Thursday, July 21, 2011
Puzzle by Michael Sharp / Edited by Will Shortz
Word of the Day: LIMBURGER (47D. One trying to shake a leg, for instance)
Limburger is a cheese that originated in the historical Duchy of Limburg, which is now divided among modern-day Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany. The cheese, which is especially known for its pungent odor, was first made in the 19th century. In its first month, the cheese is more firm and crumbly, similar to the texture of feta cheese. After about six weeks, the cheese becomes softer along the edges but is still firm on the inside and can be described as salty and chalky. After two months of its life, it is mostly creamy and much smoother. Once it reaches three months, the cheese produces its notorious smell because the bacterium used to ferment Limburger cheese and many other smear-ripened cheeses is Brevibacterium linens, the same one found on human skin that is partially responsible for body odor. (Wikipedia)
Ouch!, deadly puns with SLICED CHEESE (36A. With 38-Across, deli purchase … or a description of the answer to 17-, 26-, 47- or 55-Across) the result of parsing GORGONZOLA, PROVOLONE, LIMBURGER and MASCARPONE into multi-word phrases and assigning looney question-marked clues, constitutes the interrelated group of this pungent Thursday crossword.
GORGON ZOLA (17A. French writer with snaky hair and a petrifying gaze?)
PRO VOL. ONE (26A. In favor of the first book?: Abbr.)
LIMB URGER (47D. One trying to shake a leg, for instance?)
MA’S CAR PONE (55D. Mom’s special road-trip corn bread?)
I’m a bit distanced from the menu of this crossword as I go no further in cheese than a sharp cheddar! The remaining content of the puzzle provides mixed relief — BEEFS UP (41D. Fortifies), CATBIRDS (37D. Mewing passerines), CORPSE (46D. Zombie, essentially), FOOTRUB (7D. Service that requires no shoes), GET OUT (31D. “Beat it!“), HONCHO (22D. Bigwig), OPULENT (29A. Rich), STEEL TOE (10D. Common work boot feature), TOPLESS (44A. Like some bars and beaches).
Mid-size — BIEBER (65A. “Baby“ singer Justin), with 588,499,519 views on YouTube, HERE, INCITE, JASPER (1A. Traditional March birthstone), much more traditional are aquamarine, bloodstone, jade and/or opal, OPIATE (14A. What might be a knockout?), PAGERS, PREMED, RHEBOK (21A. Antelope of southern Africa), ROSTER, STARVE (9D. Make fast).
Five-letter — AB OVO, ATEAT, COROT (32A. “The Bridge at Narni“ artist), DANKE, EENIE, END IT, ETONS, EXULT, FIBER One, GLOBE, INNER, LEROI, LIE TO, LORAX, MCGEE, OSAKA, OSRIC, RECUR, TELEX, TURBO, UNION, VEERS and VERSA, ZIPPO (18D. Nada).
Short stuff — ALG, “What a good boy AM I!”, APO, BARB (53D. Sharp put-down), CAL, CUKE, CVS, DIP, EMU, ENGR, ERIN, ERR, EXES, FGS, GAL, JOG, NEE, OAT, OLD and OLE, ORES, OTB, REND, RUN, SIR, STD, TEED, TUNA salad.
Click on image to enlarge.
Puzzle available on the internet at
THE NEW YORK TIMES — Crossword Puzzles and Games.
Remaining clues — ACROSS: 7. Three-pointers: Abbr.; 10. Hoop alternative; 15. Meal preceder?; 19. Sportscaster Andrews; 20. Dissolve a relationship; 23. Swerves; 28. Joint custody parties; 30. A to Z, e.g.; 31. Unisphere, e.g.; 39. Troubled; 40. From the start; 43. Food label abbr.; 46. Green gourd, informally; 50. Seuss character who “Speaks for the trees”; 51. Provoke; 54. Mech. Whiz; 60. Put out, with “off”; 61. Australian sprinter; 62. It’s developed during training season; 63. Bried treasures; 64. Swim. — DOWN: 1. Nudge; 2. Receiver of private letters?: Abbr.; 3. ___ Barton, first Triple Crown winner, 1919; 4. Obsolescent communication devices; 5. Short jackets; 6. Tear; 8. Hoedown participant; 11. Engine type; 12. Marriage; 13. Comment preceding “Gern eschewed”; 22. Bigwig; 23. Compact Nissan model; 24. Rejoice; 25. Start of a children’s rhyme; 27. 29-Down, down south; 29. See 27-Down; 33. Come to mind again; 34. City of 2 ½+ million at the mouth of the Yodo River; 35. Fax predecessor; 38. Walgreens competitor; 40. N. African land; 41. Fortifies; 42. Courtier who invites Hamlet to fence with Laertes; 45. Common undergrad course of study; 47. Deceive; 48. Hidden; 49. 1985 N.L. M.V.P. Willie; 50. “Vive” follower; 57. Pony players’ parlor: Abbr.; 58. Formerly, name-wise; 59. Drop the ball.