Thriller with a two-note theme / FRI 6-4-21 / 2012 title role for Jamie Foxx / Sequel to Pearl S. Buck's The Good Earth / Mythological figure who nearly managed to flee Hades / Guac go-with / One of the schools named in the public schools act of 1868 / Explicit for a Brit / Queens squad for short

Friday, June 4, 2021

Constructor: Nam Jin Yoon

Relative difficulty: Medium

THEME: none 

Word of the Day: EURYDICE (30A: Mythological figure who nearly manages to flee Hades) —
In Greek mythologyEurydice or Eurydike (/jʊəˈrɪdɪs/GreekΕὐρυδίκη, 'wide justice') was the wife of Orpheus, who tried to bring her back from the dead with his enchanting music. // Eurydice was the wife of musician Orpheus, who loved her dearly; on their wedding day, he played joyful songs as his bride danced through the meadow. One day, Aristaeus saw and pursued Eurydice, who stepped on a viper, was bitten, and died instantly. Distraught, Orpheus played and sang so mournfully that all the nymphs and deities wept and told him to travel to the Underworld to retrieve her, which he gladly did. After his music softened the hearts of Hades and Persephone, his singing so sweet that even the Erinyes wept, he was allowed to take her back to the world of the living. In another version, Orpheus played his lyre to put Cerberus, the guardian of Hades, to sleep, after which Eurydice was allowed to return with Orpheus to the world of the living. Either way, the condition was attached that he must walk in front of her and not look back until both had reached the upper world. Soon he began to doubt that she was there, suspecting that Hades had deceived him. Just as he reached the portals of Hades and daylight, he turned around to gaze on her face, and because Eurydice had not yet crossed the threshold, she vanished back into the Underworld. When Orpheus later was killed by the Maenads at the orders of Dionysus, his soul ended up in the Underworld where he was reunited with Eurydice. (wikipedia)
• • •

This will be a short write-up today because I am barely awake. Maybe in the course of writing I will magically wake up more and the write-up will go on and on to its normal length, but at this point, in the second sentence of the write-up, that hardly seems likely. I socialized for the first time in close to eighteen months last night, and man am I out of practice. Went to Syracuse to see two of my favorite crossword people, who are also two of my favorite people people, and we drank whiskey (well, one of us had an Aperol spritz, I guess, technically) and talked and talked like people who have needed to talk for like, well, eighteen months. Time had no meaning. I ate dinner at some ridiculously late hour, left much later than I planned, drove through a vicious rainstorm, got home late, thought I would blog because by then the puzzle was already out, but then just talked to my wife and cats for an hour and passed out. And then the alarm went off at 4:45am. And here we are. And I still haven't started this write-up. OK, here goes. I loved this puzzle. I am pretty sure I have enjoyed Nam Jin Yoon's puzzles before, though I don't think there have been that many yet. I'm looking now and this is his fourth puzzle. For all the limp-brained people who say stuff like "why do you hate every puzzle?," here are the first sentences from my three previous Nam Jin Yoon puzzle write-ups:
  • "A smashing success"
  • "Wow, this was excellent"
  • "As with Wednesday's puzzle, I destroyed it, and I very much enjoyed destroying it"
Dude is currently batting a thousand. Four for four. All I can say is 'more please.' Because I *do* NEED A NAP, and yes, DON'T JUDGE! Naps are good. Good like this puzzle. So much zing. PANKO! Hi there, why don't you come out and play more often, you tasty breadcrumbs? DJANGO PANKO! HONEYBEE BEBE! This puzzle was sufficiently tough, but it felt light and playful, everywhere I turned. END IN TEARS is a beautiful entry, and also deeply unapt for this puzzle, which ended in anything but. Tears of joy only. Maybe tears of tiredness.

Loved TOP BRASS and OVERRATED REALITY TV, which I am reading as one long phrase. Also loved the clue on SNOW ANGEL (18A: A child who's lying might make one), both because it's good and because I deciphered it pretty quickly. Did not like the clue on PUTT (43A: Hardly a long shot). Some putts are really quite long, actually. 

I'm sure I've wondered this aloud before, but are ASEA and AT SEA the same, then, when it comes to confusion. Because I thought it was just AT SEA, but here we are ASEA (11D: Befuddled). Speaking of seas—Eurydice ("You RID a sea"). Subject of many operas, as well as a poem by Scottish poet Robert Henryson, which I wrote about for my Ph.D. exams in grad school. Enjoyed seeing her again. Not many mistakes today. Wrote in JOINER at 5D: Cheerful and self-confident (JAUNTY) because I misread the clue as [Cheerful and confident sort]. Had NENE before BEBE (32D: One in the care of una madre). NENE is the Hawaiian goose, yes, but it's also Spanish for "baby." Clue on HONEYBEE was tough but fair (40A: Small organic food producer). My first guess there was HOME FARM. So there were some struggles, but they never felt like annoying struggles, and there was usually some reasonable payoff at the end. I am so excited to discover that there is a newish constructor that I (apparently!) really like. And look at that, this write-up has somehow ended up the same length as all the others. Gonna quit before diminishing returns set in.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld 

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Facebook]


Hungry Mother 6:31 AM  

Very quick and easy today. Seemed more like a Wednesday offering.

abalani500 6:40 AM  

Nice write-up. Rex should drink and drive more often

Lewis 6:40 AM  

It was a JAUNTY journey through three-quarters of this, meaning hesitations and skirmishes but no concrete walls. But then I hit the SE, which forced me into my ESCAPE POD, where instead of pounding away, as I usually do, I slipped into a meditative calm zone – and waited. Waited for something to slip out. An answer did (BESTIE), but the clues were so tough for me that it didn’t lead to other answers. This happened time and again – a new answer which made new crosses, but they didn’t help. Still, I relaxed and waited in my zone until the last answer came.

