Nov 27, 2014

Thursday, November 27, 2014 C.C. Burnikel

Theme: "It's GivingThanks Day!"

Well, that's not really the theme, but how appropriate to have our dear leader as today's constructor, so we can give her double thanks. First, for creating this fun corner. And second, for entertaining us with her creative puzzles. Thank you, C.C.!

17-Across. *Four Corners locale : COLORADO PLATEAU.

23-Across. *Arctic wolf prey : CARIBOU.

32-Across. *Car named for a California city : CHEVY MALIBU.

52-Across. *1965 Jane Fonda title role : CAT BALLOU.

67-Across. With 68-Across, "Later," or, phonetically, what the answers to starred clues have : SEE YOU. 68-Across. See 67-Across : AROUND. Each entry has a "C" and a "U" around the edges.

You may have noticed the unusual grid. It is symmetrical right to left, but not top to bottom.  That was necessary to accommodate the 15-7-11-9-12 theme entries. The long down entries were nice: TALK IS CHEAP and RHETT BUTLER's full name. Let's see what else she has dished up for us.


1. Beijing trio? : DOTS. Cute misdirection. The dots over the i's and the j. And an appropriate start, with a nod to her native land.

5. Bridges of Hollywood : LLOYD. Of all his movies, I remember him best from this one.

10. First name at Woodstock : ARLO. Our old friend Guthrie is back.

14. Four Corners state : UTAH. A clecho with 17-Across, but it is not part of the theme.

15. Seeker's quarry : HIDER. C.C. doesn't usually like fabricated words, but in the game you are either a hider or a seeker.

16. Send : SHIP.

20. They may be required for rides : TOKENS. Do you call it the subway or the metro?

21. "The way things are ..." : AS IT IS.

22. Yale Bowl yeller : ELI.

27. "Four Quartets" monogram : TSE. Thomas Stearns Eliot.  I never read those.

28. Offspring: abbr. : DESC.endant.

30. Trendy cuff site : EAR.

31. Awards for J.K. Rowling and Hugh Laurie : OBEsOrder of the British Empire.

37. Hawaiian Airlines destination : TAHITI.

39. Election Day sticker : I VOTED.

42. Nebula in Taurus, familiarly : THE CRAB. Amazing photo from the Hubble telescope.

44. Prepared for a proposal : KNEELED.

45. Spanish she-bear : OSA.

46. Former upscale Manhattan eatery : ELAINE'S. It closed after she died in 2010, and is now The Writing Room.

48. Memorable period : ERA.

49. Burst open : POP. It's the season for POPping a bottle of bubbly!

50. Kerfuffle : ADO.

51. Halladay who won both the A.L. and N.L. Cy Young awards : ROY. I knew we would have a baseball reference!

58. Boris' sidekick : NATASHA. Of "The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show" fame.

61. "Raging Bull" boxer : LAMOTTA.

65. Marvel Comics assassin : ELEKTRA. With only E-L-E-K-*-R-A in place, I WAG'd ELEKTRA. (Pretty clever, huh?)

66. Hits hard, as the brakes : SLAMS ON.


1. Like many ventilation systems : DUCTED.

2. "Becket" star : O'TOOLE. Peter holds the record for the number of Academy Award nominations without a win.

3. "Actions speak louder than words" : TALK IS CHEAP. Nice fill.

4. Flat or pump : SHOE.

5. High capital : LHASA. C.C. just linked the Potala Palace in LHASA the other day.

6. Jar topper : LID.

7. Prefix with meter : ODO. Odo-meter.

8. "You betcha!" : YEP. I had YEs for a while, and it messed me up from immediately seeing PLATEAU in the first theme answer.

9. 1964 Tony Randall role : DR LAO. He was more than two-faced.

10. Piedmont wine area : ASTI. Spumanti also makes a nice POP when you open it.

11. Bonnie Blue's dad : RHETT BUTLER. "Gone With the Wind."  Nailed it!

12. Make contact (with) : LIAISE.

13. Musical works : OPUSES. I put it in, changed it to OPERAS, then took it back out when AS IT IS showed up.

18. GOP org. : RNCRepublican National Committee.

19. Sun Devils' sch. : ASUArizona State University.

24. Juan Carlos, por ejemplo : REY. Spanish "king."

25. "__ the Walrus" : I goo goo joob.

26. It may be backless : BRA. To go with dresses like these.
They are...

29. In vogue : CHIC. Tres chic!

31. Wind with keys : OBOE.

33. To be, to Napoleon : ETRE.

34. Lab container : VIAL. Because Erlenmeyer flask wouldn't fit.
35. Check-in delayer : LINE. I bet there were plenty of check-in delays at airports in the Northeast this week.

36. "Concord Sonata" composer : IVES. It's Thursday, so we get a clue for Charles instead of Burl.

