Theme: Oh Oh, No Unifier (Argyle's title) - Each two-word theme answer start with O* O*.
17A. Now and then : ON OCCASION
21A. Quick look : ONCE-OVER
39A. Lived in by the seller : OWNER OCCUPIED
58A. Vinaigrette dressing ingredient : OLIVE OIL. I like Balsamic vinaigrette, drizzled over Romaine lettuce, cherry tomatoes, slices of cucumber & avacodo, pieces of green onions. No cheese!
64A. Presidential workplace : OVAL OFFICE
C.C. here. Dear Santa will be back tomorrow. He worked extra hard last week. I think a rest is needed. It's such a comfort that Argyle is there whenever I'm in trouble. Day or night. He is always there!
I'm also pleased to blog a Gail & Bruce collaboration. I picture this:
1) Gail came up with theme (Her brain is full of wonderful ideas);
2) Bruce said "Great idea!". Then they worked on the theme set together.
|Left to Right: Bruce Venzke, Byron Walden & Rich Silvestri|
3) Bruce designed the grid. 5 theme entries are always tricky, esp with a middle 13 (grid-spanning 15 or a shorter 7 are easier to maneuver). Since they had a couple of 8's, relatively short, Bruce decided to overlap the theme entries. This actually made filling easier.
4) Bruce filled the grid. Solid corner work! No cheaters! I have a sense that he did not even want the black squares before (20A IS TO) and after LATE (61A). Because he's Bruce!
5) Bruce sent the filled grid to Gail. Gail liked the result, then she clued the grid. There was also a possibility that Gail "nitpicked" on a few entries in Bruce's first draft and those entries were removed.
6) Today's puzzle was born.
Many of you can solve Monday puzzles under 10 or even 5 minutes. But Monday puzzles are the hardest to make, in my opinion. Of course, Sunday grids are bigger and more work. But a few obscure entries (like yesterday's TCHR) can be slipped in and forgiven.
No such thing on Mondays. Fill has to be common and Monday friendly. Theme has to simple but fresh.
1. Elementary lessons : ABCs
5. When Juliet drinks the potion : ACT IV. Sure happy I know the crossing VINCE (9D. Immortal coach Lombardi).
10. Sailing or whaling : ASEA
14. "Sommersby" actor Richard : GERE. He's a Buddhist.
15. Thérèse's thanks : MERCI. Xie Xie in Chinese. Very scrabbly.
16. Hot streak : ROLL. Have you ever had sweet potato "hot streak"? Delicious.
19. Ye __ Tea Shoppe : OLDE
20. Ratio phrase : IS TO
23. Apt. coolers : ACs
24. Bumped into : MET
27. One of 100 members of Cong. : SEN. They all have amazing egos.
28. Repairman's initial fig. : EST
29. Young socialite : DEB
30. Pre-med subj. : ANAT
32. Game with sharp projectiles : DARTS
34. Siouan speakers : OTOS
36. Dutch Renaissance humanist : ERASMUS. Wiki said he's "generally credited with originating the phrase "Pandora's box".
43. One more : ANOTHER
44. Botch : FLUB
46. Dance movements : STEPS
49. Fly in the ointment : SNAG
51. Eclectic musician Brian : ENO
52. Like the Oz woodsman : TIN. Hi there Tinbeni!
53. Baseball arbiter : UMP
56. "Xanadu" rock gp. : ELO
57. Shares an email with : CCs. My C.C. stands for Chow Chin, Cantonese for Zhouqin, my Mandarin name.
61. After the buzzer : LATE
63. '70s Russian gymnast Korbut : OLGA
68. Emeralds and pearls : GEMS
69. Delaware's capital : DOVER
70. "__ Almighty": Steve Carell film : EVAN
71. Part of Q.E.D. : ERAT
72. Deer dads : STAGS. Fun clue, Gail!
73. Had a good cry : WEPT
1. In the past : AGO
2. Treat with courtesy : BE NICE TO. Are you familiar with "Minnesota Nice"?
3. Medieval arrow shooter : CROSSBOW
4. Religious offshoot : SECT
5. GP's gp. : AMA
6. These, to Thérèse : CES. Plural of "Ce" (m) or "Cette (f).
7. Duo plus one : TRIO
8. Computer symbols : ICONS
10. Buck suffix : AROO
11. Crossword fan : SOLVER. For us.
12. Sibling who usually baby-sits other siblings : ELDEST. I am the oldest. You? I have a younger brother, who still lives in Xi'An.
13. Tips off : ALERTS
18. Unresponsive state : COMA
22. Ultimately become : END UP
23. Big fuss : ADO
25. Juan's January : ENERO. Happy New Year, Juan!
26. Mystic's deck : TAROT
31. RPM gauges : TACHs
33. "I highly doubt that!" : AS IF!
35. Lose one's cool : SNAP. I bet Jayce doesn't snap easily. He's always so mellow. So are Spitzboov & D-Otto.
37. Play division : SCENE
38. Picture on a ceiling : MURAL. Look here. Surreal!
40. Happen next : ENSUE
41. Course that's not required : ELECTIVE. I wish those Marx/Lenin/Mao/Socoialism stuff were elective in our school. Wasted too much time reciting the principles.
42. Quaint headgear for a class clown : DUNCE CAP
45. Red Sox home: Abbr. : BOS. Did you see "Fever Pitch"? I bet Linda did.
46. Unwitting victim : STOOGE
47. Rudder control : TILLER
48. Puzzle : ENIGMA
50. Game with holes : GOLF. Do you know who started the Pebble Beach Pro-Am?
54. Frames of mind : MOODS. My mood ring is now blue, so I'm happy.
55. Turn on an axis : PIVOT
59. Seemingly endless : VAST
60. Volcanic flow : LAVA
62. Some : A FEW
65. Drumstick, e.g. : LEG. Guess who this girl is.
66. Surg. facilities : ORs
67. Tonsillitis M.D. : ENT