Apr 21, 2010

Wednesday April 21, 2010 Donna S. Levin

Theme: WHAT'S THAT RACKET? - The last word of each phrase is a synonym for RACKET, meaning loud noise.

17A. Consequence of the subprime mortgage fiasco: REAL ESTATE CRASH

25A. Exit spectacularly: GO OUT WITH A BANG

42A. Punished severely, with "on": LOWERED THE BOOM

55A. Complaint from one trying to concentrate, perhaps, and this puzzle's title: WHAT'S THAT RACKET?

So indulgent in the middle: SHOP, WOK, EAT, WINE, GALLO, CREPE, KEG .. then a GORGE and SPASM at the end.

melissa bee here.


1. Harpsichord relative: PIANO. A harpsichord looks a lot like a piano, but the sound comes from the strings being plucked, like a harp.

6. Doorframe part: JAMB. The upright pieces that form the sides of the door opening.

10. One of Hammett's Charleses: NORA. Dashiell Hammett's The Thin Man series, featured Nick and Nora Charles.

14. Aggressive poker bet: ALL IN. Wiki's explanation.

15. Spooky-sounding lake: ERIE (sounds like "eerie")

16. Musician Clapton: ERIC. Change the world.

20. Start of something? ESS. The letter S in the word Start. Fantastic clue.

21. Accident investigation agcy.: NTSB. National Transportation Safety Board.

22. Lowly assistant: FLUNKY

23. Swindle: ROOK. Synonyms for scam or defraud.

24. Move quickly, as clouds: SCUD. "To run or skim along swiftly and easily." I can never see this word without thinking of Arthur Kent, the scud stud.

31. Get out of bed: ARISE

32. Hunan pans: WOKS. Hunan Food (very hot) is one of the major cuisines in China. From Hunan Province where Mao Ze-Dong was from. "Hunan pan" is a nice rhyming clue for singular WOK.

33. Consume: EAT

35. Cellar stock: WINE

36. Blin, in Blois: CREPE. Dessert anyone? Alliteration. Blois is a city in Central France. Blin is singular of Blini.

38. Chip's buddy: DALE. Disney chipmunks.

39. Frat party staple: KEG

40. Mindless repetition: ROTE

41. Championship: TITLE

46. Guns: REVS.

47. Word after open or seven: SEAS

48. Take big steps: STRIDE. Didn't know stride necessarily implied big.

51. Hit or miss? VERB. Favorite clue/answer, so sneaky.

52. Special __: military force: OPS. Highly trained police or military groups that conduct special operations.

58. Aqueduct feature: ARCH. Like this.

59. Lob: TOSS

60. Narrow canyon: GORGE

61. Cook in the microwave: NUKE

62. Fencer's weapon: EPEE

63. Tic, e.g.: SPASM. i've treated a few of those.


1. Peel: PARE

2. Martinique et Re'union: ILES. French island in the eastern Caribbean Sea. Nice beaches.

3. "__, poor Yorick!": Hamlet: ALAS. Kenneth Branaugh in my favorite version.

4. Zilch: NIL. Zero.

5. Musically monotonous: ONE NOTE

6. Zippy watercraft: JETSKI

7. Like about 20% of Israeli citizens today: ARAB

8. Univ. near Harvard: MIT. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in Cambridge.

9. Stud muffin photos: BEEFCAKE. His brother lived next door to my brother in Texas. Everything's bigger there.

10. Chilean poet Pablo: NERUDA. No idea. Interesting guy. Won the Nobel Prize in 1971.

11. Algerian seaport: ORAN. Rote. Yves Saint Laurent was born in ORAN.

12. Game played on a world map: RISK. Have you ever played?

13. Sore: ACHY. Starting to feel like i'm at work.

18. Store in a hold: STOW

19. Clover-shaped suit: CLUBS

23. Artful stratagem: RUSE

24. Engage in retail therapy? SHOP. Not a shopper. I prefer other therapies.

25. Stare in wonder: GAWK. Here.

26. Bay window: ORIEL

27. New Wave band __ Boingo: OINGO

28. Tammany Hall name: TWEED. William Marcy (Boss) Tweed was the political boss of the Tweed Ring and Tammany Hall.

29. "Peachy keen!": NEATO

30. Carlo Rossi winemaker: GALLO

34. Be rife (with): TEEM

36. Sports car named for a small warship: CORVETTE

37. Info in AAA TripTiks: RTES. Routes. TripTiks is a trip planning tool for AAA customers.

38. "That's mine!": DIBS

40. Saxes and oboes: REEDS

41. They usually have strings attached: TEA BAGS. Great clue.

43. Twist in pain: WRITHE

44. Scary African fly: TSETSE. Haven't seen the dreaded 'half a fly' for a while.

45. Frau's spouse: HERR. Courtesy title in German, equivalent to Sir or Lord.

48. Ugly duckling, actually: SWAN. Children's story.

49. Drive-__ window: THRU

50. Pinion partner: RACK. Common steering mechanism.

51. Still life subject: VASE. Like this.

52. Gumbo pod: OKRA

53. Things for hanging things: PEGS

54. Stern's opposite: STEM. From stem to stern.

56. Emulate Kanga: HOP. Kangaroo.

57. Radar gun aimer: COP

Answer grid.



Dennis said...

Good morning, Melissa Bee, C.C. and gang - puzzle seemed fairly easy for a Wednesday, as did the theme. It certainly had something for everybody, however, what with 'beefcake' and 'teabags'. One unknown in 'Neruda', otherwise a pretty straightforward solve.

Mustang Mel, great job as always - and good of you to provide eye candy for all. Also, I like your take on the 'indulgence' in the middle, which I missed entirely, complete with the climactic 'gorge and spasm'.

