, pub-2774194725043577, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0 L.A.Times Crossword Corner: Sunday October 18, 2009 Alan Arbesfeld


Oct 18, 2009

Sunday October 18, 2009 Alan Arbesfeld

Theme: The Ultimate Sandwich - NTH is sandwiched in each theme answer, spanning two words.

24A. Course covering the Roman Empire, perhaps: ANCIENT HISTORY

34A. Pentathlon event: JAVELIN THROW. More familiar with the sole word javelin rather than javelin throw.

51A. Rehearse quickly: RUN THROUGH

59A. "Under Milk Wood" playwright: DYLAN THOMAS. A Welsh writer/poet. Stranger to me. I've never heard of the play "Under Milk Wood".

77A. Malfunctioned: WENT HAYWIRE

89A: Gardener's gift: GREEN THUMB. Our KittyB sure has a green thumb.

102A. One of the Seven Sisters colleges: MOUNT HOLYOKE. Have vaguely heard of this college. Wikipedia says Emily Dickinson spent sometime here.

121A. College accommodations: STUDENT HOUSING

And 123D. Ultimate degree hidden in eight puzzle answers: NTH

I thought "sandwich" implies that NTH is inserted in an existing base phrase, but it's not. Good play on our crossword stalwart NTH.

This puzzle is of perfect difficulty level to me. I was engaged throughout the solving (some Sundays I was not), with a few "D'oh" V-8 moments, a few peeks at the cheat sheet and a few erasings.

As the norm with our Sunday puzzle, quite a few clever clues and unfamilair words/names for me.


1. Place to surf: THE NET. Internet surfing.

7. Like the best straight, in poker: ACE-HIGH. And DEAL IN (93A. Include, at the poker table).

14. Creature that divides to multiply: AMOEBA. The single-celled creature.

20. One-named Tejano singer: SELENA. She was murdered by a fan. J-Lo played her in the movie.

22. Scams: BUNCOS. Or Bunkos. New word to me.

23. Like hawks, vis-à-vis doves: PRO-WAR

27. Pilot: FLIER. And AIR BASE (43A. Post with planes).

28. "You're not telling the truth!": THAT'S A LIE

29. White Rose __-Tea, first instant iced tea: REDI. It simply means "ready", yes?

31. Take pieces from?: DISARM. Pieces=firearm. Great clue.

33. Noodge: PEST. Forgot the meaning of "noodge", a variant of nudge.

42. Jazz singer Anderson: IVIE. No idea. Wikipedia says she was best-known for her performances with Duke Ellington's orchestra between 1931 and 1942.

44. __ Raton, Florida: BOCA. Literally "mouth" in Spanish.

48. Chaos: BEDLAMS

50. Slangy "OK": YEH. Thought it's "Yeah".

55. Gods' drink: NECTAR. Root word for nectarine, my favorite fruit of the summer. Gods' food is ambrosia.

57. Bambi's aunt: ENA. Bambi & ENA are the only two "Bambi" characters I know.

58. British county: SHIRE

62. Lunes y martes, e.g.: DIAS. Spanish for "days". Lunes y martes = Monday and Tuesday.

65. Small songbird: WREN

66. Mother of the Titans: GAEA (JEE-uh). The Greek earth goddess.

69. Attend: GO TO

71. Deity skilled at archery: AMOR. Roman love god. Eros for the Greeks.

83. Toon skunk Pepé : LE PEW. The constant "l'amour" seeker.

85. Vintage auto: REO

87. __ Sebastian Bach: JOHANN. The greatest composer of the Baroque period.

88. Lux. neighbor: GER

92. Org. with a longstanding journal: AMA (American Medical Association). "The Journal of the American Medical Association".

95. NC State's gp.: ACC (Altantic Coast Conference). Stumper for me.

97. Starts: ADVENTS

101. Turner on screen: LANA. She was married to Artie Shaw for a few months.

104. Bank-confiscated auto, briefly: REPO

107. Reach rudely for: GRAB AT

111. Hints at: ALLUDES TO. Quite a few verb + preposition fill in today's grid.

113. Poland Spring competitor: EVIAN. Ours is Aquafina.

117. Bandleader's cry: HIT IT

123. "Driver carries __": robbery deterrent: NO CASH

124. Like a stiff drink: POTENT

125. Operative, as a rule: IN FORCE

126. Psychologist's concern: TRAUMA. Psychological damage is hard to treat.

127. Horseplay sounds?: SNORTS. Why? I got the answer from crosses.

128. Vegas light source: NEON GAS

129. __-skelter: HELTER


1. Recipe amts.: TSPS (Teaspoons). TBSPS is tablespoons.

3. "The Time Machine" race: ELOI. Yummy meal for the Morlock.

