Nov 9, 2009

Monday November 9, 2009 Barry Silk

Theme: Hocus Pocus

20A. Toy that might answer "It is decidedly so": MAGIC EIGHT BALL.

35A. Sly inquiry: TRICK QUESTION.

51A. Cesar Millan dog-training apparatus: ILLUSION COLLAR. Unknown to me. He is The Dog Whisperer. His wife's name is Ilusion Wilson Millan, so is the collar an allusion to her?

If it is Monday, then I must be Argyle.

Alright! A Barry Silk for a Monday. Sixties music and muscle cars. And just short a 'V' from a pangram. Three Z's. Plenty of lively multiple words too, esp Down entries. Neat to have END (64A. Finish) complete the grid.

For those of you that may never have had a Magic 8 Ball, it has little sayings that float up to the viewing window after you turn the ball over a few times. Like all seers, it is often cryptic. The Wikipedi article has the list of the 20 standard answers. Plus, there are several specialty 8 Balls out there.


1. Sends a duplicate to, for short: CCS. Carbon Copy, used as a verb. (or as a shout-out to our leader.)

4. Half-baked, as ideas: CRAZY.

9. Tended: SAW TO.

14. Fink: RAT. Both verb and noun.

15. 3:1 or 7:2, e.g.: RATIO.

17. Thurman who played June in "Henry & June": UMA. The 1990 film was loosely based on the book Henry and June by our old friend, French diarist Anaïs Nin.

18. Maine college town: ORONO. Hi Mainiac!

19. Improvise lines: AD LIB.

23. Pub orders: BREWS

24. W. Hemisphere defense gp.: OAS. Organization of American States

25. "Cats" poet's monogram: TSE. T S Eliot.

27. Average: SO-SO.

28. Ancient moralist: AESOP.

31. Despair's opposite: HOPE.

32. Knight fight: JOUST. A la Don Quixote, though he tilts at the windmills.

34. Imus's medium: RADIO. Don Imus, shock jock.

40. Charlatan: FAKER. A good entry for today.

41. Helen of Troy's mother: LEDA. Helen's father is Zeus.

42. OneZip bag maker: HEFTY. Rival of Glad.

48. Cell "messenger," briefly: RNA. RiboNucleic Acid, a single chain, while DeoxyriboNucleic Acid is a double chain, the famous double helix. (Was in yesterday's puzzle.)

49. Critic Reed: REX. Film critic.

50. Barbecue equipment brand: WEBER.

58. Cavity fillers' org.: ADA. American Dental Association.

59. Crooner Mel: TORME. "The Velvet Fog". Silky!

60. November birthstone: TOPAZ. Pure topaz is colorless and transparent but is usually tinted by impurities; aren't we all?

61. Meditative sect: ZEN. Derived from Chinese Chán, literally, "quietude".

63. Covered with marsh vegetation: SEDGY.


1. Bread bits: CRUMBS.

2. Chevy muscle car: CAMARO.

3. Puts on, as a show: STAGES.

6. Yours, in Paris: A TOI.

7. Criticize in a witty way: ZING.

8. Classic chocolate drink brand: YOO-HOO. Yogi likes it; I didn't.

9. Picket line crossers: SCABS.

11. Affluent: WELL-TO-DO.

12. Sudden and precipitous downturn: TAILSPIN.

21. Pacific island on which a memorable WWII photo was taken: IWO JIMA. !

22. Audible dance style: TAP.

26. Job listing initials: EEO. Equal Employment Opportunity

28. Northern diving bird: AUK. The Great Auk is extinct.

29. Attorney's abbr.: ESQ. Esquire. Also, Esqr.

30. Fill, as with padding: STUFF.

31. Styling goo: HAIR GEL. For some, only Dapper Dan will do.

33. Military training acad.: OCS. Officer Candidate Schools.

34. Hwy.: RTE. Highway - Route

35. Miley Cyrus, for one: TEEN IDOL. Her ticket sales are not that hot any more.

36. Ready-for-the-worst status: RED ALERT.

38. Wild blue yonder: SKY. Nice clue.

39. Camera type, for short: SLR. Single-Lens Reflex.

42. "__ So Fine": 1963 #1 hit: HE'S. By The Chiffons.

43. Is: EXISTS.

45. On fire: ABLAZE. I originally had AFLAME but for a Barry Silk puzzle, I needed ABLAZE.

46. Hard to move: LEADEN.

47. Quick trip that's "run": ERRAND.

49. Foot-long stick, often: RULER.

50. Reeling from a blow: WOOZY.

52. Tibetan priest: LAMA. One 'L'. Literally "guru". Dalai means "ocean". Dallai Lama, "Ocean Teacher", means a teacher who is spiritually as great as the ocean.

