October 26, 2005

A Fridayish Thursday

Bonnie Gentry is showing a deft touch with themes this week, in Tuesday's Sun and again in the Thursday NYT. The NYT theme rebus revealed itself quickly with the three spaces allotted to actor Burton (LEVAR) crossing the Red Cross city (GENEVA) in the NW corner. Getting the central theme entry, LITTLE EVA, then spurred me to look for more EVA rebuses rather than condensed random first names. Aside from the Thursday-style rebus, I thought the puzzle really had a Friday vibe to it, with things like DUANE EDDY and "where the shilling is money" for UGANDA. The slew of Friday-level solving times on the applet bear this out. Huzzah!

Ray Hamel's Themeless Thursday NYS features a lively little clue that could be the constructor's own, but it just seems to have that Peter Gordon vibe to it: "Lesbians are surrounded by this," for AEGEAN SEA. Elsewhere in the puzzle—with a dry, factual clue—we have ERLENMEYER FLASK, and oddly enough, I found that to be a great entry. The TAPIR always amuses me, ever since my husband and I saw one at the zoo with a rather alarming display of anatomy. (If you have ever seen what I saw, you know what I'm talking about.) And working in the SALT MINES, always a good phrase. (What exactly is so dreadful about working in the salt mines? Is it better or worse than coal or diamond mining? Where are these salt mines, anyway?) My least favorite part of this puzzle was AL HEDISON—who? IMDb tells us he switched to his middle name after his first few movies and has been credited as David Hedison since 1959. Feh.


Randall Hartman (Am I the only one who doesn't really know the difference between Randolph Ross and Randall Hartman? Another Kahn/Klahn, Mel/Merl/Merle, Patricks-of-all-kinds thing.) tossed a LATER DUDE into the fill of his CrosSynergy puzzle. I like it...

NYT 5:07
NYS 4:40
LAT 4:13
CS 3:24