Dec 31, 2010

Friday December 31, 2010 Gareth Bain

Theme: No SAINTS (STs) Allowed: The abbreviation for Saint (ST) is removed from the first word of a common two-word phrase to reveal a new and humorous two-word phrase.

17A. Conger's protection?: EEL HELMET. STEEL HELMET. Cute pun, but I did not remember this species of eels so it did not fall quickly.

26A. Tracker of bauxite thieves?: ORE DETECTIVE. STORE DETECTIVE. This is where I got going, as Bauxite is the ore from which aluminum is extracted.

43A. Roadie, after a gig?: AMP COLLECTOR. STAMP COLLECTOR. A nice reminder of the days riding on a tour bus, watching the roadies load and unload from city to city.

58A. Diamond oration?: UMP SPEECH. STUMP SPEECH. The term is from the literal delivery of political speeches while standing on a sawed off tree to allow the candidate to be seen and heard.

The unifier: 41D. Hardly a model of perfection, and a hint to how this puzzle's theme puns are derived : NO SAINT.

Lemonade here, and I found the theme easily, without the unifier, and all the answers are nice symmetrical 9 12 12 9 with the unifier adding 7 more letters. I liked each of the puns, with AMP COLLECTOR my favorite; overall this was the hardest puzzle for me that I have blogged. It is however a nice honor to prepare the final blog of 2010.


1. Blows: BOPS. Man was this corner a struggle for me; I know a BOP where you strike someone is a BLOW, but BLOW was so many meanings. Down Lois and Carol. This crossing with BEECH did not help.

5. Open some: AJAR. Whew, an easy one.

9. "The Remains of the Day" author __ Ishiguro: KAZUO. Followed by more difficulty, for while I recalled the wonderful movie version starring Anthony Hopkins and Emma Thompson, I did not have any memory of this transplanted Japanese AUTHOR .

14. Sweeping story: EPIC. My FAVORITE .

15. Like some walls: BARE. Well that is depressing.

16. Collectively: IN ALL.

19. Figured (out), slangily: DOPED. Yes, we all doped out this answer, though wouldn’t slang been enough?

20. __-Magnon man: CRO. This is no longer a politically correct term, as scientists now believe the skeletons which were found in this region, and so named, are sufficiently like we HOMO SAPIENS to be called EMH, Early Modern Human.

21. '60s quartet member: MAMA. And the biggest of them all MAMA CASS.

22. Times for cool heads: CRISES. Yes, they prevailed when my computer was fighting me earlier.

23. 6 7/8, e.g.: HAT SIZE. I wear a 7 ½ which would be okay except I am pretty short. Of course some of us will speculate on body correlations, but that cannot be helped. I am sure there are research volunteers.

25. __ Age: IRON. I could not think of any other four letter ages, ICE, STONE, BRONZE?

31. Latin Quarter site: PARIS. This area on the left bank of the SEINE got its name not from any Hispanic influence, but because it is the educational center of Paris where reading, understanding Latin was important.

34. Soup vegetable: LEEK. A cousin of the onion and garlic.

35. "X-ing" one: PED. Pedestrian crossing, a cross walk. Jaywalking is taken very seriously in parts of the country, as a result drivers must brake to allow people to cross if they are in a designated area. Muhammed Ali almost ran me down in his Rolls while I was at LAX.

36. Space-saving abbr.: ET AL. My law use of the week. When you sue a bunch of people, you have to list all of them in the initial complaint. The part with the names is the caption. Once the original is filed, e.g., Lemonade vs. Dennis, Windhover, Barry G., Jeannie, Sallie and Dodo, the later pleadings will all be Lemonade vs. Dennis et al.

37. Seriously impairs: MAIMS. Yes, maiming is a specific crime, defined as injure, disable, or disfigure, usually by depriving of the use of a limb or other part of the body.

39. Loud, ringing sound: BONG. Am I the only one who thought of Michael Phelps?

40. Barnyard male: TOM. Tom Turkey? Tom Cat?

41. Lofgren of the E Street Band: NILS. He has played his GUITAR with Springsteen and Neil Young among others.

42. Flooded field: PADDY. Rice can be grown on dry land, but most of it is done underwater, in paddies.

47. Sailing, say: ASEA.

48. Alluring tops: HALTERS. Is this what you thought of for this style TOP.

52. Sign with an arrow: ONE WAY. I love this clue, so simple, but very visual.

55. Like falling off a log: EASY. A simile that always puzzled me as a child, because it is hard to get on a log.

56. Snap: PIC. Does anyone call them snaps anymore?

57. Alp-Öhi's granddaughter in an 1880 novel: HEIDI. Never read the book, but I have a close friend with the name.

60. Dum-dum: MORON. You may not know this, but this was a valid psychology term to describe mild retardation, but obviously, it has fallen out of favor. But you can still take the TEST .

61. Hook's mate: SMEE. Man, my first thoughts crook and ladder, luckily they had too many letters.

62. Appear: SEEM.

63. Hägar's dog: SNERT. Snot Nosed Egotistical Rude Teen.

64. Event with gowns: BALL. I wanted Prom.

65. __ buco: OSSO. Literally bone with a hole, the veal shank.

Okay, suck it up we are halfway home.


1. Tree with edible nuts: BEECH. There were so many, Pecan also has 4 letters.

2. "What's __, Doc?": Classic "Looney Tunes" short: OPERA. Cartoons give us so much CULTURE , of course I could tell my Pavarotti bird joke again.

3. Joystick user: PILOT. Too many video games around me for this to be as easy as it really was.

4. Univ., e.g.: SCH.

5. Burning: ABLAZE. The class A word.

6. Improvised, in a way: JAMMED. A shout out for our own JzB, the tremulous trombonist.

7. Zone: AREA.

8. Soak flax: RET. I never heard of this process of using water and the organisms to break down the fiber in flax.

9. "Devil Without a Cause" musician: KID ROCK. Be careful of the lyrics in this VIDEO .

10. Baptize with oil: ANOINT. There was lots of anointing in the bible, but I did not associate it with baptism.

11. Sci-fi effects: ZAPS. Pretty tame now that we have CG.

12. Fonda title role: ULEE. The gold was in the honey, honey.

13. Cutlass maker: OLDS. We have a zillion different ways to clue this car maker, now dead and defunct.

18. Mideast bigwigs: EMIRS.

22. First Nations members: CREES. We just had Cree but there is so much more to the indigenous of CANADA .

24. Muddy: SOIL. Oh I get it, MUDDY as a verb, not an adjective.

25. News __: ITEM.

27. Beethoven dedicatee: ELISE. Lots of this and Eroica these days.

28. Product with earbuds: IPOD. Amazing how Apple has dominated so much electronics.

29. Push, so to speak: VEND. Street vendors as pushers? Seems harsh.

30. Avant-garde: EDGY. Oh perfect for the students in the Latin Quarter.

31. Org. where fur doesn't fly?: PETA. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, often forgetting we too are animals.

