May 27, 2010

Thursday May 27, 2010 Nathan Miller

Theme: Fish Tale - An extra syllable is added to the monosyllable first word of a common phrase to form a fish pun.

17A. Price decrease for a stout-bodied fish?: GROUPER DISCOUNT. Group Discount.

25A. Habitat for orange fish?: ROUGHY HOUSING. Roughhousing. The only theme entry whose base phrase is one word. I've never heard of roughy fish, What a strange orange color!

45A. Road for Minnesota's state fish?: WALLEYE STREET. Wall Street. Minnesota has the best walleye. Delicious!

57A. Verdict for a tropical fish?: SNAPPER JUDGMENT. Snap Judgment.

We also have a bit of a Greek myth undertone:

44A. Ship of Greek myth: ARGO. "Jason and the Argonauts".

38D. Greek sea god: POSEIDON. The guy with a trident. What's that stuff under his right foot? The Roman equivalent is Neptune. He'd probably eat up this fish puzzle.

44D. Huntress daughter of Zeus and Leto: ARTEMIS. The Greek goddess of the moon. Diana for the Romans.

Must be Nathan Miller's debut. I don't remember seeing his name before. Lovely theme. I liked the two 8-letter & six 7-letter non-theme entries too. Several outstanding clues. My favorite is NOUN (11D. Pencil, pen, or quill). Tricky!


1. Cooling units, briefly: BTUS

5. Center of Cleveland?: O'NEAL (Shaq). Cleveland Cavaliers' center. Got me. I only saw letter E in the very center of Cleveland.

10. Tolstoy's Karenina: ANNA

14. Musical with the song "Another Pyramid": AIDA. Well, four letter musical with "pyramid" as hint, what else could be?

15. Pat's partner: VANNA (White). "Wheel of Fortune".

16. Somber film genre: NOIR

20. Part of ESP: SENSORY

21. 2000 Olympics city: SYDNEY. Kazie should arrive there tomorrow.

22. A smoker may flick it off: ASH. Nice "it".

23. Black wood: EBONY

30. Skunk moniker: PEPE. Pepe Le Pew.

31. Manhattan's __ Station: PENN

32. Text receivers: CELLS

35. 1997 Smith/Jones film, briefly: MIB (Men in Black)

36. __ Lingus: AER

37. TomTom or Magellan unit, for short: GPS

39. ISP featuring CBS Radio stations: AOL

40. Oscar Madison et al.: SLOBS

42. Muffin topper: OLEO. Al will never put oleo on top of his muffin. Real butter!

48. "Enough!": CEASE

49. Put away the groceries?: EAT. Nice clue. We also have BAGS (1D. "Paper or plastic?" items).

50. CNBC weekday crawl: TICKER

53. Movie venues: CINEMAS

60. Boy leader? ATTA. Attaboy!

61. On account of: DUE TO

62. Minuscule bit: IOTA

63. Promising: ROSY

64. First name in humorous poetry: OGDEN (Nash)

65. Big gulp: SWIG. "Candy is dandy but liquor is quicker".


2. Spare for a change: TIRE. I just could not keep coin out of my mind.

3. Japanese noodle: UDON. Love seafood udon.

4. McMuffin meat, maybe: SAUSAGE. Oh, did not know this.

5. Promote to excess: OVERHYPE

6. Not any: NARY

7. Means justifier: END. The end justifies the means.

8. Feminist musician DiFranco: ANI. Learned her name from doing Xword.

9. Lariats: LASSOS

10. Pain reliever: ANODYNE. New word to me.

12. Whom "seven ate," in a joke: NINE. "Why is number six afraid of seven?" Because "Seven eight (ate) nine.

13. Like some museumgoers: ARTY

18. Luxurious: POSH

19. Disbelievers: CYNICS

23. About 525 trillion minutes, in astronomy: EON. Barry G/Jerome can confirm the exact minutes.

24. Jumper cable?: BUNGEE. Awesome clue.

25. 45 and 78, e.g.: Abbr.: RPMS

26. Versailles eye: OEIL. As in the art illusion "Trompe L'oeil", literally "fool the eye".

27. Violin stroke: UP-BOW. Guitar stroke also, Al/Jazzbumpa?

28. Medal recipients: HEROES. Dennis has a Purple Heart. Jeannie too, since she loves the Vikings.

29. Downside of sailing off into the sunset?: GLARE

33. Mezzanine cousin: LOGE. Mezzanine is another new word to me.

34. Coin collector?: SLOT. Can't fool me. Nailed it.

36. Zonked: ASLEEP

41. Past due wages: BACKPAY. With the B already in place, I carelessly penned in BONUSES.

43. Drano ingredient: LYE

46. Texas border city: LAREDO. The U.S./Mexico border city

47. Citrus drink used by NASA: TANG

50. Bygone ruler: TSAR

51. "__ the Woods": INTO. Sondheim's musical.

52. Broadway's second-longest-running show: CATS. And MEOW (54D. Call from 52-Down MEOW). A bit of musical undercurrent in this puzzle also.

53. Darling: CUTE

55. Opposition member: ANTI

56. All-male party: STAG. Is there a word for "All-female party"?

58. Hairpiece: RUG

59. Martin's role in "The West Wing": JED

Answer grid.



Dennis said...

Good morning, C.C. and gang - this has been a great week thus far for puzzles, and today didn't disappoint. I really enjoyed the theme and thought there were any number of fresh clues. Hopefully, this is the first of many from Nathan Miller.
First time I think I've seen 'eon' quantified. Needed g-spotting for Ani DiFranco. 'Muffin topper' reminds me of a slightly overweight coworker I used to have who always tucked his sweater in, creating a classic muffin top. 'Boy leader' is always gonna be 'itsa' or 'atta'. Udon and soba noodles were staples for me off-base in Japan. And 'upbow' fell with perp help.

