Mar 16, 2008

Sunday, March 16, 2009 Annabel Michaels

Theme: Oral Exam

25A: Molar collector?: TOOTH FAIRY

67A: Alien language: FOREIGN TONGUE

114A: Car accident rescue device: JAWS OF LIFE

6D: Murderous: CUT THROAT

37D: Pecans, pumpkin, etc.: PIE FILLINGS

40D: Harmonicas: MOUTH ORGANS

82D: Dimple: CONCAVITY

Wow, what a laborious & harrowing solving experience! I struggled hard. The Socio/Ethno/Flenses/Cresset portion of the puzzle was simple too formidable for me. I did not even get the complete theme entries until I read others' comments. I spent 1 1/2 hours on this puzzle. Had 2 big high-carb breakfasts & 1 apple & 1 banana to compensate my rigorous mental workout.

Oh, I have a question for you, what time do you normally get your Sunday paper? Our weekend paper guy is really driving me nuts. He is always unapologetically and unabashedly late. This morning he threw the paper so hard at our garage door that he woke up my husband.

Across entries:

1A: Rite spot: ALTAR

10A: Of people: pref: SOCIO. I flirted with the senseless LOCIO for over 1 hour.

15A: Long nail: CLAW

19A: "Aida" composer: VERDI. "Aida" is the only Verdi piece I know.

20A: Component piece: UNIT

21A: Of a people: pref: ETHNO. I like the way ETHNO parallels with SOCIO.

22A: Scottish lake: LOCH. I am very fond of this crossword clue: Loch without a key: NESS

23A: Objects of devotion: IDOLS

30A: Auberjonois and Descartes: RENES. TMS crossword stalwart.

31A: Hindu priestly caste: BRAHMAN. Not a familiar word to me. I guess I've heard of Brahma, the Creator in Hinduism (Vishu is the preserver and Shiva is the destroyer. Hindu Trinity). My dictionary explains Brahman as the highest of Hindu priestly caste.

33A: Strips blubber: FLENSES. Unknown. Is this a whaler's lingo?

35A: Angel dust: abbr: PCP (Phencyclidine). I wonder who first called this awful drug "Angel dust?" Maybe he experienced some hallucination and delusions from dosing on this drug and saw angels?

38A: Divest: STRIP

39A: Relative of a flambeau: CRESSET. I did not know the meaning of flambeau, and I've never heard of cresset. I just learned that flambeau derived from old French flambe (flame). I think that's where we get this word flamboyant.

40A: Brit. electees: MPS (Members of Parliament). I just finished Josephine Hart's Damage, in which an upcoming brilliant British MP had a steamy affair with his son's girlfriend. I don't know where I got this notion that MP stood for Minister of Parliament. Louis Malle made this into a film, starring Jeremy Irons and Juliette Binoche. It's pretty good.

43A: Explorer Ericson: LEIF. Here is more information about him. Have never heard of him before.

45A: Hawaiian acacia: KOA. Acacia koa. Unknown to me.

49A: South Pacific region: OCEANIA. Does it include Australia?

51A: Censor's inserts: BLEEPS

54A: Safe: SECURE

55A: Boldly resisting: DEFIANT. That's the oddball lunatic Kim Jong-Il.

56A: Bitingly cold: RAW

57A: Social follower?: ITE. My first instinct was ism, or ist.

59A: Number stamper: DATER. What?

61A: Wife of a rajah: RANI. Rani = Ranee; Rajah = Raja.

62A: Word with prayer and throw: RUGS

64A: Afterwards: THEN. I put SOON first.

65A: Actor Linden: HAL. He is a stranger to me.

71A: Keats verse: ODE

74A: Part of NLCS: NATL (National League Champions Series). Twins belong to the ALC.

75A: Practical jokes: GAGS

76A: Rabbit's title: BR'ER. My husband helped me with this one.

78A: Top social category: A LIST

80A: __ de mer: MAL. French for seasickness.

81A: Wildebeest: GNU. Wildebeest is not listed in my Webster's dictionary.

82A: Informing: CUING.

85A: Hindu mystic writings: TANTRA. Tantra, mantra, both Hinduism terms.

87A: Admonish: REBUKE

89A: While performing: ON STAGE

90A: Cleanliness: HYGIENE

92A: Tumor: suff.: OMA. Fibroma, Melanoma.

93A: Tropical cuckoo: ANI. Learned this bird from doing crossword.

