Aug 3, 2012

Friday, August 3, 2012 Bruce Sutphin

Theme: The Leith Police dismisseth us.

A very cool theme today - three anagrams of the unifier, which itself alludes to the fact that the answers to the first three are "twisted", or anagrams!

19A. Novice chocolatier's lessons? : SWEET TUTORING

23A. Walks in the rain, vis-à-vis fair-day activities? : WETTER OUTINGS

44A. Vacations led by Twitter? : TWEETING TOURS

and the unifier:

50A. Speaker's challenge scrambled three times in this puzzle : TONGUE TWISTER

Happy Friday, everyone. Steve here on stand-in duty for Lemonade. I love anagrams, and I really liked these three and the clever reveal. The theme I chose is reputedly the most difficult tongue-twister in the English language. Give it a try and see how you do!

Now let's take a look at the rest (Red Buick, Blue Buick)


1. University of Georgia athlete, familiarly : DAWG. The Bulldogs in polite circles.

5. Scorned paper : RAG

8. Ticket holder with a conflict, maybe : NO-SHOW. This whole section was hard work for me, but I liked everything when it finally fell into place.

14. In opposition : AVERSELY

16. Self-loathing direction : INWARD

17. "Just curious" : NO REASON

18. Note sentiment : THANKS

21. Pres. between JAG and GC : CAA. Chester Alan Arthur, who came between James Abram Garfield and Grover Cleveland.

22. It might be closed due to flooding : ROAD

29. Med. land : ISR. Neither Israel nor Mediterranean are the easiest place names to reliably spell correctly.

31. "... __ he drove out of sight" : ERE. From "The night before Christmas" by Clement Moore.

32. Mena of "American Beauty" : SUVARI. Crosses all the way. I will NEVER remember this actress's name!

33. Endured : STOOD

36. Tar on a deck : GOB

38. Mantle's number : SEVEN. The Yankee's Hall of Fame Center Fielder had three nicknames - "The Mick", "The Commerce Comet" and simply "Muscles".

39. Hardly unexpected : NOT NEW

41. Threw one's hat in the ring : RAN

43. Head start? : EGG. Egghead.

48. Internet game site : POGO. Again, crosses for me. Never heard of this.

49. __ Balls: Hostess treats : SNO

56. Of an upper heart chamber : ATRIAL. This took a bit of digging out from the recesses of the brain. I kept coming up with AORTAL and knew it wasn't right.

58. Tab, for one : DIET COLA. I remembered this being clear, but I didn't remember it being low-calorie.

59. Eyre's creator : BRONTE. This was Charlotte's most famous novel. I think I might have mentioned before that I had to read this in English Literature class when I was 14, and it put me off 19th-century fiction for years.

60. "Enough already" : OKAY OKAY

61. Luxury accommodations : SUITES

62. Charles River sch. : M.I.T. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology sits on the north bank of the Charles River, Harvard on the south. I always imagined the students sitting on the river banks insulting each other with calculus problems and rhetoric.

63. Ocean current sources? : EELS. Great clue!


1. Dapper dressers? : DANS. My aptly-named friend Dan is very dapper, so this was a gimme.

2. Say it is so : AVOW

3. "__ off!" : WE'RE. Schoolboy sniggering here for a four-letter word that would fit. The gentleman in seat 4A on the 8:45PM United flight from Salt Lake City to LAX tonight was probably wondering what on earth was wrong with me.

4. Where Olympus rises : GREECE

5. Make clearer, hopefully : RESTATE

6. Baseball's Jesus : ALOU. Any relation to Moses? I assume so, but ...

7. Ibsen title character : GYNT. Henrick's protagonist Peer. Check out the libretto to Grieg's "Hall of the Mountain King" from his operatic interpretation of the play, although it will probably ruin your breakfast.

8. Dentistry number, familiarly : NITROUS. I didn't quite understand this clue/answer. I know Nitrous Oxide is Laughing Gas and was used as an anesthetic back in the (my) day, but ...(From C.C.: numb-er here, it numbs.)

9. Taking a break : ON HIATUS. All the shows recorded at the studios close to where I live go on hiatus around May, and return about now. The hiatus weeks are notable for the pleasingly quieter restaurants, bars and traffic!

10. Graceful plunge : SWAN DIVE

11. Wait around : HANG

12. Sitcom world : ORK. "Nanu Nanu! Mork, from the planet Ork." The incomparable Robin Williams in Mork and Mindy.

13. OED listing : WDS. I need help with this one. Oxford English Dictionary I get. WDS I think is an abbreviation for "Words"? But that's plural, and the clue is "listing" singular? I know I'm missing something here.

