Apr 4, 2009

Saturday April 4, 2009 Robert A. Doll

Theme: None

Total blocks: 30

Total words: 72

Still remember Patrick Berry's trick to count total words in a grid? You add the number of upper-left corners (the numbered squares that form the starts of two entries), and then add that to the grid's highest number. In today's grid, the number of those upper-left corners is 6: MARY JANE/MCI, LADY DI/LIMO, BOBS/BAS, RHYMES/RIOS, PLEASURE/PT BOATS, ANTE/ATTYS. And the grid's highest number is 66 (Across). So we have total 72 words, the maximum allowed for a themeless Saturday puzzle (78 for themed one).

A complete disaster for me this morning. Definitely need more time to get used to Rich Norris' multiple words and tricky clues.

I don't know. Last Saturday I was able to fill in lots of blanks. Not much luck today. Rich Norris is starting to show his true color. "Toto, I've a feeling we are not in Kansas any more." The good news is that most of my fills are correct. So I think I am making progress.

I like how EXTREME MEASURES (8D: "Outside the box" solutions) is positioned in the grid. But I don't understand the rationale for the clue. Why? Is "Outside the box" a movie? Why it's in quotation marks?


1A: Spider-Man's girl: MARY JANE. Stumped immediately. Could only think of Kirsten Dunst who played MARY JANE in "Spider-Man". I like her in "Marie Antoinette".

2A: "Candle in the Wind" dedicatee: LADY DI. Another stumper. Wanted DIANA, then thought of the original dedicatee Marilyn Monroe. Neither would fit. More familiar with the title Princess Di than LADY DI.

15A: French town at the foot of Mont Blanc: CHAMONIX. Non. Je n'ai aucune idée. See this map. Wikipedia says the first Winter Olympics was held here in 1924.

16A: "That was exhausting!": I'M BEAT. Yeah, that's how I am feeling now.

17A: Red-handed: IN THE ACT

18A: Ltr. opener: MESSRS. This is the old fashioned way, isn't it? (Note from Kazie: MESSRS is actually French, short for Messieurs, plural of Monsieur, because the possessive (mon/ma/mes) changes to agree with the noun (c.f. Madame/Mademoiselle/Mesdames). English simply borrowed yet another French term instead of creating its own.)

19A: "Flowers for __": Daniel Keyes sci-fi classic: ALGERNON. Nope. I've never heard of the book or the author. Wikipedia says it won the Hugo Award for best Short Story in 1960.

22A: Drifts on waves: BOBS. Does this refer to fisherman's bobbers bobbing?

26A: Extended operatic solo: SCENA. New word to me. Dictionary defines SCENA as "an extended operatic vocal solo, usually including an aria and a recitative."

28A: Like: A LA

29A: Wear and tear, e.g.: RHYMES. V-8 moment for me. Great clue.

32A: Gold medals, in Guadalajara: OROS. Not medallas de ORO?

33A: Spaghetti western director Leone: SERGIO. I've heard of these major movies he made. Did not know his name though. Thought SERGIO is a Spanish name, as in golfer SERGIO Garcia. But SERGIO Leone is an Italian.

35A: Completeness: ENTIRETY

37A: "Hawaii Five-O" order: BOOK 'EM DANNO. Someone mentioned this catchprase on the Comments section a few weeks ago. But I blanked this morning.

39A: Hedonist's pursuit: PLEASURE. What's the difference between Hedonism and Epicureanism again?

41A: Bursts: ERUPTS. Reminds me of the SCORIA clue we had last June: "Volcanic rock ejecta". I think that's how we started this "Holy hotwick lava bomb".

44A: U. of Maryland athlete: TERP

45A: One of numerous childhood spots?: MEASLE. I was picturing my childhood playground, not any MEASLE spot. Clever clue.

47A: Goddess of dawn: EOS. Aurora for the Romans. Just mentioned yesterday that George Sand's original name is Aurore. Dennis quoted her "Try to keep your soul young and quivering right up to old age." last time.

48A: Military operations centers: BASES

50A: CBS forensic drama: CSI

51A: Prelude to a deal: ANTES. Poker. Not the business deal I was thinking.

52A: Not in favor: Abbr. OPP. Opposed.

53A: Peevish: PETULANT

57A: Kind of number of clock: ATOMIC. What is ATOMIC clock again? My memory is so bad now.

59A: Communicate well with: RELATE TO. John Daly's swing & his demeanor are so hard to RELATE TO, yet he has so many followers.

63A: Ability: TALENT. Are they really the same?

64A: Competitor's payment: ENTRY FEE. I always associate "Competitor" with "rival" rather than one who competes.

65A: Music provider: STEREO

66A: Hangs around to see: STAYS FOR


1D: Early 12th century year: MCI. 1101. Easiest fill in the grid.

2D: Philip of "Kung Fu": AHN. I mentioned last time that AHN is Ang in Chinese, as in director Ang Lee. Or simply AN, literally "peace". Korean Hanja uses lots of old Chinese characters.

4D: Jewish Community Center grps: YMHAS (Young Men's Hebrew Associations). New to me.

5D: One of the Coen brothers: JOEL. He is married to Frances McDormand, "Marge" in "Fargo". The Coen brothers were born and grew up here in MN, so our local media follows them very closely.

6D: "I hate to be _ , but ...": complaint opening: A NAG

7D: With grace: NICELY

9D: Prom coach: LIMO. Have never heard of LIMO referred to as a coach.

10D: Words of agreement: AMENS

11D: Sound units, briefly: DBS. Know decibles, not familiar with the abbreviation though.

12D: Post-Katrina retail sign, perhaps: YES WE'RE OPEN. Did not come to me readily.

13D: Are afraid to: DARE NOT

14D: "Piece of cake": IT'S EASY. No sir, this puzzle is hard.

20D: Incessantly: NO END. Like today's multiple words, NO END, so many.

22D: __-relief: BAS. Or low relief. And high relief (alto-relievo) & sunkun relief, the three main types of relief.

24D: Familiar red-white-and-blue symbol: BARBER'S POLE. I was thinking of flag.

27D: Latin horn: CORNU. Oh, is that how we got cornucopia? It's horn-shaped.

29D: Mexico's San Juan and Conchos, e.g.: RIOS. Thought they are just cities. Have never heard of those two Mexican flow-ers.

30D: Nonsense: HOKUM

31D: French-Swiss author Madame de __: STAEL. I tried to connect this lady with Lesley Stahl, as STAEL & Stahl has the same pronunciation. That's a very odd portrait, no earrings, no necklace, no bracelet, not even a flower in her hand.

34D: Lose it: GO APE

36D: Concerning: IN RE. Sometimes the answer is AS TO.

39D: Mosquito Fleet craft: PT BOATS. Knew PT BOATS (Patrol Torpedo Boats) from reading various JFK biographies. Have never heard of the term Mosquito Fleet. See definition #6. Why "Mosquito"?

40D: Was enthusiastic about: LEAPT AT

46D: Like some partners: SILENT. SILENT partner is "One that makes financial investments in a business enterprise but does not participate in its management." It's a new term to me. I was thinking of SAME SEX.

49D: Gumption: SPINE. Thought of SPUNK.

51D: Some partners: Abbr.: ATTYS. Hard one. But I like the clue.

54D: __-1: "Ghostbusters" vehicle: ECTO. No idea. Have never heard of the car ECTO-1 or the movie "Ghostbusters". ECTO is always clued as "Prefix for outside" in our old puzzle.

55D: Resort near Snowbird: ALTA. See this map. I've never heard of the name Snowbird. Is it a city? A county?

56D: Not: NARY. I need " __ a one" for the answer to leap to me immediately.

58D: Debussy subject: MER. Debussy's "La MER".

60D: Reason for a repeat?: EFF. Maybe it's a gimme for all you teachers. But it's a tough clue for me. I was not in the test score direction at all. In China, you pass when your score is 60 (out of 100).

61D: Auto racer Fabi: TEO. Absolutely no idea. Not a racing fan. Know nothing about TEO Fabi or Formula One, except their boss Max Mosley's sensational scandal.

Answer Grid.



Dennis said...

Good morning, C.C. & gang - Wow. What a bear this morning, and I don't mean me. I had all kinds of trouble finishing this one, especially in the south. Most of my stoppages weren't googleable either, so I had to walk away and come back. As was said before, it's amazing what a brief break can do.

