Nov 19, 2010

Friday, November 19, 2010 Daniel A. Finan

(Note: We're instructed to "SEE NOTEPAD" in today's puzzle. In puz file (Across Lite), go to View and click on Notepad. It says "Five clues in this puzzle are deliberately left blank". You'd be really confounded if you solved the puzzle via LA Times' website, no Notepad there, despite the instruction. Does your local paper have SEE NOTEPAD also?)

Theme: CLUELESS (61A. Like five answers in this puzzle, literally and figuratively: CLUELESS. Very tricky puzzle, you see un-clued fill, but there is the dash. So the five answers were without clues, and the five answers were all synonyms for CLUELESS, meaning not very smart. I was an pea brain, airhead for a while, sorting this one out.

17A. -: PEA BRAIN. This is one of the more obvious expressions, coming from the idea of one who has brain the size of a pea does not know much.

28A. -: DINGBAT. None more famous than EDITH . Nobody seems to know where this term comes from.

46A. -: AIRHEAD. Also, pretty self explanatory, if all that is between your ears is AIR, you are not likely to be smart.

11D. -: NINCOMPOOP. A really evocative word, I have heard my entire life, but again, nobody knows why it means what it means.

27D. -: SPACE CADET. This comes from someone who has his head in the sky, with no touch with normal thought.

Well, hello all, it is Lemonade here with your Friday report, and this was a very complicated effort, with pitfalls everywhere. It is my second Daniel A. Finan puzzle to blog, the last being the incredible anagram pangram in August. Once again his approach to theme is new, leaving out clues as clues. So, let’s go.


1. "When I __ kid ...": WAS A. I put it in but wondered if there was more to it. Is this referring to the Bill Cosby comedy album?

5. Colorado NHLers: AVS. National Hockey League. The Avalanche; they began as the Quebec Nordiques, but were too close to Montreal, and finally moved to Colorado, where they won the Stanley Cup their first year, beating the Florida Panthers.

8. They may be surrounded at parties: PIANOS. Lovely clue, really nice imagery.

14. Set up: Abbr.: ESTD. Established.

15. Acqua Di __: Armani cologne: GIO. My cologne of choice; ladies?

16. Like a maelstrom: ASWIRL. Ah, an “A” word, what fun.

19. Cash in Nashville: JOHNNY. Did you hesitate and think about Money?

20. Rolls to the gate: TAXIES. What planes do after landing.

21. Colorful cats: CALICOS. So many different color COMBINATIONS .

22. Pitts of early cinema: ZASU. An old favorite from the Tribune puzzles, but we have not seen her lately; I remember her from OH SUSANNAH where she was Gale Storm’s sidekick.

24. Retired New York senator Al D'__: AMATO. As a Senator, he was more famous for controversy and long filibusters, now retired he is 73 and has 2 children, a 2 year old, and a 1 year old. Man must be crazy.

25. Hi-__: FIS. Stands for High Fidelity.

30. Second degree?: MBA. Fooled me completely first time through, but after you get your Bachelor’s , you do get a second degree.

33. In spades: AMPLY. Phrase in spades "in abundance" first recorded 1929 (Damon Runyon), probably from bridge, where spades are the highest-ranking suit.

35. It's usually four: PAR. Though generally there also par 5’s and par 3’s; no record of how 4 became the standard, or even why 18 HOLES . We also have, 34. Golfer's concern: LIE indicating where your ball lies.

36. Former 56-Across team: EXPOS. The Montreal EXPOS went bankrupt, and major league baseball moved the franchise to Washington, D.C., where they are now the Nationals. 56A. Baseball div.: NL EAST. Had to guess.

38. Cuisine that includes phanaeng: THAI. I enjpy THAI food, but most restaurants refer to it as PANANG CURRY.

39. "Entourage" agent Gold: ARI. Played ever so hatefully by Jeremy Piven.

40. English walled city: YORK. A fun tour of Europe is to see the WALLED CITIES .

41. Guard dog command: SIC EM. No doubt from ‘seek them’.

43. "__ be a pleasure!": IT'D.

44. O3: OZONE. If I had not gotten this one, I would never have finished, it opened up the whole south for me.

45. Unlock'd: OPE. I ‘ope not again, soon.

49. Place for flock members: PEW. Very cute, I can picture all the sheep in church.

50. "I __ your long lost pal": Paul Simon lyric: CAN BE. This was part of his work with African music and musicians, with American LYRICS .

52. Salon sound: SNIP. Snip, snip go the scissors, a word many men associate with vasectomy.

54. Given, as custody: AWARDED. I hated divorce work, and quit after the old man pulled gun on me in the hall outside my office; criminals were much safer.

60. Mel Gibson persona: MAD MAX. This was Mel Gibson’s break out hit MOVIE .

63. Ring of color: AREOLE. Alas, C.C., I defer to you.

64. "Popeye" surname: OYL. The hot chick the men had to fight over, Olive.