I have to remember this. Rather than struggle in an opaque puzzle area, peace out. Give the brain space.

So, Nam, not only did you delight me with lovely clues, such as those for HONEYBEE and PUTT, and lovely answers, such as DON’T JUDGE, OVERRATED, and LET RIP, and that sweet cross of OCEAN and SEA, plus the memory of a most wonderful read – “Pachinko” – but you handed me a new and maybe profound solving strategy.

“Thank you” seems hardly enough for all this, but it’s all I got, and it’s sincere. Thank you!

The Hermit Philosopher 6:41 AM  

Great puzzle, but "limp brained people" is not nice. You don't hate *every* puzzle; only about 95% of them. LOL

Z 6:43 AM  

Pretty much what Rex said, just a delightful puzzle to solve. Not a single three letter answer and incredibly low PPP (21%). This has fresh, fun phrases and just the right amount of tricky clues. The closest I came to an arched eyebrow (really more just a moue today) were the POCS PTAS and APRS, TAKES AIM AT crossing TAKEI, and the matching bar clues. That is it. This is almost Berryesque in its cleanness and it got several "nice" reactions while solving. Just generally excellent. Even little things were made better today. I really like the nearly rhyming, nearly opposites cluing for TOAST. That is a nice touch.

Whitey 6:46 AM  

I concur with Rex: good puzzle. I also had HOMEFARM. I noticed the Koreans names of the constructor of the puzzle and the author in the puzzle while doing the puzzle in a train passing through the lovely, green mountainous countryside to the east of Seoul.

Joaquin 6:48 AM  

Seeing the name George TAKEI made me so angry (and probably not why you think). The TAKEI family, like so many Japanese-Americans, were stripped of everything from their money to their dignity, without so much as a “by your leave” from our government.

At the same time, all other Americans were rationed essentials.

And yet today many Americans think wearing a mask in public is a sacrifice too great to make. Don’t tell me DON’T JUDGE. These snowflakes make me livid!

Side Note: TAKEI was a classmate of my sister at Los Angeles HS. He spent his younger years at the Tule Lake Internment Center and is now an internationally recognized icon - an incredible life despite the long odds!

Eprailick 6:56 AM  

Why is an OCEAN always found in a bed? Got it from crosses but can’t suss the clue?

Ando 7:02 AM  

Why's an OCEAN "always found in bed"? There must be a different meaning than just the ocean bed which lies at the sea floor, right? To me that's too tortured a usage.

Anonymous 7:06 AM  

Why the * * in clue for 41A, *everything*?

Geoff H 7:09 AM  

I don’t get the clue on 19A at all. How is OCEAN “always found in bed?”

kitshef 7:11 AM  

Very tough to get started. ASEA went in but no crosses worked and the clue seemed wrong, so out it came. ON TO went in, but no crosses worked. Finally got a toehold with OCD/EPOCH.

I bet I'll be the outlier today but I did not like this puzzle at all. A lot of colloquial language in this one, which I really don’t like. Clue for AND GO was particularly odious. My guess is Rex will love this puzzle, as colloquial language floats his boat.

Irfan 7:17 AM  

I always get PTO and PTA mixed up. It can be either, right? I had O and that through me off for a while.

Son Volt 7:24 AM  

Liked it - not overly difficult for a Friday but a smooth solve. Loved the clue for SNOW ANGEL. Learned HONEY BEE - liked CHIMNEYS, END IN TEARS and LET RIP.

The two shorts - OCD and MIN and the awkward NY METS and REALITY TV were the only rough spots.

Enjoyable Friday.

Anonymous 7:25 AM  


pabloinnh 7:33 AM  

Agree with the glowing reviews today. What a lot of fun this one was.

Had OFL's reaction to the ATSEA/ASEA dilemma, as the former is common at the latter is pretty much nonexistent, at least in my experience.

Seems like we just got through the PEACE=See ya discussion, and here it is again. I even managed to remember it, which was very helpful in the SE.

Thanks for a great Friday, NJY. Not Just Your average Friday, this one has got to be a Fridazo!

JJ 7:52 AM  

My favorite puzzle this year. Lots of white space early, that brought a lot of smiles as I uncovered the wordplay. SNOW ANGELS is the best this year.

Anonymous 7:53 AM  

If the flowers visited by the HONEYBEE aren't organic, she isn't an organic food producer. FAIL!!!

H. Hornblower 7:55 AM  

ASEA floating on the OCEAN. Wonderful - even if, perhaps, not intended.

And seabed is a common term for the ocean floor.

GILL I. 8:00 AM  

There were a few times that I thought I was TOAST.... then an ooh crept up and then an aah slid in and when finished I said "I HAVE TO TOAST NAM."
I had a few mistakes that led me to go do the laundry. Was I the only one that had DON'T STARE at 16A? No? Finally I said "ooh, here comes da JUDGE." That one mistake was my deadly sin. I got over it. Want to know why?.... because I actually remembered DJANGO. There's a J in there....Aah seeping out of my mouth.
My second little sin was at 38D. When I unleash, I LET out. LET RIP is something my grandfather did after getting up from the dinner table. We always expected it. It never came out of his mouth - no sireebob - he'd save it for the best part. His impolite way to say he enjoyed the meal and then head for the loo.
I was thrilled to get REALITY TV and ESCAPE POD. I've never watched that Truman thing and I don't even know what an ESCAPE POD looks like. So yay me.
Yes....more please.

sixtyni yogini 8:09 AM  

Good one,indeed!

