May 5, 2008

Monday, May 5, 2008, Verna Suit

Theme: Three Red Things

17A: Three red things: HERRING MEAT WOOD

59A: Three red things: SNAPPER LIGHT ANT

3D: Three red things: CARPET WINE COATS

11D: Three red things: CROSS EYE CABBAGE

Why COATS? Why plural form? Where is the consistency?

Oops? Mr. Williams? RED comes after WHITE and BLUE? Or are you totally confused by Juliette Binoche's "Three Color Trilogy?" Why released these puzzles now rather than the 4th of July week?

I think I was still heavily NOTTED by yesterday's NOT puzzle. Could not untangle my cluttered brain this morning to completely demystify this ridiculous TONG crossword. Got mired in the ERNIE/SAENS corner. Did not know Composer Saint- ___ and simply forgot Journalist Pyle. Penned in HOIST for 50D: Holdup, and could not get ENTEBBE for 57A: Israeli raid site.

Good puzzle though. I like how CORAL is anchored in the very center of the grid, although I wish it were clued as color related. I love the way this constructor sprinkles politics into the crossword. This time it's Bill MAHER and Michael Moor's SICKO. Remember her KARL (Rove) and SCOOTER (Libby) puzzle? And the Clinton insinuated White House, White Water, Lies, Willy sub-theme in her last offering?


1A: Flaky minerals: MICAS. MICA is "crumb, grain" in Latin. How flaky is it? I don't think I've ever touched a MICA.

14A: Wise words: ADAGE

20A: Talk of Toledo: ESPANOL. Feliz Cinco de Mayo!

21A: Greek houses?: FRATS. I like this clue.

25A: Pretenses: POSES

28A: Model Banks: TYRA. Hmm, TYRA, POSES & BARE, like this picture?

34A: Writer Sinclair: LEWIS. Finally, an author I know. The pride of Minnesota. I guess a __Libby (Scooter) clue would have made this puzzle too politically pronounced.

37A: Unit of force: DYNE. This word seems to visit us every week. DYNE comes from Greek "dýnamis", power.

46A: Caesar's garb: TOGA

47A: Micheal Moore movie: SICKO. Good intention, but too one-sided in delivery.

54A: Hops dryers: OASTS

57A: Israeli raid site: ENTEBBE. Never heard of ENTEBBE raid. Also known as Operation Thunderbolt.

62A: In __ (where found): SITU

65A: Cartoonist Thomas: NAST. Tired of this clue. Why not try Condé __?

66A: Say it __ so! ISN'T. Does this refer to the movie or what?

67A: Cubic meter: STERE. Though spelled differently, I still do not like Meter and METRE (53D) appear in the same puzzle.


1D: "Politically Incorrect" host: MAHER (Bill). I like his OUTRE satirical style.

2D: that is.: Lat: ID EST

5D: Net wielders: SEINERS. Did this one trap you also?

13D: Affirmative action: NOD. The three-letter blank actually does not leave you any chance to go to the "policy measure" direction, does it?

24D: Common nester: SPARROW. Hmm, 2 birds today, see 6D: EAGLE.

26D: Journalist Pyle: ERNIE. Here is more information. I adore this "Big Easy" ERNIE.

27D: Composer Saint- __: SAËNS (Charles Camille Saint-Saëns). Tough! Completely unknown to me. Composer name is definitely my Achilles' heel. This morning I have no desire for OMEGA watch or HERMES Birkin bag. I only want to have some knowledge and feel smart for a day. "Poor sorry Devil... shows me the fruits that rot on the tree, and the trees every day leaf out anew..." I am willing to sell my soul.

35D: World -weariness: ENNUI. Yes, Jeopardy is jejune now.

36D: Afrikaner: BOER

37D: Party Pooper: DRAG. Are you talking about our Playboy Bill MAHER?

39D: Friend of Fidel: CHE. I like how this word intersects with 45A: HERO. CHE was/is a hero to many.

46D: Chinese secret society: TONG. One more time, Mr. Williams, TONG is Chinese American secret society. I am speechless, you've really reached the epitome of arrogance. We deserve a competent editor like her.

48D: Dead as a doornail: KAPUT

50D: Holdup: HEIST

52D: Capp lad: ABNER. Li'l Abner.