65. Shell's shell, e.g.: LOGO. Like the clue, simple but effective.

66. Aquarium denizens: TETRAS. A fancy word for resident.

67. "Bottle Rocket" director Anderson: WES. This was his first movie, which he did with the Wilson brothers, with whom he forged a long relationship and did other movies such as The Royal Tenebaums he also directed the fable The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou and to show our puzzles all make sense, and fit together, the recent Fantastic Mr. Fox .

68. Colony workers: ANTS. Ant colony, not Americans working for the Brits.


1. Showed relief, in a way: WEPT. Tears of?

2. Deported?: ASEA. Oh oh, another “A” word.

3. Vintage R&B record label: STAX. Despite 30+ years representing musicians, I did not remember this LABEL but then I do rock and roll, not R & B.

4. Madison Ave. symbolizes it: AD BIZ. The home of MADMEN and crazy America, my favorite about Madison avenue was the movie CRAZY PEOPLE with Dudley Moore and Daryl Hannah.

5. Court star with the autobiography "Open": AGASSI. Andre was perhaps a bit too Open in his book, discussing his drug usage, etc.

6. Sundial number: VII. A new way to slip in a Roman Numeral.

7. One learning about the birds and the bees?: SON. My father’s entire speech was, “If you like big breasts, go be a farmer because cows have the biggest; and quality over quantity.” Edited for publication.

8. Kind of party: PAJAMA. Ah, we are back with Dennis at the Slumber party in his PJ’s and once again there is a recurring theme.

9. Get away from the others: ISOLATE.

10. In the slightest: A WHIT. Many a wit has realized all the nice things A WHIT rhymes with, but most of us do not give a …..

12. "Yes __?": OR NO. Damn, that was too easy.

13. Stallone and Stone: SLYS. SLY and the Family Stone; was this their biggest HIT ?

18. Set: READY. How can this be synonymous, when you have to be READY for CAB RIDES. (21D. Taxi stand).

23. Odd, as a sock: UNPAIRED.There is some rich creature somewhere with a bazillion single socks.

25. 1980 DeLuise film: FATSO. A rather sad and poignant movie.

26. "Can you dig it?" response: I'M HIP. Sadly, we actually talked like that.

29. "Wayne's World" co-host: GARTH. Dana Carvey to Mike Myers’ Wayne.

31. Shouldered: BORNE.

32. Out of line: ASKEW. An “A” word.

37. ___ Affair: 1798-1800 France/USA dispute: XYZ. Did anyone watch the HBO series about JOHN ADAMS , he was the president who had to deal with this problem.

42. Hindu meditation aid: MANDALA. Now we hit my weak part of the puzzle, as I did not know this DESIGN , nor

44. "Swan Lake" maiden: ODILE. I never was much on ballet, and only ODETTE came to mind.

47. Wild goats with recurved horns: IBEXES. They do have interesting HORNS .

48. Makes void: ANNULS. More divorce work, bleh.

51. Gladiator's defense: ARMOR. I liked the movie with Russell Crowe.

53. Window-making giant: PELLA. Never heard of them either, but the perps finally got me home.

54. Word in a basic Latin conjugation: AMAT. AMO, AMAS, AMAT; I love, you love, he/she/it loves; when I was in 6th grade, we studied Latin and I was conjugating and said the last one too fast…

55. Tupper ending: WARE. Burp?

57. Many millennia: AEON. Fancy spelling for EON (again a new recurring theme) and a movie showcasing a delightful CHARLIZE THERON .

58. Certain NCO: SSGT. Staff Sergeant.

59. General __ chicken: TSOS.

61. Tipping target, so it's said: COW. Yep, the old sport of COW TIPPING .

62. Drano component: LYE. I would not lie to you about this either.

Well another challenge, conquered, almost a pangram (Q short) with so many new words and clues; thanks Mr. F., and to rest of you , have a great week end, and a better Monday.

Answer grid.



Dennis said...

Good morning, Lemonade, C.C. and gang - the theme title for this one should've just been 'Dennis', 'cause I felt like all of the theme answers in trying to solve this puzzle. Finally got through without outside help, but I fought this one almost at every quadrant. Loved it.

I thought the puzzle was resplendent with great, fresh cluing, and I fell for virtually every deception. Lemonade covered the cluing/answers so well there's really nothing left for me to add; excellent job, L., liked the birds and bees talk your father had with you. As to the pajama party comment, I wouldn't fit in, as I've not owned a pair since the days of the ones with feet in them.

Today is Have a Bad Day Day. Hopefully nobody celebrates this one.

Did You Know?:

- The Three Stooges appeared in more movies than any other comedy team in U.S. film history.

- Flamingos can only eat with their heads upside down.