C.C., nice catch of the Greek mythology subtext. And to answer your question, "Is there a word for 'all-female party' -- yes, it's called a target-rich environment.

Check out the latest Google contest winner's doodle. Nicely done.

Today is Sun Screen Day. Hope the rain doesn't wash it off.

Mainiac said...

Good Morning CC and All,

I had fun with this one also today and concur, What a week! My big snag was writing Tylenol for 10D. Sent me for red letter help because I refused to erase it and try a fresh start in the NW. I also had None instead of Nary for 6D which once erased Vanna appeared. What a way to make a living.

Speaking of which, paving today!

Gotta run.

Have a good one!

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, CC and all. When BTUs didn't immediately pop into my head, I was afraid that this puzzle was going to be a slog. I don't fish, but I eat them, and suddenly, the theme fell into place. I really began to get into the solving of this puzzle. I loved it! It was the perfect challenge for a Thursday, and I didn't need any outside help!

Another Pyramid was a good clue for our old staple, AIDA.

Artemis is one of the few Greek Goddesses that I can remember. Maybe because my grandmother had a friend with that name.

There were some great clues in this puzzle. Many of them were "aha" moments when they were unveiled.

I loved Pen, Pencil or Quill (NOUN). Of course, I wanted NIBS.

I was also trying to figure out how the letter "E" could fit into so many spaces for Center of Cleveland. O"NEAL should have come to me more easily since Shaquelle was an LSU grad and we follow his career.

I immediately knew that Putting Away the Groceries was EAT.

I laughed when I uncovered BUNGEE for Jumper Cable. It also leads me to today's QOD ...

QOD: People living deeply have no fear of death. ~ Anais Nin.

koufaxmaravich said...

Top of the morning, CC and all,

CUTE Thursday puzzle to continue an exceptional week.

Theme was fun, and much healthier with all our OVEREATing earlier in the week.

Enjoyed seeing ANNA, VANNA, ANI, and ARTY -- could be a rock group.

EBONY deserves a clip of Michael Jackson and Paul McCartney singing Ebony and Ivory.

For some reason, ARTEMIS brought back memories of the show Wild Wild West starring Michael Conrad as James West - his partner's name was Artemis Gordon -- guess I'm just stuck in the 60's.

Have a great Thursday everyone.

koufaxmaravich said...


Stevie Wonder not Michael Jackson

Bob said...

Fun puzzle today. Took 18 minutes. Only one I really had to think about was 5A (ONEAL) since I didn't know 8D (ANI). At first I thought 5A might be a play on the word "Cleveland."

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers - Loved today's theme and clever clues. Quite a few unknowns that got perped out of the way, such as UDON. Never heard of ANI so didn't know I spelled ONEAL wrong (actually, I think it's Shaq who spells it wrong!) Got stuck in the NE with NOUN, NINE, & ANODYNE, until somebody turned on the NOIR light.

Koufax - Hand up for Artemis Gordon! I watched two shows a day in after-school reruns. No wonder my homework never got done.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning C.C. and all. Not difficult for a Thursday. Lots of fresh clueing and interesting fill. No searches needed; perps helped get the few unknowns. Did not make the MIB or ONEAL connection. Did not know ANODYNE.

BTUS - also, heating units

OGDEN: "The Hunter"

The hunter crouches in his blind
'Neath camouflage of every kind
And conjures up a quacking noise
To lend allure to his decoys
This grown-up man, with pluck and luck
is hoping to outwit a duck

Dudley said...

Speaking of muffin tops: I'm stunned at the number of girls who appear in public nowadays with a layer of uncovered blubber hanging out over too-tight waistbands. My sister points out that in her school days a girl would have been mortified to expose flab like that...of course there were fewer overweight kids at the time. What have we become?

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Another (relatively) smooth puzzle for me. Oddly enough, I've finished each puzzle so far this week in almost the exact same time. I won't say what that time is, of course, lest I offend the easily offendable...

No unknowns whatsoever today, and the smoothness was helped immensely by the fact that I knew the names of all the fish in the theme answers. I'm really not much of a fish eater (although I love crustaceans), but my son is fascinated by the finny creatures and we spend a lot of time at the aquarium, watching nature specials about the ocean, reading books about the sea, etc. Maybe he'll grow up to be a marine biologist or something. Or a beach bum. You just never know.

Oh -- and I just wanted to mention that I am really ready for the word OLEO to be officially retired from the crossword lexicon. Or, at the very least, there should be a requirement that every appearance of the word from now on be accompanied by a parenthetical (obs.). I mean, seriously -- when was the last time anybody actually referred to margarine as OLEO? 50 years ago? More?

Have a great one, everybody!

Dick said...

Good morning CC and All, a fun and easy puzzle for a Thursday. I liked the fresh clues and I think my favorite was noun for 11D. There were only a few unknowns today Ani, MIB, and anodyne. Fortunately all were revealed by the perps. I liked the clue/answer for Cleveland center/Oneal and putting away the groceries/eat.

This has been an unusual week of puzzles for me as I have completed every one and I think only a couple of trips to Mr. G. Maybe they are “dumbing” down a bit.

Spitz, I liked your poem.

Hope you all have a great Thursday.

Anonymous said...

