Friday, September 30, 2011

Fictional character whose first name is Kentaro / SAT 10-1-11 / One vertex of Summer Triangle / Movie genre food staple / Transportation Sugar Hill 1941 song

Constructor: David Quarfoot

Relative difficulty: Medium

THEME: none

Word of the Day: ZYNGA (26D: Company behind the popular social network games FarmVille and CityVille) —
Zynga (/ˈzɪŋɡə/) is a social network game developer located in San Francisco, United States. The company develops browser-based games that work both stand-alone and as application widgets on social networking websites such as Facebook and Myspace. (wikipedia)
• • •
Another gorgeous grid from Mr. Quarfoot, though it's so stacked with proper nouns (brands and names and pop culture and what not) that it might prove infuriating for some. STYRO is the only real clunker I see here (29D: Commercial prefix since the 1950s). Well, A CALL's not great, but those are very small prices to pay for such a lively, contemporary, edgy grid. SEX SCENEs! BOOB JOBs! (11D: Growing concern for a surgeon, informally?) Very LATE NITE. I found the puzzle hard to get into, but once I was in, I was able to make steady if slowish progress straight through — strangely, I didn't once have to reboot (i.e. start over in a new section where I had nothing). I just built on crosses, in both directions from my point of origin, until I surrounded that damn NW corner and finished things off in a well-within-normal-range Saturday time. Still, I think this might play slightly harder than average, given the preponderance of names. Initial times at the NYT site seem a little sluggish.

Started with very little (most of it wrong). Had SAT instead of ETS and SSN instead of SGT (that last one was a colossal misread) (38A: E-5: Abbr.). Finally broke through by giving JET LI a shot at 31D: "Romeo Must Die" actor, 2000. I can't remember a thing about "Romeo Must Die"—my memory has it starring Gary Oldman and Lena Olin—but for some reason JET LI was pushing his way to the front of my mind, and I liked where it put that "J"—in position to give me a last name starting with "J" at 30A: Flying Dutchman captain of film (DAVY JONES). Guessed JONES and got A-TRAIN (12D: Transportation to Sugar Hill, in a 1941 song) and ASSETS from there. Rest of the NE was easy. From there I went down and clockwise. Later returned to DAVY JONES and worked counterclockwise until I was done. NW was maddening because I've never heard of GOD'S ARMY (3D: Side in an epic battle), so even when I got ARMY, I was confused. Also, I had ---RANK and could think of only SITE and NAME as possible fill. "PERMIT ME" seemed too polite for the more pushy-sounding clue 1D: "Step aside, I'll help" and I'd never heard of MXS (hmmm ... I guess I've heard the phrase "MX missle" before ...), so there was lots of trouble up there. The "S" in GOD'S ARMY / MXS was the last thing into the grid.

Considered ODETS before ALBEE at 20A: "The Play About the Baby" playwright. Took a while to see LA PAZ (25A: City of the Altiplano). Only got MR. MOTO because I allowed myself to imagine that 1D ("PERMIT ME") ended with ME, thereby supplying the first "M" (32A: Fictional character whose first name is Kentaro). Lots of movies and sports and song and television. Was unaware Danny GLOVER had played Mandela (64A: He played Mandela on TV's "Mandela"). Was unaware (or forgot) that ANKA was Canadian. Took much longer than I should have to come up with the crosswordy movie genre named for a food staple. As with OATERS, I know DENEB only from crosswords (34A: One vertex of the Summer Triangle). I know Senator Dick LUGAR, but had no idea he co-sponsored legislation with President Obama (57A: ___-Obama Proliferation and Threat Reduction Initiative (2007 law)). NAGANO is one of those Olympics sites that I easily forget, but it was referred to on some show I watch recently, so it was fresh in my mind (49D: Olympics site that introduced snowboarding). Weird how puzzles can come together by happenstance. The SW corner felt like that—I mean, didn't believe DEER could possibly be the answer to 56D: Bucks and bucks, but imagining the "D" in place allowed me to guess (tentatively) SCROD, which then (off just the "C") (55A: North Atlantic catch) got me UNCOLA (47D: Beverage nickname, with "the"). That corner was done inside of a minute. Just ... lucky guesses. All that luck was offset in the NW, where I struggled mightily, but the overall experience was just as it should be on a Saturday—a tough and entertaining 10-15 minutes (closer to 15 today).

