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TRIPLE SPOONERISMS

New York Times, Sunday, April 8, 2018

Author: Patrick Berry
Editor: Will Shortz
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2287/11/19994/8/20182
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1.54980
Patrick Berry

This puzzle:

Rows: 21, Columns: 21 Words: 134, Blocks: 76 Missing: {JQVXZ} This is puzzle # 228 for Mr. Berry. NYT links: Across Lite PDF
Jeff Chen notes: I've never seen spoonerisms done with three-word phrases. They were tricky for me to untangle, so here's the list of base phrases: BEAK OF LAD STRUCK: streak of bad luck. THE STUCK HOPS HERE: the buck ... more
Jeff Chen notes:

I've never seen spoonerisms done with three-word phrases. They were tricky for me to untangle, so here's the list of base phrases:

BEAK OF LAD STRUCK: streak of bad luck.

THE STUCK HOPS HERE: the buck stops here.

PALE HAIRY MASS: male perry hass. Er … hail mary pass.

TERROR OF BAD GLIDINGS: bearer of … glad tidings?

ROCK STAR CASES: my stupid brain keeps starting this one with "cock." Thankfully, it's actually stock car races.

THE FANTA TRAY SALE: the Santa Fe Trail.

HEAL FIGHT AT ROME: this took me forever, embarrassing since there are only five possible permutations remaining. Feel right at home.

The best spoonerisms are the ones where 1.) it's a snap to figure out what the person actually intended, and 2.) the spoonerized phrase is titillating, embarrassing the speaker.

Luckily, a few of these did snap right into place for me. Not so luckily, very few of the resulting phrases amused me. No surprise – it's so tough to find phrases that work this way, that it's a small miracle that Patrick was able to find these seven.

Even with a theme that wasn't on my wavelength, I always appreciate a Berry grid, silky smooth as usual. I can count on one hand the number of constructors who can create a Sunday 140-word grid with just some minor KTEL NEATH kind of stuff – way, way, way under the norm.

Highlight for me: the Shortz-era debut of PENAL CODE, with a brilliant clue, misdirecting to English class: [Rules for forming sentences]. Puzzle was worth doing for that alone.

