Dec 3, 2008

Wednesday December 3, 2008 Verna Suit

Theme: Three Lines

17A: Three lines: HEM RECEIVING TAN

39A: Three lines: TICKET FRONT STAG

64A: Three lines: AIR STARTING NECK

3D: Three lines: TIME PUNCH CHORUS

7D: Three lines: HAIR SHORE BOTTOM

11D: Three lines: DATE CLOTHES HEAD

What is a STAG line?

Normally I enjoy this kind of "Three Something" themed puzzles. They tend to have less blocks (30 today, compared with our average 38) and the the grid feels more open. But this morning I simply could not find much common ground with this constructor. I was larruped good.

Struggled from beginning to the end. SHIRR (14A) for "Make cloth gathers"? I only knew SHIRRED eggs. Is GNAR (19D: Snarl and growl) even a word? I've never heard of TETLEY tea (56A: Twinings rival), nor have I heard of the clue Twinings. All I drink is the real Chinese loose leaf tea.

I love the clue for EGOS (38D: Vanity cases). I was thinking of ETUI though.


1A: Lens: OPTIC. Really? I've never of OPTIC being referred as "Lens".

15A: Bourgeois sculpture: MAMAN. No idea. Why is it called MAMAN? Looks like a spider. Reminds me of ARACHNE (Spider woman of myth).

20A: Avian haven: NEST. I penned in COOP first.

23A: __-a-porter (ready to wear): PRET. Do you like Robert Altman's "PRET -a - Porter"? Pretty funny.

25A: Shows intestinal fortitude: STOMACHS. I sure don't have this "fortitude".

27A: For two, in music: A DUE. Dictionary explains A DUE as "together; in unison".

29A: N.T. book: EPH. Would not have got this one without the down fills. Bible is definitely my Achilles’ heel.

31A: Sound of rippling water: PURL. I only knew the Chinese sound for rippling water: gudu.

44A: Loudmouth lummox: YAHOO. I wonder why Jerry Yang picked up YAHOO for his company.

45A: Minnow cousin: CHUB. New fish to me. It's quite big. Are you sure it's "Minnow cousin"?

47A: Pen name: BIC. My instinctive thought is "AKA".

50A: Follow: ADHERE TO

53A: Martin or Kingsley: AMIS. Knew Martin AMIS only because of his affair with Tina Brown.

64A E. Lansing campus: MSU. The Spartans. I wonder if they will ever change Big Ten into Big Eleven or Big Twelve someday.

66A: At full speed, at sea: AMAIN


4D: Not std.: IRR. Are you OK with this clue?

5D: Minotaur's isle: CRETE. Some of the Greek mythology are ridiculous. How could a woman fall in love with a bull?

6D: Hook's underling: SMEE

8D: Ex-G.I.: AM VET (American Veterans). Did this answer come to you readily? I don't recall ever seeing this abbreviation before.

9D: Bared: LAID OPEN

10D: Spike TV, once: TNN

13D: Penchants: BENTS

26D: Like damp basements: MUSTY. I found some nice old Life Magazine at the flea market, but most of them are very MUSTY. The smell simply refused to go away, even after I put them under the sunshine for 3 days.

30D: Some e-mail attachments: PDFS

33D: Madagascar primate: LEMUR. INDRI is often clued as "Madagascar LEMUR".

37D: Ancient temple: NAOS. Greek for temple. I forgot. It appeared in our puzzle before.

40D: Lhasa natives: TIBETANS

41D: Lapland native: SAMI. No idea. Did not know where "Lapland" is.

46D: Shell rival: HESS. Last time our editor clued MYRA as "British pianist Hess".

48D: Normandy town: CAEN. ST LO also has 4 letters.

51D: James novel, "__ Miller": DAISY. Has anyone ever read this book?

54D: Sal of song: MY GAL. Here is the poster. Alien to me. I disliked the clue.

57D: Leslie Caron musical: LILI (1953). GIGI is another Caron musical. It's released in 1958.

60D: Designer letters: DKNY. It now belongs to Louis Vuitton. DKNY, Chanel, Dior all spend lots of money for their brand protection in China. Too many fake products.

63D: ID card letters, at times: NMI (No Middle Initial). The answer revealed itself after I filled in the across blanks.



Dennis said...

Wow. Just wow.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Why "Wow"? Too hard? For you even?

Thanks for the dewlap. I can never remember this word.

Thanks for the pronunciations on ta ta and ta-tas. I did not know the difference.

Can you give me a few tips/drills on self-discipline & focus? I have a very wondering mind.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Maybe you were thinking of Snake River Canyon (EVEL Knievel jump)? Great to see you again.

Jeanne (PA),
Are your of Dutch heritage?

So what is the common way to pluralize German nouns then?

Were you in the British Army before? How come you speak German?

Dennis said...

c.c., Verna Suit, aka Marquis de Sade, had her way with me on this one.
I had stumbling blocks all over the place and spent enough time on the g-spot to last a week.

I won't bore everyone with each of my travails, but there were a few I'd never heard of (Sami?) and several where I just blanked. Took almost 15 minutes.

