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Jul 11, 2010

Sunday July 11, 2010 Pamela Amick Klawitter

Theme: Geek Squad - TECH is embedded and spans each two-word theme answer.

23A. Welsh pop singing sensation : CHARLOTTE CHURCH. Beautiful voice.

37A. Cookie tidbit : CHOCOLATE CHIP

60A. "The Awakening" author (1899) : KATE CHOPIN. No idea. But I know she's not well known when the construcotr has to put 1899 in the bracket.

85A. Knifehand strike : KARATE CHOP

101A. Environmentalist's concern : CLIMATE CHANGE

123A. 1971 counter-culture film revue hosted by Richard Pryor : DYNAMITE CHICKEN. Not in my radar.

15D. Holiday song that begins "The sun is shining, the grass is green" : WHITE CHRISTMAS

53D. Legislative meeting area : SENATE CHAMBERS

120D. Support worker hiding in the eight longest puzzle answers : TECH

Geek Squad is a subsidiary of Best Buy, which is based here in Minnesota. Had to get their TECH help last time when my computer was sick.

Simple & elegant theme. Sunday puzzles tend to have lots of Fill-in-the-Blank clues/entries (8 in today's case), which can ease up the solving considerably. Lots of 4-letter word too, 54 in this grid.

Alliterative clues aplenty. And of course, I am fond of all the "it" clues:

11D. It might be wild : CARD. Wild card.

106D. It's a plus : ASSET

124D. Make it happen : ACT

Across:

1. Addition, e.g. : MATH

5. Five-sided home? : PLATE. Home plate. Baseball. Quite a few question marked clues in the puzzle, though all the theme clues are straightforward.

10. Sandy color : ECRU

14. __ pants : SWEAT

19. Princess Fiona, e.g. : OGRE. The princess From "Shrek".

20. Ben-Hur portrayer Novarro (1925) : RAMON. "Latin lover" in silent movies, a la Wikipedia. Stranger to me.

21. Place for a speaker : DAIS

22. Letter after eta : THETA

26. Like some carpets : PILED

27. Capital near the Gulf of Tonkin : HANOI. And NAM (33. 27-Across site, briefly). Can picture pain in Dennis' face.

28. Davis who voiced Yar in "Dinosaur" : OSSIE

29. Datsun starter? : DEE. The starting letter of Datsun. Awesome clue.

30. Cruising : AT SEA

31. Gives, as homework : ASSIGNS

35. Matter of interest? : RATE

42. Place to pick up chicks : COOP. Ha ha, not bars.

46. Price limit : CAP

49. Pageant prop : TIARA

50. If-__: conditional statements : THENS

51. Stock market stat : HIGH. And UPS (115A. Stock market stats).

52. Off the mark : AMISS

54. 1860s Jefferson contemporary : ABRAHAM. Jefferson Davis. Abe Lincoln.

57. ERA component : EARNED. And ERAS (70. Times to remember). Different meanings. OK to have ERA duplication.

59. Function : ROLE

63. Gives a thumbs-up : LIKES

64. Curling tool : IRON

65. Liam Neeson's land : IRELAND. "Liam Neeson's country" would have avoided Land repetition.

66. Downs a sub? : EATS. Sandwich.

68. __ blocker : BETA

69. Leader leader? : LOSS. Leader of the term "Loss Leader". Got me.

72. Clay pigeon hurler : TRAP

76. Powder mineral : TALC

78. Choir production : CANTATA

81. 1974 Lucille Ball role : MAME

82. Yacht spots : COVES. Hopefully our yacht boy Gunghy will be back next week.

88. Some 75-Down : ANTS. And PESTS (75. Exterminator's targets).

89. Cochise, for one : APACHE. Have never heard of the tribe chief Cochise.

91. Ice cream soda ingredient : SELTZER

92. Broad-ended cravat : ASCOT

93. Sensitive area : RASH

94. Pertaining to birth : NATAL

96. Strike lightly : TAP ON

99. Sounds from Santa : HOS. Is Santa bald?

100. Entreaty : PLEA

105. Teen hangout : MALL

107. Poivre companion : SEL. Salt in French. Poivre = Pepper.

108. Picked on : NEEDLED

112. Parts of a butcher's inventory : SLABS

118. "Don't Cry for Me, Argentina" singer : EVITA

121. "South Park" mom : LIANE. No idea.

122. "Charles in Charge" co-star Willie : AAMES. Nope. First encounter with this fellow.

