Showing posts with label Mary Lou Guizzo. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Mary Lou Guizzo. Show all posts

Jan 25, 2016

Monday, January 25, 2016 Mary Lou Guizzo

Theme: Two-Letter Combos - Pick two letters and find two related words that start with said letters.

17A. *Game where one might have an ace in the hole : STUD POKER

36A. *Financial page listing : STOCK PRICE

43A. *Only woman ever elected governor of Alaska : SARAH PALIN. In the news again.

61A. *Stack of unsolicited manuscripts : SLUSH PILE. Previously, this clue/answer were reversed.

11D. *Informal surveys : STRAW POLLS

29D. *Touchy topics : SORE POINTS

68A. "500" Wall St. index ... and a hint to the answers to starred clues : S AND P. (Standard & Poor's)

Argyle here. Mary Lou is very good at this style of early week themes. The perps should get you through the rough spots.

Across:

1. '90s game disc : POG. Tough start unless you had kids in the '90s or you were yourself.

4. Infield fly : POP-UP

9. Invites home for dinner, say : HAS IN. If it's Hannibal, don't go.

14. 007 creator Fleming : IAN

15. Banish : EXILE

16. Unable to sit still : ANTSY

19. Actor __ Elba of "The Wire" : IDRIS. The name "Idris"; Wikipedia.

20. Liability offset : ASSET

21. Settle in a new country : EMIGRATE

23. Young Simpson : BART

26. "Coulda been worse!" : "PHEW!". "That was a close one!"

27. Biblical beast : ASS

30. Least fatty : LEANEST

33. __-12 conference : PAC. (Pacific Coast Conference)

38. "__ creature was stirring ... " : NOT A

39. Team in 40-Across : CARDS

40. Arch city: Abbr. : STL. (St. Louis)

41. Ship carrying fuel : OILER

42. Iowa State city : AMES

45. Very quietly, in music : PPP. (pianississimo)

46. Artist's paint holder : PALETTE

47. Farm pen : STY

48. Gave the nod to : OKed. Anon nit, yes, we know you think it should be OK'D.

50. Payroll IDs : SSNs. (Social Security number)

52. Became partners : PAIRED UP

56. To date : SO FAR

60. Ed with seven Emmys : ASNER

64. "I'll do it" : "LET ME"

65. Gum treatment, briefly : PERIO. (periodontal treatment)

66. Former president of Pakistan : ZIA. Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq (Boy, did I mess this up!)
 

"Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq" by Wikifreund.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
67. Relaxed : EASED

69. Reheat quickly : ZAP

Down:

1. Leaning Tower of __ : PISA

2. Stable diet : OATS

3. Bearded antelopes : GNUs

"What are you looking at?"
4. Coaches' speeches : PEP TALKS

5. Losing tic-tac-toe string : O-X-O

6. Water__: dental brand : PIK

7. Title beekeeper played by Peter Fonda : ULEE. "Ulee's Gold"

8. Make waves? : PERM

9. San Francisco street that crosses Ashbury : HAIGHT. For all you hippies.


10. Netman Agassi : ANDRE. (tennis)

12. "__ just me?" : IS IT

13. Financial page abbr. : NYSE. (New York Stock Exchange) How's your stock price?

18. Budding socialite : DEB

22. __ dixit: assertion without proof : IPSE

24. Sales agent : REP. 18D and 24D don't have indications that they are abbreviations: we know.

25. Like ankle bones : TARSAL

27. Songwriters' org. : ASCAP. (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers)

28. "Put __ here": envelope corner reminder : STAMP

31. Saltpeter, to a Brit : NITRE. (potassium nitrate)

32. Flashy displays : ECLATS

34. Took the loss, financially : ATE IT

35. Sideshow barker : CARNY. Short for carnival worker.

37. Music store buys : CDs

38. Actress Peeples : NIA


41. Workplace where union membership is optional : OPEN SHOP

43. DWI-fighting org. : SADD. (Students Against Destructive Decisions)

44. Growth chart nos. : HTs. (heights)

46. Looked carefully : PEERED

49. Krispy __ doughnuts : KREME

51. Soak (up) : SOP

52. Hardly healthy-looking : PALE

53. Out of port : ASEA

54. Snail-mail delivery org. : USPS. (United States Postal Service)

55. Formal petition : PLEA

57. Antacid jingle word repeated after "plop, plop" : FIZZ, FIZZ.

58. Et __: and others : ALIA

59. Harvest : REAP

62. Barista's vessel : URN

63. Rocker Vicious : SID. Bonus S&P: He was a member of the Sex Pistols.


Argyle


Jan 9, 2016

Saturday, Jan 9th, 2016, Mary Lou Guizzo & Jeff Chen

Theme: None

Word: 70 (missing Q,X,Z)