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

3ème nuit SFR...

Billet indépendant rémunéré

La Nuit SFR au Grand Palais, le décompte est lancé !

Il y a quelques jours de cela, je me suis rendue au Studio SFR afin de rencontrer les membres de l'équipe SFR Live Concerts, ceux de la Lune Rousse et d'Artevia en charge de l'évènement ainsi que le gagnant du concours SFR (jeune talent électro) : Nico Gomez qui aura la chance d'envoyer un set de deux heures à cette soirée.

Soirée qui s'annonce folle...


Il s'agit en effet, de la troisième édition et d'après ce qu'il se dit, les deux dernières ont été des francs succès !

Pour ceux qui n'ont jamais entendu parler de cette énorme production, la musique électro est à l'honneur une nuit entière.

Celle-ci aura lieu le 8 octobre de 18h à 6h du matin avec la participation de lourds, de très lourds comme Cassius, Modeselektor, Crystal Fighters, Cascadeur, SBTRKT, WhomadeWho et bien sûr, Nico Gomez dont nous découvrirons le talent.
Talent sous l'influence plutôt britannique type Massive Attack ou Portishead.


Parrainée par Agoria (rien que ça), cette longue nuit au Grand Palais n'attend pas moins de 8000 personnes... Imaginez !


Si vous êtes clients chez SFR, 500 places sont remises en vente ici-même.
Pour les autres, malheureusement tout a été vendu !

Stop, séchez vos larmes, j'ai une solution à vous proposer... La boum sera retransmise en direct sur mon blog.
Vous n'aurez plus qu'à inviter tous vos amis, choper des enceintes, des chips et remuer derrière vos écrans !


Encore plus de rêve ? Le Grand Palais sera vêtu d'un décor industriel pour contraster avec ce monument historique.
Au total, 12 caméras dont 2 caméras 360° qui vous permettront de vivre l'expérience (en cliquant là : ici) comme si vous y étiez (ou presque).

D'ici là, portez-vous bien, et n'hésitez pas à jeter des coups d'oeil à la page Facebook pour vous tenir au courant de toutes les infos postées chaque jour !


Je dois avouer que je brûle d'impatience car pour la première édition en 2009, la place que je convoitais tant m'était passée sous le nez...


Thursday, September 29, 2011

Many viviparous births / FRI 9-30-11 / Muleta material / Toppers popular with jazzmen / Wheelie supporter / Natures lay idiot I taught thee to love penner

Constructor: Joe Krozel

Relative difficulty: Medium-Challenging

THEME: none, except for that diagonal line of Ks through the middle 

Word of the Day: Muleta (31D: Muleta material => FLANNEL) —
A short red cape suspended from a hollow staff, used by a matador to maneuver a bull during the final passes before a kill. (
• • •

Pretty easy except for the SW corner, which stopped me for what must have been a couple minutes. PINKY for PIGGY (38D: Little digit? — an error I'm betting tons of people made) threw me, and then when I saw it was probably wrong, taking it out did nothing (at first), because several of the clues down there were tenuous, vague, or convoluted.  I had YELPS correct (50A: Sounds from a 3-Down), but something YELPS when it's hurt. Little yip dogs, like TERRIERs, yip (3D: One producing 50-Across). They yip. But no matter, I had that right. The main issue down there is GINGERS (44A: Choices for snaps). It's horrible in the plural (unless you are referring to slang for redheads), and it's made more horrible here by a clue that makes no sense. I know what ginger snaps are, but I can't imagine anyone saying "What flavors [plural!?] will I choose for my snaps? I know. GINGERS!" Having a crummy plural plus a completely crummy clue topped off by the intentional vagueness of "snaps" (I was thinking pictures, for a bit), made my eventual success into whatever the opposite of an "aha moment" is. An "ugh moment," maybe. Too bad, as this grid is mostly well filled, esp. for a puzzle with such a low word count. No idea what those Ks are doing there. I guess they look nice. Is this product placement for Calvin Klein (CK)? Weird.