Today is Kindergarten Day.

Today's Words of Wisdom: "Everything comes to him who hustles while he waits." -- Thomas Edison

Here's some Fun Facts about the sun:

- It takes 8.3 minutes for the sun's light - traveling at 186,282 miles a second - to reach Earth. (At that speed, light can travel around Earth seven times in a second.)

- The sun contains 99.85 percent of the matter in the solar system.

- The English astronomer James Jeans once calculated that if you placed a piece of the sun's core the size of the head of a pin on Earth, its heat would kill a person 94 miles away.

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, CC and all. I'm beginning to really look forward to seeing Donna Levin's name on the puzzles. I loved this puzzle and its theme.

Actually, when I came across the Chilean poet Carlos, I immediately though of Neruda. I learned about him through doing these puzzles. Perhaps Clear Ayes will provide us with a sample of his work.

One word I don't recall seeing in years is ORIEL. That is another word I learned through doing puzzles. It was back in the recesses of my mind.

I liked seeing ERIE and ERIC beside each other.

Barry: I'm glad you have postponed your trip and hope all goes well for you when you go later in the summer.

QOD: If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough. ~ Albert Einstein

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers - Smooth sailing, but I was one stubborn letter short of Ta-Dah: the N at 10. Neruda and Nora are simply not on my radar. Liked the "hit or miss" clue for VERB! That trick is new to me (but I'll bet this crowd has seen it before).

Thanks, M. Bee, for such a gawk-worthy image.

tfrank said...

Good morning, C.C., M Bee and all,

Like Hahtool, I like seeing Donna's name on a puzzle, because I know we are in for a treat. This was an easy walk for me, the only unknowns being Neruda and Dale. The theme was soon apparent and clever.

Good blogging job, M Bee. I liked your eye candy and Van Gogh vase links.

Being a solver who usually finishes shortly after Dennis and Hahtool, I find they have already said what I wanted to say, which is fine with me, so I will just sign off.

Have a fine day.

Lemonade714 said...

Good morning Melissa Bee and the rest of the hive. Nice to see you. The puzzle went pretty quickly, with not too many proper names for all who hate them. NERUDA has become the go to poet of puzzledom these days, and I for one could have lived without TSE TSE, but no complaints. How many of us could spell Matthew Mcconaughey, even if you like his manly , always on display chest. He really has made some awful movies. I know I am getting old when I GAWK at the young lady and am most fascinated by her ARCHed eyebrows. Speaking of eyebrows, I enjoyed Peter Lawford as the Thin Man on TV, but it was hard to not wonder if he had to shave. Speaking of TV, it reminds me of my favorite HARPSICHORD played by dear Lurch. Did any of you figure out who was who watching CHIP and DALE and of course, you ladies must enjoy examining closely the joys of CHIPPENDALES .

I am out

Spitzboov said...

Good Morning all. Nice write-up, Melissa. Easy Wednesday. Love Donna's puzzles. No difficulties that the perps couldn't help.

ERIE is a frequent fill and reminds me of a poem, "John Maynard" about a ship sailing Lake Erie from Detroit to Buffalo in the 1840's. Wonder if Kazie is familiar with it. (The site includes an English translation.)

Enjoy the day.

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Another smooth puzzle. The one hiccough (or hiccup, if you prefer) was seeing the clue "Blin, in Blois" and going WTF? The P in CREPE was the last letter I filled in.

I'm not sure how I knew that SCUD meant what it does, but somehow it popped into my mind immediately upon seeing the clue. I wonder if the missile is named for its ability to move quickly, or whether it's an acronym of something?

In other news, well, it looks like the planes are all flying again and they predict that everything will be back to normal by Friday (which is when we were originally scheduled to fly). Part of me thinks we overreacted by canceling our trip and that we should have waited. But, overall, I think we'll probably be better off going in the summertime instead. I just wish it weren't going to cost so much more, but that's life.

And speaking of costing money, I really need to replace my current car (a 2000 Pontiac Bonneville SSei with a supercharged 6-cylinder engine). I want something large, powerful, and relatively affordable without getting an SUV or minivan. I also would really like something with AWD for those long New England winters. Right now I'm thinking of either a (slightly) used Dodge Magnum wagon or a Dodge Charger sedan. Both are available with AWD and a hemi-powered v8 engine that puts out 340hp. VROOOM!!! Any suggestions?

Lemonade714 said...


While I try to always buy American, I think you should look at this WAGON .

Barry G. said...

Well, sure -- I'd love to buy a Mercedes! Unfortunately, that's where the "relatively affordable" part come in, though...

Bob said...

Easier than yesterday's. Took 12 minutes, without hurrying.

Mainiac said...

Good Morning Melissa Bee, CC and All,

Pouring rain here in STX today. I got my walk and swim in regardless. It actually was quite pleasant. Rain gave opportunity to do the puzzle which I found easy for a Wednesday, even with my brain in vacation mode. The theme answers fell quickly for me which made this doable with no red letter help.

BG, I like the Charger Sedans. I bought a used 3/4 ton Dodge Ram with the 5.7 Hemi. Superb engine with plenty of guts when you put your foot into it.

Jeannie, Positive thoughts to you and your Mom.

Melissa Bee, Excellent blog as usual.

Kids are rising. Time to cook breakfast.

Have a great day!

Dennis said...

BarryG, for your criteria, both the Charger and the Magnum are excellent choices. They've both proven to be very reliable, and the engine, as Mainiac pointed out, is a beast. If I were in the market for such a vehicle, it'd probably be Magnum R/T #1, Charger #2. I'd look for an '08 model, the last year of production, and anticipate paying in the low $20K range.

lois said...

