Jun 8, 2008

Sunday June 8, 2008 Josiah Breward

Theme: Numerous Movies

23A: Keir Dullea film: MMI A SPACE ODYSSEY (2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY)

42A: Jennifer O'Neill film: SUMMER OF XLII (SUMMER OF '42)

72A: Edmond O'Brien film: MCMLXXXIV (1984)

97A: Terry-Thomas film: MM YEARS LATER (2000 YEARS LATER)

121A: James Stewart film: WINCHESTER LXXIII (WINCHESTER '73)

17D: Charlton Heston film: AIRPORT MCMLXXV (AIRPORT 1975)


And here are five more Roman numerals:

81A: Tenth of MCXC: CXIX

88A: Roman 16: XVI

59D: 570 in letters: DLXX

119D: 141 in old Rome: CXLI

125D: CXII halved: LVI

Why not clue 51A: Decimal base (TEN) as X then? It would be perfect, wouldn't it? Did you notice that there are total TEN X'es in this puzzle?

Very noticeable in this puzzle are the following presidential/political abbreviations:


30A: WWII zone for DDE: ETO

10D: Neither Rep. nor Dem: IND. And 84D: FDR or JFK: DEM. Ridiculous double appearance!

4D: End of demo: CRAT. Democrat. Or end of Auto/Bureau/Pluto!

100D: JFK notice: ARR

And several containers:

27A: Gas container: TANK

34A: Water tanks: CISTERNS. Would have been clued as "Water storer" to avoid the TANK double appearance.

41A: Washstand pitcher: EWER

38D: Large wine casks: TUNS

And so many vexing UP's.

9A: Joins the queue: LINES UP

29A: Curry favor with: SUCK UP TO

14D: Deplete: USE UP

58D: Muddle: MIX UP

I am also annoyed by

63A: Applications: USES. And 14D: Deplete: USE UP.

130A: Resolute: DEAD SET. And the intersecting 92D: Lionel product: TRAIN SET.

I think it's a crossword sin to let the same root word appear both as the clue and the answer, though I am not so sure of the repetitive use of the same words (like today's UP, USE and SET) as the answers in the same grid. They just don't fit my eyes, so clumsy.

In summary, a very TOILSOME (115A: Arduous) journey for me. Too many unknowns and tough cluing, not to mention that excessive amount of Roman numerals. I would have got FRET (87D: Guitar ridge) easily if it were clued as "stew over" or something. And ABELS (113D: Tasman and Muzorewa) was completely out of my brain reach. My hunch is that our editor purposely made some of clues more difficult today to torture us.

However, I do like today's theme concept and the theme entries. Very creative! It's not easy to pull off such a feat.


1A: Piece of men's jewelry: TIECLASP

20A: Auto racer Mario: ANDRETTI. And 85A: Indy 500 Sponsor: STP. I am not into racing. Know neither of the answers. What does STP stand for? Is it the "Racer's Edge"?

21A: Solidarity: ONENESS. And 24D: Wholes: ENTIRES. Really? Can you pluralize "whole" and "ENTIRE" by adding a "s"? How strange!

22A: Planted explosive: MINE. "Gimme"!

26A: Personal histories: PASTS

35A: Publicity stunt, of a sort: PHOTO OP. And 111D: Photog's prompt: SMILE.

45A: Bright aquarium fish: TETRA. And 122D: Grand Banks fish: COD. I did not know where Grand Banks was, so COD did not come to me easily.

52A: Stout's stout sleuth: NERO (Wolfe). I like the clue.

54A: Japanese ornamental tree: MEI. Unknown to me. It's defined as "Japanese ornamental tree with fragrant white or pink blossoms and small yellow fruit". MEI is Chinese for Ume (the Japanese Apricot). Look at this Ume Blossome. I can not find a MEI tree on the internet. I suspect this MEI refers to Ume, not sure.

55A: A likely story!: HAH

66A: Rice dish: PILAF

68A: French probability theorist: FERMAT. Pierre de FERMAT, the French mathematician. Did not know his name before.

70A: ELO drummer: BEVAN (Bev). No idea, I barely know ELO.

76A: "The Gods Themselves" author: ASIMOV (Isaac). Know ASIMOV, did not know that he wrote this book. Wikipedia says that he was afraid of flying, and he seldom traveled great distance. Funny how he could be so creative and productive in his life.

78A: Crazy Horse, e.g.: SIOUX

83A: One heart, e.g.: BID

86A: Bass symbol: F CLEF. Is this a gimme to you?