4. Old movie house staple: NEWSREEL

5. Canine coat?: ENAMEL. D'oh, teeth.

8. Child's plea: CAN I

12. Classy fellows: GENTS. Harmon Killebrew is a true gent, so is the guy on his right, of course!

13. __ yoga: HATHA. The most popular form of yoga, isn't it, KQ/Moon?

14. Slightly more than one can tolerate: A BIT MUCH. Multi-word fill elude me often.

15. Dishevel: MUSS

16. Recorded with a VCR: ON TAPE

17. French school: ECOLE. The students are élèves.

18. Tennis great Becker: BORIS. No idea. According to Wikipedia, he is the youngest-ever winner of the men's singles title at Wimbledon at the age of 17.

19. So far: AS YET

25. "Portia is Brutus' __, not his wife": Shak.: HARLOT. From Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar". I was clueless. LOVER does not fit.

27. All done, in Verdun: FINI. French for "over". I've never head of Verdun, a city in NE France. It's picked to rhyme with "done".

30. Radius times two: DIAMETER

32. "If __ a Rich Man": I WERE. From "Fiddler on the Roof".

34. Were in accord: JIBED. And AGREE (60D. Go along).

35. Big name in labels: AVERY

36. Gore who wrote "Lincoln": VIDAL. His mother was once married to Jackie Kennedy's step-father.

37. "__ see it my way ...": Beatles lyric: TRY TO. No idea. Those are the opening words of the Beatles' "We Can Work It Out".

38. Letter-shaped girder: H-BEAM. Same as I-BEAM, correct? I forgot our discussion result last time.

39. Enthusiastic: RAH-RAH. Ardent is six-letter too.

41. It's bad to be behind them: BARS. Behind the bars. Excellent clue. I was in the deadline direction.

44. __ B'rith: B'NAI. Literally "Sons of". B'nai B'rith = Sons of the Covenant.

45. Naturalist John: MUIR. The founder of Sierra Club.

47. Invitation word: WHEN

49. "The King and I" teacher: ANNA. Anna and the King.

52. Berlin conjunction: UND. German for "and".

53. "I'm amazed!": OH WOW

56. Indian tea: CHAI. "Chinese tea" is just CHA.

63. Turkish general: AGHA. Or AGA.

64. %#&!#! ones: SO AND SO'S. I thought those symbols refer to the F word.

68. "This seems familiar" feeling: DEJA VU. All over again.

70. Actress Daly: TYNE. Learned her name from doing Xword.

71. Pond organism: ALGA. The plural form is ALGAE.

72. Hired soldier, briefly: MERC. Mercenary, not a familiar abbreviation. Neither is VIRG (114D Arlington's state: Abbr.).

73. Crude cartel: OPEC. Nice C.C. alliteration.

75. Cross, in Cádiz: CRUZ. Another C.C. alliteration. Now I have a better understanding of Penélope CRUZ.

78. Ladies' club policy: NO MEN

79. U __, '60s UN secretary general: THANT. U is just Mr. in Burmese. Thant is his only name.

80. White house?: IGLOO. In Arctic. White indeed. Very clever clue.

81. Freshen, as a stamp pad: REINK

82. Banks of baseball: ERNIE. Hall-of-Famer. Played his entire career with the Chicago Cubs. What Els? ERNIE!

84. Ladies' hoops gp.: WNBA. Our WNBA team is called Minnestoa Lynx, owned by the same guy who owns the Timberwolves.

86. "Dreams From My Father" memoirist: OBAMA. He'd probably be happier with a Nobel Literature rather than Nobel Peace.

90. Digressions: TANGENTS

91. West Coast castle builder: HEARST. The Hearst Castle.

94. Not ordinary: ATYPICAL. Cool entry.

98. Spoils, as a grandchild: DOTES ON. I can picture how Jazzbumpa spoils his grandchildren.

101. "Turn it up, please": LOUDER. I like the er-less clue.

103. Pakistan's second-largest city: LAHORE. Karachi is the largest city.

104. Woodworking files: RASPS

105. John with a colorful wardrobe: ELTON. Oh, he is a SIR too.

106. Demoted planet: PLUTO

108. Dylan's "Ballad of __ Man": A THIN. Unknown to me. I did get BAEZ (96A. "Diamonds & Rust" singer Joan) though. Both were at Woodstock, right?

109. Wilderness Road pioneer: BOONE (Daniel)

115. Andean of yore: INCA

116. Mighty long time: AGES. Wrote down AEON first.

120. Whaler's direction: THAR. "There", as in "THAR she blows!"

122. ET carrier: UFO. What if aliens do exist?

A warm welcome to all our Canadian solvers. I enjoyed your comments last week and hope to hear more of your solving experience on Sundays.

Answer grid.



Martin said...

"This seems familiar" feeling: DEJI VU.