32. Splitting it releases energy: ATOM. More bombs.

33. Modeling milieu: RAMP. Runway, not clay.

37. Cyrus who plays Hannah Montana: MILEY. She is studying the Lindsay Lohan from child star to slut handbook.

38. __ breve: ALLA. Musical terminology for which I will defer to out musicians

39. One of TV's Mavericks: BART. Jack Kelly; James Garner as Bret and Roger Moore as cousin Beau.

42. Sea anemone, e.g.: POLYP.

44. Macbeth's thanedom before he became king: CAWDOR. Another very difficult name to remember; his patch before he had a kingdom, his feudal lordship.

45. Vegas drive-through: CHAPEL.

46. Fez feature: TASSEL. Has anyone seen BURLESQUE ?

49. Blunted swords: EPEES.

50. Prepares potatoes, in a way: RICES. We get rice twice, it’s nice.

51. Jerk: SCHMO. I see SCHMOs as more harmless than jerks.

52. Resistance units: OHMS.

53. Its atomic number is 10: NEON.

54. Name on some neutral WWII ships: EIRE.

55. Jane Austen opus: EMMA.

58. PC port for a flash drive: USB.Universal Serial Bus.

59. Spanish pronoun: ESO. Like the song says…

Answer grid.

Well another year in the record books, and my first as an organized contributor, I want to thank C.C., Rich, all the great constructors and all of you who have been here and who comment regularly or once in a while. Happy and wonderful new year for all and special wishes to those who need them.

Lemonade out, see you next year….


creature said...

Good Morning C.C.,Lemon and all,

Lemon, nice write-up. Thanks.

Gareth really did a super job;it was definitely a Friday puzzle.
With careful slow-going and some reasonable guesses, I still had to look up 9A Kazuo and 53D neon.

I had to think through the Maverick boys and needed the unifier for the theme solution. Very slick.

Clever cluing: 21A 60's Quartet member-Mama.

Way to go,JimmyB! These stats are fascinating- along with C.C.'s notes from Rich Norris. I'm anxious to study them. Thanks for sharing.

Now off to reread Lemon's work and JimmyB and C.C.'s notes.

Have a safe New Years Eve everyone.

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Lemonade and Friends. I didn't catch on to the theme until after I got the Unifier (41-Down), and then I still had a pause to figure out what was going on.

I had several erasures; I erroneously thought that Aflame crossing with Fire (walls) was a clever cross, only to find out that the actual words were ABLAZE and BARE.

I also had Gala instead of BALL for an event where one might wear a gown, and thought Arty instead of EDGY for Avant-garde.

5-Across: When is a door not a door? When its AJAR!

I knew KAZUO Ishiguro because I have read several of his books.

Lemonade: I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that we had seen Burlesque. It's an okay movie, but if you are looking for something risque, you won't find it in that movie. Christina can sure sing, though.

My favorite clue was Times for Cool Heads = CRISES.

Happy New Year's, everyone. I am off to a wedding this morning.

QOD: An optimist stays up until midnight to see the New Year in. A pessimist stays up to make sure the old year leaves. ~ Bill Vaughan

Splynter said...

Hi All~!

The theme did not appear for me early, and even after having a fair amount of fill I didn't quite understand, even when I read the "unifier", which didn't help much....

I had EEL HELMET, guessed that the roadie clue would be AMP, and I was trying to get ALUMINUM in for bauxite, but it was just not happening until UMP SPEECH, and there was my V-8 moment.

Wanted START for SAINT, and it wasn't fitting...I like a puzzle that doesn't just fill in...

Lemonade, I took the Idiot Moron test, and I am "only" 13% Moron...

Yeah, funny how DOPED and BONG both appeared....

Happy NEW YEAR to each and every one of us !!!


Mainiac said...

Morning Lemonade, CC and All,

Nice Friday puzzle. Difficulties for me were in the NE an SW. Kazuo was unknown for me and Zaps isn't the first special effect that pops into my brain when I think of Sci Fi. Matter of fact, don't watch much at all.

Slapped my head when I couldn't get Heidi and Eire is a new one for me. Spitzboov, could you enlighten me?

Great write up Counselor! I thought this is more of a Halter Top. Thanks for the music links. Thanks for the theme also. I never got it.

I don't particularly like rap but I listen to Kid Rock when I work out (among other hard stuff). I tend to like the hardness of the guitar work but tire of his "eye" problem. He sings about himself a lot. I also find it ironic his latest album is country poppish after he wrote songs about not selling out to record companies. He must need cash.

CC, Thanks for the data from Rich and JimmyB, your spreadsheet is great.

Alright, enough procrastination, I've got to get at the budget.

Stay safe tonight!

windhover said...

For once I am in a position to make puzzle related comments early in the day. No, the Lexington Herald-Liar hasn't suddenly decided they can once again afford to deliver the paper to my remote location, and to the best of my knowledge they are still running the very banal Daily Commuter puzzle in addition to the NYT.
My puzzle this morning is Saturday, Dec. 25, and so far it's
kicking my butt.
So I'm writing to say thanks to everyone, from C.C. and the great guest bloggers down to the lurkers. Of course, to the trolling Anons I say: Go to Hell. But with that exception, I'm full of gratitude to each of you for making this blog a part of my life of the mind. I'm sure that very few people in the world have daily access to and interaction with such a dynamic and interesting and erudite group. You've all enriched my life, and I thank you for it.
The puzzle:
Back when life was good and two puzzles came to my mailbox at 5:30 every morning, I usually did both the LAT and the NYT every day. I gradually found myself gravitating to just the LAT. It just seems like a natural fit with the twisty quirky inner workings of my well-read but very plebian brain. Nothing against Will Shortz, the man is a genius (and his name rhymes with mine), but Rich and his stable of constructors tease my mind in a way that just feels good. So I thank them as well.
I'm sure that this tender moment will pass and I can get back to being my cranky bastard self, but while I like and respect everyone here, there are a few who have become, as unlikely as it seems, real friends. You know who you are. I wish you all the best in the New Year and beyond.
Now I've got to go kick a dog or something.

lois said...

