Dec 16, 2011

Friday Dec 16, 2011 Bruce R. Sutphin & Doug Peterson

(Please click here to solve the LA Times Daily Crossword in old format.)

Theme: HOODOO (45D. Bad luck, and a hint to the four longest across answers) - HOO is added to each common phrase.

20A. Anti-sweatshirt slogan? : NEVER SAY HOODIE. Never say die.

25A. Rabid B-ball fan's shout? : HOOPS, I LOVE YOU. P.S. I Love You. Very moving movie.

43A. Conspiracy resting place? : CAHOOT'S CRADLE. Cat's cradle.

50A. Harried photographer's wish? : RESHOOT IN PEACE. Rest in peace. The clue reminded me of Anna Wintour and her demanding style.

C.C. here. Lemonade will be back in his blogging seat next Friday. He was ready to go today, but I felt he needed one more week's recovery.

I don't quite get today's unifier HOODOO. What does DOO have anything to do with the HOO addition? Other than that, all is great. Very smooth fill.

I mentioned before that 14's are tricky to maneuver, esp if they're your first/last theme entries and you have 5 long Across theme entries. Today, we have 4. So no problem here.


1. Something to do between class and homework : MCJOB. Thought of outdoor sports rather than a part-time job.

6. "Animal House" house : DELTA. Never saw the movie.

11. Acting as : QUA. This little word always gives me trouble.

14. São __ : PAULO. So, their OK sign is not really OK.

15. Unfamiliar : ALIEN

16. Prefix with form : UNI. Uniform.

17. Auger shape : HELIX. I often confuse "auger" with "augur".

18. Globe fleck : ISLET

19. Green source, briefly : ATM. Lots of clever clues for ATM, unlike EKE or URAL.

23. Shogunate seat of power : EDO (1603-1806)

24. Major course : ENTREE. What do you want for your last meal? I want sashimi, freshly grilled unagi & mochi ice cream.

31. Lennox of the Eurythmics : ANNIE. "Sweet Dreams are made of this..."

32. "__ only kidding!" : I WAS

33. Get-up-and-go : PEP. What Dennis has.

36. "Waverley" novelist : SCOTT. Sir Walter Scott. I've never heard of "Waverley", a historical novel.

37. Boston's Liberty Tree, e.g. : ELM

38. Word of welcome : HELLO. Ni Hao! Literally "You good".

40. Push-up target : PEC

41. Progress measure : STEP. Tricky clue for me.

42. Two-dimensional products : AREAS

47. Guiding light : BEACON

49. Much of the daily paper : ADS. Esp on Sundays.

56. D-backs, on scoreboards : ARI

57. Harry's Hogwarts nemesis : DRACO. Gimme for Argyle/Jazzbumpa. A draconian clue for me, a non-Harry Potter fan.

58. "The Office" airer : NBC TV

60. Uruguayan uncle : TIO

61. Saharan refuges : OASES. Lots of dates there. Fed to camels and horses. What a waste.

62. Use a short form of : ELIDE

63. __ master : ZEN. Doug Peterson is a grid master.

64. Not sharp, say : ON KEY. I need "or not flat" in the clue to think musically. Stupid!

65. Believer in the clockwork universe theory : DEIST. What is "clockwork universe theory"?


1. Daytona meas. : MPH. Nailed it, eddy? Daytona 500.

2. French city near the English Channel : CAEN

3. Styne of Broadway : JULE. "Funny Girl", "Gypsy", etc.

4. Greek salad leftover : OLIVE PIT. Have yet to finish my jar of olive pate. Incredibly salty, Steve!

5. Ardent fan's purchase : BOXED SET

6. Speaker's platform : DAIS

7. Supermodel Benitez : ELSA. Here she is. Your clue, Bruce?

8. Plant family including tulips : LILY

9. Giggles : TEEHEES

10. Caesar colleague : ANTONY (Marc). Cleopatra was a Wonder Woman.

11. Adjusted for a larger group, as a recipe : QUADRUPLED. I like this entry.

12. Free : UNTIE

13. Pop singer Mann : AIMEE

21. Dauphin's destiny : ROI. Dauphin was French ROI's oldest (eldest?) son.

22. Nebraska native : OTO

25. Door closer : HASP

26. "I'll try anything __" : ONCE. Will you, Desper-otto?

