Thursday August 5, 2021 Susan Gelfand

Thursday August 5, 2021 Susan Gelfand



Two weeks ago we had a REVEAL without any explicit THEMERS.  This week constructor Susan Gelfand gives us four punny THEMERS with no need for a REVEAL - just four people trying to make ends meet by holding down two jobs (or maybe even three!):

20A. Alternate job title for a locksmith?: HAIRDRESSER. (or a THERAPIST?  Could be a little sTRESSful).

55A. Alternate job title for a librarian?: LOAN OFFICER.  (or PC TECH SUPPORT? - part of a librarian's job these days).

11D. Alternate job title for a file clerk?: MANICURIST.     (or a HANDY MAN?)

29D. Alternate job title for a chiropractor?: DISC JOCKEY. (or a PRO FRISBEE PLAYER?)

1. Assorted mockery: JABS.  Much in the news these days.  I'm not sure mockery is the inducement needed to convince everyone to get the JAB.  But if fear of death doesn't do, I don't know what will.

5. "I Know This Much Is True" author Wally: LAMBThis dark novel was also made into an HBO mini-series.  LAMB is also the ideal meat for Shepherds Pie.  Here's my recipe.

9. Comfy and cozy: HOMEY.  And occasionally cluttered.  At least this office is.

14. Algerian port: ORANOran, also called Wahrān, French Ouahran, is a city in northwestern Algeria. It lies along an open bay on the Mediterranean Sea coast, about midway between Tangier, Morocco, and Algiers, at the point where Algeria is closest to Spain:

15. Type of rug: AREA
16. Dodge: EVADE.  Draft dodging is no longer a big issue, although it was in the 60's.  I was a 1A during the NAM years, but was never called, as I won the Nixon lottery when my BDay was assigned number 326. A brilliant stroke, as dividing the 1As into "will be called", "might be called", and "won't be called" greatly reduced the number of protest marches.

Despite now having an all volunteer army there is still a Selective Service System.   One remaining major issue with it  is whether WOMEN should also be compelled to register.

17. Rural landscape standout: SILO.  Also an image for compartmentalized thinking and/or poorly integrated information systems.

18. Google competitor: BING. Microsoft's current excuse for a web browser.  Or BING cherries - they're in season.  Yummers!

19. Unoriginal: BANAL.  Meh.  Something we take for granted. But perhaps we shouldn't.  Hannah Arendt, a political philosopher and Holocaust survivor coined the phrase "The banality  of evil" after watching the trial of Adolph Eichmann in 1961.  The phrase captures the idea that evil acts are not necessarily perpetrated by evil people. Instead, they can simply be the result of bureaucrats just doing their jobs, dutifully obeying orders.

23. Little rascal: IMP.  My favorite IMP is a rascal named Till Eulenspiegel, immortalized in the eponymous tone poem by Richard Strauss.  Here's just the horn motif that Strauss uses to identify him. 
The whole piece is over 18 minutes long and you can find Kurt Masur's complete performance on YouTube if you want to hear it.  Alas, Till meets an awful fate in the end, but is reborn again in every generation to trick us with his merry pranks.

24. Eucalyptus eater: KOALAKoala bears are not really bears, but rather marsupials, completing the later stages of gestation in their mother's pouch.  Koalas are herbivorous, and while most of their diet consists of eucalyptus leaves, they eat the leaves of other trees as well.  Aren't they cute!
25. Chicago exchange, briefly, with "the": MERC.  They handle futures and options trading.  If you need more than this, ask JazzBumpa for a second opinion.

27. Least civil: RUDEST.  One of the things I like about the Corner is how civil people are to one another.

30. Workshop debris: SAWDUST.

33. "Lone Survivor" actor Hirsch: EMILE.

34. Trattoria choice: ZITI.  The English word for trattoriais trattoria: a small, convivial Italian style café.  And ZITI of course looks like this:
36. Machiavelli's "Dell'__ della guerra": ARTE.   The Art of War.  The perennial game of "Let's you and him fight".

37. "S.W.A.T." home: CBS.  Everything you need to know about "S.W.A.T.".  Now if I could just think of something to deal with those pesky mosquitoes in my garden!.