53. Native Nebraskan: OTOE. The clue may not be accurate; they moved around a lot but they always show up in crosswords.

54. "Law & Order" gp.: NYPD. New York(city) Police Department

55. Jagged rock: CRAG. Like this picture. Those mountain goats do not seem to have tails, do they?

56. "Let's call __ day!": IT A.

Answer grid.



Dennis said...

Good morning, Argyle, C.C. and gang - when I first saw Barry Silk's name this morning, I thought I was in for a mental workout. Turned out to be the easiest puzzle of his I've ever done, just under 4 minutes. However, I'd love to see the original.

Still a lot of fun, though. Great clues, only a 'V' away from a pangram, and a good theme. It was nice seeing 'Iwo Jima', the site of one of the Marine Corps' greatest victories. Not sure about 'OCS' being a training academy, although maybe technically it is.

Argyle, thanks for the info on the old magic 8-ball; I never knew how many answers it had. And yes, the Illusion Collar is indeed named after Cesar's wife. Honestly, when I first heard the term used, I thought he did something to make the dog think it had a collar on, but didn't. One of many reasons I shouldn't be allowed to have sharp instruments.

Today is Chaos Never Dies Day.

Today's Words of Wisdom: "If you believe everything you read, better not read." -- Japanese proverb

From the Mensa Invitational, where members were asked to take any word, alter it by changing, adding or subtracting one letter, and creating a new definition. (Some of these have been seen before, but we've got a lot of new people here)

-- Sarchasm - The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.

-- Osteopornosis - A degenerate disease.

-- Inoculatte - To take coffee intravenously when you are running late.

More to follow.

Argyle said...

Thank you, Dennis, for the info on the Illusion Collar. I wondered if the guy was selling people the Emperor's Clothes.

Dennis said...

No, that's what infomercials are for.

Off to the gym.

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

I wasn't too CRAZY about SEDGY and was surprised to see LEDA in a Monday grid, but otherwise this was a perfectly fine Monday puzzle. I originally had TEENAGER for 35D and was going to comment that the clue would make no sense if somebody accessed it in the archive years from now, but then I realized my mistake...

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, CC, Argyle, and Friends. I thought this was a tad more difficult than the usual Monday puzzle (but I'm not complaining).

I got stuck on CRAZY. I wanted to be more formal than A TOI, and I was thinking of NESTLE as a classic chocolate drink brand. Ah well ...

Some good clues, though. I liked BREWS instead of the expected Beers. Also, I liked RATIO and RADIO in the same puzzle.

ILLUSION COLLAR was a complete unknown. I figured it out because I had keyed on to the theme.

Why do you guys brag about how quickly you finish the puzzles? Do you brag about how quickly you finish other activities as well?

QOD: There would be no society if living together depended upon understanding each other. ~ Eric Hoffer

g8rmomx2 said...

Hi c.c. and all:

Fun puzzle, always love to see a Barry Silk puzzle. No problems except I had Beer at first which made it Iro Jima, lol!

Have a great day everyone!

Barry G. said...

Why do you guys brag about how quickly you finish the puzzles? Do you brag about how quickly you finish other activities as well?

Speaking just for myself, I never "brag" about how quickly I finish a puzzle. I do, however, occasionally mention my solving time in order to provide a sense of a puzzle's relative difficulty compared to other puzzles. If that comes across as bragging, well, all I can say is that it's more a matter of interpretation than it is of intent.

Martin said...

I came here with AFLAME for ABLAZE and I was wondering why MEN was clued as "Meditative sect" and I decided that MEN was short for mennonite and that WEFER was a brand of barbeque! I had trouble in that corner because I started with GUST instead of GALE and STATIC instead of LEADEN. It also took me a while to understand why "Tended" meant SAW TO: my first thought was BIAS'D. :)


Dennis said...

Hahtool, Barry said it perfectly; listing my time occasionally is more a matter of establishing relativity than 'bragging'. I believe most here understand that. As Barry also said, I think it's more a matter of interpretation than intent, but if it bothers you, I'm sure we 'people' would stop.

kazie said...

I had Martin's problem with WEFER and MEN. Don't know why I couldn't think of WEBER. Otherwise it was fine. Nice to see some imaginative clues and answers on a Monday. But I'd never heard of a magic eight ball or the illusion collar, despite knowing who Cesar Millan is.

Hahtoolah said...

Ouch! I clearly hit a nerve this morning. Some types of activities just shouldn't be rushed.

Annette said...

I don't have a problem with people posting their times.