53D: Downing Street distance: METRE. Good clue. He is my favorite 10 Downing Street resident.

I forgot to mention earlier that there are quite a few actors/actresses' names in this puzzle, characteristic of Ms. Suit's style. But all of them are gimmes to me today.



Dennis said...

Good morning, C.C. and gang - sub-five minutes today, really no snags whatsoever. The only one I'd never seen before was 'Saens', and the perps got that one.
What's everybody doing today to celebrate Cinco de Mayo? I have a feeling we won't see Lois today.

Make it an outstanding day.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Is ENTEBBE very well known?
RE: LOIS. Je Ne Sais Pas Pourquoi What triggers?

Dennis said...

C.C., I think most would know of it; it was a very successful military rescue operation at a time when that was unusual.
I'm not sure what your "What triggers?" question refers to.

Superfrey said...

Quick puzzle today... I did get hung up on the Southwest corner... I have never heard of Nia Long or Peeples which tied me up for a bit. A one googler for me. CC your Twins have come alive :-)

Katherine said...

Good morning everyone. I missed a few of the "reds". I think red "coats" refers to the civil war. They wore red coats. Maybe I am wrong???? That was a GREAT picture of Tyra. I got "trapped" by seiners at first, but then got it from the other clues.

Dennis said...

Katherine, it was actually the British during Revolutionary War, as opposed to the blue and gray of the Civil War.
And yes, a nice 'wake-up' with the picture of Tyra.

C.C. Burnikel said...

What triggers to say that Lois won't come today?

I thought I was watching batting practice on the first inning.

It still should be RED COAT.

Dennis said...

Just that it's Cinco de Mayo, a serious party day, and I think Lois is a serious partier. A high compliment, by the way.
I disagree on Red Coats - that's the only way I've ever heard it used, such as "The redcoats are coming". Just my opinion, not a big deal.

Anonymous said...

Good morning CC and company,

Not too bad today considering the caffeine intake has been minimal so far. :o) Was stumped immediately with 1A, but moved along and quickly started seeing things fill in. But was stumped again when I got to 57A. 29D/38A - using "ip". And wasn't "yip" an answer just a couple of days ago?

Don't know what I'll be doing to celebrate Cinco de Mayo, I'm still celebrating the Pens beating the Rangers yesterday . . . barely.

Have a great Monday!

C.C. Burnikel said...

RE: REDCOATS.I beg to differ. Every one of these RED words are phrases. RED HERRING, RED MEAT, RED CABBAGE, RED WINE, etc. Your REDCOATS is one word, not a phrase. Only RED COATS makes sense here. And the plural form of COATS bothers me.

I did notice YIPS (3rd time this month). I figure if I ignore it, it will go away.

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Feliz Cinco de Mayo!

Pretty straightforward puzzle today, although it took me an embarrassingly long time to realize that it was Sinclair LEWIS and not UPTON Sinclair.

And yes, the "Red Coats" were the British regular army during the Revolutionary War.

Barry G. said...

Oh -- and it can be spelled either "Red Coats" or "Redcoats"...

Dennis said...

C.C., too fine a point for me; as I said, no big deal.

Bill said...

Good Morning, and a fine one it is with beaucoup sunshine already!
Not too bad today. Called Mr. Google about SICKO. I don't go to movies and seldom pay attention to previews so I'd never heard of it.
Then had to fik Mr. Sinclair's name as I had PINE instead of WINE. What the heck? Looked good to me.
I don't like the clue for 25a. PRETENSES. I can't get poses to work with that when I think of the normal usage of each word.
Maybe the dictionary says different but it seems to me that they don't interchange.
Just my limited vocabulary setting in, I guess.

Katherine said...

I stand corrected. I knew it was one of those wars, and I see it is still "coat". I think I got up too early today.

Dr. Dad said...

Dang! On a good roll until I put Upton Sinclair instead of Lewis. That slowed me up. The rest was easy.

Movie was "Raid on Entebbe" with Charles Bronson.

Bela Lugosi followed the other day by Lon Chaney today.

Happy Cinco de Mayo!! Take a trip to Margaritaville!!!!

British army wore red coats during the Revolutionary War and thus the name, ID EST, red coats. The plural is correct - colonists fought an army of "Red Coats" and not just one "Red Coat" which would be a single soldier.