I had a rough time getting that NE corner. I think if I would have walked away and come back it would have clicked. Otherwise a fun puzzle. I loved all the fish and "caught" on to the theme right away. I was pretty proud of myself for getting all those Greek names without perp help. That area is not my forte.

MIB is such a fun movie. Gotta love Will Smith. I never put butter or oleo (I absolutely never eat oleo anyway) on my muffins. They just don't need it.

Barry, you are so right on the OLEO being overused, but there are certain words that will never die in crosswordese because of the need to use all those great vowels. I think that is why we get the French clues also. Lots of vowels in those words. Not knowing much about French, I found that out when I scrapbooked my Switzerland trip, and for all the titles I was using up the vowels of my stick on letters fast and furious.

Dudley I totally agree with your sister. Last thing I ever wanted to do (nor do I now) is show off what I am least proud of. I generally tend to favor modesty anyway though, so I am biased in that regard.

Have a great day all. I see Spitzboov already started us out with some OGDEN. I am expecting CA to follow with more.

Lemonade714 said...

Good morning,

I enjoyed the puzzle also, though, I thought it was on the easy side for a Thursday, or maybe I was just lucky as I knew ANI DI FRANCO and thought I remembered this clue for O’NEAL and C.C.s fabulous search function confirmed it.

Actually KM, it was ROBERT Conrad, who starred along with ROSS MARTIN as ARTEMUS GORDON master of disguise.

Also, for those of us who read Martha Grimes, we know all about an ANODYNE NECKLACE introduced to us in her third Richard Jury mystery. And they say you do not learn reading fiction!

C.C., are you saying you knew the word LOGE but not MEZZANINE? This was the hardest clue in the puzzle for me. All the old hotels had a mezzanine level. I guess the sky boxes at modern sporting facilities are the LOGE’s of the old theater days.

Still moving an office no phones, too much to do, but enjoy the day all.

Barry G. said...

Oh -- and I forgot to mention...

Butter (or margarine) goes on corn and bran muffins, but only cream cheese belongs on a blueberry muffin!

Of course, I was also raised to believe that only Ritz crackers could go into tomato soup, whereas Saltines had to go into chicken noodle soup, so make of this what you will... ^_^

Elissa said...

Did you know orange roughy fish used to be known as "slimehead". For some reason it didn't sell. Wonder why?

Lrc said...

C.C. - According to an episode of "The Andy Griffith Show", an all-girl gathering is a hen party.

All I could think of for olympic city was Athens, tho I knew that was wrong. I remember the cities from the 60's & 70's better than the more recent. Is that some sort of sign?

Anonymous said...

The way I've always heard the joke was "Why was six afraid of seven? Because seven ate nine".

I think a better clue for O'neal would have been "center FOR cleveland" instead of "of".

Tinbeni said...

When I finished I noticed a lot of Down clues (15) not even crossed off.

ROUGHY HOUSING was my fave theme answer. I remember the first time I saw a picture of this fish and it is Orange.
Now for eating, GROUPER & SNAPPER are wonderful.
Here on the West Coast of Florida the BP FUBAR hasn't (YET!) screwed up our catch or beaches.

ANODYNE from the Greek Anodynos and I do not know how I remembered this.
TICKER, on CNBC, a fave morning habit.
SWIG, what I did with some of yesterday's DEWAR'S ... Probably the reason I'm moving slower this morning.

FUN puzzle but more of a Wednesday level.

Dennis said...

anon @9:23, 'O'Neal' was clued that way intentionally so as to provide a subtle deception. If it'd been clued, 'Center of Cleveland', everyone would've known automatically. At least, that's my take on it.

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, I managed to start off all wrong with HVAC for 1A. I did get AIDA, but unfortunately that gave me the start of 4D as CA. Since I haven't eaten at McDonalds for at least 30 years, the only McMuffin meat, with a ? that came to mind was CANINES. I know...I wrong on so many levels!

I immediately switched directions to the Downs. That worked so much better for me. With very few exception AND with a lot of perp help, the rest of the puzzle went smoothly.

I was pleased to see 51D "INTO The Woods". I have a DVD of the original musical and watched it just last week. Sondheim is a favorite.

I've heard the term "hen party" too. It is rather derrogatory, since it infers that a group of women cackle like hens. OTOH, there's the terrific Pick-A-Little from "The Music Man".

Anonymous said...

@Argle - Since you seem to like the other blog more, why not guest-blog there?

Jeannie said...

Well, Nathan Miller welcome! I loved this puzzle and kind of had to check the calendar to make sure it was Thursday. I love all seafood so I caught onto the theme very early on when I saw it was to be fish. I am with KQ on Greek mythology. I generally don’t know them but I knew Artemis and Poseidon and got Argo from the perps as well as Noir, Aer, Ani, and Oeil. I did cheat one time by peeking at anodyne. Loge was a new word for me, but not mezzanine as the mezzanine here at the warehouse is where I stow all my foodshow stuff. We call an all girl party for the one to be married a “stagette” party. Dennis is right, it can cause a “target-rich” environment.

It’s beautiful here in MN with sunny skies and 80’s. The only thing keeping me inside is knowing I have the next five days off! If you don’t hear from me this Memorial Day weekend it’s because I am filling my sails. Everyone enjoy yours and remember all of our veterans that give and gave so much for us.

DCannon said...

A Word to Husbands by Ogden Nash

To keep your marriage brimming
With love in the loving cup,
Whenever you’re wrong, admit it;
Whenever you’re right, shut up.

Warren said...

Hi C.C. & gang, the only unknown that I had to look up was Ani DiFranco other than that my wife and I finished the puzzle before she left for work today.