To top it off, I got an email overnight from my gym - they had a gas leak and won't be open, so I can't even go vent my futility there.

Ah well, it's all good. It's nice getting stumped now and then. Hope it's a great day where you are.

Anonymous said...

What is a STAG line?

At a dance hall, where the men outnumber the women, a stag line is the line of men waiting for women to finish dancing with their current partners so they can be in line to partner them in their next dance.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Wow, wow, still only 15 minutes. Were GNAR & TETLEY gimmes to you?

Thanks for the STAG line. Was today's puzzle hard for you as well? How long did it take you to finish it?

How long have you been doing crossword? How are the clues today compared with what you had years ago?

Dr. Dad,
Steamed mantou is indeed very bland, but it's not meant to be eaten alone.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Barry et al,
I solved a puzzle two days ago. The theme answers are:

Coat of Mail
Closed Book
Johnny Cash
Charged Card

The theme title is "Receiving End". I don't grok it. Why?

Clear Ayes,
Thanks for the laurel wreath and the proper poem yesterday. You have a very rich mind.

Dennis said...

c.c., gnar was a gimme because I'd looked it up some time ago for another puzzle, and I knew Tetley from old TV commercials.

And a lens is frequently referred to as an optic.

Martin said...

39 minutes 8 seconds. Unknowns were OSHA, SMEE, AM VET, TNN, SHIRR, MAMAN, PURL, NAOS, SAMI, CHUB, AMIS, HESS, CAEN, LILI, DKNY, MSU and NMI. I wanted ORT instead of DAB.

I googled "stag line" for you. "At a dance hall, where the men outnumber the women, a stag line is the line of men waiting for women to finish dancing with their current partners so they can be in line to partner them in their next dance."


Anonymous said...

41D: Lapland native: SAMI.

an area of Finland

Anonymous said...

It took me 22:32 today I got hung up on the Bible question I was wanting it to be EST for Esther.

for pen name I like you thought AKA. when I saw BIC I thought what? I had filled in around the clue.

Dr. Dad said...

Wow does not say it at all, Dennis. Damn, just damn!

Gnar is a word meaning snarl and growl, C.C. Also, here is a Minnow link that explains relations to chubs.

C.C. - I don't think that college conferences have an odd number of teams (could be wrong) but I do know there is already a Big Twelve Conference because the Nebraska Cornhuskers are in it.

I am still speechless over this "HAMMER" and am just going to go to Today:

Today is International Day of the Disabled Person and National Roof-Over-Your-Head Day. I also believe the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting is tonight.

Have a great Hump Day.

Dr. Dad said...

C.C. - forming plurals is difficult in German. It depends on what you word you are forming the plural of. Example - Mann is Manner (man to men) while Frau is Frauen (woman to women) and the article for "the" changes, usually to "Die". When I took German, our instructor told us to make sure we learned the gender of the word/noun and the article form (der, die, das) that goes with it. In addition, when learning the words, learn the plural as well because there is no real set structure to forming plurals.

pattispa said...

Am Vets is an organization committed to aiding veterans in various ways. About twice a year I box up unwanted clothing and small household items. An AM VET truck comes on the appointed day to pick these items. I don't know whether they sell the items or give them away. In any case the proceeds go to services directly concerned with American vets.

Dennis said...

pattispa, both AmVets and Purple Heart are excellent organizations that are dedicated to helping vets in need.

Jeanne said...

Morning all,
Ouch!! My head hurts from that hammer hitting me square on the noggin. Too many unknowns to fill in all the theme answers. The only thing I'm proud of is the answer to Lhasa native--Tibetan. Finally remember that one. Verna Suit was a poor fit for me.

@C.C. My father was of German heritage and my mother a full Italian. Berks Co. in PA has a heavily PA Dutch influence. My cooking has taken on some of that influence and also much of the Italian heritage. There are certain foods from childhood holidays that stay with you. But I'll take Italian cooking anytime. We make a terrific stromboli--dough and all. That's part of the holiday tradition, too.

Now I got to get over this headache and get my day started.

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Well, let me join the chorus of those who were flummoxed by this puzzle. It spanked me soundly and put me to bed without dinner.

I was holding my own for awhile and feeling pretty good about getting SHIRR, SMEE, PRET, A DUE, CAEN and GNAR, as well as (eventually) AMVET, DKNY, PURL and EPH. But I was soundly defeated by such unknowns as MAMAN, STAG, NMI, NAOS and SAMI.

Not only that, but I made a bunch of mistakes. I knew YAHOO, but put YOBBO instead. Similarly, I had TAD instead of DAB and therefore couldn't get BENTS to save my life and didn't know what a TATE line was supposed to be. I also had OHS instead of OYS, which gave me DAISH Miller. And I simply couldn't parse ASAMI as "as am I" and therefore put ASAME, figuring it was some odd colloquialism.

I could go on, but you get the gist. I won't go so far as to say it was a bad puzzle, but it certainly humbled me.

dugglesmack said...

