Showing posts with label Lemonade. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Lemonade. Show all posts

Apr 17, 2015

Friday, April 17, 2015, Samuel A. Donaldson

Theme: Add a letter, add a pun and stir.

Four in the language phrases which have a word beginning with "W" are re-imagined by adding a "T" before the "W" and creating a soundalike, but differently spelled word. So we have a bit of add a letter and a bit of a punfest. This is our 10th LAT from the mind of Mr. Donaldson, who is a law professor with a fondness for tax law (coincidence this is tax week and his 2014 was published in April?) as well as a frequent visitor to other crossword blogs. His last effort here was a really fun letter substitution where we changed X to G and the meaning changed from prurient to pure. He was first published in the  NYT in 2008, with 16 under his belt there. You can read all about him in the 2009 interview which is linked to the right.

The puzzle sets up as a more conventional Friday based on word length and blocks, with some nice non-theme fill like FELT HAT,  SEASIDE, LAKE ERIE,  ONE FIFTH,  PEDIGREE,  TEA LEONI, CREAM SODAS, ERIC KARROS. He had told C.C. he like compound answers so see how many you find. Anyway, let's take a ride together. The combination with two gridspanners and humor and as well as picking the right words is hard to flesh out, so let me know what you think.

16A. Nail the Miley Cyrus impression? : TWERK LIKE A CHARM.(15). WORK like a charm mean it does well (like magic?) and we all know twerking. right? PG13 (2:18)

24A. Permanently deleted electronic message? : SHREDDED TWEET. (13) Shredded WHEAT.

41A. Minor trade adjustment? : BUSINESS TWEAK.(13)Business WEEK magazine.

55A. "The spasm preceded the other symptoms, Doc"? : TWITCH CAME FIRST. (15). WHICH came first, the chicken or the egg?


1. Year in which Salieri was born : MDCCL. I did not recall this Italian composer who also was a teacher to some very famous pupils. LINK. This made for a tough start.

6. Spunkmeyer of cookie fame : OTIS. No elevator here, this sweet clue.

10. Sports __ : BRA. Any more famous than this picture?

13. Key artery : AORTA.

14. Seattle's __ Place Market : PIKE.. A little home field clue for Sam who lives there.

15. Hazmat suit hazard : TEAR. Tear not tear; defeats the whole purpose.

19. "Madam Secretary" star : TEA LEONI. She has many failed tv shows.

20. "Family Feud" source : SURVEY. "Survey says...."

21. Stately tree : ELM.Stately Elm by Robert Hinshaw

Elm once clad in gold
   Has shed its colorful cloak
       Awaits winter storms
         Bare limbs lifted heavenward
            As if in supplication.

22. "... __ the set of sun": "Macbeth" : ERE. Shakespeare or not, three letters it is going to be ere.

23. Disney title girl from Hawaii : LILO.

30. Cinch : SHOO- IN. Nice fill.

32. "Ah, broken is the golden bowl! the spirit flown forever!" poet : POE. Lenore. LINK.

33. GPS suggestion : RTE. Route.

34. Prod : NUDGE.

35. Michaels et al. : ALS. The sports announcer from the 1980 miracle Olympic Hockey broadcast and now voice of MNF.

36. End notes? : OBITS. Like this clue/fill as well.

38. Pay extension? : OLA. Payola. Radio scandal from my childhood.

39. It goes around in winter : FLU. Sad but true.

40. Antarctic transport : SNO-CAT. Logical if unknown.

45. Majestic quality : HALO.  Angelic?

46. Playboy nickname : HEF.

47. Kentucky Colonels' org. : ABA. About the fifth time I have gotten the old American Basketball Association.

50. "The Caine Mutiny" Oscar nominee : BOGART. Wonderfully acted movie. Also a synonym of
25D. Be selfish about, in a way : HOG.

53. Genealogical record : PEDIGREE. We think more about animals but it applies to people as well.

57. Used to be : WERE.

58. Hendrix hairdo : AFRO.

59. Royal __: scheduled 2016 British Open site : TROON. St. Andrews this year. LINK.

60. Unmatched : ODD. Fooled me. I luckily do not lose many socks in the wash.

61. The Taj Mahal, e.g. : TOMB. I was taught it was man's greatest erection for woman.

62. Garden plant that thrives in shade : HOSTA.


1. Lackluster finish : MATTE. Also tricky adding to the rough start for me.

2. Wooden pin : DOWEL. But this was easy....

3. Vanilla treats : CREAM SODAS. This was not easy,  but really nice fill.

4. Key not used alone : CTRL. Computer key, duh!

5. Bass Islands locale : LAKE ERIE. A CSO to our own.

6. Wrote an essay, maybe : OPINED.

7. Polynesian carving : TIKI. This is part of a CULTURE.

8. Turner of entertainment : IKE.

9. Vacation area : SEASIDE. How quaint.

10. Oregon State athlete, for short : BEAVers. In this age of pc sports team names, this animal does live on the edge.

11. Rather red : RARE. Nice alliteration and misdirection for 4 letter fill.

12. Legion : ARMY.

15. Lose illegally : THROW. The college basketball scandal of the 50's another from my youth.

17. Winner of six David di Donatello acting awards : LOREN. The ageless beauty....

18. __ film : CULT.

23. Some August babies : LEOS. My father was one.

26. Low grade : D PLUS.

27. Fox commentator who was the 1992 N.L. Rookie of the Year : ERIC KARROS. One of many failed Dodger first baseman since Gil Hodges.

28. Singer James : ETTA. Time for another LISTEN. (3:00).

29. Try : TEST. My patience?

30. Self-appointed expert : SNOB.

31. Online TV giant : HULU.  Their story. LINK.

35. Moreover : ALSO.

36. Common liquor purchase, once : ONE FIFTH. It is 1/5 of a gallon. Now the bottles are 750ml.

37. Scary squeezer : BOA. Alliteration again.

39. Homburg, for one : FELT HAT. Bah.

40. Nobel, for one : SWEDE. A Friday misdirection.

42. "__ when that happens" : I HATE.

43. Buster? : NARC. Another misdirection, nice!

44. Tough syndicate : THE MOB. Next to the narc?

48. Get drunk : BESOT.

49. Insurance giant : AETNA. This unlocked the entire corner for me.

50. USAF stealth plane : BTWO. I will leave commentary to all of our flyboys.

51. Due : OWED.

52. Prepare, as for action : GIRD. Ah, the loins. GIRD GIRO, so close.

53. Chicken __ : PARM. Hmm, do you serve Chicken Parmigiana, or chicken parmesan?

54. Early copter : GIRO. Easily infer-able but I find no reference to this other than as AUTOGIRO.

56. One may be a CPA : CFO. Chief Financial Officer.

Well another Friday done with lots to talk about, Sam stop by and give us some insight. Enjoy all; lemonade out.

Apr 9, 2015

Thursday, April 9, 2015, Marti Duguay-Carpenter

Theme: Now where did I hide my dope?

Another treat for me as marti and I have switched so I can blog her Thursday effort. It seems particularly timely as I have recently returned from visiting my son who lives in Denver. Denver has now added a new dimension to its nickname of mile high city. As a child of the sixties, it is very strange to walk around and see the marijuana shops. Anyway, on to the puzzle. It involves hiding a word (DOPE) which spans two-word fill. In the first three the break is D OPE, with the last DO PE. Not an expert on Thursday word length, but we do have a less than 5 letter average. Aside from theme answers, the longest fill is 6 letters, featuring DROWSE,  ENGULF,  HOODOO, NOVELS,  OBJECT,  OWED ON,  SEVERE,  SPIRAL,  SPONGE,  TAIPAN,  TENONS and ZEALOT. She was nice enough to include a J. So let us dance....

