May 1, 2016

Sunday May 1, 2016 Kathleen Fay O'Brien

 Theme:  "Floss" (F-loss). F sound is dropped from the start of one word in each theme entry.
 
23A. Perfect apartment deal? : GOLDEN LEASE. Golden Fleece.  For Jason and the Argonauts.

25A. Saying "Break a leg," say? : STAGE RITE. Stage fright.

46A. Plumbing school basic? : WRENCH LESSON. French lesson for Splynter.

71A. Traditional wisdom about hustlers? : DANCE LORE. Dance floor.

95A. Astronomers' monthly reading? : ORBS MAGAZINE. Forbes magazine.

119A. Song about a yellow ribbon? : OAK BALLAD. Folk ballad.

123A. Hooting, mostly? : OWL LANGUAGE. Foul language.
  
35D. Supply at the thermometer factory? : READY MERCURY. Freddie Mercury.

40D. Beet-flavored drink? : ROOT COCKTAIL. Fruit cocktail.

What a great title. I recall kicking around  a "Drop the f-bomb" idea with Don G ages ago.

All theme entries go through spelling changes. Very consistent. Kathleen dropped three F sound from the last word, 6 from the first word. No odd man out.

Across:    

1. Some "No Passing" road sections : ESSES

6. Journalist Roberts : COKIE

11. Tests with printed patterns, briefly : ECGs. Had to wait for the C as I just could not nail CATTY (12D. Showing one's claws, so to speak).
 
15. "Phooey!" : DANG. And 34. "Phooey!" : NERTS

19. 1814 treaty site : GHENT. Treaty of Ghent.

20. Dadaism pioneer : ERNST (Max)

21. Worn item that actually originated in Ecuador : PANAMA HAT. I'd have chickened out and broke this answer and LIE AROUND (125A. Relax) into two entries.

26. "TMI!" : SPARE ME

27. __ Authority : PORT

29. Minor adjustment : TWEAK. Rich often tweaks 50% of the clues. I fare slightly better on Sundays. But totally suck on Mondays/Tuesdays.

30. Descendant of Sperry Rand : UNISYS. Unknown trivia to me.

32. Likely to pry : NOSY

38. Traditionally red structure : BARN

41. Roller with leaves : TEA CART. Tea leaves.

43. Situation of intense scrutiny : HOT SEAT

45. Preview to a view, for short : IMO. Tricky clue.
 
49. Islands staple : TARO

50. "__ here!" : LOOKEE

52. Glide on powder : SKI. Did not think of snow.

53. Portent : OMEN

55. N.L. lineup absentees : DHs.  Also 74A. Ernie Banks epithet : MR. CUB And 17D. 2015 N.L. MVP Bryce Harper, e.g. : NAT

56. Highly values : ESTEEMS

58. The 114th began in 2015 : CONGRESS. So the Supreme Court is older than Congress?

62. "Roundabout" rockers : YES. Unfamiliar with the band or the song.

63. Flip over : CAPSIZE

66. It has all five black keys in its scale : D FLAT. Got via crosses.

67. Singer Mann : AIMEE

69. Black, in verse : EBON

73. Go like hotcakes : SELL

76. Karnak's country : EGYPT

77. "Please help me out" : BE A DEAR

80. Sound of fear : EEK

81. Sunday dinner entrée : RIB ROAST. We don't have a traditional Sunday dinner. How about your family?

84. Little shooter : MINICAM. Great clue.

87. Traitor : RAT

88. Scottish hillside : BRAE

89. Lager alternative : ALE

92. Working : ON DUTY

93. Top-billed : STAR
 
100. CD-__ : ROM

101. Canton natives : OHIOANS. I always think of Guangzhou when I see "Canton".
 
103. Key part of Bruce Wayne's wardrobe : BATSUIT

104. 10001 letters : NY NY. Zip code.

