Jul 18, 2008

Friday July 18, 2008 Barry Silk

Theme: Crowd Scene

18A: 1979 Broncos' nickname: ORANGE CRUSH

58A: Steady date: MAIN SQUEEZE

3D: Seal out air: VACUUM PACK

31D: Gridlock: TRAFFIC JAM

I did not know that the nickname for the 1979 Broncos is ORANGE CRUSH, such a theme friendly phrase. With LEMON TWIST, ACORN SQUASH, PEACHBLOW, you've got another explosive puzzle.

I've never heard MAIN SQUEEZE either, nobody has ever called me that. Very interesting slang, SQUEEZE!

I really like this puzzle. Only one letter (Y) away from a pangram. Challenging but rewarding. I've emerged as new person after battling through the Q fever. I suggest Barry Silk watch some movies starring Maggie Q, the exotic & well-known model/actress in Asia. Or he can read Ah Q, a masterpiece in Chinese literature. I am sure he will be inspired.

The only corner I dislike is the intersection of FREEZER (43D: Cold storage) and STORE (66A: Stockpile). Bad clues. "Stockpile" does not sound powerful at all for STORE, in fact, it's anemic.

I could not finish this puzzle unassisted. It's out of my ability.

OK, let's tee off!


1A: Actress Tyler: LIV. She starred in "The Lord of Rings". She is also the spokesperson for Givenchy, irresistible indeed!

4A: In flames: AFIRE. What would you do "When You Are Engulfed in Flames"?

9A: Standing by the plate: AT BAT

14A: Palindromic constellation: ARA. No idea. But ARA is the only feasible palindromic choice here.

16A: Capital of Tibet: LHASA. "H" is a very puzzling letter to me. Why added "H" to the words when it's not pronounced? I am also bewildered by the order of "H' in a word. Is there any rule for it? I always want to spell Gandhi as Ghandi.

20A: Times and Herald, e.g.: SQUARES

23A: Samovars: URNS. Samovar is a kind of Russian urn.

26A: Words of woe: OH ME. Not AH ME?

30A: Web page file letters: HTML

34A: '50s dance: HOP. Not familiar with this dance at all.

36A: Sealy rival: SERTA. Nope. I've never paid attention to the name of those mattress manufacturers. I slept on hard, mattressless, wooden bed until I was 24 years old.

41A: Four-sided figs.: RECTS (Rectangles). I would not have got it without the down fills.

42A: Drink heartily: QUAFF

44A: Rival of 1-800-FLOWERS: FTD (Florist's Transworld Delivery). I still have not received this, have you sent it out yet?

48A: Jimmies: PRIES. I only knew Jimmy as a man's name. Had no idea that it could also be a crowbar or a verb.

52A: Be contiguous: ADJOIN

61A: Fla. city: JAX (Jacksonville). Isn't it an airport designation?


5D: Anticipated: FORESAW. Remember last Friday I FORESAW a price drop of $25/barrel for those stupid crude oil? So far so good, $15 plummet in the past 3 days.

6D: Tax-sheltered $: IRAS. Free fall in the past months?

9D: Aluminum company: ALCOA. No way AA can reach $43 this year!

10D: Atlanta pro: THRASHER. Which NHL team do you think have the coolest name? I like our Minnesota Wild.

11D: One bit per second: BAUD. No idea. Pure guess.

12D: African fox: ASSE. The Cape fox. It appeared on May 26 TMS puzzle.

13D: Asian mountain goat: TAHR. Or THAR. Nepali language. Completely unknown to me. so ugly.

24D: Lousy excuses: COP-OUTS

25D: One-celled organisms: AMEBAE

27D: Shanty: HOVEL. New word to me.

29D: Slightly blue: RISQUE. Oh, only slightly.

32D: School calendar letters: MTWTF

46D: Tanning lotion letters: SPF (Sun Protection Factor). I think mine is SPF 50 (Coppertone Sport).

38D: Get a move on!: STEP ON IT

46D: Flaubert's five: CINQ. My favorite answer of the whole grid. I like the alliteration in the clue too. Without the letter C, I would have penned in RARER for 46A: More precious (CUTER).

53D: Limp watch painter: DALI. Here is "The Persistence of Memory", a classical surrealistic piece. It's hot. Those hard watches are melting. What time is it? 6pm?

55D: Presidential turndown: VETO. Don't VETO the wrong bill please!



Dennis said...

Good morning, C.C. and fellow DFs - still no hammer this week - I sure thought we'd have one by now.
Not much to talk about - never saw 'tahr' before, 'amebae' is a secondary spelling for 'amoebae'; other than that, very straightforward. C.C., 'peachblow'?? What's that? And the 'hop' is from my generation; Friday nights were 'sock hop' nights.

By the way, given our predilection for heavenly bodies, Sunday is National Moon Day - I have a feeling certain of our members will take full advantage of it...

