Monday May 30, 2016 — NYTimes Crossword No. 0425
Today is Memorial Day. The day we as Americans honor our fallen soldiers. Thank you to all who have given their lives for the cause of freedom. In this, I include those who have made the ultimate sacrifice, and also those who have dedicated their lives to defending our great nation. Thank you. We honor you. Your service is appreciated.
Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate The Positive – Bing Crosby & The Andrews Sisters
Today’s puzzle was a delightful distraction. I especially liked the inner puzzle reveal in the center row, at 37A: MRINBETWEEN (“Don’t mess with” him, per an old song lyric … or a hint to 18-, 20-, 55- and 58-Across). Thank you to my parents, Ronald and Merrilee Swickard for raising my sisters and me in a household steeped in music, including the great singers, such as Bing Crosby and the Andrews Sisters.
The other clues involved in the special puzzle include: 18A: BOTTO[MR]OW (64-, 65- and 66-Across, in this puzzle); 20A: STEA[MR]OLLER (Heavy vehicle that smooths a road surface); 55A: PAL[MR]READING (Means of fortunetelling); and 58A: AMF[MR]ADIO (Audio feature that comes standard in cars). Notice the MR in-betweens?
Always like seeing 52D: SARAH (Politico Palin) in the crossword. She is one of my favorite candidates ever, just love that one never knows what might next come out of her mouth. I’m sure that’s a large part of the appeal of Donald Trump as well.
To me, Betty Keller, today’s puzzlemaker, saved her greatest cleverness for the Southern verticals. My favorite word of the day was 39D: FLUMMOX (Discombobulate). And my two favorite clues were: 38D: BEHOLDER (Witness), made me think; and 47D: EGGDYE (Easter dip), this one felt particularly crafty.
13 minutes today. Looking forward to a fulfilling week of crossword solving. Now say a prayer for the fallen, pray twice for those now in harms way, then eat some tasty barbeque, and enjoy the freedom their sacrifices have secured.