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Dec 7, 2012

Friday, December 07, 2012, Gary J. Whitehead

Theme: The reverse "A" word!

Each of the two across and two down two word phrases have an "A" added to the "end" of the second word (all have 3 letters), as well as revealed in a central unifier. This is our second 2012 offering from Gary, and my first time writing about his creation. In honor of yesterday's Roy Campanella reference, this puzzle reminded me of that other Hall of Fame backstop, Yogi Berra and his comment that "This feels like deja vu all over again."  It was a mere 14 days from marti's "append ix" and here we have Add an end A. (addenda) which is a nice word lawyers like to use with contracts. Overall, the puzzle was not easy,  a pangram (2 Js!) to whet your creative juices, some nice music references which I actually knew and some clues I was confused about, but I finished, so here goes our Friday frolic.

20A. Enjoying "O patria mia"? : HEARING AIDA. (11) When you get older you may need a hearing aid to listen to opera.

59A. Whomping actor Eric? : SMOKING BANA (11). Giving up cigarettes would not have helped.

I think the link gives a good idea of the definition of 'whomping.' It is Eric Bana getting whomped by Mr. Pitt.

11D. Supply electricity to a California city? : POWER NAPA.(9)  This sounds like a rest for our Italian friends. I am sure we all know the area because of the wine.

35D. Spot a flamboyant singer? : SIGHT GAGA (9)That would be a knee slapper. More MUSIC.(4:40) from the Lady.
and the reveal:

40A. Contract extras, and read differently, a hint to this puzzle's theme : ADDENDA. (7) ADD END A.

Across:

1. Family nickname : MAMA. I never used this for mine, but then again, we used real nicknames as my brother Barry liked creating them. To me this name is what dolls say when the girls pull their strings.

5. Wharton hero : FROME. I am not sure hero is the correct word for Ethan, as he wants to cheat on his wife, agrees to a suicide pact with the girlfriend and then chickens out only to leave them both partially paralyzed and dependent on the wife to care for both of them.

10. Crude letters : OPECOrganization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries.

14. One of five Norwegian kings : OLAV. I like it when they clue OLAV V, who was a fine King I am told (Spitz?, Jerome?), for the VV combination.

15. Trapper's tool? : RADAR. The policeman hiding behind a billboard,  or Trapper John from M*A*S*H abusing Mr. O'Reilly?

16. Roast, in Rhone : ROTI. They speak French in the Rhone valley but I have never heard the word with "au boeuf" added, but I assume literally it meas roast of beef. Funny, we had mention of the Indian bread Roti yesterday, and of course we have anagramatic 65A. Knee-slapper : RIOT.

17. Eye sore : STYE. Really fun clue for on who has sore eyes often.

18. Invierno month : ENERO. Today we have Spanish, Invierno is winter, Enero January. We also have a clecho 33D. Solstice month : JUNE. Did anyone else see Gareth using the term over on the Fiend?

19. Nicole's "Moulin Rouge!" co-star : EWAN. McGregor, did you like this SONG? (3:46)

23. Legal title: Abbr. : ESQuire.  I was called Colonel, when I started to practice in Gainesville.

24. Artificial : ERSATZ. A wonderful word and a nice way to get Z into the pangram. Both title, Esquire and Colonel are ersatz.

25. "Night Moves" singer : SEGER. Apparently it is Bob Seger WEEK (5:26) here. Gentleman, enjoy reading the lyrics. We also have 43A. Time to retire : NIGHT. Nit anyone?

27. Some of its ads feature a pig named Maxwell : GEICO.(0:31) My middle name, also featured in Beatles' song, and classic American TV. I do not think he would like 53A. "Pork and Beans" band : WEEZER. My oldest son's favorite band back a few years. SONG.

30. Prima ___ : DONNAS. Italian for first lady, the connotation from the opera.

33. Cuban patriot Marti : JOSE. Living in South Florida a familiar name, but perhaps a toughie for most. He is revered both there and in Castro CUBA.

36. Ages : EONS.

38. Fight back, say : REACT.

39. Aussie's school : UNIversity.

42. Layer : PLY.

45. Copycat : APER.

46. Vichy waters : EAUX. The plural form of the the French EAU meaning water. Vichy is a City. Say that three times fast.

47. Kennedy and Waters : ETHELS. Two famous women, not related to my favorite, alcohol.

49. Like old apples : MEALY.

51. Character piece? : TRAIT. A nice literal clue.

57. Binge : JAG.

62. Literary collections : ANAS. A nice stand alone word used often in Scrabble when you have no good letters.

64. Amity : PEACE. The irony of the Amityville Horror, which is a true story made into a movie in 1979 and 2005.

66. Star in Lyra : VEGA. No, not a Nevada stripper wearing lycra, but another form of heavenly body.

67. Top of a form, perhaps : LINE A. A tricky one to parse.

68. Heraldry border : ORLE.  Like this

69. Furthest from the hole, in golf : AWAY. In golf, after the tee shot, you take turns in reverse order.

70. Big key : ENTER. Along with shift and backspace on a keyboard.

71. Fade, maybe : WEAR. I hope I am not wearing out my welcome on Fridays.

Down:

1. Israel's Dayan : MOSHE.  The debonair Israeli hero.

2. Let out, say : ALTER. After Thanksgiving and Christmas, what often happens to the waist in pants.

3. Builders of stepped pyramids : MAYAS. Do you all have your CALENDAR set?

4. Nothing special : AVERAGE. Just your normal end of the world predication, nothing to get

5. Frantic : FRENZIED. about.

6. Signaled one's arrival : RANG. Like the door bell.

7. Ancient theaters : ODEA. The plural of the Latin ODEUM, one built in Rome in 161 is still in use. They were meeting halls as well as places for entertainment. Interestingly we have the Greek  22D. Ancient assembly area : AGORA.