Amen to all those who were flummoxed, wowed, stumped and maybe even a bit peeved at this puzzle! I particularly did not like AMVET since there is no clear indication it was an abbreviation (I know "G.I." but we never spell it out). NE corner and SE corner were the biggest hangups, along with "stag line" (pretty obscure by my estimation) and "MAMAN". I had "TAD" for 11a so "BENTS" was a bit hard to get as well.

I think I may try to remember the name "Verna Suit" and just skip the next one.... ;-)

ski said...

This was ridiculously difficult and obscure.


Coat of Mail
Closed Book
Johnny Cash
Charged Card

Mail, Book, Cash and Card are all items that are received, I think. Thus, receiving end?

Unknown said...

Good morning, all. Long-time crossword puzzle fan . . . new blogger.

Verse for the day: The meadows clothe themselves with flocks, the valleys deck themselves with grain, they shout and sing together for joy.

Anonymous said...

I guess I have worked crossword puzzles on and off for about sixty years. The clues in the past were more likely to be an equivalent meaning of the word; today there are efforts to make the clue more obscure or "cute".
In my experience an optic lens is the lens in the eye, as distinguished from a lens in a magnifying glass for example.

Anonymous said...

I just gave up and came to the blog for answers. Even with google I had problems

Anonymous said...

Oy, I couldn't stomach this puzzle though I finished it. The constructor deserves to be suspended on a clothesline. She showed a bent here for outdated and obscure clues and should be abashed. Bottom line: Y'all are disgusted. As am I!!

Lola said...

Verna Suit has a very strange mind. Her puzzles defy solution, and even when completed, do not give a sense of satisfaction. Too many obscure abbreviations and unusual words i.e. Gnar to even get the synapses firing. Oh well, time to go lick my wounds and ready my pencil for mañana.

Anonymous said...

66A: At full speed, at sea. That clue begs for the answer: FLANK Never have heard of AMAIN (couldn't even find a definition for it on g).

Also, I wasted a lot of time looking for "DRIVE" line. never did find it.

maria said...

it was a real dusy for me a dusy, don't know if i spelled that correctly
and i hadn't thought of dusy in long time

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, Perhaps Verna Suit has been reading C.C.'s blog and decided, "OK, you want a hammer? I'll give you a hammer!".

It was tough, no doubt about that, but I liked it all the same. I added several words to my list, MAMAN, GNAR and PURL. I only knew PURL as a knitting term.

All of the theme answers were straightforward and gettable with the help of the perps. BUT, I did run into trouble with 39A. I had PICKET (line), which made 27D APPS. It looked good to me and I didn't get my error until I came here.

There are quite a few SAMI in northern Sweden and Norway. G.A.H. and I visited a Sami village while vacationing with Swedish relatives. SAMI are known for being nomadic reindeer herders and it is legally protected as a Sami-only livelihood.
Now most Sami live in towns and cities like everyone else, but their culture and language are promoted by the Nordic countries they live in. Hmmm...I just found out with a little Googling that both Joni Mitchell and Rene Zellweger are of Sami descent.

Anonymous said...

Mark - Buenos Aires

ditto the comments on this unfathomable puzzle.

c.c. No, Ive never been in any army and I dont know German. I know Aachen quite well, its on the main route from England to Switzerland and so a stop over point. I googled the translation from "eye".

Re cryptics, Ive lost the paper which I was working on, I think my housekeeper has thrown it, and another paper I have has obscure answers

eg ""Oz celeb´s made up and eager funnily to host First Lady" (4,4,7)
Perhaps Kazee knows her but I doubt anyone else without knowing English/Australian housewife

Also "Americans invested nothing for a very long time" the answer is slang in UK but I dont know if used in US.

chau for now

Anonymous said...

I think the puzzle maker on this one was stretching things a bit. Some of the items I had never heard of before or seen anywhere else. Don't much care for these kinds of puzzles.

Dick said...

Hello everyone, I am totally spent on this one and still needed help here to get the last two fills. I can only add one more WOW to the comment Dennis made and one more damn to DrDads comment.

See you tomorrow as I have had enough for today.

Anonymous said...

I agree with all of you who felt hammered, and not in a stimulating way.
I was sure of only a few: pret, Liddy, shalt, Amis, Alamo. A few other correct guesses. Had no idea until I came here of any of the 3 lines.
But I wonder if it is "HAD" for hoodwinked. That doesn't seem like a good answer, if that is what it is.
My husband, who doesn't do xwords, but helps out occasionally, also believes FLANK is what is needed for 66A.
Welcome to all the newcomers. It's a great group here.

Anonymous said...

I'm with Barry G. on this one -- really hard.

MAMAN: Bourgeois refers to the sculptor's name, href="">Louise Bourgeois.

I also had TAD instead of DAB.

STAG line was a stumper. I swing dance regularly and I've never heard this term.

PURL was unknown. Never heard of NMI before nor AMAIN nor GNAR. NAOS is a new word for me.

Lots of googling...

Anonymous said...

I did not like this puzzle at all.
a few of the clues were very weird and the answers even weirder. not your usual relaxation crossword.

kazie said...

Well, I ditto all the complaints about this one. Suffice it to say I ended up with 18 blank or incorrect tiles all over the puzzle. I had difficulty with the three line clues, but 61A was the only one that ended up almost blank.