37. 'Vette roof option : T-TOP.

38. "Now I get it" : AH SO.

40. Finnish architect Saarinen : EERO.

41. Do-or-die time : D-DAY.

43. Words to a black sheep : BAA BAA.

44. Small hills : KNOLLS. Probably the world's most infamous grassy KNOLL.

47. The Snake R. runs through it : IDA.ho

52. Like unnaturally thick makeup : CAKY.

53. Apropos of : AS TO.

54. Drive-__ window : THRU.

55. Refrain syllables : LA LA.

56. Bridge master Sharif : OMAR. A man of many talents, he also starred in "Lawrence of Arabia" and "Dr. Zhivago."

57. Man, to Dante : UOMO. He was a couple hundred years too early to be an Italian renaissance man.

58. Zombie Nation console : NESNintendo Entertainment System. You can play it online here.

59. Microbrew choice : ALE.

60. Ball holder : TEE.

62. Sch. in Nashville : TSUTennessee State University.

63. Slew : TON.

64. "What else?" : AND...?

Nope, nothing else. I'm done! Time to go make the turkey...


Note from C.C.:

Happy Thanksgiving to our blog readers, esp our faithful regulars. Thanks for your daily solving reports, constructive nitpicking, links, recipes, computer advice, health tips (now, how can I stop this nagging cough?), poems, robocall rants, bike ride accounts & other random thoughts. Thanks for sharing. You enriched my very sheltered life.

I'm also grateful to LA Times Daily Crossword editor Rich Norris, his assistant Patti Varol, his three test solvers, his fact checker and all the LAT constructors for the quality puzzles they provide to us day after day. As I mentioned in this puzzle, Rich makes me look smarter than I am. That's not the only puzzle he helped me, and I'm not the only constructor he helped. He just does everything in a very quiet & consistent manner. Rich even replies every reader mail, despite his heavy workload and limited resources. We're lucky to have such a knowledgeable, generous, patient and humble editor whose top priority is always his solvers.

I'm also incredibly grateful for my hard-working blogging team: always there for me Santa Argyle, witty Jazzbumpa, super-efficient foodie Steve, bubbly Marti, cheerful Lemonade, talented Splynter & eager to learn Husker Gary. As I said before, it's fun to blog once or twice, spending 3 + hours on each post every week is serious job. Thank you so much for the dedication and time, friends, you made this blog what it is today. Thank you also for trusting me and letting me guiding you (mostly misguiding) on puzzle-making. I know I'm not easy to work with, thanks for toughing it out!

Nov 26, 2014

Wednesday, November 27, 2014 Matt Skozcen

Theme:  I'M OUTTA HERE.  But first, I have a puzzle to blog.  The second word of each two-word theme answer is a synonym for "makes an exit." But in each theme fill, the word of interest is used in a different sense.

17. Titillating passages : JUICY PARTS.  Interesting sections of salacious literature.  Feel free to make DF jokes. Parting is such sweet sorrow.

28. "You're the Top" musical : ANYTHING GOES.  A phrase meaning something like "without limits."  This is the only instance where the target word is a verb in fill context.  The others are all nouns.  On we GO.

Cole Porter Classic

 47. Indulgent desserts : BANANA SPLITS.  So many possibilities.   But we'll just go bananas with sliced bananas, ice cream scoops and assorted toppings.  SPLIT is the slangiest of these synonyms.

63. October tourist attraction : FALL LEAVES.   Those things that fall off of trees, leaving them bare.  When Fall leaves, Winter is coming.

Try as I might, I could make nothing of JUICY ANYTHING BANANA FALL.  Hi gang, JazzBumpa here, ready to go all the way with Matt's puzzle.


1. Black-tie affairs : GALAS.

6. Suffragist Carrie : CATT.  Among other things, she founded the League of Women Voters

10. Antelope's playmate, in song : DEER.  Oh, give me a home . . .

14. "Show your cards" : I CALL.  Poker

15. Waikiki wingding : LUAU.  Tropical beach party.

16. Concerning : IN REIn regard to.

19. Mouselike critter : VOLE.  AKA field mouse, a small rodent resembling a mouse but with a stouter body, a shorter, hairy tail, a slightly rounder head, smaller ears and eyes, and differently formed molars. [Wiki

20. Beantown hockey great : ORR.  Bobby of the Boston Bruins.

21. Missay, say : ERR.  A verbal mistake, for example.  ERR + ORR = ERROR.

22. Courtroom figure : ACCUSED.  The alleged perp.

24. Opposite of 60-Down : EAST.  Two entries consisting of exactly zero clues.  MEH!

26. Postal service : AIR MAIL.  One of the services offered by the U. S. Postal Service.

33. "A plague o' both your houses" speaker : MERCUTIO.  Romeo's moody, temper mental, and occasionally humorous chum.

