LA Times Crossword 4 Mar 22, Friday

Advertisement

Constructed by: Bryant White
Edited by: Rich Norris

Today’s Reveal Answer: Knockout Gas

Themed answers each have “GAS” KNOCKED OUT, the letter sequence G-A-S removed:

  • 34A Incapacitating agent of pulp detective and sci-fi novels … and a hint to solving this puzzle’s starred clues : KNOCKOUT GAS
  • 17A *Throw for a loop : FLABBER(GAS)T
  • 18A *Traditional jack-o’-lantern sources in the British Isles : RUTABA(GAS)
  • 52A *Adele and Cher, e.g. : ME(GAS)TARS
  • 55A *Buffet variety : SMOR(GAS)BORD
  • 24D *Gourmet : (GAS)TRONOME
  • 26D *World’s second-largest island country : MADA(GAS)CAR

Read on, or jump to …
… a complete list of answers

Bill’s time: 12m 26s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 With 41-Across, “Cloud Shepherd” Dadaist : JEAN …

“Berger des Nuages” (“Cloud Shepherd” in English) is a sculpture by the artist Jean Arp that can be seen on the grounds of the University City of Caracas.

Dadaism thrived during and just after WWI, and was an anti-war, anti-bourgeois and anti-art culture. The movement was launched in Zurich, Switzerland by a group of artists and writers who met to discuss art and put on performances in the Cabaret Voltaire. The same group frequently expressed disgust at the war that was raging across Europe.

5 RR depot : STA

A station (“stn.” or “sta.”) is a railroad (RR) or bus stop.

8 Elbow grease : EFFORT

We use the phrase “elbow grease” to mean “energetic labor”. Surprisingly (to me), the term has been around a long time, and at least dates back to the 1670s. Similar expressions exist in other languages; my favorite being the Danish “knofedt” that translates as “knuckle fat”.

14 Hoosier : INDIANAN

The exact origin of the word “hoosier” is unknown, but has been around since at least 1830. The term had no direct linkage with Indiana until John Finley of Richmond, Indiana wrote a poem called “The Hoosier’s Nest” in 1833. A few years later, by 1840, “hoosiers” was generally accepted as a term describing Indiana residents.

16 Storied restaurant : ALICE’S

Arlo Guthrie is the son of Woody Guthrie. Both father and son are renowned for singing protest songs about social injustice. Arlo is most famous for his epic “Alice’s Restaurant Massacree”, a song that lasts a full 18m 34s. In the song Guthrie tells how, after being drafted, he was rejected for service in the Vietnam War based on his criminal record. He had only one incident on his public record, a Thanksgiving Day arrest for littering and being a public nuisance when he was 18-years-old.

18 *Traditional jack-o’-lantern sources in the British Isles : RUTABA(GAS)

The names of veggies cause me grief sometimes. What’s called a turnip here in the US, we call a swede back in Ireland. An Irishman’s turnip is a rutabaga over here. Thank goodness a potato is a potato, or I’d just give up altogether …

It’s thought that the tradition of pumpkin carving originated in Ireland, although turnips and beets were used over there instead of pumpkins. The turnips and beets were carved for the festival called Samhain, which marked the end of the harvest season.

20 “__ Weapon” : LETHAL

The “Lethal Weapon” series of films features Mel Gibson and Danny Glover in the lead roles as Sergeants Martin Riggs and Roger Murtaugh. All four films in the series were directed by Richard Donner.

22 1921 robot play : RUR

Karel Čapek was a Czech writer noted for his works of science fiction. Čapek’s 1921 play “R.U.R.” is remembered in part for introducing the world to the word “robot”. The words “automaton” and “android” were already in use, but Capek gave us “robot” from the original Czech “robota” meaning “forced labor”. The acronym “R.U.R.”, in the context of the play, stands for “Rossum’s Universal Robots”.

25 Warring son of Zeus and Hera : ARES

The Greek god Ares is often referred to as the Olympian god of warfare, but originally he was regarded as the god of bloodlust and slaughter. Ares united with Aphrodite to create several gods, including Phobos (Fear), Deimos (Terror) and Eros (Desire). Ares was the son of Zeus and Hera, and the Roman equivalent to Ares was Mars.

26 __ Scarlett : MISS

In Margaret Mitchell’s novel “Gone with the Wind”, when Rhett Butler finally walks out on Scarlett O’Hara he utters the words “My dear, I don’t give a damn”. Most of us are more familiar with the slightly different words spoken by Clark Gable in the film adaptation of the story: “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.”