18A. Genre that often includes a ballet : GRAND OPERA. am familiar with the TERM generally but I am not as high brow as miss m.

23A. TV teaser before the first commercial : COLD OPENING. Another TERM I do not know, but it was easily inferred.

37A. James Bond and others : FIELD OPERATIVES. Wiki prefers the TERM Field Agents.

52A. "Great" 1975 Redford role : WALDO PEPPER. I actually was glancing through the various clues when I saw this one, immediately put in the answer and saw the Theme and went back to fill the rest. This MOVIE character may have been based on a real pilot who died flying in a movie.

And the reveal:

58A. Skinny, so to speak, or what's hidden in 18-, 23-, 37- and 52-Across : INSIDE DOPE (10)  A perfect reveal, as the DOPE is on the inside of the theme answers. An interesting slang word, the SKINNY on skinny.

Now for the skinny on the rest....


1. "That's terrible!" : OH NO.

5. Like some stockings : MESH. Oh my, Splynter?
Easy for them to say

9. Guck : SLIME. It reminds me of this scene from a slime MOVIE.

14. Windfall : BOON.

15. "The Salt-N-__ Show" : PEPA. The answer was easily inferable as I know the group but never heard of the SHOW.

16. Trojan War figure : PARIS. Now a name for the ladies, but this was a ladies man who stole away Helen from her Greek husband leading to war and the great measure of female beauty- the millihelen.

17. Roman god of the sky : JOVE. By Jove, I knew it was not Jupiter.

20. Utopias : EDENS.

22. Excited, with "up" : WOUND. Picture children with too much candy in them .

26. Côte d'Azur sight : MER. The sea in French. Not to be confused with 12D. Orbiter for 15 years : MIR. It seemed that it lasted longer. LINK.

29. Lean-__ : TOS.

30. Nasser's confed. : UARUnited Arab Republics. marti likes her initialisms.(#1).

31. Harsh : SEVERE. Winter 2014-5 in NE?

33. Swamp : ENGULF. I was thinking like the Everglades, not being swamped.

36. Bone-dry : ARID. I like the clue.

42. Open org. : USGAUnited States Golf Association. (#2) See, I told you.

43. Second book in Clavell's "Asian Saga" : TAI-PAN. Not be confused with 61D. One might keep you from seeing the show : PAN. Of the SERIES of Books, I think SHOGUN is the most famous.

44. Fanatic : ZEALOT.Another interesting WORD which is appropriate for the season.

47. One-up : TOP.

48. Time zone word: Abbr. : STD. Standard as opposed to daylight.

51. Buddhist branch : ZEN.

56. Free-for-all : MELEE.A fun word

57. Savanna heavyweight : RHINO.

63. Lined up, with "in" : A ROW.

64. Movers' challenge : PIANO.

65. Degree holder : GRADuate.

66. Without : SANS.

67. Choose to join : OPT IN.

68. Ages and ages : EONS.

69. Choice word : ELSE.


1. Protest : OBJECT.

2. Jinx : HOODOO. Again? Who cursed me?

3. King output : NOVELS. Probably she means Stephen, not Don or Martin Luther nor Elvis.

4. Upright : ON END.

5. EPA sticker stat : MPGMiles Per Gallon (#3).

6. Adverb in odes : E'ER.

7. Produce : SPAWN.

8. Capital NE of Vientiane : HANOI.

9. Quick learner : SPONGE.

10. "Dragnet" force, briefly : LAPDLos Angeles Police Department (#4).

11. Rage : IRE.

13. Spanish "that" : ESA.

19. Pressures for payment : DUNS.

21. Ting or ping : SOUND. Ting?

24. When doubled, a South Pacific capital : PAGO. The capital of American Samoa, PAGO PAGO has nothing to with a volcano in Papua, New Guinea named Pago, which may or may not...

25. Blow : ERUPT.

26. First name in game shows : MERV. Griffin, responsible for both Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy.

27. Iroquoian people : ERIE. Do we have any Native Americans reading this?

28. Cabs and syrahs : REDS. No Cincinnati to commemorate the baseball season? Oops, marti does not like baseball.

32. "You're So ___": 1973 #1 hit : VAIN

33a. Carrier that doesn't fly on the Sabbath : EL AL.

34. Where to hear maas and baas : LEA. Paa!

35. Popular chip : FRITO. Corn chips which led to nacho chips.

37. __ bass : FUZZ. A musical interlude; the effect can be from the amp or a pedal.

38. Words of understanding : I SEE.

39. Eddie __, detective involved in the actual "French Connection" : EGAN.His OBITUARY.

40. Each : A POP.

41. Slender candle : TAPER. Finally, the TAPER from BG's April Fool's Day post.

45. Was in debt regarding : OWED ON.

46. Yarn : TALE. You may spin one but it will not make a scarf.

48. Fusilli shape : SPIRAL. A fun pasta.
Twist and shout

49. Mortise partners : TENONS. We have had this debate before.

50. Nod : DROWSE.

53. Pigeon's place : LEDGE.

54. Golden, in Guadalajara : DE ORO.

55. Full moon, e.g. : PHASE.

56. Thigh-high attire : MINI.
More for Splynter?

58. 2010 GM financial event : IPOInitial Public Offering (#5).

59. Little bite : NIP.

60. Did nothing : SAT.

62. Magazine VIPs : EDS. Editors.

Well Lemonade thanking marti for the chance to explain her work, and  now I'm on my way to create a new recipe to prepare food with matzoh, though the fusilli and Cecile both look yummy.

Apr 3, 2015

Friday, April 3, 2015, Jim Quinlan

Theme: Double a letter, double your pleasure.

A debut puzzle from a familiar poster who was a rookie this year at ACPT where he finished 392nd. In a consistent theme, the last letter of a two letter word which begins a common phrase is doubled to create a new and visually fun answer. The choices for this theme are very limited (I thought of some not very good ones like ADD NAUSEAM and OFF HUMAN BONDAGE) because the theme is so tight. The rest of puzzle was similar to many Fridays we have had lately with average word length less than 5 letters, but it also the first pangram (puzzle containing all 26 letters) I have seen on a Friday in a very long while. I found the cluing not only difficult in places, but confusing. Perhaps this comes from the ambitious inclusion of all the letters. I did like seeing two Js in the grid.  There are some interesting intermediate fill like  AIRBAG, IMAGES, LETS GO, MATHIS, SEARCH, STIGMA, THINGS, XANADU, EMERGENT and  JAILBIRD and two which were as long as theme answers, OVERWATERS and  SOUTH SUDAN. There are also many fill with double letters (DDAY, TEEMS, ROOT, ROSS, ERRS, APP, OTTO, LEVEE, RAGG and OSS). None of these confused the issue of the theme for me.

18A. Quibble about accommodations? : INN DISPUTE (10). The second N appeared early from the perps, so I had an idea about the theme quickly.

27A. Marshmallow that's been toasted too long? : GOO UP IN FLAMES (13). My favorite of the answers, as I could picture the gooey mess I have made when trying to do marshmallows with my sons.

48A. Small group of tiny monarchs? : WEE THREE KINGS (13). Also a very cute variation on the Christmas CAROL  (2:28).

63A. Worthless buzzer? : BEE OF NO USE (10). We all know bees are very useful but I guess there is a Gilligan in every hive.

A good Good Friday, and a Happy Passover to those who celebrate; looking forward to another delicious seder. On to the rest...


