Aug 20, 2010

Friday August 20, 2010 Donna S. Levin

Theme: House Pun - The first word of each common phrase is replaced by a sound-alike type of house. The resulting phrase is then humorously clued.

17A. Faithful caretaker of a religious residence? : MANSE BEST FRIEND. The base phrase is Man's Best Friend. Manse is parson's residence.

26A. Stately home for debate team practice? : MANOR OF SPEECH. Manner of Speech. I'm more familiar with "manner of speaking".

45A. Former European princess's elaborate dwelling? : ESTATE OF GRACE. State of Grace. Princess Grace. The only theme entries with an extra syllable added.

58A. French castle built with misgivings? : CHATEAU OF A DOUBT. Shadow of a Doubt. Sound change is quite pronounced in this one, with different stress. But a great clue.

This puzzle is very close in theme style and grid design to Donna's last "Hat Pun": four theme entries (the first and last are grid-spanners in both puzzles) punning on the first word of each familiar phrase. The clues are more consistent in this one. Consistency is important in cluing this punny type. You either adhere to the old meaning or the transformed meaning. Can't do both. The hat, no hat, no hat, hat in the "Hat Pun" theme clues bothered me.

Donna has gradually filled in the Friday LAT pun void left by Dan Naddor and she is now our Friday Ms. Pun.

I am very fond of the two Down 10s which crossed three theme answers each:

11D. Operating room number? : ANESTHESIA. Number = Stuff that numb you.

28D. Home of the flightless kakapo : NEW ZEALAND. Kakapo looks like an owl. Why are they flightless?

The clue for ANTONYM (20A. Choose to reject, say? ) is just brilliant. The word "choose" is an antonym of "reject".


1. Dirty : LEWD. "Indecent" Dirty.

5. Fictional Fort Baxter noncom : BILKO. Sergeant Bilko.

10. Bar assistant? : PARA. Paralegal. Attorney's assistant.

14. Like the northern Antilles Islands vis-à-vis the southern ones : ALEE. I don't get this, Spitzboov.

15. Enjoyed home cooking : ATE IN

16. City named for a Tennyson heroine : ENID. In Oklahoma. Named for the character Enid in "Idylls of the King". Unknown trivia to me.

21. Draw : TIE

22. Vancouver-to-Seattle dir. : SSE. Always need crossing help for dir.

23. Defunct Frontier Airlines competitor : TED. Belonged to United.

24. Not quite NC-17 : R-RATED. Rated G, Rated PG, Rated PG -13, Rated R, then Rated NC-17. Got me.

32. Mars, to the Greeks : ARES. The ending S in Greek always suggests of a male. Ares, Zeus, etc.

33. Aglet's locale : LACE. Aglet is the metal tag at the end of a shoe lace. Like the red cirled part.

34. Per person : A HEAD. A new clue spin on common one word AHEAD.

37. Stitch : SEW

38. Spilled, with "out" : BLURTED

40. Dept. in a "Law & Order" spin-off : SVU. I only like the original "Law & Order".

41. Vocaphone : KAZOO. What is "Vocaphone"?

43. Feudal peasant : SERF

44. Like a pinto : PIED. Mottled "pinto" horse, with multicolored patches.

48. Pokes fun at, in a way : ROASTS

50. Anger : IRE

51. It's used at Gallaudet U. : ASL (American Sign Language). I've never heard of Gallaudet University, "a federally chartered university for the education of the deaf and hard of hearing", based in D.C, according to Wikipedia.

52. Umpire's call : LET. The referee in Tennis is called umpire also?

54. Winter spikes : ICICLES

61. Popular bar game : KENO. Originated in China.

62. Hard to move : STOIC. To move emotionally.

63. The duck in "Peter and the Wolf" : OBOE. I am always confused by those characters.

64. "Soldier of Love" singer, 2009 : SADE. Gimme for me, but then I love Sade.

65. Delish : YUMMY

66. White underling : KENT (Clark). Perry White's underling in the "Superman".


1. Eastern priest : LAMA. Only in Tibet.

2. Pizazz : ELAN

3. Hit the road : WENT

4. FireDome and Fireflite : DESOTOS. Cars. Waiting for Argyle for the links. He knows everything about cars.

5. Short nightie : BABY DOLL. Lovely color.

6. Canoodling couple, maybe : ITEM

7. Liszt's "__ Preludes" : LES. I guessed.

8. "Santa Baby" singer : KITT (Eartha). Hmm, happy fill for Lois and her "Santa Baby"!

9. Lit : ON FIRE

10. Louvre Pyramid architect : PEI (I.M.)

12. Washer cycle : RINSE

13. Put two and two together : ADDED. Somehow I was thinking of the lumber term 2X2.

18. U.S. dept. with a sun on its seal : ENER. See this seal. There's indeed a sun.

19. Go over again : REREAD

25. Bavarian beef? : ACH. Alas, not real beef for the meat lovers. Alliteration.

26. Conceal : MASK

27. Field : AREA

29. Legendary soul seller : FAUST. He sold his soul to the devil.

30. Cliffside litter : SCREE. Like this, the rocky debris.

31. Chemical prefix? : PETRO. Petrochemical. Why question mark?

35. "__ plaisir!" : AVEC. Literally "with pleasure".

36. Buddy : DUDE

38. Hold in, with "up" : BOTTLE

39. Productiveness : EFFICACY. Great entry.

42. CIA's ancestor : OSS. Ennui!

44. Parboil : PRECOOK

46. Equally simple : AS EASY

47. Power network : GRID. Electric power.

48. Sets up the balls : RACKS. Pool. Lois knows how to "set up the balls".

49. Actor Milo : O'SHEA

53. 1984 Nobel Peace Prize winner : TUTU. 1984? That's long time ago.

54. "Correct me __ wrong ..." : IF I'M

55. Auto mechanic's job : LUBE

56. Black, poetically : EBON

57. Re-edit, in a way : STET. "Let it stand", Let the canceled material remain.

59. Ring site : TOE. Quite pretty.

60. Half a tuba sound : OOM. Oom-pah.

Answer grid.