Have an outstanding day and weekend - I'll hopefully check in tomorrow morning, before our flight.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Peachblow, very beautiful peach blossom color. Would you be able to get BAUD (11D) without the perps?

Dennis said...

C.C., yes, baud was a gimme. My career was in computers.

Chris in LA said...

Good morning CC etal,
Not bad today - only had to google 16A & 19D. I don't like unclued alt. spelling of "amebae". Only got 12 & 13D from the perps - never heard of either. Finally, I thought clue for 51D was lame - could have been clued as "_ eyes", or "_ are the good old days".
I remember the "Orange Crush" defense of the Denver Broncos. I also liked "Main Squeeze" - brought back memories from high school.
TGIF - also, full moon tonight, don't forget to howl and/or pray!

Kim said...

CC & gang,

I'm in agreement with you on this one. I also remember the Orange Crush, I'm a big Baltimore Ravens fan, altough in those days it was the Baltimore Colts! (Damn Jim Irsay) A few I had trouble with were 12 & 13 D and how is Risque "slightly blue"? I don't get that one.
Only a few more days here in Birdland (not so much for the Orioles, but the Ravens!) I can't wait to go home, but will hate leaving my new granddaughter!

Have a great weekend everyone, its gonna feel like 100 today!

Dennis said...

Kim, 'blue' in this case means off-color.

Bill said...

Good day today. Only one I didn't know: TAHR Got it w/ the "hors" tho.
AMEBAE is a really NEW spelling for me, but if Dennis says it's so then IT"S SO! I didn't bother looking it up, it just fit (but looked terrible)!
OK, lots to do before this eve, so, CYA all later.

KittyB said...

Good Morning, C.C. and all - I didn't have to Google to finish the puzzle, but the whole thing ticked me off.

c.c., you might as well put the "H" anywhere you like, given the attitude about spelling AMEBAE.

Robert McCormick, who owned the Tribune, built an estate in Wheaton, Illinois which he named "Cantigny." Unfortunately, people insist on calling it CAN-TIG-KNEE (rather than CAN-TEE-KNEE) The staff was very clever and created a sign that had a falling leaf over the "G." Unfortunately, the sign has been replaced.

The point of my rambling is that no matter what the language, there are words with letters that are not pronounced. I agree with you on "Ghandi."

I didn't care for MTWTH or JAX, or "Nearby Things" for THESE.

I didn't know TAHR or ASSE, and despite the fact that I am a quilter, I can NEVER remember the word ETUI.

LIV was also in "Armageddon," with Bruce Willis, and I see that Dennis has already clued you into "sock hops." My memory fails me, but I assume that we took our street shoes off because the dances were held in the gym, and we didn't want to ruin the finish of the floor.

Gotta go....30 hours of work packed into a 24 hour day. Have a good one, all!

Kim said...


Thanks for the clarification!! Had never heard that before.

Bill said...

BTW, Barry; Thanks for the "chicken". (I think) I guess I didn't read the chart correctly.
There are other places I could go with this comment but discretion will be my mantra for the day!!!

melissa bee said...

good morning c.c. and all,

smashing puzzle today. crush, squeeze, pack, jam ... what else? mash, press, squish .. hmm.

when i saw a j, k, q and z i thought this would surely be our panagram. was sad to find no y. pity.

c.c., maggie q is certainly AFIRE in that pic. nice. a hard, wooden, mattressless bed? that just seems wrong.

nice asse. the fox is my favorite mammal (well, besides the obvious). foxes have both canine and feline qualities. neat.

clever how trafficjam crosses vehicle. also like how mainsqueeze and kilts both cross rises.

wondered why 6d iras was not clued as plural, and didn't know quaff could be a verb. baud was a gimme (also computer career in a former life), and will always remember lhasa fondly because of my lhasa apso named chewbacca (lhasas do look a little like wookiee's). ara was also a gimme .. again due to former computer career. ara was the machine name of my sun workstation, which were all named after constellations. one of my colleagues was not so lucky .. hers was named 'cancer.' (my workstation has cancer??)

never heard of peachblow before .. at least not as a color.

@chrisinla: my girlfriends and i started howling at the moon already .. it was beautiful here last night.

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

All in all, not a bad puzzle for me. Got a bit hung up in the NE corner like others, mostly because I didn't know TAHR or THRASHER. Fortunately, I did know LHASA and ASSE (only from crosswords, though), and that got me through it.

Had a false start with 30A with HTTP instead of HTML, but that righted itself fairly quickly. Had another one with 26A when I put AHME instead of OHME, but once I realized that 26D was looking for an airport name I realized and fixed my mistake.

Other than that, I blew through the puzzle very quickly.

I didn't mind 32D, although I agree it really should be MTWTHF. And I was not at all fond of JAX for 61A. I believe that's the abbreviation used on scoreboards to refer to teams from Jacksonville, but it's not an accepted abbreviation for the city itself. At least, not accepted by me.... ^_^

Dr. Dad said...