I knew Chamonix, as it was where I wanted to stay if I ever could have gotten to ski the Alps. Wouldn't have gotten 'Mary Jane' without it and 'in the act'.

I thought the really clever clues were 'wear and tear', the 'childhood spots' one, and 'reason for a repeat'. Excellent deception.

C.C., I think the Mosquito Fleet got its name from the fact that the little PT boats would swarm around a bigger enemy boat and 'bite' the hell outta it.

Have a great weekend.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Dennis the Bear,
Did you get "Reason for a repeat" immediately? I was thinking of HUH? Your "swarm" and "bite" explanation sounds believable. No words of wisdom today?

Yes, I read Frank "glomed", then I thought the verb is glome. Thank goodness you popped in yesterday.

Now I know why Jimbo calls you his hero. You know so much about Bible.

Jimmy S Carolina,
You should visit here regularly. We need an "Irish" voice.

C.C. Burnikel said...

What? Ancient Hebrew did not have vowels either? I thought only Egyptian glyph did not have vowel symbols. That explains why there are so many variations in Hebrew spelling.

Thanks for STARTLING. Dictionary shows that the emphasis for TORAH falls on the first syllable.

Is letter H a common ending word in Hebrew?

Thanks for the apples.

Are you a fan of Tolkien & his "Lord of The Rings"?

C.C. Burnikel said...

Interesting for me to learn your views on German people. I find it hard to make friends with them.

Thanks again for all the answers. Awesome!

Nice list of drunk phrases. Are you the old Night Owl?

Rev. Wayne,
Thank you for stopping by.

Dennis said...

Did you get "Reason for a repeat" immediately? I was thinking of HUH?

No, and even after I had the answer, I still went HUH? for a minute.

Your "swarm" and "bite" explanation sounds believable.

And why do you think I'm always making stuff up?

No words of wisdom today?

Well, ok......."When in doubt, wipe 'em out". Advice from my grandmother.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Well, the YAK! You made up the YAK story. Have to take everything you say with several pinches of salt.

Why did you post your comment on yesterday's blog when I already published today's?

Clear Ayes,
This time I got your heteronyms printed. Thanks.

I always thought amphetamines is a new drug. Did not know it's already available in Hitler's time.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your blog.

I check it 2-3 times a week and just love it. Keep up the good work!


Andrea said...

My young daughter doesn't know Saturday from a weekday, so I'm up way too early today "enjoying" the puzzle. Argh... Even with CC's answers I had a hard time with this one. With answers in hand, though, I do admit the clues are very clever.

Wolfmom: No, I'm not the chef. We count our blessings that we have found such a talented staff. I do consult on fun things like the wine list and seasonal menu changes. The beer list is my husband's domain. If you're ever in this neck of the woods, we would love to see you!

Mel said...

I for one miss the old puzzles. When one has to google and use other sources other than personal knowledge to get many answers then it no longer becomes a test of ones knowledge rather their ability to look up answers. I get my puzzles from the St. Petersburg Times in Florida. I spoke to the person responsible at that location and she told me she did not have a clue why the puzzle changed but that she was getting some complaints. I enjoy yours and others comments daily.

Fred said...

This was a harder puzzle then last Saturday's puzzle. I had to look up JOEL Coen, CHAMONIX, YMHAS, SCENA, CORNU, ALTA, and TEO. I went through the exact same mental process that you did for "Candle in the Wind". Only got LADYDI thru the perps. Lots of very clever clues involving misdirection.

Dennis said...

Mel - you certainly raise a good point. While I think the old puzzles were in general far too easy, the capability of completing a puzzle shouldn't be based on one's skill at searching out arcane pieces of information.

Having said that, I still enjoy the search; to me, it's like a treasure hunt, and the 'prize' is finding that obscure answer. Won't remember it five minutes later, but I had the fun of the chase.

So I guess I agree with you and don't agree with you. And this made my head hurt.

Mike, thanks for joining us - been solving these things long?

C.C., the 'yak' thing was just an aberration; I would never do something like that again...

Anonymous said...

57A: Kind of number of clock: ATOMIC. What is ATOMIC clock again? My memory is so bad now.

An atomic clock is a type of clock that uses an atomic resonance frequency standard as its timekeeping element. They are the most accurate time and frequency standards known, and are used as primary standards for international time distribution services, and to control the frequency of television broadcasts and GPS satellite signals.

Spiderman's girlfriend Mary Jane.

Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers - Mary Jane's Last Dance

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Just have a minute. Overall, today's puzzle wasn't bad, but the NW corner killed me. I knew who MARY JANE was and was able to get IN THE ACT pretty quickly, but I'd never heard of CHAMONIX or YMHAS and couldn't remember Philip AHN to save my left (ARN? AAN? AIN?). So in the end I was left with a French city called C_A_ONIX and an unpleasant taste in my mouth.

The end.

Linda said...

CC: Since I believe we will be judged by the BOOK...I know I had better know it.

Google was worn out when I finished today! I, too, had dec for 11d but the d allowed me to get "Lady Di".
If I remember correctly "Messrs" should be preceded by "The" (as is "Reverend".) "Gumption": means "innate intelligence" to me. I`ve often thought that this is why Forrest`s last name was "Gump."
Speaking of "bobs"...I fish as often as possible and have a red and white "bobber." I once saw a round, butane tank painted like my "bobber"...Cute. When I G`ed the Ghost Buster`s car...I read where it had been spotted in Durham last month...The puzzle was difficult...but then we all expected that...and Robert is no Doll!

Dick said...

Good morning CC and all,..this was a real b*** buster for me. CC while reading your comments it seemed as if you got into my head and wrote the comments for me. So many of you responses were exactly what I thought and felt.

There were a few gimmes like YMHA as that is where I worked out while I was in college. However, for every gimme there were many unknowns. I did like the cluing and think that over time I will get used to the editing and my solving experience should improve. Hell, I guess anything would be an improvement over today.

Cold and sunny here today and it will be heading to Philly for tomorrow. Dennis plan your day.

Hope you all have a great Saturday.

Terry 313 said...

There was a notice in the Naples Daily News that there was a lot of complaints about the xword from LA Times. They are going to run two puzzles starting monday for two weeks. The other one is from United Media.

C.C., I wonder if Mr. Norris ever updated a xword dictionary like Williams did for Dell?

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, If Rich Norris hasn't yet returned to the standard LAT Saturday difficulty, I may be in big trouble. What fun!

I started out fairly well. I knew MARY JANE, struggled with LADY DI and got CHAMONIX only because I'm a figure skating fan and knew that Sonja Henie competed at the age of 11, at Chamonix in the 1924 Olympics. (I guess remembering obscure stuff like that is squeezing out where I left my car keys last night.)

"Flowers For ALGERNON" was made into a 1968 movie titled "Charly". Cliff Robertson won an Academy Award for his role as the title character.

I am learning to think outside the box in order to understand some of the misleading clever clues. I got MEASLE right away and only needed the R-Y to see the "wear/tear" RHYMES connection.

The rest of the difficult fills like AHN, MESSRS, CORNU and TERP were helped with the perps.

I had to come here to finish up the SE corner. I had difficulty with the phrases RELATE TO and ENTRY FEE. I had STAYS PUT for 66A and just couldn't finish it up, even though I had PETULANT for a perp starter. I'm still a little confused with the multiple word fills. There were a lot of phrases today. I am in the habit of one word answers. I obviously have to get over that.

Terry 313 & Mel, I don't agree with the complaints that people are reporting about the LAT puzzles. Dennis said it very well at 8:34, although I think he is being modest and remembers a lot more than he admits to. For me, the whole idea is to get better at solving. If there is no challenge and I always get all the answers, then what is the point? I enjoy the easier solving experience from Monday to Thursday and then get geared up for the end of the week. I expect to fail at first, but I hope to get a little better with each difficult solving experience. We'll see :o)

Lola said...

c.c. etal I am kind of enjoying the new approach to solving the puzzle. The old puzzle was becoming predictable, especially once you understood the author's cluing.

Dennis, I too enjoy the treasure hunt aspect of these puzzles. I think names are fair game for googling. I used it with clear conscience for Mary Jane, Chamonix, and Stael. The rest eventually came to me after a few false starts. I think we just have to stay loose and allow the subconscious brain time to process the clues.