C.C., I just managed to construct a crossword puzzle (in English)! It is a 15x15 puzzle and has 34 across fills and 38 down fills and 43 black squares. Is that too many black squares? Does anyone here know how these things get submitted? Should I draw it up with paper and pen and then scan it and send it by e-mail or is there some way to do the whole thing electronically? Is it going to be a problem because I'm in another country? Does anybody know?


KittyB said...

Good morning, C.C. and all. I see we are off to a slow start this morning.

Thanks for the nod on the green thumb clue. I'm just about at the point where it's time to close down some of my gardens, but the herb garden, and the one along the walk to the front door will be the last to go. My parents were avid gardeners, and all their children have been bitten by the bug, too.

It took me about 36 minutes to complete the puzzle this morning, while I was chatting with my youngest sister. She and Mother were here for an overnight visit. Mother's dementia is deepening, so we are trying to have her visit while she is still able to travel.

For once I understood the theme before I came to visit the blog! I was able to complete the puzzle without Googling, with a little red letter help.

I hope you all have a good day. We're looking forward to a little warmer weather here!

Zhouqin (C.C.) Burnikel said...

Check Publisher Specification for details. Your black square is just within LA Times limit. 72 word count sounds like a themeless.

What are the herbs that you use every day?

Al & Bill G,
Thanks for the explanation on PARABOLA. I am still confused though. Is the form of St. Louis Arch is parabola or inverted catenary?

Clear Ayes,
You've been really missed.

Martin said...


It's got a theme, which is okay because themed puzzles are allowed up to 78 words. The problem is that Rich Norris wants people to provide a Social Security Number and I don't have one because I've never worked in the U.S. It would be simpler if I could just contact somebody here who has submitted puzzles before: I could send him or her the puzzle and clues and he or she can reinburse me if it actually gets chosen. Very, very unlikely I suppose, although the grid has room for improvement (I can add up to six more words and thereby reduce the number of black squares) so you never know.


Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, CC and friends. While I didn't much care for the NTH theme, I found some punny clues scattered throughout this puzzle that put a smile on my face.

I especially liked: Creature that divides to multiply (14A): AMOEBA. We see amoeba alot in the puzzles, but I liked this clue.

Canine Coat (5D): ENAMEL was another good clue, as was White House (80D): WHITE HOUSE.

I can never remember any thing relating to the Time Machine, even thought we see it often.

BUNCOS was a new word for me, too. Doubt I'll ever use it.

It is 44F this morning. Finally Fall has arrived. It feels so good, especially since last week at this time is was well over 80 and Seriously Muggy.

Good Sunday, All.

Al said...

C.C., BillG is correct, The STL Arch is an inverted catenary, the shape of a hanging chain, which is not a parabola, but a similar shape. I'm in good company being fooled, though, Galileo also thought that shape was a parabola...

Good pun with Ernie Els in your writeup.

Redi/Ready yes, an intentional misspelling to create a product brand name. People who do that have a lot to answer for, causing children to have a difficult time learning to spell correctly. I personally boycott such products, (if they can't even spell it correctly, what else might be wrong with it?) although it probably doesn't have much of an impact if they don't know about it.

And, technically, aliens do exist. Any person residing in a country where he/she is not a citizen is an alien. Although I realize that's not what you meant.

Lemonade714 said...

I have to believe solvers will not be complaining about this being too easy. There are just enough skillful puns, and semi-obscure clues to make it fun.

Life's coincidences continue to amaze me, as FIDDLER ON THE ROOF pops up right after I was fortunate enough to see Topol is his
Farewell Tour
as Tevya. If you want to see a wonderful performance by an ageless (74!) star, go and see the show.

C.C., while the beautiful voice of Joan Baez concluded the first night at Woodstock, Bobby Dylan was nowhere to be found.

Happy Sunday.

Al said...

OK, I'm being pedantic here, but I dislike being inaccurate or giving out the wrong impression. It turns out that suspension bridge cables do form parabolas, not catenaries, even though they are hanging cables.

The difference is that a catenary is a hanging shape with only its own weight to take into account, itself only acted on by gravity (thus an ideal shape for a free-standing arch), while a suspension bridge is also supporting the weight of the horizontal bridge deck via connection of the vertical cables. Here is yet another type of bridge with a parabola shape in its structure. This time it is used for vertical loading instead of suspension.

windhover said...

there's nothing wrong with being pedantic (using the definition : "a formalist or precisionist in teaching"), especially when you're most often correct, which in my experience you are.
In the example cited, the distinction is important. And, as people often say is the case here on the blog, I learned something from it. I enjoy learning. Those who don't (say for example people who get their information about current events from Fox News) can just skip over.

Argyle said...

Good Morning, All.

Here we have a double parabolic bridge; quite rare. Historical marker.

Moon said...