When I first started coming here, I was intimidated seeing the quick times posted. It wasn't long before I realized that the times were for comparison against their own previous times, not anyone else's.

While I don't want to announce it every day, I've found that my completion times are 3-4 times longer than those posted. I could make excuses like distractions I had, or being the slow reader I know I am.

But I'm really just happy to be completing the puzzles on my own, especially when a year ago I'd have given up on a puzzle that was half blank after the first pass. But now I persevere and usually nearly or fully solve it on my own, before coming here to learn the stories behind the fills.

Last Friday, I was busy and couldn't focus on the puzzle, so I gave up on it. Once I came here, I was so mad at myself because I saw that it probably was doable (and that the double letters I saw WERE correct!), if I'd only been patient with it.

When other newcomers sound intimidated too, I usually try to let them know that nobody is competing with anybody else here. I don't want anyone to give up.

I view the times I see as interesting guidelines, but don't take them seriously. It's like the ratings for Soduku. I've solved some level 4's, but not some level 1's.

The same way some people will comment that a puzzle's easy, then others come in and say how difficult it is. Everyone has their own opinion and different life experiences to pull from.

And now I'm late for work... I just had to get my 2 cents worth in before my usual nighttime posts.

Al said...

I don't usually recommend war movies, but if any of you have not seen "Letters From Iwo Jima" directed by Clint Eastwood, it is very moving and an insight that there are (at least) two sides to everything.

kazie said...

I was glad to see your last comment. I like to savor the flavor of some of the puzzles, and don't ever race to the finish line. My times are regularly much longer than what we see here, but I do them over breakfast with the dog pleading to go out, DH getting ready to leave etc., so timing would be irrelevant. If I can be done before the coffee in my cup cools, I'm happy.

Dennis said...

Annette, you certainly said it better than either Barry or I; thanks.

Al, it truly is a great movie, but I'd suggest seeing Flags of Our Fathers first, for total context.

PJB-Chicago said...

Good morning everyone:
A nice start to the week. I tripped over Orono and Auk, even if we've seen them dozens of times. ZING was about fifth on my list of possible fills there, so I really should pay better attention to perps, because it should have been a gimme. I hope never to see Miley Cyrus in a puzzle again (g) and I read on Argyle's wikipedia that she has her own branded Magic 8 ball.
Too. much. Miley. for. one. day. !

Great clue for TAP. "Woozy" is a fun word. "Illusion collar" is such an evocative phrase, and was new to me. "Leaden" didn't race to the head of the line when filling out that section.

I don't track my times, because I rarely am JUST doing the puzzle. I am not here to compete with anyone else, just to get better. I don't mind seeing other people's times. We celebrate each other's successes here--like the first time someone does a Friday with no "assists." Faster isn't my own benchmark, but I think we each have our own yardstick. It's all relative. I am not afraid to abandon a puzzle if I get too bored or don't feel like spending too much time with Dr. Google. I am reliably slow but pretty accurate. I've not got the sense on this blog that we are competing for speed records, but I admire people who are preparing for timed tournaments. Remember, that I'm a person who routinely qnd willingly faces small crowds of people who may BOO me, and I don't mean ghostly trick or treaters!

New week, new hopes, new challenges.
Did I forget to say I am glad to be here?

Crockett1947 said...

Nice Barry Silk puzzle. Argyle, very nice write-up. Noticed there were lots of multiple words and then a plethora of Zs, so I looked at the author (I usually just plow right in, and don't see who constructed until about half finished), and then went looking for the pangram. No "V!" Pretty savvy.

@hahtool I wonder if the mention of times is bragging or just reporting. I think some people use their solving times as a barometer for their own growth. And, once you have the information, might just as well share it. (see barryg and dennis and annette)

@martin Isn't it amazing how we can convince ourselves that an incorrect answer is really right? I used to do that more than I do now, but your MEN is classic.

@kazie They probably didn't have the Magic 8 Ball in Oz.

@annette Thanks for the early morning post. I think it's spot on.

@pjb Love you, man!

Have an awesome Monday!

Carol2 said...

Hi Argyle, CC and Gang,

I usually have a more difficult time with Barry's clues, Or.....maybe I could use the excuse that I'm hung over after yesterday's puzzle!!

Did not know yours in French and never remember whether Orono is spelled with an E or an O. Had magic and ball but couldn't come up with eight.

Also, I don't mind people displaying their times. I asked Dennis about this one time and he explained that he competes with his own best times. My motto is "if it feels good - do it"!

Have a great day.

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, I think Barry Silk provided us with an excellent Monday level puzzle. The theme answers were lots of fun. It amazes me how constructors come up with new themes day after day (ON END?)

