Jul 24, 2008

Thursday July 24 Alan P. Olschwang

Theme: The Comic Element

17A: Start of G. K. Chesterton quip: EVERY MAN IS FUNNY

27A: Part 2 of quip: IF HE LOSES

47A: Part 3 of quip: HIS HAT AND

61A: End of quip: HAS TO RUN AFTER IT

The complete quip is "Every man is important if he loses his life; and every man is funny if he loses his hat and has to run after it."

This is Chesterton's "On Running After One's Hat" essay:

"......There is an idea that it is humiliating to run after one's hat; and when people say it is humiliating they mean that it is comic. It certainly is comic; but man is a very comic creature, and most of the things he does are comic - eating, for instance. And the most comic things of all are exactly the things that are most worth doing - such as making love. A man running after a hat is not half so ridiculous as a man running after a wife......".

I don't think I totally grokked this hat trick. How can "humiliating" be equated as "comic"? Love the last 2 sentences though, perfect for a Sunday 21*21 grid quip, should Mr. Williams dare.

I also like the Chesterton line Mike Huckabee quoted last January in his Iowa victory speech:

"G.K. Chesterton once said that 'a true soldier fights not because he hates those who are in front of him but because he loves those who are behind him'".

Very powerful. Huckabee really has a good sense of humor and is so gifted with gab. I like men who have a way with words, who can combine a series of seemingly helpless words and somehow transform them into dynamic stuff. I do believe that the penis pen is mightier than the sword.

Not a bad puzzle, some of the clues are very creative. But I won't hide my disdain for this weekly quip themed puzzle. It's excruciatingly boring and irksome.


1A: Rain unit: DROP. Lois was right yesterday, don't ever compromise the quality of your special raincoat.

5A: King of Crete: MINOS. The labyrinth king. Some of Greek mythologies are so tragically beautiful. Reagan's "Slipped the surly bonds of earth to touch the face of God" Challenger speech always reminded me of Icarus' escaping of Crete.

15A: Pathogenic bacteria: E. COLI. I survived the Dole pre-bagged salad scare 3 years ago because I ate MOREL and other mushrooms often, which undeniably strengthened my immune system.

21A: Stellar blasts: NOVAE. Almost trapped by the plural S again. With V from OLIVES (8D: Drink garnish) in place, I thought of LAVAS for a fleeting second, imagining the LAVA Bombs.

23A: Venetian strip: SLAT. I had no idea that such blind is called Venetian.

31A: Christian's frocks: DIORS. Christian DIOR. Clever clue, very misguiding. I like how it intersects SPEND (34D: Use credit cards).

42A: Rocky's last name: BALBOA. No idea. I googled. Only knew him as Rocky.

44A: Incisive remark: MOT. Literally "word" in French. And their crossword is called "mots croisés". I like the Spanish "crucigrama". It just sounds so mysterious and enigmatic to me.

55A: Storage battery type: NICAD (Nickel-Cadmium battery). Another unknown to me.

57A: Dental exams?: ORAL. Good clue.

68A: Grow dark: LATEN. Unknown to me also. I've never seen LATEN being used in any paper/magazine that I've read.


4D: Reads with care: PERUSES. That's how I deal with your comments. So you'd better write with care too.

5D: Hebrew letter: MEM. No idea. I got it from across fills. It's the 13th letter of Hebrew alphabet (total 22).

9D: Fiber source: SISAL. It's clued as "Agave Plant" twice before.

19D: Battled on and on: FEUDED

24D: Way from the heart: AORTA. Are you OK with this clue?

28D: Parade entry: FLOAT

29D: Selassie of Ethiopia: HAILE. Gimme for any Bob Marley fan.

30D: Varnish ingredient: ELEMI. Absolutely no idea. Lacquer was the only thing that came to my mind and it did not fit.

32D: Honshu port: OSAKA. Literally "large hill/slope" in Japanese.

33D: Harp on: RUB IN. New phrase to me. I only RUB lotion IN/on my skin.

37D: River of forgetfulness: LETHE. The river in Hades. Obviously I've crossed this river because I could not remember it. I also accidentally crossed the River of Rubicon a few days ago and could not find my way back home now. Help!

39D: County bordering Napa: SOLANO. Big stumper here for me, with the thorny BALBOA & NICAD intersections.

40D: Follow in time: POSTDATE

47D: Priam's wife: HECUBA. Mother of Paris & Hector. Loved TROY, but I could not remember seeing this lady.

50D: Like the flu: VIRAL

52D: Perlman of "Cheers": RHEA. Unknown to me. I pieced her name together from the across references. She is Danny DeVito's wife. Pretty dangling earrings.



Dennis said...

Good morning, C.C. & fellow miscreants - I guess it must be tough to find a quip that's actually funny and will fit in a crossword. Anyway, this one had some posers in it for me.

Never heard of Queen 'Hecuba'. Don't think I've ever heard anyone say "it's starting to 'laten'". Also, I forgot the river of forgetfulness. Hebrew letter 'mem' was a new one for me as well. And how many people are gonna know the name of a county bordering another county in California?

C.C., another record number of posts yesterday; 200's obviously not too far off. Still happy you created this monster? Oh, and your Chesterton quote was right on the money.

Big, rainy storms here in the NE - hope it's a great one where you are.

C.C. Burnikel said...

What can I say? I've crossed the River of Rubicon. Which quote is on the money? The Huckabee one?

Dennis said...

No, C.C., the one about why a soldier fights. God, mother, country are good motivators, but what really makes you run towards things you'd normally run away from, are the feelings for the guys on either side of you. You'd rather die than let them down.