Cassieopia 8:10 AM  

Loved it. Unbelievably good. I still consider myself a novice puzzle solver; still learning even the basics of what makes a good puzzle and puzzle construction; but this one absolutely stood out to me. Hardly any PPP, fantastic mis-directions, short and clear clues that could go anywhere, and a perfect solving experience. I could tell that I was working on a puzzle crafted by a master. I’m still smiling at snowangel. Fantastic puzzle, A+ with sprinkles on top.

Z 8:33 AM  

The Seven A.M. posters seem really ASEA about that bed clue. It really is just as simple as the OCEAN floor is sometimes called the OCEAN bed. Since that definition shows up second at Merriam-Webster I would not call the clue “tortured.” I don’t know which is weirder, the slew of the same question within 15 minutes or that nobody has responded as I type 90 minutes later. Maybe they just haven’t been approved very long and this will suddenly be the 20th response. Oh Well. C’est la Crossvie.

@irfan - It can be either but I feel like it is PTA 99 times out of 100. I can’t remember the last time I saw PToS in a puzzle.

@7:53 - If the HONEY BEE is visiting plastic flowers he isn’t producing any food, organic or otherwise.

@Joaquin - I haven’t read it, yet, but I have heard lots of great things about TAKEI’s graphic novel memoir.

bocamp 8:34 AM  

Thx Nam; just what I'm looking for in a Fri. puz! Nice, crunchy challenge. :)

Med+ solve.

Got my start with CHIMNEYS and branched out from there. Ended up with EURYDICE (thank goodness for fair crosses). :)

Pretty crunchy puz; lots of new and/or misremembered stuff. Most enjoyable! :)

Sugartime ~ The McGuire Sisters

Sugar in the mornin'
Sugar in the evenin'
Sugar at suppertime
Be my little sugar
And love me all the time
HONEY in the mornin'
HONEY in the evenin'
HONEY at suppertime
So by my little HONEY
And love me all the time

yd 0

Peace ~ Empathy ~ Kindness to all 🕊

Nancy 8:34 AM  

**SPOILER ALERT** For anyone who has not yet done this past Monday's puzzle. You should skip this (now completed) lyric from the first act of the revisionist musical based on the life of the subject of Monday's puzzle. People who don't think the world needs a revisionist musical based on the life of the subject of Monday's puzzle should skip this too:)

From Act One of "Collaborator!" -- the new Coco Chanel musical (work in progress)

"Little Black Dress"

When I go out tonight, I'll wear a wire.
I'll hide it at my hip or maybe higher.
Exactly where? You'll have to guess.
But somewhere in my little black dress!!
My little black dress is perfect for a spyer!
When I go out tonight I'll be concealing
Those Allied wartime plans that I've been stealing.
Where are they now? I must confess:
They're somewhere in my little black dress!!
That little black dress you've always found appealing.


An inside pleat
An outside fold --
Just look at all my dress can hold!!!
A large and camouflaging bow
That I have placed somewhere below,
Strategically -- where you can't go.

When we go out tonight, we'll be embracing.
But don't you dare go tearing at my lacing.
For even under great duress
I won't remove my little black dress!!
The little black dress that all the spies are chasing.

I'm cool as I can be. I don't perspire.
You know I won't perspire on my wire!
Nor on the intel I possess
That's stashed inside my little black dress.
No spy in all the land will keep it drier!

It's for my haute couture the French adore me.
But plotting with the enemy is more me.
I love those those hiding places in
My little black dress -- they make me grin!
(The little black dress alone is apt to bore me.)

Frantic Sloth 8:38 AM  

What Rex said. Except for that whole first paragraph.

Fun entries, clever cluing, good challenge without frustration. What I look for in the Fridee puzzles.

Hence, no real nits. Alas and alack. (Not really)

Nam Jin Yoon has found a home in late week puzzles - more, more, more, please!


Barbara S. 8:48 AM  

This puzzle made me happy to be a crossword solver. I had some trouble getting an initial toehold, but EURYDICE came to my rescue (even though she wasn’t rescued herself). I had the most trouble in the NW and SE. The rest of the puzzle fell pretty easily which gave me a diagonal swath of filled in squares from NE to SW – it looked like the sash on Miss America. Most of my favorite answers have already been mentioned; I also liked MEANS IT and EYESORES. (Funny how close EYESORE is to Eeyore – we haven’t seen too much of him lately.) We’re always being told that Brits spell “spelled” as SPELT. We have lots of British spellings in Canada, but to me SPELT means a kind of grain and nothing else. Aren’t cars for cats Meowtas?

Today’s passage is from CÁO XUĔQIN, born June 4, 1715.