Que tengan buen fin de semana

Al said...

I hate when I can't get that last letter without resorting to looking it up. French geography crossing Jewish acronym. Sheesh.

Agree outside the box clue didn't require quote marks. I also think the phrase should be stricken from the English language due to too much corporate overuse.

I remember having read Algernon because of the funny title but can't remember what it was about. Sci Fi and Fantasy are my favs, especially Terry Pratchett. Yesterday's faun was a gimmie.

Anything floating on water "bobs" up and down with wave motion. (bad joke) What do you call a man with no arms and no legs out in the ocean?

I've always associated the term epicureanism with eating rather than general selfishness...may not be entirely accurate though.

Agree that talent does not necessarily equate to ability. You can learn, if you try hard enough, to gain the ability to play a musical instrument technically well but not have any musically artistic talent to play it and convey your emotion to others.

Kung Fu was one of my favorite shows as a child (still is), and I have all three seasons on DVD. It emphasized trying to find ways to NOT fight; that was always the last resort. Ahn was a gimmie.

Coach brings to mind Cinderella arriving at the ball, much like a Limo at the prom. Not that I went to any proms...

The "S" in barberpole got me for awhile. I had never heard it used in the possesive form, just as an object that was one compound word.

Liked the rest of the tricky clues, had more than one palmprint on my forehead today. Got all the unknowns, except that damn M, due to across/down fills. Don't appreciate proper names as answers, those don't really fit my inner definition of what a "word" is.

I wonder why we cannot use underline HTML tags in these posts. Not the same emphasis as italics, and titles of movies and books should be underlined, if I remember my rules correctly.

Linda said...

Al: "Bob"

Linda said...

CC:,,,and while I`m "at it"..."old fashioned" doesn`t always equate with proper usage. Another of my pet peeves is to get mail addressed to "Mrs. Linda _______". I`m not married to ME! I`m "Mrs. Raymond _______!"

Anonymous said...

This puzzle is no fun anymore. I want a little something to wake up my brain in the morning and then be on my way. This involves way too much time and does not entertain me. I do have other things to do and cannot spend the whole day on this.

Thanks for letting me vent. I do enjoy your comments on your website.


Lemonade714 said...

Good morning:

Still out of town, but I did the puzzle online and thought it was really hard, but managed to finish, after a few quick breaks. There were many nice mis-directions, like wear and tear. Also, I thought the Katrina reference was well done. Like many, I am bored with "outside the box" and "at the end of the day" the cliches du jour.

"Flowers for Algernon" and the movie "CHARLY" are the story of a retarded man, who is recruited to try an experimental drug that will make his intelligence level normal, It works wonderfully, he is smart, and falls in love. I think it was Claire Bloom in the movie, opposite Cliff Robertson. It is very enjoyable, and I will not spoil the ending.

C.C., I can't believe you have not run into "Ghostbusters" a very funny movie, another strong recommendation.

I thought MESSRS was a bit unfair, unless you happen to correspond in French.

And, yes, there are many Hebrew words ending in "H."

I think it is easy to get too dependent on Google, and it is sometimes more fun to let answers role around in your brain; sometimes they do pop in, like TEO did for me today, which I do not know where I learned the name, but it was there in the old files of my brain.

Off to play in the Orlando sun, enjoy everyone....

Clear Ayes said...

Thanks to Windhover, I've been introduced to writer and poet Wendell Berry. The following poem has much greater implications, but it can also be applied in a minor way to the smaller things like our crossword hobby.

The Real Work

It may be that when we no longer know what to do
we have come our real work,

and that when we no longer know which way to go
we have come to our real journey.

The mind that is not baffled is not employed.

The impeded stream is the one that sings.

- Wendell Berry

nana said...

Hi, I had to resign in? Took me a while.I am so glad I have this site. My gene comes to me as this puzzel is confusing . I copied C.C. COMMENT AND GAVE HIM IT! Our paper has letters to the editor in everyday,people are not happy with the change.Me? I think it is challenging if it is difficult to figure out anothers view ,of even crossword puzzel.And of course I go to C.C. AND ALL OF YOU! :) I have no problem at all.:)I learned to copy an article and would love to send C.C.'s TO OUR PAPER, as it made my Gene laugh. I thank you for that. love you all,nana

Dennis said...

ClearAyes, that's great, because I'm certainly extremely impeded.

LG, why not just do the more enjoyable ones at the beginning of the week, and avoid the aggravation of the later ones? That way you can still get your xword 'fix' without ruining your day.

Linda, a great pet peeve.

Lola, I said it before: I'm constantly amazed at what the suconscious brain will pop up.

SaminMiam said...

Hi guys,

I have a secret way of overcoming Google's shortcomings, maybe you know this site and maybe not. Anyway, it's
It will fill in the blanks for you when you have only a few letters of a word... you'll see!
Messrs. is the old salutation in a letter when you're addressing more than one male. It's just the plural of "Mr."
CC, no reason to think that "Outside the box" was a movie title. If it were a title the 'b' of box would be capitalized.
Speaking of which, I really like this changeover. Though it's hard to train myself not to look for old familiar clues, I feel so good when I catch on to a new one. I almost feel my brain swelling, LOL!

Crockett1947 said...

Good morning, everyone. Wow! I started very slowly, but was able to do the south, up to central, then to the NE and finally the NW. I figured out CHAMONIX, but had to correct the spelling. SCENA/CORNU was the last to fall, and I had to really think about ANTE to make it work. I was thinking "prefix." Had to G spot MARY JANE, but everything else fell into place. I knew the book "Flowers for ALGERNON," but didn't think of it as a sci-fi classic. I tried to put in DIANNA where LADYDI went. and originally had BREAKS for ERUPTS.

Welcome to all the new posters! Mel, the editor of the TMS puzzle "retired," and, in these tough economic times, the puzzle was discontinued. Can't get it back -- it no longer exists. Surprised your paper doesn't know that.

Have a great Saturday!

bobsafe said...

I think it will take me awhile to get used to this guy

Barry G. said...

I wonder why we cannot use underline HTML tags in these posts. Not the same emphasis as italics, and titles of movies and books should be underlined, if I remember my rules correctly.

Actually, my work as a technical writer lets me provide the answer to this one. Believe it or not, underlining words and Italicizing words in standard written English mean the same thing! It's just that it's very hard to italicize when writing out a title long-hand or using an (old-fashioned) typewriter, and thus underlining is typically used, whereas italicizing it's the standard way when using typesetting.

A computer can, of course, go either way, and I generally italicize titles in my professional writing, although it would not be incorrect to underline instead. But, since underlining is basically a substitute for italicizing in the first place, there's really no need to have it available if italicizing is available.

cabrini said...

Found this puzzle easier than yesterdays. It had a different feeling. Not to bad, finished in about 15 minutes.
I also prefer a puzzle that can't be helped to much by Goggle. I seem to get lazy knowing that help is near.
Linda - Loved Forest Gump/Gumption comment.
Clear Ayes - I agree that the fun is in the "AHA" moment and an easier puzzle is not as enjoyable. I like to come away with learning something new or different. The fun is in the challenge.
Trying to get warm! I think the weather gods are messing with us in Northeast PA. It's really cold.
Hope everyone enjoys their day.

WM said...

Lots of struggle with this one and then, I finally decided to treat it as learning experience. I came here, picked up an answer and then tried to see how many more things I could fill in...kept that up until I finally had all those little squares filled with letters.

The one thing that has to be said about these puzzles is that the cluing is dastardly but generally quite accurate and produce a lot of DUH and forehead slapping moments when you finally get them.

I refuse to Google and want to see how much I can fill on my own, then I come here...Like CA, if this is the easier version...well, then...I may be trouble at the end of the week. My NYTimes solving IS getting better, but on the end of the week puzzles I'm in the weeds, like here.

I do also like that most of time the crosses, one way or the other, allows some wiggle room for educated guesses...

Oh to spend some quality time with our youngest whom I rarely get to see. Great day to you all.

C.C....your awesomeness continues...My hat is off and for today I would definitely vodka AND caviar you! :o)

Anonymous said...

Hi C.C.

Yes I've read all of the Lord of the Rings books and seen all of the movies. I've also read all of the Harry Potter book series and we're still waiting for the final movie to come out.