Katherine said...

Good morning everyone.
I agree with Dennis, I never heard of Queen Hecuba, never heard the expression it is starting to laten. I did not know the country bordering Napa.
I did like the clue for 31A, even though I didn't get it! haha.....
Hope everyone has another good day.

Dick said...

sGood morning CC and DFs.

This was a very difficult puzzle for me. I struggled to complete it even with several Googles I became exasperated when I kept trying to fit assailed or assulted in for 19D FEUDED and they obviously do not fit. Guess I also crossed Lethe.

CC congrats on the great success of your site.

KittyB said...

Good morning C.C. and all.

New words for me were MEM, ELUL and ELEMI. I wanted OCTO where OTTO belonged. I fell for the trap and tried to put SONOMA in place of SOLANO.

Frequently, we will say, "Rub it in!" when someone comments on an error we've made. I have never heard someone say LATEN.

Thanks for the Chesterton quotes.

I think I have a morning to play in the gardens before rainy weather moves in. I have iris to plant, and an herb garden to weed. I need to get out before it gets too hot.

Have a great day!

Dr. Dad said...

Good morning!
Lethe (forgetfulness), Acheron (woe), Cocytus (lamentation), Phlegethon (fire) and the Styx (oath) were the rivers of Hades. Charon was the boatman of the Styx. Achilles mother dipped him in the Styx as a baby to make him invulnerable but forgot she was holding his heel. Thus we get and Achilles heel which was his downfall. That leads us to Priam and Hecuba who were King and Queen of Troy during the Trojan War during which Achilles was killed.
More Greek mythology with Minos of Crete. Where are the Erinyes? All of this comes from reading Edith Hamilton's great book "Mythology."

I thought laten for grow dark was a bit lame.

I knew that Sonoma bordered Napa but not Solano.

Dennis - we had alot of rain and hail yesterday at 3:30-4:15 p.m. I know. I was driving in it. Kind of a challenge.

Venetian "blind" strip (23A) and cry from the unsighted/blind (6D).

Rocky Balboa's first name was Robert. This was never mentioned in the films but his son's name was (Robert) and he was known as "Rocky, Jr." (mentioned in the second film when they named him).

The abbreviation NiCad is a registered trademark of SAFT Corporation and should not be used to refer generically to nickel-cadmium batteries. The abbreviation NiCd (no A) is derived from the chemical symbols of nickel (Ni) and cadmium (Cd), though it is not to be confused with a chemical formula.

There's sisal/agave. Tequila again!!

It's Pioneer Day in Utah. It's also Amelia Earhart Day and Marvin the Martian (the martian on the Bugs Bunny cartoon) Day. Here he is.

Are we mud wrestling today?

Dr. Dad said...

C.C. and other baseball afficionados - on this day in 1983, George Brett of the Kansas City Royals (vs. the Yankees) had his game winning home run nullified in the infamous "Pine Tar Incident."

Barry G. said...

Morning, folks!

Decent puzzle today, although I agree the quip is très boring. And I have really got to start memorizing the Hebrew months and letters!

I hate to admit it, but I managed to get the entire puzzle unassisted except for the very center square. For some reason, I was thinking ELENI instead of ELEMI (John Malkovich, anyone?) and just couldn't pull MOT out of the foggy recesses of my caffeine-deprived brain. So I had ELENI and NOT (thinking something along the lines of what Mike Meyers would say, e.g., "That was a really exciting quip today. NOT!")

Ah well...

flyingears said...

C.C., AORTA is the correct answer for the clue given. The other exit from the heart is the PULMONARY ARTERY (which takes nonoxygenated blood to the lungs to get the blood oxygenated). The AORTA is already blood that IS oxygenated taken to the body. The reoxygenated blood from the lungs returns to the heart via the PULMONARY VEIN (this is opposite to the real stuff as arteries have oxygenated blood and veins nonoxygenated blood). Sorry for the long explanation...

Jeanne said...

Morning all,

The quip wasn't particularly funny and yet we have all had a piece of paper fly out of our hands, chase after it, with the wind picking it up again. Humiliating for us, comic for the observer.

I'm going to preface this comment by saying I love this blog and LOL often with the ingenious play on words used by this talented group of DF's. I thought anonymous had a very sarcastically funny line which was taken way too seriously. We are all anonymous here and I hope we are all allowed an opinion without being vilified. I'm happy to see it didn't stop the ice cream battles. If I stay around long enough, maybe I can be as DF as the rest of you. You managed to get CC to the dark side, so there is hope for me.

xchefwalt said...

Good morning c.c. and all!

I, too don’t like the quip puzzles, as I am usually unfamiliar with both the speaker and the quote.

Hard puzzle for me today; I got hung up in the same areas that youse (Brooklyn for y’all) did; although as a chef, seeing e.coli anywhere will throw me off my game.

Thank you drdad! I saw your baseball post and turned on Sports center, and they played the clip. I remember seeing that and thinking that GB was going to have a stroke he was so angry! For the record, I’m a Mets fan and detest all things Yankee.

And thank you (again) c.c. for this great forum and for the fodder for today’s filth foray:

The (what?!) is mightier that the sword??

Dennis said...

jeanne, I'll respectfully disagree; 'anonymous' was upset because we (the large majority) weren't hewing to his/her idea of what should be discussed.

Ken said...

I'm another one who needs to memorize hebrew months, letters etc. I solved this rather quickly for me, but needed help on Hecuba and only got laten by crossfills. I've not heard that word either. Love reading the comments. Ken

Dick said...

Cc you seem to be tumbling ever deeper into the "Dark Side". Welcome from all of us who have already crossed.

