Rebellion leader of 1786 / FRI 4-12-19 / Sweet locale in T.S. Eliot's Wasteland / Utterly in modern slang / Jalapeño after smoking / Classic book that begins At far end of town where Grickle-grass grows

Friday, April 12, 2019

Constructor: Howard Barkin

Relative difficulty: Easy (4:12) 


THEME: none

Word of the Day: SHAYS Rebellion (32D: Rebellion leader of 1786) —
Shays' Rebellion was an armed uprising in Massachusetts in opposition to increased government coercion in taxing individuals and in their trades[2]; the fight took place mostly in and around Springfield during 1786 and 1787. American Revolutionary War veteran Daniel Shays led four thousand rebels (called Shaysites) in a protest against economic and civil rights injustices. Shays was a farmhand from Massachusetts at the beginning of the Revolutionary War; he joined the Continental Army, saw action at the Battles of Lexington and ConcordBattle of Bunker Hill, and Battles of Saratoga, and was eventually wounded in action.
In 1787, Shays' rebels marched on the United States' Armory at Springfield in an unsuccessful attempt to seize its weaponry and overthrow the government. The federal government found itself unable to finance troops to put down the rebellion, and it was consequently put down by the Massachusetts State militia and a privately funded local militia. The widely held view was that the Articles of Confederation needed to be reformed as the country's governing document, and the events of the rebellion served as a catalyst for the Constitutional Convention and the creation of the new government.
The shock of Shays' Rebellion drew retired General George Washington back into public life, leading to his two terms as the first president of the United States. (wikipedia)
• • •

Personal record for a Friday, and first thing in the morning, too. Such a delightful way to wake up. This is such a clean and bouncy and lovely grid. This grid wants you to rise and shine so it can make you pancakes. The number of "ick" "no!" and "ugh"s it elicited was virtually zero. Possibly actually zero. I actually had very bad feelings right off the bat, as I wrote in BERG (which is a fine word) for 1D: Sight on an Alaskan cruise, but then had to change it because of ANT (19A: Aesop's "The ___ and the Grasshopper"), leaving me with "blank blank blank A" for the Alaskan cruise sight, and four letters ending "A" ....? Well, I disgruntledly wrote in ATKA, aka the Island Home of Crosswordese. It's where the infamous Oracle of OOXTEPLERNON is located (OOXTEPLERNON is the God of Bad Short Fill, and I don't say his name much because he's kinda like Voldemort that way). So I was like "Really, puzzle, right off the bat, we're goin' back to ATKA (ATKA ... ATKA), we're going back to ATKA?" Nah, I don't think so! Turns out the Alaskan cruise sight is just an ORCA (also crosswordese, but also a very real creature, so no one cares that it's crosswordese). I had a few tiny struggles getting out of the NW—SET AT and WASPS both eluded me for a little bit, and the last three letters of STEPMOM required crosses because -SON or -DAD were both viable. But I went down SHOWPIECE, over to the west with MESSI, back to the middle with AT THE MOMENT and CURAÇAO, and just exploded into the rest of the grid. Polished it off with barely any hesitation and much delight. No "SON OF A"s from me. Just OOH and some more OOHs and The End.


I honestly thought it was SHAY apostrophe S Rebellion, so I balked at writing in SHAYS, since the clue did not indicate a possessive. So much for my Letter of Commendation in AP US History from 1986! I also had a moment of head-cocked-in-slight-disbelief slow-typing when, after getting STREET FOOD, I looked at 50A: Led a parade, musically (--F--) and wrote in "F-I-F-E-D-? ... huh ... let's check these crosses, then ... FROM ... IOTA ... wow, yeah, it's FIFED. OK then!" Seems like a very specific kind of parade, but I got the answer quickly, so fifiing must be iconic enough as a parade-leading musical activity to work. Loved the clue on ROGET (49D: 19th-century author whose works are still read word for word) ("word for word"! 'Cause he wrote a thesaurus! Good one, dad!). The only answer I had no clue about was LORI (54D: Rick's wife on "The Walking Dead"), since I stopped watching that show when it became terminally boring (i.e. early in season 2). My lasting image from this puzzle will surely be of THE LORAX as a SEXTing SATANIST. Thanks, Howard.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

P.S. 24A: Starbucks competitor (MCCAFE) = hard LOL. Take that, Howard Schultz!


[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Facebook]

89 comments:

Lewis 6:17 AM  

This was a lovely pastiche, inviting me to raid my knowledge bin, plucking delights from the worlds of food, drink, the arts, history, geography, fauna, sports, exclamations, and the dark side.

I liked seeing NOTE near ATMS, the cross of STREET FOOD and MESSI, the plethora of words ending in A (8) and containing double-O's (7), plus the inclusion of MORPH and a backward MORF.

Felt like a journey as well as a puzzle, and a very enjoyable one at that. Thank you, Howard!

Loren Muse Smith 6:18 AM  

Rex – I’ll say it again: you do positive review very nicely. Now I want some pancakes.

So many erasures this morning. “Wail” before WEEP. And that was after erasing “mynah.” “Reset” before SET AT. I bet a ton of us put in “Sharif” for OTOOLE.

I got a kick out of WASPS sharing the grid with BOHO-chic. I present more like a wasp: pearls, Talbot’s sheath, panty hose… (Yes. Panty hose. Every Single Day except dress-down Friday) My husband, mystifyingly, sees me as boho-chic; think peasant skirt. Think no make-up, long straight hair parted in the middle. Think the clue for 35D.

Speaking of TARANTULAs – I love spiders. Love’em. Whenever I see one, I go all telepathic on it and ask it to go off and eat any cockroaches it can find. If I wake to find a huge wolf spider (like, the circumference of a biscuit, I swear) in my sink trying desperately to find some traction to climb up the side, I wet a paper towel and drape if over the edge so it has an escape. But I always tell it it owes me 10 extra roach-eatings as my reward for coming to its rescue. Anyway…. I recently saw something so upsetting I won’t embed it. Suffice it to say that there is a tarantula out there called a “dinnerplate tarantula” that was caught on camera proving its full-on marsupial-vore status. Dinnerplate tarantula - arachneus dinnerplateus. Hah. I’ll dub my sink visitors arachneus biscuitus.