15. Occupied, as a desk : SAT AT

20. Los Juegos Olímpicos prize : ORO. Did you see the Mexican synchronized diving pair? They didn't win Gold at the London Olympics, but wow, they were amazing!

23. Penned : WROTE. Usually, it's a she, and that's all she does.

24. Physics unit : ERG

25. Corp. change : RE-ORG. Right after a corporation does this, you can bet your bottom dollar there's going to be some downsizing, or rightsizing, or whatever is the latest euphemism.

26. Pew areas : NAVES.

27. Oldest Brady Bunch kid : GREG. Another "thank goodness for crosses" example for me today

28. Rat : SING

29. Kid's comeback : ISN'T. "IS TO" held me back for a little while before I RESTATED my answer.

30. Get into a hold : STOW. Really nice clue, had me puzzled for a good while.

34. Tight game difference : ONE POINT. I was trying to think of a sport when a one-point difference wasn't going to be close - the best I could come up with was duelling with pistols, on the assumption that you're not going to come back from a one-point deficit. (I think duelling is next week in the Olympics, right?)

35. Blow up : DETONATE

37. Step to the plate : BAT. Now this really bothers me for such an innocuous part of the fill, but - GO INTO BAT, or STEP UP TO BAT or ... but just BAT?

40. Wavy lines : WIGGLES

42. "Consider it done" : NO SWEAT

45. __-turn : NO U. Conversely, for such an innocuous piece of the fill, I loved this.

46. Show of strength : UNITY

47. 1977 Australian Open champ Tanner : ROSCOE. Golly, but he had a serve! He could crush that ball with a wooden racquet! I swear he'd give any player today a run for their money if they had to play with his equipment.

50. "Star Trek: T.N.G." role : TROI. Attaboy crosses!

51. Kingdom south of Moab : EDOM. Yay crosses!

52. Torch type : TIKI

53. Tip for a dealer : TOKE. A new meaning of the word "toke" for me. Enough said.

54. Mideast flier : EL AL

55. Beams : RAYS

56. They may be sculpted : ABS. Interestingly, I don't think you can sculpt one Ab, you have to work on them collectively.

57. 1989-'90 Broadway biodrama : TRU. Not the most critically-acclaimed of Broadway shows. Truman Capote was a complex character, and the play - well, today you'd Facebook or Tweet "Fail" and move on.

Answer grid.

And (Peter Piper Picked a Peck of Pickled Pepper) - that's all HE wrote. Have a great day, everyone! (The sixth sick sheik's sixth sheep's sick).


Note from C.C.:

Happy Birthday to the beautiful Melissa Bee, who continues to delight us with her lovely & fun write-up despite all the technical difficulties. I also love this photo very much. So ethereal and fey.


Barry G. said...

Morning, all (and happy birthday, Melissa Bee)!

I'll keep this short -- this one defeated me. I just couldn't make much headway and eventually ran out of time and had to turn on the red-letter help. Too many problems to detail.

And I always heard the toughest tongue twister in English was "The sixth shiek's sixth sheep is sick."

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Steve and Friends. Interesting puzzle. I got a bit stuck in the northeast, but the rest fell into place with minimal trouble.

I wanted Def, for Definitions for the OED Listings.

One can still get a TAB at one of the hamburger joints in town. I don't often see Tab in the grocery store, though.

The mascot at Louisiana Tech is also a bull dog. Unfortunately, it is way too hot for these poor dogs in the south.

Happy Birthday, MelissaBee. Hope you have a great day.

In honor of one of my favorite author's who's birthday is today, here is today's QOD: Often we have no time for our friends but all the time in the world for our enemies. ~ Leon Uris

thehondohurricane said...

Howdy everyone,

First attempt at a puzzle in a while and it was a beaut!

As far as trouble areas, what Barry said.

Atrial was a given. Been under doctors care for AFib going on twelve years.

Steve, there were three Alou brothers... Felipe, Moses, & Jesus. The only brother combination to play all outfield positions in a major league baseball game at the same time.

Melissa, enjoy your special day.

PK said...

Puzzle: AAAAACK! 'Nuf said.

Thanks, Steve, for making some sense of this.

Hahtoolah, Read everything of Leon Uris's back in the 60's. Life changing for a WASPette. As to the quote: too sadly true, but if you ignore your enemies, they GET you.

PK said...

melissa, many happy returns of the day!

Anonymous said...

"63. Ocean current sources? : EELS. Great clue!"

Except electric eels don't live in the ocean!!!!!! They are exclusively fresh water.

There are several species of ray which do produce current and are native to oceans.

Bruce S. said...

Thanks for the write-up Steve. Glad some people enjoyed the puzzle. Have a nice Friday everyone!

