Dec 20, 2009

Sunday December 20, 2009 Alan Arbesfeld

Theme: Loose Lady. Or rather RUN AROUND SUE (120A. 1961 #1 hit for Dion, and a literal hint to this puzzle's hidden theme) - Letters SUE are running loose, bookending each theme entry.

23A. Seafood restaurant starter: SHRIMP BISQUE. Yummy creamy!

38A. Heirloom quality: SENTIMENTAL VALUE. What's the most treasured heirloom in your family?

54A. Acid rain component: SULFUR DIOXIDE

84A. Literally, "with highest praise": SUMMA CUM LAUDE

101A. The world's longest crosses Japan's Akashi Strait: SUSPENSION BRIDGE. The Akashi Kaikyō Bridge. Unknown to me.

16D. Nickname heard in Manhattan: SUNFLOWER STATE. I was in NY direction. Did not know there's a city named Manhattan in Kansas.

50D. June observance: SUMMER SOLSTICE

I have never heard of the song "Runaround Sue". The lyrics says "She took my love then ran around with every single guy in town...". Hence "Loose Lady" theme title I suppose.

Most of the theme clues for our Sunday puzzles seem to have question marks and involve some sort of wordplay or out-of-the-box thinking. Today's theme clues are honest and straightforward. Nice to have a change.

How's your solving experience today? I felt quite challenged by the geography trivia. Had to peek at the cheat sheet a few times.


1. Have the final turn: GO LAST. Very seldom did 1-Across come to me immediately. Today was not exception.

7. Kin of ibid.: OP. CIT. Both footnote abbrs.

12. Plenty: A LOT

16. Alastair of "A Christmas Carol": SIM. He played the Scrooge. His name was not stored in my brain shelf.

19. Since way back when: IN AGES

20. Moonshine: HOOCH. Illicit liquor.

21. Convertible, maybe: SOFA. "Maybe" did not prevent me from thinking of car.

22. Game whose name must be spoken during play: UNO

25. Toned down: SOFTENED

27. Drops by Niagara Falls?: MIST. I fell into "drops by" verb trap.

28. Sweep's target, perhaps: SOOT

29. Hard worker's output: SWEAT

31. Actress Woodard: ALFRE. She campaigned hard for Obama, and of course she scored a precious seat at the last state dinner.

32. Mountain nymph: OREAD (AW-ree-ad)

34. Follow: TAIL

36. Will Smith title role: ALI. Someday he's going to play Obama in a biopic.

37. Swabs: SALTS. Both slang for "sailors".

43. "Nothing __!" TO IT

44. Unsavory pair of options: EVILS. The lesser of two evils.

46. Entrance: GATEWAY

48. "The Big Chill" director: KASDAN (Lawrence). Unknown to me. Wikipedia says he wrote "The Bodyguard".

51. Heavy weight: TON. I like the clue.

52. Ill-gotten gains: LUCRE. Filthy lucre.

53. Tulsa sch. named for an evangelist: ORU (Oral Roberts University)

60. Monopoly buys: Abbr.: RRS

63. Gives pieces to: ARMS. "Pieces" here refer to guns.

66. Old knowledge: LORE. I associate LORE with tales rather than knowledge.

67. Palace abroad: ELYSEE. The Élysée Palace. The French "White House".

69. Prom night rentals: LIMOS

71. Indic language: URDU

73. Smooth in the shop: SAND

75. Shining: LIT UP

76. Portrait photographer Richard: AVEDON. Oh, so he shot this famous snake picture.

78. Major in astronomy?: URSA. Ursa Major.

80. Old Italian bread: LIRA. "Bread" here refers to money.

82. History: PAST

83. Sun. discourse: SER. And SEM (5D. Theological inst.)

88. Driving aid: TEE. Golf drive.

89. Hot day refuge: SHADE

91. "The Partridge Family" actress: DEY (Susan)