On GOES. The verb go can be what we in the business call a quotative .

My mom always rolls her eyes and GOES, get off that damn phone. (Basically, My mom always rolls her eyes says, “get off that damn phone.”)

I used to think that the quotative like does exactly the same work and has pretty much replaced the quotative go until I was listening to Anne Curzan, who led me to realize that like is more powerful; it can represent maybe not someone’s actual words but instead their perceived thought. So

My mom always rolls her eye and is like, get off that damn phone.

doesn’t necessarily mean that she uttered the words. It could just mean that’s what the daughter was guessing she was thinking. I’ll pause while you write this all down.

It never occurred to me that MCCAFE was a coffee considered to compete with Starbucks. I’ve just looked into this and discovered, duh, that it’s owned by McDonalds. I’ve never hidden the fact that I’m a McDonalds fan. A Big Mac is sublime. When I got the call that Dad was failing (on a Sunday morning), I first rushed to school to leave lesson plans for the week. I have no memory of what I left; I was I guess in shock kinda. So then I drove home to pack and start for NC. I had not eaten a thing. Couldn’t. But about 5 hrs in, I was tired and hungry-but-not hungry, you know? So I pulled through a McDonald’s drive-thru and ordered a caramel macchiato. I’m a black coffee drinker, so this iced sweet stuff was new to me. Those first few sips, I could literally feel the sugar seep into my system, energizing me, comforting me. I never even noticed the McCafe printed on the cup. Now I’m OBSESSEd with them.

“Corny” for CONIC. (Mercifully I didn’t consider their horn shape first.) Be honest. If you’re all alone and deign to eat some Bugles, don’t you first put one on each finger and then wave them around like tentacles? How can you not? Instant mood-lifter.

I love the PHENOM (!) of leaving off the last part of an utterance, like SON OF A. What the? In those cases, you’re sparing the listener a bad word. But we also do it to show unspeakable rage. Why you little… I oughta…

Howard - lovely themeless. You must have put a lot of work into this one. I can’t even…

Harryp 6:25 AM  

WASPS, ROGET, BOHO,TARANTULA, some aww inspiring moments. Fun Puz by Howard Barkin. Nuff said.

DeeJay 6:29 AM  

Nice puzzle, but I'm a little confused.

Entries with tildes are downright felonies, but entries with cedilles aren't even misdemeanors? Am I missing something? Or is this all a bunch of hooha?

Sirin:) 6:31 AM  

I’m usually hesitant to check your blog after doing a puzzle I liked but today I figured there was no way you couldn’t have liked it! This was a joy to solve for me as well. I can’t always finish fridays so I guess this was on the easy side as I finished and broke my old record for a Friday but no complaints here.

Kevin 6:34 AM  

I actually thought it was Shay’s until right now. I had justified the answer because of the phrasing of the clue. It said “Rebellion (with capital R) leader.” So I thought, “Oh! Just a tricky answer because “Shay’s” comes before (leads) Rebellion!

E.A. Poe 6:53 AM  

Walking Dead: not only terminally boring and repetitive, but whenever a character "type" was killed off, sure enough another character of the same type was introduced a few episodes later. Otherwise, how could you keep recycling the same story lines if you were missing one of the character types?

And the producers thought people would be fooled by changing the locations. HA!

Well, apparently a lot of people were. Like real life America.

Howard B 7:00 AM  

Just wanted to op in and say that the best clues here were the work of the editor. Credit where it's due :).

Hartley70 7:00 AM  

Lickety split and I was done with this puzzle. It was right on my wavelength from the PPP to the slang, but never felt easy. I had a blast and I’m looking forward to another Barkin Friday already.

SONOFA was my favorite answer because it was unexpected and at first glance cries out for multiple meanings. A couch one’s forbidden to sit on in an exhibit because it has a little rope across the cushions came to me first. But then I decided it’s the name for the new couch in the den where the dog is found sleeping each time you quietly walk in the room.

kitshef 7:25 AM  

sAn before LAS my only overewrite. MIASARA needed every cross.

If you are a soccer fan at all, and have not seen it, watch this play by Wayne ROONEY that turned around DC United’s 2018 season. Note that DC’s goalie has come forward for the free kick so their goal is unguarded. ROONEY first has to make a goal-saving tackle, then the incredible pass. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBSrKMfz33w

pabloinnh 7:33 AM  

Hand up for the SHAYS thing. Now I want it to be Shays's Rebellion. WIMPS before WASPS off the W. What does that say about my opinion of the upper crust? SAN before LAS. Pro tip: SAN is far more common. I think. Actually, I'm guessing. FIFED is that Revolutionary War painting with the drummer and the fifer all limping along, I think, otherwise it is totally manufactured for this puzzle.

And, TWO famous footballers. Life is good.

Good on you for the credit where credit is due post, Howard B. My late uncle Howard B. would definitely approve. Thanks for an EXTRACRISPY Friday.

Michiganman 7:41 AM  

For some reason Fridays often mess me up but this was enjoyable and satisfying. Had Wail but then needed ETUDE so...Oh, WEEP. Same with MAXIM, had Motto but EXTRACRISPY so....ah, MAXIM. I could have gotten each of these right the first try, but was actually more fun the way I did it. What a great themeless.

Hungry Mother 7:44 AM  

It didn’t feel easy, but my time indicated that it was. Good exercise for the old brain today. Lots of football, as the rest of the world calls it, clues. Still have a basketball hangover.

Elise 7:46 AM  

Went with stepdad and dunkin, but aorta set me straight (though my autocorrect likes sorta better). A few struggles in the NE and not my fastest Friday but a satisfying solve.

amyyanni 7:47 AM  

Well done! I confidently threw down DUNKIN instead of MCCAFE, then worked the downs to find the error of my ways. Otherwise, fairly smooth sailing. It was a fast solve, but challenging enough to make it a perfect Friday. I can't imagine how long it took to create. Tip o' the cap, Howard B.