Blocks: 34

Wow, this one was a brain-drain, and just about the longest WAG-fest I have ever had the pleasure (or pain~?) of solving.  My first time with a Mary Lou construction, though I see she was prolific last year with her LATimes puzzles.  Jeff, on the other hand, has beaten me up on several occasions, so I have a feeling this was "all his fault"....had a vaguely Dan Naddor feel to it, IMHO, consisting of several two-word answers.  Pretty atypical Saturday grid, no chunky corners, but three spanners and a 13-letter climber;

16. Strength in numbers? : PREDICTIVE POWER - I thought we might be looking at a "numb-ers" kind of misdirection, then a numerology kind of thing, but it has a scientific application - the best example was the prediction that the planet Neptune (which threw me at 62a.) existed by scientists observing its gravitational effects of the other planets before its discovery

34. Beats the rap : GETS OFF SCOT-FREE - I have English parents, so this phrase was heard around my house a lot; here's the etymology

58. Best Actress the year before Kate Winslet : MARION COTILLARD - I thought this was a 1997/98 reference to Kate's Titanic role, but no; she won for the The Reader in 2008; Marion won for La môme - never heard of it, but I do recall her as "Mal" from Inception, which was a great movie

15. Really enlightened : WISE AS SOLOMON - at one point, I had "WISE-ASS-----"









 




ACROSS:

1. Directive to a dealer : HIT ME - I am reading Slash's biography, and so the 'dealer' I had in mind was like the one he scored heroin from

6. Adds liberally : HEAPS ON

13. Sustain : UPHOLD

15. Apple bug? : WORMHOLE - no "i-Computer" misdirection here.   I am attempting to write a book of my own, and part of the plot involves the other, 'travel-through-space-and-time' kind of wormhole

18. Blubber : SOB - dah~! Not FAT

19. What "this love is," in a Taylor Swift title : OURS

20. Shades go-with : SUN HAT - not sure if this was sunglasses or curtains shades

21. Shepherd's dishes? : MEAT PIES - of the first 10 answers, 6 have two-word elements

24. Fruit trees : PEARS

25. __ cut: fabric design technique : BIAS

26. Birch of Indiana : BAYH - one of many proper noun clues that I just had no clue on, and it's Birch Bayh, Senator from '63-'81

28. Unkempt abode : STY

29. Umbrian tourist town : ASSISI - mostly perps

32. Salisbury smooch : SNOG - British kiss; think Harry Potter

40. __ Accords: Israel/PLO agreements : OSLO

41. Acorn bearer : PIN OAK - OK, I cheated on the "N", since RED was not working, and I forgot about this kind of oak tree

42. Ad follower : HOC - ad hoc, Latin "for this"

45. Some 55-Across works : OILS - dah~! since I did not know who "Joan" was, I tried ODES; a 100% 50% correct WAG

47. Smidge : MITE - not IOTA

48. Mocks : JAPES

50. Blockers' targets : POP-UP ADS - now we are talking about computers, and I was thinking football

53. Dodges : AVERTS - AVOIDS, EVADES - tried 'em both

55. Joan of art : MIRÓ - oh, it's a dude

56. __ Dome: Lucas Oil Stadium predecessor : RCA

61. Dizzy with delight : IN A SWOON

62. Neptune, e.g. : SEA GOD - DAH~! not PLANET

63. Gently passes : EASES BY

64. Simmers : STEWS

DOWN:

1. Drill cadence syllables : HUPS

2. Swear words : I PROMISE

3. "If I Can't Love Her" singer, in a 1994 musical : THE BEAST - I was trying to think of a band called "The -----S", and then I realized it was a singular character from "Beauty and..."