Good morning Melissa Bee, CC, et al., Good puzzle and excellent job, Melissa. Thank you for the links...yeah, baby! My neighbor should be so hot! Wish 'Nora' had been a Nora Jones ref. being so close to Eric Clapton and all.

'Beefcakes' being next to 'clubs' made me think of the caveman way of winning a woman - at least in cartoons. Seeing 'gawk' with 'rack'
reminded me of how guys will stare at my chest when we're talking & completely miss any eye to eye contact. I just want to lift their chins and say "up here buddy". I hate it when that happens. And then the whole hot to trot south! Holy Hotwick! I can tell you 'what's that racket'!!!-and it's not just 'one note' moans. How can you take this in 'stride'? 'Teabags', 'stem'
'gorge' 'spasm' and mixed w/the central 'gallo' 'wine' and we've got quite a party goin' on just
'teem'ing with a variety of 'rtes' for entertainment. What a way to celebrate hump day!

Lemonade, LMAO, I fell for it. Not the Chipendales I enjoy 'gawk'ing at.

Love the Edison WoW! Gotta go stir up the kindergartners across campus now. Fun times.

Spitzboov said...

Some awesome photographs of the volcano eruption in Iceland: Awesome photos.

Jeannie, I hope your Mom's operation will go well today.
You mentioned the other day about taking the car ferry. Would this be Manitowoc - Ludington? How much time does it save vs driving around the southern end of the lake? Or is it just a more relaxing trip?

kazie said...

Greeat blog,

No, 'fraid not, I'm not much into poetry, and my language studies were all in Oz, so no close association with this continent back then. Thanks for the photo link though--really awesome!

I didn't think this was a particularly easy Wednesday. I didn't know what a blin was, other than something sweet to eat, so would never have thought of crêpe were it not for perp help. Am totally unfamiliar with Hammett or the Thin Man series, so wouldn't know their first or last name either. I also was ignorant of Neruda, so guessed Cora/Ceruda there. And I didn't know the meaning of SCUD--scud missile makes sense now, I never thought about it before. Never knew CORVETTE was anything before a car. I've never hear the term stud muffin, so drew a complete blank on that until perps fell in, then took a WAG.

For Hunan pans I wasn't thinking of cooking at all. For some reason I pictured Chinese peasant panning for something in a river. I agree that VERB was clever and tricky.

The only tile I ended up with incorrect was the Cora/Nora thing, but there were several that had me stumped for too long. All in all a tale of my ignorance today.

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, Donna Levin does have a way of constructing an enjoyable puzzle. This one was right up there.

I loved the cross of PIANO and ONE NOTE. It immediately reminded me of Johnny One Note from the musical Babes In Arms.

Pablo NERUDA wrote some of the most fascinating poetry. But I do love his romantic poems, one NERUDA coming up.

How can a person eat just one 36A Blin? That made it difficult to get CREPE. My favorite CREPE is the Swedish pancake called plättar. Top them with lingonberry tasty!

Poor BEEF CAKE Matthew McConaughey. I thought he was very successful, but I guess he can't afford a shirt. At least, when he is out amongst us, he never seems to be wearing one.

Great blogging Melissa bee.

Best wishes for an excellent recovery for Jeannie's Mom.

Tinbeni said...

I did the Cora before NORA fix also.
NERUDA was new, always a plus.

The rest of the puzzle just filled itself ALL IN.

Liked the stack, ONENOTE REEDS.
ALAS, it would be my complete musical ability.

Warren said...

Hi Melissa Bee, C.C. & gang,
we got the entire puzzle done except for the 2 unknowns the N in Neruda and the O in Oran.

For Barry G,

I'd consider high gas mileage as one criteria for a new vehicle.

Here's best gas mileage four wheel drive

2009 AWD

Clear Ayes said...

Let me see. Should I post NERUDA's "Ode to My Socks", "Ode To A Large Tuna In The Market", or maybe "Ode to Tomatoes"? Believe it or not, all of those are terrific poems. But they are all too long to post here. So I'll go with one of his passionate love poems. They are very good words to live by. Never be jealous of an old relationship when you are starting a new one.


I am not jealous
of what came before me.

Come with a man
on your shoulders,
come with a hundred men in your hair,
come with a thousand men between your breasts and your feet,
come like a river
full of drowned men
which flows down to the wild sea,
to the eternal surf, to Time!

Bring them all
to where I am waiting for you;
we shall always be alone,
we shall always be you and I
alone on earth,
to start our life!

dodo said...

This was more like a Tuesday; very easy. I hesitated at
'zippy watercraft' but the perps worked it out for me. Would a 'jetski' be a craft? I think of a craft as being larger.I liked the theme and the theme fills. Nice to have an easy Wednesday.

More rain today in NoCal. Clearayes, better stay in and get rid of your cold. I just got an email extoling the virtues of honey and cinnamon. According to this they will cure almost anything. The dosage for colds is one tablespoon lukewarm honey with 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon powder for three days. Doesn't say how many times a day. At least you couldn't OD on it! I'd add whiskey or brandy, for good measure.

Honey is remarkable; they have found containers of honey that is perfectly edible in the pyramids!
Imagine! Several 1000 years old!

carol said...

Hi Melissa Bee and all -
Great job on the blog MB and also, good to 'see' you again, I have missed your cleverness lately.

Donna Levin is becoming one of my favorite constructors, I have such fun with her puzzles and can usually get on her wave length. 19D fooled me - I was not thinking cards and images of the Michlin Man popped into my head even though I knew that was not a clover shape. I took my V-8 can out of the cupboard...but the perps saved my head.

Have we seen TSE TSE fly enough??? It seems it is in every few puzzles - almost as much as EDEN. Stop!!

