Jan 4, 2013

Friday Jan 4, 2013 Gareth Bain

Theme: GAIN WEIGHT (56A. What 18-, 23-, 37- and 46-Across do to become puns?) - TON is added to the last word of each common phrase.
18A. Center of Swiss Oktoberfest celebrations? : BEER CANTON. Beer can.

 23A. Tiny sea thugs? : GANG PLANKTON. Gangplank. One word.

 37. More equitable church official? : THE FAIRER SEXTON. The fairer sex.

 46A. Cigarette buyer's bonus? : BUMPER CARTON. Bumper car.

C.C. here, giving the hard-working Lemonade a break. Blogging once is fun. But blogging every week under time pressure is certainly not an easy job. Somehow Lemonade always achieves a nice balance of seriousness in his theme/entry explanations & whimsy humor in his links and passing remarks.

So, it's Friday, the theme is, more often than not, letter(s) addition/deletion/replacement, mostly "addition", since they produce more colorful and fun phrases (while deletion tends to offer dry and boring phrases). Marti is our expert in this theme type.

Today's reveal, GAIN WEIGHT, elevates the normal Friday for me. It gives a rationale why TON is added. Five theme entries with 59 squares is a lot, but Gareth delivered. He always does. You don't see light theme in his grids. Always meaty.


1. RR sched. listings : STAs

5. Hollow stone : GEODE

10. Some Siamese : CATS. Then we also have 54. King Mongkut's domain : SIAM. Slight dupe.

14. Flamingo hue : PINK.  "Gentlemen Prefer Pink"!

15. Memorable number : OLDIE

16. Vibes : AURA

17. Queen, in some Indo-Aryan languages : RANI

20. Like the Baha'i faith, by origin : IRANIAN. Hey, no IRANI today.

22. Kicks out : BOOTS

27. "Phat!" relative : RAD

28. Friend abroad : AMI

29. Punching tool : AWL

32. Filmmaker Coen : ETHAN. Born and raised here in MN.

35. Fed. agent : G-MAN

36. Pre-coll. catchall : EL-HI. It just won't go away.

40. Cover, as with paint : COAT

41. Rail family bird : COOT

42. Ecological community : BIOME

43. Drillmaster's syllable : HUP

44. Tight do : BUN. I like loose buns. This is flawless.

45. Boozer : SOT

52. Totally flummoxed : AT SEA. Does today feel like Friday, Argyle?

55. Erode : EAT AWAY

60. Mange cause : MITE

61. Computer science pioneer Turing : ALAN

62. '90s FBI chief : FREEH (Louis). From September 1993 to June 2001. I have no memory of him. I came to the US in May 2001. Never paid attention to politics or news until Sept 11th.

63. __-à-porter: ready-to-wear : PRET. Also a star-studded fashion movie. Our Xword staple Stephen REA is in it too.

64. 18th-century French winemaker Martin : REMY

65. "La __ Nikita": 1997-2001 TV drama : FEMME. Oh, I loved it. I watched the Cantonese version.

66. Some 35mm cameras : SLRs

1. Hint of mint : SPRIG. A sprig is more than a hint to me.

2. Part of a princess costume : TIARA

3. 2001 Nobel Peace Prize recipient : ANNAN (Kofi). He studied here in MN too. Nice! Minnesota Nice!

4. Plastic surgeon's procedure : SKIN GRAFT. Sounds painful.

5. Become unlocked? : GO BALD. Fun clue. Why do men go bald? We don't.

6. John Paul's Supreme Court successor : ELENA (Kagan)

7. Shelley work : ODE

8. Hollywood VIP : DIR (Director)

9. Continental trade org. : EEC

10. Lexmark rival : CANON. Printer.

11. Prefix with pilot : AUTO

12. Bouncy gait : TROT

13. __ serif : SANS

19. Blood typing system : ABO

21. Hygiene product with a Disney-created mascot : IPANA. Bucky Beaver.

24. "Give me an example!" : NAME ONE. Excellent entry.

25. Craftsman tools seller : KMART

26. Pantry array : TINS

29. __ sax : ALTO

30. It's "no longer current in natural colloquial speech," per the OED : WHOM. Hard clue.

31. Place to wait : LINE

32. Write permanently : ETCH

33. Commandment word : THOU. Thou shalt not steal others' identity on this blog.

34. Car that's seen better days : HEAP

35. Put together : GROUP

36. Cloverleaf components : EXIT RAMPS. Great answer as well.

38. SDI defense target : ICBM

39. WWII torpedo craft : E-BOAT. Or U-BOAT. I don't really know the differences, Spitzboov!

45. Verbally attack : SCATHE

46. Hope contemporary : BENNY (Jack). Bob Hope.

47. Motor City org. : UAW

48. Turn into a mini, as a midi : RE-HEM

49. Spin : TWIRL

50. Wayne feature : OATER. Never liked John Wayne.

51. Politburo objections : NYETs. "No" in Russian.

52. Petri dish gel : AGAR

53. Chaucer chapter : TALE

57. Gee preceder : EFF. Alphabet.

58. Fury : IRE

59. Bit of treasure : GEM

Here is an adorable picture of the cute Charlotte, Lemonade's granddaughter.

Two month ago, she was only a tiny baby:

Click here for more Charlotte pictures.


fermatprime said...


