Jun 28, 2011

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 Victor Fleming and Nancy Salomon

Theme: Dyslexic Endings - Four French phrases and a GB QB that end in VRE but are commonly pronounced RVE.

17A. Delight in living : JOIE DE VIVRE. Joy of Living

24A. Paris site of objets d'art : MUSÉE DU LOUVRE. Palace of the Louvre

48A. Peppercorn-coated beef entrée : STEAK AU POIVRE. Steak with Pepper 

56A. Shrimp cocktail, e.g. : HORS D'OEUVRE. Apart from the Main Work

22A. With 50-Across, quarterback who started a record 297 consecutive games : BRETT and 50A. See 22-Across : FAVRE. Quarterback for Green Bay Packers (1992–2007)

Argyle here. That's my take on the theme; if you have a better idea, let's hear it. My French isn't all that good anyway. Couple of clunkers in the fill but overall, pretty good Tuesday.


1. Sounds of laughter : HAHAs

6. Show off, as one's stuff : STRUT

11. Leaky tire sound : SSS

14. Change with the times : ADAPT

15. West Indian sorcery : OBEAH. A search reveals we have had this word four times before, never on a Tuesday though.

16. Back muscle, for short : LAT. Latissimus Dorsi, usually referred to as LATS.

19. Stretch to remember : ERA

20. Aruba et al.: Abbr. : ISLs.. Clunk!

21. Wine-and-cassis apéritif : KIR. A French drink, how apropos.

28. Not for : AGAINST

30. Fading star : HAS-BEEN

31. __-Novo: Benin's capital : PORTO. I wish I could find this kind of map every time. The official language of Benin is French.

32. Peter Rabbit sibling : MOPSY. His sisters are Flopsy, Mopsy, and Cotton-tail in the children's story by Beatrix Potter.

33. Play (with) : TOY

34. Slate-backing strips : LATHS. Clunk. Lath and plaster, yes.

36. Word with cozy or bag : TEA

39. Apple models : iMACs

41. They may be blown in games : LEADS

43. Hoops shot that misses everything : AIR BALL

46. Hatch, as a scheme : THINK UP

51. The whole shebang : ALL

52. Pre-splat cry : "OOPS!"

55. Saloon order : ALE. Never saw a western where they ordered an ale.

60. Knight's title : SIR

61. Justice Samuel : ALITO. N.Y.Times Magazine article. I'll have to read it later myself.

62. Speedy base runner's strategy : STEAL

63. Thing to run at a bar : TAB

64. Red Sea republic : YEMEN

65. Prefix with frost : PERMA. Frost that never leaves the ground, although the top thaws out for summer. We are probably losing perma-frost to global warming, too.


1. Pilgrim to Mecca : HAJI. Add another J if you want.

2. Bustles : ADOs

3. Desperation gridiron pass : HAIL MARY. Favre threw a few.

4. Jungle film costume : APE SUIT

5. CST part: Abbr. : STD. Central Standard Time.

6. Like old Russian states : SOVIET

7. Ford in a Beach Boys hit : T-BIRD. Sure, some more Fun, Fun, Fun.(2:21)

8. Give gas to : REV. Rev up that T-Bird.

9. Former Egypt-Syr. alliance : UAR. United Arab Republic.

10. Springsteen, to fans : THE BOSS

11. Place for an ace? : SLEEVE

12. "No Exit" dramatist : SARTRE. "No Exit" is a 1944 existentialist French play by Jean-Paul Sartre.

13. __ Island Ferry : STATEN. New York.

18. __ out: barely gets : EKEs

23. Red gemstone : RUBY

25. __-Cat: winter vehicle : SNO

26. "This could be a problem" : "UH-OH"

27. Swimmer's reps : LAPS

28. On target : APT

29. Bit of baby babble : GOO

32. The Rockies, e.g.: Abbr. : MTs.. I'm surprised they didn't use the Alps.

34. In __ land: loopy : LA LA. La is also a French article, mais oui.

35. First Amdt. defender : ACLU. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

36. Corporate acquisition : TAKEOVER

37. School URL ending : .EDU

38. Fanged serpent : ASP

39. Building beam : I-BAR

40. What some do while the sun shines? : MAKE HAY. Keeping busy, windhover?

41. Ullmann of "Autumn Sonata" : LIV. Image.

42. On the way : EN ROUTE

43. Equally speedy : AS FAST

44. Roma's land : ITALIA. Next to France.

45. Echoic effect : REVERB

46. Snitched about : TOLD ON

47. Port of Hawaii : HILO. Map.

49. Second of a word-processing pair : PASTE. I live by "cut and paste".

53. English carriage : PRAM

54. Ward of "CSI: NY" : SELA

57. Cheer for a toreador : ¡OLÉ!

58. Perimeter : RIM

59. Clairvoyance, briefly : ESP



Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Argyle and friends. Parlez-vous francais? This puzzle was not too bad if you speak French!

I liked seeing a HAS BEEN in this puzzle.

My favorite clue was: They Might Be Blown in Games = LEADS.