27. Irregularly : ON OCCASION. Nice answer also.

28. Not be up-front with : LIE TO

29. Nocturnal newcomer : OWLET. "Newcomer" made me laugh.

30. Improvises : VAMPS. New meaning of "vamp" to me. Jazz term.

34. Mideast flier : EL AL

35. Put forward : POSE

38. Got set : HARDENED

39. Subject to removal : ERASABLE

41. Desert bordering the Mojave : SONORAN

44. German grouse? : ACH. Lovely clue/answer for Kazie, Spitzboov and Misty, who is from Austria.

46. Ceiling : CAP

47. Lush-lipped doll brand : BRATZ. They all look quite pretty, except their "lush lips".

48. More than odd : EERIE

51. Thing to stay on : TASK. Stay on task.

52. Big name in slush : ICEE

53. Prying : NOSY

54. MX ÷ V : CCII. 1010/5= 202. I don't mind Roman numeral in a grid at all.

55. Approx. takeoff hrs. : ETDs. ETD = Estimated Time of Departure.

59. Thoroughly examine : VET. Vet a potential candidate for a Supreme Court Justice position, for example.

Answer grid.



Dennis said...

Good morning, C.C. and gang - quite the struggle for me today; several unknowns, and a few less than stellar clues.

I needed perp help right from the start in order to get 'McJob', then needed it again at the top to come up with 'quadrupled', which I thought was a weak answer to a weak clue. Could've been any multiplier. Also perped my way to the first theme answer, which helped with the others.

With the exception of one unknown, 'Draco', I managed to get through the rest, but I just wasn't real thrilled with this one. Probably more me than the constructors. However ---- I did love the clue/answer combo for 38D...

C.C., my last meal is best left to the imagination.

Off to work on the 'pushup target', among all the other areas trying to fall apart.

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

This one was tough all over for me as well. I honestly didn't think I was going to finish it until I finally got HOODOO and was able to make some sense of the theme answers.

The NW was the last to fall, which I always hate since that's where I start. Neither JULE nor CAEN were in my lexicon, and all I could think of for 17A was SCREW. Oh -- and I also had RPM instead of MPH for 1D, which didn't help things any. OLIVE PIT is what finally saved the day up there.

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, C.C. and Friends. Well, it is definitely Friday! This was not one of my favorite puzzles. After getting NEVER SAT HOODIE, and the unifier of HOO-DOO, I felt each of the theme clues should also have included the DOO as well.

Some good misleads: My first thought for Major Course pertained to an academic major, not a meal Course.

Not Sharp made me think of an Idiot, not a musical term.

I liked the fresh clue for ATM, but Green Source had me thinking of an ecological response.

Yesterday was 80F. By tonight, we'll be in the 40s. No wonder I have a cold!

QOD: An architect's most useful tools are an eraser at the drafting board, and a wrecking bar at the site. ~ Frank Lloyd Wright

Argyle said...

Regarding the Sweet Dreams lyrics:
Is it the English way to pronounce THIS as THESE because that is what I hear when I listen to this song. Of course, I'll never give up believing it is "as the mirror told his tale" in "Whiter Shade of Pale".

HeartRx said...

C.C., thanks for sitting in for our recovering Lemonade today. I didn’t get the “DOO” in HOODOO, either, BTW. But I agree that the rest of the fill was great.

Cooking during the holidays always involves doubled or tripled recipes in my house. But I thought of Lucina and her family making tamales when I saw QUADRUPLED.

Dennis, leave it to you to find the hidden meaning at 38A…So, I guess C.C.’s comment at 33A was right on target?

BRATZ dolls remind me of actresses with "trout pouts"!

And here’s one for AIMEE Mann fans (OK, count me as an ardent fan, with a BOXED SET of “Til Tuesday” CDs…). ”Coming Up Close”.


thehondohurricane said...

Good day folks,

I struggled with this puzzle from the start, but managed to complete the North and most of the Central sections. Other than the East, the South is pretty barren. NOT SHARP, SAY once I reached the bottom. Not the first time I felt a little dopey this week.

I wasn't crazy about this puzzle either. Agree with Dennis about 38D, but many of the clues were Blah.

Last business weekend of the year and looks like it will be a good one. Talk to you folks on Monday.

Bruce S. said...

Thanks for the writeup C.C.