More later, got to ride while the weather is fairly decent.

Warren said...

For dodo a Jet Ski is definitely a water craft because it goes on the water not on land?


Jeannie said...

First of all I want to thank all you kind folks for positive thoughts for my mother, Thelma. I heard from my dad 9am CST and he said the surgery went well and she would be moving into her room around 11am. I will wait to call her tonight.

Now to the puzzle. I think I’ve said this before, but I love Donna Levin puzzles. I am usually on her same wavelength. I did have to hit the g-spot for Neruda though. Perp help included Nora, NTSB, and Iles. Who doesn’t like a puzzle that has “Oingo-Boingo” in it? I also thought of another 7 letter word that started with a “T” for “it usually has strings attached”, but thought….Naw…couldn’t be.

Spitzboov, the car ferry from Manitowoc to Ludington shaves off about 2 hours off the drive. It is also much more relaxing.

Melissa bee thanks for the wonderful job blogging I enjoyed your links today. Especially the beefcake one.

Lemonade, yep you made me look.

Lucina said...

Good day, Melissa Bee, C.C. and all.

Very nice blogging MB. I like that you clustered the "eating" words. What a lovely buffet!

Fav clues were "they usually have strings attached" TEABAGS, Chlean poet Pablo NERUDA whom we have seen before and can always count on Clear Ayes to post a poem.

Love Dale in a xwd as that was my late husband's name.

One could "gawk" out the "oriel" as they are side by side; and we have "rack" and "racket" as well as "writhe", I just like it.

"Hit or miss" VERB, tricky! You can't fool us, Donna. Looked for her name but she didn't include it this time.

Do tell us your Mom's progress, Jeannie.

Have a wow Wednesday!

JD said...

Good morning Melissa,CC and all,

Donna's puzzles are growing on me; had a good time although I had to eat a worm as I forgot Neruda. Funny thing is, I didn't know I forgot him until I read the comments.

I have to agree that there was such a long strand of easy fills and then we got to a few head scratchers.Got the theme, but still had to work them out.

a-ha's for me,:stem to stern and
rack and pinion steering. I was going to ask, but you explained, and then of course, I felt stupid.

What a beautiful line: "I would be the sunlight in your universe"...if
only! Wondered why John Travolta and Kyra Sedgwick were in that clip and remembered they were in "Phenomenon".As I recall "John" received a gift of learning and understanding on his 30 somethingth birthday.He became very smart and he lost all of his friends.

Anonymous said...

dodo,honey and cinnamon also help ease arthritis pain.

JD said...

The aqueduct/arch reminded me of this old commercial

Anonymous said...

As does asparagus.

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

Melissa - great blogging, and fine lnks.

Puzzle seemed about right for a Wed. For a while, I thought the title should be "Cymbalism."

McConaughey is one of those actors I find really annoying, for some reason. The other is Hugh Grant, who makes anything he's in worth missing. The best part of Bridget Jones' Diary was seeing Colin Firth kick his prissy British ass.

Well, that and Rene Zellweger. Maybe the most amazing actress ever.

Lots to do this week, and only a small number of days.


JzB the rushin' Hungarian trombonist

Lemonade714 said...

Do you all remember the late Patrick Swayze as a CHIPPENDALE DANCER ?

Lemonade714 said...

One last time Dancers .

lois said...

Jeannie: so glad to hear that your mom has made it out of surgery and that it went well. Now I wish her a speedy recovery. We'll be waiting for an update.

Lemonade: thanks for the great links. Patrick Swayze was beautiful inside and out.

Gunghy said...

The Fresno Bee does not give titles or authors, so I've never known how much I like Donna Levin. Being a major 'name dropper', as in I won't remember Neruda tomorrow, I loved the lack of proper nouns.

My errors:
1. I slapped in What's the trouble, but OKRA ended that.
2. aRIEL
3. I finished with SCUt and NERUtA. Actually, scut seemed appropriate to me, based on the way they jump around.

fermatprime said...

Good day fellow solvers. Hats off to MELISSA and CC and ARGYLE and fellow bloggers. Nice to hear from BUCKEYE. I have not blogged in a while as I was having internet problems. The Open DNS servers I was using stopped working, but it took me a while to figure out the problem. Also, not-very-old router seems to have gone mad (or bad). I had given a new one to a dear friend for his birthday last month. Since he had not installed it, I ended up borrowing it back. (Shame, shame!) It took a while to get everything back to snuff. Then I purchased (10 bucks a year) a really cool Open DNS combo. It isn't as fast but it takes out those annoying ad windows that must be closed in order to see what you want and offers hefty security.

Thanks DICK for Dish response. How much for several HBOs, Starz and local channels, if I might ask? I am also very grateful to those of you who sympathized with my tax problems. I wonder how much damage the prolonged stress did.

I was rather chagrined to discover that the results of the sonogram I had due to lumps in my neck were ignored by my rheumatologist until 2 months later when I was in the office and asked for the report. Had to find an internal medicine doc who takes my insurance, is taking new patients and could see me before the middle of May. HAH! (My previous internist could not see me until the end of May.) Took a week of phone calls to get one, tomorrow yet! (Much of the time I couldn't even leave a message for such doctors, who must have outrageous hours. Sigh.)

I debated whether or not to include the last paragraph. I sympathize with so many of you who are facing health challenges (either for yourselves, relatives or friends) or have had to deal with deaths. May your lives be blessed with some relief soon!

I am using Mac OS X, 10.5.8 and have no troubles with CC's instructions for links.

I find that typing my blog entries in Mail (most always open and copying them to the blog solves those DISAPPEARING problems! (I could also use Simple Text or Word. Word, however, takes ages to boot up.)