8. 1961 record breaker : MARIS. Roger who hit 61 in '61.

9. Ate at : ERODED. The attention and pressure ate at Maris and he starting losing his hair. He ended up in Gainesville as a Budweiser distributor. He seemed to be a very nice man.

10. Tram load : ORE. Not a pram, where the load is less lucrative.

12. Weather may delay them: Abbr. : ETAS. Estimated Time of Arrivals.

13. Half of dix : CINQ. The French 10/5.

21. Samson's end? : ITE. No not getting killed while pulling down the Philistine temple, but simply SAMSONITE, luggage. There is no mention of whatever happened to Delilah.

26. Compass hdg. : ENE.

28. Bars at the end : CODA. I leave all musical explanations to the experts.

29. Latish lunch hr. : ONE PM. We eat 1 or later here.

31. "Because freedom can't protect itself" org. : ACLU. American Civil Liberties Union.

32. "Come Sail Away" band : STYX. Love this TUNE.(5:51)

34. Doing the job : ON IT.

37. Bygone blade : SNEE. We just had this Sunday.

40. Rockefeller Center statue : ATLAS.  Impressive in person.

41. Approach : DRAW NEAR.

44. Every other hurricane : HER. Since 1979 we have men and women alternating names. All you need to KNOW.

46. One may be penciled in : EYEBROW. I love this clue/fill.

48. Like a piece of cake : SIMPLE.

50. Boost, with "up" : LEG.

52. Front-end alignment : TOE IN. Do we have any car mechanics to explain this?

54. "New" currency replaced by the Congolese franc : ZAIRE.

55. Gay leader? : ENOLA. The atom bomb dropping plane; you had to know there was no other PC answer.

56. Triple-A, at times : RATER. They rate hotels etc.

57. Software product with a cup-and-saucer logo : JAVA.

58. All over again : ANEW. Ah, the other kind of "A" word.

60. "Categorical Imperative" philosopher : KANT.  Immanuel actually could.

61. Slurpee alternative : ICEE. I am not linking TBBT again, we just had this last week.

63. Come out with : SAY.

I would have to say my time is up. As always, I hope the tour has been pleasant, and we have hit all the highlights, but if not I am sure you will tell us. It is the anniversary of Pearl Harbor Day, a day we should never forget.

Peace out Lemonade.




Note from C.C.:

Happy Birthday to our philosopher/farmer Windhover (Larry),  who is an excellent runner and no doubt a good biographer! Want to see how he looked when he was 10? Click here.

Windhover, 1973



94 comments:

Barry G. said...

Morning, all (and Happy Birthday, Windhover)!

Mixed emotions about this one. I got the theme early on with HEARING AIDA and thought the the reveal was very clever. I struggled with all the other theme answers, though, perhaps because the underlying expressions just didn't seem very familiar to me.

The SE was hard, what with the crossing of WEEZER (who?) and ZAIRE (had no idea it was the name of a currency). I did finally guess the Z, though.

ROTI was another complete unknown, but the perps took care of it easily enough.

I really shot myself in the foot in the NW. I had MAYAN instead of MAYAS at 3D which lead me to grudgingly accept ORNATE at 24A. Which, in turn, let me to FRENETIC at 5D. Unfortunately, that gave me MOSHO at 1D, which didn't seem right, and interfered with GEICO, which I wanted to put in at 27A. Once I got the theme reveal at 40A, however, I finally realized that things just weren't working out and I gave ORNATE the old heave-ho. Once that was gone, I was able to fill in GEICO, EONS and FRENZIED, which finally gave me ERSATZ, MOSHE and MAYAS.

Lemonade714 said...

Happy Birthday Windhover and many more.

thehondohurricane said...

Good morning everyone,

I too picked up on the theme early, but it didn't help a lot with the other fills. The NW & SE corners were both a combination of perps and wagsThje SE corner was just a lucky guess. WEEZER was/is an unknown. Yhe Z got there only because ZAIRE made sense ... I knew of the Country.

Got a kick out of 20A Trappers Tool/RADAR.

I used up all my lucky guesswork, stabs in the dark, & plain "I hope this is right" today so I will be absent for the weekend.

The annual family fun time is on the agenda.... buying and putting up the tree. I want small, DH wants large. Guess who always wins that argument?

thehondohurricane said...

OOPS again...

Windhover, Happy Birthday. Have a ball!

Anony-Mouse said...

Happy Birthday, Windhover, and best wishes for many, many more to come.

What exciting things are you planning today, with the Irish ?

Give yourself a break today - rise with the sun and retire with the sunset....

Best Wishes.

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

What Hondo said. That pesky Weezer/Zaire intersection just wouldn't compute. Put me down for a Technical DNF.

HBTY Windy.

Must rise early tomorrow as the missus and I are joining a bus trip to NYC. I get to the city maybe once in five years, that's adequate for me. Probably won't see Atlas, but we do plan to visit the new WTC memorial.

desper-otto said...

Good morning, Group!

I liked this puzzle and found it easier than yesterday's. As a result, today shall not live in infamy for me.

I got the Trapper John connection and was trying to think of a medical "tool", so RADAR didn't immediately come to mind. In the mid-Atlantic my "fight back" was REPEL and my "layer" was a HEN. That slowed me down a little.

The last to fall though was the "Z" at the WEEZER/ZAIRE cross. Both BANA and WEEZER were unknowns. But as Hondo said, "ZAIRE made sense," so I WAGged the "Z".

Do modern vehicles still need wheel alignments? And headlight aiming? Those were frequent maintenance issues back in my younger days. It seemed at every mandatory "safety inspection" the mechanic would determine my headlights needed a $25 tweaking.

HBD, Windhover!

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Gary Whitehead, for a tough Friday puzzle, but enjoyable. Thank you, Lemonade, for the swell write-up.