Our Friday blog team photo continues. Here is a recent photo of Al, a database administrator based in Green Bay, WI. Al loves words and etymologies, as you've probably learned from his always knowledgeable comments and Thursday puzzle write-ups. Al is also very well versed in nutrition due to his personal experiences and background in chemistry. He also loves guitar and takes lessons every week.



Dennis said...

Good morning, C.C. and gang - man oh man, did I ever fight with this one. I started so well, knowing the NW, including the Desoto clue, but then hit the wall. Didn't remember that Sgt. Bilko was stationed at 'Ft. Baxter', didn't know a 'vocaphone' was a kazoo, thought 'Keno' was a casino game, not a bar game, didn't remember the duck was named 'Oboe', etc, etc, etc. That said, I loved this puzzle; some really great clues. Favorites include 'Choose to reject, say?', 'White underling' and 'Operating room number?'. And I thought the theme was outstanding, with the residential homophones. A stellar puzzle, in my opinion.

C.C., I'm with you on Sade. Cruising late on a warm summer night on back roads with the top down and Sade playing is one of life's great pleasures. And you certainly didn't disappoint with the baby-doll link; as you said, pink is a lovely color indeed.

Al, great picture -- I'm glad we finally got to see you.
Today is National Radio Day.

Here's more 'creative' signs from around the country:

- On a Plumber's Truck: "We repair what your husband fixed."

- On another Plumber's Truck: "Don't sleep with a drip. Call your plumber."

- At a Tire Shop in Milwaukee: "Invite us to your next blowout."

- At an Optometrist's Office: "If you don't see what you're looking for, you've come to the right place."

- Outside a Muffler Shop: "No appointment necessary. We hear you coming."

-And my favorite, in the front yard of a Funeral Home: "Drive carefully. We'll wait."

Hahtool said...

Good Morning, CC. I LOVE Donna Levin puzzles and this was no exception. I loved theme and all the misleading clues and puns. Not only that, but she also gave a Shout Out to our Very Own ARGYLE. Hey, Santa Baby!

I, too, am a SADE fan.

Some of my favorite clues today included:

Choose to reject, say? = ANTONYM

Winter Spikes = ICICLES

Pokes Fun At = ROASTS. My first guess here was Teases.

LIT = ON FIRE. Great misleading clue. I was thinking of literature of some sort.

I wouldn't think that a ring on the TOE would be very comfortable.

Have a great Friday and weekend, everyone.

QOD: The people who live in a Golden Age usually go around complaining how yellow everything looks. ~ Randall Jarrell

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Most of this puzzle was fairly smooth sailing for me, but the upper section (especially the NW corner) very nearly did me in. I finished the rest of the puzzle and then stared at all the white space up there and stared and stared...

In the end, this was another rare instance where knowing the theme actually helped solve the puzzle. I had _A_____S_FRIEND at 17A and finally realized that the phrase probably ended with BEST FRIEND. Once I had that, knowledge of the theme gave me the MANSE part, and suddenly all the unknowns in that section began to reveal themselves very quickly. KITT, ITEM, BILKO, BABYDOLL, ENER, DESOTOS, LAMA, TED, ALEE, LEWD -- bang, bang, bang, all done!

The only real unknown today was TED. That's an airline? Whatever you say. Favorite tricky clue was definitely "Choose to reject" for ANTONYM (although a comma after "choose" would have been nice). "White underling" was also very nice. Oh -- and I totally missed the "number" bit of ANESTHESIA until I read C.C's writeup. I mean, I got the answer, but couldn't figure out why it was described as a number. D'OH!

Least favorite clue/answer, on the other hand, was all the wasted verbiage to get ALEE. Ugh.

Nice to see aglet in the puzzle, even if only as a clue. It's one of my favorite words, and one that most people don't know (in my experience).

Have a great one!

Bob said...

Got them all in 33 minutes, but this was a fairly challenging puzzle. Took a number of wrong turns along the way but managed to fix the problems one by one. Clever theme.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning all.

C.C. re: 14a - The northern Antilles are known as the Leeward Islands, while the southern Antilles are the Windward Islands. This comes about because the prevailing winds (trade winds) are easterly. The Leeward Islands are more westerly and lie on the down wind or 'lee' side. Ergo they are ALEE vis-à-vis the southern Antilles.

What a nice surprise to wake up and be treated to a Donna Levin puzzle. She didn't disappoint. There was much fresh fill and great theming. Like Barry G, once MANSE BEST FRIEND loomed, many of the xfills became obvious. SCREE was a gimme. WAGS included FAUST and ASL. Liked the STOIC and OBOE clues. The few unknowns like TED came easily from the perps.

Enjoy the day.

Anonymous said...

I love Donna Levin puzzles. Dan Naddor puns are too stretched.

Anonymous said...

Gallaudet U. made national headlines recently when a President was hired who had perfect hearing. I believe the students and faculty forced her resignation. That is the only reason we know of GU. Otherwise like you……….

We took almost two hours to solve the puzzle and missed rrated and sade. We are old.

Jsg in Atlantic Beach, FL

thehondohurricane said...

A day of trusting my WAGS. Antonym still has me scratching my head. The white underling took awhile because that whole SE section had me on the run. Once I figured out the theme, things started to fall into place and WAG's didn't seem too wild. I had TED for defunct airline, but it made no sense. Still doesn't and I'm a big Mileage Plus guy with United.

Onto Albany, NY for a weekend of making $ and seeing old friends. Till next week........

Anonymous said...

Re: "The referee in Tennis is called umpire also?"

No, the referee in tennis is called the referee. Usually, all on-court officials are called "umpires". The determination of a let can be complex, involving the net umpire, possibly 2 line umpires, and ultimately the chair umpire. The chair umpire is the final authority on all questions of fact during the match.

The referee is usually off-court. The players have the right to call the referee to court if they disagree with a chair umpire’s interpretation of tennis law. The referee is the final authority on all questions of tennis law.