Z 8:11 AM  

Well Actually... The last time I saw Consumers' Report do coffee places McDonald's was rated the highest. Starbucks does tend to over roast their dark roasts. Besides, both tend to focus on and maximize profit by adding a shot of caffeine to what are essentially shakes. So, yeah, if you're one to not be easily swayed by the marketing and are on a road trip, Mickey D's is absolutely a competitor for Starbuck's. Did that knowledge help me? Har! Was thinking Cylons and Moby Dick. Had to get to MCCA-- before the penny dropped.

Rex does have some weird knowledge/memory gaps at times. FIFE and Drum anyone? Bueller? Bueller? SON OF A, there's a Fife and Drum leading the 4th of July Parade at the ball park in Bull Durham, one of the greatest baseball movies of all time. Speaking of Bueller - MIA SARA! Rowwrrr.

Hand up for LOL at THE LORAX SEXTing his (?) SATANIST girlfriend. Do we really want to know what they do in the grickle grass?

Super easy south, but both northern corners took a little extra. Solidly medium here.

RooMonster 8:12 AM  

Hey All !
Got puz 100℅ today. HOOHA! Was looking sketchy for a bit, though. Wrongness in some Center words THROWing SHADE (har) on my solve. Writeovers were: snobS-WASPS, STEPbro-STEPMOM, tres-BOHO, Isle-ILES, lIeS-fIbS-SINS, wOw-OOH, sAn-LAS, LaRa-LORI, and couldn't think of another five letter word for 34D. "Hmm, there's ADAGE, AXIOM, TENET, what am I missing?"

And really wanted STREETmeat but didn't write it in.

Got THAMES, and having the A for the 48D clue, automatically put in ADELE. It seems any Singer clue that's five letters, in the 2010's, and starts with an A is her.

Why would a SATANIST use an inverted pentagram? Isn't a right-way-up pentagram the norm? Asking for a friend.


Is ETUDE having an attitude online?
BYO YOOHOO, you MAD NEN, you can't have mine!
And I'm still Waiting for GODOT.

I HATE TO ASK, you SON OF A... :-)
RooMonster
DarrinV

mmorgan 8:15 AM  

I think I always thought it was Shay’s as well, even though it happened right around here and we even have a Daniel Shay’s Highway and a Shay Street right nearby. Howdaya like that.

@LMS — you may have outdone yourself today but you can keep the spiders.

As for the puzzle, what’s not to love?

Z 8:18 AM  

@Roo - If you really care. Basically, the five pointed star is a symbol of Christ so turning it upside down is a symbol of Satan.

Sir Hillary 8:41 AM  

This was fine, but I didn't love it as much as many here apparently do. For one, it offered barely any resistance. More importantly, nothing really sizzled for me -- not even the EXTRACRISPY STREETFOOD.

There were some things to like though:
-- Soccer mini-theme: MESSI and ROONEY (each a one-time teenage PHENOM) plus, as clued, DOHA.
-- Little (or, as @LMS points out, not-so-little) many-legged critters: ANT, TARANTULA...even WASPS.
-- The clue for SEXT is outstanding. I liked the one for GODOT as well.

Back to DOHA...does anyone else feel the clue here is the equivalent of 1994 World Cup site for PASADENA. I suppose the difference may be that DOHA is the only city in Qatar that most of us have ever heard of. And, who knows, maybe the country is so small and its population so concentrated that all the proposed stadiums are in DOHA. The very fact that I'm writing this paragraph underscores the absurdity of FIFA's decision to award its most prestigious event to a country the size of Connecticut with no history in the sport.

TOTES is "modern" only if 2005 is modern. Usually @Rex shreds entries like this.

What's the over/under on when LORI is clued as College admission cheater mom Laughlin?

Disgusting thought of the day: mixing CURACAO and YOOHOO into a MCCAFE. You're welcome.

webwinger 8:45 AM  

Under 30 minutes with no googles = good Friday (a week early I guess). All the longer answers seemed to pop up with just a couple of crosses. But I also agree with @Rex (and pretty much everyone else, it seems) that this was an exceptionally well done themeless puzzle.

Always exciting to get a sighting of the constructor here, especially when not a regular. And how generous of Howard B to credit the usually-maligned-here Will S for some of the fine clueing!

Justus 8:51 AM  

No comment about the racial epithet WASPS? Any racial identification language is biased, one way or another…

Sluggo 8:57 AM  

Maybe it’s just me, but I really like when it’s a positive review, without a inane rant. Maybe it just happens so infrequently, it takes me by surprise. But yet I come here most days...

Liked the puzzle, only one minute slower than my Friday record (not that I care much about times).

My only comment was on DOHA. Olympic Games are hosted by cities, World Cups are hosted by countries. 2018 in Russia, 2022 in Qatar. They would have better served by clueing it as “Host of the 2022 World Cup final.”

GILL I. 9:07 AM  

Nice puzzle...Took me a while to get the old shoe in the door, and for that, I thank ANT. So what did I see on my Alaskan cruise that I never took that ends with an A? The nicely maligned ORCA. The C gave me yummy CHIPOTLE, the P gave me ESP and I thought, uh oh, ESP again. Nobody has that except dogs. Not to worry, Howard gives us Espana.
Speaking of yummy and coffee. I am a WASP when it comes to that delicious (thank goodness an Ethiopian goatherder invented the stuff) wake up call. MC CAFE's is actually good. Not so sure about the Big Mac. It almost killed me.
Let's see...what was my favorite? All of it. The cluing was primo, the answers were in my real world and I felt good that this was another Googless fest.
A few OOH's while I look for good memories. Ay, dios mio, @Loren. I'm betting you're the only one that mistook handsome OTOOLE for even more handsome Sharif as Lawrence. My droolfest Sharif played Ali.
I stopped watching "The Walking Dead" when they offed Glen. I don't even think it was in the original comics. Meh. I am now re-watching season 7 of GoT - getting ready for the new one coming this Sunday. I LOVE GoT. Please don't try and burst my bubble by saying how stupid the series are. I love dragons, TARANTULAS, and the fact that the women in the series are all smart, beautiful, evil and SATANIST's. Do not call me Sunday night at 9 pm. I will be sitting in my favorite chair, drinking something good and being perfectly happy watching a lot of gore. All for the good of mankind.
MAD MEN was my other OBSESSion.