I got STYE in the NW. I also entered OLAF for 14A. That was all for a while. I had to fix OLAF to OLAV later on.

The North Center was hopeless for a while. The NE gave me a foothold. OPEC, EWAN, ORE, ETAS. ESQ came later. CINQ was a total perp. I did not know what Dix was. French again????????

I just hunted and pecked around the puzzle after that. Slowly filled it in.

ADDENDA came easily. That gave me the theme after I got one of the theme answers.

Never heard of WEEZER pork and beans. Must be a southern brand.

ENOLA Gay, an old crossword staple. Means Alone spelled backwards. Gay was the pilot's mother's name.

EAUX got me for a while. I thought I was really a hot shot when I confidently put in EAUS. Humbly fixed that later. I should take a french course.

ZAIRE was a wag after a few letters. As was ENERO.

We get SNEE a lot. That was easy.

Anony-Mouse: Did some more research into TRS yesterday. I might go up to my local library and see what they may have. The next town over has a giant library, Gale Borden library in Elgin. I might try that too.

Off to my day. Visiting some old workmates in Northlake, IL, tonight. Our factory used to be located there.

See you tomorrow.

Abejo

Al Cyone said...

Like a few others I was stumped in the SE corner but a few serious WAGs resulted in being surprised by the "TaDa!" music. [16:11]

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning Lemonade and friends. I loved this Friday offering. The unifier helped me with the SMOKING BANA. I only knew Erich Bana from the movie Munich. AIDA, which is a Verdi opera, was first performed in Cairo on December 24, 1871.

As Lemonade noted, Bob Seger is the crossword guest of the week.

I liked the fresh cluing for OPEC.

I knew UNI because of Kazie.

A shout out to our AVG Joe, who is anything but AVERAGE.

I had the same thoughts as Lemonade about Ethan FROME being a hero, since he displayed such bad character TRAITs.

I misread the clue as Pork and Beans BRand, instead of Band, so was looking for Heinz, or something like that.

My mother hates if when we call her MAMA.

I had to purchase a SAMSONITE suitcase for my last trip because the airline destroyed my luggage. I am still fighting with the United Airlines for replacement.

Happy Birthday, Windhover!

QOD: Champagne for my real friends and real pain for my sham friends. ~ Tom Waits (December 7, 1949)

Spitzboov said...

Good morning all. Good comments, Lemonade.

Started out with a lot of easy fill but then got mired in the SE. Got the ENOLA/ORLE cross ok but took awhile for the brain to wake up on the rest of the corner. Loved 'penciled in' : EYEBROW. I defer to our resident Norwegian, Jerome, to reply to the OLAV V comment. VEGA is a very bright star in the summer triangle. Liked seeing RÔTI. Nice breath of puzzle with words like MAYA, KANT, and STYX.

POWER NAPA - An easy to remember rule-of-thumb is that roughly a megawatt of electric power is required on average,for every 1000 people.

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

Belated Happy Birthday to Lucina.

Today is the 71st anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack.

Yellowrocks said...

I also had to wag the SE corner WEEZER, ZAIRE, BABA. Like Abejo, I first read the clue as "Pork and Beans" brand instead of band. So I thought WEENER would be very funny, but the quotes soon clued me in.

I thought of AVERAGE as part of Average Joe's screen name, but the clue does not fit him as he is far above average.

Yellowrocks said...

BTW we always called our mother MAMA until we were in our teens.

Happy birthday, Windhover. I hope it is really soecial.

Anony-Mouse said...

Abejo, while at the library, consult the librarian herself/himself with your problem. Nowadays, librarians have very sophisticated training, with enormous skills and resources, for locating rare subjects and books - and there are also, 'inter-library' loans, I once got a book from Seattle, Wash. ( To Clev,OH). The book was located, strictly based on one small mis-spelled word, and all this for free. We should honor and appreciate librarians just as greatly as we honor and appreciate teachers. A friend, who is a librarian here, has 'written' four coffee table books - on subjects from animal husbandry to urban planning - STRICTLY based on her ability to marshall already known facts of 'existing knowledge' - even though she has no specialized knowledge on any of the subjects.



Bill G. - Not to beat your math problem, to Death - but yesterdays 4 Km problem - You made a statement , (sic) "The dog covered 4 Km. total, but only 2 Km. with his best friend .... AND .... The man covered 6 Km .... but only 2 Km with his best friend also".

The 2 Km. 'quality distance-time' should really be 1.5 + 2.0 = 3.5 Km. ( Do the math - lol ! ).

So, not as 'bad' or not as 'good' - depending on whether you like the company of dogs... (lol).

HeartRx said...

Happy birthday Windhover! Are you having champagne or real pain? (Great QOD, Hahtoolah!!)
.:*~*:._.:*~*:._.:*~*:._.:*~*:._.:*~*:._.:*~*:.

You are at your typical Friday sharpness today, Lemony! Thanks for explaining "Invierno." My Spanish is horrible, so I was thinking it meant some kind of city in Mexico!! I should have known it, because the Italian is "inverno." It just didn't click, for some reason.

Loved the Moulin Rouge link. It reminded me of the Meg Ryan diner scene with Billy Crystal in the movie "When Harry Met Sally."

And I cracked up at your 10D Tram load comment...

Great musical links today, too. Well - maybe except for Weezer. Didn't really care for them! But Styx? Bob Seeger (again)? Good stuff!

Spitzboov beat me to it: Pearl Harbor Day.

Anonymous said...

YR, did you mean sow-cial ?

Middletown Bomber said...

Neat Puzzle got the theme clue answer easily enough but could not actually sussout the its meaning. knew WEEZER as a result of listening to NPR and FRESH AIR. on GAGA i went to summer camp with her Keyboardist. Tgif all.

windhover said...

