Oct 2, 2011

Sunday October 2, 2011 Jim Leeds

Theme: Vintage Humor - One word in each common phrase is replaced by a wine term.

24A. Wearing a suit made of white-wine labels? : CHABLIS DRESSED. Shabblily dressed.

39A. Traditional time to bottle wine? : WHEN THE VAT LADY SINGS. When the fat lady sings.

66A. Present from a winery? : THE GIFT OF CAB. The gift of gab.

72A. Listing on a winery inventory? : SIXTEEN TUNS. Sixteen Tons.

75A. French wineries' regulations to assure quality? : CRUS CONTROLS. Cruise controls.

100A. Reds handed down from winery founders? : THE ZINS OF OUR FATHERS. The sins of our fathers.

118A. Winery owner's autobiography? : ME AND MY CHATEAU. Me and My Shadow.

Hmm, a puzzle for Marti. She loves wines and puns. Punning is quite subjective. It could bring a giggle, a groan or a grin.

One noticeable feature of this grid is the overlapping of three theme entries in the middle. Very rarely do we see this stack, as too many pre-filled slots limits constructor's choices. 67D, for example, with ENS?? in place, his only option is ENSUE. You want as many options as possible for any slot. I feel today's entries around that overlapping area are quite smooth. Good job!

I think this is Jim Leeds' first LAT Sunday. Congratulations!


1. Hawthorne title septet : GABLES. "The House of the Seven Gables".

7. Frankenstein's milieu : LAB

10. Taken in a con : HAD. "I've been had!"

13. "Yikes!" : OH GOSH

19. Green : UNRIPE

20. Amos Oz, for one : ISRAELI

22. Oil-rich peninsula : ARABIA

23. 106-Downs : STADIA. Plural of stadium. And 106. Sphere of activity : ARENA.

26. "Shoop Shoop Song (It's in __ Kiss)" : HIS. The tune sounds very familiar.

27. __-Magnon : CRO

29. Organic compound : ENOL

30. Most slush pile responses : NOs. Slush pile refers to those unsolicited manuscripts.

31. Brest beast : BETE. "La Belle et la Bete".

32. 23rd Greek letter : PSI

34. Dernier __: latest fashion : CRI. Do you like this fashion Santa brought to our attention a while ago?

36. More risky : DICIER

38. Abates : EASES

43. Mass of people : HORDE
44. "On the Road" narrator Paradise : SAL

45. Herbal tea : TISANE. Rose, mint, orange, etc.

46. They make tasty rings : ONIONS

48. Tom, Dick and Harry : NAMES. And 68D. Peter and Paul, but not Mary : TSARS. Both good clues.

51. Washed up, in a way : ASHORE

56. "Yes, Captain!" : AYE

57. Mai __ : TAI

59. Anatomical pouch : SAC

60. Prefix with culture : API. Prefix for "bee".

63. Post-Thanksgiving Muzak fare : CAROL

64. Neo- ending : PHYTE. Neophyte. Every puzzle has a few undesirable fill. Well done is rare in crossword.

69. Mint family herb : SAGE

74. Not feral : TAME

77. Heads up : SOARS

79. Colorful marble : AGATE

80. Implied part of ESL : AS A. English as a Second Language.

81. Ump's call : OUT

83. Crowd, in Cremona : TRE. Three's a crowd.

84. Chill (out) : VEG

87. Dolts : MORONs

89. Move furtively : SNEAK

91. "Griffin & __": 1991 best-seller : SABINE. Not familiar with the book. What's it about?