I gave up early and spent two hours translating a French text from 1803 for a German colleague whose local history research (Napoleonic invasion of Hessen) often requires my help. That will give an idea of my thoughts on this puzzle--that I found that more attractive!

A few comments:

Dr.Dad is right about the unpredictability of German plurals, but there are some patterns, albeit, not too reliable.
1. All feminine words of more than one syllable, as well as most of the one syllable ones, add -n, or -en (if no -e is there already to precede the -n)
2. Words of one syllable may add -e or -er, either with an Umlaut over the word stem or without, so Mann becomes Männer in Dr.Dad's example. Many words that already end in -er don't add anything, since Umlauts can only be used on a, o, or u--never e or i.
3. I mentioned last night the -s ending for borrowings and words ending with -a, -o, -i or -u.

Another comment--I wonder if Sami is related to Suomi--part of the Finnish name for Finnland--its international abbreviation on car stickers is SF.

Maman is "Mom" in French, and the spider appears to have an egg sack suspended under it. Just a thought.

Clear Ayes said...

Kazie, Doesitinink and JD,

"In joyful strains then let us sing,
Advance Australia Fair."

I just had to include lines from the Australian National Anthem. Yes, G.A.H. and I saw Australia yesterday. It was a rip-roarin' old-fashioned "Down-undern"...I guess that would be the term for a Western that takes place in Oz. About half of the movie related to the battle between the "good guys" and the evil cattle barons. (I almost expected to hear John Wayne yell, "Head 'em up! Move 'em out!") The other half was fascinating Australian history about the Aborigines and the Japanese attack on Darwin in February 1942.

I have to admit that I knew next to nothing about the attack. I think it was one line in a U.S. high school history book. I knew a just a little more about the government policies toward Aborigines, having seen movies like Rabbit-Proof Fence.

All in all, a very recommendable movie. Oh yes, I almost forgot (Yeah, right.) Hugh Jackman is about a six-pack!! I'm surprised director Baz Luhrmann didn't add a couple of digitally added sparkles to his teeth when H.J. smiled.

carol said...

It was a Good Morning before I started on that puzzle. The said puzzle is now safely in the wastebasket along with my confidence!! GNAR (never heard that one either, but that is what I have been doing).
Dennis, I feel your pain on not be able to get to exercise. I am going to have a good bike ride to vent.

Anonymous said...

"I've been had" is an old slang phrase meaning "I have been taken advantage of."

To others who dislike clues that date back earlier than they do, I would like to say that the same aggravation applies to older puzzle workers who have difficulty with modern changes in the language and the culture. It's what it is; we all need to learn to expand our knowledge. That is what doing crossword puzzles can do for us.

kazie said...

Clear ayes,
Thanks for the recommendation (as if I needed one!). We're planning to try and work it in some time this weekend, since hubby still works, and the nearest decent theater is in Madison 65 miles away. We'll go with son and d-i-l I hope.

That is, if the snow lets up by then. It's beautiful out here now, a couple of inches on the roads and school kids must be hoping for an early out, since it's still coming down.

Barb B said...

I pretty much crashed and burned on this one. I actually liked trying to figure out the ‘three lines’ clues, but a lot of clues just seemed out of reach. Reminds me that I’m an amateur.

As for IRR, it seems very normal compared to most of the others. All in all, it was a very frustrating experience. I’ll be very hesitant to work another of her puzzles. WAY out of my league.

Dennis – Yoga is good.

Clear Ayes, (and anyone else who grokked it) I bow to your superior knowledge and experience - no sarcasm intended, I'm impressed.

Calef, you are a very gracious person.

Agree with you, CC – the clue for EGOS is great, as is BIC. Gave me a little smile to keep me going.

melissa bee said...

good morning c.c. and all,

now THAT was hard. i eventually got it all but not without alot of swags and the online red-letter help. a fitting start to a cold and foggy day in the bay area.

verna .. phew is right. reminds me of a manager i had by the same name that was equally tough.

JD said...

Good morning C.C. and all who tackled Verna's stumper-youch!

I never thought I'd be looking forward to a Thurs puzzle, as I rarely get the quote. Today I had no idea what 3 lines meant even after I came crawling here.What do the 3 words have in common? anything?So yes, I gave up after filling in 18 out of 37 acrosses, and 18 out of 37 downs.I liked the clues for yahoo and BIC,but didn't think of them. :-( I have heard of shirred as in curtains, but had never seen the word.Was I OK wtih STD..maybe, if I knew what STD was.I did add a few new words to my notebook, but I felt (hoped) I will never see most of them again.

C.C., loved the picture of Arachne, and SJSU-ites are also known as the Spartans.. not so great though.

Looking forward to tomorrow. Hope all of you newcomers keep on commenting. This is a great group.
@well-versed: Your verse was a breath of fresh air. :-)

Crockett1947 said...

Good morning, everyone. Well, the hammer comes and we all gripe about it. This was one really challenging puzzle! I had to go from S to N and make a few adjustments, but I was able to get it without any help from the G spot or the blog. 25:09 for time, though. I was almost ready to walk away and return later when things began to slip into place.

