Dec 1, 2009

Tuesday Dec 1, 2009 Dave Hanson

Theme: "Ewww!" - Huge ICK Factor today; double ICK, in fact. Each theme entry has two ICKs embedded in them. C.C. informed me that the 18 C's in the grid is a new record. The previous NYT record is 16. That's a lot of C's, and 9 K's but no B, J, V, X or Z.

20A. Dickens hero with "papers," as he is formally known: MR. PICKWICK. The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club, commonly known as The Pickwick Papers (I didn't know that), is the first novel by Charles Dickens.

51A. Unflattering Nixon sobriquet: TRICKY DICK. Sobriquet, meaning nickname, comes from French, from Old French soubriquet, chuck under the chin. The constructor probably wouldn't use nickname due to the ICK in it.

10D. Surprise football plays: QUICK KICKS. Not the same as an onsides kick, the QUICK KICK relies on a formation that doesn't look like a kick is coming. Clip

29D. Girls-night-out film: CHICK FLICK. Are these new vampire movies considered "CHICK FLICKS"?

Anyway, Argyle here. A few clunkers, like 18A. Like many Keats poems: ODIC and 62A. Hitting serves past: ACING but for the most part, a solid Tuesday puzzle.


1. Attacks: HAS AT.

6. Mandolin ridge: FRET.

14. BP merger partner: AMOCO. Announced in 1998.

15. Not often seen, to Caesar: RARA. "Rāra avis" literally means "rare bird".

16. Spreadsheet reversal command: UNDO.

24. More certain than not: LIKELY.

26. Chewing gum substances: CHICLES. The latex produced by certain tropical American trees. Chiclets

31. Nut in a mixed nuts can: CASHEW. Sign on the can, "Caution: May Contain Nuts."

32. Airport building: TERMINAL. or maybe 58. Prefix with -drome: AERO.

36. Indian spiced tea: CHAI.

37. Manet's "The Luncheon on the Grass," e.g.: OIL. The medium used for the painting.

38. "Elder" or "Younger" Roman statesman: CATO.

39. Mind readers: PSYCHICS.

42. More sluggish: POKIER.

44. County on the Strait of Dover: KENT. and 46. Dover landmarks: CLIFFS. The White Cliffs Of Dover - Vera Lynn.

45. Mussed up, as hair: TOUSLED.

50. Megastar: IDOL.

57. Singer Tennille: TONI. The duo of The Captain & Tennille.

60. Milton's "Paradise Lost," for one: EPIC.

61. Overflow (with): TEEM.

63. Potato holder: SACK.

64. Old Norse poetic work: EDDA. Haven't seen this word in awhile but at one time, you'd see it once a week.


1. Hurt: HARM. And 2. Latin love: AMOR. You Always Hurt The One You Love by The Mills Brothers.

3. Chowder or bisque: SOUP.

4. In "Macbeth," it opens with thunder and lightning: ACT I.

5. How many models are built: TO SCALE.

6. Displeased looks: FROWNS.

7. Paul Harvey's medium: RADIO. "Good Day".

9. One bringing down the ball carrier: TACKLER.

11. Title for Remus: UNCLE.

12. Epitome: IDEAL.

13. Hot alcoholic drink: TODDY.

26. Initials on an old ruble: CCCP. The Cyrillic name for the USSR is initialized CCCP. "But wait, for a limited time offer, you'll receive this collector's coin!"

27. Derisive laughs: HAHS. What I do when I hear those "Fantastic Offers".

28. "My word": "I SAY".

30. Tierra __ Fuego: DEL. When you "go south", you can't go much further than here but you could drive there in your Fiat Tierra del Fuego

32. "__ the season ...": 'TIS. Almost!

35. Lady's man: LORD. This was a "gotcha" for me.

40. Playboy Mansion resident, familiarly: HEF. Playboy founder Hugh Hefner, the type of lady's man I was thinking of>

41. Like colleges with the lowest tuition, for residents: IN-STATE.

42. 1840s president: POLK.