STATEN Island must be the word of the week. I think it appeared in Sunday's puzzle.

Having that pilgrim to Mecca is often very tricky because of the all the spelling variations. I initially tried Hajj, but just couldn't figure out how the Caribbean islands could begin with a "j". Not sure I've seen HAJI, but since it is a transliteration from the Arabic, why not.

QOD: Overnight is an eternity in politics. ~ James Baker

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Definitely a speed run compared to yesterday, but still a bit of a clunker. I think the only true unknown was PORTO [-Novo] at 31A, but there was plenty of semi-obscure stuff like OBEAH, KIR, LATHS and HILO that needed lots of perps to jog my memory. And I have to wonder whether the word "amendment" has ever actually been abbreviated "Amdt" before...

Th theme answers were interesting and, despite three of them being in French, I actually knew them all. Couldn't quite spell them all without perp help, but at least I knew them. ^_^

Argyle said...

Barry, even Brett is is of French and Choctaw ancestry, so what did you find that wasn't French, Sacré bleu!

windhover said...

Argyle, re: 40D,
Doing that very thing, later today and the rest of the week.

Argyle said...

I've seen some very high quality hay being baled up here and those who green chop are on their second cutting. Same down there?

thehondohurricane said...

Good day folks,

Wasn't a speed run for me even though I had no real problem areas other than the spelling of the theme clues. There I had to rely on perps and that led to my one error. For 26D "This Could Be A Problem" I went with "Ohoh" instead of "Uhoh." The other problem was 41A "They may be blown in games". I entered saves initially, but perps got me back on track with "Leads."

I agree with Argyle about the inclusion of clunkers for fills. My candidates are Isls, Kir, Obeah, & 28D, Apt. I know we've seen Obeah & Kir before. but I can never remember them. On target/Apt just doesn't seem to go together.

36A "Word with cozy or bag/Tea was a ????? for me. Never heard of Cozy Tea or Tea Cozy. Can someone enlighten me?

Brett Favre was a gimme, but here's a guy who took a wonderful career and screwed it up by committing stupid acts in his personal life.

Argyle said...

One tea cosy, coming up. Cosy. Helps to keep your tea warm.

Grumpy 1 said...

Bonjour mes amis. Merci, Argyle, for your excellent write up. This was certainly an interesting solve for a Tuesday.

Like Barry, I knew the phrases but was unsure of the spellings. Perps were always there for me though, and it only took about 20 minutes to solve. I was surprised that I knew that many French words and names.

LEADS seemed to be the obvious choice, but I briefly considered saves and plays as possibilities until I checked the perps.

Are we sure this puzzle wasn't supposed to be printed in Le Monde?

HeartRx said...

Good Morning Argyle, C.C. et al.

I thought the theme was just common French expressions used in English. But thanks for pointing out the "dyslexic" endings, Argyle! That being said, I think having FAVRE in the puzzle almost takes away from the theme?

But what a fun puzzle! I didn't mind the couple of clunkers, when there is other fill that more than makes up for them, like T-BIRD, APE SUIT, MAKE HAY, etc! Great puzzle, and a fun Tuesday speed run.

Have a great day, everyone!

thehondohurricane said...

Cozy or cosy, either way I'll never remember it when it appears again. Thanks for the education Argyle.

Argyle said...

I hope one of the constructors stop by because I think ol' Brett Favre is key to the puzzle. I don't think it's happenstance.

Anonymous said...

The pronunciation of (Brett) Favre to rhyme with carve has always been really grating to me. If you look up the pronunciation of the French phrases in the puzzle you will see that the v is pronounced before the r and so is not dyslexic.

Husker Gary said...

Mon Dieu! The top middle was a struggle but unlike the French military, I didn’t give up!

-I knew Joie de vie but the re addition was a learning moment
-Is OBEAH voodoo and is KIR good?
-My iMac is going on 4 years without a hiccup
-Where do you put those pesky J’s, I’s and A’s on your way to Mecca?
-Soviet communism is a perfect form of government. It just doesn’t work!!
-Woody? Deuce Coupe? Nope, it’s the Fun Fun Fun car I referenced yesterday. Conjures up the image of Suzanne Somers in American Graffiti
-I watched Woody Harrelson in the Larry Flynt movie 2 nights ago. A textbook ACLU cause! I never did believe Jerry Falwell had sex with his mother in that outhouse.
-I taught 5 ways to Cut and Paste in my Word For Teachers course!
-WH, hay around here is spectacular and corn is already chest high!
-Fore on a fall-like morning! 100 F on Thursday. Sacre Bleu!

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers - What Hahtool said. My first instinct for 17a was JOIE DE VIVRE, but figured nah, that can't be right. Once that got confirmed it was off to the races.

Hondo - I've been wondering how they came up with the name "koozie", as in beer koozie, that insulating foam rubber sleeve that fits around a beer can or bottle. It sure looks like a kind of cozy to me.

OBEAH doesn't show up often, a hard one to remember.

Dennis said...

