TV journalist Baldwin / FRI 7-9-21 / Biblical birthday gift / Journalist Ifill who was depicted on a postage stamp in 2020 / Move named for 19th-century skater Paulsen / Folk rock band with two #1 hits / Frozen character with antlers

Friday, July 9, 2021

Constructor: Robyn Weintraub

Relative difficulty: Easy

THEME: none 

Word of the Day: BROOKE Baldwin (10D: TV journalist Baldwin) —
Brooke Baldwin (born July 12, 1979) is an American journalist, television host and author who had been at CNN from 2008 until 2021. Baldwin hosted CNN Newsroom with Brooke Baldwin, which aired from 3pm to 4pm ET on weekdays. (wikipedia)
• • •

GOLD MEDALS (17A: Olympics
haul of fame?)
The only problem with a delightfully smooth puzzle is that there's not much more for me to say than OOH and AAH (or is it AHH?). This thing is EYE CANDY, has a great BEDSIDE MANNER, and I would definitely pay more than MARKET PRICE for it. It was very easy to GO WITH THE FLOW. In fact, the only problem I had was that I proceeded at the very opposite of a SNAIL'S PACE. I did not need the encouragement of "DON'T GIVE UP!" because the whole thing melted in my mouth like cotton candy ("look at all that cotton candy! [one minute later] the cotton candy is gone, I need more cotton candy!"). I solved in a pretty leisurely fashion, stopping to admire the gorgeous fill as it unfolded, but I was paying close attention as I was tooling along and the fact is that I did not look at a single clue to which I didn't know the answer until the grid was half-finished. Literally every clue I looked prompted a correct answer, including BROOKE, whom I've never heard of—I had enough letters in place to guess her name easily. It was not until the clue on CORKS (35A: Light brown seals) that I failed to get an answer at first glance (I had -OR-S in place and just couldn't come up with it). 

This is how things OPENED. Nice to get such a vibrant phrase like EYE CANDY as one of your first longer answers:

I thought I might not get 9D: Goes to hell? from just DES-, but I thought on it a few seconds, and bam, down it went (love that the answer itself literally DESCENDS into the grid):

From there, it was whoosh whoosh, from BEDSIDE MANNER to LESSER EVIL to the seemingly self-referential GO WITH THE FLOW, and I had stakes into the bottom of the grid, ready to finish it off:

The bottom half of the puzzle was definitely tougher, but only a little. I stalled on both the OPIATE and EPIPENS in the SW, but that was just normal gotta-work-the-crosses-to-get-traction stuff that might happen on any day of the week. The SE was the thorniest, because there, I made a couple of real errors, namely SOFT SIDE for SOFT SPOT (36D: Charming vulnerability) and HEEDED for HEELED (42D: Followed). That last mistake seems deliberately induced by the clue, as HEEDED is the far far better answer for that clue, HEELED meaning something much more specific than the general "Followed." But it's a defensible clue for HEELED, and again, it's not like it caused a real hold-up. SOFT SIDE caused much more of a problem, largely because it made everything in that corner invisible. Plus, I still don't know the NATO alphabet (see PAPA) and ICES aren't a thing I ever eat or think of (ICEES, yes, I solve crosswords, those I think of). The only thing I really didn't like was in this corner: the clue on TASK. Is TASK a "kind" of force? It's a word that comes before force, sure, but I'm not sure it's a "kind" of force any more than BLIND is a "kind of" spot or JUNIOR is a "kind of" mint. The clue [___ force] would've been *fine* with me, but something about "kind of" here just felt off. But, again, it's the only thing that felt off in a remarkably polished and entertaining puzzle.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Facebook]


asdfasfd 7:08 AM  

Pedantic but oxymorphone is an opioid, not an opiate.

OffTheGrid 7:13 AM  

Easy Friday (for me, 32 min). Unlike @Rex I completed the south first and finished in the north. He's wrong about the TASK clue.

amyyanni 7:15 AM  

Seascape instead of EYECANDY got me off to a limping start. In the SE, Freespot contradicted SOFTSPOT, so obliged with Softside. Argh! Managed to sort it all out. Another beauty from Robin. Makes you say TGIF with a big smile.

kitshef 7:19 AM  

This was a very good puzzle. A couple of unfortunate proper names (BROOKE, EDITH) but in both cases all the crosses were solid.

Nice clues for MARKET PRICE, PI DAY.

EDITHs I would have known, unlike the one clued today:
Ann (as portrayed by Lily Tomlin)
E.D.I.T.H. in the Marvel movies
Head (she of the 35 Oscar nominations)
Probably missing a couple. Not a lot of recent EDITHs, though.

John H 7:29 AM  

This one was so unexpectedly easy for a Friday, I'm surprised Rex let that go. I am looking for more of a challenge by this time of the week.

Son Volt 7:33 AM  

Elegant - smooth puzzle. Loved EYE CANDY x PADDLE BOATS and GO WITH THE FLOW. Didn’t know BROOKE but crosses were fair. Spent time trying salmon etc for the lobster clue. Big Downton fan so EDITH went right in as did the great BYRDS right in the middle.

Highly enjoyable Friday solve.

TTrimble 7:34 AM  

Nice to see a cheerful Rex review. Of course, it would be surprising to see him trash a Robyn Weintraub creation.