“Next day was the twenty-sixth of the fourth month, the day on which, this year, the festival of Grain in Ear was due to fall. To be precise, the festival's official commencement was on the twenty-sixth day of the fourth month at two o'clock in the afternoon. It has been the custom from time immemorial to make offerings to the flower fairies on this day. For Grain in Ear marks the beginning of summer; it is about this time that the blossom begins to fall; and tradition has it that the flower-spirits, their work now completed, go away on this day and do not return until the following year. The offerings are therefore thought of as a sort of farewell party for the flowers.
This charming custom of 'speeding the fairies' is a special favourite with the fair sex, and in Prospect Garden all the girls were up betimes on this day making little coaches and palanquins out of willow-twigs and flowers and little banners and pennants from scraps of brocade and any other pretty material they could find, which they fastened with threads of coloured silk to the tops of flowering trees and shrubs. Soon every plant and tree was decorated and the whole garden had become a shimmering sea of nodding blossoms and fluttering coloured streamers. Moving about in the midst of it all, the girls in their brilliant summer dresses, beside which the most vivid hues of plant and plumage became faint with envy, added the final touch of brightness to a scene of indescribable gaiety and colour.”
(From Dream of the Red Chamber, one of the Four Classical Novels of Chinese literature, Chapter 27)

Whatsername 8:54 AM  

Well wow! What a great way to end the work week. Yesterday’s dazzler was a tough act to follow and I did not really expect Friday to measure up, but there’s no doubt this little Friday gem certainly met the challenge. Started out looking like Stumper City, lots of white space but then I got SNOW ANGEL/NETWORK and pretty much the entire west side fell into place. I love when that happens. Especially liked OCEAN crossing ASEA, TOP BRASS, HONEYBEE, LET RIP. Thanks NJY, this was refreshing and pleasant.

Keeping it brief this morning as it’s the weekend for annual community wide garage sales and I want to make the rounds. Depending on who you speak with, this might be considered a foolish pursuit but for me, it’s like going to a casino. You never know when you’re going to STEP up and hit the jackpot. The next one you STOP BY might be the time when you finally score that BURLAP fishing VEST you’ve been thinking about. I’m off to a JAUNTY start but I’m confident I’ll NEED A NAP later on. PEACE.

OffTheGrid 8:58 AM  

@H.Hornblower & @Z. Of course we all know about calling the floor of the ocean the seabed or ocean bed. But the bed is in the ocean, not the reverse as the clue says. Also the "always" in the clue makes no sense. So a hard NO on that clue.

Frantic Sloth 9:00 AM  

@pabloinnh 733am Reminded me of what was likely my only nit gnat: ASEA vs. A(T)SEA. Typically, the former means literally "out to sea", while the latter represents befuddlement. But, really, who cares?

@Barbara S 848am Hisstorically speaking, there's Cougars, Jaguars, etc., but I'm lovin' me some Meowtas, you sick bastard. They're purrfect. 😘

***Mini Quiz Alert***

PTA reminded me of yesterday. If anyone gets my drift, good on ya! (My money is on @J-Dip) 😄

Steve M 9:14 AM  


albatross shell 9:14 AM  

Hand up for DONTSTARE.
Surprised if most people didn't.

INEEDANAP OVERRATED REALITYTV CHIMNEYS STOPBY all in immediately. Everything else was a medium or severe struggle. NE the slowest. PLACARD, needed almost every cross. I know the word. Sure isn't crosswordese I guess.

For sloth no PEACE. Still cranky? Glad I made that aloha comment yesterday or whenever.

Do not understand the complaint about OCEAN or what PTo is. suppose to be. BESTIE is best friend who you might tell *everything* that you might tell anyone. Of course my first answer was shrink. Is that demeaning a profession? Sure, why not.

I wonder if the honeybees are organic if the flowers aren't? Are the flowers organic if the bees aren't?

Nifty JAUNT with several delights. Had a few skinned elbows and knees, and a twisted ankle, but that's life.

mathgent 9:23 AM  

Lately my wife and I have been doing the late-week puzzles together, calling out answers across the room. She's not a strong solver, she usually needs help to finish Monday and Tuesday. But she gave me some pivotal answers last night. SNOWANGEL, BEBE (I had NENE), WAGE, STOPBY. I would have gotten a couple of them on my own probably but when? I need my sleep.

Nancy hasn't checked in yet, but I'm quite confident that she'll love it. Virtually no proper nouns. I loved it too, especially for its smart cluing. And only two Terrible Threes, opening up the grid for 14 longs (ten of the fifteen rows had a long).

"Hardly a long shot" was ?U??. Gotta be DUNK, right? No.

JD 9:24 AM  

@Frantic, I care about at sea v. asea cause they aren't the same. I also care that Peace (again? so soon???) does not mean See Ya Later. Don't let the door hit ya on the way out! Does that mean Peace? Does Ta Ta mean Peace? How 'bout Tatas? Does it mean Peaces? Get out and stay out? Words and phrases used in the same situation are not necessarily synonymous.

Don't want to be this person but I can't stop.

I also care that the answer to Something Said While Shaking A Head can be an infinite combination of words, but I've never seen anyone shake a head when saying I Need A Nap. Or maybe that's the kind of clue you need for a Friday. I don't like guess what I'm saying clues.

Otherwise a really pleasant puzzle. I love the word Jaunty and Panko are my crumb of choice.

TheMadDruid 9:25 AM  

Overall this was a terrific puzzle. But I have a real problem with the cluing on 19A; and also with the answer to 50D. When was the last time Netflix offered dvds??

TheMadDruid 9:25 AM  

Overall this was a terrific puzzle. But I have a real problem with the cluing on 19A; and also with the answer to 50D. When was the last time Netflix offered dvds??

Anonymous 9:31 AM  

Ando, Eprailick-I'm with you. That is tortured. That the ocean floor is also called the seabed in no way means that the ocean is in the bed.
here's how the term bed is used by people who speak English.
The cargo is in the bed of the pickup. The best place for my dog to defecate is in the bed of roses across the street. The shrimp was served over a bed of risotto.
The ocean however is not in a bed.

And George Takei is a whack job and self-promoting non-talent.

JD 9:41 AM  

@TheMadDruid, 2011.

RooMonster 9:42 AM  

Hey All !
Nice FriPuz, but seems to me just a normal themeless. Not saying it wasn't good, just didn't strike me as an over-the-top puz. Dang, maybe Rex-crankness is seeping in! (I know he liked todays...)