Good morning, C.C. and gang - sorry for the unannounced departure from the grid, but I decided to take some time off from the blog (the only blog I visit) for a couple reasons. Primarily, I thought my posts, particularly the first ones, had gotten increasingly repetitive and boring, and I've never been one to be happy doing a half-assed job. Also, I've gone a whole week plus without reading the blog, and I don't seem to have the shakes. Lastly, I miss the DF days a lot.

Anyway, I'm gonna bow out for a while (please, hold the applause) and maybe return at a later date (please, hold the boos) or maybe just emulate Buckeye and check in every once in a while if I have anything clever/of interest to add.

It's been great - this is an outstanding group led by an outstanding woman (C.C., you're about as amazing as they come) and it's been a real privilege to be the 'lead-off guy' for the past three years. I wish you all every happiness in life and good health. See you down the road.

kazie said...

Good to finally hear of your decision--and no, I don't mean that to say we're glad you're going. Just that I can relate. I spend way too much time at my computer and checking in here as often as I do can be detrimental to my real life. So I understand. I for one won't be booing when you look in occasionally.

Today was a fun run, rather than a speed run for me. I enjoyed seeing so much French, but wondered at everyone else's reaction to it.

anon @8:34 was right about the French phrase pronunciations--only people who don't know French would pronounce them dyslexically. and there's a lot more about FAVRE to get annoyed at than the sound of his name. Living in WI I have heard more than I ever wanted to about him. Nuff said.

kazie said...

On to the rest of the CW...I found the NW my slowest to fall, allowing that perps got several others like OBEAH and PORTO for me before I went back to pursue it. All told the SE was fastest. HAILMARY and AIRBALL were educated guesses, but for once all the names were knowns except MOPSY.

Thanks for Fun, fun, fun!

Not enamored with the French said...

Thank you Mr. Fleming and Ms. Salomon, ( in the order of appearance - ) for a very nice puzzle - and Thank you Mr. Argyle for a stimulating commentary - your links were delectable.

Liked the puzzle, easy enough for a Tues. - but I dont care for the language. In my opinion, French is very irrational, non-phonetic and you would have to be a sadi-maso to enjoy it. I was familiar with the main theme, but didn't know how to spell the words. Argyle, your 'dyslexic' point is duly and greatly appreciated.

Now, that Dennis is 'retiring' to the bullpen, may I say, for myself, that I will miss him. Thank you for all you have done for the blog. ( I've grown familiar with his face ..... ) We will not be able to replace him easily, but I hope somebody, amongst you, will step up to the plate. Perhaps, Dennis can let Argyle know where he got his 'did you knows ?' from. Happy Trails, and Best Wishes, to Dennis and his family.

Spitzboov said...

Good Morning everyone. Good commentary, Argyle.

I agree with Hahtool on the HAJI stuff. Had Hajj at first, too, but was mindful of the several variant spellings. ISLS made sense for 20a, Once the theme endings, VRE, loomed, JOIE DE VIVRE made sense. I guess ISLS is a variant, too. The clues for ERA and LAPS were quite clever. Needed help with OBEAH, the only total unknown. A little harder than most Tuesdays. After Monday's as well, maybe Rich is trying to transmogrify us to more challenging offerings

Have a good day.


carol said...

Wow, Dennis! I am so glad to hear you are ok! I understand completely your's one I thought of doing as well as I too miss the good ol' DF days. The saucy back and forth was so much fun. You (and others) can sneak in a zinger now and then.

C.C. Burnikel said...

The last time I feel so said and hopeless is when I lost my Dad, very unexpected & crippling. God knows how much you've helped me on & off the blog, Dennis, day in and day out, forever patient and indulgent. "Thank you" is not enough.

GarlicGal said...

I have one thing to say this morning...GREAT PHOTO DODO!!! Good job.

Arriverderci a tutti or bon voyage.

C.C. Burnikel said...

DF days are not returning. I know where I want this blog to go. The blog that sprouted out because I had post limit some time ago is already there, why not go there?

Tinbeni said...

Argyle, Wonderful write-up.

Like others, I knew the phrases and needed the perps for the spelling.

Maybe I should cover my ASP and learn French.

Spitzboov said...

Dennis: For everything there is a season. You have set a good cadence for this blog. Thank you. I wish you fair winds and following seas. Visit when you can.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Plus, I've never banned DF topic. All I want is moderation. Like trivia, recipe, or anything else, a little bit adds the flavor. Too much spoils everything.

This is a crossword blog first of all, and we have thousands of new visitors every day, plus regular posters and silent readers who are not DF-minded. Their needs, their reactions are important to me as well.

kazie said...

Not enamored with the French,
I am neither sadi- or maso-, and I love the French language. I felt lost when I first was living there in the fall of 1970, but was embraced by the people. One new 'amie' took me in to spend my first Christmas away from home with her family, and after that my language skills took off like a rocket. It is neither illogical nor non-phonetic, if you know the rules.

