Historic California route with El / MON 5-15-17 / Sigher's words / Common computer peripherals / Quetzalcoatl worshiper / Soft drink in green bottle

Monday, May 15, 2017

Constructor: Peter Gordon

Relative difficulty: Medium

THEME: INNER CHILD (58A: Part of a person's psyche ... or a hidden part of 18-, 23-, 39- or 48-Across) — types of children, or words that roughly mean "children," are in the "inner" part of all the theme answers:

Theme answers:
  • CAMINO REAL (contains "minor") (18A: Historic California route, with "El")
  • PRIVATE ENTRANCE (contains "teen") (23A: Desirable feature of a rented room)
  • CAPTAIN FANTASTIC (contains "infant") (39A: 2016 film for which Viggo Mortensen earned an Oscar nomination)
  • QWERTY KEYBOARDS (contains "tyke") (48A: Common computer peripherals)
Word of the Day: "CAPTAIN FANTASTIC"
Captain Fantastic is a 2016 American comedy-drama film written and directed by Matt Ross and starring Viggo Mortensen. The story centers on a family that is forced by circumstances to reintegrate into society after living in isolation for a decade. (wikipedia)
• • •

This is decent, largely because the theme answers are long and interesting. I had no idea "CAPTAIN FANTASTIC" was a movie. I know the phrase only from the Elton John album "CAPTAIN FANTASTIC" and the Brown Dirt Cowboy" (that is how I remember the title ... looking it up now ... Yes! I was right! I remember this album because it has a gatefold sleeve with an elaborate nightmare Hieronymus Bosch-esque wraparound cover that grossed me out as a child). But, yeah, it was a movie, and now that I look the movie up, I vaguely remember ads for it. Could Not have told you what it was called. Luckily, that answer filled itself in easily from crosses. I'm not terribly enthusiastic about this theme type, and this revealer in particular. I say this as someone who has made (too) many of this theme type. I did a puzzle where I hid Norse gods in answers (e.g. HELLOKITTY, MOODINDIGO); I did a birthday puzzle for constructor Kevin Der once where I just hid his last name in a bunch of answers (e.g. STEROIDERA); a couple years back I did a BEER BELLY puzzle for Buzzfeed (w/ Lena Webb) where we put beer types in the middle of answers (e.g. TEALEAVES, VILLAGEROADSHOW). So it's common. Too common. I've promised myself I won't use that theme type again for a decade. I know I will break that promise, but I felt it had to be made.

But it's the obviousness of INNER CHILD as a revealer that gave me pause today. I was like "this has to have been done, many times." And sure enough, it has. Many times. A very cursory look turned up three different recent crosswords with INNER CHILD revealers. Here's one that has baby animals hidden in the answers (cute!). Here's one that just has "KID" hidden in the answers a bunch of times. And then here's one that's got the exact premise as today's puzzle (and even shares the answer QWERTY KEYBOARD). "Inner" or "Middle" or "Central" or "Inside" [anything] is going to suggest this kind of theme to a constructor. It's not bad. It just is. Can be nice, can be terrible. Almost forgot—I did *another* theme like this called INSIDE DOPE where I "hid" THC in a bunch of answers (e.g. FIFTH COLUMN). Clearly I have a problem. Anyway, today's puzzle is a good example of this type of theme, even though some version of this INNER CHILD concept has been done (a lot).

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Facebook]


Larry Gilstrap 1:44 AM  

Nice Monday puzzle. The themers are solid. Make it daily harder and it would be a nice puzzle for most of the week, assuming we all agree that a TEEN is an INNER CHILD. When I retired from teaching, my goal was to become a fourteen year-old with a guitar on my back riding a skateboard. Still working on that one.

We attended a FANTASTIC wedding this weekend in the town of Los Gatos near the historic California route of the El CAMINO REAL. The gorgeous bride and groom said I DO at an idyllic setting at a winery in the hills above Santa Cruz. Cue The Doobie Brothers. We drove through Gilroy, Garlic Capital of the World, and my wife insisted on buying garlic ice cream. It tasted like garlic ice cream. Love California history.