Vidwan827 said...

CC. ... VERY nice blog ... very insightful ( inciteful ?). Learnt a LOT !

I couldn't finish the puzzle ... but after reading your blog ... I was agog and amazed ... 'est magnifique' ... Bravo, Donna Levin...Bravo !

I had to google 'kakapo' ... why don't they fly ? ... Darwin would have said - indolence ... living on an uninhabited island, with no predators ... there was no need to fly, ... flying takes a lot of energy - is energy inefficient ... look at the humming birds - they have to consume 40 percent of the body weight in calorie rich foods, sugar and nectar, every day. So the kakapo took the route of emus, chickens and kiwis.

The clue for 'Antonym' was especially clever... I never saw it coming.

Finally, to those who 'love' well written nonfiction, Please consider reading 'When the mind hears - A history of the deaf' - by Harlan Lane, Vintage books, Random House 1989. A superlative, enthralling and inspiring book. Its tells you all about numerous 'teacher' charlatans, crooks and the eventual development of lip reading and sign language and... Gallaudet.

'What matters deafness of the ear, when the mind hears. The one true deafness, the incurable deafness, is that of the mind.'

Victor Hugo to Ferdinand Berthier, Nov. 25, 1845.

Barry G. said...

Antonym still has me scratching my head.

As I mentioned earlier, that clue really needed an extra comma in it ("Choose, to reject, say?"). It may help if you parsed it this way:

What is the word "choose" in relation to the word "reject"?

And the answer, of course, is that "choose" and "reject" are antonymns (a.k.a. opposites).

creature said...

Good morning all,

Great puzzle! Super theme! Loved misleading clues!
Make no mistake,I had 4 G spots:NC-17;Firedome& Fireflite; kakapo;
actor Milo.

I liked the clue for 'alee';a lot of thought and brains went into that.

Sgt Bilko is an all time fav for me. My favorite of his money making schemes was the "forgive and forget" dance on Benedict Arnold's birthday..

Al, what a treat to see you! You are so talented and so smart, its hard to believe you are so young.

Speaking of young:

C.C.,thanks for your enjoyable write-up.By the way, what was the final score on those cute pics of you on voting day.My husband picked American,but he's probably not eligible to vote. What did Boomer say?

kazie said...

I was just the opposite of Dennis --had blanks all over the NW corner except for ELAN. Never watched BILKO, and had no idea there, the only name I knew was FAUST. Goethe wrote a two part drama based on the ancient legend of Dr. Faustus. I had to study it in college German.

I agree about KENO too, but perps insisted that would be right. I also didn't know what a Kakapo was, so NEW ZEALAND had to rely on perps too.

At first I thought the whole thing would be impossible because I didn't understand half the clues (e.g. NC-17?), but a few WAGS and perp help got me started.

The theme helped quite a bit, but because I wanted AT IT for ITEM, and had no idea what FireDome and Fireflite were, the first one took forever to fall.

I loved today's signs!

HeartRx said...

Good Morning C.C. et al.

What a wonderful Friday puzzle to start the weekend off with a bang. Started off the bat with “LEWD” and moved into “R RATED”… hmmmm, wonder if anyone will comment on those? I also got the “---ST FRIEND” and figured out the theme pretty quickly. But that didn’t stop me from thoroughly enjoying all the diabolically punny clues!

Same as a lot of people, my favs were “Choose to reject” and “Operating room number”.

I thought of the Dept. of the Interior for “US dept. with a sun on its seal, so had some eraser crumbs there for a bit.

Oh, and one last note – “The duck, in Peter and the wolf” refers to the original score by Russian composer Prokofiev. He cleverly used the different instruments in the orchestra to portray the different characters in the story. The “OBOE” represented the duck, while Peter himself was portrayed by the strings.

C. C. said...

Sorry for not answering your question the other day. I've got a backlog of comments.

It seems that ladies loved the white Chinese dress (called Qi Pao). You are right about its edginess. I had it shortened.

Most men seemed to like the fuchsia tee, which is edgier on the back: nothing in the middle, see-through in the lower back, a bit of cloth in the upper to cover the back bra line. Boomer likes both.

seen said...

As God as my witness, I thought kakapos could fly!

Tinbeni said...

C.C. Outstanding write-up!

WOW, Donna Levin at her punny best.
Themes were good and I liked the GRID.

Liszt's, LES Preludes, "AVEC plaisir!" and the KAZOO is a Vocaphone? All learning moments I'll probably soon forget.

LACE crossing BABYDOLL and later we have RACKS, works for me.

KENO finally replaced Faro as the game of choice.
Does anyone ever win playing keno? I was told it's a sucker's bet.

Just curious, why is 'Half a tuba sound' never the 'pah' always the 'OOM'?

Vidwan827: Great explanation of the Kakapo.
Why fly when everything you need is on the ground and you have no natural predators. (Don't worry, those Europeans will bring their Cats and then you will be up a tree).

Finally, call me old-fashion, I refer to my 'buddies' using their first name. DUDE is soooo lazy!

Anonymous said...

Good morning everyone.

Nice to have these recent pictures. Al, it is good to see you, and you look good.

Apparently I don't get puns very well. So I had parts of the theme answers, but couldn't put an answer together.
Also I can never spell icicle, which stumps me every time. I want to put an e and a y in somewhere.

To whomever noted that he'd written a comment without ending it with a preposition: that is really not a useful "rule". I believe I wrote before that it is alleged that Winston Churchill said, "That is the sort of nonsense up with which I will not put."

C.C., nice write up. Thank you.


Grumpy 1 said...

Good morning All. What a great puzzle! I finally gave up with just a few empty spots and came here to get the last few fills. I felt pretty good after getting New Zealand with only the W in place. That gave me KAZOO, which I probably would not have gotten easily without the Z. My brain was too numb to figure out the relationship of number to anesthesia. I played around with song titles that might have some sort of connection to the OR, but finally gave up on that. I finally spotted anesthesia with perp help when I changed ESE to SSE.