Tough spot was SE. Had REALITY TV in, but couldn't figure out any Downs. Had rEel for VEST, so erased that, saw it was VeST, which got me OVERhypED. Sneaky suspicion PUTT was what was wanted there, but the Hardly in the clue threw me a bit. Maybe replace it with" Mostly"? Wanted LETfree for LETRIP (obviously too long), finally wrote in my "should-bes" ETON and DVDS, decided to erase the wrong HYP, then got PEACE, then ESCAPEPOD, then done.

PEACE out! was popular for a while (90's?), so no problems with that. LET RIP was funny, sometimes heard as "LET 'er RIP!" Got a chuckle out of JAWS clue. Dunh-Dunh........ Dunh-Dunh

That's NACHO cheese! 🤪

One F

pmdm 9:42 AM  

As seems the overwhelming conclusion, a wonderful puzzle, certainly deserving of Jeff's POW. Too bad all the submissions to Shortz are not close to this quality.

A word to those who complain about the clues. The clue for 40A does not read "Small organic food producer 100% of the time." Many who complain about the clues might append the last four words to the clue and erroneously complain the clue is wrong. (Come to think of it, isn't "100%" more than one word? Well, I suspect you know what I meant to say.)

Runs on Dunkin 9:43 AM  

Netflix still offers DVDs

Banya 9:48 AM  

Liked this puzzle a lot.

ALL: YES, NETFLIX STILL OFFERS DVDS. I still get them! :). And so should you! They offer a lot that isn't streaming.

Also, I don't know why the clue Time Out has a (?). It seems like a straight forward clue for REST.

Pete 9:49 AM  

@JD - Be mad if you want, but at least quote the clues correctly - it's "Something said while nodding", from which you're to get that nodding is nodding off. You're complaint about a-sea <> at sea in the context of meaning confused appears well founded. @Editors - just because two phrases are synonymous in one context doesn't mean they are synonymous in all contexts. @bocamp signs off with PEACE every post.

If anyone tries to tell you their honey is organic has to be able to certify the absence of herbicide use in a 4 mile radius of the hive for the past two years, i.e. their probably fibbing.


burtonkd 10:01 AM  

@themaddruid: they still mail DVDs. Even if they didn’t, the clue would work.

Hands up for enjoyed it. Perhaps a bit more resistance for a Friday would be better.

The bed seems to be the container for the ocean, not the other way around.

I always wondered about organic honey. Can you control exactly which flowers they visit? Or, maybe the variety makes a difference. I could see orange blossom honey being non-organic, but wildflower or clover must be organic.

I hereby retract my limp-brained comment about Rex needing more sleep to write a positive blog. I enjoyed his description of a night out with friends.

@nancy, I hear some melodies for many of your lyrics. They put me in a cole porter vein.

Nancy 10:02 AM  

Yes, mathgent -- I loved it too. When I immediately thought KILN for the well-clued 1A, (confirmed by KIDS), I knew I'd been doing puzzles for too long. But had trouble elsewhere. In the end, it was just a few answers that gave me most of the fits -- answers I couldn't see until I had almost all the letters.

SLASH for "or", for instance.

SNOW ANGEL. What is it? A child "lies" down in the snow and says he's a SNOW ANGEL?? I've never heard of it.

booT before VEST. You go fishing in a VEST? Doesn't it get wet and also interfere with your fly casting? What an odd thing to wear.

TYPO. I was trying to picture all those [animal] cats or [hipster] cats riding around in cars. These kinds of misleading clues for TYPO get me every time.

Loved the clues for PUTT and TOAST. CHIMNEYS was cute.

Not all of this was Friday-hard. But enough of it was to keep it intriguing and entertaining.

Anonymous 10:02 AM  

I agree! There was something about this puzzle; maybe constructors can explain it: it had JUST the right amount of assistance to get every step of the way without allowing me to skip steps, and very often produced satisfying smiles of sudden recognition after effort. How does one DO that?? Really well done. It seems to show what puzzles are when they are at their best - what experience they can offer, to lift you out of a day.

albatross shell 10:04 AM  

@JD 924AM
You got the clue wrong on INEEDANAP. Ndding as in nodding out.

Read any of @bo camp posts. PEACE as a greeting coming or going. PEACE brother. You are free not to like it. It is used that way.

albatross shell 10:11 AM  

Last time I checked they still offered dvds. Some people do not have or have inadequate internet service at home. Yes they do.

Frantic Sloth 10:12 AM  

@albie 914am Always at least a little crank in my day. 😉

@JD 924am "Words and phrases used in the same situation are not necessarily synonymous." Yes! Exactly! Thank you!
BTW the clue says "nodded" as in "nodding your head" or "smack-nods"; else, I would agree.

JD 10:15 AM  

Har, @Albatross! Never mind. Now I see it's an awesome clue. Thanks!

Frantic Sloth 10:22 AM  

Sorry, @JD I should have refreshed before posting. Now it just looks like I'm piling on. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

To all you Goodbye = Peace peeps:

Nobody is saying that "Peace" or Peace out" or "Peace be with you" are not forms of saying goodbye. It is more accurate to say that these forms of goodbye (ciao, aloha, etc.) are not necessarily saying "peace", and often can be used as the opposite of "peace". It's like saying "I know you" = "I like you".

Don't make me come down there and get cranky on your collective ass. Oh. Too late. 🤷‍♀️

jae 10:22 AM  

Medium. I was hesitant on PANKO because I thought it was a brand name. I just looked at the box and the brand is Kikkoman.

