Monday, November 15, 2010

NYT Tuesday 11/16/10 Ian Livengood - Occasional Tables

I made good very good progress on this Tuesday New York Times crossword, seeing the first thematic element ROUND after about 30 seconds. This made me think of "round the bend" and I had to wait till 37-Across was completely solved before I knew for sure what was going on.

prize tableThat took quite a while, and I even started with turned the corner, which I thought was logical and just about answered the clue. But turned the tables finally explained the connection between what went into the L shapes - something I hadn't appreciated before (not that I really needed an explanation, given the rate I was going).

Four of the six tables are completely familiar, but I find myself uncertain about game table and prize table. Is the former the same as a gaming table? I imagine the latter is the table on which prizes are laid out for presentation, such as that bedecked with trophies at the ACPT and presided over by the great BEQ. I hope I've not got the wrong end of the stick here ... wouldn't be the first time!
Solving time: 6 mins (solo, no solving aids)
Clue of the puzz: 2d noel {Holiday number}
Solution

Ian Livengood
Grid art by Sympathy [about the grid colors]

Theme

Types of table are hidden in the grid in an L shape (i.e. "turned"), as indicated by 37a turned the tables {Regained one's winning status ... or a hint to this puzzle's circled letters}. Clockwise from top left, the tables are:
round table
coffee table
pool table
game table
dinner table
prize table
Crucimetrics [about Crucimetrics]
CompilersIan Livengood / Will Shortz
Grid15x15 with 36 (16.0%) black squares
Answers78 (average length 4.85)
Theme squares[not calculated]
Scrabble points303 (average 1.60)
Letters usedABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
Video of the Day



5d Rea {Stephen of "V for Vendetta"}. Poor Stephen Rea has the responsibility of being the sole Rea in crosswords ... so we get to know the highlights of his movie career pretty well. V for Vendetta is a 2006 dystopian thriller film directed by James McTeigue and produced by Joel Silver and the Wachowski brothers, who also wrote the screenplay. It is an adaptation of the comic book series of the same name by Alan Moore and David Lloyd. Set in London in a near-future dystopian society, Natalie Portman stars as Evey, a working-class girl who must determine if her hero has become the very menace she is fighting against. Hugo Weaving plays V—a bold, charismatic freedom fighter driven to exact revenge on those who disfigured him. Stephen Rea portrays Inspector Finch, the detective leading a desperate quest to capture V before he ignites a revolution.

The film was originally scheduled for release by Warner Bros. Friday, November 4, 2005 (a day before the 400th Guy Fawkes Night), but was delayed; it opened on March 17, 2006. Reviews were positive and the worldwide box office earnings were over $132 million, but Alan Moore, having been disappointed with the film adaptations of two of his other graphic novels, From Hell and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, refused to view the film and subsequently distanced himself from it. The filmmakers removed many of the anarchist themes and drug references present in the original story and also altered the political message to what they believed would be more relevant to a 2006 audience.

The film had been seen by many political groups as an allegory of oppression by government. Libertarians used this as a conservative statement against government intervention into the lives of the citizens. Anarchists used this film to propagate the political theory of anarchism. The film had also been criticized for its depiction of rebellion and terrorism. Liberals use it for similar purposes as libertarians but point out that the government in V for Vendetta is unelected and thus illegitimate.

The Doctor is IN

15a movie {"M," "W." or "Z"}. See M (1931), W. (2008), Z (1969).

19a tom {Barnyard male}. Perhaps a tom cat, or a tom turkey.

27a go fish {"Do you have any jacks?" response, maybe}. Reference to the card game Go Fish.

31a O'Neal {Basketballer nicknamed the Big Aristotle}. I.e. Shaquille O'Neal, also known as "Shaq", "The Diesel", "Shaq Fu", "The Big Daddy", "Superman", "The Big Agave", "The Big Cactus", "The Big Shaqtus", "The Big Galactus", "Wilt Chamberneezy", "The Big Baryshnikov", "The Real Deal", "Dr. Shaq" (after earning his MBA), "The Big Shamrock", "The Big Leprechaun", and "Shaqovic."

41a HST {"The buck stops here" prez}. I.e. Harry S. Truman.

60d CLE {The Indians or Browns, on a scoreboard}. References to the Cleveland Indians and Cleveland Browns.