Of course, being a Silk puzzle, I was looking for at least one "Q", "X" and "Z". I was surprised when "V" didn't make an appearance for a pangram.

My favorite entries were TAILSPIN, IWO JIMA and RED ALERT.

I had one mistake that kept Smiley Pencil from showing up. I'm not a camera person, so SLD(39D) looked fine with DNA (48A). Next time I'll remember that there is an RNA too.

I'm not a timer either. Whether I'm working on the puzzle in the evening, or in the morning, the dog wants to go out, or the phone rings, or GAH just has to tell me about Phil Mickelson's latest round. (I understand he took it all at the HSBC Championship in Shanghai on Sunday. GAH was ecstatic.)

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

Nice job, Argyle. Yep, that's an ILLUSION allusion. TOPAZ is tinted by impurities. I am TAINTED by them.

Fun puzzle today. Harder than normal for a Monday. If I work a puzzle on the computer, I get the time. Usually 10 - 12 min early in the week. I am not swift in the a.m., and I'm awkward in the on-screen grid. And I prefer pencil. Printed off and did it that way today.

Thanks to those who gave me help on nailing A L to the Mac Dock. It worked.

Like the IDOL - IDEAL cross.

I also had AFLAME, and GUST, and had to JOUST with the SE corner.

I forgot to mention yesterday the Boston Globe puzzle had the same HEX - XENA cross as the LAT. Same clue for XENA, too.

Would a gonzo marsh be CRAZY SEDGY?

What is the TOPAZ impurity RATIO?

To CLEAR TORME, the velvet fog has to lift.

Who can say why YOOHOO EXISTS?

TAP dancers had the STAGES ABLAZE!

Speaking of ZEN: "If I have no ice cream, I will give it to you" is the ice cream koan.

JzB the butter pecan preferring trombonist

carol said...

Good Monday Morning Argyle and all...

Great puzzle, and like some others I was intimidated when I saw it was a 'Silky', but as I raced through the top half, I realized he was probably being easy on us because it is Monday.

Barry, Dennis and mostly Annette: great comments on timing (or not)your rate of completion. I rarely time myself and like Kazie, if I finish in the morning before my coffee is cool, I am a happy person.

I was please to see 23A as something other than ALE. I admit I put beers in there first until I looked at 2D and realized my error.

For some strange reason 36A gave me the most trouble. I had the 'question' filled in but could not think of 'trick', mostly because I was stuck at 36D (red alert). It all got straightened out.

More later, bikes are calling.

Bill G. said...

So what is inside the Magic 8-ball? It has 20 answers printed on a solid figure with 20 congruent sides called an icosahedron. That is one of the five Platonic solids; that is, solids made up of matching faces. The smallest is a tetrahedron with four equilateral triangles for faces (a triangular pyramid). Next is the familiar cube with six squares for faces. Then an octahedron with eight triangular faces. Then a dodecahedron with 12 pentagons for faces. Lastly, the icosahedron with 20 triangular faces. It has been proved that these are the only five solids figures that exist with matching faces.

I sure enjoyed my Magic 8-ball. It's one of those classic toys. What's the weather going to be today in Los Angeles? Reply hazy.

windhover said...

it seems the speedsolvers have missed the intent of your post. For what it's worth, "hitting a nerve" is what causes other worthwhlle pastimes to be concluded too quickly. When I was a younger let us say, "solver", it often helped to think about baseball. Now that I have reached a certain maturity, I find that it is no problem at all to concentrate totally on the activity itself, and take no notice of the passage of time, barking dogs, passing trains, etc.
So for my money, hit all the nerves you may.

Jeannie said...

I thought this was a very enjoyable Monday puzzle. I completed it with no outside help but did get Orono, OAS and sedgy through the perps. Sedgy is as new word for me today. I was glad to see TSE clued differently than the given “half a fly” clue. I also wanted DNA instead of RNA but threw caution to the wind and typed in RNA as that has been the answer lately it seems. My favorite clue today was “wild blue yonder” sky.

I thought Hahtool’s comment was trying to lead you guys down the DF path. At least that’s where my mind wandered. Who’d a thunk?

Hahtoolah said...

Thanks, Windhover. I figured someone out there would catch the drift of my comment. Maybe I struck too close to home. Yes, Jeannie, that is exactly where I was going.

DCannon said...

Had a problem with the middle bottom because I wanted "soggy" instead of "sedgy." I knew that made the downs wrong, but had to work on it to clear the error. Had to look up "Otoe" and once that was in, it cleared the rest.

