“T Party” by Randoph Ross – 9:46
Hi everyone. Jeffrey here. Did you know my middle name is STuarT? With 2 T’s?
Stuart is about the only word with 2 t’s that isn’t in this puzzle. “T Party” loads 70 T’s by my count into the grid, including a diagonal river stretching nearly from the top right to the bottom left. I really liked this one.
Theme answers: PreTTY much all of them.
1A. [Letters on Yuri Gagarin's helmet] – CCCP. The T Party starts with a C party. CCCP is Russian for USSR. Gimme for Canadians like me old enough to recall the classic Canada – USSR hockey series.
9A. [He cleans up in the Bronx] – A-ROD. Alex RODriguez batting fourth for the Yankees.
18A. ["I Am ___" (Paul Simon song)] – A ROCK
20A. [Fun run distance, briefly] – ONE K(ilometre)
33A. [Hard red winter and durum] – WHEATS /1D. [Members of a Carolina Indian nation] – CATAWBAS – Only tough crossing as WHEATS didn’t come to mind and CATAWBAS is new to me. 43A. [Russian workers' collective] – ARTEL didn’t help matters.
35A. [Costumes for the hippos in "Fantasia"] – TUTUS
39A. ["Annie Get Your Gun" star] – BETTY HUTTON
41A. [Half of a tapping sound] – PITTER patter. See BETTY HUTTON link above for more paTTer.
44A. [Spotted] – SEEN. Double T clue!
57A. [Hit-and-run participants?] – BATTERS. Hit-and-run is a common baseball sTraTegy, right Amy?
64A. [Some April 1 news stories] – HOAXES. We at the Fiend are serious folks and would never pull an April Fool’s Hoax on our wonderful readers.
87A. [Fun flavor for a sundae] – TUTTI FRUTTI. Fun to say, too. Please use in a sentence today. Does 114A. [Dreyer's East Coast brand] – EDYS have TUTTI FRUTTI?
94A. [Jennifer Lopez's "___ Funny"] – AIN’T IT
101A. [Burl Ives hit, with "A"] – LITTLE BITTY TEAR
112A. [Monteith of "Glee"] – CORY
2D. [Actor/musician Scatman] – CROTHERS
3D. [Car in a Prince song] – CORVETTE. Song selection is east today.
5D. [Exactly] – TO A T. AlTernaTe TiTle.
12D. [Rustic oath] – DANG IT. Those wacky rustics.
61D. [Four-time Masters champion] – Arnold PALMER
66D. [#1 hit for Elvis] – DON’T
68D. [Shark's foe] – JET. WesT Side STory gangs.
69D. [Broadway's LuPone] – PATTI
72D. [It may require a voucher at the office] – PETTY CASH. Hey, this is the Wall STreeT Journal. We only deal in big bucks.
78D. [They respond to your reservations] – MAITRE’DS. Me for ten seconds – what’s a MAIT RED?
87D. [Carmela's husband] – TONY. Who? I never watched the SOPRANO’s.
89D. [Tea Party sweetheart] – PALIN. Inspiration for the puzzle, perhaps?
28A. ["Cheerio!"] – TATA