92. Disquiet: UNREST. Always thought "disquiet" is a verb.

94. Expand: BROADEN

96. City ESE of Mocha: ADEN. In Yemen. Tricky new clue.

98. French noble: COMTE. French for "count". "Comte de Monte-Cristo" (The Count of Monte Cristo) is a fantastic read.

107. Party leaders: HOSTS. Was thinking of the political leaders.

109. Milk units: Abbr.: QTS

110. Queens stadium: ASHE. And LENDL (40D. Frequent McEnroe opponent). Ivan Lendl.

111. Vast, in verse: ENORM

112. When a teen's curfew may be: AT TEN

113. Did some after-dinner work, maybe?: BUSED. Excellent clue.

115. Extended: LONG. Adjective "extended".

117. Fair-hiring org.: EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission)

118. Gist: MAIN IDEA

123. Duke's gp.: ACC (Atlantic Coast Conference)

124. Character __: FLAW

125. Tarnish: TAINT

126. Songlike: ARIOSE. Same root with Aria?

127. Jeanne d'Arc, e.g.: Abbr.: STE (Sainte).

128. Squealer: FINK. Rat.

129. They may follow dogs: SLEDS. Nailed it.

130. Seeded: RANKED


1. Doodads: GISMOS. GIZMOS is more commonly used.

2. Available for work: ON HIRE

3. Only World Series perfect game pitcher: LARSEN (Don). Gimme. Game 5 of the 1956 World Series.

4. Worked up: AGITATED

6. Cup's 48: Abbr.: TSPS. One cup has 48 teaspoons. I was thinking of bra.

7. Natives of Lima or Toledo: OHIOANS. Gimme for the Pollo-ed out Jazzbumpa, I am sure. But I did not know there's a Lima in Ohio.

8. Popular yellow office product: POST-IT. From 3M.

9. __ au vin: COQ. Cock in French. Needs MOREL mushroom for extra flavor.

10. Hosp. areas: ICUS

11. It's caused by standing fans: THE WAVE. Lovely clue/answer.

12. Tear into: ASSAIL

13. Plunder: LOOT. Verb or noun.

14. Vacationing: OFF

15. Breezy farewells: TATAS

17. Couch potato quality: INERTIA

18. "The only sure bait when you angle for praise": Lord Chesterfield: MODESTY. Not familiar with this quote. Modesty is very valued in Asia.

24. Waterside inn: BOTEL. Bo(at) + (ho)tel. New to me.

26. One who gets you up: ELATER. Not excited about any ER suffix word.

33. Celebrated singers: DIVAS

35. Workers: LABOR. This S-less style entry often stumps me.

39. Less: MINUS. Verb.

41. Wrinkly fruit: UGLI. It's quite sweet.

42. __ Cologne: EAU DE. What are you using? I love my husband's Polo Sports.

47. Immune system lymphocyte: T-CELL

48. Eucalyptus eaters: KOALAS

49. Show up: ARRIVE

51. Arctic plain: TUNDRA. Minnesota is sure a tundra at this time of the year.

55. Bud's bud: LOU (Costello). Bud Abbott. "Who's on First?" fame.

56. Discussion site: FORUM

57. Aegean island: IOS. Island where Homer is supposed to be buried.

58. How much medication is taken: ORALLY. I am sure Dennis has other clue on mind.

59. City near Dayton: XENIA. No idea. Another city in Ohio. Wikipedia says Xenia means "hospitality" in Greek.

62. Deadly sins, e.g.: SEPTET

64. Earth: SOD

68. Kennel sound: YIP. More commonly seen in crossword than YELP.

70. "What a pity": SO SAD

72. Sch. with a record 33 Rose Bowl appearances: USC (University of Southern California)

74. Joanne of film: DRU

77. Ones who can barely be seen?. NUDES. Nudes are bare. My favorite clue today.

79. "The Age of Anxiety" Pulitzer winner: AUDEN. Poet W.H. Auden.

81. "What __ idea!": "How stupid!": A DUMB

85. Course list: MENU. Meal course.

86. Smart set: MENSA. "Stupid" in Spanish.

87. __ nous: ENTRE. Literally "between" in French.

90. Pick up the pace: HASTEN

93. Kept under control: REINED IN

94. Atlantic commonwealth: BAHAMAS. Have you been there?

95. Reading in a disorderly class?: RIOT ACT. Got the answer with the Across help.

96. 2-BR listings, perhaps: APTS

97. Strands: DESERTS. Can you come up with 2 sentences in which the two words are exchangeable grammatically?

98. Pals: COHORTS

99. Bridge bid, for short: ONE NO. No problem this time.

102. Bellyache: SQUAWK. And GROUSE (105D. Bellyache).

103. Large-kitchen feature: ISLAND. Our kitchen is rather small.

104. Manages: DOES OK. Alas, my multi-word woe.

106. Ran the show: EMCEED

108. Get a whiff of: SNIFF

113. Noodle: BEAN. Both slang for "head".

116. __ gum: thickening agent: GUAR. Have never used it.