1. Spell : JINX. We are going to have one of those Fridays where I am constrained to comment too vigorously, not knowing if the clue is the author's or Rich's, but I do not see these terms as interchangeable. The dictionary may disagree, but to me 'cast a spell' (or curse) would be the synonym for the verb JINX, and 'bad luck' or 'black cat' for the noun.

5. Traitor : JUDAS. A rather timely clue/fill on this Good Friday which commemorates the crucifixion of Christ after his betrayal by Judas.

10. Letters causing a rush : ASAP. As Soon As Possible.  Since people say, 'A Sap,' so is this an acronym?

14. Property measurement : AREA. As most must have, I began with ACRE.

15. Flopped financially : ATE IT. I understand the generic 'ate it' means failed miserably, but I know of no connection to financial failure.

16. Bonkers : LOCO. Some un-pc terms for mentally ill.

17. Response to a drone : YAWN. Not the one with camera or delivering from Amazon, or even from a beehive, but like my Real Property professor, D.T. Smith.

20. Zeus' beginning? : ZETA. In ancient Greek it was spelled ''Ζεύς'' with Zeta the first letter, but if you are transliterating to English, it should be Zee or Zed? I believe in modern Greek they now spell the name of the chief of the Greek gods as Δίας which aligns the name with Latin Deus. Hopefully we have a reader who can shed more light on this subject.

21. Forgives : LETS GO. The cluing so far had me scrambling, again I understand one letting go of the anger can be forgiving, but...well I will just let it go.

22. Director Burton : TIM. Wow, an easy one. Johnny Depp is his favorite.

23. Little bit : DAB.
25. "Too Much, Too Little, Too Late" duettist : MATHIS. The soulful Johnny with Deneice Williams in 1978. (3:04) reminds me of going to Peaches to buy 45s.

33. 4x4, e.g. : ATV. All Terrain Vehicle.

34. "1984" worker : PROLE. A really fine Friday CLUE, but no politics.

35. Get used (to) : INURE.

38. Assembly stage : STEP. How many have bought furniture from IKEA?

40. Hit from a tee : DRIVE. Ah some golf as we near the Masters.

42. Start of Operation Overlord : D-DAY.

43. Scrutinized, with "over" : PORED. His notes? Books and records?

45. Abounds : TEEMS. This reminds me of THIS.(2:16).

47. Generation : AGE.

51. Google, say : SEARCH.

53. Canyon part : RIM.

54. "A Bug's Life" extra : ANT.

55. It might blow up in a crash : AIRBAG. Nicely thought-out deception.

59. Shade at the shore : AQUA. Also cute as we are talking shade of color not an umbrella.

65. [I'm doomed] : GULP. Very nice cartoonish visual.

66. Goes wrong : ERRS. Do not forget to forgive.

67. Bridge expert on some "Sports Illustrated" covers : GOREN. If you ever played the game and are about my age you know and have read books by CHARLES. I do use Blackwood.

68. Mozart's "a" : EINE.

69. Soft-spoken painter Bob : ROSS. All perps for me, thought it sounds like it was an interesting SHOW.

70. Irish hero, briefly : ST. PAT.

71. Pringles competitor : STAX. I tried them once and they were not good. I do tend to try every food product once.


1. Now hyphen-less rapper : JAYZ. DKDC. He is attempting to take over streaming of music with TIDAL.

2. "Dies __" : IRAE. More religion.

3. Spotted aquarium dweller : NEWT. Mr. Gingrich's image is fading in the mirror.

4. Film estate with a championship golf course : XANADU. Took me way to long to dredge this ESTATE from my brain.

5. "Avian" for whom flight is often futile : JAILBIRD. A little prison humor.

6. __ Reader : UTNE.Does anyone actually read this?

7. It may be hammered out : DENT. Not an agreement but a literal hammer job.

8. Help providers : AIDS.

9. Stain : STIGMA. So many connotations; we also have the related STIGMATA but that sounds like religion.

10. European attraction : ALP. marti, a gimme for you?

11. Independent country since 2011 : SOUTH SUDAN.  All you wanted to know and MORE.

12. When Hamlet says, "The play's the thing ... " : ACT II. Well I got a very small taste of some Shakespeare.

13. Dickinson output : POEMS. Emily.

19. "Amen!" : SO AM I. So be it? I agree?

24. Trivia Crack, e.g. : APP. Sounds vaguely obscene, but this GAME sounds and looks like electronic Trivial Pursuit.

26. Mind : TEND. All perps, did not even see the clue and hope you all will explain. Children? One's business?

27. Horrified reaction : GASP.

28. One of the Ringling brothers : OTTO. No Sgt. Snorkel for this puzzle, but this somewhat obscure  figure who died in 1911. Per wiki the Ringling Brothers Circus was a circus founded in the United States in 1884 by five of the seven Ringling Brothers: Albert (1852–1916), August (1854–1907), Otto (1858–1911), Alfred T. (1862–1919), Charles (1863–1926), John (1866–1936), and Henry (1869–1918). In 1907 it acquired the Barnum & Bailey Circus, merging them in 1919 to become Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus, promoted as The Greatest Show on Earth. It does not say which 5, but John and Charles were the most famous and did much to put Sarasota, Florida on the map.

29. Drowns in the garden : OVERWATERS. A thoughtful clue; I do love gardening but in April one should not need to water often.

30. __ Star : NORTH. No love for Kanye and Kim?

31. Circular : FLIER.

32. Chevy's "American Pie" destination : LEVEE.

36. Woolen yarn : RAGG. Nope, sorry, I do not know this WORD. I do know MOP.

37. Socket set : EYES. Oh my, what a great alliterative misdirection.

39. Review target : PEER. Peer review is very big in many professions, especially medical ones.

41. Newly formed : EMERGENT.

44. Joe sans jolt : DECAF. Love those Js.

46. Take on moguls : SKI. I will be Colorado and the snow will be fresh. Who wants to meet me there? marti?

49. The Cat in the Hat's numbered cohorts : THINGS.

50. Visuals : IMAGES.

51. Word with tooth or saw : SABER.

52. Año starter : ENERO.

56. Repeated word in "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" : ROOT.

57. Do a new mom's job : BURP. Oh those burping moms, watch out.

58. On a cruise : ASEA.

60. Gave notice : QUIT.

61. Radius neighbor : ULNA.

62. Pinnacle : APEX. Apex, Acme? My favorite golf ball in the 80s. Second day in a row for this fill.

64. '40s spy org. : OSS. Office of Strategic Services.  The predecessor of the CIA.

Well enjoy Friday, I will be out of pocket most of the day in preparation for the first night of Passover, so smoke em if you have them and happy holidays to all. Lemonade out.

Note from C.C.:

1) Our own Minnesotan constructors George Barany and Marcia J. Brott constructed today's CHE "Sea Shells" puzzle. Tasty and timely. Please click here  to download the puz file.

2) The fourth Minnesota Crossword Tournament will be held on June 14th. Please click here for more details.

Mar 27, 2015

Friday, March 27, 2015, Jacob Stulberg

Theme: Waiter, what is this fly doing in my soup? ANSWER? See number 3.

Jacob has always puzzled me with his puzzles like his Wednesday NYT, and while the solve was okay and I am not a great solver, I was having difficulty with the explanation. The basic theme has TANG inside the fill, and I now understand why after consulting with the Corner guru. The first four themers are:

14A. *1952 #1 hit for Leroy Anderson : BLUE TANG(9), Do not know the SONG or the artist, but the perps and the theme gave me this answer quickly.

17A. *Math reciprocal : COTANGENT(9). This was easy, but I will defer to our math experts to discuss.

61A. *"Atomic" Crayola color : TANGERINE (9). I am not sure why but I remember this color.