4. Hip : MOD

5. Literature Nobelist who won two posthumous Tony Awards : ELIOT - perps and WAG

6. __ lane : HOV - I complain about this every time it's in a crossword; we have one here, part of the Long Island Expressway, and I think it's a colossal waste of black top

7. Spanish 101 word : ERES

8. Vitalize : AMP UP

9. Calls or cells : PHONES - got it, but thought "that can't be right"

10. "Like I care" : "SO WHAT~?"

11. Kevin of "Shark Tank" : O'LEARY - I had him confused with Mark Cuban in my mind; my buddy Mike, with the backyard games company, met Mark, I think


12. "Drat!" : NERTS

14. Support spec of a sort : D-CUP - ah, Dennis could appreciate this one


17. Salt Lake daily : TRIB - does leaving out "City" make for an abbr.~?

22. Sale warning : AS IS

23. Harmonize : SYNC - oops, not SING; that's another 50% correct in all places

25. Snare : BAG - not NAB

27. Shooter's target : HOOP - basketball~? I wasn't going to get it

30. Jack of "Barney Miller" : SOO

31. Logician's words : IF SO

33. Sporty VW : GTI

35. Cheeky : FLIP

36. From 2009 through Sep. 2015, it paid $143 billion in dividends to the U.S. Treasury : FNMA - stumped.  Federal National Mortgage Association, or Fannie Mae - the Wiki

37. Concern for some bodybuilders : 'ROID RAGE - my first thought, but I did not factor in an abbreviation

38. Issues a mea culpa : EATS CROW

39. Squeak (out) : EKE

42. Museo de la Revolución city : HAVANA

43. "Ring Cycle" quartet : OPERAS

44. Color similar to crimson : CERISE - sounds blue, but that's cerulean; the word comes from "cherry", and I was going to link a pie pic, but I found this much more fascinating


46. Narrow shore point : SPIT

48. Portrayer of Django and Ray : JAMIE - took me forever to remember Mr. Foxx's name

49. Throws below : STOWS - oops, not SINKS

51. "Gunfight at the O.K. Corral" screenwriter : URIS

52. Spherical extremities : POLES

54. Snoot : SNOB

57. Tosses in : ADDS - just wanted to ADD that yesterday marked 11yrs for me

59. Playing hard to get : COY

60. Pull-up beneficiary, briefly : LAT - the muscle of the back; I have been over at my friend Adam's house, where his 2yr old has moved on to "pull-ups", so I was in that frame of mind....who benefits from those~?

Splynter

Dec 29, 2015

Tuesday, December 29, 2015 Mary Lou Guizzo

Theme: Roast Beef

17A. Kansas City baseball color : ROYAL BLUE

36A. Tavern with a view : ROOFTOP BAR

43A. Dilapidated ship : RUST BUCKET

61A. Bucking ride : RODEO BULL

11D. Tour de France wheels : RACING BIKE

29D. 13th-century English friar/philosopher : ROGER BACON. Who is Roger Bacon? LINK

68A. "We Have The Meats" fast food chain, and a homophonic hint to the six longest puzzle answers : ARBY'S

Argyle here. Plenty of entries so a few tricky spots. Mine was the left coast, middle.

Across:

1. Glass edge : RIM

4. Personal histories : PASTS

9. Infielder Rod in Cooperstown : CAREW. Remember him from last Thursday? And someone new 65A. Hall of Fame second baseman Bobby : DOERR. Wiki for this Red Soxer.

14. "Caught you!" : "A-HA!"

15. Stag, at a party : ALONE

16. Egg-shaped : OVATE

19. Battery acronym : NICAD. (nickel–cadmium)

20. Olympics skating analyst Ohno : APOLO. He was a short track speed skater.

21. Laborious tasks : TRAVAILS

23. Post-shower powder : TALC

26. "Twin Peaks" actress Sherilyn : FENN

27. USN officer : CDR. (Commander)

30. Buying plan with a down payment : LAYAWAY. Odd clue.

33. Highway sign : GAS

38. "In memoriam" bio : OBIT

39. English: Pref. : ANGLO

40. Dashed : RAN

41. Job that doesn't pay? : CRIME

42. "__ 101": Jamie Lynn Spears sitcom : ZOEY. Britney's sister on Nickelodeon.