This was another puzzle that I worked mostly from the SE corner. ICICLES was obvious and that filled the rest of that corner. Estate of Grace was the first theme to fall. Chateau of a doubt was mostly filled by perps and the theme was confirmed.

I thought I had an easy fill at 5d with negligee, although I was pretty sure they aren't necessarily short. When I finally got a couple of perps that threw that out, I tried camisole but that didn't fit some of my perps, either. I finally figured out BABY DOLL and was able to continue working up toward the top.

Lots of eraser crumbs today,

lois said...

Good morning CC, et al., What a great Fri puzzle! Love Donna Levin! The puns and misdirections cracked me up. Favs were of course 8D my dear, sweet Santa Baby and '48D 'racks' (CC, you made me LOL on both of those), 17A 'Manse' and 11D 'number'... least fav was 23A
'defunct Frontier Airline'..?? It's not defunct now. It's going to be carrying me directly from here to Phx frequently in the years to come. I intend to be responsible for its survival in this area. Like TheHondo..I didn't get that one. But the rest were great.

Loved 17A for 2 reasons. It reminded me of my trip to The Old Manse in Concord, MA last year where Emerson, Hawthorne both lived and is next to the Alcott home on one side and near Thoreau's Waldon Pond on the other. Overwhelming history there and such an Outstanding fun time.

And then the pun on man's best friend. We had to put our best friend down yesterday - our 16 yr old Lab Bruno the hero who single handedly saved our lives 4 yrs ago from 3 armed home invaders b/c he would not stop barking and refused to obey the commands Kenny was giving him b/c he had a 357 magnum to his head. He was a phenomenally smart and sweet dog. I know one of us (forgot who, I'm sorry) lost a best friend here last week. I couldn't deal w/that then but I wanted to say to you how sorry I was for your loss and how much I feel your pain b/c I knew it was coming to us soon. It's an extremely sad part of life. But "All dogs (and cats) go to heaven" and he's in an 'estate of grace' now and so well deserved...w/out a 'chateau of a doubt'. Incidentally, they never found the 3 armed invaders who severely pistol whipped the 3 boys, stole their cell phones and Kenny's shoes. And our alarm system could not have worked b/c of the situation. Still glad we have one tho'.

Great write up,CC, as always. Did you know that in league play if you play all your games w/out having to rack the balls then you get a 'rackless' pin award? I had no idea. It was the first time in my adult life that I was ever declared 'rackless' - and that's the only way I could ever be declared as such. Hard to hide DD's. I loved it.

Dennis: love the signs, esp the funeral sign.

Al: great picture! So good to see you. Love your comments and blogging.

Enjoy your day.

kazie said...

That is a nice photo--good to be able to see a face close up, and yes, I was surprised too that you look so young!

carol said...

Hi group, I love Donna Levin puzzles so even though it is Friday and I seldom get Friday puzzles even 1/4 solved I thought I'd try this one. I wasn't disappointed...I did fairly well. BABYDOLL was the first answer and I found ENID popped into my brain easily (still don't know why as I don't know a thing about Tennyson).

The most clever clue/answer was 11D (ANESTHESIA). I just couldn't get away from thinking of actual numerals.

I had trouble with RING SITE, I would never have thought of TOE. lol.
How would you wear shoes?

Kazie, I thought of you with the Kakapo.

Dennis, I was amazed that you actually referred to the color of the baby-doll PJ's.

I must admit I have never heard of Sade.

Al, so good to finally see you! You are much younger than I had thought, and very handsome to boot.

Dennis said...

Carol, if you believe that one, I've got a bridge or two...

Donna L. said...

Hi, everyone. I just stopped by to see what y'all liked and didn't like about today's puzzle. Thanks for the comments.

@ Lois: Please accept my condolences on Bruno's passing. It sounds like he was a real hero, and I hope your memories of the good times you shared with him will put a smile on your face when you think of him in the days to come.

-- Donna

MR ED said...

Love the babydoll link. Where does
a guy like me FIND a babydoll?

Jayce said...

Hello all. Damn good puzzle today. Working across and down and back and forth I was able to fill it all in whoutout looking anything up. Some clues didn't make sense until I came here and read the writeup. Without you all, I never would have understood "numbers." For the longest time I kept thinking of numbers either as numerical digits or as a production "number" such as a song. As such, the song "Anastasia" is now infecting my mind.

TED would have never made sense to me either until I read it here.

The first of the long puns I got filled was CHATEAU OF A DOUBT, in spite of the fact that for a long time I couldn't think of a word that ended in BT (I had STET and EBON already.) Getting LUBE finally unlocked the secret.

From there I figured out the theme, which made me over-confidently pencil in MANSION for the first part of 26A, which in turn messed me up in that area for a while.

For some reason, BABYDOLL, STOIC, and NEW ZEALAND came to me easily.

Altogether an extremely satisfying puzzle, well worth the hour of my Friday morning. Although some of the clues were extremely, um, unhelpful, I never once felt that the constructor and editor were playing unfairly.

Dennis, thanks for the list of clever signs.

Best wishes to you all.

JD said...

Good morning all,

Wowzer! Donna is so clever! Great xrd, but a tad too hard for me to completely fill.I am not a punny person, but love the creativeness of those who are. Left a few holes after an hour.It took THREE letters for me to see Bilko, a blast from the shows like that any more. As if Phil Silvers was not funny enough, they had great guest stars like Alan Alda, Dick Van Dyke and Paul Lynde.

Saw New Zealand before reading the clue, which helped me with the theme answers.
Para alone isn't a complete word, so I rejected it added said it IS AN A!

alee- Spitzboov to the rescue!

Fav.- Bavarian beef-ach

Seen @ 10:29...LMAO

Toe rings are very popular in CA; can get fitted at any art/wine festival or street fairs.My toes are ugly, so I wouldn't want to draw attention to them.

Have watched Peter and the Wolf many times but still get confused between the duck=oboe(Sonia) and the bird=flute(Sasha)Here's a short clip from Disney.