@hughdbrown Thanks for the MAMAN explanation. I wondered about that!

Have a great Wednesday.

Anonymous said...

A stag line is the line of unattached males at a dance.

carol said...

Marie,I think the spelling is: DOOZY

JD, the 3 words don't have anything "in common' with each other, they work WITH the word "lines", ie; Hem LINE,Receiving LINE, etc.

JD said...

OH! After looking at all the words that filled in 3 lines, I now understand.DOH

Anonymous said...

In case I haven't mentioned it before, I really hate the "Three thing" puzzles. I will aver to my dying day that I should be able to fill in a complete answer in one swell foop.

I don't have a problem at all with 'Maman'. I had never heard of it, but the clue is 100% accurate.

8D: I don't see how "Ex-G.I." is Am Vet, or AmVet, or AMVet, or any such thing. Even if 'AMVet' is a veteran's organization, it's not the same as "Ex-G.I".

41D: From Wikipedia: "The Sámi are often known in other languages as "Lap", "Lapp", or "Laplanders", however these terms are considered derogatory". So maybe 'Lapland native' isn't the best clue!

57D is one of my favorite clues. Leslie Caron starred in 'Lili' and 'Gigi'. If you only have an 'I' or two, you still won't know which it is!

Unknown said...

49A Military meal, mess is where you eat or live, not meal ???

Anonymous said...

verna suit the answer
the clue
Nutty buddy.
obscure to say the least and linked to the 3rd degree.It was not a fun puzzle when it was revealed.
My mind was stuck in "what"
mode.Verna I'll pass next time.

Anonymous said...

I thought I was starting out fairly well, then came up against the most obscure clues. I really think I will skip this puzzle designer in the future...bad start to the day. KW

Dennis said...

Johnboy, I'm a former Marine, and an AmVet. It's just an abbreviation for American veteran, regardless of branch.

steve, I'm not sure what your question is, but 'mess' is correct for 'military meal'. When we'd come in from the field, the first question would be 'when are they serving mess?'.

I know there's a lot of complaints about this puzzle, but as I said at the beginning, it's nice to have to do some research now and then. Too often, we're just mindlessly filling in spaces off of the typical crosswordese clues (see 'Peri', 'adit' etc.) This one really broke my balls (sorry, ladies) and I really enjoyed it. Learned some stuff too. Hard-fought victories taste so much better than the gimmes.

Just my humble opinion.

Anonymous said...

Amain in Navy lingo means
"immediate". Like the whole puzzle...a stretch of the imagination. Flank as anonymous states is an order given by the ships captain or Officer of the Deck to a seaman. The seaman would move then possition the order indicator to "Flank" which signaled the engine room to propel the ship as fast as it can go. The order indicator has various positions (Bank: full, 2/3, 1/3,) stop, (Ahead: 1/3, 2/3, stand, full, and flank). An extremely tough puzzle.

Dr. Dad said...

Dennis - ditto on your last comment. The puzzle was a hammer but I didn't mind it for the same reason as you. Made me think and that is a good thing.

Dr. Dad said...

My last post. In keeping with my picture of the "Humble Bumble" I remind everyone that the great classic airs tonight on CBS at 8:00 p.m. EST. It just isn't Christmas without Rudolph. Of course, you can also watch the Rockefeller Center Tree Lighting on NBC at the same time.

Dick said...

Lois, carol and other DFettes if you check the post Dennis made at 1:48 you will see what he likes.

Barb B said...

I also like a challenge, and appreciate learning new things. I don’t really enjoy puzzles with iambic pentameter – filling in the blanks almost by rote. Some clues in this puzzle were good for learning purposes, and others were so obscure, the only thing I learned was that the puzzle constructor has a passion for finding the most obscure word possible for any fill.

I’m not saying that’s a bad thing; just that I’m not ready for that. I might be a major league-er some day, as long as it’s a fun trip.

Although this was not fun for me, I appreciate that there ARE major league players who need something they can sink their teeth into. I can only nod my admiration from the sidelines.

carol said...

Barb b, I too share those thoughts (last paragraph in your 2:42 post).

Now that we also know what makes you happy, we can oblige. Maybe that's why you said "Wow" in your first comment this morning...;)

DoesItinInk said...

HAMMER TIME! I had so many problems with the far right, center of this puzzle that I ultimately gave up! I could not get past “yokel” for 44A instead of YAHOO. That did not work with EGOS which I had initially for 38D. PURL for the sound of rippling water? That is a new one for me; I only know PURL as a knitting term. SAMI??? NMI??? Yuck! And I did not know AMAIN. I knew everything else.

I had to think a bit to get PDFS, though it should have been a given as I am currently working on a problem with a program that sends out e-mails with PDF attachments! I knew CAEN because my one-itme French teacher’s family came from there.

A Leslie Caron movie can be either GIGI or LILI, but a Leslie Caron musical can only be LILI.

I like the writings of Kingsley AMIS better than those of his son Martin. Father was a satirist, cynical at times. I loved his book Lucky Jim but have also read The Riverside Villas Murder, Stanley and the Women, The Crime of the Century, and The Green Man. I have only read Martin Amis’ London Fields.