I know it sounds strange, but I think most of my answers today came from fills! I knew them, but only after they were mostly filled in and then I had the "aha" moment.

Any time I mention a solving time, I'm (mentally, at least) comparing the relative difficulty of one puzzle to another - say Friday/Monday. I might not say that, but that is what I mean by even mentioning a time. My times are certainly nothing to brag about because I work it while watching TV, listening to hubby talk, eating breakfast, etc.

Dreary overcast day here, but no sign of rain.

PanGraham said...

Re CC's comment about being just the letter V shy of being a pangram today: If 39 down had been DVD instead of SLR, this xword would have crossed over from lipogram to pangram. Barry and Rich could have easily reclued the across answers for Deems, Veda, and Dna.

Annette: we're definitely on the same page. Personally, I find that the pleasure of doing xwords is the mental journey I take to arrive at the answers, and the speed in which I arrive is not particularly important. I do the puzzles to help jump start the old brain in the morning, to get an occasional chuckle, and maybe learn some new things in the process. Although I try to solve the LA daily xwords offline as much as possible (because I tend to remember stuff better when I work things out myself), I've always thought g-spotting the answers less a form of xword cheating than a way to hone research skills and learn something new.

Argyle said...

And now, just for DCannon, The Soggy Bottom Boys singing "You are my Sunshine".

Clear Ayes said...

Hahtool, Sorry for not paying enough attention, luckily both Windhover and Jeannie did. Dennis will probably be embarrassed when he realizes that he missed your drift. There are definitely times when speed is not, and should not, be a factor.

eddyB said...

Hello all.

Did this morning's puzzle last night while watching Cold Case.
Will do tomorrow's tonight while watching Castle.

I do the Universal in the morning.

After I was finished with today's, I had to Google Illusion Collar. It
reminded me of when my dog would take me for a walk.


Jerome said...

PanGraham- VEDA is real obscure for a Monday.

46 down- LEADEN. Change it to LEAVEN. Voila, a pangram!

Chickie said...

Hello All--A great puzzle today, with some new clues for old answers, TSE and RNA, for two.

I did put in DNA at first--CA we think alike. That was cleared up when I came here. Even for a Monday the completing of a puzzle without much help is always a plus.

My favorite clue today was Cell "messenger" briefly--even if I did get it wrong! I'll remember next time that RNA seems to be used more tha DNA in our crosswords.

I thought that the last word to fill in was very apropos--END. With that I'll wish everyone a great Monday and a greater week.

Argyle said...


It seems I always have to wait for the perp to decide which one to use.

Al said...

@Argyle, in today's case it was unquestionably RNA. The word "messenger" was key here. RNA is kind of a mirror copy of a portion of a DNA strand which can pass through the membrane of a cell nucleus to go out and serve as a template to build proteins. DNA only stays in the nucleus to make more DNA.

Another giveaway would be if Uracil or Thymine are mentioned, that's one basic difference in the peptide sequence: RNA substitutes U instead of DNA's T. The A,G,and C are common to both.

But you're otherwise correct, most of the time you have to wait for the perp to fill in the D or R.

Jeannie said...

Cabela's paid this guy $1,000,000.00 for this buck. He got it with a bow. Can you imagine?

Robin said...

Good Afternoon CC, Argyle and everyone.

I love your write ups Argyle, so full of information!
Barry Silk puzzles are fun, and Jerome what a great pick up on leaden to leaven to make a pangram, not that I know what that is!
New word for me SEDGY.
It seems Barry Silk has given a 'nod' to CC before in puzzles?
hmmmm, I too saw the DF-ness of Hahtools comment, so full of Sarchasm!! LOL!

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Argyle! That's a sad song if you really listen to the lyrics.

DCannon said...

Sorry: Anonymoua = DCannon

I'm doing all the good this morning!

Annette said...

I'd caught the DF slant, but wasn't sure that's all it was based on. So I felt the other meaning needed to be addressed too before people started censoring their posts before publishing. I thought I'd leave the DF comments to those that are much better at it than I! Or at least until I've met somebody on this blog in person first... :-) My DF tendencies seem to be a bit inhibited these days.

fermatprime said...

Good morning all!

I read this blog daily and really enjoy it! Thank you all. Some lf you may remember that I am bedridden most of the time (due to severe back injury). (I tried to use variations of hypatia1 on google, but they are all taken. At least one of them is a guy! Totally wrong.) So I am Lorraine L for the duration. Am not happy as I await shoulder operation next Monday.

To clarify what Bill G said, the definition of a Platonic solid needs more. All angles where faces meet must be the same.

See for example the 8 deltahedra here
Only three are Platonic solids, but all faces are congruent equilateral triangles.

