Dec 10, 2009

Thursday December 10, 2009 Dan Naddor

Theme: PHENOMENAL (57A. Clue for 17-, 22-, 36- and 44-Across)

17A. See 57-Across: OVER THE TOP

22A. See 57-Across: BEYOND BELIEF

36A. See 57-Across: TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE

44A. See 57-Across: OFF THE CHARTS

Incredible! I wish "Incredible" were the real clue for PHENOMENAL rather than "Clue for ...". Not fond of this kind of self-referential, circling cluing style. It frustrated me.

I do like cross-references in the grid. I like the extra effort the constructors spend in connecting certain entries. But cross-references offer you a defining clue for guidance. Take the PRIM & PROPER clues on Tuesday for example. 10D Down PROPER is clued as "See 10-Across", then 10-Across is "With 10-Down and "and", rigidly formal". At least, you have "rigidly formal" as a definitive clue, which gives you a basic idea of what the cross-reference is about.

Today's Dan Naddor Index (non-theme entries with 6 or more letters) is 8. And among them, FALSE ALARM (14A. Wolf cry, often?) and its symmetrical partner INDISPOSED (60A Not feeling well) have the same amount of letters as two of the theme entries and stacked direct ly with them. I don't mind this kind of distraction at all, since the unifying 57A clearly points out which ones belong to the theme answers. And those two are just awesome fill.

Neat to have MOUSSE (40A. Salon preparation) intersect MOOSE (29D. Caribou relative).


1. "Food, Body and Mind" diet maven: CRAIG (Jenny). The other diet maven is ATKINS. maven

6. Pierce portrayer: ALDA (Alan). In M*A*S*H.

10. Lummoxes: OAFS. Add letter F to lummox, we've got the confusing "flummox".

16. River past Thebes: NILE. Thebes was an ancient city on the NILE. Somehow I thought of STYX, the River of the damned Hades.

18. "Fall back" interval: HOUR. Spring Ahead, Fall Back. China has no Daylight Saving Time, despite its vastness.

19. What F or M may indicate: SEX

20. Shinto temple gateway: TORII. Dennis just linked this TORRI picture when we had TORI (clued as "Doughnut shape" last time). Plural of Torus. I am still waiting for someone to give Torii Hunter some crossword recognition that he richly deserves. Nine consecutive Gold Glove Awards, what more credentials do you want?

21. Longtime Chicago Symphony maestro: SOLTI (Georg). 31 Grammys. A record.

24. Steppes native: TATAR

27. Purge: RID

29. Like many rebates: MAIL-IN

41. Tiger Woods's dad: EARL. Sweet picture. I liked his book "Playing Through". Lots of gems inside.

42. Airline with a hub in Copenhagen: SAS. The "Airline with a hub in Amsterdam" is KLM.

43. Uptight: ANTSY. Oh, I always associate "uptight" with "stiff" rather than ANTSY.

51. Iraqi port: BASRA. Was listening to a Terry Gross "A Messenger for the Marines" interview last night. Just could not control my tears.

52. Cliff dwelling: AERIE

53. "__ to Extremes": Billy Joel hit: I GO. Was unaware of this song title.

