Coinage of 2000 / SAT 6-8-19 / Sleepy stil / High-quality coffee variety / Oxymoronic break

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Constructor: Andrew J. Ries

Relative difficulty: Easy (5:48)

THEME: none

Word of the Day: SULU Sea (33D: ___ Sea, body of water between Borneo and the Philippines) —
The Sulu Sea (TausugDagat sin SūgChavacanoMar de SuluCebuanoDagat sa SuluHiligaynonDagat sang SuluKaray-aDagat kang SuluCuyononDagat i'ang SuluMalayLaut Sulu) is a body of water in the southwestern area of the Philippines, separated from the South China Sea in the northwest by Palawan and from the Celebes Sea in the southeast by the Sulu Archipelago. Borneo is found to the southwest and Visayas to the northeast. (wikipedia)
• • •

Solid, if somewhat tepid, and very easy. The long stuff didn't shine as much as I'd like, and there's some glaring bits of crosswordese like INRI and ADEN and EELPOT (not fond of ODE over ODED, either), but in the main the puzzle holds up well, and it's hard not to like an extremely crushable Saturday puzzle. Yesterday's puzzle was dicier in the short stuff, but much better in the long stuff, and so I liked it slightly more. But yesterday had that terrible, almost disqualifying TOLTEC / FATHA cross, and it had NAPERY ... nothing that bad or wacko here. This one was certainly smoother, but more ho-hum. It's all such a tricky balancing act. The hardest parts for me today were the last four letters of DEVELOPMENT HELL (7D: Long gestation for a film, informally) (I had DEAL, and the "E" and "L" were correct, so the error stuck), and then the NERF / ERAS crossing. NERF War is not a term I know (or, now, like ... at all). NERF War is a nothing burger to me, and also it is like "nothing burger" in that I hate it as a term. Anyway, that cross was rough for me. Aside from some struggling to get ahold of the SW corner, I didn't struggle much anywhere else.

Wrote in CAREE- at 3D: Proceed wildly (CAREEN) but then pulled up short because CAREEN and CAREER both fit the clue.

  • Crosswordese you should know: INRI, ADEN, EELPOT (the entire vocabulary of eeldom, really), URAL (esp. that "Risk territory" bit)
  • Proper noun watch: NOLTE, MITZI, PEALE, ATWOOD, SHREK, NOLTE, DAMON ... and yeah, even PEALE, knew 'em all. Was gonna say "Why go with N.V. PEALE (45D: Norman Vincent ___, best-selling motivational writer) over the far more famous and current Jordan?" but Jordan is PEELE, not PEALE. Clue on SULU was the one proper noun clue that threw me. REILLY seems like the hardest name in the grid (41D: Ignatius J. ___, protagonist in "A Confederacy of Dunces"), but if you've read the novel (as I did, long ago) that name's a gimme. Overall, the names were handled well. No bad crosses.
  • Tricky clues: 
    • 25A: Sleep still? (CEL)—because a still pic of Sleepy (from "Snow White") would be an animation CEL
    • 11D: Local leader (UNION REP)—because "local" is a noun here meaning "local branch of a trade union"
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Facebook]


Runs with Scissors 12:06 AM  

Fun, feisty, tough puzzler. I had to work at this one in a couple areas.

ASCII dropped right in at 1A. MITZI at 10D was right in the forefront of the ol’ brain, but too hazy to get without a couple of crosses. Washington, Minnesota, Maine fell fairly quickly. The rest followed soon after that.

But the SW…holy carp. SW was brutal.

Some random stuff:

50A: It had to be Share. It just had to be. Until it wasn’t.

42D: Why are all the “poets,” so-called, such as they are, EXPATS? Confused souls, perhaps.

32A: MANSPLAINED is a term that I have never actually heard someone articulate. I’ve seen it in print; I’ve never heard it in the wild. I call BS. If you explain something in a particularly condescending way, that doesn’t mean you’re explaining it because you’re male and the other is female. It means the other has the mental capacity of an ailing gnat.

51A: SHREK! Yo, bud.

46D: I had the G in SACAGAWEA DOLLAR, but with Share in the cross I was floundering all over trying to figure out the interwebs URL ending. NEG? PEG? What have they thought of lately? Finally got that straightened out.

This puzzle was a breeze, until it wasn’t. It worked me down south. Please, sir, may I have some more?

Mark, in Mickey’s North 40

jae 12:14 AM  

Medium. The top half was mostly easy, the middle took some effort, and the biggest challenge in the bottom half was spelling SACAGAWEA.

I suspect the under 50 contingent will not know MITZI, but the crosses are fair.

SULU as clued was a WOE.

Solid with a smattering of zip, liked it.

Robin 12:17 AM  

Crushable is right. Fastest Saturday I have ever done, and more than a minute and a half faster than what had been my fastest Saturday.

DEVELOPMENTHELL I filled in in a trice, having dot the D and V crosses. So that gave me entries into multiple section of the puzzle, not that I really need them.

PEALE went to high school with my grandmother, so even though Ive never read any of his work, that was a gimme.

Harryp 12:18 AM  

I didn't figure on NFC, couldn't get NERF, wasn't seeing WORKING VACATION and had deal instead of DOLE. But I kept plugging away, filled the bottom section, then got back to the top and it all came together, like a good puzzle does. Thank you Andrew, for a fine Saturday puzzle.

puzzlehoarder 12:45 AM  

Slightly above medium. My comments keep getting lost. Hopefully this will get through.

Anonymous 1:06 AM  

Blow = MUFF or PUFF

Anonymous 2:04 AM  

--RFWAR just had to be TURF WAR. But someone could still get hurt in one, right? So, no.