36. Pianist Gilels : EMIL.  Flying fingers.

Back to Bach.

37. Mt. Hood locale : OREgon.  Idaho neighbor, potato supplier.

38. Arles approval : BON.  Good French.

39. Graffiti signature : TAG.

42. Wrath : IRE.  IRE-ish eyes are not smiling.

43. Brest friend : AMIE.  Good French, possibly bosom buddy.

45. Fixed firmly : CEMENTED.  Glued in place.

51. __ cheese : GRILLED.  Lunch sandwich.

52. Friend : CHUM.  Possibly an AMIE.

56. Words from a Latin lover : YO TE AMOI love you, if by "Latin" you mean "Spanish."

59. "Batman" sound effect : POW.  From the comics or the old, campy TV series.

61. Mil. address : A P OArmy Post Office.

62. "... a Loaf of Bread ..." poet : OMAR. Khayyám, a Sufi mystic, Persian polymath, philosopher, mathematician, astronomer and poet. He also wrote treatises on mechanics, geography, mineralogy, music, and Islamic theology.  [Wiki]

66. Make oneself heard : YELL.  Voice raising.

67. Most fit for duty : ONE-A.  Military draft status.

68. All too public spat : SCENE.  Don't make one.

69. Just : ONLY.  Here, "just" is an adverb, meaning "by a small margin."

70. "Ratatouille" rat who aspires to be a chef : REMY.  Cartoon movie.

71. Is inclined : TENDS.  We all have our tendencies.


 1. Fatigued action figure? : G I JOE.  The fatigues, in which this figure might be clothed, is attire designed for non-combat duty assignments.

2. Lexus rival : ACURA. Automobiles.

3. Burrows : LAIRS.  Here, "burrows" is a plural noun, indicating the sheltered homes of some critters.

4. "__ 13.5% BY VOL": wine label phrase : ALCohol.

5. Leonard __: Roy Rogers : SLYE.  Star of a TV cowboy show. Did he have a family stone?

They're outta here

6. Bayer allergy relief brand : CLARITIN.

7. Gold: Pref. : AUR-.    From the Latin aurum.

8. Teahouse floor mat : TATAMI.

9. Native of Florence, e.g. : TUSCAN.  Resident of a city in a region of Italy.

10. Disclose : DIVULGE.

11. Grandson of Eve : ENOS.  Son of Seth, Adam and Eve's 3rd son.

12. First name in whodunits : ERLE.  Complete name: Erle Stanley Gardner, best known for appearing in crossword puzzles.  He also wrote the Perry Mason mystery novels.

13. Stalk by the swamp : REED.  I'm quite fond of this clue, which could also refer to stealthily hunting frogs, but here refers to the main stem of a plant.

18. Seek divine guidance from : PRAY TO.  Religion.

23. Oft-mooched item, briefly : CIGarette.

25. Center X, in a game : TAC.  The game is tic-tac-toe.  I cannot verify the alleged fact IN RE: the center X, nor the location of the toe. 

27. Sorority letter : RHO.  Seventeenth Greek letter, uppercase Ρ, lowercase ρ or ϱ.

29. Well-used pencil : NUB.  Remnant of a worn out, oft-sharpened pencil.

30. Forget to put in : OMIT.  Also can be done on purpose.

31. Where the Shannon flows : EIRE.  Or Erin.  Mind your perps. Either way, the Emerald Isle.

32. "Call of the Wild" vehicle : SLED.  Pulled by dogs in Jack London's 1903 Klondike gold rush adventure story.

33. Ancient kingdom bordering Judah : MOAB.  Along the eastern shore of the Dead Sea in modern Jordan.

34. Witty Bombeck : ERMA.  Humor writer.

35. Check : REIN. Here, a verb, from the act of slowing or stopping a horse [or possibly dogs] by pulling on its reins.

39. Work for the small screen : TELEPLAY.  Here, "work" is a noun, indicating a screen play written specifically for television.

40. Photo developing compound : AMIDOL.   2,4-Diaminophenol,  C6H3(NH2)2OH, for the chemist in you. 

41. Understand : GET.  Get it?

44. With gusto : EAGERLY.

45. Lowest-ranking NCO : CPL. Army corporal.

46. Defense advisory gp. : NSCNational Security Council

48. Org. that publishes America's 1st Freedom : NRANational Rifle Association.

49. Target : AIM FOR With one's rifle, I suppose

50. Everett of "Citizen Kane" : SLOANE.  Prolific stage, screen and TV actor.

53. Safe harbor : HAVEN.  Cognate of Hafen, the German word for harbor.

54. Flip over : UPEND.  The up end ends up down.  Get it?

55. Three-time NBA MVP Malone : MOSES.  He went directly from high school to pro ranks in the ABA in 1974, and had a 21 year career playing for several ABA and NBA teams.  He was admitted to the Hall of Fame in 2001.