Yellowrocks said...

Happy birthday, Melissa Bee. Enjoy your day.

I really liked this puzzle and Steve's witty blog. Dismisseth is a tongue twister all by itself, almost impossible for me to say.

I dipped a toe in the NW and was not immediately on Bruce's wave length, so I dove to the South. The bottom half went swimmingly. I resurfaced in the NW, now knowing the theme and being in sync with Bruce, I easily paddled through it to the NE.

I was afraid the NE would be my swan song, rather than a SWAN DIVE. I started the NE with NITROUS and was sure of it, but didn't know why. AAH, numb-er fooled me again. A took a deep breath and tried INWARD and then WDS, then NOSHOW. TA DA. I swam a victory lap around the pool.

I needed the perps for TOKE, SUVARI, and ROSCOE. EELS was clever.

Have a great Friday, everyone.

Not-quite-quotidian Dad said...

it's moIses Alou, and yes, Jesus is his uncle. his dad, Felipe, and another uncle, Matty, also played in the majors. I may be wrong, but I believe all 3 brothers played outfield together once for the Giants.

Anonymous said...

XIVth ? time poster here. Thanks Argyle ! I gotta get a handle.

ONHIATUS from work for a few hours this morning. All hades broke loose at work Wednesday late morning and kept me at it until 10PM, then again for another 12 hour day yesterday. Is 56 too early to retire ? Got yesterday's done early but will have to read all of the commentary.

JazzB, so sorry for your loss. Both Grossmutter (no rel., but close family friend) and MIL passed away last month. I love to get together with all of those Banat Swabians, but not under those circumstances. I feel your sorrow.

Bruce, great puzzle. After a relative few cross fills, I had to go to the perps to get a good grip on this puzzle. Steve, thanks for the Write Up! 25A REORG latest euphemism is workload rebalancing in my world. Which means those of us that are left have far more to do. Not complaining, just stating fact.

16A Self-loathing direction = INWARD. Why didn't I see that answer right off the bat ? What's the matter with me ? I must be dumb. That's it. I'm an idiot, no, I'm a moron. I can't stand myself some days !

28A EGG. That's funny. 8D NITROUS had a great clue. 30D Get into a hold = STOW Can one stow oneself ?

58A Tab, for one = DIETCOLA. An old synapse or axon fired in the temporal lobe and pulled in "Hunter" and didn't want to let go.

1A DAWG, 37A BAT, 38A SEVEN and 47D were 42D NOSWEAT, but 32A SUVARI had me feeling like I was from 12D ORK, or 4D GREECE


Not-quite-quotidian Dad said...

it's moIses Alou, and yes, Jesus is his uncle. his dad, Felipe, and another uncle, Matty, also played in the majors. I may be wrong, but I believe all 3 brothers played outfield together once for the Giants.

Not-quite-quotidian Dad said...

yup, September 15, 1963:

Anony-Mouse said...

Thank you Bruce`S. for an intricate puzzle, very clever. And thank you Steve, for a charming and humorous commentary.... four marbles in the mouth, are as good as any tongue twister.

This was like a jet plane - waay over my head. I never would have guessed 'Nitrous', even tho' I was a chemist ( of sorts ) and have actually manuf. this in a lab AND inhaled it. ( It was too dilute to have any effect on me - ). When I read the clue, (what with people's dental problems here, at the blog ), I immediately thought, 'Must be in the low 4 figures ( thousands)'....

ALT QOD:- On TV, they catch a fish and let it go. They don't want to eat it, but they want to make it late for something. ~ Mitch Hedberg.

Have a good weekend, you all.

Yellowrocks said...

The GOB tries to get the cargo into the hold. He STOWs it.

Anonymous said...

Awful awful puzzle this morning. I couldn't make heads or tails out of it. Took me forever. Normally Saturday puzzles are hard but this one really got me.

HeartRx said...

Good morning Steve, C.C. et al.

And a wonderful, happy birthday to melissa! You always add joy and laughter to our corner!

I had many of the same problems as you did, Steve! For 56A I confidently filled in "aortic" instead of ATRIAL, so that messed me up but good in the SW.

I had to chuckle at your comment on 3D "___ off!" -- I had exactly the same thought! But I didn't have a problem with WDS for "OED listing". Lists always consist of more than one word (otherwise, it would just be a...word!)

In all, this was a great puzzle - very challenging, but doable, with a satisfying "aha!" in the end.


Anonymous said...

XIV here.

YR, thank you. Aha. Now I get it. Substitute THE for A and now it makes sense to me when I replace the A back in...

desper-otto said...

TGIF, everybody!

I did finish this one, but as usual, I never did get the theme. There was some interesting fill today -- ON HIATUS, AVERSELY, DETONATE to name a few.

