Monday, June 7, 2010

NYT Tuesday 6/8/10 - Thousand Handouts

The theme of this Tuesday New York Times crossword is out of the ordinary, exploiting what's presumably a rare opportunity: a song with a (5,3,5) pattern, able to cross with the two halves of one of the earliest groups to record it. Plus a later group that recorded the same song (although less successfully IMHO) happens to be (8,3,8) sharing the same middle word as the song. Trying to recreate the same idea with a different song would be like looking for a needle in a haystack.

Popular music history isn't my strong point, so I was glad on this occasion to have heard of The Mamas and The Papas (actually entirely through American crosswords ... I'm sure I hadn't come across them in England). Once I spotted what 24-Across would be, I could write in 54-Across immediately.

The way it held out on me, I wasn't sure I knew the central song (but of course I did) - I got that about a minute before the end. The Isley Brothers emerged at around the same time - another group I learned of through a crossword (they were in a Sunday puzzle last August).

For The Beatles' recording of Twist and Shout below, I've chosen the famous Royal Variety Performance where John Lennon twitted the assembled royalty via this introduction: "For our last number, I'd like to ask your help. Would the people in the cheaper seats clap your hands, and the rest of you, if you'd just rattle your jewelry".
Solving time: 7 mins (solo, no solving aids)
Clue of the puzz: 36a stoner {One who can't keep off the grass?}

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


The Paul Anka and Bert Russell song Twist and Shout (which was most famously covered by The Beatles with John Lennon on the lead vocals and originally released on their first album Please Please Me) and two other groups who recorded it.

39a Twist 41a and 42a Shout {1964 Beatles hit}

24a The Mamas 41a and 54a The Papas {Group with a 1967 ballad version of 39-/41-/ 42-Across}

40d The Isley 9d Brothers {Group with a 1962 hit version of 39-/41-/ 42-Across}
Crucimetrics [about Crucimetrics]
CompilersPeter A. Collins / Will Shortz
Grid15x15 with 36 (16.0%) black squares
Answers78 (average length 4.85)
Theme squares43 (22.8%)
Scrabble points304 (average 1.61)
Video of the Day

68a Renée {Zellweger of "My One and Only"}. A novel reference for the #1 Renée in crosswords: My One and Only is a 2009 comedy film loosely based on a story about George Hamilton's early life on the road with his mother and brother, with anecdotes that Hamilton had told to Merv Griffin. Griffin pitched the idea for the script, and had shepherded the project from idea to production, until his 2007 death. My One and Only stars Renée Zellweger as Hamilton's mother.

The Doctor is IN

26a she {Word after "does" and "doesn't" in an old ad slogan}. Referencing “Does she…or doesn’t she? Only her hairdresser knows for sure.” from Clairol commercials.

27a Ira {Glass on a radio}. Glass = Ira Glass of public radio is in Pavlov's Guide to Crosswords.

51a OAS {Western defense grp.}. OAS = Organization of American States, an international organization of the Americas.

63a one bell {12:30 a.m. or p.m., on a ship}. Ship's bells are struck every half hour: one bell thru eight bells for each four-hour watch.

70a lent {Fronted, in a way}. front vt = to advance (in the sense of lend) is in MWCD11.

30d EEOC {Job rights agcy.}. EEOC = Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is in Alphabet Soup.

Image of the Day

jute drying

65a bast {Cord material}. Bast fiber or skin fiber is plant fiber collected from the phloem (the "inner bark" or the skin) or bast surrounding the stem of certain, mainly dicotyledonic, plants. They support the conductive cells of the phloem and provide strength to the stem. Most of the technically important bast fibers are obtained from herbs cultivated in agriculture, as for instance flax, hemp, or ramie, but also bast fibers from wild plants, as stinging nettle, and trees such as the Tilia, have been used to some extent. Often bast fibers have higher tensile strength than other kinds, and are used in high-quality textiles (sometimes in blends with cotton or synthetic fibers), ropes, yarn, paper, composite materials and burlap. One of the world's foremost bast fibers is jute, shown drying above.

Other Clues

1a Oman {Muscat's land}; 5a plus {Asset}; 9a brews {Coffee choices}; 14a Dole {Clinton's 1996 opponent}; 15a adze {Woodcarver's tool}; 16a racer {Tortoise or hare}; 17a Inga {Actress Swenson of "Benson"}; 18a joie {___ de vivre}; 19a O'Shea {Milo of "Romeo and Juliet"}; 20a star-map
{Astronomer's aid}; 22a methods {Means}; 28a outer ear {Audio input location}; 33a sews {Wraps (up)}; 36a stoner {One who can't keep off the grass?}; 38a Eli {One of the Mannings}; 44a o'er {"The Star-Spangled Banner" preposition}; 45a hire on {Join the staff}; 48a acme {Pinnacle}; 49a prevents {Keeps from happening}; 53a air {Broadcast}; 59a fair sex {Women, quaintly, with "the"}; 64a aboil {Bubbling}; 67a alia {Et ___}; 69a OPER {Button between * and #}; 71a messy {Piglike}; 72a X-ray {Look inside?}; 73a Lees {Some jeans}.

1d odist {Keats, for one}; 2d month {The 6 in 6/8/10, e.g.}; 3d algae {Pond buildup}; 4d near miss {Close call}; 5d pajamas {Some are flannel}; 6d L-dopa {Parkisonism drug}; 7d Uzi {Israeli arm}; 8d seem {Appear}; 10d rasher {Having less forethought}; 11d echo {Repeated message?}; 12d weed {Thistle or goldenrod}; 13d Sras. {Ladies of Spain: Abbr.}; 21d mar {Damage}; 23d Este {Villa d'___}; 25d soonest {Earliest time}; 29d Undo {Edit menu option}; 31d alum {Grad}; 32d rite {Marriage, for one}; 33d stop {Word before "You're killing me!"}; 34d ewer {Fancy pitcher}; 35d wire {Bra insert}; 37d tart {Lemony}; 43d has a ball {Really enjoys oneself}; 46d in re {About, on a memo}; 47d NO ENTRY {"Private - keep out"}; 50d varies {Isn't all the same}; 52d Ape {O'Neill's "The Hairy ___"}; 55d Hosea {Old Testament prophet who married a harlot}; 56d Pelée {Martinique volcano}; 57d A-line {Dior-designed dress}; 58d slats {Strips in front of a window?}; 59d farm {Old MacDonald had one}; 60d a bee {Busy as ___}; 61d ions {Table salt is composed of them}; 62d Xbox {PlayStation 2 competitor}; 66d APR {Auto loan inits.}.

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