56. Gunny fiber: JUTE. A good Scrabble word. I did not know the gunny & burlap connection.

59. Slaughter who famously scored the winning run in the 1946 World Series: ENOS. Nice trivia to a tired name.

61. Reveille counterpart: TAPS

62. Latin 101 verb: ESSE. "To be" in Latin.

63. Frère de la mère: ONCLE. French for "uncle". Frère = Brother. Mère = Mother.


1. Some are CPAs: CFOS

2. All-night party: RAVE. Ignorant of this RAVE meaning.

3. Infield mate of Derek: ALEX. Instinctively wanted A-Rod.

4. Haifa's country: Abbr.: ISR. HAIFA is often clued as " Israeli seaport". Good to have a change.

5. Go-__: GETTER. Ha ha, I wanted Go-go girl.

6. Olds compact: ALERO. Learned from doing Xword. The model only existed for for six years.

7. Romance languages ancestor: LATIN

8. R2-D2 or C-3PO: DROID

9. Rock blaster?: AMP. Fell into the TNT trap.

10. Waiting to talk: ON HOLD

11. Garlicky mayo: AIOLI. Ai = garlic. Oli = oil.

12. Rampal's instrument: FLUTE

13. Calligrapher's embellishment: SERIF. I find it very soothing to practise Chinese calligraphy.

15. Call to a mate: AHOY

21. It flows along La Rive Gauche: SEINE. La Rive Gauche = The Left Bank in French.

22. Good thing to go out with: BANG. Go out with a bang. Good clue.

23. Grease, so to speak: BRIBE

24. Cairn terrier of film: TOTO. Oh, I did not know that Toto is a Cairn terrier.

25. Out of control: AMOK

26. Art community near Santa Fe: TAOS

30. Soccer star Freddie: ADU. Too much hype on him earlier on.

31. "__ only money": IT'S. What's this? Movie title? Song title?

32. Rock's __ Lobos: LOS. Literally "The Wolves".

33. Greek house?: FRAT. Frat house. Nailed it.

34. "__ not to reason why": Tennyson: OURS. I forgot. Rich Norris used this clue before.

37. Home of the College World Series: OMAHA. Good to know.

38. They're often next to fives: TENS. Cash box compartment.

42. Chill pill target: STRESS. Not familiar with "chill pill" at all.

43. At the original speed, in music: A TEMPO. New musical term to me.

44. __ d'art: OBJET. Literally "thing" in French.

45. Regional wildlife: FAUNA

46. Setting that affects depth of field: F-STOP. Camera setting.

47. Songwriter Sammy et al.: CAHNS. Just learned that he wrote the lyrics for "High Hope".

48. Pays attention to: HEEDS

49. Immortal PGA nickname: ARNIE (Palmer). Penned in ERNIE first and was ready to complain that Ernie Els has yet to achieve the immortal status.

50. Roberto's rivers: RIOS. Spanish rivers.

53. Dedicated by the auth.: INSC. Inscription I suppose. Not a familiar abbr. to me.

54. Highlander: GAEL. Scottish Highlander.

55. Quaint word in some tavern names: OLDE

57. Dessert choice: PIE. Do any of you love Larabar also?

Answer grid.



Dennis said...

Good morning, C.C. and gang - very enjoyable puzzle today; shoulda known, coming from Dan.

Had several sticking points, but I managed to get through with just a bit of perp help. Interesting to see 'torii' after just discussing it last week.

C.C., I'm with you, I thought the intersecting of 'mousse' and 'moose' was great. And I agree, I don't think of 'antsy' and 'uptight' as synonymous.

Interesting that you heard 'A messenger to the Marines' last night; we were just talking about that yesterday at the gym. In the gallows humor that permeated Vietnam, we used to make up self-deprecating singing telegrams that would be delivered to our parents upon our demise. Seemed funny at the time.

I really liked 22A, 'good thing to go out with' - exactly how I'd like to 'go out'.

Today is Human Rights Day.

Today's Words of Wisdom: "Happiness is good health and a bad memory." -- Ingrid Bergman

Some odd facts:

- If the population of China walked past you, in single file, the line would never end because of the rate of reproduction.

- The cruise liner QE2 moves only six inches for each gallon of diesel that it burns.

Bill said...

Dennis , check this out.

Did well today except for INSC. Didn't make sense to me but I guess it's OK 'cause CC said.
Have I mentioned, latels, that I really dislike S***???

Oh, well, I suppose I'd better suck it up and go blow it out!!!

CY'all Later

Bill said...

Crap! I forgot to paste it!!!!
6" per gal?

C.C. Burnikel said...

I was prepared for the "Trained to Kill" , "Never Leave a Man Behind" (not even a fallen one), cold, arrogant, closely-packed Marine images. But when hearing them softly talking to a dead buddy on the plane back home, I cried.

Always great to see you. Hi to Nancy.

Anonymous said...

War is a necessary evil.

Gareth Bain said...

