January 07, 2007

Monday, 1/8

NYS 3:52
CS 3:38
NYT 2:47
LAT 2:37

The last time Harriet Clifton published a crossword in the NYT (9/20/05), it included the line HERE'S THE REMOTE. In this household, we can no longer fight over possession of the remote control because the gadgets have proliferated like bunnies. I think the AA batteries are an aphrodisiac, and the remotes are conceiving baby gadgets whenever I'm out of the room. Anyway, in her new Monday puzzle, the theme includes three idiomatic phrases a DOUBTING THOMAS might say. I SAW and ESAU are undistinguished fill on their own, but when they're connected, it triggers thoughts of "I saw Esau sitting on a seesaw," no? [Scalds, e.g.] was used to clue BURNS, which made me think of Montgomery Burns on The Simpsons, so I checked Cruciverb.com to see if the word has been clued in reference to Mr. Burns. Would you believe the word hadn't been used in the NYT crossword since 2000? (And no, no Mr. ___ clues. )


Blogger has quite rudely kept me from updating the post today. Hmph!

The Sun puzzle by Gary Steinmehl had one of those "what the..." themes I couldn't figure out, even after I was done with the puzzle. Eventually it dawned on me that the "Surfdom" title signaled channel-surfing rather than surfing the web—with five theme entries ending with cable channels. You've got your E! (sans exclamation point in the grid), WE (I think it stands for "Women's Entertainment" and is a Lifetime knockoff), LIFETIME (ahem), SPIKE (formerly TNN but no longer Nashville-centric), and BRAVO (my favorite of the pentad). I wonder how many other cable channels there are with one-word names. There's Versus (formerly Outdoor Life Network), but what phrases end with "versus"? And Nickelodeon, which is a little long for ending a theme entry...