Once again, I maintain that only Patrick Berry can fill grids like this very well. He probably would never have a. repeated -LESS, b. repeated BACK, or c. had two answers that shared a *six*-letter string. Twice ("CKLESS" and "INGERS"). That said, there's hardly any of the usual forced fill that sinks the typical overambitious Joe Krozel puzzle, so this is definitely a step in the right direction. Had to go pretty far for that RENO'S clue (6D: "___ Most Wanted" ("best-of" compilation of a popular TV cop show)), but otherwise, everything else seems well within the land of common knowledge. There's some trying too hard to be clever and not quite pulling it off, or pulling it off horribly awkwardly, as in the clue on TOM (4D: Petty recording) and POSTBOX (24D: London letter getter). Misdirection in clues is great. Torturing normal phrasing in order to pull of some bit cuteness, not so much.

Started off by going SRTA to VARMINT to LOVE TAP. Not sure how I got VARMINT (15A: Coyote, say, to a Western rancher) from just the "T," but I did. NEUTRON (22D: Deuterium has one) and COASTAL were both easy, and both gave me access to the center of the grid. Threw down SPACKLING off just the "S" and hacked away at things from there. Had CALMLY and SANELY before SAFELY and WRINKLED before FRECKLED (31A: Having been overexposed to the sun, maybe). BACK TIRE forced the latter change (28D: Wheelie supporter). No idea about SPUTNIK (16A: Subject of the 2001 book subtitled "The Shock of the Century") or OFT or FLANNEL, but I worked them out relatively easily from crosses. PORKPIES (23A: Toppers popular with jazzmen) look good on JACK LORD (26A: His character had the signature line "Book 'em, Danno")—nice '60s vibe. AGEES is an unfortunate plural (25A: 1958 Pulitzer-winning novelist and family), but easy to get. I thought SYKES was MEADE, which I think is what I was supposed to think. Apparently there were (at least) two General Georges at Gettysburg.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

Sondheim's Mrs Lovett / THU 9-29-11 / Baritone piece sung by Renato / Best selling PC game released in 2000 / Curie Kelvin Fermi

Constructor: Ben Fish

Relative difficulty: Easy-Medium

THEME: PLUS — Puzzle note: "Two hints for 17- and 57-Across and 11- and 26-Down appear somewhere in this puzzle"—P, L, U, and S appear in circles in the corners, and black squares make a "+" sign in the middle of the grid.

Word of the Day: Princess IRENE of the Netherlands (14A: Dutch princess who's the daughter of Queen Juliana) —
Princess Irene of the Netherlands (born 5 August 1939) is the second child of the late Queen Juliana and Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands. [...] Because of the invasion of the Netherlands by Nazi Germany during World War II the Dutch Royal family chose to live in exile in Canada, where Irene attended Rockcliffe Park Public School, in Ottawa. As a teenager, she was dubbed by the Dutch press as "the glamorous Princess of the Netherlands." During the war, the Royal Dutch Brigade (the formation of Free Dutch soldiers that fought alongside the Allies) was named for Princess Irene. This was continued after the war as the Regiment Prinses Irene. (wikipedia)
• • •

Decided to solve this without stopping to check the [blurb] and still finished in regular Thursday time, so I'd say this was pretty easy. I am pretty sure I've seen this gimmick before—in that I've seen the "black squares form a symbol" gimmick several times, and the "+ is the easiest of those to make in a crossword grid. It was an entertaining puzzle almost in spite of the theme, which didn't thrill me, mainly because the theme answers seemed a bit wonky. A "+" is not a GRADE BONUS. It's merely another available grade. Part of the normal grading spectrum. No BONUS involved. "NICE" is a pretty weak adjective, and END wants to know what it's the END of. But still, we get a nice varied array of PLUS types, and unlike some recent puzzles, the fill on this one is really quite good. I went "Ugh" precisely one time, and that was at the RRN (Random Roman Numeral) (19A: Year St. Augustine of Canterbury died=>DCIV). I really like those thick stacks of answers through the middle (all the 7s PLUS the two 5s). It's very clear that Mr. Fish took good care to make the puzzle smooth, and that deserves acknowledgment and praise.