When my future husband, then almost a complete stranger even to me, arrived in the town where I lived in the school I was at as assistante anglaise, we got him a room at a migrant workers' hostel only because the host there said he was so grateful for what Americans had done for the French during WWII.

No, the French don't deserve the bad rap they have in this country.

JD said...

Good morning Argyle, C.C., Dennis and all,

First of all, I am so relieved that you are alive and kicking, Dennis!!We will miss you and look forward to your sporatic and always wise words.I too understand, but will miss you.

Ended up loving this xwd, but it was surprising at times. From ha ha's, and goo to obeah, kir and those tricky spellings. Argyle, liked your theme title!

Left out the P (Porto/apt).

Favorite: they may be blown in games. All I could think about was those silly vuvuzelas, but perps filled leads.
Mopsy and Alito in the same xwd...a hoot!

Didn't like ados for bustles.

windhover said...

All in all, it's been great. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

DF? Don't know the lingo.

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, Poor Splynter, my heart goes out to you with this puzzle after being exposed to all this French language stuff.

I agree with Kazie@8:13 and Anon @8:34 about the French phrase pronunciations. I learned them "VRE", topped off with with a nice alveolar trill (rolling R) (LOUV-RRRREH).

I don't know what I'd call the theme. We usually just say "The LOUVRE" when we're talking about a trip to Paris. The other complete phrases are common in English.

I think BRETT FAVRE was included as an "in puzzle" joke, just to demonstrate how Americans can get it wrong, or at least change it so it no longer sounds "foreign".

All the theme phrases were familiar and I knew their spelling. I remember HORS D'OEUVRE showed up regularly on French vocabulary spelling quizzes.

With all the long Acrosses filled in, the perps came easily.

I liked seeing SATRE, another RRRREH ending.

Anonymous said...


Kazie Admirer said...

Kazie, I most humbly apologize to you. You are the person, I thought of, first and foremost, and was truly worried, I might offend.

To be a xenophobe and a Francophobe, is not my character. Such thoughts, are in itself irrational, stupid and unfair. I have been to France 4 times, and each trip has been very distasteful. But, since I don't know the language ( a VERY necessary requirement in that country, since they refuse to even acknowledge English ! ) and their actions in the last 100 years in world wars and politics - I just basically do not like them, in my gut. But, that should not extend to their language - which I will freely admit was ( for some time - ) the only language of the 'court' in England.

Again, my sincerest apologies to you. Please excuse.

Jerome said...

Dennis- You absolutely cannot do this. No way, no how... can't happen.

Argyle said...

Aw, Dennis, you can't fool me. You been recruited for some black ops mission. It's OK buddy, your secret is safe with us.

Semper Fi!

Clear Ayes said...

Best Wishes Dennis. We all hope to see you back, more often than not, but sometimes we just have to move on.

There is another sky

There is another sky,
Ever serene and fair,
And there is another sunshine,
Though it be darkness there;
Never mind faded forests, Austin,
Never mind silent fields -
Here is a little forest,
Whose leaf is ever green;
Here is a brighter garden,
Where not a frost has been;
In its unfading flowers
I hear the bright bee hum:
Prithee, my brother,
Into my garden come!

- Emily Dickinson

Argyle said...

I think the difference in the way the French pronounce these phrases and the way the average American pronounce them is my point.

Anonymous said...

No educated American goes to see the masterpieces at the Louver. I would love to have an original Monet or two on my louver (slat on my blinds.)

Anonymous said...

Good afternoon everyone.

Jerome, I am in total agreement!

Dennis, you are so much a part of this blog that I can't imagine it without you. Hope you will drop in often. We will all miss you (except for a few trolls).

Good Tuesday puzzle. I loved being able to get the long ones and spell them. Missed a few fills. It was just the right amount of head-scratching and just writing. Thank you Victor and Nancy.

And good for you Argyle for the very French, but used in English, phrases in the write up.


Anonymous said...

Clear Ayes - You must be one really special and beautiful person - your art, the choice of your poems, your feelings and your sympathetico words !!!

You add beauty, glory, nature and love to this blog. May your tribe increase.

Dennis, - If you are indeed with the Special Ops - Go get Osama's asst. - wherever his sorry little - is, and whatever his unpronounceable name might be.

Dennis B said...

Best to you Dennis, from a long time reader!

kazie said...

A word or two to all and sundry,

To my "admirer",
No apology necessary, but a suggestion: if you go a fifth time, try a simple bonjour or merci bien, and see if it doesn't do wonders.

You're right about words adopted into English still with French spellings. but do anglophones really say Louver referring to the museum? I've never heard it. OTOH, my mother always made fun of the hors d'oeuvres expression by calling them "horse's douvers".

Most French borrowings in British English retained the French spelling, whereas the Americans, sensibly IMO, changed the spellings to reflect their English pronunciations, hence spelling differences like "theater/theatre", "litre/liter" and "metre/meter", which in American English, look more like their German counterparts.

But I've always heard people attempt their imagined French pronunciation of French locations with that ending.

frenchman said...