Hand up for thinking TAB Hunter initially. Remember his horrible version of Young Love back in '57 or so?

HBD Melissa Bee! Hondo, good to "see" ya.

Husker Gary said...

Red rubber baby buggy bumpers! This was a treat with fiendish cluing, a clever and somewhat helpful theme and learning. The kitchen sink must be in there somewhere!

-Me too Steve’s - NE looked like hanging chads for a while, I thought of ATRIAL fibrillation, loved EELS too, MIT bumper sticker – Don’t drink and derive
-Why do I want to know if you have fire insurance? NO REASON.
-Our flooded ROADs from last summer are now sere, sec, arid,…
-What sit com character wanted to name his child SEVEN?
-John Gotti was the dapper don not DAN
-Ever said, “WE’RE off like a herd of turtles”? or like a dirty shirt? or…
-Did I say that you made you look heavy? Let me RESTATE that.
-My first dentistry number came from an Omaha dentist whose number in his TV ad ends in 2323 (toothy, toothy). Yeah, me too.
-A colleague had this on his desk – 3 reasons I love teaching – June, July and August (ON HIATUS). Yup, he stunk as a teacher.
-Harper Lee and To Kill A Mockingbird? That’s all she WROTE.
-How small is an ERG? It’s an ant pushup.
-Ya think the GSA needs a REORG? It ain’t their money.
-GREG was dating mom (:26)
-HBD, MB! Great snap!
-Bag fees are making people try to STOW huge items on planes these days.
-QOD corollary – Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.

kazie said...

I'm afraid Bruce S. lives in a different world than I do. Very many unknowns where even the clues were lacking any frame of reference.

I've never heard of ROSCOE, but I was already here in '77 and busy with my first baby. I still have a wooden tennis racket though, and am not game to try and use it, since the gut strings would certainly bust and maybe break the frame. Of course I'd have to regain my timing to serve properly after at least 33 years before I'd even make contact with a ball!

desper-otto said...

Tennis racquets are no longer made of wood? When did this new fangled trend start?

John McEnroe said...

Last wooden racquet victory in a Wimbledon final was 1981.

Mari said...

And We're Off:

DNF thanks to the NE - wow what a doozie.

I didn't get 53D Tip for a dealer: TOKE. I'd get token, but TOKE? I wasn't feeling NOU-turn either.

Not all gripes and nits here, there were some great clues. I always appreciate a puzzle that makes me think and learn something.

My mom drank TAB back in the 70s when it was the only DIET COLA around. The stuff was nasty. I wonder if it's better these days.

XIVth ? Time Poster @ 7:57 am: It seems those of us who were lucky enough to keep our jobs are stuck doing double duty. (I loved your INWARD comment.)

Anony-Mouse: I love your fish quote!

Have a great weekend and a super Friday, especially to you Melissa!

Speaking of mom, I knew TROI from watching Star Trek Next Generation with her. She's a trekkie.

Mari said...

Red Leather Yellow Leather

tawnya said...


morning all!

do woodchucks really chuck wood?

tough puzzle today - my mom beat me by over three minutes! i think i'm going to enter her in the puzzle day competition!

lots of clues had me stumped this morning, but when i got them they were pretty funny. favorite was easily EEL, although i did not realize the electric variety was fresh water only.

HBD Melissa Bee!

Deepest condolences to JazzB, my thoughts are with you.

on vacation for 10 more days!!

have a great weekend!

Anonymous said...

Concerning 13 Dowm, (wds), the (OED) "Dictionary" is single, but contains many words Plural. That might explain the confusion

Irish Miss said...

Good morning all:

I found this a challenge, even for a Friday. Finished without help, but NE almost did me in. Theme was evident early but many perps were needed to complete the fill. Clue for Nitrous was downright devious.

Thanks, Bruce, for a waker-upper, and thanks, Steve, for a great expo.

Happy Birthday, Melissa B; hope you have a great day.

Hatoolah, thought provoking QOD; thank you.

Happy Friday to all.

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Bruce Sutphin, for a great Friday puzzle. Thank you, Steve, for an equally great review.

Well, I could not start North. I could not start South. So, I went to the center and worked on the three letter words. Was able to get them all, including Chester A Arthur, CAA, by luck. GREECE became apparent in the NW.

Was able to try RESTATE. ALOU was obvious. Slowly got enough to get SWEET TUTO Much later I was able to finish that phrase with RING. Got TONGUE TWISTER first. That helped with the letters I needed for RING. Anyhow, the remaining themes fell easily.

I bounced around and got a few words here and there. My last section was the NE. I had NO SEAT for a while for 8A. After HANG I changed that to NO SHOW.