The PLUSes:

Had slight trouble getting going when it turned out I didn't know either of the women in the NW corner (IRENE, Mrs. Lovett the BAKER18D: Sondheim's Mrs. Lovett, e.g.). Otherwise, the only tricky part was inferring the theme answers (again, I didn't see the note, so didn't know for a little while that I was dealing with PLUSes). Made some wrong turns along the way, including going with SRS. over SEM (21A: School yr. section) (SRS. is a yearbook section...); PROFFER over PROFESS (6D: Claim); and SPA over MAT (59D: Bath ___). This last error resulted in a stray wrong (uncorrected) square that I had to track down at the end—specifically, I ended up with SAABS as the answer to 68A: Tries. Always bad when your mistakes look like real words. I would've gone with GAOL for 56D: Shakespearean stir (ADO), but a. there weren't enough letters, and b. I never actually saw the clue while I was solving.

I thought a Ming Jar was some kind of science thing, like a Leyden jar, so I was surprised to find out that I was dealing with the Ming of Ming vase fame, i.e. the dynasty. Had a little trouble coming up with THE SIMS (43A: Best-selling PC game released in 2000), but once the definite article was in place, the answer was obvious (which is good, because I was *not* getting SIMON despite having SI-ON) (34D: One who says a lot in a game). The "table" of 9D: #33 on a table (ARSENIC) is of course the periodic table. "Te reo" means simply "the language" (65A: Language known to native speakers as "te reo"=>MAORI). Didn't know GINSU was a "type" of knife. Thought it was a brand. Love the triad of Curie, Kelvin and Fermi for EPONYMS, though for some reason all I can picture (or hear!) when I look at this clue is Alvin, Simon and Theodore:

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Si toi aussi tu es Madly...!

On m'a dit MADLY...


Pour moi, Madly ne signifie pas forcément porter des chaussures extravagantes, se coiffer de façon folle ou être dans la provoc.
J'associe ce mot à la vie et qui dit vie, dit bonheur... Le bonheur ou la quête de toute une vie, non ?



En entrant dans ce grand showroom, je ne savais plus où donner de la tête mais je savais que mon choix se porterait sur de la couleur. Avec Kenzo, easy.


Après avoir jeté un rapide coup d'oeil à la collection inspirée de l'Amérique du Sud, j'ai jeté mon dévolu sur ce gilet sans manches. Je voulais qu'il soit la pièce maîtresse de ma tenue.
Alors un pantalon, une jupe ou... Une robe ?


Une robe ! Cette robe !
Noire ? Orange ?
Soyons fous, allons dans l'extrême. Une grosse ceinture en cuir pour l'habiller et un chapeau pour la touche "mâle".


Pour les escarpins, j'avais le choix entre ce modèle animalier et le même en noir. Dans la vraie vie, j'aurais opté pour la seconde option mais après avoir été convaincue par deux Miss Kenzo, c'est le léopard qui a eu le privilège de coudoyer mes orteils.



Maintenant que je suis tapissée de Kenzo du sommet de mon crâne jusqu'aux pieds, à vous de jouer...!


Une fois n'est pas coutume, j'ai encore des choses à vous faire gagner !

You Make Fashion, The Brunette , Hello it's Valentine et moi-même vous offrons la possibilité de gagner un accessoire Kenzo (SURPRISE !).

Pour cela, c'est très simple.
Vous avez jusqu'au 3 octobre pour laisser un commentaire "Madly" (soit le plus fou) sous la tenue que vous préférez chez l'une de nous quatre.

La bloggeuse qui aura reçu le plus de commentaires se verra choisir la seule et unique gagnante qu'elle désignera en fonction du commentaire le plus dingue !