Good morning Lemonade, CC, et al., What a great Fri puzzle to end this year. I loved it as much as the write up, Lemonade. Great job! Loved all the links. Excellent!

Did get the theme, for once, and it helped.Got excited w/blows (1A) and Lemonade, you are so right! Bops was not even close to my thinking! But now you've got me curious in ref to 23A. The only body correlations I've ever heard of involved shoe size, not hat size. Guess I'll start my own research study on this. I am taking applications. It'll be my New Year's project.

As Splynter pointed out, I LOL w/'doped' and 'bong' showing up. Never heard 'doped' used in this puzzle's context before. In typical 'doped' context, 'vend'ing might be increased in CA now w/new laws, but it's also 'one way'
'crises' could decrease too. Mamacita always would say, Si, Senor, life's a 'beech'; just enjoy.

Happy New Year, everybody, one and all. Thank you CC, for everything. You rock our world!

Enjoy your day. Have a 'ball'!

thehondohurricane said...

Good day folks,

Other then the SE Corner, this puzzle was a complete flop for me. Just couldn't get a foothold and never came close to figuring out the theme. The few clues I managed to fill in were correct, but they were not enough to "make hay." Chalk it off to too many Bowl games yesterday. Husker Gary, 'What happened?"

Lemonade, a very entertaining write-up. And I always thought halter was a benign word! All your links were enjoyable.

As we say good bye to 2010, I would like to thank each of you for allowing me to share my thoughts each day. And CC, thanks for keeping the blog going. You are a fun group with a wide range of interesting views.

To everyone, a very Happy New Year.


kazie said...


Well, I started, as usual in the NW, and immediately thought I was never going to finish. It was still the last area to fall. The SW also caused many trips to the g'spot for CAWDOR, HEIDI, and SNERT (never have time for comics).

I had got the theme without the unifier, but had trouble getting to SAINT from the missing STs until ONE WAY was revealed. I also had to google NILS, KAZUO and OPERA, and tried for BEECH because I didn't know they were edible, but google didn't include them and pecan was all that would fit otherwise. I never did get EEL HELMET because I had FIRE for BARE and AFLAME for ABLAZE and had guessed REN for RET, although I think I remember having had that some time ago. So that meant, along with having ROIL for SOIL, that HATSIZE never even came close. I had no idea what 6 7/8 meant. Google gave it as the name of a girlband which didn't fit. And I had DOHED for DOPED, having never heard dope as slang for grok, so of course ZAHED made no sense.

Some days are just like that, especially Fridays and Saturdays.

Thanks for the great blogging today and always. I could never do it, and I'm so grateful to all who do.

Have a happy new year everyone!

Mainiac said...

Lois, Where do I apply?

lois said...

WH: Loved your comment. So well said! Also had to LOL at the position of our comments today. Just perfect. I'm working on a picture for you. Happy New Year to you and yours.

CC: thank you for sharing those notes. Very interesting. I was surprised at the number of men. But perhaps it's really not so surprising about so few women being in the field. With that lopsided membership, I first thought I'd consider joining in and creating a c/w, but realized I don't have time to eat brkfst, I just fix it. So who has time? and that thought (right or wrong) made me laugh. No offense meant...just a musing as Husker says.

JimmyB: outstanding work; very interesting. Thank you for sharing.

Be safe. I have a party in Yorktown tonight. Should be fun.

lois said...

What a day! 2nd time for coming under a handsome man.

Maniac: LOL I'll email you my form.

Splynter said...

Hi again ~!!

This is what I thought a halter top was - guess it's different out here on the Island...

Lois, care to comment "one more time?" - I am looking to apply as well...

carol said...

Hi all -
Couldn't finish this, but sure enjoyed Lemonade's write up. I always try the Friday puzzles but most times they are just too clever for me. Some of the answers just didn't 'connect'. Too many names I didn't know.
(I'm with you Kazie) :)

Lois: LOL on 1A and the answer was not the one I thought of at first either. 23A - Same thing, but I laughed again at the 7/8 part...that's really an odd measure for what I had in mind.
(Cute new picture by the way, where were you?)

Hope you all have a safe time if you go out tonight. Have someone else drive if you're going to imbibe. We will party at home.

Husker Gary said...

Lemonade et al, to all of you and especially our ringmistress C.C., 幸福的新年 (I hope that is Happy New Year!). We awoke this morning on the Great Plains to temps 45 degrees lower than yesterday and precipitation you could hear. Not Good! Jeannie, you are right, I want to get that Sears snowblower going today but it ain’t so good on ice pellets. Thanks for the kind comment on my ramblings yesterday!

-Lurkers and Lurkerettes – come on in from Anonymousville, the water is fine. What have you got to lose? Even snarkiness and political vitriol are more tolerable when you actually sign your missives! Hell, you might even have a kernel of truth in there somewhere.
-I thought Conger’s protection might be EELHOUSE with the WH left off but gave up that idea when I saw OREDETECTIVE. I would think street walkers might make lousy private eyes (DICKS?)!
-The theme came to me on UMPSPEECH and it helped on the roady clue. Fun!
-The Sorcerer’s Apprentice link was fabulous and reinforces what I have said many times – Disney and Looney Tunes introduced me to many of the great classical works in my childhood. Justin Bieber wouldn’t have cut it then!
-Lemon, I as well have a huge melon - 7 ¾. Old joke – You know what big hands on a man mean, don’t you? Yup, big gloves!
-LEEK/OKRA? Tomayto/Tomahto?
-MAMA’s and Papas were fabulous musicians and debauchery was just a sideline. BONG and DOPED in the same puzzle seems about right! Hey, Poe did his best on Opium.
-Who’d a thunk I would have known Alp-Ohl’s granddaughter? Maybe it was because my family immigrated to America from eastern Switzerland or it was a WAG. Hmmm…
-My granddaughters EMMA and ELISE both made the cut today
-I have no idea about ULEE but I know when to enter it
-Hondo, the Huskers were about as disinterested as the rest of the state about that rematch!
-Kazie, is Oz going to float away?

Thanks to all of you for the witty, ribald, engaging and wonderful correspondence we have shared in this venue this year!


elsie said...

Good Morning,
I am one of those who Lemonade referred to as a "once in a while" poster. I am quiet in person as well as in print. But I do want to thank all of you who post regularly. And also to C.C. for creating this "Corner". Happy New Year to all!

MH said...

Thanks Lemonade and Happy New Year to everyone. Nice weather out here in Northern California.

The puzzle was not too difficult for a Friday. Nice end of the year puzzle. I got the theme pretty quickly and the theme answers came very easily.