When I first started teaching, the textbooks were horrible. Our grammar text spent page after page insisting that "sneak" was a regular verb and that the past and past participle merely added -ed. To this day, "SNUCK" is cringe worthy to my ear. That one little extra syllable, after all.

@LMS - You know I feel the pain expressed in your rant from yesterday. We talked about it, remember? Every idiot has a simple solution to a complex problem. Advocating literacy in an illiterate culture, promoting education as the key to opportunity in a society with little prospect of opportunity, and modeling civility in a uncivilized world is the battle we all should embrace, not just educators.

Nobody in my family ever went to college, ever. I ended up at San Diego State and got a BA and a teaching credential and my life changed and I am grateful. AZTEC for life!

Anonymous 2:04 AM  

Elaine BeneS really screwed me on this. I spent 10 entire minutes checking each answer trying to figure it out where I could had gone wrong on a Monday until I gave up and hit up the checker. I had Benez. I am very disappointed in myself, and eternally, Seinfeld.

chefwen 2:37 AM  

Great Monday puzzle. Not too easy, not too difficult, just right. It was fun finding all the kiddos and at my age I still think of teenagers as kids.

I worked for a company in Carlsbad CA which was right off of El Camino Real, so that was a little trip down memory lane.

@Anon 2:04 - I had trouble with Elaine at 16A also, had BENiS before BENES, easy fix.

wgh 3:17 AM  

"It's Benes, you jackass."

Loren Muse Smith 3:30 AM  

@Larry – I know, right? (And I knew someone would gripe about SNUCK, which I use instead of sneaked.)

@Aketi – share away!

This kind of trick is my absolute favorite way to play around with language. I don’t know what it is, but words hidden among other words thrill me. Early on, I bought Patrick Berry’s book on constructing, and I remember being so taken with his example of this – he hid DEMON between words (CLAUDE MONET, MADE MONEY)…and I kept going back to that page and staring.

I’ve discovered that this trick is the best kind of word-search for students who have finished a test or something. When you take away pesky in-the-language/symmetry rules, it’s not hard at all to embed stuff. The last one I did was a bunch of sentences, each hiding a student’s name. So, like

“Emily” -
Driving to Morgantown, I saw a semi lying on its side.

And “Jordan” -
When the key switches to A major, dance like you’re an angry bumblebee.

This was the single most successful exercise I came up with this year. Utterly useless but it sure kept them occupied. Finding the name is like finding an Easter egg, both literally and figuratively. Someone should publish a book of these kinds of word searches. A page of basketball terms – As I ate the barbecued rib, bleu cheese dripped down my chin. or On SNL last night, the tuba sketch was the funniest. A page of breakfast foods – We pulled to a stop. or Esau sagely nodded as he listened to Eve. Hey, Will – have your people contact my people, ok? Let’s do a book.

(Speaking of toast and sausage, skip this paragraph if you’re eating.) Anyhoo, my inner child is a 13 year old boy. On Friday, I was yucking it up with the cafeteria ladies, and the yucks turned to potty humor as they often do. I told them the joke, Why is the STARSHIP Enterprise like toilet paper? . . . Because it circles Uranus looking for Klingons.

Peter – always a pleasure.

Question of the day - When we’re being totally open, is envy something we’re willing to admit?

jae 4:25 AM  

Tough Mon. for me but Mother's Day cocktails at my daughter's may have taken a toll.

And, @Larry & lms, speaking of my daughter, she has been teaching elementary school in San Diego County for 25+ years. She loves being in the classroom, but has mostly contempt for the ever changing stream of administrators (3 superintendents in the last 5 years) who feel that they can "make a difference" (what ever that means). Her bottom line is (and this for you @lms) that she is doing her best to defeat the Bell Curve all the while knowing it is mostly a losing battle. Optimism is not necessarily a bad thing.

Liked the puzzle, nice riff on a familiar theme.

evil doug 4:35 AM  
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evil doug 4:42 AM  
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evil doug 5:05 AM  

Loren: The chance that it's I? Zero.

