, pub-2774194725043577, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0 L.A.Times Crossword Corner: Friday January 1, 2010 Andy E. Sawyer


Jan 1, 2010

Friday January 1, 2010 Andy E. Sawyer

Theme: Happy New Year! - The first words of three familiar phrases are Scottish-ized and together they form the song title "Auld Lang Syne".

20A. Steamy Western attraction, today?: AULD (Old) FAITHFUL. Old Faithful Geyser is in Yellowstone National Park. Why is "Western" capitalized in the clue?

36A. Airport convenience, today?: LANG (Long) TERM PARKING

52A. "I wouldn't have said this, but ...," today?: SYNE (Since) YOU ASKED. "Syne" is Scottish for "since".

Quite simple a theme concept, which resulted in sparse numbers of theme answers I suppose. But also plenty of long & lively non-theme fill.

I am very fond of the "it" clues in the grid:

2D. It sucks: VACUUM

33D. The one who started it: AGGRESSOR

45D. It turns litmus paper blue: ALKALI

How is your solving experience today? I felt it's an easier Friday than our recent offerings. Still had to cheat though.


1. "Variations on 'America'" composer: IVES (Charles). Wikipedia says he is widely regarded as one of the first American composers of international significance. I was stumped.

5. Hurry: RACE

9. Lit: AFIRE

14. Cantata composer: BACH. "Fugue composer" too.

15. Birds that lay green eggs: EMUS. Yep, their eggs are dark green. Edible, right, Kazie?

16. Activist with Raiders: NADER (Ralph). Dader's Raiders.

17. Behold, to Brutus: ECCE. "ECCE homo" (Behold the Man).

18. Hot flower: MOLTEN LAVA. Need to parse "flow-er" here as things that flow.

22. Oaty cereal: MUESLI. Not to my taste.

23. Chose not to discuss now: TABLED

27. '70s Citroën models: SMS. Have never heard of Citroën SM. What does SM stand for?

28. JFK, LBJ, etc.: INITS. Can't mislead me into Democrats/Presidents abbr. any more.

32. Muhammad's daughter: LAILA

33. San __ Fault: ANDREAS. Just learned that the San Francisco 1906 earthquake ruptured along the San Andreas Fault.

35. Scratch: CLAW. Oh, scratch from cat.

40. Designing first name: OLEG (Cassini). Designer for Jackie Kennedy.

41. Complains: REPINES. New word to me. Same root as opine, I presume.

42. '60s attorney general Ramsey __: CLARK. Under LBJ. I remember the brouhaha surrounding his defense of Saddam.

44. Lightheaded: GIDDY

45. 1977 Grammy-winning Steely Dan album: AJA. Pronounced like "Asia". Jeannie's favorite album.

48. Out: ASLEEP. Got me. Great clue.

50. "CSI" set: DNA LAB

56. Probably not a teacher's pet: CLASS CLOWN. Thought of Dennis.

59. Prego alternative: RAGU

60. Asian capital: HANOI. Vietnam's capital.

62. Lighting svc.: ELEC. Have never seen "service" abbreviated as svc before.

63. Embellish: ADORN

64. Get smart with: SASS

65. Gossip: DIRT


1. Steel girders: I-BEAMS

3. Bk. after Proverbs: ECCLES. And ESTH (8D. Bible bk. named for an orphaned maiden). Bible books are my weak points, that's for sure.

4. Gets rid of: SHEDS

5. What's left: REMAINDER. Wrote down REMAINING.

6. Pierre's possessive: A MOI. French for "mine". Alliteration.

7. Religious offshoot: CULT. Wanted SECT.

9. Like many awards: ANNUAL

10. Alternative plans: FALLBACKS

11. Wash. neighbor: IDA. In my mind, Idaho is full of potato fields.

12. Gun in a garage: REV. Gun/Rev your engine. I was picturing the real gun.

13. Important time: ERA

19. Terrestrial newt: EFT. Young newt.

21. City where General Motors was founded: FLINT (Michigan)

24. "Hi-__ Hi-Lo": LILI. The song was featured in Leslie Caron's "Lili". Have never heard of it before.

