Feb 10, 2011

Thursday, February 10, 2011 Don Gagliardo

Theme: Shaken, not stirred, the reveal is found in 57 Across: Its components are hidden at the ends of 17-, 20-, 35- and 53-Across: DRY MARTINI.

17A. Delta location: RIVER MOUTH. An "aromatized" wine, flavored with herbs and spices, such as cinnamon, chamomile, marjoram, cardamom.  The inventor was inspired by a wine which in German was called Wermuth (flavored with wormwood, a component of absinthe).

20A. Source of showroom shock?: STICKER PRICE.

35A. Standing by for an on-air appearance: ABOUT TO GO LIVE. The word "oil" in several languages is derived from words for olive and olive tree.  Originally, oil only meant "olive oil".

53A. Risk calculation: SAFETY MARGIN. Shortening of geneva, altered by influence of the similarity of the name of the Swiss city, with which it has no other connection. from Dutch genever "juniper" because the alcohol was flavored with its berries.

Hi all, Al here again on a Thursday.  Today's theme answers were both helpful and yet not helpful for me. Recognizable phrases, so they filled in missing letters, but the endings were disguised as part or parts of words, so that had me scratching my head how the full words could be related. See Don's note at the bottom of the write-up.


1. Get used to it: ADAPT.

6. PBS moderator Ifill: GWEN. A new name for me..

10. Go for: COST. A yooper scooper for handling large amounts of snow?  How much does that go for?

14. Martinez with three Cy Young Awards: PEDRO. Baseball pitching award.

15. By __: from memory: ROTE Bi rote "by heart," of uncertain origin.  I thought for sure this would have a Latin root, but I guess not...

16. Sale modifier: ONLY. And you can have it for ONLY 19.95 per month, and your first born child.

19. Actor Sitka who appeared in numerous Three Stooges films: EMIL. Apparently called "the fourth stooge". Another unknown name for me.

22. Healthy routine: HYGIENE. From Hygiea, daughter of the god of medicine, Asclepius.  His other daughters were Iaso ("Medicine"), Aceso ("Healing"), Aglæa/Ægle ("Healthy Glow"), and Panacea ("Universal Remedy")

25. "Catcher in the Wry" author: UECKER. Bob. Named "Mr. Baseball" by Johnny Carson.

26. Make __ dash for: A MAD.

27. Hershiser with a Cy Young Award: OREL. And some more baseball pitching excellence.

30. Wind instrument vibrator: REED.

31. Send: THRILL. Sam Cooke: You send me.

33. Battle gp.: REGT. Armed Forces group, Regiment.

40. Bauble: GAUD. A large ornamental bead in a Rosary.

41. Citi Field org.: NY METS.  And baseball again.  I'm catching on to this sub-theme, you don't have to hit me over the head with a bat...

43. Central Chinese city: XIAN. Today's geography lesson.

46. Jazzman Stan: GETZ. I get misty.

48. Some are named for music genres: ERAS.

49. Carrying limit: ARMFUL.

51. Fit for consumption: EATABLE. This seems odd, I hear "edible" more often, but it's been around since the 15th century.

56. Beard-preventing brand: ATRA.

61. Forest denizens: DEER.

62. Capri, e.g.: ISLE.

63. Quilt filler: EIDER. Duck down harvested from nests after the young leave.

64. Used too much: OD'ED.

65. USNA part: Abbr.: ACAD. United States Naval Academy.

66. Puts in a hold: STOWS. Sometimes you have to wrestle it down the stairs...


1. Mortgage no.: APR. Annual Percentage Rate.

2. "De Civitate __": "The City of God," St. Augustine work: DEI.

3. -ly word, usually: Abbr.: ADV. Get your Adverbs here.

4. Spanish fort: PRESIDIO. From Latin præsidium, from præsidere "to sit before, protect". Related word, preside.

5. Rich dessert: TORTE.

6. Food merchant: GROCER. One who buys and sells in gross quantities.

7. "The Caine Mutiny" novelist: WOUK. Herman.

8. Cigar tip?: ETTE. A suffix clue: cigarette.

9. Early Indian leader: NEHRU. Jawaharlal. Prime minister having the longest time of service to date, 1947-64

10. Strong-arm: COERCE.

11. Wired for sound: ON MIKE.

12. Did a deli job: SLICED.

13. "Total Eclipse of the Heart" singer Bonnie: TYLER. Obligatory link.

