May 25, 2009

Monday May 25, 2009 Gia Christian

Theme: Play Ball!

18A: Not in working order, informally: OUT OF WHACK

23A: Crook who doesn't need the combination: SAFE CRACKER

36A: Union benefit during a walkout: STRIKE PAY

42A: Everything, informally: BALL OF WAX

47A: Promising picnic forecast: FAIR WEATHER

60A: Tendency to anger easily: FOUL TEMPER

(Note from C.C.: Argyle blogged today's post. Our editor Rich Norris seems to pick different alias name for himself according to the difficulty of the puzzle. All the Gia Christian and Lila Cherry puzzles we've solved are Monday's. Nora Pearlstone authored a hard Friday. Quite scrabbly puzzle today. Loved the OUT/SAFE, STRIKE/BALL & FAIR/FOUL order. Wish SHAG (54A: Thick carpet) were clued as baseball related too. )

Back to Argyle.

OUT OF WHACK. When a hitter is in a slump.

SAFECRACKER. Also known as a yegg or yeggman.

STRIKE PAY. Did ball players get any when they went on strike?

BALL OF WAX. Usually known as the whole BALL OF WAX.

FAIR WEATHER. Domed statiums don't worry about the weather.

FOUL TEMPER. None of that in baseball, is there?

Lest we forget: George Carlin's Baseball vs Football.


5A: Quick __ flash: AS A.

8A: Open, as a gate: UNBOLT.

15A: Dickens pen name: BOZ. Sketches by Boz was Dickens's first work.

16A: Connect, as a stereo: HOOK UP.

17A: Kind of party torch: TIKI. If you have watched "Survivor", you've seen these torches.

28A: Las Vegas's desert : MOJAVE. Most of it is in California.

33A: Shooter's aiming aid: SIGHT. Telescopic optic mounted on rifles.

41A: Shredded: TORE.

44A: Annual athletic awards: ESPYS. Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly Awards from ESPN (Entertainment Sports Programming Network). If you would like to see the Best Major League Baseball Player ESPY Awards since 1993, go here. A-Rod won last year.

45A: Vote out: UNSEAT.

46A: Hip-hop Dr.: DRE.

54A: Thick carpet: SHAG. Also, a baseball term: shagging flies (to throw back fly balls during batting practice).

58A: Point on a wire fence: BARB. You won't find any barb wire fences on horse farms.

63A: Mrs. Peel of "The Avengers": EMMA. EMMA is due for a vacation.

64A: Regional dialect: PATOIS. Origin: 1635–45.

65A: Grammar best-seller "Woe __:: IS I. Woe is I: The Grammarphobe's Guide to Better to better English by Patricia T O Conner, an editor at the New York Times Book Review.

67A: Start to nod off: DROWSE. As at a four hour ball game.

68A: Souse's woe: DTS. We sure have a lot of drunk references lately.

69A: Full of pep: SPRY.


1D: Madrid misses: Abbr.: SRTAS. Spainish senoritas.

2D: Boxer Ali: LAILA. Laila Ali with father Muhammed Ali. She probably "floats like a butterfly but stings like a bee".

3D: Request from: ASK OF.

4D: Moby Dick, notably: WHITE WHALE. From the book by Herman Melville.

6D: Composer of marches: SOUSA. Might hear one in a parade today.

7D: Early Mexican: AZTEC.

8D: TV dial letters: UHF. VHF/UHF Very high frequency/Ultra high frequency. This will have to be clued as former TV dial letters after next month.

10D: Quantum physicist Niels: BOHR. Niels Bohr, a Danish physicist who worked on the Manhatten Project and a frequent answer in crossword puzzles.

11D: "Works for me": OKAY.

12D: Time co-founder Henry: LUCE. Time Magazine co-founders Briton Hadden and Henry Luce were classmates at Yale University: more Eli's to remember.

13D: Toll rds.: TPKS. Turnpikes: don't like 'em, take the shunpike!

24D: Maine coon, for one: CAT. I had a cat that had some Maine Coon Cat in her. And 62D: Suffix with Siam: ESE. Siamese cat.

26D: Soldier of Seoul: ROK. We learned they fought on our side in Vietnam and earned Dennis' respect.

29D: Fashionable fliers: JET SETTERS.

30D: Per unit: A POP.

31D: Fluctuate: VARY.

33D: Child star of "The Thief of Bagdad" (1940): SABU. Sabu Dastagir, 1924 – 1963, was a film actor of Indian (South Asian) origin. Credited only by his first name, Sabu, for his role as Abu. movie poster As Abu, the thief , son of Abu the thief, grandson of Abu the thief, he helps the real Prince escape prison.

37D: Hijack-prevention gp.: TSA. Transportation Security Administration

38D: "Oedipus __": REX.

40D: Old Spice alternative: AFTA.

46D: Explosion remains: DEBRIS.

48D: "Big Blue": IBM. International Business Machines Corporation, abbreviated IBM and nicknamed "Big Blue" (for its official corporate color).

49D: Fast: RAPID.

