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Jul 27, 2008

Sunday July 27, 2008 Josiah Breward

Theme: Just One of Those

23A: Wish me luck!: HERE GOES NOTHING

34A: Stop what you're doing: DROP EVERYTHING

55A: Vigorously: LIKE ANYTHING

80A: No holds barred: ANYTHING GOES

94A: All the bells and whistles: EVERYTHING ON IT

114A: Not directed at you: NOTHING PERSONAL

16D: A Skeleton in the closet: SOMETHING TO HIDE

43D: Approximate age: THIRTYSOMETHING

Out of those 8 theme answers, I had trouble understanding 80A & 55A. "No holds barred" was not a familiar phrase to me. I might have heard of the expression "LIKE ANYTHING" before, but I had never bothered to check what it means.

I go to dictionary for help only if the new word is long, complicated and exotic looking. "LIKE ANYTHING" just sounds too simple for me to spend extra energy to find its exact definition. Lots of nuances in English language. That's why sometimes my solving experience differs from yours. These little things often trip me, besides those familiar-to-you but foreign-to-me names (TV series or singers/movie stars).

Anyway, I enjoyed this puzzle. Nothing frustrating. Was very annoyed in the beginning by the repetitions of NOTHING, ANYTHING, SOMETHING & EVERYTHING in the theme answers, musing "Why not construct a 15*15 grid instead by using simply one of the above things". Then I noticed the 180-degree rotational symmetry. Take 23A & 114A for example, they are thematically opposite each other, 23A ends with NOTHING, and 114A starts with NOTHING. Same with the other 3 pairs. Obviously lots of thoughts were given to the construction of this puzzle. And they were noticed and appreciated.

Across:

9A: Twangy guitarist Eddy: DUANE. Unknown to me. Probably a gimme for Melissa/KittyB. He is in Rock and Roll HOF, and is "acclaimed as the most successful rock and roll instrumentalist of all time".

14A: State of India: ASSAM. The tea state.

19A: Acceptable excuse: ALIBI. And 91A: Commit a perjury: LIE

20A: Heat exchanger: CONDENSER. I had no idea that "CONDENSER" is a word.

22A: Replay gimmick: SLO MO

28A: Barnyard fowl: GOOSE. And the Hawaii GOOSE NENE (12D: State bird of Hawaii)

39A: "Raging Bull" boxer: LAMOTTA (Jake). No idea. Have never seen "Raging Bull".

33A: Burgundy wine: PINOT

38A: Daughter of Loki: HEL. Stranger to me. "Goddess of Dead" in Norse myth. Kind of like Hades in Greek I suppose. Another two Nordic references are: 73A: Gudrun's poetic victim: ATLI. Knew "Attila the Hun", but did not know that he had a wife named Gudrun, which sounds like a man's name. Also YMIR (81D: Norse giant).

41A: Chummy: MATEY. Besides the British, I think Australians also use "MATEY" for "Pal".

46A: Italian boyfriend: AMICO. Girlfriend is AMICA.

48A: Turkish title: AGHA

53A: Ecclesiastical council: SYNOD

62A: Like last night's pajamas?: SLEPT IN. Do you really wear pajamas to sleep? I don't, never.

65A: Osprey's cousin: ERN. This is the best picture I've ever fished out of the Google Ocean. Superb!

67A: German-French Dadaist Jean: ARP. And the movement ARP cofounded DADA (107D: Art of the absurd). Very interesting clue. Dadaism itself was not absurd, it just focused on the absurdities in daily life.

69A: Currency exchange fee: AGIO. Foreign to me, and I've changed many different currencies before.

70A: Einstein's field: PHYSICS. I tried SCIENCE first.

75A: Makes more rewarding: ENRICHES

79A: Miss from the highlands: LASS. And more girl power. 117A: Portuguese ladies: DONAS And 41D: Address for a lady is MA'AM.

84A: Laxative derived from aloe: ALOIN. No. Got it from the perps.

88A: Tennis situation: AD IN

90A: Cost of Morocco: RIF. I crossed the River Lethe on this word. Saw this clue before. Great map here. Why is it called Er RIF?