18. Camera company that merged with Konica: MINOLTA. I hope they didn't mind.

21. With some sauce: PERTLY. Saucy, variant: sassy, giving off a little heat, using spicy language.

22. One of many jobs, in metaphor: HAT.

23. Jewish social org.: YMHA. Young Men's Hebrew Association.

24. Things to wear: GARB. "Elegance, stylishness," from M.Fr. garbe "graceful outline", from It. garbo "grace, elegance,"

28. Wear away: ERODE. Originally a gnawing-away at, as of rodents.

29. Relay runner's assignment: LEG.

32. Wheel securer: LUG NUT.

34. Spokane university: GONZAGA. The bulldogs.  It all started on Thanksgiving Day, 1892. A new sport – then often referred to as American rugby – was played for the first time on the Gonzaga campus in front of 500 fans. The sport soon became known as football and Gonzaga was able to compete until 1942, when there were not enough male students to field a team due to their service in World War II.

36. Play with a dog toy, maybe: TUG.

37. Response to "You were kidding, right?": I MEANT IT.

38. Word of action: VERB.

39. And friends, facetiously: ET AL.

42. Capt.'s heading: SSE.

43. Like DVDs in a restricted room: X-RATED.

44. "We can talk now": I'M FREE.

45. Terrified, to the bard: AFEARD.

47. Designated: TERMED.

49. South American grilled meat dish: ASADO. A barbecue.

50. Croesus' kingdom: LYDIA. Now Anatolia (Asia Minor)

52. Exhausts: TIRES.

54. "Happy Days" mom, to the Fonz: MRS. C. Marion Cunningham, played by Marion Ross.

55. Auel heroine: AYLA. Jean Auel, The Clan of the Cave Bear. Played by Daryl Hanna.

58. Altar promise: I DO.

59. Fresh: NEW.

60. Letters seen in many forms: IRS. Sigh.Yes, it's that time of year again.

Answer Grid.


P.S., Thanks to C.C. for getting me the puz file last night after Cruciverb made some changes again.

A note from Don about today's theme:

"As a solver, I really like puzzles where words just pop out of nowhere to form new words.  I wanted to hide something at the end of phrases where, when all was solved, one could take those items and put them together to make something.  A mixed drink sounded like a good possibility.  ICE and GIN came to mind, and I thought this would be easy.  OLIVE?  The phrase “About to go live” popped out of my head as something that I have heard a million times on TV.  But how do you clue it?  Rich and I struggled with that one.  I don’t know yet how it ended up.  I was afraid VERMOUTH from RIVER MOUTH was going to be too obvious and tip the whole puzzle theme from the getgo.  We’ll see!"


Dennis said...

Good morning, Al, C.C. and gang - now this was more like it; I really had a good time solving this one. Didn't have a clue about the theme until the unifier, and I found it extremely clever. Don G., you have no worries about the theme being "too obvious", at least from my standpoint -- it was very well hidden.

I got off to a fast start in the NW, slowed a bit in the North central, and really blew it in the NE. 'Love' for 'Go for' and 'as is' for 'Sale modifier' didn't exactly speed me along, and took a while to correct. After that, it was fairly smooth sailing, with some exceptions, such as 'gaud' - I know we've seen it before, but it still didn't look right. 'Xian' was a gimme thanks to C.C.'s comment about it last time we saw it. I'm not real fond of 'eatable' -- yes, it's a word, but does anyone ever use it in place of 'edible'? Unknowns included 'Emil' Sitka (recognized the picture, but never knew his name), 'Asado', 'Lydia' and 'Ayla'; all perpable. Very enjoyable puzzle.

Al, superb write-up as always - enjoyably concise. My learning moment this time was 'erode' having a derivation from 'rodents'; makes sense.

Today is Umbrella Day - fortunately, won't be needing one here (for a change).

Did You Know?:

- A calorie is the amount of energy, or heat, it takes to raise the temperature of one gram of water by one degree Celsius. A gallon of gasoline contains 31,000 kilocalories, or the equivalent of 46.3 Happy Meals.

- You can tell the temperature by listening to a cricket chirp. For the temperature in degrees Fahrenheit, count the number of chirps in 15 seconds and then add 37.

- Scientists at the Tokamak Fusion Test Reactor site in Princeton, New Jersey, have produced temperatures as high as 920 million degrees Fahrenheit, or about 34 times as hot as the center of the sun.

Lemonade714 said...

Al, great job, especially knowing Cruciverb was not cooperating. Well, the theme answers were not hard and they helped make for a quick job, but as Al said, the disguising of the words made the actual theme very hard to pin down. Don, you did not have a thing to worry about, VERMOUTH did not jump out at all, and did not see the connection until the reveal. We do have XIAN a nice shout out to CC and ET AL. a reminder that it is Thursday.