In situ is a term used in chemistry where it means "to generate something in the reaction mixture because it is too unstable to be isolated.

I'm used to "say it ain't so."

It has been said (I don't know if it's true) that the U.S. supported the Mexicans over the French for "cinco de mayo" because if the French got into Mexico, they might try to take back the Louisiana Purchase by force after realizing how foolish Napolean was in selling it to us for the price he did.

C.C. Burnikel said...

You are right, REDCOATS can be spelled as RED COATS. Still, it should be in singular form to harmonize the consistency of the theme entries, esp since RED COAT can refer to one British soldier.

I am also used to "Say it ain't so, Joe". So 66A does refer to the movie, doesn't it? Disagree with all of you on RED COATS.

Bill said...

Paul Revere : The Redcoat is coming" or " The Redcoats are coming"

Dennis said...

Mkat, it'll be an interesting series; Penguins are awfully damn strong. My prediction: we (Flyers) win in seven.

Hey, if anyone lives near a Cheeseburger in Paradise restaurant, it is an OUTSTANDING place to celebrate this day - certainly where I'm gonna be.

Anonymous said...


I agree that it'll be quite a series. Though the Pens are strong, they make foolish mistakes and don't keep up their momentum. Yesterday being a prime example of that. I'm not sure who'll take it. But, cool that it's an all-PA final, regardless.

Barry G. said...

Actually, Bill, I think it was, "The British are coming."

I'm also more familiar with the phrase, "Say it ain't so," except that whenever I see it in a crossword puzzle it seems to be "say it isn't so" instead, so I've come to expect it.

C.C. Burnikel said...

RE: POSES (PRETENSES). I don't like the clue either. 2 P's in a pod is too much for my palate.

I am totally confused. Who on earth are coming? The British or the Redcoats?

Barry G. said...


"Red Coats" was a nickname for the British soldiers. So, in that sense, they were both coming. The actual quote attributed to Paul Revere during his famous "Midnight Ride," however, was, "To arms! To arms! The British are coming!"

Dick said...

mkatesq hope you liked the Penguins yesterday. Guess you got your cross state game, now who are you going to cheer for? Good puzzle today. No problems but I did not know 27D Saens. It worked in form the other clues and the rest of the puzzle was pretty straight forward. cc I guess you could say "The British are Coming " or you could say "The Red Coats are Coming" as they were the same invaders.

Bill said...

Barry, You're right; I was just trying to make a point. As to the plural being out of place with the singular answers, Redcoat refers to one soldier while Redcoats refer to ONE army of Brotish soldiers.

Dr. Dad said...

The quote may have been attributed to Paul Revere but he never said it. There are eyewitness accounts that what he said was "The regulars are coming out" and that he did not say this to everyone as he took his "ride." The mission was one of secrecy and the countryside was filled with British patrols so he would not ride around shouting "The British are coming." It is worthy to note that many of the colonists at the time still considered themselves to be British subjects. Longfellow helped to perpetrate the misquote with his poem.

Boomer said...

I started this puzzle the way Boof started yesterday against the Tigers. But then when I got to the middle, I started filling in some words. In the end I finished about six innings. Of course I got red Herring, and my favorite (Red Meat). I was looking for Red China but it's gone. Now the Peoples Republic! I don't think it's fair to have talk of Toledo, Taj Mahal spot, Afrikaner, Chinese secret society, Downing Street Distance, or Israeli raid site as clues. Do these people think I'm a world traveller?? My idea of a vacation trip is down the road to the Corn Palace in Mitchell, SD. And with the price of gasoline now, even that's an expensive trek. And whoever heard of Red cabbage. I've seen green, and I've seen that purple stuff, which was invented by Minnesotans in honor of their football team, (Or to throw at the refs for a bad call), but red cabbage must be something that Joe Biden thought up for the Red Herring to eat.

Dennis said...

drdad, I was there at the time and distinctly heard him say a red coat was coming. Thought someone was just having a good night, and I went back to sleep.

Anonymous said...

Good morning, CC et al., Under 5 minutes, dennis? You're a genius!
I was chasing a 'red herring' the whole time and running 'red lights'...BAM! It is Redcoats around here...the heart of the Rev. War....Surrender Field is just down the street.