Good Morning!
Enjoyable puzzle though I could only do half of the puzzle in Master mode.
Switched to regular and red letters helped me complete. Got the theme from NTH and managed to get the theme answers easily. However the non-theme answers baffled me: The crossing of BNAI and DIAS, JIBED and IVIE, CRUZ and BAEZ.
Fav clues: Canine Coat? (I was thinking of dogs) and Take Pieces from?
Hatha Yoga is the most popular.
Bikram Yoga (yoga in a heated room) is also gaining popularity..I have never tried it though.

Late for my yoga class...gotta run.

Have a great Sunday, everyone!
Go Giants against Saints.

Anonymous said...

Martin; before sending your puzzle to Rich or another publisher, you should try to have an experienced constructor look it over because they know what feedback you get.
Did you check CCs links for pages with hints and links about constructing? Some of your many questions are answered there or link you to other forums where they have been asked and answered before, except maybe the soc.sec. question but Gareth Bain is from SouthAfrica so youre not the only foreigner. Good luck.

Bill G. said...

CC asked: "Al & Bill G,
Thanks for the explanation on PARABOLA. I am still confused though. Is the form of St. Louis Arch is parabola or inverted catenary?"

As Al said, it's a catenary though there's no way to tell by just looking at it. The shapes of the two curves are very similar though the mathematical equations that describe them are different.

Bill G. said...

This puzzle was about the right level of difficulty and enjoyable to solve for my wife and I.

Al's complaint about the intentional misspelling of a product's name reminded me of our discussion of variant spelling yesterday. If I were a crossword constructor, I would like variant spelling because it would give me more choices. But otherwise, I would always choose a preferred spelling over a variant. If people misspell or misuse words enough, it ends up in general usage and in the dictionary. But I would always try to opt for the preferred spelling or usage. Incidentally, I wonder if Barry Silk and Rich discussed yesterday's use of SO instead of SOL and UKELELE instead of UKULELE? If so, why not include "Var." as an aside? Oh well, I know it's not that big of a deal and I know it's a compromise in an effort to construct an interesting puzzle.

BTW, the grammar I used in my first sentence is incorrect but it's becoming so commonplace on TV shows and occasionally in print that I'm guessing some of you didn't notice it. :>) Pretty soon it may just be considered an acceptable variant. I heard Barack Obama include something about "for Michelle and I" in one of his informal TV discussions.

Go Dodgers!

Hahtoolah said...

BillG: I can assure you that most of us noticed your grammatically incorrect sentence structure. I can only wonder why you so proudly pointed out your error instead of correcting it.

Anonymous said...

The cheap pot shots at conservatives,i.e. those who watch Fox News,are getting a bit old. I realize that most of you on this blog are liberal Democrats, but we conservatives are also in the audience. I don't recall anyone taking shots at liberals. Just a thought.

Bill G. said...

Hatool said: BillG: I can assure you that most of us noticed your grammatically incorrect sentence structure. I can only wonder why you so proudly pointed out your error instead of correcting it."

I was trying to make the point (apparently badly) about how common that usage is becoming lately. So I used it myself as a little joke.

Anonymous said...

Hello all.

What is the algebraic equation for
a catenary curve? My 50 year old
Analytic Geometry Text book doesn't have one. ????


DR John H said...

I remember reading about the "bunco squad" as a kid -- maybe in the Dick Tracy comic strip.

Can't remember ever hearing about it elsewhere in my 67 years!

Bill G. said...

eddyB asked: "What is the algebraic equation for a catenary curve? My 50 year old Analytic Geometry Text book doesn't have one."

It's been too long ago for me and the math involved is complicated. I know a parabola has a pretty straight-forward alebraic equation, the simplest version is y = x^2. A catenary doesn't come from an algebraic equation but involves a transcendental equation and hyperbolic geometry.

MJ said...

Good afternoon, C.C. and all.

I found this to be an enjoyable Sunday puzzle with some very clever clues, most of which have already been mentioned. My favorite is "Canine coat?" Just couldn't get my mind off dogs. I had to reach into the cobwebs of my mind for some of the answers, but as there were no crossings of two complete unknowns, I had no empty squares to fill in with guesses at the end.

C.C.-Thank you for a fine write-up. Sometimes I get a correct answer from the perps but have no idea what it means (i.e. ACC) and get the explanation from your notes, and also learn fascinating facts such as that the "U" in U THANT means "mister."

Enjoy the day, folks!

embien said...

15:28 today. The easiest Saturday ever is followed by one of the easiest Sunday puzzles ever. The theme, hidden NTH, doesn't do a lot for me personally, but it was well done and at least the NTH's were all split between two words (as they should be in a simple theme like this).

I had put in FLYER instead of FLIER and it took me a while to find that error (always tougher to do when the puzzle is large). Never heard of that IVIE person before, but the crosses were all good.