45. Go astray : ERR

46. Thicker, as a beard : BUSHIER

47. Some MIT grads : EEs. (electrical engineers)

48. Indonesian island : BALI

50. Well-kept : NEAT

52. "That's shocking!" : "I'M AMAZED!"

56. Triumphant cries : TADAs. A welcomed sound.

60. Potato press : RICER

64. Sun-dried brick : ADOBE

66. Vintage roadster : REO

67. Guadalajara girls : NINAs

69. Woodsman's chopper : AXE

Down:

1. __ avis : RARA. (rare bird) 10D. For the birds? : AVIAN

2. All-You-Can-Eat-Pancakes chain : IHOP. (International House of Pancakes)

3. Spread on a BLT : MAYO. Should Steve have blogged today or what?

4. City near Stanford University : PALO ALTO. Located in Santa Clara County and the State of California.

5. Greece neighbor: Abbr. : ALB. (Albania)

6. Note after fa : SOL

7. Letter-shaped fastener : T-NUT

8. Clairvoyant : SEER

9. Transport, as on a factory belt : CONVEY

12. List-ending abbr. : ET AL.

13. Unites in marriage : WEDS

18. Bottom-row PC key : ALT

22. Off in the distance : AFAR

24. Thai language : LAO

25. Mediterranean island republic : CYPRUS

27. Hottest fashion : CRAZE

28. Philanthropist : DONOR

31. Embarrass : ABASH

32. Hope to participate : WANT IN

34. 'Til Tuesday lead vocalist Mann : AIMEE. I didn't know she is a bassist.



35. Decides not to dele : STETS

37. Swatter target : FLY

38. Tolkien beast : ORC

41. Museum overseers : CURATORS

43. All-Star Phillies catcher Carlos : RUIZ. Another ball player. Wiki

44. Pollen eater : BEE

46. Loud, raucous sounds : BLAREs. Like a tie-up at rush hour.

49. Tiny life form : AMEBA

51. Bill at a bar : TAB

52. OPEC founding member : IRAN

53. Calf-length skirt : MIDI

54. Wagner's Earth goddess : ERDA. A week ago Sunday: ["Ring Cycle" goddess : ERDA. German for "earth", right?]

55. Way in or out : DOOR

57. Battery name prefix with "cell" : DURA

58. "Jeopardy!" host Trebek : ALEX

59. Gin flavoring : SLOE

62. Belle of the ball : DEB. (debutante)

63. Suffix with trick : ERY. Enough trickery for one day.

Argyle


Sep 10, 2015

Thursday September 10, 2015 Mary Lou Guizzo

Theme: A LOW KEY Thursday, like this hilarious LOW KEY Comedian




Mary Lou's lovely Thursday exercise got me with LACT_/SAM_. I didn't know SAMI but had a good feeling about LACTO. Her LOW KEY theme used the gimmick that the word KEY could be appended to the last word in the  four down fills with asterisks to form a common phrase. The first word of the amended phrase was also LOW on the  vertical fill and so LOW KEY!


3. *Event for A-listers, say : PRIVATE FUNCTION - Where the elite meet and FUNCTION KEY on my MacBook Pro. Any of the 11 on the top row




11. *The Hagia Sophia, for nearly a millennium : BYZANTINE CHURCH - Constantinople CHURCH and CHURCH KEY - puncture or cap removal type




27. *Sirius' constellation : CANIS MAJOR - The winter constellation and MAJOR KEY signatures in music



29. *Space to maneuver : WIGGLE ROOM - Plausible denial or ROOM KEY (modern version) that all my Florida kids got and half managed to lose at one time or another




58. With 59-Down, subdued, and a hint to the answers to starred clues : LOW. 59. See 58. Down - KEY and there you have the reveal: LOW KEY


Marti is off in Europe sightseeing, staying with friends and helping to kick off Oktoberfest in Bavaria. I am her envious and barely adequate pinch hitter.