In my last job interview they gave me an exam. One of the questions was "How many bits per character in an ASCII text file?" I guessed 8 (it's actually 7). But I got the job anyway, despite getting several other answers wrong, because they said "we liked how you got the wrong answers".

Nothing to do with the puzzle, but: there are umpteen Canadian teams in the NHL and none have won the Cup in 25+ years. Yet in the NBA, there is one Canadian team, and they are on the brink of winning it. Can we strap some skates on those Raptor guys and see what happens?


mateo 2:29 AM  

Mad about MUFF. I really MUFFED the M and went with PUFF because it works. Better. But PITZI makes no sense.

Phil 3:01 AM  

Happy bit of AHA to catch my iDo to ODE misdirection. Especially since was trying to fit carom into careen slot. (misguided of course)

chefwen 3:38 AM  

Not so easy in this camp, but we finished with only one cheat at 33D SULU. 26D was a bit of a challenge as I was thinking nursery rhymes, as in three bags full (of wool) puzzle partner was thinking of a hospital nursery, had to laugh when turned out to be a garden nursery where we spend a lot of time. 55D was another messed up area, I had any, in a, before AHA.

Fun puzzle, liked it.

Brookboy 3:58 AM  

Yesterday we had a solid Friday puzzle, and today we have a solid Saturday puzzle. It was a very enjoyable puzzle to solve.

I took a lucky guess on DAMON (24D) as the correct Wayans brother, lucky because his is the only Wayans name I ever remember.

I knew about the Sacagawea dollar because my brother used to collect silver dollars, only I spelled it with the middle letter a J instead of a G. J didn’t work here, though, and that became apparent soon enough.

Nice misdirect on 29A - had bat before OAR.

Thank you, Mr. Ries, for your fine puzzle.

Hungry Mother 5:26 AM  

Oh so fast this morning. As a tech guy, ASCII came quickly. I hope I’m as fast in my 5K this morning. I’ll settle for the same time.

Anonymous 5:38 AM  

I’m afraid the ERA for 13D has come and gone, if indeed it ever meant anything. Otherwise a fun fast solve.

Lewis 6:24 AM  

My favorite part of this worthy Saturday is the cluing, which brought zing to the entire enterprise. [Local leader] for UNION REP brought an "Aha!", [Rabbit's favorite chain restaurant] for IHOP brought a genuine LOL, and [Stick in the dugout] for OAR rather than "bAt" was a sensational misdirect.

I'm sure they weren't intentional, but the cross of MASC with MANSPLAINED was most fitting, while that of FIB with FESS UP was quite the opposite.

All in all, a strong hello to the mind on a rainy North Carolina morn, ameliorated by GLINTS of appreciation for what you've created, Andrew!

JJ 6:31 AM  

"It's all such a tricky balancing act". Isn't that always the case?
That's why I never like the overly harsh criticism of words that constructors, and editors, choose to include.
There are so many great clues here today . Loved the clue for DANCE LESSONS, and ERAS. I now know something about Palynology,
Just a great way to end a Friday night, or start your Saturday.
BTW-I also think that crosswordese is a good thing. It gives us a TOEhold in a difficult puzzle.
Loved it

Newf 7:04 AM  

Coffee, French Open on the tube and a relatively easy time for me with a Saturday—good start to the morning. Neither my IPAD nor I seem able to spell 54A correctly.

QuasiMojo 7:12 AM  

Great Saturday puzzle, if as Rex pointed out, it's over too fast. Something funny about Mansplained, Costume Shop and Dance Lesson all in a pile together. I can just imagine the get-up that might require some mansplaining. From Mitzi to Shrek, something for everyone today. Although Reilly was new to me. The dugout stick thing irked me but apparently people use the term oar for canoe paddle all the time. Loved seeing "Development Hell." I had a screenplay once trapped in one of those endless No Exit option situations. To paraphrase Sartre, "Development Hell is other people."

Maineiac 7:29 AM  

Re: "EELPOT (the entire vocabulary of eeldom, really)" Better add "SNIGGLE" and "SNIGGLER" to that.

Aketi 7:37 AM  

@Runs with Scissors, Thanks for SPLAINING to this “other” female that I should not presume to use the term because of course I have the mental capacity of an ailing gnat every time a male decides I need his erudite SPLAINation when I haven’t asked for it.

This ailing gnat brain would love to have a SAKAGAWEA DOLLAR for every time a male has SPLAINED to me about something I already know better than he does (even with my ailing gnat brain). I could have made a fortune off entire class of boys who did this on a daily basis when I was the only girl that dared to take drafting and architecture in high school. FYI the boy SPLAINers eventually stopped SPLAINing and started asking me for advice near the end of the term. So perhaps I transmitted the ailing gnat virus to them and temporarily recovered until the next male decided I needed a SPLAINation.

As I’ve aged have discovered that some young adults engage in youth SPLAINING to what they must consider to be aging ailing gnat brains. The dead giveaway that the youth SPLAINation is coming is when they look you in the eyes and speak loudly and slowly.

I also believe that some new mothers engage in mom SPLAINING to dads due to their belief that dads have zero capacity to care for babies. Sadly this belief in the ailing gnat brain dads means that the dads give up offering to help with child rearing. I prefer to teach moms how to cure the ailing gnat brained dads in the same way that our cats cured us.

Irene 7:53 AM  

What is a sacagawea dollar? No idea at all.

pabloinnh 8:24 AM  

I'm with Brookboy on the Sacagawea with a J iteration, as that's how I remember learning it. Hard to get a soft "g" with the following "a", but of course .ORJ makes no sense.

Agree with OFL on the EELPOT appearance, but suggest that INRI has some significance beyond crosswordese. He might see this in a church, for instance.