It did go down pretty smooth, and I can only agree it felt rather easy for a Friday. GO WITH THE FLOW is very apt.

About my only misstep was typing in OPIoid before OPIATE. There's some distinction between them but I don't remember precisely what it is.

The clue for CORKS was cleverly devious; I had to think about that one.

BROOKE and EYE CANDY: gotta say, she is indeed "easy to look at".

Another long day of driving ahead for yours truly, as we visit another prospective college. Elsa is coming down hard now as we speak. Wish me luck!

Peter in Chicago 7:40 AM  

This one sparkled! I’m jealous of anyone for whom this puzzle is a first-time solve

The Joker 7:42 AM  

Andy, "Did the young 'un have supper yet?"

Aunt Bee, "Yes, OPIATE".

Anonymous 7:42 AM  

asdfasfd taught me something today. Until now, I didn't know that there was a difference between opioids and OPIATEs.

According to the CDC, "Although these terms are often used interchangeably they are different:

Opiates refer to natural opioids such as heroin, morphine and codeine.

Opioids refer to all natural, semisynthetic, and synthetic opioids."

Oxymorphone is semi-synthetic.

Robyn, it's a great puzzle, though! Your puzzles are just such a pleasure to solve.

mmorgan 7:44 AM  

Easy-ish (mostly!) for a Friday but wow, so lively and smooth and fun. How can she be so good at this? An utter delight, except… except… I had HEEdED and PiPe and was doomed. But I still loved it.

The Hermit Philosopher 7:46 AM  

My dictionary says “resembling opium” for both opiate and opioid.

Anonymous 7:52 AM  

I found this:

Opiates” vs. “opioids” Although these terms are often used interchangeably they are different: Opiates refer to natural opioids such as heroin, morphine and codeine. Opioids refer to all natural, semisynthetic, and synthetic opioids.

Sounds like all opiates are opioids but not all opioids are opiates.

Also found this:

Oxymorphone is used to relieve moderate to severe pain in people whose pain is not controlled with other medications. Oxymorphone is in a class of medications called opiate (narcotic) analgesics. It works by changing the way the body responds to pain.

And this:

OPANA (oxymorphone hydrochloride) Injection, is a semi-synthetic opioid analgesic.

So I think @asdasfd wins the prize.

Demeter 8:04 AM  

@asdfasfd (7:08 am)

Not merely pedantic. The distinction is important. Had the Sacklers stuck with their original opiate product (morphine) and not turned their evil genius toward marketing an opioid, a lot of people who are dead today wouldn't be dead; and a lot of people who are addicted today and resorting to dangerous street opioids wouldn't be addicted.

Raven Starkly 8:13 AM  

I skied 74 days last season and glare was never a problem. Glare doesn’t even make the top 50 problems of skiing. It’s one of those things where too much knowledge of a subject can hinder you In crosswords. It happens for me with ballet too, the answer is always pliΓ© or maybe jete and never sous sous or passe. Glare is never a problem skiing — white out is a problem or fog, ice, lines, costs, parking, cold, snow, wind, rain, injury, crowds — never glare. /rant

Fell for the “capital of” clue again hook line sinker and copy of Anglers Monthly … when will I learn?

Barbara S. 8:14 AM  

Yes, smooth as silk and just as pretty. Like Rex’s solving experience, the north filled itself in, while there were some snaggy bits in the south. “Followed” went from ensuED to taiLED to HEELED. And DON’T GIVE UP started out as “DON’T mind me” (for some reason).

Trickily delightful clues/answers:
Club alternatives BLTS
Line for a sleigh ride REIN
Light brown seals CORKS
Piece of mind? IDEA
Big wheel at a party? BRIE
Irrational thing to celebrate? PI DAY
Doesn’t surrender CLINGS TO (I started with “fightS on”)
It helps make waiting easier TRAY
Capital of the Philippines PESO
Head turner NECK

When I got to the BYRDS, I burst into a rousing rendition of “Hey, Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me…” My husband stuck his head around the door and said, “Are you taking requests? I’d like to hear ‘Subterranean Homesick Blues.’” At that point I changed songs and started “For everything, Turn, Turn, Turn. There is a season, Turn, Turn, Turn.” ”Ah,” said my husband resignedly, “Not Dylan, the BYRDS” and padded off down the hall.

Mike G 8:26 AM  

I saw the constructor's name, my hopes rose, and Robyn did not disappoint. This was a great puzzle from start to finish, and I really enjoyed it. Peter Gordon and Robyn Weintraub in a single week? Yes, please.

Anyway, this one was little tougher for me. I struggled with BYRDS, which made MYRRH and the rest of that center block hard to get (especially with my mental GWEN vs OWEN debate), but MARKET PRICE opened up the SE corner and I was able to back my way into the center.

So I definitely got tripped up by the proper names. I don't know BROOKE Baldwin, SVEN with antlers, GWEN Ifill, or EDITH from Downton Abbey, and I had a blind spot for the BYRDS, but here's the thing. Every single one of those had crosses that made the answer perfectly evident when I got it. There was never any question that I had gotten the right word. And because of that, I was satisfied when I solved it instead of feeling like I just guessed correctly. Very nicely done.

Barbara S. 8:28 AM  

As we’re on a bit of a music kick at the moment, I give you this passage by OLIVER SACKS, born July 9, 1933.