25. Vivacity: ELAN

26. Deputy __: cartoon canine: DAWG. Easy guess.

29. Discount store abbr.: IRREG

30. Allegro et al.: TEMPI

31. Pleasing to the palate: SAPID. This word sure does not look tasty.

34. Areas for buggies: SAND DUNES. Obtained the answer from crosses.

36. Ricky Martin's "Livin' La Vida __": LOCA. Great song.

37. "__ fair in ...": ALL'S. All's fair in love and war.

38. C&W singer McCoy: NEAL. Here is his "Wink". Alien to me.

39. Former U.S. soccer team captain Claudio: REYNA. Nope, sorry. Don't follow soccer.

43. Adds to the database: KEYS IN

46. Predatory seabird: JAEGER. How do you pronounce this bird: YEY-ger or JEY-ger?

47. Kidnap: ABDUCT

49. __ Park: Pirates' stadium: PNC. Named after PNC Bank.

51. Comparable to a beet: AS RED. As red as a beet.

53. Skull and Bones members: ELIS. George W Bush was a member, so was his father.

54. Star Wars character who uses strange syntax: YODA. "Do or do not. There is no try".

55. Night fliers: OWLS

56. Chinese tea: CHA. Yes, literally "tea".

57. Boy: LAD

58. Spanish year: ANO. ¡Felíz año nuevo!

In his letter to constructors yesterday about Dan Naddor's passing, Rich Norris said: "... Dan was one of my favorites, a fun and imaginative guy to work with. I will miss him. His unique style, creativity, energy and willingness to learn were assets that catapulted him to the top echelon of the puzzle constructors since his 2006 debut. In the three-plus years that followed, the LA times published more than 100 of his puzzles. His legacy will live on through much of 2010: there are quite a few more of his puzzles to be edited and published over the coming months ..." A tough loss for Rich too.

Answer grid.



fermatprime said...

Happy New Year everyone!
Harder puzzle today but no cheating.
(It's TEMPI CC!)

fermatprime said...

PS Thanks to all of you who wished me well with pain problem, and happy birthday.

Anonymous said...

1977 Grammy-winning Steely Dan album: AJA. Pronounced like "Asia". Jeannie's favorite album.


AJA released in 1977.
All songs written by Becker and Fagen.

Side one

1. "Black Cow" – 5:10
2. "Aja" – 7:57
3. "Deacon Blues" – 7:37

Side two

4. "Peg" – 3:57
5. "Home at Last" – 5:34
6. "I Got the News" – 5:06
7. "Josie" – 4:33

Happy 2010 to all who blog here.

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

I've corrected my error. Thanks. Were you a math teacher before?

Hope there is a Alyssa Milano waiting for you in 2010.

I am so envious that your lilies are blooming too. Frozen tundra here.

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

We investigated manufacturers who produced unauthorized or fake luxury brands such as Gucci, Chanel, Prada, Louis Vuitton, etc. Zippo was a big client.

Thanks for the fascinating list. The blog tags at the end of each main entry allow me to automatically count the total puzzles by a certain constructor too. But the data starts from Jan 21, 2008 when I first started blogging.

Besides LA Times, what other puzzle do you solve daily?

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

Clear Ayes & Kazie,
Did Hahtool mention any traveling plan for the holiday period? By the way, heard from Jimbo last night. He's happy and healthy. Still reads our comments every day.

Mainiac said...

Happy New Year CC and All,

This definitely was an easier Friday even though I did need red letter help. Getting the theme answers helped tremendously. Fun puzzle and I compared it to more of a Tuesday difficulty.

I never did get to yesterday's grid. We celebrated my youngest's birthday yesterday. Both were born close to Christmas so instead of parties and presents now, the celeb of the day selects a movie to see and restaurant to eat at. We watched the Chipmunks movie the "Squeakuell". It was almost as cute as the two little girls who attended with their dads, seated in the row in front of us. When the "Chipettes" (for those who might have seen it) were performing they just couldn't stay in their seats. Dancing energetically enough their pony tails were flying all over the place!

Red STate, Put my Aja CD in first thing this AM. Great way to start the year!

Mr. Ed, As to you comment the other day about the dogs in my avatar. I do on occasion throw in pics of the boys but I am very uneasy about putting their pictures out there. Being the biased parent they are much better looking than the pups but I haven't injected the kids with ID chips like I have the dogs. I'm also not as technical on a PC as most around here. Keep an eye out. I'll put something out on occasion.

I've got to get the plow on. We've got three days of snow predicted.