C.C. Re: your question on what was on Poseidon's foot in your link picture? I think it might be the hand of Neptune?

here's your link and the subtitle is neptune-poseidon.

here's a link to Neptune / Poseidon. Neptune was the Roman name of the Greek Poseidon.

lois said...

Good morning CC et al, What a week! Altho' not a speed run, this seemed easier than a true Thurs, but I also got the fish theme for once. It helped.

I didn't know DiFranco but I love the fresh clue for 'ani' instead of black cuckoo. Perps and Wags took care of what I didn't know.
Loved 24D jumper cable..bungee. That is the one thing I have no desire to do - that and get my fingernails ripped off one at a time. Ogden Nash is an all time favorite. His One-L lama was here not too long ago it seems. And finally, 36A sent me around the bend. Holy Hotwick!

Very enjoyable. Hope to see more of Mr. Miller. .

Enjoy your day. I'm off to do my share of enriching the target environment - with sun screen b/c going topless does have some risks.

Dennis said...

anon@9:40, why are you concerned about other blogs someone may visit? As long as they're not promoting some other blog here, I don't see a problem.

Anonymous said...

I'm just saying.

carol said...

Hi all -

I knew it was Thursday but this puzzle seemed just right in many places and that surprised me. Maybe I was just on the right wave length.
The SW corner stopped me for a long time though.
I have never heard of a Roughy. I usually dislike 'play on word' puzzles, but I did get all the long answers (except said Roughy).

Part of my problem today was in spelling the answers I knew: Poseidon and Artemis (I thought of Wild,Wild West too).

51A...never heard of it.

Dudley (7:30) YES! I am just amazed that the high school age girls are as fat as they are and that they don't seem to mind that fat hanging over their too-tight jeans. I don't understand that at all. Funny thing is that there doesn't seem to be much of a happy medium, the girls are either so thin they appear anorexic or they are really heavy. The thin girls cover up and the fatties, just let it all hang out - ugh!

Barry G : Agree on OLEO.

Spitz: Cute poem - LOL

I hadn't thought of mezzanine in years, a lot of the old department stores had them. One I loved to go to had a restaurant on its mezzanine and Mom and I used to stop there for a chocolate sundae while shopping. Fun to look down a level and see people milling around.

Lucina said...

Good day, C.C. and fellow solvers.

What a nice, fresh offering from Nathan Miller. I, too, hope we see more of him.

The fish theme fell into place easily, even here in the desert.

I love orange roughy and snapper; and indulge whenever I visit either coast. They are best served fresh not frozen as here.

This kind of puzzle leads to discovery and that is really fun. Several clues caused a smile as have been mentioned:

jumper cable (bungee)
coin collector (slot) nailed it, too

I'm familiar only with bachelorette party for women.

Must go to babysit adorable grandbaby.

I hope you are having a super Thursday.

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

Good fishy theme today, but I don't agree with the general consensus. For me, this puzzle is not bad, but a step down from the rest of the week. Simply too much stale crosswordese and dross: UDON, OEIL, OLEO, ATTA, MIB (really?!?), LOGE - which I swear I have never seen before, anywhere.

If you need IOTA and ARGO, crossing ARTEMIS, not far from POSEIDON helps.

Also, I hated 11D - self referential clues are humbug.

EBONY - NOIR is a nice echo.

I don't know much about string playing (well, nothing, to tell the truth) but I've seen the string players pay attention to up and down bowing. It's part of strategizing technique to play a passage with the right sort of continuity and phrasing.

I do something similar picking alternate slide positions to reduce reversals. The scale run Eb-F-G-Bb-(middle) C can be 3-1-4-1-3, or 3-6-4-5-6. You have to think about it though, to play the second option. It nicely avoids a potentially tooth-jarring long slide into first.

Classical guitar plying involves a lot of fingering strategery with both hands, as well as a high degree of small muscle group athleticism.

The only person I ever saw play guitar with a bow was Jimmy Page.

BTUS work for both heating and cooling because they are units of energy - and every bit as obsolete as OLEO.

Not having TICKER tape parades for HEROES is a lost opportunity.

JzB who wished he were ASLEEP

Anonymous said...

Good afternoon, everyone.

I seem to be on the bad girl list for having mentioned that some post their times as if this is a contest. One that I will never win. So I apologize for offending you Barry G. And I must tell you that I still use the term oleo. (And I'm not offended that you think only we old folks might use it.}

Spitsboov, great poem by Ogden Nash. Worth keeping. Thanks. And the one about husbands (I've gone thru the blog three times and cannot find who entered it, sorry)is a good one too. Thank you both.

Like Carol, I thought this must be Monday or Tuesday. I loved being able to do almost all of it, especially the theme ones. They are great.


Chickie said...

Hello All--I hope Nathan Miller will give us all another run for our money--or another fish for our line very soon. A very enjoyable puzzle. My only lookup was for Ani (De Franco).

I did have trouble starting off as I had the N for nary and the A for Anodyn so blythly put in none and aspirin. Sooo wrong. When Grouper Discount fell into place I had to do a lot of erasing.

Tang was also a drink we took on our several 10 day back packing trips with our Senior Girl Scout Troop. It was light weight to carry and gave the morning a lift. It was hard to think of things that all the girls would eat that would give them the energy to trek the next 10 to 15 miles, mostly uphill.

It is raining here, AGAIN. The cool temperatures are really messing with our vegetable garden and our berries are not ripening!

CA, Sondheim's "Into the Woods" is also a favorite of mine. Our grandson was in a HS production of the musical way back when.