90A: SSS classification: ONE A

93A: Collections of valuables: TROVES

95A: Fast starter?: STEAD. I put BREAK initially.

102A: Sacred bull of Egypt: APIS. Also called Hapi or Hap. It's said to act as "an intermediary between Ptah (Egyptian creator god) and humans." Here is a picture. Aren't we seeing Egyptian deity almost every day now?

104A: Actress Fawcett: FARRAH. Don't know much about her. Love the new Charlie's Angels.

105A: Laugh-track users: SITCOMS

109A: McMurtry novel, "__ of Laredo": STREETS. I don't know the author or the book.

112A: Soak in wine: MARINATE. In wine? I thought you MARINATE meat in a mixture of oil, vinegar, soy sauce (or other sauce), herbs and some spices.

114A: Weasel sound?: POP. "POP Goes the Weasel"

117A: Mount of Moses: NEBO

126A: Bogie in "Casablanca": RICK. Good to see SAM (64D: Actor Waterston) in the same grid.

127A: Gregory Nava film of 1983: EL NORTE. Not familiar with this "The North" (?) film at all.

128A: Complete: LIVELONG. I've never heard of this expression before. Only know LIVE LONG (and Prosper).

129A: Architect Mies van der __: ROHE. Rae lives in an apartment building designed by him.

131A: Ship departures: SAILINGS. And the annoying crossing with MOOING (106D: Cow talk).


1D: Interfere: TAMPER

2D: Fellow prisoner: INMATE

3D: Prolific inventor: EDISON

6D: Org. of Federer: ATP (Association of Tennis Professionals). Good timing. I am rooting for Rafael Nadal though.

7D: Belief in centralized government: STATISM

8D: Printer's measures: PICAS. And 12D: Printer's spaces: ENS

11D: One of Napoleon's marshals: NEY. The "Bravest of the Brave".

15D: Lover of Eros: PSYCHE. And 2 more Greek references. 19D: Greek fable writer: AESOP. 75A: Greek letter: DELTA

16D: One who has lost a limb: AMPUTEE

18D: Pico de ___ (Pyreness peak): ANETO. No, nope, not familiar to me at all.

29D: Buckled under: KOWTOWED

31D: Walk-on parts: CAMEOS

32D: Coast of Morocco: RIF. Another unknown. Dictionary says it also refers to "discharge (a person) from military or civil service, esp. as part of an economy program".

33D: Goddess of night: NOX. Roman goddess. The Greek equivalent is Nyx.

34D: Letters on Cardinal caps: STL (St. Louis"). Rams too I suppose.

43D: Morals: ETHICS

44D: End of cash?: IER. Cashier.

46D: Having pertinence: RELATIVE

47D: Planes for hire: AIR TAXIS. Another unknown for me. It's "a small aircraft for passengers, cargo, and mail operated, either on a scheduled or nonscheduled basis, along short routes not serviced by large airlines."

48D: Tart plants for pies: RHUBARBS. Have never had RHUBARB pie before. It sounds sour.

49D: Removes carefully: EASES OUT

57D: Lap dog. briefly: POM

60D: Bird's horn?: SAX. Bird refers to Charlie Parker.

67D: Financial: FISCAL

71D: Nonentities: NOBODIES

73D: Bad: pref: MIS. I put DYS.

74D: Actor Kilmer: VAL. And 75D: Actor Diesel: VIN.

80D: Dylan song "____ Moore": NETTIE. Did not know this song. Not a Dylan fan.

86D: Mesh fabric: FISHNET

91D: Bowling equipment mfr: AMF (American Machine and Foundry). Brunswick is their competitor.

101D: Waldorf - __ Hotel: ASTORIA

103D: Put away, as gear: STOWED

106D: Choice: OPTION

108D: Parsley pieces: SPRIGS

109D: Bart or Kenneth: STARR. Ah Bart, the Packers' guy. As for Ken STARR, go ask the Clintons'.

110D: Mann novel, "___ Kroger": TONIO. Had to google for this book.

Feeling bruised by today's puzzle? Here is Sade's "No Ordinary Love" to salve your wound: "I gave you more than I could give...I gave you all that I have inside...".



Dr. Dad said...