See you all next year!

Grumpy 1 said...

GOOOOOD Morning! The decade of the 'aughts' comes to a close. I can think of a lot of things I ought to have done, and probably a lot I ought not to have done also, but those are stories for another decade.

With 'doped' and 'bong', 1a should have been 'hits'.

First pass across, EPIC dropped in nicely, but nothing else definite until CRO and HAT SIZE, which was a gimmee. And, no, that is not my hat size. That 'Z' kept me from falling into the 'aflame' trap and I was able to pick my way back up and fill the corner. 'Pecan' was my first choice but with the letters I already had, BEECH was the only thing that fit. Then it dawned on me... where does Beechnut gum get its name?

I got the NO SAINT unifier, but had all of the theme answers before I figured out that 'Saint' needed to be abbreviated. Very clever!

There were several unknowns or entries couldn't dredge up. CAWDOR, SMEE, RAZUO, KIDROCK, NILS and ELISE and ULEE needed perp help, but all except RAZUO eventually arose from the depths of my addled brain. It didn't help that I had the singular CRISIS instead of plural CRISES. After going through the alphabet looking for the letter needed in the cross of KAZ_O/_LEI and finding nothing that looked right, I went back and looked at the CRISES clue again and realized it was plural. Since we saw ULEE's Gold a few times this year and discussed it here, I got my AHA moment when I went through the alphabet again.

Conger and moray show up often enough that I associate either with eels now, but I never saw an eel wearing a helmet. Considering the common usage of the word helmet in another context, I guess it could be a condom eel.

Have a really, really happy healthy and prosperous new year, all.

ARBAON said...

WH: I`m saving you`re sweet it or not! I just knew you had it in you. Don`t worry...I won`t blow you cover!

windhover said...

Thank you, Rose.

I'm waiting patiently, mine is ready to send. And we can switch places any (every) time you like.

You other dudes get in line! Doesn't seniority count for anything these days? And I want my damned discount, too.

Jeannie said...

For some reason I always feel a sense of doom when I can’t complete either 1 A or 1 D which was the case today. I didn’t know that eels were congers, so “eel helmet” wouldn’t come. The same thing with “ore detective” as I had no clue what bauxite was. I also had to hit the g-spot for Kazuo and Cawdor. Funny how Miley Cyrus showed up in the puzzle today as I was thinking of her for the “bong” answer. When I think of Michael Phelps I am not thinking that…no picture for me, my favorite counselor? My brother’s first car was an Olds Cutlass. Favorite today was “Org where the fur doesn’t fly” – PETA. A friend of mine at work and I got into a discussion on how hard it would be to cook/bake for a true vegan. I am glad I don’t have to. Polyp, Alla, and USB were all obtained by perps. I did finish the puzzle, but was far from completing it unassisted.

I want to wish each and every one of you and your families a Very Happy New Year!

Argyle said...

No, windhover, not this kind of halter.

VirginiaSycamore said...

Hello all,
Thanks for the great writeup Lenomade.

I too, had AFLAME until HAT SIZE made it ABLAZE. I was able to get most of the answers from the perps, except the NE corner, although the NW corner came slowly and was discouraging. I had to look up KAZUO and KID ROCK. The use of DOPE as a verb didn't hit me either, so I had to red letter it. I only knew "I have the dope".

Some crossword strateges I use are
*Skip corners that are too hard. Do them later.
*Words with a high vowel to consonant ratio are used more. Hence Ulee, Oboe, etc. I didn't do Ulee until I had perps, which at first pass were all wrong in the NE. There are just too mqny Fondas to look up every one.
*Somehow, words are often used in several crosswords each week. I don't know if Rick and Joyce plan this.

Finally, my ususal bit of arcane trivia. The electrician's word for the inverse of an OHM is the MHO. The symbol for an OHM is the Greek letter Omega.The symbol for MHO is an upside down Omega. Cool, Huh?

Unfortunately, the world scientific community (SI units) uses the siemens for this value. It is named after German inventor Ernst Werner von Siemens.

Alas! And the SI also refuses to use the curie for radiation.

daffy dill said...

Good morning, C.C. Thanks for a great write-up, Lemon.

Remains of the Day is one of my favorite books, so I knew the author. However, I had to go get the book to check the spelling of KAZUO. Had saga at 14A but immediately changed it to EPIC, which helped with BEECH. Took a while for me to figure out 1A. BOPS is not a word that immediately comes to mind for blows. (OK, am I the only one too old to think of that kind of blow?) I had okra at first for the vegie, but ELISE disabused me of that. The only thing I had to look up was ULEE. We have had it before, but I didn't remember it. Didn't see the movie.

I couldn't figure out what EEL, AMP, UMP, and ORE had to do with SAINT, so I didn't get the theme before coming to the blog. Clever.

daffy dill said...

Forgot to wish everyone a very Happy New Year. Hope 2011 is all you want it to be.

windhover said...

Daffy Dill:
Maybe if we ask him nicely, Argyle will link the Bob Seger tune Horizontal Bop. That should make the connection.

JD said...

Good morning Lemonade, C.C. and all corner compadres,

This was definitely a Friday work of art.Puns make me feel like a dum-dum, so I was pretty much doomed with the theme.I left 7 acrosses inc stretching from KaZuo in the NE corner to amPCOlLEctor. Didn't complete umpSpeECH either. Have never riced my potatoes.

Didn't know a sea anenome was a polyp- definitely NOT the vocal chord kind.

epic- just completed Follett's Fall of Giants and now have more of an understanding of WWI.

I was not familiar with the process of retting flax, so here is bad bad, it is funny; it even has a flax dog.

JimmyB, thanks for sharing that list.What an impressive group of constructors; kudos to all.

Lemonade, I always look forward to your write-up, even though I'm pretty much stymied on Fri/Sat.You add so much humor. Enjoyed all the extras, esp BB opera.

Love listening to each and every one of you, and even if I don't add anything of significance, I do feel part of a very special group. To those of you who share the blogging I am in awe, and appreciate the time you put into this and your ability to make us laugh and come back for more.
C.C., you did a wonderful thing for all of us, xie xie.

kazie said...

I hadn't kept track of Oz weather lately, but a quick look tells me that most storms are in the west and north where they'd need it most right now. Perth has had the hottest and 2nd driest year on record. The SE is mostly sunny. so I'm not sure about your question.

Thanks for backing me up on the name thing--glad to have company on that, or I'd feel like I was griping too often.

kazie said...

Hilarious video.

This is one thing that makes this blog so enjoyable--you never know what will come up each day. Always some fun as well as learning.