Other line possibilities: checkout, base, dotted, life, party, What’s My, by, pickup, Nazca.

@cc: Regarding the name of the Bourgeois sculpture…maman is French for mama.

DoesItinInk said...

A friend sent me this “quiz” yesterday. I had a lot of fun typing comments on the list items and sending it to my children. How many of these things do you remember?

Count all the ones that you remember not the ones you were told about. Ratings at the bottom.
1 Blackjack chewing gum
2. Wax Coke-shaped bottles with colored sugar water
3. Candy cigarettes
4. Soda pop machines that dispensed glass bottles
5. Coffee shops or diners with tableside juke boxes
6. Home milk delivery in glass bottles with cardboard stoppers
7. Party lines
8. Newsreels before the movie
9. P.F. Flyers
10. Butch wax
11. Telephone numbers with a word prefix (OLive-6933)
12. Peashooters
13. Howdy Doody
14. 45 RPM records
15. S& H greenstamps
16. Hi-fi's
17. Metal ice trays with lever
18. Mimeograph paper
19. Blue flashbulb
20. Packards
21. Roller skate keys
22. Cork popguns
23. Drive-ins
24. Studebakers
25. Wash tub wringers

embien said...

34:32 today. This is without doubt the hardest TMS puzzle I've done. The NY Times (syndicated) puzzle today was far easier, which is unusual for a Wednesday.

I hate the "three things" kind of puzzle anyway, because this is the weakest kind of "theme" there is: three random things...blah blah blah. This kind of "theme" is especially hard when the crosses are difficult and/or obscure, as was the case many times today.

I won't list all the words that were new to me today, as there were so many. I will, however, join those who object to AMAIN instead of FLANK.

c.c.: 4D: Not std.: IRR. Are you OK with this clue?

I think this clue is OK (not great), as IRRegular is often used for non-standard on a sale item in a store.

Crockett1947 said...

@doesitinink Nazca? My Gawd! I remember ALL of those. I must be as old as dirt, LOL!

mariposa said...

Good afternoon c.c. and all. I gave up on this one quite early. I don't mind a challenge but this was too much for me.

I love your list of do you remember 23 out of 25 for me.
My down falls were Studebakers and Howdy Doody.
Have a good evening all

Dennis said...

Well, count me in as older than fluids - I remember all of them. Matter of fact, I still sell the wax coke-shaped bottles (nik-l-nips)in the hobby store. If I can find it again, there's a great web site that has nothing but old-time candy, and I'll post it here. Stuff like MaryJanes, Bonomo Turkish Taffy, etc.

DoesItinInk said...

@crockett1947 and mariposa...Don't fret. I too am "old as dirt", having been born in 1946. I only did not know "Blackjack bubblegum".

Does anyone have special memories of something from when they were young that no longer exists?

kazie said...

I only remembered 15 of these, but it may be as much because of culture differences for me. I was also born in 1946, so youth isn't the reason. In fact our town still has a drive-in, probably the only one left in Wisconsin.

melissa bee said...

Does anyone have special memories of something from when they were young that no longer exists?

when there were only 4 stations on television, one of them was PBS, and NONE of them were devoted to celebrity gossip.

when Discovery Zone was outside, and kids actually played there.

the milkman. it was in canada, and i was only 6, but we had a milk chute (so it wouldn't freeze) and the milkman would deliver the glass bottles. we had a laundry chute, too - my brother got stuck in it once. snicker.

Crockett1947 said...

@doesitinink I have very special memories of our milk delivery man -- "Bud." We would eagerly await his arrival three times a week and bum chips of ice from him in the summertime. He was a real friend to everyone on his route. I still have his autograph in my autograph book!

Dick said...

@doesitinink Not so sadly I remember all of the items on your list. I also remember Blackjack gum tasted horrible. UGH!!

What is nazca?

C.C. Burnikel said...

Thanks for the German plural forms. Very informative.

Dr. Dad,
Great MINNOW link. Somehow I always think minnows as baits.

I understand mail and card, not book and cash. You can give a book or some cash to others, right?

I like your verse, simple and beautiful!

Dennis said...

Does anyone have special memories of something from when they were young that no longer exists?

My mind.

Dick said...

doesitinink I remember the milk man delivering glass bottles of milk with the cream on top and cardboard lids. I also remember a horse drawn wagon that delivered ice for the ice boxes we used then. Also remember carrying a kerosene lantern to the barn for the milking that occurred after dark or before daylight.

C.C. Burnikel said...

I like your receptive attitude towards new style puzzles. Have you been doing the same puzzle (Tribune Media Service syndication) all those 60 years?

Judi, VaBeach puzzler, Maria, Mitzi, Hughdbrown and all the anons,

Nice to see you again!

Anonymous @ 10:06am & Sallie,
Thanks for FLANK speed. It's new to me.

Barb B,
Do you do yoga every day?

Dick said...

mariposa is the cat you have pictured a gray? If so I have the sister.

Dick said...

Dennis good answer at 4:32! Guess we all share in some of that.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Gigi is also a musical.

You really should comment often.

I've been enjoying your posts lately, always so bubbly and full of life.