92A: Slammin' Sammy: SNEAD. Flowing & flexible & flawless swing, amazing! He had total 82 PGA wins in his career. Another golf related entry is DOG LEG (21D: Fairway bend).

107A: "The Blue __": DAHLIA. Here is the poster. I've never seen the movie. DAHLIA is Mexico's national flower. Just learned earlier that DAHLIA is named after the Swedish botanist Anders Dahl.

109A: Twinned crystal: MACLE. No, unknown to me. I got it from the down clues. What is "Twinned crystal"?

113A: Like an old woman: ANILE

118A: Right to enter: ADMISSION

120A: Gut-wrenching feeling: ANGST. Feel the ANGST? (The Scream - Edvard Much).

122A: Part of PST: STD. I wonder if anyone will object STD appears on a Sunday puzzle. It's an innocent shortened form in this case though.

DOWN:

1D: 1986 Indy winner: RAHAL (Bobby). Not a familiar name to me. Had no idea that he is the co-owner of the RAHAL Letterman Racing team.

3D: U.S. Grant's first name: HIRAM. Wow, who knows?

4D: Penny picture?: ABE. Good one.

5D: Intolerance: BIGOTRY

6D: Frozen region: ICE CAP. Another great picture.

10D: Immoral: UNHOLY

15D: Irish bay: SLIGO. See this map. I've never heard of this bay.

31D: Old music halls: ODEA

29D: Dog's first name: RIN. Dislike this clue. "Dog star" is more apt.

33D: Mountaineer's spikes: PIT-ONS

35D: Overrefined: EFFETE. Are they really interchangable?

40D: Waterproof cloth: LODEN. No idea. Is it really made from sheep wool? How can it be waterproof then?

47D: Nearsighted: MYOPIC

55D: Currency of Georgia: LARI. New to me. Nice photos.

56D: Final innings: NINTHS

60D: Talk of the town: GOSSIP

66D: Endorse: RATIFY

68D: Long John Silver feature: PEG LEG. No idea. I did not know who Long John Silver was until today.

70D: Rio de la ___: PLATA. "Silver' in Spanish.

71D: Bill __ and the Comets: HALEY. I've never heard of Bill HALEY. Are they very famous?

72D: Trapper's traps: SNARES. "Traps" alone is sufficient.

76D: Frisco hill: NOB

92D: Animated Homer or Bart: SIMPSON. No need for "Animated".

95D: Int. broadcasters: VOA

96D: Computer geek: TECHIE

97D: One seeing the whole as greater than the sum of its part: HOLIST. Only familar with the "Holistic approach" in health healing.

98D: Belgian seaport: OSTEND. Unheard of. It's located in West Flanders. They must be speaking Flemish there.

99D: Not e'en once: NE'ER

104D: Song for nine: NONET. Pieced it together from the across clues. ENNEAD was clued as "Group of nine" in yesterday's puzzle.

C.C.

45 comments:

xchefwalt said...

Good morning c.c., df’s and all!

Wow! I’m first and I don’t even get the Sunday puzzle!

c.c.- “no holds barred” is old wrestling terminology. In wrestling, there are holds (i.e a full nelson) that are illegal. So today that phrase refers to a fight or conflict where NO holds are barred; there are no rules, ANYTHING GOES.

I can’t help you with the other one; it’s unknown to me, also.

Also- leave the beaver thing alone; some time its best to be lost in ignorant bliss.

Have a great Sunday everyone!

Chris in LA said...

CC et al,
"Slept in" on this one - had to take a nap in the middle to clear my brain. I don't understand 55A "vigourously" = "like anything", nor do I understand 88A "tennis situation" = "adin".
Got stuck in SW corner - didn'y know 113A, 117A, 101D & 107D so I had to cheat there. Had a blank on 81D/90A intersection until CC filled it for me.
Otherwise, a little more frustrating than usual for a Sunday.
Hope all carpe diem!

Anna said...