50D: Obtain using force: WREST.

51D: Overplay: HAM UP.

52D: Wascally Wabbit hunter: ELMER. Elmer Fudd, hunter.

54D: Bay Area enforcers, initially: SFPD. San Francisco Police Department.

57D: Vibrant look: GLOW.

It was a fun Monday puzzle. Everybody have a reverent Memorial Day and I don't believe today's honorees would mind if you watched a baseball game; it was one of the things they were fighting for.

Answer grid.



Dennis said...

Good morning, C.C. and gang, and a very Happy Memorial Day - I thought today's puzzle was a cut above the normal Monday's, in that it wasn't a real blow-through. I had several answers where I needed the perps to make sure I was right. Even spelled 'mohave' initially, which of course gave me 'het setters'. Haven't seen 'patois' in a puzzle in quite some time, and I always forget what it means. Fun puzzle.

And from yesterday:
Luxor: her bust is too big, and her hips are too narrow.Jazzbumpa: She has a perfect body because she's wearing a corset!?!Gentlemen, my compliments to you both if you find that she doesn't meet your standards.

Also, Al, please try to avoid giving the answers to a puzzle in the previous night's post - most everybody reads the previous day's entries before doing the current day's puzzle. Also, just an FYI - a 'maine coon' is actually a breed of domestic cat.

No Words of Wisdom or Fun Facts today, just please take some time and think about the men and women who gave up their future for us. There's rarely been a day gone by in the past 43 years that I haven't thought about my buddies, 19-and 20-year old kids like I was, who never got to come home, and what their subsequent years would've been like. Men and women like them have been making that kind of sacrifice for us for many, many years, and we should never, ever, forget it.

Dennis said...

Argyle, great job as usual - I always learn something new from your entries. And yes, the ballplayers got strike pay.

From yesterday, yes, Jeanne, the drivers here in NJ are a bit, uh, frenetic, on the roads. You definitely need to keep your head on a swivel. I've actually gotten to enjoy it, which probably speaks volumes about the state of my mental health.

Argyle said...

Theme music:
Baseball song "Take Me Out To the Ball Game" by Edward Meeker September 1908 recording. Edison Record. The original 1908 lyrics.

Martin said...

HOAR and PATOIS are new words to me. I also didn't know how to spell MOJAVE and I ended up wondering what a GET SETTER was. :)


C.C. Burnikel said...

I thought PATOIS is hard for a Monday. Also spelled MOHAVE first. Really? Those ball players got paid during 1994 strike? Also, why 3:00pm for the remembrance? What's so special about 3:00pm?

Thanks for ESPY. I did not know that. Excellent write-up. Did you know SAUSA died in March?

I'd have "Empire's Calls" as my theme title, since BALL appears as part of the theme answer. As for your comment on Saturday: "On your comment about not taking an ESL course, did you get asked a lot to come over for band practice?". I don't understand it. What band practice?

Dennis said...

C.C., 3:00 was picked because it's seen as the time when most Americans are enjoying their freedom.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Just like Al, I always need surrounds to decide HOAR/RIME. Whom do you like better, Gong Li or Zhang Zi-Yi?

I also use Firefox.

I think ODED/ODS is an accepted word now. Sometimes it has "ER" in or "briefly" as hint, sometimes not. I like your USER and ODED connection the other day. You have a very imaginative mind. I bet that's one of the "Blog" things Dennis is curious about.

C.C. Burnikel said...

I've never heard of 3:00pm as Freedom Hour. You did not make that up, did you? 5:00pm seems to suit the concept better.

Barry G,
Thanks for "Unqualified"/UTTER. You do have a way to explain things clearly and concisely.

Gong Li has a perfect body too.

OK, SAX and SEX are both a throat thing. Now I don't feel so bad about mispronouncing/confusing them.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Thanks for St. ELIAS.

I've been too busy to respond to your posts lately. But don't de-lurk again. Even a short "Uh oh" brought a smile to my face last week.

Barry G's paper Boston Globe now carries a different puzzle, so he only solves LAT on line when he has free time.

Embien & Lola,
The answer for "Cornerstone Abbr." is always ESTD. Embien, RAFFIA tends to have a "fiber" hint in the clue.

Windhover said...

To all:
I also enjoyed Atlas Shrugged in college; when I reread it 25 years later as a full-grown man, I realized what total bullshit it was and is. It's worth pointing out that one of Ayn Rand's acolytes (when he too, was a young man, was none other than the architect of our present economic crisis, Alan Greenspan. The philosophy that spawned both of them, Positivism, has been pretty thoroughly discredited by the events of the past 29+ years. But the book and its theories continue to appeal to immature minds and neocons. (Excuse the redundancy).

To C.C.:
Since no one is likely to see this tonight, would it be possible to move it to Monday's posts? You may censor that word if you choose.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Clear Eyes,
Great poem! Interesting to read it again after today's GLOW and TIKI torch.

I linked the Maggie Q chili pepper picture with you in my mind.