27 Only Canadian MLB city : TOR

The Toronto Blue Jays baseball franchise was founded in 1977. The Blue Jays are the only team based outside the US to have won a World Series, doing so in 1992 and 1993. And since the Montreal Expos relocated to Washington, the Blue Jays are the only Major League Baseball team now headquartered outside of the US.

28 Half-Betazoid sci-fi counselor : TROI

Deanna Troi is a character on “Star Trek: The Next Generation” who is played by the lovely Marina Sirtis. Sirtis is a naturalized American citizen and has what I would call a soft American accent on the show. However, she was born in the East End of London and has a natural accent off-stage that is more like that of a true Cockney.

32 Spanish inns : POSADAS

The Spanish term “posada” can describe anything from a cafeteria to a pub or motel.

36 Illegal “Risky Business” business : BROTHEL

“Risky Business” is a very entertaining 1983 comedy starring Tom Cruise and Rebecca De Mornay. This was an important movie for Cruise, as it really launched his film career. Everyone remembers Cruise dancing in a pink dress shirt, briefs and socks to Bob Seger’s “Old Time Rock and Roll”. Great stuff …

37 NRC forerunner : AEC

The Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) was set up right after WWII in 1946, with the aim of promoting the peaceful use of atomic energy. Establishing the AEC was a significant move made by President Truman, as it passed control of atomic energy from the military to the civilian sector. The AEC continued to operate until 1974 when its functions were divided up into two new agencies: the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and the Energy Research and Development Administration (NRDA). The NRDA was merged with the Federal Energy Administration in 1977 to form the Department of Energy.

38 Avatar of Vishnu : RAMA

In the Hindu tradition, the god Vishnu has several different avatars i.e. incarnations or manifestations. Rama is the seventh of these avatars.

44 Copacetic : JAKE

Both “jake” and “dandy” are slang words meaning “fine”, as in “things are just dandy”.

Something described as copacetic is very fine, very acceptable.

45 Nickname of NBA great Oscar Robertson : BIG O

Oscar Robertson is a former professional basketball player who had the nickname “The Big O”. Robertson was named Player of the Century by the National Association of Basketball Coaches in 2000.

47 Actress Gardner : AVA

Ava Gardner is noted for her association with some big movies, but also for her association with some big names when it came to the men in her life. In the world of film, she appeared in the likes of “Mogambo” (1953), “On the Beach” (1959), “The Night of the Iguana” (1964) and “Earthquake” (1974). The men in her life included husbands Mickey Rooney, Artie Shaw and Frank Sinatra.

48 Songlike : ARIOSE

A tune that is “ariose” is song-like, characterized by melody as opposed to harmony.

50 Homer’s bartender : MOE

The regulars on “The Simpsons” hang out at Moe’s Tavern, which is named for and run by Moe Szyslak. The most popular beer at Moe’s is Duff Beer. The name “Duff” is a reference to the real-life Duffy’s Tavern that used to be East 13th Street in Eugene, Oregon. “The Simpsons” creator Matt Groening used to frequent Duffy’s regularly, and Moe’s looks very much like Duffy’s in terms of decor and floor plan.

52 *Adele and Cher, e.g. : ME(GAS)TARS

“Adele” is the stage name of English singer Adele Adkins. Adele’s debut album is “19”, named after the age she was during the album’s production. Her second album was even more successful than the first. Called “21”, the second album was released three years after the first, when Adele was three years older. Her third studio album “25”, released in 2015, broke the first-week sales records in both the UK and the US. “30” followed in 2021.

“Cher” is the stage name used by singer and actress Cherilyn Sarkisian. Formerly one half of husband-wife duo Sonny & Cher, she is often referred to as the Goddess of Pop. In her acting career, Cher was nominated for the Best Supporting Actress Oscar of 1984 for her performance in “Silkwood”. She went further in 1988 and won the season’s Best Actress Oscar for playing Loretta Castorini in “Moonstruck”.

55 *Buffet variety : SMOR(GAS)BORD

A smorgasbord is a buffet-style meal that originated in Sweden. “Smörgåsbord” is a Swedish word comprised of “smörgås” meaning “slice of bread and butter” and “bord” meaning “table”.

58 Liqueur made with coffee beans : TIA MARIA

Tia Maria is a coffee liqueur that was invented just after WWII in Jamaica using Jamaican coffee beans, Jamaican rum, vanilla and sugar. The drink’s name translates to “Aunt Maria”.