Great Friday offering, Gareth; swell expo, as usual, CC!

No cheats necessary, but a few things required extra thought, like GO BALD.

Derm appointment OK, after a fashion. Now have big dent in arm. Stitches had been left in too long and were reluctant to come out!


fermatprime said...

PS Took me awhile to get rid of Sears and substitute KMART!

Had a long nap after errands and appointment. Had great dream--I was walking around again.

Still having trouble just about every other day with It stops working in Apple Mail. Have to pickup mail from internet, forward it to fermat, so it can be filed appropriately, if not junk. Junk filter (Spam Sieve) ineffective with Safari. At one point I paid a bundle to ATT to solve the problem. Worked for one day. Cannot change to Vios where I live. (ATT is email and DSL.) Any suggestions would be appreciated!!

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Well, the new year's run of smooth, easy puzzles for me just came to a screeching halt. Fine puzzle today, but I really struggled with it.

Had SEARS at 25D and did not want to let go of it. Totally forgot that KMART bought SEARS (or vice versa). And even after getting the theme, BUMPER CARTON didn't mean anything to me. I mean, I know what a BUMPER CAR is, but how does BUMPER mean bonus? And shouldn't AURA be plural to match "vibes"? And who knew that mange was caused by a MITE (I guessed LICE at first and then even tried MICE before finally getting MITE)?

And yes, the clue for WHOM was brutally hard.

All in all, a typical Friday...

Anonymous said...

Eboat was the German version of US PT boat. Patrol Torpedo (PT). Uboat is the German Submarine.
Also skin grafts are painful.

thehondohurricane said...

Good morning everyone,

When I looked the puzzle over initially, my first thought was to go on to something else so Garreth would not kick my butt again. It was not to be however and I took up the challenge and finished, but I had three incorrect letters.

Had BEERCAR, instead of ...CAN, BIONE instead of BIOME, & RAT instead of RAD. No excuses, they were wags.

Still, happy I took up the challenge, For once I caught onto the theme early and that helped most of the time. Lots of fresh and fun cluing. In particular 46D Hope contemporary/BENNY & 15A Memorable number/OLDIE were favorites. Always liked Jack benny.

Back to the grind this weekend so I'll talk to you Monday.

HeartRx said...

ood morning C.C. et al.

I did a double take when I read your write-up, C.C. You made me sound like an expert in dry and boring phrases, LOL!! I do have a real soft spot for themes of this type, though. I loved how Gareth included the unifier GAIN WEIGHT. After the holidays, I’ll bet many people can identify with that!!

It turned out to be a speed run, as soon as I figured out the theme at GANG PLANKTON. That was my favorite theme entry, because of the mental image it conjured up. The names that didn’t come immediately to mind (ANNAN, FREEH, ALAN Turing, ELENA Kagan) were easily solved by perps.

Barry G. @ 5:54, think of a “bumper crop.” It means a bountiful or abundant crop.

Have a great day everyone – TGIF!

C.C. Burnikel said...

Is that why the G in "Good morning" is gone? Ha ha! Sorry I did not express myself clearly. I meant you're the expert in letter addition/deletion theme type. I don't remember anyone had more puzzles published on LAT Fridays, other than Dan Naddor.

Anonymous @5:54am,
Thank you.

Congratulations on your full retirement! What did you teach in those years, other than ESL?

Montana said...

Thank you Gareth and CC. Couldn't sleep last night. Did the puzzle early morning. Only had one WAG and it was correct.

I got the theme! That is rare for me.
Leaving CT this morning to fly back to MT.

Have a wonderful Friday, all,


HeartRx said...

Gee, how did that go missing? And I was just teasing you about the boring phrases, C.C. I knew what you meant, so thanks!

TTP said...

Happy Spaghetti Day. Thank you Gareth and thank you CEE CEE

15A My oldie memorable number is 867 5309 . Jenny, I got your number. And actually, Gareth had my number today. Hard time and had to resort to red letter help to avoid the DNF.

Loved your comment at 39D CC.

I don't get 30D WHOM, although perps filled it. Tried to look it up. Wouldn't it be nice if we didn't have to hear the words "fiscal cliff", "bucket list" and "Kim Kardashian" any more ?

Montana, have a safe trip and be especially "Minnesota nice" at your layover in Minneapolis. Oofta !

desper-otto said...

Aha! So that's why Lemonade promised this week he'd have something for the ladies. He knew he was going to be playing hookey, and put the onus on C.C. Clever!

This was no walk in the park. I definitely wanted SEARS and BIOTA. It took some time to figure out that OED clue. I was mentally playing musical letters with WHO_.

The clue for GO BALD was cute. C.C., men go bald because of their mothers. It's a genetic thing, the same with color blindness. Mothers pass the condition on to their sons, and their daughters become "carriers."

I did not know that Disney created Bucky "Brusha-Brusha" Beaver. Wasn't enough to make it a lasting brand, though. I don't think it had fluoride (as opposed to Floride).

Hahtoolah said...

Good morning, C.C. and friend. The new year continues with another wonderful puzzle. What a fun theme.
My favorite answer was Go Bald. I laughed when the answer appeared.

Stay warm. It was -1 here this morning.

Lucina said...

Good morning, friends. Hi,C.C. What a nice surprise to see you today and thanks for the entertaining expo.

