January 28, 2022


Constructor: Amanda Rafkin

Editor: Amanda Rafkin

Theme Answers:
PEANUT DRESSING (14A: It might come on the side with a Thai Crunch Salad)
BUTTER CROISSANT (27A: Flaky patisserie order with no filling)
JELLY ROLL MORTON (43A: Jazz pioneer with a sweet-sounding name)
TIME-LAPSE PHOTO (57A: Image of a plant growing from a seed to a sapling, e.g.)

Theme synopsis: Reading the first words of the theme answers in order, we discover it's PEANUT BUTTER JELLY TIME! More on the theme below.

And now a word from our constructor: 
Amanda: This puzzle is probably the biggest "sorry not sorry" moment of my puzzling life thus far. If you get the theme and it brings back some truly unusual memories of 2004, then my work here is done. If you need the point of reference or just want to revisit a truly bizarre moment in music's history, here's what you'll need in order to dive headfirst into whatever exactly this was.

Things I learned:
Random thoughts and interesting things:
  • BEE (1A: "More Than Honey" insect) More Than Honey is a 2012 documentary about colonies of BEES in California, Switzerland, China, and Austria. 
  • PIE (13A: "Waitress" dessert) The 2015 musical, Waitress, is based on a 2007 movie of the same name. Both are about Jenna, a baker who bakes PIEs to reflect what is happening in her life.
  • SHE (18A: "___ Loves Me" (1963 musical)) The 1963 musical, SHE Loves Me, is an adaptation of a 1937 play, Parfumerie. The 1998 movie, You've Got Mail, was also based on Parfumerie.
  • JELLY ROLL MORTON (43A: Jazz pioneer with a sweet-sounding name) JELLY ROLL MORTON was a pianist, bandleader, and composer. His song, "Original JELLY ROLL Blues," is one of the first published jazz compositions.
  • TIME-LAPSE PHOTO (57A: Image of a plant growing from a seed to a sapling, e.g.) If you want to produce a TIME-LAPSE PHOTO or video, the most important thing you will need is patience.
  • ADA (62A: "___ Twist, Scientist) I was excited to see a reference to the children's book, ADA Twist, Scientist! I learned about this book from the April 23, 2021 puzzle (also by Amanda Rafkin). The main character of the book was named to honor scientists ADA Lovelace and Marie Curie. ADA Marie is a young girl who is full of questions. Shortly before I learned about ADA Twist, Scientist, my CSA farmer, Farmer Kate, had just had her first child, a girl named ADA Marie. I was so excited  to find a book about an ADA Marie that I bought two copies of the book, and gave one of them to baby ADA Marie. The book was a huge hit, and Farmer Kate told me she shared it with her grandma for whom her daughter is named. Thank you crossword puzzle, for helping me find a perfect gift!
  • BEDS (66A: Places for catnaps) BEDS are good places for people to take catnaps,
    and for cats to take naps.
  • PUPU (14D: ___ platter (assortment of appetizers) A PUPU platter consists of an assortment of meat and seafood appetizers, such as egg rolls, spare ribs, chicken wings, fried shrimp, crab rangoon, etc. 
  • SITCOM (24D: "Sort Of," for example) Sort Of is a Canadian SITCOM that premiered in November 2021. The TV series centers on the life of Sabi Mehboob (played by Bilal Baig), a non-binary millennial child of Pakistani immigrants working as a bartender at an LGBTQ bookstore and cafe and as a nanny.
  • ONCE (26D: First word of "Into the Woods") Into the Woods is a 1986 Broadway musical on which a 2014 movie of the same name was based. The musical intertwines the plots of several fairy tales. "ONCE upon a time..."
  • PARASOLS (38D: Umbrellas seen in Seurat's "A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte") If you'd like to see Georges Seurat's painting, A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grand Jatte in person, you'll need to plan a trip to the Art Institute of Chicago. Perhaps you could count the number of PARASOLS in the painting. 

    Geography review:

    • SFO (39A: Bay Area airport code) The San Francisco International Airport (SFO) serves California's Bay Area.
    • ARI (39A: Tempe's state, on scoreboards) Tempe, ARIzona is home to ARIzona State University.
    This puzzle has a wacky theme, so of course I enjoyed it! Let me tell you a story (that you may remember from the early 2000s...) The musical group, Buckwheat Boyz, produced one record. From their self-titled album, they released a single in 2001, titled "PEANUT BUTTER JELLY TIME." The song's lyrics mainly consist of repetitions of the nonsensical line, "It's PEANUT BUTTER JELLY TIME." A couple of people had the idea to create a flash animation of a dancing banana singing the song - yes, a dancing banana. The video went viral, and lead to many variations being created. The video has appeared in many areas of pop culture. I had pretty much forgotten about the dancing banana and PEANUT BUTTER JELLY TIME, and it was delightful to be reminded. In addition to the PEANUT BUTTER and JELLY in the theme, this puzzle features a FEAST. We have a PUPU platter of appetizers (some of which may have been prepared in a WOK),  followed by a Thai Crunch Salad with PEANUT DRESSING accompanied by a BUTTER CROISSANT, and a SLICE of pizza. To drink we have a choice of ALE, a SODA with ICE, or a hot toddy (which is hiding OTTO). And for dessert there is PIE, a THICK milkshake, and a SLAB of cake. This puzzle was a delicious way to begin my Friday!