Yeah that's the american way, killem all and let God sortem out. Maybe we can bore em to death now that the top man is gone.
The king is dead, long live the king. Who's the king?

creature said...

Good Day C.C., Argyle and all,

Really enjoyed your write- up, Argyle. Thanks.

What a treat to see a couple of leading ‘stars’ of the cw world headline today’s offering as a duo.

I don’t mind a stretch on a Tuesday, if it still has some play in it. I hope I can remember, the next time someone asks for the name of West Indian sorcery, to reply OBEAH.

Would that be what Rich is wanting to do to us, when Spitz suggested transmogrification. It just, somehow, doesn’t sound nice or fair. Sorcery at its worst. Something else, if legal.

The theme was delightful to me, even if I had to sneak up on some of the spelling.

Interesting comment on 65A, Argyle. Need to read more.

Thanks, Nancy and Victor for your ‘joint affair’.

Dennis, if I ever hear of your being DF anywhere other than here, I will personally call the cops on you, if you haven’t already been arrested. No fair looking for younger, more fertile ground. There’s a law against it, you know.

Have a nice day everyone.

Clear Ayes said...

I've only been to France twice and have had varied experience with French hospitality. I been treated very kindly and helpfully and impossibly rudely too. Same things have happened in the States with Americans in English. C'est la vie.

Kazie is right, try and learn some basic phrases, or at least make phonetic notes so we can get along in a foreign country.

Americans have been spoiled by knowing most countries teach English as a second language. But it isn't automatic. Expecting the French to speak English in Paris is like expecting a New Yorker to understand and respond to a French tourist in Times Square.

Anon@11:50 thanks... and I hope they don't increase too much, at least not for a while. The oldest grandchild is only 20. :o)

Jeannie, nope, still dealing with the weeds and woods. Another PET scan this morning, so I'd better get moving.

Jayce said...

Hello everybody. Interesting to see the word "clunker" associated with this puzzle. My first, second, third, and most subsequent reactions as I worked this puzzle was pleasure at seeing such cool fill as SOVIET, AGAINST, AIRBALL, TAKEOVER, SLEEVE, REVERB, and my favorite, MOPSY. Okay, I guess I overlooked the clunkers such as ISLS and, well, that's the only clunker I can see. Other 3- and 4-letter fill(s), such as OOPS, TEA, and TOY were cute, I thought. Anyway, very interesting to see all our different takes and points of view.

Anon at 1340 HRS said...

To the Anon at 10.43 am.

What is DF ??

Its one of those 'unmentionables', which everybody skirts about and avoids referring to - I assume it means it means something vulgar, raunchy, obscene, dirty, scatological, tasteless, lacking refinement, and crude, particularly about sex and bodily functions.

But then, those are also my jokes, limericks and bon-mots. Fortunately, I have not been able to link them with the crossword clues, hence my avoidance of them. Oh well.

Jayce said...

Dennis, thank you for checking in and letting us know your thoughts, feelings, and plans. Count me among those who will miss you. As Spitzboov so eloquently said, "I wish you fair winds and following seas."

Anonymous said...

Even in his departure Dennis has to be the arrogant pompous ass that he is. Wonder how he'll get his ego stroked now?

Anonymous said...

Are the French(men) merely uncomprehending about the English ( and their language - ) or are they just plain coarse, vulgar and rude ?

Observe the Germans, the Spaniards, the Eye-talians, and the Swiss ( who have 4 languages ) - who have English as a foreign language, but are still, in their behavior towards foreigners, very polite and courteous (- and 'correct').

Because of near-ancient history, ( the last 600 years), the French, see and fantasize, in their language, not only a culture - but their sovereignty and their destiny, their glory, their victories, their omnipotence - and are unrelentingly unforgiving of their 'shabby' present (diminished - ) circumstances. If you do not speak their language, in their eyes, you are committing an unpardonable crime - of not being mindful and in awe, of the Glorie', that once was France. Hence the rudeness. IMHO.

Yet another anon said...

DF is shorthand for 'dysfunctional', and it was used to describe any of the slightly off-color comments that used to occasionally appear here. At least, that's my take on it. They were some laugh-out-loud fun times on the blog.

Lemonade714 said...


Vaya con dios.


DF = dysfunctional, which does encompass all of anon1340's list.

Perp = perpendicular the fill which is 90 degrees to other fill.

Clecho: clue echo, a recognized Dennis submission to the new language.


Jayce said...

I think the varied opinions about French people illustrate how complex our relationships usually are. To me that's what makes them interesting.

Anon@10:54 AM, well and clearly said. Thank you.

I hope Rich doesn't transform the LAT crossword into just another NYT copycat.

Anon@8:34 AM, pronouncing his last name to rhyme with carve has always grated on me too, but then I remind myself that many of our last names are "mispronounced," such as pronoucing Weiner as Weener, Bernstein as Bernsteen, Boehner as Bayner, etc.

Anonymous said...

anon@1:04, what was arrogant or pompous? I thought Dennis' note was anything but.

Clear Eyes, best of luck with your scan.

Jayce said...