43. Annual period beyond the current fiscal one: OUTYEAR.

45. Washington city: TACOMA.

47. Parkinsonism treatment: L-DOPA.

48. Greek architectural style: IONIC.

52. Clarinetist's need: REED. Wood wind, not a brass wind.

53. 1920s-'40s art style: DECO.

56. Frat party containers: KEGS.

I'll be gone all day on a repo job (down past Dennis in Delmar, MD) so play nice. I have to drive the repo back so I'm hoping it's not ICKY!

Answer grid.



Dennis said...

Good morning, Argyle, C.C. and gang - no 'ick' factor here, typical Tuesday puzzle with minimal pauses.

Had a brain cramp in the midwest when I went completely blank on 'chicle', a word I knew but simply couldn't pull out. Conversely, I don't know that I've seen 'out-year' before, nor has my wife, who runs the accounting component of a seriously big company. Anyone else seen it? Other than that, a fun, simple puzzle.

Argyle, C.C., the record of 18 - is it a record for any letter?

Fun day on the blog yesterday; I've missed those exchanges.

Today is Eat a Red Apple Day.

Today's Words of Wisdom: "The statistics on sanity are that one out of every four Americans is suffering from some form of mental illness. Think of your three best friends. If they're ok, then it's you." -- Rita Mae Brown

And the last of the Washington Post contest entries:

- Frisbeetarianism: The belief that, after death, the soul flies up onto the roof and gets stuck there.

- Oyster: A person who sprinkles his conversation with yiddishisms.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Dennis & Argyle,
18 is just for letter C. See this list, which I just added to Argyle's main blog entry. As you can see from the content, the title Daily NYT Puzzle Record is not accurate. It covers all the major newspapers.

Dick said...

Good morning Argyle. C.C. and all, another typical Tuesday puzzle. I had a problem with the cross of 27D and 36A as I had inserted HAWS for HAHS and I really did not know 36A Indian spiced tea. I did not think "cwai" could be correct so I changed the w to the h and it at least looked better. Over all a good Tuesday puzzle.

I liked the definition Frisbeetarianism: The belief that, after death, the soul flies up onto the roof and gets stuck there. LMAO.

Hope you all have a great Tuesday.

Lemonade714 said...

I really enjoyed LADY’S man, which if you looked at it as not Ladies man, was easy.

I wonder if the Russian coin is designed as a representation of Vasili Alexeyev the greatest Soviet athlete of all time? Dennis?

On to Tuesday, and we hurtle towards the holidays

Dennis said...

Lemonade, that could be true; there is a bit of a resemblance.

And you're right, I can't believe it's only 3 weeks and change until Christmas. Seems like November was a week long.

Hahtoolah said...

Morning, CC, Argyle and Friends. I found this to be a very easy puzzle, much easier than yesterday's, which I was apparently the only one here who was challenged by it.

I liked all the ICKs, even LIKELY (24A as an added un-themed clue).

My favorite fill was the Terra DEL Fuego(s)

DEL Fuego(s). Anyone else remember this band out of Boston? I used to go hear them at dance clubs in the mid-80s. I will be at the Terra Del Fuego later this year.

QOD: The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity. ~ Dorothy Parker

Barry G. said...

Morning, folks!

Relatively smooth puzzle today. I wasn't crazy about CHICLES (I believe that is Spanish for "gums" but I've never heard it in English before), ACING (always an ugly word), OUTYEAR (huh?) or ODIC (no surprise there), but everything else was fine.

I initially put NOVA for 50A, thinking about a completely different type of "star" obviously. After I got CITES for 46D, however, I changed NOVA to IDOL. And then took it right back out, since I knew that 47D couldn't possibly start with LD. Except, of course, it could and did.

Have a great one!

fermatprime said...

Dear folks,

Nice blogging Argyle!
I haven't been up in time to make comments lately. Not much sleep due to shoulder pain.
Thanks to all the people who have wished me well! I have a nice physical therapist. However, after his visits I experience excruciating pain.

I always read this blog. It is the best around by far!

A few remarks from the past:

I read a lot of cozies also. But mainly books authored by females that are more substantial, such as Ruth Rendell

fermatprime said...