59 Actress Dash : STACEY

Stacey Dash is an actress from the Bronx, New York. Dash is best known for playing one of the lead roles in the 1995 movie “Clueless”, as well as in the TV spin-off series also called “Clueless”.

60 Sun. delivery : SER

Our word “sermon” comes from the Latin “sermonem” meaning “discourse, talk”. The literal translation of “sermonem” is “a stringing together of words”, from the Latin “serere” meaning “to join”, as in the related word “series”.

Down

1 Wink : JIFF

“Jiff”, or “jiffy”, meaning “short time, instant” is thought originally to be thieves’ slang for “lightning”.

2 Beat the draft? : ENLIST

The US government maintains information on all males who are potentially subject to military conscription, using what is called the Selective Service System (SSS). In the event that a draft was held, men registered would be classified into groups to determine eligibility for service. Class 1-A registrants are those available for unrestricted military service. Other classes are 1-A-O (conscientious objector available for noncombatant service), 4-A (registrant who has completed military service) and 4-D (Minister of religion).

3 “Moonlight Sonata” opening movement, e.g. : ADAGIO

An adagio is a piece of music with a slow tempo. The “adagio” marking on the score is an instruction to play the piece slowly and in a stately manner. The word “adagio” is Latin for “at ease”.

Beethoven subtitled his “Piano Sonata No. 14, Op. 27, No. 2” as “Quasi una fantasia”, or “sonata in the manner of a fantasy” in English. Five years after Beethoven died, a music critic wrote that the first movement of the piece had an effect like that of moonlight shining on Lake Lucerne. Since then, the work has been known as the “Moonlight Sonata”.

4 Penpoint : NIB

“Nib” is a Scottish variant of the Old English word “neb”, with both meaning “beak of a bird”. This usage of “nib” as a beak dates back to the 14th century, with “nib” describing the tip of a pen or quill coming a little later, in the early 1600s.

5 Dagger of yore : SNEE

A “snee” is a type of dagger formerly used by Scottish highlanders.

6 Fish-and-chips sauce : TARTAR

Tartar sauce is basically mayonnaise with some chopped pickles, capers and onion or chives. The recipe was invented by the French (as “sauce tartare”) with the name somehow linked to the Tatars, a people who once occupied Ukraine and parts of Russia.

7 Studiers of human ancestry : ANTHROPOLOGISTS

Anthropology is the scientific study of human beings, both in the present and in the past. The term “anthropology” combines the Greek “anthropos” (meaning “human”) and “logos” (meaning “study”).

8 Viscounts’ superiors : EARLS

In Britain, there are five ranks of peers. They are duke, marquess, earl, viscount and baron, in descending order.

9 Winter bug : FLU

Influenza (the “flu”) is an ailment that is caused by a virus. The virus is readily inactivated by the use of soap, so washing hands and surfaces is especially helpful in containing flu outbreaks, and other virus pandemics …

11 Panpipe relatives : OCARINAS

An ocarina is an ancient wind-instrument that sounds like and is played like a flute. Usually an ocarina has an egg-shaped body with a number of finger holes cut into the material making up the instrument (usually ceramic). There is a tube protruding from the body through which one blows to make sounds. The air vibrates within the body of the instrument, and the pitch of the vibrations is changed by covering and uncovering the finger-holes. Ocarinas date back as far as 12,000 years ago when they were used both in China and Central America. The ocarina was brought to Italy in the 1800s where it became popular as a child’s toy, but also as a serious instrument. It was given the name “ocarina” as its shape resembles that of a goose, and “ocarina”is a diminutive word stemming from “oca”, the Italian word for “goose”.

Pan flutes (also “panpipes”) are folk instruments that have been around a long time, and are believed to be the first mouth organs. The pan flute is named for the Greek god Pan, who was often depicted playing the instrument.

12 Picture puzzles : REBUSES

A rebus is a puzzle that uses pictures to represent letters and groups of letters. For example, a picture of a “ewe” might represent the letter “U” or the pronoun “you”, a picture of an “oar” might represent the letter “R” or the conjunction “or”, and a picture of an “awl” might represent the word “all”.

13 Winter Palace figures : TSARS

The Winter Palace is a magnificent building in St. Petersburg in Russia that was home to the Russian tsars (and tsarinas). Today, the Winter Palace houses the famous Hermitage Museum. I was lucky enough to visit the Palace and museum some years ago, and I have to say that I have rarely been more impressed by a historical building.

