Jun 30, 2011

Thursday, June 30, 2011, Ed Sessa

Theme: Hey, MICKEY, you're so fine. 52D.When spelled out, word that follows the beginnings of the starred answers in a memorable kids' show theme song: MOUSE.

20A. *13th in a literary series of 26: M IS FOR MALICE. Along with 42A. Author Grafton who wrote 20-Across: SUE.

29A. *Me.-to-Fla. route: I NINETY-FIVE. Interstate highway from Maine to Florida.

35A. *Benjamin: C-NOTE. It's all about the Benjamins. My daughter is getting sick of hearing me say "follow the money" whenever she asks me why someone did something.

39A. *Blue Light Specials store: K-MART. Now owned by Sears.

43A. *The Boss's backup: E STREET BAND. Bruce Springsteen.

53A. *All men have them: Y CHROMOSOMES.

Hi all, Al here. Did anyone else get anything more complex for the theme? Seemed a bit simple for a Thursday. (Note from C.C.: Looks simple, but it's tough to find familiar phrases where the first word is an English letter, not to mention in equal length for symmetry.)


1. Nile reptile: CROC. In it's natural habitat.

5. Dance in Rio: SAMBA. Brazilian dance of African origin, Zemba, from Portugese samba, shortened form of zambacueca, a type of dance, probably altered (by influence of zamacueco "stupid") from zambapalo, the name of a grotesque dance, itself an alteration of zampapalo "stupid man," from zamparse "to bump, crash."

10. Net info sources: FAQS. Frequently Asked Questions.

14. Make over: REDO.

15. Dwindling Alaskan tribe: ALEUT.

16. It runs in Juarez: AGUA. Spanish water.

17. Copycat: APER.

18. Horn without keys: BUGLE.

19. Place to brood: COOP. Old English brod "brood, fetus, hatchling "that which is hatched by heat." The verbal figurative meaning ("to incubate in the mind") is from the notion of "nursing" one's anger, resentment, etc.

23. Glucose regulator: INSULIN. From Latin insula "island," so called because the hormone is secreted by the islets of Langerhans in the pancreas.

24. Winter phenomenon, commercially: SNO.

25. Diary of a sort: LOG.

28. Cultural org. since 1965: NEA. National Endowment for the Arts. PBS sponsor.

32. Actress Gardner: AVA. Husbands and lovers include Mickey Rooney, Howard Hughes, Artie Shaw and Frank Sinatra.

33. Party invite inits.: BYO. Bring Your Own beverage.

34. "So be it!": AMEN. From Hebrew for "truth".

38. "__ to him who believes in nothing": Hugo: WOE. From Les Misérables.

40. Bats: LOCO. Daft, nuts.

41. "Platoon" setting, briefly: NAM.

46. Basic resting spot: COT. Basic training.

49. "So that's it!": OHO.

50. Where kronor are spent: Abbr.: SWEeden.

51. Cooks quantity?: TOO MANY. Cooks spoil the broth. Many hands make the work light. Make up your mind...

55. Bunker smoother: RAKE. Golf sandtrap.

58. Give __: inspire: A LIFT.

59. Capable of: UP TO.

60. Cell impulse transmitter: AXON. Nerve ending.

61. Blakley of "Nashville": RONEE. Unknown to me.

62. Put in stitches: SEWN. Expecting something funny here.

63. "I Love Lucy" producer/writer Oppenheimer: JESS. If you say so.

64. Tipped at the casino: TOKED. Never been to Vegas, but makes sense, I guess.

65. Winged archer: EROS. Greek God of love, Roman counterpart: Cupid.


1. Fill snugly with: CRAM IN.

2. Complain: REPINE. Old English pine (pain, torture) with intensifier "re-", to cause pain.

3. Potemkin mutiny city: ODESSA. The Battleship Potemkin, a propaganda film. The Tsar's Cossacks in their white summer tunics march down the Odessa steps in a rhythmic, machine-like fashion firing volleys into a crowd.

4. Argonauts' island refuge: CORFU.

5. Kate's "Charlie's Angels" role: SABRINA. Charlie's Angels.

6. Some booster club members: ALUMNI. Latin alumnus "a pupil," literally "foster son", from a word meaning "to nourish".

7. Byte beginning: MEGA. Prefix meaning one million.

8. Dartboard area: BULLS-EYE.

9. Diminished slowly: ATE INTO.

10. Watch part: FACE. Band, dial, hand, stem, gear, lots of choices.

11. Back in time: AGO.

12. Status __: QUO. "The state in which", so existing state of affairs.

13. Deplete: SAP. "weaken or destroy insidiously," originally "dig a trench toward the enemy's position", from M.Fr. saper, from sappe "spade," from Latin sappa "spade". The sense of "weaken" on the notion of "draining the vital sap from."

21. Martini garnish: OLIVE.

22. Demure: COY. from Old French coi, earlier quei "quiet, still, placid, gentle," ultimately from Latin quietus "resting, at rest".