I am so pleasantly surprised that you saw "Raise the Red Lantern". I'd like to hear your opinion on American film audiences and American culture. By the way, what is a fence energizer? Energizing what? As for Ayn Rand followers, don't forget Mark Cuban.

C.C. Burnikel said...

I forgot earlier. Nobody has completed a Sunday puzzle in 2 minutes. Dan Feyer's record is 4:17, a second faster than you did yesterday.

A belated Happy Birthday.

Anonymous said...

Enjoy your solutions and your comments.

FYI---Jessica Lange is a Minnesotan, from Cloquet, on the iron range.


Fargo ND

Bill said...

Well, different experience today! Had to solve online as we have no paper yet.
20:59 with one short phone interruption.
I thought this was pretty easy (for me, that is). Did the same thing to the desert as others. MAHAVE But the "H" was red and it took a minute to see the error of my ways.
Didn't see the theme til I got here, but I usually don't.
Just a note: Fridays was undoable except for a few answers. Sat's got done except for the SE corner.
But , that's OK 'cause I had lots of other things to keep me busy.
Enjoy the day and, please, don't forget it's meaning!
CY'All Later

Bill said...

BTW, I wonder why so many references to Emma Peel lately. May Rich Norris has a fixation? Couldn't blame him!!

Hahtoolah said...

I thought this was a strange one for a Monday. I got all the answers (with a brief error in the spelling of Mojave), but didn't see to catch onto the theme until I read this blog. (I got "out of whack" and "safe cracker" early, so tried to focus on words rhyming with "ack", which of course, didn't happen.

Jeanne said...

Morning all,
I thought this puzzle was a bit more difficult for a Monday. I, too, spelled Mojave with an h rather than a j even though I was just there last fall. I have never heard of patois and wanted jargon, but that didn’t fit for regional dialect. Things started to fall into place but not as easily as a normal Monday.

Thanks Dennis, I’ll remember to set my head on swivel the next time I drive in Jersey!! I think many of us know of someone lost in a war or served in a war. I had an uncle who died in the Battle of the Bulge, a friend in Vietnam, and many other family and friends who have served and returned safely. Our neighbor is leaving for Afghanistan next month and we have promised his wife and son to do everything we can for them while he is away. Yes, I will take a moment to remember and say thanks to all who have served.

Rented “Slumdog Millionaire” and really enjoyed it. Last week, Dateline had a story on the two child actors who are still living in the slums of Mumbai in makeshift houses. The filth and living conditions were intolerable. I couldn’t imagine that the makers of the film would allow this. After all, everyone involved in the film has certainly reaped many rewards and so should the children. After airing the Dateline show, the movie people have now pledged to give each family $50,000 for a real home and a stipend of over $100 a month. Too bad shame brought them to this conclusion and not a sense of doing good.

Windhover, your acerbic wit is enjoyable, even though I might not always agree with you. Have a good day all.

Dick said...

Good morning C.C.; and all,...quite an enjoyable puzzle today. No real problems, but did need some perp help to complete all the fills. I did manage to spell Mojave correctly.

I agree with the others that we should never forget our armed services personnel and not just today, but remember them every day for what they have given.

Hope you all have a great Memorial Day Monday.

tfrank said...

Good Morning all,

Easy puzzle for me today. I was surprised so many posters had trouble spelling Mojave. It was familiar to me because of visits I made to it for two weeks in August every summer when I was attached to a USMC Reserve battalion which took its active duty training there.

The mumidity is so low there that the heat is very bearable. A load of wash will dry on the line in 20 minutes. We were told to drink two liters of water every hour.

It would get very cool at night, and we were warned to be wary of sidewinder rattlers trying to crawl under our blankets.

While the desert seems drab from a distance, it is very beautiful up close. There is a plethora of flowers from cacti and other flora. You can see for miles because the air is so clear.

I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday and remembers to fly the flag

Al said...

@Dennis, my apologies... I always do the puzzle first before coming here, just in case someone did the puzzle early and couldn't put their comment in the correct day. I made a bad assumption that others would do that, too.

C.C. Some guys'll do anything to get what they want. If you didn't know the difference between sax and sex, then they might try to fool you by asking you over to play an instrument (band practice) and hope you misunderstand. There's an old "gotcha" (no-win) joke that guys play:

"If you woke up with muddy knees and elbows and your pants down, would you tell anyone?"

Of course, a person would say "no" out of embarassment, which then would get the following response:

"Wanna go camping?"

KittyB said...

Good Morning, all.

I solved in sections today, working both across and down. The SW corner was the last to fall. I had ----TEMPER and PATOIS in place. Once I got SHAG, the rest fell.

I'd never heard of Dicken's pen name: BOZ. I have no idea why I know the answer to Dr. DRE, but it popped right out. Most of the long answers came pretty easily.

Argyle, you do a great job with the blog. Thanks for the George Carlin clip.

I'll be busy in the gardens today, but I'll make time at 3:00 to reflect on all those who have served, especially those who didn't come home.

I hope you all have a good Memorial Day!

kazie said...

Thanks for another great blog.