“At the end of our visit, Fleisher agreed to play something on my piano, a beautiful old 1894 Bechstein concert grand that I had grown up with, my father's piano. Fleisher sat at the piano and carefully, tenderly, stretched each finger in turn, and then, with arms and hands almost flat, he started to play. He played a piano transcription of Bach's "Sheep May Safely Graze," as arranged for piano by Egon Petri. Never in its 112 years, I thought, had this piano been played by such a master-I had the feeling that Fleisher had sized up the piano's character and perhaps its idiosyncrasies within seconds, that he had matched his playing to the instrument, to bring out its greatest potential, its particularity. Fleisher seemed to distill the beauty, drop by drop, like an alchemist, into flowing notes of an almost unbearable beauty-and, after this, there was nothing more to be said.”
(From Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain)

QUOTER’S NOTE: Oliver Sacks was a neurologist. Leon Fleisher was of particular interest because in his 30s, Fleisher had lost the use of his right hand due to a neurological condition, which he eventually overcame. The video clip shows Fleisher playing the piece and the particular transcription mentioned, but not the same instrument.

Anonymous 8:35 AM  

Anyone get hung up with the y-cross at Byrds and Myrrh? Totally forgot the band spelling was weird.

Z 8:36 AM  

Blrrrgh - Double my typical Friday time. Definitely not the puzzle’s fault, just a wavelength thing. For example, first thing that comes to mind when I think of spelunkers is rope, not a LAMP. I was probably only a third of the way into the puzzle and just not on Weintraub’s cluing wavelength when the light switch finally flipped on and I got into a groove. I did have to run the alphabet* at ICE-/TA-K force because TAnK is what first came to mind. Unlike Rex, when I got to S and TASK force/ICES I thought “nice clue.” Indeed, the very epitome of a good crossword clue is repurposing a common word like “kind” from the expected (gravity, weak, army) to the unexpected. I loved it.

And I would say that’s also my synopsis of the puzzle, I loved it. My most negative comment is that we need A NEW BLTS clue.

I have never really watched CNN, so BROOKE Baldwin was a WOE, but I am curious about the past tense in that Wikipedia blurb. Where is she now? Wikipedia, uncharacteristically, doesn’t say.

OPIATE opioid again? Nobody has called the clue “wrong” yet, but let me point out what @anon7:42 posted with some emphasis anyway: Although these terms are often used interchangeably
All lines are not straight, “rebus” can be used in a non-technical sense, and in non-medical/therapeutic settings OPIATE and opioid are synonymous. This flexibility of language bordering on the edge of chaos is the very basis of crosswords and wordplay.

* It occurs to me that there are two ways to “run the alphabet,” first is to mentally go through each letter to see if it works, the second is giving up and typing each letter until the software tells you you are right. I’m referencing the first way.

Z 8:46 AM  

@Raven Starkly - Do you wear goggles when skiing? Are they tinted? Have you ever wondered why all ski goggles are tinted?

@8:35 - I got hung up on the very notion of a “biblical birthday.” D’Oh slap when the clue finally made sense to me. Did I mention that I was on a totally different wavelength for a huge chunk of my solve?

puzzlehooarder 8:52 AM  

Another puzzle from the marshmallow lady. This one had a bit more resistance than your average Weintraub offering but that had more to do with deliberately misleading cluing than the content. Calling an OPIOID an OPIATE was a perfect example. The content was the straight up TV Guide fare I've come to expect from this constructor. Is 1A ROPE? We've got AHOY crossed with OHIO so no it's LAMP. That's the kind of anodyne blandness I had to deal with the whole way through. The three unknown names in the middle did little to relieve the boredom. With EDITH, GWEN and BROOKE it would appear she's showcasing how many women she can pack into her puzzle. In the south she throws in NWA and I couldn't help but think of the actor in "Airplane" telling us she knows how to speak jive. There must be children's publications looking for puzzles why does this constructor keep turning up at the NYT?

After a Thursday that was so early week I couldn't work up the urge to comment it's looking like a bleak late week.

Thank Ja for the SB.

CT2Napa 9:06 AM  

Club Sandwich!

thfenn 9:10 AM  

I'm not good enough at these to call a Friday easy, but I managed to complete it so it must have been. And wow, just elegant and rewarding all the way through. Had to run the alphabet in a few places (meaning @Z's first way to do so). Loved the MARKETPRICE clue/answer with lobster (though unlike getting to hell, it's going up). The NE took me awhile as I thought I was off to a great start with rope and sevengolds for LAMP and GOLDMEDALS, but got that sorted out. The PPP was all right up my alley, and I grew up listening to the Byrds. Finished this one feeling like I'd just gotten a glimpse of perfection, and now know what a crossword puzzle should be. Happy Friday to all.

Amie Devero 9:10 AM  

I thought a soft spot is a thing that you have for somebody else's charming vulnerability. Not the vulnerability itself.

Wm. C. 9:10 AM  

Can someone explain for me why EST (37A) is "...Not The Final Number?"

Amie Devero 9:14 AM  

It stands for estimate. The final number would be the conclusive answer.