126. Link in a chain? : STORE. Beautiful clue.

127. __ the Red : ERIC

128. Rolling in francs : RICHE. French for "rich" I presume.

129. Actress Polo : TERI

130. Bank caper : HEIST

131. Michaelmas mo. : SEPT. Paolo or someone else mentioned Michaelmas Day on the blog a while ago.

132. Workout consequences : ACHES

133. Signs of success, for short : SROS. SRO = Standing Room Only.

Down:

1. Starbucks choice : MOCHA

2. Turkish chiefs : AGHAS. Also spelled as Aga.

3. Former prefix? : TRANS. Transformer.

4. Medal-worthy : HEROIC

5. Woods or Els : PRO. Golf pro.

6. Play on which a Puccini opera was based : LA TOSCA. I peeked at the answer sheet. We also have AMORE (47. Puccini's love). Italian for "love". Puccini echos.

7. Small quantities? : AMTS. OK, I guess "Small"= "Abbreviated".

8. Hose fillers : TOES

9. Spanish name for the holm oak : ENCINA. Just learned this trivia a couple of months ago.

10. Univ. URL ending : EDU

12. Sushi staple : RICE

13. Herald, as a new era : USHER IN

14. Mar. parade honoree : ST. PAT

16. Slippery swimmers : EELS

17. Precisely, with "to" : A TEE

18. "There!" : TA-DA

24. Wrigley Field's lack until 1988 : LIGHTS. Unknown fact to me.

25. It can drive people to the mountains : HEAT. No mountain here.

32. "There's __ in 'team'" : NO I

34. Madness may involve one : METHOD. Idiom: There's a method to one's madness. Learning moment for me.

36. Cathedral section : APSE

38. Spouts off : ORATES

39. Stickers : LABELS

40. Mate : CHAP

41. Spherical opening? : HEMI. Opening to the word hemispherical.

43. Porker's plaint : OINK

44. Arced molding : OGEE

45. Ones who get a third degree : PHDS

46. Antilles native : CARIB

48. Tube test? : PILOT. TV tube.

55. HDTV brand : RCA

56. Philip __, Asian-American actor known for war movie roles : AHN. Ang in Chinese, as in Ang Lee.

58. Flying level: Abbr. : ALT (Altitude)

60. Veto : KILL

61. Hard as __ : A ROCK

62. "Awesome!" : NEATO

67. Quickly, in memos : ASAP

70. "Blah, blah, blah," briefly : ETC ETC

71. Enthusiastic : RAH RAH

73. Dressing choice : RANCH

74. Sandbox retort : AM TOO

77. Eyjafjallajökull output : ASH. Spitzboov has been waiting for the volcano to appear.

78. Coloratura legend : CALLAS (Maria). Coloratura is a new word to me. It's "runs, trills and other florid decorations in vocal music".

79. Bar passer: Abbr. : ATT (Attorney)

80. Pince-__ : NEZ

82. Moan and groan : CARP. Nice rhyme.

83. Down Under gem : OPAL. Australia looks beautiful through Kazie's eyes.

84. Flower holder : VASE

86. Piedmont wine area : ASTI. And ANGELI (92. Gabriel et al.). Italian for "angels" I gather.

87. Paper purchase : REAM

90. SASE, for one : ENCL

95. Refers casually (to) : ALLUDES

97. Dash : PANACHE

98. Washington is on it : ONE

102. Overflow : TEEM

103. "Movie Macabre" host : ELVIRA. Can never remember her name.

104. Orders from on high : EDICTS

109. California cager : LAKER. Bill's homeboys.

110. January, to Jorge : ENERO. Lots of alliterations in the clue.

111. Patron saint of France : DENIS. Oh, good to know.

112. Obi, e.g. : SASH

113. Past curfew : LATE

114. Madame's mine : A MOI. French for "mine".

116. Rite heap : PYRE

117. Salon sound : SNIP

119. Meteor ending : ITIC. Meteoritic.

125. Bucks and rams : HES

Answer grid.

Congratulations to our LAT constructor Fred Jackson for his first Sunday (Newsday) construction!

Here
is Part III of Kazie's Oz pictures. Very scenic.
C.C.

55 comments:

Argyle said...

99. Sounds from Santa : HOS. Is Santa bald?

Santa wears a hat for a reason.

Anonymous said...

110. January, to Jorge : ENERO. Lots of alliterations in the clue.

Not really an alliteration, in that Jorge would be pronounced with an initial "H" sound.

Just nit-picking, but we solvers tend to do that!

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Nice, smooth puzzle with a completely irrelevant theme (i.e., didn't get it until the end and didn't need it to solve).

Minor trouble spots were the fact that I couldn't believe the actor in 122A was really spelled AAMES and I really wanted a final S on ANGELI at 92D.

And then there was 119, which was my official WTF moment of the day. MeteorITE, meteorOID, meteroIC, sure. But meteorITIC? I'm sure it's a real word, but definitely not one I've ever seen, heard or used.