25. Andean bean: LIMA. Simmonds' "Dictionary of Trade" (1858) describes it as "esteemed," but it has the consistency of a diseased dog kidney.

26. Done: OVER.

27. Mannerly fellow: GENT.

30. Nuclear radiation weapon, for short: N-BOMB. The neutron bomb was supposed to kill people but leave buildings intact.

31. Popularity: FAME.

32. Comment end?: ATOR. Commentator

35. Mark's love: CLEOpatra.

36. Chips and dip, say: NOSH. From Yiddish nashn "nibble,"

37. Twice quadri-: OCTO.

38. Decisive downfall: WATERLOO.

39. Praise: KUDOS. Greek.

41. 1980s sitcom set in rural Vermont: NEWHART. Hi, I'm Larry. This is my brother Darryl and this is my other brother Darryl.

42. Acted snobbishly toward: SNOOTED.

44. PC key: ESC. I use it all the time with my favored Unix text editor. Really messes me up when I have to switch back to using Windows though.

45. Payment for cash?: ATM FEE. I remember when these were first being pushed to be accepted to lower your account fees because banks would save money not having to pay a teller for mundane tasks. They seem to have lost sight of that...

46. Boy scout, at times: CAMPER.

47. Fight combo: ONE TWO. Boxing. Give 'im the ol' one-two, along with 57D. Haymaker consequences: KOS. Knock-outs.

48. Boxer Mike et al.: TYSONS. Hmmm, I think one of those is enough...

53. Desires: YENS. Earlier yin "intense craving for opium", from Chinese (Cantonese) yan "craving," or from a Beijing dialect word for "smoke." Reinforced in English by influence of yearn.

54. Pen call: OINK.

55. British rule in India: RAJ. From Hindi raj "rule, kingdom" c.f. Rajah.

56. Bush whacker?: AXE. The spelling ax is better on every ground, of etymology, phonology, and analogy, than axe, which became prevalent during the 19th century; but it is now disused in Britain. [OED] (but then it wouldn't fit in a LAT crossword puzzle).


Notes from C.C.:

1) I'd like to share with you a baseball themed puzzle Don G made for my birthday. Click here for Across Lite file and here for PDF version. The clues are original & tough. When you're done, click here to see the layered gimmicks. I only got half of the tricks.

2) Here are a few cool pictures from Marti & Dudley's lunch meeting yesterday. Marti has more detailed captions on her photos. Unfortunately they don't show well in the pictures.


Dennis said...

Good morning, C.C. and gang - just wanted to wish C.C. a very, very HAPPY BIRTHDAY. I don't know how you can possibly top the successes/accomplishments of the past year, but I have no doubt you will. Have an outstanding day!

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Thanks for all the birthday wishes and advice yesterday. And is today C.C.'s birthday? HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU!

Today's puzzle was about average in terms of difficulty. The theme was nice, but some of the fill was awfully clunky. BYO by itself seemed really week. And the entire bottom central section was rough, what with SNOOTED, TOKED, RONEE and ALIFT all CRAMmed IN together. The NW was also a bit off with CORFU and REPINE nearly side by side.

Everything else was smooth, though, and the perps took care of most of the problems.

A.R.E. said...

Happy B-Day CC.


Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, CC and friends. I absolutely loved this thursday puzzle. I got the theme immediately and found it very amusing.

I saw the Potemkin Battleship in a class in high school. The only thing I remembered was the infamous baby carriage scene.

Happy, Happy Birthday to you C.C.! I hope today is extra special for you. How nice of Don G to make you a special baseball crossword.

In honor of your birthday, here is today's QOD: Age is strictly a case of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter. ~ Jack Benny

C.C. Burnikel said...

Very interesting comment on YEN. I did not know the connection before. Mandarin Chinese has 4 tones. In even tone, YIN means "negative/dark", as in YIN/YANG; In rising tone, YIN means "loose/promiscuous"; In falling & rising tone, YIN means "addict", as you mentioned in the writeup; In falling tone, YIN means "stamp", as in "Dennis left his yin in this blog".

Bill & ltl are right. You're safe in blue. All the thieves have been doing is to steal others' names and comment in Black. ltl (long time lurker) was a victim before. I hope he/she turns blue.

C.C. Burnikel said...

A.R.E et al,
Thanks for the birthday wishes (from yesterday as well). You've all been so kind to me in the past few years. Your loyal support & consisently fun comments make running this blog rewarding and worthwhile. Great to see you again, A.R.E.

windhover said...

Happy Birthday, C. C.

I'm not too worried about identity theft. Most people are interested in trading up.

Dot said...

It is usually so late when I get to the blog, that anything worth saying has already been said. So I have not commented for quite awhile. However, even though i have not seen today's puzzle, I will join you early birds in wishing C.C. a wonderful birthday. I always enjoy seeing your comments. Thank you so much for the blog.

And Dennis, the blog is not the same without you. Without your "Today is ----" info, we don't know whether we need to be eating donuts, going for a walk or what!" No wonder life is so confusing!