Then again, better Bayner than Boner, I suppose. LOL

kazie said...

I agree about those names.

Anon @1:06,
I have heard unpardonable rudeness in France--but more often from Americans who are complaining that they can't get a hamburger or who are talking loudly in the hope they will be heard by all in the area. Yes, the French want to use their language in their country. Are we any different?

The other groups you speak of have their faults too. A young female in Italy is at constant risk of unwanted advances, which I have described here before. I did not find the Spanish terribly accommodating linguistically either, and let's face it, the Germans just want to show off how well they speak English, even when you try out your German on them. (Except our son's in-laws, who only speak Saxon, LOL). So get over it.

Avg Joe said...

Random jottings today. I'm on a short leash.

Take a well deserved break, Dennis. Then come back. I don't know the cast here well enough to say it, but it's readily apparent that you are integral. That happened for a good reason.

The French theme was overdone in the puzzle, IMO. I sort of knew the phrases, but found it tedious figuring out the spellings. Do agree that Favre was thrown in as an inside joke.

As CA said, Americans have been spoiled by the adoption of English as a world language. And that's just been within the past 50 years.

And lastly, a QOD: "One way to prevent conversation from being boring is to say the wrong thing." - Frank Sheed. (I've proven this to be true.)

creature said...


Amen on your remark to Dennis. Thanks.

erieruth said...

Thanks for explaining DF (disfunctional) that really it??

Now, please explain IMHO.

Dennis, your reasons for leaving are so logical and understandable. I always enjoyed your posts and wish you the best.

Anonymous said...

In My Humble Opinion

Tinbeni said...

I'm looking forward to a LAT Crossword Puzzle actually being in English (American).

IOW's w/o Arabic, French, German, Greek, Italian/Latin, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Urdo, Pig-Latin, or Mime-speak.

Anonymous said...

French language test today. Didnt we have one yesterday? Liked the beachboys clues. Thats two in as many days, groovy!!!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
@ Bill G, The owners had a rather large deal with FOX and it would have given the Dodgers the necessary capital but Bud Selig's office has refused to ok it.

June 28, 2011 2:10 PM

Frenchman2 said...

Saw a bumper sticker the other day in my small town:
Welcome to America: Now speak English.
Deja-vu? Ever hear the phrase "Greatest country in the world"? Where were you at the time? The reason Americans don't get along with the French is we're too much like them. Except we learned the French kiss from them, for which we should be grateful. French fries, not so much.
As for Farve, it's his damned name, he can say it any way he wants.

Jerome said...

I'm going with Argyle on this one. I believe BRETT FAVRE is part of the theme, especially since he's French/Choctaw.

I thought the theme was refreshingly different, the fill superb. I'm also going to guess most of the fill was Nancy's. She loves phrases. The theme idea was probably Vics. He's listed first in the attribution. That's the usual deal.

erieruth said...

Anonymous - Thanks for explaining IMHO!!

IMHO today's puzzle was lots of fun. I never know how to spell the French words, but today the perps (yes, I know what a perp is now) helped.

HAND (Have A Nice Day)

Bill G. said...

I always thought DF was a strange term for the clever double entendres which get bandied back and forth. But it's part of the local argot so it's peachy with me.

Regarding the Dodgers owner, he was planning to use part of the loan for his own benefit, not the team's. I think he's a dirtbag and I hope MLB takes the management of the team away from him. Then I hope the IRS audits him. Then...? Course, they did look pretty good last night against the Twins.

I have crabs said...

naah, its just my favorite bumper sticker

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

The theme is different, but IMHO not a bit refreshing. But you all know how I feel about French in American English cross word puzzles. The fill is indeed superb, and very fresh: TAKE OVER, EN ROUT, AIR BALL, MAKE HAY, and OMG - APE SUIT. What a blast!

I didn't find the clunkers to be especially clunky, either.

Really high quality stuff, overall. Still, I hate the theme, and couldn't spell any of it.

I think HAJJ is the pilgrimage, HAJI is one who has made it.

Dennis - Well, this is bad news. Farewell and God speed, my friend. I've been missing you for a while, and will just have to get used to it.

Rebekka is with us today. We gave her a little stuffed bunny when she was a newborn, and she named it MOPSY when she was a little older.

JzB Nuthin up muh SLEEVE . . .

HeartRx said...

Boy, do I feel dumb. After going back and studying the grid, I havre to agree that FAVRE was probably intended to be part of the theme, with the symmetrical placement of BRETT. Which removes my one nit for today... yaaay!

Dennis, you will obviously be missed here at the corner. How are we ever going to know what to celebrate each day?

Filthyfreedomhatingliberal said...

BillG, you must understand that in amerika, the rich are rich because god wants them to be, and it is not fair for proles like us to criticise them, adding to the stress they must feel under the responsibility to provide jobs and trashy entertainment for an ungrateful underclass.
You're a smart guy and a tutor, so you know this, but you let your emotions get the better of you. Just remember, god loves you too (but not as much as the rich).

Anonymous said...

I can see right now that Dennis is going to have to come back and restore order to this mob.

eddyB said...

