Friday, November 30, 2018

Friday's New York Times crossword puzzle solved: Friday, November 30, 2018

My time: 11:17.

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Robyn Weintraub thought up this themeless, which has a couple of modern phrases (NANNY STATE, HOLD MY BEER, TONE IT DOWN) but is otherwise fairly unremarkable.

"Resort in Salt Lake County" is ALTA, last seen on September 24, 2017.  No wonder I didn't remember it!

"Little suckers" is APHIDS.  This is because they use their piercing sucking mouthparts to feed on plant sap.

OSAGE, the Native American tribe and the orange, have both come up before.  Today it is clued as "county in a Pulitzer-prize winning play title."  That's "August: OSAGE County," a 2007 dramedy by Tracy Letts.

I misspelled the mountaineering tool PITON at first.

Never heard of RAISA Smetanina, a Russian cross-country skier who was the first woman to win 10 Winter Olympic medals, from 1976 to 1992.

I did not know that the MYNA was originally native to southern Asia, especially India.  They are an invasive species in Australia and known as "cane toads of the sky."

Title character of a "Dora the Explorer" spinoff is DIEGO, Dora's cousin, of "Go, Diego, Go."

We love Lena Olin, but have never heard of Ken OLIN, who was a lead on "Thirtysomething" and the producer of "This is Us."

We have heard of the Saab car, but not ELIE Saab, a Lebanese fashion designer who originally specialized in bridal couture.

Point REYES Peninsula, in California, is in the part Point Reyes National Seashore, as showcased on September 30, 2017.

"Vette alternative" is, of course, the Pontiac GTO.

The University of Maryland TERRAPINS came up on April 15.

Clever clues: "Coping mechanisms?" is SAWS.  "Eastern state" is ZEN.  "Holders of solutions" is TEST TUBES.  "Employer of some shepherds" is CANINE UNIT (not K-nine unit like I thought it might be).  "Message that might be sent in a storm?" is TWEET.

Whew!  That's a lot.  I couldn't do Thursday's puzzle, with all its twists and turns.  Well, I'm GONE.

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Sunday's New York Times crossword puzzle solved: August 9, 2020

                              My time: 19:28 , not too shabby for a Sunday! Theme: SHIPSHAPE, as shown when you connect the "dots"...