Quick explanation on our HOODOO theme… Doug and I had been talking theme ideas and I suggested we do a just add water type theme where we added HOO to some phrases and let wackiness ensue. Doug said sure and we ran with it, making a good puzzle with a WATER reveal at the end etc.

Got a nice email back from Patti at the LAT that while Rich really liked the theme answers, HOO was not the chemical designation for water, that would be HHO. DOH!! We rearranged a bunch of stuff, Doug was able to get HOODOO in the grid, and we ended up with a nice “huh, why did they stick HOO in there? and where is the DOO?” themed puzzle. I guess the morale of the story is that you do not want me to be your chemistry lab assistant…

desper-otto said...

Morning, all. Cool morning today. Hahtool, I think you and I are probably enjoying the highs for the day right now. Here in the piney woods the leaves have finally started to fall.

No speed run, no siree! Got the theme at HOOPS, and that helped with the rest of the theme answers.

I found the SE corner to be the hardest, probably because I miss-interpreted MX as CX giving me XXII. Realized that was wrong when ABCTV wouldn't fit. Only when I changed RESTIN' PLACE to RESTINPEACE did ABC change to NBC and everything HARDENED into shape. Tough slog for me! Enjoyed it, though.

CC, the clockwork universe theory argues that the motions of the stars and planets, for example, are so precise and clock-like that they could not have arisen by accident; they must have been planned. Therefore, there must be a master clockmaker who planned it all.

kazie said...

I'm glad to see I'm not alone in my struggle today. I was going to say names, names, names, DNF, and leave it to that. But I softened when I sat at the computer and googled a few of them and let the perps take over.

I share C.C.'s consternation over HOODOO which I don't associate with bad luck at all. (Sorry, Bruce and Doug, but nice of Bruce to stop by and explain how it got there.)

I misread refuges as refugees, and had BULB for LILY for so long those AREAS were stymied for some time. I also have never known that QUA meant acting as.

I also thought of academics for major course, since I still, after living here for 38 years, don't like the use of ENTRÉE for the main course of a meal--in French it means entrance, so should refer to the appetizer.

Have a great weekend all of you!

Yellowrocks said...

This seemed difficult at first as I had to pick at various clues until I got a start.
At @)20A I had N-V-R-S-Y---DIE and wagged NEVER SAY---DIE, OOH, adding HOO makes HOODIE. This HOO gave me all the themes and the reaveal. It was all downhill from there.
QUADRUPLED ddin't bother me. I knew it was some kind of multiplier and early on had -RUPLED

TGIF Happy weekend.

Tinbeni said...

C.C. Great PINCH hitting!

DNF ... what a mess!!!
I've hit the Mother-Lode of Ink Blots.

My "Word of Welcome" was Aloha.
HELLO seemed toooooooo easy for a Friday.
Thought the Boston Liberty Tree was an OAK.
Yaddie, Yaddie, Yadda ...

On the "Plus Side" I was amazed that I remembered the Lush-Lipped Dolls were called BRATZ.

For that "Believer of Clockwork Universe Theory" ... I had IDIOT (off the 'I' and 'T' from CCII & VET).

As such, I just started filling in answers I wanted.
Ergo, my "Major course" was SCOTCH.
(Which will probably be "My last meal").

A "toast" to all at Sunset.

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

Really benefitted from the theme today, once I realized it was a HOO insertion. The NW was the last to fall, because I applied my own experience to that space between class and homework: SNACK !

Speaking of snacks, for the last meal I think I'll pick something richly Alfredo, skip the salad and go for both chocolate and cheesecake for dessert, along with an excellent coffee. Cholesterol Heaven!

Mari said...

Must be Friday! Wow, did I ever make a mess of my grid. A good challenge and a great learning opportunity. I especially liked 38D: Got Set: HARDENED, and 39D Subject to Removal: ERASABLE.

Happy Friday. I hope you all have a great day and a wonderful weekend!

kazie said...

I can relate to your solving today--I was tempted to do the same. In fact, that's what my DH does if I ever ask him to help, so I have to resist the urge or my grid becomes a mess. Thanks for the guffaws!

Mock-Chemist said...

Bruce S. - Nice of you to stop by, but maybe I should mention that the formula for water is properly HOH or H-OH, rather than than HHO. It is a combination of a Hydrogen ion ( H+) and a Hydroxyl ion ( OH- ).

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Bruce and Doug, for a great Friday puzzle. Thank you, C.C., for sitting in.