Hello all.

No hay making today. We are having a very rare June rain.

My biggest concern about this blog
has been that something would happen to some one and that we would never know. Nice to hear from

Hope CA has a good scan.
Hope Lorrie is ok.
Priscilla, your mail is still in the inbox. Haven't forgotten.

Have finally gotten some rest.

Take care.

Chickie said...

Hola Everyone, The puzzle actually was easier than I thought it was going to be. What everyone else has said about the spelling of the French Phrases. The perps really came in handy today!

I thought that Stretch to remember was a clever clue. Also, Place for an Ace/Sleeve gave me pause. I was thinking flying Ace. Sky wouldn't fit.

Reverb for Echoic effect was like yesterday's Bate for Diminish. I wanted to keep going with both words. Reverberate and Abate.

Dennis, you will be missed, but I can relate to the reasons that you gave for wanting to step back a bit. We'll look forward to those days when you do post.

dodo said...

Hello,All, IMHO, just like Erie Ruth I really enjoyed this one, though I had a hard time with 'Obeah' which I know we've had before. ( knew it started with 'O' and ended with 'H' but the rest didn't stick to the grey matter, I guess. LOved the French phrases. I studied French for six years, but never had enough experience with conversation.I can read it pretty well.....well, I could read it pretty well. I know how it should sound, but have no confidence trying to use it. It certainly hasn't made a great difference in my life!

dodo said...


Our experience in France was unfortunate, not because of the people, but because my husband was pickpocketed and we were almost stranded. The only Frenchman who was unpleasant was a waiter on the Champs Elysee. The other people we met were civil and many of them very helpful and friendly!

I love the language. The interesting thing to me is the way the French have worled to preserve it. Is that still true, Kazie? American English, OTH, keeps changing, often detrimentally, IMHO.

dodo said...

Dennis,Don't Go!!!

Husker Gary said...

Happy Sabbatical Dennis! Some of us labor under the delusion that things will stop if we don’t participate and my year of retirement has shown me that is not so. Dennis’ absence will be noticeable but we will carry on, although in a diminished capacity. Semper Fi!

Everyone on this site should buy
this mug

Cutie Verbalist said...

This is just a memo ( of possible puzzle answers - ) for those crossword constructors, who 'do' Fridays and Saturdays.... following Tinbeni's advice, words used herein are not from any of the major eurocentric languages....

OBEAH is also spelt OBI ( no, not the japanese sash - ), OBIE, OBEA, and OBIA ( Greek MATI, Egypt- HAMSA, Ethiopian BUDA ) - following the religions of PALO, VOODOO, HOODOO (honest !).and its origin was in IGBO ( W. Africa).

see all the 4 letter words, with 2 vowels, apiece ? Good.

The Obeah tries to avoid the 'evil eye' - MAL OCCHIO (Italian), BONCUGU ( Turk.), NAZR or NAZAR ( M.E.Asia), MAL DE OJO (Sp.)

Finally, a jewish saying to ward off the 'evil eye' - "Key on whore".( per Wikipedia - )

Did You know ? - Armenians, Syrians and Iraqis respond to the perceived attack of the 'evil eye' by pinching (their own - ) buttocks. This is not only inconspicuous, requires no added expense and can be ( at times - ) pleasurable.( per Wikipedia - )

Anonymous said...

Whats all this nonsense going on ? This is bedlam, mayhem, chaos, utter degradation of this blog !@#!

Dennis, could you please, please, please come back and restore some g- order ??

Anonymous said...

Barry...You used to be my humble hero but lately you're getting as arrogant as the rest of the bloggers. Where's the AMDT that you're referring to?

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

We need a new sheriff, quick.

Jerome said...

It's official, Argyle. I've spoken with Nancy... BRETT FAVRE is part of the theme. Originally they had FAVRE as their center entry across, but Rich wanted the whole name so they worked that in. Tough to do.

kazie said...

As far as I know, the Académie Française still is their language police, and has to deliberate at regular intervals to decide what gets in and what is disallowed.

kazie said...

Sorry--I meant Dodo.

Reggie Hammond said...

Kazie. Aren't you over your limit? We will see you tomorrow. Merci.

All about the theme said...

Jerome, since you spoke to Nancy Salomon and she confirmed that FAVRE was part of the theme, what did she say the theme was? Was it as Argyle thought, "ending in VRE but are commonly pronounced RVE"? Are Americans really as ignorant as that?

Lemonade714 said...

What an interesting group of grumblers we have today.

Jerome, thank you for communicating with Nancy, I really do like to know.

I agree that I appreciate Dennis taking the time to say adieu, rather than just disappear into the night. As has been said, things happen, and while our friendships may only be cyber, and we never fought together at the kyber, we do worry about those who post, than suddenly they are a ghost.

Say hi now and then, you don't even need a pen

Avg Joe said...

From the looks of things, Dennis got a new job after resigning this morning. He must be down at the regional center handing out day passes.

(Hope that's not too DF for publication)

Argyle said...