Happy Friday, C.C. and DF's.
Not too bad. As Dennis said, no hammer yet.
C.C. - doesn't the color peachblow have something to do with Chinese porcelain?
Liv Tyler also plays Betty Ross to Edward Norton's Bruce Banner/Incredible Hulk in the latest movie. She was also in Armageddon as Bruce Willis daughter and Ben Affleck's fiance.
Serta is the mattress company that uses the sheep in their commercials.
Kept wanting byte instead of baud (had forgotten about baud). Baud was the prevalent measure for data transmission speed until replaced by a more accurate term, bps (bits per second).
I remembered asse from a previous puzzle. Can one see Uranus from an asse? On Sunday you may see Uranus on National Moon Day. I agree with Dennis - some of our morel DF's will be having fun that day!!
Blue as an adjective means indecent/risque as in "a blue movie" and "a blue joke." I don't think its a common usage.
I found another site on the web that says today is cow appreciation day but we already celebrated that on Tuesday.
It's also National Caviar Day. I've never had it. It's also Chrysanthemum Day. In keeping with Sunday's Moon Day, today is also "Full Buck Moon Day" because Bucks begin to grow new antlers at this time. This full Moon was also known as the Thunder Moon, because thunderstorms are so frequent during this month.

Have a great day. I won't this afternoon as I have a dreaded dentist appointment for a "drill and fill"!!!! Not that kind, Lois, Carol, Melissa!

Barry S said...

Good morning C.C. and TMS solvers. Thought I'd drop by and respond to some of the comments.

The editor changed the NE corner of the grid from my original submission:
I don't care much for TAHR or ASSE and would not use them in my puzzles if I could help it.

Also, my original clue for JAX was "The Jaguars, on scoreboards."

It is always the editor's prerogative to make changes to the puzzle as he/she sees fit. All crossword editors change clues to adjust the difficulty level of the puzzle. And as I mentioned in a previous post a few weeks back, some editors will ask the constructor to make changes to the grid before accepting the puzzle. The TMS editor prefers to change the grid himself.

Barry Silk

Dennis said...

Good morning, Barry - good of you to stop by.
Your cluing of 'Jax' is obviously much more appropriate. Any thoughts on the secondary spelling of 'amebae'?

Dick said...

Good morning Cc etal. I also did not like some of the cluing for this puzzle. I did not like 61A JAX but I do believe that is the abbreviation the airlines use for Jacksonville. I never heard of 13D TAHR or Cc's word PEACHBLOW.

Kittyb and Dennis I also remember "sock hops" being held in the gym and we had to remove our shoes so as not to damage the finish on the floor.

Dennis would it be legal for all of us to run around "mooning" on Sunday since that is National Mood Day?

Baud was a gimme
I disliked the 41A clue and did not really like the variant spelling of amebae.

Enough for now and all of you have a great weekend.

Dr. Dad said...

Bill - yesterday Barry said he thought you were a chicken. The Chinese calendars I looked at say that 1945 makes you a rooster which should make you feel better.

Barry S said...

@Dennis - AMEBAE is an acceptable plural variant of AMEBA and can be found in the Random House Unabridged Dictionary. It has been previously used in crosswords published in the NY Times, LA Times, CrosSynergy, and others, but infrequently.

Barry Silk

Mr. Corcoran said...

wow abounding in le francais today...the ever predictable etui among our faux amis...managed to fill it in but didnt know those strange animals nor the secondary spelling of amoeba, amoebae...otherwise well done and cool to have the author drop by...very nice to be reminded of the lovely miss sommer too! cheerio

Barry G. said...

Oooooh.... Hiya, Barry!

I suppose one of us should change our names to avoid confusion, huh?

I'm glad you agree about JAX. Your original clue was just perfect.

Dr. Dad said...

Interesting history for today.

1969 - After a party on Chappaquiddick Island, Senator Ted Kennedy from Massachusetts drives an Oldsmobile off a wooden bridge into a tide-swept pond and his passenger, Mary Jo Kopechne, dies.

Dennis said...

Barry, thanks for the response. I wasn't questioning the use of the plural, which is not uncommon, but rather the omission of the 'o'. In any event, thanks again for taking the time.

Jeanne said...

Morning all,

Had trouble with the NE corner but it would be helpful if I remember Lhasa in the future.

CC: Hope the price of crude oil continues to drop. Maybe the threat of domestic drilling, investigation of the speculators by Congress and the CFTC on price manipulation on commodities has helped. Of course, a reduction in demand has helped, too.

Really, really hot the next couple of days. Pool and margaritas are on tap.

C.C. Burnikel said...

H: Yes! Look at TAHR/THAR.

I did not know that the hard bed was so uncomfortable until I had my first bed with mattress.