Nancy 9:15 AM  

I could wax rhapsodic over this gorgeous Robyn Weintraub puzzle. The clever cluing of MARKET PRICE, PI DAY and REIN. The lovely answers: LESSER EVIL, GO WITH THE FLOW, EYE CANDY, SNAIL'S PACE. But instead I want to tell you about all my missteps. It was like falling into one GULLY after another.

That's what the answer to "skier's problem" should have been when the answer starts with a "G", right? I mean GLARE?? Give me a break. Put on your sunglasses, skiers, put on your goggles, don't make a big deal of it. There's real danger out there on those slopes! The "G" dangers like GULLY and GULCH and also the non-G ones like MOGUL and TREES. Then there are also the non-5-letter ones like PRECIPICE, ICE and AVALANCHE.

It also didn't help that I had G--h- written in. I'd spelled it MYRHH instead of MYRRH. Don't ask.

Then there was my HEEDED instead of HEELED for "Followed". Combined with my TWA instead of NWA at 53D, that gave me STAID SPACE instead of SNAIL'S PACE for "Crawl". Was "crawl" a slang term for a space that's staid? Don't ask.

I straightened it all out eventually. Once again, Robyn, you gave me a crackling good time! Or is it a cracking good time?

Wm. C. 9:19 AM  

@Amie9:14 ... D'oh! Tnx.

jberg 9:23 AM  

I was working down the west side, breezing along, admiring the tricky clues but thinking I must have done too many crosswords, as I was seeing through all the tricks, when BAM! Along came those light brown seals. had _OR__, and wondered if I could make it into haRpS somehow. Much later, I figured out MARKET PRICE, and everything was fine. Except it wasn't; I'd forgotten they weren't the BiRDS, and never knew how to spell MYRRH.

Also I don't know the order of Israeli prime ministers and went with bEgin, further slowing the process. But despite my DNF, I thought it was a great puzzle.

Looks like Elsa is about an hour away; not too much wind yet, but the rain just stepped up. We're all battened down, just hoping we don't lose electricity.

thfenn 9:24 AM  

Just going to add that being in Maine and familiar with the state's opioid crisis, I appreciated @asdfasfd's point, @Z's notwithstanding.

jberg 9:26 AM  

By the way, today's paper reports that the Sacklers are offering to fork over $4 billion in restitution; probably not enough.

G. Weissman 9:27 AM  

Merriam-Webster defines SOFT SPOT as “a sentimental weakness : a strong liking for someone or something. They both have a soft spot for puppies. [=like puppies very much].”

This “sentimental weakness” is not a “charming vulnerability” in the person who has a strong liking, nor in the someone or something strongly liked. To take the dictionary example, neither puppies nor those who have a strong liking for puppies take on a “charming vulnerability” due to that strong liking.

The clue appears simply incorrect to me. Am I mistaken?

Carola 9:34 AM  

One treat after another...I can't think of any other constructor who can cram so many winners into a grid, like today's natural, in-the-language phrases, most with a sunny disposition.. Like others, I found the top very easy - and so enjoyed the more resistant lower half: reviewing the nature books I read to my kids for different kinds of seals, looking at MAR... for the lobster accompaniment and thinking, Surely not MARinara! Loved the clue for PI DAY.

Jay 9:40 AM  

I love Robyn Weintraub's puzzles. This one is no exception. Fresh entries, delightful cluing and minimal level of trivia.
Unique spelling of Byrds tripped me in the dead center.
Me Weintraub, more please.

burtonkd 9:41 AM  

NE started a Scandanavian theme with OSLO, REIN, SVEN extending down to ICES

Only real resistance: I had ___SPACE, then brain combined that with crawl in the clue to make atticSPACE. HEEdED left me with SNAIdSPACE. Took a while to get from SPACE to S PACE.

@puzzlehoarder, that is quite the hot take and major zag from the universal love for this puzzle.

After the LEER synonym rant from yesterday, I'm surprised Rex gave no tsk to EYECANDY.

I thought I'd gotten my monthly fill of OHIO from the recent themed puzzle.

Appropriate that EDITH Wharton and the ungenteel SNORT are as far as possible from each other.

G. Weissman 9:45 AM  

puzzlehoarder @ 8:52 AM writes: “ In the south she [Weintraub] throws in NWA and I couldn't help but think of the actor in ‘Airplane’ telling us she knows how to speak jive.” I guess this answer was just “thrown in” carelessly because it pertains to a Black band, or Black culture or Black people more broadly. That the primary association this commentator has with this answer is a scene from a decades-old movie ridiculing Black English — well that says a whole lot about the commentator, but nothing much about Weintraub or the puzzle.

Whatsername 9:46 AM  

Combine an immaculate grid with expert fill and what do you get? Why it’s a Robyn Weintraub Friday. Of course it. And then what do you do with a Robyn Weintraub Friday? You just thank your lucky stars and GO WITH THE FLOW. I stumbled badly with TANDEM BIKES at 6D but otherwise this TASK was a pure joy. Thank you ma’am!

Anonymous 9:51 AM  

was easy. still hate OARED.

the paper, for those that read not just do the puzzle, has a long piece on the Sacklers/Purdue. my dead trees edition fronts a photo of the headquarters in Stamford. that building started out as GTE's headquarters after it fled NYC for the burbs. from one time tele-conglomerate to poison factory.

Anonymous 9:54 AM  

I had FILETMIGNON as "by the lobster" at first, because it often is, as well ("by" being such a relative term). Of course I later realized it was MARKETPRICE.