15 Cutting the mustard : ABLE

The expression “to cut the mustard” means “to meet expectations”. Apparently, the origins of the phrase are unclear, but some suggest it may come from “cut the muster”. But “cut the muster” has a very different meaning, i.e. “not turn up for a military parade”. I’ve also heard people use “cut the mustard” and “not pass muster” interchangeably. It’s all so confusing …

21 Vital quintet in English literature : A-E-I-O-U

Although definitions vary, it is usual to divide the English alphabet into 21 consonants and 5 vowels (A, E, I, O and U). The letter Y is sometimes used as a vowel, which changes the count to 20 consonants and 6 vowels.

24 *Gourmet : (GAS)TRONOME

Gastronomy is the art or science of good eating. The term “gastronomie” was coined in 1801 by Frenchman Joseph de Berchoux as the title of a poem on good living.

26 *World’s second-largest island country : MADA(GAS)CAR

Madagascar is a large island nation lying off the southeast coast of Africa in the Indian Ocean. The main island of Madagascar is the fourth largest island in the world (after Greenland, New Guinea and Borneo).

Here is a list of the ten largest island countries, by size:

  1. Indonesia
  2. Madagascar
  3. Papua New Guinea
  4. Japan
  5. Malaysia
  6. Philippines
  7. New Zealand
  8. United Kingdom
  9. Cuba
  10. Iceland

28 Georgia __ : TECH

The Georgia Institute of Technology (commonly “Georgia Tech”) is located in Atlanta. The school was founded in 1885 as part of the reconstruction effort to rebuild the infrastructure in the South after the Civil War. President Theodore Roosevelt delivered an address to the school in 1905, and then shook hands with every single student. Back then the school didn’t have over 20,000 students as it does today …

33 Runs or walks, e.g. : STAT

That would be baseball.

34 Volcano in the Sunda Strait : KRAKATOA

Krakatoa is an island located between Java and Sumatra in Indonesia. Famously, the volcano on the island erupted in 1883 causing the death of over 36,000 people, who mainly perished in the resulting tsunamis. It is thought that the sound of the explosive eruption was the loudest sound in modern history.

The Sunda Strait is a passage of water lying between the islands of Java and Sumatra in Indonesia. It links the Java Sea to the northeast with the Indian Ocean to the southwest. The strait is home to several volcanic islands, including the famous Krakatoa that exploded in 1883.

35 Russian milk drink : KEFIR

Kefir is a fermented milk drink that originated in the Caucasus region of Eurasia.

42 Ride-hitching fish : REMORA

Remoras are also called “suckerfish”, which name is descriptive of one of the fish’s basic behaviors. One of the remoras dorsal fins is in the shape of a “sucker”, allowing it to take a firm hold on a larger marine animal, hitching a ride.

43 Everycity, USA : PEORIA

Peoria is the oldest European settlement in the state of Illinois, having been settled by the French in 1680. The city is famous for being cited as “the average American city”. The phrase, “Will it play in Peoria?” is used to mean, “Will it appeal to the mainstream?” It is believed the expression originated as a corruption of, “We shall play in Peoria”, a line used by some actors in the 1890 novel “Five Hundred Dollars” by Horatio Alger, Jr.

44 Door parts : JAMBS

A door jamb or window jamb is the vertical portion of the frame. The term “jamb” comes from the French word “jambe” meaning “leg”.

45 Very low : BASSY

A sound described as bassy has strong bass tones.

51 Red-wrapped cheese : EDAM

Edam cheese takes its name from the Dutch town of Edam in North Holland. The cheese is famous for its coating of red paraffin wax, a layer of protection that helps Edam travel well and prevents spoiling. You might occasionally come across an Edam cheese that is coated in black wax. The black color indicates that the underlying cheese has been aged for a minimum of 17 weeks.

53 LAX tower service : ATC

The concept of air traffic control (ATC) was introduced to the world in 1920 at Croydon Airport in South London, England.

Los Angeles International Airport is the sixth busiest airport in the world in terms of passenger traffic, and the busiest here on the West Coast of the US. The airport was opened in 1930 as Mines Field and was renamed to Los Angeles Airport in 1941. On the airport property is the iconic white structure that resembles a flying saucer. This is called the Theme Building and I believe it is mainly used as a restaurant and observation deck for the public. The airport used to be identified by the letters “LA”, but when the aviation industry went to a three-letter standard for airport identification, this was changed to “LAX”. Apparently, the “X” has no significant meaning.