Thank you for what you have created.

Nice Cuppa said...

Dear All -

• That last decade was punningly but affectionately termed the "NAUGHTIES" in the UK, hoping they would be "Naughty but Nice" I suppose. I've not heard any contenders for the next one.

• I last came across today's theme in a Brit cryptic crossword about 30 years ago, but it remains in my memory for some reason. I think it was constructed (the verb is "compiled" in the UK) by the famous (in the UK) compiler, "Araucaria" (="Monkey Puzzle Tree") from The Guardian. I digress. The "unifier" was the title of the crossword, which was:


Interpretative answers on a post-card please......

• The only dodgy clue for me was "AVANT-GARDE". I have never seen/thought of it as a synonym for "EDGY".

• "EIRE" was straightforward - it came as little surprise that the Free Irish Republic chose to avoid joining forces with UK&Comm so soon after finally gaining independence.

• Kazie - I hope you don't have freinds or relatives stranded in Queensland - looks like a mess, but sounds like the Oz government has matters under control.

• I'll be raising a cuppa kindness to you all later today.


JD said...

Forgot to wish each of you a happy and safe New Year. Be aware of those ONE WAY signs.

Argyle said...

Bob Seger tune Horizontal Bop.

Jerome said...

Hey, JimmyB - Why the hell am I spending 8 to 10 hours of work so you can have 20 minutes of fun? :)

Not so fun-

IRON- Hubbard's autobiography
MORON- The above's dumb brother
HEIDI- The one not seeking
SMEE- Answer to "Who's there?"
EIRE- Website for the angry
PILOT- Aviating Roman Governor
OSSO- Sleuth Carlos Chan's exclamation

You're an Awesome Blossom, counselor.
Superb puzzle, Gareth.
Always, always, always... Thanks, C.C.

PJB-Chicago said...

Happy New Year's Eve Day, Lemonade, C.C., and all!

It was the simple-ish stuff that tripped me up today: BOP, BEECH, BONG, ZAPS and especially DOPED ---all familiar words that didn't make it onto the mental "short list" of possibly right answers I'd first tried and discarded.

Well done Gareth, perfect for a Friday.

Reversing the last two letters of TASSEL strung me up briefly, too......No wonder the term MORON came so easily to me. "IDIOT" whispered its name, also -- just in case!

*Theme answer = EEL HELMET [ugh, hatsize is 8+,so I have to have them special ordered]
*Clue = "where fur doesn't fly" [also true of Allergist's office...]
*"How the hay did I remember that? answer= KAZUO.

Spot on blogging, Counselor. I like your style & links.

Thanks also to C.C. for another year of being our trusted sail and our rudder.

-----------OK, time to start looking for the Party Hats, right? Here's wishing everyone a very happy close to 2010, and a New Year filled with wonders and joys you didn't even imagine!

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

Happy Old Year, and Counselor, splendid job of bringing the curtain down on it.

Thanks for the call-out. We'll be jamming Sunday afternoon.

I do love a Gareth Bain puzzle, and actually sussed the theme right off. Couldn't get the unifier, though, and despite having SNERT, OHMS, and ONE WAY, got my second DNF of the week in the SE corner.

Alp-Öhi looks like he ought to be in the Mikado, not central Europe.

Does anyone remember the infamous
Heidi Bowl?

Here is MacBeth's Thanedom

PED XING looks like it ought to mean something in Chinese.

Got the surprizing KAZOU from the perps. I thought that "The Remains" was written by a British author, just like The ENGLISH PATIENT - then I found out that was written by Michael Ontaatje, a Sri-Lanken Canadian. Nor did I know that the patient was actually Hungarian! Quite a day I'm having.

Jazzbumpa said...

Acchhh -

Premature posting problem.

Isn't a HALTer something to stop you? Why does it just make you want to get started?

Another of life's mysteries.

JzB who occasionally BOPS

Husker Gary said...


Here is what I was referring to as far as The Great Flood of Oz
is concerned. I don’t know if kangaroos can swim, so the picture below is particularly poignant.

Roo On An Island

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, Like Jeannie, I didn't think of Michael Phelps when I saw (19A) DOPED and (39A) BONG. (37D) MILEY Cyrus and her salvia bong smoking episode was how I connected the dots.

I've always thought of DOPED as "under the influence", I've never heard it used as "Figured (out), slangily"

Maybe I was under the influence of MORON and/or SCHMO. I filled in all the theme phrases and the unifier NO SAINT and I still didn't DOPE it until coming here.

JD, funny RET video. I didn't know until recently that linen flax is very different from New Zealand flax.

Thanks to Lemonade714 for a fine end-of-year blog. All of our "explainers" are greatly appreciated. A special thanks to C.C. for keeping the blog going strong.

Whether you are partying or relaxing at home, I'm wishing a wonderful New Year's Eve and the whole year after to everyone.

Spitzboov said...

Good afternoon, all. Great commentary, Lemonade. C.C. thanks for Rich's notes.

Enjoyed the puzzle. Did not get the theme before coming here, even after getting the unifier. But, no matter, the perps were sufficiently ample and so no lookups were needed.. Did not know KAZUO or NILS. IRON and ONE WAY were WAGs. Besides the theme words, there were other interesting words. SMEE and SEEM were anagrams of each other. OSSO was a palindrome. CREES we had yesterday.

Love LEEK soup. Some of the lushest leeks I've seen were at a farmers market in Ottawa.

WH - most of my feelings about this group you have expressed very well. Thanks for the thoughtful words. C.C. and other regular contributors: thank you for the time and efforts that you devote to this space.

Hahtool: I liked your QOD this morning.

Welcome aboard to Lizlee and Elsie.

Einen guten Rutsch everyone.
(A good slide (into the New Year))

Chickie said...

Hola Everyone, I had too many missteps today. The center top section was one example. I put in Aflame for 5D, which gave me Fire wall instead of bare wall and Jimmie for Improvised in a way. Roil for Soil unfortunately prevented Hat size from appearing. I had to leave a lot of bare squares today.

However, that doesn't mean I didn't enjoy the puzzle this morning. There were a lot of clever clues, and I did manage to get the theme answers despite the mistakes elsewhere. Thank you Gareth Bain for the year-end sendoff.

My favorite today was "x-ing" one/Ped.

Mylie, Milie, Miley Cyrus was a problem until I finally went to Google to find the spelling. Duh!

My thanks to everyone who did the blogging comments this year, and kept our little corner of crosswordese going with information, education, and often humor and entertainment.