119. Mid sixth-century date: DLI. Roman numeral 551.

121. Never, in Nuremberg: NIE. "No, in Nuremberg" is NEIN.

122. Strong D.C. lobby: NRA

Answer grid.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to Audrey and all the LAT Sunday solvers!



Dennis said...

Good morning, C.C. and gang - little time to post, because I've gotta find the driveway, then the cars in the driveway. Snow's finally stopped, it's over 2', but the winds caused some awesome drifts.

This might be the first ever Sunday puzzle I absolutely blew through, with no outside help and just a little bit of perp help. Great theme, too; Runaround Sue was a favorite of mine back in the day.

C.C., favorite colognes are Hugo and Gaultier.

4 & a w/u.

Anonymous said...

I liked this puzzle. I am too old for the nonsensical Dan Naddor clues.

Dick said...

Good morning C.C. and all, another difficult solve for me today. I managed to get thru the puzzle with only perp help, but it took quite awhile. I liked the new and fresh clueing because of the challenge it presented.

C.C. I think Xenia, Ohio is best remembered for the 12 tornados that touched down one evening in 1974 killing 36 people.

On the road this weekend so not much time to blog.

Hope all of you people in the east are now out of the snow fall and will have some time to “dig out.”

Have a great Sunday.

Crockett1947 said...

Good morning, everyone. Looks like most are busy elsewhere -- too much white stuff?

This was an eminently doable puzzle, much better for me than Dan's hammer yesterday.

I couldn't get the theme clue-in. Thanks for pointing out the S and UE, C.C.

I got most of the clues fairly easily, but had to work hard on the NE section. C.C., if you thought of 6D in the bra area, what did you want for a fill, BOOB? Wanted PTS for QTS for the longest time. Thought Alastair was SIMS, not SIM. Did not know ALFRE or KASDAN. Wanted WASHED or DRIED for BUSED, and RAT for FINK, which finally fell after I change my PTS to QTS. Agree that GISMOS is usually GIZMOS, but tried GEEGAWS first. The XENIA answer was easy for this ex-OHIOAN -- they have had a couple of bad tornadoes rip through the town. Got SUNFLOWER state once I got in Kansas and not New York. Had no idea on GUAR. Got a bit of an education last night from this one.

@dennis Careful out there. Don't overdo it.

Have a fantastic Sunday!

DCannon said...

Well, it took a while, but I finally got it. It was a little difficult today, but mostly because of the length, I think. Wore me out! Most of my hits on the g-spot were for actors and directors. Didn't know any of those people. I did rely on the perps for several, such as 104D, which was the last to fall. The theme clues filled in right away, but I never did get the theme.

Should get into the high 60s today, maybe even to 70º.

I don't wear perfume. I can't even be around it - allergy. All my household and personal products have to be unscented.

I guess everyone survived the snow. Stay warm.

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, I didn't get started until Don LARSEN. I hate to admit it, but I remember the game and the huge headlines.

Yay! I got the theme and filled in the beginning S and ending E all the way through. It wasn't much help, but I'll take anything on a Sunday.

SUNFLOWER STATE and Manhattan, Kansas?....I should have figured that out much earlier. GAH has relatives who live there.

I've never heard of the terms ON HIRE, BOTEL, or of ENORM used in verse.

I don't think the verbs STRANDS and DESERTS are interchangeable. I've been deserted, which I think of as the same as abandoned, but I wasn't stranded. I've also been stranded (broken down car in the middle of nowhere and no money to get help), but I hadn't been deserted. Both are, "Wow, I'm glad that will never happen again" memories.

Is MENSA International still called MENSA in Spanish speaking countries?

GAH doesn't use cologne. My favorite scent is Shalimar.

Chickie said...

Hello All--I managed to finish with the tada from the computer. I did have red letter help, though. I thought it was one of the easier Sunday puzzles, but with some clever clues. Mainly the Manhattan (Kansas) clue. I was snowed in back East in NY.

I put in Zenia for Xenia and had a bit of a puzzle in that area. I agree with CA on the difference between strands and deserts.

Dennis it is good to see you on the blog first thing this morning. Are you snowed in completely? The snow drifts are what make it hard to dig out.

C.C. Favorite cologne is Lauren.

Have a great Sunday. Still getting the last few things done for a big group on Christmas-17 in all.

Clear Ayes said...

I found ONE poem that utilizes the word ENORM. The title translates from Latin as "Nothing greater".

Coleridge's poem refers to death (at least that's what it seems like to me). It's a tough poem, so feel free to skip it. I wouldn't blame you.