As for Cinco de Mayo? I'm going to Paradise and several different 'villes'. After that picture of Tyra Banks, Dennis might alrady be smokin'and then coupled w/cinco de Mayo activities? we may not see Dennis for a while. Happy C.d.M, everyone.

Bill said...

All Right Dennis, I knew you were older than dirt!!!!!
What color was his horse or didn't you look out to check??

NYTAnonimo said...

I went with Upton Sinclair before Sinclair Lewis too. Did not know Saint Saens either but managed to finish sans Google.

Dr. Dad said...

I saw the Corn Palace a long time ago (drove there from Nebraska). Kind of neat!

Dr. Dad said...

Mexicans struggling against the French umpteen years ago and here we are debating British Red Coats, etc. My, my, my!

Anonymous said...

I worked in dermatology for 25 years and here is how we used the word in situ

Carcinoma in situ (CIS) is an early form of carcinoma defined by the absence of invasion of surrounding tissues.

Anonymous said...

dennis: I about had convulsions with your last comment. You are hilarious!

Barry G. said...

The quote may have been attributed to Paul Revere but he never said it.

Well, yeah. That's why I said "attributed". :)

Anonymous said...


I will most definitely be rooting for the Pens. The game yesterday was enough to give me a heart attack. I just couldn't believe the beginning of the 3rd period. Ah well. Neat that it is an all PA final. But, I think I may get beat up here @ work because I'm a Pens fan. :o)

Der Katze said...

OK Revolutionary War & X-word buffs here's a bonus for you. Clue: North Church Sexton(purveyor of fine food)Ans: six letters

Dennis said...

Ooh ooh I know! I know!
Oh wait, that's seven letters. Never mind.

MH said...

Somehow these "3 things" puzzles always stump me. Just couldn't get going on this one. Too many problems for me to list all of them. I agree with CC that coats is inconsistent with the rest of the red clues. British soldiers were called Redcoats (because they wore a uniform with a red coat) and a single British solider would be a Redcoat. It seems to me that the red coats made the Redcoats easy targets for American marksmen (snipers) who used the long rifles that had been developed for hunting game in the American forests. I'm ready for an easy puzzle to rebuild my confidence.

Dr. Dad said...

Newman (as in Robert Newman and Newman's salad dressing).

Mr. Corcoran said...

Saint Saens: He began learning the piano at two and a half and displayed remarkable precocity, memorizing all the Beethoven piano sonatas by age 10. His great friend Hector Berlioz remarked: 'He knows everything, but lacks inexperience'--Redcoats on a fiesta day--Rully! Boomer: red cabbage is a great specialite in Scandinavia--the ingenuity of limitation has spawned endless permutations of this gustatory deelight

Crockett1947 said...

Good morning everyone. For a Three Things puzzle this one wasn't too bad for me. C.C., thanks for the Tyra link. Nothing for Lois today? Nice pun on 5D. Katherine the "RED COATS" were the British in the American Revolution, aka "Lobster Backs." Boomer, Red cabbage is the prime ingredient of the German "rotkoln," a sweet-sour side dish to go with your schnitzel.

Dr. Dad said...

Rotkoln also goes well with Rippchen.

Anonymous said...

Crockett: that is so funny! Don't worry about me though, I'm still happy with the ice skater video and the 'morel'image. What a mushroom!

Dr. Dad said...

Forgot to add - Boomer, that "purple stuff" is what is called red cabbage, I believe. It looks the same to me.

Der Katze said...

:) Can't stump the doctor. "Newman" it is.

Lisa said...

Good Morning Everyone,

Well it is still morning here on the Wet coast! The instant I saw "coats" in the clue, I got a picture of the British in my mind. If it had been "coat" I wouldn't have understood why that was included.

Red cabbage is purple cabbage. We eat a lot of it in the Fraser Valley (near Vancouver BC) as we have a large population of Mennonites. It goes great with perogies!

Anonymous said...

Dennis: thank you for the high compliment earlier. I'll try to live up to it tonight and maybe even raise the 'bar'...or something equally exciting. Hope your time in 'Paradise' is all you want it to be. And drdad? It's 5:00 right now (still) in Margaritaville...Hope you enjoy yours as well. I've got my shaker of salt ready to go!

Happy C d M, all.

Dr. Dad said...

Lois, I'm looking for my lost shaker of salt.

lois said...

drdad: don't tell me...there's a woman to blame! I hope you find it and enjoy the fun! I sure will.