Dennis said...

Anybody remember American Bandstand back when it was on every weekday? We actually got in one day, and spent the whole time sitting in the bleachers gawking at the regulars. The place was absolutely tiny compared to what I had pictured; hardly any dance room at all. This was back in 1959.

Clear Ayes said...

RE: Verna Suit...maybe I like her puzzles because we share a, not Suit. My mother's name was Verna and as I mentioned previously, my middle name is the same as Mom's. I used to hate it when I was a kid, but now I like the old-fashioned oddness of it.

Some of Verna Suit's clues/answers are pretty obscure, but as Calef said earlier, some of them are just dated. I don't "get" the newer rapper clues/answers we often see, but I'll remember ICE T now. I don't want a steady diet of puzzles that are super time consuming and difficult(the Sunday Times comes to mind). But I don't want all of them to be filled with words we already know and have no difficulty completing.

I'm sitting here sucking on a few of the Jujubes I bought at the old-timey candy store in Sebastopol last Friday. Dee-licious! That was another walk down memory lane candy-wise. It is amazing how many of those old favorites are still being made.

Our three-party line from 1960 was VA(lley)2-0290. I loved Blackjack licorice gum. My parents' first hi-fi console radio/record player was a Grundig Majestic brand. I loved everything on Doesitinink's list and I remember every single one!

I remember running after the iceman on hot summer days and having him toss ice chips to all the begging kids who surrounded him.

Dennis, Yes to American Bandstand. I rushed home after school to turn on the TV and watch all the regulars. Janet, Jimmy, Carmen, Kenny and all the others were so "tough". I don't know if anyone remembers that "tough" was early '60's slang for really neato.

RichShif said...

Good Evening C.C. and All

This puzzle was more like a Sledgehammer! I have never seen "bents" used before, and felt hoodwinked throughout most of this puzzle. Finally had to resort to searches and the blog to complete. Had abase for abash at first; started with tad for 11a but then had to change to dad for the date in 11d, so dad became dab and bents showed up. Once found that Twinings was tea; knew Tetley. I thought plural for oy would be oyes. Glad this one is over. Never got that "Aha" feeling with this one.

lois said...

Good evening CC et al, This puzzle was somethin' else! Won't say what though. Not my favorite and I'm glad I'm not alone. I feel vindicated.

Doesit: What a hoot! Thanks for the memory trip. I remember all but the black jack gum and the washtub ringer. I grew up in the drive-in theater business and loved it. Sure miss them.

Dennis: I for one would LOVE to have that web site. That is so cool that you still sell those things. Great comment @ kidding!

Dick: comment 2:35 Duly noted! I think that's a universal morel character trait...well, YOU should know!

Meliss: that's so funny about your brother. Is his name 'Dennis' by chance?

Dennis said...

Speaking of American Bandstand, does anybody remember the TV show, "American Dreams"? It was my favorite show while it lasted (three seasons), depicting a family growing up in Philadelphia in the late 50s, early 60s, and the experiences were remarkably parallel to my own. I was really pissed when they canceled it.

Anonymous said...

Wow is right. This one was tough. I finally finished it but I wasn't sure of all my entries until I checked here.

I understood a chub to be a medium sized Great Lakes white fish. I would not have guessed that it was closely related to a minnow.

JD said...

doesitinink: great list! I remember everything, but I did not have a cork popgun (Bob did). Peter (from "Peter and the Wolf") had one.Blackjack gum may not have been sold in all states. When my friend from WY comes to visit, she always buys it here.

I remember 5 & dime stores, Woolworths, where a coke was made with coke syrup. It also had a lunch counter.Sometimes when one of us had a cold, Mom bought the syrup for our coughs.We also had a 4 square painted in the middle of our street.Boston Cream pies were 17 cents.

Thanks Embien for the expl. of "not std". I agree, it's a good clue.

carol said...

Doesitinink, Thanks for the jogging my 'em all, so what does that say for me? Guess I'm older than liquid too. One thing though, Blackjack did not make a bubble gum 'back in the day'.
I loved that flavor and also Clove and Beeman's Pepsin'.
I still have some old green stamp books, all carefully filled out. Geez the things we hang on to..but I like old stuff from my youth..even have my lunch box from grade school.

I believe we all discussed the perils of wringer washers a few months ago. LOL

There was 1 house in our neighborhood that still took ice for their frig.(ice box) and a truck would come down our street every few days and in the summer the driver would hack off a piece of ice for each of us kids..we always waited with one of our mom's dish towels (to hold onto the ice chunk). We all thought that was the greatest treat! Can you imagine today's kid's reactions if given a chunk of ice?

Dennis, my sister gave me a plaque that says: "Of all the things I ever lost, I miss my mind the most" :)

JD said...

Dennis, WOW! You were actually there at American Bandstand. Awesome! I also enjoyed the show, American Dreams.I mourn (well, kind of) when the shows I really get into are cancelled.This is ER's last year.
Richshif,I get an a-ha feeling every time the right word comes to me.I know this was a hard puzzle, but those who needed a hammer, got one, and enjoyed it. The easy ones stretch my mind, but they don't do a thing for those who do these puzzles in 5 minutes.It's hard for me to even write that. FIVE MINUTES!!!