- After a three-week vacation, your IQ can drop by as much as 20 percent. (I've obviously been on vacation too much.)

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

I was pretty clueless about this one until I finally got the theme reveal and was then able to go back and fill in all the themes. After that, most of the puzzle was easy.

Sadly, the very top central section remained impenetrable to me. I've never heard of GIO, although I got it off a WAG when I figured 6D had to end with II. And the cluing for SON was brutally hard, although I did finally guess that as well. Not being a hockey fan, however, I just couldn't get 5A. I knew that 6D had to be XII, VII or III and AVS, AXS and AIS all looked equally improbably for 5A. I think I actually went with AIS at first, since it was the only option that was at least pronounceable (obviously, I didn't pick up on the fact that it was an abbreviation). Had I been solving on paper, that would have been the end of things. Since I solved online, however, I had the luxury of trying other letters until I finally got the "tada!" sound.

Mainiac said...

Good Morning Lemonade, CC and All,

I really enjoyed this one. I got down the the SE corner and worked to solve the unifier and things really opened up. I did lots of pecking and poking around and got hung up in many places. Ended up with a stump left for an eraser. Loved the clue for Son. Unknowns were Wes, Mandala and Gio which perps gave me. Really tricky and fun.

Wife and I were joking with my youngest the other day. He sometimes has trouble sleeping and enters our bed via his mother's side. She suggested waking me up to crawl in instead of her. He emphatically said "No-way!! Dadio's gross!". I gave up PJ's long ago and he wanted nothing to do with that.

I refuse to have a bad day today. the previous Four have sucked.


Tinbeni said...

Lemonade, Excellent write-up.

This may be my "All-Time" favorite puzzle.

The five theme clues "____" did NOT leave me CLUELESS ... they were an inspiration.
Joyful AHA moments when each fell.
Followed by V-8 can head slap with a DUH !!!

At 12D I had "Yes DEAR?" until I noticed the question mark. Perps took care of that easily.
(I am wearing my "Yes Dear" T-shirt).

PAJAMA party? I still don't understand what this could be ... maybe I should go to a store and get some of these.

Really liked the NL EAST / EXPOS pairing.

For MAD MAX I did consider Mr.Gibson's persona to be 'asshxxe' but it wouldn't fit.

General TSO'S chicken is a fave ... hmmm, guess I know what I'm having for dinner, post-Sunset toast to everyone.

Sorry my voice is SOOOO raspy, it was all those cigs puffed on yesterday ... damn, that smokeout thing is hard on the throat.

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Lemonade and friends. This was a toughie for me. Hard enough that I am now running late for work.

Bottle Rocket, directed by WES Anderson was, if not the first, and early film staring Luke and Owen Wilson.

Mining explosion in New Zealand. Had you visited that area of the country, Clear Ayes?

Have a great weekend, all.

QOD: No one can build his security upon the nobleness of another person. ~ Willa Cather.

thehondohurricane said...

Good morning folks,

First, thanks to Husker Gary and Kazie for making it possible for me to display Riley's pix. He was 9 wks old then, 11 wks now.

In a rush today, but I really liked this puzzle. Once I figured out the blanks were self descriptions, it went rather smoothly except for the NW corner. Too many unknowns... R & B record label, Rolls to the gate...( I was fixed on a Rolls Royce).... and deported all left me asea.

Have a good weekend everyone.

Annette said...

Good morning, all! I thought today's puzzle was easier than usual for a Friday. In most cases, perps gave enough help with any unknowns to prevent me from remaining CLUELESS for long. 1A gave me a deceivingly easy start, but the rest of the NW stayed blank until the very end, then took a little teasing of brain cells...

No explanation of the blank clues in our local paper. However, I found this preferrable over the confusing dashes supplied by Cruciverb last night. I didn't notice the Notebook comment until after I'd finished and saw C. C.'s comment on yesterday's blog.

I hope that "Bad Day" isn't an omen of things to come... The majority of my day will be spent at a mandatory office picnic/team building/staff meeting. Rather than sign up for the tug of war or water balloon toss, I chose the Scrambled Words event. Jerome, I expect to be channeling your anagram expertise this afternoon!

Lemonade, I'll be in NYC next week, but will try to pop in here on Wednesday for your International Blog Shout-out Day! I hope you get a good response from all.

Lemonade714 said...

Annette, thank you for plugging my invitation for a cyber reunion on Wednesday. Which reminds me, Happy Birthday JIMBO, great of you to stop in. I know there are many who still read, so as Annette said, lets all try to at least say hi on November 24.

HeartRx said...

Good Morning Lemondae, C.C. et al.

I got lucky on this one. When I first saw the “-“ for several clues, my heart sank, thinking I would never finish it. But in the NW “WAS A”, “STAX” record label and “TAXIES” filled in easily and helped me get the rest of that corner. With PEAB… for the first blank clue, the lightbulb went on and I filled in the rest of RAIN. From there, each dash was replaced (in my peabrain) with “Clueless”…which happened to be the unifier at 61A !