Thanks for the b'day wishes. Today was a first for me. The Irish has a work related meeting this morning in Murray, Ky, so I accompanied her on the drive out yesterday (a little less than 300 miles) and I'm currently holed up in a hotel room. I solved the puzzle online, kind of a weird experience for a pen and paper guy. Oh well, I'll be advancing into the 20th Century any day now.
Not much to say about the puzzle (as usual), but it must have been relatively easy for a Friday because I zipped right through it, not a common Fri/Sat level occurrence for me.
Dinner in Lexington tonight with my youngest son; he turns 40 tomorrow. It's a family tradition.
Happy Birthday tomorrow (if I recall correctly, I have no list) to Jazzbumpa, and if you missed it last night, the AA guy is Bill Kirchen, one of the great masters of the Stratocaster.
Finally, though I solved on Irish' laptop, I came back to the trusty (?) iPhone to comment, one-fingered as usual.
I shall return. (MacArthur)

Mari said...

Happy Friday everybody!

This puzzle was a little easier for me than the typical Friday offering. Some great clues today, I loved:

17A: Eye Sore: STYE (Not my brother's apartment?)
46D: One may be penciled in: EYEBROW

Loved seeing ERSATZ. Don't get to use that word much.

Hahtoola @ 7:25 am: Loved the QOD
Spitz @ 7:25 am: Thank you for the Pearl Harbor reminder. I will observe a moment of silence and reflection today.

Happy Birthday Windy! What happened between 1962 and 1973. It looks like two different people :)

Avg Joe said...

Happy birthday Windy!! Sounds like a good way to spend it.

Also, Happy birthday Hahtoolah. Thanks for the Tom Waits with whom you both share a birthday. I've been a fan of his older music for decades. One Favorite: Marth. Another: Hope that I don't fall in love with you

The puzzle was a crawl, but got it done. My biggest downfall was confidently filling in tow in and not letting go. Finally, I saw the light and changed that w to an e. Knew of the band Weezer, but don't know their music. Still, that trivia helped out there.

Mari said...

CED, HeartRX, LalaLinda, etc.,

If your kitty is drinking A LOT of water it could also be a kidney problem. One of my previous cats was diagnosed with early renal failure when she was 8, and she lived to be 12. When she crossed the Rainbow Bridge the water bowls needed less filling and the litter box needed less scooping (Much Less!)

Anonymous said...

Very enjoyable Friday puzzle.

"The irony of the Amityville Horror, which is a true story made into a movie in 1979 and 2005."

It's only true if demons exist.

kazie said...

The bottom half of this smoked my butt. DNF due to too many crossing unknown names and completely foreign (to me) concepts.

Maybe because I'm being eaten away at by an overriding problem:
Lately a couple of times now, I've opened my old 2003 software based Excel file and can't see my tabs at the bottom for the other worksheets that are in it. When I open the same file in my backup flashdrive it does the same thing, and I don't know how to access them. This is rather serious, since I keep my 30 + passwords, somewhat disguised, on one of these sheets. Since many have to be updated and changed regularly, I don't see the point of printing them out, so if I can't find them, I'm screwed.

Any ideas from you tech savvy helpers?

HeartRx said...

Mari, thanks for the heads up about a possible kidney problem. She is 12 and had surgery for bladder stones a few years ago. I hate to think about anything like that. Still, it's better to get her checked out. She has an appointment in a few weeks, so we'll see.

HeartRx said...

Kazie, if your scroll bar at the bottom of the page was somehow moved too far left, it will hide the tabs. Try moving your mouse along the scroll bar until you get two parallel lines and arrows for a cursor. Then click and drag the scroll bar to the right. You tabs should then be visible.

Husker Gary said...

I had my coffee, a Wenderful muffin and was ripping through this puzzle and then the SE said, “Not so fast my friend” but I battled through to a very satisfying conclusion. Thanks Gary!

Musings
-HEARING AIDA revealed the theme and laughter DREW NEAR. MAMA mia!
-I knew ADDENDA was right but it took Lemon ESQ to let me know what I was looking at.
-At first I had smoking GUN, AMP up, EAUS, layers were HENS and learned ODEA and ROTI. Held back on DONNAS because I didn’t see any hint of plural.
-I read and forgot Ethan FROME in high school. Sounds like a weasel (not a WEEZER).
-There was a hilarious ERSATZ Colonel in an SNL skit!
-Look up ubiquitous in the dictionary and it says, “GIECO ADS”. My God!
-A message of prime numbers from VEGA played a big part in the movie CONTACT
-A friend of mine was still “AWAY” after 3 putts the other day. I didn’t know he could throw a club that far.
-If you’re giving away your stuff because the MAYAS say 12/21/12 is the end of the world, contact me
-MARIS was from the same state as two of our mapped bloggers
-Eating lunch past noon is very rare here at Chez Joann
-TOE IN is when your car is headed east but your tire is pointed ENE
-HBD Wind! Nice snap!
-Hawkeye line from M*A*S*H- “Champagne is just beer that knows somebody.”

kazie said...

Marti,
Thanks, but the scroll bar isn't there either--just the window frame with a couple of faded looking boxes on the far right side, one of which has NUM in it. On the far left end of it the word READY is there, but moving the cursor in either direction makes no difference. If I scroll down in the open worksheet, it just keeps going indefinitely.

Irish Miss said...

Good morning:

Happy Birthday, WH; have a great day.

The southeast did me in. Never heard of Weezer or Zaire as currency. So, a finish but with help. Thought it was a mite crunchier than a typical Friday but kudos to Gary for the challenge and ditto to Lemony for the expo.

Thoughts and remembrance on this solemn anniversary.

Have a nice Friday.

desper-otto said...

To give due credit, Lemonade was the first to remind us in his expo that today is the anniversary of Pearl Harbor day. (Or as George HW Bush said back on 9/7/2001, "September 7th, the day that shall live in infamy.")