C.C., always enjoy your write-ups especially on days when they are difficult. You continually amaze me. Scree picture helped as I filled it with perps..also petro, svu, pied....

Dennis, loved the creative signs

Al, so good to see the handsome guy who comes to my rescue continually

Lois, my heart goes out to you, and I wept for your loss of Bruno, and for that horrible ordeal you experienced. You should write a book!!!BTW, how is the new Tsar and vice Tsar?

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, Donna Levin is a keeper. Her clues never fail to give me a few "Aha's" and more than a few "D'oh's".

Clues for ANTONYM and ANESTHESIA...what can I say? Just brilliant.

Super tough Friday fill area was (4D) DESOTO, next to (18D) ENER and crossing both (20A) ANTONYN and (23A) TED.

Tinbeni, I also kind of thought that the (36D)"Buddy"/DUDE connection wasn't quite the same thing. It isn't, if you are thinking of a buddy as a close friend. But if you are asking the guy at the end of the bar, "Hey, Buddy, pass the pretzels this way.", it is the same thing as "Hey, Dude, pass the beernuts."

I'd never be able to wear a TOE ring. My tootsies are sensitive and I can't even wear flip flops comfortably.

Lois, what a frightening home invasion story. You and your family are amazingly brave to have recovered from such a terrible experience. You were so fortunate to have Bruno as your guardian. He was the real definition of "Good Boy!"

Jeannie said...

I am usually right on Donna Levin’s wavelength, but not today. I had trouble all over the place starting with the first theme answer. I always knew the Parson’s residence as a parsonage I have never heard of a manse. I did like Chateau of a doubt though. I didn’t know Sargeant Bilko, didn’t know what an aglet was and still don’t understand “pied” like a pinto. Perp help included Enid, Ted, and SVU. Oh, and I had to hit the g-spot to look up Gallaudet U. I guess this just wasn’t my day.

Lois, I am sorry for your loss of your dog. It’s like losing one of your family members; and oh, what a scary story!

Everyone enjoy your weekend!

Dilbert said...

Hi. Some trivia for you all.
According to Jon McLoone of Wolfram Research, "JAZZ" is the hardest word to solve in Hangman.


Jerome said...

Well doesn't that beat all. I didn't know Donna was mean enough for the "Choose to reject" clue. Suddenly my angelic vision of her has a decidedly devilish aura.

"Legendary soul seller" for FAUST. I thought it would be ARETHA.

You won't find A WAN DENZEL in Washington, but you will in NEW ZEALAND.

The ancient road, "Avian Way", loosely translates to OF ROMAN CHEEPS. In a MANOR OF SPEECH.

It was not the Quakers that invented ANESTHESIA. It was most certainly THEE ASIANS.

Anonymous said...

Al is so young.

Annette said...

Hi everybody,

Sorry to not have a comment about the puzzle first, but I haven't done the puzzle yet, and had something I wanted to share.

We recently had a discussion about lactose intolerance. The link is to a brief advice column in our paper today with some interesting things to say about it.

I'll be back later...

Dennis said...

Lois, the more I learn about you, the more my respect grows. I know that adversity builds character, but jeezus, you've suffered through some unbelievable ordeals. And now, losing Bruno - there's few things tougher than putting down a four-legged buddy. I thought I'd never cry again after what I'd been through in my life, but I bawled like a baby at the animal hospital when we made the decision. I can't even type the damn words without my eyes filling up. You are truly a remarkable woman, and I'm not even talking about the double-D's.

Well, maybe a little...

Vidwan827 said...

Annette; Thanks for your link up on lactose intolerance ... the article also mentions that Yogurt ( and some cheeses) are 'exempt'. To those who have mild L.I. .. a good food to consider would be buttermilk ... its easy to digest, dissolves spicy-ness ( like capsaicin, the alkaloid 'heat' in chillies/hot peppers ) and aids digestion. If you can get 'used' to the taste ... the drink is very soothing.

kazie said...

ironically, I didn't know what a kakapo was, but it did sound rather Polynesian, so when the letters I already had for New Zealand pointed the way, I wasn't surprised.

I agree with everything already said about losing dogs after they've served you so long. People who haven't experienced their unconditional love and support wouldn't understand. The longest we've ever had a dog was 14 years, so I know it's really hard to make that decision when the time comes. Please know that my thoughts are with you too.

Al said...

Well, thanks all, for the kind remarks, undeserved as they are. You all do know you should get your eyes checked at least once a year, right? I'm more middle than young, and sometimes I really do feel pretty old. My ears have been dry for quite some time now, since I'm approaching my mid-50's. That snow in my beard isn't just a trick of the light...

Oh yes, the puzzle. Barry G. pretty much summed it up for me too, probably because I'm too young to remember DESOTOS, right?

Also count me in as a Sade fan, she has a lot of class. Ten years between releases and she cam back looking and sounding just as good as before.

@Lois, my condolences on your pet as well.

creature said...

Great tip on the Bob Klahn interview with C.C; the DPS clue was a 'knock-out'.

I'm so sorry about Bruno-he was indeed a hero.What a horror that this happened to you all. I'll have you in my thoughts. Thank you for Bruno's eulogy.

lois said...

Thank you all for the sweet thoughts and condolences for the loss of Bruno the hero. He doesn't look like the hero he was in this photo but it was a Halloween party and he was pretending to be a meek bunny. Of course, he'd've died of embarrassment today if he knew that this picture was being displayed for all to see. Such a fun dog, a truly best friend.

Donna L.: thank you especially for stopping by and for your kind words. That was so nice of you. It means a lot. And thank you for the fun puzzles. I hope you stop by often and join in.

Dennis: what a nice thing to say! Thank you very much. That means a lot coming from you, also a hero. We toasted to Bruno yesterday and well into the night last night and doubt that we can ever mention his name w/out tearing up and probably even genuflecting. Some pets are just so much more than that and Bruno was one of those. Kind of like a Lassie - understood things, very perceptive and eerily aware...just smart - good and smart. Like CA said, gives a whole new slant to "Good Boy!" It is hard. So, cheers!