Have a great day.

Maniac the paranoid overly protective, low tech parent!!

Dick said...

Happy New Year and good morning C.C. and all, another difficult puzzle for me today. It seems that the puzzles have ratcheted up recently, but I guess that is what we were asking for recently.

First problem today was “rush” for “race” “sect” for “cult” and things went downhill from there as I read 18A as a clue for some type of red smelly flower. Gosh, what a horrible start! After correcting those problems I moved to the lower half where things went much better. In the end I finished with a few trips to MrG. Overall this was a difficult puzzle for me.

I hope all of you survived the festivities of last night and are all safely back this morning.

Have a great Friday and do not OD on football this weekend.

Barry G. said...

Happy New Year, all!

Fine puzzle, overall. Wasn't too crazy about the SYNE/SINCE pun, though. They really don't sound anything alike. Other than that, though, a lot of fun.

Spitzboov said...

Got the theme right away. A little messy today. had rush for RACE and sect for CULT, until EMUS and AMOI became clear. About 4 g'ls.

Got JAEGER from fills, but thought of skua, which a jaeger is. Briefly had bats for night flier before OWLS fell.

LAILA - C. C. you have a typo.

Didn't flow well for me today; guess I wasn't ASLEEP enough.

Happy New Year to All
Einen guten Rutsch ins neue Jahr
Gelukkig nieuwjaar
Bonne année

Jeannie said...

A couple of comments about today's puzzle. First of all, I needed the red letter help. Nice to see Aja once again and sorry to see Ragu. Bad, bad sauce in my opinion. New word for me was "sapid". Favorite clue was "It sucks" -vacuum. I hope everyone enjoys their day. Mine hasn't gotten off to the best start. Don't want to go into details but I'll just say that sometimes you can't fix what you have done no matter how hard you try.

Argyle said...

Barry G., I got caught thinking that, too, but as C.C. pointed out, the theme answers are Scottish words and SYNE means SINCE.

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

Happy New Year

Im a bit underwhelmed by the IRREG theme. Pretty cheeky putting IVES over BACH. Ives was a self-taught, highly idiosyncratic composer who is not really considered one of the majors. His Variations on America (actually, "My Country 'Tis of Thee", aka "God Save the Queen") is weird. We played it a couple years ago. There's one section (at about 3:20 in the clip) where every one of my notes sounded like a mistake. Very disturbing. I'm not THAT bad. Really.

But, enough REPINES.

Liked seeing ANNUAL and ANO, just right for today.

JAEGER is the German word for hunter. Had no idea there was a bird with that name. I would pronounce it YEY-ger, but cannot verify that it is correct.

I wanted RUSH and SECT, which was awkward, SYNE they don't fit together. Lots of trouble in that region. Took a while to parse Flow-er.

Only got SAPID because we had it a few days ago. MUESLI is an even more unappetizing sounding word.

Why did Clapton write a song about Muhammad's daughter?

Everyone blames San ANDREAS. Is it really his fault?

Christmas decorations come down today. Gotta go help the LW.

JzB the occasionally helpful trombonist

Bob said...

No problems. 20 minutes. No help.

Anonymous said...

sadness is seeping through your posts, c.c. I am so sorry.

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning and A Very Happy New Year to All, I agreed with BarryG about SYNE/SINCE, but Argyle's 9:36 clarification and going back to actually translate AULD LANG SYNE into OLD LONG SINCE, I had that great AHA moment. Thanks, C.C. and Argyle.

Lot's of words were not familiar, like IVES, SMS, ECCLES (although I did know ESTH), NEAL and REYNA. Don't get me wrong, I'm not repining (didn't know that one either.)

I started with our copy of The "Sibley Guid to Birds", but all I got there for JAEGER was Family: Laridae, Genus: Stercorarius. No help there. According to Cornell University, "JAEGER - YAY-gehr, JAY-gehr. Stay with the first pronunciation; it's German.". Not too much of a problem, because in North American, as Spitzboov pointed out, it is usually referred to as an Arctic Skua. We've certainly seen SKUA lots of times.

C.C. I haven't heard from Hahtool either. It seems that quite a few people drop out once in a while to concentrate on their non-blog lives. I am fortunate, in that I am retired so I usually have time to stop by the computer and check in several times a day. But I think our absentees are probably still lurking, just waiting until they just have to comment again. You have to admit, it is addicting.