It does appear that today is also Hahtoolah's birthday. HBD, Hahtoolah -- or in the event that it isn't -- have a happy un-birthday.

desper-otto said...

Oops, I should have read that quote more carefully. Papa Bush actually made that comment on September 9th, 1988. How time flies!

Sorry I missed Bill G's puzzle yesterday, but I agree that the dog walked a total of 4 KM, but only two KM with his best friend. Sorry, Anony-Mouse.

thehondohurricane said...

Meant to mention earlier ..... the MARIS clue reminded me I had the pleasure of meeting former Red Sox pitcher, Tracy Stallard at a show a few weeks ago. For those of you who don't know. Tracy was the pitcher of record when Maris hit his 61st home run in 1961.

Tracy has a nice gig going these days... he's in a partnership group in No Carolina that owns a series of golf courses. I think he's in the Asheville area ... I Think!

For you baseball fans out there, I asked him what the pitch to Maris was and he immediately answered "a gopher ball."

Tinbeni said...

Lemon: Once again your write-up was more FUN than the puzzle.

At first, my contract extras were BONUSES. So you can figure out that was the beginning of a nice Rorschach Ink Blot test.

Windhover, Happy Birthday !!!
And the First Sunset "toast" is to you (and Irish).
Cheers !!!


Anony-Mouse @7:48
re: Yesterdays math problem @6:56 Bill G. posted MY SOLUTION of 4 Km.
And the quality time the man and the dog walked together was correct at 2 Km.
Do the math ...
Remember the man walked twice as fast as the dog.
So from the very first step he was ahead of the dog.
The man walked the whole way up the 3 Km hill alone (the dog trailing).

The only time the man and dog were together was the final 2 Km going down the hill.

And YES, I like to walk with dogs.

buckeye bob said...

@ abejo 6:49 a.m.

Actually, Enola Gay was pilot Paul Tibbets mother's name, not just Gay.

Hahtoolah said...

HeartRx: Cats are prone to kidney problems. One of my cats has had kidney problems and we got her a drinking fountain (upon a suggestion by our vet). She loves it and cried when we take it up to clean each week. (The other cat isn't so keen on the drinking fountain, however.)

Last spring, my cat got very depressed when we were away and refused to eat or drink. That caused her to go into kidney failure. The vet convinced me that she wasn't in pain, so after spending a considerable amount of money on tests, etc., she is now doing very well. I have to give her a pill each morning, but she doesn't fight me.

Desper-Otto: Thanks, for the birthday wish, but you are 2 days early.

Java Mama: You had a double shout out in today's puzzle!

Anony-Mouse said...

Happy Birthday Hahtoolah - ( if so - ) - you share it with another famous blogger - Windhover. (!) .... and the day which will live in infamy ( .... not because of you - ).

Two common birthdays in a group of, say, 50 people is not that rare, statistically speaking.... the chances are better than say, 60 percent.

Anyway, have a very happy birthday, and try not to work too hard. And many, many happy ones ahead.

Tinbeni said...

Hahtoolah has her birthday on Sunday.
Jazz has his birthday tomorrow.

Windhover today, and Lucina yesterday.

In a group of about 60 ... I'd say birthdays on four days in-a-row is very rare.

Thank god "it's 5 o'clock somewhere" ...

Cheers !!!

Lucina said...

Hello,cyber friends. MAMA Mia! I'm not up on my modern bands so STYX and WEEZER beat me up. Had to look up the latter and just forgot to check on the former where I had STYS.

Otherwise a fine offering from Gary W. Loved the clue for EYEBROW!

Also loved the crunchy words like JAG and ERSATZ and we haven't seen ORLE in a long spell. It used to be quite common in crosswords.

Lemonade, your ADDENDA is a RIOT as usual.

Happy birthday, Windhover! I'm sure it will be special!!

Have a fantastic Friday, everyone!

CrossEyedDave said...

Happy Birthday Windhover

The song starts @ 3:50, but you have to hear the intro...

The space key is the biggest key!!!

Ever seen a Volkswagen bug that looks like a ruptured duck,,,
thats the toe-in adjustment!

Mari, Pretty Kitty is somewhere between 15 & 18 years old. we are not sure....

Hahtoolah???

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

Windhover - HBD, my friend -- your memory is correct. Were we both born in '46? Never heard of Bill Kirchen. No surprise, though, on two counts - the world is full of great musicians who don't become famous, and [D'OH] I don't know everything.

Great theme today. I love SIGHTING GAGA. But is WEEZER crossing ZAIRE [so clued] not the mother of all naticks?

And isn't RATER for "Triple-A, at times" simply and inexplicably wrong? I entered RATED, which makes perfect sense, and therefore could not get WEAR.

My other nits aren't worth mentioning.

I like today's SEGER song. Probably my fav in his repertoire.

I always spell ETHEL as ETHYL and have to correct it.

I know Eric BANA best from the movie Hanna, where he plays Erik Heller, her ERSATZ father.

PEACE,
JzB

JJM said...

"A Day that will live in infamy"- FDR
Sometimes I find it incredible that most people have forgotten or just don't know the significance of this day. It happened twenty years before I was born and I still say a prayer on this day every year (along with 9-11) to remember those who were slaughtered on our soil. Don't ever forget.

Anonymous said...

Hello All,

I liked todays puzzle with two exceptions:

I get HEARING AID, POWER NAP, and SMOKING BAN, but what is SIGHT GAG?

Front-end alignment is NOT synonymous with toe-in. A front end alignment consists of 4 settings:

1. TOE= adjustment of tires away from parallel as viewed from the top. If the front of the tires are closer together than the back, this is toe-in. Opposite is toe-out. Most cars are set to 1/4" or so of toe-in.