NYTAnonimo said...

Had the exact same trouble as you Barry. Also agree on Thursday quote ennui.

Dr. Dad said...

Pine Tar

melissa bee said...

good morning c.c. and all,

no real problems today. unknowns that came only with perps: mot, iambs, elemi, lethe, and fen. have finally groked sisal and haile from previous puzzles. hated 68a laten. laten? really?

inspired post today as always, c.c., and uncompromisingly studded with pen*s/pen, raincoat, morels, and lava bombs .. glad to see business as usal here.

am very familiar with g.k. chesterton, as he was often quoted by one of my favorite gurus alan watts. i'm glad you included some information about him, as this snippet of his quote did not reveal his genius. here are some additional quotes:

"The first two facts which a healthy boy or girl feels about sex are these: first that it is beautiful and then that it is dangerous."

"Coincidences are spiritual puns."

"The poets have been mysteriously silent on the subject of cheese."

The word “good” has many meanings. For example, if a man were to shoot his grandmother at a range of five hundred yards, I should call him a good shot, but not necessarily a good man.

make it a great day ..

Jeannie said...

Managed to get the puzzle done but had never heard of the following:
LATEN (what?)
LETHE river
I actually thought I had some of them wrong until I checked this site. Well off to spend the companies money.

Drdad, got you pinned!

Dr. Dad said...

Nope, cokato. I managed to squirm out from underneath. Getting ready to take you down!!

Ken said...

Americans usually run into mot as in a "bon mot" or a good quip or ad lib remark. In "Frasier", both brothers would pat themselves on the back for their "bon mots."

@Melissa Bee. GKC also wrote mystery stories. His detective was a "Father Brown." I've read one which I enjoyed. I don't know how many he wrote. I've never seen it in a crossword, but either Father Brown's creator or GK Chesterton detective would be good clues, I think. Ken

Jeannie said...

xchefwalt, I am getting two pounds of fresh mussels tomorrow. Just another perk (as you know) for working for a food distributor. What is the best way to steam them?

Unknown said...

got the (boring) quip with no problem but I struggled with some of the other words. Always dislike the Hebrew months and letters since I have no way of remembering them. Solano was no problem for me since I live nearby. Didn't know Lethe, mot, or elemi so the middle stayed unsolved.

JOJO said...

Hello all. Didnt like laten. I guess I got lost in the river of forgetfulness because I was going with resin on the varnish clue.

Anonymous said...

I concur that this is a most interesting and entertaining blog. I also agree with Jeanne about not vilifying DFs for a comment. There was too much of a pile on for anonymous, in my opinion.
I didn't like steeped and seep in the same puzzle (unless I have it wrong).
I keep the Hebrew alphabet tucked in my dictionary. It came from

Jeanne said...

Sallie: Maybe it's the teacher in us. I love Eat Shoots and Leaves. Did you use it in your classrooms?

Ken said...

Melissa Bee Iambs come from the rhythm of poetry. When the rhythm is da DAH da DAH da DAH, etc that is iambic. When it is DAH da DAH da DAH da, it is trochaic. Much of Shakespeare is iambic pentameter, that is, da DAH rhythm with five (penta) beats to the line.
"I THINK that I shall NEver SEE" is iambic tetrameter or four beats.
Hope this helps. Ken

Dennis said...

Jeanne, should be mandatory reading for everyone.

Dr. Dad said...

cokato - the best way to steam mussels is to use steam. LOL. Body slam in the mud!!

Crockett1947 said...

Good morning everyone! Had to struggle with a few words today and got a couple through perps (SOLANO, HECUBA) and actually used the quip to fill in as well.

C.C., your cross-out in the opening comments puts you firmly on the Dark Side. Welcome to the fun, LOL! LATEN is certainly obscure. I liked 24D, since the AORTA is the main carrier of blood going away from the heart. I was surprised I actually KNEW RHEA -- too many crosswords, I guess.

Drdad, very informative. I miss Amelia, she was an original.

Barry, I was fortunate enough to drag MOT from the dark recesses. Better luck next time, LOL.

Eats, Shoots and Leaves was a good read.

Anonymous said...

drdad, the Brittanica says about styx:

in Greek mythology, one of the rivers of the underworld. The word styx literally means “shuddering” and expresses loathing of death. In Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey, the gods swear by the water of the Styx as their most binding oath. According to Hesiod’s Theogony, if a god perjured himself, he was rendered insensible for a year and then banished from the divine society for nine years.

I had thought that styx referred to death, which is why I looked it up. I was wrong, but it does mean more than oath.

Anonymous said...

Jeanne: No I didn't use "Eats, Shoots & Leaves" in my classes because it came out after I retired. I am, after all, older than dirt. Even though I don't feel like it. But I am a stickler, and have been known to use a magic marker to cross out errant apostrophes.

Barb B said...

Ok, today I plan to be demure. Enough ice cream and feathers for a while. See? I’m wearing clothes. (stepping daintily around the mud)

The quote did make me laugh – the visual is like slap stick, and I wouldn’t have been able to get a lot of other words without figuring out the quote first.

Like drei, mem, isu, iambs, elemi --- you get the picture. Couldn’t have done it alone.

I didn’t really know iambs, but remembered iambic pentameter, and I remembered fen, but had to reach for it.

Ecoli, aorta, I can’t see, sera, viral, anat(omy) suggest a medical sub-theme

Nice crossing of Rub in and skin, followed by balm, gave, a lot, float and seep, – pleasant to think about– Melissa Bee’s turf.

winfield said...