Spitzboov said...

Good morning all.

Belated Happy Birthday to Barry G. Hope you had a great day.

And a resounding 40th Happy Birthday to C.C. All the best to you.

Haven't done the cw yet. Getting ready to travel to New England (hard g) for a few days. Will salute Dudley and HeartRx as I pass their exits on the MassPike this afternoon. Everyone have a great 4th of July weekend.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Does Al's write-up look complete in your screen? I got nothing after 28A now.

Anonymous said...


Yes, same here. I thought it was only me. I use Explorer.

C.C. Burnikel said...

How about now?

Dick said...

Good morning Al and all, a somewhat easy puzzle for a Thursday. Like Barry I struggled with “Ronee”, toked, and “a lift”, but the perps were kind and I was able to get the fill.

As usual Al you write up was filled with good information. Thanks.

A belated Happy BD to Barry and a Happy Birthday to CC.

The first time I logged on to the site this morning only a few of Al’s comments appeared. I logged out and tried again this time everything appeared.

I never saw the movie Potemkin Battleship, but form the clip I am just as happy to have not seen it.

I will be gone until the 6th of July so here’s wishing you all a fun filled weekend.

Lemonade714 said...

Well Happy Birthday C.C., and many more. Your day has already been great with a really nice puzzle here, and the wonderful personal bonus from DG. I am late commenting, having stopped to do that one. I hope you all take the time to wish our fearles leader well on this her day.

I really enjoyed the theme and structure of this one, and living in Florida, who does not love Mickey Mouse, who has brought our economy more money than anyone.

I used to like RONEE Blakely's singing, Nashville is probably worth watching again.

I liked it all except the extra S in Tysons; if you need the S use the chicken company not a plural of a singular man. IMO

Anonymous said...


Display is fully back to normal now.

Tinbeni said...

C.C. Happy Birthday.

When "So that's it" happens, I would say AHA.

Hmmm, TOKED is something I would do with Mary-Jane.

HeartRx said...

Good Morning Al, and HAPPY BIRTHDAY to you, C.C.!

I loved your write-up, Al. Yep, I got the same thing with the theme. I thought it was pretty straight-forward. But as CC pointed out, this must have been very difficult to find such smooth theme entries, without any of them sounding "forced".

So in that respect, plus some of the fill that want not exactly intuitive, made it seem like a Thursday level puzzle. Good to see you pop in, Dennis. But I knew you wouldn't forget C.C.'s birthday!

HeartRx said...

Sorry the notes on the photos didn't come out clearly. Here they are:

#1 The first picture of Dudley has the caption" All he needs is a white scarf an a leather helmet, right?" The red arrow pointing to the left indicates an empty space, where a brand new hangar used to be. (Incredible destruction!!)

#3 Captions are an arrow pointing to a heap of scrap metal, saying "This used to be a Cessna, like Dudley's in the front row" and another arrow pointing to he planes to the right, that says "Every plane in the row suffered severe to total damage".

ltl said...

Al, I think the 'basic' in 'basic resting spot'(46A)is implying 'rudimentary' as opposed to basic training. Cots haven't been used in basic training in many decades.

sherry said...

Had some problems. Didn't know Corfu,repine,& nea. Ruined the nw corner.
SW corner was also a no go. As I didn't know Jess or rake. Knew: Raj,axon,& axe but 57 down alluded me so....

erieruth said...

C.C - Happy Birthday - you are remarkable. I hope you are celebrating your milestone birthday just as YOU wish!

All the best to you.

Grumpy 1 said...

Good morning, Al and solvers all. A great big hug and happy birthday for our fabulous forty fearless leader. May you really enjoy your day C.C.

A year ago this one would probably have required a trip to Google to complete, but most of the trivia in today's puzzle has been seen recently and I filled it easily. I'm not sure I'm getting any smarter but I am getting better at crosswords.

WH, I'm still chuckling at you trading up comment.

I'll have to give Don G's birthday puzzle a try.

kazie said...

I want to wish C.C. a wonderful birthday again, now that it's the right day. I'm guessing she won't choose a big steak for her celebratory dinner. What will it be, C.C.? Enjoyed seeing your new pix yesterday too.

I thought I was doing well for a Thursday to get through this with no major lock-ups. Then I came here and realized I'd screwed up the first theme answer having no clue about that title or the Potemkin movie. I had M IN FORMALISE, ODENSE and SHY. NEA to me is a teachers' union, and I had no clue about SNH for 24A.

C-NOTE also took a while but finally clicked, and the SW was the slowest area to fall.

Marti and Dudley,
Nice pix!

Husker Gary said...

Hi Puzzlers! I thought this was a very Thursday puzzle with a lovely theme and fun answers!