Fred said...

Hi C.C.

You may be interested to know that my very first Sunday puzzle anywhere is being published in Newsday today.
We were discussing a few weeks ago that I had a puzzle published in every day of the week except for Sunday. So today I finally hit for the cycle.

Hahtool said...

Good Morning, CC and all. There is a METHOD to My Madness as I do my morning crossword puzzle. This was a great Sunday puzzle - challenging, but no so much so that I wanted to give up due to the enormity of the grid.

KARATE CHOP was my first theme clue, but once I got TECH, it assisted me in completing the other theme clues. Strangely, MATH / TRANS was my final fill. The lightbulb wouldn't go on for that final T.

I initially had Legs instead of TOES for Hose Filler

RICE as a Sushi Staple was great. I was looking for a type of fish.

ST. PAT was recently in nearly the same way.

My favorite clues were: Place to Pick Up Chicks = COOP,
Downs a Sub = EATS
Five-Sided Home = PLATE

I was also amused by seeing ETC ETC and RAH RAH side-by-side.

Kate Chopin is considered a Louisiana writer. "The Awakening" is probably her best known work, which is based on the lives of women in New Orleans. The book is often read in college English classes.

QOD: There are some people who leave impressions not so lasting as the imprint of an oar upon the water. ~ Kate Chopin

Dudley said...

Morning, Puzzlers - I loved this puzzle, despite the fact that I didn't quite finish it. I solved on paper again ('cause I find Across Lite annoying to use, compared to the Java applet), thus no red letters.

Had the wrong gender, as EL TOSCA, because I was stuck on PENTA for PLATE. Never saw that until C.C.'s summary. Was similarly clueless about SROS even though we've had it before. Drat!

C.C. and Jayce from yesterday - Oh, now I get it! I've only played Mah Jongg on the computer, and have never seen (or heard) a real set of tiles. However, I do like dominoes, and they can be noisy to shuffle using today's dense plastic tiles.

Relatedly, I have long wondered about the symbols - Chinese, I presume - on Mah Jongg tiles. I have no idea what they represent, and I'll bet it's an interesting history.

C. C. said...

Argyle,
Baseball hat? Or what other style?

Anonymous @6:38am,
Thanks for pointing out the H sound in the J in Jorge. Visual alliteration then :-)

Fred,
I actually wrote a note (at the end of my write-up) about your Newsday this morning. Congratulations on hitting for the cycles! Well done! Next stop: NY Times. Good luck!

Fred said...

CC
I didn't read your column yet because I haven't solved the LA Times puzzle for today yet. But thanks for the shoutout!

C. C. said...

Bill G,
Yes, it would be harder for you to learn Chinese/Japanese/Korean. I am sure Barry G can speak from his personal experiences. He's fluent in Spanish and is conversant in Chinese I think.

As Lucina said yesterday, Asian languages are quite different from Romance languages. Rather complex. We use characters. Not alphabet. It's tougher for those players from Taiwan/Japan to pick up & then speak English as quickly & fluently as European or Mexican/Cuban/Venezuelan players do.

You have a good point on confidence issue though. At least it's true with me. I speak poor English and often need Boomer's help in getting myself understood. So I decide to speak less or just remain silent. I have no problem with written English and I suspect it's the same with those Asian players.

Barry G. said...

I am sure Barry G can speak from his personal experiences. He's fluent in Spanish and is conversant in Chinese I think.

Actually, I'm fluent in Spanish and almost completely incomprehensible in Mandarin. No matter how I try, it seems nobody can understand a word I say...

Jeanne said...

Morning all,
Enjoyed today’s puzzle--had a few hang ups but perps all helped with completing the puzzle. Really should make up a word list for “South Park” since it is used in so many puzzles and I never watch the show. Love the word panache, and “Denis” and saint are not two words I would put together in the same thought!!

I did the Merle Reagle Sunday puzzle yesterday--more doable than normal. We had rain on Saturday for the first time in forever and it was a good day for puzzles and reading. Congrats Fred on your completed crossword cycle. Will give the puzzle a try later on today. Looking forward to it.

Kazie, I am really enjoying your pictures and I am amazed how much that part of Australia reminds me of Arizona and Utah. The red rock formations are very similar. I’m glad I got to see Sedona, the Grand Canyon, and Bryce Canyon because I will probably only ever enjoy Australia through your eyes. So thank you.

Enjoy your Sunday.

Spitzboov said...

G'day everyone.

