04.02.10 — OMEI?! Oh My!

Mount Emei (Chinese: 峨嵋山), literally towering Eyebrow Mountain) is a mountain in Sichuan province of Western China. Mount Emei is often written as 峨眉山 and occasionally 峩嵋山 or 峩眉山 but all three are translated as Mount Emei or Mount Emeishan


Friday, April 2, 2010

Puzzle by Alan Olschwang, edited by Will Shortz

OMEI (21A. Sacred Buddhist mountain) is a desperate bit of fill in this disparate Friday crossword, so let’s explore the oddest entry of the crossword that is strangely bland with a quotation from a travel brochure about Mount Emei — Emei?... that’s right, we’ve even been slapped with an obscure spelling.

Mt. Emei in Sichuan Province in Southwest China has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to its incredible natural beauty and historical Buddhist sites. The mountain is characterized by lofty ancient trees, spectacular waterfalls, pristine brooks and numerous Buddhist temples and is blessed with a temperate climate, making it a very popular summer destination. A full days hike to the summit is a truly unforgettable experience but for those less active there are mini buses and cable cars.

Mt. Emei is a sacred Buddhist haven and one of the four most divine Buddhism Mountains in China. There are 30 Buddhist temples on the mountain and every morning streams of Buddhism pilgrims armed with joss sticks conquer the steep stairs of the mountain and swarm into the temples which include; Baoguo at the foot of the Mountain, Wanian temple (one of the largest on the mountain) and Qingyin Pavilion.

At the Gold Summit which is 3,077 meters above sea level, the views are spectacular and there is a spectacular four-side ten-direction golden statue of Puxian, which is the highest golden Buddha in the world and the crowning glory of the mountain. For Wikipedia, HERE.

So, you see MENTAL TELEPATHY and REGULAR CUSTOMER (17A. Special communication, 55A. One who keeps giving you the business) are relevant. The other long entries of this Friday crossword are MOVES INTO (24A. Starts occupying), ROPE-A-DOPE (47A. Rumble in the Jungle strategy), TEN GALLON (31D. Kind of hat) and U S POSTAGE (10D. It increased to 4 cents per oz. in 1958) at nine letters each.

Eight letters — ADAM’S ALE (15A. Teetotaler’s order), AERO PERU (35D. 1970s-’90s international carrier), ATTEND TO (12D. Serve), COQ AU VIN (1A. Certain fricassee), NO HITTER (13D. Diamond dream), RAMPAGED (36D. Went wild), SQUEEZED (61A. In a tight spot financially) and TEST RIDE (59A. Spin out on wheels?).

Six — ACCEDE (46D. Bow), AUDENS (60A. “Funeral Blues” poet and family), CREDOS (58A. Philosophies), EPACTS (43D. Periods added to harmonize the lunar and solar calendars), EXCISE (25D. Cut out), GARNET (34A. Deep red), GENEVE (42A. Where la Croix-Rouge is), HUMANS (9A. Around-the-world race); IGNORE (37A. Not even consider), IS IT OK (16A. “Would you mind …?”), LES MIZ (45D. 1987 Best Musical Tony winner, informally), NEESON (8D. Star of the 1998 film version of 45-Down), ODESSA (2D. 1905 revolt setting), QANTAS (3D. Virgin Blue rival), UNTIED (28D. Loose) and UP NEXT (28A. On deck).

Five — BEECH, BETTE, CAMEO, ELUDE, GEESE (20A. They come to a point while flying), GLINT, HIRED, KNORR, LEVEE, MIAMI, OSAGE and USAGE, RANEE, RNASE (33D. Biochemical enzyme, briefly).

Short stuff — AMT, ARM, ASEA, ASL and ASS, DTS, ESSU, EST, GNAR, HIE, ITNO, ORE, OSSE, PALL, RCA, SCI, SKY, SLA, VALE (6D. Low point).

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: 19. It’s not exact: Abbr.; 21. Sacred Buddhist mountain), 22. Dakota relative; 27. Special communication syst.; 9. Cause of some shaking, for short; 30. “Pay ___ mind”; 40. Like pirates; 49. Cherry alternative; 51. Become wearisome; 52. Important Indian; 54. It may be exact: Abbr. DOWN: 1. Small part; 4. Check information: Abbr.; 5. Gas bill information; 9. Get a move on; 11. Home to Seaquarium and MetroZoo; 14. Top of the world?; 18. Spillover stopper; 23. Flash; 26. Bone: Prefix; 34. Growl; 39. Campbell’s competitor; 48. Shake; 49. Greene who wrote “Summer of My German Soldier”; 50. Like some help; 53. “Mi casa ___ casa”; 55. MP3 player maker; 56. One that may balk; 57. Stuff in a bank.

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