Another surprise! I was on Gareth Bain's wave length and sashayed across the bottom first. Laughed out loud at GO BALD!

For some reason FREEH came to me. He was often in the news at the time. Actually once I had the W from AWL and H at ELHI, WHOM appeared as did BIOME.

Hand up for SEARS before KMART and UBOAT followed by EBOAT. I wasn't sure that was even correct.

Fun time today and I kept up with Gareth!
You all have a fantastic Friday!

unclefred said...

Got rid of AT&T and got Comcast for Internet. Much faster and better.

Lucina said...

Thank you, C.C. and all others for your kind sentiments. Yesterday I exhausted my posts and couldn't comment later in the evening.

C.C. I taught elementary school, usually the middle grades, 5 and 6 but 4th was my favorite and where I spent most of my years. ESL was a late career change for 26 years at the community college.

LOL at your math comment yesterday and in fact, some classes often had more than 30 students. I really hope that they remember me kindly and that I had a good effect on them.

kazie said...

definitely not a speed run for me, but I got it all! the midsection was the last to fall, and PLANK the last theme part. I also had U-BOAT for a while and that slowed me down.

Congratulations on full retirement! You won't regret it. I don't know how you could have lasted so long. as someone said last night kids are different creatures these days.

I don't know what's been done to make teachers unhappy where you are, but it seems to be an ever widening trend. Here now there are no bargained contracts, only "handbooks" of superfluous rules. So much for it being a "noble profession". I'm certainly glad to be out.

Mari said...

Wow! This seemed super easy for a Friday.

I absolutely loved the clue for 5D: Becomes Ulocked? GO BALD. Ha ha, too funny!

I forgot that K-Mart also sold Sears products, so the bit about the Craftsman tools threw me off a bit. Otherwise, smooth sailing!

I have Person of Interest in the DVR for tonight's viewing, but did watch TBBT last night. It was amusing that Shelly threw the gang under the bus, but I didn't find the episode particularly funny. However, I did like the Giant Jenga.

Well, I owe, I owe - it's off to work I go...

Al Cyone said...

Hand up for SEARS. Had HUT before HUP. Never heard of an EBOAT. Thought the theme was fun. Favorite clue: "Become unlocked?" [8:49]

TTP @ 7:10: I thought Wednesday was (Prince) Spaghetti Day.

Anonymous said...

Terrific Friday offering. Thank you very much.

"Had SEARS at 25D and did not want to let go of it."

Hand up.

"And shouldn't AURA be plural to match "vibes"?"


"Become unlocked? : GO BALD. Fun clue. Why do men go bald? We don't."

Actually, many of you do, just not nearly as many as men.

"Wouldn't it be nice if we didn't have to hear the words "fiscal cliff", "bucket list" and "Kim Kardashian" any more ?"

Prepare yourself for the "sequester cliff," "debt-ceiling cliff" and "budget cliff." They've left the station.

"Got rid of AT&T and got Comcast for Internet. Much faster and better."

Six of one...

desper-otto said...

Hahtoolah, where the heck are you where it's below zero???

Sfingi said...

This seemed awfully easy for a Friday. I had bAD before RAD, and never heard of E-BOAT, but otherwise, chop-chop.

Was upset about the WHOM clue. Really? The world is going to hell in a hand-basket.

Didn't notice GOBALD; glad it was pointed out.

Most public school teachers are upset over large classes. Class size does matter with kids. (I taught in a NYS prison for 17 years, after the computer industry dried up here - we had cops in the hall.)

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

What Mari said. Including the part about Giant Jenga.

I not only forgot about the Sears - KMart connection, I forgot all about KMart itself. I haven't seen one of their stores for years. It took a while to perp that answer.

Morning CC - your example of a loose bun definitely gets the point across, but because the opportunity is there, I'd like to be the first to advocate for tight buns! :-)

Cheers All

TTP said...

Lucina, congratulations !

CGP Grey - Thoughts on the future of education:
Digital Aristotle

TTP said...

"... In the mindset of a generation, Wednesdays became equated with spaghetti days."

Spaghetti Day explained

Spitzboov said...

good Morning C.C. and all.

Like Gareth's puzzles but this one got me in the K MART/COOT area. Had AMI, but kept wanting SEARS, who have always sold Craftsman. O well. Liked some of the cluing misdirection such as that for EXIT RAMPS. Only other lookup was RAD.

E-BOAT. Appears to be a Brit term for enemy? boat. Germans called them S-boot for Schnellboot, and the US calls them PT boats (for Patrol Torpedo. Think McHale's Navy. Wiki has more info.

Have a good day.

Seldom Seen said...

I'm worried that CED's cold/flu will keep him from posting any BEER CANTON pics.

So, just in case. (remember canton's other meaning?)

Wonder if this sign is in Ohio or Illinois or Connecticut or Texas or Guangzhou?



CrossEyedDave said...

Hello puzzlers,

Finally able to get out of bed, feeling ill is just awful. I have not done the puzzle yet, but i have 2 days of work to do in one day. So i probably will not get to the puzzle till late tonite.

Not wanting to leave you unamused for 24 hours, i give you 10 Most Common New Year's Resolutions as Illustrated by Cats

Jeff said...

E-BOAT: My dad (on an American PT Boat) had an interesting encounter with an E-Boat in the Mediterranean. In the semi-darkness, they happened on each other and raced side-by-side with weapons trained for several harrowing seconds. Each skipper decided to veer away, and that was that!