We always called them Venetian blinds and that reminds me of a few jokes I heard probably in 5th grade... A woman was taking a bath when she heard her doorbell ring. "Who is it?" she said. "Blind man," was the answer. "I'll be right there," she said. Without putting clothes on, she went to the door. A surprised man said, "where do you want these Venetian blinds?" or How do you make a Venetian blind? Poke him in the eye.. Anyway..

melissa bee said...

@ken: oohhhhhh, got it .. thanks. i knew iambic but did not think of iamb as the root. did not know the term metrical foot in that sense, was thinking some kind of distance measurement.

@jeanne, et. al., i appreciate a vote for the underdog, i really do. assuming an anonymous id to publicly insult others by name is not the act of an underdog, but a coward. and since most of us have made our personal emails available its unnecessary.

my point to anonymous was that this blog is c.c.'s jurisdiction, and she is appropriately sharp when necessary. she has been maganimous enough to suffer our silliness, but has never tolerated insults.

anyway, i'm glad we're all still here.

also enjoyed 'eats, shoots and leaves.'

melissa bee said...

@winfield: hahaha!

Dr. Dad said...

sallie - I knew much of that about the Styx but the most common term applied to it is oath because the gods swore by it. I wanted to keep it as a one word description. Thanks for adding the rest.

Jeannie said...

Drdad, slid across the mat, hit the wall, rebounded to my feet. Got you now in a boston crab. How do you like that?

melissa bee said...

@cokato: no idea what a boston crab is .. but i doubt that drdad will try too hard to escape your clutches.

Dr. Dad said...

A person who likes lying on her back after a whopper has me on my stomach in a boston crab. Having a bit of a struggle getting out of it.

Dr. Dad said...

An interesting position, wouldn't you say?
Boston Crab

melissa bee said...

@drdad: good luck with THAT.

Dennis said...

After seeing drdad's link, I'm volunteering as the next Boston Crab recipient.

Mr. Ed said...

Buenos Dias C.C. & fellow deviates

Tough puzzle for me today... just couldn't get my head into it. But, I knew the Chesterton quote for some strange reason. Don't particularly like it but knew it!

I only knew Solano because I lived in Chico(slightly north and east) in one of my prior lives. Also lived in Lodi and Ojai in other lives. And LATEN???? Is that a Jeff Foxworthy word? It sure is a stretch for English... even coloquialized.

drdad's correct on NiCad although nicad seems to be the generic term like Jello is to gelatin. Anyway, NiCad is rapidly being replaced by NiMH(Nickel Metal Halide) which have much better "staying power". Keeps your "Energizer" UP much longer.

I'd love to stay and mud wrestle with you but it seems to be such a "dirty" sport...

Dr. Dad said...

Whew!!! Got out of it. I'm going to try and get melissab in a Figure Four Leg Lock.

Jeannie said...

dennis I am starting you out with some asian mist just to get a lead.

Dr.G said...

CC et al,

Today is Haile Selassie's birthday.

Danielle said...

Not an easy puzzle. I got the upper left corner quickly and had a totally false sense of security as a result. Had to google a lot. Who knew Queen HECUBA? Like Ken, I knew MOT from bon mot, such a fun term. I also thought SONOMA county - it fit, but wasn't right (my grandparents lived there and we used to visit every summer). Ah well, Friday's right around the corner.

Dr.G said...

Ooops! Missed it by one day.

melissa bee said...

@clear ayes: we are expecting a scorcher today as well. are you anywhere near the sonora pass?

Dr. Dad said...

melissa bee - how can you ask about the weather when I have you in that interlocking leg hold?

Clear Ayes said...

It definitely is too hot. I had to repost the following from a slightly earlier one. I should Preview to make sure spelling, etc. is at least in the ballpark.

RE: adjectives in French. I wonder why it is "bon mot" with the adjective preceeding the noun but it is "mot juste" where the adjective trails the noun? I took French for several years in high school and I don't think I ever got a clear explanation. Now I only remember enough French to order off a menu and to translate Jeopardy clues. Anyone out there have an answer to the adjective placement?

I think the answer "mot" was a little misleading, since it just means "word". It is "mot juste" that is an incisive remark. Should the clue have been just plain "word", "remarque", "remarque incisif", or is it "incisif remarque"?

Maybe it is just too hot to do any thinking. The thermometer on the patio already reads 91 degrees and it's not even 10 A.M.

Danielle said...

@clear ayes, Isn't language wonderful? I took Spanish and there are the same issues of adjectives preceding nouns and following them. Keeps your poor brain in a muddle, as it should be! =)

Clear Ayes said...

Melissa bee, we are about 30 miles downhill from Sonora. The other day I said we are in a "geographic anomaly", (yes, I stole the phrase from Oh Brother Where Art Thou) being 30 miles from anywhere. The other 30 miles away cities are Merced and Modesto. Gotta keep a constantly up to date shopping list. With gas at $4.50 per gal, we have to make every trip to whatever town count.

xchefwalt said...

@jeanne 7:53- I don’t think we were to harsh. We’re all grown-ups here (in age, at least), and can take a punch with the best of them. The main issue (and please correct me if I’m wrong) is this: it was a first time post that was personally critical and anonymous. We all reveal ourselves (some more than others), and have built up “street cred”. To do as anon did was rude at best.

@sallie 10:29- “…Styx refers to death”. Only if forced to listen to them in the 80’s…..

@cokato 9:41- I love it when things “fall off the truck” (a common occurrence with food, booze, cigarettes and appliances in NY)! Here’s my favorite way to prepare mussels. You will need: Olive oil (extra virgin is preferred), fresh (not jarred) coarse chopped garlic, fine chopped fresh (not dry) basil, salt, white wine (preferably Pinot Grigio) and butter (whole or euro blend, salted over unsalted, not margarine), fresh (not canned) fine dice tomato concasee (optional).