Today I learned that there are people who study SPORES, and that they have a name, so it's a good day.

Nice Saturday, AJR. Thanks for the fun.

Anonymous 8:30 AM  

Had no idea about ASCII....we are of a different generation; got it with the crosses.
We got Sacagawea, but could remember the correct spelling.

"...there's some glaring bits of crosswordese..." Shouldn't that be "there ARE some glaring bits of crosswordese," Prof. Sharp?

amyyanni 8:32 AM  

Love the IHOP clue. North middle was hardest as not sure of ADEN and sure didn't know NERF war. Sad it's finished. @HungryMother, ran a fun 5K last night: "Under the Moon 5K."

mmorgan 8:45 AM  

Not “extremely crushable” for me but very fair and lots of fun and highly satisfying. I knew 54A was SACAGAWEA but I wasn’t sure how to spell the last half of her name so I had to wait to get that from crosses. After filling in a smattering of gimmes here and there, this took some work but it was steady progress with many AHA moments more than banging my head against the wall. THANK you, Mr. Ries!

albatross shell 8:47 AM  

Quite difficult here. Got WORKINGVACATION MANSPLAINED COSTUMESHOP SACAGAWEADOLLAR with few crosses. That gave me the easy CABLECAR made easier with both C's. The other long answers needed many more crosses. DEVELOPMENTHELL needed the most: the incorrect bat kept getting in my eye and passes out too feint. Decoding still sleepy made a L of a difference.
I'm not much of a computer guy so I looked up ASCII after the solve. It seems like you were proactively correct. Since 2013 they use 8 bits for ASCII. No wonder they liked you.

CEL also gave me NOCONTEST which up until then had flummoxed me because at the top NO_O had me thinking nolo and when that irked me by not fitting I got the brilliant idea the bottom was going to be time as in sentence. Doh and grrr. The NE was fun with MITZI OZONE and GLINTS. My first thought on police descriptor was finers instead of finest.
DIETARY and FESSUP took way too long. As did the fudgeFIB connection.

Was hoping for Suez over ADEN. I love me some crosswordese misdirects.

GHarris 8:51 AM  

Found it tough and used auto check. Had to finish it off after a night’s sleep. I would argue that a local leader is president or secretary/treasurer. A rep would not be classified as a leader..

albatross shell 8:57 AM  

Thanks for mansplaining MANSPLAINED to us.

Teedmn 8:58 AM  

No irony in having an AHA moment at AHA moment. That tiny bottom center HELLed me up, the only part of this puzzle that gave me pause. I didn't whiz through this solve but I made steady progress until the aforementioned section.

So, SACAGAWEA. I have always pronounced it as SACAjAWEA though spelled with a G is how I usually see it. It just occurred to me while solving that the G spelling implies a hard G sound, which I don't recall hearing before. Wikipedia shows SACAjAWEA and SAkAkAWEA are variations and that a pronunciation with a hard G is the primary example. The woman had one name, pronounced one way, yes? Was no one on the Lewis and Clark expedition capable of hearing the name in a way that it could be written phonetically in English to correctly reflect how it sounded? Am I asking too much?

I suppose it is all too common - look at Peking vs Beijing, Bombay vs Mumbai.

Sleepy still? is the best clue today, in my opinion.

Thanks, Andrew Ries, nice Saturday, albeit, once again, easier than Friday's.

kitshef 9:01 AM  

A solid Saturday offering - nothing SHODDY here - featuring some nice cluing.

For some reason, my brain had the clue for 47A as ‘Part of David once improbably broken by a hammer’. I was looking for something like RIB or LIP. Didn’t help that I had GlAdiolas, “confirmed” by GLINTS, MANSPLAINED, and loRAx.

Is MAN- becoming the new ECO- -- a prefix that you can just stick in front of any word?

Really wanted CAREEr at 3D, but fortuitously Schrodingered that last square. Add that to the AVer/AVow, YAk/YAp sets.

Hartley70 9:02 AM  

Zippity doo dah Saturday fun today! This puzzle felt current but with lots of unknowns, SULU, REILLY, and SHOP, HELL, NERF, IHOP as used. It was all doABLE in record Saturday time which makes me feel smart and makes up for missing last night’s final Jeopardy question.

Cali 9:06 AM  

@Okanaganer, Cheering for you guys!

Fun easy Saturday except that I persist in thinking Joyce Carol Oates wrote The Handmaid thing (even though I'd read it long ago) and that held me back for a long time. But the puzzle came into view in a fun puzzly way.

Carola 9:33 AM  

Easy and enjoyable. ASCII x ATWOOD + it's-gotta-be WORKING VACATION started me on a clockwise sweep around to FESS UP x PYRE, with a mid-grid sashay through the COSTUME SHOP and DANCE LESSON. I'm old enough to know MITZI and PEALE, and was able to draw on memory STORES for SULU. Two do-overs: EXileS before EXPATS and SACAjAWEA. Favorite cluing cross: Blow x Local leader.

Nancy 9:37 AM  

One cheat needed to solve this bear of a puzzle. I typed in DOLLAR coin/2000 and out she came. SACAGAWEA. And she even fit the [very few] other letters I already had. I had hoped this one cheat would crack open the entire SW, which just wasn't coming, and it did.

In addition to all the answers I didn't know or couldn't think of, I absolutely couldn't see SWAB for tar -- even though I had S-AB. (Do you StAB someone's reputation the way you would tar it?)