Jayce said...

Hi everybody.

My sisters used to call all female parties 'hen parties.'


john28man said...

I felt real proud of myself for finishing a Thursday puzzle except for g-spotting Sydney but having read the posts here, I guess it wasn't that hard.

ARBAON said...

Dennis: Please don`t think I`m patronizing you when I say I appreciate your sacrifices during your military days. I know humor is sometimes born of pain. I hope that`s not the case with you. No response is needed...just know I deeply appreciate your sacrifice.
To all our veterans and active duty people on the blog : My sincere "thank you."

Jayce said...

Greetings to you all.

Well, I have to laugh at myself for for putting ONEEL in for 5A, because to me it read as One El. And of course I didn't know until I looked her up that ENI was not Ani DiFranco's first name. (I try not to have to look up anything, if possible, so often get it wrong.)

I loved the fish puns, and got the others after I somehow intuited GROUPERDISCOUNT. Must be a wavelength thing.

My favorite clue was Jumper cable. Laughed out loud when I got the answer. Second fave was Spare for a change.

I haven't looked it up yet, so I still don't now what Aer Lingus is. Lois seems to know, though! LOL

I gotta agree about OLEO; I'm sorta tired of seeing it, and at the same time I understand it often cannot be avoided. I remember kneading plastic bags of oleomargarine as a kid, to soften it. The stuff was white, like Crisco, and was colored yellow (orange) by breaking a capsule of dye into it and kneading it until the coloring was mixed throughout. Gosh, I can't believe we used to actually eat that stuff.

KQ, very cool about using up your vowel stickers while scrapbooking your trip. Makes ya notice stuff like that, doesn't it?

I think every concert hall I've ever been in had a Loge. Pretty decent seats, although I preferred sitting in the balcony. Cheaper, too. And, as carol "indicated" (haha), it's fun looking down onto the people milling around below. By the way, does anybody know why one can go all day without any urge whatsoever to cough, and yet suddenly experiences such throat and bronchial distress that they cannot refrain from coughing mightily during a concert?

Can't figure what the heck Poseidon is stepping on in that sculpture; looks like some sort of snake or sea monster.

Best wishes!

Tinbeni said...

Aer Lingus is the Ireland Airline.

OLEO will always be in puzzles due to the vcvv construction.
This applies a lot many of our crosswordese type of clues that we get tired of.

Jerome said...

Clear Ayes- A few times a year I work as a fill-in bartender at a local saloon. I can assure you that a table of women after about an hour or so of drinking will begin to cackle. Just as a table of drinking men will eventually start to crow. You can bet on it.

Crockett1947 said...

Jayce and C.C., I think that critter under Poseidon's foot is a big nasty looking eel. Not positive about that, though.

Heartfelt thanks to all the veterans in our group. My gratitude to those who gave their all for our country has deepened as I've spent more time taking headstone pictures for people who have requested them from Willamette National Cemetery.

Have a great Thursday!

Dennis said...

ARBAON, I'll just say thanks very much and leave it at that.

My take on the Poseidon statue is that it looks like a woman's arm reaching for.....something.

Gunghy said...

Hey, all.

No glare last night, but the race committee didn't show up so we had to do an impromptu race around floating outhouses and buoys. It also requires a rabbit start. That's where one boat sails across the lake as everyone waits. When the rabbit crosses your bow, you can take off. It's a huge disadvantage for the rabbit, as he can't leave the start area until he's passed everyone. I got selected as rabbit, so no prize to brag about.

About the puzzle: I thought it had way too much crosswordese, and that it was too easy for a Thursday. That said, the cluing was so fun that I definitely want to see more of this author.
Center of Cleveland: I immediately thought of basketball buildings. Don't follow basketball, didn't know Shaq was there. Big stumper.
Skunk Moniker: I had P__E and was fixated on POLECAT. I didn't know 26D or 27D, but knew that OOIL and ULBOW made no sense. When the cartoon finally clicked, I spent a long time trying to figure out the spelling of PEW that went there. I got out the Costco 1/2 gallon of V8 for that one.

Speaking of Costco, that's where the very occasional muffin comes from in this household, and to prevent muffin-tops, those muffins are never topped. Other than having it spelled Bungie, I had to fill that entirely from perps.

CC, Posiedon is standing with his foot on the head of a fish. The body is climbing up his leg. Better view in Warren's link.

Lucia, The roughy is a deep-water fish not really local to US waters. You should be able to get it just as fresh as us.

Going out to pull my boat. (That's sailor talk for getting it onto the trailor.) After a serious once-over, I will then 'trailer' my boat up to Helena, MT for the Nationals on the 10th - 12th.

Gunghy said...

OOPS, backup...

CC, Posiedon is standing with his foot on the head of a Dolphin. The body is climbing up his leg.

One of the symbols and representative animals for Poseidon is the dolphin. It doesn't look anything like a dolphin, but blame the ancient sculptors for that. He also claims horses, probably because jumping dolphin reminded the Greeks of jumping horses?

Crockett1947 said...

Gunghy, I'm with you on that -- doesn't look like any dolphin I've ever seen. Of course, it is art, so there needs to be a little leeway given!

Gunghy said...

Yeah, well, just don't ask me what recess of my mind that one crawled out of.

Barry G. said...

With regard to EON, by the way...

If you accept that one EON literally equals one billion years (as opposed to simply "a very, very, VERY long time), then there are approximately 5,259,600,000,000 minutes in an EON. That's calculated based on there being 356.25 days per year (to account for leap years), but it's still not an exact figure since periodically you need to add a leap second or two to keep things consistent. Over that many years, those extra seconds can add up...

dodo said...