When I saw those references to 57A, I quickly moved to the bottom to puzzle that phrase out (via its crossers) first. Helped a lot in solving the rest of the puzzle!

Argyle said...

Hi Dennis, C.C.,
I thought 22D was one place where the letter "A" should have been included. Good thing to go out with - "A BANG"

INSC.(53D) The internet hasn't heard of it either!

And even though it is often misquoted as "OURS", Lord Tennyson wrote, "Theirs not to reason why," (34D)

I needed the first four themes to get the unifying clue. Not the right way to do it.

Anonymous said...

22A. See 57-Across: BEYOND BELIEF

44A. See 57-Across: OFF THE CHARTS

I noticed a couple of errors just thought I report them so they could corrected.

Dennis speaking of Marines, I like the quote from Gen. Smedley Butler,

"War is a racket. It always has been. It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives. A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of the people. Only a small 'inside' group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the expense of the very many. Out of war a few people make huge fortunes."

Gen. Butler

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, CC and Friends. A second Dan Naddor puzzle this week! Wow. I agree with CC, though, I am not terribly fond of self-referencing clues, especially when they are the theme clues. Although I easily got all the 4 referenced clues, I had trouble with the actual clue of PHENOMENAL.

I think we had TOTO earlier this week, and on Tuesday evening, I saw an excellent production of The Wizard of Oz, with TOTO.

Favorite clue: Greek House? FRAT.

I hope everyone who was in a snow storm yesterday is safe and didn't lose power, so could stay warm.

QOD: Do not be too moral. You cheat yourself out of much life so. Be not simply good, be good for something. ~ Henry David Thoreau.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Red State Democrat,
Thanks. I've corrected my errors.

Dick said...

Good morning C. C. and a, a real b**l buster for me today. I never really got a good toe hold on the upper half, but was able to complete the entire bottom half without help. Going back to the top I finally started to make some progress, but still needed help with 1A “craig”, 21A “solti” and 13D “serif”, although, by then I had 57A which helped immensely.

Hope you all have a great Thursday.

Dick said...

I was going to comment on the QE2 stat, but I see Bill has already covered it.

tfrank said...

Good morning, C.C. and all,

Another excellent Dan Naddor puzzle. It was challenging but just the right degree of difficulty to my mind. I, too, was a little hesitant about the cross referenced theme clue, but it all worked itself out.

I am off to the auto body shop. Jean had an set-to with a trailer hitch and lost one of her headlights.

39 degrees here this morning, about as cold as it gets around here. I am thankful we don't have to suffer the kind of snow storms some of you have experienced.

Hvae a good day.

Mainiac said...

Good Morning All,

A real struggle for me today even after putting it down for a bit. False Alarm fell easily which began my foothold in the NW. I focused on the SE to get Phenomenal then Over the Top filled in. After that the other themes came together but boy, it took some work! I liked the same crossings as discussed. I do feel Antsy and Uptight are synonymous meaning nervous.

Have a great day!

Anonymous said...

@c.c, larabars have a very high amount of total fat.

oscarand said...

Not to be picky, there's big error here. "The Charge of the Light Brigade" is one of my favorite poems. In 34D, Ours is incorrect. Should be Theirs.

It's cold here. 3. And power just came back on.

kazie said...

Happy Thursday after the snow to you all!

I wanted TENSE for ANTSY at first. Lots of unknowns, most of the names except ALDA.

I agree with C.C. in not liking the "see 57 across" kind of clueing--it feels like doing a puzzle with half the clues missing. But once I had the first two, and enough perps in 57A, the rest were easier.

Never would have thought of GET HER for 5 down. I g'ed TORII and TATAR--for some reason that simply didn't occur to me. I was trying to think of something to do with Siberia. And TOTO only came after the other g'ing--didn't know what kind of dog Toto was and that film is not one of my favorites.

I also liked the moose/mousse crossing. Puzzled for ages over INSC, but then it finally fell in unnoticed through perps.

Spitzboov said...

A nicely textured Naddor puzzle. I don't rush through these because then they are over all too soon. Akin to relaxing with a Drambuie or such on a cold winter's day. Reluctant to end it too soon.