-I gotta read some of those Grafton books!
-At first I wondered if 20 across ended in ICE, LICE, ALICE or MALICE
-I guess CROC is a word
-Juarez is a horrible city right in the epicenter of the drug wars!
-Has anyone seen the word APER outside of a cwd?
-There few sensory experiences to match a chicken COOP on an August afternoon!
-A graduate of my tiny Nebraska high school was the head of Glen Glen Sound who did the audio for the Lucy show
-I won’t repine about REPINE
-More later, I have to go to the park with Heckle and Jeckle before it gets too hot!

Razz said...

Happy Birthday C. C. - Thank you for all of your efforts.

Al - Great write up.

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers - First things first: A very Happy Birthday to our Chief Cruciverbalist! Many happy returns of the day.

I am some kind of impressed that Ed Sessa could come up with all those long phrases and fit 'em in a puzzle. Clever work, I sez.

Spitz, good thing you know your way along the Turnpike - you'll know how to get here for a meet-up (hint hint).

Enjoyed my lunch gathering with Hearti and her husband yesterday, now there's a couple with a fun sense of humor!

I was nervous about parking the airplane right next to all that wreckage, I didn't want to scare her.

Anonymous said...

can anyone shed light on the birthday theme?

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

HBD, C.C., my D-I-L Dana , and Barry, only a day late.

REPINE is new to me. Missed the T at the SNOOTED - A LIFT cross.

Was totally befuddld by ATEIN TO. DOH!

Interesting Theme placememts, and a nice grid. Very well constructed puzzle.

Al - love the CROC link.

That AVA was quite a LOOKER, back in the day.

I'm over-busy right now - TOO MANY things to CRAM IN. I might be out of touch for the next week or more.

Read the Grafton books years ago, but got bored before making it to M. Just about through A Game of Thrones, ready to move on to Clash of Kings - very impressive stuff.

IMBO, for a while.

JzB who has not SNOOTED anyone

carol said...

First of all, a very happy 40th birthday to you C.C. I hope you do something wonderful. You sure have here.
Also thank you for the info on being 'blue'. I removed my e-mail info from my profile and everything else went with it. I should not have my e-mail in my actual name. I am aware that this would not result in actual 'identity theft', but still will change my e-mail name.

Jeannie from last night: I removed the profile info, not Joe...he didn't even know about it.

To the puzzle: Yikes, it was a bit too difficult for me but it was clever. I finished about 3/4 of it.

Marti and Dudley, how nice you could meet! Shame about those airplanes!

JD said...

♫•*¨*•.❤.•*¨*•♫♪•.¸¸.•´♫♪♩♬*¨*`•.♥.•´*♫♪ Happy Birthday tooooo youuuuuuuu. Have a lovely day C.C.

HeartRx said...

Dudley, you're right about all the wreckage. It was rather unnerving to see. But we had a thoroughly enjoyable time with you, too!

Spitz - I know you are probably in a hurry to beat traffic today, but next time you go past exit 9, I hope you do more than just salute!

C.C., I finished Don's birthday puzzle - you're right, it was a toughie! I got all the gimmicks, except for the "P..." (I don't think that spoils it for anyone). Fun theme, though!!

kathy rn said...

Threw me off on the "Mark's Love" clue. Should be "Marc".

Warren said...

Hi gang, Happy Birthday C.C.!
The Toke answer made me think of another Toke

BTW, NPR just said that today is Mike Tyson's birthday too!


mariposa said...

Thought I would come out of lurking status to wish C.C. a happy birthday. Hope your day is a great one.

Ruth A said...

Thank you so much fot all your hard work in solving the puzzles and then providing the answers too. I love starting my day with coffee and the puzzle knowing I can complete each puzzle with a little help(sometimes more than a little on Fridays and Saturdays ) from you. Special thanks for rising early to post answers :)

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, Liked this! I got the theme after the M and the I and zipped down to fill in unifier 52D)MOUSE.

I liked everything except 42D)SNOOTED. I know (since I looked it up post-puzzle) that it is in the dictionary, but it just looks and sounds strange.

56D)Bush whacker?..with a question mark. It made me think of chopping and clearing in Texas.

kathy rn@10:17, I think it is Marc(us) Antonius in Latin, but Mark Antony in English. I see what you mean about using his given name for the clue. He was from the Antonia clan, so Antony would correspond to his last name in English. 35D)CLEO is an anglicized nickname. Her English name would have been Cleopatra Ptolemy VII. (I just finished reading "Cleopatra: A Life", by Stacy Schiff, so that makes me an expert. ;o).. Haha.. Hoho..)

Nice photos, Marti and Dudley. Really sad about all the damage in the area.

Wishing C.C. a lovely Happy Birthday.

eddyB said...


Happy Birthday CC. I heard that 40
is the new 30.

Jerome said...

Happy Birthday Golden One!

Curious- ODESSA has all the letters of ED SESSA

WHAT do you get with YCHROMOSOMES?


Clear Ayes said...

Chade-Meng Tan: "I work in Google. I am Google's Jolly Good Fellow (yes, it is my official job title). I used to be a Google engineer. I'm now semi-retired. My current job description at Google is, "Enlighten minds, open hearts, create world peace". In my free time, I try to save the world."