66A. *Bogged down : ENTANGLED (9). Not perfect fit for me.

Then we have the supplemental variation of the old joke about a fly in the soup:

30A. With 35-Across, question the starred clues might ask : WHAT IS THIS FLY (13).
35A. See 30-Across : DOING IN MY ANSWER (15).
44. Response to 30-/35-Across, and a hint to a hidden word in 14-, 17-, 61- and 66-Across : THE BACK STROKE (13).

I was struggling to make sense of the back stroke reference when I was made aware that TANG backwards spells GNAT, which makes it all fit together as the GNAT in each theme answer is backwards leaving a FLY doing a backstroke. Really inventive combination of words and visual.

Again we have a Friday with almost 60 five letter or shorter words, 42 blocks and only a few non theme related sparkly fill such as ANCHOR, BEATER, EERILY, IT WAS I, KEITEL, OUTLAW, SHIRTS, SO THAT, AT STAKE, ESSENCE. We also have the cross-referenced reveal which get some complaints, and if you do not know the old joke it may have been a bear, but overall this was as an inventive and puzzling puzzle.


1. Long __ : AGO. We begin like STAR WARS Episode IV only it is our constructor who has a mind from a different galaxy.

4. Spartan colonnades : STOAS. You see many of these on college campuses as well.

9. Belief of more than a billion : ISLAM.

16. "Done!" : THERE.

18. Expand : WIDEN.

19. Numskull : DOLT.

20. Start of a rumor : I HEAR...that Rich does not like partials, is this one?

22. Fuel economy testing org. : EPA. Environemental Protection Agency.

23. Business card word : FAX.

26. On the table : AT STAKE.

33. Zhou __ : EN LAI. This Chinese POLITICIAN and cohort of Mao actually died a few month before Mao's death. And 25D. Capital of Shaanxi Province : XI'AN. CSO to our own.

34. Wide size : EEE.

42. Boston Coll. is in it : ACC. Atlantic Coast Conference.

43. '90s runner : PEROT. For president, not for distance, Ross.

50. Pith : ESSENCE.

51. Medit. land : ISRael.

52. Revised versions: Abbr. : EDS. Editions.

55. Sharp : ACRID. I think of smells.

57. Stop on Amtrak's Lake Shore Limited route : ERIE. CSO.

58. Theodore's first lady : EDITH. This LADY. She was however, his second wife.

65. Event with pole bending : RODEO. Like slalom for cowboys? No idea.

67. "Octopus's Garden" songwriter : STARR. Ringo wrote some interesting songs. His best with the BEATLES.

68. Holds up : LASTS. And, 46D. Hold : ANCHOR.

69. Sch. units : YRS.


1. Start of a children's song : ABCDE.

2. Gluttonous Augustus in "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" : GLOOP. I did not remember his NAME.(2:39)

3. Posse target : OUTLAW.

4. Stop: Abbr. : STN.

5. __ sale : TAG. We have yard sales, garage sales, moving sales as well as THESE. My grandmother manufactured tags in Southbridge.

6. Word with man or horse : ONE. ReallY?

7. Latin lambs : AGNI. A variation from our normal reference.

8. To make sure : SO THAT.

9. Confessor's words : IT WAS I. I started with I DID IT which also fit.

10. Haberdashery stock : SHIRTS. The original meaning was the peddler of notions such as needles, thread etc. but it has become associated with outfitting a man.

11. Directed : LED.

12. Exist : ARE.

13. Sign on a door : MEN. It safer to put gentleman and ladies, too easy to remove WO.

15. Put away : EAT.

21. Djibouti neighbor: Abbr. : ETHiopia.

23. Canine : FANG. Rhymes with TANG.

24. Hun king, in Norse legend : ATLI. Is this a comeback this week for ATTILA?

27. Several : A FEW.

28. "Twittering Machine" artist : KLEE. I had the K and filled in the rest, but I still am not very knowledgeable about painting. I have seen the picture, but did not know the name.

29. Observer : EYER. Not a favorite clue/fill.

31. Mother __ : HEN.

32. Fools : SIMPS. Literally I guess this is true as a simpleton is a foos.

35. 2/3, say : DATE. This partial clue fooled me for a while.

36. Big name in publishing : OCHS. Really, really BIG for the NY Times, not so much our journal.

37. Decorates, in a way : ICES. Tin, it is okay to ice a cake.

38. Mountain sighting : YETI. Ridiculous. I would rather see....

They were at Woodstock

39. JFK list : ARRS.

40. Queen dowager of Jordan : NOOR. Our American export. LINK.

41. Wall St. purchase : STK.

45. Rattletrap : BEATER. I know the term from reading old books,, but I have never heard anyone actually use the term.

47. "Born on the Bayou" band, briefly : CCR. Credence Clearwater Revival, a 2nd Woodstock band.

48. "Mean Streets" co-star : KEITEL. Harvey.  A powerful FILM. (2:58)

49. How ghost stories are told : EERILY.

53. "2 Broke Girls" setting : DINER. A female variation of the ODD COUPLE in the grand tradition of sitcoms from Lucy to the present. Much more sexual innuendo and talk. It used to follow The Big Bang Theory so I tried it.

54. Origins : SEEDS.

56. Actress Delany : DANA. I have watched her on many things since China Beach. (2:28)

57. Bit of work : ERG. Followed by....

58. Triage ctrs. : ERS. Emergency Rooms.

59. Finish, as a letter, perhaps : DOT. Finish writing the letter (i) , not the letter! Ah ha, I get it.

60. Wyo. neighbor : IDAho.

62. Some Windows systems : NTS.

63. Hood's gun : GAT.

64. U.S. Army rank abolished in 1815 : ENS. A WAG that was easier than I expected.

Another Friday gone, another month, another change of season and another puzzle with a somewhat complicated gimmick. I had fun once I got past the TANG + GNAT backwards part. A reminder to always look both ways when you see "BACK" in a puzzle. Enjoy the birdies. Lemonade out.

Mar 20, 2015

Friday, March 20, 2015, Jeffrey Wechsler

Theme: PeePee time.

A return to Friday for another of my favorite regular constructors, Jeffrey Wechsler, who gives us five two word phrases, with the first word ending in P and the second starting with P but one of the Ps is eliminated. Gratuitously for my write up I have chosen the P at the beginning of the second word as the eliminated letter. For me, the key to all letter adding or subtracting is the wit in the reveal and here is a really fun one. If I had been eating SPLIT PEA SOUP I would have spit pea soup. I started out with a bit of trouble only because the HUMAN BRAIN has such adaptive qualities that I read STRIPOKER, as if both Ps were present. There have been so many studies of this phenomenon, it was cool to see it as the basis of a puzzle. So what did one P say to the other P? "Time to split, man." The grid also has incorporated the reveal and one themer in the downs, which I always like. Lots of workable but challenging fill EARTHEN, HAD A KID, OLD WEST, WREATHE, APPARENT, GET A BITE, HARRISON, HOOSIERS and some shorter fun words ADDLED, BURROW, CANTOR, OCTAVE, ORIENT, PARSEC, SCATHE, URANIA.

A nice balance with some crunch to make you earn the Ta Dah.

17A. Where shirts may be lost? : STRIP POKER (9). I like the double entendre of the clue/fill as you can lose your shirt, literally and lose your shirt figuratively playing poker.

32A. California Marine Corps base : CAMP PENDLETON (12). OOH RAH. What do our resident marines think of its ban?

39A. Realm of some self-help books : POP PSYCHOLOGY (12). My undergraduate degree.

62A. Update : KEEP POSTED (9). I now recognize KYP, in texting. (Keep You Posted).