Yes! Peachblow is originated from Chinese porcelain glaze "Peach-bloom". Why is Ted K's incident interesting?

Barry (our Barry),
I enjoyed very much your comments @9:01am &12:39pm yesterday.

You are way obsessed with ETUI.

Trust me, it will plunge further. The bubble will burst with a big BANG. The current price is simply irrational.

Superfrey said...

A no google puzzle.... TAHR was strange.
BARRY SILK thanks for jumping in and letting us know of the changes in the NW. I think most of us would have liked your clues better. Keep up the good work. This was an enjoyable puzzle.

NYTAnonimo said...

Nice Scrabble score of 351 if I figured correctly. What's the highest score you've gotten on a puzzle Barry? Changes in the upper right corner didn't bother me too much, though I still think the editor should try to check with you first. Do you use computer software to help construct these puzzles? If so, what do you use? "Florida port, for short" or "FL airport" would have been good clues too. Thanks for the puzzle and your input.

Hope everyone has a nice weekend.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Barry Silk,
1)STORE/FREEZER. Are those clues your originals? If so, aren't you bothered by the 3 identical letters for STORE & its clue "Stockpile"?

2)I like your 12D MUSE better than ASSE. What is your clue for 13D SHHS then?

3) What is your submitted puzzle title?

C.C. Burnikel said...

ASSE & TAHR would be a horrible parallel if the across clues were not so easily obtainable.

C.C. Burnikel said...

How did you calculate the scrabble score of this puzzle? Manually?

Dr. Dad said...

C.C. - that accident with Ted and Mary is somewhat of a "legend" in the life of the Kennedys. Surrounded by questions of "was Ted drunk?" "Why didn't he report it right away?" etc. etc. I have my views on it but will keep them to myself.

NYTAnonimo said...

Used this and just typed all the words in at once cc. I didn't like the clue for 35D-Rel. figures (STS) but that is a minor point. You're correct cc, if you didn't know LHASA it would be pretty hard to get ASSE and TAHR.

Ken said...

Baud is short for Baudot, a French mathematician. Squeeze is slang for girlfriend or boyfriend. Steady date is your "main" squeeze. Best, Ken

C.C. Burnikel said...

He was drunk, and he was too coward to step forward immediately. He did not have the guts/balls to face the music. But Ted Kennedy has redeemed himself in my view. I misunderstood your "interesting" comment @7:47am. I thought it was somehow related to our puzzle today.

We always spell LHASA as LASA in Chinese Pinyin.

Thank you for the "MAIN SQUEEZE".

Ken said...

Also, 66A, Stockpile is often a verb for amassing a quantity of some item, thus, to stockpile is to store. Store is one of those English words which is both a noun and verb. Puzzle is another as in to "puzzle something out." Mates is another as in "to mate" is synonymous to "to breed". They drive CW solvers nuts! Ken

C.C. Burnikel said...

I object the clue for STORE because of the 3 identical letters in "Stockpile". There are so many ways to clue STORE. And the intersecting "Storage" clue for 43D: FREEZER does not please me neither.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Dennis et al,
What's your views on the STORE/FREEZER clues?

Dennis said...

C.C., it honestly didn't move me one way or the other. I didn't even notice it at the time.

lois said...

Good morning CC & DF's: Good puzzle. Set my asse afire with the rough words today-thrasher, jam,crush, squeeze, pack and offs. Very exciting on a Serta. Might run amok on a Sealy tho'. Question 37A -avast? C'mon! If I said that to a sailor, he'd probably take it as a compliment.

drdad: Hurts to be you today. The drill and fill that we would offer may also leave you numb and with your mouth open, but the sense of satisfaction would last forever.

I'm looking forward to Quaff and Prawn at Greenie's tonight w/my main Friday squeeze...on the water w/a full moon. The howling will be audible from coast to coast. Iraq 'em and I stack 'em. Fun times. Hope you all enjoy this day.

Ken said...

Lois, Avast is a term from the days of sail when certain words meant some defined action. "Avast" is to stop. Why not use stop? A "stop" is a part of a line (rope is never used aboard ship) that is so knotted as to not pass through a pulley or sheave, hence the line is "stopped." Many such terms came in to being because, in wooden ship days, the noise of the wind on sail and rigging and creaking of the wooden hull made hearly clearly the first time a must. I know, more than you wanted to know...sigh

lois said...

CC: I liked the freezer/store combo. Thought it was a good 'mate'.

Gonna put the shine in the moon tonight and have some good moonshine! Can't wait!

Ken said...

oops...that should have read "hearing clearly"...sorry

Dennis said...

ken, great information - thanks.

lois said...

Ken, thank you for the excellent information. Nautical terms are So when I tell a sailor to 'stop', it obviously means his line is knotty. Right? My kind of guy!

Dennis said...

Lois, it's a moot point. 'Stop' isn't part of your lexicon anyway, is it?

lois said...