A little while ago, I watched the Ohio State School for the Blind Marching Band. They are living up to this year's theme, "A Cut Above the Rest". As usual, the Pasadena weather is gorgeous.

Anonymous said...

Your puzzles are starting to get obnoxiuos again. Way too many obscure clues and clues that are too dated without available references in a crossword dictionary. How long has it been since there was a Citroen in the United states, anyway? Even my friend who does your puzzles in ink and easily, has made comments how "clueless" your clues are becoming. Make more like Monday and Tuesday, and Wednesday's. 2010is supposed to be an enjoyable year, so help us out on this one.

Belle said...

Happy New Year to all. I've been lurking here for a couple of months when I found the LA Times crossword on line. I've been here long enough to know who Dan Naddor was and am sorry to hear of his passing. I enjoyed his puzzles very much even though they usually kicked my butt! He was a very talented constructor.

JD said...

Happy New Year CC and blog buddies,

This was difficult for me.I got auld, but couldn't complete the 3 phrases. Yes, I cheated with just those 3 and then finished with some visits to the G spot.Didn't like the intersection of repines/sapid, 2 unknowns.I am always amazed when the constructors can fit in words like aggressor, fallbacks, and Jaeger on the verticals.Good work!

Thought I knew birds, but a Jaeger is a new one.

Mainiac, loved your answer about your avatar.

CA, have been loving all the poems that you give us.Thanks

Crockett1947 said...

Happy New Year, everyone!

@jazzbumpa Ives is an acquired taste, I think. It took me a while to warm up to him, but he has some good stuff, IMO. I really enjoy his "Unanswered Question."

@clearayes Thanks for noticing the marching band from the Ohio State School for the Blind! I'd love to see a performance of their "Braille Ohio!"

@anonymous@11:28 I hope you realize that this is just a forum for commenting on the L.A. Times puzzles. Although we have constructors comment at times, the responsibility for the puzzles rests squarely on the shoulders of editor Rich Norris and his squad of talented constructors. If you want a pablum puzzle, there are plenty out there to choose from.

Have a fantastic New Year's Day.

Go Bearcats!
Go Ducks!
Go Buckeyes!

Clear Ayes said...

Anon@11:28, Crockett1947 pointed out that C.C. doesn't have any control over the contents of the LAT puzzles. If you'd like to email them with any complaints or kudos, try LAT Crossword Page, then click on the blue "Contact Us" on the left side under "Settings and Services". Then under "Comments and Feedback", click on blue "comments". In your subject line, write Crossword Editor, Rich Norris, or you can write to them at the address shown at the top left of this page. They will make sure he gets your comment.

:0) I've written to them before and told Mr. Norris how much I like the graduated difficulty during the week.

Jeannie, sorry that you are not having a good start to the year. I hope it is all resolved by tomorrow and that you can go on to 364 great days. BTW, don't let the trolls get to you. Your recipes are very much appreciated.

Four more hours until prime rib at the neighbors' home. Yum!

IRISH JIM said...

Good afternoon CC and all.

This was easier for me than the usual Fri. Only blank was AJA for 45 A. Wanted Yaeger for 46 D but thought it was too much like the pilot Chuck.
Had MUesli spelled meusli as could not see 2 U's in a word.
Had Rush for 5a and also Sect for 7D. Did have to "cheat" with biblical names as could not think of one that began with H.
Some very likeable clues. 15A Nader, 48A asleep. 2D vacuum.

To the T V room for the rest of the day Jimmy.
Happy New Year to all.

eddyB said...

Happy MMX to all.


JD said...

While looking up today's history lesson, I was confused by the many entries of the Rose Bowl so I delved deeper.

1890- The Tournament of Roses was just a festival put on by Pasadena's Valley Hunt Club to show off their beautiful flowers and oranges.

During the next few years it expanded with marching bands and floats. They had games (like ostrich races and bronco busting) in the town lot, which they called Tournament Park. Soon they built reviewing stands along the parade route.

1895-This celebration got so large that an association took it over.

1902-They held the 1st post season football game to enhance the festivities, but Stanford lost 49-0 to Mich, so they stopped the games and had Roman style chariot races instead until 1916.

There have been games ever since.
1923- 1st game in the new Rose Bowl Stadium.