Lewis 6:01 AM  

@Rex -- So, this theme, and this type theme has been done before and is common. All the more reason to present it on a Monday, which introduces crosswording to new and newish solvers. It gives them something to look for up the road, in addition to probably being new for them.

This is Peter's 100th puzzle in the NYT! And it shows: this is the work of a pro. It is theme heavy, and yet there's hardly a hint of ugly fill. The clues are easy without being embarrassingly easy. It's smooth as silk, and it presents a newbie with a reveal that has a double meaning. Truly, this puzzle shimmers with excellence.

I ran into someone yesterday who was having trouble with a corner of a Thursday puzzle and showed it to me. He perfectly completed the rest of the grid. It turns out the reason he couldn't finish this one corner is that he had NO IDEA what a theme was and that a puzzle could have one. Today's puzzle would have taught him that.

My only question on this one is -- Are we to consider TEENs children? I did like the GOES out and the STAND down. And it does seem most appropriate to run a child-centered puzzle the day after Mother's Day!

Bryan 6:40 AM  

Go see Captain Fantastic! One of the best movies of 2016.

kitshef 7:09 AM  

A Monday DNF at BENiS/NiA. Didn’t know the spelling of BENES (having heard it but not seen it written), and NIA could have been something like National Institute of Academics. No crossing uninferrable proper name spellings with initialisms on a Monday, sez I.

I applaud the way all the vowel sounds are different in the ‘inner child’ than in the words forming them (the parents?).

Two Ponies 7:34 AM  

Fun solid puzzle with the right amount of difficulty for a Monday.
Just what I expect from a pro like Peter Gordon. Thanks.

I happened to see "The Imitation Game" last night. Funny surprise to see it in the grid today.

Aketi 7:35 AM  

@Lewis, everytime I start counting on my TEEN to act like and adult, he does something to remind me he's still a CHILD.

@Larry Gilstrap, the image of a TEEN with a guitar strapped on his back riding a skateBOARD made me notice on the STAND that is upright on the QWERTY KEYBOARDS. The STAND is so close to the edge of the BOARD it must be prepping to do an Ollie.

When my son was just a TYKE, my husband tried to demonstrate how to skateBOARD. He never managed to fully STAND upright and it did not end well. Whenever he gets mad when I injure myself in Martial Arts I remind him about the skateBOARD episode,

The puzzle geography of EBONY linked with EBOLA sadly mimics reality. The area I served in during Peace Corps had an outbreak the year before I arrived. It also had beautifully carved EBONY woodwork. The Mangbetu busts with the elongated heads were my favorites.

CFXK 7:36 AM  

Liked the puzzle, but...

I did find the theme a bit inconsistent. While TEEN, TYKE and INFANT each refers to a particular stage of childhood, MINOR refers to the legal status of children and to children in general.

chefbea 7:46 AM  

Finally a puzzle I could finish!!! Never heard of captain fantastic...but got it from the crosses. Fun puzzle

Irene 7:54 AM  

Charming, clever, just right for a Monday.

Teens are definitely considered children. Ask anyone training to be a pediatrician. (Just don't ask a teen.)

Mr. B 8:02 AM  

This was a nice and zippy puzzle with a bit of resistance to keep me honest...
Had EcOLi for awhile...which had me searching my memory bank for Elaine's last name. Had "sprite" in the green bottle...and put down BEaNE instead of BEENE.

Yeah, CAPTAINFANTASTIC and the Brown Dirt Cowboy was one of my favorite albums way back when...

Thanks Peter Gordon

Nancy 8:08 AM  

This did absolutely nothing for me while I was solving. Once again, it was after the fact -- and about 8-10 minutes too late -- that I realized the construction was actually pretty nifty. But it was all about the constructor's fun and not about mine. I didn't need to see the INNER CHILD to solve, and I remained blithely unaware of the theme until I got to the revealer. By then, I had already filled in all the theme answers. So I was left to judge this puzzle by the cluing alone, and evaluated by the cluing alone, this was pretty meh.