Today's puzzle had both of us stumped for the top right corner. We knew that 9D: had to be "LIMO" but couldn't remember LADYDI and kept trying to fit Dianna or Monroe there...

My wife remembered the Ghostbusters car Ecto it was called a Ectomobile, or Ecto–1 is a 1959 Cadillac Miller-Meteor
Described here at wikipedia



Anonymous said...

I stumbled across your blog today when I was looking for help on Saturday's crossword. I usually can not work a Saturday one without computer help. Do you help with answers daily or just here and there? I think it is a really neat resource because as the week goes on, they get much harder for me to complete.
Thanks for the help today!!


jim said...


Linda said...

Been "antique-ing" again. Found a piece about which I can find no information. It is a cast iron, flat iron...but has a 4"-high compartment that probably held hot coals. We wondered if it was, perhaps, a "commercial" iron. Anyone have info?

For Bob: What do you call a dog with no legs?

Kazie: I still have the letter/number info for diacritical marks but they aren`t working...I "locked the number lock...held `alt' down, typed the letter then the number, then released `alt.`"
Nothing happened..."whadimiss?"

Barb B said...

The toughest spot for me was the crossing of SCENE and CORNU, and that is an example of why I’m liking the new puzzles. I learned two new words for future reference. In the past, With the old puzzles, I was often stumped by the crossing of two proper names that meant little or nothing to me, and the next puzzle would have different names, still useless for future puzzles. Of course, today’s crossing of YMHAS and CHAMONIX seems a little unfair. Totally un-guessable.

I love the cleverness too, as in measle and eff. I smile more with these puzzles, and google less. If I keep circling, I can eventually guess a longer word; for instance, LADY DI instead of Princess or Dianna..

Were the quotes for OUTSIDE THE BOX there because the ANSWER was a movie?

Buckeye said...

Guday, all. I will not spend too much time on details, but I still don't like Proper Names in puzzles because there is no way, without perps, to EVER get them. I could have thought about Ghostbuster's vehicle until my eyes bled, and never have gotten it. I'm not trying to be "petulant" but, in the future, I will glance at Sat's x/w and if I see what I saw today, I'll move on.

""Candle In The Wind" dedicatee" is a rotten clue for Lady Di. Elton John revised the song after Di died. (Di died? Isn't that a type of "hippy" t-shirt?) The song was written for Marlyn Monroe. The first three words in the song are, "Good-bye Norma Jean...."

c.c., I expected a comment about 46d and 51d; "Like some partners" and "Some partners; Abbr". You USED to call that laze editing. I still think it is.

I ain't bright enuff for thesehere bodacious pizzles. I ain't a member of thatthere "mensus" club, yit, like Dennis are.

Nurse Ratchet asked me if I'd ever seen a psychiatrist. I told her, "I'm not sure! It's not like they walk around holding a sign above their heads".

I must be off

Buckeye said...

BTW Picabo Street was in the puzzle the other day. As y'all may remember, I told you a while back that she made a large contribution to a Denver hospital. They named a wing after her. "Picabo, ICU".


Buckeye said...

Jessica; Keep coming back. c.c. is here 24/7 - 365 (366 on leap years). The woman never rests.

Linda, You don't call a dog with no legs 'cause he won't come, anyway. However, he will "stay". Be careful of that book you're reading. I would like your comments on 1 Corinthians 14: 34,35.


Anonymous said...

I really miss the ol’ TMS Daily puzzles.


Dennis said...

Buckeye, your posts are without peer.

Barb B, always great seeing you - are you gonna be a regular again?

Jessica, our leader, C.C., does this blog every single day. Good of you to join us - it's a great group and a great way to learn and exchange information.

Cabrini, we're right across the Delaware River from Philly, and we're having 50mph winds today, 63 and sunny tomorrow, and 40s with snow by Tuesday. Just weird.

T. Frank said...

Hi, Folks,

Good, hard puzzle today. Managed to get most of the answers, but had to G. ladydi and alta which my brain seems unable to remember. It helped a lot to work it online; the red letters save time and enable guessing.


Why am I having to sign in to post a comment? I did not for a while, but have been required to since a couple of days ago.

Anonymous said...

I am having a really hard time getting into these new puzzles. I used to enjoy doing the puzzle, now I almost dread it.

I miss the old ones.:-(


Barb B said...


Thanks. I never stopped solving and reading; I love you guys. Sometimes I just feel a little shy.

Good to see you again. Are you trying to get the women to riot? It might not be a pretty sight. :-)

Auntie Naomi said...

Good Afternoon C.C. and Co.,

Thanks for the reminder about Patrick Berry's li'l trick. As for the "Outside the box", it is in quotations because it is an idiomatic phrase. It means that when doing things in the usual manner is not getting the desired results, one should then consider doing things in an unusual manner. I am not sure it is really synonymous with 'extreme measures' but it's close enough.

"Not medallas de ORO?"
That was a very iffy clue in my mind. While one might say "Michael Phelps won eight golds in Beijing", I do not recall hearing anyone do so.

"What's the difference between Hedonism and Epicureanism again?"
It seems to me that the obvious difference would be that 'Epicureanism' would be characterized by good taste, whereas one can be a Hedonist and have terribly bad taste.

"What is ATOMIC clock again?"
This video might help explain. We have one of these in our living room. We have the one on the right, not the wall clock.

Ability: TALENT. "Are they really the same?"
Good question. No, not necessarily. Sometimes ability can be the result of sheer TALENT, while other times it is the result of a lot of hard work. Typically, ability is the result of a combination of both talent and hard work. This subject was one of those discussed with Cleveland Orchestra Music Director Franz Welser-Möst and Dr. Ali R. Rezai at the Music and the Brain lecture that I attended back in January. This evening we are going down to Miami to, yet again, see the Cleveland Orchestra.

"I mentioned last time that AHN is Ang in Chinese, as in director Ang Lee."
Yes, you did ... and I promptly forgot it. BTW, your memory is anything but bad, it is quite excellent.

BARBER'S POLE is an odd answer. It is usually simply called a 'Barber Pole'. It is not a compound word. The Barber Pole has a very grisly history.

"I was thinking of SAME SEX."
I do that often.

This puzzle was a toughie. It took me 43:39 today. As always, I did it unassisted, but I did have one mistake. Unlike Dennis, I did not know CHAMONIX. I had CHASONIX which did not look right and had I looked at it a bit longer I would likely have realized the correct answer. I had YSHAS instead of YMHAS. I was trying to think of an abbreviation for 'yeshiva'. Perhaps I should have asked the Dean of the Rabbinical School of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America to whom I am quasi-related.
I enjoy the difficulty of the LAT puzzles.

That was the perfect poem choice, ClearAyes. Thanks.

Welcome Jessica :)

C.C. Burnikel said...

Re: "Picabo, ICU". Now I remember. See, my memory is just getting so bad now. As for my objection to clue repetitions, see these theme answers, all "Bars", very repetitive. John Underwood's originals are very colorful and creative. The word BAR is gridded at the very end of the puzzle as a tie-in. I rather like today's paired-up "Like some partners" & "Some partners: Abbr." Both are great clues.

Barb B,
I don't know. I guess I don't understand what's the meaning of EXTREME MEASURES.

Blogger software works oddly. Sometimes you are required to sign-in again.

Are you married? If not, do you plan to?

Linda said...

Buckeye: From the research I`ve done on the matter, women and men of that day were segregated in the temple. Women would call out to their husbands with questions or comments during the service. Hence, a little "temple etiquette" teaching was in order.
And you must remember that Paul was almost as opinionated as I...he said women shouldn`t cut their hair and that men would be better off not to marry but that "if he can`t contain himself...he should marry."
As to the real question, with my was/is hard to teach gender-mixed classes...but I have done it. If ever I found out that it offended someone in the class, I`d poll them and if the majority were not offended...I`d council those who were to visit another class.
BTW, this forum is not a "church" even though it does sound like it at times...therefor, I need not be quiet unless CC bids me to.
Now...what are your thoughts on that passage.

I do feel like Divine order is God-Man-Woman...any entity must have a "head"...but when Man loves Woman as God loves His Church, no Woman would have trouble with that.
Worship of Jehovah God is the most freeing and equalizing for the whole world.