38. Short-order tool: SPATULA.

41. James' creator: IANHere's a spine tingling article on Fleming which will tell you who the real James Bond was (if you read to the end).  It was posted on the WWII Museum in New OR-lins.  And a CSO to our Big Easy.  Perhaps he'll stop by and tell us how his home town is really pronounced - it seems to be a matter of some dispute.

42. Roman aqueduct section: ARCH.  Aqueducts: how ancient Rome brought water to its people.  Aqueducts were used throughout the Roman Empire, and even in Britain.  The first aqueduct I ever saw spanned a valley in Northern Wales.  Canals, run partly over aqueducts, were also used as a part of England's system for transporting raw materials and finished goods to and from factories.
44. Apple music holder: IPOD.  Clecho to 64A.

45. Rosters: LISTS.  E.g. this blog is a ROSTER of clues and answers.

47. Garb often shortened to three letters: PAJAMASPJS.

49. Uncle Sam feature: GOATEE.  I resemble that remark!

50. Portent: OMEN.   Comets were often considered OMENS.   Halley's will be back in 2061:
51. Chases off: SHOOS.  DW wants me to get a new pair of SHOOS.

53. __ drop: MIC.  I always thought it was a singer taking a deep bow with his floor mic, but apparently not ...

mic drop
an instance of deliberately dropping or tossing aside one's microphone at the end of a performance or speech one considers to have been particularly impressive, e.g.
60. Signed: INKED.  While I sign official documents in INK, I do my crosswords in PENCIL.  As I am HUMAN, I tend to ERR a lot.

62. Cut with a beam: LASE.   An article that sheds some light on laser surgery.  See also 34D.

63. Skirt length: MAXI.  My father used to offer to buy extra material for all of my sisters' MINI-skirts, so they could alter them to MAXIS.  I don't think any of them ever took him up on the offer.

64. Jobs in high-tech: STEVE.  Tech-jobs are all virtual these days, but STEVE JOBS definitely was not.  He was the real deal, and the company he founded continues to have a major impact on society.   For example users are still queuing up at midnight for the next shiny new version of the iPhoneJobs was definitely a genius.  Among his biggest inventions was the Silicon Valley work ethic, i.e. all the time!

65. Layer: TIER.

66. Poet during Augustus' reign: OVIDPublius Ovidius Naso, better known to modern readers as Ovid, most famous for his compilation of Greek myths in his work the Metamorphoses.

67. Played (with): TOYED.  In this clip Leopold Mozart (Wolfie's father) TOYS with a symphony:

The credits on the clip attribute it to Michael Haydn (younger brother of Joseph), but it is now thought to have been composed by Leopold Mozart.

68. Bygone GM line: OLDS.

69. Pet pros: VETS.

1. Kid: JOSH.

2. Puccini piece: ARIA.  This is Nessun Dorma ("No one sleeps") from Puccini's last opera, Turandot. Turandot is the beautiful "Ice Princess", who refuses to wed unless her suitor can answer 3 riddles. Any who try and fail are beheaded.   A stranger, the Unknown Prince Calaf) appears, accepts the challenge, and succeeds.  She is bereft, but to demonstrate his love Calaf offers her a way out: if she can learn his name before sunrise the next day, she can have him executed.  He sings this aria in the night while Turandot's soldiers scour the city for those who they think might know his name, torturing them in a desperate and ultimately fruitless attempt to discover it.   It Puccini's only full-length opera with a happy ending:

 3. Java neighbor: BALIBALI is an island in the Indonesian Archipelago . As this might not be a good time to visit, here is a taste of Indonesia's distinctive GAMELANmusic:
4. Marine explorer's aid: SNORKEL.

5. Maze runner: LAB RAT.   The original standardized breed of LAB RAT, also known as the "Wistar Rat" (trigger warning: contains actual pictures of RATS) was co-developed by a woman named Dr. Helen Dean King (1869 – 1955) ,  as a part of her genetic researches while at the Wistar Institute in Philadelphia:
Dr Helen Dean King
6. Flounder's best friend, in Disney: ARIEL.  He seems a little chubby for a flounder ...
7. 98th-percentile group: MENSA.  I suspect that there are more than a few in that group, certified or not, loitering daily on the Corner.