Puzzle today was nice. SCUD was unknown but easily filled in in other direction. I got a kick out of REVS and VERB.

kazie said...

So glad to hear the good news about your mom. I'm sure she'll recover quickly.

I always loved that commercial--German car and the pont du Gard in southern France. (At least that's the one I think it was.)

I can appreciate her skills as an actress, but the way Zellweger squints all the time drives me nuts.

Gunghy said...

Bill G, re last night, I just didn't want to bother you with an email if it was some other Bill. I usually have no problem following directions, my problem runs with accepting them. I was concerned when the directions said it may not work on a Mac. By the way, I left an extra space on each side. They didn't show, but I managed to embed in the middle.

Barry, you ruined it when you said no SUV. I've got a 2004 GMC Envoy that I'd let you have cheap. Very few repairs needed. I'm not a Dodge
fan, but this'll definitely be my last GMC 4X4.

Jeannie, glad your mom is doing well.

dodo said...

I never knew that about asparagus.Speaking of which, this weekend will have the 25th Annual Asparagus Festival here in Stockton, CA. I understand it's a big affair, lots of taste samples among other fascinating attractions. If it stays this cool, I just might go. Last year it was very very hot, so I stayed at home in the air conditioning!

Warren, I was thinking more of, say, canoe, kayak, dory, skiff, whatever. I know jetskis are for water!

Some of the other things honey and cinnamon are apparently good for:Heart diseases, arthritis (as noted, anon),bladder infections, cholesterol control, upset stomach, gas, immune system,indigestion, influenza, longevity, pimples, skin infections, weight loss (????), cancer, fatigue, bad breath, hearing loss! Who needs a Dr.??

Everything but hoof and mouth disease. Windhover?

Argyle said...

Here is our other Bill. I hope he's alright, haven't heard from him in awhile.

melissa bee said...

thanks to all for the nice comments.

lois, you never disappoint, was hoping you'd visit today.

clearayes, great poem - and having just planted my garden, i'll have to look up the ode to tomatoes.

jd, phenomenon, yes ... great movie.

even though i don't get here regularly, all those with health challenges are in my thoughts, keep us posted.

Lucina said...

Calling Minneapolis people, would you tell me about your weather in June, the 19th specifically. My S-I-L will be in a wedding and I'm going, too, to babysit, of course. It's by way of Sioux Falls, his home town and where his mother still lives.

Spectacular photos! Thanks.

Spectacular photos! Thanks. I'm not so old I can't enjoy that, and the full monty, too. Wow, I feel hot. No, no hotflashes.

Anonymous said...

@Dodo, what's the ratio of honey and cinnamon for arthritis?

Linda said...

Jeannie: Looked for an e I`ll say, "I`m glad your Mom is alright" and what you asked me to do, I`m still doing!

Also,a regular was kind enough to alert me that Jimbo had visited the blog. Hey, my friend...good to hear you`re still lurking. I see that quite a few of us "old-timers" are still present...and many new ones.

CC: Forgive me for using your blog for a personal note...I don`t do it that often...your new pictures are very pretty.
I see you have some new puzzle bloggers/solvers, too. You aren`t retiring, are you?

Anonymous said...

Thank you Lemonade for the Chippendale Dancers. What a disappointment when I opened the first link and saw chairs.

My grown daughters and I took my mother to Chippendale's in Los Angeles one year for her birthday. She loved it. We got there 4 hours early and waited in the parking lot so we could get in the door first for a front row seat.

One is never too old to admire the male body.


Jayce said...


Every router I have ever known always eventually crashes and the only recourse is to power it off and on again. At work we have tried many different brands and models, and frankly Linksys is the worst. So, count on your router crashing sooner or later.

Fun puzzle today; I really enjoyed it.

Jazzbumpa, if only Renee Zellweger could stop from always pursing her lips! LOL

Best regards.

Jeannie said...

Hey everyone. I just talked to my mother and she sounded like her old funny self. Even made a joke that stock should go down on depends. She sounded a little “lit” too which is kind of funny as she has never had a drink of alcohol in her life.

Linda, so good of you to stop in and give me well wishes. You are just as sweet as I remembered, and keep on doing what I asked of you.

Lucina, the weather in the Minneapolis area at the end of June is usually beautiful. 80’s and everything in bloom. Check the weather ahead of time though as the weather is one thing here you can never count on.

Lucina said...

Thank you, Jeannie. That sounds perfect, 80s, as it will be at least 105 here. And, yes, I'll be sure to check prior to leaving.

I am continuing to pray for your mother and it's wonderful to know that she is doing well.

Bill G. said...

Speaking of routers, we have had trouble connecting to the Internet for the past several months. We would get error messages saying 'Site not found' or connecting would take way too long. (Once we got connected, the webpage loaded quickly.) Barbara finally got me off my tush and I made the dreaded call to the cable company. They had me remove the router and connect my Mac directly to the cable modem. Everything worked great and very quickly though Barbara can't use her laptop. The cable company is coming by this afternoon to replace our old NetGear router with their own version. I hope that will solve all those problems.

Chickie said...

Hello All-- Melissa B., Nice blogging today and great links. Eye candy for everyone!

I enjoyed this Levin puzzle a lot, and didn't have to look up anything. For me that's a real plus. I thought the crossing of Corvette and Rev was fun. Dennis?

I did goof up the SE corner when I put in puppets for Teabags and Ruckus for Racket. That soon was sorted out with the fills around those two words. This is one problem I come across when I do the downs along with the across words. If I just left things blank, I probably wouldn't have to erase as much.

Lemonade, I laughed at your Chippendales!

I liked the clues for Shop and Crepe as well as Ess for the Start of Something? Hit or Miss was a very clever clue.