1942- R.B.was played in N.C. due to Japanese threat (Oregon vs Duke)

1954- The Rose Bowl and the Cotton Bowl games were the 1st sporting event to be telecast in color.

Last 2 entries:

1966-Simon and Garfunkel's "Sounds of Silence" was #1

1995-Last "Far Side" by cartoonist Gary Larson

JimmyB said...

Another challenging Friday but a lot easier for me than last Friday. Got the theme early enough, but that didn't help with my first guesses of RUSH and SECT, instead of RACE and CULT (looks like I'm not alone on this one). Googling didn't even help me with EMUS. EFT and REPINES were new to me. Love it when someone uses GIDDY.

I know Jazzbumpa was just being his usual clever self, but in case there's any confusion, LAILA is Muhammad ALI's daughter, no relation to Clapton's LAYLA. I only know this because I watch "Dancing With the Stars".

Annette said...

Happy New Year, all!

The NW was left totally blank for a long time, but working clockwise, I backed into it and finally got it done with a little red letter help. I did get the theme though, which helped me stop trying to put in OLD or OLDE for 20A. I knew what it was referring to from the start but the "O" just wouldn't turn black for me!

I often use svc. used as an abbr. for service.

That Neal McCoy song is my ringtone for a certain guy... "All he's gotta do is give me that wink!" ;-) Hearing it never fails to make me smile.

JAEGER - Think of ordering the dish 'jaeger schnitzel' in a German restaurant. It's pronounced Yay-ger.

I remember catching on to flow-er last time, but it caught me this time...

Jeannie: Sorry to hear your year had a bad start. I hope it's like a performance rehearsal - when it goes poorly, the actual performance usually shines! I liked and respected your handling of last night's obnoxious Anon. Kudos to you for not letting him get to you, or stooping to his level.

tfrank said...

Happy New Year to all!
This is a late post for me, but Jean had an appointment with her therapist this morning. We worked separate copies of the puzzle today and I am proud to say that she beat me. I had trouble with the "out" clue. Repines and jaeger were new to me, nor did I know Aja. Otherwise, it was smooth sailing. I liked the timely theme, but like others, questioned syne.

Enjoyed a half hour of sun bathing around noon time, fully dressed, of course, but the sun is warm. A good way to get some Vitamin D.

I will be preparing a fruited loin of pork for dinner, along with black eyed peas, a Southern tradition on New Year's Day. It is supposed to bring good luck.

I am glad to hear that there are a lot of Dan's work still in the pipeline. They will be a good way to remember him.

Jeannie, we have a saying in AA, that if yiu don't like the way your day is going, just start it all over again. It works for me. It is helpful to remember that we are powerless over people, places and things, but there is one who has all power.

I am off to watch some football.

Annette said...

So, has anyone here ever used SAPID in conversation before? How have you used it? "Mmmm, that meal was sapid?" It doesn't sound like a compliment to me... I just googled it and found this interesting explanation for it: SAPID definition

eddyB: MMX, I like that representation of the year!

Jazzbumpa said...

Annette -

Excellent find. Such savoir-faire. I savor your sapient sapidity!

JzB the savvy trombonist

kazie said...

Late posting for me today, but hey--Happy New Year Everyone!

Irish Jim,
Re muesli: Whenever the u precedes the e, it sounds like "you" which is an approximation of the ü sound in German, though not a good one. In words of German origin, "eu" sounds like "oi" in English, or the vowel sound in "boy". So go by the pronunciation and the spelling is easy.

Yes, the emu eggs are green in color, and huge--you can make scrambled eggs or omelet for six people with one egg. According to this, which compares eggs of several large birds, they are the equivalent of 10 chicken eggs.

I took quite some time with today's puzzle, but got through without help. i loved the clue out for ASLEEP. Got that the theme spellings were changed from normal, but was too busy getting things out to realize the connection between them and "today?" in each of them. Actually Auld Lang Syne seems more suited to New Year's EVE than today.

kazie said...

Just went back to look at comments after doing Sunday's puzzle almost a week late, and found the first comment by "anonymous" used the word SAPID to refer to that puzzle. Was that prescient? It was one thing I'd never heard of before today!

Anonymous said...

@Jeannie, is red wine vinegar better than white wine vinegar?

Clear Ayes said...