My problems were with the teams – didn’t get AVS (I had AXS until I came here- oops!). NL EAST was a wag, and EXPOS only came thru perps.

MANDALA came easily – I remember watching a show on the History channel (I think?) about Buddhist monks who make sand mandalas with incredibly complicated designs. After days of labor, the mandalas are then ritually destroyed !

Have a BAD Bad Day (meaning good) everyone!

Anonymous said...

Great puzzle. Lots of unknowns but so cleverly done. Loved all the CLUELESS answers. Once I caught on that helped but never would have been able to accomplish unassisted by red letter help I don't think. Maybe later in the day if I had time.

Off to school for some volunteering. So busy these days!

creature said...

Good morning C.C.,Lemon and all,

Thanks for your write up, Lemon.

Really liked the puzzle, today. The paper also had just a dash, but perps gave it away.

My stickiest place was the XYZ,OZONE,ODILE area. A little guess work and wags did it.

My fav was the theme. Wacky and clueless can be a good thing; especially on the day of Lincoln's
Gettysburg Address.

Have a nice day everyone.

Dilbert said...

Hi all.

I have no friggen idea of what I did or how I got the printer to work.

I did this one and Matt's last night while following the football
game and watching TV. Both were
pretty easy. Used without the Note.

San Jose lost the hockey game Wed
night to the Avs. Blew a two goal
lead in the third period.

See ARI was in the grid again.
Maelstrom is usually eddy.

Take care. We are to be in for three days of rain. Storm door is open.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning all. Thanks for the commentary, Lemonade.

Solved this on the LA website. Skipped the - clues at first until I could see a pattern. That came with enough perps to get NINCOMPOOP. The theme was confirmed when the unifier, CLUELESS, fell. Several passes were made to get the solve. XYZ was a gimme from having read the recent biography of John Adams. ZASU, THAI, IBEXES, and AGASSI were WAGS. Liked the clueing for PELLA and TAXIES. O3 threw me at first until the d'uh moment of seeing OZONE from the perps. Don't know why it wasn't clued as O₃, with the subscript, the normal way the symbol is written.

All in all, a fun puzzle; no lookups needed.

Have a good day.

MH said...

Another hard one but probably not as hard (for me) as Wed and Thurs. I just couldn't get the NW to come in and ended up guessing STAR and then finally STAX to get it done.

My father was a limo driver in Hollywood back in the 40's and 50's and Zasu Pitts was one of his favorite clients.

Good blogging there lemonade!

MH said...

PS: saw my GI doc yesterday and I am back to normal (for me). Need a "procedure" (I'll spare you the gory details) in December to ensure that the blockage won't recur, but I'm back on normal food, etc. Feeling pretty hungry and I lost 8 lbs from not eating for 5+ days. Tough way to lose weight but I'll take anything ;-).

Off to Vail, CO next week for a visit to my daughter (who lives/works there) and some early season skiing.

kazie said...

Well, my sticky spots were everywhere. Too many unknowns to bother enumerating. At first I was getting very angry, thinking all the blank clues were going to be sports team names, and then NINCOMPOOP jumped out at me, and the rest were easier after that. PEABRAIN was the last to fall because I was missing so much else in that corner. What DID the notebook note say? There was no indication of its existence in my paper.

I had to g'spot AGASSI because I had guessed 5A might be DVR short for Denver, so SON never emerged at all. Never heard of STAX (guessed STAR), GIO, "in spades", misspelled ANULLS so that screwed up the SE too, causing me to remain clueless about CLUELESS--I still thought it would end in -ERS.

I wonder if nincompoop is derived from the combination of nin =not, com = with and poop = information, as in "here's the poop on ..."

creature said...

Correction: the paper had no dash- just blank ; the latimes site had a dash. Got the paper to check it and the blank was helpful for me,so I didn't think of symbol names.

Husker Gary said...

Lemonade and other TGIF’ers (wait a minute, I’m retired, everyday is Friday), OMG what a great puzzle. I always said that an exceptional puzzle challenges you but seems “gettable” and I was ready to start my blog that the Omaha paper had left out some clues but after SPACECADET (of course for me) revealed, I had the “aha” moment and filled in DINGBAT, CLUELESS and the rest, especially PEABRAIN which finally unlocked the NW corner for me.