Lewis 8:49 AM  

@Bryan -- I second your CAPTAIN FANTASTIC rave.
@LMS -- "If U think I'm going to drink an RC Cola UR entirely mistaken."

Anonymous 9:17 AM  

Very first thing I thought of when I saw that clue.

RooMonster 9:37 AM  

Hey All !
Not the usual fly-through-super-easy-MonPuz, which is a good thing. Had to turn the ole brain up a notch for some of the fill. Liked that. Usually solve Mondays while doing something else so it slows down the solve.

Actually had writeovers, incan-AZTEC (never can remember who was who down there!), Alas-AHME, REmailS-RESENDS.

I don't mind these hidden words-twixt-words themes. This one didn't have circles pointing out the word, so you actually had to find them yourself. Bravo for that. Agree with @Lewis, this is a great introduction MonPuz for the 40,000 new subscribers. :-)

Poor @M&A, Peter SNUCK in a Q without using any U's! The nerve!


semioticus (shelbyl) 9:43 AM  

@wgh, I would have liked your comment incessantly if I could.

This was fun. The theme might be done before, but that doesn't mean it should cease to exist forever. Nice fill, no obscure references (at least for my level of pop culture knowledge), and now I know what a YENTA is, so a good day overall.

QuasiMojo 9:47 AM  

I'm with @Nancy on this one. Pretty clean and serviceable but overall I don't see what all the excitement is about. "Private Entrance" is a lot of effort just to get TEEN. The clue seemed contrived to me. "And guess what, Mom, the place comes with a private entrance too!" Yeah, right. NOONS? "Many noons ago, I used to eat at Katz's Deli in NY"? Nah. And pluralizing "Qwerty Keyboard" seems forced. "Oh, look Gus, there's a box full of brandnew Qwerty keyboards over there. Can you hand it to me?" Nope.

Part of what is wrong with our culture today is that people focus way too much on pleasing their INNER CHILD and not enough on acting like an adult. Just my two cents. Sorry if I sound full of QATAR today.

Oldflappyfrommississappy 10:19 AM  

We're in the money, urine the money

jberg 10:26 AM  

To put in QWERTY and not even get a pangram for it just seems wrong. I did a quick search, and ISJ can be either the Idaho State Journal, or a slangy phrase referring to the Liverpool footballer Ian St. John, and his proclivity to telling fans to 'f*ck off.' Cross that with JOYED (no worse than OARED), ant there you are.

Didn't anyone else go with a PRIVATE bathroom first?

Happy Pencil 10:39 AM  

I thought this puzzle was super fun, and I loved the freshness factor in the themers. What would have made it perfect is if the theme answers had appeared in chronological order—that is, INFANT, TYKE, TEEN, MINOR (I guess those last two are interchangeable). But perhaps that would have been an impossible task.

Liked it, as @jae would say!

notoriousRBC 10:41 AM  

@QuasiMojo the NOONS clue is in reference to High Noon, both a phrase and a great old movie.

Loved this puzzle - I wasn't sure on SEXTANT (had SEnTANT at first). Still not sure what that is, but otherwise this was an easy, quick, fun puzzle. Captain Fantastic was easy for me, since I work in the industry. So nice to get a more obscure reference like that!

Masked and Anonymous 10:43 AM  

Ah yep, but SNUCK has a lot of the inner beauty, in this here puz.

Real fun solve, tho. Don't see many 16x15 MonPuzs. But, hey -- whatever makes yer captain fantastic.

"Was IST das?" Ach. Das ist eine kleine desperatiche gridfillung. Sehr gut. Beste weejectichkeit. Aber … nur ein U-liebe? Ich habe schmerz und angst, Herr Gordonmeister.

Kinda like the hiveful of BENES and BEENE and BERET. Also partial to STARSHIP and SYDNEY.

fave moo-cow eazy-E MonPuz clue: {Election mo.} = NOV.