This puzzle was easier than I expected it would be. Got the entire North right off the bat. The lower 2/3's was a little slower, but it came together.

My last holdout was the West Central. I had OLIVE OIL instaed of OLIVE PIT. Eventually figured that out.

The theme answers came easily, except for HOOPS I LOVE YOU. That was my last.

HOODOO was puzzling, but perps got it.

59D, VET, was a clever clue/answer.

DRACO fell with perps.

BRATZ was a wag that worked.

Get well soon, Lemonade. We miss you.

Off to Chicago this afternoon. See you tomorrow.


Husker Gary said...

Ni Hao, C.C. Very satisfying Friday fare! Theme fills drew chuckles although it took caHOOtscradle to see it.

-Animal House rocks!
-I don’t think any of my farmer friends would use the word HELIX as they auger fence post holes
-My last meal will probably be oatmeal at the home
-My Draco is the dragon constellation twining between Ursa Major and Minor. No idea on Harry and his merry band.
-Athletic Zen master is Phil Jackson
-I had LPS and RPM first
-UNTIE/UNITE – free/join
-ELAL is pretty direct about keeping terrorists off their planes
-All this VETTING goes on and skeletons still pour out. Who vets the vetter?

Mari said...

Abejo, Bundle up. It's cold in Chicago today, only 35 deg. We're up to 42 deg on Sunday...woo hoo! Heat wave!

Al Dente said...

Last Meal? With knowing you're going to be put to death in a few hours, it's hard to imagine having an appetite, although many apparently do. I guess I'd ask for a Bromo and about 25 mg of valium. And perhaps a Communion Wafer to appease my ancestors.
In the realm of Greetings, I like the Mayan "Inlakesh", which I have been told means "I am another you."
The next time I bump into Chuck Shumer on the Coney Island boardwalk, maybe I'll try it.

Anonymous said...

OMG, leave it to a mock chemist to pick a very esoteric nit on H-OH and miss the silly mistype of moral/morale.

This was a great puzzle Bruce and Doug and thank you for the insight in your posting. It was good for my morale and I look forward to more efforts from you.

Yellowrocks said...

Mock Chemist, thank you. I sensed HHO and HOO were both inocrrect for water, but I couldn't dredge up the correct formula from my HS days.
With my "downhiil all the way"in my earlier post I was thinking of blythely whizzing down hill on a sled, not slipping down to disaster.
Oops, don't ask what kind of whizzing was I doing on the sled. LOL

Doug P said...

Thanks for the nice write-up, C.C. Bruce and I were a little embarrassed by our H2O gaffe, and we're glad Rich allowed us to salvage the puzzle with HOODOO. I believe we also considered HOOHA as a theme hint.

Lemonade714 said...

Happy Friday all:

I am so pleased to be able to do a puzzle that I found this one lots of fun. Doug P., you stole my HOOHA comment; I also thought of the old the old song lyric, Who Do the Voodoo Like You Do.

Bruce S., sorry I missed a Friday, you are always fun to blog and thank you both for the entertainment.

Finally got to sleep without a 4AM blood draw, 5AM chest x-ray, etc.

C.C., thanks for the time to rest and I will be back. Enjoy the day everyone

len said...

Hi all,
Well, foiled again, by an olive pit this time. (I had olive oil.) But I never do well on these add some letters to the word puzzles. Not my thing.
Hadn't heard the term "vamp" as musical improv before, even tho it seemed like the only possible word.
I still don't quite understand what "bad luck" has to do with any of the long across answers, or any kind of luck for that matter, other than this adding "hoo" business.
But enough boo-hooing. Time to do the Wash Post puzzle. Hopefully, it will be a bit easier.

*David* said...

I felt that this was a solid and smooth puzzle. It took me a while to get toeholds but once I did, it moved really nicely. The cluing was actually easier then I expected in some places which made me suspicious of my fill. I think the theme unifier would've made a bit more sense if it interspersed HOO and DOO in the theme answers.

GarlicGal said...

Good morning everyone. Boy, is it ever Friday?!

DNF for me. I know we have had MCJOB before, but it wasn't in my realm today. Nor CAEN, JULE (which I should have guessed) and BOXEDSET.

Oh well... Have a great weekend. Welcome back Lemonade and as always, thank you C.C.!

Lucina said...

Good day, C.C. and cyber friends.

