Activities

Chris Rock

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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Puzzle by Susan Gelfand / Edited by Will Shortz

Five surnames of well-known individuals double as the first word of two-word phrases in this Tuesday crossword:

ROCK GARDENS (17A. Comedian cultivates flowers?), Chris Rock 
POUND SIGNS (23A. Poet inks a contract?), Ezra Pound 
PRICE TAGS (33A. Opera singer scrawls graffiti?), Leontyne Price  
FIELD TRIPS (48A. Actress stumbles?), Sally Field 
BACON STRIPS (53A. Philosopher removes his clothes?), Francis Bacon 

Other — ABALONE (2D. Ornamental shell source); ANSWERS (12D. They cross in a crossword); BRAVADO (37D. Impressive show of courage); GAZELLE (25D. Graceful antelope); Singer Josh GROBAN whose self-titled 2001 debut album went 4x platinum; PIG and RATS (29D. Squealer; 47A. Squealers); SNIPPETS (20D. Tiny excerpts); Assassin John WILKES Booth.

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06.29.15 — Movement

Spinners flying, an iconic and influential 
futuristic vehicle designed by Syd Mead.

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Monday, June 29, 2015

Puzzle by Todd Gross and Andrea Carla Michaels
Edited by Will Shortz

Modes of movement, e.g., CRAWLER, WALKER, RUNNER and FLYER, constitute the interrelated group of this fine Monday crossword:

WEB CRAWLER (17A. Bot that systematically browses the Internet)
ALICE WALKER (28A. “The Color Purple” novelist)
BLADE RUNNER (48A. 1982 Harrison Ford sci-fi film)
RADIO FLYER (64A. Classic red wagon)


Other — CHURN (29D. Make butter the old-fashioned way); DACCA (4D. Capital of Bangladesh, old-style); EMBARKED (3d. Started, as on a journey); EMERALDS (2D. Green gems); ET CETERA (41D. “Yadda, yadda, yadda”); GEESE (70A. Birds that fly in V’s); KEMO SABE (58A. The Lone Ranger, to Tonto); LEA, LEI and LIE LOW; SERGEANT (21A. To whom a private says “Sir, yes, sir!”).

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06.28.15 — Fields of Blood — the Acrostic

Battle is joined between Crusaders and Muslims 
(Bridgeman Art Library)

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Sunday, June 28, 2015

ACROSTIC, Puzzle by Emily Cox and Henry Rathvon
Edited by Will Shortz

This Sunday’s acrostic draws a quotation from Fields of Blood: Religion and the History of Violence by Karen Armstrong.

“… a sweeping exploration of religion and the history of human violence.

For the first time, religious self-identification is on the decline in American. Some analysts have cited as cause a post-9/11perception: that faith in general is a source of aggression, intolerance, and divisiveness—something bad for society. But how accurate is that view? With deep learning and sympathetic understanding, Karen Armstrong sets out to discover the truth about religion and violence in each of the world’s great traditions, taking us on an astonishing journey from prehistoric times to the present. “ ~ amazon.com  

The quotation:  THE SUMERIANS HAD NO WORD FOR PRIEST:  ARISTOCRATS WHO WERE ALSO THE CITY’S BUREAUCRATS, POETS, AND ASTRONOMERS OFFICIATED AT THE CITY CULT.  THIS WAS ONLY FITTING, SINCE FOR THEM ALL ACTIVITY--ESPECIALLY POLITICS--WAS HOLY.