In a sauce pan, heat olive oil over medium high heat (do not scorch), add garlic, sweat- do not brown.
Add mussels, turning rapidly to coat with oil and garlic- salt and turn again.
Add white wine. If you can, take a match to it to burn off the alcohol. If not, use your sense of smell to judge. Add butter and cover tightly for 5-7 minutes, or until all mussels are opened.

Gently stir mussels in jus, add basil and tomato, cover for one minute.


melissa bee said...

@drdad: as pheobe buffay said, 'i'm very bendy.'

@dennis: as the rock says, 'i will layeth the smacketh down on your rock candy a**.'

you know, since you asked.

@clear ayes: ah, downhill .. that would explain the heat. i was wondering. i attend an annual event at clark's fork campground in the stanislaus national forest .. just beautiful there.

carol said...

Hello C.C. and fellow D.F.'s (also, thanks to Carl fellow F.D.'s):
Not an easy one for me at all!!
Had a terrible time with the quip and that pretty much set the tone for the rest.

C.C. Welcome a little further into the dark. (It was that Pen is sentence that was so clever!)You will like it down here with might be muddy tho'

drdad: I always learn something from you (and others as well), but want to thank you for mentioning Edith Hamilton's book. I read Greek mythology many years ago, and now I can enjoy it again.

I see drdad, dennis and melissa bee have done their morning warm-up's, wonder what is next?? The Boston Crab, looks like it she will need someone to "rub in" some "balm" on that "skin". Whew!

Jeannie said...

xchefwalt: thanks for the recipe. Can I still use the basil if I skip the tomatoes?

Dennis can you see?

Drdad legs getting tired?

C.C. Burnikel said...

RUB it IN is different than RUB IN, isn't it?

I love the first paragraph of your 7:53am comment, very nice play on the theme today.

Melissa Bee,
Why the "Good" comment at 9:08am? Was it intended for 2:26pm?

Margot & Jojo,
Thank you for stopping by.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Barb B,
Great observation on the medical sub-theme.

I enjoyed the "Easy Rider" last night, thank you. Interesting NiMH explanation.

Clear Ayes & Danielle,
In French, most of the adjectives are placed after the nouns, but BON/MAL are always put in front of the nouns. I believe MOT has been fully assimilated into English and is well accepted as "incisive remark", though "Bon mot" is in fact more accurate.

xchefwalt said...

@cokato 12:52:

Yes. The tomato is for color and is an option only.

melissa bee said...

@c.c.: that paragraph should have been in quotes .. also from chesterton. but i like your 2:26 idea.

Clear Ayes said...

I'm back to A Word A Day! Thanks to xchefwalt for the recipe; except for the mussels, I already have all the ingredients. Mussels aren't easily available here. Would shrimp be good with this sauce? I did have to take a minute to google "concasee". Now I can hardly wait for it to show up in a future crossword puzzle.

c.c. Thanks for the clarification on adjective placement.

Dr. Dad said...

Time to put cokato in a sleeper hold. Nighty night!!!!!

embien said...

11:11 today, with lots of unknowns gotten only from crosses:
ELUL (well, perhaps I almost knew this, I know I've seen it before. Wanted ELAL at first.)
LATEN (had to look it up to be sure it was a word after I finished the puzzle)
LETHE (I only knew Styx as a river in Hades)

On top of those unknowns, there was a lot of uncommon fill in the grid. At least it wasn't full of names, like yesterday's puzzle.

My favorite clue was 31a Christian's frocks which had me thinking of albs and other vestments. Only after DIORS got filled in from the crosses did I get that sublime "aha" moment that makes puzzling fun.

C.C. Burnikel said...

I did not understand your "Smokin' behind the woodshed" wordplay yesterday. Why is it a double entendre?

Dr. Dad,
I loved the George Brett link. Very exciting restraining in the end.

I think DIORS deserves a "Clue of the Month" nomination.

Jeannie said...

I'm awake.....extra caffeine today. Surprise. Here's a moonsault on you! Happly landing Drdad.

C.C. Burnikel said...

I am curious. What's the best way to cook MOREL?

Dennis said...

C.C., it just needs to be thoroughly heated. Sometimes in an oven.

Clear Ayes said...

31A Christian's frocks seemed easy to me because of the "frocks". Does anyone other than a haute couture designer call a dress a frock? Drat, there's another French adjective stuck in front. Now I'm confused again. Temperature is up to an even 100F. I'd better stop thinking for a while.

xchefwalt said...

c.c.- mushrooms?

Mr. Ed said...


I probably should have put smokin' in quotes. It was used as in "being naughty to the nth degree" and anything that entails... I used woodshed ie reference to all the "woody toy" usages. My reaction was; "OMG! The nuns are watching" and I'm not Catholic. It probably would have been better to have not posted any response. C.C., I apologize. drdad - dennis pls humor me... I'm a newbie.


To borrow from Dylan Thomas: "Do not go gentle into that good night".

I really feel bad about yesterday's events. I love the eccentricities of words and crosswords are mindplay. If I offended anybody (and I obviously did offend anonymous@2:26), I apologize wholeheartedly. But, why did none of US even think about "getting a room"? My humor is adult but if that offends anyone, even anonymous, I care. I'm a big boy and can pull up my own pants. If you have further pernicious comments, please send them to my profile page posted email address.

