Apr 10, 2012

Tuesday, April 10, 2012 David Steinberg

Theme: Jackson Five hit song(1970) Clip (3:31) - ABC spans each theme answer.

17A. It arranges pickups : CAB COMPANY

25A. Emir : ARAB CHIEF

36A. Simple ... or a hint to the hidden puzzle theme in 17-, 25-, 50- and 59-Across : AS EASY AS ABC

50A. Maryland seafood fare : CRAB CAKES

59A. Sit-up relatives : AB CRUNCHES

Argyle One here. David provided us with a test of general knowledge today with entries gleaned from all over the place and all ages.


1. Dark, to a poet : EBON

5. Tony who played a sitcom 17-Across employee : DANZA. He was in "Taxi".

10. Sitters' charges : TOTS

14. Lee with frozen desserts : SARA

15. Barkley who served under 41-Across : ALBEN. Served as Vice-President to 41A. FDR's successor : HST. Harry Truman. We've had him before but you can be forgiven if you don't remember him.

16. "... thunder, lightning, __ rain?": "Macbeth" : OR IN. Act 1, Scene 1 "When shall we three meet again? In ..." "When the hurly-burly’s done, When the battle’s lost and won."

19. Modest dress : MIDI

20. Like a crowd in awe : HUSHED

21. End-of-week exclamation : "TGIF!"

22. Vagrants : HOBOs

28. Mocedades hit whose title means "you are" : "ERES TU"

30. Golf units : ROUNDS

31. Slippery swimmer : EEL

32. How Dennis Eckersley pitched : SIDEARM. No, he didn't pitch wearing a side arm.

40. Desexes : NEUTERS

44. Outbursts that provoke blessings : ACHOOs

47. Harley alternative : YAMAHA

54. The Lusitania, e.g. : LINER. On May 7, 1915, the Lusitania, the British passenger ship, was sunk by a German U-boat off the Irish coast.

55. Sidewalk border : CURB

56. Guitarist, slangily : AXEMAN

58. Carlisle's wife in "Twilight" : ESME. Portrayed by Elizabeth Reaser. The loving couple.

63. It may be barred or bolted : DOOR. It may be barred by Katy.

64. Songs for two : DUETS

65. English aristocrat : EARL

66. __, meeny ... : EENY

67. Muslim god : ALLAH

68. June 6, 1944 : D-DAY


1. Key to the left of F1 : ESC

2. Sheepish reply? : "BAA". Shout out to WH? Or would that be a "bleat out"?

3. Heavenly body : ORB

4. Cheese-topped snacks : NACHOS

5. Electricity generators : DAMS. Oh please, the dams don't do anything except hold back water. It's like saying dams sawed wood or ground grain.

6. ___-Bits: cereal : ALPHA. Cereal for cruciverbalists.

7. Pro hoopster : NBAer

8. "The Prisoner of __" : ZENDA. An adventure novel by Anthony Hope, published in 1894.