Santa Baby: my list is being renegotiated and reprioritized but my chimney is still spotless and ready for you to come in..AND molasses cookies will also be waiting for you...warm and moist? I'll be in touch, Santa Cutie. Can I get a "Lab Report" from you?....not talkin' a physical there, Darlin' but I'll help ya if ya need it.

carol said...

Lois - I know others have expressed this but I want you to know how sorry I am about Bruno! He sounded like a true hero. As Dennis said, and I am teary eyed too, you have had a *&#^ of a summer and now this. Time for things to improve.

CA: You too, my friend!!!

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

Yep - it's Friday. I had to work this from the bottom up. Neither IMAM nor GURU worked for 1D, so that was the last corner to fall. Full disclosure, though: I never got ASL, and misspelt NEW ZEELAND, so I couldn't get ROASTS, either. (Sigh)

Very clever grid-apanning theme, and great long fill. As is ANTONYM, but just like yesterday, I hate a sneaky, self-referential clue, brilliance not withstanding. Loved ANESTHESIA, my V-8 can moment.

AGLET is one of my favorite words.

I'm sure we've had LES Preludes before. I played it last year, and think I linked to the music.

I was going to supply the Sonya/oboe link, but JD beat me to it. I also confuse Sonya with Sasha. Love the narration by Pooh Bear. Sounds like the part of the wolf is shared by trombones and horns. We also get the 5/4 Uruk-Hai theme in The Lord of the Rings.

Some clients of plastic surgeons have ADDED RACKS.
There might be a kind of EFFICACY to the BABY DOLL.
Sometime you have to REREAD the message in the BOTTLE.

Near as I can tell, ICICLES has no ANTONYM.

Lois -
Scary story on the break in. Glad you got through it OK. Sorry about your pet. We have a 14 year old Lab in the clan, and her days are numbered as well.

On a lighter note, Perry White always makes me think of this.

JzB the STOIC trombonist (HA!)

Bob said...

Ernie Bilko was a great comic character and could ONLY be played by Phil Silvers. Paul Ford (Colonel Hall) was his worthy foil. I have most of the episodes of the Phil Silvers Show on DVD and still find them quite hilarious, but Silvers made the character and the show.

Lois: My condolences on the loss of Bruno. Pet lovers everywhere know and share your loss.

Frenchie said...

Good Morning C.C., Argyle and folk,

I am now indoctrinated into the club! I received my first anon. critique yesterday. It's good to be acknowledged. I was beginning to think I had a case of discrimination on my hands!

@Al, great photo and thank you for sharing it with us! You're a babe!

@C.C., showing our pictures is great. I like being able to put a face with a name!

33a aglet's locale/lace is my favorite today. I like these obscure words. Roman Catholic nuns wear a WIMPLE (or guimpe) which is starched linen to cover the cheeks and neck. I like the sound of whimple though I wouldn't want to wear one.

5a for Bilko, I initially thought 'sarge' but quickly saw with 5d baby doll, it didn't jive. Then 9d on fire/lit

6d canoodling couple, maybe/item...sounds like a vellicate situation to me!

One could draw some conclusions!

I enjoyed the theme and with the length of their solutions, it gave me a lot of help which I needed dearly today.

@lemonade714, where are you? Hope everything is alright!

@Vidwam827, ditto to Tinbeni, great explanation of the 28d Kakapo lifestyle!

@Lois, my heart is with you for both the loss of your Bruno and the traumatic experience! What an incredible dog. Its amazing what some creeps off the street are capable of doing and walking away with a pair of shoes and a couple of cell phones. No justice there...

Two things,

The theme reminded me of our lodging when my husband and I went to France. I tried to book one of each. While we didn't stay at a manse, I found we could book a stay at a Catholic convent, but that's where Peter drew the line! Also liked the mention of I. M. Pei. His structure in front of the Louvre is awe inspiring...

Donna, your puzzles are incredible! For me this one is quite complicated. I learned many new things today, thank you.

I'm out.

Gunghy said...

Not much I can add about how great this one was/is. 5D NEGLIGEE, 52A OUT, and 59D TOE slowed me down a lot.

Wanted New Guinea for 28D, but it didn't fit. Neither did vuvuzela for 41A.

I finished with a cross of fOust and lOce. I knew Faust, just couldn't spell it; and even though I've heard Aglet before, I figured LOCE was some foreign word for lake. Isn't an aglet a small ILE?

Pied means 2 colors. It comes from the black and white plumage of the magpie.

I didn't even know Sade was a female.

Who is Milo O'Shea?

House cleaning from yesterday: Jeannie, I've never been in an ice boat. No chance, I live in Central California. Winters are rarely below 30 degrees. (The fog is hell, we once went 40 days with no sun at all.) You have to hit 7000 feet before the lakes freeze and even then, they are better known for eating sno-mobiles than for winter play. I'm not brave enough to crawl out and try ice-fishing on one, let alone racing around. Also, it sounds like I should take lessons from A.R.E. The best finish I've had this year is a 3rd in a minor race. I am enjoying training my daughter and her fiancee as a crew.

Headed out, have a good weekend, everyone.

Gunghy said...

Forgot to mention: Today is National Lemonade day. Have a good one, wherever you are.

Grumpy 1 said...

I've always enjoyed Phil Silver's comedy. Another comedian that we seldom hear about anymore is the late Dom Deluise. Here's a clip of an appearance he made on the Johnny Carson show that I really enjoyed.

egg trick

Mainiac said...

Afternoon Gang,

Donna on a Friday is always tough. Today didn't disappoint. Much of the same miscues that have already been discussed. Took me 45 minutes using read letter help and when I got some of the answers, Doh! Very clever.

Lois, Sorry for your loss. I'll be lifting a glass to Bruno tonight. Cheers! I've got a three ringed binder where I write the ten good things about pets I've had. That helps a little bit but getting drunk really does it.