516. It can walk the dog : YO-YO.  Like this.

57. Comet, to some : OMEN.  Frex:  "When the red star bleeds and the darkness gathers, Azor Ahai shall be born again amidst smoke and salt."

58. Starbucks size : TALL.  Short, TALL, Grande, and Venti coffee orders.

60. Opposite of 24-Across : WEST.  Sure.

64. Apollo vehicle, briefly : LEMLunar Excursion Module.  American space program on the moon.

65. Kiss guitarist Frehley : ACE.   Paul Daniel.  How can I resist sealing this with a Kiss?

That's it gang.  Now I am Outta here.

Cool regards and happy trails!

Nov 25, 2014

Tuesday, November 25, 2014 Peter A. Collins

Theme: Joltin' Joe - A puzzle about Joe on his 100th birthday.

18. 1967 song that asks, "Where have you gone, 60-Across?" : MRS. ROBINSON

24. Nickname for 60-Across, with "The" : YANKEE CLIPPER. He played his entire 13-year career for the New York Yankees.

36. With 39- and 40-Across, length of 60-Across' record hitting streak : FIFTY, 39A. : SIX. 40A. : GAMES

52. 60-Across eloped with her in 1954 : MARILYN MONROE

60. Sports great born 11/25/1914 : JOE DIMAGGIO
Argyle here. I like there is little to take away from the theme. Web Site


1. Japanese yes : HAI

4. "Get lost, kitty!" : "SCAT!":

8. "The Taking of __ 1 2 3" : PELHAM

14. Suffix with heir : ESS. Heiress.

15. Word after "take it" or before "does it" : EASY

16. Bring into being : CREATE

17. Org. with Red Wings and Blue Jackets : NHL. Hockey

20. Some HDTVs : RCAs

22. When repeated, belittle : POOH. "Oh, bother!"

23. Dutch cheeses : EDAMs

27. Obliged to pay : IN DEBT

28. Industry leaders : BARONS

31. Egg-hiding times : EASTERS

35. Heavy Brit. reference set : OED. (Oxford English Dictionary)

42. Man-mouse connector : OR A

43. Solar phenomenon : SUNSPOT

45. Ice cream seller : PARLOR

48. Freeway no-nos : U-TURNS

56. Rep. and Dem., e.g. : ABBRs. (abbreviations)

58. Sticky substance : GOOP

59. Whence an icicle may hang : EAVE

63. Pro __: for now : TEM

64. Actress Dahl : ARLENE

65. New Rochelle college : IONA

66. Dir. from Fort Worth, Tex. to Fort Lee, N.J. : ENE

67. Undergrounds : METROs

68. NCO rank : SSGT

69. Allowance dispenser, often : DAD. The human ATM.


1. 12th-century English king : HENRY I

2. Rubbish barrel : ASHCAN

3. Cuba, for one : ISLAND

4. Sch. term : SEM. (semester)

5. Completely covers : CARPETS

6. Part of NCAA: Abbr. : ASSOC. (association)

7. Innsbruck's state : TYROL

8. Banned chem. contaminant : PCB

9. Port SW of Buffalo, N.Y. : ERIE PA. How's that, Abejo?
10. Mortgage provider : LENDER

11. Is staying overnight (at) : HAS A ROOM

12. Bit of matter : ATOM

13. Clothing department : MEN'S

19. "__ wouldn't say that!" : OH, I

21. Sport invented by hunters : SKEET

25. Site for cyberbidders : EBAY

26. "Downton Abbey" airer : PBS

29. Originally named : NÉE

30. Radical '60s gp. : SDS. (Students for a Democratic Society)

32. Volunteer State sch. : TSU. (Tennessee State University)

33. "Ich bin __ Berliner": JFK : EIN

34. MD's orders : RXs

36. Dandy : FOP

37. 401(k) kin, briefly : IRA

38. Agricultural region : FARM BELT

40. Attend : GO TO

41. Carry __: sing on key : A TUNE

43. Hindu honorific : SRI

44. Action at a well : PUMPING

46. Refrigerator predecessor : LARDER

47. "Twelfth Night" duke : ORSINO. More or less known than Blixen?

49. Not for kids, filmwise : R RATED

50. Nine-day prayer ritual : NOVENA

51. Appeared to be : SEEMED

53. NYC airport : LGA. (LaGuardia)

54. Bear and Berra : YOGIs. Cute.

55. Scrapped missions : NO GOs

56. In __: stuck : A JAM

57. Tiresome sort : BORE

61. Month, in Madrid : MES

62. __ bran : OAT


Nov 24, 2014

Monday, November 24, 2014 C.W. Stewart

Theme: Winning Wrestling Moves - One.., Two.., Three! and one more makes the four different types of PINS in today's puzzle.