54 Issa of “Awkward Black Girl” : RAE

Issa Rae is a Stanford University graduate who created a YouTube web series called “The Mis-Adventures of Awkward Black Girl”. Rae also plays the title role in the series, a young lady named “J”. “Awkward Black Girl” was adapted into an HBO comedy-drama called “Insecure”, in which Issa Rae stars.

56 Emeril catchword : BAM!

Emeril Lagasse is an American chef who was born in Massachusetts. Lagasse first achieved celebrity as executive chef in Commander’s Palace in New Orleans. Now famous for his television shows, his cuisine still showcases New Orleans ingredients and influences. Lagasse started using his famous “Bam!” catchphrase in order to keep his crew awake during repeated tapings of his show.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 With 41-Across, “Cloud Shepherd” Dadaist : JEAN …
5 RR depot : STA
8 Elbow grease : EFFORT
14 Hoosier : INDIANAN
16 Storied restaurant : ALICE’S
17 *Throw for a loop : FLABBER(GAS)T
18 *Traditional jack-o’-lantern sources in the British Isles : RUTABA(GAS)
19 Worthlessness metaphor : FIG
20 “__ Weapon” : LETHAL
22 1921 robot play : RUR
23 Surfers’ find : SITE
25 Warring son of Zeus and Hera : ARES
26 __ Scarlett : MISS
27 Only Canadian MLB city : TOR
28 Half-Betazoid sci-fi counselor : TROI
29 Draw to a close : WANE
30 Four quarters : ONE
32 Spanish inns : POSADAS
34 Incapacitating agent of pulp detective and sci-fi novels … and a hint to solving this puzzle’s starred clues : KNOCKOUT GAS
36 Illegal “Risky Business” business : BROTHEL
37 NRC forerunner : AEC
38 Avatar of Vishnu : RAMA
39 Blanket __ : FORT
41 See 1-Across : … ARP
44 Copacetic : JAKE
45 Nickname of NBA great Oscar Robertson : BIG O
46 Branch headquarters? : TREE
47 Actress Gardner : AVA
48 Songlike : ARIOSE
50 Homer’s bartender : MOE
52 *Adele and Cher, e.g. : ME(GAS)TARS
55 *Buffet variety : SMOR(GAS)BORD
57 Flora and fauna of different regions : BIOTAS
58 Liqueur made with coffee beans : TIA MARIA
59 Actress Dash : STACEY
60 Sun. delivery : SER
61 Hat-tipper’s address : MA’AM

Down

1 Wink : JIFF
2 Beat the draft? : ENLIST
3 “Moonlight Sonata” opening movement, e.g. : ADAGIO
4 Penpoint : NIB
5 Dagger of yore : SNEE
6 Fish-and-chips sauce : TARTAR
7 Studiers of human ancestry : ANTHROPOLOGISTS
8 Viscounts’ superiors : EARLS
9 Winter bug : FLU
10 Be the right size : FIT
11 Panpipe relatives : OCARINAS
12 Picture puzzles : REBUSES
13 Winter Palace figures : TSARS
15 Cutting the mustard : ABLE
21 Vital quintet in English literature : A-E-I-O-U
24 *Gourmet : (GAS)TRONOME
26 *World’s second-largest island country : MADA(GAS)CAR
28 Georgia __ : TECH
29 Carry on : WAGE
31 “__ bad idea” : NOT A
33 Runs or walks, e.g. : STAT
34 Volcano in the Sunda Strait : KRAKATOA
35 Russian milk drink : KEFIR
36 Go out into the storm, say : BRAVE IT
40 Dorm pal : ROOMIE
42 Ride-hitching fish : REMORA
43 Everycity, USA : PEORIA
44 Door parts : JAMBS
45 Very low : BASSY
46 __ paper : TERM
49 Skyrocket : SOAR
51 Red-wrapped cheese : EDAM
53 LAX tower service : ATC
54 Issa of “Awkward Black Girl” : RAE
56 Emeril catchword : BAM!

30 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 4 Mar 22, Friday”

  1. The theme was cute and I figured it out quickly but I ended up with a DNF with blank squares at “sTat” and “STAcEY”. And also swapped the E and Y between TRONOME and BASSY. Never heard it called a blanket fort, only pillow fort.

  2. Every time it looks like a. stupider puzzle is not possible, you manage to do it!! PLEASE STOP with the misspelled words puzzles!!! Does not matter how “cute” the puzzle is, I HATE THESE and do not want to see another one!

    1. 100% AGREE! These “cutesie” puzzles with misspellings are an exercise in frustration. Some of your themed ones are clever, but this one sucked!