Nancy 9:07 AM  

Not easy for me. I loved the Friday-worthy struggle I had with this puzzle, but not so much the reasons for my struggle. Where there was wordplay I sailed through (OBSESSES; AORTA; RAP SHEET; BOOTLEG; PHENOM), but where there was pop culture trivia -- and there was lots of it -- I kept hitting the wall. I'm amazed I finished without looking any of it up. It may have earned a billion dollars, but I've never heard of ROGUE ONE. I've passed a zillion Starbucks in my life, but not a single MCCAFE. I don't even know if there is one in NYC. Who's MIASARA? Or is it MIA SARA? Thank heavens for the names I did know: ROGET (beautifully clued); GODOT (beautifully clued); MESSI; O'TOOLE and MAD MEN.

And another ugly bit of modern slang to match the previously-introduced-to-me-right-here ADORBS. TOTES for "utterly". I didn't know it and couldn't get it until I finally changed I HAvE TO ASK to I HATE TO ASK. Till then, I had TOvES. Lewis Carroll, anyone?

A mixed bag for me. What I loved, I loved. What I didn't, I didn't.

Dorothy Biggs 9:11 AM  

MIASARA crossing SHAYS = natick for me. I just guessed on the A. It was a good guess and there weren't many options, but I knew neither name (I now remember Shay somehow) and being two proper nouns, that A could have been an E or even an O or U...not likely, but possible. See also all kinds of "Soccer superstar" names.

I don't think that WASPS is an "epithet" as much as it can be read as a pejorative...kinda like "dinks" (Double Income No Kids). I've never quite understood the P part of that...since most times when someone points to someone they'd call "waspy" are just middle to upper middle class white people who lead beige lives. Catholics do that too. And probably satanists. But for the most part, the White Anglo Saxon part is just a way to say White of European Descent. WED. Not sure why that didn't catch on...You all can use it if you like.

FIFED? No. Do you say "fluted?" "clarinetted?" You might say "trumpeted," and that would be 1000x more to the clue than "fifed." You can be "drummed" out of something, and someone might have "harped" about you not taking out the trash. But FIFED? Now you're just making it up.

My SO puts CURACAO in our margaritas. Probably because it's fancy.

Well, this comment turned out to be just about as long as LMS's. BTW, LMS why not just start your own blog and be done with it? lol Your word count today was probably about the same as Rex's...as it is most days. I'm sure you'd get a following.

Rube 9:16 AM  

The NE is a total mess. That's total mess not totes which is either a verb (he totes) meaning carries or adds, or a brand name for galoshes. But it is utterly wrong as used in this puzzle. Neither I nor my adolescent daughter or anyone in beteeen uses this term.

And no one polite enough to say gosh darn it would say sonofa whoch sounds like Calif wine country and really is sonofabitch or more colloquially accurate sonuvabitch.
3 soccer clues? It's baseball season. This is America. We don't do soccer. And Mccafe is a menu item. Starbucks is a restaurant chain. They don't compete. MickyD would be at least a correct altho misspelled answer. Let's hope for better tomorrow.

Anonymous 9:21 AM  

Poor us: the people who don’t own or watch televisions thus don’t understand (or care about) modern culture! Alas! It makes solving much more difficult.

Paulus Johannes 9:33 AM  

Wanted HALLUCINOGENIC for 17A but it wouldn’t go. A couple of downs helped me out. I was mildly surprised that a CHIPOTLE is actually a jalapeño…used to think it was separate type. My dear friend, who comes from México City, has been trying to educate me about Mexican cuisine. It’s not all fiery, is wonderfully varied, and not at all like Chipotle and Taco Bell, I’m told.

Mayflower 9:35 AM  

How can WASPS be a pejorative? WASPS are not the least bit unhappy about being:
White
Anglo-
Saxon
Protestant

People who are not WASPS may say it disdainfully, but that doesn't make it a pejorative.

Unknown 9:38 AM  

John Adams: Delete your account.

CDilly52 9:51 AM  

TOTES correct on the Bugle-eating protocol. That was my very first thought when I saw the clue!

CDilly52 9:53 AM  

Two footballers and the 2022 World Cup Site! Oh happy day!

JustMarci 9:59 AM  

Average time for me. Too many sportsball fills - MESSI, ROONEY, DOHA (Do-who?) Also had SAN for LAS. Star Wars reference crossing Walking Dead no fun in either direction, so overall it took a minute for me to unsnarl that SE corner.

Anonymous, john adams, and justus - I get enough of the “I’m so victimized despite being the majority” stuff in the comments on local news channels’ Facebook pages. Puh-lease.

CDilly52 10:04 AM  

I fell into every trap cited above. . . Every. One.
And I could not get a toehold in the Center West and SW, but flew through the remainder. I was certain that I was going to set a personal slow Friday record but in fact was nearly 8 minutes faster (if one can actually use the word “fast” to describe my typical Friday slog).

Too much pop or current TV/movie ones to make this truly easy (for me) but I thought it was clean and very clever in spots, FIFED not being one of them.

I have a Polaroid photo of my daughter at a friend’s slumber party when she was about 8 with Bugles on all of her fingers and a Halloween witch hat on her head. @LMS recognizing that essential Bugle-eating etiquette made me laugh out loud. Gotta find that pic.

I would love to have coffee with everyone in this neighborhood, my treat, just not at a MCCAFÉ or a Starbucks, please, because I truly enjoy good coffee. . .

Dorothy Biggs 10:14 AM  

WASPS, the term, is used as a pejorative to describe the bougie lifestyle wrapped in the American Dream. The dream they believe to be available to all...read: entitled.

Not much different than hipsters or the aforementioned DINKs. And yes, you can be white of European descent and still be critical of the WASP lifestyle.

Joe Dipinto 10:47 AM  

I had a medical appointment early this morning and was all set to do the puzzle on the subway (got a seat -- yes!!) and then realized I left my pen at home (crap, no!).