Anonymous said...

Der Katze,

CHE Guevara (RED)


Boomer said...

If red cabbage is purple, why not call it purple cabbage. Yup, I was on a hill in 1969 in Hardheim, (Near Wertheim on Main) watching a Nike Herc in a silo in case we needed it against evil doers. We'd go down the hill to the Gasthaus for schnitzel and ein bier, but I don't remember ever getting purple cabbage.

Lisa said...


My kids actually call Rotkoln "purple cabbage" it's a pickled cabbage, still a little crunchy. It is delicious, but it dyes everything on your plate purple. You should try it sometime. You can get it in the grocery store in the pickle section.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Thomas et al.
No comment on 35D: ENNUI???
ENUI, HERO(45A), EAGER (64D)all appear in Sylvia Plath's poem ENNUI.

There is only HERB (42A) in the puzzle, no SPICE. Lois is a Spicy Girl. And I know What a Spicy Girl Really Really Wants. Do you? If not, please listen to the music (You can skip the first 56 seconds). I've found nothing special in today's puzzle to please her!

lois said...

CC: that is sooo funny! Yeah, I'm goin' to "zig-zig Ah!" all the way through Margaritaville and up to the Tequila Sunrise. I may have to take off tomorrow for a little R & R...nah, I'll just eat extra nails with some red cabbage for breakfast and I'll be good to go. You're right about "spicey". I like it hot! BAM!

Dennis said...

Hey, when you google "zig-zig ah", Lois' picture comes up!
(You're welcome, google, for the dozens of hits to follow)

Mr. Corcoran said...

CC pas d'ennuis aujourd'hui!
lois--sortez les bouteilles, finis les ennuis! Skål!
Gotta say tho, the zig zag ah loses me...

C.C. Burnikel said...

Count me as one of the dozens. I googled.

melissa bee said...

good afternoon from the west coast, most of you are probably already hammered for cinco de mayo but i'm not even off work yet.

there won't be alot of celebrating in shark country tonight though .. excruciating loss last night.

this one tripped me up in a couple spots, i also wanted it to be upton rather than lewis, and initially put wait instead of whoa. seiners gave me trouble. i liked the placement of coral.

saint-saens came easily to me as i loved the soundtrack to 'babe the pig,' which was based on saint-saens's carnival of the animals. i'll never forget farmer hoggitt singing 'if i had words' to a sick pig.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Where is Santé? Why suddenly Skål?

I've been waiting for someone to tell me she/he was trapped by SEINERS. Yes indeed, the CORAL placement is awe-inspiring.

By the way, the 3:56pm deleted message was from me. I did not write it properly.

lois said...

Thomas: No problem! Skol!!!

Anonymous said...

yes, that was very well known. In fact it is increduluous to me that the event has somehow been forgotten by so many. what about mai lei? has that also disappeared from memory? or kent state? does anybody who doesn't know about entebbe remember the peace corps?

Anonymous said...

I will never like these "three things" puzzles. I still say that you should be able to get the entire answer in one go.

With that said, I don't have a problem with 'red coats'.

NYTAnonimo said...

Subject: Hellmann's Mayonnaise

Most people don't know that back in 1912, Hellmann's mayonnaise was manufactured in England. In fact, the Titanic was carrying 12,000 jars of the condiment scheduled for delivery in Vera Cruz, Mexico, which was to be the next port of call for the great ship after its stop in New York.

This would have been the largest single shipment of mayonnaise ever delivered to Mexico. But as we know, the great ship did not make it to New York. The ship hit an iceberg and sank, and the cargo was forever lost.

The people of Mexico, who were crazy about mayonnaise, and were eagerly awaiting its delivery, were disconsolate at the loss. Their anguish was so great, that they declared a National Day of Mourning, which they still observe to this day.

The National Day of Mourning occurs each year on May 5th and is known, of course, as Sinko de Mayo.

WHAT??? WHAT??? You expected something educational from me?

C.C. Burnikel said...

Where did you get this information?

NYTAnonimo said...

A facetious e-mail.

MooBossyCowCow said...

I think the editor is lacking imagination. There is nothing tantalizing in the past few cws. The clues are either too easy, or impossible.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Ditto your take of "Lacking of imagination"! TMS puzzles definitely need improvement.

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