Sep 24, 2016

Saturday, Sep 24th, 2016, Ed Sessa

Theme: None

Words: 70 (missing J,Q)

Blocks: 32

The fourth LA Times Ed Sessa Saturday puzzle this year, and I feel like I am starting to get on his cluing wavelength.  That's not to say I was completely successful today - I had to cave in to red-letters for one answer, but I was 'this' close.  Slowed down by proper names, misdirected on a few of my initial fills, but I call this one a win.  So there.  Triple 9-letter Across corners, and pairs of 9- and 11-letter climbers;

9d. Sandford opponent in a landmark 19th-century case : DRED SCOTT - I learned about this case in grade school, but the Sandford part I don't recall; took some crossings (perps)

11d. Feature of Civil War General Ambrose Burnside : MUTTONCHOPS - and hence the term "Sideburns", which I have been sporting since I was in my 20s - but not this bushy


22d. Explosion surrounding a star? : MEDIA FRENZY - not fooled by the "?", I figured it had to do with paparazzi, cameras, "FLASH", but it was my one correction; I had FLURRY at first

30d. Ordinary people : COMMONERS


ACROSS:

1. Time keeper? : NEWSSTAND - I was hip to this "?" as well, figured it was magazine related, but had to wait on some crossings first

10. Decorative Japanese porcelain : IMARI


15. Foggy : IN A STUPOR - I pondered "IN A ---", but waited on crossings

16. Warms with waves : NUKES - the 'affectionate' term for using a microwave oven

17. Shelled omnivore : BOX TURTLE - again, I pondered "TURTLE", but didn't know if it would start or end the clue

18. Guitar band : STRAP - here, too I gathered this was not an actual "group", but a part of the instrument; however, "strap" did not jump right out at me, and FRET was too short.
Hey, check this guitar out


19. Artful : SLY

20. Not a good sense : DREAD

21. Features of some 'Vettes : T-TOPS

22. Johnny Vander __, only pitcher to throw back-to-back no-hitters : MEER - I'm sure C.C. knew this one; didn't someone come really close this season, too~?

23. They stir things up : SPOONS - dah~! I had WHISKS

25. Out of one's class : ABSENT - ah, clever misdirection; I was thinking "AT SEA" - that is, being a "30d." among the elite

28. Nut in a cupule : ACORN - didn't know what a cupule was

29. High-end chocolatier : LINDT - ah, so close; I tried "S" and "Z" before the "D"


30. It may lead to an argument : CLOSE CALL - in sporting events, frequently, and baseball more than most, I think

34. Et __ : ALII - typed in "ALI-" and waited....

35. Tusk, in fact : TOOTH - dah~!! Not IVORY

36. Colors : HUES - these are "HUES", too


37. Allow it to go no further : SET A LIMIT

39. Informal qualifier : SORTA

40. Trailers often precede them : FILMS - got it

41. Meal : REPAST

42. Home to Mount Kinabalu : BORNEO - mostly perps

44. Guns : REVS - it was either this or "GATS", and I was right with my first guess

45. Downed, in a way : HEWED - HUE/HEW

46. Sound : NOISE - ah, not the SANE variety of 'sound'

48. Ending with humor : OUS - humorous

51. One-named musician whose last name is Chryssomallis : YANNI - learning moment, tho I am familiar with the artist who ends up as the butt of some jokes - his Wiki

Hey, it's Yanni Halen~!

52. Lasting ability : ENDURANCE

54. Mideast unitarians : DRUZE - all perps

55. Elaborate procedure : RIGMAROLE - 'round here it comes with a second "A" - rigAmarole

56. Best Moment and Best Upset : ESPYs - sounded like awards for sporting events, but it was not working with my "SITH" at 45d.

57. Mental comparison : STEEL TRAP - "he has a mind like a steel trap"

DOWN:

1. Ink dispensers : NIBS - dah~!!! not PENS

2. Hydroxyl compound : ENOL

3. Like fake fruit : WAXY - good first round guess on my part

4. Boomer until 2003 : SST - supersonic airplanes

5. Word after A, B or C : STUDENT - what~? you can't be a "D" student, too~?

6. Castle projection : TURRET - I wanted RAMPART, but it didn't fit; BAILEY did, but it's not really a projection


7. More suitable : APTER

8. Emeril's French Quarter restaurant : NOLA - well, it's in New Orleans, LA, so....

10. Imminent : IN STORE

12. Rubber home : AKRON

13. Gets as a return : REAPS

14. Web connectors, for short : ISPs

24. Like penthouse suites : POSH

25. Troubled word : ALAS

26. Ill humor : BILE

27. Sulky state : SNIT

28. Dr. Alzheimer : ALOIS - perps

31. Pervasive quality : AURA

32. "__ see ... " : "LET'S"

33. Test with arguments, for short : LSAT

35. Five-point K, e.g. : TILE - oh, duh.  Scrabble TILE....


38. "Dancing With the Stars" numbers : LINDIES - I really, really wanted to try LIMBOS, but it was too short

39. A few : SEVERAL

41. Pick up again : RESUME

42. Brown University athletes : BEARS - perps

43. Confess : OWN UP

44. Hill crest : RIDGE

45. Fictional dark side : HYDE - yeah, I wanted SITH, but this is the 'dark side' of Dr. Jekyll

47. Taking care of business : ON IT - oops, I had AT IT

48. __ about : ON OR - and a second two-letter two word answer

49. Golden State sch. : UCLA

50. Bleed : SEEP

53. "Anything you can get away with": Marshall McLuhan : ART

Splynter