December 19, 2006

Wednesday, 12/20

NYS 4:57
NYT 3:43
LAT 3:30
CS 3:29

It's Nancy Salomon day all over, with a solo byline in the NYT and a joint production with Brendan Emmett Quigley in the Sun. In the NYT puzzle, the theme is rude things that ill-mannered people say, such as NICE GOING, GENIUS. Puts me in mind of American Idol and its underlying mean streak—hey, the show's back with a new season in a couple weeks! Must set TiVo. Fantastic long non-theme entries, such as DUTY CALLS, and some old-school crossword terms like OGEE and APSE (crossing in today's crosswordese architecture intersection). Anyone know if truckers still use CB radios? Based on the scary movie, Joy Ride, I'll say yes, but CBs have lost that vibe of coolness they had in the '70s.

CBER makes an appearance in both the NYT and the Sun crossword. (Oh! APSE is in the Sun, too. Coincidences abound.) In the latter, the theme is "Iron Supplements," or phrases with supplemental FE. Four of the entries have one iron pill, while the middle one dances with three pills: CHAFE, CHAFE, CHAFE. Most surprising clue: [Douche spray] for EAU (douche being French for "shower"). Never heard of baseball player EMIL Brown, didn't recall that the Lost character named Desmond had the last name HUME, don't know [1918 Allied commander Ferdinand] FOCH, and I can't say I recall the [Early Internet search engine] HOTBOT.