Anonymous said...

From Vern:

I got the puzzle in 30 seconds. Wait, that's how long I took to find it in the newspaper. Sorry.

embien said...

7:20 today. About two minutes tougher than a normal Monday for me.

I only use the times to compare the difficulty level of the puzzle for me. I don't "speed solve", i.e., I make no effort whatsoever to go through the puzzle as rapidly as possible. I don't Google. I don't compare my time against other's (except in the most general way). I'm not in a competition here. If @hahtool and others object to seeing times posted, they are welcome to skip over my posts because I am always going to list a time (I have since my very first post here).

While I'm on a vitriolic roll: for the Miley Cyrus haters out there I'll just state that her concert was one of the most enjoyable I've been to in the last year. I had a good time and enjoyed the music and I've never seen a single episode of "Hannah Montana" (for the record, Taylor Swift put on the best concert I think I've ever seen). I'm collecting social security, so I doubt I'm in the target audience for teenage girl singers, but I do watch CMT and have come to enjoy their music. Take a look at this video: Miley Cyrus "Seven Things"

Crockett1947 said...

@embien I thought you didn't post times on Saturdays when you went and solved the puzzle with your favorite waitress. Or was that only when we had them on paper in the O?

@vern LOL!

embien said...

@crockett: since The Oregonian has reverted back to the Wayne Williams syndicated puzzle (which I am hating, by the way), I only solve the LA Times online. I now do the NY Times syndicated puzzle while eating breakfast (well, not often on Fridays and Saturdays for the NYT).

The crossword-solving waitress is no longer at the greasy spoon where I "dine" in the mornings. She had a disagreement with the new owner there or something.

windhover said...

Annette @ 2:42:
inhibitions are not good. For a cure, I recommend the wise words of a great poet, Ogden Nash, whose pop culture claim to fame was the couplet. In a famous one, he said,
"candy is nice, liquor is quicker".
Maybe ClearAyes will favor us with a more profound
Nash opus.
as far as solving times and Miley Cyrus, the original comment about times was meant as a DF double entendre, a tease, a joke. Relax, friend.
I was very irritated a few years ago when the country music establishment, a bunch of whining pretty boy whores in my estimation, dissed Miley's dad, Billy Ray (From Greenup County, Ky. about 100 miles from here.) m Modern country music is pretty much a wasteland anyway. I have never knowingly heard a MC tune. But I happen to like the Britney Spears "song" called "Three", which is an ode to the sexual threesome. I just don't confuse it with music.
But to each his own, right?

Dennis said...

Just now catching up on the comments; it's Pine Car Derby time again, and the store's been a bit overrun with little people.

Hahtool, if that is indeed what you meant, my sincere apology. I homed in on 'bragging' and took offense. By the way, the only ones I do quickly are the very easy ones, just because I like to see how fast I can do it; I enjoy taking my time with the more difficult ones.
I did think your follow-up "maybe I struck too close to home" comment was unnecessary, however. As to the other, age does have its benefits, as Windhover so sagely pointed out.

Vern, just a great line - you gotta post more often.

Unknown said...

How silly of me to think cell messenger could be SMS

Jeannie said...

Embien, I don't think you read through all the comments here or you wouldn't have had to think you had to defend the reason why you time your solving ability. I personally don't GAS if anyone times themselves or not.

Windhover, I agree with you on the new day country music. I am a fan of the older stuff. I am really a rock and roller at heart. I also agree with throwing your inhibitions to the wind. If it "niggles" at the back of your mind there is a reason. I have never been a big fan of Britney Spears but now you have forced me to google that song. When you are good you are good, when you are bad you are BAD.

Anonymous said...

My French dictionary did not give A Toi for yours. And I could not remember the O in OAS. Otherwise, an okay puzzle.

Tomorrow is a special day which will mean nothing to some of you but is very important to us in the Midwest. The governor of Wis. has declared it "Snowplow Driver Appreciation Day." I don't know why it is so early in November. I don't know any drivers to thank now but I certainly will appreciate them when the streets and roads are covered with snow. I'm enjoying our Indian summer and hope that it will last until Thanksgiving!


Anonymous said...

I thought the movie was called Flags of Our Fathers.

Flags of our Fathers

I saw Uma Thurman in The Producers.
Uma Thurman

Bill G. said...

Ogden Nash...

I think that one goes, Candy is dandy but liquor is quicker. I just found this other clever one online.

Celery, raw
Develops the jaw,
But celery, stewed,
Is more quietly chewed.

I also like this one. I thought it had been written by Ogdan Nash but apparently not. I don't think my version is exactly correct but I like my version better.