The most objectionable made-up word for me is Miller LITE. I hate, hate, hate that. I only drink microbrews on those rare occasions when I drink beer (I'm a confirmed red wine drinker). I think the only way I'd consider having a Miller LITE would be if there were nothing else to drink.

Anonymous said...


Sgt Friday used to work the day watch out of the Bunco Squad.

Thanks Bill G for sending me in the right direction. Found the equation in my 50 year old Calculus
Book. If anyone is remotely interested, it is: y = a cosh x/a

bye, eddyB

windhover said...

Anonymous @1:27,
here's another thought:
if you go back and reread my post, you will notice that I said nothing about conservatives, liberals, republicans , or democrats. I am personally none of the above. But it is generally acknowledged that Fox News is biased in the extreme, and my view of people who adhere blindly to any ideology, without attempting to learn anything new, are incurious fools.
On the other hand, you do not think enough of your opinion to sign your name to it. Until you can do that, either skip
over things you don't want to read or hear, and/or

windhover said...

One more thing, anonymous,
"Most of you here" are not ANY one thing. There is at least one of everything here. I speak only for myself. Don't paint anyone else here with my brush. You may well be a "ditto head" ; we are not. If you can't or won't think for yourself, we can. And that includes the so-called conservatives and the so-called liberals. These are thinking people. Neither Fox nor its liberal leaning counterparts tell us what to believe.

Lemonade714 said...

I am curious why it is deduced that this group is primarily liberal democrats, as I have seen a really varied political landscape. Certainly Windhover is not the first person to suggest Fox News is slanted to reflect its owner’s views. I also did not think this was “easy” as there were many nice clues, such as : One-named Tejano singer: SELENA, Dylan's "Ballad of __ Man": A THIN, "__ see it my way ...": Beatles lyric: TRY TO, Scams: BUNCOS, Pakistan's second-largest city: LAHORE, White Rose __-Tea: REDI, It's bad to be behind them: BARS, Jazz singer Anderson: IVIE, "Portia is Brutus' __, HARLOT, Mother of the Titans: GAEA, Tennis great Becker: BORIS, and the tricky ones: Canine coat?: ENAMEL, Crude cartel: OPEC. I also am amazed our little group has not only lost much of the DF, but much of the spirit. Are we all so busy now? We have little challenges politically and intellectually, and we are not rising to the bait. Off to work, time for me to SFTU

Hahtoolah said...

Windhover, Glad to see you back. I missed your voice this past week.

Dennis said...

Finally a chance to sit and read the blog. Very enjoyable puzzle, lots of fresh cluing; definitely a fun solve. Great puns. I still do hope whoever said that the difficulty will be increasing later in the week, is correct.

Windhover, my friend, great to see you back; you've been missed. I will, however, disagree with you on one thing: the blog, IMHO, most definitely has a liberal bent. Maybe it's because liberals tend to be more outspoken than conservatives. I don't find anything wrong with that as each blog will tend to have its own flavor, and no one's really pushing an agenda. I too thought yours was a shot at conservatives.

For the record, I'm staunchly independent; my views are my personal 'best of' of each side's issues, with close to an equal number of left- and right-side views. I wouldn't believe anything I heard on Fox News any more than I'd believe anything Nancy Pelosi said. I think this blog does as good a job as any in keeping from sharply skewing one way or the other.

Anyway, just my thoughts, and we all know what they're worth.

Boomer said...

Hello All,
Boomer the bowler here. Just wanted to let you know that CC is not feeling well today and hasn't been online since early this morning. :( If you have something pending, please be patient. Knowing her, she'll be back out here early Monday morning.

Argyle said...

Hey, thanks for the heads-up, Boomer. I'll try to do an extra good blog that won't need any editing.

Dennis said...

Boomer, please tell C.C. we all wish her a quick recovery.

KittyB said...

C.C., I'm so sorry to hear that you're not feeling well. I hope, as Boomer says, that you will be back tomorrow morning.

In response to your question about herbs, I suspect that I use basil, either fresh or dried, more than any other herb. In the summer I use a lot of dill. Flat-leafed parsley, thyme, sage and chives would be next in line.

My mother used to put "savory" in everything, but I've never been able to discover whether it was the summer or winter form of the plant.

I love the scent of rosemary, but don't care for the taste. I save it to use in antibacterial sprays, or pet fresheners.

Lavender is probably my favorite herb for scent.

My least favorite herb right now would be cilantro.

Right now, I'm taking ecchinacea for a "boomer" of a cough that blew up overnight. I do grow purple cone flower, but I don't harvest it for medicine. I buy the gel caps instead.

I hope that you're feeling better. Thank Boomer for letting us know you were under the weather.

Jeanne said...

Thank you Dennis. Well said from another "Staunch Independent.

windhover said...

"just my thoughts, and we all know what they're worth".