9. Vague quantity : ANY

10. Tiny fairy tale hero : TOM THUMB. OK, give us another Tom Thumb but not one that's already been given. I'll start.

11. Starting point : ORIGIN

12. Cleaned (up) : TIDIED

13. Searches like a detection dog : SNIFFS

18. Give the boot : OUST

22. Donkey syllable : HEE - haw.

23. Cinnabar or magnetite : ORE

24. Lugosi of "Dracula" : BELA

26. Having a lot of nerve : BRASSY

27. Chef Cat __ : CORA. She is featured as an "Iron Chef" on the Food Network.

29. Patriotic Olympics chant : "USA!, USA!"

33. Believer's suffix : IST

34. Gray hair disguiser : DYE

35. Place for a ring : EAR

37. Elitism : SNOBBERY

38. Fed. anti-discrimination org. : EEOC. (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission)

39. Biggers's detective : CHAN. Earl Derr Biggers (1884 – 1933)

42. 54-Across pronoun : SHE

43. Pit goo : TAR. Most famous are the Rancho La Brea Tar Pits in the heart of Los Angeles.

44. Acquiesce : ACCEDE

45. Defoe title surname : CRUSOE. (Robinson)

46. Longtime Tiger Woods coach Butch __ : HARMON. Master's tie-in?

48. Astronaut Shepard : ALAN

49. Chopped, as garlic : MINCED

51. Afghan capital : KABUL. Today's geography lesson. Map.

52. Stand out in a field : EXCEL

53. Mattress giant : SERTA

57. Sled dog command : MUSH

59. Drillers' org. : ADA. (American Dental Association)

60. "I've been __!" : HAD

61. Important time : ERA

62. Surreptitious : SLY



Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Really liked the theme today and the theme answers were all fresh and interesting.

I really got worn down by all the cross-referenced clues and obscurities, however. ALBEN (who?) right under DANZA ("see 17-Across") was especially annoying (even more so because it was crossed by NBAER). CORA was another unknown, and then we had the lovely crossing of ESME and HARMON. Feh. And my brain just refused to parse either the clue or the answer to 16A (ORIN).

Other than those spots, though, the puzzle was enjoyable. And, as I said, I really like the theme and its execution.

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Argyle and friends. Wow! A fantastic puzzle constructed by one so young. David has a career ahead of him! Good puzzle. It's Elementary, my dear Mr. Steinberg!

My favorite clue was Stand Out in a Field = EXCEL.

Tony DANZA and Taxi was long before our constructor's time!

QOD: Minds are like parachutes. They only function when they are open. ~ James Dewar

Nick said...

A so-so theme in and of itself when made by a good enough constructor (D. Steinberg) equals a sweet puzzle!

Also had to type on various vowel combinations to get ALBEN, and had to grab a dictionary to look up "acquiesce", but I spose that's a good thing.

Before somebody makes a sarcastic comment about the clue for ESME, realize that might get David a girlfriend or thirty.

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, David Steinberg, for a very good Tuesday puzzle. thank you, Argyle, as well, for the review.

Well, I read the interview of David. I am impressed by this young man. Great job, David!

I started in the NW and was able to get that corner right off the bat. The North Center section was easy except for ZENDA. Perps got that. ALBEN was in the back of my brain.

The NE corner came easily as well. My perped word was OR IN at 16A.

Did not know ERES TU at 28A. I had the TU and figured it was latin. Perps to the rescue.

CRAB CAKES was a gimme for 50A. I lived in the Tidewater area of Virginia for a while (King George and Dahlgren) and that fare was readily available. We had more fun at crab houses eating hard shelled crabs with gallons of beer. Wow!

HST was easy for 41A. Harry is one of my personal heros. He had no middle name, just plugged in the "S" to fit in with the politicos.

Did not know HARMON or ESME. Wagged it.

Enjoyed the theme.

See you tomorrow.


Lemonade714 said...

Hey; Thought this was a really excellent Tuesday which as Argyle mentioned was all over the place with fill, from old vice-presidents, to 70's tv and then a Twilight reference (Esme was my unknown) makes his comment in his interview about dedicating the most time to the fill ring true.

I noticed the NYT introduced three teenagers in June of 2011 and Merl Reagle was one of the teen age constructors back in the day. Thanks for the info A.

desper-otto said...

Morning, all.

This was fast and fun. No nits to pick. There were a couple unknowns (HARMON, ALBEN) but the perps came to the rescue.

Gotta ask, though. Who is Argyle Two?

creature said...

Trying to post on my iPhone

HeartRx said...

Good morning Argyle, C.C. et al.

I remember David’s LAT debut (but then, it was only a month ago!). This puzzle confirms that he is a quality constructor with a long future ahead of him.