I also found today's puzzle a bit harder than the usual for Monday. I got it all without help, but it was slower than expected. My slowest fills were LAILA (thinking of her dad), and the SW corner. I started with FAST for FOUL, couldndn't rmember how to spell DROWSE (had a U for W), and couldn't think of patois until it got there by accident. A clue that it was French would have helped, though I know it's used often in English too.

I did spell Mojave right but then was doubtful that it was the right desert when perps were slow to fall in--I wanted EACH for A POP. Not knowing anything not learned here about baseball, I had no clue as to the theme.

Do have a great Monday everyone!

carol said...

Hi C.C. and everyone,
I had more trouble than I ever have had with a Monday puzzle. For the life of me, I could not figure out: 20A (FREQUENTLY),1D (MADRIS MISSES- I can never remember the initials correctly-and I really dislike ANY initial answers), 2D (LAILA)(never heard of her),30D (PER UNIT), 29D (FASHIONABLE FLIERS), 44A ATHLETIC AWARDS. I also spelled MOJAVE with an 'H' so that ruined 29D. sigh.
I did enjoy what I could figure out so I guess it's not a total loss.

Beautiful weather continues in Western Oregon today so all our Memorial Day celebrations have that to complement them. We are having various fly-overs today throughout the area, and at 3:00 a special one directly over the river that runs through our downtown area.
Take time to remember what this is all about and be grateful to all who served.

Argyle said...

Okay, a little primer on the baseball terms:

As Al pointed out last night and I forgot to mention, these terms are grouped as opposite pairs.

Out is a bad thing. Safe is a good thing.

Strike is a bad thing. Ball is a good thing.

Fair is a good thing. Foul is a bad thing.

Or just the opposite, if you're on the other team.

And looking at this, I find it incomprehensible.

So here is a link to the story behind Take Me Out to the Ball Game.

Argyle said...

And the lyrics.

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning, I think it was a fair trade-off that the Californians in the group all got the spelling of MOJAVE the first time around, because we all probably missed TPKS. Turnpike is not a term that is used here in the west.

Although I remembered Dennis' comments, I couldn't remember the "K" in ROK. A POP wouldn't come either. But perp STRI-E -AY was easily filled in and got the two Downs for me.

I agree that PATOIS isn't a Monday kind of word. I had ACCENT to begin with.

Thanks Argyle. You really have a talent for crossword blogging.

Windhover, I never did like Ayn Rand. Hers were "books to read" when I was younger and I did. But to tell the truth, I thought both Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead were just plain boring. I guess being young and shallow spared me from having to think about the philosophy they espoused. Now I don't have the excuse of being young, but I'm always willing to play the shallow card and I don't plan to reread any Ayn Rand book.

JIMBO said...

Hi all,

I love Monday's. Got it all with the help of perps and Argyle. Did'nt know 10d
and 12d (Bohr and Luce), so those and 8a (unbolt) were the last to fall. No trouble with Mojave, but slow to fill in ESPYS
(44a). The rest was fairly easy. Like some of you, at times, an answer will come to me when I don't even know the meaning of the word. It just pops up.

I don't use "spell check" and I'm not very good at punctuating so please bear with me when I err.

Argyle, enjoyed your
write-up. The highest compliment I can lay on you is----I have a hard time realizing that it is not C.C. doing the blog.
So there!!!!
Hope everyone has a good safe holiday. It is one of the most meaningful.

Vaya con Dios

Anonymous said...

Happy Memorial Day!
I missed Mojave, and I grew up in CA! Been through the area many times. Lived near Victorville when I was very young.
I almost never get the theme until I check in here. Oh well.
Have a safe and restful day.

Lemonade714 said...


Thanks so much for the TAKE ME OUT TO THE BALL GAME trivia. I found the most surprising fact that the same person wrote SHINE ON HARVEST MOON .

I am just not good at this theme business, and had no clue what was going on until I had all the squares filled. In retrospect it is great, but my mind was initially confused by the ACK in the first two answers.

Doesn't it seem unlikely we could randomly have so many EMMA PEEL references ?

PATOIS is a nice word, and I learned all about Niels BOHR reading Martha Grimes, Richard Jury mysteries; you never know where knowledge is hiding.

Enjoy the BARBeques, I hope you single people HOOK UP, and remember to clean up the party DEBRIS.

WM said...

Before I read anything, our puzzle is not the LATimes today in the San Jose Mercury News...I am hoping this is an aberration for Memorial Day as there has been absolutely no mention of how people liked the puzzles when they changed or even recently...the puzzle is also, again, getting slightly smaller with less room for the letters...AARRGGHH! I am printing out the LAT and will get back to ya'll.

JD said...

Good morning CC and all,

Well, I guess our paper has made a change without telling us. When I came to the blog, I was unpleasantly surprised. So, I printed out the correct one and the SW corner took me a long time.

Will return after I read what others have said.

Warren said...

Hi C.C.

Something has changed with our local Mercury News puzzle. Today's puzzle didn't match the LAT?

e.g. 1A: "Part of a daisy" - Petal.