HeartRx said...

TTP Thank you for posting the digital Aristotle clip – fascinating concept! I immediately went to the Khan Academy site, and am happy to report that after watching the first basic math video, I can now add two and two. Bill G., there’s hope for me yet!!

CED, feel better! I loved the kitty resolutions.

Mari said...

CED: Unfortunately my company blocks YouTube (grr). I can't wait to see your cats and resolutions on my home computer tonight!

Husker Gary said...

I won’t list the obscure words I eventually got but the charm of Gareth’s offering is that I did! Re theme: I have lost 6 lbs getting ready for yesterday’s procedure, not a TON but…

-I only saw steins of beer in Munich beer halls, never a CAN
-Before the reveal, I thought about THE FAIRER FRIAR or some such
-A state senator is upset that Omaha is raising the city tax on CARTONS of cigarettes to finance a new cancer center. There’s irony in there somewhere.
-We’re now officially looking for a female, neutered, declawed, female SIAMese kitty
-I’m listening to Sock Hop OLDIES on iTunes as I type today. Pat Boone and Little Richard!
-Variations on old friends Baha’I, Rani, Asea, Ipana today. Loved GO BALD and EFF.
-Seinfeld had a line where he said, “Every time I add a COAT of paint, the room seems smaller”
-What’s wrong with my neighbor’s African Violets? It might be mites. Yup, it is.
-Does every DIR’s office have a couch?
-I knew a teacher who was on AUTO pilot for decades. Same notes, same lectures, same tests.
-SEARS sold me my snow blower and other Craftsman tools. KMARTS are practically extinct here.
-C.C., did you know any English before you hit our shores in 2001? I thought it was taught in most Chinese schools.

Sfingi said...

Speaking of an array of TINS, I have hundreds of lithographed tins and have noticed that they are becoming rarer. Now we see everything in paper, which is fine for recycling, but I love the lithos.

Lemonade714 said...

Thank you C.C., this old body did need the day off, especially with both of my sons in town. Also, the Charlotte pics and page, really sweet.

Gareth and Marti are becoming Friday regulars, and he also delivers great puzzles. I too thought the unlocked clue was great. Also RANI followed by IRANIan was cute, COAT COOT also.

The Theme made me think of this staple from my childhood LISTEN .

Safe trip Montana.

Congrats Lucina, it is people like you who kept going despite changes and disappointments which give the world hope.

Yes. H. where are you?

Irish Miss said...

Good morning:

Thanks, Gareth, for a feisty Friday challenge. Did not want to let go of Sears but eventually saw the light. Clever theme and cluing, especially Get Unlocked. Great expo, CC.

Lemon, pictures of Charlotte are delightful, especially the one with the dog in the background watching over her. CED, cat clip brought a smile, so cute. Hope you feel better soon. Hatoolah, I never realized it got that cold in New Orleans.

Mari, I also have POI on my DVR for tonight. Again, I continue to be disappointed by TBBT. There were a few funny lines but, overall, a weak episode. I wish the writers would focus on some other topic besides female anatomy; it's getting insulting to the viewer, IMO.

Happy Friday.

Anony Mouse said...

Thank you Gareth Bain for a very challenging puzzle. I was close, and got most of the answers - but still a DNF. Thank you C.C. for your very interesting commentary.

Why do more men go bald ? As has been said, above, it's genetics, stress ( historically, men, the "wage earners" were 'supposed' to have more stress - ) and among a host of other things, the presence of DHT, a variant of Testosterone, a 'male' hormone. Do women grow bald ? Both my wife, and, worse, my daughter, 32, have significant baldness. Fortunately, unlike Kim. K., they both work in a profession where personal looks are totally irrelevant.

Hahtoolah, I await your response with great anticipation.

Marti, my feral cat(s ?) is still here, and generally sleeps in the freezing weather, on my front sloop. Unfortunately, the pre-warmed, microwaved fresh meat that I put in the metal bowl, is frozen stiff by the time it makes its appearance, so it is a struggle for it to pry it out .... ( I also feed it cat food.)

Have a good weekend and week ahead, you all and best wishes.

Husker Gary said...

A category on Jeopardy yesterday was “TIN” men with answers like George MarTIN, TINtoretto, Vladimir PuTIN. One answer could have been



Tinbeni said...

C.C. Great job PINCH-hitting (one of my favorite things!).

Gareth: WOW !!! I really enjoyed your themes and clever cluing. Thanks for a FUN Friday.

Fave theme was BEER CANTON. I'm invoking my Swiss heritage/roots.

WEES re:K-MART/Sears, E-BOAT/U-Boat, also had HUT before HUP.

Didn't realize my neighbors were related to the Rail family.
These old COOTS around here are driving me crazy. (Probably a short trip, lol).

OK, just one little nit ... at 28-A, Friend abroad, I couldn't fit in my desired answer. I was thinking:
1) prijatelj (Croatian)
2) apyr (Russian)
3) kolega (Polish)
AMI is okay if your "Friend abroad" happens to be French. I found them to be aloof. Just saying ...

A "toast" to all at Sunset. (Yup, it's Pinch Day!)
Cheers !!!

Anony Mouse said...

As Henry Kissinger, famously said about patterns of baldness....