My only gripe was seeing the theme reveal smack in the middle of the puzzle. I like to get as many theme entries as possible, so that I can puzzle it out by myself. It’s almost like someone yelling the punchline before the other guy can finish the joke!

That being said, there was a lot of fresh fill, and I particularly liked TOM THUMB, NACHOS, CRABCAKES and the scrabbly DANZA crossing ZENDA and AXEMAN crossing EXCEL. A really fine Tuesday puzzle, so keep ‘em coming, David!

Spitzboov said...

Good morning Argyle and all.

Easy romp today. No erasures or lookups. Easy ABC theme. Argyle, I'm with you all the way on DAMS; it's like dragging fingernails across a chalkboard. The dam just holds the water back. The actual turbine-generator is at the end of a penstock possibly located some distance from the 'dam' depending on terrain.
Learned ALBEN's name as a kid; never forgot it.
NEUTERS - Ouch!!.

Enjoy your day.

HeartRx said...

Creature!!! So glad to see you back - you have been sorely missed.

thehondohurricane said...

Good day folks,

A fun puzzle, but a toughie. As usual, never picked up the theme, but it didn't deter making progress. Slowdowns were due to my spelling errors...ALBIN before ALBEN, CHEIF before Chief.

28A, ERES TU & 59A, AB CRUNCHES were favorites.

Never knew a guitarist was called AXEMAN. Not having picked up on the theme, my first choice for 36A was PIE

But the NE corner almost did me in before I woke up.
Had Fees before TOTS for 10A, did not know the quote from MacBeth for 16A & my previously mentioned spelling error for 25A. A reasonable workout for the eraser.

All in all though, no complaints about David's offering. Have a pleasant Tuesday.

Hahtoolah said...

Creature: so glad to have you back here again. Posting on your phone worked!

creature said...

I'm trying to get my tech together. Getting excited hope my next contact will be fr my lapto

Mari said...

Easy as ABC, no complaints from me. Except I never heard "MIDI" - is it the opposite of mini?

My cats didn't appreciate the clue for 40A ;)

If you don't do a good job your boss becomes the AXEMAN.

OK Argyle, here is my Tom Thumb

kazie said...

Impressive offering from David.

I screwed up the NE by having MAXI/MIDI, and not knowing OR IN. I had to use perps for all the names except DANZA, and still got ALBEN wrong because I thought it was ZANDA. My obvious lack of sport knowledge made some of those names impossible to WAG. ABC theme did appear early when the unifier fell.

Hand up for wanting BALLSY before BRASSY.

Mari said...

This one’s cuter

kazie said...

Maxi would actually be the opposite of mini, with midi reaching to mid calf.

When I was first teaching in this country, the long skirts were in fashion, and, not being used to the winter climate here, I wore them all the time. One spring day, I broke out an older skirt that was a mini, and one of the kids exclaimed: "She's got legs!" Then I realized I'd been wearing maxis all winter.

Grumpy 1 said...

Good morning all. This took me a little longer than the usual Tuesday, but I enjoyed the puzzle. If I were sorting puzzles for publication, I would have put this one in the Wednesday stack.

Hearti, the theme reveal in the middle can serve as a spoiler... if you get it right. I didn't, so the theme wasn't AS EASY AS pie!

I guess a coal mine or an oil well is another example of an electricity generator.

Spizboov, I think almost all of us guys had that reaction to NEUTERS.

I hate to admit that I needed all of the perps to get ALBEN. I should have known that one. My wife watches the various cooking shows, so Cat CORA was easy. Tiger's former coach gets mentioned often enough (he's worked with many of the top PGA players) that he came to mind with a couple of perps.

Hondo, I'll join you in the fees/TOTS corner.

Great job, David. Looking forward to more.

creature said...

Now from iPad . Bear with me . Loved the puzzle. Alben from Ky. Thanks all. Been following everyday. Sorry to have missed birthdays, illnesses . Thought of all of you.

This young man is so talented and has added his uniqueness to the mix. Good interview, CC.