2. Camber = adjustment of tires away from parallel as viewed fron the front. Tilting in at the top is +camber, tilting out at the top is -camber. Most cars are set slightly positive.

3. Caster = the angle of steering in relation to the vertical centerline of the tire. Imagine a chopper motorcycle, it has highly positive caster. Imagine the wheels on a shopping cart as you push it. They flip around backwards, because they have negative caster. Most cars are set to positive caster.

4. Tracking = front and rear tires riding in the same track. You may have at some time been driving behind a car or truck that appeared as if it were going down the road at an angle, this is called dog-tracking.

Settings 1,2,3 can be measured on both the front and rear wheels of every vehicle, but not every setting can be adjusted on every car. Most newer cars can be adjusted for all settings.

My reason for the details is this:

A front-end alignment is made up of many factors, only one of them being "toe-in". Using this logic a clue could be "car engine" and the answer be "piston", or the clue "book" and the answer "chapter"... just doesn't work.

Other than that, great Friday puzzle.

Cheers!

creature said...

Gary, you're puzzle took quite some time {short nap in the middle around Weezer,Bana and Zaire} before I allowed Lemon to clue me in. Enjoyed the crunch and squeeze of it. Thanks, Lemon. You always add some craziness to it.

Happy Birthday to Windhover! Are you going dancing with the Irish tonight?

Thanks for all the kindnesses. They help.

Have a nice day everyone.

HeartRx said...

Sorry Lemony! I got to the end of your write-up and got distracted by the picture of WH, so I never noticed your Pearl Harbor comment. But I should have known that you would be on top of the date...

windhover said...

Jazz:
I'm a '45 model.

JJM:
It's a safe bet THEY haven't forgotten August 6th & 9th in the year I was born, and we shouldn't either.
We "Remember" the Alamo and the Maine, but we forget to learn anything from the experience, so it happens again.
There's a great Calvin & Hobbes strip involving a cliff and a wagon that illustrates this point.
On the road again.

Misty said...

Terrific Friday puzzle, Gary--many thanks! It came slowly but steadily, and in the end it was only my woeful ignorance of bands that undid me a little. Like others, I didn't know WEEZERS (had 'Weevers') or STYX (had 'Stys'). This is a problem I also have when watching/playing "Jeopardy." They have more and more popular music categories and my husband and I are just duds in that area. Serves us right for not being more hip in our youth.

Lemonade, I loved your RADAR explanation. And thanks for talking about 'Ethan FROME,' a classic I've never read. I'm going to order it from Amazon as soon as I get off the blog.

There are so many birthdays at this time of year, I'd like to give all of you my best wishes. Windhover, what a handsome dude you are in that photo!

Have a great Friday, everybody!

Mari said...

CED @ 11:00 am: That's great about Pretty Kitty! My friend had a Siamese who lived to be 20. Right now my "babies" are 13, 9 and 3 and all seem to be in good health. (Keeping my paws crossed.)

Lemonade714 said...

Thanks marti to pointing out the Pearl Harbor Day reference in my write up, but I do not care about the credit. Just mail me the cash.

Speaking of bad humor, sight gags are just that, visual humor like this LINK .

Anonymous said...

Good afternoon everyone.

Happy birthday, Windhover. Nice to see those pictures. And happy birthday to your son for tomorrow. Sounds like a nice tradition.

And a belated happy birthday,Lucina. I didn't get to do yesterday's puzzle, and didn't read the comments until 11:30 PM, so figured it was too late to wish you well then.
And congratulations, also belated, C.C. on your solo puzzle yesterday.

I got very few of today's puzzle, so DNF but did get 19 correct of 23 attempts. Put five in for CINQ. Duh.

Cheers

Lemonade714 said...

Creature it is good to see you here two days in a row, and HG thanks for the effort putting together a new map of the denizens of the Corner.

Finally, tire person anon, thank you. I am always confident a reader will explain the stuff I do not know, which is voluminous.

As was pointed out to me by an expert, the second word of each theme answer is a 3/4 letter word, adding to the consistency of the theme.

Well done GJW

JJM said...

You're a smart guy windhover. "
Within the first two to four months of the bombings, the acute effects killed 90,000 –166,000 people in Hiroshima and 60,000–80,000 in Nagasaki
You weren't the only one that noticed that ENOLA was also in the puzzle. Ironic?
We should all remember what Santayana said.

Jazzbumpa said...

Big Tchaikowski weekend. I'm playing the First Symphony tonight, and have oldest and youngest granddaughters in the Nutcracker, showing tomorrow and Sunday. Amanda is the Sugar Plum Fairy. Emily is a mouse and a Ginger Snap. We're going to the Sunday performance.

No bones in the Symphony until movement 4.

Also doing 2 Noctures by .Debussey. I get to play in the 2nd "Fetes".

My collective playing time for the whole concert is under 5 minutes, and finding some of the entrances is very tricky. I'll be spending some time this afternoon with those 2 vids.

Cheers!
JzB

Mari said...

Have any of you seen this Pearl Harbor movie? I'm wondering about your take on it. (Other than the flower romance angle.)

desper-otto said...

Mari, I used to own that Pearl Harbor DVD -- operative phrase: "used to." I hang onto the ones I think are worth watching over and over. This one's about three hours too long.

Anonymous said...

PEACE is in the puzzle also, which was brought about by ENOLA.

Pinto said...

It's a Family Tradition?

On The Road Again?

HB Windy.

Tinbeni said...

Mari @12:04

When I think of Pearl Harbor and movies ... this is my favorite clip.

Blutto Speech from Animal House (:24)

PK said...

HI Y'all, Well, I filled in correctly all the W third of the puzzle! The rest was pretty much a bust. Had HEAR an opera. (Close but no cigar.) Eras not EONS. TRAmp not TRAIT (I was thinking of the character pieces by Red Skelton & "The Little Tramp".)