Also I filled in all the square in the puzzle without the app saying it was solved correctly before finding that I had misspelled MYRRH as MIRRH and created BIRDS as a cross instead of BYRDS, which is an error compounded by the fact that in 1964 bands named both The Birds and The Byrds were formed, one in London and one in the US. Of course, BYRDS is the correct answer. I just wonder if that was on purpose.

bocamp 9:57 AM  

Thx Robyn; another brilliant puz! :)

Easy-Med solve.

On Robyn's wavelength most the way.

The only holdup was the center with MARKET PRICE crossing BYRDS, CORKS & GLARE.

No SNAILS PACE for me on this one. 🐌

@pabloinnh (9:14 PM yd eve) ty 😊

Actually fished for them when stationed at Pearl Harbor in the early '60s. Didn't catch any at that time (glad of it now).

yd 0 / td 0

Peace ~ Empathy ~ Tolerance ~ Health ~ Kindness to all πŸ•Š

mathgent 10:00 AM  

Excellent puzzle! Not easy for me.

My highlight was "Irrational thing to celebrate?" for PIDAY. It prompted me to think of clues using "rational." Numbers like pi and the square root of 2 are irrational because they are not equal to the ratio of two whole numbers like 2/3, 0.75, or 58. The best I could come up with was "Rational being?" for FRACTION, DECIMAL, or INTEGER.

Nancy 10:03 AM  

FROM YESTERDAY: Not wanting to give away anything about yesterday's puzzle on today's blog, I just posted a response to yesterday's late evening contretemps on yesterday's blog. I think it's a highly original and resourceful idea that will render that particular argument moot forever. If you miss seeing it now, I'll post the idea again soon when there's no recent puzzle to spoil.

Anonymous 10:11 AM  

I don't understand SOFTSPOT as clued as well.

As far as opioid vs OPIATE, I think there's a difference between looseness because of wordplay and imprecision. The opiate clue is "Oxymorphone, for one." There's no wordplay there. The clue should be an accurate description of the answer.

Pete 10:13 AM  

@Nancy - Oh, hell no. You provided an initialism, not an acronym (unless initialisms are acronyms) yet you called it an acronym. You just re-ignited ridiculous argument #1 from yesterday.

Frantic Sloth 10:24 AM  

It's a Weintraub. The end.


jae 10:31 AM  

Very easy. No real problems with this one. @Rex HEEded before HEELED and a soupçon of doubt about spelling MYRRH were about it. BROOKE was a gimme as I frequently have CNN on in the background.

Typical smooth and sparkly RW puzzle. Delightful, liked it a bunch! Plus Jeff gave it POW.

ow a paper cut 10:36 AM  

I had opioid at first. : )

pabloinnh 10:37 AM  

Ate at our local favorite seafood place last night and the menu always list lobsters and scallops at MARKETPRICE, while the whiteboard has today's price, so that was just automatic. Lobsters are wicked expensive right now for whatever reason, BTW.

GLARE is a problem for me when skiing because of semi-compromised vision, but it still took me a long time to see it (see what I did there?). The worst problem we have is caused by incompetent grooming, which leads to the little ice balls known as "death cookies".

Everything else went in pretty much at first glance, with many fun answers and clever clues, which is what I expect from Ms. Weintraub. I agree with the "disappointingly easy for a Friday" assessment, minor nit.

Thanks for the fun, RW. A Real Winner.

Joseph Michael 10:50 AM  

Speaking of INTERPRETing THE PARTS OF, an area where mollusks can roam freely would a SNAIL SPACE.

Also thought that “oxymorphone” referred to iPhone addiction, but couldn’t figure out how to express that in six letters.

Agree with Rex that this puzzle is EYE CANDY.

Whatsername 10:51 AM  

@Nancy from yesterday: I like your rebus solution. It’s the perfect acronym.*

@Lewis: If you’re lurking about, I wanted to say thanks for the top notch puzzle yesterday. I thought your “izer” theme was delightful and had a good time solving it.

For others, in case you missed it, here’s the link for @Lewis’ puzzle, originally posted by @jberg yesterday:

*Acronym: A word (such as NATO, radar, or laser) formed from the initial letter or letters of each of the successive parts or major parts of a compound term

Initialism: An abbreviation (such as FBI) formed from initial letters.


Dillon 10:53 AM  

The Byrds singing "Hey Mr. Tambourine Man" is like Donnie and Marie singing "Stairway to Heaven".

JD 10:57 AM  

JD here. On vacay without a computer and typing on the phone. No idea how to log on to blogger it's been so long. But I must comment.

This was just beautiful, a real joy from top to bottom. Paddle Boats, Parse, Lesser Evil, Soft Spot. Cluing for Cork, wow.

Market Price alone would have left me happy but the best part was sussing out those answers across the south.

Thought it was over with the Downton Abbey character and adjacents but the dominos fell in stunning proof of constructor dexterity.

I rarely gush outside of babies, puppies, and government stimulus money but this is my new all time favorite puzzle, unseating the Clinton election trick.

JC66 10:58 AM  


I just emailed you my Embedding Cheat Sheet. Hope it helps

JC66 11:04 AM  


Great idea!