13D. Travel agent's suggestions : TRIP PLANS (8). My least favorite of the theme, but needed to balance the reveal.

35D. Soup variety, and a feature of five puzzle answers : SPLIT PEA (8). As mr. Gleason would say, And away we go....


1. Shoot the moon : GO BIG. This was real challenge as well, because it has so many meanings, and I mostly associate with Hearts where you must take all hearts and the Queen of Spades.

6. "Say from whence / You __ this strange intelligence?": Macbeth : OWE. Not my favorite play, but:

Stay, you imperfect speakers, tell me more.
By Sinel’s death I know I am thane of Glamis.
But how of Cawdor? The thane of Cawdor lives,
A prosperous gentleman, and to be king
Stands not within the prospect of belief,
No more than to be Cawdor. Say from whence
You owe this strange intelligence, or why
Upon this blasted heath you stop our way
With such prophetic greeting. Speak, I charge you.

9. Word of possibility : MIGHT.

14. MDX maker : ACURA. An SUV.

15. __ Pacis: altar of Peace : ARA.  This EDIFICE. PAX, was the Roman goddess of peace, from whence we derive Pax Vobiscum.

16. Tough test metaphor : A BEAR.

19. Dish man? : PETRI.  An interesting  STORY about a very cultured man.

20. Measurement for Sagan : PARSEC. Carl is back. Twice. 58A. Muse for Sagan : URANIA. A bit of a scientific mini-theme with the Galileo reference. This amusing MUSE.

21. One sending out bills : ATM. Automated Teller Machine. Nice deception.

23. Field guard : TARP. More fun cluing, for the tarpaulin protecting the baseball diamond.

24. Bolivian president Morales : EVO. A member of an Indigenous Tribe in Bolivia as well as a Coca farmer. LINK.

25. Denounce unmercifully : SCATHE. I do not go in for the Rex Parker tendency for scathing reviews.

27. Natl. debt unit : BILlion. Sadly trillion is the real answer.

28. Mountain __: soft drinks : DEWS. There are many kinds.

30. White : ASHEN.

31. Galileo's birthplace : PISA. His BIOGRAPHY.

35. Snowboarding gold medalist White : SHAUN.

38. Begins : OPENS. Our write begins with a made up theme/name.

45. Easy pace : LOPE.

46. Idle colleague : PALIN. No Sarah but Monty Python and Fish Called Wanda star MICHAEL. Nice Eric Idle misdirection..

47. Conan Doyle, for one : SCOT. The damn Scott's Lawn commercials have ruined it for me.

51. "Love __ Rose": Neil Young song : IS A. Neil got bashed for his CSNY work.

52. At sea : ADDLED. Not out on the ocean but confused.

54. LAX stat : ARRival.

55. Fade out : TIRE which describes how I feel about...

57. Film with six sequels : SAW.

60. Equals : PEERS.

64. Kovacs of early TV comedy : ERNIE.

65. Tao follower? : ISM. Taoism.

66. "JFK" director : STONE. Oliver.

67. Late bloomer? : ASTER. They bloom in the fall.

68. Skid row woe : DTS. Delirium Tremens, the shakes.

69. Prepares for recycling : SORTS.


1. Suddenly inspired : GASPED. Along with the equally confusing 5D. Is visibly thunderstruck : GAPES. These words do confound me.

2. Staff span : OCTAVE. Musical staff.

3. Underground shelter : BURROW.

4. Camera component : IRIS.

6. Sturdy tree : OAK.

7. Encircle : WREATHE. Not a usage to which I was familiar, but of course it makes sense.

8. Like 3-Downs : EARTHEN.

9. Place for an X, perhaps : MAP. It marks the spot.

10. "That's dubious" : I BET. The tone must be sarcastic.

11. Go for lunch, say : GET A BITE. Not related but see 41D. Started one's family, casually : HAD A KID.

12. President who signed the Sherman Antitrust Act : HARRISON.  Benjamin who was the grandson of William Henry and president before and after Grover Cleveland. This ACT. Shall we break up Apple?

18. Razor man? : OCCAM. It is simple, it really is.

22. Patch : MEND.

26. Venomous snake : ASP.

29. Informal pardon? : 'SCUSE. Is this supposed to be English?

31. 1666 London fire chronicler : PEPYS. A glimpse into the past with his DIARY.

33. "__ luck?" : ANY. Luck had nothing to do with it.

34. Two-by-four source : LOG. Simple, elegant.

36. Classic 1986 sports movie : HOOSIERS.

37. Obvious : APPARENT.

40. Makers of many skeds : CPAS. I am sure accountants use it but I do not like 'sked.'

42. Grey area? : OLD WEST. Zane Grey that is.

43. Small, made smaller : LIL.

44. Get ahead of : ONE UP.

48. Fixture at Rosh Hashanah services : CANTOR. At all services.

49. Put on course : ORIENT.

50. Masonry and such : TRADES. One of my mother's brothers taught masonry at trade school in Brooklyn, Connecticut.

53. Metallic waste : DROSS.

56. City on its own lake : ERIE. A shout out to our own.

59. In the matter of : AS TO.

61. Sun. delivery : SERmon. Ecumenical equal time for the Church.

63. Acute care initials : EMS. Emergency Medical Services.

Thank you Jeffrey, I had a really good time. I hope you and all the others have a great week end at ACPT, and I hope everyone has a great spring. Lemonade a bit under the weather signing out.

Notes from C.C.:

1) Welcome back, Gary! What Irish Miss said yesterday: You were missed and no more setbacks allowed! Now we need Yellowrocks to check in.
2) Happy Birthday to Commander Al (Spitzboov), a blog regular whose loyalty, friendship and advice I've been relying on the past few years. Al served in the Navy Reserve for over 20 years and retired as Commander. You can click here for more pictures of Spitzboov, Betty  and Argyle at the Washington County Fair last August.

 Spitzboov and Argyle with John (Deere)
3) Happy Birthday to John28man as well. The lady in his avatar picture is his wife. They were in a restaurant in Vienna, Austria.


Mar 6, 2015

Friday, March 6, 2015, Steve Marron

Theme: There is no "I" in Steve Marron's name

Our own tag team titan from Wednesday's well traveled and witty Steve has taken an old saw and made it into a reveal 61A. Sports cliché that explains 17-, 28-, 35- and 47-Across : THERE'S NO I IN TEAM (15) which spans the grid and explains that all the other nonsensical fill are sports teams with the letter "I" removed from the names. Really cute, and inventive, and a classic Friday structure with lower word count and fewer blocks, with the average word length almost 5 and 1/2 letters. This led to lots of 7 and 8 letter fill like ABYSMAL, ACERBIC,  AD ASTRA,  AMPERES,  ATTACHE, BASKETS, BASMATI, CATBERT, ECSTASY, ENTWINE, SEETHES, STREETS, UTENSIL, VIEWING, MANIACAL, VENDETTA. Very fresh fill and almost no common answers (IRA, TEN and AHA) another rising star emerging in the LAT world from our little Corner. Remember when we used to say, Oh great that is C.C.'s third solo, or marti's? Let's see what this transplanted Brit brought.

17A. Pennsylvania athletes : PITTSBURGH PIRATES (15) I bet it was deducing that this team left 15 letters when the Is were removed that made this puzzle possible for Steve. Well done catch.

28A. Florida athletes : MIAMI DOLPHINS (10) I love seeing my hometown team (they actually no longer play in Miami) and the fact the mirror clue is also an NFL team.

