Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Tuesday, July, 15, 2008

Title: In the Middle
Author: Barry C. Silk
Theme: Phrases have "IN" added in the middle to generate new phrases.

  • 17a: Bill from an orator? (SPEAKING INVOICE).

  • 24a: Saudi oil revenue? (KINGDOM INCOME).

  • 51a: Cause of a fugitive's pain? (RUNAWAY INJURY). My favorite of the bunch.

  • 60a: Praying mantis? (RELIGIOUS INSECT).

These are decent Tuesday theme entries. Nothing overly fancy, but fine.

Sunny Spots:

  • 28a: "Big" or "small" hold'em payment (BLIND). After yesterday, we just keep the poker terms coming.

  • 3d: Bizarre (FREAKISH). I like this fill. Great word.

  • 33d: Long-grain rice (BASMATI). Nice word ending in I. Don't see all that many of those. And food, too.

  • 39d: Lie motionless (PLAY DEAD). Good fill.


  • 9a: Part of www (WIDE). World Wide Web

  • 32a: Tongue sensor (TASTE BUD).

  • 38a: Cal. pages (MOS). That's calendar, not California.

  • 39a: Nightwear, briefly (PJS).

  • 42a: "___ My Party" (1963 #1 hit for Lesley Gore) (IT'S). Classic oldie. Check it out here.

  • 43a: Sewer entries (MANHOLES).

  • 45a: North Carolina's Cape ___ (FEAR). Best known for the movie (and remake) of the same name.

  • 48a: Compressed video file format (MPEG). Gimme for me.

  • 50a: Muscular strength (BRAWN).

  • 54a: Coddled thing (EGG).

  • 56a: Canal zone? (EAR). Cute.

  • 57a: Nyet negators (DAS).

  • 64a: Diciembre follower (ENERO). This is the one Spanish month you need to know.

  • 66a: "10 Things I ___ About You" (HATE). Never saw the film, but I saw enough trailers that I feel like I have.

  • 68a: Half-___ over (drunk, in slang) (SEAS). Not a phrase I'm familiar with.

  • 1d: Teacher's helper: Abbr. (ASST). Well, anyone's helper, really.

  • 4d: LIRR train letters (MTA).

  • 7d: 2004 GOP convention locale (MSG). Madison Square Garden.

  • 8d: Black mark (STIGMA).

  • 16d: Makes more attractive, with "up" (SEXES).

  • 25d: Abbr. on a windshield wiper control stick (INT). Interval.

  • 26d: Leash law, e.g.: Abbr. (ORD). Ordinance.

  • 38d: Milk of ___ (MAGNESIA).

  • 46d: Seat of Oregon's Lane County (EUGENE). I'm familiar with the city.

  • 47d: Did some fishing (ANGLED).

  • 49d: Road construction cones (PYLONS).

  • 52d: Delivery truck (WAGON).

  • 59d: Mark to undo a deletion (STET). This and DELE show up all the time.

Suns of Bitches:

  • 23a: Goofy's son (MAX). I feel like I ought to know this, but it doesn't even ring a bell.

  • 55a: Big O.? (ATL). I don't understand this one. I assume ATL is for Atlanta? What am I missing? Olympics? Orgasms?

  • 11d: Moon of Mars (DEIMOS). This crosses the Goofy clue at the M. It seemed a reasonable guess.

  • 19d: Hall of Fame hockey coach Roger (NEILSON).

  • 35d: Two-time N.L. batting champ Richie (ASHBURN).

  • 42d: Kaplan of Yo La Tengo (IRA). Man, the band members we're supposed to know these days. At least I know who Yo La Tengo is; I bet there are a lot out there who don't even know that. Here's an amusing video of theirs.

Overall, a pretty average Tuesday puzzle. Which is not a bad thing at all.

Thanks for listening.

- Pete M.


Anonymous said...

Very nice Tuesday puzzle. My favorite theme clue was "Praying mantis?"

O. is short for ocean, so ATL is the Atlantic. Funny clue, BTW. :)

Anonymous said...

A perfectly reasonable puzzle, but another one that's pretty heavy on the abbreviations and short forms. Granted, some of these function essentially as words. Still, the number of the count is 14, and 6 of them were explicitly tagged with "Abbr." in some fashion.


Better than having to learn the German word for "eleven", I suppose.

I'll go back into my cave now.

Joon said...

good puzzle! i really liked RELIGIOUSINSECT as well.

i must have seen IRA kaplan of yo la tengo in a puzzle before, because i certainly wouldn't know him from IRA levin, IRA gershwin, or a roth IRA otherwise.


embien said...

I was born and raised in EUGENE, OR, even going to college at the University of Oregon (in Eugene), so that was the ultimate in gimmes for me.

If anyone figures out what is meant by 68a:, please post. I've never seen or heard the expression Half-SEAS over (though I've been drunk more than a few times).

Anonymous said...

The probable source of half seas over is, as you assume, also nautical. Here the image is of someone trying to walk on the deck of a tilting ship on a storm-battered sea. Again, trying to keep one's footing on a slanted, slippery, moving deck so resembles a drunken stagger that we have yet another graphic way of referring to someone who is quite drunk.

Half seas over is found in 19th-century literature, although it probably goes back further than that. From Le Pere Goriot (1834) by Honore de Balzac, we have: "'There, now!'" she added, looking round for the old vermicelli maker, 'there is that Father Goriot half seas over. . . . My word! it is disgraceful to lose his senses like that, at his age!'" From Herman Melville's Moby Dick (1851): "Drinking hot rum toddies with me every night, till he couldn't see to put on the bandages; and sending me to bed, half seas over, about three o'clock in the morning."

For some reason, you're considered to be slightly less plastered if you're half-seas over than if you're three sheets to the wind. With either one, since you're still standing, you're not yet "under the table"; nor are you "dead drunk." As between the two states, which is "worse" (or better!) is up to you. I'm not going to "go there."