The inception of the puzzle was my wondering how many words that might be in an American’s vocabulary end with VRE.

A quote from Victor Fleming so no, how they were pronounced wasn't a consideration.

Avg Joe said...

Oh what the hell. May as well have some Theme Music for this debacle.

Dennis look-alike said...

Avg. Joe - I didn't get the joke - is it too DF to ask you to explain ? - or would that fact, in and of itself, put it 'over-the-top '?

Lemonade, your efforts in rhyming your posting, is admirable, and almost sounds like boasting.

Thank God, we still have you - otherwise we would be down to too few.

At sea said...

"He must be down at the regional center handing out day passes."

What does that mean? I don't get it.

Clear Ayes said...

Back from my test, but won't get the results for a week or so.

I've been catching up on the blog comments. Kazie is the resident French and German linguist and her comment about the Académie Française periodically policing the language got me thinking.

All the theme phrases were totally en Français, with the exception of STEAK AU POIVRE. STEAK isn't French, it is an English word that has apparently wiggled its way into the language. Bifteck, or biftek, meaning beef steak, is the word I learned many years ago. Then there are words for various cuts such as châteaubriand and filet mignon.

I guess the French aren't that different from Americans when it comes to adopting words, they are just a little slower.

windhover said...

Long day on the tractor, and just caught up on the posts. Wow!!
My only comment:
If the guy who called Dennis a pompous ass is the same one who called him a 'pompass ass' last year, it just proves what we all know - this is a great blog. Even idiots can learn here.

Avg Joe said...

More theme music? Try This.

Or This.

Anonymous said...

Nope, still don't get it. But that's ok.

No, Windhover should NOT be the new sheriff - a good guy, but too quick to trash someone, usually an overreaction.

Jerome said...

All about the theme- VRE, that's the theme. Simple as that. It's fresh and it's quirky. Different. How many phrases, or names, end in VRE? There's nothing to overthink here.

As an aside to others. Get off the jingoistic crap. French, American, Saudi, Israeli, African, and on and on... we're all sisters and brothers. And if you don't like foreign words in a crossword puzzle don't do the puzzle in the LOS ANGELES Times.

MJ said...

I will miss your early morning postings. I hope you will at least pop in to guide our daily dietary habits.

Otherwise, how shall we know whether we should eat a doughnut (6/3), savor chocolate ice cream (6/7), or crunch on fresh veggies (6/16)? Or (heaven forbid!) sip on ice(d) tea (6/10).

You have made me LOL on many occasions. Thank you! I hope you chime in soon, and often.


Anonymous said...

Ce mots croisés était la merde. Ce que l'enfer est KIR 52 de partout ... aucune question j'ai fait le calcul. Américains stupides et votre langage simple

Anonymous said...

So's your mother.

HUTCH said...

Kazie. Please tell me the difference between SWaxon and German.

Jeannie said...

Jeez O' Pete, we lost a mainstain. Not really a good idea when sailing. You just take down the jib, unhoist the sail and recover. I am not saying that I will not miss Dennis, but time marches on. Do what you must do.

As for the puzzle today....for once I wasn't on Kazies's wavelengh; but I am pretty sure she had a leg up on me seeing how I suck at French.

C.C. I felt the worst for you. It made me sad that you compared Dennis leaving to your Dad dying. BTW, my Dad turned 76 today. Dennis, did you think of turning over the birthday list? You can send it to me. I will still be a loyal poster here when time permits.

Jeannie said...

C.C., sorry about the recipes and riddles. Those will cease. I just thought it added to the entertainment value here. I know that first and foremost it is a crossword puzzle sight. I am sorry if I did something wrong here once again.

C.C. Burnikel said...

I don't want them to disappear. As you said, they add to the entertainment here and I appreciate your constant effort to make the blog fun. Moderation is all I ask.

Happy Birthday to your Dad!

JD said...

Jeannie, I think you misunderstood C.C. Everything in moderation has always been what she has asked of us.

anon @9:59..made me laugh. Don't attempt these puzzles if you think they are so stupid.

Jeannie said...

One of my favorites

C.C. riddle and /or a recipe coming up tomorrow. I just have to decide which one has preference.

Kudos to all that you have accomplished here and in the crossword world.

windhover said...

Anon @ 8:49,
Thanks for the good guy label. But I am allergic to authority, and have no desire to possess any, here or elsewhere.
As for "overreacting", I have been playing here for 2 1/2 years, roughly. In that time I have criticized other named, regular bloggers exactly twice, and only once this year. Anons who make inflammatory remarks, such as calling someone a pompous ass, are fair game.
In my view, the people who care enough to come here daily, interact with the other bloggers, and do so with mutual respect, wit, and intellect are the glue that holds what was once an obscure blog that people found by accident together and have made it was it is or was.
The genius of CC was in having the vision to start such a blog not knowing if anyone would ever find it, and then creating a space and a structure that led a certain number of souls to visit each other daily in the ether.

Anonymous said...

Jeannie new chief?

Anonymous said...

i dont tink so