Great subbing, C.C., thank you.

Oh, H2O (H-OO)now I see; thank you Bruce and Doug as this was fun and a challenge for me.

It took a while to gain traction as I skipped around. No sashaying today! I started with DAIS and ISLET then slowly spread from there.

My Dad left a complete set of the Waverly novels and I read them all one summer (20, I believe) in my high school freshman year. That started my love of English lit.

Yes, Marti, we QUADRUPLED the recipe and my wish for the last meal is, you guessed it, freshly made tamales!

HELLO did seem too easy but I grasped that straw and held on.

Hand up for ABC before NBC so HARDENED took some time. Also ETA then ETD.

Have a wonderful Friday, everyone!

Lucina said...

If ENTREE means entrance, appetizer, what would be the correct word for the main course?

Tuttle said...

Printing the puzzle out via the LA Times' new interface is maddening because it doesn't print special characters. No á makes the clue for 14A "So ____". And no division symbol makes 54D just "MX V".

As a classicist I kind of bristle at using an anglicized nomen (ANTONY rather than Antonius) clued with a Latin cognomen (Caesar whose nomen was Julius). But The Bard kind of ruined that peeve a long time ago.

My DRACO is the one who gave us the word 'draconic'.

Seldom Seen said...

I always thought Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slade was saying Hooah.

This is what wiki has to say.

Then I guess the marines say Oorah.

Do the vets here concur?

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

Technically, a DNF. Came here to get QUA, then that corner fell into place. Certainly DRACO and JULE were very welcome gimmies.

There's a lot to like in this puzzle. And, while I appreciate the effort, skill and cleverness that went into it, it is also rife with easily preventable inaccuracies.

HOODOO is not bad luck, it is conjured folk magic. Look it up. It's also a very poorly fit unifier.

Improvise = VAMP is evidently part of the X-word lexicon, but it is simply wrong. A VAMP is a repeated figure that does admit to some variation, but only within a tightly defined context. It is in no way equivalent to "improvise."

No musician would ever say "ON KEY" when he means "IN TUNE." In fact, I can't recall ever hearing any musician ever say "ON KEY" in any context.

Last week I linked to Gorden Goodwin's Yo Tannenbaum. Here is our shot at it.

JzB tends to play sharp

Tuttle said...

Lucina, there are several variants but one of the most common lists of a seven-course meal is: 1. Hors d'oeuvres, 2. Potage (soup), 3. Poisson (fish), 4. Entrée, 5. Relevé (roast), 6. Fromage (cheese), 7. Dessert.

But often the main course, especially if it's not a roast, will just be 'plat principal'.

Checkered past - said...

What, we have to Vet-ted now, to post on this blog ?

BTW, judging by the links, the most obvious target for push-ups would be bra or t--. Just sayin'.

Steve said...

Awesome puzzle, took me almost an hour, but such satisfaction in finally seeing ISLET to finish.

Tremendous write-up, CC.

Last meal? FOOD! Woo Hoo! I'll take a five-course eclectic restaurant dinner as follows:

Blue Corn Crab Cakes from Bobby Flay's Mesa Grill, NYC

Blood Sausage and Asparagus salad from Joe Allen's, London

Jamie Oliver's Lamb Shanks from the Naked Chef cookbook

Nancy Silverman's chocolate cake dessert from Osteria Mozza, Los Angeles

Cheese plate selected from Neal's Yard Dairy, London

Sorry, overran my 20 lines, but FOOOOD!

Have a great weekend, all y'all

kazie said...

The French call it the "plat principal", or literally "main dish". After reading to the end of the comments, I see Tuttle has given you the whole story.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning all. Thanks C.C. for the comments and for clarifying the theme.

Ach, a real stinker today. I got the center, N, E, and SE, relatively easily. But I had to hit the g spot for JULE which gave me MCJOB and MPH. Also needed red letter help with BRATZ and DRACO. I agree with Dennis about QUADRUPLED, but I attributed the crappy clue to Friday's difficulty level. Did not know ANNIE or SCOTT, and was dense on PEC. I liked the ATM clue. I also did not 'get' HOODOO, but I accept Bruce's and Doug's explanation of how it came about.

LIE TO - has a nautical definition as well:

To remain stationary while facing the wind.

Clear Ayes said...

