We've been hard at work on our web series BLOGJOB. Latest Director's Vlog below:
Episode 4 to come later this week. There was a delay, because we had a short-term dayjob. Our dayjob severely interfered with our BLOGJOB.
Watch, comment, share, twart. It only takes a second. It's so easy. Hit that Paypal button at right, show us you love us. Yussssss.
To the puzzle!TackyHarpersCrypticClues.blogspot.com staff that Harper's has made the entirety of the puzzle archive available in an easily served up URL. Hot dang! Should you still require a reason to invest in a subscription, consider that requirement fulfilled:
At last, to the puzzle for real-real:Theme answers, unclued and entered by inference, were all alternate names for the devil:
17A) THE EVIL ONE
41A) OLD SCRATCH
48A) THE TEMPTER
7D) BELIAL (had to look this one up)
9D) PRINCE OF DARKNESS
Circled letters yielded a jumble for NICKNAMES, as in names for Old Nick. When we gave Finnegan's Wake a try in 2008, we latched on to references of "Mick vs Nick," aka the archangel Michael versus Satan. It was a slippery handhold in a maelstrom of a book. We got maybe 40%? 50% through? Then lost heart and read Infinite Jest instead. Different maelstrom. Much more satisfying.
Kindof strange and thrilling to delve into the black occult this puzzle.
open question: is there a relationship between Old Saint Nick and the devil?
- 11A) Word for four years of George Bush (4)
(double synonym) = TERM
- 12A) I was fired in just one war—Europe (9)
juST ONE WAR Europe = STONEWARE
- 16A) A welcome fish (3)
A + (welcome = HI) = AHI
- 18A) Swindlers left protected by Hells Angels, e.g. (7)
(Hells Angels e.g. = BIKERS) + (left = L) = BILKERS
- 22A) Pick top off (3)
TOP * (off = anagram) = OPT
- 25A) Lionize artist in rehabilitation getting clean (13)
LIONIZE ARTIST * (rehabilitation = anagram) = STERILIZATION
- 26A) In sight of Cyclops, it might help if improper come-on captures Helen's heart (7)
(COME ON + (Helen's heart = L)) * (improper = anagram) = MONOCLE
- 36A) Loafer doesn't need this solace—he needs exercising (8)
(SOLACE + HE) * (exercising = anagram) = SHOELACE
- 42A) Criminal litigants, e.g., circumvent copper, making waves (13)
(Criminal = anagram) * (LITIGANTS + EG + (copper = CU)) = GESTICULATING
- 49A) Nuns are commanded! (7)
ORDERED (double synonym)
Mildly related, the other month we were checking out Netflix for entertainment and Nude Nuns with Big Guns came up. "Ooh, that looks like a fun romp!" we thought. Campy exploitation like Machete we thought.
O good grief no, it was awful. It hurt us to watch. It hurt us in our hearts. Granted, we are an especially sensitive and feeling person. For instance, talking about a Yelp review the other morning for Hassan at Andersonville Tech moved us to tears of happiness.
But this film. Best avoided. Go watch The Man with the Iron Fists instead. Or Kill Bill.
- 1D) A squint at miss rubs the wrong way (10)
AT MISS RUBS * (wrong way = anagram) = STRABISMUS
- 14D) Victory—it extends into where the wizard is a famous agent (5)
(Victory = V) + IT + (where the wizard is = OZ) = OVITZ
- 19D) List in wind (4)
ROLL (double synonym)
- 34D) For one who has come out, a bit of testosterone is a liability (4)
(one who has come out = DEB) + (bit of testosterone = T) = DEBT
Can't quite shoehorn it into a lean narrative, but this clue hints at a general sensitivity to and awareness of Queer Orthodoxy which complements our own hypersensitivity to and awareness of Queer Orthodoxy. Once BLOGJOB is done, our next show is going to be EVERYBODY HATES BISEXUALS. Note that: BLOGJOB might not be done for a long long time. The title of the show that comes after will be EDITING TAKES FOR-FOCKING-EVER.
- 13A) Organic compound, only spelled backwards (4)
(only = LONE) * backwards = ENOL
- 15A) In botany, it covers cutting the second of this month (4)
(this month = APRIL) - the second = ARIL
- 28A) Sports fans' Mustangs? Right from start, initially, they're all blue (6)
(Sports fans' Mustangs = SMU) + (Right from start) = SMURFS
- 50A) Second manuscript that is returned—you can find fault in this! (5)
(Second = S) + ((manuscript = MS) + (that is = I E) * reverse) = SEISM
- 3D) Touching letters from supporter sick with envy (just a tad) (7)
(supporter = BRA) + (sick = ILL) + (envy = E) = BRAILLE
And btw, Dougray Scott (above) is this month's Nerd Hot Guy. But since we brought in Val Kilmer as the Bat, honorable mention goes to the Kilm in Real Genius.
- 5D) Chestiest models—it's a matter of taste (9)
CHESTIEST * (models = anagram) = ESTHETICS
- 20D) A speaker's excessive—get it on for dancing (4)
(excessive = TOO TOO) * homophone = TUTU
- 31D) My singers working together as a group? (9)
MY SINGERS * (working = anagram) = SYNERGISM
[ ... actually looks up "synergism" on etymonline ... ]
Oh. Ok, it's a word.
1650s, "theological doctrine that human will cooperates with divine grace in regeneration," from Modern Latin synergismus, from Greek synergos "working together" (see synergy). Used in a broader (non-theological) sense by 1925.
- 33D) River in South America and a river below it (4)
(South America = SA) + A + (river = R) = SAAR
- 43D) Sow seen by yokels? (4)
SEED (double synonym)
Disgracefully, native Georgian Julia Roberts gave in to such stereotypes in Steel Magnolias.
and the Tacky!
- 35A) Young person died inside trunk (4)
(Young person = BOY) + (died = D) = BODY
So: child murder. And sexism.
Boo, Maltby. Boo.
We were not saying Boo-urns.