The author’s name and the title of the work:  KAREN ARMSTRONG, “FIELDS OF BLOOD”

The defined words:

A. Loss of language faculties, APHASIA 
B. Modify for more current use, RETROFIT
C. 1980 Summer Olympics host, MOSCOW
D. Activate, in a way (2 wds.), SWITCH ON
E. Mechanical attendance counter, TURNSTILE
F. :Like the music of Brahms or Chopin, ROMANTIC
G. Chest or urn containing bones, OSSUARY
H. Bird related to a tree creeper, NUTHATCH
L. Cause of woe to Northeastern forests (2 wds.), GYPSY MOTH
J. Meant to be amusing, FACETIOUS
K. Horn-blowing archangel of Islam, ISRAFIL
L. Figures used by Ptolemy to describe orbits, EPICYCLES
M. Notable author of weird fiction, LOVECRAFT
N. Glistening bed on a spider web, DEWDROP
O. Tool employed in “Moneyball”, STATISTICS
P. Seafood dish that is part of Andy Warhol’s “Campbell’s Soup Cans II” (2 wds/), OYSTER STEW
Q/. Not drawn with mechanical aid, FREEHAND
R. Pas de deux participant, BALLERINA
S. Racially discriminatory, above reproach (hyph.). LILY-WHITE
T. Software giant based in the Bay Area, ORACLE
U. The Big Ten’s Buckeyes (2 wds.), OHIO STATE
V. Standoffish, detached, aloof, DISTANT

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06.28.15 — The Final Word


Sunday, June 28, 2015

“Getting in the Final Word” — Puzzle by Jeremy Newton
Edited by Will Shortz

In this Sunday afterthought crossword, the final word of a phrase is formed by ignoring the first section’s crossing letter resulting in a shorter word.
  • JUST with CAUSE (3D. With 18-Across, “Tobe on the safe side…”; 18A. Gay rights, e.g.), results in JUST IN CASE.
  • KEEPING with MIND (16D. With 21-Across, remembering; 21A. Like some enemy waters), KEEPING IN MIND
  • WHAT HAPPENS with VEGANS (30A. With 13-Down, shorthand pact for a wild trip; 13D. Unlikely butchers), WHAT HAPPENS IN VEGAS
  • YOU’VE GOT A FRIEND with MOE (52A. With 49-Down, 1995 Oscar-nominated Pixar theme song; 49D. Good name for a lawn care guy), YOU’VE GOT A FRIEND IN ME
  • COULD YOU PUT THAT with WRITHING (80A. With 58-Down, request for an official document; 58D. Twisting)
  • DOUBLED OVER with PAIN (101A. With 90-Down, reacting a to a gut punch, perhaps; 90D. Bristol, for one), DOUBLED OVER IN PAIN
  • CALLING with SLICK (87D. With 104-Across, talking with a fake rasp; perhaps; 104A. Cleverly crafted), CALLING IN SICK
  • CAME with LAST (109D.  With 125-Across, got the booby prize; 125A. Tiniest thing), CAME IN LAST
Other — ADMIT IT (88D. “Fess up!“); ECLECTIC (107A. Diverse); EDAMAME (10D. Sushi bar appetizer); EVANESCENT (12D. Not here for long); MOO SHU PORK (74D. Chinese dish often wrapped in pancakes); NAG, NAG, NAG (23A. “Geez, get off my back already!”); NO CHANCE ((59D. “Forget it!“); OPIUM DEN (36D. Smoke-filled establishment); TOWN DRUNK (114A. Stock character like Mayberry‘s Otis); ST. PETER (89A. Guard at a gated community?).

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06.26.15 — Hot Wax

"Babel Upturned," hot wax (encaustic
painting by Grace Carol Bomer 

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Saturday, June 27, 2015

Puzzle by Tim Croce / Edited by Will Shortz

Of interest — AMEX CARD (36D. Plastic that’s often green); ARIZONA (58A. Brand name whose middle letter is capitalized for no apparent reason); ARBORIO (15A. Rice variety used in rice pudding); BASSALE (24D. Its logo was the U.K.‘s first registered trademark); DESTINE (40D. Foreordain); EASY ONE and EAZY Z (14D. “C’mon … gimme a challenge!”; 51D. The Godfather of Gangsta Rap); HOT WAX (7D. Brazilian supply); IS IT A GO (12D. “Do we have the green light?“); KIA SOUL (43D. Korean compact); MCDREAMY (38A. Handsome surgeon’s name on “Grey’s Anatomy”); MISHAPS (38D. Blooper reel highlights); NEATNIK (13D. One whose work is picking up?); PANFISH (1A. Bluegill or crappie); PONY CAR (62A. Mustang, e.g.); RAGE-QUIT (8D. Leave an online game in a huff); R.I.C.O. ACT (17A. Mob law?); SICK JOKE (33A. Product of a twisted sense of humor); ST CROIX (25D. Denmark sold it to the U.S. in 1917).