18A. Where to get cash : ATM MACHINE. No PIN(personal identification number), no moola.

26A. Where to see splits and strikes : BOWLING ALLEY. Shout out to Boomer.

47A. Where to keep needles and thread : SEWING BASKET. And lots of straight pins.

61A. Where to find valuables : JEWELRY BOX. Yesterday's brooch is a fancy safety pin.

69A. Things associated with 18-, 26-, 47- and 61-Across : PINS

Argyle here. Maybe. I blindly down loaded a Java update and acquired a malware named Vosteran. Now I can't get a connection to the internet. Cable was out!

You notice the whole entry is the the theme answer. Our constructor used the same device in the spring. Except for a couple of words, an easy Monday.


1. Cup of joe : JAVA. And 20. Foamy brew : BEER

5. Slow-moving critter : SNAIL

10. British sports cars, for short : JAGs. 68A. __ Martin: British sports car : ASTON

14. "Woe is me!" : "ALAS!"

15. Neigh sayer : HORSE

16. Clarinet cousin : OBOE

17. Flat-topped landform : MESA

21. Korean cars : KIAs

22. Put in a chip for a hand : ANTED

23. Turn topsy-turvy : UP-END

25. Meaner than a junkyard dog : ORNERY. Great fill for a 6-letter word.

30. Sci-fi subject : ALIEN

31. Replacement grass, perhaps : SOD

32. Dollop : GOB

35. Under the weather : ILL

36. Highlander's hat : TAM

39. Part of a journey : LEG

41. Id controller : EGO

42. Young man : LAD

43. See 38-Down : TAI. 38D. With 43-Across, umbrella drink : MAI

45. La Scala production : OPERA

51. Theater district : RIALTO

54. Like San Francisco's terrain : HILLY

55. On the ocean : AT SEA

56. Leslie Caron title role : GIGI

57. Cleft site : CHIN

63. Bring on board : HIRE

64. Latin 101 word : AMAT

65. Photographer's request : SMILE

66. Sci-fi subjects : UFOs

67. IRS IDs : SSNs


1. Doorframe part : JAMB

2. On the sheltered side : ALEE

3. Bouquet holder : VASE

4. More often than not : AS A RULE

5. How Bond likes martinis : SHAKEN

6. Making mention of : NOTING

7. Warship fleets : ARMADAs

8. Beliefs: Suff. : ISMs

9. Rural area : LEA

10. "Heeeere's __!": Carson intro : JOHNNY

11. Grab __: eat : A BITE

12. One beyond hope : GONER

13. Shabby : SEEDY

19. Give a hoot : CARE

24. 20-Across serving : PINT

25. Shoppe adjective : OLDE

26. Get-out-of-jail cash : BAIL

27. Earthenware pot : OLLA

28. Out of control : WILD

29. IM chuckle : LOL

32. __ Squad: Best Buy tech support : GEEK

33. Fairy tale baddie : OGRE

34. Gravy vessel : BOAT

37. Part of Lawrence Welk's cadence : A-TWO

40. Soccer score : GOAL

44. Repress : INHIBIT

46. Inspire with a pregame pep talk, say : PSYCH UP

47. Comes down as ice pellets : SLEETS

48. And others, briefly : ET AL.

49. Male escort : GIGOLO

50. Karen who wrote as Isak Dinesen : BLIXEN

51. Indian princes : RAJAs

52. Lines on a list : ITEMS

53. Dam on the Nile : ASWAN

56. Workout centers : GYMS

58. Old record player : HI-FI

59. Remove creases from : IRON

60. Storied loch : NESS

62. Cape Town's country: Abbr. : RSA


Nov 23, 2014

Sunday, November 23, 2014 Patti Varol

Theme:  "'Tis the Season" - Giving can precede 5 of the theme entries.

23A. Event that kicks off shopping for 119-Across : BLACK FRIDAY

39A. *Space mission team : GROUND CONTROL. Giving ground.

51A. *2003 romantic comedy with multiple story lines : LOVE ACTUALLY. Bill G's favorite movie. Giving love.

67A. *Amy Dickinson, for one : ADVICE COLUMNIST. Giving advice.  Her column "Ask Amy" appears in our Star Tribune, and I read it often. Also like her in "Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me".

86A. *Botticelli on display in the Uffizi : BIRTH OF VENUS. With "The". Giving birth.

96A. *Friends for life : BLOOD BROTHERS. Giving blood.

119. Festive time : THE HOLIDAYS

Reveal entry:

101D. Important theme for 119-Across, and a word that can be used with the starts of the answers to the starred clues : GIVING. Great placement, crossing the last theme entry.

Sweet puzzle to kick off our Thanksgiving celebrations. 

This puzzle is very clean, Patti's hallmark, no obscure abbrs. or weird words. She's another constructor who won't dazzle you hot debut entries. Just solid entries one after another.