Not an overly difficult puzzle, today, Didn't get the 'tech' assist until almost the end. It was not really needed. Perps helped with unknowns like AAMESand KATE CHOPIN. Didn't know DYNAMITE CHICKEN but it filled in nicely. RAMON was a WAG. Had 'legs' before TOES. Clever clues included those for DAIS, RICHE, TRANS, and PLATE, my favorite. I liked today's clue for AT SEA rather than the usual 'lost', 'baffled' or 'perplexed".

Anonymous said...

@Fred, congrats.

@Kazie, truly amazing photos.

Mary

Anonymous said...

I read this blog every day after I have finished the puzzle, and really enjoy all your comments and insights. Even though I don't know Kazie, I love the photos and feel as if she were an old friend sharing her trip with me.

Just another "nit-pick" about "January, to Jorge": Jorge is actually pronounced "Hor-Hey" so it sort of rhymes, doesn't it?

Lemonade714 said...

Well drat:

My post never posted and other than CONGATULATIONS FRED! I forgot what I said.
I know how devastated you all must be.


My nephew has been a Geek Squad employee since he was 18; he is the one in his 8th year of college.

I wonder if the original clue for 1860's Jefferson contemporary included the reference to the year?

Willie AAMES was a staple of crossword puzzles in the 80's because of the AA.

Like it or not METEORITIC is a real dictionary word; these guys probably do check their work. As we learned from Doug Peterson yesterday when he googled VAMP and loved its different meaning, puzzles are researched.

Has anyone seen All About Steve


Yes we are all very close virtual friends, enjoy the day.

Lucina said...

Good day, C.C. and puzzle people.

What a beautiful puzzle today; it clipped along without any glitches although there were some doubting moments on "five sided home" although I knew ENCINO. Gradually the light dawned on home PLATE.

I'm familiar with KATECHOPIN from having substituted in a reading class one entire semester.

Not much else to say except that like Barry I had ANGELSat 92D and failed to see the theme clue right in front of me. I peeked at the answer for DYNAMITECHICKEN since it is included in the Sunday version.

Just add my voice to Jorge; Anon@9:37 is correct. Hor-Hay

C.C.:
Thank you for your input on the language discussion. I have found that Asian students can translate with 100% accuracy but falter in the pronunciation.

Kazie:
Simply wonderful photos, thank you.

Fred:
Congratulations on your continued success! I look forward to your next installment here.

I have a question. In searching for the Hebrew alphabet I noticed that numeric values are given to each character/letter, but after counting from 1 to 10 they jump from 10 to 20, 30, 40, etc to 400. Why is that?

I hope you have a superb Sunday!

Bill G. said...

C.C., thank you and others for your comments regarding my questions about Asians and learning other languages. Makes more sense now.

Congratulations Fred! Where can I find Newsday puzzles to solve online?

Dudley, why don't you go to the LA Times website where you can find these puzzles to do online with Java? Also, it sounds as if you are unaware you can get red letter help with Across Lite too though I like the Java applet better.

Kazie, I am enjoying your photos. Between you and your camera, the pictures sparkle.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I never saw CC wrote such a long response.

lois said...

Good morning CC, et al., Can't believe this was a Sunday puzzle and I finished it. The Downs were so much more doable than the Acrosses, it seemed to me today and before I knew it, the puzzle was done. Maybe it's 'cause I'm stoned on pain killers and free thinking prevailed. I'm enjoying it all at any rate.

Had to LOL w/99A and think of our resident wonderful Santa. I'm counting down to the holidays when I can hopefully join Santa and his 3 fine ho's. As for being bald, I'd rub that darlin' bald head of his for good luck like I do my Budha's belly then kiss it sweetly to finalize the deal. For some reason, I think 'ho' won't be the only sound uttered by Santa this Christmas. I'm being real good this year...esp right now when I'm being forced into it, which is earning me merit points, right Santa baby? My list will be coming soon...well, that's what I call it.

Kazie: I LOVE the pictures and the labels you've given. It's a reamarkable country. Thank you for sharing.

Congratulations Fred on getting the Sunday puzzle in and completing the cycle. We're all proud of and happy for you.

I need to go back and read what I've missed in the last few days. My cast is florescent pink and is comfortable...duh, hello pills! I got a cover for my cast so that I can take a shower and even go swimming. I call it a cast condom and will test it out later today. They'll have to try harder to keep me down.

Enjoy your day.

Argyle said...

Santa's Hat, while on the job. Santa, on the beach.

Al said...

69A, LOSS leader is something that a grocery STORE (126A) will do to bring in customers. They put out an advertisement for "specials of the week" where they sell a few select items for cost (or less than cost if legal) to draw people in to do the rest of their grocery shopping in that store vs their competition. Even if it is at cost, they had to pay for the ad, stocking it, cashiers, etc, so it is still literally selling at a loss. Larger chains then will advertise "ad matching prices" to promote loyalty and attempt to negate the store-hopping it causes.

