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Author Topic: The October 10 crossword is right on the money  (Read 1198 times)


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The October 10 crossword is right on the money
« on: October 10, 2016, 03:47:36 PM »
Joel Mackerry's first crossword appeared in February 2015. Today's puzzle is only his fourth to be published. Here are the theme answers:

Pizza topping veggie: GREENPEPPER
Baked-in-their-shells seafood dish: CLAMSCASINO
Tradition filled fare of Europe and West Asia: CABBAGEROLL

I detest the use of the word "veggie" as a shortened form of "vegetable." I also detest other shortened words such as "fridge" for "refrigerator." But I digress. "Down payment, and what the long answers have in common (besides being food)" is CASHUPFRONT. Green, lettuce and cabbage are slang terms for paper money for one obvious reason: the color. But why do we call a dollar bill a "clam"? "Clam" is short for "clamshell" -- yes, another one of those shortened words -- and strings of clamshells were used as currency by native Americans, mostly in the region which corresponds to modern-day California. A. L. Kroeber's 1919 Handbook Of Indians In California explains the value of the clamshells in the Miwok culture:

"Clamshell disk currency was less precious than in the north, though that may have been one of the directions from which it reached the Miwok. Its value in American terms is said to have averaged $5 a yard, only a fraction of the figure at which the southern Maidu rated it. Whole strung olivella shells went at $1 a yard among both groups. The cylinders made from magnesite by the southeastern Pomo reached the hill Miwok but were scarce and valuable. Possibly clamshell money traveled to them from the Chumash via the Yokuts, as well as from the Pomo; whence its abundance and comparative depreciation."

"French state" is ETAT, which is not used in English. "Blue, in Baja" is AZUL, which is not used in English. "Siena sweetheart" is CARA, which is not used in English. "Spanish groceries" is BODEGAS, which is not used in English. "Pirates' cry" is YAR. In pirate movies, yes -- but has any real pirate ever said "Yar"? I doubt it.

"Sara of baking" is LEE. There really was a Sara Lee -- she was the daughter of Charles Lubin, who, from 1935 to 1956, co-owned Kitchens Of Sara Lee, a chain of seven bakeries in the Chicago area. Consolidated Foods Corporation bought the bakeries in 1956. The company changed its name to Sara Lee Corporation in 1985. In 2012, the corporation was split into two companies. The North American company is Hillshire Brands, which continues to make bakery propducts under the Sara Lee name. International beverage and bakery operations are handled by Netherlands-based Douwe Egberts Master Blenders. Sara Lee's famous slogan is "Everybody doesn't like something but nobody doesn't like Sara Lee." Ummm.......yeah, that makes sense. I think.


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