For mathematicians - Fermat's Last Theorem that defied proof until a couple of years ago - If an integer n is greater than 2, then the equation an + bn = cn has no solutions in non-zero integers a, b, and c.
The mountain carving for the Crazy Horse memorial in the Black Hills of South Dakota was begun in 1948 by sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski, who had worked on Mt. Rushmore under Gutzon Borglum. In 1939, Ziolkowski had received a letter from Chief Henry Standing Bear, which stated in part "My fellow chiefs and I would like the white man to know that the red man has great heroes, too."
F Clef was not a gimme.
I hate the new Charlie's Angels.
Bogie's Rick to "Play it, Sam."
How does "Complete" translate to "Live Long?" Doesn't make sense to me.
We have a black pomeranian in our house. That little ankle biter!!
AMF almost put Harley Davidson Motorcycles under when it took them over. Thank God HD got the company back.
All of our crossword people who don't really like Roman numerals must have had a ball with this puzzle. I finished it in about 20 minutes and a half cup of coffee.

Made it back from Mumbai, India yesterday about 11:00 a.m. What an experience. People who whine about money should go there and see the incredible number of poor people. It opens your eyes quite a bit.

Today is Race Unity Day. Only thing I could find.

Alas for the passing of Jim McKay - great sportscaster for ABC's Wide World of Sports. Remember his line "The thrill of victory and the agony of defeat."? He was also an important part of the reporting of the The Munich massacre that occurred during the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich, West Germany, when members of the Israeli Olympic team were taken hostage by Black September, a group with ties to Yasser Arafat’s Fatah organization. The end result was the killing of 11 Israeli athletes and coaches plus 1 German police officer. Rest in peace, Mr. McKay

NYTAnonimo said...

Hey c.c.-can't work the Sunday puzzle-don't get it locally-and they didn't deliver my NYT magazine with the rest of the paper-guess I'll have to try to work it online. Maybe Josiah Breward aka Wayne Robert Williams, today's consrtuctor and editor, will explain his editing on yesterday's puzzle. It would be nice to know why he altered Barry Silk's work. Hope you're having a nice weekend.

Jeanne said...

Morning all,
Liked the theme even though I had to Google several of the movies because I forgot the actual number in the title or I wasn't familiar with the movie at all. Generally I think the use of the same word in clue and later in an answer is very poor construction. Is this happening more and more lately?
Hit 95 deg. yesterday-summer is here and I'm loving it.

Superfrey said...

Nice puzzle.... few struggles.

CC - Well, I sure hope you did not take my advice and "Bet The Ranch" on BIG BROWN... I think he missed his May 15th steriod shot which would have aided his recovery period after the Preakness. His original owners had sold him just before the Preakness for $ 50 Million. I guess they knew what they were doing. I should have known... always follow the $$$$ trial.

Superfrey said...

Oops... I meant $$$$ Trail

C.C. Burnikel said...

I am so happy to see you back safely! I was hoping that you would come up with "Roman Holiday" or something Roman numeral related movies to celebrate today!

Dictionary explains "LIVELONG" as "(of time) whole or entire, esp. when tediously long, slow in passing, etc: We picked apples the livelong day."

I remember "The thrill of victory and the agony of defeat" line but I forgot who said that. Thank you for letting me know again. Thanks for also sharing with us your experience in India.

No, I don't think Williams will ever explain. This is not the first time I've heard from constructors regarding the heavy editing on their original submission.

The problem appears more pronouncedly on Sunday puzzles due to the sheer size of the grid. Additionally, today's puzzle author is our editor himself. So he might have overlooked his own mistakes. I agree with you, today's theme is good.

Yeah, you should have listened to Deep Throat and followed the $$$$ trail :-). But I don't believe there is a conspiracy story behind the huge stud right deal. I just love Dennis of Cork, from the very beginning.

Dick said...

Tough one for me today as I am not a movie buff. The Roman numerals were a snap as soon as I figured out the theme. I really did not like this puzzle because of all the movie titles as movies are a struggle for me. Other than that not too bad. Welcome back drdad. India is one place I have no desire to visit.

Superfrey I did not "Bet The Ranch" on Big Brown. Wow! Makes one wonder what is really going on when the favorite finishes last and the 38 to 1 long shot wins.

Katherine said...

Good morning everyone. No puzzle for me today, I just checked in to read the comments and look at the links. It's funny, I am reading The Streets Of Laredo now. It's a good book.
Have a good weekend.........See you tomorrow.

Anonymous said...

I was all set to complain about "livelong", until I remembered the old song:

"I been working on the railroad all the livelong day".

But them. I usually sing it as "All the doo-dah day". I like to interpolate lyrics from one song into another.

Aside from that, this was the most tedious puzzle I've ever solved. I consider Roman numeral clues to be a cop-out to begin with.

Including them in the movie titles was OK, but there were too many "perps" that then relied on Roman numerals.

Did I mention that it was tedious?

It was also a bit strange to include an acutal movie title ("El Norte") when all of the other movie titles were part of the theme.