Much of this grid was absolutely wonderful: DEVELOPMENT HELL (which I didn't see for like forever) and MANSPLAINED being my favorites. DANCE LESSON, IHOP, ANGLE, EXPATS and ODE were clued really, really well. Did I love this puzzle? I think I "suffered" over the solve just a little too much to love it, and heaven knows I spent much too much time on it on a beautiful day when I want to be outdoors. But I absolutely admire it to death.

jberg 9:39 AM  

Gee -- SACAJAWEA DOLLAR, MANSPLAINED, DEVELOPMENT HELL, DANCE LESSON as clued, even the weakest of the lot, COSTUME SHOP. All fresh and interesting, I should have said. But then, I knew SULU Sea right off.OTOH, I wanted a bAt in my dugout (as I was expected to), and confused INRI with IHS, ending up with the ridiculous INhs. That was the hardest part, for me -- plus figuring out what "blow" meant. There are other ways to clue MUFF, but maybe not in the NYT.

No time to read the comments, we're off to get haircuts.

GILL I. 9:41 AM  

I always do a glance through on Saturday. Looking for my first little toe dip. Today it started with MITZI Gaynor... and I sang. Remember South Pacific? I can see her on the beach singing "I'm In Love With a Wonderful Guy." I still remember (most) of the lyrics..... I'm as corny as Kansas in August. Go ahead, sing it in the shower like I do.
So that starts me off in a good mood. I only know ASCII because of crosswords. I don't know what it means; I don't care. It was ATWOOD that held me up. Damn. Better do a googs or I'll never get started. Wish I hadn't because he/she would have slid in eventually.
WORKING VACATION just off the ATION. Another smile. I took many of them. You can claim mileage and meals. Try thinking how hard it is to be sitting in Cabo, drinking a Margarita under a palm umbrella, with a pencil and pad in hand and working on your annual budget. It's fun. It's productive. SUN!
Came to another stop with SULU. Damn again. But with just that other Google, it opened up that whole middle section.
Third and last Googs was that Igatius guy. So I cheated on REILLY. Three cheats today - not bad for a Saturday and besides, they were all proper names...UGH.
I liked seeing CABLE CAR. I was tempted to fit in Rice-A-Roni since that was the San Francisco treat. To this day, I don't know why that vile tasting stuff was ever a treat....In San Francisco no less.
I remember the TOE incident on poor David. The guy who did it kept getting released from jail and going around doing the same thing. I wanted to wail like Nancy Kerrigan...WHY? WHY? WHY?
Nice, fun puzzle today.

gfrpeace 9:50 AM  

Finished the Saturday puz earlier than normal, having been stuck in a virtual online queue for Hamilton tickets in Providence RI, with nothing else to do. My friend had been convinced I would have no trouble as long as I was willing to spend top dollar, but she was wrong -- I offered to pay a mint and got bumped down to mere $88 tix, which I think are against the back wall.

What I want to know is, is ADEN a city? It's not big enough to show up on my globe. I shall check Wikipedia.... Hmmm, not bad, it has 800,000 people and was the capital of the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen. A local legend in Yemen states that Aden may be as old as human history itself. Some also believe that Cain and Abel are buried somewhere in the city.

Someone's already beaten me to the punch in thanking runs with scissors for mansplaining MANSPLAINING. Are men really not aware of this phenomenon? They often have to sit through it at meetings.

Z 9:54 AM  

dONtS before NO NOS. Why are mannerists so negative? Speaking of which, I got into a longish explanation of Mannerism with my wife the other night, starting with an observation of a wait staffer’s longish neck, to my wife’s tendency to have longish arms in her works to looking up some famous Mannerist works. I was saved a MANSPLAINED accusation because my wife knows way more about the making of art while I know way more about the history of art. One of my favorite sayings is “A wise man knows what he does not know.” I would add, “and knows when to keep his mouth shut about it.”

Rex’s NERF war plaint is proof that he never had three pre-pubescent boys running around his house. Otherwise I agree with him for the most part. More easy-medium here, but my self-inflicted slow downs were quickishly resolved. DealS before DOLES, time before HELL, chaSm before ABYSS. I had MITZI so didn’t fall into the pUFF trap, and just waited on the G/J question as I’ve seen both spellings.

@teedmn - I’ve ranted about transliterations before. But here it is not just proper spelling, but actual scholarly debate. And apparently that G is supposed to be said like the second, not the first, G in geography.

@GHarris - The Leadership Council would include the local REPs.

@pablonh - INRI appears more often than psalm or hymn or Jesus or Christ or liturgy or..., well you get the point.

@Okanaganer - I was amused to hear that Stephan A. Smith was upset to learn that TSN still leads with hockey, not the Raptors.

Nancy 9:54 AM  

@Quasi -- So you're a screenplay writer!!!!!!!!! I knew you were a writer! I have always known that. And your Sartre-esque "DEVELOPMENT HELL is other people" is absolutely inspired.

@Aketi -- I inadvertently scrolled past your name and started reading your comment. I knew immediately it was you. You tell 'em, girl! No one better mess with you. That combination of feistiness and humor is unlike anyone else's. Maybe we should call it heistiness?

Anonymous 10:00 AM  

I’m not satisfied with the explanation for “cel” as the answer to “Sleepy Still”. Does anyone have a better idea?

Z 10:10 AM  

@Anon10:00 - I’m pretty sure it is supposed to be a movie still, the movie is Snow White, and Sleepy is one of the seven. At least, that’s how I processed it in about 0.0027 picoseconds and wrote it in.

IrishCream 10:31 AM  

Mansplaining is real. Yes, #notallmen, but there are plenty of men who assume lower levels of competency in women. Try being a female sports fan; mansplanations abound!

Hungry Mother 10:38 AM  

11 seconds slower in my 5K race than colve time today.

