08.04.08 -- Happy Birthday

A Mad Tea-Party illustration for Alice in Wonderland by Sir John Tenniel
Monday, August 4, 2008
Puzzle by Oliver Hill, edited by Will Shortz
I have always been fond of the fact that I share my birthday with Roger Clemens and the late Queen Mother of England. Whenever I encounter an overly egotistical and troublesome prima donna in the profession of theater, I give a stern warning not to “fuss” with me, ‘cause I have the same birthday as Clemens and the Queen Mother (you know, sort of buzzing the batter)!
Reminding one and all that there still is a Roger Clemens, today’s crossword sports the entry of CYYOUNG (39A. Award won by Roger Clemens seven times); along with the less direct entry of MOM (10A. T.L.C. provider), the puzzle’s closest reference to the Queen Mother. Due to my lack of fame or infamy, I hereby claim for myself the entry of 7A. NON de plume.
WEEKLYPLANNERS (19A. Books for jotting down appointments), CATSCANNERS (23A. Hospital imaging devices), POORMANNERS (45A. Burping and slurping in public) and PROTESTBANNERS (53A. Places for antiwar slogans) are the interrelated entries of this Monday back-to-work crossword which starts the puzzle week off fresh and friendly.
Other personages include AMELIA (5D. Earhart who was the first aviatrix to fly solo across the Atlantic); ARNOLD (47D. Gov. Schwarzenegger); EDITH (31A. Author Wharton); the omnipresent ELI (58D. Priest who raised Samuel); ELLISON (65A. Ralph who wrote “Invisible Man”); an HONORER (17A. One offering kudos); JOE (14D. Quarterback Namath); SGTS (35D. Bilko and Pepper: Abbr.); a SNOB (60D. One looking down on the “little people”); 25D. Marshal TITO, Yugoslavian hero; and TSO (41A. General on Chinese menus).
Animals and musicians are represented by 38D.Rock’s FOO Fighters and ROO(37D. A.A. Milne baby); a GNU (63D. Wildebeest); NALA (57D. “The Lion King” daughter) and NEIL (7D. Young of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young); ORCA (8D. Killer whale); OWLET (44A. Miniature hooter); and PUNK (20D. The Sex Pistols’ genre).
The half-dozen or more seven-letter entries include ASKSOUT (64A. Invites to a movie, say); EARACHE (61A. Case for an otologist); EROSIVE (15A. Like waves on a shore); GOALONG (62A. Say “Sure, why not?”); ICEAXES (18A. Mountain climbers’ tools); IWOJIMA (13A. 1945 battle site wit a flag-raising); and NETSURF (36A. Cruise around the Web). Six-letter entries are MEAGER (46D. Scanty) with just BARYON (6D. Subatomic particle made of three quarks) and the aforementioned lost aviatrix and Austrian.
SPEAK (48D. Command to Fido), along with the leftovers of the five-letter CHUMP, CORKY, ERASE, MESSY, MIXER (10D. The 7-Up in a 7 and 7), OVERT and SPYON, while the happenstance fill of ABU, ADES, AER, ARTY, CENT, clued by ¢, which is no longer on the keyboard, DAB and DRAB, DIRK, ECON, EEC, GONE, IOU, KEEP, KEY, MOEN, MOOD, NNE, ONER, OWOW (2D. “Man, that hurts!”), RDA, REY, ROSA, SANA, SECS, SHUN, STAS, TETE, YOS and YULE round out the order.
Who else has a birthday today? …why Barack Hussein Obama!
For today’s cartoon, go to The Crossword Puzzle Illustrated.
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Puzzle available on the internet at
THE NEW YORK TIMES -- Crossword Puzzles and Games
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Search information -- Across: 1. Christmas drink; 4. Little bit, as of color; 21. Lendee’s note; 22. Pretentious; 32. Not rot; 33. Hip-hop greetings; 42. Word before ring or swing; 48. Moments, in brief; 52. ___ Lingus; 66. Florida island; 67. Opposite of SSW; 68. Nutritional stat.; 69. ___ Dhabi, Persian Gulf port. Down: 1. Biomedical research org.; 3. All used up; 4. Dagger; 9. Big name in faucets; 11. Conspicuous; 12. Like dorm rooms, often; 24. Juice drinks; 26. Ave. crossers; 27. ___ change; 28. The Common Market: Abbr.; 29. Playa del ___, Calif.; 30. Watch through binoculars, say; 33. Christmas; 34. Lollapalooza; 40. Have the rights to; 43. Lacking color; 49. Wipe out; 50. Like the taste of some bad wine; 51. Subway stops: Abbr.; 54. Supply-and-demand subj.; 55. Ostracize; 56. French bean?; 59. Sub ___ (secretly).


Susan said...

Happy Birthday, Donald! Have a great day.

Who says that?

DONALD said...


awww, gee -- thanks!