When a man starts getting bald at the back (vortex), he is said to be very sexy, because he has an excess of the male sex hormone. (Testosterone)

When a man starts getting bald in the front, by his forehead, he is said to be a great thinker.

When his baldness at the back starts touching the baldness in the front, he is said to be thinking about sex, all the time.

Tinbeni said...

Hahtoolah @7:45
That -1 was in Celsius? Right?

Pinch-hitting QOD:
"Be like a postage stamp. Stick to one thing until you get there." Josh Billings

Mari @9:18
Do not forget to watch the CED cat link when you get home.
That was very, very funny. A total hoot !!!

Anony Mouse @9:45
They're not going bald.
They're just getting more head.

Dennis said...

Tin, in a related theme, I have a bald friend who insists it's the result of "too many u-turns under the sheets".

Lemonade714 said...

Irish Miss, thank you, that is one of my favorites; Remus is very protective of his baby.

Seen, actually like so much here, the Pabst sign is in MINNESOTA .

Lucina said...

Great video of digital education. I believe it is the wave of the future and present, too. My daughter and a niece are pursuing master's degrees on line and they love it. My daughter visits school twice a month for physical classes.

Kazie et al:
Since 1995 when I retired from elementary school teaching, I've been at the community college. That for me was education heaven with motivated, interested students.

klilly said...

Enjoyed this Friday puzzle. I had to look up why rail family bird was coot. I had no idea. now I know. It seems that this is a clue that most of you knew..I enjoy learning so much on this blog.

As for unhappy teachers it is because it is all about test scores. I retired a year ago. I could not set in another meeting about our test scores. I taught a great school with great kids. I hope that the pendulum is swinging away from all this testing.

Avg Joe said...

This beer sign has nothing to do with Canton, but I'm pretty confident that a lot of you will find it funny.

Husker Gary said...

Another thought on distressed teachers, at least here in Fremont: State testing is putting real pressure on results. All protestations about teaching to the test have been trumped by newspaper’s publishing reading and math results from around the state. The alternative of no public exhibition of scores has gone by the boards. Teachers are now like coaches whose teams are evaluated every Friday night in front of God and everybody.

The new Curriculum director here is visiting all schools and telling teachers they are going to be held accountable for their kids’ making progress and has made no friends. He expects to see teachers on-task and reaching every child. Principals are also out in classrooms working with underachieving kids and teachers instead of going to worthless “conferences” in San Diego. My neighbor is a 20-year vet and says she is feeling the pressure but enjoys that some slackers who have just collected checks for years are having their feet put to the fire.

FPS has also extended the school day by a half hour, the school year by 4 days and told the teachers that any snow day WILL be made up in the spring.

It’s a brave new world.

Java Mama said...

Happy Friday, all! Wonderful puzzle, Gareth. Really enjoyed the “weighty” theme. Going to have to redouble my efforts at exercise class to deal with the post-holiday pudge. Thanks for a fun and informative write-up, C.C. I loved your Blog Commandment comment for 33D. Also, great pics of little Charlotte – so cute!

My favorite theme answer was the FAIRER SEXTON. Proper names FREEH and REMY were all perps. OLDIE eluded me for quite a while, as I was looking for some sort of numerical mnemonic (hard not to over-think answers late in the week). Hand up for sticking with SEARS instead of KMART until the bitter end.

CED thanks for the day brightener with the Cat Resolutions video. Hope you feel better soon.

Dudley I laughed out loud at your “tight buns” line!

Younger daughter headed back South this morning (tears). But older daughter and grandbaby are still with us while SIL is on his interview trip, so the party’s not over yet.

Have a great day, everybody!

Misty said...

A great Gareth Bain puzzle, and I almost got the whole thing--with the exception of BIOME and WHOM. I don't think the OED should be announcing (and discouraging)the use of WHOM, for heaven's sake. Do I sound like a grammar pedant? Very well, I guess I am. There are probably worse faults.

C.C. delightful expo and, my goodness, talk about hard-working! Between constructing and posting, is there time for anything else? And that is one sweet Charlotte, Lemondade!

Glad you're feeling better, Cross-Eyed Dave.

Am getting started on my New Year's resolution of slowly getting all the extra junk cleared out of each closet, the garage, etc. Not my favorite chore, for sure. The reward: looking forward to the return of all our favorite TV programs in January, including our guilty and disgusting pleasure, "The Bachelor," on Monday. I know, I know, it's awful.

Have a great Friday, everybody!

Lemonade714 said...

My teaching experience is limited to junior college, college and law school, so I have no frame of reference for the current issues, but I do wonder why the US cannot adapt a model from a country where the education systems work.

When we go to law school and begin to practice law, the first thing we learn is to look to what has worked and what has not worked. Florida particularly has had mostly negative results from its focus on the testing. My own children learned best when they had interesting, dedicated teachers, like most of the Corner.

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Gareth Bain, for an excellent puzzle. Thank you, C.C., for the swell review.

This puzzle seemed easy initially, but then I got to the hard answers.

Of course I confidently wrote in SEARS for 25D. Kept it until almost the bitter end. After I changed CANS to TINS, which gave me AMI, I had KMART.

Theme was clever.

FREEH came slowly. But I did remember him once I had a couple letters.

Had U BOAT first, then fixed it to E BOAT. Not too many write-overs today.