Actually, quite a lot. I've read enough of your posts to know there are probably things we disagree about. I have also read enough to know that what you think and say is always well thought out and reasoned. No one has opened your head and poured in some received knowledge. I respect that. People, liberals and conservatives alike, who only read things (books, magazines, newspapers, etc) that reinforce what they already believe eventually devolve into navel gazing. If a person never has occasion to change their views or beliefs over the course of their life, they either were very prescient or are stagnated.
Of course, if it turns out that you believe George W. Bush was a great president, we may at least have to arm wrestle someday.
Thanks for the kind words. You know the feeling is mutual.

Andrea said...

Just now having a chance to do the puzzle. We were out enjoying a beautiful sunny day here in Madison. Lots of outdoor playtime, plus a nice fire in the fireplace inside to watch football. Finally a nice fall day!

CC, hope you're feeling better. We've all had the ick here in our house, glad to be done with it.

To anonymous from yesterday: when I make coconut rice, I substitute half the amount of water or liquid called for with coconut milk, and follow the rest of the directions for whatever kind of rice I'm using. Sometimes jasmine, sometimes basmati, sometimes brown. Occasionally, I'll add a little lime juice and cilantro at the very end, depending on what I'm having with the rice. I just read an article last weekend about cooking with tea; one of the people interviewed mentioned using green tea instead of water with her jasmine rice. Sounds pretty good to me. (I also sometimes use chicken stock instead of water.)

Time to get the bedtime routine going - Dora the Explorer is just about over...

Dennis said...

Jeez, maybe we should get a room.

Seriously, thanks for that - you know the feeling is mutual; I have the utmost respect for your opinions and enjoy your philisophy on a myriad of different subjects.

And no, the arm wrestling, while it would be fun, won't be necessary...

Valerie said...

Another enjoyable puzzle today. I caught on to the theme early on and didn't have much trouble.

KittyB, your comment about cilantro made me smile. I'm not sure if you were referring to the taste but my husband and I are not fond of it. We got a kick out of an add in a local weekly paper, when someone put an ad under a category title something like "You Ticked Me Off" It said something like "Cilantro, I hate you. You taste like soap. Get out of my food!"


Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

I am very late arriving today.

Nice, clever puzzle today. I had three or four blanks at the end, when I gave up.

C.C. Hope you're feeling better soon.

Me spoil granchildren? Never!
Well, maybe a little . . .
We're very blessed. They're good, smart, talented kids, and a lot of fun to be with.

I'm very tired today, for no particular reason. Had my son's 3 kids o/n. They are 9, 11, and almost 13. We played a few games in the evening, then watched some of the first season of Rockie and Bullwinkle on DVD. It's all new to me - I must have missed season 1 first time around.

Everyone slept well. After breakfast we went to a cider mill, fed the ducks in the stream (they don't care much for pop-corn, but love quackers. Go figure?!?) bought some cider and donuts and got them home in time for Lexie to get to her dance class.

Back home, fell asleep watching the Lions get shut out.

NO dropped 48 pts on the Giants today. Yikes. Eagles clipped by the Raiders? NE totally embarrased the TITANS. GAEA must be in tears. Bears and Falcons in a good battle, but I'm probably heading for bed.

JzB the Pottsylvania Polka trombonist

PJB-Chicago said...

C. C., get well and feel better. Boomer, thank you for updating us.

Very independent here when it comes to politics, choice of favorite sports teams, and best place to get pizza in Chicago. Enjoyed seeing recent comments above re: independent thinking:

Since C. C. has asked us to stay away from discussions on politics/religion, so what follows has to do with PIZZA. Maybe it applies elsewhere

It's a pity to see so many people so polarized into "Us" versus "them, " where "they" are by "definition" the "enemy." Yes, there are enemies in the world, let's not be naive, but the next-door neighbor with whom you disagree about thin crust versus pan pizza, or trade with Cuba, probably shouldn't be lumped into the "enemy" pile.

Voices in the public forum are getting very shrill. Not a lot of listening is going on. The quality of actual thought about the (pizza) issues of the day seems to have been turned into yelling, bullet points, and bad manners.

To exemplify, with what's now a moot point, just because I wasn't in favor of Chicago hosting the Olympics in '16 doesn't mean someone can automatically guess whether I prefer square pieces or wedges of pizza, or even who I may vote for in the next election for gov. or Senate. I read several national FOOD columnists every day--especially ones who I may often disagree with but who think deeply about the issues and don' t serve up easy answers or predigested factoids. Am a fan! Some writers, who I may agree with more often, do veer off in unexpected directions. Squid on pizza?...Great, enjoy it, but none for me. Without the interplay of ideas and facts and questions and dialog and history, my own thinking would be stunted and unchangeable. I would still, um, be buying cases of frozen pizza.

