03.31.08 -- AIR

Waterloo Bridge, Effect of Fog, 1903 -- Claude Monet
The State Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia
Plein air -- a French term for "in the open air." This term describes paintings that have been made outdoors, rather than in a studio -- a key method of the Impressionists.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Click here for abridged post in LARGE PRINT.

Puzzle by Jeff Armstrong, edited by Will Shortz

AIR (36A. Word that can precede each half of the answers to each of the eight starred clues) is the star clue in this breezy Monday puzzle. The inter-related entries are FORCEFIELD (18A. *Sci-fi barrier); DATELINE (20A. *Newspaper article lead-in); SHOWTIME (28A. *When the curtain goes up); HEADLOCK (41A. *Wrestling move that puts an arm around someone’s neck); MAILDROP (50A. *Secret communication location); SPACECRAFT (54A. *Mars Pathfinder, for one); BASEBALL (4D. *Diamond game); and SPEEDWAY (37D. *Indy 500 venue).

O.K., redundantly, air force, air field, air date, airline, air show, air time, airhead, airlock, airmail, airdrop, air space, aircraft, air base, air ball, air speed, and airway.

I was talking to my nephew while writing this, and for whatever it’s worth he called my attention to the MacBook Air, and a parody of the ad, HERE. I guess the ultimate would be to disappear into thin air!

Across: 1. Sea creature that sidles; 5. Group of eight musicians; 10. Underhanded plan; 14. Greeting in Granada; 15. Get up; 16. Toy block brand; 17. Andy’s partner in old radio; 22. Quenched; 23. Big name in audio equipment; 24. Martial artist Jackie; 25. Result of a belly flop; 32. Quiet spells; 33. Bed board; 34. Turf; 35. Kind of history; 37. Performed ballads, e.g.; 38. President pro TEM; 39. Go after bucks or ducks, say; 40. Outpouring; 44. Less bold; 45. Slick; 46. Corduroy ridge; 47. Measly; 56. Rouse from slumber; 57. Regarding; 58. Western flick, in old lingo; 59. Farm measure; 60. Abound (with); 61. One of a reporter’s five W’s; 62. Annum.

Down: 1. Punched-out part of a paper ballot; 2. Capital of Italia; 3. Plenty; 5. Like a lout; 6. Hag; 7. Become bushed; 8. PC bailout key; 9. Golfer’s opening drive; 10. Flexible; 11. Cousin of an onion; 12. Gawk at; 13. Sondheim’s “Sweeney TODD; 19. Scratch on a diamond, e.g.; 21. Amount printed in red ink; 24. Nautical map; 25. Slow-moving mammal; 26. Blender setting; 27. South American wool source; 28. Move with one’s tail between one’s legs; 29. Actor and rockabilly crooner Chris; 30. Three-card hustle; 31. Yard worker’s tool; 33. Impertinent; 39. “Yikes!" ; 40. Hawk, as wares; 42. Business that may have gone boom and then bust in the ‘90s; 43. Pre-euro money in 2-Down; 44. MAITRE d’; 46. Eucharist disk; 47. H.S. junior’s exam; 48. Cathedral recess; 49. Tardy; 50. Corner, as a king; 51. 10K or marathon; 52. Gumbo ingredient; 53. House of Lords member; 55. Pep squad shout.

I think you’ll find that this one was a real breeze!

La Promenade, 1875. Claude Monet

For today’s cartoon, go to The Crossword Puzzle Illustrated.

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Puzzle available on the internet at
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