11.11.07 -- Turkey -- the Acrostic

Sunday, November 11, 2007
ACROSTIC
Puzzle by Emily Cox & Henry Rathvon, edited by Will Shortz
Thanksgiving is just around the corner and today’s acrostic is buttering up the bird for that occasion with a quote from the late left-wing journalist
Cassandra (William Connor) -- which can be found in “Brewer's Cabinet of Curiosities” by Ian Crofton under the chapter “The Glories of Gluttony”.
TURKEY A FRAUD
“What a shocking fraud the turkey is. In life preposterous, insulting -- that foolish noise they make to scare you away! In death -- unpalatable. The turkey has practically no taste except a dry fibrous flavour reminiscent of a mixture of warmed-up plaster-of-Paris and horsehair. The texture is like wet sawdust and the whole vast feathered swindle has the piquancy of a boiled mattress.”
-- Cassandra (William Connor), in the Daily Mirror, 24 December 1953.
The quotation as it appears in today’s acrostic:
TURKEY HAS PRACTICALLY NO TASTE EXCEPT A DRY FIBROUS FLAVOR REMINISCENT OF WARMED-UP PLASTER AND HORSE HAIR THE TEXTURE IS LIKE WET SAWDUST AND THE WHOLE VAST FEATHERED SWINDLE HAS THE PIQUANCY OF A BOILED MATTRESS.
The defined words:
WHITEMEAT (A. Diner’s choice on Thanksgiving Day [2 2ds.]); ISTANBUL (B. City where Byzantium used to be); LIFESPAN (C. For a Thanksgiving bird in the wild, it’s about 10 years [2 wds.]); LETHE (D. River of oblivion-inducing quaffs); IRONCHEF (E. TV Show with competitive cooks [2 wds.]); APTERYX (F. Bantam ratite native to New Zealand); MUSTARD (G. Dark yellow or light olive brown); CASSANDRA (H. Newspaper pen name used by the author of this puzzle’s quotation); OXTAIL (I. Soup ingredient from a bovine); NEWWAVE (J. Tradition-bucking trend [2 wds.]); NUTSHELL (K. Exemplar of concision); OVERLAP (L. What abalone and baloney do, to a great extent); ROQUEFORT (M. “The King of Cheeses”); DRANK (N. Fell of the wagon); ADAPTED (O. Made with cranberries instead of raisins, e.g.); IRISHSTEW (P. Dish with mutton and potatoes [2 wds.]); LOTSWIFE (Q. Woman much given to salt? [2 wds.]); YEASTY (R. Frothy; ebullient; creative); MATCHUP (S. Categorically pair, as beans and rice [2 wds.]); ICEBUCKET (T. Chiller set in a restaurant [2 wds.]); REHASHED (U. Discussed again and again, as a diner dish?); REDFISH (V. Seafood also known as channel bass); OYSTERS (W. Meal for Carroll’s Walrus and Carpenter); ROTATED (X. Turned on a spit).
Not that I’ve ever tasted warmed-up plaster and horse hair, wet saw dust or a boiled mattress, I think the description hits the bird right on the head!
Another fine acrostic from that dynamic duo Cox & Rathvon, giving us the pleasure of a quotation which is both hilarious and topical!
This being Veteran’s Day today, it’s a bit soon for this greeting -- but in syndication, this puzzle appears the Sunday before Thanksgiving -- so, Happy Thanksgiving!
Puzzle available on the internet at
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2 comments:

irv said...

How come the first letters do NOT form the author and title?

DONALD said...

irv

Looks like the title and author is William Connor, Daily Mirror, due to the fact that the piece appeared in that newspaper -- even though his pen name was Cassandra and the article was headed "Turkey a Fraud" -- I'll tell you it took a bit of searching to find this quote anywhere -- links are provided in the first paragraph of post.

See ya!