I liked the puzzle a lot, but used it to wrap up a broken lightbulb so without notes I can't remember much. Southern half was much easier than the north. "Crude cartel" was clever and IVIE Anderson out of my range. SOANDSOS was a lucky guess. The link between "Canine coat" and ENAMEL took me forever to get, but AHA finally hit!

Pretty nice run of puzzles the past three days. See you all Mon. or Tuesday.

Anonymous said...

Good evening everyone.

Bill G. I totally agree with Hahtool's comment about your grammatical statement.

My last name is Light, and it truly galls me when I am asked how to spell it. I guess "lite" has entered too many heads as correct.

Boomer, thanks for telling us about C.C., and I hope she feels better soon. For her sake, not only that of the blog.

Good night and sweet dreams.

kazie said...

Hi everyone.
I think yesterday was record for me in that I didn't get time to even look in here, despite doing the puzzle early in the day. I too found it extremely easy for a Saturday, but a relatively fun solve. A Barry Silk couldn't be otherwise.

Then today too was very easy for Sunday. I took just over 30 minutes, which is very fast for my slow typing skills. Especially liked ENAMEL. Got the NTH degree early and used nothing but a couple of red letter assists and perps.

I remember BUNCO squads from old TV shows but that's it.

My newsletter's back is broken. All that's left is the checking and tweaking, then printing and the mailing labels on 1100+ copies.

Sorry to hear of C.C.'s illness. Echinacea is good for repiratory infections but I also take Lysine daily for the immune system and I rarely get sick, even during the years of exposure to kids, but then I think teachers do build up ummunity through exposure to everything.

Bill G,
You touched on one of my pet peeves. It drives me nuts that educated people can't tell when to use a subject or object form of common pronouns. We're lucky that English has so few declined forms compared with other western languages, so why is it so hard to use them correctly? Common usage should not be the standard of correctness in my opinion. Ignorance is no excuse in other matters--the law for example.

Anonymous said...

Never heard of "bunco"? A staple term of hard-boiled detectives. E.G. "we were working the day shift out of Bunco. The boss is captain Gannon. My name's Friday. I'm a cop."

Boca=mouth? When combined with "raton" (mouse) isn't it mouse trap?

The Times puzzle is usually over my head. So grateful for your web site. Thanks.


Anonymous said...

PJB Chicago: great essay. Well said and am in total agreement. Especially since my DH and I cannot discuss politics or religion since we disagree strongly on both.

Hahtoolah said...

CC: I am sorry to hear you are ill and I do hope you are feeling better soon. I really enjoy your commentary. I echo MJ's statement that I sometimes get the correct answers from filling in the other blanks, but have no idea why a response is correct until I read your explanation.

Annette said...

Martin: Congratulations and good luck with your puzzle!

Lemonade: My sister was at that show last night! I'm glad it was so enjoyable.

Dennis and Windhover: Too bad you live so far apart. I think a lot of people on this blog would enjoy seeing that arm wrestling match! Imagine the bets that would be "laid" on it... A little DF-ness to lighten the mood around here these days! I'd hate to see how intent things get around Feb/March when cabin fever sets in!

Annette said...

A little story related to variant spellings: Many years ago while job hunting, I'd consistently see a particular ad in the paper for a COBALT programmer. The correct spelling of the programming language is COBOL, so I refused to apply somewhere that couldn't spell it right. COBALT isn't a variant, and reminded me of the awful treatments they gave my grandmother when I was little that made her so sick.

Eventually, the unemployment office sent me there for an interview. If you don't go, they won't give you money... I hated the owners of the mom and pop shop and the physical environment, so I declined the job offer, even though it was more money than my previous job.

Unemployment didn't take kindly to that, so they called us both in for a hearing. Within 5 minutes of meeting the owner, the mitigator accepted my decision!

The funny part of it was that one of my reasons for not liking it was that the place was dreary and rundown, looking like a govt. agency, which elicited a laugh from the mitigator. About 6 years later, I accepted a job with the County as a public servant, and have been there almost 17 years!

Bill G. said...

Kazie said: "You touched on one of my pet peeves. It drives me nuts that educated people can't tell when to use a subject or object form of common pronouns. We're lucky that English has so few declined forms compared with other western languages, so why is it so hard to use them correctly? Common usage should not be the standard of correctness in my opinion. Ignorance is no excuse in other matters--the law for example."

Right. But apparently I tried to make that point in a way that seemed to give offence to a couple of folks. Sorry. It wasn't intended.

Annette said...

Doesn't somebody here play the game Bunco? I thought they mentioned it recently, but I don't remember who it was... I've never played it. Does it relate to the Scam definition at all - where you lie or scam the other players?

windhover said...

That's a great idea, but if I understand correctly the stakes you are suggesting, and if I know Dennis as I think I do, I'm betting he and I (me and him? It doesn't seem like a good day to be grammatically careless) might decide to save our strength, call off the match, and divide (or possibly share) the loot. We're both pretty competitive, but we're not fools. We have both been known to lay a bet, and occasionally, a bettor.