Peter Gordon is a pretty darn solid fireball-breathin constructioneer, and it's interestin that he tends to specialize in MonPuz's, at the NYT. Maybe he finds herdin words into a moo-cow easy grid a challengin exercise, in a nice, change-of-pace sort of way. Anyhoo, congrats Mr. Gordon, on yer 100th NYTPuz. U do good, persistent work. Thanx for the extra squares of fun, today.

Masked & AnonymoUs


Carola 10:49 AM  

I thought this was a great Monday puzzle. I like it when the theme answers refuse to give up their secret until the reveal, and I enjoyed the ONE SEC or two it took to locate the hidden CHILDren.
RAISINETS? I don't think so. Milk Duds all the way.

Joseph Michael 11:00 AM  

When teens have the right to vote and can be sent to war, it is hard to think of them as "children."

Aside from that, I DO think the puzzle was fine. Had more crunch than the usual Monday and I appreciated the fact that the themers didn't just repeat the same inner word.

Liked the clues for OARED, ANTS, and SOLES which added a little zest to otherwise routine entries.

Not sure how I feel about the grammatical existence of SNUCK or the proliferation of NOONS. And NAGAT sounds like something you eat.

Anoa Bob 11:20 AM  

Greetings from TEX-Mex land. Anyone remember the Seinfeld episode where Elaine's cousin, BEENE BERET BENES was on the show?

The grid relies quite a bit on the oh-so-convenient S. There are several two-for-one, share a final S at the point where a Down meets an Across, e.g., the end of OMEGA/CLONE. Those Ss add nothing to the puzzle. They just make it easier to fill the grid. And I always think that the use of a POC (plural of convenience) to gratuitously boost a themer's letter-count so it will fit its slot, as happens here with QWERTYKEYBOARDS (hi @Quasimojo), is a major detraction to the puzzle's overall quality.

AZTEC, Class of '73.

Unknown 11:35 AM  

Pleasurable solving experience made better because I needed to guess about whether CaminoReal was going to be part of the theme or not. When I got to the clue for QWERTYKeyboards I paused for a moment to consider if there were a military rank that needed to be part of the answer. Nice misdirect.

efrex 11:37 AM  

Been quite a while since I last commented here. Trying to get back into the regular solving swing after a few months' away (darned new job making me actually do work instead of the important things in life...)

Anyhow, I can't complain too much about this, although the E and A in NEA are pretty tough crosses for a Monday, methinks (they were for me anyhow, and I think of NEA as the arts group before the educational one). Still trying to decide if the theme revealers should've been circled or shaded in this one. I like contained phrases like this in cryptic crossword clues (although it frustrates me to no end that I usually find those last).

Some 20 years ago, I caught a program at the NY public library featuring staff members of the Oxford English Dictionary, and the author of "The Professor and the Madman" (FANTASTIC book on the making of the OED). During the discussion, an older woman complained about SNUCK, and an OED staffer noted that it's been in the language for quite some time, although it's hard to explain why it sneaked in. I can be a stickler for some grammatical usages, but this one never bothered me, I must admit...

Anonymous 11:37 AM  

Wow, I always enjoy it when Rex takes his chill pills and relaxes a bit. No ranting and raving today, and it's not even Annabelle's Monday, lol. I'm an advanced beginner at best, and enjoyed solving this one. I'm perhaps a little less nit-picky than some others - I believe most of us would agree that a 13 year-old still qualifies as a child, for example.

QuasiMojo 11:42 AM  

@Anoa thanks for the nod! I agree. And @notorious, yes, I love that movie, but pluralizing noon, not so much. Would you say "midnights"?

Malsdemare 11:52 AM  

I'm really posting here today so y'all can gawk at my new avatar, my tripod puppy, Pogo.

But I liked the puzzle and I'm damned impressed with the ease with which @lms can toss out a WHOLE slew of similar clues. Quite the word acrobat, our Loren.

I doubt any of us would question whether a fourteen year old is a CHILD, at least a great deal of the time. But by 18, they're ADULTS most of the time. So TEENS as a blanket child seemed off to me, but I won't quibble. Some of my college student teens made my 10 year old seem mature. Is that opaque enough?