It backfires on them when people come in and only buy the sale items, so they usually place limits on how many of each item you can buy.

Not sure if other types of retail chains do that; it makes less sense elsewhere, because when you do grocery shopping, you usually buy many items, but other types of chains, you only go to pick up one or two things.

Kazie, I've been loving the pics. You have a good eye for composition.

Dudley said...

Quote from Bill G. upstairs:

Dudley, why don't you go to the LA Times website where you can find these puzzles to do online with Java? Also, it sounds as if you are unaware you can get red letter help with Across Lite too though I like the Java applet better...

Thanks for your input, Bill G., but the reason was that I wanted to benefit from the availability of the puzzle at 10:00 P.M. Eastern, which so far as I know is unique to Cruciverb. Rather than work in Across Lite (which does have some good features including incorrect letter flagging), I just print it out and solve the old-fashioned way.

As for the LAT site itself, it sometimes gives my browser indigestion. At the suggestion of another commentor, I now use a Virginia news site, one which runs a little better, uses Java, and is available at midnight Eastern.


My beefs with Across Lite: I find its habit of skipping over a filled square annoying, along with its method for toggling between across and down. I prefer the easy Applet space-bar keystroke for the latter. There may be other nits but that's all I can think of.

What do you other bloggers think?

Bill G. said...

Dudley said: My beefs with Across Lite: I find its habit of skipping over a filled square annoying, along with its method for toggling between across and down. I prefer the easy Applet space-bar keystroke for the latter. There may be other nits but that's all I can think of.

I know some others disagree with us but I like the Java applet better too. However, under Options>>Solve, you can change Across Lite to skip to the next square without skipping over a filled square.

kazie said...

Thanks to all re pix,
I forgot to mention yesterday, that one thing I learned about Uluru and Kata Tjuta is that, like icebergs, what we see is only a tenth of their size, the rest being underground.

I hope it doesn't get overpowering, having so many photos to post. But there'll be a break tomorrow with someone else's photos for a day.

Lemonade,
I saw it the other night--pretty silly but also amusing, I thought. I suppose there's a lesson there about relationships and what's important too.

I actually took the time to do today's puzzle online. It was doable with red letter help, but I still took too long. Wouldn't have done it except DH is feeling ill so we couldn't go to Madison to visit our d-i-l as planned.

Bill G,
A bit late, but my 2-cents worth on languages. The European languages are all related to some degree, and most use the same alphabet (or equivalents e.g. Russian cyrillic), so once you learn the pronunciation of the vowels and letter groups in another language, pronunciation is just a matter of remembering those rules. For languages like the Asian tongues where characters have more than just sound connotations, it must be really difficult.

Maybe Hahtool knows more than I do of Hebrew characters, but most speakers of modern Hebrew also learn English early on.

Western Europeans start English at the latest in the 5th grade, and must continue throughout their schooling. If only education authorities here would recognize the importance of really knowing other languages, and that it needs more than the usual two years!

I just received the newsletter for alums of my old high school in Sydney, where one can now study not only French, German and Latin as I did, but also Chinese, Modern Greek, Italian, Japanese and Spanish! If only!

And Oz just (my last day there) ousted its prime minister Kevin Rudd, who incidentally speaks fluent Mandarin. In his place they now have Julia Gillard, the first woman to hold the post.

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, Is half an understanding better than none? Early on I got the CH connection with the theme answers, but I had to wait for 120D TECH for TE and the "D'oh" moment.

With a couple exceptions, most of the theme entries came easily. I had never heard of 60A KATE CHOPIN. It sounds like Hahtool and Lucina are familiar with "The Awakening", but I bet 123A DYNAMITE CHICKEN was a new one for just about all of us.

I had to look up 119D MeteorITIC post puzzle. "Adj. meteoritic - of or relating to or caused by meteorites" As usual, the constructor was one step ahead of me. I felt your pain, Barry G.

C.C. about 89A "Cochise, for one", from Wikipedia, "Cochise was one of the most famous Apache leaders (along with Geronimo) to resist intrusions by Americans during the 19th century". There was a very good 1950 movie titled "Broken Arrow" that took the side of the Native Americans. It is considered very un-PC today, but Jeff Chandler, who was not a Native, played Cochise. (Chandler on left, James Stewart on right.) Jeff Chandler was nominated for an Academy Award for his portrayal.

Congratulations to Fred.

Lois, sounds like you aren't going to let a cast pull you under. Happy paddling!

Dudley, I really have no preference about how they work, but I use Across Lite simply because we west coasters get it at 7:00 PM, instead of waiting for LAT at 11:00 PM.

Annette said...