Adin in tennis indicates that the advantage is to the server.
This one was not too bad. I did great until I got to Endorse at
66D. I just could not get that. It was the holdout. Vigorously didn't make sense to me either, but I got it from the surrounding words.

melissa bee said...

good morning c.c. and all,

great links today, as usual.

'like anything' is sometimes used to mean vigorously, as in 'she ran like anything.' used it as a kid, don't hear it so much as an adult.

duane eddy i know, but only because i'm a bit of a freak for obscure guitar players. there are many who would recognize his music but not necessarily his name.

did not know 'anile' specifically refers to an old woman. i guess the equivalent for men would be penile? snort.

have never heard of the blue dahlia before, only the black dahlia.

c.c.: no pajamas? don't you get cold?

lie, slo mo, unholy, goose, and .. long john silver feature??? this has lois written all over it.

Clear Ayes said...

The term was used last night and I think it is unfair to keep c.c. in the dark about what "beaver" means. c.c., it is a euphemism for external female genitalia.

I'll be back later when I finish the puzzle. Last night's dinner party had lots of fun conversation and we didn't get home until quite late. Beside that, our Yosemite fire is still growing both in size and seriousness. There is little containment and even though last night's breeze provided a respite, the smoke is back even worse than before.

jollie said...

Wow half past noon and hardly a soul is stirring. I so enjoy c.c.'s xword help and everyone's comments. I just had to jump in and say something. What is a df?

C. C. said...

Xchefwalt,
Thank you for checking in. What puzzle does your paper carry on Sundays? Regarding beaver, I can not seem to leave it alone. Wilma8 said @ 4:31pm yesterday: " NUTRIA" this fur can be dyed and substituted for beaver - very politically incorrect these days". How so? Why politically incorrect? I would have been in "ignorant bliss" if Lois had not piqued my curiosity with her stubby beaver exercise statement.

Chris,
Our editor used the identical clue for RIF on his last puzzle (June 8 Sunday). YMIR. OLLA, ANILE all appeared in TMS puzzles before.

Anna,
Would you be able to get AGIO (69A) without crossing references? I've never heard of it.

C. C. said...

Melissa Bee,
Penile? Why not? Your comment forced me to look at the root word for "ANILE", wow, I was shocked. How can "an?s" mean old woman in Latin? What is Latin for old man then? PJs, no, not even in winter.

Clear Ayes,
Thank you so much!

Jollie,
DF = Dysfunctionals, a word coined by Dennis.

Chris in LA said...

CC,
Fur of any kind is politically incorrect.

KittyB said...

Good afternoon, c.c. and all,

I had the pleasure of doing the puzzle with my younger sister and one of our nieces. I probably would not have finished it without their help. Each of us supplied a word to finish the SW corner: DONAS, ANILE, and OLLAS. I didn't know ADIN, DUANE, or YMIR. AGIO was the only word we couldn't collectively complete.

Had I done this puzzle alone, I would have needed to walk away, then work on it again later in the day, and I STILL wouldn't have gotten some of those words.

Clear Ayes, we hope you will stay safe, and well.

Xchef, way to go on the games yesterday!

Anna, thanks for the AD IN explanation. We felt the same about 55A, but Melissa bee's explanation for Vigorously made sense.

I hope you all have a great Sunday!

C. C. said...

Chris,
Why? Why politically incorrect? Does it offend any specific race/ethnic group like what OREO does to black people?

KittyB,
Some of the native Indian OLLA pieces are breathtaking. Very beautiful.

Dick said...

Good afternoon Cc and others. I got a late start today but the Xword cooperated and was interesting but no too tough. I got the theme ones rather quickly and that was a BIG help. The one that screwed me up was 62D as I entered agis and not egis.

Cc we had the discussion about 88A adin a few weeks ago and anna's description is correct.

I also do not know why beaver is politically incorrect.

Melissa bee I have also used and heard like anything to mean vigorous and in the same expression you used.

Over all I thought a very interesting puzzle.

C. C. said...

Chris,
Very interesting. Wikipedia says "Political Correctness" is a term which traces back to Chairman Mao's "Little Red Book" which I am very familiar with. What is exactly "Politically incorrect" then? Can you give me some examples?

melissa bee said...