He is also a fine poet. This is a poem for any day and particularly a birthday.

One Moment

A life-time is not what's between,
The moments of birth and death.
A life-time is one moment,
Between my two little breaths.

The present, the here, the now,
That's all the life I get,
I live each moment in full,
In kindness, in peace, without regret.

- Chade-Meng Tan

Anonymous said...


Absence makes the heart grow fonder. Out of sight, out of mind. Make up your mind...


Sheng Ri Kuai Le!

Grumpy 1 said...

C.C.,thank you for sharing your present from Don G with the rest of us. I really enjoyed it. It certainly wasn't a breeze but I was able to pick my way through it. What a clever theme!

Early on I was using Yosemite Sam's line for some of the clues.
I'd send you a 14a boquet, 57a. Count me as 16a, though.

creature said...

Good Day C.C., Al and all,

Well, I must add “Happy Birthday” to the greeting, C.C.. What a big day it is for all of us, as well. So glad I am a part of this great corner, that you created. Thanks and many more.

Ed’s puzzle was mainly a pleasure and the theme was well done. It slowed me down in places, yet my only stop {look-up] was JESS. Thanks for your challenge, Ed.

C.C., Don’s puzzle was a bear for me, but I persevered. What a treat to have a second puzzle, but I must say I am, now, puzzled out. Will we ever get to talk about it?

Love everyone coming out of the woodwork to applaud C.C.! It is so exciting!

Have a nice day everyone.

Jeannie said...

I didn’t do too badly for a Thursday. I only had to look up Ronee Blakely. I can’t say that I’ve ever used “repine” in a sentence, but there it was and had to be right. Can someone explain to me how “haymaker consequences” = KO’s? I don’t understand that one. My favorite today was “basic resting spot” – cot. Al, I enjoyed your write up as usual, but didn’t K-Mart buy Sears?

Today is Meteor Day, National handshake day, and National Bomb Pop day. It’s really hot here today so I think I will opt for a Bomb Pop.

Lastly, have a great birthday today C.C. I hope Boomer spoils you with something nice.

C.C. Burnikel said...

You're so funny and sweet.

Feel free to talk Don's puzzle.

How do you get such toned arms?

Bill G. said...

Jeannie, a haymaker is a wild, powerful swing in a fight or a boxing match. A KO is a knockout. So, a haymaker ofter results in a knockout.

melissa bee said...

just wanted to say happy happy birthday c.c., and congratulations on your successes this past year. i look forward to more of your puzzles, and am honored to be among your team of guest bloggers.

you are heading into a wonderful time, 40's are just fantastic - especially when you look like you're 20.

have a wonderful day :)

JD said...

I had a few V8 moments on this one, such as ator, and finally filling the P in aper to fill the unknown repine.Actually, Barry's assessment was spot on for me.Ronee (talk about weird spelling)sitting on toked, which sounds a little DF.I gave that section an OINK!

Nosh, I've got to get used to this word which we are seeing more often. Have never heard it said in conversation.
For 46D, I wanted to fill in Dennis,and also thought about his or Lois's would be remarks about "all men have them."

No asterisks in our paper, so theme
was an ah-ha... a very fun puzzle!
Thanks Al for all the information you give us.

Husker Gary said...

Musings 2
-Back from the park and cooling off as the temp nears 100!
-I could not open the .puz file
-I appreciated the info yesterday – both on this site and to my personal email.
-Nice pix Dudley and Marti!
-Planes that land in Omaha land at Eppley Airfield which is located right on the Missouri. This amazing video shows the horrendous flooding on the Iowa side of the river as the plane is approaching from the East. Notice the I-29 and Missouri River normal channel labels! AMAZING!

C.C. Burnikel said...

You're right. No steak for me. It's hot here. I just want some cold seaweed salad & cold soba noodles.

Clear Ayes,
Thanks for the nice poem. You always pick up the best one.

Razz & Mariposa et al,
Thanks for dropping by today. Nice to see all of you.


JD said...

CA, that poem was lovely. Too bad that it takes something awful to happen for us to appreciate each and every day.

Enjoyed seeing your pictures, Mardi and Dudley. Never having lived thru floods, hurricanes,etc.,it is hard to imagine. This has been a strange year of catastrophic events.

Clear Ayes said...

Don G's Birthday Puzzle was a toughie. I had to leave a few blank spaces at 35D) BN--, 40D) R-I and 42A) U-I.

I absolutely loved the way WHO topped FIRST, WHAT topped SECOND and I DON'T KNOW topped THIRD. ABBOTT and COSTELLO's Who's On First skit is a terrific birthday present for C.C.

Anonymous said...

I think we need Dennis' spark back on the blog, and I think I know how to do it. Could you ladies simply change your avatars to nekkid pictures of yourselves? I bet he'd be back in no time.

Anonymous said...

Clear Ayes. I think the point is WHO is "on" FIRST(not topped). WHAT is "on" SECOND.....

Clear Ayes said...