93. 4:00 p.m. service, maybe : TEA SET

97. Emeril catchword : BAM. "Kick it up a notch!". He makes crowd happy.

99. West Pointer : CADET

105. Redder inside : RARER

107. Chicago L, for one : LOOPER

108. Vegas opening : LAS

109. Dress (up) : TOG

110. Julia played her in 2000 : ERIN. " Erin Brockovich".

111. Kitty plaint : MEW

112. Slick-talking : GLIB

114. Org. with a "Popular Baby Names" Web page : SSA. Was ignorant of this fact.

116. Jazz job : GIG. Hi Ron!

122. Bright with light : ABLAZE

124. Like mosaic stones : INLAID

125. Seriously shocks : APPALLS

126. Faithful servants : YEOMEN

127. Drapery ornament : TASSEL

128. Ltr. add-ons : PSS

129. Observe : SEE

130. Most clever : SLYEST


1. Spew : GUSH

2. Call-and-response singing : ANTIPHONY. Two nice 9's here.

3. Relaxed, upscale restaurant : BRASSERIE. I've never thought of it as upscale.

4. Eye cover : LID

5. The "Iliad," e.g. : EPIC

6. Revealer of hits : SEARCH. I don't get this clue. (I'm a dummy, needed Splynter to explain it to me. Our blog gets many hits a day since people are searching for crossword answers.)

7. DMV card : LIC (License)

8. U.S. Open stadium : ASHE

9. Ex-German chancellor Willy : BRANDT. No idea. This guy won Nobel Peace in 1971.

10. Shrews : HELLCATS

11. Baba with magic words : ALI. "Open Sesame".

12. Walt and Roy : DISNEYs

13. Rows : OARS

14. 1,000-yr. realm : HRE

15. Blowhard : GASBAG

16. Get hung-up (on) : OBSESS

17. Veintiuno ÷ tres : SIETE. Let's see, 21 ÷3 = 7.

18. Where the Styx flows : HADES

21. Seething : ABOIL

25. Backs, in anatomy class : DORSA

28. Tram loads : ORES

33. Prefix with Chinese : INDO. Indo-Chinese.

35. "Terrible" ruler : IVAN. Ivan the Terrible.

37. Despotic Amin : IDI

38. "Romanian Rhapsodies" composer : ENESCO (Georges). Any comment, Jayce?

39. Silver stopper : WHOA. Lone Ranger's horse.

40. Back nine opener : TENTH. Husker Gary is nuts about golf, playing 36 holes a day so often.

41. "What a shame" : ALAS

42. Having three sharps, musically : IN A

47. Boss's prerogative : SAY SO

49. San __, California : MATEO

50. French for "rung" : ECHELON. Good to know. And excellent answer with 3 fixed letters already penned in from the theme placement (??HEL??).

52. Sword handles : HAFTS

53. Ocean predator : ORCA

54. "Home on the Range" word : ROAM. "Oh, give me a home where the buffalo roam..."

55. Hamburg's river : ELBE. Into the North Sea.

58. Turner autobiography : I, TINA. Here is the cover. Look for Jazzbumpa to say I, RON again next time IRON comes up.

60. FBI employee : AGT

61. Any of 12 popes : PIUS

62. Backup plan lead-in : IF NOT

64. Green sauce : PESTO. Try it on toast, Bill G.

65. Phone no. go-withs : EXTs

67. Follow : ENSUE

69. Swindle : SCAM

70. Legendary Greek ship : ARGO

71. Legume whose gum is used as a thickening agent : GUAR. Guar gum.

73. Sung syllable : TRA

76. Hoops big man : CENTER

78. Be moved, say : REACT

82. Dana's "forbidden fragrance" : TABU

84. Arcade attraction : VIDEO GAME. Another two 9's here.

85. Stimulates : ENERGIZES

86. Obtains : GETS

88. "__ me!" : SEZ

89. Temporary solutions : STOPGAPS. Great answer too.

90. Marx who's much older than Harpo : KARL. Love this clue.

92. Bangkok bread? : BAHT. Thai has no plural form. So, no Bahts there.

94. Choreographer Alvin : AILEY

95. Peak experience? : SNOWCAP. Mountain peak.

96. That, in Tijuana : ESO

98. Some lit. degrees : MFAs

100. Matters for courts : TRIALS

101. Salon rinses : HENNAS

102. __ draft: was chilled : FELT A. The only partial in the grid, right?

103. Bay windows : ORIELS. Here is one.

104. Appraisers' reports : ASSAYS

105. Use PayPal : REMIT

111. CCLV x X : MMDL. 255 x 10= 2, 550.

113. Barn bundle : BALE. So, Spitzboov & Argyle grew up on a farm, anyone else? Grumpy?

115. One raised with Cain : ABEL

117. Chap : GENT

119. Metal-shaping block : DIE

120. Some printers: Abbr. : HPs. Meg Whiteman is their new CEO.

121. Employ : USE

123. Powell partner in "Thin Man" films : LOY (Myrna)

Answer grid.



fermatprime said...