Next try will be laptop, I hope.

Irish Miss said...

Good morning all:

Great job, David, and nice expo, Argyle.

This puzzle lived up to it's theme but was very enjoyable. Clean, clever cluing and, as others have said, something for everyone. Looking forward to more from this talented young man.

Mari @ 8:19-Those Poms are precious!

Hatoolah @ 6:31-Love your QOD.

Irish Miss said...

Just noticed an egregious error in my post. Please replace its for it's which I just noticed was done by the auto-correct. I thought I had been more careful when previewing but I guess I didn't catch it. Sorry.

Abejo said...

Just stopped in for a minute. Creature, nice to see your presence. Welcome back!


Fine 49er said...

Hi Argyle - thanks for sharing your puzzle skills with us.
Another Tom Thumb? General Tom Thumb was P.T. Barnum's first big money-maker, originally a midget from New England whom one of Barnum's agents found and bought from the parents. This was around 1850. Barnum liked to give his midgets military titles.
General Thumb was presented to Queen Victoria and became quite famous, a real superstar.
He was reported to like full-sized ladies (let your imagination run wild on that one) but eventually settled down and married Lydia Bump, another midget. Their children were normal-size, I believe.
He was an interesting guy, as was P.T. Fun reading. Thanks again.

Ron Worden said...

Good morning to all. Thanks Argyle for the write-up and to young Mr.Steinberg for a clever puzzle. Really liked all the cluing except 47A, anyone I know with a Harley wouldn't be caught dead on a Yamaha. Have a great day to all RJW.

Zcarguy said...

Morning all,

Adam Scott ( Butch Harmon student, so is Phill ) electrified the crowd at the Masters with an ace on the 16th hole.

Would that make the ace an electricity generator ?
Or would it be Adam ?

Mon Dieu..! Here we go again with Allah
If the editor ( Rich ) will not allow an incorrect entry , why would he allow this to be clued as a Muslim God ?
Arabian God ? Yes,, Muslim God ? No

Fine puzzle by the way


Argyle said...

Mari's Tom Thumb link @8:15 AM was very informative.

Fine 49er, try again.

Spitzboov said...

Good to see you, Creature.

Here is a link to the famous Tom Thumb (locomotive)

ZCG LMAO at: "Would that make the ace an electricity generator ?"

Lucina said...

Good day, puzzlers. Great review, Argyle, thanks.

So, David Steinberg strikes again! Well done!

WEES. With up and down strokes this filled fast, AS EASY AS ABC, actually and gave a nice trip down memory lane. I, too, recall ALBEN Barkley from school and hearing it so much on the radio.

Really didn't know HARMON or ESME but worked it out with no problem.

Interesting clue for SIDEARM which could also be a gun of some sort.

Learning moment: AXEMAN

Thank you all for your good wishes for my brother. So far he is still in the hospital as much paperwork is involved for the transfer.

Enjoy your Tuesday, everyone!

Jerome said...

Why is our blog host good at making CRAB CAKES? C.C.'S A BAKER.

Avatar said...

Fave today was 'Cleaned (up)' TIDIED.

After all, I always like things NEAT!


Steven J. St. John said...

The stand out in a field clue (EXCEL) reminded me of a favorite Gary Larson Far Side cartoon. The picture is a split screen. On one side, a cow grazing. On the other, a cow on stage accepting an award. The caption: Two cows, both outstanding in their field.

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

Not easy for me today.

Basically, I agree with Barry in the first post. Too many proper names, ans too many of them either obscure or pop culture references that are outside of my circle of interest.

With all the other letters filled in, the M of HARMON/ESME wasn't hard to suss, but it was my last entry.

Isn't it time to ban NFLER, NBAER, ALER, etc forevER?

Lots of god stuff in this puzzle, though.

Now, I want some CRAB CAKES. Not likely to happen any time soon.


eddyB said...