@c.c.: i agree. had no idea about anile/an?s.

C. C. said...

Melissa,
I got it. It's SENEX, Latin for old man. Interesting EN insertion in the word.

Bea said...

CC: I think what Chris is referring to is that wearing clothes (like coats)made from animal furs is now considered "politically incorrect." There have been instances where people have thrown blood on women wearing furs. Years ago having a mink coat or fox stole (for example) was considered a status symbol.

C. C. said...

Melissa,
Senex Amans is Latin for "Aged Lover" or "Amorous old man".

Bea,
Thank you. I was on the wrong track, misguided by Lois & Carl & Xchefwalt.

Carl said...

C.C & fellow DFs

No xword today in the big "O" so I just wanted to say buenos dios to all.

Read this somewhere but I don't remember where. (Mad Cow I guess).
Anyway, it goes something like this: "Life is a oneway journey, get onboard & enjoy the ride"

Re: Beaver; it's an animal. That's my story and I'm stickin' to it. I don't think the word "beaver" is politically incorrect but wearing their skins certainly is...

ciao

C. C. said...

Carl,
What's behind the "near-sighted" beaver comment yesterday?

xchefwalt said...

c.c.- I plead the fifth! I plead insanity! I’m stickin, with carl…

It was not my intention to lead you astray, I just didn’t want to get into the storm that the other meanings of that word can be. I tried to stay above the fray, to no avail. Bea answered the question correctly; you need only check out the PETA organization to understand how.

Clear Ayes said...

I had to smile at the confusion with "fur" and "beaver".

Bea is right. The use of animal pelts for clothing or for decoration has become "politically incorrect" in most modern countries. There are some organizations such as PETA that are very vocal and some say militant in their opposition to killing animals for any purpose.

It can be difficult for a non-native speaker to "get" our American double entendres and euphemisms but, and I think this is a Sigmund Freud quote, "Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar".

Anonymous said...

107D is Dada...very interesting when Googled (Art of the absurd Dada)

C. C. said...

Xchefwalt,
The jury does not buy your DADA style excuse - Absurd!! Who purposely brought up this topic by saying "Leave the beaver thing alone" this morning?

Clear Ayes,
I am afraid a cigar is not a cigar here at this blog.

KittyB said...

Have you ever sat at the computer, typing a response, and erasing it, typing it, and erasing it, over and over?

Anything I say in response to the current thread is only likely to egg on this conversation. Besides, nothing I can say will keep this thread from going where it's most likely to go, now.

So, please note....I have refrained. I'm TRYING to be good....but it's really HARD!

xchefwalt said...

c.c.- guilty as charged. As the saying goes: “no good deed goes unpunished”. I throw myself on the mercy of the court!

C. C. said...

Xchefwalt et al
Talking about DADAISM, do you find beauty in this art form? I wonder why it never caught fire in the US.

Clear Ayes said...

My eyes are too irritated by smoke to even try concentrating on a puzzle today. However, I'm finding this blog is a platform for just about anything, as long as it is conducted in a civil manner. I am really enjoying it!

I'm not much of a sexual banterer myself, but it can be amusing and it doesn't bother me when others indulge.

I found it interesting that the gentlemen banterers were suddenly shy about explaining the words and terms that fly freely usually later in the evening. They seem to want this topic to just go away and to have a beaver be a furry rodent and a cigar to just be a cigar.

If we are going to do it (banter that is), we should be willing to explain the words and terms that c.c. and others might not understand. So, "Banter on" and enjoy folks, but be prepared for questions.

Anonymous said...

Good afternoon, all. Late start, other things to do. Two comments: I believe that beaver when used in a sexual way refers to pubic hair, as in a pelt. For some reason it always is used to refer to a woman even though men have pubic hair also. It doesn't ever seem respectful.
And loden refers to the thickly woven boiled wool in Austrian jackets. The boiling must make it water repellent.