Lemonade, I always appreciate your help and humor. I read the paragraph in which you said "that's my middle name". I thought you meant WEEZER. Why on earth would anyone name their kid WEEZER? I wondered. Also wonder why they'd name their band that. Never heard of them.

I have a MAYAS calendar on my wall which my daughter brought back from an exchange trip. It's an octogon. They just ran out of space to write.

Two cataclysmic events in 1941: I was born and Pearl Harbor. I came first.

For you dog/man puzzlers: When the dog walked with his master, he heeled. When he was off the leash, he ran all over the place. Don't you guys know anything about dogs? LOL!

LaLaLinda said...

Hi All ~~

I started out well - so I thought - filling in 1A & 1D MAMA - MOSHE and then 2D - 'Let out, say' - 'Admit.' That messed things up for a bit in that corner but perps helped to correct things. As usual, I had a few write-overs: ASA before ESQ, for legal title, MEN before HER for hurricanes and HEN before PLY for layer. I actually like having to rethink things to come up with the right word - much more enjoyable than just filling in the blanks. A fun puzzle ~ clever theme!

Thanks for a great write-up, Lemonade. I always enjoy your comments on the answers and your humor.

Hahtoolah ~ I'm so glad to hear that your kitty with kidney problems is doing well. I had been wondering but was afraid to ask in case the news wasn't good. Let's hope all our blog kitties continue to thrive! (I also have a fountain and two of my three girls love it!)

Happy Birthday, Windhover ~~ Enjoy your day and have a great year!

PK said...

Happy Birthday, Windhover! May all your best-laid plans not go awry! I have a brother named Larry born in 1946. (I know, you were "45.) His senior picture has black-rimmed glasses and stern face too.

Early happy birthday to Jazz and Hahtoolah in case the next two puzzles defeat me too bad to post.

Hahtoolah: loved the QOD. Words I can live by.

I sign my emails & cards to my kids MAMA and to my sons-in-law and daughters-in-law, MAMA followed by my given name derivative. S&DIL's all call me by my given name.

Gentlemen go 2nd said...

PK @ 1:45
Isn't that the way it's supposed to be?

PK said...

P.S. Okay, I know my birth had much less impact on the world than Pearl Harbor. It was a macabre joke!

I too stand in reverence on this day when hell happened!

Anony Mouse said...

test

Well, maybe not every time said...

It was a joke. Go back and reread your post, carefully.

Hahtoolah said...

Welcome to the Blue World, Anony-mouse!

An early happy birthday to Jazzbumpa tomorrow.

To those who celebrate, Chanukah, Happy candle lighting tomorrow evening.

Anony Mouse said...

Tinbeni and Desper-Otto

Thank you, thank you for pointing out my conceptual mistake. Of course, both of you are right - the Quality Time-Distance is 2 Km. I can't realize what I was thinking. However, I am very happy I posted the earlier (erroneous) calculation - now, I have learnt something valuable that I was conceptually muddled about.

This is like the problem of 2 bicyclists (A and B), 30 miles apart, who travel (race) towards each other. A travels at 8 mph, and B at 4 mph. A bee travelling at 48 mph, Flies from A's bike, (from his handle bar), at the beginning of the race .... and travels towards B, 'touches' B's bike, and turns around, towards A,... touches A's bike, U turn ....back to B's bike, and so on .... until the 2 bicycles meet. What distance does the bee travel ? Assume, say, a straight path, .... bee loses no time turning around,etc. This was a question at the Cambridge 'O' level exam - like an SAT exam.

Dennis said...

Windhover, Happy Birthday my friend -- I trust you'll get into something interesting by night's end. (And yes, I was being clean.)

Anony Mouse, either you're holding your breath or you've joined us blue hairs. Good to see you take the plunge.

Excellent puzzle - SE had me guessing, but I got lucky with perps.

Have a fun weekend.

Anony Mouse said...

Hahtoolah - now I'm blushing - turning redder by the second.

Avg Joe said...

More Tom Waits, more seasonal this time Christmas Card

PK, reread both your post and the gentleman's.

windhover said...

Dennis:
She thanks you for the compliment. Remember the airplane joke a couple years ago?

desper-otto said...

Mr. Blue Anony-Mouse, I calculate it to be 120 miles.

Jayce said...

Hello everybody. DNF. Like JazzB I put RATED in for 56D, and did it for the same reason he mentioned. Hand up for getting the Z in WEEZER for no other reason than that ZAIRE was the only thing that made sense at 54D.

MEALY is a cool word.

Prima what? Ballerina? Nope. Vera? Nope. Donna? Nope. Vista? Nope. Facie? Nope. Nocta? Nope ...

Happy birthday wishes to all of you who have a birthday this month, and may you have as many more of them (birthdays) as you want to have.

windhover said...

CED:
Been on the road all afternoon and just got around to watching that clip. I've had days something like that, but I still get back on. Went for a ride earlier this week. Soon as I saw it was Arlo I knew what the tune was gonna be, but the intro story was great. I know you'll have no trouble believing this; I once had a bike that spent the entire winter in the living room. That was about the same year as the pic with the 442. And a different wife. These days we ride it in the winter. The bike, too.

Chickie said...

Hola Everyone, A real DNF for me today. I had trouble with most of the puzzle. I did have some answers in and those were correct, but not enough to finish up the unknowns.

I wanted to wish Windhover a very happy birthday and many, many more. I hope you'll do something special to celebrate the day.

I baked another batch of cookies this morning and while waiting for each pan to bake I put up some of our Christmas decorations. The cookies are done, but not the decorations

Hatoolah, I'm so sorry to hear about your destroyed luggage. I hope the items within weren't lost along with the luggage. I ran across some paper work from my in-laws trip to Hawaii in the 70's. Their two suitcases were lost altogether and never turned up. They got $50.00 for each as a claim. That didn't even cover the cost of one of my father-in-laws suits!! Hopefully you'll have better luck.