Nathan, I'm with all the others who are hopeful of more puzzles from you. This one was really fun, a bit easier than most Thursday puzzles but still challenging. My favorite clue was 'jumper cable'. I didn't know "Ani" and put down 'Ann' at first , then thought maybe 'O'neal' might be spelled 'O'Neil' and by then I had 'grouper discount', so I just WAGGED 'Ani' and when I finished, looked it up to verify. Otherwise, no lookups. I remember 'anodyne' from Martha Grimes, but I still keep thinking it's some sort of mineral! Maybe from now on I'll know it for what it is!

Jerome, LOL at your takes on the 'Cackles' and 'Crows'. How true!

Dennis, I had that same thought about the statue of Poseidon, that it looked like an arm pointing at....something. Pretty funny, but I guess, after looking at some other pix, it must be a fish, head down, tail up. Peculiar! All that stuff on the bottom could be shells, I suppose, or maybe surf.

CC, great writeup, as usual. I'm amazed at how many people don't recognize 'loge'.

Loved the two Nashes. He's a favorite of mine.

Tinbeni said...

Barry G.
You added a digit.
525,960,000,000,000 minutes.
Add in all those extra seconds, the last time they did that I finally finished "War and Peace" and you could probably get 526 trillion minutes.
But I figure the clue was close ENOUGH, and I CEASEd calculating.

As for the downside of sailing off into the sunset?
Well for a second or so I thought "falling off the edge" but it wouldn't fit.

Hahtool said...

Where is Irish Jim? I think he used to work / fly for Aer Lingus.

carol said...

Tenbeni: What is VCVV construction?

Dennis - I'll agree that does look like a woman's arm reaching (pointing) at his privates...which aren't too private on that statue.

Why is Aer Lingus funny? I didn't get that.

When I was a kid they had Loge seating in all the theaters. You had to pay extra to sit there and they were always roped off (velvet rope no less). We always wanted to sneak in there but they had ushers back then - with flashlights, so you couldn't get away with much.

Barry G. said...

Well, that's the disadvantage of using a calculator that doesn't display commas... ;)

Gunghy said...

Astronomically, you have the sidereal year, tropical year, anomalistic year, draconic year, full moon cycle, lunar year, vague year, heliacal year, Sothic year, Gaussian year and the Besselian year. If you care at all, you can read about the differences here.

The most reasonable one to use is the sidereal year. The sidereal year is the time taken for the Earth to complete one revolution of its orbit, as measured against a fixed frame of reference, such as fixed stars. Currently that is 365.256363051 days.

The day is defined as 86,400 seconds. The second is the SI (le Système international d'unités) unit of time. That is equivalent to 1440 Minutes.

365.256363051 days times one billion equals 365,256,363,051 days total. 365,256,363,051 times 1440 minutes equals 525,969,162,793,440 minutes total.

Have I glazed everyone’s eyes yet? If not, I’d like to point out that the second was defined in 1820 and gravitation pull is slowing the earth’s revolution speed. The day is now about 0.002 seconds longer. Not much time, but in one billion years, that’s over 12 million extra minutes.

All that work, and my calculations disagree with Barry’s in the 5th significant digit. I make it 525,970,000,000,000 instead of 52596.

You may have guessed by now that I didn’t go to the lake. My assistant canceled.

Dennis said...

I now have a headache and blurred vision.

Tinbeni said...

Vowels and Consonants

It is why if you have a 5 letter city in Florida and it ends in "A" it will probably be Ocala not Tampa.

vcvcv beats cvccv in construction usage.

It is why EERO Saarinen shows up so often.

That is why I rounded up to 526 trillion.
Figured it was close enough for gonernment work.

Clear Ayes said...

Bank from Thursday shopping and I had some comments to catch up on.

We've had a couple of Ogden Nash poems, so I'll leave mine until the next time.

Jerome, I'll take your word about the cackling hens and crowing roosters. I do understand why the guys' parties are called "stags" though...all that leaping around, crashing antlers and trying to mount anything that comes into their territory. Maybe not literally...but close!

Jayce, I had the oleo squishing job when I was about seven or eight years old. It was fun for about three minutes. Too bad the job took about ten minutes to get the yellow food coloring totally blended in.

Elissa, we don't see you often enough.

Dennis said...

all that leaping around, crashing antlers and trying to mount anything that comes into their territory.

Jeez, you just gave me flashbacks.

Dot said...

I know I'm dating myself when I tell this, but i still use the word 'oleo'. And when I ask, "Do you want oleo or butter?" I get the question, "what do you mean?" I, too, had to mix the coloring. I thought that was just in Wisconsin. Did other states use the uncolored? We would go across the border to Illinois to buy yellow oleo (margarine).

Since BTU stand for British Thermal Unit, should the clue have included the word, 'unit'?

This was the easiest Thursday puzzle I've seen in awhile.


Warren said...

Oleo eh? It may be a tired puzzle clue but I can remember that we used it from growing up in Northern MN. We had a house ~30 miles north of Minneapolis on Hwy 65, I bought a house in Minnetonka shortly after they put in traffic lights that ruined my commute in '84. I think that I was probably 5 or 6 years old at the time and that time frame agrees with the history of Oleo.

BK said...

Hi, just discovered this blog. I've been doing this puzzle in the NY Post for a long time and it's great to meet fellow enthusiasts.

Also, I love reading the comments. Keep up the good work, guys and gals!

Messed up on Pepe the Skunk, before my time.