DONT > starE > GlarE > JUDGE

Solid with some clever/fun cluing and a bit of zip. Liked it a bunch or what @Rex said.

I was reminded of how much I don’t pay attention to things when I hit the Pachinko clue. I’ve read the book and highly recommend it but I had no memory of who the author was. The only reason I remember who wrote “A Visit From The Goon Squad” (another book I would highly recommend) is crosswords.

albatross shell 10:23 AM  

Yes fisherman wear VESTs. Handy pockets above the waist. Vests do not interfere with casting. Long time tradition. Keep the body dry if anything. Place to pin fishing license too.

TJS 10:23 AM  

I don't know, @JD, one of my boys says "peace" or more often "peace out" for "goodbye" all the time. And the clue for the "nap" entry says "nodding" not shaking.

Anyway, great puzzle today. Two sections where I had to erase entries just to get a clean look at possible alternatives, and "Wham" the right answer suddenly materialized. I'm with @Lewis when that happens to me.

I'm with anyone who thinks Rex should drink more often. Just watch out for those drives home. One nice thing about life here in the D.R. is I don't need a car, so let'er rip.

Frantic Sloth 10:24 AM  

And I just read that I said "nodding your head" which is exactly the wrong example. I meant "nodding off". What a jamoke. 🙄

Frantic Sloth 10:28 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
albatross shell 10:29 AM  

See you later is saying goodbye. Saying Peace is sometimes saying goodbye. I think that is the standard for crosswords. They are clues.

egsforbreakfast 10:46 AM  

I loved the puzzle. Smooth and in my wheelhouse for a Friday. I also loved the Little Black Dress lyrics from @ Nancy. For some reason I’ve been playing with Little Black Dress sung to the tune of Little Deuce Coupe for the last few days. A very different approach, and not as interesting as @Nancy’s, but amusing nonetheless.

Anyway, thanks for a great puzzle, Nam Jin Yoon.

gregg 10:49 AM  

PTO is paid time off in my book.

Whatsername 10:58 AM  

@Nancy (8:34) Huzzah! You’ve outdone yourself.

@Anonymous (10:02) Agree with you 100%. And like you, I wonder, how did they do that? I tried to figure out how to say something along those lines but you expressed it perfectly. Thanks!

Carola 11:01 AM  

This was all I hope for in a.Friday - challenging and very enjoyable. Solving required a sort of pinwheel approach, with repeated sweeps around the grip picking up an answer or two each time, and providing many a chance to appreciate the inventive cluing. I was very grateful for my few "for sures" that provided much needed anchor points in what was otherwise A SEA of white space: TAKEI, EURYDICE, CHIMNEYS, EPOCH, IDRIS, TYPO. Loved the HONEYBEE, ESCAPE POD, and SNOWANGEL x KIDS.

JD 11:03 AM  

@Frantic, I knew what you meant! You speak my language.

Newboy 11:05 AM  

For all who whine about Rex’s negativity, today’s response is truly a wake up call! Day after day before Dawn even when hungover, OFL leads the charge toward crucaverbal perfection. I am in awe of his service to Crossworld as I am of today’s grid cluing. Only groan I suffered was when I found myself ASEA yet once again. But those SNOW ANGEL & BURLAP entries more than compensate. And looking for a “bar” with ?A?A? In play could only be sAlAd, right? Wrong! That kind of cluing makes any Friday a day to look forward to. Thanks Nam; like Rex, I look forward to seeing you again real soon.

Anonymous 11:10 AM  

These snowflakes make me livid!

Careful with your words, there. 'snowflake' is the term used by the Right Wingnuts for those who wear masks and get vaccinated.

ghthree 11:23 AM  

Several people (including my wife and me) loved the clue for "snow angel," but didn't bother to explan it for you. When I was a boy, we used to lie down in the snow and move our arms and legs to make wings and a skirt. You are probably one of the few people who never heard of the term. Good clue, if you have the memory.

Practically everybody loved today's puzzle, including Rex. Bodes well for the day.

Peace to all.

GILL I. 11:35 AM  

@Nancy...As they say in my neck of the woods: En hora buena......Have you written a book yet?
@Newboy....Good comment and I agree with you on cruciverbal perfection.

Anonymous 11:42 AM  

I've only scanned, but I didn't see anyone complain that 41A clue is a lie. LYING is about falsity. LAYING is about SNOW ANGELS. Even the College Instructor let it pass. Gad.

Z 11:54 AM  

@Everybody Alleging Wrongness - I can't believe this even needs to be said because most of you have been around the Crossworld Block a time or two, but what we get are clues and the task for the solver is not to bemoan the 1,001 ways the clue doesn't work, but to suss out the one way the clue does work. PEACE as clued not only works in English but has parallels in other languages (Aloha, Shalom). Yes, there are a 1,001 ways to use PEACE that don't fit the clue, but we see this specific usage here every day. Can't we all just give PEACE a chance? As for OCEAN - Come On. That's a perfect little misdirect and spot on. If you don't have a bed you don't have an OCEAN (you probably have a comet). And if you think "on" is better than "in" what I hear is a chorus of violins playing a pity party because you got fooled. No, "in" is fine just like I might be "in bed," not "on bed." And finally, I never ever ever use "at sea" or A-SEA, I usually go with "confused," "lost," or "Get your arse off that wooden roller coaster." Still, appending that "A" prefix is the same as saying on the sea or at sea, a long established metaphor for being lost. To quote that great philosopher, Spock, a difference which makes no difference is no difference.

Oh, a finally finally: "Organic" can also just mean having to do with plants or animals. That is, the opposite of inorganic.