NITROUS was my last entry. I still do not get the clue/answer.

I also had a write over in the SE. Had CHIP for 53D. Finally TOKE became obvious. Thought EELS was very clever.

Really liked this puzzle. A challenge, but doable. Only two write overs. I saved ink today.

Happy Birthday, Melissa Bee. Many happy returns.

Hahtoolah: I just read Armageddon this summer by Leon Uris. Excellent historical novel.

See you tomorrow.


Yellowrocks said...

That which dentists use to make a patient numb is a numb-er, hence nitrous oxide.
We have been fooled quite often by reading number as a mathematical word when the clue speaks of numb.

Tinbeni said...

Happy Birthday Melissa
21 Again? I'm not surprised!!!

What a frickin' "perp" fest.
A 2-cup of java solve. (That's a Saturday time-frame, geesh!)

Anon @7:31, I'm with you on EELS NOT being a source of 'Ocean current' (River current? OKAY/OKAY!).
IMHO it was a lousy clue/answer.

OK, I'd give the dealer a TOKE ... hope he doesn't Bogart it, lol.

Cheers to all at Sunset

HeartRx said...

Husker G. @ 8:29, LOL at your dentist's phone # ! There is a dentist near us whose name is ROTTY. (True!) I chuckle every time I drive by his office!

desper-otto said...

HeartRx, that's similar to the Goodbody Mortuary in San Diego.

Anonymous said...

Husker G Re: seven..George Costanza

thehondohurricane said...

Damn, too much going on around here. Meant Matty, not Moses (Moises) in naming the three Alou Brothers. Should have caught it, have plenty of their BB cards in my inventory and none of Moises. He's too new for me.

Splynter said...

Hi there~!

This one was a workout - but I didnt help myself, either;

AVER for AVOW (and I know the rule about this one, BTW)


RENEG(otiate) for RE-ORG

EGO for EGG - head start? Well, that's how it is for some people here on LI.

Hilarious comment for "one point" loss in a duel, Steve, well done~!

I however, missed the theme entirely....must look INWARD to my shame....

HB-day mellisa bee,

Condolences to JazzB and family


windhover said...

Desper-Otto, Hearti, HG, et al,
When I moved to Lexington in the late '60's, among the choices of dentists in the YP's were Dr. Hurt and Dr. Pleasant. You can guess which I chose. Dr. Damon Pleasant was my dentist and my children's dentist for 25 years.
Husker, from a few days ago, re: Texas Western in 1966; the team that lost that game was our own Kentucky Wildcats. It was heartbreaking at the time, but ultimately was a lesson learned and a good thing for college sports.
Fans my age will tell you that 2 or 3 Ky. players had the flu that evening, who knows if that's true or a lame excuse? In any case, the rest, as they say, is history.

Very sorry to hear of your BIL.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

WEES. I was AVERSELY influenced to the notion that this cw was easy. Needed a little RLH in the W central. But fair for a Friday. Had Alcott before BRONTË. NITROUS was very clever. Some pithy fill: TIKI, DETONATE, and ON HIATUS.

There's a mortuary in Buffalo called Amigone.

Hoyt said...

I also liked the one point/duel comment!

George from seinfeld wanted to name his kid Seven.

I'm not sure nitrous actually numbs you, more like gets you real high then you pass out, no?

Spitzboov said...

I think Live Free or Die has moved to Vermont, Argyle's neighboring state. Revenge.

Happy Birthday Melissa B. Learned a new word today thanks to C.C. - FEY

PK said...

What's the difference between NITROUS and novocain? I thought nitrous oxide was "laughing gas" and no longer used.

Windhover, have you seen Kentucky's Anthony Davis playing basketball at the Olympics? The older players are mentoring him and he's been having a real good time. His basketball moves have been impressive too.

Lucina said...

Hello, passionate puzzlers! Thank you for pinch hitting, Steve. Great job.

Happy, happy birthday, Melissa!

Finding Bruce's wave length took a loooong while for me. Started with RAG/GYNT and ALOU then worked painfully and slowly in the NE. Knew SUVARI but initially misspelled it SOVARI until ON HIATUS crossed ROAD.

Had AFR first with AM SO but WROTE dispelled that and so it went; AORTAL before ATRIAL. No way I knew ROSCOE so finally looked it up and that enabled me to finish the SE. Tough but challenging.

Great misdirection, Bruce!

Have a fantastic Friday, everyone!

Husker Gary said...