Lemonade714 said...

Welcome to blue A-M and an early birthday wish for Hahtollah and JzB.
To those who light up at night, a Happy Festival of Lights.

To all the lurkers, see how easy it is.

Lemonade714 said...

Hahtoolah, sorry; bad vision day today.

Anonymous said...

A guy goes up the airline counter, at JFK airport, and says - 'I would like a ticket to Chicago, and please ship one of my bags to Tampa, FL and the other one to Boise, Idaho'.

And the Airline clerk says,'Oh no, sir, we can't do that'.

and the guy goes,' Why not .... you did it the last time .....'.

Chickie said...

Abejo, I didn't know the reason for the name of the Enola Gay. Very interesting.

Dec. 7th is etched in our memories as we became part of WWII in a big way. A friend of mine was with her airforce husband at the base in Hawaii the day it was bombed. She shared this with us at a recent dinner party. At age 90 she says this was the scariest day of her entire life.

Chickie said...

Also, happy early birthday to Hatoolah and Jazz this weekend. I'm not usually on the blog during the Sat/Sun. schedule and would have missed your special days.

Anony Mouse said...

desper-otto, you're right.

Total combined speed of cyclists = 8 + 4 = 12 mph.

Distance tween the 2 = 30 miles

Time to 'meeting of the bikes' = 30 miles / 12 mph = 2.5 Hrs.

Distance of bee flight = 48 mph x 2.5 Hrs = 120 miles.

Avg Joe said...

Here's another Arlo birthday song for Windhover. Highway In the Wind

And as long as we're on the road, why not dust off Arlo's biggest hit by the guy that wrote it. City of New Orleans. In fact, you can recycle this one on Saturday, Hahtoolah.

windhover said...

Joe,
I'll check out the Arlo tune when I get out of the car, but I assume you're talking about Steve Goodman (RIP) on the other. One of the best songwriters ever, he also wrote Savid Allen Coe's signature song. I have his boxed set. It's a great listen.

Avg Joe said...

This is simply too good to not post. Windhover alluded to a tune that most everyone has heard at one time or another, but I doubt most have heard Steve Goodman perform it. I know I hadn't. This live rendition by the co-writer is so different from the David Alan Coe version that the only real recognizable aspect is the melody.

You Never Even Call Me By My Name

Enjoy.

kazie said...

Happy Birthday to Hahtoolah and Windhover!

And a big thank you to Hearti, who solved my Excel problem. Unfortunately, since I was gone most of the day, I didn't get back to thank her for her emails until later this afternoon.

Spitzboov said...

I think this is a short biography of today's puzzle developer.

fermatprime said...

Greetings!

Nice puzzle, Gary! Swell write-up, Lemon, as usual.

Have spent roughly 21 minutes each on Wed., Thurs., Fri. puzzles. Weird, huh? (No cheats, just slow and steady.) Expect to have to use red letters tomorrow. Even then it will take over 30 minutes.

Since Congo used to be Zaire, had no problem putting in the Z (but, of course, never heard of WEEZER).

Hope that you have/had a nice birthday Windover! And many, many more!

Cheers!

Bill G. said...

I've always enjoyed that song, "You Never Even Call Me by my Name," especially the last verse.

We got our Christmas tree, a Noble fir. It sure smells good. Decorating will come later.

Did you read about the prank involving two British DJs who impersonated Queen Elizabeth in an effort to speak to Kate in the hospital? The nurse who happened to answer their call has died, possibly suicide. That's the problem with practical jokes; they seem funny to everybody else except the victim.

I even wrote an e-mail to Ellen about this type of humor. She pulls jokes like that. One person a few days ago got so upset, she said something like, 'Screw this, I'm outta here' and walked out of the room. Ellen stresses being kind to one another but doesn't seem to notice that, at least for a few minutes, she's making someone really uncomfortable in order to get a laugh. Needless to say, I haven't heard anything back.

Bill G. said...

Relevant to absolutely nothing else, I just came across this YouTube video with a young woman doing different recognizable accents. She seemed pretty good to me. ACCENTS.

michele said...

Good evening all. Thank you Lemon for the writeup of today's puzzle. This was a tough one for me. I also had EAUS and ORNATE first.

Happy birthday to Windhover. I enjoy Arlo G. and Steve Goodman very much. Used to play some of those tunes on the guitar. I will have to come back to these links tomorrow while D. is at work. As he goes to bed early so I can't turn them up loudly right now!

After today's puzzle Saturday's should be a breeza. (LOL)

Good weekend everyone.

PK said...

AvgJoe: Did you see the Farmers' Style-Gangnam Parody along side of your "Never Even Call Me By My Name"? This is pretty good. Looks a lot like some of my farmland.

You told me to reread one of my earlier post. Actually, I was writing my response to my own earlier post while the gentleman was posting. I didn't see his until later. i wasn't sure what he was talking about anyway.

Casanova said...

PK: He was being a bit naughty and DF. You said you came first, and the gentleman said that's the way it is supposed to be, ie, a good lover.

Avg Joe said...

PK, I try my hardest to ignore much of what pop culture offers these days, so no. I didn't see that clip.

On the earlier mention, I'd still recommend you go back and revisit both posts. It's pretty funny, IMO.

I have a good friend that farms in W KS. I'd enjoy discussing it if you are interested in emailing me. I might also be able to assist in solving what those helicopters were doing way back when. I know a guy....

Lemonade714 said...

Casanova why are you not out ravaging young women on a Friday night?

Where are all the newbies. Cat got your tongues?

Nice weekend all

Lemonade714 said...

Nice job tracking down GJW, spitzboov
Intetesting man

PK said...

OOOOOOH! Good one, guys! I wish.....