BTW, I'm not sure discussing the "trick" of a Thursday puzzle the next day is giving much away.

howardk 11:07 AM  

I put in mainecourse at 24 down and glaze at 38 across and that did me in.

Newboy 11:08 AM  

Thumbs up today for Robyn and Rex, both in fine form this morning! Only glitch was HEEdED before HEELED to dog my solve. Laughing out loud at several clues with PI DAY being something truly worth celebrating. Didn’t think yesterday’s delight could be topped, but today did it. Now I wait for Saturday, in hopes of a trifecta!

Anonymous 11:13 AM  

A rave review! Quick. STAT! Rex is off his meds!

Joe Dipinto 11:17 AM  

When we called out for another drink
The waiter brought a tray

I count on RW puzzles for really boring end-of-week answers, and she came through. Not only with boring answers, but boring answers that are boringly clued and that depict actual boringness.

GO WITH THE FLOW – conform, don't make waves!
BEDSIDE MANNER – someone's in bed feeling out of it
SNAIL'S PACE – boy, is this movie dragging
MEEKEST – "You can have my spelunking lamp, I'll just flail around in the dark"

I wish 1d had been clued as
"Theater section that's an anagram of ogle"

Judy 11:23 AM  

Oy, I kept fighting PIDAY, because I confused irrational with imaginary. I kept thinking that Pi is not irrational, so that can’t be the answer. Had to look up the definition, and then remembered that the word for numbers with the square root of negative one are imaginary.

Good puzzle. Always happy when I finish a Friday or Saturday.

sixtyni yogini 11:24 AM  

My solving experience (snags and smooths) same as Rex’s.
Haha but it took me longer to get there. 🐌’sPACE and hares race.
Cheers! Good 🧩! Good clues πŸ”Ž

GILL I. 11:25 AM  

I TAUT I saw EYE CANDY. I did! GOLD MEDALS all around.
My only little GLARE was for the light brown seals. Are they HARPS? Are they GRAYS? Are they a name I don't know? Why no...they are little CORKS. A Weintraub sneak attack.
My only little pause was remembering the daughter's in "Downton Abbey." Ahhhh, yes. EDITH... the one always getting the short end of the stick by her stinky sister. But all's well that ends well. Everyone lived happily ever after.

Mohair Sam 11:52 AM  

@Z - Help! You're the techiest crossword person I know. Listen - I'm dropping Microsoft from my life for myriad reasons (Print Nightmare being only the last straw). I like to work on printed out puzzles (eyesight thing) and want to print using AcrossLite. I've moved the Times app and AcrossLite to my IPad, but can't: a) Print the Times puzzle from there; b) Move the Times puzz to AcrossLite (want to print using 2 pages for Sunday puzz). Alternative would be to use AcrossLite type software on Chromebook (if any is available). Can you help me? Thanks.

The Puzz? Clean and smooth like all Weintraub puzzles. But played waaaay to easy for a Friday in this house. Maybe it's a wavelength thing.

BEE-ER 12:02 PM  

**possible SB spoiler**

I confidently typed BIMBO but (buzzer sound) "not in word list" message appeared. Yet DILDO and GIGOLO are OK. Sam, I don't understand.

A 12:19 PM  

I was expecting more of a challenge but the puzzle itself was fine. So many plurals, though. Hand up for HEEding where I should’ve HEELED. Amazed that Rex liked EYE CANDY. Can’t decide if my favorite entry is PADDLE BOATS or LESSER EVIL - wonder is either a debut?

Alternate clue for SNAILSPACE - Shell. Missed opportunity for cross-referenced clues with OSLO and GOLD MEDALS.

Didn’t know the word oxymorphone and briefly tried to etymologize it into ‘a thing that sounds like its opposite.’ Hey, etymologize is a real word - thought I was making it up.

DESCENDS, DIVING and FREE SPIN make me think of air shows. I was just reading about this pilot - was she in a recent puzzle?

Ottorino Respighi, Italian composer (Pines of Rome), born in Bologna, Italy, July 9, 1879 (d. 1936)
This music is glorious. The title came well after the piece was written, so you can come up with your own impression. Brave Bess doing her airshow?

JennyO 12:20 PM  


TJS 12:20 PM  

Nice Wednesday. Ridiculous for a Friday. I realise that this is not the constructors' fault, but kind of mystified by the love for this puzzle. I had to get all the way to the SE before even stopping to think.

JennyO 12:21 PM  


Jill 12:31 PM  

Your objectification of Brooke is totally unnecessary here.

jb129 12:34 PM  

If I'm repeating my post, my sorry - not sure the first one went through. So I gotta repeat myself because of the constructor.

So like I said this was a teeny bit harder than Robyn's usual puzzles, but, as usual, I LOVED IT. Especially Epipens.

Robyn, I would never give up on your puzzles as long as you show up. Especially on a Friday.

Thank you!

Anonymous 1:06 PM  

@Mohair Sam - @Z may be responding as I type this bit I thought I would chime in anyway. Maybe I don’t understand your issue exactly but if you just want to download the NYT puzzle into Across Lite for local printing, that should work. From within Across Lite, click on the arrow icon (bottom left corner) and then on the Download icon. Then click on the “New York Times Crossword Page link. On the page that opens you can log in and download the puzzle directly into Across Lite. Hope this is helpful.