Musings –

- When I was kid – “The older I get, the better I was”
- AMPLE instead of AMPLY slowed me as I put PLACE for set _ _ A _ E
- I too took a while for O3 without the subscript
- I think there are other sources of SNIPPING in the salon than scissors
- Like Dennis, my pajamas are with me all day
- I also remember Zasu Pitts on TV doing mindless sitcoms being “Ethel” to Gale Storm’s “Lucy” after a distinguished film career
- thought golfer’s concern was PAR but that was 35A and not 34D (am going to play today myself with highs in the low 50’s)
- ASWIRL? Really?
- Sly Stone’s Rocky gave him license to make a lot of drek after that
- Peter, Paul and Mary had a lovely, haunting song The Great Mandella about the Indian Wheel of Life telling of a young man’s struggle with the war de jour, the Vietnam War in this case

Warren said...

Hi Lemonade, C.C. & gang,

My wife had to leave early for work so I simply went online and did the puzzle that way. Once I got the Clueless theme it was actually a doable puzzle!

Pella windows somehow reminds me of
Hey Stella

Splynter said...

Hi All ~~!!

I did the puzzle online (as usual) and there were just the dashes, and in the past, I believe there was a puzzle that had three different definitions of "dash" for the answers - so I was looking in that direction.

Then I got SPACE CADET, and the SE corner was easy for me - I used to sell PELLA windows, and I love General Tso's, too. That gave me CLUELESS, and the V-8 moment was upon me.

I still ended up feeling like an AIRHEAD because I had AVS (hockey fan) and TAXIES (doesn't look right, tho) but ZAZU, and couldn't figure out the Tennis star - duh, AGASSI !

Here's my take on COW tipping...."That's Frank!"

TGIF for sure!

Enjoy the weekend !


Grumpy 1 said...

JOHNNY, CALICOS and AMATO gave me agood start in the NE. I filled that corner and worked my way down the east coast. By the time I got to the theme I had enough letters that CLUELESS was pretty obvious. PELLA was a given since I spent about $20K on Pella windows and doors on the last house that I built.

The west side was a little tougher but working from the bottom up I finally had everything except for that pesky NW corner. I WAS was so obvious that I wondered if I HAD was supposed to go there, but that didn't fill any perps either. I sat here with a block of 3x3 letters unfilled for the longest time. The AHA! moment came when I finally figured out that PEA preceded Brain. DOH! I felt like a lame brain!

"Rolling to the gate" isn't TARIES? It was in my puzzle because I just knew that record label had to be STAR. I mentally went through the alphabet and had the final AHA! when I got to X.

I have to stick with AHA's! instead of V8 moments like some of you since I drink my morning V8 from a glass instead of a can. Fave clue was "tipping target". I've never engaged in that "sport" but when asked what we did for excitement out in the rural areas where we often worked, someone would always answer "Oh, we go cow tipping almost every night". Got some really strange looks from the city folk that were "clueless".

Have a really great weekend everyone.

carol said...

TGIF to all you un-retired people :)
(the rest of us are lucky to just know what day it is).

I really tried on this one, but feel just like the 'clueless' answers in the puzzle. I could not figure out how to get the Notepad thingy. I Googled Notepad but that didn't do any good, I couldn't find it on C.C.'s list so I just cheated.

Lemonade: thanks for the link to "Call Me Al" of my favorites from one of my favorite albums!

Thought 49A was very clever.

Hondo H (7:09a), Riley is a cutie!!

Gunghy (from last night), thank you for the clip. I really didn't realize how one mixed tapes. I know that recording studios have sound 'mixers', but that is it. I don't have a clue how to link stuff to this blog (even though I have read the instructions, it is all too much fuss). I have never 'burned' a CD..good thing I have Joe to do all that :)

Spitzboov said...

Inspirational talk on cow tipping

C.C. Burnikel said...

Notepad is a feature in Across Lite only. You can't find it in LA Times website.

Your newspaper version is exactly what the constructor wants for his theme clues. No clue, nothing, no dash. Dashes exist ONLY because the software does not accept an empty space for clue.

Grumpy 1,
When I HAD A kid? So funny!

Seldom Seen said...

Awesome traction in the SE and found the CLUE(LESS) and from there everything else slowly fell(or tipped over).

I did not DIG neither AVS nor OPE.

Around my nephews, the ongoing joke is "when I WAS A boy...". They immediatley roll their eyes and say "Here we go again." I tell them about walking to school "uphill, both ways, through the snow and broken salty glass..". They love it...I think.

Also have told them about my many cow-tipping escapades. They are onto Santa, the Easter Bunny and championship Bengal teams, but the still believe in cow-tipping!

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, there were several things I had never heard of, or had forgotten as soon as I had heard them. STAX, GIO and XYZ (Affair).

Strangely, even after an almost three week vacation, the theme answers came to me fairly easily. I'm trying not to take those easy solves to heart.

There were plenty of other fill that gave me trouble. I really wanted PEN for 49A, MANTRAS for 42D and MANIAC almost filled in itself for Mel Gibson's 60A persona. (Sorry Mel G., but I think you are nuts.)

Thanks for the blogging and links, Lemonade. I always enjoy a Paul Simon song and "Call Me Al" is a favorite.