C.C., A big thank you to you for keeping all this going and the foresight to know that this would be a blog that people would come to for help, get hooked, and become part of a wonderful family.

Happy New Year Everyone.

Abejo said...

Good afternoon C.C., Lemonade, and Gareth. I enjoyed today's puzzle. It was easy in some spots, but tough in others. I had a problem with KAZUO and ZAPS. I had RAYS. Could not piece that corner together without help. I finally got it. The four themes were quite easy once I got two of them.

My favorite clue was 46D, fez feature/TASSEL. I happen to own three fezzes, all with tassels, and that I wear on a regular basis. My red fez as a Shriner, my black fez as a Prophet of the Grotto, and my blue fez as a Sciot. Finally, the Masons were included in the puzzle. See you tomorrow. Abejo

kazie said...

NC and Husker,
I do have a cousin in Queensland, but she's in Brisbane. The flood info seems to be quite a bit further north in Bundaberg (rum producing area) and Rockhampton. Thanks for the info. The first search I did didn't reveal any of this. As I've quoted before in a poem, it's a:
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of droughts and flooding rains.

My mother grew up in a rural town and remembered returning to their home after a flood and finding a rotting sheep carcass on the verandah. I guess it's a life of extremes--either drought or flood, and not much in between.

Anonymous said...


Premature posting problem.

Happens to the best of us occasionally :)

Clear Ayes said...

Here's a little "be careful out there" for anyone who is going to be partying this evening.....on the other hand...have fun!!

Passionate Elixir

"I have an elixir that cures all
It is only one dollar and I'll be on my way"
"Does it cure love sick blues?"
"It takes care whatever ails you
I give you my word"
I buy a bottle of this here elixir
Drink the whole bottle down
I start feeling giddy
My head is spinning around
I check the ingredients
In very small print
50% alcohol,
"I give you my word"

- D. L. Vaineo

Bill G. said...

I enjoyed the puzzle but had a hard time with parts of it. Just right for a Friday.

Happy New Year everybody! Thank you to C.C., to Rich and all the constructors, to all the guest bloggers and to all the contributors who make this a special place to visit.

Argyle linked Bob Seger's Horizontal Bop. Here's my favorite Seger song made famous by Tom Cruise in Risky Business.

windhover said...

Welcome to an anon with a sense of humor.
But not to worry, premature posting can be fun. If you're like Jazz and The rest of us old guys, when you post prematurely you just wait a little while and post again. The problem doesn't seem to recur, in fact just the opposite.

John Lampkin said...

To echo Rich's sentiments in the year-end info wrap up, thank you C.C. and thank you all for wonderful and often insightful comments throughout this past year. This is a marvelous age and a marvelous blog where one's creative efforts are instantly reviewed.

I for one do listen to your criticism. Recently an anonymous poster commented unfavorably about the suggestive quality of some of the banter here. I hear you, and I feel your pain! Consequently, I vow to do my part to make this a wholesome and boring blog by putting aside all impure thoughts for the coming year. I won't even consider using LAKE TITICACA in a puzzle, or the highly suggestive MATZOH BALLS. (Tell me, dear Jewish friends, is any other part of the matzoh edible?)

On the other hand, some of you, and you know who you are, have complained repeatedly about the entry E-TAIL and all such related entries. What's wrong with you?! Although it's highly suggestive, ETAIL is a wonderful entry! I love it and am currently working on a puzzle where every answer from 1 Across to 65 Down is ETAIL. As a serious step towards making that a reality, my Sunday puzzle on January 2, is titled "E-Literature." Seriously. You're gonna have to learn to love it!

Happy new year to all!

Nice Cuppa said...

OK, here we go:

Yes we can! = Able Mates

Projectile vomiting? = Retching exercise

Tag teams? = Ring Quartet

Michael plays Humpty Dumpty? = One Wall Jackson

The eyes have it? = Yes

Challenged Wikileaks? = Ate secret

Itinerant surgeon? = Op-and-Go

Senior Moment? = Age Effect

The end of culture? = Art Over

Portrait-hanging? = Art-Ups.

Wine Cellar = Aging Area

Drinking Buddy = Ale Mate

Cockney self-arousal? = 'And on ones dignity

Result of Cockney self-arousal (with nice) = And 'ard


Jayce said...

Hello everybody. I liked this puzzle.

As for the theme, I first got UMP-something and AMP-something, so I thought the theme was phrases that start with _MP and blithely put in MP for the second and third letters of the long fills. Nope, that wasn't it :)

As for the Maverick brothers, they all are 4-letter names beginning with B, so at least the B was a gimme. Of course it turned out NOT to be Bret, the most famous brother.

Nope, I didn't think of Michael Phelps when I filled in BONG. I actually thought of Edgar Allen Poe's "tintinnabulation." Does that make me a Left Banker?

I get a kick out of those Ped Xing signs.

As for 25A, I kept thinking of things like Old Age, Golden Age, Middle Age, CREES and ITEM got my mind going in the right direction.

Hands up for wanting PROM instead of BALL.

Favorite clue was quartet member MAMA. Also Hook's mate, for which I did not want something like LINE or SINKER, oddly enough.

OHMS and USB were gimmes, but I had to work to get SOIL and CAWDON.

Whenever I see SNERT I can't help but think of the image of snorting a beverage out through one's nostrils. *snert snert*

All INALL a very pleasant and satisfying puzzle. Lemonade, your writeup was also pleasant and satisfying; thank you. And don't worry about being somewhat short with a big head; the camera loves it, and some of the best looking movie stars were short with largish heads. Weird what a camera sees that our brain-filtered vision does not see.

That's all my trivia for today. Best wishes to you all and may you all be safe and snug this most celebrated of midnights.

Bill G. said...

Hi John L. I always enjoy your puzzles and contributions here. I am looking forward to your ETAIL puzzle :>) That is, if you promise not to do an ELHI puzzle. Also, no AROAR or ABOIL puzzles.

Happy New Year!

Lucina said...

Saludos Amigos!

Finally, I have time to return to the Blog. It's been a busy social week for me, but have missed you all.

First, let me say I worked yesterday's puzzle at 11 P. M. last night, very doable, but tricky and found MESA, AZ there where I had spent the night on Wed. with my gal pals. It's very near Scottsdale. Loved the theme of combining tri-cities. Very clever.

As for today, again, tricky and difficult but doable without any looking up although have to confess many errors, the same as some of you, KARUO for KAZUO, BUPS for BOPS, PECAN for BEECH, etc.

I did correct BEECH but HATSIZE eluded me as did ABLAZE.

