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Popular culture sister website of The Onion / SUN 7-17-22 / Like a geocentric orbit by which the orbital interval is greater than 24 hours / Highland boating spot / Plant with clusters of tiny white flowers / Bhutanese bovines / Outdated Imperial title / Resort chain since 1950 / Missouri website of 2014 civil rights protests

Constructor: Greg Slovacek

Relative issue: Shrug … onerous, simple, I dunno

THEME: “It is All On the Desk” — this puzzle apparently depicts a hypothetical sport of Texas Maintain ‘Em, a wide range of poker … nicely, right here, I will let the puzzle notes clarify:

So there are, I believe, 4 “palms” specified by the grid (every hand consisting of two playing cards showing in the identical Throughout reply), after which there are 5 communal playing cards laid out diagonally within the heart of the grid. The most effective hand among the many 4 is the hand in 123-Throughout, the place a King and Jack of hearts can mix with the Queen, Ace and 10 of hearts within the communal playing cards to make a ROYAL FLUSH (39D: 123-Throughout’s holding that wins this puzzle’s sport). There’s additionally a cutesy little reference to the two-card “palms” on this number of card sport (42D: Indicator on a clock … or considered one of 4 on this puzzle?) (MINUTE HAND). Then there is a reference to a film that “featured” Texas Maintain ’em (???) (131A: 1998 Matt Damon movie that includes this puzzle’s sport) (“ROUNDERS“). There’s in all probability different stuff crammed in right here too that I am simply not seeing proper now. Anyway, in case it wasn’t clear, every “card” on this “sport” is a rebus sq. the place the go well with works for the Down reply and the worth (e.g. 2, 10, King, and so on.) works for the Throughout.

The “palms”:

  • QUEEN (of golf equipment) ANNE’S LACE (of spades)
  • NETWO (of hearts) RKING (of golf equipment) EVENT
  • SURFACE (of golf equipment) TEN (of spades) SION
  • SMOKING (of hearts) JACK (of hearts) ETS

The communal playing cards:

  • TEN (of hearts) DS BAR
  • SMITTEN (of golf equipment)
  • PLACE (of hearts) BO
  • 7 (of diamonds) SEAS
  • WHITE QUEEN (of hearts)

Phrase of the Day: “ROUNDERS” (131-Throughout) —

Rounders is a 1998 American drama movie concerning the underground world of high-stakes poker, directed by John Dahl and starring Matt Damon and Edward Norton. The story follows two pals who have to win at high-stakes poker to shortly repay a big debt. The time period rounder refers to an individual touring round from metropolis to metropolis searching for high-stakes card video games.

Rounders opened to blended evaluations and was reasonably profitable on the field workplace. Following the poker growth within the early 2000s, the movie grew to become a cult hit. (wikipedia)

• • •

Hey, hey, what? You realize what I would do if I needed to play poker? Effectively, first, I would ask myself “self, are you feeling OK? You haaaaaaaaate poker and that entire early-’00s TV poker tradition playing on line casino dudes ugh you ****ing hate it, are you OK?” however as soon as I would established that I used to be certainly OK and that I simply needed to play some poker, what, what I would do? Effectively I will let you know what I’d not do, and that’s, resolve a crossword. This factor could certainly be an architectural marvel of the primary order, I do not know, and I do not know as a result of the Solely cause I solved this puzzle At All was as a result of, nicely, it is my job. I’ve to. I’ve by no means, ever not needed to *begin* a puzzle. Even after I see a byline that makes me go “nicely, this in all probability is not going to be for me,” I additionally suppose, “hey, you by no means know, at the moment may shock you!” However at the moment, the Puzzle Notes alone would’ve made me shut my laptop and stroll away. And certain sufficient, the fixing expertise was as a lot of a tedious ordeal as I anticipated. Moreso. It took me like half an hour simply to explain the puzzle (above) and *incompletely* kind out all of the card-related stuff. Pfffffff, wow. You’d should Actually like poker to love this one, I would suppose. Once more, on a technical stage, I can not communicate to “high quality.” The “high quality” of the development was solely irrelevant to me, because the very matter, to say nothing of the method of working by it, was 100% of no curiosity to me. Non-theme solutions seem like a considerable a part of this grid, however I do not keep in mind any. I used to be too busy making an attempt to determine, fully in opposition to my will, learn how to play Texas Maintain ’em. I believed the three playing cards within the very center have been the communal ones, however no, it is all 5 on the diagonal there. As soon as I figured that out, the remainder was fairly simple. 4 Throughout solutions containing two “playing cards” every, these are the 4 “palms.” And SMOKING JACKET wins. Congrats to SMOKING JACKET, a real hero, I hope he goes on to seem on ESPN6 some day.

Principally this was a slog. That’s, it was slow-going as a result of I needed to preserve checking to see which rebus was working by which path. It was difficult, however not advanced, or significantly troublesome. The toughest “card” for me By Far was the two of hearts, particularly HIGH-EARTH (!?!?!). Yeeesh. I did not even know that was … a factor (12D: Like a geocentric orbit by which the orbital interval is greater than 24 hours). Based mostly on how lengthy and extremely particular the clue is, I am guessing that could be a factor solely to the NERDIER amongst you (38A: Extra versed in esoterica, perhaps). Unsure what else there may be to touch upon right here. I had SLOVAK earlier than SLAVIC, that was enjoyable (80A: From Serbia or Croatia, say). Huge geographical blind spot on the subject of central Europe. I keep in mind through the Balkan disaster within the early ’90s, my head simply refused to absorb all of the names and locations. Simply … would not course of it. However to be truthful my mind would not do a lot within the early ’90s besides marvel why I made a decision to go Michigan as an alternative of Texas the place it was heat they usually had truly supplied me funding (I finally acquired a tuition waiver and stipend at Michigan, too, however not after … let’s simply say, some heavy psychological and emotional dues). So I keep in mind CNN’s Lynne Russell saying “Bosnia-Herzegovina” lots, and never a lot else. Can you are feeling me not wanting to put in writing concerning the precise puzzle at the moment? Are you able to? DOEST thou really feel it?! The kindest factor I can say at the moment is that it looks as if it took a whole lot of thought and work to make this. And I’m merely not the viewers this puzzle is in search of. I hope this puzzle finds its followers. Good day.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld 

P.S. when you’re questioning what the hell you are purported to enter within the “card” squares in an effort to protect your streak on the app or no matter, it appears like the primary phrase of the cardboard worth ought to work. After I hit “reveal all” in my software program, that is what confirmed up (see posted grid). There’s additionally this:



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