@melissa, cokato, carol, lois & all the other darkside ladies... please don't change. I don't even know you but I love your piquant wit. c.c. You've definitely gone to the darkside with your "pen is"!

Having thrown out that rather large wet blanket... anyone up for Coed Indian Leg Wrestling instead of the "muddy" kind? It can be clothing optional best two-out-of-three falls???

Dennis said...

Carl, first, there's no need to 'humor you' - I think you're a great fit for this group. Wait -- I'm not sure that's a compliment....

Seriously, I'd feel bad too, if that criticism had come from one of the group, and not someone taking a shot from behind a tree. To me, that person has no credibility whatsoever. As you astutely pointed out, we're big boys here, and our lovely women counterparts are big girls (figuratively, before I get killed) - if ANY ONE of us registers a complaint about something, I have no doubt whatsoever that the group would try to accommodate. We've become a tight-knit group over the months, and I think I can speak for the group when I say we all have the utmost respect for each other.

Ok, who still has their clothes on and why?

Jeannie said...

Dennis how can you see to type through the asian mist?

Carl, consider this a throw down for the Indian leg wrestling. Clothing optional.

Anonymous said...

Hello c.c. and all, This is Anon 2:26. I’m not going to identify myself other than to say I’m an adult male. I was pissed off yesterday when I made my comment. There was a reason, and it’s not that I am a prude. My wife monitors this blog just about every day, but is shy about joining in. She isn’t a prude either, but when the postings took multiple double entendre turns toward whoppers and white creamy stuff and what to do with it, she got uncomfortable. She would never say anything to you, but it got me thinking about what the “line” is, or whether there is one. You are right though. It is what it is and if some people don’t like it, they can sign off. If my wife chooses to keep checking in, that is her business, not mine. I won't bother you again.

Mr. Ed said...

The sun is out, the sky is blue and it's 73 degrees in O... just another beautiful day in paradise yet not so hot it harms the moss. (Brought to you by the Oregon Chamber of Commerce)

For those who were hit by Dolly and in the N.E.; wet is really sucky. Clear ayes... having lived in Chico and Lodi... I feel your burn.


It may be premature but thank you... I think.

Dennis said...

Anon, (and I still don't know why you feel you must remain 'anon' -- this isn't the type of crowd that's gonna bother sending hate mail), there's literally hundreds of thousands of web sites on here; if I happen to click on one I don't care for, I move on. For any subject I care to pursue, there's hundreds of different sites. I certainly wouldn't criticize a particular group that I dropped in on, rather, I'd just go to the next one. If our sometimes blue dialogue offends you or your wife, why would you not just leave, rather than try and put a damper on an otherwise very happy group of friends?

Dennis said...

carl, welcome - in both senses.

Mr. Ed said...

Anon 2:26

Please understand that I'm only trying to help. Maybe your wife should just check c.c.'s solution on her original posting. C.C. is very thorough and not too corrupt yet. It should be enough to get you or your wife through the puzzle without clicking into the darkside. But, if she or you choose to enter the darkside, we each bear our own "guilt".

lois said...

Dennis: well said! Ditto! Why say anything at all and FOR somebody else? As McDonald's says, "Step aside,please." As my Cowbodys say...Move along, little Dogie.

cokato: the best way to steam mussels? In a sauna, naked, and half lit.

Chef; I agree whole heartedly with your recipe for preparing mussels. I do the same thing..only with a slight variation. The olive oil? Well, Extra Virgin is not an option any more, but I do like fresh herbs and spices (jarring comes later), any white wine works well w/my preparation, and I try not to use the can at all during this time. Yes, medium heat at first crescendoing to hot, but not ever scorching, just to sweating. I get the mussels, put them in, and turn them frequently at this point. Then I add white wine (1/2 c to the con-cocktion, the rest of the bottle to me). As for the match? That comes in about 30 minutes, under cover, when the mussels are steamy hot, open to suggestion and soooo delicious. A good time is had by all.

melissa bee said...

@lois: i must try that recipe. now if i could just get some mussels ..

xchefwalt said...

Wow- that's a great way to do mussels. That's just the appitizer- let's talk entree: beef tenderloin (tube steak?) with seafood infusion.

I tell my wife that IM only here for the articles, I NEVER look at the pictures

lois said...

Melissa: Come to OK. Plenty of mussels land-locked OK of all places. Except these mussels are very much out of the shell, nicely tanned (but not browned) and great in the oven!

Chef: I love how you think!!! Beef tenderloin (tube steak!).. my favorite cut of meat. Any suggestions for preparation? I prefer smoked, marinated in some alcoholic beverage, and then put in the oven until "I'M" done.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Clear Ayes,
In French, "beautiful" adjectives, such as haute and jolie, are always placed in front of nouns.

Yes, "the mushroom". Dennis' instruction is too vague.

Anonymous @ 3:24pm,
The line? To quote Justice Stewart, "I know it when I see it".

Argyle said...

I gotta stop and add my comment right now. I might learn a lot from the crosswords but nothing compares to learning about the Boston Crab!

carol said...

to anon at 2:26(Wed) and again at 3:24 today): Why should you or your wife care what we write or have fun with here - she is the one reading it, if she is offended, then she should just find something else to read, as Dennis and Carl have so wisely advised. We are "blog friends" here and understand each other, are amused by each other, learn from each other and by "gum", enjoy each other!!

carol said...

xchefwalt, are you going to let Lois alter your mussel recipe that way:), I'll bet you are! She will heat your kitchen up and you won't even have to turn on your oven, just hers!!
Love your suggestion of beef, a good tenderLOIN is also very much appreciated, a little on the rare side please!