Je vous invite à lire le règlement du concours, oui, faisons les choses bien !

Ps : Bravo à Lola qui remporte les bandeaux Adéli et qui fête ses 25 ans aujourd'hui !

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Vamp Negri / WED 9-28-11 / Root used as soap substitute / Player of TV junkman / Eighth-inning hurler often / 1960s Bye

Constructor: Steve Salitan

Relative difficulty: Medium

THEME: CLOUT (65A: Influence ... and a hint to 20-, 26-, 46- and 56-Across) — "CL" is taken OUT of four familiar phrases, creating four wacky phrases, clued "?"-style

Word of the Day: SETT (59D: Paving stone) —
A badger sett or set is a badger's den, usually consisting of a network of tunnels. The largest setts are spacious enough to accommodate 15 or more animals, with up to 300 metres (980 ft) of tunnels and as many as 40 openings. It takes many years for the animals to dig these large setts. Setts are typically excavated in soil that is well drained and easy to dig, such as sand, and situated on sloping ground where there is some cover. (wikipedia) [I realize this isn't the definition that was clued, but I like this one better— thanks to Chicago sports radio talk show host Dan Bernstein for pointing it out to me recently]
• • •

This is a puzzle I like more in retrospect than I did while solving it. I've seen several versions of the -OUT puzzle before, so this is not-at-all original, concept-wise, but at least a couple of the theme answers are cute, and the long Downs are pretty nice as well, especially REDD FOXX (37D: Player of a TV junkman) and SET-UP MAN (9D: Eighth-inning hurler, often). It always gets me down when the short fill is terrible, and it's pretty damned grievous today. I realize that the best that short fill can be is inoffensive, but if that's the best it can be, then that should be the goal. Even with cheater squares I'm having to deal with EDO (53A: Tokyo, to shoguns) and SETT ... two ugly Latin plurals in the same tiny quadrant with ACTA and SERA (60A: Anti-snakebite supplies, e.g.) ... the World's Worst Partial in AAND. I almost wish AMOLE had been a partial (to go with ACOW) because I botched that one (31A: Root used as a soap substitute). It's not a pretty word. You want people marveling at your nice long stuff, not groaning at the gunk in the works. To sum up: a recycled concept, adequately executed, with some nice longer fill.

Theme answers:
  • 20A: Iodine in a barber's first-aid kit? (EAR CUT SOLUTION)
  • 26A: Doofus given a pink slip? (ASS DISMISSED)
  • 46A: One modifying goals? (AIMS ADJUSTOR) — extremely vague (and dull) clue made this one the hardest to get. 
  • 56A: Cronus and Rhea's barbecue remains? (ASH OF THE TITANS) — easiest one to get, by far.
Speaking of Titans, I know who Argus is, but I did not know Argus-eyed meant ALERT. I remembered that THETA  was an [Angle symbol in trigonometry] only after I changed BRIE to PATÉ to get the initial "T" (BRIE tastes lovely while PATÉ tastes like dog food, hence my solving instinct). I've seen POLA Negri in puzzles many, many times (25A: Vamp Negri), and yet still hesitated. Brain couldn't quite accept that POLA was a real name. I had to manually override it. I just googled "serpent" to see how exactly it is different from "snake" (short answer: it isn't), and noticed that "The Serpent" was a 1916 silent film starring POLA Negri's crossword compatriot, THEDA "Don't call me THETA" BARA. Just a little bit of trivia for you to forget in a few minutes.