8. Captures: BAGS.

9. __ Bible: HEBREW.  A cornerstone of Western civilization, the Hebrew Biblerecords the history and the stories of the Jewish people.  The major Western religions, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, all trace their origins to the events described in this book.
10. Egg cells: OVA.

12. Dutch cheese: EDAM.  The cheese with the RED rind.  As opposed to EDOM, the Kingdom founded by ESAU, as described in the HEBREW BIBLE!  And not to make light of it, but this book is also a valuable resource for cruciverbalists.

13. Dining review site: YELP.  Here's the Wikipedia's take, which explores some of the controversy around this site.  It also seems that reviewing YELP itself has become a cottage industry among scholars.  Here's a small sample with a ROSTER of article titles churned up by Google Scholar:  unfortunately they're all behind journal paywalls.

21. Rx specs: DOSES.

22. It's often checked by surfers: EMAIL.

26. Nutritional abbr.: RDA.

27. Sum up: RECAP.  Patience please.  We're almost done this RECAP.

28. Sunspot center: UMBRA.
  1. the fully shaded inner region of a shadow cast by an opaque object, especially the area on the earth or moon experiencing the total phase of an eclipse.
    • Astronomy
      the dark central part of a sunspot.
    • literary
      shadow or darkness
30. Small jewelry item: STUD.  I think this NY shop is unclear on the concept.  Any ladies on the Corner thinking of this guy?
31. Condition: STATE.  It seems like physicists these days find a new STATE of matter at least once a month.

32. Present, e.g.: TENSE.  Just thinking about this topic makes me TENSE.

34. Microwaves: ZAPS

35. Skater Midori: ITO.  I just realized that there are no other sports reference in this puzzle.  We'll make it up with a TRIPLE PLAY:
39. It has hammers and keys: PIANO.  An instrument introduced in the Classical era.  Here pianist György Cziffraplays Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach's Sonata in B Minor, H.245, showing us what Johann Sebastian's son could do with those hammers and keys:
40. Standoffish: ALOOF.

43. It may be glazed: HAM.

46. 1994 sci-fi memoir: I ASIMOV is Isaac Asimov's third memoir, published posthumously.  The title is a pun on I ROBOT, a 1950 novel derived from an earlier collection of nine science fiction short stories:
48. Combined: MELDED

49. Low-level workers: GOFERS.  The University of Minnesota sports mascot, GOPHER, was used as the name for an eponymous app to fetch ("GO FER") files  from remote servers distributed across a wide-area network.  GOPHER was developed by U of M programmers, and was an early prototype of the Word Wide Web.  Hi C.C. and Boomer!

51. Slowpoke: SNAIL.

52. Washed (down): HOSED.

53. Fine spray: MIST.  Let's see, have I MIST anything?  Oh yes ...

54. "__ the Woods": Sondheim musical: INTOInto the Woodsintertwines the plots of several Brothers Grimm fairy tales, exploring the consequences of the characters' wishes and quests. The main characters are taken from "Little Red Riding Hood", "Jack and the Beanstalk", "Rapunzel", and "Cinderella", as well as several others.  Here's the Finale (Pt 1):

56. Part of SATB: ALTO.  This acronym was new to me and stands for Soprano, Alto, Tenor, and Bass, the 4 vocal ranges commonly used in small ensembles and choruses.

 57. Yield: CAVE.  No, not one of these:

This is the Lechuguilla Cave in Eddy County, New Mexico.  Sounds like it's got some pretty exotic geology: the picture is a GYPSUM stalactite.  Back east LIMESTONE caves are all we have.  A hand up from any of you Southwestern Cornerites who know of it or who've been there.  Lucina?CMoe?, OwnKl?

58. Theater sign: EXIT.  Almost there.  Walk, don't run!

59. Purges (of): RIDS.

61. "Killing __": BBC America drama: EVE.  A British spy thriller and one that DW and I don't have on our watch list.  It YELPs highly, but the trailer is a bit NOIR, so maybe not.

Here's the grid 


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