I filled in the last letter of the grid in the SE, and..no TaDa! I looked around for the square I missed, and it was the last "A" in TA DA! What a coincidence!

Another coincidence is the theme title: Geek Squad. I'd been awakened by a phone call from the Geek Squad this morning, telling me that my laptop was finally back from the repair shop and ready for pick up! I've had a loaner for about 2 weeks from my sister, but there's nothing like having your own back...with all it's saved passwords, familiar keyboard, precious files, favorites on the toolbar, etc.

I really enjoyed this puzzle! It had a lot of fun clues and fill. Loved its theme too!

The biggest d'oh moment was struggling to get the K in Veto: KILL, even though just last week I'd had a discussion with someone on the blog about missing such a simple word with a similar clue in another puzzle!!! I knew it was the same word, but that old lethologica invaded once again... I had to mentally go thru the alphabet to fill in the K.

Can I blame it on too much sun and heat at our neighborhood block party yesterday, or that I was reading the paper, watching a movie and eating breakfast while working on the puzzle??? :)

daffy dill said...

C.C., I have heard that the reason
Chinese, epecially Mandarin, is difficult is that the inflection is so important. For instance, a compliment can turn to an insult if the inflection is not right.

Not too difficult a solve for a Sunday. I got the theme quickly and the theme entries were easy enough, except for DYNAMITECHICKEN which I left to the perps. Well, to be completely honest, my theme was simply "Geeks" instead of "Geek Squad."

I wanted legs or gams for 8D, but I knew I had CHARLOTTECHURCH an OSSIE right. When home PLATE dawned, I had TOES, as well. My favorite clue is "Place to pick up chicks." Of course, my first thought was bars. "1860s Jefferson contemporary" ABRAHAM confused me until I read C.C.'s comment. I thought it must refer to the fact that both were presidents, although "contemporary" didn't suggest that. Didn't think of Jefferson Davis.

Kate Chopin was considered quite the feminist and THE AWAKENING was banned for many years because it was scandalous. Reading it from today's perspective, one finds it quite a mild offering in that genre -- at least I did. Ms. Chopin was somewhat of a pariah in her day.

I hope everyone has a great Sunday.

Dudley said...

Bill G. - D'oh! I didn't notice that the skip feature could be changed. oopsie...

Because of that, I read the other ALite options more carefully and learned some new stuff. I might have given it an unfair shake. Time'll tell, I'll experiment with it some more.

Annette said...

Fred, congratulations on your first Sunday puzzle in Newsweek! You've made the full cycle now - what's next? :-) I'll check it out later tonight.

Barry G., think of people who have had a speedy, METEORIC rise to fame. Movie stars, athletes, politicians, people in the corporate world, etc.

Barry G. said...

Barry G., think of people who have had a speedy, METEORIC rise to fame. Movie stars, athletes, politicians, people in the corporate world, etc.

Yep, I know that one. Unfortunately, the actual answer was METEORITIC and not METEORIC...

Al said...

Here's why I prefer Across Lite over the Java app.

I like the completed letter skipping. For me it mirrors the way I do a puzzle in pencil. I don't rewrite a letter I already have filled in unless it is wrong. And especially on long words where I finally see the answer and only need a few letters at the beginning or end, I don't want to hit the arrow key or retype the letters (incorrectly sometimes). Plus, I like the way it wraps within a word to go back for letters I hadn't filled in yet, saving me from having to use navigational keystrokes or using the mouse.

I don't like the java spacebar direction change. I prefer being able to use it to erase a word or letter that I had entered wrong instead of having to go for the backspace key, and I prefer that the arrow keys change the direction.

I HATE the directional navigation in the java applet when you use the arrow keys. Instead of staying on the same row or column and only moving one space, it skips to the first open letter of the word you move to, so if you only wanted to go back three spaces, you instead find yourself in an entirely different portion of the grid and have to grab the mouse to get back to where you want to be. This annoyance alone is the second biggest reason I use Across Lite, aside from the timing for availability on Cruciverb.

The only thing I like about the Java app is the red letters that don't leave a mark (when I use check letters in A/L), but that's not enough for me to overcome my annoyance at the navigation when I have lots of open squares in a puzzle.

To each their own, though. I'm not trying to convince anyone else. Whatever works best for you is what you should use. Both methods have annoyances for me, both have at least one good feature the other doesn't. One thing I would like to see added is to type the number of a square and have it navigate there instead of having to use arrows or the mouse. As an occasional programmer, I can appreciate the difficulty of doing that, though.

And finally, I just like the initials for Across Lite...

Oh Fred, I didn't mean to snub you earlier, I kind of get wrapped up whenever I start explaining something. Congrats on getting your sweep. If I had time I might try construction someday. Maybe after I retire...