Dennis: only when driving and a hummer comes too fast.

flyingears said...

In my Navy if you wanted to stop someone you would say, "Stop, you as_ -_-e!!!". They knew you meant business... AVAST??? Never used it or heard anyone using it, not even aboard a ship... Must be used in a Dutch Navy...

BARRY SILK, thank you for stopping by, it was very nice you did. C.C. should be happy that a X/W "puzzlemaker" got through our dysfunctional site, but full of fun and extra info (drdad's).

Bill said...

ROOSTER !! Much better. Now I know why I'm so..............
Never mind - TMI !!

Danielle said...

A fun theme, and I didn't have to Google anything, surprisingly, because there were some pretty obscure items, but I got everything with some lucky guesses and fortuituous fills.

Ken, thanks for the info - (like many others I suspect) I'm always interested in how common words have arrived in our language.

Another similar use of blue is "blue laws" - where I used to live, Pennsylvania, there were still lots of those, including no liquor sales on Sunday.

Liv could also have been clued "Ullman" to make in easier on an older generation. Liv Tyler was in one of my all-time favorite movies, Inventing the Abbotts. A Must See if you like family drama (my fav genre):

Awesome of Barry Silk to weigh in - this blog is making an impact!

Hideous steamy day today - I'm cowering in the A/C - and we expect the same for the weekend. Ugh. Good days to stay indoors and do puzzles! Have fun!

xchefwalt said...

Hello C.C. and others! I've had the pleasure of reading this blog for about a month now,and I find it very enjoyable. All your posts add to my day (hot and sunny in Naples Fl)and expand on the puzzle. It also helps when the author himself chimes in!

As far as the puzzle is concerned; I,too got stuck up top, but loved all the slang refrences. Also, two hockey clues in two days gives me hope that my favorite sport is coming back to the mainstream.

Lois: speaking of slang- your 10:21 post was brilliantly dirty in its wordplay!

Lastly: I'm reading "The Road" by Cormac McCarthy, and as our hero rummages through a half-sunken vessel, he stumbles upon a foating "mae west"! Now I know what that is.

Crockett1947 said...

Good morning everyone! New words today were THRASHER, ASSE, TAHR. Loved the clue for 26D. I don't get the clue/answer for 35D. Can someone explain it for me? Is 46D a variant spelling? I always thought it was CINQUE. Xchefwalt, welcome to the crew!

lois said...

Dick: running around mooning would only be illegal if we were caught..and that would be getting caught w/our pants down. And on top of that even, today is Full Buck Moon Day?...oh the fun just never stops, does it!

Dr. Dad said...

crockett - rel. figures = sts. is this - religious figures = saints.

Mr. Ed said...

Good morning all-

This one wasn't a gimme but I managed to get all without help. Like all of you, I thought some of the clues were obscure but the crosses helped narrow it down.


In 35D, the Rel is an abbreviation for religion so the answer was an abbreviated saints... sts.


JD said...

Good morning, I also have been reading this great blog for the last month...since I retired from 34 years of teaching.So enjoyable, but I'm not quite there yet with these puzzles.4 minutes? No way!

sts. is short for saints, the religious figures, very familiar to those of us who want to Catholic schools


xchefwalt said...

crockett: thanks for the welcome! I was taken a little by the same clue as I grew up on Cinque Lane in Bayport, LI NY.

carol said...

Hi C.C. and everyone:
Great puzzle today, so many fun words! Lots of "fodder"!
Took me awhile to get 10,11 & 13D but it was worth it.

Barry Silk, nice of you to "drop in" again, and explain what the editors do to your clues. It would be nicer if they asked you first.

That "baud" "Asse" haven't we seen him before?? I remember the big ears.

I love Fridays: after a few "quaffs", a little fun watching friends running "amok" with their "kilts" over their "asses" as the moon (and something else)"rises"; what a load of fun!!

Kittyb, Dennis, Dick: Those "sock hops" were great fun! We also used to have impromtu dances in the cafeteria during lunch period...we did the Stroll and the "Grant Walk"(every high school had a dance of their own called the "The (school name)Walk". Good memories!

Anonymous said...

mark - Buenos Aires

Its great when the compiler visits this blog. I was wondering if he thinks of his International audience at all when creating the "crucigrama".
Dont get me wrong, I have no objections or criticisms of your work, I was just wondering of your mindset.

A bit cooler here this winter, after 70 degrees for four days, down to 60.

Do the golf fans find it more interesting when the players have to battle the wind, rain and long grass as in the current open? Most courses here are of the American variety - a lot of water, trees and bunkers but fairly short rough.
But it matters little to me which emphasis the course has, breaking 100 gives me a spring in my step.

Bien fin de semana for you and yours

melissa bee said...

@dennis: national moon day .. i guess i started early last weekend. now i have a good excuse to extend the celebration .. thanks for the heads up.