Thanks Mr. Gordon.

r.alphbunker 12:01 PM  

Superbly done puzzle (by both me and the constructor). I flatlined the progress graph and my letter map was perfectly sectioned. And there were no erasures.

Details are here.

Anonymous 12:01 PM  

ok Monday puzzle - not fond of "tyke" tho

GILL I. 12:05 PM  

I feel exactly as @Lewis does. This is a wonderful puzzle for the beginners. Nothing wrong; all clean and nicely doable. My two cents.
Shouldn't it be "EL" CAMINO REAL? My husband and I have taken the Route 1 and 101 looking for the missions. My favorite is Mission San Miguel off of 101 on the Salinas River.
@Larry G. I love Gilroy - I love that whole area. You can smell the garlic miles away...and the ice cream...yeah, it tastes like garlic. Roasted garlic, fried garlic, garlic on a stick, garlic up your nose... I don't think Gilroy is known for anything else.
A pleasant Monday, Peter and congratulation on number 100.

Dick Swart 12:12 PM  

'Camino Real' is a recollection for me of Tennessee Williams's "Ten Blocks on the Camino Real'.

In our college production staged in 1954 a year after its appearance on Broadway (50 performances), I had two small roles, neither of which I really understood, but fortunately the audience did.

The play has been sporadically produced and each time with outstanding actors.

I still hear that off-stage voice announcing scene changes to the audience ... "Block 9 on the Camino Real".

Andrew Heinegg 12:19 PM  

I need to stop looking at the
constructor's name before I do a puzzle because it changes the way I do both the solve and how I feel about the puzzle itself. In this case, I think of Mr. Gordon as a polished and professional crossword composer and, while doing and after completing this one, I stuck to that thought of how nice it is. Then, some of the commenters made me think otherwise. Ah well.

I, like Malsdemare, am quite impressed with LMS's ability to come up with a passel of similar clues. But, I am more impressed with Malsdemare's new logo or rather the 'story' behind it. People that are able and willing to take on animals that are not 'right' tell you a lot about themselves by taking on that challenge. Bless you and good luck with the puppy.

tea73 12:59 PM  

I have a kid who lives on EL CAMINO REAL and we watched CAPTAIN FANTASTIC recently (good movie - watch it Rex!) so those were easy. I couldn't see what the theme was at all, looking at the clue - trying to find ego or something more psychological. I got stuck for a long time at Elaine's last name (I've never watched Seinfeld) and had stupidly put in NtA instead of NEA.

Malsdemare 1:15 PM  

@ Andrew, thanks for the compliment but this is easy. Pogo's lineage could not be better in terms of temperament: social, confident, bright, tolerant. I've been doing pet therapy with kids at risk for centuries and can't think of a better partner for me to share with troubled or differently abled or seriously ill kids than a sweet three-legged 80lb bundle of fur and love. And ya know what? Tripod puppies can't dig or paw you!!! Our sole disappointment is that he won't be able to do the lumping in agility. Otherwise, all is good.

Teedmn 1:17 PM  

I'm the person who sneaks SNUCK into a sentence. I was writing an email to an erudite person recently and was about to splatz SNUCK into my story when I decided to check online whether it was proper usage.

As is often the case when I am ambivalent about using a word, I found that it is one of those words which have SNUCK into the language but many people still resist it. And the website I was on emphasized how much of an outlier it was - other similarly formed verbs have not morphed into that past tense form. One doesn't say "The oil luck onto the garage floor", "The storm wruck havoc on the small town" or "Unemployment puck in August".

But I think SNUCK is in my lexicon, for better or worse. Apologies if that's just my INNER CHILD throwing a tantrum.

Thanks, PG, nice Monday puzzle.

GILL I. 1:18 PM  

@Malsdemere....Woof! what a cutie pie.

ArtO 2:10 PM  

The theme of the puzzle tells you all you need to know re. sneaked vs.SNUCK. What kid ever said "I sneaked into..." rather than "I snuck into..."

Charles Flaster 2:30 PM  

Loved this theme and reveal.
Although it has been previously done I do appreciate the construction.
Thanks PG

Mohair Sam 2:37 PM  

@Mals - Fine lookin' dog for sure.