Chickie said...

Hello All--I don't usually comment on Sunday, but I wanted to congratulate Fred on hitting the Pulished Puzzle cycle.

Also, again, Kazie, your photos are beautiful. I've always had a yearning to go to Australia, but will have to be content with my arm chair travel through your pictures for now.

Hahtool said...

Kazie: Actually, Hebrew is a relative easy language to learn to speak because it is phonetic. Many American Jews can read Hebrew, but not necessarily understand what they are reading precisely because it is phonetic. Most Israelis I know learned English in school, and whenever I have been in Israel, that is the language I generally converse in. Several years ago I was in Israel with a woman from Hong Kong. She spoke English, but not Hebrew. She, however, couldn't understand the Israeli-English accent, nor could the Israelis understand her English. I was the "English" translator so both could converse in the common language.

Lucina: Check your email.

kazie said...

Huge congratulations to Fred! That's a big hurdle for you. As someone else asked...what's next for you?

Hahtool,
Thanks for the clarification. Accents can be like that. Sometimes it takes an outsider to get beyond the idiosyncrasies. My mother told me she knew an Aussie guy who joined the English grenadier guards band in London, then had to translate for his two English roommates--one from Yorkshire and one from Lancashire, if memory serves me correctly. I know German pretty well, but the Saxons in my d-i-l's family sometimes have to translate their Saxon into real German for me too!

dodo said...

Good Sunday afternoon, friends.

Congrats, Fred, on your Sunday triumph! Did anyone answer the question about where to get the Newsday puzzle? I'd like to know, too.

Kazie, you do a terrific job of photographing! I'm so enjoying your pix. I look at them before reading the blog! Never thought of OZ having so many beautiful spots! I guess all I've seen until now are pictures of that rock (is it Ames? cant think of the name) and Sidney harbor, which is beautiful.
Of course, Oz is so huge.....and so far away!

Today's puzzle was much more enjoyable to me than yesterday's. It's nice to have a fun one cancel out a bummer. I guess if that didn't occur so often I'd just quit solving. But my enjoyment is restored without fail!

Lois, I hope your foot heals fast. I understand that type of surgery is very painful. Not a fun way to spend your summer! I'd love to know how they manage to waterproof that cast. Wonders never cease; I remember getting those big black garbage bags to cover up my leg when I had my knee replaced. And still they leaked! BTW, I'm not sure what you mean by 'Santa's three ho's'? Maybe I'm thinking of another definition!

Lucina, when are you planning to visit Northern California? It would be such fun to meet you.

Clearayes, I didn't know that 'The Awakening' was banned. Doesn't that seem archaic now? We have certainly come a long way. It's taken a long time though. I got started reading Chopin's book some time ago but for some reason I didn't finish it. Guess I'll try again.

I guess I'll have to investigate AcrossLite and plan to use it. The Sunday LAT in the SF Chronicle is so small it gives me a headache trying to read the numbers. The daily ones in our local paper are okay but I tried the Chronicle one again today and it's just too unpleasant.

C.C. I finally got my Coolpix but the owner's manual is in Spanish so I'm trying to print it out from the website, which offers a printable version. What a mess! You said my life would change and it sure has! I think when I get this all straightened out, it will change for the better, though! I'm looking forward to it!

Hahtool said...

Kazie: I forgot to tell you that I am thoroughly enjoying your photo gallery from your recent trip. Makes me want to retire now so that we can take a long trip to Australia.

C. C. said...

Dodo et al,
Just click on the blue link at the end of my write-up, you'll find Fred's Newsday puzzle. Also, Fred has never had a puzzle published by NY Times. I believe that's his next target.

Anonymous said...

Way to go Spain!

Copied Fred's puzzle and answeres
to do later. Way to go Fred!

Don't think I would finish a puzzle on-line.

Anonymous said...

Fred, congratulations from a long-time lurker. A wonderful accomplishment.

BarryG, might be time for a new avatar? Something from this decade, maybe? Or with your son?

C.C., have you tried your hand at constructing? It seems like something you'd be good at.

kazie said...

Dodo,
It's Ayer's Rock, and now they use the Aboriginal name for it: Uluru. Also, your Coolpix should have come with two user guides: the other one should be in English. I got them both with each of my Coolpix cameras.

lois said...

Argyle: love that Santa at the beach. Is that VaBeach? That scene looks very familiar...esp the bottle part. His tan is looking good.