Musings 2

-Don’t Drink and Derive and other fun math t-shirts. Waddaya think Bill G., Ferm, et al?
-I’ve seen a Tab being consumed along with a huge cheeseburger and fries. Hmmm…
-Dentist with toothy toothy phone number
-Yup, George was going to name his firstborn after The Mick.
-Wind, Coach Adolph Rupp did not come off well in the movie Glory Road that chronicled that historic NCAA tournament. Don Haskins, along with Barry Switzer, et al, did change the face of college athletics.
-My cousin has a gynecologist with a very amusing name. I’ll let you make your own joke.
-I am off to the chiropractor again and then off to Lincoln for daughter’s 41st birthday that will not be as traumatic as last year when she left the land of 30 something’s. We were not allowed to say the numerical “F word” at her party. Papa will spring for about $200 at the restaurant.

Anonymous said...

This took me longer than any other Fri. puzzle this year. In addition,I thought the clues were weak.

windhover said...

Right you are. Never saw the movie, but heard lots about it. Rupp was the Joe Pa of basketball; he hung on long after the reality on the court (field) had made the legend irrelevant. The causes of their tarnished records were different (entrenched Southern racism vs. third party child abuse), but the legacy of both wod probably survived had they quit 10 years sooner. Their narcissism kept them from doing so, IMO. Paterno turned a blind eye, Rupp failed to challenge the reigning paradigm even as the culture (and the game) passed him by.
But he's still something of a local hero, and the arena bears his name.
He should have gone fishing.

Misty said...

This was a Friday puzzle? Give me a break! Too clever by half, and you can decide in what sense I mean this. I got a bit of a toe-hold in the West but almost none in the East and so this was pretty much a disaster for me. Sorry to be so grouchy, but when a puzzle is more frustrating than fun . . . . I don't go inward.

Have a great birthday, Melissa Bee!

Anonymous said...

Nitrous doesn't numb.

Jayce said...

Hello everybody. Jeez, "number" fooled me again! Great puzzle today. I guess it must be very difficult to fill in around the theme entries and other long (and excellent) entries, and difficult to clue them, too.

I am terrible at anagrams, and had WINTER OUTINGS for a long time. Only after I painstakingly enumerated each letter did I realize I had too many Ns and Is and needed another E and T did I get it. *Forehead bonk*

For some reason SUVARI came to me almost instantly, and of course BRONTE was a gimme. Never would have gotten POGO, SNO, TOKE, and several others without perps. Food! Perps!

I'm happy I was not AdVERSELY affected by this puzzle. The only part that elicited a "meh" from me was Kid's comeback/ISNT. Okay, yeah, and OED listing/WDS.

I wish you a very happy birthday, Melissa Bee. Best wishes to you all.

Anonymous said...

Good afternoon everyone.

Gee, retirement is great. Slept 'til 9, showered, and then went out for breakfast with DH. Surely is better than getting up at 5:30 AM to get to school to teach in time. And the principal was always at the door checking his watch in all the different places I taught. (Except Community College Denver.)

DNF, didn't even come close. But I love reading all your comments.

Thanks for the write up Steve. Otherwise the puzzle would have made no sense to me. Did get 15 correct answers though. Whoopie!

Have a most happy birthday, Melissa Bee. Such a nice tribute from C.C.


Jayce said...

So Spitzboov, how is "Amigone" pronounced? For years I thought the ancient Greek play "Antigone" rhymed with "Lake Wobegone" until I finally heard somebody actually say it out loud. One of the disadvantages of learning by reading is that you can be "myzelled" (translation: misled) as to how some words are pronounced, because you only experience them in written form. I know very well what a Bode plot is, but for decades I was wrong about how to pronounce it. Unfortunately, it makes you appear stupid when you say it wrong while making a presentation in front of a group of peers.

On the other hand, learning by reading has always been much more effective for me than sitting, and often sleeping, through lectures. Small seminars fall somewhere in between.

Avg Joe said...

In Lincoln there is a Dentist with the name Toothaker. True story.

There's also another professional that chose the wrong career path. He's a Veterinarian. His name is Forney. Shoulda been a caterer.

Argyle said...


Spitzboov said...

Jayce - Envelope isn't pronounce like Penelope either. It's been some years, but I think they pronounce it virtually the same as it looks - Am' i gahn. The i is like a schwa.
Found this on the web: In my city we have appropriate names for funeral homes. Amigone Funeral Home (AM I GONE?) If you have to ask your not. Also Curtin Funeral Home (Yes when youre gone its curtains for you). Exodis Garden (Yes you are certainly exiting - stage left). Bury Funeral Home ( Yes you will be). Comfort Funeral Home (Who cares your dead?). Hoy Funeral Home (Ships AHoy your on your way). Kloc Funeral Home ( ding dong times up). Wood Funeral Home (Yes your as stiff as as a board). Dick Funeral Home (Are they related to Wood Funeral Home ?).

