Chris Words #68: Themeless Fourteen

he’s baaaaaaack! themeless fourteen.

Screen Shot 2016-05-15 at 3.24.07 PM

chris king returns with a breezy 72-worder. it was a quick solve for me, so here’s a quick review:
  • DEADPOOL gets a great trivia clue – [2016 film that’s the highest-grossing R-rated film of all time]. (i’m sure it grossed a high number of people out)
  • i’m a big fan of MEMEs, but was only vaguely familiar with [Unexpected John Cena, e.g.]
  • i’m told there’s a fun backstory behind one of the entries in this puzzle, and i’m guessing that entry is the scrabbly VONTZ, clued as [Yiddish bedbug]. looking forward to hearing it.
  • was stuck for a solid minute running the alphabet on the crossing of [Pharm. docs], RXS, and [Twisted ___ (hieroglyph shape)], FLAX.
  • love the colloquial long down pairing of BY ALL MEANS and FAIR ENOUGH, as well as the shorter SON OF A…
  • [Nickname for some black-and-white Air Jordans] – new OREO clue alert!!! in crossworld that’s like discovering a new element.
  • TOUCANS gets a subtly funny clue: [Tropical froot eaters]
  • meh fill: obsolescent LETT, TRIS clued as the old baseball guy… that’s all i got.
thanks to mr. king for the sunday fun. until next time!


1 comment
  1. Thanks Erik for another great write-up. Glad you enjoyed the clues for TOUCANS and OREO. The John Cena meme is one of my things ever, so much that it had its own puzzle in the USC Puzzle Hunt.

    So, 38-Across in this puzzle is VONTZ, which was really the only seed entry. One of my favorite TV shows of all time is M*A*S*H, and I’ve been able to make references to the show throughout my time at Chris Words, including the very specific clue [Final rank of Maj. Frank Burns after his promotion during his mental breakdown shortly after Margaret’s marriage] for LTCOL. The Season 5 episode “38-Across” is about the gang finding a New York Times crossword, and then struggling with the 5-letter word begins with a V at 38-Across (a slight to the 38th Parallel btw), which has been clued as [Yiddish bedbug]. Hawkeye and BJ call a crossword-loving friend of theirs who due to misunderstandings, brings an admiral with him to the camp “emergency”. After a long session of surprise surgery, Hawkeye tells the admiral about the situation, where the admiral gives the great line “You dragged us all the way up here just to get the word ‘vontz’?”

    I’ve been following the Pre-Shortzian Puzzle Project for a while now, wondering if they’d ever unearth the crossword that featured the word VONTZ. Eagle-eyed viewers of the show will note that the grid they are working on is not the one the dialogue is referring to, but it might have been possible for the puzzle to have existed. Unfortunately, the word VONTZ never appeared in any NYT puzzle, and I assume the producers of the show must have picked that word as the critical word because they liked it. The word is real btw, and vontz is mostly used as a term of endearment by an older Yiddish person to a younger person, like “You’re my little bedbug”.

    Nonetheless, just like it was on the show, 38-Across is VONTZ, making its crossword debut. The 4077 would be proud. Also, the last across word in the grid is MASHES, another nice nod.

    Hope you all enjoyed it, and we’ll be back with non-70s TV and non-Yiddish words in crosswords next week.

    Liked by 2 people

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