Many clever clues. Liked "fall back" interval: HOUR 14A and 32D involved references to wolves (lobos).

Strangely, PHENOMENAL was my last fill; no strikethru's today

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, I managed to get through the puzzle last night. I also noticed the flub on The Charge of the Light Brigade line "Theirs not to reason why".

A very nice smooth Dan Naddor puzzle otherwise. Just enough back and forth with perps to make it thought provoking without making it impossible. Thanks, Dan.

I surprised myself that I knew SOLTI and ATEMPO.

Now GAH is looking over my shoulder and is reminding me that we need to "git goin'" in an hour or so.

Jeannie said...

This one stumped me a little bit. I too, don’t like the “see 57D” clues. I do however think there were some very clever clues such as “Pierce” portrayer and “rock blaster”. I got lots of red letter and perp help as well with words like solti, Torii, tatar, and Enos. There seemed to be a lot of river clues such as Rios, Seine, and Nile. Fun to see aioli today too.

Woke up to 8 degrees below zero this morning but at least the wind has died down.

Dennis, I think Humans rights day seems odd.

Warren said...

Hi C.C. & gang, I was stumped by 45 & 53D, 'A Tempo' + 'INSC'. We finished 90% of the puzzle before my wife left today...

For C.C. here's some pictures of cairn terriers
don't they look like the TOTO dog?

Jim said...

Puzzle is good, clues are bland. I prefer Dan Naddor's ? theme clues.

Lemonade714 said...

Good morning all;

Well I will try and send some warmth (record highs here again today 87) to all you snowed in sufferers; in the meantime, I am always fascinated by answers like SERIF, which I wrote in with no hesitation, though I had no conscious recollection of knowing the word. perhaps because Microsoft uses a font sans serif the information was buried in my brain.

Speaking of TOTO, when I met my ex-wife, she had just acquired a Ciarn Terrier and named him TOTO; he was the spitting image of the movie dog. He was a fun dog for years, but became unstable when he got older, which was not good as we had our children then. he nipped at my oldest, and was shipped off to live out his life in the country. A client who is a vet, said Cairns have lots of problems CAIRN TERRIER and I guess she was right.

Lemonade714 said...

I am sitting here thinking Tiger Woods needs to sue Nike for misrepresentation; he, as one of their premier product pushers (I love alliteration) certainly was brainwashed by Nike's success, and is now facing untold troubles, yet all he did wrong was believe them when they said, "Just Do IT!"

DCannon said...

I didn't do well with this one at all. Don't like the cross-referenced clues. It is like working blind.

Had very few fills on the first passes across or down and had to "g" a lot. Once I got the first theme clue, the others went pretty fast, except for "off the charts." Did not like "phenomenal." I thought the clues suggested something to do with caveat emptor (let the buyer beware) although that wouldn't have fit.

I "g'd" the diet clue and came up with somebody named Ashby, which didn't fit anything. I wanted "prom" for all-night party. All in all, not my best puzzle solving day, but I guess my mind got stretched.

I hope everybody's weather has settled down. We still have cold, but no wind or moisture. Sun is shining.

Argyle said...

My feeling is that something got dropped in the 57A. Clue for 17-, 22-, 36- and 44-Across, usually it goes "(.....) and a clue for..."

Lemonade714 said...

Another of the oddities of life his how often things show in our puzzles soon after we speak of them, such as TORII, referenced in picture form by Dennis recently. We all "know" there is a lag time from a few weeks to many months between the submission of a puzzle and the presentation of the puzzle in the newspaper. We also all "know" the editor changes puzzles, both by replacing clues, (up to ½!) and by 'suggesting' different fill. This leads to speculation as to when the final version of a puzzle is created and what lag time exists between the approval by Mr. Norris, and the appearance of the puzzle. I think I recall his saying he edits one month in advance. Does our Lila Cherry make last minute adjustments based on reading this and other blogs? Do editors read blogs? Perhaps we need a part two to the wonderful information C.C. gleaned from Mr. Norris before the switch.

Lemonade714 said...

