03.21.10 — Switch!

Erté, the letter S from The Alphabet Suite, c. 1927


Sunday, March 21, 2010

THEM’S THE BREAKS, Puzzle by Adam Fromm, edited by Will Shortz

The letter S stars in this Sunday crossword as an either/or item in nine interrelated entries — the S, moved from the second part of a common phrase and given over to the first part resulting in the first word becoming a verb to form a terse sentence, accompanied by a justifying clue:

DOUBLES PACES (23A. Goes from walk to trot and trot to gallop?)
TRAINS POTTERS (38A. Teaches a ceramics class?)
POLICES TAKEOUTS (69A. Monitors food orders to go?)
LIGHTS WITCHES (100A. Illuminates a Halloween display?)
SHOWS TOPPERS (122A. Puts hats on display?)
TURNS TILES (16D. Prepares to play Scrabble?)
TAILS PINS (38D. Closely follows secret banking information?)
OILS PILLS (57D. Makes drugs easier to swallow?)
LANDS CAPES (74D. Manages to grab some bullfight attire?)

Other — APE HOUSE (22A. Zoo home for gibbons), ARMOIRES (115A. Wardrobes), CANASTAS (11A. Seven-card melds), CATTLEMEN (11D. Ones promoting brand awareness?), CONCERTO (66A. One of two by Liszt), DISASTER (127A. Big snafu), ELECTIVE (124A. Music Appreciation 101, perhaps), IT’S A DEAL (26A. “You’re on!”), JAPAN WAX (119A. Ingredient in furniture polishes), MISCOUNT (75a. Election problem), SONG MIXER (81D. Recording engineer, sometimes), TIRE IRON (25A. Lever in a trunk).

Seven-letter — AWESOME (94D. “Like, totally cool!“), CLAIROL (66D. Hair care brand since 1931), DECRYPT (8D. Crack, in a way), LAPLAND (6D. Santa’s traditional home, to some), PELICAN (72A. Piscivorous flier), STRASSE (96D. German street), SUSS OUT (42D. Solve, in a way), WOOLSEY (68A. James who was C.I.A. director under Clinton), WYSIWYG (51A. Word-processing acronym), "what you see is what you get," YOPLAIT (87A. International food company based in Paris).

Six letter — AVANTI, DESILU, EVEN SO, HOLMES (97A. “The Five Orange Pips” sleuth), ICEMAN (61D. Nickname for Björn Borg), IN A BIT, INTACT, KOOKOO, NOSALT, OAXACA (99D. Mexican state south of Veracruz), OCTILE (36D. 45-degree wedge), PATIOS, PESETA (126A. Pre-Euro coin), SALAAM, SHIELD, SHODDY, SOIREE (15D. Big do), STOLID, TENSER, TOASTS.

Five — AHEAD, A NOTE, “All systems ARE GO”, ASSAY, CAUSE, CO-PAY, CREEPS, GROINS, I PASS, “Some Like IT HOT, LED ON, LENTS, MACAW (1A. Colorful bird), MIDIS, OCTET (70D. Maids a-milking in a Christmas Song, e.g.), PESOS (35A. Change south of the border), REACT, SERTA, SOCAL, SWEDE, TAMES, WONKY (68D. Knowledgeable on arcane details of a subject).

Short stuff — ABBA, ADAM, ALI and API, AMY (40D. Funnywoman Sedaris), ARA, ASO, AVE, AXES, AYLA, CART, COT, CSA, DARN, DIKE, EATS, ELAL, ENC, ERA, ETCH, EUR, EZRA, IDLE, IPSO, JED, KATY (31A. S-s-s-subject of a 1918 hit song), LOLA (33A. The “her” in the lyric “I met her in a club down in old Soho”), LSAT, MOP, NERD, NON, OED, OGEE, OHH, OMOO, ONUS, OPEC, PAPP, PETS, PLIE, POE (89D. “Eldorado” poet), RAW, REID, RIO, RTS, SAKI, SAL, SEE and SEN, SHAW (114D. Only man to win both a Nobel Prize and an Oscar), SWEE‘ Pea, SWIT, SYS, TEE, TORN and TORK, TSO, WED, WILD, WIZ, YAWS.

