October 10, 2009

Daily Beast, 10/9/09

Time - 10:53

Hello, everyone. This is Jeffrey Krasnick, Canada's only crossword blogger, back with the first post on Matt Gaffney's Sunday-sized "Daily Beast" crosswords. You can find the puzzle here.

This week's puzzle is called "Columbus' Circle" and is theme to coincide with Monday's holiday: Thanksgiving, or as Americans call it, Columbus Day. The theme answers all include names of famous explorers.

23A - SHORT ORDER COOK. Martin Short is a famous Canadian explorer. No wait, it is Captain James Cook. Here in Victoria, he gets a statue and we have a Cook Street named after him.

39A - CLARK GABLE. William Clark of Lewis and Clark fame. Not to be confused with Martin and Lewis.

51A - MAGELLAN FUND - Ferdinand Magellan, first man to sail around the world. Went well, except for the part of the trip where he was killed.

65A - DRAKE'S CAKES - Francis Drake, second most famous male duck, after Donald.

85A - RALEIGH BIKES - Sir Walter Raleigh. If your parents name you Sir, good things will happen to you.

91A - POLO SHIRTS - Marco Polo, who explored on horseback while whacking a wooden ball.

112A - LANCE ARMSTRONG - Lance Bass, discover of JC Chasez. Or perhaps, astronaut Neil Armstrong.

Other stuff:

26A - [Atlanta housewife Leakes] is NENE. Huh? NeNe Leakes is a star of 'The Real Housewives of Atlanta." Matt - Nene is a Hawaiian goose.

56A - [Elton John rewrote a song for her] - LADY DIANA. Shouldn't that be Bernie Taupin, lyricist, rewrote a song for her? And wasn't she Princess Diana at that time?

61A - [Norah's dad] is RAVI Shankar. Norah Jones is great.

75A - "Hace _____" ("It's hot" in Spanish)]/75D - [Scots toss them]: CALOR/CABERS. Error alert. That "C " could have been any consonant to me.

109A - ABED/ 118A - AWAKEN. Nice.

16D - [Village People classic] - YMCA

33D - [Cough drop name] - HALLS. I was sucking on a Halls Centres (cherry) as I solved this, with the bag right below the screen. This is the type of planning you must do (88D) PREPLAY to be a speed solver.

52D - [Bails on plans] - FLAKES. Never heard of this meaning. Maybe NeNe knows it.

63D - [Defiled, as someone's face] - SPAT IN. Ewww! Matt! Not while we eat our corn FLAKES.

96D - [2007 Michael Moore movie] - SICKO. Canadian health care: Leave your credit card at home.

99D - [Creepy deck] - TAROT. Subtle hint to Hell Month at Matt's contest site. Check it out.

114D - [Open ___ night] - MIC. I put ALL. So did you. Admit it.