02.21.10 -- Presidential Puzzle

Sunday, February 21, 2010

WORDS FROM THE WHITE HOUSE, Puzzle by Eric Berlin, edited by Will Shortz

UNITED STATES PRESIDENT (9D. What you’ll get if you read aloud 23-, 44-, 67- 86- or 113-Across) and five roughly phonetic renderings of Zachary Taylor, Ulysses S. Grant, Thomas Jefferson, John Quincy Adams and Harry S. Truman from SAC AIR EAT AIL LORE (23. Anatomical pouch / Run on TV / Consume / Feel sick / Oral history), YULE HISS SAY ASK RENT (44. Christmas season / Greet a villain / Speak aloud / Query / Monthly payment), DUMBEST CHEF HERS SINN (67. Least smart / Kitchen worker / Towel word / ___ Fein), JUNK WINS SEE ADD HUMS (86. Trash / Victories / “Get it?” / Do some math / Runs smoothly) and HAIRIEST ROOM HAWN (113. Most shaggy / Hotel offering / Actress Goldie) constitute the interrelated group of this strange-sounding Sunday crossword. Is that a solver groaning or BAR AUK OWE BOMB AWE (Stop / Arctic Bird / In debt / Flop / Wonder) reading the latest approval ratings? Oh, and for stimulus, throw in a NICKEL (30D. Where 67-Across’s face appears)!

The fragmentation continues with but the following over seven or more letters -- APOLOGY (12D. “My bad,” for one), ASTAIRE (16D. “Shall We Dance” dancer), BIONICS (41D. Science of duplicating nature), CHARADE (65D. 1963 Audrey Hepburn thriller), HEARTEN (45D. Buck up), KARAOKE (89D. Bar activity), LA SORDA (105A. World Series manager of 1981 and ‘88), LAWRENCE (99A. Obama economic adviser Summers), NEW LEAF (88D. Fresh start, metaphorically), NUMEROUS (84D. Many), ODDITIES (36A. Robert Ripley’s specialty), OLEANNA (29A. Mamet play revived on Broadway in 2009), OMELETS (95A. Egg foo yung and others), PARABOLA (5D. What’s represented by 2x = 4py), PAT DOWN (75A. Frisk), SAUNTER (15D. Amble), SEEDIER (90D. More run-down), SIGNS ON (39A. Joins the team), WEDLOCK (58A. Union, of a sort), WHETTED (58D. Sharpened).

Six-letter -- AVANTI, BADDOG, CANALS, DOWSES (77D. Emulates a rhabdomantist), ENIGMA (27A. Appropriately named monthly of the National Puzzlers League, with “The”), ENISLE, KENOBI, KENNEL (61D. Setter sitter?), LACING, LACUNA, NOSPIN, ONETON, POSEAS, RUSHEE, SADIST (47D. Hannibal Lecter, e.g.), SANDAL, SEENAS, SENDUP, SESAME, SPARTA, SUPERB (40D. Topnotch), TEJANO (74A. Music genre that often includes an accordion), THEWEB, UBOATS, UNCORK, “You WEREN’T kidding“.


Short stuff -- ALE, 48D. Satyajit Ray‘s “The APU Trilogy“, ARTE, ASH and ASHE, ASIS, ASL, ATNO, ATRA, BOL and BOY (32A. “Whew!”), CHAI, DOH, DRAB, EEN, FLA, ION, JUL (86D. Birth mo. for Coolidge, Ford and G.W. Bush), LEE and LEI and LIE, 120A. “My LIFE” (Clinton autobiography), LOTT, NIE and NAES, OAT, OBI, OLEO, ONA and OVA, OSO and OSLO, OWL, PAL, PBS, REA and RIA, RIOT, SARA (15A. F.D.R.’s mother), SHIM, SLAT, SLO, SST, TAE, TET, TITO, UAE and UNE, UKR, UMPS, USA and USN (82D. Org. for Jimmy Carter, once), UTAH, WEAK (116A. Watered down).

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Puzzle available on the internet at

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Remaining clues -- ACROSS: 1. Trusted one; 4. Dairy Queen order; 9. W.W. II threats; 19. Eggs; 20. Its national anthem is “La Dessalinienne”; 21. Unbiased; 22. Untouched; 26. “Big Love” setting; 28. Former Mississippi senator; 31. Periodic table fig.; 34. Washington and ___ University; 41. Cry after discovering the furniture’s been chewed, maybe); 43. Roman goddess of agriculture; 48. A fist might represent A or S in it: Abbr.; 51. Early: Prefix; 52. Asian observance; 53. ___ kwon do; 56. Forum wear; 62. Open; 64. Barrel of laughs; 65. Indian tea; 66. Mideast inits.; 71. French article; 72. Scottish refusals; 73. Crate part; 78. Peloponnesian power); 80. Corporate department; 81. Japanese tie; 82. U.S.S.R. member: Abbr.; 83. Blue Cross competitor; 85. Traffic warning; 94. Strand; 102. Never, in Berlin; 103. McSorley’s Old ___ House, New York landmark since 1854; 104. North Carolina county; 107. Grayish; 108. Fraternity hopeful; 111. Blue Bonnet, e.g.; 116. Watered down; 117. Pickup capacity, sometimes; 118. Accumulated, as debts; 119. Mens ___ (guilty mind); 121. “You ___ kidding!”; 122. Accumulate; 123. “Washington Week” airer. DOWN: 1. Pretend to be; 2. Forward, in 7-Down; 3. Ice skate part; 4. Thin wedge; 6. “I cannot tell a ___”; 7. See 2-Down; 8. A Jackson; 10. Neighbor of Braz.; 11. ___ Accords of 1993; 13. Ready for bed; 14. Three-time Masters champ; 17. Inlet; 18. Memento of an old flame?; 24. “There is no greater ___ than bearing an untold story inside you”: Maya Angelou; 25. Brother of Prometheus; 33. Law school newcomers; 35. Son -- or father -- of Henry; 37. Contraction before “now”; 38. Former part of the British Airways fleet, for short; 40. Topnotch); 42. It may be made into a meal; 46. Rampaging, after “on”; 48. Satirize; 50. Blank space; 55. Cupid’s teammate; 57. Cry accompanying a head slap; 59. Holder of the alphabet; 60. Shortcuts for ships; 63. Skywalker’s friend; 68. Admitted to the foyer; 69. Ga. Neighbor; 70. Cracker seed; 75. Bear, in Baja; 78. Entanglement; 79. Playwright Fugard; 87. Cable channel;88. Fresh start, metaphorically; 89. Bar activity; 912. Yanks and others; 92. Playable character in Guitar Hero III; 96. Equivalent to F; 97. Surfer’s place; 98. Regarded to be; 100. Not in any way; 101. Stretch, in a way; 106. Prado displays; 108. Grooming brand; 110. Ones near bases; 111. Friend of Pooh; 112. Kona keepsake; 114. Charged bit; 115. ___ high.


Phil said...

It must take a lot of guts to construct a puzzle with this theme. Especially when the phonics aren't even close on some answers.

YULE HISS SAY ASK RENT, or whatever it was, is BREW TULL.

Anonymous said...

Phil hitthenail onthehead!!!!!! This one had me heading for my raggedy copy of an old puzzle dictionary for sure.