Richard in NM 1:11 PM  

BIRDS X MiRRH...aaarrrrrgggghhh. The sad thing for me is that I KNOW this. But, solving on paper, I don't get a "You're close" (or whatever your app gives you) message so that I can go over the grid and find the error. So a DNF on a glorious Robyn Weintraub puzzle.

She, along with Patrick Berry, Elizabeth Gorski, et alia, make up a formidable lineup at the New Yorker.

Robin, I'd have finished this one if I'd run into it (online) there.

puzzlehooarder 1:22 PM  

@burtunkd, FWIW I never liked PB1's puzzles either because they were always so easy.

@ G. Weissman, I was genuinely shocked that this constructor used an entry like NWA. It seems very out of character. I would never denigrate someone based on their race and I apologize if my comment implied that in any way.

ghostoflectricity 1:26 PM  

I agree with previous commenters: I initially wrote OPIOID because Oxymorphone is synthetic or semisynthetic, and my understanding is that the term "opiate" (when not used metaphorically, as in Karl Marx's definition of religion as "the opiate of the people"), was restricted to only naturally occurring alkaloids, including morphine and codeine. BTW, the definition I saw listed heroin this way. Heroin, originally developed in the 19th century and marketed, among other things, as a non-addictive alternative to natural morphine (ha!), is not a naturally occurring opiate.

Whatsername 1:30 PM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Z 1:41 PM  

@Mohair Sam - I recommend printing from a computer browser at the NYT website. I just keep that tab open, refresh for the new puzzle, and print the newspaper version. If you need to print from an iPad you will need to download the printer software for your printer since the software is not automatically loaded on an iPad (printing being passΓ© these days), and some of it is not particularly user friendly, which is why I print from a computer. If you want to minimize the hassle and still have a more print version experience use PuzzAzz. It has handwriting recognition tech that’s decent if you don’t want to type, and it does a much better job with things like yesterday’s puzzle (it accepted the rebus in the way other apps didn’t but made sense to lots of frustrated people yesterday).

@Nancy - An elegant solution … so of course we won’t adopt it. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

@G. Weissman - I wouldn’t say you are mistaken, just focused too hard at a single way of looking at SOFT SPOT. A SOFT SPOT doesn’t always have to be “charming,” but it can be “charming.” I'd say a SOFT SPOT for puppies, for example, might be charming to some and annoying to others. Of course, when finding a SOFT SPOT annoying the tactful thing is to pretend that you are charmed.

Joe Dipinto 1:58 PM  

@Kitshef 7:19 – There's also actress (Dame) Edith Evans. And, last but not least, Edith Prickley.

Mohair Sam 1:59 PM  

@Z - Been printing other puzzles from my IPad, but can't get AcrossLite to print anything. Like to have the puzzle in front of me and pen in hand - just like I like my newspaper on newsprint, not online. It's an old fart thing. Guess I'll use my Chromebook and print from the Times site. Just wish I could get that "Print using 2 pages" option for Sundays that they have on Across Lite.

Thanks for the helping hand!

Whatsername 2:16 PM  

@JC 66 (10:58) I tried reposting and the link worked but it brought up today’s puzzle. Then I went back to jberg’s post from yesterday and it also takes you to today’s puzzle now. Oh well.

Crimson Devil 2:19 PM  

Loved PIDAY and MARKETPRICE, learned Paulsen AXEL, or AXEL Paulsen. Fun Fri.

jae 2:28 PM  

If anyone is looking for more of a Friday challenge I just finished 2 NYT puzzles from 1999 that were pretty tough for me. Ed Early's from Jan. 22, 1999 which I got but only because of lucky guesses in the NW and Martin Ashwood-Smith's Feb. 26, 1999 which I missed by one square which was a classic Natick. Good luck!

albatross shell 2:31 PM  

Rule-less Equivocal Baleful Ugly Solution.

Ramming in Extra Batshit Unfair to Solvers

Rather Excellent Beautiul Unexpected Surprise.

So everyone can have a REBUS of their own.

Speaking of changes in word meanings, a report that a combination of quick citizen action and police response rescued a six year old from a kidnapper, I, after and absurd number of years, looked up the origin of KIDNAP. It was first used in England in the latter part of the 17th century to describe snatching of children for labor in the American colonies.

It was easy by comparison, but difficult enough for me on Friday. I hope not too many single and double POCs to earn total condemnation by Anoa Bob. BaTS for BLTS, being late to see the capital misdirect, and unknown SVEN combined to make LESSER EVIL a larger problem. The corners all had some interesting aspects with the NW being the easiest.

GOWITHTHEFLOW GOLDMEDALS EYECANDY BEDSIDEMANNER DONTGIVE (up or in) PADDLEBOATS all were quick. Putting in on all fours for SNAILSPACE slowed me on the SE.

OPIATE (combined with the opioid scandal) makes not only the EPIPEN crossing relevant, but conceivably every crossing relevant. MyK, a nurse, objected to the idea that EPIPENS would be a supply in a nurse's office. I failed to convince her to take an expansive C-W definition of office or office supply.

It is a tutu puzzle. Too many good clues (@Barbara S.'s list e.g.) and too much good fill. Any nits not worth worrying about except for "technical interest".

Eniale 2:33 PM  

Filled with admiration for @bocamp - I'm still -8 today.
@ttrimble - Wishing you good luck during Elsa; reading the storm warning very scary! My kids are on Nantucket.