1. Unnerving sound on a hiking trail : RATTLE. And 66. Nile cobras : ASPS. My grandma told me to turn my shirt inside out after seeing a snake to avoid bad luck.

7. GI on the run : AWOL

11. Saturate : SOAK. I put in SATE first. Nuts.

15. Passé players, briefly : VCRs. I was thinking has-been ballplayers.

19. On __ basis : A TRIAL. A rare 6-letter partial. Rich allows it occasionally.

20. "Flashdance... What a Feeling" lyricist : CARA

21. Year in Italy : ANNO. And 49. Sicily, to Sicilians : ISOLA. And 11D. City near the Amalfi Coast : SALERNO

22. "Not so fast!" : WHOA!

25. Bygone Fords : LTDs

26. Island east of Java : BALI. There are girls who go to Bali to find love. "Eat, Pray, Love" style.

27. Low voice : BASSO

28. Polish writing : EDIT

29. Verbal shrug : MEH

30. "Desire Under the Elms" playwright : O'NEILL (Eugene)

32. Qualifying suffix : ISH

33. They're often grad students : TAs

35. "Stop" : NO MORE.  And 119D. 35-Across, briefly : TMI

37. Fight (for) : VIE

38. Iron-rich cabbage : KALE. How do you normally prepare kale?

44. Tight-knit group : CLAN

47. End-of-letter letters : ENC

50. Colleague of Ruth and Sonia : ELENA

55. Folks : PARENTS

57. Less cordial : ICIER

58. Cycle beginning : TRI. So is UNI.

59. Goblet parts : STEMS

61. Art in a parlor : TAT (Tattoo)

62. Giraffe kin : OKAPI

63. Unlikely lawyer in a 1992 film title : VINNY. I bet many of you nailed it. "My Cousin Vinny".

65. "Ta ta!" : CIAO

71. Calendar list, briefly : SKED (Schedule)

74. Blowups: Abbr. : ENLS

75. Pink hue : MELON

76. Potala Palace city : LHASA. Gimme for me. Dalai Lama used to live in the Potala Palace, which sounds very romantic in Chinese.

80. Christiane Amanpour's network : CNN

81. Super Bowl XLIV MVP : BREES. I have BR??? in place, so BRADY went in first.

82. Well-chosen : APT

83. Knock for __ : A LOOP

84. Danger sign : RED FLAG

90. Michelob beer : ULTRA

91. Strength : ASSET

94. Fashion monogram : YSL. I know who this girl is just by looking at her bag and cutout shirt.

95. Start to commute? : TELE. Telecommute.

100. Carry on : WAGE. As a war.

102. Large body of eau : MER

103. Keep mum : CLAM UP. Snazzy 6-letter entry.

104. Prefix with gram : EPI

105. Big initials in nutritional supplements : GNC

108. Westernmost Texas county : EL PASO

111. "__-Tiki" : KON

112. Layered cut : SHAG. Hard to pull it off.

114. Vice __ : VERSA

116. Fertilizer ingredient : PEAT

117. Interstate H-1 locale : OAHU

121. Emilia's husband : IAGO

122. 2012 U.S. Women's Open winner Na Yeon __ : CHOI. I forgot her name completely.
K. J. Choi is more familiar. CHOI is the same as Cui in Chinese.

123. Nothing but : MERE

124. Driving force? : ENGINE. Nice clue.

125. Stylish eatery word : CHEZ. Don't you want to be in Chez Lucina's?

126. Spots for holsters : HIPS

127. Footnote word : IDEM

128. Insurance __ : AGENCY


1. Hebrew for "my master" : RABBI. ADONAI is "my Lord".

2. Map collection : ATLAS

3. Refuse : TRASH. Noun "Refuse"

4. Personal quirks : TICs

5. Sioux language featured in "Dances With Wolves" : LAKOTA

6. Seasonal worker? : ELF

7. Sharp : ACID

8. Getting one's feet wet : WADING

9. Loud speaker : ORATOR. Loud indeed.

10. Nonexpert : LAY

12. Temporarily out, in baseball lingo : ON THE DL. And 42. Coming up soon : ON TAP.  Patti normally does not allow these little "On", "Up", "The" dupes.

13. Far-away connection? : AND. Far and away.

14. State that declared its independence in 2008 : KOSOVO. From Serbia.

15. "Punch buggy" in a car trip game : VW BEETLE. And 85. Skipping nothing : FROM A TO Z.  Two nice 8's.