You know who's a big fan of serpents (by which I mean "snakes")? Dana Delany. You can see her discuss her herpetological interests here, in this interview with Jimmy Kimmel. She also discusses crosswords, including her experience co-constructing a Sunday NYT puzzle with Matt Ginsberg this past summer (interview starts around the 16 min. mark, in show's second segment). I want to thank her for saying such kind things about this blog, and for giving Jimmy the opportunity to ridicule my name, repeatedly, on national television. A huge thrill and honor on both counts.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

Monday, September 26, 2011

Creator of GOP elephant / TUE 9-27-11 / Larklike bird / Noted 1964 convert to Islam / When repeated noted panda

Constructor: Peter A. Collins

Relative difficulty: Challenging (for a Tuesday)

THEME: COUNTRIES (34D: Sovereign lands ... or what are hidden in the answers to the six starred clues) — loose assortment of country names are buried inside familiar (or at least vaguely familiar) phrases

Word of the Day: PIPIT (44A: Larklike bird) —
The pipits are a cosmopolitan genus, Anthus, of small passerine birds with medium to long tails. Along with the wagtails and longclaws, the pipits make up the family Motacillidae. The genus is widespread, occurring across most of the world, except the driest deserts, rainforests and the mainland of Antarctica.
• • •

This is a Wednesday puzzle. It's not even close to a Tuesday. How do I know. It took me 4:42, a full minute longer than my typical Tuesday. Also, when I finished, I was in *2nd* place on the NYT applet—that has literally never happened. As we speak, I'm in 4th, and falling, but even A Division solvers are taking over 4. This is not a complaint—it's just to say that the puzzle was clearly misplaced. Mis-slotted. The theme is kind of blah—random COUNTRIES, so what?—and the theme answers are often painfully unsnappy. I don't think I've ever seen the phrase CHICKEN YARD, though I can at least imagine what it is. Never seen a DIGITAL YEARBOOK, but I assume it's a thing. ROPERUG? Again, I can imagine it, but I've never heard the term. But you can't deny those answer have COUNTRIES in them, which is really all that's required. Central middle was the toughest for me. My farm was TWO ACRE rather than TEN ACRE (it's not as if either is some kind of standard—again, a non-snappy phrase) (42D: Like a small farm, perhaps), and so HEINZ (47A: Ore-Ida parent company) and ZION (48D: The Jewish people) and even ANIMAL INSTINCTS were all hard to see. Never heard of a PIPIT (or I have, and then forgot). Most of the rest of the fill was mediocre, except for THE WALRUS (5D: Character in a Beatles song), which is great. Too bad it doesn't have a country name inside it—it really should, for symmetry's sake. So let's all pretend there's a country called HEWAL. OK? Done.

Theme answers:
  • 17A: *Area in front of a coop (CHICKENYARD)
  • 23A: *Modern school memento (DIGITALYEARBOOK)
  • 35A: *Braided floor covering (ROPERUG)
  • 37A: *More than enough (TOO MANY)
  • 50A: *Elemental parts of human nature (ANIMALINSTINCTS)
  • 57A: *Discover to be fibbing (CATCHINALIE) 
Short stuff is pretty junky all around, but that's what you'd expect in most people's theme-dense puzzles. I was proud to remember the 39D: Creator of the G.O.P. elephant, and then sad to find out that I'd misremembered his name as NASH (it's NAST). Tried CAUGHT IN A LIE first even though it's obviously the wrong verb tense. Thought the wine bar request was the TAB (really didn't read the clue well enough I guess—57D: Request inside (or outside?) a wine bar (CAB). I always botch relative adjectives when the adjective ends in "Y"—SLYER looks just fine, but I guess not (29A: More clever=>SLIER). Good thing I couldn't buy LYNG LYNG as a panda name (26D: When repeated, a noted panda=>LING). Lots of Beatles in this puzzle today, but I'm gonna go out with some PIXIES instead (46D: Fairies)—it's my 8-year wedding anniversary, so (like every other day of the year) I'll do what I want. I love you, honey. xoxo

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

From Marrakech to Paris

Samedi, rendez-vous pris avec Nabil, un pote rencontré au Maroc.

Nabil est en fait l'ami de mes cousins, il est né à Paris, y a vécu et s'est ensuite installé à Marrakech.

Bac en poche, il a décidé de revenir en France, à Toulouse dans un premier temps pour en fin de compte retrouver Paris où il bosse aujourd'hui en agence de publicité.

Nous avons parlé des différences de nos deux cultures, de sa chérie, de scooters et des joies d'internet...!