JC66 2:34 PM  


Yesterday's link won't access yesterday's puzzle for me, either.

A for effort.

Z 3:14 PM  

@JC66 & @Whatsername & @Anyone wanting to do the July 8 Universal puzzle made by our very own @Lewis in collaboration with Jeff Chen - The link takes you to the most current puzzle. At the top of the puzzle area are the timer and several icons. Click on the icon that looks like a tiny crossword grid and a drop down menu of previous puzzles will appear. Pick Action Figures, July 8, 2021, et voilΓ , @Lewis’ puzzle.

JC66 3:27 PM  



CDilly52 3:31 PM  

@Peter in Chicago 7:40 AM. What a lovely thought! This one would indeed be a joy as a “first completion.” Heck, I’ve been a daily NYT solver for 60 years and thought my journey through this gem pretty dang joyous myself!

CDilly52 3:33 PM  

@Demeter 8:04 AM


CDilly52 3:40 PM  

@Nancy 9:15 AM. I made exactly the same missteps you catalogued and fought myself to keep HEEdED rather than HEELED, which slowed me down in the SE. What a fabulous Friday!

CDilly52 3:41 PM  

Loved it, loved it, loved it!

bocamp 3:44 PM  

@jae (2:28 PM)

Thx for the Fri. puz suggestions; I'll give them a go, as I haven't yet arrived at 1999 in my archive tour.

@Eniale (2:33 PM)

Thx for the kind words. 😊

🀞 for your -8

@Z (3:14 PM)

Thx for the @Lewis’ puzzle info. πŸ‘

Peace ~ Empathy ~ Tolerance ~ Health ~ Kindness to all πŸ•Š

Douglas 3:45 PM  

There is nothing wrong with finding someone attractive. Get over yourself.

Z 3:46 PM  

@Mohair Sam - Are you using the latest version of Across Lite? If you are looking at only the puzzle click on the little library book icon on the bottom left, this should bring up the downloaded puzzles on your iPad. You should see an icon of a page with a curved arrow, click on it. Print Puzzle should be an option, especially if you have been printing from other apps.

Douglas 3:48 PM  

There is nothing wrong with finding someone attractive. Get over yourself.

Pete 4:04 PM  

@Albie - Have MyK think about a Nurse's Office at a school, and their hesitancy about the clue my disappear.

Anonymous 4:06 PM  

Had MONKS (type of seal) instead of CORKS

Grouch 4:16 PM  

Why does anyone have to make "rebus" an acronym or an abbreviation or an initialism or whatever the fuck? In crossworld it means 2 or more letters in a square. Get over it.

Bubbabythebay 4:16 PM  

So true!! I'll take glare any day. To my cataract-challeged eyes, whiteout, shade and flat light are skiing problems - glare means a good day on the slopes. Besides, how much better does it get than a sunny day in January?

Mohair Sam 4:40 PM  

@Z, @Anon, @newboy - Thank you all. I have been able to access the Times puzzle from Acrosslite on my IPad. Now I'll have to figure out how to let the Times know I already subscribe and I'll be rolling.

Thanks again.

Mohair Sam 5:04 PM  

@Z et al.

Happily printing puzzles here. Times, LA Times, WSJ. It's a brave new Microsoft Windows free world for me.

Appreciate all the help.

(I've cut the cable cord, escaped Bill Gates, next target - Facebook)

jae 5:34 PM  

@Mohair - If you tap on the pencil ✏️ icon in the lower right hand corner of the acrosslite screen you will see a printer πŸ–¨ icon pop up. This is a tad faster than the process @Z described and works just fine as long as your iPad and printer are on the same WiFi.

Barbara S. 6:49 PM  

Once a quoter...

Karl Marx got around the whole problem by using the word "opium," although it seems his statement is often rendered in English with the word "opiate." I don't see how that can be justified, though. This is Wikipedia:

"This statement was translated from the German original, 'Die Religion ... ist das Opium des Volkes' and is often rendered as 'religion…is the opiate of the masses.' The full sentence from Marx translates (including italics) as: 'Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people.'"

On a different topic:
SB - yd & td 0 (yay!)
Good luck to all bee-ers.

Lyn 7:18 PM  

Agreed. Went through every problem I ever had skiing (including lightening storm when we had to evacuate the mountains) and never thought of glare.

Bill L. 7:49 PM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
TTrimble 9:13 PM  

SB: Joining the growing crowd with td 0. (Relatively easy, but the last word took me a while.)

I think it's because BIMBO is disparaging. I tried that and "MIMBO" (coined by Seinfeld). And yet: the other day, GRINGO was acceptable. I don't want to be that guy, but it could be a kind of "reverse racism", where a slur on those who are considered privileged is sanctioned.

Mohair Sam 9:57 PM  

@jae - Thanks for the tip. There's a world of joy under that pencil. They hide their "how to" pretty well.

Whatsername 10:03 PM  

@Z (3:17) I assumed there was a way to access the previous puzzles but just did not have the time or the inclination to go looking for it. Should have known you would figure it out because as @Mohair Sam said … you’re the techiest crossword person I know. Thanks for taking the time.

albatross shell 10:50 PM  

@Pete 404pm
It worked.

Jaime 12:48 PM  

Totally true

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