Jeannie, So glad to hear that your Mom's surgery went well.

Another very rainy day here and the temperature has dropped about 30 degress from two days ago. Staying indoors today and enjoying a good book.

Annette said...

I had the same problem as most of you - the N crossing of NERUDA and NORA. Both clues had familiar tones, but the fill just weren’t coming to me. It didn't help that I had SCUT instead of SCUD until I came to the blog. I didn’t get the theme, but had no trouble filling in the theme words, once I had a couple letters from the perps.

I played RISK once in college. I thought it was a lot like Monopoly and chess in strategy, and monotony... Either you love it or hate it.

Spitzboov: Thanks for sharing the Iceland photos. It’s a nice consolidated collection.

JD: Cute commercial!

Fermatprime: The only time in my life that I was so furious that I was practically hysterical was in dealing with a dr’s office who specializes in heart issues… I guess they figured they could mess with patients all they wanted, and if they drove us to a heart attack, they were capable of fixing it. And THEN they want to take my blood pressure?! Good luck with your appointment tomorrow. I type my posts in Mail too, then copy to the blog. It helps by spellchecking for me too!

Jeannie: Great news that your mother is doing so well! Keep us posted. I’m glad you got the chance for a nice chat with her. You’ll be there with her soon!

Clear Ayes said...

Dodo, This evening I'll add some cinnamon to my hot lemonade with honey.

My doctor put the brakes on my chorus practice tomorrow. He said I should keep my mouth shut...actually, he said I should rest my voice for a couple of days, but it amounts to the same thing.

I am feeling better and expect I will be back in fine fettle by this weekend.

Jeannie, good news about your mother. You can sleep well tonight!

seen, not heard said...

oingo boingo trivia: former leader of the band, danny elfman, has had a successful second career as a hollywood composer. he is responsible for several soundtracks such as good will hunting, men in black, desperate housewives and the simpsons

Jerome said...

Kazie- A couple of years ago I did a puzzle where one of the theme answers was RENE ZELLWEGER. The clue was, "Actress who always looks like she just ate a lemon?"

Clear Ayes- I've loved Pablo Neruda since I was a teenager. Though I prefer his political poetry, "Always" is one of my favorites.

Interesting- A Jewish magazine called the "Tablet" is now publishing crosswords with Judaism-related themes. I hear the puzzles are easy, but I'm sure they're good. The constructor is a New York Times vet.

Donna S. Levin- You're a national treasure!

carol said...

Lois : you are terrific, thanks for the hearty laugh.

Jeannie: I am so glad to hear your Mom is doing well and is good spirits. I'm sure it did your heart good to hear her.

Melissa Bee: I envy all your warmish weather :). I saw tomato plants at the nursery today when I was getting my flowers for my patio and fence's just way too early to put tomatoes in the ground here. I usually plant mine at the end of May.

Dot said...

Who says you can't OD on cinnamon? Irv takes cinnamon capsules because he has diabetes. (doctor's orders) Not long ago, a capsule went down the wrong way & lodged in his windpipe. He coughed and choked until I was ready to call 911. Hours later, he was still coughing up cinnamon phlegm. So stick to your 1/4 tsp. at a time.

Jeannie, glad your Mom is doing so well.

I had the same problems as Kazie on the puzzle.

CC, I liked all your pictures.


koufaxmaravich said...

Hi fellow puzzlers.

A fun Donna Levin x-word today. Melissa Bee - good job.

Lemonade - loved those Chippendales. But my all-time favorite was Chris Farley.

Lois - NoraH Jones is spelled with a trailing H.

Spitzboov - great volcano pix. Thx.

I agree - Hit or Miss was clever & tricky.

Best wishes for good health to fermatprime and Jeannie's Mom.

kazie said...

Perfect description of René. Another gripe I have is with females who spell that name the masculine way. It should be Renée.

Tinbeni said...

I remember doing that Rene puzzle.
I LOL when I saw that clue.
Remembered I mentioned it to quite a few people. Good job!

With TEABAGS in the grid did you just say to yourself: "Nah, too easy ..."

Anonymous said...

Kazie, Not her fault because her parents named her. But it doesn't matter because they did name her the feminine Renée Kathleen Zellweger.

dodo said...

Dot, I guess cinnamon doesn't dissolve and so would be pretty 'chokable'! Very serious, I'm sure. Mixed with honey it should slide down nicely, wouldn't you think? And CA, maybe you should patent that stuff. If my dr. told me to shut my mouth....well! But up thar in the boonies, I s'pose they's not much choice!

Anon: for arthritis, one cup hot water with two spoons (sic) (I'd say Tbsps.) and one small teaspoon of cinnamon powder. No dosage mentioned.

Kfaxmrch (you know who you are!) 'scut' means a short tail, as on a wabbit.

JzBpa,I'm with you as regards both M. Mccaughney and R. Zellweger, in spite of her eye crinkles and lemony smiles.She's gifted and outdid Zeta-Jones in Chicago! Hugh Grant? Well, he IS cute but seems to have just one character, a lashbatter.

Gunge, 'H' is an aspirant, how can it trail? Please clear that up for me, willya?

After all this blather, I need to pin roses on Millis for the great blog and Donna, although I'm new at recognizing constructors, for the enjoyalbe puzzle! Loved it!

Clear Ayes said...

On the big topic of the day... Does Renée Zellweger spell her name properly? Looks like the answer is Yes. Is she a classic beauty? Not hardly, but Jazzbumpa seems to like what he see. Is she "maybe the most amazing actress ever"? MY two cents is that she is interesting and isn't afraid to take on unglamorous roles. She's made some good movies and a few bombs too.