Sole Positive of Night!
Antipathist of Light!
Fate’s only essence! primal scorpion rod–
The one permitted opposite of God!–
Condensed blackness and abysmal storm
Compacted to one sceptre
Arms the Grasp enorm
The Interceptor–
The Substance that still casts the shadow
The Dragon foul and fell–
The unrevealable,
And hidden one, whose breath
Gives wind and fuel to the fires of Hell!–
Ah! sole despair
Of both the eternities in Heaven!
Sole interdict of all-bedewing prayer,
The all-compassionate!
Save to the Lampads Seven
Reveal’d to none of all the Angelic State,
Save to the Lampads Seven,
That watch the throne of Heaven!

– Samuel Taylor Coleridge

More interestingly, "Ne Plus Ultra was also used as a motto on a rare Spanish coin, minted in the fifteenth century, and was imprinted with a drawing of the narrow strait between Europe and Africa near Gibraltar, called the Pillars of Hercules. Inscribed at the bottom were the Latin words, Ne Plus Ultra, meaning "No More Beyond." To the Spanish of that time, that was it, there was not anything else out there, other than the vast expanse of water. Then along came Columbus, and when he proved that a new world lay beyond, they had to remove the Ne from all the coins. From that time forward they read "Plus Ultra" —More Beyond."

Al said...

I had to share this "failblog" link after the comment for 36A Will Smith title role: ALI. Someday he's going to play Obama in a biopic.

Anonymous said...

What happened to Embien?

kazie said...

Late start for me and a slow solve, with some red letter help, but not too much.

I agree with CA about STRANDS and DESERTS, and of course I didn't know the names, but that's a given for me. No real beefs.

I did get an email back from Dot the other night--they're fine, just very busy.

Glad to hear you didn't get totally buried! Did you find that car?

My favorite cologne at the moment is Euphoria.

tfrank said...

Hello, C.C. and all. How about "she left me stranded but not deserted in the desert sand with no desserts."

I was able to complete about two-thirds of this work before church, lunch and football. Finished the rest online where I needed red letter help for some of the unknowns like Kasdan, Alfre and Avedon. For the second Sunday in a row, the printed-out version from the web was missing three of the down clues - 86, 87, & 90.
I thought the theme was the initial su and the ending e, so did not include bisque or sentimental value as a theme answers.

My sympathy to those snowed in by the storm. It reminds me of my nine years residence in a Boston suburb. I remember giving Jean a brand new Ford LTD station wagon as a Christmas present. We had to junk it six years later because the whole undercarriage was rusted out due to the salt they spread on the roads.

I am still elated over them Cowboys' win over the Saints. It got to be a nailbiter at the end, but a win is a win and it came in December.

I wish you all avery Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

MR ED said...

Thanks for the spiced nuts recipe. I made some today and the came out great!

You got 2 feet of snow? We were lucky, We only got about 4". I pity you, that's a lot of snow to shovel.
I'm sure you are physically fit but you must be careful when shoveling snow. Don't get too much on the shovel at one time and take several breaks.
It must be the positions we get into when shoveling that puts the unusual strain on the heart.
Take care, Dennis.

Chickie said...

Mr. Ed, I'm glad the nuts turned out great. We make them every year and enjoy them. The only downside is that I usually don't make enough.

Dennis said...

Mr. Ed, Crockett, thanks for the concern, but no worries. Took me almost 4 freaking hours to clear two of the cars and the driveway (we have a circular one), but I'm fine. Probably won't be able to walk tomorrow, but tonight I'm ok.

Disasterous weekend for the stores; hardly anyone on the roads. Hopefully we'll have a strong 4 days.

Anon@9:36, Dan Naddor puzzles are anything but "nonsensical". Sorry you don't 'get' them. Rather than your weak attempt at trashing them, why not just ignore them?

Robin said...

Dennis, I think you may need a good Massage and I believe we have an excellent therapist in our midst......

Robin said...

and thank you Chickie, we made your recipe today and love, love, love them!!!

Clear Ayes said...

We already have the almonds and walnuts, but I'll have to pick up some pecans when I go shopping on Wednesday. The Spiced Nuts sound too good to pass by.

Our chorus holiday concert this afternoon was terrific. A woman in the audience told me afterward, "You had such a happy smile on your face, you must really enjoy it." How true. I sit up there with a goofy grin on my face, tra-la-la-ing away, just because it is so much fun. According to GAH, we were very good (what else could he say? :o)

My two cents on Anon@9:36, Don't defeat yourself on any puzzle by thinking you are too old. Many of the folks on this blog are in their 60's, 70's and beyond. Instead of thinking of Dan Naddor's clues as nonsensical, think of them as witty, clever and just a little twisted. If you make the effort, you may learn to enjoy them.