OK Anon@1:32, you asked for it. You really this this will bring Dennis back? Hmmmm....I wonder....

Another OK to Anon@1:39, ON is the correct choice. I still feel pleased that I "got" it, with the exception of the P in 42A and 43A)HOME. And I got a kick out of watching ABBOTT and COSTELLO's skit. I remember seeing it when I was about the same age as my new avatar.

Avg Joe said...

What everyone has already said about the LA puzzle. Ambitious and interesting construction, but the theme is really pretty tepid. Liked finally seeing one of Sue Grafton's titles in its entirety. Did not like Snooted...not one bit.

And Happy Birthday C.C. I nearly completed your bonus puzzle, but got hung up in the SE corner. Did get the theme, though, and thought that was very clever.

Jayce said...

Hello everybody, and warm happy birthday wishes to you, C.C.

A good puzzle today. Interesting and clever theme. Some terrific fill, such as BULLSEYE, INSULIN, NEWHART, and WATERLOO. Damn clever clue for TOO MANY :)

REPINE, SNOOTED, and TOKED were unknown terms to me, but now I know them, not that I anticipate ever using them in conversation. I'll probably never say N BOMB either. And now I know who Ronee Blakley is. Oh, and Tess Oppenheimer, not that I'll remember that name an hour from now.

Agree with Lemonade about TYSONS.

Thanks for the photos of you, Dudley and Marti.

Jayce said...

Clear Ayes, very cute! Haha, made me look!

Grumpy 1 said...

Oh my! It doesn't get much more DF than a totally nekkie CA playing with her.. ahem!

john28man said...

I would like to add my birthday congratulation to all the others.

crazyhorse said...

A very happy birthday to you!
I always thought the 40's was the best decade!
I just didn't care what anyone thought about me anymore.

So funny!

Miss you

HeartRx said...

C.C. @ 1:07, carrying laundry up and down three flights of stairs?

CA- hilarious pic, and Grumpy 1, leave it to you to comment on what she was playing with, LOL!

Lucina said...

Hello, puzzlers and again, very special and happy wishes, C.C. I too hope Boomer is spoiling you today.

Al, wonderful blogging, thank you and I still have to open some links. One of my sisters is flying in from Orange, Cty for our next trip and I was preparing the room for her.

I loved most of this puzzle as CROC was almost too easy and first filled MAMBO before SAMBA became apparent. Thought of JazzB at horn, BUGLE, only because it's a brass instrument.

All the rest was a breeze until the mid west and SW. OHO, Mark, misdirected me because I think of Marc and CLEOpatra. Thanks, CA, for that explanation.

Benjamin, CNOTE also came slowly but with the theme and MOUSE I grokked ESTREETBAND.

DNF the SW so thanks again, AL.
Since I was gone last week I must have missed something. What has happened with Dennis?

I hope everyone is having a lovely Thursday!

Lucina said...

Thank you. We arrived home quite late because our flight was delayed by several hours, not that we minded a little more time in the cool climate of San Francisco.

I must repeat meeting you and the rest of the coven was fabuloso!

Dudley said...

Oops, sorry Hearti, I didn't word that quite right! I knew you were tough enough for all that destruction, it was Martha (the airplane) I didn't want to scare!

Sort of like an old-time wagon driver not wanting to tie up his best cart horse near the knacker's yard...

Airplanes are categorically exempt from PATHETIC FALLACY. We all know they are sensitive.

dodo said...

Hi, everybody!

A GREAT BIG HAPPY BIRTHDAY, C.C.!May you have many many more! Think how famous you are at only 40! You are definitely a WINNER!

Pretty much the same as most of you about today's puzzle. Hand up for 'snooted'. Not good! I have never heard 'snoot' used as a verb. I put in 'snubbed' and of course had to change it.

No look ups for metoday, though I
thought I would need help. Perps did a lot! Odessa' was a WAG that worked!

Guess I missed something about our profiles. Have to go back and look, although I have felt much the same as WH regarding ID theft, even having had a friend who had it happen! I live dangerously!

Jerome said...

Don, you sneaky Pete! Great puzzle... just perfect for C.C.

And, I might add, pretty damn clean for a tough grid to layout and fill!

GarlicGal said...

C.C. Tante Auguri, as we say in Italian! Hope you have a wonderful day.

Dodo - I thought you seemed like a woman who lives on the edge! Just keep yourself "blue" as a few others pointed out.

Clear Ayes - made me look, too! Boy are you quick.

Haven't gotten to the other V.I.P.
yet. (That would be Very Important Puzzle.) I'm saving it for dessert.

Back to summer - for a while I guess. Tank top? Turtle neck? Tank top? Turtle neck? I'm addled, at sea and adrift. Bewitched? Bothered? Bewildered? You pick!

Jayce said...

GarlicGal, tank top.

dodo said...

Aha! I thought it was just your
30th, C.C. Please forgive me! Some one today said 40th,and I picked it up. Anyway You're young! Live it up!