Good Morning All, I got the HOO connection after NEVER SAY HOODIE. I gave the letters HOO a try at the beginning of 25A. Yay, it fit! After I got 29D OWLET (smack dab in the center), I was sure that OWL sounds were, at least, part of the theme.

I finally got 45D) HOODOO and I am glad to see Bruce's explanation, although like others, I'm missing the DOO.

Here's a pretty good explanation of the difference between Voodoo and HOODOO.

For those of you who thought Shel Silverstein only wrote childrens' poems and stories, he was also a lyricist (Boy Named Sue. The Unicorn) and wrote Hoodoo Voodoo Lady I couldn't find a musical version of this one, but it reads very well as a poem.

Lemonade, I hope you are feeling better everyday. Here's a short cheery Peggy Lee Latin-ish version of Cole Porter's You Do Something To Me.

*David* said...

I find it odd when people disagree with defintions without looking them up to see if there are alternative defintions. It does happen but more often then not the constructor is correct. Case in point is VAMP and HOODOO that both have alternate defintions that are exactly as the constructor described.

Yellowrocks said...

I have often heard ON KEY and OFF KEY used to describe singing. The music teacher actually told me I was singing OFF KEY (sharp or flat). It is best that I sing solo, so low you can't hear me.

I did look up HOODOO and found it has more than one meaning.

a. Magic healing and control, especially in African-based folk medicine in the United States and the Caribbean. Also called conjure.
b. A practitioner of hoodoo.

2. Voodoo.

a. Bad luck.
b. One that brings bad luck.

Dennis said...

I always thought Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slade was saying Hooah.
This is what wiki has to say.
Then I guess the marines say Oorah.
Do the vets here concur?

This one does.

eddyB said...


Nice Friday puzzle. No problems.

MPH WAS the first to fall. The 500
will be 2/26 and Danica will try to qual.

Wanted box seats for 5D. Wish I had one for the Sharks. They scored 3 goals in the third to
win. Top line finally woke up.

Made crab cakes last night and plan to have potato pancakes to night.

Remember those early wake up calls for blood draws. Impossible to get back to sleep.

take care. eddy

Seldom Seen said...

So C.C. and JzB were not very fond of the clue for 64a? Good enough for me.

Maybe it could have been clued as "Pejorative used in the east end of London".

Steve said...

Oh - by the way, if you QUADRUPLE a recipe, make sure you only DOUBLE the salt. Odd and inexplicable rule-of-thumb, but it's sound advice.

Anonymous said...

Seen, do you mean A Cockney accented - southern US racist ?

Fellow Fooodie said...

Steve, did I see you on The Food network, next to Paula Deen ? Your advice sure feels familiar. For the IT expert, that I think you (really - ) are, you should have been with the C.I.A. ( Culinary Inst. of America, Wash D.C. ).

Clear Ayes said...

Well, we're not concerned with cholesterol or calories at a last

For hors d'oeuvres, I'd take escargot, or even better, roasted bone marrow with toast. I do love Caesar salad....with raw egg and anchovies. Most restaurants don't use raw egg anymore, but if it were my last meal..."Who cares?" Then, maybe some properly cooked scallops. So often they are overcooked. Meat? I'd probably go for a nice pink pork chop. I grew up with the cooked-gray ones. Somewhere in there, I'd like a few stalks of roasted asparagus. For dessert, I might go for a piece of Hummingbird cake. Although I like many of them, I don't have a favorite, so no soup or cheese course for me.

Anonymous said...

I think the Deist emphasis in "clockwork universe" isn't on the elaborate design, but on the idea that it's wound up and then forgotten, i.e., it doesn't have or need any ongoing divine intervention once it's been started.

Misty said...

Great Friday morning for me. I got the Diabolical Sudoku in the LA Times--a total rarity for me--and then thought I completely nailed the puzzle. Turns out I put PAOLO instead of PAULO and therefore got JULE wrong. But the rest was right and I feel terrific. Thank you, Bruce and Doug, for explaining how challenging construction can be.

Lucina, I'm in awe of your reading 20 Scott novels! Wow!

Am cooking German roasted vegetables for our Gourmet Club's Christmas dinner tonight--and since we have 16 people I have to QUADRUPLE the recipe for 4. Thanks for the hint about the salt, Steve. I'll keep that in mind.

thehondohurricane said...

Never really thought about my last meal because I hope it never comes to pass, but my choice would be simple.