  3. Every time it looks like a. stupider puzzle is not possible, you manage to do it!! PLEASE STOP with the misspelled words puzzles!!! Does not matter how “cute” the puzzle is, I HATE THESE and do not want to see another one!

  4. Got the theme quite early in the game, but ended up with one error
    box: had “form” instead of “fort” to go with “blanket.” I just didn’t
    think of “stat” to go with runs or walks. Duh! …should have realized
    the baseball connection.

  5. Took me awhile to catch on to the trick because the LA Time’s print edition doesn’t have any hint as to the removal of “gas” because there is no title for the puzzle in the paper. I’m assuming (and probably incorrectly) that the online puzzle has such a hint?

    In any case I finished without final error and actually had fewer strike overs than usual for me. Normally I’m terrible at these trick puzzles. On to the WSJ.

  6. Holy cow, what a SMORGASBORG of foreign vocabulary.

    I got the theme ok but i messed up down in the BIOTA region. Didn’t know STACEY DASH. Certainly didn’t know where Sunda Strait was let alone the KRAKATO volcano. WOW Bryan White really tried hard to make sure Noone made this one. Well, almost Noone. Took Bill 12 minutes. That’s a long time for Bill.

    @christineW – see, there were others that never heard of Ring Dings. That’s what is frustrating when crossword builders say things like “popular…” or “common…”.. sorry but it’s still very regional even if it might be a national chain. I enjoy crosswords too much and I learn something along the way….

  7. I don’t think you will see many Brits using tartar sauce on their fish and chips.
    Salt and vinegar yes

  8. 14:24 3 lookups for BIG O Oscar Robertson, STACEY Dash, and the NRC forerunner when I wasn’t sure that AEC was right. Also had to brute force my way through the alphabet to build my blanket FORT.

    This puzzle was a good brain stretch. The vocabulary felt different right away. I suspected the pulp novel agent was some kind of gas, but I didn’t catch on until SMOR(GAS)BORD. It helped that just yesterday the NYT daily crossword had a similar gag, where the idea was not to cram letters in with a rebus, but to leave them out. I think having REBUSES in the puzzle itself was a hint that that was going to the only use of a rebus.

    I did a quick search on the “Berger des Nuages” sculpture. It’s … something.

    ARIOSE is a cool word

  9. 36:43 with lookups for “Cloud Shepherd” , Spanish Inns, and the coffee bean liqueur. Just too many things I couldn’t figure out otherwise.

    The theme became clear after filling in POSADAS and solving WAGE/WANE; then, only the A in GAS was missing. The intersecting MADACAR made it clear. However, I could not figure out FLABBERgasT until all those letters were filled in after getting JEAN ARP from the lookup (I just might remember that Dadaist’s name at some point). It did help with the lower themed answers, though.

    Is Peoria still such an “Everycity”?

    Didn’t know STACEY or Sunda Strait, but still figured out KRAKATOA and ATc/BASSy (ick on that one). I had ARIOSO at first – ARIOSE was not obvious to me at first.

  10. DNF got KO’d by the “knock out gas”. SW corner specifically. I got the theme but I
    just couldn’t unscramble “megastars”.
    Didn’t care to. To be honest…..

  11. The theme was OK, but god so many stupid proper nouns! Worst crossword I’ve had in a while and that’s saying something. Hope the constructor never publishes another puzzle ever again!

  12. You know, after yesterdays NYT’s missing “HOO” (water H20) I thought I’d be ready for this.

    I was wrong …

    I didn’t to well, but really, I don’t think the puzzle was not nearly as bad as some made it out to be. I just wasn’t good enough .

    Be Well

  13. A little tricky, but doable Friday; took me 30:21 with no peeks or errors, but plenty of groping around waiting for crosses and trying to remember things. Figured something was up when I got the truncated RUTABA and confirmed it with MADACAR. Took me a second or two to remember JEAN and never heard of STACEY. Didn’t know BROTHEL either but managed. Ended on the T in FORT/STAT.

    Looks like STATs from past seasons are what we’ll have to be satisfied with this year…grumble, grumble.

    1. DIRK!!! NO!! SAY IT AIN’T SO!!! Will there really be a lockout??

      Been caught up in other news and didn’t realize!!

      Hi friends old and new!!🙃

      Haven’t done the puzzle in MONTHS and it’s nice to be back. DNF but got most of it. Caught the theme early and managed most of those answers.

      Back Monday!!🤗

      Be well~~

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.