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Normally, I'm a big fan of Don G's puzzles and really look forward to them. This one, however, defeated me and left a bad taste in my mouth. Part of it was the vast amount of obscure fill (GAUD, XIAN, EATABLE, AYLA, ASADO, EMIL) that kept making me stop and go "Huh?" while attempting to solve and "You're kidding!" after finally getting via the perps.

The other part, though, was the complete disaster in the NE corner caused by me being completely and utterly convinced that "Total Eclipse of the Heart" was written by Bonnie Raitt. I really wanted STICKER PRICE for 20A, but rejected it because it wouldn't fit with RAITT. And nothing else would work in that corner either. Out of desperation, I finally googled "Bonnie Raitt Total Eclipse of the Heart" and found tons of hits, which confirmed that I was right.

Except, of course, I was wrong. Apparently, a lot of other people get confused as well, hence all the search results on Google...

HeartRx said...

Good Morning Al, C.C. et al.

As Dennis said, this is a puzzle I can relate to! Give me some vermouth, ice, olives and gin, and I am one happy camper! The theme didn’t jump out at me, either, which made it a double mystery to solve.

Al, a great job blogging as always. Thanks for the Lolly link at 3D. Now that one will be caroming around in my head all day. (For those who may not have listened to the entire song, the last word was “Indubitably”.)

There were great clues, too:
25 A Catcher in the “wry” for UECKER really got me for a while.
51 A EATABLE instead of edible? Yep, it’s a word. But its meaning is more like “appetizing” rather than “safe”.
66A “puts in a hold” for STOWS was a good misdirection.
21 D “With some sauce” for PERTLY (that would be a 3D). Great clue!
60D “Letters seen in many forms” for IRS, loved it.

So I guess that covers everything I have to say, sort of like “umbrella” insurance.
Have a great day, everyone!

thehondohurricane said...

Good day folks,

A bit of a struggle today because of so many obscure words... pertly, afeard, gaud, & eatable..... but I managed to finish w/o outside assistance. Emil was a gimme. I remembered an Emil Sitka, football player in college and the pros. Turned out his name was Sitko. Oh well! I recall Sitka's role as a stooge, but never knew his name until today.

Like others, I wanted Bonnie Raitt, but it wouldn't work at all. Never heard of Bonnie Tyler.

Loved the "Catcher in the Wry" clue. Uecker has long been a favorite of mine.

Always like Dry Martini's, but more then two would put me into the land of embarrassing moments that would be difficult to live down, especially at home.

Dennis, did you ever count cricket chirps?
Me neither, but maybe this summer ...........

Enjoy the day everyone.

Mainiac said...

Good Morning Al, CC and All,

Tough puzzle for me today even though I got the theme and unifier after really having search for the hidden clues. I wrote in River Mouth and Sticker Price quickly and thought this may not be my normal Thursday bout. I refused to write in Eatable until perps left me no choice, similar experience with Gaud.

The wife is a martini girl so when the theme struck me I did a head slap. She likes them so dry, waving the Vermouth over the glass is too wet. I don't even buy Vermouth anymore.

Been awhile since I've done a Thursday puzzle do to storms and snow removal. Enjoyed your write-up Al. Great work!

fermatprime said...

Hello fellow cruciverbalists!

Terrific write-up, Al.

I could echo Barry G's comments. I too had to google.

Of course, I am in so much pain now my mind is half-gone.

Reason for pain (and poor sleep) is really defective mattress. Hills, valleys, lumps, etc. Have only had it for about 5 months. (It's a Serta CA king.) I was walking about 30 feet with a cane, finally. Cannot do it now (due to pains everywhere)l

Does anyone know about Intellibed mattresses with gel?

The Preview function does not appear to be working!

Andrea said...

Morning all -

I loved this puzzle and the blogging. Nice work Al and Don. It took a couple passes, but I finished without G or coming here to peek. I got all the theme answers pretty early on, but didn't catch on to the theme until after dry martini partially filled itself in. Pretty clever. I also wanted Raitt, but knew it didn't fit; Tyler eventually came to me. For some reason, I always think Gonzaga is in the East, not in Spokane.

We're all still pretty excited about the Packers around here. It's been fun to watch all the celebrations and talk show appearances this week. I even sat at my computer to watch live streaming of the plane touching down in Green Bay on Monday. That wasn't terribly exciting, but it did provide a nice distraction from some paperwork I had in front of me...

Stay warm!

kazie said...

I googled more than half of this before getting a toehold. Too many names and I don't drink martinis so never caught the connections there.

As far as I'm concerned, you are a genius for making sense of this one.

Have a great day, everyone!

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, Today is dentist day for me. My appointment is for 8 am, so I don't have time to comment now. These one hour drives are for the birds.