QuasiMojo 10:44 AM  

@Nancy, you crack me up. I've dabbled in all realms of writing, with mostly mixed results. I once wrote a one-act play that closed before the show was even over.

Teedmn 10:53 AM  

Thanks, @Z. I guess that settles it! :-)

Molasses 11:01 AM  

Very challenging for me. Never heard of SULU, couldn't remember the letters on the crucifix, didn't think of NERF, thought the new currency might be something to do with bitcoins. And so on. Started well with ASCII and ATWOOD but it was an uphill battle from there on. Very satisfying every time I actually figured out a word, though.

@Aceti, great comment. I loved seeing MANSPLAINING in the puzzle. I'd be surprised if there are many women who haven't encountered the phenomenon, with or without the label. There are great examples of it in the book I'm reading right now, The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal; if you like SF you should check it out (meteor strikes just off Maryland in 1952 and sets off extinction level changes).

Amelia 11:02 AM  

@gill I

Did you mean Tonya Harding? Or are you referring to Nancy wailing after Harding's boyfriend attacked her?

I didn't find the puzzle THAT easy. Every time I got a nice corner of the puzzle, I was stuck in another one. I did like it a lot. Can one of you men explain to me why?

Off to do the Stumper. Cheers.

Barry Frain 11:16 AM  

@Runs With Scissors, your lack of self-awareness is a CHASM.

Barry Frain
East Biggs, CA

pabloinnh 11:31 AM  

@Z--I was being sarcastic when I said you might see INRI in a church, as I know it's the abbreviation for the Latin "Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews", but thanks for the mansplanation.

TomAz 11:34 AM  

Hey! I found it! Here's the Friday puzzle! It's really much better than that monstrosity they actually served us yesterday.

Any man who is offended by MANSPLAINING is probably guilty of it. Me, I find it silly.

some really clever cluing here. Bravo.

JC66 11:37 AM  


Let me tell you why...

emmet 11:37 AM  

Lived in London for ten years and the Brits always use career and never careen. In the USA careen via common usage has become acceptable to indicate racing out of control.

kfja 11:41 AM  


orangeblossomspecial 11:42 AM  

Next trip to SFO, be sure to visit the cable car museum. There once were more than 20 systems in SFO, now there are only three. The museum shows the actual cables under the streets and explains the technology that makes the cars run. Managing through intersections where the cables cross requires special talent.

Newboy 11:48 AM  

Great puzzle! Loved the Sleepy still from my still favorite Disney film done without CGI which I still think of as cheating, but I’m not going to MANSPLAIN all that and risk Akita’s ire; loved her riff on our collective chromosomal damage as much as the puzzle itself. Thanks all for a delightful start to a rainy morning. Now IHOP off to Saturday Market.

Z 11:49 AM  

@pablonh - I totally missed the sarcasm. D’Oh slap.

@teedmn - Yep. Clear as mud. I knew there was debate, but it wasn’t until your comment prompted me to do a little looking that I learned the US government, North Dakota, and Idaho all had opinions on the “right” way of saying and spelling her name.

@TomAz - I tend to think it’s more of a “how much” question rather than an “if” question.

Joe R. 12:01 PM  

I want to give thanks to Tom Lehrer today, thanks to whom Norman Vincent PEALE was a gimme.

I agree with @pablonh that INRI does not strike me at all as crosswordese.

And I would like to suggest to @Runs that if they are not encountering anyone talking about MANSPLAINing in real life, they might want to start hanging out with some more aware people.

old timer 12:09 PM  

I liked that SF cable car clip. And I learned from it that on YouTube, OFL is an old softy with a heart as big as all outdoors. Peter Paul and Mommy! (My favorite song from that album, too). Kate Wolf (Across the Great Divide, a beautiful song she wrote on the way to a radio interview, and one of her best). At least on my computer, YouTube remembers the clips and songs you have enjoyed in past visits, I assume the same is true in the Sharp household).

BTW, the car most frequently shown in that clip is from the old Cal Cable line -- still exists but the route has been truncated -- you used to be able to go up California St for several miles, and now the cars turn around at Van Ness; for that reason tourists much prefer the other linea that start at Powell and Market.

Anonymous 12:12 PM  

Huh, why is it "terrible" to cross a hugely important black musician with an entire Latin American civilization?

jb129 12:26 PM  

Manspread on the subway is bad enough - but Mansplained, really?

Anonymous 12:26 PM  

@Runs with Scissors:
MANSPLAINED is a term that I have never actually heard someone articulate.

Wow. You obviously live in a unisex world. Not in the public toilet sense, but lacking women sense.

Malsdemare 12:32 PM  

Oh this was fun! So many good, feisty clues — I'm looking at YOU, Sleepy still, step-by-step instructions and so many others — and great answers. No googling for me, though it took forever to change NeC to NFC, and swap my bAt for OAR. I really wanted that dollar to be Susan B Anthony's but there was no way to make that work. But seeing SACAGAWEA in the grid was nice; has she ever been so honored?

I'm giving @runs with scissors a pass. I enjoy his funny, acerbic, quirky posts and would hate for him to take his ipad and go home. My favorite instance of MANSPLAINING was a good friend, male, describing in great detail the medical consequences of the endometriosis that killed his wife after the birth of their daughter. His target, also a good friend, was a practicing physician, renowned hematologist, and dean of the medical school. Those of us witnessing his disquisition just shook our heads in disbelief.

@aketi, you are right on the nose with youthSPLAINING. I buy all my tech on Amazon because no one there feels the need to explain to me, in words of one syllable, just what it is I'm buying and what it will do. And my grandchildren feel ever so important teaching me how to play games.

Such a nice puzzle! Thanks, Mr. Ries.