16. Indian tea : CHAI

17. Bakery purchase : ROLL

18. Put out to sea : SAIL

24. Harbor a grudge against : RESENT

29. Unlikely to speak up : MOUSY

31. Frisco squad : NINERS. Never heard my sisters-in-law call their city "Friso".

34. Novelist Waugh : ALEC

36. Work hard : MOIL. Did you try TOIL again?

38. Bit of inline skating gear : KNEE PAD

40. Massachusetts resort : CAPE ANN

41. Pays to stay : RENTS

43. Stands the test of time : LASTS. Like my Shanghai Tang skirt. I bought it in 1998. I've been wearing that pair of shoes to death too. Lovers come and go, my taste in clothes stays the same, thankfully.

44. Ad writer's award : CLIO

45. Sure bet : LOCK

46. Sports shoe with a Cantilever heel : AVIA

48. Manicurist's concern : CUTICLE. My heart sank after reading Gary's pedi venture.

52. Drought-prone : ARID

53. "Gunsmoke" star : ARNESS (James)

54. "The Mod Squad" role : LINC

56. Not yours, in Tours : A MOI

59. Work on a bust : SCULPT

60. Addressee of two New Testament epistles : TIMOTHY. Got via crosses.

63. Salad dressing ingredient : VINEGAR

64. __ Kippur : YOM

66. Player : ATHLETE

68. Designer Wang : VERA

69. "O, that way madness lies" speaker : LEAR

70. Many a Balkan : SLAV

71. Hit the dirt? : SCRUB. Great clue.

72. Funereal ring : KNELL

73. Put an __: terminate : END TO

77. Super : A-ONE

78. Focus of some searching? : SOUL. Nice clue also.

79. Basilica area : APSE

81. Grass units : BLADES

86. "Borstal Boy" author Brendan : BEHAN. Unknown to me.

87. Particular : ITEM. Not en easy clue.

88. SUNY city on Lake Ontario : OSWEGO. Famous for what?

89. Book jacket part : FLAP

92. Rock 'n' roll era dance : SOCK HOP

93. Rams' home : ST. LOUIS

97. Scarf securer : BROOCH. So pretty.

98. Acted hastily : RUSHED

99. __ of influence : SPHERE

105. Wood pattern : GRAIN

106. Timberlake's old band : NSYNC. I like Justin Timberlake. Extremely talented and down to earth.

107. Jones of song : CASEY

108. Grand-scale tale : EPIC

109. Genesis wife : LEAH. Shout out to our Chickie!

110. Leaf : PAGE

113. "Beg pardon ..." : AHEM

115. Fringe : EDGE

118. Sushi-grade tuna : AHI

120. Pasture : LEA

Indie 500 crossword tournament will be held on Saturday, May 30, 2015 in Washington D.C.  The constructors are all indie crossword constructors: Andy Kravis, Evan Birnholz, Peter Broda, Neville Fogarty & Erik Agard, who made two of my favorite LAT Mondays last year. They're holding a contest for the sixth constructor spot. The payment is $500 and the deadline is January 15th, 2015. Click here for the rules and submission details. Good luck!

Nov 22, 2014

Saturday, Nov 22nd, 2014, Brad Wilber

Theme: BW

Words: 70 (missing Q,W,X)

Blocks: 27

 Mr. Wilber's prolific solo Saturday work is starting to rival that of Mr. Silk~!  We last had a visit from Brad in September.  Lots of vagueness on the first pass, but the Downs gave me a lot of letters to work with, and I ended up smoking through the puzzle in about half time.  Not an intimidating grid at all, yet a block count that is only one more than last week's.  How deceiving - and just four 9-letter fills comprised the whole of the 'long' answers;

25a. Highly visible septet : BIG DIPPER - The Big Dipper consists of these seven stars, yet part of the larger constellation Ursa Major

45a. Gig at the brig : GUARD DUTY - I was thinking Jailhouse Rock

10d. Five-time A.L. home run champ : RODRIGUEZ - oh, him

31d. Baryshnikov move : GRAND JETÉ - Hello~!  I couldn't link a male in the pose, it looked too painful; yet this past Wednesday I played hockey, and the other goalie asked how I could get so low - I must be almost as buddy Bob sent me this pic from a few years ago



1. Jeweler's concerns : SETTINGS

9. Coke product : FRESCA - Coca-cola, that is

15. Passed : OVERTOOK - the kind of passing drivers of cars do; see 7d.

16. "Top Hat" dancer : ROGERS - Ginger - because ASTAIRE did not fit ( the only other dancer I know of that regularly appears in crosswords )

17. How Dickens' novels were first published : SERIALLY - I had S---IALLY, and I thought, SOCIALLY~? Naw, they didn't have Facebook back then....

