07.08.09 -- AURA

Tuesday, July 8, 2008
Puzzle by Andrea Carla Michaels, edited by Will Shortz
Today's lighter-than-air crossword features five interrelated entries with first-syllable homophones -- AIRJORDAN (16. Big name in athletic shoes); HEIRTOTHETHRONE (22. Prince); EREISAWELBA (37. End of a Napoleonic palindrome); AIREDALETERRIER (52. Black-and-tan purebred); AERLINGUS (61. Carrier with a shamrock logo).
AURA (14. Surrounding glow), which can be defined as a particular atmosphere or quality that seems to arise from and surround a person or thing is left hanging in mid… well, air.
SUBPOENA (10D. Court summons) and ESTRANGE (37D. Alienate) are the only two eight-letter entries, which seem to compliment each other nicely. HONALEE (24D. Puff, the Magic Dragon’s frolicking place), the sole seven-letter entry, is new to me, but seems likely a place for a breath of fresh hot air!
AUDITS (5D. I.R.S. scares) lead the six-letter entries -- DONORS (9D. Patrons of the arts, perhaps); EURAIL (2D. Provider of a pass abroad); GOITER (1D. Possible result of iodine deficiency); RECUSE (50D. Disqualify, as a potential juror); SEXTON (45D. Church groundskeeper); STARVE (47D. Go hungry); STYLES (21D. Modes); TIARAS (33D. Pageant toppers); ZINGER (49D. Clever comeback).
GARBO (4D. Greta of “Anna Christie,” 1930) headlines the five-letter entries which include ARGOT (64A. Slang); COENS (67A. “Fargo” brothers); DIETS (53D. Removes excess poundage); DOUSE (15A. Throw water on); EDITH (8D. Mrs. Woodrow Wilson); EDSEL (8A. Ford misstep); ELLES (54D. Monthly fashion issues); MONTE (59A. Three-card con); PASHA (13D Turkish poo-bah); and finally, INBED (18A. Still asleep) which goes nicely with AROSE (51D. Got up from sleeping).
A ROAR of four-letter entries -- ARLO, AXIS, BAER, DOVE, ENOW, EZRA, GABS, NOLO, ONES, POUR, RUES, RUTS, SEER, SESE, SONY, SEER, SHUL, STOP, WAHL -- are eclipsed by a busy ADO of three-letter entries -- ALB, ALT, ARE, BRA, DRJ, EON, ESE, FBI, GED, IRA, IQS, LED, LEW, MAC, NCO, NOR, NSA, OFT, OLE, ORO, QUI, RBI, SAN, SEA, STA.
“Fresh air is good if you do not take too much of it; most of the achievements and pleasures of life are in bad air.” -- Oliver Wendell Holmes
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Search information -- Across: 1. Option for a H.S. dropout; 4. Yaks; 13. Dispense, as milk; 19. Site of a tkt. Booth; 20. J. Edgar Hoover’s org.; 21. “Enough, you’re killing me!”; 28. Singer Guthrie; 29. Electronics giant; 30. Reader of omens; 31. Supermodel Carol; 34. Defendant’s plea, for short; 36. Neither’s partner; 40. Mensa figs.; 42. “Wiseguy” actor Ken; 43. Mediterranean, for one; 44. Boring routines; 46. Laments; 48. Rock’s Better Than ___; 56. Bush’s “___ of evil”; 57. Priestly vestment; 58. Sgt. or cpl. 65. Bird with an live branch; 66. Zaire’s Mobutu __ Seko; 68. Singles; 69. “What ___ the chances?” Down: 3. Basketball’s Erving, familiarly; 6. Article under a blouse; 7. ___ Diego; 11. Chicago-to-Pittsburgh dir.; 12. Commanded; 17. Frequently, to a poet; 23. Engine sound; 25. Sufficient, for Shakespeare; 26. Prefix with con; 27. “To ___ is human…”; 32. Dr. Kildare player Ayres; 35. Corrida cry; 38. Synagogue; 39. 1930s heavyweight champ Max; 40. Tax planner’s plan, for short; 41. On the ___ vive; 55. Category in which the single-season record is 191; 59. Bub; 60. Gold, in Guadalupe; 61. Hubbub; 62. Long, long time; 63. Code-crackers’ org.

3 comments:

andrea carla michaels said...

thank you Donald!
what a gorgeous pic of Garbo!
Thank you for all your thoughtfulness in posting this!
It's interesting to see the letter word counts broken down, I didn't even know!
I also tried to sneak ERR into the puzzle and AYRES into the clue for LEW, but that was met with complaints as too obscure!
;)

DONALD said...

ms. michaels

Thank you for your comment. I see ERR and Ayes, and also Zaire -- didn't mind LEW and WAHL at all. A lovely puzzle!

cornbread hell said...

one of the more interesting tuesday puzzles in my memory. complimented by an as usual deft commentary.

thanks to you both.