Jayhawk 12:53 PM  

@Gill I:

When I hear that line from "I'm In Love With a Wonderful Guy," I have to fight off a pedantic urge to ponder: Wait, is Kansas really that corny? Seems like more of a wheat state. But of course Kansas works rhythmically in the line much better than any of the major corn states would. "I'm as corny as Illinois . . . I mean Iowa . . . ."

Joe Dipinto 1:02 PM  

MANSPLAINED has been in the puzzle before, I'm pretty sure. I knew someone who mansplained things to everyone, not just to women. (Probably to animals as well.) The attitude is "you know nothing about this subject, so just pay attention and I will instruct you." The topic was usually sports, politics, or something related to his profession. If you tried to interject a question or comment, he would say, "No. You're not listening to me." Yeah, you got that right. Waiter, check please.

DEVELOPMENT HELL was first to go in the grid. Again today I wasn't really wowed by anything. GRASSSSSSEED looks kind of silly. The clue for TOE seems meant to be titillating in that schoolboy way the editors lean toward: "Let's get them to think about naked body parts!"

Well, at least there's a Sunday acrostic to hopefully liven up the solving weekend. There hasn't been a diagramless in the variety puzzles for a long time -- I wonder submissions?

Fred Romagnolo 1:03 PM  

@pabloinnh: I, too, on having been raised on Sacajawea; and also on not being able to accept a soft "g" before an "a." Therefore DNF. Most of the EXPATS spent the 20's in Paris. I'm sure old, white, heterosexual men are the mansplainers, because that'a the only group in the population we're allowed to insult anymore. Especially with the sneering "if you object to the term, you're probably one of them."

Crimson Devil 1:08 PM  

Quite an admirable construct. I continue to be in awe of such.
Blanked on ASCII and SULU, but they were gettable with crosses; isn’t that what xwords are sposed to be?
Good to learn of spore-studiers.
Very nice Fri & Sat.

nyc_lo 1:19 PM  

Flew through it until hitting due south. My AHA moment was a long time coming, held up by trying ANY and INA for quite a while. Not used to “Keynote” used as a verb, as it seems to be in the ORATE clue.

GILL I. 1:24 PM  

@Jayhawk...Hah! OK, I'll give you "I'm as normal as blueberry pie."

oldactor 1:25 PM  

As an actor I so wanted 36A to be GREEN ROOM but it didn't fit.

I still have a Sacagawea dollar.

@Hungry Mother: I worry about your knees.

MJB 1:32 PM  

Rebecca Solnit's essay, "Men Explain Things to Me" is an illuminating delightful read; although she didn't use the word "mansplain," she often gets the credit.

Barry Frain 1:33 PM  

@Fred Romagnolo, poor baby.

Barry Frain
East Biggs, CA

RooMonster 1:35 PM  

Hey All !
SW was a bear for me, as others have noted. All tricky clues there, plus PEALE who is a WOE. Never read motivational stuff. lie before FIB, and EELPOT, STEER, URAL, PYRE, DIETARY all tough to suss out. But I did it, and finished error free! WooHoo!

Never heard of the SULU Sea, but I'm sure @M&A is gonna plan a trip there!

Four F's today. Almost wanted a fifth, GRASSfEED. Plus having dONtS for NONOS gave me fPtRES for SPORES, and I was like, What the What?

But enough MASC MANSPLAINing from me.


jb129 1:39 PM  

Thank you Anonymous @ 12:26 pm for your comment.

Men have been talking down & down to women forever - actually, it's the men who don't understand.

burtonkd 1:52 PM  

Really enjoyable today because "h" in AHA was last letter to go in. Did a fist-pump, an LOL and attacked rest of SUNny nyc Saturday.

Masked and Anonymous 2:28 PM  

Always nice to see the return of the Jaws of Themelessness black squares, in the puzgrid.

This SatPuz played slightly friendly, at our house. A couple names/concepts here and there that we didn't know [aka: ATWOOD, SULU, DEVELOPMENTHELL, REILLY, DAMON], so that ate up some extra precious nano-seconds and nano-thirds.

@Aketi: Primo Aketisplainin, on MANSPLAINED and all the other 'splainins. thUmbsUp.

staff weeject pick goes to RET. Better clue: {Butler character whose extra characters have Gone with the Wind??}.

Unfortunately, the puz fell a bit short on yer entertainin Ow de Speration touches. COSTUMESHOP at least brought a slight glint to M&A's eye.

Thanx for the fun, Mr. Ries. Real good job.

Masked & Anonymo4Us

sorta suggested/inspired by @kitshef:

Aketi 2:47 PM  

@Fred, you clearly didn’t notice that I provided examples of other types of SPLAINErs too, including the female variety. On behalf of moms everywhere, I do have to point out that even mom SPLAINERS themselves suffer from others SPLAINING to them how they are doing it all wrong, usually from people who parented so long ago that they forgot how hard it was or those who have never been parents who think it’s easier than it is.

bauskern 4:04 PM  

Not all plea bargains include a "No contest" plea. Many plea bargains involve an outright guilty. As a crim defense attorney, that clue wound up killing me. "No contest" pleas are actually very rare.

RooMonster 4:17 PM  

Uh-oh, gonna MANSPLAIN the SACAGEWEA Dollar for those in the dark.

Har, not really, just gonna provide a link to the info.

I'm usually on the receiving end of the SPLAININ'.


Monty Boy 4:20 PM  

Tough puzzle for me but came in with average time.

