I was just thinking to myself, geeze, I haven't found the time to do the themed CrosSynergy puzzles in at least a week. Maybe I should be doing them so I'm not too rusty by the time the ACPT rolls around. And then I remembered that I test-solved and proofread 51 other crosswords between January 20 and 27 and felt a little more prepared.
Barry Silk's New York Times crossword defines BAR (66-Across) in five ways, with all five definitions being clued simply with [See 66-Across]. Now, if I'd had any sense, I would have traveled directly to the lower right corner and used the crossings to give me BAR right away, but no, that didn't occur to me until now. The five theme answers are the LEGAL PROFESSION, to BANISH BY DECREE, a TAPROOM, a UNIT OF PRESSURE (not to mention cell phone signal strength), and MUSICAL NOTATION. Favorite stuff from elsewhere in the puzzle:
David Kahn's Sun crossword, "Chop To It," builds a theme around the ADDAX, an [Antelope with spiraled horns (and a hint to this puzzle's theme)]. Everyone knows the oryx is the cooler antelope, right? Six theme entries incorporate and ADDed AX that changes a phrase's meaning:
Congratulations to regular reader Gareth Bain on his constructing debut—today's LA Times crossword. The theme was a little tough to suss out, but eventually it hit me. The four longest answers end with slang terms used to refer to the police:
The pigs and po-po are sitting this one out, but there is a KOP ([Keystone bumbler]). TRINI LOPEZ gets promoted to full-name treatment; she's the ["Lemon Tree" singer, 1965]. FLOYDS is clued with [Pink and golfer Raymond?], the question mark reflecting the playfulness of treating Pink Floyd like a first and last name. Anyone else find that their first impulse for [Capital near Troy] was ANKARA? I don't know how close ancient Troy is to modern-day Turkey's capital, but New York's ALBANY rules the day here.
January 28, 2009