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06.26.15 — The Friday Crossword

Lest We Forget - The Sinking of the Lusitania
By Thomas Marie Madawaska Hemy

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Friday, June 26, 2015

Puzzle by Eric Rhode / Edited by Will Shortz

Of interest — ALTE Sprachen; LUSITANIA and U-BOAT (17A. See 16-Across; 16A. Source of doom for the 17-Across); HAVE IT ALL (32D. What many career women strive to do); HIT A NERVE (58A. Touched on something touchy); I’M AT A LOSS (15A. “You got me”); IS IT GOING TO RAIN (8D. “Should I take an umbrella or not?“); LLAMA (6D. Spitting image in the Andes?); MANSPLAIN (1A. Patronizingly point out, in modern lingo); NASAL CONSONANTS (3D. “m” and “n”); ODESA (46A. City south of Kylv); ONE PLAYER (60A. Like solitaire games); PORKY (18A. Famous stuttered); SALT SPRAY (55A. Product that puts waves in the hair); SORRY I’M NOT SORRY (12D. Non-apology apology).

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06.25.15 — Lead Belly

Lead Belly

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Thursday, June 25, 2015

Puzzle by David Poole / Edited by Will Shortz

LEAD BELLY (61A. Legendary guitarist … or a hint to eight answers in this puzzle), along with four squares containing PB (the symbol for lead), constitutes the main feature of this Thursday crossword:
  • U[P B]EAT with LI[P B]ALMS (19A. Optimistic; 10D. Blistex products)
  • PO[P B]OTTLES with TO[P B]ID (17A. Subjects for Andy Warhol; 3D. Winner on eBay)
  • DEE[P B]LUE with A[PB]S (38a. Groundbreaking cross-playing computer; 33D. Old calls from HQ)
  • RAS[PB]ERRY with CU[PB]OARD (49A. Sound of disapproval; 42D. Place to put everything you can?)
Other — APULIA (24D. The “high heel” of Italy’s “boot”); ASTA (1A. Tinseltown terrier); BRASSERIE (31D. Restaurant that might serve steak fries); BRUCE LEE (9D. Kato portrayer in “The Green Hornet”); CARELESS (23A. Like most typos); ESCARTE (21A. Euchre relative); I MEANT IT (57A. “That was said in all sincerity”); OVEREATER (11D. One taking extra courses?); PALMA 28A. Capital of Majorca); ROMAN (49D. Like M, L or XL, but not S); SUCRE (45A. One of two capitals of Bolivia); TÊTE (67A. Head overseas?).

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06.24.15 — Five Stars


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Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Puzzle by Ian Livengood and J.A.S.A. Crossword Class
Edited by Will Shortz

FIVE STARS (56A. What 17-, 23-, 33- and 47-Across each have), along with the following constitutes the main feature of this Wednesday crossword:

THE PIERRE (17A. Luxury hotel overlooking Central Park)
OMAR BRADLEY (23A. First chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, 1949)
SOUTHERN CROSS (33A. Constellation visible in Melbourne and Sydney)
CHINESE FLAG (47A. Flier over Tiananmen Square)

Other —  ANT EATER (9D. ‘B.C.” animal that goes ZOT!); CAPO and THE MOB (5A. Crime chief; 42D. What a 5-Across is a boss in); FEEBLE and FRIED (21A. Weak; 49D. Mentally pooped); SCENARIO (3D. Plot outline); SKI TRAIL (36D. Slippery slope?); TRUE THAT (34D. “I agree”).
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06.23.15 — The Road to Bali


Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Puzzle by Jules P. Markey / Edited by Will Shortz