I hope I'm not manslpaining, but an interesting bit of trivia I learned long ago: SHODDY comes from a suppliers for the Union army. Many contracts and corruption for supplies. From Wikipedia:

Northern novelist Henry Morford, himself a Union Army veteran, issued a sweeping indictment of government practices in a novel that gave a new word (or at least a new usage) to the English language: shoddy. In his scathing 1864 novel The Days of Shoddy, Morford defined the word as “a wide and disgraceful synonym for the miserable pretense of patriotism—shoddy coats, shoddy shoes, shoddy blankets, shoddy tents, shoddy horses, shoddy arms, shoddy ammunition, shoddy boats, shoddy beef and bread.”

Anonymous 4:58 PM  

*adjusts vocabulary so it's appropriate for ailing gnats*

Mansplaining is when you explain something to a woman that she already knows when you wouldn't explain the same concepts to a similarly qualified man because you would simply expect him to know that.

It's a real phenomenon and the fact that you don't know what it means says a lot more about you than you probably should admit in public. You don't know what it means because you don't have to deal with it, and you don't have to deal with it because you're not a woman. And here you are telling women that you don't really believe it happens to them. So good logic there, Einstein.

Fred Romagnolo 4:58 PM  

I was under the impression that "shoddy" was a Brit word for a type of cheap cloth. @Barry Frain: EAST BRIGGS? Poor baby.

Anonymous 5:02 PM  

Or HUFF. Crossing MITZI, I call foul.

Anonymous 5:14 PM  

ASCII requires 7 bits to represent all its characters. But it's always represented as 8 bits in a modern computer. And pretty much everything supports the full 8-bit ISO 8859 code page, which is an extension of ASCII and what many people think of when you say ASCII.

Anonymous 5:29 PM  


Let's nerd out, y'all. In the first ASCII, that lonely 8th bit was used for parity. Transmission in those days was really poor. The reason there even was an 8th bit was because The Big Blue Monster had taken the 6 bit BCD code to 8 bits with EBCDIC. That and the simple fact that 8 bits makes for a nicely morphable power-of-2 structure. So, once parity checking went passe`, folks used that lonely 8th bit to define 'character graphics'. 1-2-3, in the DOS original, made much use of same.

Birchbark 5:31 PM  

DANCE LESSON is a dook, as in "Please ____ my toes."

Runs with Scissors 5:43 PM  

@Ally'all in re: Mansplaining

Maybe, just maybe, perhaps, the folks I hang with don't do it, so the word never gets might want to consider that angle.

Or was that mansplained?

Z 6:01 PM  

Regarding the Saturday Stumper - there are a couple of us regular commentariatians for whom 26A was probably a stone cold gimme, but Wowser, that’s a pretty esoteric way to clue that answer. I’ve dined at the Olde Peninsula brewpub, but it is very unlikely that you have.

JC66 6:12 PM  


I've never even been in the State, but got it off the last three letters.

joebloggs 6:20 PM  

Because NFC is not ever their home. It’s their conference. Just a deliberately misleading clue. Not clever in any way.

albatross shell 6:34 PM  

At least a little more ambiguous.
Maybe it's manscuzing. First post put you a bit of a hole. Better hold on to those scissors. Check out Patrick Sky's Radcliffe Highway. I'm sure your sense of humor will get you out of any jam it gets you in.

Z 6:34 PM  

@JC66 - As I said, Stone cold gimme here, so had you beat by three letters. If you’re ever in that state the Olde Peninsula is a decent place to eat and have a beer. Not the best of either, but decent. Food, Dance has better food and The Eccentric Café better beer, both just a couple of blocks away. The clue sort of reminded me of some Edina and Orem clues I’ve seen, although this clue does provide an extra hint.

joebloggs 7:01 PM  

A costume shop is where you buy things before Halloween. Not a place backstage at a play. This was just painful. Not clever.

joebloggs 7:06 PM  

No clue what LMGTFY means but it was like a Susan B. Anthony dollar more recently. I’ll try to be helpful unlike kfja

joebloggs 7:10 PM  

Dugout=canoe? This was an incredibly painful puzzle. Some real stretches here.

JC66 7:29 PM  


My point was that "esoteric" didn't effect the solve.

JC66 7:34 PM  

BTW, can't wait to see @Rex's rant about tomorrow's 94D.

Crimson Devil 8:59 PM  

Agree re “no contest”, not heard in 40 yrs of “White Collar” defense.

JC66 9:15 PM  

@Crimson Devil

Nolo Contendere?

CDilly52 10:23 PM  

Just so y’all know, one absolutely can get hurt with supposedly “safe” NERF toys and a NERF war is a real thing. Could be an actual pretend war or a game that devolves into sibling bickering and havoc. Young sibs of my teenage girlfriend who saw the commercials on Saturday cartoons in the day believed the hype and thought NERF baseball would be just fine in the house, right? Until the ball hits the long stemmed flowers in the crystal vase and it tips over, crashing to the floor scaring the daylights out of the dog sleeping under the coffee table. Dog jumps up, coffee table goes over spilling beverages and popcorn all over the living room carpet. Regardless of said commercials, parental unit walking in to the chaos yells, “I told you kids not to throw ANYTHING in the house!” Said children’s nether regions were indeed hurt. Thus endeth the NERF war circa 1969.

Lane 6:33 AM  

I had exactly the same issues you did!

The Grammar Nazi 10:30 AM  

Maybe the fill was the unavoidable price of the amazing symmetry?

Sallie 12:56 PM  

I still don’t know who sacagawea is. I gather she helped Lewis and Clark from the above post but what else do we know about her? Wikipedia not helpful

spacecraft 10:41 AM  

Ah, old school! DOD MITZI Gaynor was my way in: "Anything goes!" There was some trickiness hereabouts, but nothing that doesn't belong in a Saturday. I make it medium for the day. Stickiest point was the etiquette list: I had dONtS for way too long. Trickiest clue: that body of water thing for SULU. C'mon, man, you'll have Trekkies calling for your head. There will only ever be one SULU, so there. I thought it was a cool puzzle, with MANSPLAINED as a nodding NONO (for me, anyway). I better never. Birdie.