See you all later.

creature said...

Good Morning C.C.,Al and all,

Al, great write-up and links; thanks.

Finshed w/o help; thanks to perps and a couple of Wags. BUT, it took me two phone breaks and a TUG with the dogs, to freshen my approach in certain areas{already mentioned by others}.

Loved seeing Xian for C.C.- got it right away!

Tricky clues, obscure fill and remote names- thanks Hard G.

Fermatprime, you definitely sound in a pickle. Here are a few of my random thoughts, which I must say are just that.
1. Try a piece of foam on top of mattress for a night or two; it could be a twin size piece, if you don't want to commit to it unless it works.
2. I realize I am assuming single occupancy; but, do you have to have a King size mattress? I'm guessing a double would GO FOR about half. Even a Queen, to accomodate critters{pets or humans}
would be considerabLY less. The floor space in your bedroom will be greatly improved.

Have a nice day everyone.

carol said...

Hi everyone...

Just read what Barry G wrote and that would be my experience. I'll bet he got more of this than I did.

I also agree with HeartRx in that the clues she listed were really terrific, I just was not sharp enough to get them when working the puzzle.

Needless to say I did not finish this one....had to come here to lick my wounds.

Grumpy 1 said...

Good morning, Al, CC and Thusday (or Thirsty, considering the theme) solvers. Great write up, Al.

Don G. this was a masterpiece! I thoroughly enjoyed it. There were lots of entries that were slow to emerge from the depths of my memory, but they eventually did.

I saw 'mouth' 'price' and 'live' on the ends of the phrases and that had me thinking of 'auction' for the end of the unifier. You're one sneaky devil!

Grilled meat? I was sure it was Carne ASADA. That kept me from seeing OD'ED even though we see it often enough in relation to 'using' that it should have been obvious. Changing the A to O finally gave me my AHA moment.

Have a great day, everyone.

fermatprime said...

Hello again!

I forgot to congratulate CA. Let's hope the last problem is OK! Very brave of you to share your thoughts!

Creature--I have a beautiful oak (king size) captain's bed. Also a shelf that holds remotes, creams, pills, etc. on one side of the bed. I cannot cope with twin or double beds. I am about 6 feet tall (and weigh too much)! Have nightmares when forced to sleep on narrow beds (like in hospital and nursing home from hell). But thanks for thinking of my dilemma!

Wow. The preview function is working again!

Splynter said...

Hi There~!

Well, aside from no longer partaking of the alcohol, I still liked this puzzle. Got RIVER MOUTH right away, and STICKER PRICE came along, and when MAR - GIN filled in, I realized how the theme was "hidden", and thought it was pretty clever....

Yes, plenty of "ARGH!" clueing, like "ATRA", "ET AL" & "ON MIKE", but I did get them, even if they were WAGs (XIAN, ASADO, AFEARD), and I have to brag, I knew Tyler over Raitt, because I grew up in the '80s.

Thanks for the explanation for Grocer - I always wondered why my food is considered "groceries", since I do find them, er, EATABLE? EDIBLE? and not 'gross'....uh-huh....

Maybe "waiting in the wings" would have been a better clue for "GO LIVE"....

~!~ Thank you Good Night ~!~


kazie said...

I also did not know that GROCER was related to GROSS quantities, despite being familiar with both the terms grocer and greengrocer in Oz. Here it seems everything is in supermarkets. In France the grocer is an épicier--or spice handler, and his shop an épicerie. Germans have Lebensmittelgeschäfte --"means of living (=food) shops". How dull would life be with only one language!

Bill G. said...

The theme was well-hidden from me too. Very enjoyable but hard I thought. Much more fun for me than a themeless puzzle.

I can easy forgive 'eatable' if it was necessary to create a puzzle with such a clever theme.

Since Barbara makes quilts, I can say that none of them are filled with Eider. I'm thinking there is some confusion between quilts and comforters or somesuch.

Big doings in Egypt.

MSNBC had a slideshow of the most romantic movies of all time for Valentine's Day. We've seen and enjoyed almost all of them. My favorite is number 24 or course though I really like them all.

Lucina said...

Good day, puzzlers, ET AL!

Great blogging, Al; many learning moments and thanks for the Sam Cooke link. Love him! Too bad he died so young but as they say in "Chicago" he had it coming (apparently).

At first pass I thought this would be a slog, but it filled fairly easily even with many unknowns. Since I'm not a Bonnie Raitt fan I just worked out TYLER as well as all the names: EMIL, UECKER, and PEDRO, but knew OREL and AYLA

Big error on GETZ, as I thought it was METZ as well as GWEN, had GLEN first. Thanks again, Al.