(Boy did I ever hit an incorrect key.)
Continued: Diane Mott Davidson, Elizabeth George and a few that are good for laughs such as those by Janet Evanovich and (my favorite) M.C. Beaton.

I never miss Jeopardy unless the DVR screws up. Can't abide commercials.

I really dislike Simpsons--too much stupidity.

For some reason, Google has switched my name again.

Lorraine L.

PS Please tell me how to delete a post!!!

Dennis said...

Lorraine, there's a little 'trash can' at the end of your posts; if you click on that, you'll be able to delete your post.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Great to have you back. Hope you had a nice Thanksgiving.

If you hit the Garbage Can at the end of your post, the result will be like the 6:35am comment, which shows "This post has been removed by the author". Dennis, Argyle and I can delete the already deleted post and the post will be permanently gone.

C.C. Burnikel said...

I forgot to mention that you can only delete your comment if you sign in with your blue status (Google Account)while posting. If you choose Anonymous or Name/URL, you won't be able to delete.

Anonymous said...

17 was routs I had beats

34 D Lady's man I wondered how I could get gigolo to fit.

33 D Nail I tried glue first.

I am a mess today. Today was a day when I thought I knew plenty but it turns out I was wrong.

51 Across It's weird that the final Jeopardy question last night ties into this clue today.

Political Non fiction was the category.

A: The book begins January 17, 1972 nine o'clock Saturday Morning.

Q: What is All the Presidents Men?

It is as if the puzzle constructor watches Jeopardy the night before he makes the puzzle.

7:58 for me today even with my hiccups.

kazie said...

Goodmorning all!
I loved this puzzle. Several new clues and NO difficult NAMES! I whizzed through it in (for me) no time at all. CHICLES was my only unknown and it got perped. I groaned at HAS AT, but otherwise a nice Tuesday.

When I think of cozies, it's those knitted teapot covers to keep the tea warm long enough to finish the whole potful.

Our d-i-l gave us a cute German Adventskalender consisting of a string of 24 tiny Christmas stockings, each containing chocolate surprises for DH and me. I hung it in the living room, and today we got the first treats--rich white chocolate eggs. Yummy!

tfrank said...

Good morning, C.C., Argyle and all,

Smooth sailing this morning; enjoyed all the icks.

Dennis, I believe outyear is a term used in connection with budgets. If you were preparing a five year budget, for example, the sixth year and beyond would be considered outyears.

Another good job, Argyle.

A good day for all is my wish for today.

Bill said...

Well! All of Nov. gone and no S***!!!
BUT Dec. 1st and here we go. I've watched 2 vehicles do donuts in front of the house (on a straight stretch of road in a 35MPH zone!)
Some idiots will never catch on to the SLOW DOWN technique.
And, there's only a half inch give or take!!! What will it be like when we get a foot at a time?

Yesterday and today pretty straightforward x words. Had no idea about PRUFROCK. And today didn't get CHICLE till last. But I DID get it!
CY'All Later

Al said...

Odd how the same word can have completely different meanings as a noun and a verb, how words change over time, and the path they took.

Crossword origin of the day: FRET

From the Online Etymology Dictionary.

As a noun:

"Ornamental interlaced pattern," late 14c., from O.Fr. frete "interlaced work, trellis work," The other noun, "ridge on the fingerboard of a guitar," is c.1500 of unknown origin but possibly another sense of O.Fr. frete.

As a verb:

Figurative sense of "irritate, worry, eat one's heart out" is c.1200. Fretan "eat, devour" (in O.E., used of monsters and Vikings; in M.E., used of animals' eating), from P.Gmc. compound *fra- "for-" + *etan "to eat" O.H.G. freggan, Ger. fressen. Modern Ger. still distinguishes essen for humans and fressen for animals.

I fret that if I press too hard, my frets will wear out.

Spitzboov said...

Pretty easy crossword. Only one cross out. Had CCCr which didn't look right; then saw it had to be CCCP.

Thought the POKIER and POLK cross was interesting.

CLIFFS the white chalk cliffs of Dover are an example of how the Earth got rid of excess CO2 from the atmosphere millions of years ago.