C.C. Burnikel said...

"I would never do something like that again...". Don't promise me this! You are an impeded stream? Holy hot wick lava bomb!

It comforts me to read that you had to google also.

Your song MARY JANE is just a song title. It has nothing to do with "Spider-Man's girl", correct?

Absolutely, this Robert is definitely no Doll. But I've grown to like his puzzles. How do you prepare your fish? Do you attend church every Sunday? Why the answer is Bob? Where did you antique? Garage sales/Flea market/Antique shops? A dog with no legs is a hot dog, correct?

IRISH JIM said...

C C Thank you.

Definitely the toughest xword we have seen yet IMHO. If Mr Norris is going easy on us we are in for some heavy hammers.
Had to cheat and look up Chamonix and Mary jane. Got The bottom half ok but top and N E corner could not figure until I entered Messrs which I remember from many years ago in letters. Saw Lady Di in person once in Lon and she is without a doubt the most stunning looking woman I have ever seen.
Its a shame the early part of the week are too easy and the end so difficult. No happy medium.
Doing in pen is over, now using pencil only. Also much walking away and returning which does help .
Jimmy , S Carolina

C.C. Burnikel said...

Clear Ayes,
Great poem. Very inspiring.

What a nice surprise to hear from you again.

Sam in Miami,
Oh, you are right, box would have been capitalized if it were a movie. I thought Messrs is the plural of Mr too. I use OneAcross to cheat.

No, I don't think Rich Norris has compiled a Xword dictionary. But he is a highly respected & experienced Xword constructor/editor. And his puzzles are of much superior quality than Wayne R. Williams' TMS Daily or United Media. We just need more time to get used to his style.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Great post @10:15am. Your TALENT & "Ability" comment described exactly what I was thinking this morning. Why didn't you go to any prom?

Bobsafe @ 11:10am,
How long? Three months?

Now you've mastered the link, maybe you can create a profile and get your name in blue?

Holy moley! Even the modern Hebrew reads from right to left? Kind of like ancient Chinese. We write from left to write in mainland China. But the newspapers in Taiwan, Hongkong and Macau still print from right to left.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Jim@ 1:11pm,
It's the misguiding vagueness in clues that makes Rich Norris' puzzle appealing to me. Don't give up. We need to be challenged. You just need more time to get into his wavelength. Also, don't capitalize all your words. I can't stand it.

Now, your short solving experience gives you the advantage in adjusting to the new puzzles. For those who have been solving Wayne Williams puzzles for 10, 20 or more years, it's a hard struggle.

Jimmy in S Carolina,
I often wonder why Monday is the easiest in both NY Times and LA Times. Why not start with the hardest and make Saturday the easiest?

Barb B said...

In the 1996 movie starring Hugh Grant, Gene Hackman, and Sara Jessica Parker, Doctors took ‘extreme measures’ to cover up illegal medical experiments on people without consent. You could say that Gene Hackman’s character was totally thinking ‘outside the box ’ and using extreme measures. He used homeless people (a problem for society) to find a cure for people he found to be more valuable. Eliminate one problem to solve another. Twisted.

I respect our opinion, but don’t agree that there is a hierarchy. I prefer another of Paul’s instructions; Gal 3:28 - There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

However, I will bow to Paul’s wisdom in his advice to Timothy – 2 Tim 23 -- Don't have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels.

It’s all good.

Anonymous said...

OK, I'm gone. This guy's clues/answers are too obscure, and frankly inaccurate. I do crosswords for pleasure and relaxation, not to exercise my ESP into some sob's brain!

Anonymous said...


I agree with you. I wish the SPTimes did not change the c/w puzzle - I was just beginning to get the knack of it all - I had to google so many answers today, that it really took the fun out of it.

CC - good for your stick-to-it- toughness! I swear I may give up on these new c/ws....ugh!
Thanks for your posts or I would never, never finish these new puzzles....

Realtor from Pinellas

Crockett1947 said...

@barryg Thanks for the underlining/italicizing education. I know I was blown away when I first started word processing and found that only one space is required after a period. I was so used to the double space after a period rule for using a typewriter.

@cabrini Freezing in Portland this morning, but we're forecast for 60 today, 70 tomorrow and 74 on Monday. Oh, how I hope that is true!!

@jessica C.C. is here EVERY day, and she does a FANTASTIC job! Welcome.

@jim Caps Lock On?

@barbb I figured if there was a YMCA and a YWCA, why not a YMHA?

@t.frank That's probably a Blogger question that C.C. can't answer.

@c.c. I think Snowbird is just s resort, like Alta. Yes, Hebrew is still read from right to left. And a Hebrew text starts on the "last" page and continues to the "first (front)" page. Why is there a link to "Really now..." showing at the bottom of the comments on occasion? This is the third time I've seen it this past week.

Clear Ayes said...

Andrea1263, Your menus look delicious. If G.A.H. are ever in the neighborhood we will be sure to drop in.

Barb B, Nice to see you again. Thanks for weighing in on the hierarchy thing. My husband would be quite surprised if I were to start to defer to him as "the boss". ;o)

Sorry to see people getting discouraged with the LAT puzzles. Maybe I just like an excuse for my mind to be in a state of bafflement.

PMT, I thought the poem might be a little "high falutin'", but I guess not. You and others seemed to enjoy it. Windhover has really caught my interest. BTW, speaking of catching interest, I ordered Skeletons At The Feast from Amazon. Oh yes...Hurray for Iowa!

Fred said...

I will tell you something interesting. If I sell a hard crossword puzzle to a syndicate, and it isn't published for six months or so, I will have totally forgotten the answers by publication date. And I will get stuck in the same places everyone else does while solving the puzzle!!!

SandbridgeKaren said...

My hats off to anyone who got all, most or at least more than half of this puzzle. I wound up with an answer here and there but never got enough traction to make a difference. Simply gave up and logged on to get the answers from cc - for some reason Doll's puzzles just frustrate me - I'm not a big fan of the double words (relate to, stay for, leapt at). Didn't like nicely for with grace - lots of people do things nicely but not gracefully. Really disliked the Lady Di clue. Guess I'm just a wee bit petulant about his puzzle - certainly didn't erupt with pleasure - the next Saturday I see a Robert Doll puzzle I may think outside of the box and take extreme measures.
At least it's sunny here at the beach and I have a whole week to work up to next Saturday's challenge. Happy rest of the weekend to all - hope you get to do something fun before the work week starts.

Al said...

CC: No proms because I was book-smart, but not people-smart, i.e. a geek/nerd, not very popular.

The man's name was Bob (nickname for Robert) because with no arms or legs, all he would be able to do in the water is bob up and down along with the wave motion (people float). As I said, a bad joke, more of a pun, really. Along those same lines, these are also name puns...

What do you call a man with no arms or legs:

At the bottom of a hole?
Hanging on your Wall?
Laying on your doorstep?

Just having a childhood flashback, sorry.

KQ said...

Wow, really interesting reading all the comments today.

CC - I felt like we did much of the puzzle the same way. I started with spunk instead of spine, was looking for something other than Lady Di, etc. However, I got Mary Jane right off (my son is a huge Spiderman fan) and Chamonix is a town we visited as a family and had it as a backdrop for our 2002 Christmas family photo. Our friends were living in Switzerland and we spent some time in the area. She grabbed our camera and said "Stand here - this is the most awesome place for a photo". She was right. It is a wonderful place to visit and I would highly recommend it.

I had trouble throughout much of the puzzle, but I would google a word or two and then could fill in much of the rest.

I like these puzzles. They make you think. I have always thought it nice that we get a few days of easier ones, and then harder puzzles. Sometimes it is fun to just fill in quickly, and other times the challenge is good. It encourages you to work your brain and get better. I firmly believe that if you don't use your brain, you lose it. As my father died of dementia, I try to use it as much as possible. I don't work outside the home, so this is a good way.

Buckeye your posts totally crack me up. Picabo ICU? Is that for real? What a hoot. While I agree that the song wasn't originally written for Lady Di, he did dedicate a version to her. I think it is a fair clue.

I had trouble not knowing Teo, and wanting EFF to be AN F instead, which didn't make sense. But I eventually got that one. I was totally stumped by SCENA and CORNU. Your reference to cornucopia was very insightful CC. FYI - both ALTA and Snowbird are ski resorts in Utah. Very nice and lots of good snow.