Mainiac, you have a valid point about not displaying photos of your boys too much. That being said, I couldn't resist the grandkids on Christmas Day.

Time to get ready for the Rose Bowl and that SAPID prime rib!

Annette said...

Kazie: SIPID had been a fill last Saturday too (12/26/09). Then mentioned a few times in the blog that day. I think that was the reference Anon. was making early the next day.

IRISH JIM said...

Thanks for the spelling lesson. It was never my strong suit.Hopefully its in my head until tomorrow at least Ha Ha.

MR ED said...

I'm just checking.

PJB-Chicago said...

Not much time to comment but want to wish all of our puzzlesolving community here at C.C.'s Corner a Very Happy New Year. Here's hoping 2010 is filled with solid, sapid (!) and fun puzzles, new things to learn & think about, lots of laughs, and memories we'll share and treasure for a long time to come....

Starting Monday, my non-puzzle life is going to require some more focused attention for about the next couple weeks, so I will be a scarce presence in the Comments corner, but will try to stay up with the puzzles & read the commentaries. And notice new avatars!

Thanks to CC and all of you for many happy, educational and entertaining times in 2009!

Spitzboov said...

The comments on the apparent nuances on the use and meaning of 'sapid' are a little difficult to fathom but I think I'm drawing a bead on it. Would the opposite be 'vapid' (dull, flat)? If so, they would both be easier to remember.

Warren said...

Hi C.C. & gang, I think we got ~50% of today's puzzle before I went online to see if our guesses were right. Shortly after that my wife picked up on the theme which made it a lot easier.

Here's a happy new year from ABBA

MR ED said...

I never thought of the safety factor. You are very smart in your thinking.

Chickie said...

Hello All--A Very Happy New Year to everyone here at Crossword Corner(s).

The puzzle needed a little help from Google today, as I didn't know some of the names--Reyna and McCoy. I also misspelled Muesli,so the abbreviation Eccles, was hard to come by.

The SE corner fell last, but my husband did know Jaeger. We saw them flying along side our ship on our way down to Colombia. They are a beautiful bird in flight.

Jeannie, Sometimes we need to give a problem time to iron itself out. Take heart, and look to tomorrow. It will get better.

We're making bean soup with the ham bone from our Christmas ham. It really smells delicious. It has been cooking several hours now, and will be just right after the Rose Bowl is over.

Frenchie said...

CC and the whole blog family, may this new year be the best!
Had to pick around the puzzle to bring it together. I liked the theme and smiled when I hit upon FLOWER and SYNE. I agree SAPID is obtuce sounding word though I like the definition.
@Bob, you are a wild man with 20 min. and no peaking!

JD said...

Warren, thanks for ABBA.

Chickie, we are having the same dinner at our house tonight.

Had no idea that emus had green/blue or black eggs. While in S.A. I bought an ostrich egg that had been carved out and decorated.It's really beautiful and seems almost unbreakable.

An emu can lay up to 54 eggs at a time. Wow! But I suppose most don't.LOL! Fun fact: the emu , when being chased by a predator, can quickly change direction(a uey) by raising up one wing, and lowering the other. This will wear out anything chasing they say.

It is said that the invention of the car saved the ostrich from extinction. Marie Antoinette put an ostrich feather in her coiffeur and it became the rage. These plumes looked lovely while riding a horse, but not so great in a car zipping around at 40 mph.

Anonymous said...

I am the one who commented on "empiric" and apostrophes, but did not make any of the other comments. I would have thought that the creator of this crossword puzzle put in the wrong clue for "empiric" would be of more interest that discussing the propriety of mentioning another person's grammatical errors.

It seems to me that if no one mentions the errors, then people are going to keep on making them, and I'll have to just sit silently as people do such things as use "set-up" as a verb. Why is it such a taboo to inform someone of grammatical errors? Are we to sacrifice the English language just to avoid hurting some feelings? And how is calling someone "Punctuation Gestapo" less rude than making a factual observation about someone's grammar?

MR ED said...

After seeing the bird, I would pronounce it 'sea gull'.

Argyle said...

Punctuation Gestapo, we use common dictionaries and they say empiric and empirical are interchangeable, so unless you can tell us the source of your knowledge, we are doomed to live in ignorance.

MR ED said...


Have a HAPPY NEW YEAR basking in the sun. You missed a bit of snow the last few days.