I do agree with Jazz that M.McConaughey is annoying, as is Hugh Grant, whose Britishy hemming, hawing and throat clearing throughout all his movies got on my nerves very early on.

Gunghy said...

Don't know nothin' about a trailing H. Must have me confused.

I did post a picture of a scut. I thought I was being pretty cute, since a slang definition of scut is a slutty woman.

windhover said...

I can vouch for the efficacy of asparagus for arthritis. It's asparagus season in the Outer Bluegrass, and I have been eating it every meal, every day, for two weeks. Sauteed or in an omelet for breakfast, raw on the side for lunch, and in a salad at dinner (or supper, as we call it when we eat at home), and a few spears whenever I pass the bed during the day.

Dodo @ 1:41,
Hoof and mouth disease has been eradicated in the U.S. For decades, but I still suffer occasionally from hoof in mouth.

Tinbeni @ 7:22,
Not going there today. See above.

Hahtoolah said...

Spitzboov: Thanks for the link to the volcano photos ~ Awesome! Glad I am seeing them from afar, though.

Jerome: I am aware that The Tablet has a regular crossword puzzle. It is a fairly new feature. It's online, though, which is not a medium I am keen on. I usually do that puzzle the way Dennis did a puzzle earlier this week ~ in his head without a pen.

Jeannie: So glad to hear that you Mom is doing well after her surgery.

blog reader and re-reader said...

For Dodo@7:36,

Lois@8:49 said "Wish 'Nora' had been a Nora Jones ref."

Koufaxmaravich@6;46 said, "Lois - NoraH Jones is spelled with a trailing H."

Nothing grammatical there, just a spelling thing. The meaning was that Norah Jones is spelled with an "H" (a trailing H)

Jeannie said...

Hey all just checking in again. Funny story about asparagus. We grew up in asparagus central. The sandy soil part of MI I grew up in was perfect growing conditions. One summer my Mom and one of her best friends that happened to be a neighbor decided they would make some extra money working in a "picking operation" of aspargus. It seems you ride a conveyor belt contraption that takes you down the row as you cut it. We called that our Mom's "migrant worker" month. She did manage to learn a little Spanish though. Funny thing, my Dad never liked aspargus so we never had it growing up as kids. I personally love the stuff and roasting it is my favorite way to eat it, but it does make your urine smell a little different.

Talked to Mom again tonight and they had her already up walking. She said they took the uterus via the vagina route and if they take the catheter out tomorrow and she can do "her thang" she can go home. Go figure. She had me in two hours with no complications and had to stay in the hospital in May of 1962 for two days. Times sure have changed.

Just re-read this and too much pee talk today from me.

Another note, I watched that nice video of the "Chek" dancers and although I enjoyed the dance/stiptease, isn't a "Full Monty" a frontal view? Not complaining here as it was very enjoyable. Dad's half Checkoslavakian. I might need to take a visit and "embrace" my roots.

Gunghy, I have been admiring your sailing vessel and I too am a sailor. Little Lo-li-ta goes on bouy May 6th. She's an oldie but a goodie. 1985 Windrose Laguna, fixed keel.

This one has to be signed Lo-li-ta.

Spitzboov said...

Jerome said A Jewish magazine called the "Tablet" is now publishing crosswords with Judaism-related themes. I hear the puzzles are easy, but I'm sure they're good.

The one dated April 13th seems to have 'helper' blocks in the extreme NW and SE

Karin P. said...

What a wonderful puzzle Ms Donna Levin. Scrabbly, sparkly, clever & fun! Words such as FLUNKY, NEATO, OINGO & BEEFCAKE
are rather appreciated midweek.

My two sticking points were not knowing SCUD & having some difficulty thinking of 'clover-shaped suit' in terms of games, not clothing.

Thanks 2 Fru ClearAyes for the Neruda poetry. And also mention of Swedish plätter. One can now buy lingonberry jam in some US grocery stores: 15 years ago that was not the case.

Melissa Bee gets an A-plus for her deft hand with blogging & links.

JD said...

Spitzboov, awesome photos!

Lemonade, ah, you got us with the wooden legs.Enjoyed the "almost full monty guys", but howled over Chris Farley.

Melissa Bee, as usual, you always do a great job. Wish we heard from you more often, but I know that job must keep you busy.

Jeannie, so glad for you that your mom is back to her old self. You sound relieved.

Leaving you tonight with the eerie Edmund Fitzgerald. Why? It's an old favorite , even though it sounds like Gordon is singing mainly on one note. I mistakenly thought it sank in L. Erie. Not so. It was L. Superior.Close.

Anonymous said...

Good evening all.

Warren and Barry G.: We have a 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid, and we absolutely love it. The mileage is fantastic; if I'm careful I can get 46+ mpg in town. And that doesn't mean always on the battery. The battery is guaranteed for 8 years or 100,000 miles. Plus you can get 47 mph on the battery. It's the best car I have ever had in the 65 years I have been driving. And if you need acceleration, it is great.


Bill G. said...

Two days ago, I parked my car near the ocean while I went for a ride on the bike path. When I came back, there was a piece of paper under my windshield wiper. It said, "The license number of the car who hit your car is #######." After hunting around, I found some damage around the driver's side front wheel well. I reported it to the police who couldn't do much without a witness. Then I called my insurance company, AAA.

I was very impressed with the way they handled my claim. Excellent service! So I'm writing all this to alert you to a very good insurance company. I switched to the Auto Club a while back because their rates were significantly lower then others'. And their customer service is excellent. So if you aren't delighted with your insurance provider and you want to save some money, you should consider checking them out. We switched our homeowners policy to them also.

Jeannie said...