Would take Brian to Oakland when the KC Royals came to visit The A's. Loved to watch Dan Quisenberry
pitch sidearm. Never saw the two in the same game. Think it would have been a classic.

Misty said...

Wow! Fifteen years old! You're an amazing dude, David, and I loved your interview with C.C. And, as always, thanks for a great write-up, Argyle.

This puzzle started out frustrating for me because I got the NW corner last. So for me the early ABC reveal was a blessing, and I thoroughly enjoyed everything from then on. I used to love "Taxi," so the Tony Danza and CABCOMPANY clues were special delights.

Creature, so nice to have you back. Lucina, we'll keep our fingers crossed that your brother has a smooth transfer to hospice after the paperwork is done. And SJ thanks for the funny verbal cartoon!

Have a great Tuesday everybody!

Chickie said...

Hola Everyone, A few unknowns today such as Cat Cora and Axeman, but they all eventually filled in with the perps.

A fun puzzle, but I didn't "find" the theme until I filled in the unifier. Because it was in the middle of the puzzle that helped with the last two theme fills of Crab cakes and AB Crunches.

Thanks for a great writeup, Argyle, and David for a puzzle that I was able to finish on my own. To be bested by a 15 year old would have been embarrassing.

I loved Excel for Stand out in a field.

Creature, so glad to see your blog post today.

Off to a meeting today, so have to run.

Have a great day, everyone.

placematfan said...

Hello all. Really enjoyed the puzzle. Great fill, cute theme. Thank you David and Argyle, and thank you C.C. for the interview. My only puzzle gripe is the ALBEN/ZENDA cross, a Natick for me. Loved AXEMAN, SNOBBERY, and TOMTHUMB.

Thank you, Argyle and Spitzboov, for the enlightenment about electricity generation. Once again, I thought I knew something about a particular subject when in reality I didn’t know a dam thing.

Avg Joe, I’ve used your (daughter’s) joke from yesterday several times already. I am one of those people who for the life of me cannot remember a joke, so I try to hang on to those sardonic or witty two-liners . . . e.g., Interrupting Cow and the one about the Zen Master asking the hotdog seller to make him one with everything (I probably remembered that wrong) are, I think, timeless.

Hahtoolah, I also like the quote about not being able to simultaneously have a closed mind and a closed fist. Reminds me that anger distorts perception. Wish I knew who said it, but I remember quotes like I remember jokes.

Kazie, my pen wanted BALLSY but my mind knew it couldn’t be. I bet it’s only a matter of time--months? years?--before we see it in a puzzle. If someone starts a pool, I’ve got “six months.”

I agree with Ron Worden that most Harley owners I know would be insulted by the 47-A clue.

Has anyone been watching the baby eagles? Enthralling stuff. Watching it is eerily (I so wanted to type “aerily) similar to “The Truman Show” and makes my head drift into the land of bioethics. Weird.

Bill G. said...

I love that 'Interrupting Cow' knock-knock joke!

I headed off to the dermatologist this morning for an overall inspection and in particular, to look at four worrisome little growths. One she ignored, one she froze off, one she burned off and one was cut out. None seemed to be a big deal. But as usual for me, the thought of going off into the unknown at a doctor's office was stressful. Amazingly, my blood pressure didn't spike. Anyway, it's all over and not a big deal.

Mari said...

Argyle @ 10:40 am: You've got to get up pretty early to fool me. And even earlier to get Barry G!

Tinbeni said...

Argyle, maybe google-chrome will fix it. LOL

David, Thank you for a FUN Tuesday.
The ESME/HARMON cross was wicked.

Jazz: Nice Detroit win. The Tampa Bay Rays cannot play in snow. lol

Cheers to all at Sunset.

Jayce said...

Hello everybody. I enjoyed the puzzle today, even though I didn't know several of the proper names.

So, is Dieu the French god?

