Thursday, August 11, 2011 Clive Probert
Cross-posted at The Corner
Theme: PUNCH LINES. Common descriptors for types of boxing punches are given new figurative definitions, with a humorous wallop.
17. Very angry, informally? : RIGHT CROSS Right means very, in this usage. The punch, delivered with the right hand, crosses over the opponent's leading arm. I believe Laila is delivering one above.
26. Tackle box item for liberals? : LEFT HOOK. Liberals are left-leaning- figuratively. The punch, delivered with the left hand, is powered by turning the core muscles of the back to swing the arm.
44. Chuck steak, for example? : UPPER CUT. Eating high in the cow. The punch involves an upward motion of the striking hand with the arm bent up at the elbow. It is usually targeted at the chin, and is most useful at short range.
And the unifier: 58. What 17-, 26- and 44-Across are, figuratively and literally : PUNCH LINES.
Plus a bonus: 18 D. Recover from a knockout : COME TO.
Hi gang, It's JzB making an atypical Thursday appearance. Let's fight our way through this puzzle.
1. Bike part : PEDAL. Where you put your foot to power the mechanism
6. Boo-boo : FLUB. An error - like misreading the clue as Boo-hoo.
10. Call heard at night : HOOT. From an owl. In the day time, has any body else noticed an absence of bird song? I hear squawking birds, but not singing birds.
14. Upstage a co-star, perhaps : EMOTE.
15. No trouble at all : EASE.
16. Within: Pref. : ENDO. You have an ENDOskeleton. An insect has an exoskelton.
19. Don Juan's love : AMOR. Not anyone in particular. Just a feeling.
20. European cheese with a Protected Designation of Origin : STILTON. Intensely flavored English blue cheese from the three Counties of Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire.
21. Alehouse : TAVERN. See also 10D.
23. High regard : ESTEEM
24. Two-time '80s-'90s Senate majority leader : DOLE. This guy was a politician? I thought he was in advertising.
25. Roman trio : TRE. Italicized three.
30. Head of Québec : TETE. French for head.
33. New driver, typically : TEEN. It's frightening when the grandchildren begin driving.
35. Heart line : AORTA. This doesn't fool me any more
36. Crew member : OAR. I cannot verify this. The person handling an OAR is a rower if using one OAR, or a sculler if using two.
37. 1947 South Seas traveler : KON TIKI. The raft Thor Heyerdahl used to cross the Pacific from South America to Polynesia in 1947. Kon Tiki was the old name for the Inca Sun God Viracocha.
39. Wrongdoing : SIN. I cannot lie.
40. Hobbit on a quest : FRODO. The ringbearer traveled to the Cracks of Doom in Mordor, but needed Gollum's SIN to finish his quest.
42. California's __ Valley : SIMI. Nowhere near Mordor. Quite near the San Fernando Valley.
43. Deep-six : TOSS. Sometimes I deep six a ball with my grandchildren. Oh --wait . . . I guess this means throw overboard.
46. Carol opener : 'TIS. I believe this carol starts with "Deck," though I may be mistaken.
48. One of the guys : MALE. Frodo, Gollum, Otis, Bob, Cecil, Ewen, even Nemo . . . But not Laila or Dory.
49. Cling cause : STATIC. Fabric can be attracted to itself or other surfaces if electrified by the triboelectric effect, which comes from rubbing and release, as in a cloths dryer.
53. Twins in the sky : GEMINI. The Constellation.
56. "The Legend of Zelda: __ of Time": video game : OCARINA.
57. Base runner? : AWOL. Not to be confused with the Twins of Summer. This is clever. Someone who has run away from a military base is Absent Without Official Leave. AWOL doesn't need to be designated as an abbrv.
61. Temerity : GALL
62. Words after step or sleep : ON IT. Did anybody want IN IT?
63. IV part : INTRA. From Intravenous - into a blood vein.
64. Pay to play : ANTE. This doesn't fool me either.
65. A fish named Dory helped find him : NEMO. Cute kids movie. Nautical, but nice.
66. Starts fishing : CASTS, Completing the minor angling theme, along with LEFT HOOK and NEMO.
1. In and of itself : PER SE. Latin
2. Throws off : EMITS
3. Shirk responsibility : DOG IT. This gives DOGS a bad name, doggone it!
4. One playing the field, e.g. : ATHLETE. Nice clue. Does anyone "play the field" anymore? Or is it just serial dating?
5. Alphabet soup bit : LETTER. Can you do crosswords in your soup bowl?
6. Bouquet greenery : FERN. For some reason, I had trouble with this one.
7. Thai language : LAO. This one always gets me. What language do they speak in LAOS?
8. Navy ship letters : U.S.S. United States Ship
9. Words on a "greatest hits" album : BEST OF. Not always.
10. Bar drunk's comeuppance : HEAVE HO. Ungraceful exit from a 21A, or words accompanying a deep six..
11. Generous words : ON ME. Words occasionally spoken in a 21 A
12. Febreze target : ODOR. It actually works pretty well.
13. Having a hard time deciding : TORN. It's not often kind.
22. Central Asia's __ Mountains : ALTAI. They extend from the Gobi desert through China, Mongolia, Russia and Kazahkstan.
24. It's in your jeans : DENIM. Fabric, and a sneaky misdirection.
26. "__ Bleed": Stones album : LET IT. Didn't care much for early Stones. Or this image.
27. Roughly : OR SO.
28. Soul great Redding : OTIS. Yes!
29. 24-Across's state: Abbr. : KANS. Mr. Dole served as the U.S. Senator from Kansas from 1968 until 1996 when he found his true calling..
30. Flavor-absorbing food : TOFU. Fermented bean curd. Yum!
31. Holliday friend : EARP. Doc Holliday, not someone who invades your home at Christmas. Good clue for a crossword stalwart.
32. De __: excessive : TROP. French, I suppose. Kazie . . . ?
34. Come next : ENSUE
37. Mullah's text : KORAN. The holy book of Islam.
38. Velvet Elvis, e.g. : KITSCH. Tacky, lowbrow art of inferior quality.
41. "The King of Kings" (1927) director : DEMILLE. Cecil B. Da Mann.
43. Winter Palace woman : TSARINA. The wife of the Rusian Czar.
45. Like some earrings : CLIP ON. Or sunglasses.
47. Like biased writing? : ITALIC. This one always gets me. I guess I'm too political
50. Turns blue, perhaps : TINTS. Clever misdirection involving a reflexive vs transitive verb form. I laughed till I dyed.
51. Like a noble gas : INERT. Helium, Neon, Argon, Krypton and Xenon each have a full shell of valence electrons, and thus no need to combine with baser elements. They are the SNOOTS of Chemistry!
52. Hidalgo houses : CASAS. Estado Libre y Soberano de Hidalgo, one of the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico, was created in 1869 by Benito Juárez. CASA is the Spanish word for house.
53. Hung up on, with "over" : GAGA. Are we hung up on or over her?
54. McGregor of "Emma" (1996) : EWAN
55. Shed : MOLT
56. Bi- cubed : OCTO. Two cubed is eight. I'm not linking the OCTOmom.
59. Somme one : UNE. One in French, now officially at the point of DE TROP
60. Matchstick-removing game : NIM This game can be played with any counter. Play here with muffins. Yum!
There you have it. Did you beat the puzzle, or did you have to COME TO?