Spitzboov, have you ever ventured on the Badger? I always meet someone on board that I keep in contact with. I also like the bar aspect and I can travel as just a passenger. My drive is over in 6 hrs and I use one of my parents cars to visit peeps once there. I can't wait to hang out with Mom in the kitchen again.

Dennis said...

Jeannie, great news about getting your boat back in the water; I know you missed it last year.

Spitzboov said...

Jeannie - No, I have not. I spent 2 weeks on L. Michigan on a training cruise in 1964, so became aware of the ferry services. Glad to see they are still thriving. Got to see all the great ports, Three Rivers, Muskegon, Michigan City, and the anchorage at S. Manitou Island

Glad to hear things went well for your Mom. Hope you have a nice visit with her, I believe you wrote, the end of May.

Jerome said...

Spitz, don't even go there... cheaters, helpers. If I bring up that topic, or respond to it one more time, C.C., I'm positive, will kick my Norwegian butt from here to kingdom come. Tis a wrath I choose not to face!

Jeannie said...

Barry G, as you know I live in snow country too and have driven a couple of Le Sabre's for 7 years. I have since switched to their Lucerne which is a six cylander I believe, front wheel drive and not as heavy as the Le Sabre but Geeves (2008) did just fine this winter through a few snow drifts. I picked him up for under $14,000 with about 25,000 miles on him. I call the car a him as he is smoky grey and if I am going to hire a chauffer it's got to be a him. He also gets good mileage and get up and go if you want to pass someone. I travel about 86 miles round trip averaging about 34 MPG. It's a smooth ride, American made, and I can't complain. I did like my Queenie and QE2 better though.

In my opinion, Buick makes a good solid car as I put no maintenance into either one (Queenie or QE2) other than brake pads and oil changes with about 145,000 miles respectively on each car, plus got a great trade in value.

Anonymous said...

P.S. Melissa Bee, What a great job of posting and linking. I finally took time to appreciate. Thanks.

Jazzbumpa said...

I spurred some commentary by mentioning Rene Z. It's never a surprise when someone in Hollywood goes for odd spelling. If I were rich and famous, I be Jassbumpa.

Rene is certainly not a classic beauty, and I neve noticed the squinting, though she does look pouty a lot.

I was speaking of her acting skills. Chicago - sure, also The Whole Wide World, White Oleander, and Miss Potter, a quiet little gem about Beatrix Potter, of Peter Rabbit fame. Really a lovely movie. And that is a word I almost never use.

JsB the non-famous trombonist

Lucina said...

Well, beauty is in the eye of the beholder I guess. I thought Catherine Zeta-Jones danced circles around Renee Zellwegger in Chicago and I like Hugh Grant. He's cute but Colin Firth even more so. Yes, that was an almost full monty in the video, I just got flustered, people.

Jeannie said...

Dennis, I can't wait. Good things come to those that do. I have finally hit the year where I get 15 day's of vacation and I only have to figure out how to juggle it, if you know what I mean. Jeannie should have definite tan lines and blonder hair by July.

Bill G. said...

Lucina, I think Catherine Zeta-Jones is one of the most attractive women I've ever seen. I didn't like Four Weddings and a Funeral with Hugh Grant but I really enjoyed both him and Colin Firth in Love Actually, a favorite movie of mine.

Dennis said...

Jeannie, you're right about Buick - they're finally building a world-class car, rivaling both Lexus and Infinity. The new Lacrosse is definitely a car I would look at, were I in the market for such a vehicle.

kazie said...

Renée apparently does use the correct spelling, so maybe someone else just got it wrong.
Anon--I guess parents are at fault with lots of kids' names. Some spellings I've seen as a teacher would make your hair curl. One poor girl was called Melony. I had to fight the urge to ask if it was cantaloupe or honey.

I sincerely hope that everything turns out well for your health issue once you get it dealt with. Your doctor's negligence is inexcusable.

Bill G,
I had a similar experience with my car recently, but our insurance is with State Farm. Their adjuster decided to recommend a cash settlement minus the deductible. The wonder of it was though, he estimated the repair costs at about $230 more than the quote I had for the work--my deductible is $250. So I thought OK, I'll only be out about $20 if they handle it that way, assuming they didn't intend pursuing the rest aggressively. Then lo and behold, last week I got a check for the full amount of the deductible! I've never had that happen before!

Bill G. said...

Kazie, sounds as if your insurance company did right by you. When I got cold-called a number of years ago by the Auto Club, I agreed to have them give me a quote. I was satisfied with my present insurance company and wouldn't have switched for a few dollars. But the Auto Club saved me several hundred dollars per year and, as I've said, their service is great. They will try to figure out who hit my car. If they do, they will reimburse my deductible.

A couple of years ago, I backed up carelessly and barely hit the front bumper of a BMW behind me. The damage to her front bumper was almost unnoticable. She got an estimate at a BMW repair facility that was about $2000. Amazing! I contacted AAA. They sent their adjuster out and estimated a cost of about $600. Her repair shop agreed. Had they had not done that, her more expensive quote would have raised my rates. Because of the involvement of the Auto Club, I saved a bunch of money due to not having my premiums increased. I am a big fan.

Gunghy said...

Jeannie, I have been cruising under false pretenses. That picture was taken on a commercial cruise in the Seattle area. I'll switch my avatar again, so the next time will be my boat. This one is to demonstrate why we can't do x-words on my dock at this time (with 2 more feet in the last 48 hours.)

Lucina said...

I agree about Catherine Zeta-Jones! and recall being mesmerized with her exquisite beauty the first time I saw her in Zorro. And I like Love Actually as well. Very funny movie and a good spoof.

Good night fellow bloggers.

Crockett1947 said...

Jeannie, I only came up with six letters. Were you thinking plural?