96A: Feudal tenants: VASSALS. Big stumper. I only knew ESNE.

99A: One hundred: pref.: HECTO. I simply forgot.

101A: AARP members: SRS

102A: Tex and Thelma: RITTERS. Complete strangers to me.

103A: Part of the Arctic Ocean: KARA SEA. On the east of Barents Sea. Look at this map.

105A: One more time: AGAIN

108A: QED part: ERAT. I am tired of this cluing.

109A: Norwegian king: OLAV

110A: Makes insensitive: NUMBS

116A: High: pref: ALTI. Altitude or what?

117A: Window on a corbel: ORIEL. It looks like this.

118A: Hog-wild: AMOK. Can also be spelled as amuck.

119A: Of an arm bone: ULNAR

120A: Spoils taken: LOOT

121A: Cooper's Bumppo: NATTY. No idea.

124A: Skewed: AWRY

125A: __ Park, CO: ESTES

Down entries:

1D: Rara __: AVIS. A rare bird, Latin. That's Sade. Don't know where she is now. Sade and her sister used to frequent a bar in Southern Spain operated by my ex-boss.

2D: Mother of Castor and Pollux: LEDA. The Swan Lady.

3D: Walked (on): TROD

4D: Impromptu: AD LIB. The impressive Mike Huckabee! He is so good at ad lib.

5D: Staircase elements: RISERS

7D: Blood deficiency: ANAEMIA. I always spell it as Anemia. Don't eschew the R word, W, this economy is anemic.

8D: Irregular stone foundation: RIPRAP. Here is a picture for you.

9D: Drinking vessel: STEIN

10D: Looses: SETS FREE. I penned in LETS FREE, thus could not get SOCIO for 10A.

11D: "My fair Year" star: O'TOOLE. Never saw this movie.

12D: Routine duties: CHORES

13D: Deeply felt: INTENSE

14D: La-la lead-in: OOH. I put in TRA first.

15D: Sculptor Oldenburg: CLAES. Another stranger.

18D: Reasons: WHYS

26D: Worried: FRETTED

32D: Rowan, a.k.a. Mr. Bean: ATKINSON. Poor guy. He will always be Mr. Bean.

34D: Earthly seven: SEAS. I loathe the clue.

35D: Proceed slowly but surely: PLOD

36D: Gospel singer Winans: CECE

39D: Wrigley's and Doublemint: CHEWING GUMS

41D: Liquefied: PUREED. Don't like anything pureed either. I need to see clearly what I am eating.

42D: "Tristram Shandy" author: STERNE. Have never read the book, do not know the author either.

48D: Beat it: SCAT

50D: Childlike person: NAIF

52D: dugout canoe: PIROGUE. I want to be in this boat.

53D: Knocks for a loop: STUNS

58D: Coop item: EGG. Have you ever taken a fresh warm egg from a coop?

61D: Make road repairs: RETAR

63D: Minor divisions: SUBUNITS. This word posed quite a bit of problem for me.

68D: Battering device: RAM. It's in last Sunday's puzzle.

69D: 31-syllable Japanese poem: TANKA. I only know Haiku.

70D: Greek goddess of discord: ERIS. She is the sister of Ares (God of War). Troubled siblings.

73D: Italian wine center: ASTI

77D: Ways in: abbr.: ENTS. Entries I suppose?

79D: Golfer from El Paso: TREVINO (Lee). Great guy. Very funny too. But I was actually thinking of Crenshaw (Ben). I did not know that Trevino is from Texas. Golfer Justin Leonard is from Texas too.

83D: Borodin's prince: IGOR

88D: Long, narrow cushions: BOLSTERS

91D: Actress Parson: ESTELLE. Nope. Have never heard of her.

93D: Aquarium requirement: AERATOR. My husband filled this for me.

97D: Old World finches: SERINS

98D: Former PLO leader: ARAFAT

99D: Revere: HALLOW. I think Abe Lincoln used "hallow" as a verb twice in his Gettysburg Address.

100D: Wife of Paris: OENONE. Only knew Helen.

103D: Australian marsupial: KOALA

104D: Invisible emanations: AURA

106D: Willing: GAME. I don't think I am game for another Sunday puzzle, this is too tough for me.

107D: Gone GI: AWOL

112D: __ noire (bugbear): BETE

C. C.


Katherine said...

I am sulking because I don't get the Tribune puzzle in my Sunday paper. Someone mentioned the other day on your blog how to get it on line, but I could not find it. If anyone knows how to do that, could you send the URL again? I miss it on Sunday.