TOSCALE; how many models are built. Was thinking more about the attributes of the female body shape:-).

Ciao everyone.

Jeannie said...

I caught on to the “ick” theme once I penned in Tricky Dick and chick flick. I couldn’t remember Mr. Pickwick so made a WAG once I had most of the letters filled in. I guess I have never heard of a quick kick and I don’t think that’s a play you see all that often in football. Perp help included Rara,and chicle. This was an okay puzzle but I didn’t enjoy it as much as yesterdays.

Off to go spend the company’s money!!

Warren said...

Hi Argyle, C.C. & gang, a slow start today but we finished it easily without needing help before my wife left for work.

Re: "All the President's men?"
That was the answer to a question on jeopardy yesterday and directly relates to 'tricky dick'

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, Nice, breezy Tuesday puzzle. My first thought at "How many models are built" was TOO THIN like Anabela Belikova. ICK ICK! IMO.

Then I misread 44A as country, rather than county. Naturally I put in EIRE.

Got everything straightened out pretty quickly though, so it wasn't a problem.

When I filled in CHICLES, I thought of the currently popular "Chiclet teeth". Straight white teeth are very nice, but I think Faye Dunaway and Hillary Duff have gone too far.

carol said...

Hi Argyle, C.C. and all -

Did not have an 'icky' time with this one, went smoothly all the way through with only minor stops for : chicles, cccp and chai. I stayed in that area for several minutes.

The weight lifter depicted (!) on the CCCP coin looks like an out of shape, middle-aged poop! Look at that gut! Oh wait, maybe I'm just used to seeing pictures of 'juiced up' guys.

Lorraine - hope your shoulder improves..keep up the physical therapy, it will hurt at first, but help later. My hubby went through that surgery a few years ago and it's a painful recovery.

Dennis - I echo your thoughts of yesterday and the word fun. Takes me back to some good, laugh out loud times we all had 'way back when'. :)

Anonymous said...

Good afternoon everyone.

I thoroughly enjoyed this puzzle. And the post was great, Argyle.

But what's all this moaning about the good ole days? I enjoy this blog every day. It's always interesting and amusing.

I caught on after Mr. Pickwick, but my DH who was a football player didn't get quick kick. I got it after I realized the ick ick theme.
(I tend to hopscotch around and don't do a down or across pattern in any organized way.)


Clear Ayes said...

No Keats poem today, but an ODIC sonnet to Keats by another fairly well known poet.

Fame Speaks

Stand forth,John Keats! On earth thou knew'st me not;
Steadfast through all the storms of passion,thou,
True to thy muse,and virgin to thy vow;
Resigned,if name with ashes were forgot,
So thou one arrow in the gold had'st shot!
I never placed my laurel on thy brow,
But on thy name I come to lay it now,
When thy bones wither in the earthly plot.
Fame is my name. I dwell among the clouds,
Being immortal,and the wreath I bring
Itself is Immortality. The sweets
In mine own ether,with the crownéd crowds
Of earth I know not,more the pains,but wing
Born of the centuries.-Stand forth,John Keats!

- e e cummings 1894-1962

DCannon said...

Super easy puzzle today. Had to erase only one or two of the acrosses when I did the downs. Had "peanut" instead of "cashew" and "blush" instead of "roses." I did not, however, fill in all the acrosses on first try. No unknowns that did not get taken care of by perps. Didn't see Mr. G this morning. I did not like "hasat." I wanted it to be one word. "Pickwick" was a given, but I was trying to remember some initials until the down clues took care of it.

Fermatprime, I love cozies, but haven't found many lately that are truly in the cozy tradition,IMO. I think the newer ones have too much blood and gory details to qualify. Seems as if the "language" usage has increased, too. I don't cringe at it, but sometimes it is appropriate to the story and sometimes it isn't.

Here's hoping your shoulder improves very quickly and you get back into the swing of things.

Kazie, when I think of cozies, I think of a comfy chair, a pot of tea on he table beside the chair, a fire in the fireplace, and me with my snuggie and a good book. We have snow flurries this morning, so it sounds reaaly good. (Except that we no longer have a fireplace.)