Burma Shave 12:57 PM  


when conFRONTED with your FINEST MASC, IHOP."


rondo 1:21 PM  

A coupla small issues with love lines as iDo before ODE and a bAt in the dugout before an OAR. No big INKfest.

I used to be a UNIONREP. A THANKless job.

MANSPLAINED needs to be expelled from the language, and if you don't know why, let me tell ya . . .

Willing and ABLE to accept a SEXT from you gals.

That DYNAMO MITZI Gaynor famously had the COSTUMESHOP make up that gown that almost wasn't. Yeah baby and THANK you for the DANCELESSON.

Not the FINEST puz ever, but if I FESSUP, pretty good.

5wksltr 1:29 PM  

No trouble with Sacagawea, as once upon a time NJ Girl Scouts in the summer would go to Camp Sacagawea while Boy Scouts would go to Camp Sakawawin.

Anonymous 3:04 PM  

@Diana -- Thanks for your reply yesterday. The online Spokesman Review doesn't offer the NYT puzzle, so I'll have to stick with my current source (the Seattle Times online, which I'm very happy to have access to) and my six-week lag.

Thanks again.

Syndie Solver, 7-13-19

leftcoast 3:40 PM  

Easy? No. AHA moment? Hardly.

DNF fodder: NERF


Anonymous 3:49 PM  

@rondo, please stop the YEAH BABY nonsense.

It's the verbal equivalent of a leer. It's gross and offensive, and the unconscionable misogyny in this world harms women in real ways, from lower wages to car-safety measures that don't take their body size into account (so more women die in crashes than men even though women are safer drivers and cause fewer crashes), to domestic violence, rape, female genital mutilation, and "honor" killings.

Just ... stop, please.

Diana,LIW 4:22 PM  

Too many non-AHA moments for me today. Oh well. Must need a non-WORKINGVACATION.

Anon - My SR on line has the puzzle, but it's by subscription. (The whole paper, that it.)

Uh oh - I hear Mr. W bellowing from the other room.

Diana, LIW

leftcoast 5:36 PM  

@ rondo --
I have to agree with @Anonymous 3:49. The "yeah baby" era is over, or should be.

rondo 6:01 PM  

@anon 3:49 - I apparently do have some MANSPLAINING to do:
I've yeah babied the likes of Mother Teresa and Eleanor Roosevelt and Golda Meir and Helen Keller, not what I'd consider leer-worthy, so put that in your gross pipe and smoke it offensively. I've even yeah babied a few guys for that matter. I've been been told that during daily readings of this blog to a less than fully ABLE person, that person couldn't wait for the yeah baby of the day.

As for your stilted stats - Every woman that does what I do for a living for the past 36 years has made exactly as much or more than I do. I even trained a handful of those who were already earning more than me. That should be gross and offensive, but I didn't see it that way.

The 'average' American woman is 6 inches shorter and 10 pounds heavier than me, so am I the one who's unsafe? Don't tell me about your car safety issues unless they include new measures for all short and/or overweight people (including men), all of whom BTW are a drain on my health insurance (and life insurance) premiums.

Those other things you mention should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. Even those that are more prevalent and generally found in other countries/cultures. Good luck on your soon-to-be-launched overseas crusade. I wish you the best. What's that? Not going? Then don't whine to me.

So . . . my recognition of women (and men) of note (for whatever reason) that appear in a xword puz will continue in this blog as it has for years, probably years before you knew it existed. You don't have to read my posts.

Perfect example of why interesting posters like @evil doug have left.

spacecraft 6:07 PM I hear a DOD-bashing as well? Please forgive us; these titles are conferred as honors. We do not in the least mean to denigrate. I once made Mother TERESA Damsel of the Day. What does that say?

leftcoast 6:16 PM  

@rondo --
@Anonymous may still get his word in, but I think that regardless of your rationalizations, "yeah baby" still means "yeah baby", and that's not acceptable.

rondo 9:01 PM  

Not rationalizations. Facts and explanation, hence it's apparently been MANSPLAINED twice now. And why aren't folks up in arms about MANSPLAINED? Sexist more than dad bod or dad joke. Yeah baby stays.

rondo 9:16 PM  

And what makes you think @anon will get in "his" word. Why not 'her' word?

rainforest 2:09 AM  

So late that this will not be read, but I'll have satisfaction of writing it anyway.

Re: yeah baby. When it first appeared I have to admit that I was somewhat
uncertain as to whether I thought it was OK, not OK, or if I cared. I've commented in a like way myself all the time wondering if I should. I have to say, though, that over the years I've grown to "know" @rondo (as much as you can know someone here), and I think he is definitely a non-sexist and generous man. Sure he has his proclivities, don't we all?, but he is open and, I think, honest, and a person whose opinion I like to see every day, just like @Spacey, @Lady Di, @leftcoastTAM and @Burma Shave. We used to be a larger bunch here in Syndiland, and I don't want it to shrink even more. Probably why I'm commenting at this ridiculous time. We don't all have to be of like minds -- my God, that would be boring. I think we all like to do the NYTX daily and comment on our solving. Nothing wrong with that even it it seems sometimes a little like a covert society, free of TAR.

Anyway, in my opinion, carry on @rondo, and you, @spacey. The yeah babies and the DODs, male or female, shall survive, and once in a while, I'll join in.

BTW, was the above considered MANSPLAINING? Oh yeah, I liked this puzzle.

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