Paint Drinking Pete 11:54 AM  

Association vs Organization. Some school systems have a "PTO", hence the uncertainty

Aelurus 12:08 PM  

Thought I’d have a difficult time because at the start I had nothing in the NW. But happily and lazily sitting in my air chair as the sun went down last night I wandered around the grid looking for clues I was sure of. To my surprise, eventually the grid started filling in and it turned out to be one of my fastest Friday solves.

Several straightforward answers, but tricky because I didn’t enter them immediately - I wasn’t falling for that, was I?

As I didn’t enter KIDS at 1D, KILN (1A) was elusive, so instead thought hot pot as in cooking style, which is all I knew about it.

SNOW ANGEL (18A)! Wow, excellent clue. It finally opened the NW, and the happy music appeared.

Favorite answer: TYPO (48D), for the cleverly misdirectional cluing of cats and publishing.

A TOAST to this enjoyable Friday!

Malsdemare 12:16 PM  

@Nancy, that was delightful. But I need a melody!! Please help me out here. I agree; something Cole Porter-ish but my brain is AT SEA.

Perhaps someone already assisted @anonymous 11:42 with the LIE/LAY difference? If not, LIE, LYING etc are intransitive verbs; they don't take an object. LAY is transitive. I can LAY my child in the snow to make SNOW ANGELS, but if the child does so herself, she lies down, or is LYING as she moves her arms and legs.

This was a terrific puzzle! I did need to do a little research on MIN Jin Lee but otherwise, my experience was like so many others: catch one elusive answer and lie in the weeds to wait for the next to stick its nose out.

jb129 12:16 PM  

Fun Friday! Glad you had a good time, Rex

Joaquin 12:24 PM  

Just stopping back in to agree with @Z and @Frantic. "Clues" are just that - clues. They are not definitions, they are not synonyms. They are hints. And we are solving a crossword 'puzzle', not a cross-Thesaurus.

Anonymous 12:30 PM  

Why on Erath does Z think people who prefer one preposition to another got fooled? What evidence is there for that claim. Anyone?

Joe Dipinto 12:39 PM  

Funny, as I was doing this I kept picturing Agent 99 for some reason.

@F-Slo – I guess you mean my link from yesterday?

@Nancy – excellent lyrics, I could imagine the character in an atelier being attended by two assistants measuring, tugging, adjusting the pleat, fussing with the bow, etc., as she performs the song.

This was very good, barring some asinine-as-usual clues (oh, hello, OCEAN). Not crazy about AND GO as an answer. But that's not much to complain about. When I look at the grid now I keep reading EPOCH as EPOOCH. "Please tie your epooch up outside, it's not allowed in this etailer. And make it stop ebarking."

While we're doing lyrics, here are two fave songs from the swinging 60s that contain puzzle-pertinent ones:

But it's just a crazy game
When it ends, it ends in tears

You don't realize that it's all compromise
And the problems are so overrated

Cankee Yanuck 12:56 PM  

I was moving fairly quickly through this but got stuck for a while in the NE at the end. I thought the options for 9A were either NGOs or PACs and as a result I couldn't see PLACARD. Got there eventually and, like most commenters, I enjoyed the puzzle overall. Thought the cluing was especially good for SHIN, SNOWANGEL, and TOAST. Also realized for the first time why a gunny sack is called that.

Teedmn 1:02 PM  

I would say I had a desultory solving experience today, moving from place to place, but it was much more fraught than meandering, more like going down rapids, being displaced by rocks in the stream. I finally found a foothold at BEATS crossing BEBE and chipped away from there.

When I had _URY in place at 30A, I thought maybe one of the fURY trio had tried to escape Hades (Google implies they had a free pass) but the F was a no-go at 26D. I didn't know the story of EURYDICE before reading the word of the day in Rex's column but I knew the name so that wasn't too hard.

Far from OVER-RATED (over-hypED could have fit there also), this puzzle was JAUNTY. I liked it a lot. Thanks, Nam Jin Yoon!

Teedmn 1:03 PM  

@Nancy, great job on the lyrics. Very fun!

Frantic Sloth 1:14 PM  

@J-Dip 1239pm and everyone. Please disregard my "Mini Quiz" from an earlier post (if you haven't already).
Wish I had some kitty litter to cover my egregious error turd, but Mrs. Sloth was giddy to point out that I had the wrong song entirely.
I do that every.stinkin'.time.
Every June 3rd "Harper Valley P.T.A." supplants "Ode to Billy Joe" in my head. Mainly because there's so much room in there to run amok.

As you were. 🙄

A 1:23 PM  

Found a snow angel demonstration with a twist for @Nancy and anyone else who may not know how it’s done: Peace: or how to stop worrying and make snow angels

Loved the puzzle and was so on the constructor’s wavelength it felt like a Monday. Thanks for the JAUNTY ride, Nam Jin Yoon!

HONEstEa before HONEYBEE, lol.

Happy Birthday Paquito D’Rivera!

jberg 1:27 PM  

@Nancy, great lyrics, I can't wait for the demo tape!
But I feel sad about your childhood and the absence of snow angels (unless you grew up down South, but I don't think you did.) Next time it snows you should go straight to Central Park and follow @ghthree's instructions. Then stand up and look at the result.

@Irfan, @Z -- this is just based on my personal experience, but in the Midwest they have PTAS, while we in New England are more Organized. From the exclusive appearance of the former in the NYT, I'm guessing Associations are more widespread.

Great puzzle, although I don't think the Anthropocene has earned the "epoch" designation, at least not yet.