Across   

     
1. Oz. sextet : TSPS - 6 TSPS per oz. abbr/abbr. Not Kazie's Oz.

5. Hamlet's foppish courtier : OSRIC - Yeah, I knew that!


10. Abba not known for singing : EBAN - ABBA Eban who held many posts in Israeli government 


14. Other, in Orizaba : OTRO - Español - "On the other 
hand" becomes "pro OTRO lado"

15. __ Park: Knott's Berry Farm city : BUENA




16. Connecticut town for which a disease is named : LYME - Less favorable notoriety than Buena Park


17. Sinn __ : FEIN - An Irish political party. Name means "Ourselves"


18. 100-eyed guardian of Io : ARGUS - Yikes! I'm pretty sure we wouldn't see eye to eye to eye to eye... 




19. Weizman of Israel : EZER - Seventh president of Israel


20. Bean used in falafel : FAVA - They were also a side dish in a grotesque meal in Silence Of The Lambs.


21. Half a comedy duo : MEARA - Part of Stiller and Meara and mother to Ben Stiller


22. Two-time MLB all-star Ron : GANT - Now host of Good Morning Atlanta, a city where he once played


23. Three-handed game : SKAT - Aggressive SKAT play




24. Wrench handle? : ALLEN - I loved this clue. My bike requires ALLEN wrenches on most bolts


25. Stats for QBs : INTS - When your number of INTerceptionS exceed your number of COMPletionS, you will probably have to seek other employment


26. "Clueless" co-star __ Dash : STACEY - I know it's lame, but I was CLUELESS about Stacey


28. Johannesburg section : SOWETO - SOWEstern Townships. 




30. Salad option : CAESAR - Et tu?


31. Social calls : VISITS 


33. "__ Wiedersehen" : AUF - Literally means "until we see again". AUF Wiedersehen, Marti!


34. It often says "Hello" : NAME TAG


38. FDR loan org. : NHANational Housing Agency was part of FDR's alphabet soup




39. "Pardon me, Giuseppe" : SCUSI - Dean Martin sang "Grazie, Grazie, SCUSI, Prego"


41. CPR provider : EMT - First responders run TO danger


42. Something in your eye : GLEAM


44. Wires, e.g. : SENDS - Used mainly to transfer money today


45. Mr. Rogers : ROY


46. Dairy prefix : LACTI - LACTOse occurred to me first 


47. Brown shade : CAMEL


49. "He that __ down with dogs shall rise up with fleas": Franklin : LIETH - Birds of a feather...


51. Bar made by Hershey's : KIT KAT 





53. Enterprise bridge regular : MR SULU


56. "Vous êtes __": Paris map words : ICI - You are here!


57. Dog days mo. : JUL - A fairly cool July on the prairie this year


59. Kitchy-__ : KOO


60. Cartoonist Chast : ROZ - Clueless redux


61. Disney's Bob Iger, e.g. : CEO


62. Dash prefix : ODO - The ODOmeter on your car's dashboard. Can they still be turned back?


63. Frequent co-producer of U2 albums : ENO - A frequent cwd commodity


64. "__: Miami" : CSI


65. 54-year-old doll : KEN - Middle-aged KEN and Barbie




66. VCR button : REW


67. Sweet tuber : YAM - YAMS with brown sugar, marshmallows and football. Now that's Thanksgiving!


68. Bulls and bucks : HE'S - Both male


 Down:


1. Farnham Fops - TOFFS - A gaggle of TOFFS


2. Outback condiment : STEAK SAUCE

4. Piano pieces : SONATAS


5. Period since 2009 : OBAMA ERA


6. Without a doubt : SURELY - From my "funniest movie ever"




7. Courtly : REGAL


8. Hardens : INURES


9. 18th-century Italian adventurer : CASANOVA - Oh, it's called adventuring 


10. Poetic laments : ELEGIES - Was I the only one who read this in high school?





12. "I'll say!" : AMEN TO THAT - Right on, brother!


13. "Darn it!" : NERTS


30. Mama known for singing : CASS - "...and everyone's getting' fat 'cept Mama CASS"


32. Scandinavian native : SAMI- Not a clue, er no idea. These are Indigenous people living in the very north of Sweden, Finland and Norway. Tundra is a SAMI word used in many other languages. 