Yup, the message about ID theft was after I signed off for the day.
He's only using the names for here, I guess. I love your description, C.C. "he has the soul of a rotten banana peel". Makes me think of Jamie Fox in "Mash" and his epithets!

CA, where do you get lovely little poems like the one today? Has anyone ever heard of Mr. Tan? Do you subscribe to some esoteric poetry mag or something? I'm sure I'd never find that name in any anthologies I can think of!

Jeannie said...

A little riddle:

What English word that has nine letters, remains a word at each step when you remove one letter from it, right up to a single letter remaining. List each letter as you remove them, along with the resulting word at each step.

Anonymous said...


Hahtoolah said...

My goodness, Clear Ayes, you are ever so much younger than I imagined!

Melissa Bee, here's a question for you. What it the proper etiquette for when your pedicurist falls asleep while doing your nails?

Linda said...

My dear CC: The happiest of birthdays to you.

I went into severe depression on my 30th birthday...thought my life was "over." Decided I would live...went back to college and earned my BA in education...and with 3 children! By 40, I had decided I was just a young chick, after all!

As intelligent as you are...why not complete a degree, if you haven`t`s NEVER too late and I found college much more fun at 30 than I did at 18! At 40, it should be a riot!

Al said...

@Jeannie, it was more of a merger, but Sears Holdings is the name at the top managing all the stores. It probably won't matter anyway, unless it does something truly miraculous to turn around the financial troubles it has been having ever since the merger completed.

Marge said...

Hi all,
I did it again- I pushed the wrong key and there went my blog. It happened yesterday too and I quit. I hope I can get this one in now.

Wed.'s puzzle was harder than Mon. and Tue. I had Hadj Tuesday instead of Haji but when I looked them up they are both right. The French phrases were ok except for the spelling, I had to have help there.

Someone once made me a Tea Cozy for my teapot. We usually drink ice tea this time of year.We are finally getting hot weather.

Sabrina was good today, also Sue Grafton. I've read all her alphabetized books.

Have a good evening!

eddyB said...


CC. Thanks for sharing.
Don G. Had to laugh at 26A. See that you got it in this time.

creature said...

OMG, Hahtool,

That's one of the funniest post. A real LOL. Thanks.

LaLaLinda said...

A very Happy Birthday to you, C.C. I hope you've had a wonderful day! Thanks so much for this great blog and congrats on your recent puzzles. Looking forward to more!

creature said...

Dudley and Marti super pics. Thanks.

CA, Really? You? simply great! Love the photographer. Where?

MJ said...

HAPPY, HAPPY BIRTHDAY, C.C.! I hope you are celebrating in style. Thank you so much for all you have done to create and maintain this wonderful blog-site.

Dodo (from yesterday), Drake is our only grandchild to date, hoping for more. So much fun and joy!

Clear Ayes, LOL!

Very impressive offering from Ed Sessa today. As C.C. said, it must have been a bear to come up with "beginning letter" phrases that could be symmetrically placed in the grid.

Fun to see the recent photos of cyber "friends" meetings.

Enjoy the night!

melissa bee said...

hahtool, i'm not sure there is proper etiquette for that situation - but you could try buying her a cup of coffee. i've heard stories of massage therapists drifting off during a session also - many of the therapists i know are also going to school and have children - it happens.

Jayce said...

I really like this blog and I like all of you lovely folks who contribute toward making it so pleasant.

Clear Ayes said...

My latest avatar shows what passed for a swimming pool with my family. I think we were pretty poor, I just didn't know it at the time :o)

Anon@1:32, I don't think the new avatar is going to get the response you were hoping for. Maybe it calls for more nekkidity. Perhaps this reclining nude will work. Yup, that's me. You can tell by the butt, thighs, big ears and big feet...LOL, nothing really ever changes. Come on folks, you know you (or your mother) has a photo like this in an album someplace.

Jeannie, from last night. I think your menu sounds delicious. Maybe I'd leave the watermelon wedges for breakfast, or next day lunch. Your guests don't have to stuff themselves at dinner. Just remember to tell them to save room for the pie.

C.C. Your new photos are very pretty. I hope your day was very special.

That's it for me today. Have a good evening all.

Anonymous said...

"When spelled out, word that follows the beginnings of the starred answers in a memorable kids' show theme song"... This is an extremely poorly worded clue. I think what is meant is something like the following:

Memorable kids' show theme song word which follows a word formed by the beginnings of the starred clues.

Abejo said...

Good Evening, folks! Thank you, Ed, for a great puzzle. Thank you, Al, for the swell write-up.

Well, from reading the blog I see that it is C.C's birthday. Happy Birthday to you, C.C. Hope you have many more and great health along with them.

I have been an absentee blogger for about a week, or more. I have been very busy closing our office in Illinois. I have done a few of the crosswords, but did not have time to log in.

This puzzle was easily done. I thought a little too easy for a Thursday. But, that is OK.

I started with 1A and got stumped initially because the clue was not abbreviated, but the answer, as it turned out, was abbreviated. CROC for crocodile. I got it eventually with perps.