Clear Ayes, are you sure you want SHRIMP? I know "it's the meat, not the motion", but SHRIMP?

Lois, if you drink all that wine, and you "try not to use the can", you're going to be in serious trouble, girl!! You'll bust something and then won't be able to play "chef" with us.

Argyle said...

Well, anon got me looking in the archives. This place has certainly changed since 4 or 5 comments were the norm and most posts were anonymous. But we can never go home again...covered with feathers, mud and honey. The ice cream all melted away.

Dennis said...

I feel like I should be volunteering to light pilot lights...

carol said...

Dennis, please do!!

Clear Ayes said...

OK, I got punked on the shrimp. I was thinking that the "loosening up" of this site usually starts happening around 1:30. I missed by 5 minutes. After I saw it in print, I had a feeling someone would call me on it before the day was out. Should I have said "giant shrimp"? Now there's the perfect oxymoron.

carol said...

Argyle, We could help wash off all those muddy feathers and melted ice cream...where would you like your bath?

lois said...

Dennis: I laughed at your comment earlier and then got distracted. Apparently, you are quite the chef yourself! I bet your morel is absolutely delicious, in or out of the oven. Let's talk "Entree" for that rare delicacy! Can I volunteer to be a taste critic?

Carol: you underestimate me. I've been in training. Every teacher I know has an extended bladder and can hold it 'til the cows come home. And only 1 bottle of wine? Well, maybe if it was a gallon jug I'd be in trouble. Besides, bustin' a gut is normal play around here. I'm conditioned!

KittyB said...

Chef, I don't even LIKE mussels and I was drooling as I read your recipe!

We vacation rarely, but Dear Husband does it up right when we do. We took a two week trip to Alaska, and on the cruise down the Inner Passage, we were served cioppino. It was astonishingly good! (I KNOW...there's mussels in it. I ate around them.) I told the waiter I wished I had the recipe, thinking nothing would come of it...just complimenting them on a great meal.

The next night, in full uniform, one of the chefs comes striding up to our table and asks which of us is Mrs.B. I was afraid I'd done something wrong! I raised my hand and he gave me the recipe for the cioppino! A recipe that serves SIXTY! *G* I had to learn how to make tomato concassee and several other ingredients, but I made a (mussel-less) scaled down version one day.

Clear Ayes, I'd be willing to try shrimp in Chef's recipe.

Melissa bee...Phoeby Buffet???

C.C. I have no research to back this up, but when I say "Rub It In" to someone, usually it is a sarcastic remark referring to the fact that they are teasing me for having goofed. I suppose it could also refer to applying lotion, etc.
I don't use "rub in," even as a substitute for "rub it in," so they apparently do mean two different things. I hope that helped. Perhaps the others will have more to say on the matter.

Argyle said...

must be a storm in the area; lights are flickering. I better get, disconnect from the internet. The bath will have to wait, Carol.

carol said...

Clear Ayes: I knew you'd re-consider. I think we should have an oxymoron meal: Buffalo Wings, Cat Fish, Hot Chili, Vegetarian Hamburger...what do ya' think? All served to us by a "Smart Ass"...

carol said...

Argyle, not to worry, bathing by lightning flash can be fun, adds a little "charge" to the experience.

Lois, hooray for "extended bladder capacity", I wish I had that! When the hour "latens" you'll have it all in control...or does it "Depend" :)

Mr. Ed said...


My head hurts! Way too much pressure building up. Ooh! Ooh! Everything is getting dark! The only answer... deviant wordings, the darkside, and MUSIC!
...seasoned with debauchery and booze? AND, an oxymoronic picnic. C'mon.. if Olschwang can use LATEN, I can use oxymoronic. I think I need a vacation... Oh! That's right; I just got back. Crudzilla! Darn it Dennis... that wasn't my pilot light... it was my fuse!


Miss Creant

Crockett1947 said...

Unlike chicken, when your morel is done there are no juices. The chicken is done when the juices run clear. Walt, you need to check the archives to understand the uproar over morels. There was a very nice picture that sent the dark side sisters over the edge!

carol said...

Miss Creant (I love it!) Oxymoronic is even better than laten. What sort of drinks can we bring to your picnic? Never mind your fuse, we can take care of that, we'll light your fire!! You can light up our lives, and whamoo we have fireworks!

Mr. Ed said...

The chicken is done when the juices run clear????? Alllrighty then.

Anonymous said...

Hi Gang I decided to pop in again and see what is going on. HM Where did all this mud come from?

WOW! now, I never seen that move before!
Had some probs today, but muddled thru once c.c. helped me with mot. The last pieces just fell in place then.

C.C. thanks for all the insight and this site.

Dennis @ 3:04 There he was apoligising and you had go insult Carl L O L ROFL

@ cokato A question:
Did you people finally get a liquior store or do you still have to drive the 4 miles to Howard Lake?

Have fun everyone and Lois? I love your version of steaming mussles

As Always, Whoo

kazie said...

The rule about French adjectives is:
B.A.G.S. for short-- the common words giving a description of these qualities will always be before the noun. Others come after.

One interesting exception to this rule is the word même--thus:
le mot même = the word itself
le même mot = the same word
même le mot = even the word

The position is the same in both languages. Over 33 years of teaching French--I couldn't resist a teaching moment.

xchefwalt said...

Sorry I’ve been gone- I had an ice hockey game to coach, and yes, we won 7-6.

@carol 5:40- I am only but a mere mortal, and am putty in the hands of a skilled craftsperson!