A queer old bird is the pelican,
Its bill holds more than its belly can.
It can store in its beak,
Enough food for a week,
But I don't know how the hell he can.

windhover said...

Anuradhu @ 6:42,
That's a great idea, and if Jerome is lurking, it will be SMS next time.
The Cub Scouts must be getting to you. I couldn't believe that hanging curve was still there when I came up to bat.

Catchy, isn't it? On the other hand, the girl can't sing a lick.

Dennis said...

RSD, see my 9:11am post.

Robin said...

Go Broncos!!

PJB-Chicago said...

Good evening: Just catching up on a few threads.

I tried but failed to slip "sedgy" into a sentence today, but I did get "woozy" in there and taught a Northwestern U. student about Space-Aged Screwdrivers (from yesterday's post: it's Tang--which is still sold in stores...yech--and vodka.) People of that generation love retro and ironic cocktails, apparently.

I should have known Hahtool was showing her humorous side today re: timing. I know her to have a wonderful sense of humor as well as having a finely tuned sense of justice. Her QOD and the WOW of Dennis make mornings worth tuning in here. Hahtool also is also a fine blogger and writes heartfelt book reviews too.

No one believes I'm a c/w fan but my years out west made me appreciate good country music. The word REAL is controversial, but too much of what is played here in the Midwest seems to have lost its connection to the heart and roots of country music. I liked Dwight Yoakum's (sp?) tunes best, and have been known to do a Johnny Cash song at karaoke, in memory of my Dad. I liked Windhover's description of the "stars" of today. Am not a Miley hater, but a little Miley goes a long way. I was glad that even American Idol picked up on the fact that many Americans--and Canadians--enjoy a country vtune when it's done right. And I am here to say that Dolly Parton is a national treasure, especially for her songwriting.

Bet you didn't expect to hear that from me!

When I was doing a little counseling with the guys in Colorado whose wives had "up and left" I think the most helpful thing I did other than listen was to encourage them to sharply curtail their radio time listening to KYGO (local C/W station) because those sad songs will drag you into a deep dark snake pit every time! Turns out that was advice they remembered and passed on to their buddies. A friendly reminder to avoid too much "sauce" was actually heeded and appreciated. Try doing kind of "therapy" with a CEO or an accountant and you'd get taken to court for malpractice!

I loved the suggestions on how this puzzle could have been a pangram. I would never have thought of that.

Apropos of nada: Taylor Swift did a fine job on SNL this weekend. You can't teach or fake talent like that. SNL has been so hit or miss, that I usually don't catch it, but she's a breath of fresh air.


JD said...

Good evening friends, I'm so glad to be home, although we fell in love with South Africa.What a beautiful country!Their national anthem , Nikosi Sikelel i'Africa, beats anything by Brittany or Miley.
I never read a paper or watched TV, but I ran off some puzzles to pass time on those long flights. It wasn't the same without the knowledge I gain every day from CC, Argyle, Dennis, WM,CA,Carol, Barry,WH,PJB,JzB, and ALL of you.

How fun to come back to a Silkie!! I loved it!My favorite clue was audible dance. It had to fall into place for me to get it. Good guy, that Aesop! Yoohoo was a WAG for me.Got illusion but didn't grok it until Argyle explained.

Annette, I loved what you said about time spent.At 1st it bothered me, but now I like to hear how long it takes the mensas.I could never time myself as I seem to always be doing lots of things.Maybe if I got up at way!

Good poem Bill..loved your version too.

Where is Lois?

Anonymous said...

3 is good song and the video is hot!

Thanks to Windhover and Jeannie for introducing to a great song!


Dennis said...

JD, great to see you back. Will you have some pictures to share?

Anonymous said...

I looked at the paper ads. They spelled Camero..not Camaro!?!!?

carol said...

JD - what a fabulous link to the S.African national anthem and all the pictures. Thank you! I loved the sound/beat. Welcome back, you were missed.

Hahtool, I feel silly having missed your DF take on the 'timing' thingy. Hope I don't lose my standing over it. In some things slow is very good!

Anonymous said...

Also the Almanac spell OTO!!!!

Anonymous said...

The Almanac called the tribe the Oto, not the Otoes?!?!

Martin said...


We had A MOI previously for "Mine" and I objected at the time because MIEN works just as well. For "Yours" it could be TONS (one person, two objects) but TON, TONNE, TONNES, VOTRE and VOTRES all have the wrong number of letters.

It's been a while since I studied French though: nowadays if I even try to speak French it comes out as Chinese. It's almost as if the Chinese vocabulary is being stored in the part of my brain that used to store French vocabulary and everytime I learn a new word in Chinese I forget a word in French! It's scary.