Oh, and my point about lag time, is there is a temptation to feel positive about Dan Naddor's health because of the appearance of two puzzles in a short time span, but since of the lag, we really know nothing new. In any event, my continued best wishes for your health, Dan, and the use of your mind to entertain us.

Anonymous said...

VERN said:

The northwest corner had me stumped as I had "go figure" instead of "go getter" and nothing seemed to make sense. The only other problem was 53D insc and 63A oncle. (I could have worked all week and not gotten those two!) Otherwide, not bad for a Thursday puzzle.

Jeannie said...

Aioli Sauce

3/4 cup olive (not virgin) oil
3-5 garlic cloves
1/2 tsp salt
1 lemons
3 egg yolks
1/4 tsp white pepper
1 tbsp Dijon mustards
1 tsp white vinegar

Combine olive oil and garlic in a food processor. In a medium bowl, beat the 3 egg yolks with the Dijon mustard. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil with the garlic whisking all the while. About ½ way through the oil, your mixture will start to resemble mayonnaise. Now add the vinegar and salt and pepper. Squeeze some of the juice of the lemon and combine. Add more lemon, salt and pepper to your taste.
This is wonderful on any type of seafood or fish. It also make a great dip for veges.

MR ED said...

Not a bad puzzle. Some clever clues- 1A diet maven, 6A pierce portrayer, 18A fall back interval, 9D rock blaster. And ,of course,some things i never heard of-- garlicly mayo, chill pill and insc for inscribed.

MR ED said...

And, by the way C.C., what is 'larabar'?

MR ED said...

And, by the way C.C., what is 'larabar'?

Anonymous said...

@Mr. Ed, Google Larabars, remember, Google is your best friend.

Dennis said...

Speaking of Larabars and 'best friend', I once had a Larabar Retriever. Great dog.

Warren said...

Larabar? for Dennis and et al;

Didn't you mean:Labrador retriever?

edddyB said...

Hello all.

The LAT was pretty easy compared
to the Matt Jones puzzle. His puzzle was filled with a bunch of obscue proper names. Didn't care to know who the Bolivian president is/was.

Light rain again this morning. The
Sierras must be getting feet of snow.

The belt high pile of leaves were
picked up. Now I get to start all over again.

Stay warm. eddyB

MR ED said...

It looks like nobody knows what a larabar is. Not even Dennis, who thinks it's a dog. LMAO!

melissa bee said...

mr. ed - i believe it was meant as a joke ...

Warren said...

lara bar?
"Gluten Free Nutrition Bars, Energy Bars, Fruit & Nut Bars - LARABAR

LÄRABAR is a delicious blend of unsweetened fruits, nuts and spices. Pure and simple, just as nature intended."

PJB-Chicago said...

I blame the cold temp (a whopping 11 degrees) for my brainfreeze and difficulty ploughing through all 4 corners of the puzzle, and the middle. The rest was easy [grin]. Based on comments so far, I'm not alone in finding cross references usually irksome and bewildering, but Dan Naddor made the extra work worth the effort.

We have OVER THE TOP today and had the word OUTSIZED yesterday. All apply when the ego runs AMOK.

Haven't heard "chill pill" or RAVE (as in all night dancing, partying, XTC, etc) in a while. I do remember the rave scene:strobe lights, trance music, people carrying glowsticks & wearing glitter and getting too kissy---so, mister uncool me just sipped my domestic beer, kept my clothes on, and went home before midnight.

*Larabar?? Whaaaat's that?
*Footballer Freddy ADU got highly over-rated. With a short last name that's 66.66% vowels, we're bound to see him again in puzzles.
*AIOLI is very good with french fries. Lots of fat, but 80% vowels, so must be healthy, right?
*MOOSE; MOUSSE and Mouse sure sound alike when our Canadian admin says those words. Whatever it is, something is crawling around in her basement, and none of the possibilities sound too delightful!

windhover said...

Uh, Melissa Bee dear,
You're forgetting that Mr. Ed is a fictional TV horse who can talk. That IS the joke.

Dennis said...

Well, so much for lame jokes.