One more time!

Click on image to enlarge.

Puzzle available on the internet at

THE NEW YORK TIMES -- Crossword Puzzles and Games.

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Remaining clues — ACROSS: 6. Beguiled, maybe; 19. Shortly; 27. Flinch, say; 29. Tend to a hole; 30. Visit; 43. Outline clearly; 44. Greeting of respect; 47. Pour on the love; 48. Where Haiku is; 50. “Was ___ blame?”; 53. Dutch construction; 56. Not easily stirred; 58. Carrier whose name means “skyward”; 59. Frist’s successor as Senate majority leader; 53. Vote in Versailles; 64. Bulwark; 65. Chow; 76. Founder of New York’s Public Theater; 80. “Onward!,” in Italy; 81. Narrator in Kerouac’s “On the Road”; 82. The blond Monkee; 83. Potentially going into screen saver mode; 84. Less mellow; 85. Albatross; 90. Ky. Neighbor; 91. Unable to decide; 93. Doesn’t quite go straight; 98. ___ buco; 104. San Diego’s region, for short; 106. Melville work; 107. Book after Chronicles; 108. Group defeated in ‘65; 111. Eighty-sixes; 113. Bridge declaration; 125. Calms; 128. Any member of 4-Down; 129. Insurance holder’s burden. DOWN: 1. Not-quite-ankle-length skirts; 2. Make ___ of; 3. Free Tibet, e.g.; 4. “Chiquitita” group; 5. Natural; 6. Santa’s traditional home, to some; 7. Procter & Gamble laundry brand; 9. S-curve; 10. Dietary restriction; 12. Bee: Prefix; 13. Brainiac’s put-down; 14. Oodles; 17. Japanese volcano; 18. D.C. V.I.P.; 20. Casual top; 24. “The Open Window” writer; 28. “M*A*S*H” prop; 32. General on a menu; 34. Coach Parseghian; 37. Substandard; 39. Like some emotions; 41. U.K. reference; 45. “The Clan of the Cave Bear” heroine; 46. It includes a sect. of logic games; 52. Common place for a pull; 54. Whole; 55. Gold-certified debut album of Debbie Harry; 60. S.A.S.E., e.g.; 62. Big production company in 1950s- ‘60s TV;67. N.F.L. linemen: Abbr.; 71. It borders the Atl.; 72. House add-ons; 73. Be that as it may; 77. First of all?; 78. Bend for Baryshnikov; 79. Strokes; 86. Admin; 88. Cry from one who just got the joke; 92. Kia model; 95. Michael Jackson film, with “The”; 101. Jump #1 in a triple jump; 102. Parts of many celebrations; 103. Haul; 105. Fast times?; 108. Skeevy sort; 109. Sealy competitor; 110. Evaluate; 112. Houlihan player on TV; 116. Swab; 117. Its HQ are in Austria, which isn’t a member; 118. ___ facto; 119. One of the Beverly Hillbillies; 120. Lighter of the Olympic flame in Atlanta; 121. Constitution in D.C., e.g.; 123. Hitch up with.


Anonymous said...

Al Gore won both the Nobel Peace Prize and an Oscar for An Inconvenient truth, so Shaw is no longer the only one to win both a Nobel and an Oscar--rather, he's the first. Of course, they both had to have four letter names...

DONALD said...

The Oscar for An Inconvenient Truth went to director Davis Guggenheim -- a second Oscar for the film was awarded to Best Original Song for Melissa Etheridge's "I Need to Wake Up" -- Al Gore starred in the film and was the driving force, and indeed, when receiving the award, Davis Guggenheim stood at the podium with Al Gore, who spoke briefly.

A technicality to be sure, but one that renders the clue for SHAW correct.