18. Is wild about : ADORES

19. Backwash creator : OAR - I went with "EBB", but it fit better at 48a.

20. Montreal Canadiens' all-time leading point scorer : LaFLEUR - Guy; I went with Maurice "Rocket" RICHARD first; he scored 50 goals in 50 games in the '44-45 season, but LaFleur scored 50 goals a season for 6 straight seasons decades later

22. Toon shopkeeper : APU - The Simpsons

23. Signals one's presence, in a way : RAPS

27. Year in Clement VIII's papacy : MDCI - well, just had to wait on perps, but after the "M" and "I" appeared, I tried the other Roman numerals ( C, D, X, V ) that would work with the "down" answer

28. Piquancy : TANG

29. Silly sorts : GEESE - "Silly Goose~!"

30. Jump back into the fray : RE-ENGAGE

32. Clingy husk : BUR - seems short a letter....

33. Paper fatteners : INSERTS - ah, Newspaper; I did not get this until I came to do the write-up; our Sunday paper is about to gain some weight with the holiday season upon us

34. Flips : GOES APE

38. Hot air ballooning watchdog: Abbr. : FAA - we have a drone problem developing over here; they're interfering with JFK airspace

39. Almond confection : MARZIPAN

40. About 1% of the Earth's atmosphere : ARGON - I did not go with RADON; just linked this two weeks ago

43. Engine once known as Live Search : BING - WAG

44. Abbey section : APSE - APSE~?  NAVE~? wait on perps

47. Your alternative, at times : ONE'S - seen often in crossword clues

48. Taper off : EBB - ah - that's where it goes....

49. 1974 top ten hit for Carole King : JAZZ MAN - Link away~!

51. Kenyan export : TEA - had the "A", WAGed the "T-E-"

53. Green Giant morsel : NIBLET - toyed with CARROT first

55. Dietary practice : VEGANISM - it may be a practice, but I'm not in the game; I had this for dinner here at A Lure last night

57. Efface : DELETE

58. Sea along the Balkan peninsula : ADRIATIC - with the first "A", and "C" in place, this dawned on me

59. Letter closing : AS EVER

60. Buoys up : HEARTENS


1. Underwhelming : SO-SO

2. She played Principal McGee in "Grease" : EVE ARDEN

3. View providers : TERRACES

4. Prefix with athlete : TRI - TRIathlete

5. Right-leaning type?: Abbr. : ITALicS - see above

6. Bourbon Street city, informally : NOLA - New Orleans, LousianA

7. Drivers can be seen in them : GOLF BAGS - nailed it; did not confuse the 'club' with the 'car controller'

8. Broad view : SKYLINE

9. Mountebank : FRAUD - filled via perps; did not have any clue (except to consider the Alp, Mont Blanc ); a swindler

11. A BMOC may have a big one : EGO - speaking of EGOs, see above

12. Colorful cover-up : SERAPE - total WAG, total win~!

13. Brunch order : CREPES - anyone try OMELET~?

14. Guarantee : ASSURE

21. Whisking target : EGG - and, uh, see above

24. Miss badly : PINE FOR - I went with LONG at first; I am holding out hope for my blue-eyed girl still

26. Blofeld's cat, in Bond films : PERSIAN - I think Mr. Bigglesworth was a great way to satire the whole thing

27. Picture of health? : MRI - we've seen this before; the "?" denotes the slight mis-direction

28. "I'm off!" : "TA-TA~!"

32. Wimbledon five-peater : BORG - Bjorn

34. Largest moon of Jupiter : GANYMEDE - I love watching shows on the probes we've sent out to explore the solar system; this one took 6 years to get there, but had some great moments

35. Fondness : APPETITE - for Destruction?  Great album cover, which was, of course, banned

36. Submits, as an exam paper : PASSES IN - HANDS IN was not enough; but then again, I remember we used to "pass in" exams by handing them to the person at the desk in front of us

37. Topeka-to-Peoria dir. : ENE - I threw in NNE

39. Bar __ : MITZVAH - this should have come easier than it did

40. Handout from a chair : AGENDA - I knew what direction this was pointing, but I spent Tuesday helping my buddy Adam move, and he has a 13 month-old son, so there was this image of baby food flying....

41. 40th anniversary symbols : RUBIES - an educated WAG after the "R" showed; I knew it was not Diamond, but a little further on than, say, "wood"; here's the list

42. Unintelligible talk : GABBLE - I had GARBLE in place; EBB fixed that

43. Sawyer of old comics : BUZ - the other "missing a letter" answer

46. "Antiques Roadshow" expert : DATER - carbon dater?  Now that's an antique~!

47. Booth warning sign : ON AIR

50. Onetime capital of the Mughal Empire : AGRA - seems sensible, now that I look at it

52. Pacers and Ramblers : AMCs - nailed it - but then again, I owned a Concord Sportabout

54. Bk. of the Torah : LEV

56. Baseball's Ryan Zimmerman or Jordan Zimmermann, briefly : NAT - I defer to our  baseball-starved but fearless leader, C.C. on these answers (From C.C.: Here is a good old article about them. The former is a little (2 millions?) behind Derek Jeter in this 2013 list.

There's always room for dessert~!