Another busy day for me, so I'll check in later. Have fun all.

WM said...

Morning all...just checking in and thanking Lemonade for a most excellent blog for a most difficult puzzle. I actually printed off the LATimes version and started it last night and kept wondering if my eyesight was failing and the dashes were individual puncuation marks that I couldn't remember the names of...then AIRHEAD fell the lighbulb went on and I had to erase a few letters but filled almost everything in except for the NW corner and finally gave up and came here. I misspelled ZASU as ZAZU and once I corrected it things got a tad better...very clever all the way around and with minor tweaking here and there I pretty much finished what I originally thought to be undoable. YAY!

Very busy balancing getting ready for a Christmas Show at the gallery and getting all the ducks in a row for Thanksgiving. I will try to remember to check in next Wed.

Promised rain, cold weather and snow on the hills by Sunday after a week of almost 80's.


Jeannie said...

I always do the puzzle on line over my lunch. Imagine my surprise when I saw those dashes….I thought it was some sort of computer glitch. So I did something I never do before solving and peeked at the write up to see WTH was going on. I’m glad I did as once I figured out there were no clues for those I just started plodding along. I did have to hit the G-spot to find out what the name was for the CO hockey team and also needed help for Zasu and Odile. I got ope (op’n would have been more acceptable) and Wes via the perps. I didn’t like deported – asea either. Overall, I didn’t do too badly for a Friday puzzle. I guess I need to take a three week vacation.

Hondo, what a cute puppy! Glad to see you were able to link an avatar.

Warren, it’s great to see you back. We haven’t seen you in awhile. You too, WM.

Counselor, you wear my favorite men’s cologne…imagine that.

Everyone enjoy your weekend. Mine will be spent swapping out wardrobes as I think it’s time.

Jayce said...

Hello everybody. Great puzzles yesterday and today. Loved them both. Excellent writeup, Lemonade, thank you. Well said, Dennis. Between the two of you, you've said it all.
Best wishes.

Jayce said...

After I got GIO, I guessed it made sense because Armani's first name is Giorgio.
Like Barry G, VII, XII, and III were all equally probable to me, as the clue for 5A was no help.
I had AMPLE instead of AMPLY, which made me put in READE for 18D. The "Set" clue didn't help for that one either. But now I'm all set and ready to go.
Speaking of ready to go, DW and I are looking forward to being with family in Arizona all next week. Dunno if I'll be doing any puzzles or reading this blog until we get back.
Best wishes to you all.

Jayce said...

In the San Jose Mercury News, the clue for 44A looked exactly like 03 (zero three), which made it difficult to understand even after I finally got OZONE filled in.

Chickie said...

Hola Everyone, At first glance my reaction was,"No way can I do this puzzle". I started filling in all of the knowns, then when I hopped and skipped my way around the middle finally fell and Airhead came to light. I had Space already in, so guessed at Cadet. The AHA moment came and I started filling in the rest of blank answers.

I had to look up Stix, Gio, Ari,and Mandala. But something that seemed totally undoable was finally completed.

New cluing for Asea/Deported? and Thai/phanaeng ingredient were clever. My favorite clue today was Place for a flock/Pew.

WM already gave the weather report for our area, so Winter clothes will be needed again. It seems to be one extreme or the other.

Lemonade, great blogging today. Thanks for the information and all the links.

Have a great weekend everyone.

Tinbeni said...

If that COW gets me my milk fresh and in a timely manner ... then I think Tipping is appropriate.
Usually I leave 20 percent.

Damn, my real initials ARI were in the grid (again!) and I missed it.
Must have been all perps.

Last night, I watched that defensive battle:
Lightning 8
Flyers 7
Goalkeeper's ... CLUELESS

windhover said...

Like Jeannie, part of my weekend will be spent swapping out my wardrobe. In my case this means putting away the 33" jeans and getting out the 34"s, as well as digging out the long-sleeved t-shirts, which will now be worn under the short sleeved ones and over the insulated underwear. There are white collar jobs and blue collar workers; I am a no-collar guy.
I'll be doing this puzzle and the Irish later tonight, so am avoiding the writeup and conserving energy.
La vie est trés bonne.

Dilbert said...


Wished someone had linked Norah
Jones singing Cow Tipping from the Little Willies album. Funny song.

It's raining.

Warren said...

Hi Jeannie, thanks for the welcome back note, I've been monitoring the blog lately but haven't found a good comment to post...

BTW, My wife noticed the blank clues before I did and immediately knew that it an intended part of the puzzle (I thought it was a typo at first since this is my first experience with blank clues).

Next Thursday (Thanksgiving) we're BBQing a turkey at our pottery studio. I'm bringing my signature mashed potatoes and my wife plans on making dessert pies but I don't know what kind yet. One year she made a butternut squash pie that everyone thought was pumpkin...