Robin said...

I just love you Clear are the best!

PJB-Chicago said...

Good evening, everyone.
Took me forever to finish the puzzle, but it was worth it. Several unknowns caused me a little headache: ON HIRE, SIM, OREAD and ARIOSE, but the "should've known" list was much larger: KAZDEN, DRU, ADEN, SQUAWK, BOTEL, etc.

Clever cluing for LIMOs--in my day we just rented the tux and the date (kidding)-- INERTIA and NUDES. I personally have revived the word HOOCH in my circle of friends; e-vites now say BYOH. BUSED was clever, too. Hard word to spell--I remember seeing a sign outside a garage saying "No BUSSES."

The modesty quote by Lord Chesterfield is a gem. Today's constructor also did the NYT puzzle, which I didn't attempt but "helped" someone else with, just a little. //Favorite cologne is an oldy: Armani. One quick spritz is just enough, lasts all day. Got a gift last year of another cologne that smelled just like cotton candy, really. It got used as room deodorizer instead.

No snow on the ground here to speak of. Later this week, perhaps. I hope those of you who are traveling stay safe and warm. Solstice party tomorrow so I made soup and spiced nuts (thanks Chickie--they're great). Be well, all!

Clear Ayes said...

Thanks Robin, you're not so bad yourself!

Have a great night everyone.

Jeannie said...

Just a quick you know I don't normally attempt Sat or Sun puzzles as my "catch up" time is mine, and puzzles don't fit in with cooking for the week, laudry, cleaning and all that jazz. I have hosted my last party and am free and clear into the upcoming weekend.

Dennis, although it sucks being a business owner at this time of the year when inclimate weather happens, there is something magical about being "snowed" in. Take advantage of it.

One last recipe to bore you with...I made Jeannie-ayki chicken wings yesterday that 6 out of 10 wanted the recipe. That usually tells me they're good. Gonna have to wait till tomorrow however as I am tired and the Vikings are sucking hind tit.

BTW, I hate cologne on men. My favorite smell is the outdoor clean smell that attaches to them after they have been outside working, hunting or fishing. Is that a MN thing? Okay, I'll take a guy fresh out of the shower any time.

For those of you traveling this upcoming week, be safe.

Annette said...

Busy day and getting to the puzzle so late it's already the next day! Oh well, I'll share my opinions anyway in case anyone checks back later.

I really enjoyed today's puzzle! It started off really slow, with a lot more blanks than fills when I finished the acrosses. But the perps from the downs helped me fill MOST everything in. Not that it didn't take a while, and a lot of thought though! I never figured out the theme either, but I've always like the song.

I tried GEEGAWS first too, before realizing it wanted GISMOS. I'm still uncomfortable with it using an 's' rather than a 'z'.

I think Polo is my favorite cologne for a man to wear. I'm not sure what a co-worker uses, but it's 'tangy'. Some days he pours it on, and I have to steer clear!

For me, I wore Opium or Oscar for a while,but now when I even wear cologne, it's something VERY inexpensive available from the local drug stores. I always get compliments because it's so subtle, but noticeable. My favorite compliment was from a guy at work that I was seeing. He came by my desk and asked if I'd just been in the stairwell. I said "yes, about 5-10 minutes ago." He'd recognized my perfume. I thought that was very romantic and flattering!!!

I've been to the Bahamas a few times, but mainly stayed at the casino/resorts. Atlantis is my favorite, but I haven't been there in several years.

Last fills were ARIOSE and RANKED where they cross DOES OK. I finally had to resort to running thru the alphabet for each. ;-(

PJB: "No busses." Maybe they were trying to suggest people find a different lover's lane...

JD said...

Good evening to anyone who is still up,

Sunday is family night here, and everyone left at 9. I only had enough time this a.m. to do the top 1/2 of the puzzle. Had big trouble with urdu..never got it. Finally got tsps after a long conversation with myself! Looked up R. Avedon. What a beautiful photo, CC!

Loved the word botel, never heard of it, but it works. Favs were post its, and the wave.

"Run Around Sue" brings back memories of my 1st love; I was 17, a freshman in college. He sent me that 45 record when he found out that I had eaten lunch with another guy.It was so dramatic.LOL

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