Do you have any idea on what's up?


Treefrog said...

Just went back and read Sunday's posts. Our paper prints the NYT puzzle on Sunday. I usually don't even bother. Guess I will have to find the LAT Sunday puzzle and print it out to get my fix.
KittyB-yay on the quilt studio. I do lots of sewing. Only quilts I have done are small kid quilts that I donate to Shriners in Portland. I've suggested turning the kitchen into a second sewing room, but hubby isn't to hot on the idea!
Grew up in Sacramento and have never been to the Winchester house. Maybe when the Sacto grandkids get older we will take them.

JD said...

Thanks Argyle for such an enjoyable blog and links.Had not seen that one on George Carlin.

Carol, we are having fly- overs too: a B17, B24, and aP51. Evidently, one can take a 1/2 hr. ride in the P51 for $4000!!!!

I could not get the theme until reading it here. I was looking for a W to fill in someWhere in strike pay.LOL! Did not get the T (TSA),the K (rok), or the P(a pop).Was happy with the rest, although I did G Neils and Dickens pen name.

I'm not happy about our paper. It was getting very small, and interfering with Bob's sports page. On those days, I make a copy, or print it out.C'est la vie

As for Mojave, most Californians are familiar with the j sounding like an H, such as San Jose, jicama .jajaja!

Jeanne,@ Slum dog cast. They did give each family $30,000 at 1st for a home,( plus $ for educ.) but found out that it wasn't enough.I would think that it would be hard for those 2 families to make such big changes, and when their "homes" were torn down, the publicity started all over again.I wonder what they will do next now that they have more money. They have to leave all their friends.

WM said...

OK...I'm baaaack...since I had already done the mystery puzzle and found it not too difficult(about a Wednesday level), the LAT just seemed easy or my brain was finally awake! No hangups, no erasures, no guessing except that I never have any idea who those hip hop/rap guys are so let the perps do the job.

JD...Jajaja...LOL Haven't heard any big planes yet and we are very near Moffett Field.

Dennis and I mentioned yesterday I think that we are, sadly, reminded every day of the needless sacrifice of promising young lives. But it is also important to think about the thousands who have been severely injured and their lives irrevocably changed forever by the greed and and fear of a few...OK, off my soapbox now. guys are ticking me off...mysoginistic codswallop...IMHO ;o)

I am hoping that today was just a misstep for the paper, and am grateful that at least the LAT is available online.

Argyle...I second Jimbo's be da man! Thanks, as always for an awesome job!

Beautiful weather here, it couldn't be more a more gorgeous, with that...I'm outta here.


Anonymous said...

There are two ways to spell "mohave/mojave." My daughter lives in Mohave Valley, Arizona (between Bullhead City and Needles, Calif.) They spell it with an "h" there.


Jeanne said...

@JD, Dateline reported that they initially were paid $2,500 and were given a stipend dependent on the children going to school. Whatever the amount of money, I'm sure the parents don't know how to handle a large some of money and may need help in that area. Their living conditions are deplorable and should be changed. Slumdog Children will give you more information.

KQ said...

Great post Argyle. I wasn't catching the theme until I came here. Got the entire puzzle, and only had to g-spot one clue, but needed the perps to finish. I thought it was tougher than the usual Monday. PATIOS was the least familiar answer.

I wanted UMP for Big Blue - which would have fit right into the theme. I didn't get the IBM link until I had filled it in via the perps.

However, keeping with the theme, I have been glued to the Twins as of late. Mauer is awesome. Went to the game on Saturday and had a great time. Lets hope they keep it up.

We are celebrating my youngest's 15th birthday today so cheers to him. In honor of the crossword theme, he is picking out a new bat right now with his father for a gift. Cheers, and here is to those who sacrifice for our country.

KQ said...

Jeanne and JD, Similar to India, I visited a town in South Africa called Mphopomeni (Sp?) It was a government subsidized community. Each family paid $25 rand for a simple concrete home constructed for them if they tore down their shanty home. It was a project to try to eliminate shanty towns. Once the people moved in, there were schools on site, etc. However, it is only mildly successful. Despite getting the education, there are no jobs for the graduating children. It is rampant with aids, and the people develop an affinity for those things they had never seen before. Suddenly they must pay for electricity, they want cellphones, TV, etc. which they cannot afford. Have no idea what the right answer is though. At least someone is trying there.

melissa bee said...

happy memorial day c.c. and all,

ditto on alot of previous comments, needed perps for LUCE, PATOIS and SABU. californian here entered MOHAVE, had to fix that. just had APOP a few days ago, so that came easily. seemed a tad tougher for a monday, but still sub ten mins.

interesting about the sj merc puzzle switch .. i canceled my delivery and now solve online or print so was unaware. anyone know what puzzle it was?

@argyle: fantastic job as usual.

@c.c.: thanks for the ODED/ODS. maybe i'll remember next time.

@wh: good to see you here.

@jazzbumpa: good lord, even i'd turn for corset woman.

kazie said...