35A. Illinois athletes : CHICAGO FIRE (9). We have soccer, to go with football. Of course to Steve this too is football, so....There also is a current TV Show with this name. Am I the only one who finds it odd that things are named after a terrible disaster?

47A. Michigan athletes : DETROIT LIONS (10). Like the Dolpins they are in a long span of futility.
and the reveal as above
61A. Sports cliché that explains 17-, 28-, 35- and 47-Across : THERE'S NO I IN TEAM (15)
classic 5 theme 15, 10, 9, 10, 15 symmetry.


1. Biting : ACERBIC. What a witty way to begin.

8. Pulley wheel : SHEAVE. The things I learn here, I never knew THIS.

14. Beyond enthusiastic : MANIACAL. Is this a CSO for marti?

16. __ arch: blood vessel section : AORTIC. Is this a CSO for marti?

19. "Charlotte's Web" monogram : EBW. Elwyn Brooks White. Now I recall why I never remember this AUTHOR's full name. Notice that he likes dachshunds as well as correct use of English.

20. Like dreamers, often : ASLEEP.

21. Word of suspicion, to Tweety : TAWT I saw a puddy tat.

22. Steering aids : REINS. I like this clue so many ways, the misdirection, the sound....

24. __ moment : A HA. Is this two words?

26. Langley-based org. : CIA. Central Intelligence Agency. I had a high scholl classmate who went to work for them and I am hoping he will tell us his adventures at our upcoming 50th reunion.

27. Maritime raptor : ERNE.

32. Booyah, e.g. : STEW. Man this was hard for me, I only know the Stuart Scott version not the FOOD.

33. Tax shelter initials : IRA. Individual Retirement Account.

34. Gray wrote one in a country churchyard : ELEGY.  He originally called it Stanza's Wrote in a Country Church-Yard. LINK.

39. Teatime choice : ASSAM. Leave it to Steve to know his teas.

42. "Un-PC" was added to it in 2014 : OED. Oxford Englsih Dictionary.

43. "Take a Chance on Me" group : ABBA.

50. Company headquartered in Trollhättan : SAAB. WE had the ABBA/SAAB once before and I love it.

51. Fizzy prefix : AERate.

52. Words before hear or see : SO I.

53. Needing to be picked up : MESSY. Or perhaps this ANSWER (for Splynter?).

54. "Let it be" : STET.

56. Address label words : SEND TO.

60. Düsseldorf distances: Abbr. : KMS. The European mind, Kilometres.
64. Make final adjustments to, as a concert piano : RETUNE.

65. Family feud : VENDETTA. I recently rewatched one of my favorite Natalie Portman movies.

66. They may be intangible : ASSETS. Goodwill, for example.

67. Setting piece : UTENSIL.


1. Electrical units : AMPERES.

2. Scott Adams' Evil Director of Human Resources : CATBERT. He has such a strange mind.

3. Wrap around : ENTWINE.

4. Grafton's "__ for Ricochet" : R IS. Between Wheel of Fortune and Sue Grafton there is always a saving fill.

5. Rum desserts : BABAS.

6. Post-op areas : ICUS. Intensive Care Units.

7. Red Sox great Yastrzemski : CARL. Not to be confused with another Carl, 13D. "Understanding is a kind of __": Sagan : ECSTASY.

8. The tenth Muse, to Plato : SAPPHO.

9. Old TV knob : HORizontal.

10. Proof word : ERAT.

11. Diplomatic official : ATTACHE.

12. Taking in : VIEWING.

15. Part of XXL: Abbr. : LGE.

18. Proceed : HEAD. Like head home, or HEAD EAST.(5:17).

23. Air freshener scent : NEW CAR.

25. Ray or Jay : ALER.

28. Emcee's aid : MICrophone.

29. The Era of __: period in Notre Dame sports lore : ARA. Parseghian.

30. Toon with a cat named Bowser : MAGOO. No memory of this feline.

31. Satisfy : PLEASE. It will satisfy me if you say please....

36. Health care orgs. : HMOS.

37. Vintner's prefix : OEN. We usually have Oeno.

38. Hose users: Abbr. : FDS. Fired Departments.

39. Words on the Royal Canadian Air Force badge : AD ASTRA. Latin for 'to the stars.'

40. Is ready to blow : SEETHES.

41. "__ of Philadelphia": Oscar-winning song : STREETS. Not a happy SONG.

44. Court scores : BASKETS.

45. Long-grained Asian rice : BASMATI. We ue primarily Jasmine.

46. Beyond poor : ABYSMAL. Fun word.

48. Pre-game decision makers : TOSSES. Of a coin.

49. Property encumbrance : LIEN. Oh goody, a real property law word.

53. Eiffel's world : MONDE. Just French.

55. Level : TRUE. True dat!

57. Fall mo. : NOVember.

58. "Mon __!" : DIEU. OMG! More Frawnche!!!

59. Salon treatment : TINT. Hair salon.

62. Sinusitis-treating MD : ENT. Ear Nose and Throat.

63. Top __ : TEN. This is absolutley in my top ten favorite Steve Marron puzzles! Great Job! I did get a chance to ask Steve the genesis of this puzzle and he said, "I was working at home one morning and watching the Dan Patrick show on NBC Sports and he started to question the "No "I" in Team" tenet and that's what got me thinking." Remember to set your clocks ahead, and beware the Ides.  lemonade out.

Feb 20, 2015

Friday, February 20, 2015, Frank Virzi

Theme: Where do I find the "F" words? I can't C them.

Wow, it is only February and I already am blogging my second Frank Virzi puzzle this year. To refresh your recollection, Frank is a science teacher working in Townsend (?) Massachusetts (that knowledge might help solving) who gave us an 'ell of time in January with his add a sound offering. This time we have a straight letter exchange where "C" becomes "F" in 5 phrases, three of which are grid spanners. Each of the phrases had a final word that begins with C, but an F is substituted to reveal some visually amusing fill. Having the C in Cover as part of a fill may not be acceptable to some, though it is only Cs in the last word which are switched. The key to this type of theme is the wit of the new fill. I really enjoyed some of them and I hope you did as well. With 71 theme letters encased in only 5 fill we have a puzzle which has no fill longer than 6 letter, except for the theme, with 3,4 and 5 letter words dominating the grid.

17A. Forgeries that are easy to spot? : UPSIDE DOWN FAKES (15). Pineapple Upside Down Cake is the only one I have ever had. Do you get a mental image of the Mona Lisa standing on her head? Getting the theme is very critical because the perp of FIFE which intersects this and the next theme answer, is not easy.

23A. Dude in the CIA? : UNDER COVER FOP (13). I do not think of CIA operatives as Cops but I guess in the generic law enforcement sense they are. FOP is a word I know from reading  English mysteries along with TOFF.  As I said, FIFE is easy if you have the F theme.

37A. Trivial blunder? : MICKEY MOUSE FLUB (15). Ah, they have given us Annette Funicello, Britney Spears, Justin Timerlake and so many other graduates of Disney's Club. I assume we all of heard of the disparaging, what kind of Mickey Mouse operation are you running here?

49A. Pancake cook in pinstripes? : YANKEE FLIPPER (13). I love this; a reminder of Joe DiMaggio, the Yankee Clipper, in his pinstripe uniform.

58A. "My fireplace is defective!"? : I HAVEN'T GOT A FLUE (15). I also laughed out loud for this variation of I haven't got a Clue though we had many, and I hope you filled them all.

So that is the theme, just one letter changed, no spelling or sound changes, just interesting mental pictures.


1. "Invisible Cities" author Calvino : ITALO. I would guess marti knows considerably more than I do about this WRITER. Lately we are getting tough 1A starts to our Fridays.