GO BALD was very clever.

Hope I never have a SKIN GRAFT. Sounds painful.

Congratulations on your retirement, Lucina.

Hahtoolah, where are you that it is 1 degree below zero? I thought you were in Louisiana.

So, I went to this oral surgeon yesterday to have the little growth on my tongue checked out, per the request of my regular dentist. He looked at it and said it was benign. So I said, what is normally done with these? He said we usually just cut them off. I said OK, go ahead. The next thing he did was inject an anesthetic into my tongue. (painful) Then he cut the growth off and put two stitches into my tongue. By the time I got home the stitches were gone. I called the office and told them, and they told my to come right back. I did. The dentist took one look and said you are OK, go home. Now I just have a red spot on the end of my tongue which will go away with time. At least I have peace of mind and my regular dentist will be happy. He just lost his 32 year wife to cancer, so I believe he is attuned to potential cancer situations more than others.

Anyhow, see you tomorrow.


Lemonade714 said...

Interesting story Abejo, especially for me. Many years ago I was playing touch (yes touch) football and a friend who was on the other team got me with a forearm to my jaw, and I bit through my tongue. At the hospital, I was told they would not stitch the tongue and the injury, though permanent, would not prevent my continued use of the tongue, both for my tongue in cheek humor and for my other activities.

Lucina said...

I forgot to tell you how much I enjoyed the photos of your darling Charlotte. Your DIL is pretty, too.

Cute video of the cat resolutions, CED.

LOL at your bun observation.

Pookie said...

What a MESS!!
Thanks CED, that this morning's
highlight for me.
Shoulda stood in bed.

GarlicGal said...

I was definitely on Gareth's wave length this a.m. Done in 20 minutes! A Friday record for me.

AMI/KMART went right in. Had to think about GEODE. Thanks for the U-boat/E-boat explanation. I've never heard of an E-boat before. But SEXTON was a gimmie. GO BALD - loved it.

Lucina, congrats on throwing in the towel. Maybe now that you are retired you will be able to meet up with the California Coven this year. Any California trips planned?

Lemon, love those baby pix.

We may possibly see temps in the low 60's today...YIPPEE!


Java Mama said...

Have to add my vote to the others who think there is w-a-y too much emphasis on standardized testing in schools. I feel it’s more about making money for the companies who produce and score the tests than it is about what the students are really learning.

There was an interesting op-ed piece in this morning’s paper from a local professor on the merits of “flipping” the classroom. The students are responsible for reading the basic course material and doing research outside the classroom, and class time is spent applying what they’ve learned in problem solving, discussion and digging more deeply into the subject matter. The instructor is there to provide depth of knowledge and advice that cannot be gleaned from reading the course material or watching a Power Point presentation. Of course, this approach works best in the higher grades and college, once a student has the basic study skills and discipline needed to be successful. Have any of the educators on the blog had experience with this approach?

Ol' Man Keith said...

This was tough for me before I cracked GANGPLANKTON. Until then I thought I was dealing only with ON as the add-on. Once TON emerged, everything else fell into place.

Ol' Man Keith said...

This was tough for me before I cracked GANGPLANKTON. Until then I thought I was dealing only with ON as the add-on. Once TON emerged, everything else fell into place.

Hahtoolah said...

Tinbini: unfortunately, it was not -1C. I am rethinking my idea of moving north when I retire in a few years.

CrossEyedDave said...

I did pretty good for a Friday, after the 1st pass the puzzle looked like an erector set, so i had a lot of perps to work with. In the end, i ran out of time & had to look up a couple of names.

Kmart totally got me, i was looking for the guy from This Old House, or the sidekick from Tool Time.

What to do with a ton of old beer cans?

867-5309 is worth a listen to again...

Old Coot Salt & Pepper Shakers???

Bill G. Yest @ 9:16pm

No, i have not seen an Iridium Flare myself, but i have seen what appeared to be a tumbling satelite, it kept disappearing, & reappearing all across the sky.

Never saw The Great Flydini! that was worth a YouTube lookup! Thanks!

Spitzboov said...

With all the AT SEA stuff, today: GANGPLANK, E-BOAT, etc., I thought I would offer this opinion by a famous British writer, Nicholas Monsarrat (The Cruel Sea):

"Sailors, with their built in sense of order, service and discipline, should really be running the world."

And some groaners:

I changed my iPod name to Titanic. It's syncing now.

I tried to catch some fog. I mist.


Jokes about German sausage are the wurst.

PK said...

Hi Y'all, Great one, Gareth! C.C., your dedication to the blog is truly amazing! You deserve a medal or a mental hug! I'm mind-beaming the latter.

Patience rewarded a tough one with only one error: BIOtE/WHOt. Did a lot of erasures. WEES. Church official: put in FAthER. When I caught the theme, I fixed that. Clever puns! Great links from everyone!

My late husband always said his favorite color was "titty pink".

My mother was bald & wore a wig. She had five babies and several surgeries. With each one, she lost more hair. I quite having babies to stop hair loss. Thins out each fall, like tree leaves, but I don't need a wig.

I saw a fox with mange in my car headlights one night and couldn't figure out what it was. Looked like a big chihuahua: big ears, heart-shaped face, long rat tail. I called my neighbor where I'd seen it and she verified it was a fox. The coyotes also had it and looked like greyhounds without the fur.