But, not to worry...I did the entire thing in my head while in the waiting room. It's lots of fun if you've never tried it -- you just have to keep a mental picture going as you solve. The left side fell in pretty quickly, then I progressed to the bottom right (ha! @Sir Hillary on Lori Loughlin) and then up to the northeast. I was going for I HAVE TO ASK at 12D, but that was the only snag.

Seems a trifle easy for a Friday once again, but I like it, as I usually do HB's creations. Now I'm hungry for the Insect Special: the ant, tarantula and wasp salad with chipotle dressing, and a side of extra-crispy eels.

JT 10:47 AM  

A much-faster-than-usual Friday for me, and fun. Didn't know chipotles were made from jalapenos, so that was one thing I learned. Extra crispy and street food made me hungry!

Bay One 10:52 AM  

The word MORPH as shortened from metamorphosis has incorrectly come to mean change or evolve but the part of the word signifying change is META. Perhaps the clue should have been qualified as “colloquially”.

Banya 11:09 AM  

err, if anyone wants to add me as a 'friend' for the mini leadership board...
This is my link...

https://www.nytimes.com/puzzles/leaderboards/invite/2c93d553-1d4d-450d-94f7-00b13a33962e

I swear your time will be better than mine :)

old timer 11:38 AM  

My solving experience was the same as @kitahef'a. Easy for a Friday and I never could have solved it top to bottom. Started in the SE and worked up. My one writeover was San before LAS. LAS is relatively uncommon for several reasons. First, it is plural (there are many ELs and LAs compared to LOSes and LASes). Second it is feminine, and in case of doubt Spanish uses the masculine form. So the clue was a little unfair.

As for WASPs it is true I think that there are today plenty of Catholics who fit the WASP mode. Really the image is based on the group that has been here since before the Revolution, such as the Adams family and the Southern plantation owners including Washington and our other Virginian presidents. The only Catholics in the club, for the most part, were the proprietors of Maryland (did you know the first Catholic archbishop had his diocese in Baltimore)? Really the better term today would be WARPs (White Anglosaxon Rich People). And that would include all the Catholics and Jews who aspire to the background of those old Anglosaxons).

Whatsername 11:40 AM  

@Loren - You outdid yourself today, TOTES! I admire your respect for arachnids. I try but usually keep my distance from crawly things. We have tarantulas in my neck of the woods and even though I know they’re harmless, I’d probably faint if I ever found one in my sink.

@GILL - I too OBSESS TOTES over Mad Men and often watch the reruns. Such an accurate portrayal of the era. Don Draper was every woman’s dreamboat. If only Betty could have found a way to deal with his philandering, I think they could’ve lived dysfunctionally ever after. Best drama in television history. Period.

This was on the easy side but a very enjoyable Friday. Thanks Mr. Barkin.

RooMonster 11:40 AM  

@Z
Cool info. I guess (my friend) didn't realize that the regular star thing was called a Pentagram. I also associated a Pentagram (the word) with not-good stuff.

So, thanks.

RooMonster

jb129 11:40 AM  

Fun puzzle - thank you!

puzzlehoarder 11:45 AM  

Once again a week of not doing puzzles. It's Friday though and I have to make an exception for late week themeless ones. This was mostly routine with the exception of that middle East crossing of MIASARA and SHAYS. Both of these names have completely ducked the radar so I had to infer the A which I hate doing regardless of how natural it looks. Some spark of actual recognition would have been nice but it just wasn't there. A clean grid anyway and a bit more trivia to add to the pile.

Three soccer references in one puzzle is three too many.

Anonymous 11:53 AM  

Lost my longish original post about WASPs. But for anyone who wants the definitive dish. Check out E. Digby Baltzell's work. (even a quick google will get you on the right track. And imho, the comments suggests it's needed)
He was the undisputed authority. I miss him greatly.

Hurrah for the Red and the Blue. And especially E. Digby.

Masked and Anonymous 12:04 PM  

ESP? Holy Olympics shorthand, Batman. **Someone** feared the wrath of @RP, today. M&A thinks it's about time for an ESP runtpuz … [ESP = staff weeject pick, btw]

This was a very EXTRACRISPY SONOFA-SHOWPIECE of crossword STREETFOOD. Darn good job, Mr. Barkin. themelessthUmbsUp.

fave fillins included: MORPH. TARANTULA. SONOFA. ROGET/ROGUEONE.

Great FriPuz cluin today, but … Better FIFED clue: {Busted by Barney??}. Luved the 46-A clue, with the four cute little stick figure tops. Artsy. More, please.

Had to fight thru the fog of: MCCAFE. BOHO. ROONEY or almost anyone else of "soccer fame". SHAYS. Rick's walkin dead wife. Just barely got the M&A brainpan to muster up: MIASARA. CURACAO. BAHN SPIT.
In more promisin news, for M&A brainpan futures: Got offa just a coupla letters each: RAPSHEET. ATTHEMOMENT. BYO. … Well heck, *I* thought BYO was kinda hard.

Thanx, Howard dude.

Masked & AnonymoUUs


**gruntz**

GHarris 12:05 PM  

Flew right along until I didn’t. Messed around with adage and moral so was hard to get to extracrispy. Never heard of miasara or rogue one let alone its sequel. Call foul on Doha, the cup will be played in Qatar. Shays also a problem because I too believed the “s” was a possessive and not part of his name. Got finished by moving from paper to iPad and turning on Autocheck, a lesser form of cheating.

bauskern 12:17 PM  

Living in western Massachusetts, Shays Rebellion was a bit of a gift. Actually, this was by far the easiest Friday i have ever seen. Hooha! I had IHAVETOASK, which created a little issue with TOTES, but other than that, this was easy peasy. Helped that I knew all the soccer references (Rooney, Massi, Doha).

Best clue? "Barely communicate" That made me laugh out loud.