Spitzboov said...

Dot said: Since BTU stand for British Thermal Unit, should the clue have included the word, 'unit?

A seven letter fill could have been 'calorie', a metric unit. (1 BTU = ~252 cal.) Both are units of heat energy. In the case of the BTU, the word 'unit' is embedded in the term. I would give the puzzle constructor some slack here about using a clue word which is abbreviated in the answer.

Gunghy said...

Welcome, BK
If you plan to stick around, why don't you go Blue?? You can start a profile by clicking on the word 'Dashboard' above the initial explanation of the answers. Tell us a little about yourself that way.

Dennis said...

BK, good of you to join us; glad you like this great group C.C. has put together. As Gunghy said, when you can, tell us about yourself. Easiest way to do that is to go blue.

kazie said...

Hi all,
Just thought I'd check in this once to let ou know I got here safely and (wonder of wonders!) on time!

I'm unpacked and ready to relax, or whatever is on my schedule. It's 11:26am on Friday here.

I enjoyed Dan's puzzle yesterday, only need ing help from the guy next to me on the plane for Hagler, and since I left the paper on the plane when I changed to the long flight can't remember anything else to comment on.

See you all later!

kazie said...

I guess my typing on someone else's computer isn't that good--'needing', and 'you'.

Chickie said...

Kazie, I'm happy to hear that you have arrived safely and are READY to relax. We should all be so lucky. Take pictures to share.

BK, Welcome and Stay Awhile. As I used to tell my children, "Try it, you'll like it!"

Gunghy, Your sailing races sound wonderful. Are there any coming up here in CA in the near future?

As for Oleo. I,too, had that squishing job. We thought that it tasted better when it was colored. I wonder if there wasn't a bit of flavoring in that yellow capsule? It was difficult to get all the oleo out of the bag once it was colored. We didn't have a refigerator at that time, only an ice box, so my mother would place it on top of the block of ice to harden it a bit so she could get every last bit out of the package.

Since we are having a contentious race for Governor in the primary on June 8 we've had 6 political calls today alone! I'll be glad when the election is over.

That's all for me this evening.

Lucina said...

Well, I had a great time playing with my grandbaby. How I love her!

I missed you all, though. Both hands up for having the job of mixing the oleo, probably age 8 or 9. By that time I believe we had a refrigerator. I do recall the ice box, however. i think there's a story about that, but I'll have to check with my sisters for details.

Great poems and links. Thank you.

It's comforting to know you arrived safely. I'm sure you are having a lovely time reunited with your family and resting.

You should hear our book club, all women, 13 in all, when we really get excited. You describe it well!

I'm happy to know about the roughy being a deep water fresh water fish, but I shall have to find out where it originates. Our lakes have trout, bass and catfish.

Hmmmmm. I wonder if I want to know how many seconds I have lived? No, I think not.

You all have a good night! It's been a grandmother's dream for me.

Lucina said...

Sorry. One more thing. When I was in high school and dating, a friend was the usher at the local theater and used to sneak us into the loge where it was darker and more private. Fun times.

MJ said...

I loved the puzzle today, and hope to see more from Nathan Miller. Favorite clue was 24D "Jumper cable? To BUNGEE jump is one of the items on my bucket list. However, I want them (okay, a pronoun,those who prepare me for the jump) to strap me in feet side down. Does that count as "bungee-jumping"?

carol said...

BK - welcome to our world, sure hope you stay. Go blue and we will read about you.....hey, dang that rhymes!

Kazie, so great that you got there safely and are 'up and running'. We hope you will be able to comment from your homeland, sounds like such a wonderful trip! You know we will all want pictures-:)

I'll also add my mixing skills at the oleo...must have been about 7 or 8 at the time. Don't know how long I actually dug my hands in it, but I remember loving the smell! I know they put 'something' in that yellow dye packet. Geez, I don't think I want to know what, but it didn't make everyone sick like a lot of stuff today, or maybe we just didn't hear of it.

Clear Ayes said...

"we are having a contentious race for Governor in the primary on June 8". Chickie is so right. Californians are being bombarded with TV ads, mailings and phone calls from the candidates. This is the primary, so I can imagine we will be ready to elect anybody in November, just to get them to shut up for a while.

MJ, your feet first bungee jumping idea is something I could consider. Head thanks!

Isn't the internet amazing? Kazie is on the other side of the world and is already back in touch. Have a great visit, Kazie.

Annette said...

KoufaxMaravich, you were close though. Paul McCartney did sing a duet with Michael Jackson too, "The Girl Is Mine", and it's got a very similar 'sound' to "Ebony and Ivory". Both have a fun give-and-take too.

I probably say margarine, but write OLEO on the shopping list.

I got BUNGEE right off the bat, but the spelling eluded me...IE, EY, ??? I forgot to revisit it after a few more perps were in and didn't notice I'd chosen wrong until I came here. Other than that, what I didn't know, the perps smoothly assisted with.

My favorite was 29D Downside of sailing off into the sunset? GLARE, since I was just talking to someone about the glare they'll be missing when they relocate to my office.

51D "INTO The Woods" was touring here several years ago when I was ushering at a local Playhouse. The first night, we couldn't believe we were going to have to watch that silly show several times throughout it's run. By the end of the run, it became one of my favorites! I'm so happy to see others enjoyed it too.

Gunghy said...

Chickie, If you want to come see me, the High Sierra Regatta is held the 2 weekends after the 4th of July. I race on the second weekend of the Regatta, this year on the 17th and 18th. We have others a couple of times a month, but that one draws 200+ boats per weekend. Last year there were eight separate flights of boats starting every 5 minutes. E-mail me if you want directions or more info.