Someone will need to point me in the direction of the morel thread. I may live to regret this, but here it goes:

c.c., this is for you- Morels are related to truffles, are honeycombed in shape and have a nutty (oops, I think I see where this thread went!) flavor. They are VERY expensive ($80 per pound fresh and $190 per pound dry) and are most often found dry. In that state you can either grind them into a powder (very nice sprinkled on beef, fish or poultry) or reconstitute them (preferably soaked in marsala, brandy or sherry, at least chicken stock) and are best sautéed with butter to complement other vegetables, like haricot verts. They may also be stuffed (oh no, trouble again) with a veal or similar mousse, then poached in court bouillon and used as a garnish.

BTW- “ to quote justice Stewart….” Nicely played!! Eagle on par 5 for c.c.!

“chicken is done when the juices run clear…” that’s what she said…..

Is anon 2:24 going to be the new John 3:16? Anytime someone gets out of line, we don’t rant, just say “anon 2:24”? Will there be signs at football games?

Anonymous said...

With a 100 plus hits every day, (and gaining) this blog should reach a million very soon.

Way to go C.C.!!!!!!!

Jeannie said...

Geez, I thought I was kind of creative with Drdad's mud wrestling theme. And all the talk of the musssels with xchefwalt. I guess it is hard to fit in here as a DF female unless you've been here awhile. I guess I will stick to "reading" as I did four months ago. (Taurus-feelings hurt) always have to be liked. After all, I feel bad enough to cause all the chaos from yesterday (169 posts). Like I said, I guess I don't really fit in :(

Dennis said...

xchefwalt, you won't believe the picture of a morel that c.c. found - I believe it's the John Holmes of you can imagine, all the women here suddenly became mushroom gourmets.

I'm sure Lois or one of the other evil sisters can pinpoint the day the picture appeared; if not, I'll bet c.c. has it.

Clear Ayes said...

Kazie, It's a great mnemonic device. Thanks so much for the B.A.G.S. I'll carry them with me from now on. I may never lose "mes valises" again.

Jeannie said...

One last post...C.C. when do you get your paper? Or do you do it on line? I am always astounded that you have this post so early in the morning and Dennis has also posted so early. I quit getting the weekly paper because out here in Cokato the paper isn't delivered until I am long gone. I usually pick one up on the way to work.

melissa bee said...

@cokato: trust me, you fit in just fine. anonymous caused the chaos, not you.

keep your comments coming.

carol said...

cokato, please don't feel bad! We love your very D.F. comments and you are really our fourth "evil sister", as the boys are now calling us. I think we just all got hungry after all the mud wrestling and wanted to "eat" know how it goes!

Dennis, you little "weavil" that was one h..l of a "morel"! whew, sweaty brow! Wonder what sort of steamy stew we can make now. OMG it rhymes! Am I a poet?

carol said...

melissa bee, right on kiddo!

melissa bee said...

@xchefwalt and dennis: okay well ... i might remember when it was that c.c. posted that picture.

puzzle date: friday, may 2, 2008.


what?? i just looked it up ....

melissa bee said...

@lois: OK is a long way to go for mussels. then again, tulsa is my old stomping ground ..

carol said...

Isn't that one hell of a morel?? yeeehaaaah... take me baby!!!!

Anonymous said...

@cokato .... Ooohhh! I think someone needs a HUG. Are we having a moue??? Come here little girl... I've got a walnetto for you... heh heh heh!

You did nothing wrong yesterday. You are a breath of fresh air and girl if I fit... so do you. But, beyond that, anyone brave enough to question why men have nipples has got my attention. I could tell you but you'll eventually figure it out...

I certainly don't claim to speak for anyone but myself but methinks everyone is a tiny bit funked by anon 2:24 but working through it in their own way. Patience sweets. And please don't go away. I'd miss you a lot. There will always be detractors but how much fun are they.

Miss Creant

lois said...

Melissa: Come on!!! You have a place to stay...and talk about lookin' up? Holy Big Dipper!!! (even lookin' down...holy big dipper!) The most beautiful night sky! star studded...studs everywhere actually...and the mussels are worth every effort in coming!

Anonymous said...


There! See! I'm starting to forget already. It's anon 2:26!

carol said...

miss creant; are you the evil side to King Creole? "got those catfish jumpin' on a pole"....ohhh baby! Hey Lois, what do ya' think? Can those cowPOKES handle us tonight?

Anonymous said...


Yeah! That'll work! That's the ticket!

Uh... why are they called "cowpokes"? Is there something I've overlooked???

lois said...

Carol: It's only 11:15 here and they're stokin' up the fire...just warmin' up. Yeah, I'm positive they can handle us tonight. I'm plannin' on it. And it's another gorgeous night out here. I love the weather, the air, the fun, and the high morel character of these cowPOKES. HARD to BEAT!

carol said...

Lois: They love it when we beat 'em baby! Now,now Miss Creant, we know who you really are - your tongue needs re-waxing!

Anonymous said...

wanna wax it for me???? Hmmm? Could I be Debauchee's "other" side???

Crockett1947 said...

Walt, I must object to my unscheduled sex change. Last time I looked I was still a male, LOL!

Argyle said...

Ain't this somethin'. I can go straight from yesterday's comments to today's puzzle. And I'm really clean, too. I had to go out in the downpour and got drenched.

Mr. Ed said...

melissa bee & drdad
(and anyone else who wants to look)

It's time to wrap up another dysfunctional day in the life of a... yada, yada, yada!

Here's to Phoebe Buffay and all her friends...

Phoebe Buffay

G'nite all
Miss Creant

C.C. Burnikel said...

Thanks. I think I like the stuffed the best.

Mostly on line now.

Very instructive. Thank you.