And holy shit! That is truly a frightening ordeal. You and your family are incredibly tough! Cheers Again!

Great write up CC as usual and thanx much for the baby-doll.


seen said...

For Lois and those who have recently lost a dog:

Hal McCoy

Hal McCoy is a retired sports writer. He still writes a blog for the local paper. He usually receives 20 to 30 comments a entry and many of those are drunk cardinals' or cubs fans' with nothing nice to say.

I think the 176 comments he received on this particular day shows how deeply dogs affect our lives.

Jerome said...

Lois- They don't ask for much, do they. A pat on the head, a little food, a bit of water, a ball to chase. Not much else really. And in return for these somewhat trite offerings, they give us their heart and soul. It's more than most human beings will ever give us. Odd, isn't it, that a dog seems to have a larger capacity for giving love than most people do. Losing that is a terrible thing. Sorry.

Gunghy said...

Grumpy's and Seen's links both brought tears to my eyes.
Lois, my condolences.

And now, I'm really gone.

Husker Gary said...

How about this? I just retired and I got called to sub on the second day of school! I went but had to cut out the puzzle and work it in fits and starts during the day. It was fun to see my old friends but about 1:30 I remembered why I retired.

The puzzle was a hoot but an effort especially when I couldn't sit with it for very long at a time.

I really liked the uh, color, of the baby dolls and jazzbumpa, I looked forever for the rack of pool balls in your and darned if I can find them. Is it an optical illusion?

BILKO was a fun reminiscence
ANTONYM has the flavor or a Miller's analogy
I had LANE for White underling before PRECOOK talked me out of it
My first "sold his soul" candidate was Joe who so wanted to beat the Yankees in Damn Yankees but FAUST came soon enough
I wanted GUANO for cliffside litter

Can anyone tell me what famous TV series had this line: "Ave Plaisir, Miss snake in the grass!"

Dennis said...

Husker Gary, Frank said that to Margaret in M*A*S*H, after which they slapped each other, and that of course turned them both on.

One of the greatest shows ever.

Hahtool said...

Lois, I am so sorry to hear about your dog. Pets are so much a part of the family, and yours was especially a good and loyal member. My thoughts are with you.

Grumpy: Glad you have added an avatar! Good to "see" you.

Here's to an early Holiday.

Anonymous said...


Oops, didn't know the cap lock was on!

Lois, My heart goes out to you! I know what a loss losing a pet is. Seen, you've linked the perfect tribute.

Donna, thanks for a superb puzzle; lots of fun, laughs, and just challenging enough not to make the solver despair!

My comments echo Brad G's almot to a T. The NW corner almost did me in, too, yet looking at it now. . . .? Why? But the one look-up gave me the grip I needed: DeSoto, and I AM old enough to remember them!

Terrifying experience, Lois! It's hard to picture what one would do in those circumstanes. I think I'd like to faint, but I never have and probably wouldn't! As Dennis says, what a woman!

CA, it feels so nice and normal again, now that you're back!

Cheers, all !

Fowler said...

This one ranged from too-clever (KENT) to choice (ANESTHESIA) to confusing (TED) for me. My main object was the same as our leader's--inconsistency in the theme answers.

~ Kf

PS. There REALLY was an airline named TED? Well, I Googled, and it's closed now. I guess prospective passengers weren't inspired with confidence.

Husker Gary said...


You got it! Also, Radar once asked BJ of Frank and Hot Lips, "What do those two see in each other?". BJ replied, "I don't know, but fortunately they don't see it in anyone else!"

M*A*S*H was very good until it jumped the shark and started trying to be too cute and politically correct. The same could be said of Roseanne who seemed to have rearing tough kids down and then just went over the edge when her bank account starting matching her Nielson's.

Dennis said...

Wow, I haven't been called 'Joe' since that time in a Bangkok bar...

Husker Gary said...

Dennis, Sorry about that! I had Damn Yankees on the mind. Hey, if you've got some Polaroids on that night in the bar...

Chickie said...

Hello All--A great Donna Levin puzzle to finish the week. I loved the punny theme answers. I managed to get all of them, but the central section was a mess. I had net for let, and sloshed for blurted. Of course, that ended the answer for Bottle and Faust.

Even after I filled in Antonym, I had a question mark after the clue. Thank goodness for C.C. and her blog answers to help me erase those ???. Vocaphone and Kakapo were both learning experiences today.

Lois, I'm so sorry about Bruno. Our pets are so much a part of our family that when they are gone, they leave a huge hole in our hearts.

Chickie said...

I had a wonderful recording of "Peter and the Wolf" done in the 1960's by Leonard Bernstein. Once you've heard his annotated version of the piece, you'll never again forget which instrument is for which animal. Besides, it is just great listening.

HeartRx said...

@ Husker Gary

M.A.S.H. was one of my fav'rite shows - was glad to see the quote! One night I was sitting in the "Irma" bar at the Magic Castle in L.A. This is a bar with a "magic" grand piano that plays any song you ask of it, only there is no one actually sitting on the bench! So around 2:00 am, when they were trying to close for the night, in walks Johnny Mandel and he sits down at the piano and starts playing "Suicide is Painless"... what a thrill to hear it from the person who wrote it - such feeling! Needless to say, there were many more rounds of drinks, and the "Castle" never closed until 4:30 am !!

Husker Gary said...

Heart Rx, I am so jealous of your encounter with Johnny Mandel. The song with the lyrics really capture the mood of the movie. The TV show started out as gritty as the movie (within TV tolerances) and Frank was not quite the buffoon, but later the lighting came up, uniforms were ironed, men were shaved and story lines followed broader themes than just trying to survive in that meat grinder. I am torn as whether I enjoyed skewering Frank or deflating Charles the most.

carol said...

Jerome (4:18) That was beautifully said, so true. Made tears come to my eyes..and I have never had the pleasure of sharing my life with a dog, but I know how sweet and wonderful they really are, my sister has always had dogs and so have most of my family members. I do love them, but cats fit better into our dynamic. We were gone too much and dogs need more attention and room than we could give and it just wouldn't have been right to give them less.

