Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Tuesday's New York Times crossword puzzle solved: December 18, 2018

My time: 6:41.

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Ross Trudeau brings us this stylish puzzle which hangs four clothing-related puns on the phrase FASHION POLICE.  I found this to be a delightful collection of plays on words, with perfectly written clues.  I got the first one right off, even before coming to the capper that pulls it all together: "proper attire for taking fingerprints?" is DUST JACKET.  "Proper attire for picking up a series of clues?" is TRAIL BLAZER.  "Proper attire for detaining a perp?" is HOLDING TANK.  And "proper attire for shadowing a suspect?" is FOLLOW SUIT.

Surprising, clever, amusing... just a very well done Tuesday theme.

Being the most clueless American male about sports, I had never heard of MLB's two AARONS in today's puzzle: Aaron Hicks and Aaron Judge.  They're both Yankees!  I have, however, heard of ALONZO Mourning.

Everyone has heard of Twitter Queen Chrissy TEIGEN, but I didn't know she wrote a book called Cravings.

Some vague flicker of a memory from my life as a northeasterner still lingered, and I pulled RARITAN, New Jersey out of it.  This is a borough of about 7,000 people.  It is also the name of a bay and a river.  All of these places are named for the RARITAN people, a branch of the Lenape.

For "black cat running across your path, it is said" I put *BAD LUCK but it's BAD OMEN.  This slowed me down.  Likewise, for "like summers in Washington DC" I put *MUGGY but it's HUMID.  These are tricky for a Tuesday!

Here's a good word: EMERSION.  The opposite of submersion, I suppose.  Defined as the act of emerging, and typically used in astronomy.  But a submarine does it too!

The pull-up muscles LATS were last used on September 14.  Feel the burn!

Mauna KEA, the tallest mountain in Hawaii, comes up a lot.

The bat for hitting practice fly balls is called a FUNGO, which popped up on April 8.

"Arkansas River city" is TULSA, and this tidbit of Tulsian trivia was last seen way back on November 10, 2017.

As I said above, I loved this theme.  Great puns, with a great capper.  The time today was slow, but not exceptionally so.  I didn't FLAIL around a lot, but I might need a REST AREA now.

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