Anonymous 1:31 PM  

A clue may be just a clue but it still has to make sense.

Joe Dipinto 1:33 PM  

@F-Slo – Ah...
It was the third of June, another sleepy dusty delta day
I get it.

Anonymous 1:39 PM  

Snow angel
You lie down in the snow with hands at your sides and feet together. Then you slide your arms to shoulder level while separating your legs. Do this a few times and then stand up. It will look like an angel in the snow.

bocamp 2:09 PM  

@Rex, thx for the long PUTT vid; that was amazing, especially considering the jocularity of the situation! ⛳️

Remove the OCEAN and the bed remains. The dry bed of the Aral SEA remains where 90% of the lake used to be.

Let there be PEACE, go in PEACE, and all other Good connotations of PEACE!

td pg -1 (I'm ASEA on the final word)

PEACE ~ Empathy ~ Kindness to all 🕊

Anonymous 2:16 PM  

@Z, 8:33

"He? - HONEY BEEs are female.

kitshef 2:45 PM  

@Nancy - here's another example of the making of a snow angel, with a comic twist.

Nancy 3:24 PM  

Alas, @Malsdemare (12:16), I can't write music. But there's still hope. Here's what @burtonkd had to say at (10:01:

@nancy, I hear some melodies for many of your lyrics. They put me in a cole porter vein.

A Cole Porter vein? Wow! Would you like to be my collaborator on the project, @burtonkd? We even live in the same city.

I've already pegged @Joe Dipinto (another New Yorker) for Director. His suggested atelier scene (12:29) would be a genius way to stage "Little Black Dress."

Nancy 4:05 PM  

I am so, so touched by the kindness of all those Rexites today -- @jberg, @A and @kitshef (have I left anyone out?) -- who have gone to great trouble to introduce me for the first time in my life to the creating of a SNOW ANGEL. (I must admit that I clicked off immediately on "The Simpsons" link. As an unusually noise sensitive person, I don't watch any of the cartoon shows because I absolutely can't abide the voices.) So I went to YouTube and found SNOW ANGEL-making videos featuring real children and watched them instead. I was completely underwhelmed -- though I gather from the videos that the real challenge of the activity is getting yourself up from the snow without messing up your "creation".

I had a quite pleasant childhood. This seems to be something I somehow missed, but I'm happy to say I don't feel deprived. Plus the fact that I hate snow. Yes it's pretty when newly fallen -- but it's also very cold and very slippery.

Charles Young 4:11 PM  

Two 3-letter answers.
And number of, not amount of...

mathgent 4:28 PM  

@Joaquin (12:24). Exactly! I propose that whenever someone here objects to a clue or an entry by saying "Some x's are not y" or something similar that we respond by saying "Your comment is invalid. Please refer to the Joaquin Dictum."

Anoa Bob 4:45 PM  

Started out like gangbusters in the NE. Dropped in JAWS right away at 5A off the "Thriller with a two note theme" clue and then was so proud of myself when I absolutely nailed 5D "Cheerful and self-confident" with JOVIAL. I mean starting with J and having six letters, what else could it be? Wrong buffalo breath! (Anoas are buffaloes, you know.) Took a while to correct that. It was a self-inflicted solve buzz downer for sure.

I did, however, think that the "lying" children were lying down and not telling lies. So when SNOW ANGEL show up I said "Nice" and my solve buzz was restored.

My first thought was that 41D "Gunny" would have something to do with a USMC E-7 Gunnery Sergeant, also known as "Gunny". Or maybe a Gunner's Mate in the USN, also sometimes called "Gunny". Oh yeah, I remember from long ago that a BURLAP bag was also known as a "Gunny sack".

I join the rest of yous who thought this was a first rate puzzle. I did, however, notice that the grid fill got considerable help from the ultra handy letter S. There are a couple of two for one POCs, where an Across and a Down both get a letter count boost by sharing a final S. One shows up in the spot where a two for one POC most frequently appears, in the lower, right-most square. There's also two of what might be called Stealth POCs, where the letter count boosting S is "hidden" inside a phrase. See them? Remember, POC is a crossword, not a grammatical term. The POCs were noticeable but I wouldn't call them EYESORES.

Bitter 5:08 PM  

Pretty sure all brains are limp. If your brain has a decent amount of shear strength... you might be petrified.

Anonymous 5:34 PM  

too many years, long past alas, of 'NCIS' to have any other notion of gunny. total fixation.

Joaquin 7:13 PM  

@mathgent (4:28) - You've embarrassed me with your compliment! And I thank you. I will encourage the use of "Joaquin's Dictum" in the hope to be included in next year's OED.

Anonymous 7:35 PM  

Thank goodness the proposed dictum will never be implemented.
Now if we could ever banish... well, we all know who the irritants are.

Anonymous 7:36 PM  

Hey Z
Got any more thoughts on bees or organic pollination?

Unknown 7:44 PM  

Also loved 48D: Cars for cats, say!

Anonymous 7:45 PM  

Not a single three-letter answer! That must be the prescriptivist way of counting. Or, am I embarrassing myself?o

Joe Dipinto 10:00 PM  

I never made snow angels as a child either. Maybe it was too plebeian for NYCers. I think I first became aware it was an activity here.

albatross shell 10:38 PM  


Nancy 10:42 PM  

They must have been very cold, Joe.

JC66 10:43 PM  

I can't wait to see what @Anoa Bob has to say about tomorrow's puzzle.

I'd be more specific, but I don't want the Mods to nix my post.

Joe Dipinto 11:21 PM  

@Nancy – Love means never having to say "I'm cold, can we go inside now?"

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