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© 2018, The New York TimesNo. 0408 ( 24,988 )
Across Down
1. Anesthetic of old : ETHER
6. Forcefully remove : RIPOUT
12. Very good, as a job : BANGUP
18. Purple candy's flavor, often : GRAPE
19. Sea-dwelling : OCEANIC
21. Things a spy may have many of : ALIASES
23. Stares slack-jawed : GAPES
24. What caused the nosebleed on the playground? : BEAKOFLADSTRUCK
26. Sponsor of U.S. Olympic swimmers : SPEEDO
28. Ball hit for fielding practice : FUNGO
29. Burro's call : BRAY
30. Tagline in an ad for Elmer's Glue-Ale? : THESTUCKHOPSBEER
35. Holiday song closer : SYNE
36. Bygone channel that aired "Veronica Mars" : UPN
37. Chill in the cooler : DOTIME
38. Finish filming : WRAP
40. Gets up : RISES
43. Bernadette of Broadway : PETERS
45. Succumb to sleepiness : NODOFF
50. High-flown, as writing : FLORID
52. Big ox : LUG
53. Discreet attention-getter : PSST
57. Lash with a bullwhip : LARUE
58. Deliberative bodies : SENATES
60. Description of a yeti? : PALEHAIRYMASS
63. Parodied : APED
65. Capacitate : ENABLE
66. Tip jar fillers : ONES
67. Novice parasailer's fear? : TERROROFBADGLIDINGS
73. Ingredient in a Roy Rogers : COLA
74. Coarse : RIBALD
75. What a Möbius strip lacks : ENDS
76. Containers for electric guitars? : ROCKSTARCASES
80. They're easy to take : GELCAPS
85. Unfamiliar : ALIEN
86. Quite a few : LOTS
87. It hangs around the neck : BIB
89. Sandwich with Russian dressing : REUBEN
90. One-room apartment, to Brits : BEDSIT
92. Motifs : THEMES
95. Like the questions in 20 Questions : YESNO
96. Very worst : PITS
99. "Law & Order" actor Jerry : ORBACH
101. Sealer for sailors? : TAR
102. Drawbacks : CONS
106. Best place to buy a platter of fruit-flavored sodas? : THEFANTATRAYSALE
111. Square footage : AREA
112. Bishop's headgear : MITER
113. Paradisiacal : EDENIC
114. Mend fences after Caesar's civil war? : HEALFIGHTATROME
120. Maker of PowerShot cameras : CANON
122. Apathetic response to "What's new?" : NOTMUCH
123. Leave behind : ABANDON
124. Something to live by : CREDO
125. Market offerings : SHARES
126. Trick-taking game : SPADES
127. "Napoleon Dynamite" star Jon : HEDER
1. Easter ___ : EGG
2. It's a bunch of garbage : TRASHPILE
3. Discovers by chance : HAPPENSON
4. Pentathlon items : EPEES
5. Complete policy overhaul, in D.C.-speak : RESET
6. 1987 action film originally given an X rating for violence : ROBOCOP
7. Winter driving hazard : ICE
8. Shell game object : PEA
9. Cooper's wood : OAK
10. Game with 108 cards : UNO
11. Small scraps : TIFFS
12. Hedgehog predator : BADGER
13. Second, or worse : ALSORAN
14. Quibble : NIT
15. Dresses : GARBS
16. There's enormous interest in it : USURY
17. Nut in pralines : PECAN
20. Caddie's selection : CLUB
22. ___ terrier : SKYE
25. From scratch : ANEW
27. Fizzler : DUD
30. Lays down the lawn? : TURFS
31. Classic seller of compilation albums : KTEL
32. Seek moolah from : HITUP
33. Alphabet ender : OMEGA
34. According to : PER
39. Cal ___ : POLY
41. Setting for a period piece : ERA
42. Instrument whose name means "three strings" : SITAR
44. What shopaholics do : SPEND
46. "The Martian" star : DAMON
47. Long-armed climber, for short : ORANG
48. Joins : FUSES
49. Own (up) : FESS
51. Kick out : DEPORT
54. Dance akin to the jitterbug : SHAG
55. Prized Siberian animal : SABLE
56. Bathroom floor, often : TILING
59. Podcast that won a 2014 Peabody Award : SERIAL
61. Detectives run them down : LEADS
62. More rare, perhaps : REDDER
64. Resonator guitar : DOBRO
67. John Kennedy ___, author of "A Confederacy of Dunces" : TOOLE
68. Charlton Heston title role : ELCID
69. Aids in golf course maintenance : RAKES
70. Irrefutable point : FACT
71. Play at maximum volume : BLAST
72. R&B's ___ Brothers : ISLEY
73. Sideways scuttler : CRAB
77. Cutlet? : SNIP
78. "Life Itself" memoirist Roger : EBERT
79. Swahili for "lion" : SIMBA
81. Actor's last line, maybe : CUE
82. Stayed sober : ABSTAINED
83. Rules for forming sentences : PENALCODE
84. Mock sound of disinterest : SNORE
88. Exhausted : BEAT
91. Tufted songbirds : TITMICE
93. Sweetie : HON
94. Multiplex count : SCREENS
97. Dark meat options : THIGHS
98. Jimmy's "Late Night" successor : SETH
100. Deceived : HAD
102. "High Hopes" lyricist Sammy : CAHN
103. Snacks in stacks : OREOS
104. Opposite of o'er : NEATH
105. "Frida" star Hayek : SALMA
107. Spanakopita ingredient : FETA
108. Ones who grasp elbows in greeting, by tradition : ARABS
109. "How revolting!" : YECCH
110. Drum kit component : SNARE
115. Lab coat? : FUR
116. FISA warrant objective : TAP
117. Genetic macromolecule : RNA
118. Unmatched : ODD
119. One of the Three Stooges : MOE
121. Winner of the most medals at the 2018 Winter Olympics: Abbr. : NOR

Answer summary: 11 unique to this puzzle, 1 unique to Shortz Era but used previously.

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