The theme popped up after NOSAINT and flashed on me with a laugh. Very smart, Gareth Bain.

Finally, thank you to C.C., Rich Norris, the guest bloggers who do a terrific job of entertaining and enlightening us. My world is so much richer because of the company I keep with all of you.

Lemaonade, you zesty blogger, you! I am so impressed with all your vast experience and knowledge.

To all of you my cyber friends, I wish you happy solving in 2011 and a year of good fortune in all your endeavors. From unsunny AZ (we had a hard freeze last night) Happy New Year!

Jazzbumpa said...

ALLA BREVE has a musical history that I don't understand. Prior to about 1600, music was quite different - in very subtle ways - from the way it is now written and performed. It meant something rather different back then.

O Come Emmanuel is a good example of ancient music. Rejoicing in a minor key! What we think of Major was almost never used. Note though, that it ends on a Major chord - that was typical, and called the "Picardy third." I have no idea if this song was notated "alla breve" or not, back in the day.

Anyway, Alla Breve now indicates what we call "cut time;" where the time signature is 2/2 - two beats to a measure, half note gets one beat.

Marches are typically written in cut time.

Fast 4/4 music can come out better if you can think of it in two rather than 4 while playing. Here's a great example, and a tune we'll be playing on Sunday

JzB the EDGY trombonist

Argyle said...

Here is a strange tie-in, what with this talk of retting and dope: Hemp for Victory (1942)(13:39). The retting part is at about the six minute mark.

Grumpy 1 said...

Here's a collection of quotes and toasts that may come in handy tonight.

"I like to have a martini,
Two at the very most.
After three I'm under the table,
after four I'm under my host."
-- Dorothy Parker

"The three-martini lunch is the epitome of American efficiency. Where else can you get an earful, a bellyful, and a snootful at the same time?" -- Gerald Ford

"When we drink, we get drunk;
When we get drunk, we fall asleep;
When we fall asleep, we commit no sin;
When we commit no sin, we go to heaven;
So let's all get drunk and go to heaven!"
-- Old Irish Toast

"Here's to good friends, who know you well, and like you anyway!"

“The proper behavior all through the holiday season is to be drunk. This drunkenness culminates on New Year's Eve, when you get so drunk you kiss the person you're married to.” -- P. J. O'Rourke

“My rule of life prescribed as an absolutely sacred rite smoking cigars and also the drinking of alcohol before, after and if need be during all meals and in the intervals between them.” -- Winston Churchill

“Sometimes too much to drink is barely enough.” -- Mark Twain

"I exercise strong self control. I never drink anything stronger than gin before breakfast." -- W. C. Fields

"I only take a drink on two occasions: when I'm thirsty and when I'm not." -- Brendan Behan

"The first thing in the human personality that dissolves in alcohol is dignity." -- Author unknown

"I'm not a heavy drinker, I can sometimes go for hours without touching a drop." -- Noel Coward

"Once, during Prohibition, I was forced to live for days on nothing but food and water." -- W.C. Fields

"First you take a drink, then the drink takes a drink, then the drink takes you." -- F. Scott Fitzgerald

"No animal ever invented anything so bad as drunkenness - or so good as drink." -- Lord Chesterton

"Everyone who drinks is not a poet. Some of us drink because we're not poets." -- From the movie "Arthur"

"My dad was the town drunk. Most of the time that's not so bad; but New York City?" -- Henny Youngman

"And God said, 'Let there be vodka !'
And He saw that it was good.
Then God said, 'Let there be light !'
And then He said, 'Whoa — too much light'." -- Author unknown

"A hangover is the wrath of grapes." -- Author unknown

"If you mean the demon drink that poisons the mind, pollutes the body, desecrates family life, and inflames sinners, then I'm against it.
But if you mean the elixir of Christmas cheer, the shield against winter chill, the taxable potion that puts needed funds into public coffers to comfort little crippled children, then I'm for it. This is my position, and I will not compromise!" -- Congressman Full Warren speaking about whiskey

"I know I'm drinking myself to a slow death, but then I'm in no hurry."-- Robert Benchley

“Drink today, and drown all sorrow; You shall perhaps not do it tomorrow; Best, while you have it, use your breath; There is no drinking after death.” -- Ben Jonson

"A man's got to believe in something. I believe I'll have another drink." -- W. C. Fields

kazie said...

Before I realized what you were going for, your
Projectile vomiting? = Retching exercise made me think of Bazza McKenzie's 'rainbow laugh' and 'technicolour yawn' expressions.
Very clever of you to come up with so many missing 'st' phrases!

Grumpy 1 said...

Jerome @12:42
IRON- Hubbard's autobiography
MORON- The above's dumb brother
MORON- sequel to Hubbard's autobiography

@ John Lampkin
Looking forward to your E-lit puzzle. With a jug of wine by my side, I'll probably be half-lit by the time I finish.

@ Nice Cuppa
Laughing me arse off at your cockney clues.

JimmyB said...

Jerome @ 12:42 pm: You're one of my favorites BECAUSE all that cleverness can be savored in 20 minutes. After 30 minutes or so I just get frustrated.

Which brings up Windhover @ 7:41 am and my agreement with his remarks about NYT vs. LAT puzzle styles. What I love about Rich Norris and the LAT puzzles is that when I'm struggling and finally get the answer, there is always the "V8 can" moment of recognition. All too often when I finally learn a difficult NYT answer, I'm still scratching my head and wondering "huh?"

I echo all the appreciation for C.C., the guest bloggers, Rich and all the constructors, and all the friendly commenters here who teach me something new every day.

Dennis said...

Hey gang - haven't had much time for the puzzles/blog this week, but I couldn't let this day pass without thanking all of you for making this blog what it is, and wishing everyone an outstanding New Year filled with joy and most importantly, good health.

After C.C., I think I've now got the most time on here of the current posters, and it's truly been an honor to watch C.C.'s deft touch each day as she built this into the world's best crossword blog. I know there's some things planned for the coming year that will give it even more recognition, so be sure to stay tuned. Again, thanks to our eclectic group; we really have a wonderful 'family' here, one that seems to be growing by the day.

And on the vacation we're waiting for our car after lunch, and the guy says to me, 'you know, you look a lot like one of the Beach Boys (my favorite all-time group), Dennis Johnson (who I don't look a thing like), and did you know they're in town for a New Year's Eve concert?' Well, long story short, we canceled our previous reservations and we'll be spending tonight with them at the Hard Rock Casino in Hollywood Fl. Cost a frigging arm and a leg at this late date to get near-the-stage tickets, but hey, I can't think of a better way to bring in the New Year.