Carola 12:19 PM  

Medium for me - easy enough from the NW sweeping around counterclockwise as far as EXTRA CRISPY; then II was blocked by the unknown MIA SARA x wouldn't-fit "If I may" ASK. I stared for a while at 11 D, asking myself what slang word ends in -OFA. Anyway, finally got it all. Enjoyable and engaging all the way. I loved the OOHs, especially the NE's friendly YOOHOO down to O'TOOLE and ROONEY in the opposite corner.

The parallel TARANTULA and SHOWPIECE reminded me of this recent article in the Times about a newly discovered species, whose legs are not only hairy but a brilliant iridiscent blue.

@kitshef, what a pass!

Teedmn 1:12 PM  

Easy here though the black splotches in my middle section belie that - blanking on a five letter word for adage starting with M, I put Moral in at 34D. 41A showed how EXTRA stupid that was and the solve went on from there.

Thanks, @Loren, for showing that the word "like" proves the existence of ESP. And @Nancy, your 22A has me imagining someone "toves gyring and gimbling in the wabe."

Thanks, Mr. Barkin, for a THAMES-like Friday puzz.

Geezer 1:18 PM  

I started watching Madmen once, saw several episodes, couldn't stand it. I think it appeals to women more that men but don't know why. It's a terrible, even disgusting portrayal of men.

jae 1:34 PM  

Easy-medium. Delightful! A little crunch, a little zip, a fine Fri. Liked it.

STREET taco before FOOD, but OTOOLE fixed it.

Rob 1:54 PM  

Had DUNKIN way before McCafe ha. Also wanted it to be StreetMEAT lol. Maybe I've been working in NYC for too long. Great puzzle!

QuasiMojo 2:04 PM  

I had the exact same reaction to the puzzle today as @Nancy. “Word for word.”

Masked and Anonymous 2:12 PM  

p.s.
@Muse: Definitely primo schlocky story about U goin all telepathic with the spider world. Enjoyed. The followin puzbauble was just about totally inspired by @RP and U, Spider Gal …

Sometime soon there's gotta be a puztheme answer with clue {Mueller report redactions??} and answer BARRBARS. M&A has got him some serious ES&P vibes about this.

M&Also


**gruntz**


Gareth Bain 2:35 PM  

Went through the exact same sequence with ORCA.

And thanks for the La's tjoon...

sf27shirley 3:05 PM  

I've studied and researched Shays' Rebellion extensively and was thrilled to see it in the puzzle. I recall one previous time, a good six or more years ago, when the clue for one answer was something like "he led a rebellion" (Shays) and another answer was clued (again, something like) "reason for [26 down]" (answer was "taxes".

Rex Parker's wikipedia post about the rebellion is inaccurate in some respects: (1) Shays wasn't a "farmhand," but a farmer; owned his own land. It's now underwater, Quabbin Reservoir to be precise; and many have said that Boston politicians who selected that area for the reservoir did so partly out of revenge -- not just against Shays and the town of Pelham, but all the other hotbeds of radicalism in that part of Massachusetts.
(2) Shays wasn't just "eventually" wounded in action, but was wounded several times, including one that left him limping and in pain the rest of his life.
(3) The people in this movement did not call it Shays Rebellion and did not all themselves "Shaysites" but "Regulators".
(4) They were not attempting to overthrow the government.
(5) the "privately funded local militia" was actually a militia composed primarily of wealthy men's sons and employees from the Boston area.
(6) Dozens of towns in Massachusetts had sent petitions asking for relief from the onerous post-war taxes. Massachusetts had raised taxes and insisted on their being paid in cash so that John Hancock and other wealthy merchants could be paid back the money they'd put up for the Revolution. Previously people had paid taxes in goods; the farmers in western Mass did not have cash and their lives were organized around a barter system. The men who'd fought in the revolution were paid in a scrip that, by the end of the war, was valueless, and most of the men sold these notes for pennies on the dollar. Then Alexander Hamilton, the father of American capitalism, came up with a plan to buy the scrip from the speculators at full face value. When it was proposed that the original note holders -- the soldiers -- be paid, Hamilton objected and said that the speculators deserved it more because they'd shown more faith in the new government.
(7) The state attorney general, Robert Treat Paine, created what he called a "blacklist" of leaders of the movement who would thereafter be denied certain rights. Among the leaders was a black man named Moses Sash.
(8) Evidence shows that Moses Sash, a private in the Revolution, was a Captain in the Regulators, and led white troops. The U.S. Army was not even integrated until the Korean War.
(9) Most of the leaders of the movement left Massachusetts. Daniel Shays moved first to Vermont (not a state yet), then to western New York, where he became friendly with a local man named Millard Fillmore, with whom he had long conversations. Fillmore, as the comptroller of the state of NY, successfully introduced a bill to abolish debtor's prison, the first such law in the nation.
(10) As late and the 1930s when a proposal to erect a statue of Shays was proposed in Massachusetts, one legislator declared "Massachusetts doesn't honor traitors!"
(11) Shays served with General Lafayette and was one of the men to whom Lafayette gave an ornamental sword. Shays was forced to sell the sword in order to pay his taxes. Historians ever since have sneered at that instead of feeling sympathy.

Whatsername 3:10 PM  

@Geezer: I don’t know how much of a “geezer” you are, but having been a young career girl around that era, I can tell you that Mad Men’s portrayal of the way women were treated in the business world was extremely accurate. And I suppose like you say, the resulting image of men in general was pretty disgusting which is unfortunate and perhaps unfair. However, I actually knew and worked with professional men who behaved very much like the characters in the show, who made openly suggestive comments without the slightest regard for a woman’s feelings and actually thought she ought to be flattered by it. It was in some ways the best of times but certainly not if you were a woman trying to make it in a man’s world.

OldActor 3:11 PM  

You've probably heard this, if not, here it is.

Noel Coward told O'Toole that if he had been any more beautiful in the movie it would have to be called,
"Florance of Arabia"

I loved the puzzle but it took me over an hour. Do you think it could be that I had TWO surgeries last week?
One was planned for Wed, before last. A simple instillation of a brand new pacemaker replacement.

Then that Saturday evening my right eye suddenly went totally blind. Shocking! but within a few minutes sight returned completely. I called my best friend while it was still blind and said WTF?. He said, "Google it". You do it, I can't.