Barbecued beef brisket, baked beans, and corn bread from Angelo's Barbecue located on University in Fort Worth, Tx. Add to that a cold beer to wash it down. All served by a gorgeous blonde female native of the Lone Star State.

Bill G. said...

This was a tough Friday puzzle for me. I got the theme early on and that helped. As usual, most everything has been said by the time I get finished mid-morning on the west coast.

All this talk about food is making me hungry! Potato pancakes, corn bread, brisket, crab cakes. Geez...

ARBAON: said...

My fried chicken, my former MIL`s roast and gravy, (you can see I`m not vegetarian), our cafeteria lady`s yeast rolls, asparagus vinaigrette,
twice baked,loaded potato, New York cheese cake with raspberry sauce, commercial grade (saved just for fine restaurants) black coffee and Vernor`s Ginger Ale.

Avg Joe said...

Glad to see your once again out in the world Lemon. Hang in there.

Even though I get why the original idea of H-OO standing for water was rejected, I still think it's a clever theme and should have been allowed. As is, it produced a challenging puzzle, but it seemed a little forced to me.

Last meal....hmmmm....Well, it would start with Eggs Benedict, asparagus on the side. Then maybe some fried clam strips (cooked correctly, like CA said). An extremely tender Rib Eye cooked only to the point that a good Vet could still save it, with a side of sauteed morels. Then finish with raspberry cheesecake and wash it down with a not-too-overpowering strawberry weiss beer.

Chickie said...

Hola Everyone, A very difficult puzzle for me today. There were so many unknown names that left many unfilled squares the first time through.

I had a tough time in the NW corner as I put in My Job for McJob and that gave me Year instead of Caen. My excuse and I'm sticking to it.

Barry G. always manages to say what I feel and has much the same solving experience.

Thanks to you C.C. for filling in all the gaps. Your writeup was super.

Have a great day everyone. I'm off to do some more Christmas stuff.

Seldom Seen said...

Last meal:

Similar to ClearAyes.

True Caeser Salad with surf and turf.

My surf is never frozen Alaskan king crab legs with drawn butter.

Turf is a thick porterhouse, medium rare.

Veggie? O.K., i'll take creamed spinach and/or stewed tomatoes.

Dessert is bread pudding with some Louis XIII.

Ron Worden said...

Good Friday afternoon to all. Thanks for the write-up C.C. and for filling in for Lemonade.Clever theme and cluing,thanks Bruce and Doug. All this food talk is making me hungry and thinking about all the holiday food to come. So in the words of Hedley Lamaar "Go do that voodoo that you do so well" A happy Friday to all RJW.

Anonymous said...

This puzzle definitely put the HOODOO on me! Thanks, C.C. for another good blog. I never really understood what HOO was doing. I got the HOODOO fairly soon as well as SONORAN, but wrote in cohorts and thought couch.

Has anyone else seen the HOODOOs in Utah's Brice Canyon? They are gorgeous weird orange geological formations like nothing else I've ever seen. Wish I knew how to technologically bring a clip of them to the blog.

- PK

Avg Joe said...

Can't have a theme like this without including a clip of Junior Wells and Buddy Guy doing HooDoo Man.

PK, I've been to Bryce Canyon, and I agree. This is the Wiki article , but the picture doesn't do justice to the color. They seem like they're almost glowing when you see them in person.

Anonymous said...

My last meal would be foods I cooked regularly on the farm and can't duplicate in the city. Spaghetti sauce made with fresh home grown tomatoes from my garden. Fresh picked green beans or broccoli with cheese sauce. A choice grilled rib steak raised by my husband. Either fresh cherry-mulberry pie or apricot cobbler--all the fruit from my orchard.

Yeah, I'm homesick! But I don't miss squat and pick.


Anonymous said...

Thanks, AvgJoe!

- PK

N. Game said...

We all will have a last meal. The question is whether we'll know it at the time.

This too shall pass. Or not, as the case may be...

chapstick52 said...

Great puzzle. Once I figured it out, Paul Simon's song "Love me Like a rock" kept playing in my inner radio--who do, who do you think you're foolin'?

windhover said...

No last meal for me, please. I'm with Woody Allen, who said,
"A lot of people want to be immortal by being known for their work. I want to be immortal by not dying."

It's working for both of us, so far. ;-}

But an 8 ounce filet mignon (or as we hillbillies call it, beef tenderloin) would be nice.