PK said...

My daughter teaches history at the college level and to 7 to 14-yr.-olds who are home schooled in private classes. She loves working with home schooled kids who love learning and like her hands-on & act-out-the-story approach. She used Lucina's cake-map idea. Enthusiastic bunch elates her and keeps her stretching for meaningful ideas.

She is very disappointed that her college level students are very blaise about any hands-on, acting approaches. They don't want to know any more history than what is going to be on the tests. They don't want to understand the trends or philosophies--just pass the course. Too bad.

Tinbeni said...

Misty @11:36
I enjoyed your comment about OED announcing (and discouraging) the use of WHOM.

Now I can't wait to read: "For WHO the Bell Tolls."
(Wonder if its Horton. I understand he has excellent hearing ...)

Cheers !

Mari said...

Lemonade # 11:43 am: OUCH! I can't even imagine the pain you must have felt.

DH says when he was a kid he broke his ankle playing football, and kept on playing. I kind of doubt this one! The only things I've ever broken were both my pinkie toes, and I could hardly walk - let alone play football!

Mari said...

CED @ 2:10 pm: LOVE the coots!

Lemonade714 said...


It is not uncommon for football players to continue with broken bones, the most famous example being Jack Youngblood a Florida young man who played at UF and for the Rams.

Bill G. said...

CED, I LOVED your cats video!

Our house cleaner, Clara, is here today. She is from Guatemala and, like Lucina, makes tamales for Christmas. She brought us two today. Delicious! It turns out she also makes pupusas, a Salvadoran dish. She promised to bring some of those next time.

Time for a short bike ride in just beautiful weather, about 65 degrees, sunny with a slight breeze. Then a macchiato. This retired life is tough but somebody has to do it.

Lucina said...

I think the cake-map idea is JD's but thanks for the credit.

Thank you. Yes, I am planning to visit the Bay area to see friends and am really hoping that includes the CA coven. Probably in summer or late spring.

Funny links.

Love your corny puns.

I, too, am lamenting the displacement of WHOM.

LOL at Horton reference.

PK said...

JD: sorry to have miss-credited your great cake-map idea to Lucina. Thanks, my daughter's kids loved it.

As for playing football on broken bones, don't you think anyone who plays such a rough and slam-into sports has to have a feel-no-pain threshold in the first place to be attracted to the sport? I've fallen twice and was laid up for months. I watch NBA players and marvel when they fall hard half a dozen times, moan a little, then jump back and play harder than I ever could. Maybe competitive adrenalin deadens all pain.

Avg Joe said...

Shock is also a very effective analgesic. But I'm not sure I'd recommend it.

Seldom Seen said...

Good detective work on the sign lemon. I wondered if anyone would notice the url of my link: MN prairie roots. I just never realized how many states have a city named Canton until I checked wiki.

Jayce said...

Hello everybody. Nifty puzzle today, Gareth, thank you. Always fun to read your comments, C.C. Thank you.

Once I figured out the added TON at least I could pencil in the last 3 letters of the remaining theme answers with a fair degree of confidence, which helped a lot.

I believe some baldness is called male pattern baldness, which implies it's inherited, as several of you have said. Testosterone is also a cause. I "read somewhere" that the balder a man is, the more testosterone he has in his body. This does not mean that a man with lush hair on his head is deficient in testosterone, just that he doesn't have an excess of it.

Best wishes to you all.

PK said...

One of my sisters-in-law was raised in the small town of Canton, KS. Their one claim to fame at the time she married my brother was two old-fashioned water towers. One had the word "HOT" painted on it, the other read "COLD". True story. I was back there when her father died 35 years later, but can't remember if the "hot-cold" are still there. SIL inherited the great sense of humor apparent in the place.

Lemonade, Do Charlotte's blue eyes look like the blue that turns into brown-black like her mother's dark eyes? My brown-eyed kids started out with that dark blue. She's sure a cutie!

PK said...

Some Tom Swifties to go with the ASEA sub-theme:

Pass me the shellfish, he said crabbily.

Hurry to the back of the ship, he said sternly.

Don't let me drown in Egypt, he pleaded, deep in denial.

Bill G. said...

Regarding Tom Swifties, here are some more. Please forgive me if I posted these before. My CRS is acting up.

Here are some quotations where you have to supply the clever and whimsically appropriate adverb. The first letter of the desired response is given.

1) "I'll need a sharper pencil to solve this puzzle," Tom said p__. (pointedly)
2) “Your gift is ready,” Tom said p__.
3) “Who put Tobasco sauce on my eggs?” Tom asked h__.
4) “I’m breaking out in hives!” Tom cried r__.
5) “Get to the back of the boat,” Tom ordered s__.
6) “Do you want heads or tails?” Tom asked f__.
7) “We can’t wait until Dad gets out of the hospital,” Tom declared i__.
8) “I just ate six cans of pineapple,” Tom complained d__.

Bill G. said...

Part 2

9) “I-guess-I’ll-fix-my-car,” Tom said m__.
10) “You can lead the before-dinner prayer,” Tom said g__.
11) Elliott likes clever and confusing British crossword puzzles,” Tom remarked c__.
(I invented this last one myself in 1962.)
12) “Oops, I dropped my toothpaste on the floor,” Tom said c__.