In about a minute he called and said look at your email. It said:

"Amaurosis fugax is a temporary loss of vision, usually in just one eye, that lasts from seconds to minutes. ... If it does happen, it can be treated to prevent a permanent loss of vision. It may also be a warning sign of something more serious, such as a stroke. Sudden blindness in one eye is an emergency."

I was impressed. Not could be, nor MIGHT be ......IS!

Went to the ER and was immediately admitted. It was about 8:30. I was monitored all night, two CatScans Etc.
Turns out my carotid artery was 90% blocked and could have been a stroke at any minute. All's well. No damage at all.

That eye event saved my life, no doubt. So if that ever happens to you or anybody you know....You know what to do. But it will affect your solving time, if you care about that.

Wood 3:19 PM  

Record fast Friday for me too, although still about 3x @Rex's time.

JC66 3:21 PM  

@sf27shirley

Thanks for the history lesson. Very interesting.

@OldActor

Amazing. Thanks for the warning. Here's wishing you continued good health.

Wood 3:24 PM  

Is it really a verb, to FIFE?. People don't FLUTE or PIANO. But I guess they do DRUM and TRUMPET.

Wood 3:28 PM  

Can you be. WASP and WOKE?

Fred Wollam 3:28 PM  

I'm also of the life-long opinion (I'm a few months older than Trump, so I oughtta know!) that a just-opened bag of potato chips contains, near the top, a single, largest-by-far chip that is the exclusive property of the bag opener, and MUST be immediately devoured. Extra credit if you can close your mouth around the entire chip without breaking it... and extra-extra credit if you can then remove it from your mouth, display it to your buds, and then reinsert it without breaking it. The eventual chewing MUST be accompanied by a waaayy-smug, twinklingly cherubic grin. Fact.

Cassieopia 3:53 PM  

What JC66 said.

lodsf 3:55 PM  

Thanks for adding so much nuance! History often isn’t exactly what it seems to be at first glance.

pabloinnh 4:01 PM  

@OldActor-Good eye advice. Also, if you feel a slight twinge in an eyeball and experience prolonged partial vision, you have torn your retina. After it's repaired, be sure to follow post op instructions and above all take it easy. If you don't, you will have a detached retina, which is far more serious. Been there, done that, and yes indeed, did it ever raise hell with my solving times.

albatross shell 4:28 PM  

Fifes have a long tradition of leading military marching bands both in America and England. The Pied Piper also led playing a fife. Some good fife playing in Black Mississippi traditions too.

I am at a loss why anyone would think Sharif played Lawrence of Arabia.

The menu items of MCCAFE were intended to compete with Starbucks and I am sure Starbucks recognizes it as such.

Good cluing and answers today and yesterday, but yesterday beat my ass. I was glad to finish today.

I agree Shays had genuine grievances, but it was an armed rebellion. And "regulators" is a term that went on to pretty much mean we are the law here because we got the most fire power and we just elected ourselves.

brian 4:43 PM  

I DNF without checking CURACAO and MIASARA, but this was a lovely puzzle to (almost) solve. I agree with your take Rex---no crud content here.

Petsounds 6:07 PM  

This was a well designed puzzle that was a lot of fun to solve. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and I was one of those laughing at the idea of McCafe being a Starbucks competitor!

My one and only quibble with construction is that it included three professional soccer clues. THREE! I didn't know any of them, and I'll bet I'm not alone. I throw a red card [Soccer fans: Did I get that right?] on that.

catpez 6:14 PM  

Loved seeing CURAÇAO since we’re flying there in ten days time and hope to enjoy a few poolside drinks laced with the island’s namesake liqueur.

Overall, much more do-able than Tuesday’s puzzle, which I’m still recovering from and still haven’t finished.

Toughest section was the NE corner by far.

Alison 6:22 PM  

Thanks for the fun puzzle, Howard!

Anonymous 6:34 PM  

LAS is the start of "many" southwest place names? The only ones of any significance are Las Vegas (two of them) and Las Cruces, and there's also Las Animas.

albatross shell 7:02 PM  

Fife is listed as an archaic verb.
SPIT, from sandspit, meaning a small narrow sandbar penisula, was harder to find, but if I lived on a coastal shore I assume I might be more familiar with it.
TOTES - short slang from totally?
Haven't googled yet.
Did not know any of them but no naitcks involved.

Whitey 7:29 PM  

This felt like a Wednesday puzzle. I bet there will be a lot of personal bests today

Anonymous 8:08 PM  

There's a Dungeness Spit on the Olympic Peninsula of WA.

Z 9:25 PM  

@OldActor - Best last sentence ever. Way to keep your priorities straight.

Wowser at the whole WASP discussion. Usages evolve and all, but not just anyone can legitimately be called a White Anglo-Saxon Protestant. I was raised in a protestant church. I’m comfortably well off. But not a hint of “Anglo-Saxon” in the old family tree. I have ancestors from the Netherlands, Spain, and France. This Anglo-Saxon absence has attitudinal and cultural implications. If you don’t know this you need a whole heaping lot of remedial US History. As for the the whole “it’s racist,” thing... Stop, you’re embarrassing yourself.

Back to important stuff
@Nancy - You have passed a MCCAFÉ, every time you go past a McDonalds. Depending on the year, who is winning changes, but in 2018 MCCAFÉ was ascendant. Dunkin is the other big player. Personally, I drink most of my coffee at home, from a local roaster who puts a biography of the grower on the bags. Is it better? I think so. Is it cheaper? By a lot. Are any presidential wannabes supported by my coffee $$? Nope.

jberg 11:40 PM  

Late in the day, on my phone, haven’t read all the comments. This one was tough for me because 1) ILLBEA before SONOFA, 2) mAkING before BASING (a weird answer) and 3) no idea about TOTES. also liner before AORTA, but I knew that might be wrong. So I did it all except the NE corner, then had to leave for an all-day conference, back home at 10 to finally figure it out.

Not sure those are the right shape for ANKHS, either, but I might be wrong.

Those of us who teach this stuff do call it SHAYS’s Rebellion.

