Myth-Labeled

New York Times crossword June 3 / Constructed by Patrick Berry

Hope you remember your Greek mythology: Today’s puzzle is filled with ancient symbols that have become modern-day metaphors. The trick is that they’ve been clued as “WARNINGS,” giving us the crossword’s lisping title (“Myth-labeled”).

Perhaps the easiest “label” to recognize is 29 Across, “WARNING: May contain Greeks” — TROJAN HORSE. Other WARNINGS: “Suspension system prone to failure” is the SWORD OF DAMOCLES (23 Across); “Possible heart-related side effects” is CUPID’S ARROW (50 Across); “Cutting tool required” is GORDIAN KNOT (75 Across); “Do not open” is PANDORA’S BOX (96 Across);  and “Improper use could lead to jealousy, treachery and/or war” is the APPLE OF DISCORD (54 Down). A couple have non-Greek origins: FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH (“Effects on children unknown,” 103 Across) and FORBIDDEN FRUIT (“May cause damnation if swallowed,”4 Down).

Business Dept.: Didn’t realize that the “Company that owns Lands’ End” is SEARS (26 Across). “Its first car was the Model AA” is TOYOTA (33 Across). The “Maker of Reynolds Wrap” is ALCOA (19 Across). The “Company whose ads have ‘Peanuts’ characters” is MET LIFE (82 Across). And a “Big-box store” is IKEA (56 Across), which I would also argue is simply a “big box store,” because nearly all of its furniture comes unassembled in boxes.

For Fun Dept.: “Cache for cash, say” is a HOMOPHONE (41 Down). “Oscar winner for ‘Little Miss Sunshine’” is ALAN ARKIN (42 Down).

Childhood Nostalgia Dept.: “‘Bewitched’ regular Paul” is LYNDE (68 Down), who also appeared frequently on “Hollywood Squares.” From that same era, it was sad to see that “Family Feud” host Richard (“Survey says!”) Dawson died this weekend. Dawson was also in “Hogan’s Heroes,” of course, but those reruns never held my interest as a kid.

More Childhood Memories Dept.: I grew up in L.A. and often heard radio surf reports for REDONDO (“___ Beach, [California surfing mecca],” 79 Down). And “Part of L.A.P.D.” is LOS (45 Across). Been thinking a lot about SoCal this week but am too afraid to mention why, for fear of jinxing it.

Hope you enjoyed this POST (“Blog entry,” 48 Down)! I am off to circus school for an introductory lesson. Will report back next week if I haven’t injured myself.

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