The unifier came first and looking back I could see the elements, very clever, Don G.!

Made me smile, cigar tip? ETTE

You all have a THRILLing Thursday!

daffy dill said...

Thanks, Al. Morning, C.C. and all.

Even after I got the unifier, I did not get the theme because I was looking at the last word in each one, not partials. Not being a drinker didn't help. I had to look up TYLER and UECKER. I had to wait until I had all the crosses before I could get XIAN. That was my "Oh, yeah!" moment. Had YUAN for a long time. I knew that was a unit of currency, but I thought maybe a city, too??? Hand up for wanting edible. When I saw that it wouldn't fit, I put in potABLE, which fit and satisfied the clue, but wrong.

Had temp of 5 degrees this morning...BRRR! Wish I didn't have to get out later.

Jerome said...

There was a time when all martinis were made with gin. Not so now. When I do my fill-in bartending gig I find that most people prefer vodka martinis. Usually without vermouth, but almost always with olives. Could be a regional thing, but I think not. We serve a lot of tourists from all over the country.

daffy dill said...

Thanks, Al, for the Stan GETZ link. "Autumn Leaves" always leaves me "Misty" because it was our backup "our song." "Love is a Many-Splendored Thing" was first. When we were dating, we saw Roger Williams at Texas Tech and he played that. After we were married, we listened to a late night radio program called Misty, hosted, of course, by Misty. All very romantic.

Speaking of romantic movies - I wonder why "Love is a Many Splendored Thing" wasn't on that list. That was the first movie we saw together. It ended tragically, though.

Anonymous said...

I've been checking my answers on this site for awhile now, and just noticed today that there is a theme before each astute of me..not...however, there has never been a theme in my newspaper except for Sundays...Just wondering if the rest of you see a theme/hint in your paper !?
By Anonymous on Wednesday February 9, 2011 Samuel A. Donaldson at 11:52 AM

Dennis said...

Speaking of romantic movies - I wonder why "Love is a Many Splendored Thing" wasn't on that list. That was the first movie we saw together. It ended tragically, though.

They got married?

Dennis said...

anon@12:08, no, the theme is only given on Sunday.

Argyle said...

Anon, you went to far on the scroll and posted on the wrong day.

We who do the blog come up with what we hope is a suitable theme. The consructors do have one but it isn't published on LA Times.

eddyB said...


Still can't get to work. Found the puzzle last night
on at about 9PM.

Pre ordered the latest Jean Auel novel on It is due in March.

Sharks now tied for first in divison.

take care.

Dennis said...

Ok, here's a little poser to chew on today:

If a human being could eat only one food for an entire month, what should it be, in terms of nutritional value? The easy answer is breast milk, because it's complete, but there's not always one of those suckers (sorry) ready and available to latch onto.

The answer, which will surprise most everybody, will be revealed later today. And if I said how I first learned this, it'd give away the answer...

Dennis said...

eddyB, the web site you mentioned caught my eye. I just looked, and it's an erotic escort service. You sure you got the right site? They may be filling in spaces, but I'm betting it ain't in puzzles.

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

Yikes! A puzzle on a favorite theme of mine, an I just didn't get it. HUGE DNF.

Great job, Al. And thanks for the Misty clip - that is OUR song. But wait -- there's more: Bob Brookmyer on VALVE trombone. Awesome!

Great job, Don (He said, humbly.)

Everything seems quite reasonable in the write up, so I'm going to blame this epic fail on my awful head cold, which is leaving no room for anything like - oh, say - intelligence for example.

Don got me this time. (Hmmmm - I think he got me the last time, too)

Anyway, I'm having a big week. Subdivision annual meeting tonight, and I need to be there, since I'm the president (but not the decider!) Tomorrow, I have a big date with granddaughter Emily. Saturday, playing for a Valentine's dinner-dance (and they're feeding me!)

Before I go take a nap, I have to thank Don for getting the recipe exactly right: Gin, Vermouth, Olive, Ice. Anything else is either an adulteration or an abomination!

JzB who is a purist about certain carefully selected things

Al said...

Dennis, I'd guess sardines, packed in olive oil. You get the essential fats from the oil, and protein is obvious. What isn't so obvious is that excess protein is converted to sugars, so there you have your carbs as well. My second guess would have been avacado, the only fruit with fat and it does contain some protein.

Argyle said...


thehondohurricane said...

My hand is up for peanut butter too.

HeartRx said...

Dennis, I would guess olive, surrounded by gin or vodka (but just shaken over ice).

Anonymous said...