KittyB said...

c.c., I Googled OLLA and I have to agree, there are some gorgeous pots out there. It's interesting that artists continue to create ollas, and that the olla has such a wide variety of uses. I was surprised at how many OLD ollas are for sale.

Thanks for nudging me to do a little surfing. *S*

Carl said...

C.C. Beavers (animals) are very near sighted.

Maybe I'm too deep for this blog? Minds are wonderful things to play with. All things do not require explanation... they simply ARE what they are.

Maybe anon 2:26 was correct?

Clear Ayes said...

39A I highly recommend "Raging Bull". Amazingly, it lost the Academy Award Best Picture to "Ordinary People", which in the long run was just an ordinarily good movie. Robert DeNiro did win the Best Actor award. It would have been a total setup if he hadn't. It isn't an easy movie to watch, but most of the best ones aren't. It is about boxing, but it is much more than that. My husband said the boxing choreography was the best he has seen. He's a big fan of "The Sweet Science", so he should know. What the heck does that mean, you may ask? I'm familiar with the term, but didn't know the origin. According to my google, there was a book, published in the 1700's that was titled Boxiana. The author referred to boxing as "The sweet science of bruising". (I know, it sounds pretty primitive and very "politically incorrect".) I'm a sometime watcher of bouts, not a fan, but my husband assures me that it can be very scientific and the stronger opponent doesn't always win.

Dick said...

Sometimes a cigar is not just a cigar as in the Bill Clinton chronicles.

lois said...

Carl: "All things do not require explanation... they simply ARE what they are."...

That's true in some cases. But here it's all in fun...unless Debauchee's tongue really is a tie.

"Maybe anon 2:26 was correct?"
Not even close!

melissa bee said...

@carl: correct about what?

carol said...

anon at 2:26 will never be correct!
Lois and Melissa - thanks!

Argyle said...

Tennis situation: AD IN

"A serving B / at "40 all," which is called "deuce." At deuce, one player must win the next two points to win the game. If, at deuce, A wins the next point, she has the advantage, and the score is called "ad in," which means server's advantage. If B had won that point, the score would have been "ad out." If the player having the advantage wins the following point, he or she wins that game. If the player with the advantage loses the point, the score returns to deuce."

How come we never get "adout" then?

Argyle said...

Bill Haley and his Comets
“Before it became a hit in summer 1955 - more than a year after it was recorded - rock ‘n’ roll was virtually an underground movement, something kids listened to on the sly,” wrote journalist Alex Frazer-Harrison. “This changed after ‘Rock Around the Clock.’ The music was everywhere.”

The first time I got to go to the drive-in, the movie was "The Blackboard Jungle" and "Rock Around the Clock" ran during the opening credits. That was back when the credits ran at the start of the film, long gone now.

Clear Ayes said...

Argyle: Nice to have a resident tennis expert. You beat me to a
comment about Bill Haley and the Comets. They were hugely famous. They were one of the first true rock and roll bands. Before that it was all Perry Como, Doris Day and Rosemary Clooney; terrific singers, but not too exciting. "Rock Around The Clock" made us all sit up and take notice. “Blackboard Jungle“ was one of the first “out-of-control-teens” movies and really made an impression on my 13 year old mind.

Nice to hear from the Sirens (so much more attractive than Evil Sisters!). It is all in fun, and if an explanation is needed to help others understand the wordplay, why not? There’s no need to think negatively (here's a gimme for you ladies and as far as I go :o)), after all, it is different strokes for different folks.

Argyle said...

What is "Twinned crystal"?

I just read about it and am still not sure. You're on your own on that one.

Why is it called "Er RIF"?
The region's name comes from the Berber word arif. The Rif (Arif in Berber, er-Rif in Arabic)

Overrefined: EFFETE. Are they really interchangable?
1. lacking in wholesome vigor; degenerate; decadent: "an effete, overrefined society." Dictionary.com Unabridged Not to be confused with Effeminate.

See ya' later, alligator. (Another Bill Haley hit song)

Ken said...