Finally found it!
cow tipping

Norah Jones singing Cow Tipping from the Little Willies album. It was extra hard to find because the song is titled Lou Reed not Cow tipping

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

Lemonade - most excellent, sir!

I looked at _E_BRAIN forever, and finally gave up. Really felt like an AIRHEAD, because it is an expression I use - more deservedly than I know - about myself.

So, the NW corner was intractable. I was never going to get WEPT, for "relief" having just been to the funeral home this afternoon. Recognize STAX, but wasn't going to come up with it.

Wanted some kind of food from that stand, not a CAB RIDE.

Thought of basketball for court, and plugged in ALONZO (Morning), which gave me DONG BAT. Lovely.


Other than those things, I had a BIG success, for a NINCOMPOOP.

AREOLE ASWIRL, for some reason, makes me think of tassels.

Maybe because my solving was a bust.

PELLA is HQ'd in PELLA, IA, with factories in IA and IL.

We're going to see Rebekka in Rodger's and Hammerstein's Cinderella tonight. Then I'm going to see U of M vs Wisconsin with my son-in-law tomorrow. Cowboys vs Lions on TV Sunday. Rest of the weekend could get ugly.


Jazzbumpa said...

Oh - did the puzzle in the Freep today, with pencil. No clue there about being CLUELESS. Fortunately, saw C.C.'s tip last night.


Seldom Seen said...

Great stuff. I've never thought of it that way before. I'll use that someday and act like I came up with it!

Dilbert and Warren:
Thanks. I tried to look for it, but gave up.

Thanks to you also. I had never heard of her.

I'll link the cow but someone else has to link the areole.

dodo said...

Hello, Lemonade and everyone, This puzzle turned out to be fun, finally. First entry "was a" looked pretty doubtful to me so I tried 1D and I did put in "wept" but felt even more doubtful about that so I erased the 'ept'. Started what I thought would be many, many lookups with "Colorado NHLers" and finally decided it must be "AVs". "Pianos" was a wag but got me started on the NE and when "nincompoop" fell and the clue was blank, yes, there was no Note, no quotes, no dashes, I knew it had to be a theme word. That made for lots of fun thinking of all the synonyms for it. After that is was fairly easy.Still had lookups but not so many: "Wayne's World", which I've never watched, "Mel Gibson persona",
"XYZ". Spelled "annul" correctly the first time but couldn't figure out what "N Least" was so I changed it to "anull" which gave me "U Least" so erased the whole thing until the perps made me certain the "n" was right but I didn't look at the clue or I might have realized it was it was "NL east"! Duh!

I finished the NW last like a lot of you, and found I was right in the first place about 1A and 1D. Duh, again!

I will try to remember to check in on Wednesday. In fact, I'll write myself a note, something I often have to resort to now that I've reached 85! Hi, Jimbo. Nice to have another octogenarian aboard!

Hahtoolah said...

Dodo: is today your birthday?

Query: what is notepad that was needed for today's puzzle? Maybe that is why I found it so hard.

Off to shul before it gets dark. Shabbat Shalom.

Bob said...

Got them all OK in 29 minutes, despite the missing clues, which I thought for a time would leave me trapped in some corner or other. Kind of a fun puzzle to end the week.

Lucina said...

Good evening, Lemonade, C.C. and all.

Very late to this party because I was with a dear friend most of the day; I don't see her often enough and we go waaaaaay back.

Before I left most of this puzzle was finished, except for the NE part which gave me fits.

Once the theme unifier filled, I could easily find the rest and already had SPACECADET and NINCOMPOOP. Great fun!

Unsure about 6A, AVS, left it blank but otherwise a succesful finish. I loved it. It made me feel like an AIRHEAD at times, but not bad over all.

Really liked:
second degree, MBA

My newspaper had no indication about the blank clues so I'm glad C.C. posted that info yesterday. At first it seemed daunting, but instead it was a good challenge.

Thanks, Daniel.

I hope your Friday has been delightful!

Lucina said...

As usual I loved your blog and shall return for all the links. Always fun. You rock!

daffy dill said...

Evening all.

Did the puzzle this morning, but was too busy to come here until now.

I harrumphed a lot with this one after I saw the note, but it turned out to be easier than I expected. I drew a blank on GARTH and FATSO; had to google those. It took 44 minutes, but the rest came with WAGS, SWAGS, and perps. I knew PELLA and that gave me CLUELESS, which practically revealed the theme fills. It was a fun run after I got over my early "Hey,not fair" attitute.

Our morning temps have been in the 30s this week, but the days have been quite nice.

DH is having a go-round with his doctor's offoce again about them changing his scripts without even talking to him. This is the second time they have done this. Now it will be Monday before he can talk to them. I want him to change doctors and maybe this time he will.

See ya!

Clear Ayes said...