How about high fat bison, buffalo or bovine milk ( assuming no lactose-intolerance, on the part of the ingestor -).

Bovine colostrum ( first milk) , prior-to and post-natal of pregnancy, would be ideal.

The best colostrum would be from a Mama Polar Bear - a baby polar bear gains 966 % of its birth weight in the first 6 months of its life -

-or even that from a Harp or leopard Seal mother -

- but procuring from all these sources, would present some logistical problems....

Clear Ayes said...

Back from the dentist visit. No problems and ready to go for another six months.

After reading all the comments, I agree with everybody who liked this puzzle. The DRY MARTINI recipe theme answers were really terrific.

Minor quibble...yes to Bill G. about "some confusion between quilts and comforters". I have several quilts and they are quilted over batting, not feathery stuff of any kind. Comforters can be quilted but they are much "looser" to make room for 63A EIDER down filling. I think a better clue would have been "Comforter filler".

I also agree with Dennis about MSNBC's choices of romantic movies. I think Meg Ryan must have paid off the MSNBC staff. No "The Quiet Man" either...tsk, tsk...that one is a favorite for me.

I don't know if beer could be considered a food, but why not? Argyle always seems to have good answers, so I'll go along with beer for a month.

Jerome said...

"They got married?" Thanks Dennis. I've got my crack-up for the day!

Tinbeni said...

Al, Another great write-up.

Don G. I caught on to your theme immediately.
VERMOUTH, OLIVE, GIN are great in a DRY MARTINI ... but ICE?
I enjoy my "toasts" of Avatar NEAT.
ICE is never allowed.

Well, I'm back from the North, it was 16 when I left Salisbury, MD.
71 (but overcast) in T.B. ... I guess I'll just have to suffer with it.

Barry G. said...

With regard to GROCER and it's relation to gross, I thought I'd just point out that the Spanish word grosería actually does mean "rudeness, coarseness, vulgarity" (much to the chagrin of many beginning Spanish students). In Spanish, the word for groceries is actually comestibles (which is a direct cognate for the English word spelled the same way, although pronounced differently).

Mainiac said...

Beer and Sardines (in oil with jalapenos) are a food grouped! Does that count?

Belated Happy Birthdays to Splynter and Elissa. Tried to post last night but problems with the site killed me, so I quit. Youngest said I was being colicky. (they are a pain in the butt now that they read well)

windhover said...

You're standing on your head all day? Why?

Barry G. said...

Oh -- and as to the perfect food to survive on for a month, I'd go with pizza with all the toppings. You've got your grain (crust) your dairy (cheese), fruit (tomato sauce), meat (peperoni, ham & sausage) and veggies (peppers, broccoli and onions).

That may not be the "right" answer, but I bet I'd be happier eating that for a month than whatever the right answer is...

eddyB said...

Dennis. oops. Should have said: Freudian slip? Tells you where my mind is.
The problem was with my bookmark. Deleted it and reentered. Problem solved.

Headed for 22 degrees again. 22C.

Lucina said...

I would have to go with chile verde, green chile. My mother always said it was the perfect food!

Anonymous said...

I feel like I have gone backwards on completing crosswords as of late. I had a tough time with this one and never caught on to the theme, but is a very clever puzzle. Some of the unknown's were in too critical of places though.

Feeling quite blue this week as a good friend just had brain surgery for a cancerous tumor. Still awaiting the pathology results. Life is fragile. The family has already gone through two bouts of cancer with their daughter. Why does it hit some families so hard? The extreme cold doesn't help in the least either. Looking forward to a jaunt to Florida next week.

Enough of that though. Foods would be nuts or avocados I think, but a good martini sounds much better. Mine are always a top shelf vodka on the rocks with a twist of lemon. I never add vermouth. All those new sweet ones are fun, but not really martinis in my mind.

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

Another clever Don G. puzzle! I had to hit Goog a few times for unknowns, of course, there were plenty.

I'm with JzB: Martinis are are only martinis when they are made of Don's ingredients. All these stupid designer drinks - apple, chocolate, whatever - are defiling the good martini name. There oughtta be a law!

Clear Ayes - I sympathize about having to go to the dentist, among my least favorite things. I'm a bit worn out today for a good reason: Beer after breakfast. No, really, my dentist's name is Beer! I had a morning appointment.

Nice Cuppa said...


According to Lynn Osburn, it's HEMP SEED. I suppose the leaves would be useful too.


Dennis said...

No, the answer is certainly more recognizable than hemp seed. I know the question's bugging some people, but you need to think a bit outside the box.

erieruth said...

Hot Dogs???

Dennis said...

I wish.

Anonymous said...

My guesses for the perfect food would be first, the egg, then, the banana.