CA: yeah, the cast condom and a comfortable raft w/a drink holder are my essentials for the rest of july.

dodo: Santa's 3 fine ho's is assuming Santa's in fine voice and saying ho ho ho. Then again, it could be a little more DF than that if ho is interpreted in a more modern day way. It's all up to you. FYI, I'm an alto and always made every choral group I tried out for...even got a solo once...sang so-lo nobody could hear me, but it was an honor just the same.

lois said...

dodo: forgot the main thing. The cast condom is a rubber boot that goes over the cast. With a little hand pump, all the air is sucked out of it and it closes in on the cast/leg like a 2nd skin..air tight and waterproof. To release it, I just slip my finger between the top edge of the boot and my leg and the seal is broken. Works like a charm. Much better than plastic bags and duct tape, which I may have been driven to try before too long if I hadn't found this.

Bill G. said...

Fred, I am mostly finished with your puzzle and I am enjoying it. It seems to be related to my Lakers, yes? Is it about equivalent to an LAT Wednesday puzzle? What's Stanley Newman like? Is it possible to get it in a different format like the LAT or Across Lite? It's confusing to have to use a third online format.

Frenchie said...

Hi Everybody,

I haven't been able to blog consistently and I miss it..

Today's puzzle is very interesting. I enjoyed it.

Fred, Congrats.!!! Love your puzzles!

Happy Birthday to each one I missed from C.C., CA and so on. I continued to send positive energy to each of you...it can't hurt, right? Kazzie, the images in your photos make me proud to live on this earth. Lois,I hope you and the others of our group with physical conditions and the like get the healing you need.

Our desire to understand the ease or lack thereof, of pronunciation and comprehension of varied languages, entails quite complicated detailing. It's really beautiful that we are able to give insight and educate one another. C.C., thanks for this that comes from your blog. I learn something new each time I log in.

I love the discussion about the little things that annoy us in the presentation of the puzzles and the impact it has on how we feel when we are solving! I can relate, though I won't comment as it would most likely be reiteration.

I'm extremely fond of all of you, my virtual friends. Life's good!

I'm out.

Anonymous said...

Nice puzzle Fred. Something for everyone. Counted 8 before the reveal.

HeartRx said...

I didn't see any comments on 64a "Curling tool", which I completely missed when I thought of the game of "Curling" on ice, and came up with "ROCK" for the fill. I haven't used a "Curling iron" in forty years, so now you know where MY mind is.
QOD: "The only thing that I have lost and miss the most is my mind..."

Bill G. said...

I just caught an early episode of Frasier on cable. That show sure had good writers and good comedic actors. The humor was smart. It was one of my favorites until Niles finally married Daphne. Then it went downhill fast.

Other favorites were WKRP, Cheers, Welcome Back Kotter. What have I missed?

Al said...

@BillG, Barney Miller and Night Court were a couple of my favorites from then.

Anonymous said...

Good eveningC.C. and everyone. Congratulations, Mr. Jackson. I finished your puzzle last night and immensely enjoyed the solving process. Hope you can construct one for the Saturday Stumper.

Today's puzzle is a confidence booster after the ego castrating experience yesterday. I got stymied
a bit with 118A. I put the actual
singer PAIGE(Elaine)instead of EVITA. But overall a smooth solve.

In case anybody wants to try another puzzle just like yesterday's, try doing the Washington Post Sunday challenge.

Have a goodnight everyone.
August

Fred said...

CC:
You are right. A NY Times puzzle is my next goal.

I accomplished another goal in June when "Simon & Schuster's Mega Crossword Puzzle Book" published two of my crossword puzzles. They only publish new crossword puzzles not reprints. They've got a third puzzle in the wings. Doug Peterson has a bunch of puzzles in it, too.

Bill G:

Yes, the Newsday Sunday puzzle is about equivalent to a Wed LA Times puzzle.

Stan Newman is a very demanding editor quality-wise.He makes you up your game. As a result I'm a better constructor. He's a very good mentor who will work with you all through the process to turn out a better puzzle.

Newsday is available in Java and pdf format. You have to use pdf format to print it out.

Thanks everyone for their kind comments.

Lucina said...

Dodo:
I would love to meet you as well. I shall be in Lafayette on the 27th throughthe 31st.

I certainly hope the weather is cool. That would be such a treat.

Dennis said...

Fred, just had a chance to check in and I wanted to add my congratulations to you on the cycle; quite a feat! I also just did the Newsday puzzle which was a nice treat for a Sunday evening; thanks for that as well.

Dudley said...

Fred - What Dennis said. I just completed your puzzle (well, almost, I had two wrong letters) and it was a good workout!

Annette said...

Barry G. - This is a bit late, but I wanted to say I was sorry about the METEORIC comment. That was one that filled in from the perps, and I never noticed the IT in it. Now I get your issue with it...

Annette said...

Fred, I just finished your Newsday puzzle too. Nice job! It was challenging, but doable. Congratulations, again!