6. "I ran away from you once. I can't do it again" speaker : ILSA. One of the most quoted films of all time, Casablanca had Ingrid say these lines:

"I can't fight it anymore.
I ran away from you once. I can't do it again.
Oh, I don' t know what's right any longer.
You have to think for both of us.
For all of us."

10. Ford Field player : LION. The stadium where the Detroit Lions play.

14. Surgery acronym : LASIK. Laser-Assisted in situ Keratomileusis or the easier to parse Laser-Assisted Stromal In-situ Keratomileusis. I am sure we all remember KERA is Greek for cornea.

15. It's a gas : NEON. Fun clue. A touch of science.

16. "Snow White" character flaw : ENVY. Poor Queen.

20. By way of : VIA. A Latin word fully accepted into English.

21. French pronoun : TOI. Moi, toi? wait for perps.

22. Habituate : INURE. Both words mean accustom, but inure is more frequently associated with bad things.

28. Essen's valley : RUHR.

29. Spotted : SEEN.

30. Slug relative : SNAIL. A slug living in a motor home?

33. Roll : WAD. Usually seen with 'of dough.'

34. Word after clip or pop : ART.

42. Colorado native : UTE.

43. "About his head he wears the winner's __": "The Two Noble Kinsmen" : OAK. How cool, some Shakespeare that I do not know, with fill that was not easily inferable.

44. Guanaco cousin : LLAMA. This animal got its name from the Qhechua, who live in the Amazon so we are once again back in Ecuador.

45. Beantown athlete : CELTic. Boston is beantown, and they ended up making no deadline trades. Danny Ainge I thought you had the inside track for Dragic? And, 66A. City NNE of Boston : LYNN. Was this a Natick for anyone? Finally, 46D. Bay State motto starter : ENSE. "ense petit placidam sub libertate quietem" "by the sword she seeks quiet peace under liberty" How many of our Bay Staters knew the motto of their home, Massachusetts?

47. Peek follower : ABOO.

54. Some Highlanders : GAELS. Having read extensively about Scotland, this was a gimme. Their STORY. Also, 19D. County on the Firth of Forth : FIFE. I find all of this stuff interesting. LINK.

56. U.N. workers' agcy. : ILO. International Labour Organization. Don't forget the 'u.'

57. Roasting time in Toulon? : ETE. Another variation on cluing the French word for summer (without the accent.)

63. "Footloose" co-star Singer : LORI. She got the Bacon sizzling...

64. Word after "funny" that clarifies its meaning : HA HA. Not, funny odd.

65. 1995 Stallone title role : DREDD. A dreadful film, that has already been remade.

67. Senate Republican leader before Frist : LOTT.

68. Sources of wisdom : SAGES.


1. Affectionate text : I LUV U. LUV was a way to avoid saying love, when I was young.

2. It's often just inches : TAP IN. You just love those tap in pars and birdies, HG?

3. Syrian leader : ASSAD.

4. Full deck Nero wasn't playing with? : LII. Fifty-two, the number of cards in a modern deck.

5. Gave a thumbs-up : OK'D.

6. Like some soccer games : INDOOR. And football.

7. Pope before Benedict III : LEO IV. All perps; there have been 266 according to the Vatican; do even the best Catholics know them all?

8. Plant : SOW. Juxtaposed with...

9. Taylor of fashion : ANN. There is no such person, it is the name of a retail chain, and it was named after a DRESS.

10. Pressure : LEAN ON. Me.

11. Finish, as a tat : INK UP. My meh fill of the puzzle, don't  you 'ink in' the artwork?

12. Finished : OVER. I am so over this.

13. Where to see MMM : NYSE. New York Stock Exchange.  They were Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company when I was young, known then for Scotch tape. A CSO to our Minnesota heritage.  LINK.

18. "Toy Story" character who draws : ETCH.

24. Composer Satie : ERIK. More marti's STYLE.

25. Gag __ : RULE. In a trial, the judge orders the participants to not speak of the courtroom happenings.

26. Isaac's eldest : ESAU.

27. Team whose logo involves a "wishbone C" : REDS. There are many Cs but only this odd one.

30. Mustangs' sch. : SMU. A return visit for Southern Methodist University.

31. Trivial objection : NIT. You get to pick you own. A tiny clecho with the theme clue.

32. One-spot : ACE. Never heard the term.

33. Pan for Yan : WOK. I guess the rhyme is cute, but YAN is not the most well known of Chinese provinces.(up date, the reference is likely to a tv cooking show You Can Cook hosted by Martin Yan)

34. Recipe words : A LA.

35. Mojito ingredient : RUM.

36. Not yet determined, in skeds : TBA. To Be Announced.

38. It's surrounded by white : YOLK.

39. Game ender : MATE. Why do we have 'check' in chess but not in checkers?

40. Morlock prey : ELOI. Yummy?

41. Bomb : FLOP.

45. He served between Warren and Herbert : CALVIN. Coolidge in between Harding and Hoover.

47. Like most rafts : AFLOAT. Not George.

48. Rorschach image : BLOT. The oldest joke: the man goes to the doctor and is shown inkblots but after each one he tells the doctor he sees naked women fornicating. The doctor expresses amazement with the man's fixation on sex, but the patient says, "Me, Doc? I think it is you since you were the one showing me all the dirty pictures."

49. Ache : YEARN. For better jokes?

50. "__ Men Out": baseball scandal film : EIGHT. Ahhm the 1919 White Sox.

51. Pequod co-owner : PELEG. The characters in Moby Dick should all be familiar.

52. Chopin's "Winter Wind," e.g. : ETUDE. Do we like Piano music ?

53. Orchestra group : REEDS. Or do we prefer the ORCHESTRA?

54. Fish feature : GILL. Vince is hurt...

55. "Hi, sailor!" : AHOY.

59. Vezina Trophy org. : NHL. National Hockey League, the award is for the best goalie, named after a Montreal Canadien goalie who died of tuberculosis.

60. Lao Tzu principle : TAO.

61. Some pop-ups : ADS. Too many.

62. Brother : FRA. This is a variant of the word FRIAR; the Catholic encyclopedia says Friars are different from monks in that they are called to live the evangelical counsels (vows of poverty, chastity and obedience) in service to society, rather than through cloistered aestheticism and devotion. Whereas monks live in a self-sufficient community, friars work among laypeople and are supported by donations or other charitable support.

We are now getting ready for spring training baseball while we have parts of So. Fla. experiencing below 40 degree temps for the first time in four years. I realize this is not impressive to all the New England, upstate NY and Canadian readers, but is our harsh winter. Hope you enjoyed Frank V., as I did. Lemonade out (in the cold!).

Note from C.C.:
Happy Birthday to dear Argyle, my trusted adviser and close friend. I can't picture my life without Argyle, yet I forgot his birthday! I need to be punished!!

Feb 13, 2015

Friday, February 13, 2015, Mark McClain

THEME: This is one of those times where the reveal is better than anything I can think of to describe this letter replacement puzzle, which only requires remembering how to parse reveal clues.
63A. Modernize, in a way ... and when divided into three parts, a hint to the answers to starred clues : RE TO OL (6).

This is Mark's second puzzle for me to blog; his first publication was an LAT I wrote about on October 3, 2014 which involved adding DD into phrases. He since has had other publications, and while he stopped by to introduce himself, he did so a week after the puzzle, so in case you missed it,  here are his words. About myself? I've enjoyed xwords for many years, but just started tinkering around with constructing late in 2013 and started submitting puzzles early this year. This puzzle was actually made in March 2013, but went through a revision with Rich and was finally approved in June. I've had 8 puzzles approved for publication, including one in collaboration with Brad Wilber, who has been a great source of encouragement and knowledge. We started our dialog a few months ago when he approved one of my puzzles (scheduled for December). I live in Salem, Virginia, in the mountains near the Appalachian Trail and Blue Ridge Parkway. Both my long-time partner Diana Christopulos and I and do volunteer work for a number of local organizations. He has a website: LINK.