The 1952 film of ROAD TO BALI is the main feature of this Tuesday crossword, with a string at the top starting with ROAD and leading to BALI at the bottom on the puzzle, e.g., ROAD, TOAD, TOLD, BOLD, BALD, BALI:

BROMANTIC COMEDY (16A. Modern-day genre for the 1952 film whose title is suggested by a word ladder starting at 1-Across)
HOPE AND CROSBY (24A. The film’s headliners)
DOROTHY LAMOUR (40A. The film’s co-star)
SONG AND DANCE MEN (52A. Occupations of 24-Across in the film)

Other — APER (23A. Impressionist); AUTO (13A. What drives on a parkway and parks on a driveway); CAPRIS (18D. Women’s casual pants); COP CAR (38D. Black-and-white); EDDA (47D. Icelandic saga); LOCO (45D. Batty); ORONO (25D. Maine college town); Soprano YMA Sumac; UTNE Reader; Wisconsin v. YODER (landmark 1972 Supreme Court case on religious freedom).

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06.22.15 — @


Monday, June 22, 2015

Puzzle by Joel Fagliano / Edited by Will Shortz

The AT sign (designated on Twittter on the internet as “@”) preceding common words to render two meanings to six answers constitutes the main feature of this mildly interesting Monday crossword:

AT TEMPTING (17A. Good Twitter handle for a seductress?)
AT TESTING (21A. … for a teacher?)
AT TUNES (37A. … for a musician?)
AT TIRED (39A. … for a sleepyhead?)
AT TRIBUTE (53A. … for a eulogist?)
AT TRACTION (59A. … for a tire company?)

Other — ALTO and BASS (53D. Kind of clef; 55D. Kind of clef); CATACLYSM (6D. Large-scale disaster); JOSH (31A. Kid around); SHUTTERFLY (27D. Internet photo company named after an insect); SLAG and SMELT (13D. Refinery waste; 27A. Refine, as ore); STAND TALL (33D. Show pride); STATE FAIRS (10D. Events with Ferris wheels and livestock competitions); TAXIDERMY (35D. Professional stuff?); TIDES (49A. They go in and out and in and out); WEB (26A.Fly catcher); YOGI BERRA (11D.Who said “Always go to other people’s funerals, otherwise they won’t go to yours”); ZAP (50A. Sound of a mosquito being fried).

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06.21.15 — Climbing the Corporate Ladder


Sunday, June 21, 2015

"Climbing the Corporate Ladder," Puzzle by Timothy Polin
Edited by Will Shortz

Seven answers that step upwards with a corporate name as the central down answer constitutes the main feature of this Sunday crossword: 
  • POSTAGE STAMP with SEGA (31A. What may be forever?; 14D. Video games)
  • TRUE/FALSE TESTS with TESLA (34A. Exams that students get F’s on?; 5D. Automobiles)
  • THREE KINGS DAY with NIKE (62A. Annual celebration on January 6; 47D. Sportswear)
  • IN THAT RESPECT with SERTA (75A. When viewed one way; 55D. Mattresses)
  • HOW WAS I TO KNOW with OTIS (82A. Response deflecting blame; 68D. Elevators)
  • SETS IN MOTION with OMNI (116A. Initiates; 101D. Hotels)
  • LOGICAL FALLACY with AFLAC (118A. Part of an unsound argument; 99D. Insurance)
Other — ASHBIN (16D. Garbage collector); HANNIBAL (82D. General defeated by Scipio, ending the Second Punic War); HOLY WATER (35A. Liquid harmful to vampires); IDLE HANDS (97A. The Devil’s workshop, as the saying goes); INSIDIOUS (75D. Sneaky); MEETING UP (54D. Getting together); RICE CAKES (37D. Crunchy snacks); SEAT BELTS (49A. Lighted icons on airplanes); SEXOLOGY (9D. Study for a Masters?); SUGARLOAF (2D. Ro de Janeiro peak); THE ARTIST (65A. First silent film to win Best Picture since “Wings”). 

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