Wednesday, August 12, 2009

NYT Wednesday 8/12/09 - A Whale of a Time

This is an abbreviated form of my usual blog, as I'm on vacation in Cooperstown, NY with barely usable internet access at a B&B.

Goose GossageI got a delightful surprise at breakfast this morning - the gift of my first baseball card. It's of pitcher Goose Goosage, who was about the only baseball player I'd heard of until I started solving US crosswords, thanks to his picture being all over Cooperstown last year when he was inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Today we return home, but as we have Dino_Burger, Coffee Jones and the little beans as houseguests this week, it may be a few days before I can get back to the normal blogs with commentary.
Solving time: 12 mins (solo, no solving aids)
Clue of the puzz: 17a teens {Frigid temps}
Theme

9a Moby, 59a Dick {Novel of 1851}, whose famous opening line "Call me Ishmael" appears diagonally from the NW corner to the SE corner of the grid, as referenced by 54a slant {Incline (and a hint to the location in this completed puzzle of the first line of 9- & 59-Across)}. Other theme answers are:
31a Captain Ahab {Character in 9- & 59-Across}
6d Great White Whale {9- & 59-Across}
Solution

Peter A. Collins and Joe Krozel
Grid art by Sympathy [about the grid colors]

Crucimetrics
CompilersPeter A. Collins & Joe Krozel / Will Shortz
Grid15x15 with 38 (16.9%) black squares
Answers72 (average length 5.19)
Theme squares45 (24.1%)
Scrabble points314 (average 1.68)
Letters usedABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
Other Clues

1a sag {Cause for an eyelift}; 4a fight {Playground shout}; 13a acne {Benzoyl peroxide target}; 14a acrid {Bitter}; 15a orle {Shield border}; 16a moan {Complain}; 17a teens {Frigid temps}; 18a ibis {Head of the Egyptian god Thoth}; 19a pull ahead {Take the lead}; 21a frats {Sig Ep and others}; 22a -ery {Fish tail?}; 23a lost {At sea}; 24a crèche {Stable display}; 25a retrim {Stylize anew, as a car seat}; 27a whooshed {Rushed (by)}; 29a Edie {Warhol associate ___ Sedgwick}; 30a Ehuds {Israel's Barak and Olmert}; 36a rests {Chills, so to speak}; 37a Mira {Sorvino of "Mighty Aphrodite"}; 40a anisette {Cordial offering?}; 44a hatred {"___ is gained as much by good works as by evil": Machiavelli}; 46a martyr {St. Stephen, notably}; 47a whom {Pronoun in the starts of many letters}; 49a DVD {Netflix offering}; 50a apers {Simon Says players, say}; 51a showcases {Displays}; 53a zone {Designate "commercial" or "single-family," e.g.}; 55a beat {Recipe direction}; 56a Elia {Hollywood's Kazan}; 57a roleo {Lumberjack competition}; 58a relo {Change of address, for short}; 60a obeys {Does what a good dog does}; 61a ads {Halftime features}.

1d scoured {Searched high and low}; 2d analytic {___ Geometry (college course)}; 3d genl. {Four-star leader: Abbr.}; 4d fathom {Grasp}; 5d ICEEs {They're served with spoon-straws}; 7d hind {Rear}; 8d TDs {QBs' coups}; 9d moires {Shimmery fabrics}; 10d Orbach {Jerry of "Law & Order"}; 11d blithe {Carefree}; 12d yessed {Assented}; 13d ampere {Eponymous French physicist}; 20d Ali {1960 Olympics boxing gold medalist}; 21d frosh {High-school class, informally}; 24d coda {Musical conclusion}; 26d Rea {"Fool (If You Think It's Over)" singer Chris}; 28d Huns {Onetime Asiatic nomads}; 30d East {New York's ___ River}; 32d preys {Hunts, with "on"}; 33d tetr- {Numerical prefix with oxide}; 34d amt. {Qty.}; 35d birdseed {What a swallow may swallow}; 38d reveals {Displays}; 39d adds to {Supplements}; 40d amazed {Blown away}; 41d Napoli {"In ___, where love is king" (start of "That's Amore")}; 42d irenic {Peaceful}; 43d streak {Word with hot or blue}; 44d how-tos {Reading for home mechanics}; 45d AMC {Rambler maker, once: Abbr.}; 48d honey {Baklava ingredient}; 51d slob {One whose shirttail is always untucked, maybe}; 52d Abra {Start of an incantation}; 54d SRO {Sign of success}.

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