Anonymous said...

I meant "But then,", not "But them."

lois said...

Good morning CC & DFs: Fun puzzle and agree w/you CC that 'ten'(51A) would've been better X, but it's still related. 'Suck up to' made me laugh...finals time in schools here. A lot of sucking up happening 'livelong'got me altho' I know those sayings, as well as some names & titles. F Clef is another name for Bass clef as G Clef is Treble clef, each indicating their respective line on the staff (common terms) Still enjoyed it.
Welcome back drdad and thanks for comments on India. There's no place like home in the US. Jim McKay will be well remembered. Do you remember that video that went w/his thrill of victory slogan? The 'agony of defeat' part still gives me nightmares.

Expecting triple digit heat today. I just enjoy the hydrating part. Carpe diem!

C.C. Burnikel said...

RE: EL NORTE. "The US, to Mexicans" is probably a better clue for this non-theme movie entry.

Thanks for the F Clef/G Clef education. All things Loisized, this seems to be a very tame puzzle, isn't it?

lois said...

CC: That's funny. Not much to 'fret' about today. It's all
'relative'. 'Fishnet' almost set me free but I've been scratching my '7 yr itch' for the 'past' few years...since the 'summer of '42'. I'm pretty 'raw'. I think I'll just take my 'inmate' and 'ease out' of the 'tank' of 'sin'. But lo and behold! 'Delta' Force,
'lines up' on my 'streets' with another 'option'. Ok, we'll add a whole new meaning to 'train set' at the Waldorf. It's a major'suck up to' my 'astoria'.I'm 'psyche'd. Guess it's not nice to 'tamper' with 'ethics' (or the lack thereof). Plus it's a photo op! Move over 'Farrah'.

You're right, CC. It was almost tame! Guess 'rhubarb' wasn't the only tart thing around here after all.

C.C. Burnikel said...

I was so besieged this morning with those Roman numerals that I failed to catch the connection of the TETRA/COD fish with the NETtie (50D) and aNETo (18D). Now I think FISHNET (86D) was a pretty good clue, esp since it set you free. Have you noticed that we've come across this MORALS (43D) issue almost every day?

Read comment from D&SK @12:52pm on Saturday's puzzle, what's your thought?

czenko said...

Livelong? First thing that popped into my mind was that old American folk song: "I've been workin' on the railroad, all the livelong day; I've been workin' on the railroad just to pass the time away..." And I was workin' on this crossword just to pass the time away, but I finished rather quickly and, now, no more excuses, I have to mow my lawm. Damn!

lois said...

CC: As to the morals and ethics issue? It has occurred to me that they might be sending a subtle message...but I'd rather think that it is just construction coincidence. You know, that old lead a horse to water adage?

I love that last astute observation from D&SK about Sat's puzzle configuration.

Anonymous said...

Hi C.C., No puzzle for me today, but I definitely have Denis and David in common with you. I had picked Denis for the Derby and was surprised but glad they didn't run him in the Preakness. I think three major races in five weeks is too much for most of the horses. He is such a beautiful horse. And as for David...well, if I were younger I'd be in love - or lust - with him. As it is, I just really appreciate and enjoy his talent, as well as his looks. Saw him on Larry King; he is quite bright and witty as well.

Did some research on the steroid use in horse training. It's legal in 28 states now; ten have banned it, 11 more are considering a complete ban. One vet said he expects it to be banned nationwide by next year. He said it's too hard to distinguish between proper use and abuse, so they will ban them all. Preliminary checkup of Big Brown revealed no physical problems, according to the news today.

Enjoyed all the comments today. I agree about the apparent "target" in the grid of Saturday's puzzle. Interesting.

Looking forward to Monday. I miss my puzzle. But I still enjoy reading the comments and I love the links - especially the beautiful works of art and the music videos. Thanks so much.


C.C. Burnikel said...

Thanks for leaving a comment.

I was bursting out laughing in tears seeing MOREL VIRTUE clued as "Mushroom's merit" in some other puzzle.

David COOK: Love/Lust. Ditto here! I wonder why this steroid issue emerging only this year, the Big Brown Effect?

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed this puzzle - only needed my old copy of Leonard Maltin's TV Movies to verify my guesses.

I think the answer for 12D is 'ens' not 'ems'.


C.C. Burnikel said...

I've corrected my mistake. Thank you! Regarding 54A: MEI, what is it?

Anonymous said...

The Free Online Dictionary( does define mei as a Japanese ornamental tree.


C.C. Burnikel said...

Thank you. I've never seen MEI tree before.