There are 8.26 Rand to our Dollar, so that made it a very cheap house. It would make it even more difficult for them to understand why they couldn't afford those other things.

I imagine in India, it might take a generation or two to change the whole mindset. Education would certainly help though. They already have a very well educated elite which must be transcending the traditional caste system to some extent.

I just made time for the Carlin link--thanks, wasn't he awesome, the way he could juxtapose ideas?

JD said...

Jeanne, thanks for the updated material. I agree that no one should have to live like that, but unfortunately there are pockets all over the world, even places in the U.S.

WM, they have been flying over all wk.The "T-man" and I went outside 3X on Thurs. to watch them. They come every yr. for this holiday.

MelissaBee, all it says is 2009 Tribune Media Services,Inc.I hope it was a one time thing, but I am able to print out the LA Times. Like WM, I did both today.

embien said...

6:33 today. Nice baseball puzzle, in keeping with the season. I had zero unknowns, but some of the fill had to wait for crosses to complete.

@c.c.: The answer for "Cornerstone Abbr." is always ESTD.Except when it's ESTB, lol. If I have time later today I'll dredge up a couple of recent examples.

treefrog: Our paper prints the NYT puzzle on Sunday. I usually don't even bother. Actually, treefrog, you should give the Sunday NYT puzzle a go. They are at about Wednesday/Thursday level of difficulty and quite a bit of fun, usually (though they can take a lot of time since they are 23x23). More difficult than the LA Times Sunday, though.

SandbridgeKaren said...

Thanks for the analysis Argyle - enjoyed the George Carlin bit - how clean that one was! Sometimes I forget how truly witty he was.

Easy puzzle for me today and I got the theme which I often miss. After the out of whack and safecracker responses I was looking for a theme involving ck but quickly realized the baseball opposites theme. I agree with Bill - what's with the Emma Peel run all of a sudden? Really enjoyed the puzzle and got it easily done before my Monday Aquarium volunteer stint.

Windhover - when I was in senior advanced English is high school (a TON of years ago) my English teacher (who clearly favored her male students)cut my book reports to pieces until I discovered her favorite author was Ayn Rand. Guess who authored every book I read for the rest of the year? Got an A in the class.

Jeanne - good news on the g-baby - you must be so relieved!! I opened my pool about 6 weeks ago - it's so depressing sitting there with it's cover on all winter - opening it is sort of a 'first rite of spring' for me. Hope yours went well. My next door neighbor does my pool along with a bunch of others and was bitten by a black window spider opening one last week - said it was the worst pain he'd ever had for 5 days. Freaked me out just hearing his story.

God Bless America and all those who died serving our country - as they say, Freedom isn't Free!

Dennis said...

Melissa Bee said, "good lord, even i'd turn for corset woman."

Um.....where would one purchase tickets?

WM said... are sooooooooo easy...

C.C. Burnikel said...

Warren, WM and JD,
I suspect your new puzzle is TMS Daily Commuter, the same as Windhover's. It's edited by Jackie Mathews, who succeeded Wayne R. Williams in March. Your old LAT did have constructor by-line, correct? The Daily Commuter normally doesn't give constructor credit and it's not available online.

WM said...

C.C....that is probably a good bet. No by-line, the date was correct and I think Warren gave the 1A clue...Daisy part/PETAL...bummer! It was a pretty easy puzzle...maybe 2 head scratchers.

The Mercury News has been surprisingly silent on any of the puzzle changes...I am waiting to see what happens tomorrow...if it is not the LAT, I'm emailing them. I have come to really enjoy the LAT puzzles and don't want to lose them...thank goodness for online access...and when I print it out, the squares are larger.


Jazzbumpa said...

My friends -
I never suggested that corset-woman didn't meet my standards. I merely pointed out in my (tongue-in) cheeky way that she was wearing a corset. I have no disdain for the obvious. No 58A intended. And if her bust is too much of a 40A, well, alas, that is a curse whe will most likely just have to live with.

"Hack", "crack", and "strike" had me off-course for the theme. Then "ball of wax?" I was confused.

Slept in late, then did the puzzle. Pretty good, but getting tired of tiki, asea, and emit. Will NEVER be tired ofMrs. Peel. (If you wonder about my standards, then look no further.)

Then planted shubbery. (Ni!) Now I'm tired.

Dinner time. Gotta run.

KittyB said...

WM, I LOVE the sunflower avatar! I thought the apples were cool, but the sunflowers are even better.

I like the colors in Carol's avatar, as well. I seem to be drawn right now to the orange and gold range. I think it may be a response to having worked in blues and greens on the last quilt.

Treefrog, we have a good-sized house, with only four of us but to have a studio I would have either had to give up the guest room, or build the studio in the basement. I have a bad knee, and didn't want to be running up and down the stairs, so I used one end of my bedroom for 19 years. I still can't quite get used to the idea that I have all that room. I'll take a picture of the stash wall for an avatar. When my Mother lived with us, we worked on Project Linus quilts for the hospital and for police cars. It's about time to make a few more. Thanks for the reminder.