Hi all!

OK. I'm up late again due to unplanned nap. Great puzzle, Jim; fine write-up, CC!

Favorite answer by far: WHOA!

Theme answers were all amusing, especially the one with ZIN.

Still haven't been able to swim for quite a while. Everyone has problems. Am falling apart and somewhat lonely.

Anybody like any new TV shows? I rather like Person of Interest and Unforgettable .

Have a happy Sunday!

fermatprime said...

PS While waiting for CC's blog to come up, I tackled Merl. 16 somewhat confusing interconnected theme answers. Still, only took 33 minutes. Also has WHOA. Very different from the usual Merle. (Did not have to cheat on either puzzle. UNBELIEVABLE.)

fermatprime said...

RATS. Spelled Merl incorrectly!

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, C.C., and friends. This was a witty and winey puzzle. Did anyone else think of Tennessee Ernie Ford with the Sixteen Tuns answer?

My favorite clue was Silver Stopper = WHOA.

I initially tried Males for Peter and Paul, but not Mary instead of TSARS.

I think of BRASSERIEs as being casual, but not really up-scale.

I met Amos Oz once when I was in Israel. He wrote an semi-autobiographical novel entitled A Tale of Love and Darkness, which was really wonderful.

QOD: History keeps repeating itself. That's one of the things wrong with history. ~ Clarence Darrow

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Made slow and steady progress through most of the grid today. I am a fan of puns, but my knowledge of wine is lacking. The hardest theme answer for me was THE ZINS OF OUR FATHER. I now recall seeing ZIN as an abbreviation of zinfandel before, but it's still a miserable excuse for an abbreviation in my opinion. The fact that it crossed SEZ made it even more abominable, since I had first SUE and then SEE me there.

Aside from the punny wine theme, I had the most trouble at crossing of DORSA and TISANE. I couldn't tell if 25 would be DORSA or DORSI, and TISANE and TISINE looked equally good to me (which is to say I'm not at all familiar with the word).

Oh -- and I put in ALBEE instead of AILEY for 94 and was wondering what the heck a BOOPER was at 107. I did finally guess the correct words, but LOOPER doesn't look much better to me (unless we're talking about a golf caddy as described by Bill Murray's character in "Caddyshack").

Argyle said...

Gee, Barry, I must have been feeling guilty about something. My first choice for 88-Down(__ me) was "NOT ME!"

Anonymous said...

I took 24A to be 'Sharply dressed man'. Seems more common than 'shabbily dressed man.'


Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Jim Leeds for a great Sunday puzzle. Thank you, C.C., for the swell write-up.

Really enjoyed this puzzle. Did it on the train heading for PA via NY. I am still on that train and am nearing Buffalo.

Got 1A, GABLES, right off the bat. That always gives me confidence. After that got most of the North.

CHABLIS DRESSED was my first theme answer.

I did the South after that and finished with the middle.

107A, LOOPER, came slowly. It shouldn't have since I live near the Chicago Loop. The CTA "L" train actually makes a loop in the heart of the city. Hence the name, Chicago Loop.

We just had BAHT the other day.

17D SIETE came slowly. I still am not ape over foreign words. Oh well.

Almost put in LEOS for the pope, but wisely waited until I had a few crosses, then put PIUS. PIUS sounds quite self-centered, doesn't it?

See you tomorrow.


Abejo said...


Thank you for the explanation yesterday.


Argyle said...

John, a "sharply dressed" man may be more common but wouldn't be wearing a suit made of white-wine labels. Shabbily is a better pun of CHABLIS(sha-blee).

Anonymous said...

Argyle, makes sense. Thanks.


Hahtoolah said...

Barry G: Is the abbreviation ZIN any worse than the abbreviation CAB for Cabernet? While I agree that SEZ Me was perhaps not the best clue/answer in the puzzle, the reward for that was ZINS OF THE FATHER, which I thought was quite clever.

Anonymous said...

If you like zinfandels, one of the best out there IMO is 7 Deadly Zins.