Dennis said...

We don't get it here either; Philadelphia Inquirer gives us a Merl Reagle one on Sundays.

Anonymous said...

I think 10A should be SOCIO-, and 10D should be SETSFREE. This way they both make more sense. Do you agree?

Anonymous said...

Eubin: That's what I had

Add to the puzzle theme:
40D MOUTHorgan

C.C. Burnikel said...


Have a look at my Saturday's post. I put a link for Chicago Tribune's crossword on line. No Sunday puzzle though.


Thanks for checking in. How I wish you were doing TMS's Sunday instead of Merl Reagle's!


I've corrected my mistakes. Thank you. No wonder I was so bemused by "LOCIO"

Anonymous @ 10:35am,

I've added your lists to the theme entries. You helped me tremendously. Xie Xie.

Anonymous said...

This puzzle comes in the Sat. ed. of the Globe and Mail from Toronto.
What did the clue 'dimple' give anyone?

Anonymous said...

This puzzle comes in the Sat. ed. of the Globe and Mail from Toronto.
What did the clue 'dimple' give anyone?

Anonymous said...

Shouldn't "Makes insenstive" be "numbs," not "dumbs." After all, Paris's first wife was named Oenone, not Oedone.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Dimple: Concavity

Corrected my DUMBS mistake. Thanks.

Dennis said...

C.C., is your Sunday puzzle available online?

Anonymous said...

34d I had sins which I like better. I remember Thelma Ritter in All About Eve. The late John Ritter (3s Company) was Oater Actor Tex Ritter's son. He also sang a bit.

Dick said...

Hello cc
I do get the Sunday STC but my wife and I have a camp/farm that we visit most weekends and I do not get a chance to see the puzzles until late in the day.

I have traveled extensively in my career and I am now very content to stay home or go to the our camp.

I will work on todays puzzle and hopefully have some comments later.

C.C. Burnikel said...


It's not on line. Star Tribune has the Universal Syndication puzzle on line (Monday-Sunday), edited by Tim Parker, who also edits USA today.

You can not find it on Chicago Tribune's Website either.

I really want to know what puzzle is on Chicago Tribune's Sunday paper. I suspect it's the same as ours.

I am very perplexed by this crossword world. Why can't your paper carry the TMS Sunday as well?

C.C. Burnikel said...

Anonymous at 11:49am,

I went to your Globe & Mail website, and found Universal and Gemini puzzles, not Tribune Media puzzle.

If your Saturday puzzle is our Sunday puzzle, what's on your Sunday paper then? A 15*15, or another 21*21?

Anonymous said...

This puzzle is a daily in the Tampa Tribune, Tampa, was a tough one for me too!

Anonymous said...

crossword puzzle movie memo: Watch for "My Favorite Year" on cable. It's a hoot.
Estelle Parsons won a best supporting actress Oscar for her role in 1967's "Bonnie and Clyde".

Dick said...

Hello CC
This puzzle was a problem because of its content plus I was trying to watch Tiger woods play in the Arnold Palmer Invitational.
121A gave me fits and therefore I could not get 112D. Needed your blog help to get these. Also, I had olaf for 109A which screwed up 82D concavity although I really did not know that word anyway. I see 68A was close to battering material from a few days ago. Guess overall I thought the puzzle offered some good mental exercise.

Dick said...

In my earlier comment I referred to the Sunday STC puzzle. Dont know what I was thinking but I meant TMS.

sallyjane said...

Finally! Not a killer, but just the right mix of tough ones, easy ones, crosswordese and never heard of ones!

I did most of this puzzle this morning but had other things to do the rest of the day. Just now got it finished. Last section to fall was the 6 ACROSS and 6,7,8,9 DOWNS. CARS seemed too obvious so I didn't even put it in at first! And I have seen the spelling ANAEMIA, but not for a long time. Had WAIF for 50D, so that screwed up OCEANIA. Have never heard of FLENSES, KOA or CRESSET, but the crosses came through for me. 82A. CUING was a tough get for me as well. Just couldn't come up with that until the end. 99A. HECTO - wanted CENTI, but knew HALLOW coming down had to be right. So, finally done and done!

C.C., Natty Bummpo is a character in James Fenimore Cooper's "Last of the Mohicans". Treat yourself to the movie version starring Daniel Day Lewis. One of my all-time faves. Probably have seen it a dozen times.



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