I watch Jeopardy! every day except when they are having a "tournament" of some kind. I especially don't like the celebrity tournaments. When those are on, I just delete it that day.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Clear Ayes,
How come none of your posts today showed up the Comments section? I saw all of them in my mail box.

JD said...

Good morning Argyle, CC and all,
Loved today's puzzle!Didn't notice the icks, so maybe I'm one out of 5HAH!

Laughed at potatoe holder.
Things I didn't know(CCCP,amoco,cato,edda,kent) filled quICKly with perps.Enjoyable.

Argyle, loved the "White Cliffs.." CA, what movie did they replay that song?

Spitzboov, interesting about CO2.

Lorraine, wishing you a speedy recovery.

Jeannie, can't wait to make your mac 'n cheese. Looks yummy!

I don't think these vampire movies are chick flicks; seem to be similar to the Harry Potter phenomena. I know of many guys who have read the books and seen the movies, including S-I-L.

All of our white irises have been blooming for weeks, so I guess they must be a Fall variety.I grow them, just don't know them.I don't think the flowers in CA really know when spring is. They just bloom whenever.And those in So. CA always seem to have flowers.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Clear Ayes,
OK, the two posts showed up on my computer. The blog malfunctioned earlier.

Anonymous said...

Is this the Dave Hanson who constructed the icky puzzle today?

embien said...

6:08 today. What an ICKy puzzle. Not! I loved this thing from start to finish, even with my missteps (e.g., putting in ROUE instead of LORD after misreading the clue). C how much fun puzzles can be?

There also seemed to be a lot of O's in the puzzle, but I didn't bother counting them.

I checked Twilight out of the library a couple of months ago. I amazed myself (I'm not exactly in the teenage girl demographic, being a guy collecting social security) by enjoying it immensely. Though it is set in Forks, WA, it was actually filmed in Oregon. I ended up buying the DVD 'cause I liked it so much.

Haven't seen New Moon yet, but I will when I get a chance.

embien - Team Edward

Chickie said...

Hello All--Not a total walk in the park, as I, too, have never heard of out-year or odic so had to rely on perps to help fill in the missing letters. Other than that everything fell into place. I began to realize that there was an ick theme when I filled in Mr. Pickwick, and Chick Flick. But the whole thing was far from icky.

For the Eat a Red Apple Day I have some Gala apples in the fruit bowl, so will have one for a snack this afternoon.

Lorraine, It was good to hear from you. I have been wondering how you have been getting along. Physical therapy is just that, Physical, but necessary. I hope you continue on the road to recovery.

Hatool, at first I thought your new avatar was a caterpillar! I had to enlarge it to realize that it was a brussel sprout stalk! LOL.

IRISH JIM said...

Good evening CC Argyle and all.

Did not like Odic or Acing.

Never heard of Chicles..

Argyle, after Maria Elena twice last week to get stuck in my head, beautiful by the way, I now have "white cliffs of dover" for this week. The wireless(radio) in the U Tube piece looks very familiar.
Great job as always.

Kazie I am doing a HUH with cozie. I had the same thought as you did. Googled it so now its AHA.

Clear Ayes said...

C.C. My computer had a bad case of the hiccups (hiccoughs to some) and posted my 10:34 twice. So, I deleted the last one, which was a repeat. My "Publish" button seems to be working fine now.

GAH and I started some Christmas shopping at Costco today. They seem to have a lot of neat gifts in the "Under $30" category. In this economy that's a good thing.

JD, for a minute I thought the movie you referred to was "Dr. Strangelove", but that was We'll Meet Again, another WWII song by Vera Lynn. I'm afraid I can't help on "Bluebirds Over...".

Lorraine, Hope you are feeling better very soon. Don't give up on the physical therapy. It often hurts before it gets better.

Hahtoolah said...

Chickie: Yes, that is a brussel sprout stalk. I never really gave much thought about how brussel sprouts grew. When shopping for Thanksgiving food, I happened upon a stalk. Just seeing it made me laugh. Since I had already scoped out a recipe for baked brussel sprouts, I just had to get the real deal.