Anonymous said...

Germinated Mung bean -


Green Olives ( without C2H5OH )


Soy Milk

Jerome said...

windhover- I've been told that I'm dumb headed, so I figured why not show that I'm a wise ass.

C.C. Burnikel said...

I always thought brown rice is the perfect food.

carol said...

There is no perfect food...but I'd be very interested to know which food one could eat for a month that contained the best nutritional value. Dennis, you got us all thinking :)

Nice Cuppa said...


There is always the humble POTATO, of course.


Dennis said...

Gotta go in a little bit - I'm taking delivery of a new car this evening - so I'll post the answer at 5:45 Eastern unless someone gets it before then. Might wanna go back and read my 3:38 again.

anon@3:55, your soy milk answer is excellent; soybeans cooked w/salt is the #2 answer.

windhover said...


creature said...

I'll guess green olives OR peanut butter

Bill G. said...

The answer's bugging some people, eh? Bugs, eh? Fried ant and grasshopper salad? Nah. If bees are bugs, then honey seems good. What about royal jelly though?

creature said...

CertainLY, you're not gonna say roaches. Somehow, I think I've read that disgusting thought before.

windhover said...

More importantly, what's the new ride?

Tinbeni said...


I would guess ...

Scotch ...

Dennis said...

I hinted at the answer in my earlier post. I learned this many, many years ago at Jungle Survival School in the Marines, and just recently saw it reiterated:

Bugs. Grubworms, caterpillars, termites, cockroaches, maggots -- they have everything you need because they're complete life-forms. They have protein, carbs, fat, vitamins and minerals.
Congrats to Argyle for nailing it, but emailing me with the answer so as not to spoil it for everyone else.

Hey, enjoy your dinner.

thehondohurricane said...

Good grief Dennis,

I know you were in the Marines, it can't be Spam or K Rations, can it?

Jayce said...

Hello everybody. Been so busy, haven't done yesterday's or today's puzzles. Nor have I even had time to read your comments today or yesterday. Wanted to pop in and say hi anyway, and wish you all well.


Hmm, looks like the login process is different: click Preview (or Publish) first, BEFORE you can enter your user name and password. Maybe just this once.

Tinbeni said...


I would enjoy my PINCH for the whole month ...

And it has carbs and joy that BUGS just can't deliver.

(Though a certain form of Hemp would be just as enjoyable).

Abejo said...

Good Evening, Folks. I have had a busy day in Alexandria, VA. Visited the George Washington Masonic Memorial and the House of the Temple in DC. Going out to dinner shortly.

Congrats to Don Gagliardo for a great puzzle. Also to Al for a great write-up. Again, thank you to C.C. for posting.

This puzzle was not easy, but I did enjoy it. It took me a while to catch the theme, but once I did it was easier. Very clever. I do not drink martinis, but enjoyed the puzzle.

Not familiar with GAUD (40A), but Al clarified that.

EATABLE stumped me for a while. Also TERMED was hard to get.

All worked out. Got the puzzle. And will gladly spend $3.00 to print another tomorrow.


Anonymous said...

Despite the 'correct' answer- here are some alternatives-

1. Chlorella - single celled fresh water aquatic plant, w/'chlorophyll'
2. Organic Bee pollen (yes, WH !!!)
3. Activated barley
4. Beans, Beans, BEANS
5. Green Barley Grass
7. Marine Phytoplankton (?)
8. Organic Hemp seeds THC free, YES Nice Cuppa !!!
9. Milk, preferably raw,
10. Salba ( Salvia LATINUS ?)
11. Bananas Yes, 'other' Anon !!! 12. Lentil/Bean extract/Rice Congee soup ... Colostrum ... coconuts ... Goat Milk ...Garlic ... Acai berry ... Pizza ( Yes, BarryG !!! ) ... Maringa Oleifera ( The Miracle tree - Whaaat ?)

I need to get a life ...

lois said...

Good evening Al, CC and gang. Great job, Al, Thoroughly enjoyed your explanations and links...esp Misty - one of my ATF's (all time favs). That Yooper scooper is so clever. Who knew? And I never would've suspected that anyone saying "Oh my Gaud!" was referring to a bead on a rosary...esp someone kneeling. Things are not always what they seem. I had to laugh at 30A - reed (wind instrument vibrator) coupled w/11D On mike. That's a 'thrill' to be followed by a 'dry martini'. Good stuff -Getz my heart racin' anyway.

Dennis: bugs? I'd starve. They wouldn't stay down anyway if I knew I was eating them. Interesting question. Argyle, you de man!

Clear Ayes said...