@drdad: full buck moon day ... try saying that three times fast. luck with your drill and fill .. too bad it's not the other kind.

@barry silk: nice to see your comments again here, thank you.

@bill: discretion? here?? anyway i filled in the ....'s

@jd & xchefwalt: welcome

@jeanne, carol & lois: cheers!

KittyB said...

Barry Silk, thanks for visiting with us. Pardon my crotchety comments this morning. I would have liked your rendition of the NE corner better. Although I wouldn't have gotten the answer for "The Jaguars on the scoreboard" I'd have liked the clue a great deal more. I stand corrected on the alternate spelling for amebae, but that doesn't mean I have to like it! *G*

Welcome to xchefwalt (do you have a favorite cuisine?) and jd. I hope the "Old Ones" here (a tip of the hat to Heinlein) won't mind my welcoming you to the group, as I'm a newbie as well.

mark - Buenos Aires....I'll be right there, hon. Our heat is DREADFUL!

xchefwalt said...

Kittyb: I'm a classical French guy, but I love all the French influenced areas, i.e Vietnam, Tahiti, New Orleans and Quebec. They all use local foodstuffs with classic French stylings, awesome stuff!

Anonymous said...

In the 50's they had sock hops.

Not the style of dance, but the dance in going to the dance.

How's that!

embien said...

9:09 today, a small improvement.

@melissa bee: 6d IRAS is clued with $$, the two dollar signs indicating plural, at least that's my take on it.

@crockett1947: I believe that 46d CINQ is the correct spelling (in French, and the clue indicates French, and not the Italian).

25d AMEBAE should have been clued as (Var.). At least it's listed as variant spelling in my giant dictionary. (AMOEBAE or AMOEBAS is the primary spelling, according to that dictionary).

As for the puzzle, I had a great time solving this one. A couple of unknown (to me) words were gotten by the crosses:
ASSE (seen before but I didn't remember it)
TAHR (next to each other no less)

A fun day, to be sure!

melissa bee said...

@embian: got it! excellent point, thank you.

JD said...

Thanks for the welcome melissa bee & kittyb. I have felt like a spy this past month, but have learned a lot.Amebae threw me today as I'd never seen it without the o.

melissa bee, we are neighbors..I'm in Los Gatos. GoooooSharks!!and I'm a tad dyslexic; I taught 43 yrs, not 34... which aged me automatically

I hope you are all having a full buck moon day

Barry S said...

@CC - To answer your earlier questions:

My clue for SHHS (which would have been 13-Down) was "Librarian's admonitions."

My other submitted clues were
FREEZER: "Supermarket section"
STORE: "Squirrel away"

Puzzles submitted to TMS do not have titles, rather, they are referred to by the combination of the answer to 1-Across and the constructor's name. For example, this puzzle was submitted as "LIV-Silk".

FYI: I do have an upcoming TMS puzzle that is in fact a pangram (unless of course, the editor decides to change the grid).

@nytanonimo - I have no idea what my highest scrabble score would be! However, there is a website that tracks all sorts of fascinating statistics, including scrabble scores, for New York Times puzzles. See for details.

You asked whether I use computer software to help construct puzzles. The answer is yes. I use a combination of commercial software (Crossword Compiler) plus my own custom-written software, database, and wordlists. I'm a software engineer, so that helps a great deal. When I constructed my first puzzle back in 2003, I did it all by hand... that requires a lot of effort!

@anonymous 12:33pm - Thanks for calling to my attention the fact that the TMS puzzle is published internationally. Although I haven't consciously thought about it, I guess you could say my puzzles are written from the perspective that solvers are American English speakers. Having lived in the USA my entire life, I don't think I'd be qualified to evaluate whether a puzzle would be acceptable outside of North America!

Barry Silk

carol said...

Anon at 2:37,
Do you remember the Lindy Hop?? That is an actual dance.

melissa bee said...

@jd: yes, we are close .. los gatos is so lovely. 43 years teaching wow ... as long as i've been alive. thx for the idea - my dyslexic age is 34.

carol said...

jd and xchefwalt: Welcome to our dysfunctional group! C.C. puts up with our ranting and raving (and a few ribald comments) so we salute her whenever possible!! This blog makes my day more enjoyable and I never fail to learn several things. We have some very smart people contributing.

Mr. Ed said...

Barry Silk...

Thank you for your talents and explanation. I've always wondered what went into making crossword puzzles beyond "lots of time and effort".

Now, will someone enlighten me please. Does "full buck" moon phase refer to male gender deer? I've been told the term refers to the gaining of antlers. Does that mean they're becoming horney? Ah, wordplay and my warped sense of humor made me ask.

But, moon or no moon, my backyard residents will undoubtedly want to know 'cause they are curious creatures and inquiring minds want to know. And, I may want to use it as an excuse....


Chris in LA said...