35. Jazzman Saunders : MERL - SF jazz organist/keyboard player


36. Expressive music genre : EMO


37. Texter's sign-off : TTYLTalk TYou L8r


40. Home to Pierre: Abbr. : S DAK - Where Lewis and Clark encountered Teton Sioux or Lakota tribes


43. Back muscles, briefly : LATS - Latissimus Dorsi




48. Czerny piano piece : ETUDE


50. "__ roll!" : I'M ON A


51. Bit of excitement : KICK 


52. Frozen treat : ICEE


54. Shed : LOSE


55. Strong arms? : UZIS - I'll bet EZER Weizman knew his way around one


C.C. was very LOW KEY when we visited with her and Boomer but I wonder how many of my other crossword friends here. There are a lotta hot buttons out there! Who knew a comma could raise IRE?


Husker Gary


Aug 19, 2015

Wednesday, August 19, 2015, Mary Lou Guizzo

Theme - INTO THE WOODS.  The theme answers are the names of trees, but clued differently, of course [though cluing as the trees' woods or fruits is only slightly different] and they are located at the puzzle's periphery, thus surrounding all the other fill.

1 A. Hearth dust : ASH.   That is what is left of the wood when the fire is done burning.  Sadly, the ASH tree is under attack from a green boring beetle.  I thought this might be why fewer baseball bats were being made from ash and more from MAPLE, but that turns out not to be the case.  The word is derived from Latin, via Old English, meaning spear in both languages, which can provide another hint as to one of its uses

4 A. Snapple's __ Madness : MANGO.  A fruity beverage made of kiwi and vegetable juices, MANGO puree and other stuff.  The eponymous tree is tropical and cultivated for its fruit.

9 A. Jet black : EBONY.  A deep black color, named for the wood of the EBONY trees - several species of the genus Diospyros native to Africa and Asia. The wood is used for decorative and ornamental purposes.  

65 A. Syrup type : MAPLE.  Made by boiling down the sap of the tree of the same name.  There are other syrups made from corn and sugar cane, but only pure MAPLE syrup will adorn my pancakes!

66 A. __ Rapids, Iowa : CEDAR.   Iowa's second largest city straddles the CEDAR River, named for the red CEDAR trees that grow in its Minnesota and Iowa watershed.

67 A. C&W's __ Ridge Boys : OAK.  They started in the 40's as country group Wally Fowler and the Georgia Clodhoppers [I am not making this up] who evolved into the OAK Ridge Boys [because that was where they usually performed,] a gospel singing quartet that changed their focus in the 70's, thus generating several country and crossover hits. Of course many personnel changes occurred over the years.  The tree whose name is at the heart of all this is native to the northern hemisphere.

1 D. Jam fruit : APRICOT.  Well, this could have been just about anything - but as is it is one of my favorites.  Apricot trees are from the genus prunus - bearing fruits with a stone seed at the core.

13. Robin Hood's bow wood : YEW.  Again, the wood and its tree.  "The secret to the Yew bow’s strength and beauty is it’s natural laminate of heartwood and sapwood. The heartwood is where the power comes from, it’s ability to be compressed and return back to its original shape is almost unmatched in any other wood. The sapwood of the tree is superior under tension and protects the heartwood from being able to break, but also adds beauty. This is why some Native North American tribes believe this tree was put on earth for the making of bows and referred to it as the chief of the forest, being a small tree mostly almost vine-like under towering Old Growth forests."

27. Cookie fruit : FIG.   Fruit and tree - an Asian species in the mulberry family, cultivated since ancient times.


39. Trident, e.g. : GUM.  Well - this is different - and confusing.  Trident is a brand name for sugar-free chewing gum.  People have been chewing gum made from various tree bark extracts for millennia. In recent decades, though, natural gums have been replaced by polybutadiene, a synthetic polymer (yum!)  GUM tree can refer to various types of trees from the eucalyptus, angophora or corymbia genera, native to Australia and/or Tasmania.   The American Sweet GUM tree is completely different, native to the southeastern U. S., Mexico and Central America.

46. Poison drunk by Socrates : HEMLOCK.   Here, we have a case of mistaken identity.  Socrates' bane, corium maculatum, is a poisonous biennial herb of the carrot family, also known by several other names such as carrot fern, poison parsley and devil's bread.  These plants contain several chemically similar highly potent alkaloids that attack the nervous system leading to paralysis of resperitory muscles.   The completely unrelated and nontoxic HEMLOCK tree includes several species of the genus tsuga, tall conifers in the pine family, pinaceae.  The crushed foliage exude an aroma similar to that of the poisonous plant, hence the name.