If the answer for "food for a month" is bugs because "they're complete life-forms", I guess the Donner party wasn't too far off in their choice of survival methods.

Before anybody chimes in, I know that the reports of cannibalism were exaggerated, but it does make a horrifying campsite tale ....particularly if you're camping by the Truckee River in February.

Is pizza a single food, or is it a culinary preparation of several foods? I'd still vote for it over grubs (or beer) any day.

lois said...

Dennis: LOL at your comment last night about the very fabric of the time/space continuum being threatened by my being in Vegas. Very very funny! Don’t know about time/space, but I learned the last time that my idea of “doing the strip” is way different than what they think. I am, however, anticipating the earth moving while I’m there. So much so that I’m expecting there not to be any erection left in the city…esp the Stratosphere. And I hope that what goes on in Vegas doesn’t stay there but comes home w/me…in my wallet. It’s going to be a fabulous time. I’m going w/3 stunning male magnets and I figure I’m good just by association. I doubt Vegas is ready…or ever could
be. 1 day and a wu. Can’t wait.

WH: 2;35...LOL.

carol said...

Food (?) for the month??? Bugs, grubs- Gag, Gag - I'm with Lois, them little devils would not stay down. However, circumstances are everything and what sounds too gross to contemplate as we all sit in our comfy spaces would be bearable if faced with starvation. Really. I hope I am never in that situation!

carol said...

Lois, I hope you wear those 'boys' out!! As they say in poker, I'll see you and raise you. Here's saluting those 'raises' :) Puts new meaning to betting on the come. Well, I know you will have a 'ball'.

lois said...

Carol: LMAO! I'm going to play
'craps' first. I love the way you think. LOL I've been practicing w/the professional bachelor next door, Mr. Las Vegas. Cheers!

Dennis: congratulations on the new ride. Nothing beats the smell of a new car...well almost nothing. Hope it's a convertible then we both can go topless.

David said...

I'm coming in late on this, but today's puzzle has two examples of clue/answer combinations that strike me as weak.
> Response to "You were kidding, right?" I MEANT IT
> "We can talk now" I'M FREE
None of the four clues or answers here have any kind of literary or historical basis; they are simply taken from casual conversation.
I realize the answers contribute to constructing the puzzle, but I don't agree with their legitimacy.

Jeannie said...

And here I thought it was Jeannie's meatloaf recipe....go figure! Dennis?

Once again no time for the puzzle but after reading the blog (excellent as always Al) I probably would have taken a "swing and a miss"...too many baseball clues and I don't follow that sport at all.

Clearayes, I am so happy to hear of your diagnosis, and that your chemo treatments are done! Everyone has already said what they thought of you, but I believe
you know just what I think of you!!
If I could post a link to a hug I would! You are a remarkable woman.

It seems I missed some birthdays...belated ones to Splynter and Elissa.

EddyB, I am not sure what troubles you are going through, but my thoughts are with you.

Gunghy, somehow, I don't think I am aging as gracefully as you, but may take up your offer!

Booth layout will be done tomorrow, just brow beat a couple of vendors for LMS, customer books go to print on Tuesday so I may be able to breathe after that.

Fermatprime...may you find some comfort soon.

MFCounselor...I hope your eye appointment went well. I worry about you.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of things staying down: There`s an old bar tale about a bet that no one could eat a raw oyster and keep it down...because everytime someone swallowed one, the barkeep would tell them..."You`re the only one that`s swallowed that oyster today and kept it down!"

Annette said...

My first pass of the acrosses today garnered only SIX answers! The downs went better, but it still looked hopeless for a while... In the end though, perseverance and 4 G's got 'er done! I "got" the theme, and loved it! Thank you, Don!

The theme reminds me of a cute little black tank top I bought this weekend to give my niece at her "sexy lingerie" bridal shower - it had a martini on it, with the phrase "I like it dirty!" They were out of the matching thong though...

Cigar tip? was my favorite misleading clue among many!

Susan said...

Haven't read to the end of the blog yet, but I seem to remember reading once that dates were the perfect food. I'll keep reading to see if you tell us the answer.

Frenchie said...

I always enjoy your write ups...thanks. Well done!

64a. od'ed I feel this isn't really PC for those who have been touched by such a tragic thing as drug over dose.

20a. sticker price/1d. APR
35a. about to go live/ 11d. on mike

21d. with sauce/pertly I would never have figuered this out. To me, these two ideas are mutually exclusive. ...only in a crossword puzzle could they ever relate and make sense! And here I was feeling like I may have a taste for pasta for dinner!

What a ride. Things fell fine. It's just that it was like Alice in Wonderland.Curiouser and curiouser!