Argyle, thanks for the links to "Take Me Out To The Ball Game." I really enjoyed reading the story behind the song.

tfrank...just how do you go about being "wary" of a sidewinder snuggling up with you!? What do you do when you find one is there? I can't imagine waking up to finding a snake nestled up to me or in my sleeping bag.

Lemonade, thanks for the mention of the Martha Grimes books. That looks like a series that I'd enjoy.

I'm sure the link has been provided for the Sunday NYT puzzles on-line, but I've missed it. Do you have to subscribe to get the puzzle? Would someone please point me in the appropriate direction?

Warren said...

Thanks for the update C.C. & WM,

What I do is cut out the puzzle from the paper and enlarge it by 125%.

I'm not happy that the SJ Mercury News has again decided to change puzzle formats without any notice.

Vern said...

I've not observed drivers in New Jersey, but I did notice that in New York when the light turned green, everyone in line immediately stepped on the gas--so the first car driver had to be on his/her toes. In the midwest, the first driver is typically busy cleaning out the glove compartment, combining his/her hair or conducting other business so very few cars get through the light. Midwesterners also have the bad habit of not pulling up on left turn lights so only one car gets through. It is a little maddening for us "Triple A" type personalities.

windhover said...

Warren @ 12:23 & others:
WolfMom and C.C. Are correct. Congratulations, you have just glanced into Crossword Hell. Run away now and you can possibly save your soul, if not your intellect. According to the person I talked to at the Lexington Herald-Leader when they made a similar switch e few weeks ago, both puzzles are distributed by the same entity, and when they got "a lot" ( I'm guessing three) of complaints about the LAT puzzle being top difficult, they switched to the daily Commuter. Doing this puzzle for a few weeks will erode your skills to the point you will barely be able to read the front page headlines. Of course, in the H-L that consists of mostly car wrecks, house fires, and sports anyway, so WTH. According to the person I talked to nothing short of a mob with torches and pitchforks will get them to change back.
I had a teacher like that in HS, too. Last I heard, he was a greeter at Wal-Mart. Ayn would be so proud. But she's still full of s---.

windhover said...

Forgot to answer your questions.

A fence energizer is a simple little device that connected to a properly constructed fence, delivers a painful but very non-lethal shock to an animal (or human) that touches it. Animals quickly become trained to avoid touching it. I get inadvertant shocks (not being as well-trained as the average sheep or, as Oberhasli knows, as clever as the average goat), and while the experience always elicits an involuntary yell, it lasts only a split second, and like hitting your self with a hammer, feels much better when you stop doing it.
As for my opinion about mass media in general, but especially movies and TV, are you familiar with the Don Henley song, Dirty Laundry? It has a line that says, "It's interesting when people die". A lot of people die on TV and in the movies. This is as much as I can say and exercise my promise of "restraint".

carol said...

KittyB (4:35) LOL - I sometimes find a 'snake' cuddled up to my leg of elsewhere in the's all good!

Vern (5:12) I'm with you on the drivers!!
I am also a triple A type so have little patience with those who are doing everything else at a stop light except looking at it. How about the driver(s) who when coming up to an intersection that is supposed to be wide enough for 2 cars (one on the 'left' to go straight ahead, and space on the right for those who want to turn right at a red light)...they invariably straddle the lane so that no one can get past their right side to turn and must wait for the light. I know it's not a long wait usually, but it is just such a brain dead action that makes me want to scream, and I usually do. My 'French' is great at times :)

Windhover (5:24) LOL good rant!!!

SandbridgeKaren said...

Windhover - but Ayn would be so pleased to note he's the best greeter WalMart ever had; I agree she was full of crap. I shudder to think about what's happened to my old teach but on reflection I doubt she's still above ground.

Jazzbumpa said...

C.C -
The other point of the article was that some people like to listen to the one while doing the other. But, being a mere lowly trombonist, I might have the whole thing backwards.

Do any of the other old timers here remember when Jerry Fallwell wanted to boycott the Lawrence Welk show? tI was full of gratuitous sax and violins.


Jazzbumpa said...

Oh, boye, am I a bahd typosth!

Anonymous said...

Enjoy your day today all you veterans that have served. My heart burst with pride today as my little guy in his Cubscout uniform, proudly carrying his flag marched up to the cemetary today and saluted. I was even prouder when he shed a tear. All you know I am a single Mom...and am trying my best to instill "he-man" stuff into him...but I couldn't have been prouder today. Dennis, I was gonna come up with something today, but didn't think it was appropriate. Thank you and all others that have served and made us this great country that it is.

Anonymous said...

A coon is a black actor or actress, who takes roles that stereotypically portrays black people. They think theyve made it but they are slaves to the same images. A.k.a sellout
It comes from the term baracoons (a cage), where they used to place Africans, who were waiting to be sent to America to be slaves. They had no idea of this, so some of them were even eager waiting in the baracoons.

