Apologies in Apulia - FRIDAY, April 17, 2009 — Corey Rubin (John Wayne title marshal of 1973 /Slow-smoked Southern grub / Crack of dawn, old-style)
Friday, April 17, 2009
Word of the Day: IMARET(S) (15D: Near Eastern hospices) — A type of hostelry for the accommodation of Muslim pilgrims and other travelers in the Turkish empire. (answers.com)
PuzzleGirl back with you again with your late-week puzzles. Wow. I really liked this puzzle! This was exactly the kind of solve I'd like to have every single Friday. Bit by bit, I keep plugging away ... a few hiccups here and there ... one wrong answer I finally let go of and then BAM! It's done. The first thing I popped into the grid was MIRANDIZE (17A: Read rights to, as a perp). I could hardly believe my luck. I almost never get a long answer like that right away to get me started on a late-week puzzle. The Z made BOZEMAN (12D: Montana State University setting) appear effortlessly. Then BSMT. (25A: Rec rm. locale, often) and LEAS (28A: Picnic places) brought QUESTS (13D: Story lines of Indiana Jones films) into focus, but that would made 6 Across end with "BQ." That couldn't possibly be right! What did I do wrong? Ohhh ... [Slow-smoked Southern grub]. It doesn't just end with BQ, it ends with BBQ! Awesome! (It took a little longer, but I finally got the whole answer: TEXAS BBQ. And speaking of Texas. I heard today that there are a few people in Texas who don't really want to be part of this great nation of ours any more. Wade: What the heck is goin' on down there??)
The only missteps I had were at 18A: Work in a gallery (OIL), where I initially entered art, smirking to myself "Well, that's pretty easy for a Friday!" And 36A: Like lumber in a mill (SAWN), where I had hewn. Does that even make sense? I don't feel like looking it up. Saw and hew are related somehow though. I'm pretty sure. I also had Gatorade where POWERADE was supposed to be at 31D: Coca-Cola product. And I thought SET out was a pretty good answer for 1D: Depart, but the right answer is SET OFF.
This was a quick solve for me. I started keeping track of my time at the beginning of this year, so I decided to look back and see if this was my fastest Friday so far. Turns out it's my second fastest. My first fastest was back on March 6 on a little puzzle constructed by ... Corey Rubin (his debut!). Rex rated that puzzle Medium-Challenging, but a quick scan of the first few comments reveals that not everyone had as much trouble with it. So either (a) Corey Rubin creates objectively easy puzzles, (2) I'm always on Corey's wavelength, or (c) something else. In any event, I thought this puzzle was awesome. Here are the answers I particularly liked:
- 32A: Appt. book headings (MTWTF). Don't recall ever seeing this in a grid before and it rocks. (I have no idea where I picked it up, but I always abbreviate Thursday with an R instead of a T, to distinguish it from Tuesday. Does anyone else do that?)
- 37A: Information, slangily (FOUR ONE ONE). This strikes me as hip, which probably means it was hip about ten years ago. Plus ... slangily!
- 53A: Our neighbor's nickname, with "the" (RED PLANET). I'm all "The ... Canada? The ... Mexico??"
- 25D: Overwhelmed and destroyed (BLITZED). Sure, why not?
- 34D: Crack of dawn, old-style (DAY-PEEP). Never heard of it. But I like it.
- 1A: Apologies, in Apulia (SCUSE). Italian!
- 15A: "No, no, this one's on me" (I'VE GOT YOU). I'm going to let this one slide because I love the rest of the puzzle.
- 26A: French kings' emblem (FLEUR DE LYS). Not to be confused with Beethoven's "Fur Elise."
- 29A: Dark times abroad (NUITS). French!
- 34A: It can be cracked (DOOR). Anyone like code for this one?
- 35A: Frijoles go-with (ARROZ). Spanish!
- 48A: Letters in some church names (AME). We talked about this recently. Hope you remembered that discussion.
- 55A: On the lookout (OPEN-EYED). I'm gonna let this one slide too.
- 56A: Fast results? (PANGS). That's fasting as in not eating. Clever.
- 2D: John Wayne title marshal of 1973 (CAHILL). Tagline: "Break the law and he's the last man you want to see. And the last you ever will."
- 11D: Per se (BY ITSELF). Latin!
- 10D: Not an upgrade: Abbr. (STD). I should say not.
- 20D: Depths of despair (NADIR). This word always makes me think of frequent commenter Badir, which I also don't know how to pronounce.
- 23D: Podiatrists' concerns (BUNIONS). I am simultaneously tickled and grossed out by this answer.
- 30D: "Lost" character Jin-Soo _____ (KWON).
- 37D: Park since 1912 (FENWAY). I miss Rex.
- 38D: How some people shop (ONLINE). There's another way?
- 40D: Kind of ceremony (NAMING). I think of this as a Jewish tradition, but I'm guessing there are other types of naming ceremonies. Anyone?
- 47D: Certain sub (TEMP). Raise your hand if you were going through the list: "Grinder, hoagie, hero...."