@jberg - Having rented a bed-sitter in London's Stoke Newington for a period of time the PRIVATE bathroom did indeed cross my mind as a desirable feature.

Masked and Anonymous 5:19 PM  

@muse: Gave yer cool question of the day some deserved thought. M&A examined a lifetime of experiences, and at the end of the day, could only ever answer with another question back …

Is it being totally open, to say: "I wish I had that extra-big cinnamon roll, and you had a wart on your nose"?

M&A Philosophy Desk

Tough-ass assignment of the day: Hide the seven deadly sins in word-spannin phrases. Good luck, with gluttony.

RooMonster 6:50 PM  

How's this one?
The manager called in the car salesman to ask why there were still lots of unsold cars. "You sure have a glut, Tony. Better drum up some buisness!" ?

Stealing the ball from @LMS :-P

Malsdemare 8:24 PM  

Roo. You rocked it today! "You sure have a gut, Tony." Excellently?

BarbieBarbie 9:06 PM  

@Teedmn, LOL about "unemployment puck."
I got Peter's stuff just fine but am so out of my depth here.. @EvilDoug, HAT SIZE?!?

Nancy 9:13 PM  

@Maldesmare -- Awwwww. So cute! I just keep falling in love with all the dog/avatars on this blog.

Nancy 9:16 PM  

@Malsdemare, cont. -- And I forgot to say: Pogo's name is inspired!

Liz T. 9:29 PM  

Is anyone else having trouble loading the WaPo puzzle? All of a sudden today it won't load, on my work PC or my own MacBook, in Chrome or Safari or Internet Explorer. Cleared my cache, still nope.

Elephant's CHILD 9:32 PM  

@Loren, re your closing question of the day
Reminded me of the most excellent secretary who ran the department I worked in at the VAMC. Her name was Penny, and evenso she married a guy last name of Ennis. Helas, we lost her young to a bad disease, so I don't envy her.

Leapfinger 10:21 PM  

I've noticed that most things which might a PRIVATE ENTRANCE will merely a SERGEANT AMUSE.

Thought this Monday puzzle a most palpable hit. Solved with Acrosses only and missed only 3 entries and the themers, but enjoyed all the cleverness that abounded. Interesting to find that members of the EBO tribe have settled in both LA and NY. Fun to see SNUCK today after some solvers yesterday ran into SHUK and SNUK while looking for SAUK.

Can't think of anything that GAULed my SOLE and the QWERTYKEYBOARD was lovely. Oh, has it been done before? Well, there's a few things I enjoyed more than once. Maybe I enjoyed it so much because my drug ration has been increased.

A Gordon Bleu to the Centenarian

Anonymous 11:02 PM  

@QuasiMojo, no QATAR, but maybe a little Flemish.

@AnoaBob, class of '73? You're just a little TYKE!!(Am resisting the siren call of TYKE under UGA)


Amaze Clones Morals 3:02 AM  

Ooooh, did I love this!

A perfect puzzle (tho I would say 10, 15, 16, 15, 10 is NOT typical Monday...more a Tuesday in that it had 5 theme lines, 66 theme squares... a German expression, and names like REMAX and BENES.
Hard! But (Captain) FANTASTIC!

Got off to a rocky start as I thought renters would like a PRIVATEbaThroom...
and I bit with the PRIVATE CAPTAIN thing and wondered if CAMINO were some sort of rank in the Spanish army!

And I loved the wink that it was just a J short of a pangram...
(made up for by 7 Ys
I think J is even called Y-Grec in French, or is it the other way around?)

Plus even tho it was quintessential Peter Gordon, only ONE baseball ref (ERA) but we got a mani-pedi, a little Elaine, ELLA, ALICE and a YENTA to balance all the Star Trek stuff!

Peter is a brilliant man, fantastic constructor (and editor) has always pushed for more money for fellow constructors and this shows that Will never holds a grudge.
PG can be hilariously prickly. I love him.
This puzzle is very opposite of NFM, Peter, if you are reading this!