REPINE is a new word for me. Also got it with perps. I like learning new words.

TOKED became obvious once I got WATERLOO.

RAJ was easy. I have read some books on India and the British rule was an interesting time. The British certainly left their mark on the world. Some not so good, but most of it good. In my opinion.

The theme was clever and was easily solved. The only one I had to think about a little was Y CHROMOSOMES. YENS secured it for me.

Husker Gary: Enjoyed the film clip you provided. That flooding was unbelievable.

Great puzzle and I am glad I had the time to log in in. I read all your posts and, as usual, enjoyed reading them. I hope to be with on a daily basis again, as I have since last December when I was allowed to join this blog.

I am now unemployed until the second week of July when I go to Texas for a couple weeks to help get our charity established in that state. Then I come home and am really unemployed.

The first week of July I am going to Pennsylvania to visit my mother, see my oldest daughter and her family who are visiting in Pennsylvania, and head to Johnsonburg, PA, for a few days to check out the house we just bought there. After that I come back to Illinois and then head to Texas. Busy, Busy.

Glad to be back. See you tomorrow.


Don G. said...

I finally got around to solving Ed's brilliant puzzle today. Got to admit I did not see it coming, the M-I-C-K-E-Y. Very clever! Also, a very nice fill to enjoy.

Jerome so accurately pointed out that the puzzle that I created for C.C. was quite challenging to make. I first designed this quite a while ago, maybe three or four years. I didn't have the guts to send it to Rich. When I learned of C.C.'s birthday, it seemed a natural for her. But making a puzzle like this will drive one crazy!

Anonymous said...

How come Abejo's posts are always allowed, even though they're twice as long as the 20-line maximum?

Anonymous said...

Late good night all.
Belated most happy birthday to you, C.C. Hope you're having a terrific celebration on your 40th.

Neat pix of Marti, her DH, and Dudley.
And the explanations helped too. Thank you for sending them on.

And am so glad Dennis dropped in for this momentous occasion.

Didn't like snooted or croc in a very clever puzzle. (My spell check didn't like croc either.)And DNF.


Annette said...

Happy Birthday, C.C.! I hope you've been enjoying your special day.

Hahtool, what a pretty new avatar. But, Lemonade's is just adorable! I know you've had it for a short while, but this was my first chance to comment on it.

M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E reminds me of a weekly conference call we have with our vendor. It always starts with each person around the table saying their name so the people on the other end of the call knows who's there. I always tense up, waiting for a Mouseketeer comment when I say "Annette!", but nobody's ever said a word! To be honest, I don't know whether I'm relieved or disappointed...

Bill G. said...

To 'ape' Don's opening, I finally got around to solving his puzzle made for C.C. Great stuff! Why were you afraid to send it to Rich? Could you still do so? How would people know to look for the connection in the theme answers?

Anon at 9:09; when you care enough to get a name and go blue, maybe I'll start caring about your complaints.

Annette, I think all the boys had a crush on your Mickey Mouse Club doppleganger.

Anonymous said...

bill g, stick to your repititious sandwich descriptions.

Bill G. said...

Dear Anon. Thin-crust pizza and Italian salad today. Let me know if you'd like more detail on the ingredients.

C.C., BTW, I wished you a very happy birthday yesterday but another time won't hurt. Thanks for your kind hospitality.

Jeannie said...

Why do people feel the need to be cruel to one another?

I for one, want to know what so and so had for dinner. Maybe I can glean a recipe or idea off of that.

I don't like mean people. Anons, if you don't like what you see here or read here go somewhere else.

Okay, that's my best Dennis impression. Probably not as affective. Where's Windhover when you need him?

Argyle, Lemon, Al, don't you all have the wherewithall to delete these bad posts?

Chickie said...

Hola Everyone, It's 9:30 P.M. and I've just finished the puzzle. I had a super busy day today with drop in company and then dinner company.

I just wanted to make sure I wished C.C. a happy birthday. I hope your day was wonderful and the coming year even better than your last.

You have made us all into such a wonderful community. We have you to thank for the cyber friendships, the face to face friendships and the day to day repartee. What better day to thank you for all of this, but on your birthday.

fermatprime said...

Dear fellow puzzlers,

Just a line to say that I thought the theme was really cool. Didn't like a few words, all mentioned above. Thanks for write-up, Al.

Anon@9:51. You can't spell and are rather mean to boot. Does the spell checker not function for you?

Have read all of the Grafton books. They are somewhat boring, perhaps because her characters all still exist in 1986 or such. Did you know that she is a very rich woman? Wth lots of horses?

Again, HBTY CC! Did you get dessert?

Bummer, Marge! Remember to do the copy thing that I have suggested a few times! (Command A and command C on a Mac, use Control on Windows, before hitting Preview.) Perhaps someone whose blog is certain to be read should repeat this info! (Again.)

Need a bigger picture, Marti!

Anonymous said...


Other way around K MART was facing bankruptcy and it was Sears who bought them.