I was curious as to what a TERP was - Maryland's mascot. It is a Terrapin - or a reptile. A turtle really. I think that is an interesting mascot, as turtles do not seem very competitive to me.

Off to do something more productive now, but enjoyed reading all the posts.

Dennis said...

Fred, whether intentional or not, I think you've made us all feel better. Thanks.

Barb B, how can you be shy around this group? Besides, you've been with us way too long to have any shyness here.

C.C., take it easy with the 'impeded stream' stuff; not something any guy wants to hear.

nana, just great seeing you again; post more often.

Buckeye said...

T. Frank 1:52 I, too, have to sign on each time I come to this blog when using Internet Express. If I come here thru Firefox I don't have to sign in. Help-anybody?

Linda, I meant no disrespect nor am I trying to silence anyone. It's just an innocent question, of which I have many, about the contradictions in the Bible. Being a Unitarian/Universalist, Buddahist, Pagan, Druid, freethinking/nonthinking whore monger, I'm usually very confused.
I wonder what Gandhi meant when he said, "Christianity is a beautiful religion. It is a shame nobody practices it".

Whew!! It's getting hot in here. Anyone for a cold shower?


Warren said...

Hi C.C.

I guess I do have a Google account...

At least my name is in blue this way?

Jeannie said...

Didn't have a chance to do the puzzle today. I was busy working on the sailboat. Good to see you Buckeye ;). I'll try to post later. I keep forgetting the puzzle is now online.

Jeannie said...

On this day April 4th:

1841 Henry Harrison died of pneumonia one month after his inauguration.
He was the 1st president to die in office.

1887 Susanna Sater was the first ever woman elected to mayor in Argonia, KS
Yeah, Susanna for paving the way for us!

1915 Muddy Waters blues muscian was born....
(feel free to link something as I can't retain the knowledge)

1945 US Forces liberated Nazi death camp Ohrdruf in Germany.
(Thank God)

1968 Martin Luther King was shot in Memphis, TN. (Thank God for that dream)

1974 "Hammering Hank" Hank Aaron tied Babe Ruth's record career home runs
with 714 in Cincinnati, OH. (Anyone own one of his rookie cards?)

2007 Don Imus made an offensive remark on-air about the Rutgers University
Women's basketball team and was fired by CBS radio and MSNBC.

This is your number "69" gal Jeannie signing off.....

Buckeye said...

Dad-gum-it! Here I go getting "petulant" again. Karen Q, I love you like the daughter I never had, (I actually have two daughters, but I love you like the one I DIDN'T have), and the reason I said it was a "lousy" clue is because it shows no indication of an abbreviation. "Di" is short for "DIANA". "Monroe" fits the clue. "Lady Diana" does not; maybe a (fam) for "familiar" or something to give us a hint it was not the full name. IMHO

Since this is my final allowable post, I shall request that all of you ignore my bumper sticker.
"My Kar-ma just ran over your Dog-ma". (A REAL U/U bumper sticker said, "Honk if you're not sure".)


WM said...

Jeannie...this so great! Really interesting information! Keep up the good work and I like this idea.

carol said...

Hi C.C.and all - Hard, hard puzzle! I did what Dennis suggested and left it alone several times...that helped some. I did have to G-spot MARY JANE and CHAMONIX but then more words fell into place. Thought 60D (EFF) was clever even though I didn't get it at first. 24D BARBER POLE really had me confused as I could not think of anything that was red, white and blue except our flag.

Karen mentioned TERP (44A). It reminded me of my husband's surgery - a TERP stands for trans-urethral resection of the prostate, the nice little 'roto-rooter' job they do to men.
Dennis mentioned 'impeded stream' as something most men do not want to think about. I say better pay attention to that symptom or a TERP is likely in your future.
All you males can exhale now!

Hope you all have (or are having) a great weekend.

carol said...

whooops - I miss-spoke on that last is TURP... so "never mind" :)

Elissa said...

I think I might be getting used to this puzzle, because I got MEASLES and RHYMES, without problem. Can't say that was so for most of this puzzle. Unknowns included CORNU, SCENA, STAEL, TEO, ALTA, CHAMONIX and AHN. Had totality for ENTIRETY and analog for ATOMIC. Couldn't figure LADY DI on the first round but got it immediately with LIMO. I had help from some 13 year-olds who were sitting by me with the first answer - MARY JANE. They were surprised that Spiderman had been around for more than 5 years, but wanted to know if I thought her name had anything to do with marijuana.

I didn't like "military operations centers" clue for BASES, although it is correct. Same for EFF - but think KarenQ's AN F makes perfect sense. I agree with PMT that thinking outside the box isn't only for EXTREME MEASURES, it could be for anything that is outside the norm.

Crockett: I'm with you - didn't think of "Flowers for Algernon" as scifi and I think a SciFi fan like Al would be disappointed.

C.C. Don't know about the dictionary. I only know what my rabbi taught me and how I hear it pronounced in synagogue. Crockett is right. Hebrew reads from right to left and from "back to front" but English reckoning. While there are symbols for vowels in modern hebrew, cursive hebrew is written without vowels. As there are lots of variations on roots whose meanings change with different vowels, it is beyond my ken to read without the vowels.

Barb B said...

Dennis, I am often irrationally shy. Thank you for always being cordial. You make me feel safe.

I do know what you mean, trying to harmonize that many authors can be confusing. Apparently Gandhi reacted positively to the Bible and to Jesus, but wasn’t allowed to attend a Christian worship service because he was ‘kaffir.’

Christian missionaries supported British rule, opposing Gandhi as an anarchist. I suppose that would make the church seem un-appealing to him.

I love your bumper stickers.

Elissa said...

Linda: Back before they invented the term 'MS.', I learned that Mrs. John Doe was married to John and Mrs. Jane Doe had divorced the SOB but was still using his last name (probably to avoid confusion over the legitimacy of the children).

All: Sorry for typos in my last post. My computer suddenly decided to randomly highlight blocks of text and I couldn't make any corrections. Also sometimes when I'm working the puzzle on-line the computer randomly and suddenly decides to shink the puzzle or increase it in size. Anyone have any idea why this happens? When asked my husband, he said "Yeah, computer's do that kind of stuff." I HATE YOU, BILL GATES!!!!!!

WM said...

Elissa...don't feel too badly...My computer has suddenly decided that I can't copy and paste anything from the address also decided that I can no longer make attachments(and I don't think that I was abusing the priviledge at all)'s an Activex control issue. When I downloaded the Internet 8 it battled with Norton anti-virus and apparently won because now I no longer get those annoying little windows that tell me the application something or other has expired and I probably don't don't want to go there...but the really great new trick it does is to randomly throw me over to another "page" or who knew that Google apparently has its own webstore with "green" stuff...I surely didn't...until 2 days ago...Absolutely amazing the things you can learn.

embien said...

16:32 today. A tough, but fair and fun puzzle. What a delightful change from the old TMS puzzles (though I see a lot of folks disagree).

ECTO was my last fill as I don't know anything about Ghostbusters and their vehicles.

I do find it hard to come here late in the day as there are so many posts to read before I can post (I think there were 75 today when I finished solving the puzzle and reading c.c.'s comments).

@linda: I still have the letter/number info for diacritical marks but they aren`t working...I "locked the number lock...held `alt' down, typed the letter then the number, then released `alt.`"
Nothing happened..."whadimiss?"

Don't type the letter and then the number. Just type in the number--it's a code, actually. You also have to use the numeric keypad for it to work, not the numbers in the top key row.

DoesItinInk said...

I worked on this puzzle throughout the day when not busy running errands, doing laundry (my daughter is home from college…don’t they every do laundry at school?) and unloading the compost pile. I finally completed it, though with two errors and a few guesses…but no help.

My two errors: for 11D I had “dbl” instead of DBS, and for 37A I had “book ‘em dAnno” instead of DENNO. Amazingly, I knew 54D ECTO, probably more from the animated tv series than the movies! I truly enjoyed the misdirection of some of the clues. 45A “one of numerous childhood spots?” and 29A “wear and tear” were wonderful.

Clear Ayes: I loved the poem you included today.

Buckeye: Great Picabo ICU joke! You are quite a tease!

embien said...