MR ED said...

What's in the cup?

Clear Ayes,
What a beautiful family.

Argyle said...

Chicken soup.

Robin said...

Anon WOW, why don't you share with us who you are? Does this not make your diatribe invaluable? You seem like a pretty smart person. Give yourself credit.

At least we could know and appreciate your invaluable contribution. As an Anon, you just sound foolish.

Anons have the history of being hystrionic and irritating, I don't think than would be you.

Robin said...

Argyle , Yum

Argyle said...

Okay Robin, what is the story behind yor avatar?

Clear Ayes said...

Mr Ed, I think so too.

Back from our prime rib feed. I sure hope our neighbors make it an annual event. Pleasant people and great food made for a very nice beginning to the new year.

Anon@8:29, I don't think anyone objected to your comment about yesterday's constructor's use of "empiric" rather than "empirical". Right or wrong, the contributors to this blog are often critical of our constructors choices. Constructors expect some repining (love that new word). As long as it is respectful it goes with the territory.

Your other comment was of a different nature. Perhaps I can explain why hackles were raised at your "apostrophes" remark. First of all, the vast majority of punctuation and spelling errors seen here are merely typographical errors. Sometimes we catch and sometimes we don't. It is considered poor blog etiquette to call attention to such small lapses. Second, the first apostrophe was an error, but the second was mocking the "H-dropping" of some accents and an apostrophe replaced the "H". It was a joke, but you felt it was necessary to point it out as an error. Third, and I believe the reason that gained you the title "Punctuation Gestapo" was that although you addressed your comment to a specific person, you did not sign your own name. Anonymous comments are too often of a negative nature and are not looked upon kindly.

Most of the contributors here are very willing to accept constructive criticism, but you must be willing to identify yourself.

Robin said...

long story Argyle, but thank you for noticing

Crockett1947 said...

@robin Is there something inherently wrong about a long story? Let's hear it!

Clear Ayes said...

Most of us are alloted five posts a day on this blog. Why we don't often waste a post to correct grammar or spelling errors....

Spell Chequer

I have a spelling chequer,
It came with my pea sea,
It plainly marks four my revue,
Miss steaks eye kin knot sea.
Eye strike a key an type a word,
And weight four it two say,
Weather eye am wrong oar write,
It shows me strait a weigh.
As soon as a mist ache is maid,
It nose bee fore to long,
And eye can put the error rite,
Its rare lea ever wrong.
Eye have run this poem threw it,
I am shore your pleased two no,
Its letter perfect awl the weigh,
My chequer tolled me sew.

-Sores Unknown

That's five and out for me. Have a good one, everyone.

P.S. Robin, sounds interesting. Have you been dating Sir Paul?

Martie said...

From today and yesterday, the Anonymous who brought up the error of using "empiric", rather than "empirical" didn't provide any proof for his claim. He might have gotten a little more attention if he had. Check Tip 1 in the following link.

Tip 1: empiric or empirical.

WM said...

Quick, late, stop in...Had a good time with the puzzle and once I figured out that I need AULD to go with the FAITHFUL I already had, the rest was fairly easy. Hang-ups, SAPID(???) and JAEGER(???) no way, except that the perps filled everything in. I thought it was just a bit easier than the usual Dan Naddor Fridays...but no complaints.
Quiet evening last night babysitting and then a nice visit and a glass of Champagne with the kids when they got home.

An historical note on the 1906 SF grandmother was 6 years old, living in SF with her family and they had to scramble to get out of their house so early in the morning. It rained that first night after the quake and she, her mother, and sisters slept on a cable car to get out of the rain and then eventually moved into a tent city. They didn't find their father for almost 3 mos because he was working down the peninsula in Redwood City and had no way to locate has been an interesting part of our family history and a story that has been passed down.

Jeannie, I hope the the rest of your year is much better than your false start today. And I haven't been able to manage more than about 2 days of sits and waits for me. I am hoping to get back to it tomorrow now that a lot of things have been cleared off my plate, so to speak.

I will probably still be hit and miss here, but I do the puzzles every day and when I have time I scan through all your comments...the very best to everyone in the coming year...:o)

Robin said...

I have the mis' fortune of looking just like Pauls ex, Heather and am mistaken for her a lot. My friend just sent me this old picture of them during happier times, so I decided to use it!!!