Stay safe on this, the ultimate amateur night.

Marge said...

Hi all,
Thanks to C.C. for having this blog-Thanks also to Al or C.C. who moved my comment to the correct day.

I also appreciate your explanation Al, on baptism. And Chickie's comment on the Mennonites in Columbia.

This puzzle wasn't easy. RET hasn't been used in a long time but it was one I remembered. I cannot believe I missed Heidi. I read the book several times when I was a kid and saw the movie (The Shirlie Temple version) numerous times.

Husker- I guess the ice storm you had today will get to us here in Wisconsin tomorrow. A good reason to stay home and watch The Rose Parade and Rose Bowl which hopefully Wisconsin will win.

Having been in Georgia most of December we came home to snow Tuesday. Actually, we had snow on Christmas day in Atlanta, their first white Christmas in more than 25 years. It was cool there most of the time. My daughter tells me the temp. is 65 today. We should have stayed longer!

A good New Year to all of you, this blog is really a fun thing.

Hahtoolah said...

JD: Your video under the One Way signs reminded me why, as much as I loved living in Boston, I moved south. I don't know if I could deal with the snowy winters anymore. It hit 80F here today and not a snowflake in sight.

Annette said...

I've been away visiting family since the 23rd, with little time for the puzzle or blog. I'm going to have such fun next week, catching up on all I missed!

I just wanted to stop in and wish everybody a Very Happy New Year! You've all played a very large part in my enjoyment of 2010, and I look forward to sharing 2011 with you!


carol said...

Grumpy: Great toasts! I loved them!
Here is another:
Here's to you and here's to me,
hope we never disagree...
but if we do, &^#@ you
and here's to me!

Nice Cuppa: hilarious Cockney stuff!
took me a bit to get the accent right :)

Dennis, what a wonderful treat for both of you! Glad you are having fun.

It's been a great year here and I am so thankful for C.C.'s work and all of you who do the write-ups each week. A grateful shout-out to all the very talented constructors too.
Without you we'd have no reason to be here. I've made many friends and reading the comments has become an enjoyment I look forward to each day.
Thank you to all!!!

lois said...

Husker 9:38; your WH comment made me LOL. really funny! Cute cute cute!

Grumpy 1: Thanks for all those toasts! I will use some tonight. Very very funny! Love 'em! Good job! And I love your catch on 1A =hits w/doped and bong. LOL.

WH: Babe, it's coming. Treasure boxes take time.

Splynter: You're on! I'll send you my form as well. I didn't intend to make it hard. It just happens. If you need any help, I'll come over.

Nice Cuppa: Hilarious! Well done!

Carol: Thanks for the compliment. The Avatar is a firey bush is a product of.... ready? wait for it..

John Lampkin: based on the complaint of an anon...seriously? Looking forward to your E-lit offering. E-tail is fine w/me, as are most tails - no secret there. But that's another tale.

Dennis: so happy for you! How so exciting! See? Life's a 'beech' boy! enjoy! CA: loved the poem!

Argyle: Santa, cutie: love your links. Thank you for all of them.

Happy New Year to all and to Buckeye, wherever he might be.

LaLaLinda said...

Hello Everyone ~~

I don't post very often but I continue to do the puzzles and enjoy this blog every day. I've learned a great deal these past months and you all have made my puzzle solving so much more enjoyable. Thank you to C.C. and all of the contributors!

Wishing you all a very Happy and Healthy New Year!

Bill G. said...

Hey JD, somebody forwarded me some photos that show an interesting mural on Main Street in your hometown. Yes? It looks like fun.

Lemonade714 said...

wow what a great group; I am now in Lafayeete Alabama so i get two New Years tonight/ thanks and here's to 2011 and the corner 0ur slice of heaven

creature said...

A group of eight of us have been getting together for about 30 years on New Years Eve. The hostess has been the same. The drive for us is about 45 min. one way. I backed off tonight. DH doesn't drive at night and I'm almost at that point. Such a relief.

I want to thank C.C. for this blog site,the explainers[ala CA],the constructors and all the really neat people here on this blog..What a wonderful thing that has happened to me. I can never explain what this means to me. Happy New Year to you all!

Thank you so much!

Spitzboov said...

Maniac: Just noticed your comment from this morning. Sorry I didn't reply earlier.

HEIDI - The perps helped with this. I took the grandfather's name to be Swiss. Heidi made sense, as it's been around quite a while and was set in Switzerland. (Our 6th grade teacher read an installment to us over a period of weeks if the class behaved.)

EIRE - Again perp help. Ireland was neutral during WWII so under international law, they should not have been attacked by the warring parties. This explains how EIRE was painted in large letters on the sides and decks of Irish cargo ships. They sailed with full navigation lights.

carol said...

Lois: Oh geez, a firey bush and 'siemens'...can't hardly stand it! Better to 'lay' down.

Lucina said...

I just went back to read your "minus ST" list. How clever!

It just floors me that beautiful flax material is rendered from those ugly plants and the complicated process for it. Things like that always cause me to wonder, how did they think of it?

JD said...

Bill, our town has many 3D wall murals which, at first, I thought you might have seen, but then I remembered when they tore down the old Safeway and put up a wall during new construction, an art class from Bellarmine (a local Catholic H.S.), came and painted a fabulous mural. I can't find a finished picture.

BTW, loved the Risky Business clip!

Lucina, I agree, who would ever think to do that to flax!

windhover said...

The Shaky Ground is Rockin' in the Free World with Al Tillery and Slingblade.
Happy New Year!!!

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year everyone.

Ditto to all the comments about C.C. and her blog, the great write ups from several, and the comments from the ones who sign their names. I enjoy it every day, and have learned much. Thank you all, and I hope you all have a great year.

dodo said...

Happy New Year, all! Thanks, every one of you for being here and C.C., thank you for making it all possible! You light up my life, all of you. dodo

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year!

I'm still here and I'm not a troll.


PN (anon)

windhover said...

Well then, what the hell, Happy New Year, and welcome.
We're often very severe, but always very forgiving.

Dennis said...

Windhover, if Al Tillery and Slingblade were anywhere near as good as the Beach Boys, you had a great time. I don't think one person sat down the whole concert. We were dancing in the aisles and I felt like I was 18 again. Tomorrow I'll probably feel like that number was reversed...

Happy, Happy New Year everyone; make the most of every day.

P.N. said...


Thank you very much. I appreciate it. It looks like I got off on the wrong foot and part of that blame is with me. See my longer blog at the end of Thurday's comments.

All the best to all.