Tinbeni said...

I'm amazed at the specialization.
A funeral home just for a body part.

Mari said...

Tin @ 10:21 am "Hope he doesn't Bogart it." ha ha!

A puff to all at sunset.

Bill G. said...

That was a fun puzzle. Hard but fun. Even after I finally got the unifier, it didn't help at all with the theme answers. Tricky clues. Great writeup Steve.

Happy birthday Melissa!

Gary, I like the tee-shirts. Ant push-up. Heh heh. I remember another one I used to like. "The square root of three equals two for large values of three." (I think that's what passes for engineering humor.)

Jayce, as a kid, I always pronounced Yosemite Sam as Yos-e-might Sam in my head as I read the comic book. I had an excuse growing up in Virginia. My grandson and I were reading a Looney Tunes comic book and he did the same thing. Must be in the DNA.

I found that nitrous oxide is/was a propellant in canned whipped cream like Kool Whip. I tried inhaling it once when the can was mostly empty. I guess I didn't get a big enough dose because the effect was minimal.

I came across this (very little) math puzzle on my wife's Facebook page. I don't know if her friend had the right answer since he didn't say. It was: 5 + 5 + 5 - 5 + 5 + 5 - 5 + 5 x 0 = ?

Anonymous said...

Anything times zero is zero

Jayce said...

Spitzboov and Bill G, thanks for reminding me of Penelope and Yosemite, too, both of which I also mispronounced ("Peen-a-lope" and "Yoze-might") for many years. My dad loved to drive out into the South Dakota prairie and look for antelope, and my sister used to joke about his love of "an-TELL-o-pees." I never got the joke until years later. Heck, for years antipodes were just plain antipodes in my 8-pound head. 8 pounds! No wonder my shoulders are stoo-ped!

Inward and upward!

PedantTheBrit said...

Nice one Bruce! Luckily I'm on vacation today so had more time to finish this. I never would have done it in my normal 20-25 minute breakfast break.

Also not too happy, though, with WDS - A list would, indeed, imply plural, but a listing surely is singular?

Not the hardest tongue twister, but possibly the most dangerous:

I'm not the pheasant plucker, I'm the pheasant plucker's son and I'm only plucking pheasants 'til the pheasant plucker comes.

Yellowrocks said...

Listing can refer to an item in a list (See def. #1.) Or, it can refer to the list itself. (see def. #2.)
The dictionary has a listing (or list) composed of WDS.

list·ing [ lísting ] 1.something entered in list: an entry in a list, catalog, or directory
2.a list, catalog, or directory

Synonyms: list, catalog, inventory, register, record, roll, directory.

fermatprime said...


Interesting puzzle, Bruce; amusing expo, Steve!

Took advantage of perps wherever possible and took a whole half hour. No cheating. Can't believe I was tricked by NUMBER again. Hands up for AORTAL first.

HBTY melissa bee!

Loved those math tee shirts. Have quite a collection.

Bill G: Using correct rules for doing algebraic equations, the 5 x 0 comes first and is thus zero. The rest then computes to fifteen.


Husker Gary said...

-My sister used to say Rise (Ryze) Stevens instead of Ree’ suh for the famous soprano.
-Scientific names (French? mon Dieu!) are a bear and I mispronounced Foucault for years before I heard it said correctly. Explanation of his famous pendulum (along with correct pronunciation of his name) showing the Earth rotates!
-Bill, by order of operations, I got 10 (5 x 0 is done first to get zero and then regroup remaining +5’s and –5‘s) to get 20 – 10 = 10)
- (5 + 5 + 5 – 5 + 5 + 5 – 5 + 5) x 0 would equal 0

fermatprime said...

Check again, Gary!

Hondo: what do you do for your A fib?

Husker Gary said...

OMG, I was just walking out the door and looked and saw the name of our town’s new fire chief. Ya can’t make this up, nobody would believe it.

MIL's banker whose loaning her money on her house? You guessed it, Ron Weaklend (Weak lend - not land).

Bill G. said...

Fermatprime is correct. This is a silly little exercise that might be given to seventh-grade students learning order of operations. This kind of problem wouldn't arise in serious math or science classes. Also, they would use parentheses to avoid possible confusion. Order of operations states that you use parentheses first, then exponents. Then multiplication and division together from left to right. Then addition and subtraction together from left to right. So, in this little exercise, do the multiplication first getting zero. Then just start on the left and do each step in order. That results in 15.

Gary, I'm not sure I understood the Dartmouth explanation of the Foucault pendulum showing rotation around the sun. If the earth kept the same side facing the sun, then yes. But if the earth get the same face, say Omaha, facing some place in the cosmos, say Betelgeuse, then there shouldn't be any movement of the pendulum at all. Right?