Image of the Day

The Nittany Lion

34a PSU {Nittany Lions' sch.}. I think I've now mastered the distinction between Penn (Magdalen and Hub 1.0's alma mater) and Penn State (Pennsylvania State University). We've even seen a Penn football game and have been promised tickets to a Penn State game. PSU's mascot is the Nittany Lion, a representation of a type of mountain lion that once roamed what is now University Park. The school's official colors, now blue and white, were originally black and dark pink. Penn State participates in the NCAA Division I-A and in the Big Ten Conference for most sports.

Other Clues

1a infer {Surmise}; 6a scoff {Say "Oh, that was nothing," say}; 11a owe {"I ___ you one!"}; 14a rouse {Awaken}; 16a pom {Small dog, for short}; 17a mental image {Picture in one's head}; 20a Aldo {Gucci of fashion}; 21a oral {Face-to-face test}; 22a daily {Seven-times-a-week newspaper}; 24a nicks {Shaving woes}; 26a poboys {New Orleans sandwiches, informally}; 30a linen {Bedding material}; 32a spin {Washer cycle}; 42a dais {Speech setting}; 43a gears {First, second and reverse}; 44a ID tag {Suitcase attachment, for short}; 47a Breyer {Justice Stephen of the Supreme Court}; 48a salary {$100,000/year, e.g.}; 50a pilaf {Rice dish}; 52a primo {A-number-one}; 53a Dino {Flintstones' pet}; 54a saga {It takes a while to tell}; 58a adz {Carpenter's curved tool}; 59a ocean bottom {Seabed}; 62a doe {32-Down's woodlands mate}; 63a plane {Carpenter's smoothing tool}; 64a dente {Al ___ (like some noodles)}; 65a err {Goof}; 66a Señor {Madrid man}; 67a swoon {Faint with ecstasy}.

1d Irma {"Joy of Cooking" author Rombauer}; 2d noel {Holiday number}; 3d fund {Supply with money}; 4d Estonian {Native of the land known by natives as Eesti}; 6d smirk {Smug look}; 7d comas {Postaccident conditions}; 8d oval {Indianapolis 500 track, e.g.}; 9d fig {Biblical fruit}; 10d feed on {Use for sustenance}; 11d option play {Football ploy}; 12d wooly {Like a sheep}; 13d Emmys {TV awards}; 18d Loch {___ Lomond}; 23d Abe {Grandpa on "The Simpsons"}; 25d Isle {Emerald ___}; 26d pint {Pub order}; 27d Goth {One dressed in black, maybe}; 28d onus {Cross to bear}; 29d fertilizer {Garden enrichment}; 30d lies {Propaganda, often}; 32d stag {62-Across's woodlands mate}; 33d phi {Honor society letter}; 35d sere {Desertlike}; 36d USSR {"Back in the ___"}; 38d D-day {Time of reckoning}; 39d Agra {Indian tourist city}; 40d beef stew {Hearty entree that may be cooked in a Dutch oven}; 45d dam {Beaver's work}; 46d troops {Scout units}; 47d blob {Gooey mass}; 48d spade {Diamond alternative}; 49d ardor {Zeal}; 50d piano {Elton John's instrument}; 51d inner {Word before self or strength}; 53d dean {College V.I.P.}; 55d at no {"___ extra cost!"}; 56d go to {Head for}; 57d amen! {"You said it, brother!"}; 61d ODs {Some E.R. cases}.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Re: "game table" - Not quite the same as "gaming table," which I would associate with gambling. Many furniture companies sell tables for home use that are referred to, generically, as "game tables." They may have a chess/checker or backgammon board on the top, or be designed with chip holders for poker, etc.

Crossword Man said...

Ok. Thanks for the clarification Anon.

Daniel Myers said...

That 5D clue always throws me at first---Stephen FRY was also in the movie

Crossword Man said...

I didn't know Stephen Fry was also in that movie; sorry you told me that as I'll be confused now.

Really enjoyed reading The Fry Chronicles recently - Stephen was also at Uppingham being expelled shortly before I arrived. It's always fascinating to read his books, as our backgrounds are so similar.

Daniel Myers said...

Yes, I imagine so! He's written about that expulsion, as I'm sure you're aware. Anyway, here's a short clip of him in the movie, which is really quite good if one doesn't overburden it with interpretations of various hues. I wasn't aware of all these interpretations until your write-up. I first saw the film on one of those transatlantic aeroplane flights:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=INooai8ynG0

Crossword Man said...

Thanks. If it's showing the next time I fly, then I'll see if I can stay awake long enough to get to the Fry bit ... or should I say, the Bit of Fry ...