I don't even like pizza, but when confronted with it will sometimes take a bite, sometimes more than I can chew.
I liked your essay, too

does this help at all?

Anonymous said...

My Sunday October 18, 2009 Los Angelese Times puzzle is titled Vowel Play by Merl Reagle.
It sounds quite a bit different that what was was being talked about. Are there different puzzles depending on region???

PJB-Chicago said...

Good evening! I have heard of Bunco but never played it. Same goes for Euchre; but played lots of cribbage on winter nights growing up. I don't remember the rules, now, but definitely remember hitting the age when adults stopped letting me win! It was about sixth grade and it became "winner takes all."
Wikipedia has a whole page on Bunco, but it's not very clear on the rules.

Kazie et al.: my grammar and punctuation are far from perfect, so it's hard for me to come down too hard on other peoples' errors. That said, I am often shocked that some of my colleagues/staff members cannot write a simple memo or business letter without serious lapses in subject/verb agreement or without differentiating between "their" and "there" or between "your" and "you're." The battle over "its" and "it's" was lost long ago. I'm referring to well-educated people with degrees from "good" universities.

Despite proofreading, I know that I slip up often while posting here and elsewhere. Some of my French friends write me in beautiful, expressive English and they don't make the errors listed above. They may mix American spelling
and idioms with those from England, but those are very forgivable mistakes. When those same people text me in French, WOW, they resort to lots of words that take me hours to decipher! Keske c? Kwa? Ki es? Gottit?

Back to pizza, for real. In Chicago, no matter how long you've known someone and how much they trust you, you can say two things that will forever change how they look at you:
1. I don't care for deep-dish pizza.
2. I put ketchup, not neon green relish and bright yellow "mustard" on my hotdogs.
True story!

Argyle said...

This is the syndicated L.A. Times puzzle. It does not appear in the actual newspaper, but is available to other papers and online. It is distributed by Tribune Media Services, I believe.

kazie said...

Bill G,
I did realize you were on the side of the grammatically correct.

I have to admit to being tired and having made a couple of typos in my last as well, we all do that. But I was highly amused by the French texting shortcuts you quoted. With your French background, do you put mayo on fries?

PJB-Chicago said...

Yes, I do put mayo on fries, at times. Just a bit. Aioli is even better!
I forget if you mentioned that the newsletter you're editing is for the (am going to get this name wrong, most likely) AATF (Amer. Assoc. of Teachers of French). If so, please know that they were kind enough to award me with a scholarship many years ago, for which I was--and am--very thankful. If not, I still commend you for taking on the responsibility of putting together a newslettter for any organization. It's a thankless task, but seeing one's words in printed form is a bit of a thrill.

Three of my lifelong heros have been teachers of French, and only one of those was a "native speaker." I can say, without any doubt, that I am much better equipped to teach Italian, French, or even Swedish, than English. I learned the first three languages by dint of years and years of sweat and work, and the latter is my native tongue. I pale, by comparison, to the three wonderful teachers who taught me French. You may know or have met two of them.
Bon Courage!

Jeannie said...

Jeannie here, can't sleep on the eve of the foodshow...Especially now after reading the blog. I have pictures of Dennis and Windhover wrestling it out with Lemonade officiating.

Hmmm, maybe now I can sleep. See you all Wednesday.

Annette said...

Speaking of using the wrong words - sorry, I meant intense, not intent in my 9:52 pm post. My mind must've still been on the wrestling match. Although I'm sure they'd have been concentrating intently on holding their ground.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

The cheap pot shots at conservatives,i.e. those who watch Fox News,are getting a bit old. I realize that most of you on this blog are liberal Democrats, but we conservatives are also in the audience. I don't recall anyone taking shots at liberals. Just a thought.

I'd like for you to come and show when liberals on this blog have made snide comments about Fox News or conservatives. Is there some truth or you just blowing smoke? I think politics are boring nothing ever gets done because both sides are too busy complaining about what the other did. Congress and the Senate both sides of the aisle act like 2 yr olds instead of working together to accomplish something they work against each other. We will never have a working health care system in this country, until the democrats sell out the trial lawyers lobby and the republicans sell out the insurance & pharmaceutical lobby's. Both parties have been drowned in sea of money that they have forgotten that they serve at the pleasure of the people. People should not fear the government the government should fear the people. The French people are not afraid of their government. They take to the street in mass protests to get the government back on track. Compared to the U.S. where money talks.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the welcome!
I actually completed this puzzle with only about four Google helps. This was a first for me. Often I cannot understand the theme, even after the puzzle is all completed.
Canine Coat and White House were the best "of course!" moments.
Audrey in Ingersoll, Ontario