I used to own a Yamaha motorcycle; loved it. It's a well-made machine, with lots of pep, in spite of the name of its manufacturer, which means "Mountain Flower."

Excellent interview, C.C.

Awfully good to 'see' you again, creature.

Best wishes to you all.

Tinbeni said...

Nice to hear from you again.


Avg Joe said...

Late to the show today. Duty calls...nay it screams.

Very nice puzzle, especially for such a young constructor. And an excellent interview. Thanks for the time invested in that both C.C. and David. I'd agree the ESME/HARMON cross was a difficult nexus, but entirely guessable. I'd find the other clues mentioned for Harmon easier and can't help but feel that Esme should only be used in the context of a Sallinger novel, but that's not a slam against the puzzle. It's a slam against the writer of Twilight for outright theft. (I mean C'mon! Be a little more creative, OK. There's only one Esme.)

It's true that Harley riders wouldn't be found dead or dragging behind a Yammerhammer (Or a Honda). But the Yahama riders get to spend more time riding and less time working on the bike. Seems like a fair trade to me.

Nice to see you Creature. Hope you get the tech battery back up and running.

Anonymous said...

Easier than yesterday. But not a traditional tuesday, I don't care who doesn't agree. Put MAXI, which I think is more conservative than MIDI, so that threw me off awhile. Love Alpha-bits. Put clambakes instead or crabbakes. Thought Tot's answer was a little to early in the week to deal with. I did 80 crunches this morning in the rain. Last comment, being a harley dude many of my buddies do agree that if there wasn't any harley's a yamaha would be next. Honest! Cheers all!

thehondohurricane said...


Great to hear from you.

Spitzboov said...

Bill G. - Hope the one cut out is ok. They usually send them to the Pathologist. I get an annual "overall". Also get an extra short haircut then so they can see everything they need to on the scalp. Too much cultivating corn sans shirt as a teen-ager, I guess.

Lucina - Best wishes for your brother's continued good care.

CrossEyedDave said...

Fun puzzle,
I had trouble with the crossing of Harmon & Esme. I didn't want to look it up so i thought i was smart when i crammed 3 possible letters into one space, unfortunately none of them was an "M".

Looking for something funny for the Blog was a real drag, no luck today, but under "ABC's of Crossword Puzzles, i found this, which i am sure you have all heard, but it was new to me...

CrazyCat said...

Ouch! I did both yesterday's puzzle and today's this afternoon. They were both a little challenging after the long weekend of family and visiting "grand dogs." Seriously folks, four dogs in the kitchen while cooking Easter dinner is four too many!

I was thinking, while solving today's puzzle, that Twilight to Truman and BELA to ESME was a huge stretch.

Congrats to our young constructor!

Cat CORA on "The Best Thing I Ever Ate Grilled" cited the scallops at the Ranch House in Ojai, CA. Chickie?? Going up there again this weekend.

Thanks Argyle!

Lucina - Sending good thoughts your way.

windhover said...

If my old BMW K100 gives up the ghost before I do, my next bike is going to be the Yammerha FJR1300. I parked next to one a few weeks ago, and it's quite a machine.
What I'd really like to do though, is clone my old Honda 650 Nighthawk. I took that one to three coasts and BC. Only Honda I ever owned that was worth spit.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of (red) Harley`s and blond (25 year old) women...Bobby Petrino was axed today!

HUTCH said...

Alben Barkley, vice-president under Truman, used to tell a joke as follows -" There were two twins. One went to sea and the other became Vice-President and no-one heard of either one, ever after!

Middletown Bomber said...

nice tuesday puzzle, great write up. watching the twilight movies, reruns of 70s sit coms and iron chef actually paid off.

Bill G. said...

Rain is on the way.

As you know, I am a fan of old-fashioned music. Here's one of my favorites by Hank Snow called Hello Love.

David Steinberg said...

Thanks, everyone, for all the nice comments! I'm busy working on my next puzzle. . . .