Mr. Silk,
Presumptively speaking on behalf of the group, thank you - as far as I am aware, you are the only constructor who visits (or at least comments on) this blog - we all appreciate your time, energy & effort and hope that every now and again you get an idea from all the moaning & complaining we do.
CC - you should be proud of what you have built here!

lois said...

Barry Silk: Wow! That is so interesting about how you do your puzzles. And it's so nice of you to share with us. I much prefer your clues instead of the editor's. It just seems so wrong for him to do that when your name is on it. Thanks for dropping in.

Carl: Love your take on the Bull.uh..Full Buck Moon Day. Funny!

Melissa: Cheers back atcha!

flyingears said...

C.C., You must feel great to have Barry Silk visit today when his X/W puzzle was published!!! It's good that your blog is been visited by the important people rather than "dysfunctional" ones (just kiddin').

Argyle said...

Howdy folks,

c.c. here in the North-East, jimmies can also mean something else. The little candy or chocalate logs that can be put on ice cream are called jimmies. Not quite the same as sprinkles. If you need to know more, go here

and if you wanted to combine alliteration with the full moon, sing along with Warren Zevon and "Werewolves of London"

I belive the late Mr. Zevon has been in cw puzzles before.

Dennis, Yes

C.C. Burnikel said...

Thank you for bringing us those wonderful movie/TV series links every day. Very appreciated!

Xchefwalt & Jd,
Welcome on board! I look forward to hearing more comments from you guys regarding the puzzles from now on.

Chris et al,
Barry Silk is the only constructor who has commented on the blog, but several of the constructors are in email contacts with me.

FREEZER & STORE are good MATES indeed, but the William-ized clues are simply horrible.

C.C. Burnikel said...

"Dennis, Yes"??? Were you a marine also?

Embien & Melissa Bee & all you guys from the west coast,
Your comments have become my daily desserts now. Thank you for the time and effort!

Barry Silk,
Your response regarding the STORE/FREEZER clues made me feel better. I thought I was excessively preoccupied with the cluing. FYI, we have a large number of TMS solvers in Indian (3-month lag).

lois said...

Argyle: check the end of yesterday's blog.

Mr. Ed said...

For everyone's enlightenment...

Re: Hop (as a dance)

A group called Danny & the Juniors had a hit in 1957 called "At The Hop". It sold two million records (you know those round thin flat things with a hole in the center but not CDs or DVDs). It was a Philly group led by Danny Rapp(committed suicide in '83)

Here are the words:\

Well, you can rock it, you can roll it
Do the stomp and maybe stroll it at the hop
When the record starts spinnin'
You calypso when you chicken at the hop
Do the dance sensations that are sweepin' the nation at the hop

Ah, let's go to the hop
Let's go to the hop, (oh baby)
Let's go to the hop, (oh baby)
Let's go to the hop
Come on, let's go to the hop

Well, you can swing it you can groove it
You can really start to move it at the hop
Where the jockey is the smoothest
And the music is the coolest at the hop
All the cats and chicks can get their kicks at the hop
Let's go!

Let's go to the hop
Let's go to the hop, (oh baby)
Let's go to the hop, (oh baby)
Let's go to the hop
Come on, let's go to the hop
Let's go!

Okay, at the time it worked better with music. And yes, I was there. I've got the original 45.

I really only posted this as a test because I wanted to see if my new pix showed up.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Your picture does show up. But I can not see clearly what it is. I really like your comments @ 11:56am earlier. You are getting so good at "carolizing" each puzzle now. I have a question for you regarding Dennis' response to your gasket blow-off comment yesterday. He said "Carol, I stopped wearing gaskets years ago. Snip, snip." What does it mean?

C.C. Burnikel said...

Why does Santa slide down the chimney during Christmas time? Isn't he afraid of the fire and smoke?

Crockett1947 said...

Drdad, THANK YOU! All I could come up with was "related" or "relative." "Religious" never entered by mind. Carl, thanks to you also. And jd. Embien, I tried to verify that spelling but struck out. Thank you. Ah, Los Gatos. Say a prayer and head over the mountain to Santa Cruz. I have a hard time with that passage when I'm headed over to my brother's place in Aptos. Carl, like your picture, even though it's so darn small. Oops, you changed it! Now I can't even see what it is! Ah, yes, the sock hop -- where all the boys stood on one side of the gym and eyed the girls and all the girls stood on the other side of the gym and giggled.

lois said...

CC: He's in and out so fast that there's no time to think about smokin'. Now why he prefers the chimney and doesn't enter like most guys, I don't know. Personal preference?

Seriously, it's just a legend. He'd make an 'ash' of himself if he really did that.

NYTAnonimo said...

Thanks for the info Barry Silk. Much appreciated as are your puzzles!

C.C. Burnikel said...

Ken @ 9:52am,
Why rope is never used aboard ship?

Santa has checked in and left a note for you.

