07.14.11 — Mind your P's and Q's.

A Caricature Group, c. 1776 by John Hamilton Mortimer, Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection, USA

If you are minding your P's and Q's you are alert and observant, monitoring your behavior and watching your language. In other words...behaving. Even early breweries had a rudimentary 'tab' system. Though not computerized, the barkeep had a chalkboard behind the bar where he would keep track of pints and quarts consumed by the patrons. When a well-watered patron became less than respectful of his bar mates, the barkeep may have said, "Mind your Ps and Qs". Translation? Pull yourself together or else!


Thursday, July 14, 2011

Puzzle by Brendan Emmett Quigley and Ian Livengood / Edited by Will Shortz

Two descending rows of letters, Ps and Qs, along with PS AND QS (51A. Good behavior .. or a hint to two lines of letters in this puzzle) constitutes the gimmick of this well-mannered Thursday crossword. The P's across — HIP, CLOP, CHIN STRAP, CRIP, PROP, BAD RAP, AD REP, BOOP and ARP, along with the down P‘s, LUMP, ISLIP, ON A HIP, LAP, SCRIP, TROP, SCRAP, PREP and DROPCAP. The Q's across — QTS, QUIP, QUERY, QUOTES, QUAD, QUIK, QUITE SURE, QUES, QUI, along with the down Q’s, PARQUET, QUOD, QUAKE, QUIT, QUISP, QUE, QUILTS, QUASI, Q-TIP.

Other — CROQUET, DENSITY, INSULAR, MANNERS (19A. Good behavior), OPEN AIR, OUTDONE, PALM TREE (17A. Where to find a date), PANACHE, RECITALS, SADISTS (58A. Crossword editors, some say), STOMACH.


Short stuff — ACAI (23A. Berry used as a dietary supplement), AUEL, BIP, Betty BOOP, ETON, HER, IDA, OCD, PROP and TROP, QUI, SOTS (52D. Ones often calling the shots?), SPAR, SST, TUDE, ULT.


Click on image to enlarge.

Puzzle available on the internet at
THE NEW YORK TIMES — Crossword Puzzles and Games.
Remaining clues — ACROSS: 1. Crew and others; 7. Surface, as anger; 13. Support, as a weak wrist; 14. Completely cut off; 16. County of Utica, N.Y.; 21. Cool; 22. Oil amts.; 23. Berry used as a dietary supplement; 24. Sound on a trail; 26. Wise words?; 27. It’s snapped on a gridiron; 30. “Who?,” e.g.; 31. Stevie Wonder’s “I Was Made to Love ___”; 32. Blood’s counterpart; 33. “ “; 34. Top hat, cane or monocle; 36. Thigh muscle, informally; 3. It might result in a wrongful lockup; 39. Classic Nestle brand; 40. Neat freak’s condition, e.g., for short; 43. Madison Ave figure; 44. “Oh, that’s definite”; 47. Topic for debate: Abbr.; 48. It has boys aged 13 to 18; 49. He said “Art is a fruit that grows in man, like a fruit on a plant”; 58. Who, in France; 54. Some Carnegie Hall performances; 57. “Certainly, Monsieur!" 59. PC communications link; 61. Like some bad driving conditions. — DOWN: 1. Stand; 2. Flamboyance; 3. Like a classical Greek theater; 4. Control; 5. Cheekiness, slangily; 6. Lightly box; 7. Marcel Marceau characters; 8. How some ground balls may be fetched; 9. Town on the south shore of Long Island; 10. Group (together); 1l. Last: Abbr.; 12. Decorate floor; 15. Call it a day; 18. Awards show for athletes; 20. Money substitute; 25. What cats do .. or sit on”; 26. Q.E.D. part; 28. Treat for Spot; 29. St. Pete ball field, with “the”; 3l. California worry; 32. Call it a day; 34. Test ___; 35. Cereal with a propeller-headed mascot; 36. “Histoire de ___,” first in a popular series of children’s books; 37. Digs; 38. Enlarged letter at the start of a chapter; 39. Canadian prov.; 40. Bested; 41. Low-stakes game?; 42. Mass divided by volume; 44. Winter layers; 45. Doting; 47. Prefix wit judicial; 50. Wax remover; 52. Ones often calling the shots?; 53. Jean who wrote “The Shelters of Stone”; 56. The Gem State: Abbr.; 56. Display at the Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum, for short.

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