105. "M.O." rapper : NELLY

106. Many a reception : GALA

107. Emulate Cher in the '70s : GO SOLO. Also 130. Cher's former partner : SONNY

110. __ law : LEASH

113. Valley where David fought Goliath : ELAH. Valley of Elah.

115. Came out : EMERGED
 
126. Backs (away) : SHIES

127. Ottoman Empire founder : OSMAN

128. Banned apple spray : ALAR. And 122D. Banned bug spray : DDT

 129. Part of Q.E.D. : ERAT

131. Storage facilities : SHEDS

Down:

1. They're usually broken before use : EGGS. Also got via crosses. D'oh!

2. Mom-and-pop enterprise : SHOP

3. Ward of Hollywood : SELA

4. Evasive strategy : END RUN

5. Dutchman who painted "The Surprise" : STEEN. Can you link "The Surprise" painting for me?

6. Frozen pizza brand : CELESTE

7. Rock to refine : ORE

8. Hiker's burden : KNAPSACK

9. Schoolyard retort : IS SO

10. Infinite : ETERNAL

11. Some 45-rpm records : EPs

13. Nibble : GNAW

14. Wise one : SAGE

15. Most gloomy : DARKEST. Don't lose hope.


16. Sushi fish : AHI. Not our regular EEL.

18. Old AT&T rival : GTE

22. Was serious about : MEANT

24. Abbr. for people with only two names : NMI. I don't have middle name.
 
28. Raced : TORE

31. Desires : YENS

33. Rd. atlas listings : STS

36. Chapel Hill athlete : TAR HEEL

37. Eponymous Fox weekly news show : STOSSEL (John). Never watched his show.


38. Anger : BILE

39. Biblical prophet : AMOS

42. Stylish : CHIC

43. Betting favorite, often : HOME TEAM

44. People : ONES

46. Cry : WEEP

47. Radiation units : REMs. Learned from doing xwords. Never know what it stands for.

48. Like a June day, to Lowell : SO RARE


51. Reeves of "John Wick" : KEANU
 
54. Codebreaker's org. : NSA

57. "May I approach" court conferences : SIDEBARS. Tiny BAR dupe with ROLLBAR (94. Racecar safety feature) 
 
59. "Awake and Sing!" dramatist : ODETS (Clifford)

60. Patriots' org. : NFL

61. Goo amount : GLOB

64. Croatian capital : ZAGREB. Tinbeni's old haunt.

65. Companion of Ares : ENYO. I forgot. We had this sometime ago.

68. "Again ... " : I SAID

69. "Nature" author : EMERSON

70. Live partner : BREATHE. Live and breathe.

72. Tax season VIP : CPA

75. "I need a short break" : BRB (Be Right Back)

78. Belmonts frontman : DION

79. Kin of -trix : ENNE. Or ETTE.

82. Golfer's choice : IRON

83. Luggage danglers : TAGS
 
85. Loads : A TON. Not A LOT.

86. "Goodness!" : MY MY. And 117. "Goodness!" : EGAD

90. Texas Air Force base : LAUGHLIN. Well, gimme for D-Otto and Anon-T. Unknown to me.

91. He played Emile in Broadway's "South Pacific" : EZIO (Pinza). I only watched the movie "South Pacific". I talk like Bloody Mary.
 
96. Agcy. that aids start-ups : SBA

97. Guy : MALE

98. Stumped : AT A LOSS

99. "Piece of cake" : IT'S EASY

102. Annually : A YEAR. A partial.

104. "I have time" : NO RUSH

106. Togo neighbor : GHANA

108. Every, in an Rx : OMN. I won't dare to put this or TER in a grid. Rich just told me he would not allow DAMN any more.

109. The 5,922 of a Taj Mahal model : LEGOS

111. Natural balm : ALOE

112. Mark indicating a musical phrase : SLUR

114. Dr. Seuss's "Horton Hears __" : A WHO

116. Phone download : GAME

118. TV sites : DENS

119. Ipanema greeting : OLA

120. Confine to bed, maybe : AIL. Boomer had to take a cane when we walked yesterday. His right hip gave him so much pain. He normally toughs it out the elbow and shoulder pain. This hip pain is something else.
121. Mauna __ : KEA

124. Novelist Deighton : LEN

C.C.