Photos : Nabil Nadifi

Pantalon - H&M
Tee-shirt - Urban Outffiters
Veste - H&M
Mocassins - New Look
Lunettes - H&M

Ps : New Look organise un concours pour vous faire remporter une paire de chaussures de votre choix !


Ça se passe sur leur page Facebook et vous trouverez les indices sur leur blog que je vous conseille de checker chaque jour...

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Lightning-fast Bolt / 9-26-11 / 1941 chart-topper Maria / Part of 2005 Harry Potter title / 1987 Stanley Kubrick classic

Constructor: David Gray

Relative difficulty: Easy

THEME: BACK (67A: Word that can follow the start of 20-, 38- or 50-Across) — Football theme, with theme answers beginning with words QUARTER, HALF, and FULL, respectively:

QUARTER POUNDERS (20A: Some McDonald's burgers)
HALF-BLOOD PRINCE (38A: Part of a 2005 Harry Potter title)
FULLMETALJACKET (50A: 1987 Stanley Kubrick classic)

Word of the Day: DUANE Allman (26D: One of the Allman Brothers) —
Howard Duane Allman (November 20, 1946 – October 29, 1971) was an American guitarist, session musician and the primary co-founder of the southern rock group The Allman Brothers Band. He is best remembered for his brief but influential tenure in that band, his expressive slide guitar playing and improvisational skills. // A sought-after session musician both before and during his tenure with the band, Allman performed with such established stars as King Curtis, Aretha Franklin, Wilson Pickett, and Herbie Mann. He also contributed heavily to the 1970 album Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs by Derek and the Dominos. // In 2003, Rolling Stone magazine ranked Allman at #2 in their list of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time, second only to Jimi Hendrix. His tone (achieved with a Gibson Les Paul and two 50-watt bass Marshall amplifiers) was named one of the greatest guitar tones of all time by Guitar Player. / He died in October 1971 in a motorcycle accident. (wikipedia)
• • •

This is a very nice little Monday. There's nothing very showy about it, but the theme answers are lively and the theme itself is solid and multi-layered. Progression of first words makes sense in its own right, but then throw in "BACK" and you've got an appropriately autumnal football theme. I spent much of the day watching and listening to football, including watching my Lions come back from 20 down and beat the Vikings in OT. It'll be nice when they actually beat a solid, winning team, but they can only play who's on the schedule, so I'll take what I can get.

This puzzle was very easy, even for a Monday. I was butterfingers on my keyboard, continually botching input, and I still beat the 3 min. mark by a good 15 seconds. Got all the 15s with no hesitation. Needed many crosses to get LOADED DICE for some reason (10D: Items for gamblers who cheat — I think of a pair of dice as *an* item), and forgot briefly about DUANE Allman, but other than, it was just fill in the blanks / wrestle with the keyboard. Oh, I had I'M HERE for IN HERE (5D: "Yoo-hoo" response) and misspelled USAIN (USEIN?) at first. These are all very minor things, but they'll add seconds to your time. I wonder how many people are going to claim (once again) never to have heard of USAIN Bolt (59A: Lightning-fast Bolt). Every time he appears, I'm surprised by how many people shrug and go "who?" Not knowing DRAYS, I understand.

I'm currently obsessed with the year 1980—watching movies and listening to music from that year like crazy. Why am I telling you this? Primarily because I'm currently listening to a band called KROKUS. Seeing that name in the grid would make me exceedingly happy.

Enjoy your Monday.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

Roulades dans l'herbe

Chaleur ce matin là, direction le parc des Buttes Chaumont.

Chloë, munie de son argentique, m'avait envoyé quelques vidéos d'inspiration avant de nous voir.

Le résultat est là, je ne vous donnerai pas les crédits des vêtements qui pour la plupart sont vintage ou issus d'anciennes collections.

Je vous conseille de voir ces visuels pour ce qu'ils sont et non pas pour vous inspirer dans le choix de vos tenues... Dans la vraie vie, qui porterait deux imprimés bien distincts, associés ?!





Il me reste quelques jours pour éventuellement gagner !


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