Maybe it was just because I recently saw the movie "Sophie's Choice" (for the third or fourth weepy time), but when I saw 33A AMPLY, the first thing I thought of was this poem.

Ample Make This Bed

Ample make this bed.
Make this bed with awe;
In it wait till judgment break
Excellent and fair.

Be its mattress straight,
Be its pillow round;
Let no sunrise' yellow noise
Interrupt this ground.

- Emily Dickenson

If you haven't seen Sophie's Choice"", the poem was recited in the last scene. Memorable movie and touching poem.

Dilbert said...

Thanks Warren. I will learn how to do that one day. Just wondering are
Men in Black able to show links?

Love her and the album.

Jayce said...

JazzBumpa, I admire your talent and your sense of humor. May you never lose them.

Jeannie said...

Okay, I just watched all of
your links as I can't access them from my computer at work. That damned Baracuda filter!!

First of all, my favorite counselor, I love the Sly Stallone song clip...anyone else notice the geeky guy in the blue shirt that really had no clue how to dance?

I also laughed out loud at the Ibex clip!

Seen, a problem with your "Cows" clip....McDonald's slogan isn't "Have it your way"...that's Burger King's but they redeemed themselves by bringing up Whoppers.

Jazz, you just made me dig out my tassels just to see if I still have it...

Warren said...

Hi Dilbert,

C.C. has posted a link on the main blog page that shows how to post a link and I don't think that it matters if you're blue or black? Why not go blue with most of us on this blog?


Dot said...

Lemonade, I can't find your request re. next Wednesday. I looked throught the comments for Wed., Thurs, and today. Would you post it again, please?


Jeannie said...

Dot, there have been a lot of people who have come and gone from the blog. Lemonade's message is a "call out" to any of those people that have suddenly disappeared to stop in and say "hey". The "get together" in mind is the Wednesday before Thanksgiving. See you there folks...

Lemonade714 said...

Love to Dot, I would like all our commentors, dating back to the original 2008 ones, to all newbies and lurkers who ever check in, to stop by on Wednesday, November 24, and post something as a quick thank you to CC for starting this blog and providing us with so much entertainment, information, feedback from the constructors, and all in all a great service to any and all who love solving crossword puzzles. I want to thank Rich who brings us the puzzles, and I want to thank Dan Naddor, who used the last months of his life to bring so much pleasure to ours. I also want to thank all of the wonderful constructors Jerome Gunderson, John Lampkin, Barry Silk, Jeff Chen, Fred Jackson, Fred Piscop, Doug Peterson, Donna Levin, Don Gagliardo, Brad Wilber, Nancy Saloman, Mike Peluso, Gareth Bain, David Cromer, Pancho Harrison, Alan Olschwang, Gail Grabowski, Will Nediger, Jack McInturff, Bruce Venzke, Pamela Amick Klawitter, Kelsey Blakely, Scott Atkinson, Ed Sessa, Joel Fagliano, Mark Feldman, Mark Bickham, Mark Diehl, James Sajdak, Timothy Meaker, Harvey Estes, Robert H. Wolfe, Robert A. Doll, Robert Harris, Robert Fisher, Todd McLary, Jim Page, David J. Kahn, David Poole, Dave Eckert, Dave Mackey, Nathan Miller, Victor Fleming, Julian Lin, Joon Pahk, Daniel Finan, Jascha Smilack, Neville Fogarty, Mangesh Sakharam Ghogre, Bonnie Gentry, Matt matera, Matt Ginsberg, Pete Muller, Tom Heilman, Victor Barocas, Jared Banta, Ron and Nancy Byron, John Doppler Schiff, Corey Rubin, Allen E. Parrish, Joe DiPietro, Michael Doran, Gene Newman, Steve Salitan, C.W. Stewart, Dan Schoenholz, Charles Barasch, Gary Whitehead, Betty Keller, Mike Nothnagel, Paul Guttormsson, Anthony J. Salvia, R.M. “Bob” Peobles, Clive Probert, Elizabeth Long, Anna Gundlach, Meredith Ito, Kristian House, Jennifer Nutt, Arthur S. Verdesca and of course Verge. These are just this year’s, and if I left anyone out, it was clearly unintentional.

So come celebrate all, Wednesday November 24, 2010

dodo said...

Forgot to thank you, Lemonade for your consistently excellent commentary! You are a gem.

Hahtool, Not today, it was 10/29.

Can't remember who, but someone connected Sly Stone (unknown to me) to "Rocky". It was Stallone.

dodo said...

Jerome, come back! I miss you and your wit.

Anonymous said...

Re 32 across in today's (Saturday) crossword puzzle, Adele Astaire was Fred's sister and dance partner before Ginger Rogers.

Bill foley

Argyle said...

Bill, two things: Lemonade714 mentioned Adele was Fred's first partner in his comment 12:24 this morning, very first comment for Saturday; and two: this is Friday's comments.