HeartRx said...

Good Morning C.C. et al.

C.C., of course I loved this puzzle! What a fun write-up, too. I wouldn’t mind the Dernier CRI if the ones who wore it had a shape like you showed in the link. Unfortunately, most often it is seen on young girls with oversized muffin tops!

Some of the puns really made me laugh, like WHEN THE VAT LADY SINGS and THE GIFT OF CAB. When my friends visit, that what they usually bring!

I read Griffin and Sabine – it’s a love story told through postcards and letters sent back and forth to each other. But it was put together like a scrapbook, and you could pull the postcards out and look at both sides of them.. Very unusual, but interesting.

I didn’t get the answer for “Peak experience”. How is a SNOW CAP an “experience”? But that was just a minor “Huh?”, as the rest of the fill was rather enjoyable.

Have a lovely day, everybody!

Husker Gary said...

What a lovely cwd round today with only a few sand traps after the top 1/3 flew by! Marti probably did this while simultaneously reading War and Peace! Cru and Zin were new to this oenophile neoPHYTE. Nice write-up and construction insight C.C.! 36 holes are hard to get in on a Sunday!

-My favorite October Lab (ear worm alert!)
-My fav? The tribute to Tennessee Ernie’s 16 Tons
-Lovely fashion statement, Argyle! Not what you see in Wal~Mart!
-Nothing DICIER than UNL passing the football
-Parsley, SAGE, rosemary and thyme
-Stone referred to Michelangelo cooking over a BRASSERIE many times in his squalid quarters in the Agony and the Ecstasy. Dairy Queen uses them too.
-Hoops man was not a proper noun
-Joann wore TABU when we were dating. That scent brings up MANY pleasant memories!
-SUE me! No. SEE me! No. SEZ me! Bingo!

puny said...

Not being much of a wine drinker, most of the theme oeno-puns brought forth little more than a weak snicker. Too many of them reminded me more of over-used CW fill: vat, tun, cab, zin, cru.

Much better was CC's at 64A which elicited a true guffaw.

Is it true that most people born in the Year of the Horse are neigh-sayers? (TY JW@RTCA)

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone. Nice commenting, C.C.

What Hahtool said about SEZ. Generally liked the puzzle and it's wine pun themes. BALE and ABEL are anagrams. We always lifted our bales with one hay hook and one knee to goose it up onto the wagon. ENESCO was a WAG but sounded Romanian. The clues for TSARS and WHOA were quite clever and helped me to enjoy the puzzle. YEOMAN is a Navy enlisted rating who do secretarial/administrative work. Here is a YN1 rating badge. Note the crossed quills in the center.

Enjoy the day.

Mikey said...

A fun Sunday, with several stumbling blocks which turned out to be fairly common, so I don't feel so bad. I had the same DORSA/DORSI, TISINA/TISANE ambivalence as did Barry G., and, alas, chose poorly, but otherwise managed to cross the finish line only a little bit bloody and mostly unbowed.

Grumpy 1 said...

Good morning Sunday Solvers. Congratulations to Jim (who misLeeds us with his witty puns). Great write up, C.C.

Another hand up for WHOA as fave clue. Nailed it. Went down the same sue, see, SEZ path as most of you, but thought it was a great clue with the ZIN crossing. As a fan of 'groaner' puns, I really enjoyed that clue and this puzzle.

Hahtool, did anyone NOT think of Tennessee Ernie Ford as SIXTEEN TUNS emerged?

C.C., although we were not farmers, we did live on a farm and I grew up doing farm chores as part of my daily life. Now I own a farm but don't do any chores except paying the bills and depositing the profits. I find that to be more to my liking than mucking stalls, carrying water, baling hay , etc.

I hope we see more efforts from this constructor.

Lucina said...

Hello, Sunday Puzzlers. Thank you, C.C. for your excellent write up.

This was a lovely, punny puzzle though I have to agree with Barry's first two paragraphs. My experience exactly.

I sashayed through most of it, even while watching my toddler granddaughter, really enjoyed the puns as I'm a fan of groaners. And am always glad to see a shout out to ESL, with or without AS A.