Lucina, I guess I wasn't clear. The roughy is a salt water fish, but the 'fresh' roughy you come out here to enjoy is flown in from Chile. I don't see why they can't fly it into the desert.

I think the worst thing about the campaign is the devisiveness. I'm in a solidly Republican district so they are competing against each other. Each is running on the platform of, "I'm more conservative than those three." When did conservative and liberal become swear words? They are so busy insulting each other, that not one of them has offered a single plan to solve any of the multitude of problems facing us. I think they're in it for the money, not to serve. Must be, considering that they've spent over $1,000,000 for the primary of a house seat.

I've never heard of the play, "INTO The Woods", but I'll be happy to lead any of you lovelies "into the woods." I don't sail all the time.

5 and out.

Bill G. said...

My father told me that the reason you had to mix the food coloring into the oleo was because of the dairy lobby. They didn't want the competition for a cheaper non-dairy spread. So they insisted that it had to look unpleasant and unbutterlike.

Speaking of fish, one of my favorites in local restaurants is sand dabs cooked with lemon-caper sauce. Really tasty.

Anonymous said...

Never got the squishing oleo job. I grew up in Milwaukee, and because it was the dairy state you literally could not purchase oleo there when I was a child. My mom talks about people taking the train to Chicago to purchase large quantities of oleo as it was so much cheaper. I don't remember it myself though.

Otis said...

Lemonade - I wondered why I got Anodyne after a few perps, when I couldn't think of what it meant. My subconscious must have recalled the book from years ago.

I enjoyed today's puzzle. It did seem on the light side, but I prefer at least one do-able-ish puzzle in the Thurs - Sat stretch (versus three killer puzzles full of TV/movie names).

I'm not sure I'm on the same page as others when it comes to crosswordese. "Oleo" was the word for margarine growing up, and my mom still uses it. (I checked with her today, and she used to mix it growing up. I didn't know until today that one used to "make" the margarine! My sibs and I had to "make" the milk - powder and milk - gross.) "Loge" is the balcony section in the Warfield Theater (SF) and was printed on tickets for the four years I ushered (with a flashlight) at shows there. "BTU" is defined on the back of my MDU (gas) bill each month - something I have to pay for to stay warm in -20 degree weather isn't really crosswordese to me! "Attaboy" is also common here, although it could be "due to" where I live (the sticks).

Sallie - you can use the "find" function of a browser to find words in a webpage. "Control" + "F" brings up a search box in most browsers. Type the word you are looking for ("husband" in your case"), and the browser will locate the word on the web page. This is super-duper useful for finding people's names and/or times that are mentioned later in the comment page.

Well, anyone not asleep earlier should be by now.


Lemonade714 said...

Interesting Freudian slip, CA, " Bank from Thursday shopping."

Where are all the martha Grimes fans? WM you out there?

Working way toooooooooo late, but some clients wait until the last moment. 132 am and I am out

Frenchie said...

C.C., Argyle and folk,

@maniac, 6:02 am...while not paving per say, I'm having my back yard paved with bricks and have many fun features being put in as well! Its so very exciting! My first contracting job!

blitch, blitch, blitch...

@Dennis,"Is there a word for 'all-female party' -- yes, it's called a target-rich environment." Do you mean women out looking for a financially rich catch? Like the theme. He's a real catch...catch and release (if he's just wealthy-looking and really poor, release!"...or put another way, gold digger fish!

@Dudley May 27, 2010 7:30 AM,

Dudley said...
"Speaking of muffin tops: I'm stunned at the number of girls who appear in public nowadays with a layer of uncovered blubber hanging out over too-tight waistbands. My sister points out that in her school days a girl would have been mortified to expose flab like that...of course there were fewer overweight kids at the time. What have we become?"
Yes, I believe you when you make this statement. It, however, occurs to me that this is a more complicated issue. I don't know. When I was growing up, I remember my mother and aunts wearing you know exactly what girdles are? They'd be out on the clothesline, blowing in the breeze. on laundry day. We, as women, I don't know haw men handle father didn't wear a girdle, have tried diets, clothes that flatter,'s endless....back to the younger girls, they always existed. They were just invisible to many of us, unless we were making fun of them! Point: I'm proud of young ladies being comfortable enough with their bodies to own the bulges. It's healthy! oUR SOCIETY DEVASTATES ENOUGH PEOPLE WITH THE 'BARBIE & KEN' SYNDROME. Finally a breath of fresh air...people living comfortably inside their own skin. Three cheers from me.
Don't mean to be cruel, Dudley, but I have given this topic a lot of thought over a matter of years and it's been an arduous road for women to 'own' their body weight. I look at the muffin top and I am humbled by the heightened self esteem young people have gained. Like the old Virginia Slim commercial, "you've come a long way baby to get where you got to today......"
sleepy time...can't let insomnia win.
I'm out.

Otis said...

I made many of the false starts mentioned earlier here (leia, rosa, alero/a, and a-line), plus a few more. I tried "act your age" for 31D, and all I could think of for Sweet Sixteen was ANBK (and never been kissed). I knew it had to be the wrong path, but when "ales" landed, I stayed with the idea and tried SWAK. It worked out in the end (except for central west), and I learned some new stuff. Glad to learn more sports info, as that is one of my big weaknesses.

Sallie - glad you got the search function to work! It saves me a lot of time. As to the apple=command=control, I think that's how it works, but the computer pros here will know best. Its been a while since I've used a Mac.