Warren said...

For Al:

Your link to Etymology made me remember John Ciardi

Does anyone else remember his word rambles?

PJB-Chicago said...

Good evening, Argyle, C. C., and all.
Late finishing this enjoyable puzzle due to work in a.m. and lunch with Mom. Fun time reminiscing about old times -- she forgets nothing about some of our mini road trips across Chicagoland; e.g., we visited our favorite consignment shop and she remembered an overcoat and golf clubs with wooden shafts we'd bought there for me in 1980! Now I have two "new" pairs of handsome tweed trousers.

Just a few bad guesses here and there while solving. QUICK KICKS and TO SCALE took some time, and potato SACK was so easy it was hard. My Latin has gotten less spotty under the tutelage of CC, Argyle and fellow commenters here. EDDA may finally be ODIC enough to remember, I hope!

Chickie said...

CA, I had the same problem with my publishing today. I actually had three posts and had to delete two! I'm putting this in to see if my password will be accepted. I was rejected three times earlier.

I wanted to thank you, also, for the poem today. Lvoed it.

Bill G. said...

Red apples have been mentioned.

I remember when about all you could find in the supermarket were Red Delicious and Golden Delicious. The selection is better now.

Galas are good, Fujis are good but my favorites have become Pink Ladies.

Barbara is out for the evening at a quilting class so I guess it's a frozen dinner for me.

~ Bill

Lemonade714 said...

No reason to ever have a frozen dinner Bill, cooking is fun and there are a million shows you can watch on Bravo and Food network for simple inspiration. Or you can live off the recipes here from our resident chef, the Sweet tart with heart, Miss Jeannie.

I suggest Joan Hess as a cozy writer with a real sense of humor, along with Elaine Viets, a local girl. Of course none are in the grand tradition of Miss Marple, but I can always hope.

Robin said...

:) to all of you!

Mary said...

Robin :) to you too. And to all of you. Even on the days I don't have time to comment I love reading the posts.

Bill G. said...

Lemonade said: "No reason to ever have a frozen dinner Bill, cooking is fun and there are a million shows you can watch on Bravo and Food network for simple inspiration."

You are right of course. I like to cook and/or have good food cooked for me. While I prefer good food, I'll eat most anything including Spam and Velveeta. (ICK for today's puzzle.) But the deciding factor for tonight is that the Lakers' game is starting as I'm typing. So the good stuff will take a back seat tonight. Go Lakers!

PJB-Chicago said...

Good evening!
Some shout outs, in no particular order:

@ Dennis re. 5:30 a.m. You said that you had a "braincramp in the midwest." Hey, welcome to my world, where I have brainspasms here in the Midwest almost hourly!

@ Lorraine: PT ain't "cozy" but in the right hands does work miracles. If, by chance your insurance co. balks at keeping the treatment going, I can offer some e-mail help about the appeal process. I know all of us are rooting for you!

@ ClearAyes: agreement on Faye Dunaway's teeth "issues." (Ick!) She was so good in the movie REDS, [I think that was her] prior to her dental makeover. What happened? Btw, the ee cummings poem is a treasure.

@ Jeannie: dare I ask about the "talk" with H.R.?
@ Hahtool. The brussel sprout stalk looks great; might I ask how you prepared the sprouts? I enjoy your blog, by the way. Del Fuegos have kind of disappeared, no?

@Argyle: I have a photo that I will soon post of your namesake Chicago El train stop. I am no photog, but jumped off the train just to snap the bright red sign.

@ Everyone: Thanks for bearing with me during my relocation/partial job loss/job hunt. Am not very skilled at navigating such sudden moves and upheavals-- but am adapting to new circumstances with more pluck and vigor than I'd ever thought I could muster.

Thanks to C. C. for your help and advice as well. You are our rock!

Bought a new "lucky puzzle pen" today, so I'm testing it out on Wednesday's grid

Clear Ayes said...

PBJ, You always have such kind comments for the rest of the gang. It has been a real pleasure to get to know you. I'm glad to hear that things are settling down and you are "adapting". Best of luck to you.