CC: Although Bill Haley and the Comets were mentioned earlier, his defining song was "Rock around the clock" and it was the theme for Happy Days, a sitcom starring Ron Howard and Henry Winkler as the stereotypical good teenager and Henry Winkler as the stereotypical rather tough guy.
"The Blue Dahlia" was written by Raymond Chandler in the 30s, named for a mythical bar in Los Angeles. He also wrote the screen play for the movie mentioned above. Btw, there is no such dahlia as a blue one.
Duane Eddy was a nationwide star in his prime, and his "Rebel Rouser" with deep bass notes and twangy sound was instantly recognizable.
I don't get the Sunday crossword, but did want to chime in with some comments. Ken

lois said...

Argyle: One of my new favorite words...effete. Thank you.

Didn't Bill Haley & the comets come from the Hampton Roads area of VA?..Norfolk, VaBeach?

I'm so glad you mentioned the drive-ins. That was a great era. Brings back a ton of memories. Almost watched a lot of movies there.

Ken said...

I should add that "Happy Days", shown in the 70s? was set in the 1950s. As Clear Eyes and Argyle mentioned, the song was heard every day many times. It is difficult for those not around in the 50s to realize how dangerous rock'n roll music was thought to be. The music scared sponsors and so they would pull advertising, demanding that radios played established music such as that sang by Doris Day, Kay Starr and Margaret Whiting, who sang with Fred Waring and his Orchestra.
When Elvis Presley appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show, (the morality meter of those years) his infamous hip waggling could not be seen on the screen because the cameras focused on his upper body. Nonetheless, there was a strong movement to suppress R & R because it was felt to be damaging to youth morals. Bill Haley was the very first, to my knowledge, to find that sound we call Rock and Roll. Ken

Clear Ayes said...

I think Bill Haley's first big hit was "Shake, Rattle and Roll" in 1954. It was a sanitized version of a Big Joe Turner's song. That happened a lot in the early Rock and Roll days. Pat Boone did cover's of "Tutti Frutti" and "Long Tall Sally", to make them more acceptable to middle-class white America. We listened to the Little Richard versions anyway. Then there was Elvis. 5 Million drooling teenage girls were not to be denied!

20,000 acres burned so far outside Yosemite, and 0% containment. The smoke has disapated, but if the wind changes we'll be right back in the middle of it. All from a guy doing some target shooting. You'd think people would have better sense.

Anonymous said...

RIN- Dog's first name, was a dog from the 1020's. I know because I'm very old. His full name was Rin Tin Tin.

Carl said...

C.C. Re: earlier postings

I have drafted this missive numerous times since the original and scrapped everything up to this point. Only time will tell whether it too gets scrapped.

Before we take ourselves too seriously, the word beaver(beyond the animal) originally was a Victorian reference to a man's beard(origin about 1910). It was a style of beard that was segmented similar to the way beaver pelts were split lengthwise. From there it went to a loose definition meaning hairy or furlike(1926) and eventually evolved to where it is today(whatever that is). male beaver

In C.B. radio jargon which was the rage forty years ago, a beaver(human) was simply a female and a buffalo(human) was a male. Females were also referred to as seatcovers meaning "passenger".

I am multilingual but in no way a linguist. For what it's worth, I think English is the most complex language in the world. There are so many words with variations and multiple meanings. I personally love words and accordingly "wordplay". Once words are uttered (or sent out in written form), it's up to the recipient to figure out what has been stated. I plead guilty to enjoying the humor of this aspect of words and the resultant wordplay. The key to this humor is to deliver a word in a deadpan manner knowing that SOMEONE(thank you sirens) will take it to the farside through a double entendre. The original word can be delivered in a totally innocent manner and then the fun begins. The beauty of this humor is that you don't have to participate.

I think we get overanalytical about words sometimes beaver (and many others too many to list). btw that's Priscilla Presley with Leslie Nielsen in Naked Gun!

The next is a direct offshoot from Britney's lack of underwear indiscretion that made headlines

beaver (no; this is not Britney)

I can go on ad infinitum but I think you get the point. This humor has permeated American society. The simple fact remains however that humor isn't funny when it has to be explained. We have to laugh at ourselves... we're too ridiculous to take seriously.