Martin said...


Unless we know in advance that the clues are going to be straightforward definitions then we always have to stop and ask ourselves if our answers are right. I fully expect "Religious sect, briefly" to be a future clue for MEN. :)


Annette said...

Dennis: I like the Mensa definitions!

Martin: I got a nice chuckle out of your rationalization of MEN too! I like your certainty that it'll soon be seen in another puzzle.

PJB: You always make me smile. I really hope to make it to Chicago some day, and especially catch one of your performances.

Lorraine L: Good luck with your shoulder surgery. We'll be thinking about you.

JD: Welcome back. I've thought about getting up earlier to do the puzzles in the morning before everything's already been commented on, but decided it didn't work for me, either! If I have time for a break at work, I'll do the puzzle on paper. But I have to use devious means to access the blog from there... Big Brother has eyes from coast to coast!

Windhover: Yes, I know first-hand that liquor is a great uninhibitor! I've definitely had my moments (nights)...!

Jeannie said...

Carol, you are slipping my dear.
Annette, I didn't mean to single you out as being inhibited. BB was looking over my shoulder too. I got busted for forwarding e-mails from my home e-mail to work and then forwarded some of them to people at work. Not good evidently and ceased and desisted that rotten behavior. Who wants a little fun to break up your day?

Hahtoolah said...

Thanks for the kind words, PJB.

Jeannie said...


1 c. cornmeal
3/4 c. flour
1 sm. onion, chopped
1 sm. can cream style corn
1 egg
1/2 c. milk
1/4 c. oil

Mix together cornmeal, flour, chopped onion. Beat egg; add to mixture along with
oil, cream style corn and milk. Mix well. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Bake for
1/2 hour.

I know it's chili time for some of us in the upper states. This is a fabulous recipe and can be made ahead of time. Can also be made in advance if you use it it your stuffing. Still looking for stuffing recipes....

Jeannie said...

What a coup, by accident believe it or not...#69 Lemonade, where are you ESQ I can only assume you are still moving. Lois, you are missed as well and I hope everything is fine with you.

kazie said...

Martin@9:46, and Dot,
Here are the correct forms:
your, possessive adj. (familiar): ton, ta, tes
(formal): votre, vos
yours, possessive pronoun (familiar): le tien, la tienne, les tiens, les tiennes
(formal): le/la vôtre, les vôtres

à toi, à moi, etc. are used instead of the possessive pronouns in a more casual way: c'est à moi = it's mine. Also: c'est le mien = it's mine.

Martin said...


TA, TES, VOS and TIEN had already been delected from my memory due to lack of space. Thanks. Of course, I've probably now forgotten a few words in Chinese now.


PJB-Chicago said...

Kazie: thank you. I was too bowled over by TONS and TONNES to craft a coherent answer.
Martin, I admire your facility in Chinese and commitment to learning it, but perhaps the French grammar lessons would be better left in the hands of people who actually know French. It's one thing to try to correct others' pronunciation of Dior or Dion, as you have done in the past, because there is some margin of allowable error there, but French grammar lessons might not be your calling. That's why I don't try to teach Tap Dancing, Thai Massage or Tennis.. That's why I don't recommend skin care regimens or dole out barbecue grilling hints or tips. Chances are that someone else here knows how to do those things or there are books/websites that can be consulted.

Annette, thanks for your kind comments. Smiling is good for your health!
JD, you were sorely missed! WELCOME back.
Crockett: Back at ya! You got a good brain there and a big heart.
Jeannie: Yum. Thanks for the recipe.
Argyle: I forgot: Knowledge-packed write up today.

CA: your Blair/Orwell poem was a classic. I did not see the last line coming until it hit me square in the jaw. Laughed and laughed. It's funnier with good clipped vowels, out loud. Try it!

My British accent is all over the map, but it sure makes going to Confession more fun for me and for the priest. He is less fond of my Swedish accent, thinks the Italian version of me is going straight to the ninth circle of Dante's Hell, but can't stifle his guffaws when I lapse into my generic Slavic accent. I don't do Dora the Explorer in the "booth" because that would just be morally wrong, right? Seriously, I've never done those things, but I "confess" I think about them. I did once make a real confession in French to a Dutch priest in Denver in conjunction with a monthly Mass that he did in French for the French expats, of which there at least 75 at that time. He also spoke German and Spanish and said Mass in those languages regularly and probably heard confessions in them as well. Like most Dutch people, his English was wonderful, but he didn't like switching back and forth. The poor altar boys had to rely on hand gestures to know when to kneel, sit, stand, heel, fetch.....