Hahtoolah said...

Fermat: it is the darn spell autocorrect.

The JVN said...

Re: 21A, Pres. between JAG and GC --
The answer, Chester A. Arthur, is also the 21st president!!

Unknown said...

Hmm, 3D, my first thought is pretty much what I thought of this puzzle.

My brother's name is Phillip and he insisted we call him Felipe after his favorite ball player.

Having a real case of CRS- used to be a dentist in town with the perfect name. But, do you think I can remember it? I will, at 3AM :}

Married a KRUMM-my husband's dad spent most of his working career with RAINBO BREAD.

thehondohurricane said...

fermatprime @ 3:12

"What do you do for your A fib?"

Basically, follow the Cardiologist's orders, take my meds regularly, & try to watch my diet. I must admit, the diet issue is often ignored. The single biggest change was/is reducing my intake of alcoholic spirits.

Otherwise, life goes on as I so choose.

JD said...

Good afternoon all and a HHB to you, Melissa ♪♩♬♫•*¨*•.❤.•*¨*•♫♪•.¸¸.•´♫♪♩♬*¨*`•.♥.•´*♫♪♩♬

well, I really disliked this xwd-only because I could not get a foothold...too clever for me. When trying to fill the unifier, all I could come up with was TROUT, and had no luck trying to figure out the phrase, having very few perps in that area.

Poor Roscoe, life has not served him well ; should have chosen another racket (not forgery)

Charlotte, I loved that you married a Krumm. Our kids' dentist was Dr. Rabitz.

Manac said...

3d had me snickering too. After doing some of Brendan Quigley's xwords I thought it plausable but then reality
kicked in. Toke also gave me a different mental image. Does anyone else time their solving like Tin?
I'm at one cup of coffee for MTW and
sometimes Thur. Fri. are always two
and Sat. if I don't get it by three
I'm ready to crack open a beer.

Unknown said...

It's not 3AM and I suddenly remembered the name of the oral dentist in Medford

Unknown said...

Oh yeah, my cardiologist is DR LIGHTHEART. Great guy.

Manac said...

C Krumm
I just hope your gynecologist
isn't named Dr. Hook
(sorry, just couldn't help it )

CrossEyedDave said...

PK @7:17am summed up my feelings for this puzzle perfectly!

I did not understand the answer for 36A, tar on a deck = gob? & since it was not explained in the Blog i assumed it was crosswordese that everyone knew, perhaps some obscure sailor reference? Just to make sure i went to Wiki. I had forgotten it was a molten glass pellet, but the Australian definition surprised me. No mention of sailors, or sticky wads of tar anywhere???

Having lived on Staten Island NY, i was familiar with the Outerbridge Crossing, & always thought it was so named because it is the southernmost NYC bridge. Imagine my surprise in finding out it was built by Eugenius Harvey Outerbridge, & was called a crossing to avoid calling it the Outerbridge bridge!

HBD Melissa Bee!
( they are all too cute too pick just one.)

I also found this on YouTube dated 2010, & when i saw "Blogspot", i thought it was you guys wishing Melissa a HBD 2 years ago!!!

Sfingi said...

Got the theme, and it was wow! But some of the secondary stuff threw me, esp. sports.

fermatprime said...

Hondo: I was wondering what meds you take. I am on Pradaxa.

Hahtoolah: Can you turn autocorrect off?

They are having their annual big bash in the front house. Live, heavy metal band. Just awful. My room very close to noise.

Bill G. said...

Fermatprime, having a heavy metal party in a neighboring dwelling sounds like about the worst scenario I can imagine. Well, maybe not the WORST but plenty bad enough.

A much simpler little tongue twister has only three common short words but is really tough to say quickly three times. "Bugs black blood."

All of this doctor talk reminded my of my childhood doctor, Dr. Podolnick. He took office calls without appointments and even made house calls in the evening. I remember his giving me penicillin shots on a number of occasions. Ah, the good old days.

Spitzboov said...

Fermatprime - I have Afib too. I take ~5mg of warfarin and 50mg of Toprol (slow release). daily. Get a blood test every month for the warfarin. It's pretty stable.

Argyle said...

CrossEyedDave@9:00pm was stuck in the spam filter and released @10:40, in case you missed him.

Lucina said...

There is a famous doctor in Phoenix named Dr. Payne.

Unknown said...

Sorry, a loser for me today!

Vairnut said...

Best time to go to the dentist? 2:30 (Tooth hurty) Short tongue twister- say "toyboat" numerous times. Took me a long time to train myself, but I can do it. Yes, I have no life....