Ha ha. I just went to the "other" LA Times Crossword blog (not sure if it's kosher to plug it here, but I'll put in a link anyway). L.A. Crossword Confidential.

Not only does Orange call this puzzle "easy" (took her 3:16 to solve, but then Orange is in a different universe from most of us), she posted a link to the same Tom Petty song (but a different version), "Last Dance for Mary Jane" as Red state Democrat did!

Anonymous said...


Right MARY JANE has nothing to do with Spiderman gf I just used it since the girl in the song was named MARY JANE.

Anonymous said...


hit Bill Gates where it hurts! A few years ago I bought Macs and donated our PCs to charity. I promptly fired the IT dept.

I work for a law firm in Cincinnati.


Argyle said...

for jeannie...Muddy Waters: a song about what we were talking about the other day. Champagne & Reefer

Some days going away and coming back to the puzzle doesn't work. Maybe tomorrow, Mary Jane and Lady Di would have pop into my brain, I certainly knew both, but they would not come to me today.

ECTOplasm is stuff that allegedly oozes from ghosts or spirits and makes it possible for them to materialize. That was what the Ghostbusters used the ECTO-1 for; to suck up ghosts after they got them to "show" themselves.

“book ‘em dAnno” is correct.

Lemonade714 said...

I read the LA Confidential, and she could not possibly have done the puzzle in 3:16 based on the inaccuracies of her comments, the most grievous of which is suggesting that MESSRS is the abbreviation of MONSIEUR, when it is in fact the abbreviation of MESSIEURS the plural of Monsieur. Her tone is also pedantic, which is the last thing I want from a blog. Okay, maybe she and Rex Psrker can write really fast, but who cares, I am here to have fun, not to be lectured.

Anonymous said...

Linda's explanation of that scripture is what I've always been taught. However, when studying the Bible you should never take just one scripture without comparing it with all others on the related subject. The New Testament does not put women in a subservient position. Christianity lifted women to a much higher standard of life than any of the religions that existed at the time. It gave her love, honor and respect.
If the wife were not supposed to have any opinions or contribute to decisions made in a household she would be unnecessary. But when God formed her, He took a rib from Adam. Not a headbone so she would rule over him nor a foot bone so Adam would push her down. He took the side bone so they would work side-by-side with her as a helpmate. Everything God did has been done in an orderly fashion and every organization needs an order so it can function well. Even so, there has to be an order of authority in the family & in relation to God. When I was working in a large corporation, the president of the company said, "In the end, someone has to make a final decision, and so the buck stops here - at my desk" That's why I think the CEO's of these banks and businesses should be held responsible for what has been going on in our business world - but that's another subject!

Crockett1947 said...

@buckeye Just junk the old IE and stay on Firefox.

@embien Good to see you. Thanks for chiming in on Linda's problem. I didn't read it close enough to see it was a problem between the keyboard and the operator. It's tough to remember some of those things you don't use very often. I do good remembering what I had for lunch some days!

@doesitinink It is DANNO.

@dot Nice post!!

OnlyNightOwl said...

Greetings C.C. and all

C.C. –
I thought I might have given myself away. Yes, I am the old Night Owl. The drunk phrases are kinda old – some of the younger posters may never have heard of them.

Clear Eyes –
Thanks for the heteronyms – love the wordplay.

Today’s puzzle was a real bear. I had to research a lot – I just hope some of it sticks in my brain for later use. I have always liked puzzles – most any kind. I like the challenge. I think with these new constructors that they just have different ways of expressing themselves AND are a little devious too. This is not what we are accustomed to and it will take time to adjust our thinking.

There is a second xword puzzle in The Ledger; however, there is no constructor name or anything to tell where the puzzle comes from. I think I will call the paper to see if they can enlighten me. The only reason I mention this is because in the clues if there is more than one word in the answer they so indicate. Example: They give the clue and then (2 wds.), (3 wds.), etc. I don’t believe I have ever seen this in a xword puzzle before.

C.C. –
From your lips to constructors/editors ears. Besides xword I also enjoy Sudoku and their puzzles start out Very Easy (in my newspaper) on Saturday and Sunday and become more difficult as the week progresses with Friday being a Hard puzzle.

Difficult puzzle. But the comments were tremendous!

C.C. –
Thanks for the blog. You are doing a wonderful job as has been mentioned in many of the comments. I think many people would give up xwording without you.



OnlyNightOwl said...

Greetings C.C. and all

Embien -
Thanks for the look at L.A. Crossword Confidential.

C.C. -
After taking a peek at L.A. Crossword Confidential I am in awe of your blog - yours is far superior IMHO.

Have a great "rest of the weekend."



kazie said...

Sorry for my tardy arrival today. I started the XW over breakfast as usual, but only had a few answers when we had to leave, including among others, CHAMONIX, IM BEAT, BOBS, BOOK EM DANNO and MEASLE.

I didn't get back to it until about half an hour ago, but gave up again and came here. I saw the Mary Jane and Lady Di answers and then decided to google a bit and see where it would lead. Ended up with all but the SW corner done, mostly by guessing.

I agree that too much g'spotting steals the fun, especially when it's to get sports figures, or sports team abbreviations that don't even appear on the school's official athletic website!

Anyway, I had EAU for Debussy's subject, thinking of the "Water Music" and I had SPUNK for SPINE too.

MESSRS is actually French, short for Messieurs, plural of Monsieur, because the possessive (mon/ma/mes) changes to agree with the noun (c.f. Madame/Mademoiselle/Mesdames). English simply borrowed yet another French term instead of creating its own.

Maybe you have yet to meet the right Germans--there are as many assholes there as anywhere else.

Don't ever forget that the Bible was written by men, with every reason to keep women and others right where they wanted them! The Dead Sea Scrolls might have put an entirely different slant on religions if they had not been censored out. Dot makes a good point, namely that a lot of the old testament subjects are handled very differently in the NT.
I don't have an answer to your diacritical question. I just tried it here and mine work, so it's not the site. Some of them don't work in all fonts, but the font isn't relevant on this site. If your numeral lock is on, and you use the number keypad on the right, there shouldn't be a problem. The only otheer possibility is that something else is turned on or off that affects it. I even checked the caps lock, and with that on, I can still use them normally too. Have you tried using them in a word document as well to see if it works there?

kazie said...

I skimmed the comments very fast tonight, so forgive if this was answered already: Epicurean refers to food, in a gourmet rather than gourmand sort of way. Hedonism deals with physical pleasures in general, delights of the body.

For LIMO I scratched my head for a while trying to think of a dance teaching term that would fit, so the kids would get "coached" for the prom.

Buckeye said...

Crockett, my friend. At risk of getting c.c.'s ire my 6th post is - that if I drop IE, I experience Adobe problems. Damned if you do , damned....

Great win for MSU. BIG TEN rules. Won the NIT for the second year in a row (OSU won last year). We're the best of the least!!!

IMBO Finally.

kazie said...

No, I answered correctly, it was c.c. who called it a wagon. Here is my quote from Thursday:
Volk just means people in German, and Wagen is car, or any vehicle for that matter.

It's nice to arrive late for once--I still have 2 more comments possible!

Melissa B.,
I actually said I was using the first part of my name--not the initials, and the ZIE are the first three letters of my last name, though I liked your KAZED suggestion. Some of my French students used to call me Mme Zedd (the French pronunciation of the letter). To the German classes I was often Frau Zett, or simply Frau, which is actually not "done" in German without adding the name, but they were just trying to be cute so I put up with it.

JD said...

Good evening CC and other night owls,

I agree, we need more time to get used to Rich Norris's style, but if they get any harder, I'm screwed! LOL! I only filled in 18 out of the 72 without help. I had to G spot Stael, Sergio, Ecto, and PT boats or I couldn't have budged. Like Kathleen, I came here for help, picked up 1 or 2 words and went back to circling. I agree with what Lola said (10:10). I do like the clues,but have trouble thinking out of the box.

Mt. Blanc was once called Mont Maudit, "accursed mountain," due to a legend of a statue of the Celtic sky god,Jupiter Poeninus, that was to have sat on top. He was considered a pagan devil in old Christian myths.

CC, if you haven't seen Charly, the movie adapted from Flowers for Algernon, it is worth renting, although it is sad.