Just read Jeff Chen at XwordInfo curious to see if this got the POW! and learned it was Peter's 100th NYT puzzle!!!!!! KUDOS.

Unknown 9:08 AM  

Phishing?? Schuss??sent up??
Couldn't finish a Tuesday . Frustrating

Malsdemare 10:17 AM  

Amaze clones morels. "Y" is y-grew. "J" is zany.

Malsdemare 10:18 AM  

Dam it, autocorrect. j is y-grec and J is zhay

d'Artagnan 7:30 PM  

Puisqu'on dit Y, on dit Ee-Greque.

Il n'y a pas de quoi.

Bob 10:21 AM  

Tough Monday for this 82 year old.

Burma Shave 10:52 AM  


because his INNERCHILD had the GAUL
to STAND and conquer the AZTEC.


BS2 11:17 AM  


the WHOLE room with his chANTS,
the IDEA's to make ALICE dance
while he TOYED with her over SEXTANTs.


spacecraft 12:33 PM  

Nothing with STARSHIP in it can be all bad. Actually, the nose-crinkler here is the RR (random re-verb) RESENDS. With that out of the way we have a pretty nice puzzle. I like it when a revealer is a familiar phrase that at the same time helps to locate the themers, such as INNERCHILD. Another could be girls' names, and the reveal could be WOMANWITHIN. "Reply to 'Why don't you turn off the TV?'": FOOTBALLISON. "Sign in an Eskimo store": PARKARENTAL; etc.

It's a pleasure to install Elaine BENES, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, as DOD, but honorable mention must surely go to ALICE Krige as the disembodied Borg queen in "Star Trek: First Contact." Sizzling.

Congrats to Brooks Koepka on his US Open victory. Here's another birdie.

rondo 12:53 PM  

Not sure I'd've seen the INNERCHILD without the reveal at the end. The way it should be.

Flew to Frisco (not FRESCA) and bought a car at a lot with an El CAMINOREAL address in Sunnyvale, CA back in 2012. Took nearly a month to drive it back home. FANTASTIC tour of the western U.S. Still have said car.

NOON'S the time today to get an appraisal on my potential new property. SNUCK outta work today. Biking after to RELAX.

Looks like J-L. Dreyfuss as Elaine BENES gets yeah baby honors today.

Very nice MonDAY puz.

Diana,LIW 1:10 PM  

A bit more resistant than most Mondays - I agree with @Lewis's review. Good puz to let a beginner in on how to solve. And I'd put that RESEND answer in there - the beginner will be seeing a lot of RE___ in his or her career here. (And POCs, also, will be SNUCK in.)

My one big error, which I did resolve, was I TOYED with the QuERTYKEYBOARDS. Stared at the resulting uHOLE for a while. Finally, an errant neuron clicked into place, and the WHOLE puzzle was done and I could RELAX. Double duh!

Had a flight of 2 soups yesterday at a late brunch - a creamy mushroom and a lobster bisque. The MORAL of that story - it pays to eat soup that's not from a can.

Diana, Lady-in-Waiting for Crosswords

leftcoastTAM 1:57 PM  

Pretty good Monday puzzle and all that. Agreed, but might one MINOR cavil be allowed?

Lots of MINORs and TEENs would resent being called a CHILD, and understandably so, wouldn't you think?

Oh well, forget it.

rain forest 2:46 PM  

Good start to the week with an easy and expertly constructed puzzle. The themers were fun to get, and once the revealer was filled in, finding those INNER CHILDs was a nice way to mop up.

Who cares about POCs? Words can be pluralized, and many appear in puzzles. But, always nice to see @Anoa Bob religiously totting them up as his pet peeve. Me? I hate MCOCs (Mexican civilizations of convenience). You'll often see constructors sneaking OLMEC, AZTEC, MAYAN, and TOITEC into the grid. Man, that really grates.

@Lady Di - while I agree about made-from-scratch soups vs. canned, I do love Campbell's Mushroom, especially when I slice a few fresh 'rooms into it, and add a dash of Thyme. Yum.

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