Examples- Roles or advertisements were black people:
-play basketball
-rap about a product
-are obsessed with money or chicken
-have a lot of video hoes
-have names that show that they are black (kwame, darnel, any two capital letters (JT, TJ, AJ, TC, JJ), any female name ending in a "qua",

excessively use old terms we made up like
-woo wee
-bling bling
-im da man, you da man
-thats wack yo
-or anyterm that white people have begun to acknowledge, use and accept.
-(I hope you get the idea- this happens everyday)
Black guy on commercial or in movie: Woo wee! Boy do I love me some chicken, where da Koolaid at?


tfrank said...


It never happened to me but I lost a lot of sleep thinking about it. Sidewinders love paved roads at night because they retain their heat; snakes are cold-blooded animals and seek heat in cold weather. Driving on these roads in the desert after dark can be a good way to thin out the snake population.

Anonymous said...

hello all. have an enjoyable decoration day.

Argyle said...

windhover said@ 5:24 PM "... nothing short of a mob with torches and pitchforks will get (the Lexington Herald-Leader) to change back."

In keeping with our background, the mob should carry tikis and tridents. ;~)

Anonymous said...

As I was gone for two weeks, I am not sure how it happened, but we seem to be getting both the Commuter and the LA Times in the Naples News. I surely hope that continues because I am bored with the Commuter but cannot grok the Thur., Fri., Sat. LA Times.
Therefore I'll do the LA xwords on Mon, Tues, Wed, & Sun. The Commuter on the other days. Aren't you all glad to know that?

kazie said...

Vern and Carol,
Be careful before you disparage the driving habits of all midwesterners. Maybe I'm an exception, having learned to drive in a city of (at that time) 3 million in Oz, but I sit at the lights watching the light on the other direction so I can be ready when it turns orange for them, to hit the gas as soon as mine is green.

My husband OTOH is a true midwesterner, not doing distracting things while driving, but he won't drive or react as fast as I do.

I just watched the movie "Taking Chance" with Kevin Bacon. Really brought home the sadness of so many young lives sacrificed in war.

Argyle said...


Are you still here? What is the meaning of your post and why is it posted here?

Anonymous said...

Had I got here earlier, I could have made a number of comments about the puzzle, but someone else has already said everything I would say.

However, Melissa Bee made a comment that brings up something that has been concerning me. She said she had cancelled her paper subscription & now gets the puzzle online. I understand frustration with the newspapers and a desire to cancel. Most newspapers are in serious trouble because their readership has fallen off. I recently read an article about the papers and the causes of their problems. They certainly aren't what they used to be. But my question is, "If the newspapers cease to exist and our only source of news is either TV or the Internet, what happens as far as archives?" As a genealogist, I find old newspapers are a valuable source of information. I realize that genealogy is just a hobby & it isn't really of any great importance if I find out my great-great grandfather's 4th cousin twice removed was a horse thief but frequently there are inmportant reasons for looking into the archives. And thanks to the hard work of journalists, criminals have been apprehended; dirty politicians have been exposed and worthwhile causes have been publicized. If we don't have papers, will the TV's and Internet carry on these activities? Just wondering.
As an added concern, now the census is not going to be a true census, just statistics. I think we're becoming a people without a past - and I'm afraid we could also be a people without a future

melissa bee said...

@dot: the world is surely changing, and i share your concern about the future of newspapers, and alot of other businesses including my own. i agree, it's troubling.

Anonymous said...

Great comments regarding the newspapers.
I have been doing my family genealogy for the past 10 yrs.
I was able to get a copy of my parents wedding announcement back in 1934.
Even though my paper annoys me at times and it has gotten smaller as well, I honestly don't know how I would survive without it.
All the best,

windhover said...

Yo, that 9:08 post was so wack even I ain't gon touch it.

And, tikis and tridents it is. When do we leave?

Seriously, WTH was that? Do remember the story about an infinite number of monkeys typing on an infinite number of typewriters, and one would eventually type a Shakespearean play? Something like that has happened, evidently. Or maybe there really are worm holes. Or maybe I just need to go to bed. Maybe it won't be there in the morning.

WM said...

Dot...with you 100%. The people that do honest reporting and who make it their life to look for the truth and report it are an incredibly important part of the freedoms we enjoy in this country. Freedom of the press, and newspaper offices filled with eager reporters keeping us in touch with the world and local events is an important part of the foundations that make this country strong.

The internet and TV just doesn't have the same kind of dedication or the freedom to spend days, weeks, months tracking down information and following up on stories...when we lose the printed word we will have lost more than we we know. These are the people who produce the stories that are picked up by the news bloggers and often by the TV shows...we are staring at a very bleak future if our newspapers disappear.

Even though I may have to start getting the puzzle online, and I actually get a lot of the current news online, there is a kind of pleasure in sitting down with the paper and a cup of coffee in the morning and reading a story that may even have multiple follow-ups...I hope the newspapers can start thinking outside the box a bit and stay in business.

WH/Argyle...ignore the naked elephant in the room...obviously no clue, as the correct answer was CAT... no relationship to sanity at all...WH... I applaud your self control this evening.

#5 and done