Hartley70 12:22 AM  

@Old Actor, thank you for sharing that excellent advice and I’m so glad you are doing well after what must have been a terror filled few days.

Loren Muse Smith 2:26 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Loren Muse Smith 2:51 AM  

@Fred Wollam – hah! You are absolutely right! I love your flourish of removing the intact chip first and will add this display to my antics repertoire forthwith. My favorite big chip trick is to stand in the hall with a big chip at the ready and at just the right moment, when some hapless kid is passing me, push it into my mouth in such a way that not quite crosses the line of just fast and ridiculously fast caveman pig speed. So hopefully the kid wonders What did I just witness? The push-fast-almost-cram-in technique very extremely tough to pull off, and I have practiced in front of a mirror. No lie.

@M&A – primo beastly hard runt! I had to cheat a bit, but it was worth it! That is some true runt brilliance.

@Dorothy Biggs – I know, right? Man, I can run my mouth. Actually I had meant to delete both the WASP/BOHO and caramel macchiato deals. But I had written all that the “night” before, like, at 1:30am and emailed it to myself since the day’s comments weren’t up yet. Once at school, I decided to desperately watch my YouTube SuperHeroTeacher Tim McGhee introduce Macbeth since I’ve never taught it; I was so nervous about acting all I’m-comfortable-with-Macbeth that I forgot to prune down my blathering before posting.

You should see all the crap that I toss to the cutting room floor on almost a daily basis.

As regards the unasked-for quotative go treatise, my only defense is that I figure this is a community of people who notice language, and, well, some may find it food for thought. Basically, this is my life save the time I spend here!

spacecraft 10:48 AM  

I'm surprised OFC didn't light into that clue for WASPS. "Upper crust sorts," really? Well, my mind was on the paper wasp, about which I was just reading on the page opposite this puzzle. Seems the little devils can think--sort of. They can use a form of deductive reasoning called transitive inference. SONOFA...

This played on the easy side for me, yet there were a couple of spots with potential trip-ups. I didn't "get" the clue for 52-a right away and wrote in rObOT. Then later, when BOOTLEG came in, I just thought, well, a Gobot could be a thing, maybe a robotic brand name. Only after the whole thing was done and I was double-checking did I (HATE TO) ASK, "Where's BOHA? I know DOHA, but..." and then the bulb flashed on. Sure, that guy who never arrives, GODOT (rhymes with "DOH!").

And then the other one was sAn--from me, who lives in LAS Vegas! NEXT looked normal, despite the clue, which I thought might refer to a newspeak expression, short for "nude text." But then SORI didn't look right; sounds too much like sorry. And that's when I looked at 56-d: "Oh, that's SEXT," and finally done.

Despite a personal bugaboo of mine, the -Y ending for CRISP, I did think the puzzle was CRISP and well done. DOD is the winsome MIASARA, a relative rarity whose full name appears in the grid. Birdie.

Burma Shave 1:18 PM  

MESSI MAXIM

ATTHEMOMENT my STEPMOM’s RAPSHEET SCHEMAS reflect
that I’m a SONOFA PHENOM who OBSESSES to SEXT.

--- ROONEY O’TOOLE

rainforest 3:32 PM  

Except where I had difficulty, ie, BOHO, SONOFA, MIA SARA (hence, SHAYS), and TOTES, this was a pretty easy puzzle. Once I got it, I admired SONOFA, but the others, well...

My girlfriend has two daughters who say things like TOTES quite frequently, but I have to always ask WHAT THE? Can't you say "totally" just as easily? I saw the BUELLER movie years ago, but who acted in it I couldn't actually tell you, though it was very funny.

Is SHAYS a plural of SHAY?

Good puzzle once I figured out the roadblocks.

rondo 3:35 PM  

I found this puz quite easy. Got the feeling that it started out as a fast food theme (CHIPOLTE, MCCAFE, EXTRACRISPY, STREETFOOD) that fizzled and became a themeless.

As @spacey mentioned, I put a large X on WASPS expecting a RexRant. Nuthin’ doin’ on that one today. Also as @spacey mentioned MIASARA, yeah baby. I think she created a lot of teen-age ANKHS. Har.

Kinda busy ATTHEMOMENT. Gotta go. EZ Fri-puz.

leftcoastTAM 7:37 PM  

Nothing left for me except a few crumbs. Did okay, but some problems in the East.

By the way, shouldn't BOOTLEG[ged]be past tense, as is its clue "Pirated, in a way"? No matter.

rondo 10:00 PM  

@lefty - think adjective
That is a pirated tape.
That is a BOOTLEG tape.
But I kinda see your point, too.

Anonymous 11:41 PM  

@Justus and @Dorothy Biggs, WASP isn't a "racial epithet" nor is it "a pejorative." It's simply an acronym that stands for white Anglo-Saxon Protestant.

The Oxford dictionary defines it as "An upper- or middle-class American white Protestant, considered to be a member of the most powerful group in society." Nothing about that is derogatory or biased -- it is factual (white, Protestant, and Anglo-Saxon are verifiable, and "have power" is backed up by stats).

@leftcoastTAM The clue can be read as "Your BOOTLEG (used as a noun, short for bootleg CD / DVD / etc.) has been pirated." I think it makes sense grammatically, but it is definitely written to misdirect.

@Howard, if you check back: For me, everything that was enjoyable about this puzzle (EXTRA CRISPY, I HATE TO ASK, to name just two) was canceled out by too much trivia (MIA SARA, ROGUE ONE, LORI clued from "The Walking Dead"; though I don't know THE LORAX or MAD MEN, those were kind of inferrable from the clues, where the others weren't) and too much sports.

MALE CONSTRUCTORS: Cut down on the amount of sports in puzzles, as women have been saying for years. ROONEY, ESP, and DOHA should not have been clued sporty in a puzzle that already had a lot of trivia rather than wordplay. It's 2019 -- we are WAY past the time for male constructors and editors to pretend they don't know that women are far less likely than men to get the sports clues/answers. It's the *only* topic in puzzles that splits along gender lines -- cut it out already.


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