In every theme answer an 'in the language' phrase which includes the letters RE together in that order, are replaced with OL, in that order- RE to OL. The placement of the RE/OL is different in each of the theme answer; some of the fill is humorous, some functional.. The inclusion of the asterisks and the reveal made this one of my faster Friday solves, but then again, I am not a very fast solver, so....Many three and four letter fill for a Friday, with some nice medium fill like AIR RAID, ‘FRAID SO, IRIDIUM, MIRAMAR, SEE THRU, SORRIER, LHASA APSO, OUT SHOOTS.  let's see the theme and more....

19A. *Site of preserved ancient gaucho weapons? :LA BOLA TAR PITS (13). La BREA Tar Pits
are in one form or another very common in crosswords.  BOLAS is a nasty weapon; I am not sure if the singular is a legitimate word.

32A. *Hip curriculum? : COOL COURSES (11). CORE Courses are the basic ones you need for your degree.

41A. *Second-hand seat? : THRIFT STOOL  (11). The Thrift STORE has become  big business in the US. They used to be second hand stores when I was a kid.

54A. *Heroine in a reprised fairy tale? : OLD RIDING HOOD (13). My favorite of the theme, and I am sure by now she is the one in bed waiting for her granddaughter.

We revealed the reveal above...


1. Word with cake or meal : OAT.

4. Doctrinal suffix : ISM.

7. Pat Nixon's real first name : THELMA. I guess she chose Pat, because like most Thelmas, she hated her name. LINK. My ex-mil, Sue, is also a Thelma.

13. Classic sci-fi play : RUR.

14. Tres equivalent : DREI. Spanish to German number 3. An outlier....(sorry brain semi-functional)

15. Clinton's birth name : RODHAM. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing, did any others recall that Bill was born William BLYTHE, also 6 letters?

16. Bush spokesman Fleischer : ARI. Staying with politics, Alex....

17. Part of DAR: Abbr. : AMERican. Daughters of the American Revolution. My third and fourth grade teacher, Mrs. Sochor was a proud member; she was in her 80's, frail, and as a very small child I thought the name was literal.

18. Busy enterprise? : APIARY. It be where they have bees and Sherlock Holmes. Leading to...

22. Grouse : BEEF. Can't complain about this clue/fill.

23. Humana option : HMO. Health Maintenance Organization; I just joined their gold plus plan.

24. Cut (it) : HACK. He just couldn't hack it as a salesman.

27. Blitz : AIR RAID.

31. MLB "minors" : AAA. Triple A baseball is the highest of the minor leagues which now go from rookie to A, AA and AAA; no more D leagues.

36. Banned chem. pollutant : PCB. PolyChlorinated Biphenyl; the initialisms adding up.

37. Protective bauble : AMULET.

38. Capital SE of Tallahassee : NASSAU. Capital of the Bahamas.

40. GPS datum : LATitude. Not a CSO to the LA Times.

45. Canadian sentence enders? : EHS. But a CSO to our resident Canadian.

46. Worse : SORRIER. State of affairs?

47. __ Men: "Who Let the Dogs Out" band : BAHA.

49. Andalusian aunt : TIA. Spanish.

50. Emerald City princess : OZMA. The dedicated fans of L. Frank know this half-human, half fairy GIRL.

59. "Ditto" : I DO TOO.

61. Thought : IDEA. Not to be parsed I, DEA.

62. French handle? : NOM. Just  French meaning "name." 21D. Versailles rulers of old : ROIS. French for kings. And42D. Roast, in Rouen : ROTI. This is one time where the accent would help. Rôti.We all remember that the accent is replaced with an "s" in many americanized versions of French words as explained by Kazie..

64. Functions : USES.

65. One of quarterback Archie's boys : ELI. With Peyton, the fading Manning brothers.

66. Lover's request : KISS ME. Often followed by, "you fool."

67. Stylish, once : MOD. Ah, the days of the mods and rockers.

68. Symbiont on "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" : DAX. probably the most interesting and complicated CHARACTER(s) in the Star Trek universe. Realy only one DAX but two hosts....And the similar 14D. Indian lentil stew : DAL. A much harder clue than Delta. All perps. A CSO to my twin Vidwan and Mangesh Sakharam Ghogre.


 1. Colgate competitor : ORAL B. Even with the O from OAT, my inclination was CREST.

2. Halos : AURAE.

4. Culinary author Rombauer : IRMA. So many to chose from.

5. Sexy, in some ads : SEE THRU. Click if you want to see an EXAMPLE. (for the guys)

6. San Diego Marine Corps station whose name means "sea view" : MIRAMAR. Living in So.FLa. this is a gimme (a) we have a city with the name (b) you hear "mira" a billion times when people want you to look at something or understand something.

7. Trick : TRAP. Not synonymous for me, but it was easy fill.

8. Arizona natives : HOPI. We studied this tribe extensively in my undergraduate sociology classes. And a token cross reference. 3D. 8-Down, e.g. : TRIBE.

9. Archie's wife : EDITH.

10. Himalayan canine : LHASA APSO. This breed's HISTORY is interesting. Also see Caleb and Baha men.

11. Spoil : MAR. Mira! Another one.

12. '70s White House daughter : AMY. Where is she NOW?

20. Taking everything into account : OF ALL. Huh?

25. Evergreen bean : CACAO. Of course we love chocolate, and especially the fine aroma beans from Ecuador.

26. Capital where Pashto is spoken : KABUL. With all the years of war, this should be easy.

28. Rhyme $yndicate Records founder : ICE-T. Not to be confused with Grammy host ICE CUBE. Sorry Tin.

29. Certain IRAs : ROTHS. Names for Senator William from Delaware, also home to Joe Biden.

30. Driller's prefix? : DENTI.

32. Biblical spy : CALEB. Interesting and CONFUSING part of the story of Moses, which happens to be where the cycle of reading the Torah is now. Caleb (which means dog; see Baha Men) was perhaps one of the 12 spies.

33. Home of the Beef, an indoor football team : OMAHA. How perfect; I must get an email per week from Omaha Steaks. Now we would know how to answer when Clara Peller asked her famous question.

34. Makes more baskets than : OUTSHOOTS.

35. Fund drive appeal encl. : SASE. Self Addressed Stamped Envelope.

39. Eponymous brewer Bernhard : STROH.

43. Atomic number 77 : IRIDIUM. Was that easy for you science guys? Not the part of the periodic table that I remember.

44. "'Tis true, sorry to say" : FRAID SO.

48. Certain choristers : ALTOS. Why not chorusters?

51. Subdivided : ZONED. Zoning is part of the process, but a previously zoned property can be subdivided.

52. Scratch : MOOLA. Another interesting word, and one of questionable HERITAGE.

53. Blend : ADMIX. This is a real word, on its own, why I do not know.

55. Not a happy fate : DOOM. Doctor, doctor...

56. Function : ROLE. Super-villain.

57. Mandatory item : NEED. The Avengers? Fantastic Four?

58. It can be natural : GAS. Crepitation? LISTEN? (15:17).

59. Vex : IRK. Yes, vexsome.

60. Agnus __ : DEI.  Ah, we finish with classic crosswordese.

Well this was a real admix of information which brought out the linker in me; thanks Mark and I hope you all aol golat. Lemonade, out.