Since you asked... Pan loved noise and confusion.He created panic by showing up unannounced and scaring "people." He fell in love with the moon, but the moon said he was too ugly to marry and smelled like a goat. So he dressed up as a sweet fluffy lamb and lured the moon into the woods.When she recognized his voice, she hid behind the earth's shadow for many days, creating the 1st eclipse.

Goodnight Moon..Ok,Ok, my grandson LOVES that book.

Anonymous said...

I suppose this has been addressed earlier, but I don't know blogs. Found this site by googling.
Why did Tribune replace Wayne Robert Williams? Did he retire, or what? I was comfy with his puzzles & am pulling hair out with some of the LA Times clues.

BTW, how do I find your answer to this question?


JD said...

Welcome anonymous @ 10:23

Wayne Robert Williams retired. There have been so many different reactions to these new puzzles. Many love the new challenges they bring, while others like you, and me are pulling out their hair. We had grown very comfortable with the same old clueing. I intend to learn from this; that is why this blog is so great. Read and join in the conversation, especially when the goin' gets rough. C.C., our hero, does such a great job.

Hopefully you have bookmarked us. Just scroll down and read. As you can see, it starts early with the east and it is those of us on the west that continue later. Sign your name if you write, because it sounds better than anonymous.

Crockett1947 said...

@buckeye I don't understand why NOT USING Internet Explorer would affect your Adobe. Don't delete it, just switch over to Firefox and you should be golden!

kazie said...

I'm still up, and I'm in the midwest! Night-owling tonight because I can. I didn't use my posts up early like most days.

Yes, Anonymous @ 10:23--Just bookmark this site, and visit it every day. c.c. does the same blog every day of the year, at an unearthly hour of the morning. Most of us are now getting the LAT 6 days a week, and it's available 7 days a week online if you don't get it in your paper on Sunday at LAT.

Jeannie said...

@Andrea, who is your food distributor?

@Dennis, do you hunt and search and finally get your prize and forget it after
five minutes? Wow. You found the wrong thing.

@Linda, I fish also. Do you ever use a slip bobber?

@Clearayes....Damn, you lost your keys? Hey, I think I may have 'em. Long night last night; sorry about that. But if you hadn't have left them there
you might have gotten into your house.

@Al, no one asked me to the prom either. Turns out guys were scared to ask? I was mortified! I ended up going stag with some "other wall flowers". We had fun anyway, and I believe I ended up stealing someone's date at an after party. :)

@Linda, If I was married I would prefer my mail to be addressed to me: Ms Jane Doe...maybe that's a women's lib thing. I don't know. I just know I have earned any mail coming my way whether it be a bill or anything else addressed to me.

@Wolfmom...Did you use the phrase "In the weeds"? Were you a server or cook at some time in your life? BTW YOMAP Baffeled by that.

@Buckeye, my sweetie...what else can I say to you to entice you into my lair? Did that cold shower do you in darlin'? I am missing my daily dose of you.

@Argyle, thanks for looking up and linking Muddy Water. If I may be candid here, champagne gives me a headache and makes me do stupid things like taking my top off; and reefer puts me to sleep quickly...not a good mix in my book....but in OTHERS.....???

By the's snowing like hell outside right now. Is it ever gonna quit??? COMEONNNNN!!

WM said...

Jeannie...I waited tables in my college years and many years later worked in a cooking school, then in a Gourmet Deli/Wine store (Oakville Grocery) as the cheese and charcuterie buyer and interned in a restaurant in Brittany, France for a bit...I have a lot of chef friends so it is a term that I am very familiar with...I have led a very varied life. The painting is what I went to school for but it took me about 30 years to get back to it full time...I used to attend and then later work the Food Shows in SF, Chicago and NYC for the British cheese company Neal's Yard Dairy, so I can relate to your job a bit.'s only 10:15 on the left coast...still early.

YOMAP(????) have no idea...if I wrote it somewhere it is most likely a typo...I'm very good at typos.

This is 4 for me.

Auntie Naomi said...

It sounds like you might be having a graphics card issue. Do you know whether you have a graphics card or simply an onboard graphics chipset?

It sounds like you have a compromised PC. You should take the advice I offered the other day. If you do not recall my advice, just ask me.

I think you are confusing Debussy with Handel ('Water Music').

"English simply borrowed yet another French term instead of creating its own."
You make it sound like the English are lazy and deliberately plagiarized the French. Modern English, as I am sure you are well aware, is fundamentally a Germanic language with a HEAVY French stamp on it due to the invasion of England by the Normans. It's not as if they all politely asked William of Normandy to come and take over the place. "Hey! You there! Yes, you! We find that we are at a loss for words here. Do you think you might be a good chap and come help us out?"
If there ever was an original term for the word we know in English today as 'mister', it was likely some forgotten (or almost forgotten) variety of Brythonic Gaelic.

"Maybe you have yet to meet the right Germans"
I know you are right. Yet, why is it that when other Europeans are vacationing on a far flung beach and they hear the Germans coming ... they all quietly grumble? My understanding is that the South Americans do the same thing to Argentinians and, of course, many people the world over would sooner avoid that 'Fat American'.

"Don't ever forget that the Bible was written by men"
Those are words to live by and, as far as Christianity empowering women, NO. Christianity cannot take credit for that. Respect for women in Europe began with the institution of Chivalry, a creed systematically opposed by the Catholic Church. This harkens back to the Provençal clue we had a while back and the Troubadours.

IN RE: Melissa's query -
You did say that in Oz they use zebra instead of zed correct? So, if you had been using your initials, you would be kay zebra, no?

'Jupiter Poeninus' does not sound at all Celtic. That clearly smacks of Rome, but I like the sound of it ;)

Anon@10:23 said: "BTW, how do I find your answer to this question?"
The main page is Go to it now and bookmark it. That is where you will see fresh posts for the current day's puzzle, as well as C.C.'s answers to the previous day's questions.

Whichever browser you use, you need to install the plugin for the Adobe Reader. You must have done that at some time in the past for Internet Explorer (either that or it was already done for you). Open Firefox and go to and click on the button labeled 'Get Adobe Reader'. It takes only a minute to install the plugin, after which you should be good to go.

Please forgive me the long post. It is only my second, though.
I am not actually married. but my SO and I have been together for 14 years. We are, for all intents and purposes, married. We only seriously discussed the matter very briefly a couple of years after we met. At that time, there was no possibility of same sex couples getting legally married anywhere in the US. There still is not in this somewhat backward state. Therefore, it is a bit of a non-issue. I can sense the prevailing winds, though, and I hope that those same-sex couples who truly desire to get married will be able to do so soon ... wherever they may live.

Thomas said...

Hello C.C. & all,
First off, CrckttMCMCDVII, please forgive me for negating your follow up posts to my late night posts. I appreciate your comments and you are someone who's input I enjoy and appreciate. You're SOMETHING! Thanks for the pet-peeve throw-in.

Kazie@ 9:51,
My humble apologizes.. I will not question your languages, but will only question for your linguistic abilities.

Jeannie: I love a bobber that slips and slides!

"In the weeds", I was frequently thrown under the bus by a hostess that didn't know how to seat a dinning room, and caused all the food to be served at the same time, as well as appetizers, salad, drinks, dessert, and check! Try juggling 20 people at 5 different tables when the hostess is the wife of the GM! Grin and bite it! But, immodestly, I WAS the best!

But at least it was at the Hilton in FL and we wouldn't have had this cruddy weather today! Agree, Jeannie!
This snow sucks!!!

Oh, and C.C., I didn't post after you did because I hadn't done the puzzle, which was a doozie, today,
(yesterday), with most of the same snags and conundrums from everyone else encountered as well. Finished, but needed on-line red letter help.

Have a great Sun., to all the next day bloggers who want to bother to catch up on the last day's post.

TJ in Osseo

SkipC said...

What an interesting blog. I really enjoyed reading through your thoughts about the answers. It is rather like the way my son and I handle the LA Crossword that is run in our local paper on Sundays in Vancouver Canada.
I'm sure to be back for more.

Bush League said...

you've never heard of "Ghostbusters?" That's odd.

C.C. Burnikel said...

I've copied and pasted your comments to Today's blog (Monday, April 6). Hope to see you there.

Bush League,
Don't be surprised. My ignorance knows no bounds.