For some reason GASBAG and HELLCATS also amused me. However, this was a DNF for me since I left SEE at 88D not noticing that SEE was already at 129A and LOOPED/ODIEL is embarrassing because ORIEL is one of the first words I learned through crosswords.

PIUS I was pope from approximately 140-154; he was the tenth pope after Peter. The first 50 popes were automatically called Saint because most were martyrs.

Have a wonderfully happy Sunday, everyone!

Jayce said...

Hello everybody. A well-constructed puzzle today, as C.C. explained, and quite enjoyable. I love puns so I loved this puzzle.


Here in Calif we say ZIN and CAB all the time. There are so many many wineries and brand names! I actually think "Sin Zin" is pretty good.

Sorry Fermatprime, but I don't really like any of the new TV shows very much. I suppose "Body of Proof" is okay, but maybe that's just because I like Dana Delany. I also like how she said in her interview with Jimmy Kimmel recently that she'd rather solve than construct. Oh, and I read Rex Parker's critcism of the puzzle she did, and I thought it was Rex who was "Disgusting," not her puzzle.

Serendipitously, PBS showed "The Thin Man" just last night, but I would have known Myrna LOY anyway.

Jayce said...

More thoughts:

As for Enesco, the first time I heard his first Romanian Rhapsody it was love at first, um, hearing. So his name has been familiar to me for many years. I don't know a damn thing he wrote other than two Romanian Rhapsodies, though. Apparently his name was really Enescu. I suppose "Enesco" is an Anglification of it.

I agree a BRASSERIE is, to us, not necessarily upscale.

Hahtool, great quote today!

Wanted SUE me, and even after getting ZIN I was slow at getting SEZ.

Abejo, I was jus' gonna say the same thing, that we had BAHT just the other day. Made it a gimme today.

One of my favorites was also WHOA. Some damn good cluing today, in addition to the terrific fill.

Jayce said...

Final thoughts:

HP (the company formerly known as Hewlett-Packard) sure has gone downhill. I think they have totally lost their way and no longer know what their own mission is.

Do not like that example od dernier cri fashion at all! Maybe it's just that particular person's ugly butt.

Thanks for the explanation of slush pile. I wouldn't otherwise have known what it is without looking it up myself. Nice to be spoon fed sometimes :)

Best wishes to you all.

Jayce said...

Okay okay, so there are definitely worse muffin tops than in that pic. Seen 'em!

HeartRx said...

So, no alternative groaners for today's puzzle?

How about:

RIESLING HASH (Serve the same food at a greasy spoon?)

SYRAH SMILE (Wine-induced grin?)

Husker Gary said...

How ‘bout

Not choosy about wine in a hurricane – Any PORT in a storm

Spitzboov said...

How about:

Not being satisfied with your wine's feelings:

Frankly Madeira, I don't give a damn.

(might need 2 rows across)

Lucina said...

RE: new TV programs

I like A Gifted Man which I watched after seeing an interview with Dr. Peter Jankowski, the executive producer of Law and Order, SVU.

He is a pediatrician who now works with children from the inner city and some in Africa.

Apparently this program is his way of placing awareness on the severe problems of so many children. It focuses on a doctor from an upscale hospital who is directed to work in a clinic formerly run by his late wife. It's intriguing.

HeartRx said...

I knew we would get some more groaners!! Spitzboov, I loved "FRANKLY MADEIRA..." But Husker, your idiom was a PORT CHOICE for a pun, haha!

Husker Gary said...

You're right Marti! I must have looking through ROSE' colored glasses!

Grumpy 1 said...

It doesn't fit this puzzle, but you do know where they keep the singing apes, dont you? The hairy simian corral, of course.

HeartRx said...



Bill G. said...

I enjoyed this puzzle (and the writeup) though it was a challenge for me. I thought it had a good many really clever clues.

I can't take Jordan to see the pirate movie that came out 'cause it's rated Arrr!

dodo1925 said...

Edit Profile, please

Anonymous said...

Pebble in a pond: Ripple effect.

Why is Ali grimacing? champaign

A mother putting her child to be: I`m tired! Anjou?

A neutral shoe color: Beaune

Result of drawing too fast: Chateau

Aircraft carrier`s command; Clos de Beze

More wines here