Argyle said...

c.c.: Yes, Ma'am

"Carol, I stopped wearing gaskets years ago. Snip, snip." What does it mean?
vasectomy, no need for galoshes.

afraid of the fire and smoke?
never, Santa's red suit is a firesuit.

melissa bee said...

@c.c., i see carl's picture, not carol's. your comments today only confirm you were a df all along. i like it.

@carl: i can make it out, is that in your yard?

Argyle said...

Ken @ 9:52am,
Why rope is never used aboard ship?

I think he means that it isn't called rope, that they have special names for the various lines. eg. hawser

Mr. Ed said...

melissa bee

Yep! On my patio as you can see. Some friends and I had been having margaritas & left some salt on the table. The biggest one in the herd is a four point (eight point on the east coast) and none of them have any fear of me. Total herd sizes is 28 with the count of this year's new fawns that have been confirmed. The does hide them really well until they're big enough to get around good so I expect that number to grow some.

carol said...

C.C. Regarding your "gasket" question and Dennis' response, I believe he (ah, how can I phrase this) is referring to a prophylactic (gasket) and that due to surgery (snip,snip), he does not need one. (gasp, that was "hard" to explain!!) :)

Also, I don't have a picture (yet) perhaps you meant Carl?

Carl, I don't understand what your picture is. Please explain so me 4year-old brain can understand. :)

carol said...

Carl, thanks for the lyrics to "At the Hop" hubby was a record collector (mostly 45's) and had that one too...we danced to that many times over the years (when there were still places that would play "our" music). Seems that there is still confusion about the word "hop". It is something you go to to dance and also a specific dance you do at a "hop".
Geez, for the younger generation, that must sound weird!

Dick said...

Welcome to xchemwalt, embien and jD. I hope you don't ind dysfunctionals as we have many of them on this site.

Barry Silk thanks for your visit.

Mr. Ed said...


It's a bad picture. It was taken two nights ago right at dusk so it's really dark. It's a yearling buck licking salt off my patio table. If you click on the pix it's clearer in larger form. I'll pull it later.


carol said...

Carl, thanks but the pic is still too confusing for are sure that's all it's licking?

Mr. Ed said...

I assumed! Maybe it was the alcohol. Nah! My buds would have been licking the table if it was booze!


lois said...

Carl: you are a hoot! Thank God you changed that 1st pic. I thought it was some Kama Sutra illustration or something. I stared at that for 5 mins trying to understand what it was. Finally I got the deer, but my mind was awhirl w/possibilities. Almost sorry the deer came through. The 2nd pic is much better and so adorable, except for the head coming out of its ass. You should never be allowed near children. Licking booze off a table? You're my kind of guy!!!
What a hoot!

Mr. Ed said...

Oops! Never noticed the head before. Must be all the booze???? Ya don't suppose it's mad cow???

lois said...

If it's not mad cow, it must be 'angry bull! disease! And who'd want to mess w/ THAT!

lois said...

Carl: After all, it is ... or was Full Buck Moon Day! Don't worry about it. It's a great picture! However, booze does help!

Mr. Ed said...

Way to go c.c. & dfs et al

Another century mark. Bring on Saturday! I'm outta here to watch the space station cross over the Northwest. Kinda like watching grass grow but it gives me a reason to stand outside with a drink in my hand, looking upward at the sky, wondering.....

lois said...

Carl: You rock!

Mr. Ed said...


You are one scarey lady! Do you ever sleep?

Now that we've survived the buck moon, I'm looking forward to National Moon Day on Sunday. My new image is dedicated to that day.

C.C. Burnikel said...

What were you wondering???

What happened?

You are a good Santa and a great Marine.

You melted the the HARD question like DALI did with his watches. I got it. Thank you.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Carl & Lois,
I thought of you and Lois' Kama Sutra fantasy when I typed in 47D: SAMBAR deer entry today (Saturday).

Anonymous said...


it is also a synonym for sprinkles

As in:

I'll have a large cone with 2 scoops of ice cream with jimmies, please!

Ken said...

CC I hope this adds to your blog, I can't quite get to this link from your blog questions. The Sham Rocks comes from shamrock, a symbol of good luck for Irish people. It is a plant named clover, very common with 3 leaves. If you find a four leaf clover, it is a sign of good luck. It also is part of a song from my childhood, "I'm looking over a four leaf clover."
The Waldo answer is from a group of child's books with many visual distractions and in the illustration somewhere is Waldo, a nerdy looking man in round glasses and a red and white stripped shirt. Hope this helps, Ken

Anonymous said...

Re 76D, should you visit Maui, rent a car and drive the gorgeous east coast Hana Hwy to the little town of Hana. Plan to spend a lot of time as there are dozens of one-way bridges, curves galore, but beauty everywhere. You might even plan to overnight in Hana. JoAnne

C.C. Burnikel said...