JD said...


Dennis said...

Ok, here it is:

Old Time Candy

Be sure to check out all the old TV commercials; lots of memories there. And believe it or not, they're going to make BlackJack gum again.

Anonymous said...

15 Across refers to sculpture Bourgeois, whose big spider work, Maman, is on exhibit in Ottawa, Canada

carol said...

Dennis, they are making BlackJack gum again, you can find it at The Vermont Country Store. I get their catalog..they have all the old time candy and tons of other stuff from by-gone days. That is their "hook". Check them out.

Clear Ayes said...

Carol, Beeman's Pepsin was my absolute favorite gum. My dad, who smoked unfiltered Camels (yup, he had his first heart attack at 39 years old) always chewed Clove gum to lessen his tobacco breath. It probably was the only way he could get my never-smoked mother to kiss him!

Barb B & JD, I never time puzzles because I know I'm not in the "5 Minute League". I like a challenge, but that doesn't mean I'm very good at them. I'm just a glutton for punishment!

Anonymous said...

Can't help you focus. I am highly motivated and tenacious. That's not to say I don't have my own way of procrastinating.


I remember them all and more. I still have my skate key. HiFi's aren't that old. Go before 45's to 78's. Still have some. I got my fingers caught in a washtub ringer when I was a newlywed, doing the laundry for the first time. Ouch.


RichShif said...

I remember the first washing machine that my parents used. It was a used Maytag tub washer with a wringer. My dad has a scar on his arm from one that his parents had and he got his arm caught in the wringer when he was young.

We begged our mother to buy us PF Flyers because they would make us run faster. She never did....too expensive. I did buy my own Converse canvas Hi-tops though. Had a paperroute and had my own money.

Argyle said...

Phew, a long day, and a long puzzle!

15A got me because I never heard of the sculptress Bourgeois so was thinking, bourgeois sculpture.

66A is plain wrong but only because she added "at sea". According to Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary: "Amain (Naut.) To lower the topsail, in token of surrender; to yield." Also, "let go amain, in seamen's language or strike amain, is to let fall or lower at once." from Webster's 1828 Dictionary.

Hey, I feel better now. A little revenge for a tough puzzle.

lois said...

Dennis: thank you for the link. Great site and great stuff. Funny old advertisements too. Did you notice the phone number being 866 WAX LIPS? I thought that was great.

Argyle: Way to go! Good catch!

JD said...

Remember when kids did the paper routes on their bikes? Probably many of you had one. Today, at least where I live, an adult drives around tossing the papers out of his window.

Anonymous said...

No, I did not do the same puzzles over 60 years! I started out in my hometown of Chicago about 1940. I think I used the Tribune and the Daily News. Later I was in the Cleveland, Ohio area and used the papers there. Most of my adult life was in Dayton, Ohio and I used the papers from there and Cincinnati. At various periods I was too involved in other activities to do puzzles regularly.

Barb B said...

About yoga --I have good intentions. I do feel much better when I do the routines, and I'm determined to increase the amount of time I spend.

I went to a Kundalini class last week and I loved the integration of body and spirit. It inspired me to see it as much more than a necessary chore.

Argyle said...

It turns out, the song, My Gal Sal, is much older than the movie. (1929 clip)

melissa bee said...

@dennis: i loved American Dreams, too, hated to see it end. felt the same way about Homefront.

kazie said...

Sorry Mark,
I don't know the names of any Oz celebs now--I've lived in the USA since 1974. If it was an older one, I might have a chance if I hadn't lost my memory like others have mentioned here today. I thought of figuring out an anagram but couldn't come up with any combination that looked familiar. I also wondered about Bazza McKenzie and his Edna Everidge, but that wouldn't work either. So you'll have to tell us who it is.

Clear Ayes said...

Kazie, I think you may have a good guess with Dame Edna Everage.
(4, 4, 7) She's certainly made up!

Anonymous said...

Thursdays quip


puzzle was complete in 15:34

I didn't struggle today. Which is a first for a Thursday puzzle that I was able to solve it so quickly.

I enjoyed today's puzzle.

Crockett1947 said...

C.C., I don't have the autograph book(s) readily available, but I do remember a lot of aunts, uncles, neighbors, cousins, and classmates, as well as a few Cincinnati Reds baseball players.

I have a trio of other autographs that I cherish, though, and they were personally collected. One is the legendary Andres Segovia. I went backstage during intermission of a concert he was giving in Cincinnati's venerable Music Hall, shook his hand and got his autograph on the cover of the concert program.

The other two are Christopher Dean and Jane Torvill, the fantastic ice dancing duo from Great Britain. They were covering the World Championships in Cincinnati and I was able to track them down and get their autographs.

Anonymous said...

Hey Rich

the wringer type washer you mentioned brings back memories. My mom had a friend who lost an arm at her elbow after getting it caught in the wringer. I was convinced that Chuck Taylors made you play basketball better.

Anonymous said...

16:55 today (05 Dec 2008)

not struggling at the end of the week for me means that I will on Monday & Tuesday of next week.