Lucina said...

Thank you, Tuttle and Kazie.

I guess I should rethink my last meal and add a few more courses! Yum! You all have great suggestions.

I was 14 and had a whole summer to read.

thehondohurricane said...


If you figure out immortality, let me know, ASAP.

AARP General Poobah said...

Talk about dying - 2008 WAS the year to die - for. The Federal estate tax ( upper limit - ) exemption was unlimited ! So, your beneficiaries wouldn't have to pay any estate tax, if you died that year.

Now it is down to $ 1 Mil. , again. (sigh).

My last meal would have to include a large dose of a powerful laxative - like castor oil - so my inheritors would have to clean up the whole, entire mess. Make them earn the windfall !

Did you hear about the pharmacist who had run out of oral cough syrup ? He gave the customer a real strong laxative instead. ( Made him clam up, in a hurry ).

Abejo said...

Well, I checked back in on my way to Chicago. It seems that the Last Meal is the alternate theme.

Mine would be, if I knew when to choose it, pork and sauerkraut with mashed potatoes and lima beans on the side. The pork and sauerkraut would be baked in the oven. As a matter of fact this is exactly what I will be eating on New Year's Day.

Welcome back Lemonade714. Hope you are feeling much better.

Mari: It sounds like the weather in NW Pennsylvania was about the same as Chicago. It was pretty cold when I left.


Tinbeni said...

The "year to die for" was 2010.
THAT was the year the Estate Tax was Zero, Zip, NIL, Nada.

Note: There were actual instances where some very wealthy individuals were extensively "kept alive" (by their "loving" children) in late 2009 so they could DIE in January 2010, thereby avoiding all Estate Taxes.

(But what do I know ... I've only been a Tax Consultant for 36 years).

All the last meal food talk was interesting.

But I'll stick with my first choice.

Hopefully, you now realize WHY I make a nightly "toast" at Sunset.

And why my last consumption will probably be Pinch.

Cheers !!!

Seldom Seen said...

Thanks Dennis.

Clear Ayes said...

It is interesting to see what people would choose to eat before checking out. Some want things they have seldom eaten, others go for things they have eaten and enjoyed all their lives. I'm sure that says something about us psychologically, but I'll be darned if I know what it is.

ant said...

C.C., a bit off-topic, but while browsing the bookstore tonight, I came across this book of Baseball Haiku. I picked it up and can send it on to you if you'd like. Just let me know...
(Yeah, I can hear all the teachers (and students) on the blog now - "brown-noser!". But think of it as a Christmas gift to our wonderful hostess.)

Back on-topic (sort-of), if I had to pick a last meal, it would be the never-ending pasta bowl at Olive Garden. Not because I love their food, but the "never-ending" has gotta mean something here, right...?

Also, don't forget to spread the word about Dominick the dONKEY!

Argyle said...

My last meal? An endless buffet with Peggy Lee singing in the background, Is That All There Is?

Bill G. said...

I don't want to think about a LAST meal. Too stressful. But one of my favorite main courses would have to be medium-rare prime rib roast, a substantial slab.

Spitzboov said...

Mother moose and two moose calves cavorting around a lawn sprinkler.

windhover said...

There's some deep philosophy in your statement, but I'll be damned if I know what it is. I just know you're always right. ;)

It's quite alright to brown nose, as long as noser and nosee are ok with it.
Sounds like a great idea to me. Maybe you or Avg. Joe could come up with some musical accompaniment. Maybe that Fogarty tune?

ant said...

Sure, Windy!
Do you mean this one...?
(check out that gee-tar!)
Or maybe this one?
(Argyle, can I get you a little something, too?)

Bill G. said...

Spitz, fun video. Can there be any creatures more ungainly than mooses?

Clear Ayes said...

Thanks Windhover, coming from our friendly farmer-philosopher, that is high praise. You know I've got your back too.

Bill G., I had to smile at your comment about it being too stressful to think about a last meal. But when the coin was tossed in the air, you knew how you wanted it to land. Order that "medium-rare prime rib roast, a substantial slab" often....ya never know. :o)

Spitzboov, loved the mooseses.

Have a good weekend everyone. We're doing some packing and then we'll be going to my (former) chorus concert on Sunday. I may burst out into uninvited song, but if they can't take a joke... I'll let you know.