58. Common street name : ELM.   Many American cities once had shady tree-lined streets - hence the name transfer from the tree.  In the mid 20th century, elm growth in North America and Europe was devastated by dutch ELM disease, an affliction caused by three related fungus species spread by the ELM bark beetle.   It's ben a mightmare.

And the unifier: 36 A. Like a shady boulevard ... and like this puzzle, in terms of its 12 border answers : TREELINED.  Which by this time should need no further explanation.

Hi gang, it's JazzBumpa, back after a long hiatus.  Despite what you may be thinking, I was neither lost in the woods nor up a tree.  Wood you like to go exploring in today's sylvan adventure?   I wood, so let's discover if we can find the forest for the trees.

But beware -- there may be danger!




Across

14. Shade of green : PEA.  Like olive drab, but slightly less exciting.

15. Exemplary : IDEAL.  Serving as a good example.  Am I exemplary when I DEAL at the poker game?

16. "Irma la __" : DOUCE.  Sweet Irma, the central character in a 1956 romantic comedy about prostitution, intrigue and moral degradation, starring Shirley MacLaine and Jack Lemon.   Sweet, indeed!

17. Flock member : RAM.  Likely to be an old goat.

18. Intimate : CLOSE.  I guess this explains white intimate apparel is close fitting.


19. Trailing : IN TOW.  Pulling something along.

20. Provence pronoun : ILS.  Google translate tells me this means "they."

21. Structures with many layers? : HEN HOUSES.  Would you like more of this kind of yolk?  Do you think I'm egging you on? Are you shell shocked? [Extra credit for anyone who can make a pun involving "albumin."]

23. "My Antonia" novelist : CATHER.  Willa, 1873 - 1947.   After growing up first in Virginia, which her family left in 1882 to avoid a TB outbreak, and Nebraska, she graduated from Nebraska U, thus becoming an official Husker!  She then lived in Pittsburgh for 10 years and finally settled in New York City, though "settled" is probably a bit misleading, since she traveled extensively and spend her summers in New Brunswick.

25. To some degree : SORT OF.   So you might say she SORT OF lived in New York.

28. Situation before a two-run homer : ONE ON.  Baseball! The condition of having ONE runner ON base - any base.  

29. "Barnaby Jones" star : EBSEN.  Buddy (1908-2003.)   I remember him as Holly Golightly's [Audrey Hepburn] abandoned husband, Doc, in Breakfast at Tiffany's, a thoroughly ghastly movie, in a way that only something from the early 60's could be.  But that gives me an excuse to link to this wonderful Henry Mancini song featuring Dick Nash on trombone, from the score album.   Mysteriously, the song is never heard in the movie.



32. Lilly of pharmaceuticals : ELI. (1838-1898)  He was a successful pharmacist, Union army hero in the Civil War, and unsuccessful plantation owner after the war.  He returned to pharmacy and became wealthy by making several advances in the manufacture of medicines.

33. Hardly talkative : TERSE.  And that's all I have to say.

34. Strange: Pref. : XENO-.   From the Greek

35. Take down __ : A PEG.   Reprimand someone for being arrogant.

39. Long-jawed fish : GARS.   No hint that a plural is needed.


42. Order in the court : WRIT.  Clever, but I'm not sure it's correct.  A WRIT is an order issued by a court, but generally sent to a recipient outside of the court.  That may be a lower level court, but still.  I rest my case

43. "Happy Pills" singer Jones : NORAH.  Ravi Shankar's daughter.


47. Game with Skip cards : UNO.



48. Lavish affairs : FETES.   Borrowed from the French, meaning holiday or party.

49. Ambition : DRIVE.  Get up and go.

50. Ally in a TV courtroom : McBEAL.   I totally misread this one, having forgotten about the TV show I might have watched once or twice.


52. Payment for a return : RANSOM.  Of a hostage or kidnapped person.

53. Brunch cookware item : OMELET PAN.

57. Like mil. volunteers : ENL.  Enlisted, I presume.

58. "MacGyver" actor Dana : ELCAR.  Gone for 10 years, now.



60. Get (a ship) ready to sail again : RERIG.   Or, simply to upgrade a ship with new riging.

61. __-pitch softball : SLO.  What justifies dropping the "W" from this word?