Lois, I meant to comment on the break-in that Bruno was so heroic in saving all of you. What a horrible thing to have faced! I can't imagine what I would have wonderful dog to come to the rescue.

dodo said...

Anon@ 4.44 That's me, Dodo1029. I guess it had to happen soomer or later!

Hope I turn blue again; meantime, folks,once in a while, will you try to give one little thought to me? Say, that would be a good first line.....!

Clear Ayes said...

Chickie, about "Peter and the Wolf" done in the 1960's by Leonard Bernstein"....I had to smile when I saw that. Was it this 1961 Columbia
Record Club
release with "The Nutcracker Suite" on the B side? It was a spectacular LP. We listened to it on our old Grundig Majestic hi-fi until it was just about de-grooved.

HuskerGary and other M*A*S*H fans, I liked the TV series a lot too, but it was the original movie that knocked my socks off. Actually, I would have liked Donald Sutherland, who starred as Hawkeye Pierce, to knock my socks off, but alas, we never met. The movie made an impression on me that has lasted 40 years and is still one of my all-time favorites. I was rooting for it for Best Picture Academy Award, but it lost out to "Patton". I couldn't argue with that choice.

Dodo, happy to know that you were Anon@4:44, so I could say, I'm glad to be back.

Bill G. said...

Lois, I understand completely your sorrow over Bruno. Our old sheepdog, Sammy, never got to be a hero but was an important part of our family, right up to the point where we had to help her up the stairs and lift her up off the floor.

I recently saw the movie version of Mash again and I think I liked the TV version better. What a great theme song. I like the melody better than the lyrics. One of my favorite episodes was where major Winchester got a ragtag bunch of Korean musicians to play Mozart's clarinet quintet.

I found a western on TV costarring Mark Harmon as a bad guy. His character is much like Jethro Gibbs, bossy and abrupt. I wonder if Mark Harmon is really like that.

Chickie said...

Yes, CA, that is the very same Peter and Wolf that we had! I ended up putting it onto a reel to reel tape along with the Nutcracker, and several other of our favorites to take to South America with us. I used the Peter and the Wolf part in my classroom and we did wear out the record.

We used the reel to reel tape recorder to tape our "letters" home.

Spitzboov said...

Lois, Condolences on the loss of your Bruno, a very special pet who has meant so much to you.

@ Bill G. Re: Mark Harmon. I liked him in "The Presidio" with Sean Connery

windhover said...

Hello CC bloggers,
Not much time for reading or posting this week, and you could probably tell that I was nearly asleep when I wrote my late-last-night post.
Some random comments:
One very good explanation of "pied" is the Gerard Manley Hopkins poem "Pied Beauty", posted a while back by ClearAyes. It's readily available on the Net via Google, and along with the eponymous "The Windhover", one of my favorites.

I rarely indulge in "I told you so's", but I do recall telling you all about this time last year what a class act our Lois is. She continues to prove it every day and every way. Today's revelations are pretty damned outstanding (and astounding), but not surprising if you've met her.
And yes, the DD's are formidable.

We have a 14years, 2 months old Border Collie, Molly, and we know our (and her) time is coming, and of course we dread it. Our transition might be a little easier because we also have her 4 year old daughter Maggie.

I finally have worked thru my backlog of copied puzzles (thanks WM), with only one, Sunday, August 15, which is about 2/3 complete, left to go. Of course I won't get today's until next week, by which time I will have erased the memory banks, except, of course, the DD's.

Hi Dodo! Will you remind me again what subject you taught?

Lemonade714 said...

Lois: My condolences; Donna, my undying admiration, both for the puzzle and who you are. Gunghy and Frenchie, thanks for the differing shout outs; August 20 is always National Lemonade Day, so I get an extra holiday.

Just stupid busy, tomorrow

Frenchie said...

@DoDo,I often have a difficult time using the correct technique to keep my blog profile going. Last week or so, Al gave me instructions which my assistant and I followed closely and I'm back on track.
DoDo, you always provide so much information in your comments. Its a comfortable moment reading your pieces.

JD said...

Seen, very moving tribute

Husker Gary, our school district had to lay off so many teachers who, understandably, will have 1st choice for all of the sub jobs this year.I had planned to sub the wk after Labor Day...but more.

Dennis, I don't think there has been a series as well done as M*A*S*H*.The only line I remember was "Oh go salute yourselves!" Can you picture Hot Lips sputtering and then storming out?

"CA, it feels so nice and normal again, now that you're back!"
well said Dodo!!!!

seen said...

My favorite line was written on a toe tag:

Emotionally Exhausted And Morally Bankrupt

Bill G. said...

Seen, I enjoyed your adaptation of a wonderful line from WKRP in Cincinnati.

Even through my CRS fog, I think Dodo was an English teacher.

dodo said...

Windhover, I taught HS English (my major) and French (minor) for one year, then after a number of years, it was second grade for a couple of years and then third. I also did a part-time spell of teaching Learning Disability groups. Why do you ask? Did I make some grievous error? Me? Paranoid?

Annette said...

Nice to see you, Al !

I know a few women (one in her mid-fifties) who are never without their toe rings. Of course, they're here in Florida, so they wear open toes shoes most of the time. On the other hand, I don't even wear flip-flops because I can't stand that thong between my toes! And don't even think about socks with toes in them.

Lois, what an adorable picture of Bruno! He looks like a little sweetie. I'm so sorry for your loss. And...wordless...about your ordeal!

Jerome, I was looking at the soul music route rather than FAUST too.

I got a kick out of TED airlines when I first booked a flight with them - my b-i-l is a pilot, and when I first met him, he was working as a sales rep for...UniTED!

Husker Gary said...

My favorite M*A*S*H line -

Fr. Mulcahy talks about seeing it so cold that surgeons would "...warm their hands over the open wound. Could anyone look on that and not feel changed?"

William Christopher was a strong character and a counter point for all the other raucousness of the show.