Yes, having grown up in a household with 3 consecutive black labs, I'm pretty familiar with the breed.

Dennis said...

Mr. Ed was fiction???? Damn.

eddyB said...


All I know about lara bars is that they are being retrieved by the FDA.

Tori Amos is on Letterman tonight.

Only reasson to watch Pit @ Cle tonight is to see if the play in snow.

It doesn't look very nice outside
so I'll wait untill tomorrow to go to the store. Maybe we will have sun shine.


Chickie said...

Hello All--I had difficulty with this puzzle, especially with the NW corner. I put in Bash for Rave and didn't know Derek's infield mate. This was the last corner to fall. I had to Google about 5 answers today--mostly proper names.

I did like Greek House? and Call to mate clues. Insc was a totally unknown answer but it did fall to perps. I think others also had a problem with this abbreviation.

I ran early errands this morning to beat the crowds at the department stores. I don't think there are many crowds at any of the stores from the looks of things. There was no waiting in lines even at 1:00 P.M.

Stay warm everyone in the snow belt.

Buckeye said...

@Dennis: Those Larabar retrievers are great dogs. I once had a Spinner Spaniel and loved her to death.

I must be off

Dennis said...

Buckeye, years ago I had an Australian SheepHurter, and she was all flocked up.

Buckeye said...

Dennis, my Doberman Pincher was a pain in the butt.


Dennis said...

My little Welsh Corkie kept getting stuck in bottles...

MJ said...

I messed up pushing buttons, sorry. I am in a minority in not being bothered by the cross references today. The four main theme answers were familiar to me, so I didn't need 57A to complete.

Loved the cross of MOUSSE and MOOSE. Fortunately, most of the proper names were familiar to me. My only hang-up was in the South, thinking of the abodes in the cliffs at Mesa Verde National Park for 52A-"Cliff dweller".

Thanks, Dan Naddor. Hope your health is improved!

windhover said...

Dennis and Buckeye:
What the Hell are you two drinking? I want to send the Irish out to pick some up right now.
Mr. Ed:
Buy you a drink?
Melissa Bee:
Buy you a brand new Mustang?

Dennis said...

Windhover, just a little hair of the dog.

Jeezus, what the hell is wrong with me??

Robin said...

Drinking!! Are we drinking???

Robin said...

May I buy the first round??

Dennis said...

My dear, the first round is but a distant memory.

Anonymous said...

Didn't Like the stump the chump questions like Rock buster or what ever. Had Kidney stones, and they are called stones not rocks.
I used to teach and make the tests. We could not use stump the chump questions. They were always thrown out if one got by. I did like Greek House clue!!! I had better luck with the lower part of the puzzle.


Robin said...

One for the Road?

lois said...

Robin: I'm sure you can buy the next round and it can be called 'round Robin'. Maybe Carol will buy the next round and we'll call it...a chorus round...perfect for Christmas Carols. I'll buy the next round and we'll call it a Hoedown which comes w/fiddlin' a-round. Bottoms up!

Robin said...

:) @ Lois !!!!

windhover said...

If there's going to be a hoedown, can I be the caller? And for sure it needs to be in Hillbilly Heaven, which is currently very near Lexington, Kentucky.
Don't start without me.

Buckeye said...

Dennis: I don't even want to get into my Shit-Sue.


Buckeye said...

But my favorite, which I have been enjoying all evening, is my Johnny Walker Blue.


Dennis said...

I'm certainly glad to hear that; bestiality doesn't become you.

Annette said...

There's always so many darn baseball references in the puzzles (a pardon to all those that are really into baseball), that I was sure 50D Roberto's Rivers had to do with Roberto Clemente and Three River's Stadium! I thought I finally had the inside track on a baseball clue. And it had nothing to do with baseball.

Sorry, but parts of the south were just frustrating for me today - although some of the really clever clues were gimmes, so I should feel happier...

I can't even come up with a good DF comment for 19A tonight!

Lemonade: LOL - "Just do it!"

Jeannie said...

My little Cocker Span was just that.

MR ED said...

Tis a great place here and I enjoy it very much.