62. Second of 13 popes : LEO II.  (611-683) Served as Pope from Aug 17, 682 until his death on June 28, 683.

63. "You beat me" : I LOSE.  


64. Gumshoe : TEC.  DeTECtive.

Down

2. Maritime route : SEA LANE.   Best route across a large body of water, as determined by land masses and prevailing winds.  "Whale road" to Beowulf.

3. Wheel-spinning rodent : HAMSTER.   Do hamsters get caught up in the rat race?


4. Author of "Hawaii," "Alaska," and "Texas" : MICHENER.  James Albert (1907 - 1997)  His novels are too big and sprawling for me.

5. Psychologist Alfred : ADLER. Alfred (1870-1937) founder of individual psychology, a post-Freudian method influential in counseling.

6. Lamp gas : NEON.  It glows.

7. Cut that may need stitches : GASH.

8. Parkay, say : OLEO.   Ersatz butter.  What do Hungarians put on their toast?  Magyarine!  [Actually, we're pretty big on bacon grease.]


9. New Jersey township named for an inventor : EDISON.  Thomas Alva (1847-1931.)

10. Silly blunder : BONER.   Probably derived from making a bone-headed play. 

11. Walk faster than : OUT STEP.   I wanted OUT PACE, which seems more in-the-language.

12. PX shopper : NCO.  Non Commissioned Officer at the Post Exchange.

22. Try to tempt with : USE ON.  You can use all your charms on your next victim.

24. Party throwers : HOSTS.   Etymology, via Wictionary:   From Old French oste (French: hôte), from Middle Latin hospitem, accusative of hospes (“a host, also a sourjourner, visitor, guest; hence, a foreigner, a stranger”), from Proto-Indo-European *gʰóspot- (“master of guests”), from *gʰóstis (“stranger, guest, host, someone with whom one has reciprocal duties of hospitality”) and *pótis (“owner, master, host, husband”). Used in English since 13th century.

26. "Hip, hip, Jorge!" : OLE.  Spanish cheer, here presented as a ghastly pun and a reach too far.

29. Wield : EXERT.   As force, as in using a weapon.

30. Prove otherwise : BELIE.   Debunk.

31. Piques : SNITS.  Little anger episodes.   Aren't they cute?

35. Beautify : ADORN.  Decorate.

37. "The Seven Year Itch" actor Tom : EWELL.   Star of the stage play and the movie.



38. Jeopardize : ENDANGER.  As one's marriage, per the above clip.

40. Anti-apartheid org. : ANC.  African National Congress, the ruling national political party of the Republic of South Africa since 1994.

41. 1987 title law-enforcing cyborg : ROBOCOP.

44. Meets, as a challenge : RISES TO.

45. "Anne of Green Gables" community : AVONLEA.  A fictional community on Prince Edward Island

48. Spenser's "The __ Queene" : FAERIE.    Read all about it.

51. Online letter : EMAIL.

52. Mrs. Gorbachev : RAISA.  (1932-1999)



54. Old Norse explorer : ERIC (Eiríkr Þorvaldsson; 950 – c. 1003) The turn-of-the-millennium Norse had spent the previous couple of centuries earning a reputation as nasty people.  Þorvald Ásvaldsson was so nasty that the other Norse could not tolerate him.  He was exiled from Norway and settled with his family on the West coast of Iceland.  Continuing the family tradition, his son Eric - called "The Red" due to his Marxist leanings the color of his hair and beard - was exiled in turn for committing "some killings" in Iceland, ca. 982.  Per Wikipedia, he spent his three years of exile exploring Greenland, and established the first successful Norse settlement there.   Lovely fellow.

55. Marketing leader? : TELE.  TELEmarketing is a rude intrusion.  This type of affix clue always annoys me.

56. Nudge : PROD.  As with an elbow.

59. Pastoral expanse : LEA.  From Middle English for a grass land, and what you might find when you emerge from the woods.

Well, here we are on the lea-ward side, safe and sound.  IMHO we had a successful excursion.  We were able to branch out a bit, and I only barked my shins a couple of times. Hope you enjoyed it, too. [Full disclosure: I used Wikipedia and Mr. Google to root out the information contained herein.]

Cool regards!
JzB