JD said...

omigosh... it is after 6 and I have not yet finished the CW, nor read the to gangplankton and howled. Hard to share that humor with small fries. Truman is astute enough to know how "Words with Friends" works. Without me knowing, he spelled out and sent CAT on one of my games. I was puzzled at 1st til I saw that guilty little smile.
Will complete and tune in later.

CanadianEh! said...

Finished this one but it took a while! Loved the "Go bald" and cloverleaf clue. Thought "whom" was pretty obscure. Was in Switzerland a few years ago but not for Octoberfest! - beautiful country.

Qli said...

WEES about this great puzzle and explanation. C.C., you must be part Energizer Bunny! You've been doing a lot of good quality work in the crossword world this week.
Got stumped in the middle with UBOAT, no idea of what a rail family bird could be (pet for a family of hobos?), and had FRO for tight do. Gave up and went to the Y, and when I got home, I finished the puzzle with no lookups. Must have been the extra blood flowing to my brain. COOT came with perps, but I had to google it to see why it was a rail. DIdn't know that today is Spaghetti day. Darn, we had chili for supper. Or dinner, if you are on the east coast.

The CATs were a hoot! Unlocked was my favorite clue. My husband must have quite a bit of testosterone. which explains a lot. Not that I am complaining.

Congrats to Lucina! Lucky duck! (which is not a COOT, right?) Charlotte is a doll, and growing fast.

Good night, everyone.

JD said...

Hi C.C. and friends,

Worked until I dead ended at the SW corner and drinking a toast to Gareth, I flikked my Bic.DNF.:-( Enjoyed it, but wish I had been able to work on it with some focus, although Truman did love my rendition of "Brusha-brusha-brusha" and told me that he has an Elena in his kindergarten. Yes, I do my puzzles aloud.

Lots of names, so lots of WAGS.CA would have liked seeing Ethan.

a-ha moment: mite. I thought it was flea!

Fav clue: cloverleaf components

Biome- CA 6th gr. Sci. curriculum.

Now I can read what you all thought.Have a great weekend.

JD said...

Pk, no worries... I'm sure Lucina had many projects that help the students not only remember, but enjoy the curriculum.

Kazie, so many of the enjoyable exploratory classes have been eliminated to improve the scores on math tests. I was able to teach art for one period to my class , if they didn't sign up for band, but now it is more work.I have made up some fun art lessons for the teachers to use in these extra math classes.

Lucina,our classes were most always over 30, with 7 of the students having special aide unless a student was severely disabled.The autism population is growing quickly, as is ADD,ADHD.
Glad to hear you are coming our way.

TTP, enjoyed Digital Aristotle ..lots of good ideas there.

CED, great video!

Lemonade, Charlotte is a doll..oh, they grow so fast.Enjoy each moment.

CC, always a smile when you blog for us.

Lemonade714 said...

we will have to see what happens to Charlotte as I too have brown eyes but both of my sons have blue which stayed. I have mentioned before, I was shocked when I underwent my first corneal transplant to see my eye blue like a baby.

Speaking of blue, on my evening walk I pass by a Starbuck' s with an out door cafe. Sitting there was a man in a blue football jersey with with yellow piping and the number 85.

It was a Jack Youngblood jersey. He retired more than 20 years ago and on the day I mention him at the Corner, he appears on my walk. Coincidence?

JD said...

Things like that are spooky. The day Sal Mineo was on the CW, I mentioned that my late sister was in a movie with him. That day was her birthday.

Misty said...

Tinbeni, many thanks for your literary support of WHOM ("For WHO the Bell Tolls"). Whatever one thinks of Hemingway, the dude had his grammar right! Hope you made a delightful toast to Papa at sunset!

downtonabbey said...

CC thank you for blogging the puzzle. I am sooo late to the corner tonight.

Gareth thanks for the puzzle, but you did me in with this one. I have noticed that I have trouble with this sort of theme. I knew kmart, and lots of other answers but couldn't quite finish it without checking on some of the names. Didn't know FREEH. I had WHIRL for 49D which did not help me. I managed to do the top 2/3 of the puzzle which felt like an accomplishment.

Enjoyed all the links today. Lemon your grandaughter just gets cuter!

downtonabbey said...

I am not surprised as the demise of whom. My father was and English teacher.

You rarely hear it used anymore. I wonder what Hemmingway would have named that book if written today? Who Dissed Ya?

Anonymous said...

To All, a happy, healthy & safe 2013!

Have stalked around here for awhile, I enjoy the puzzles and blogs so much! Actually posted once before, but duh, I'm not really expert at this stuff, just a tyro, at best.

Still don't know what "ipana" is; got K-Mart, unfortunately - never shop there. It's a shame "whom" is gone from the OED. Always made it a point to use it after prepositions.

Loved gangplankton and the fairersexton. My paper only gives the "clue" to the puzzle on Sunday, so I'm always clueless until I can figure it out myself. Makes it a little more challenging.

Dislike elhi very much, coming from a family of educators, never heard of that term. It's either elementary, middle, or high school.

Great puzzle!


Argyle said...

Don't know Ipana? We can fix that forthwith. Link.

Sorry I had to be the one to infect your ears with the Ipana jingle.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Argyle, very much for the Bucky Beaver Ipana commercial. It really wasn't that annoying, kind of cute, and now I know what Ipana is! Thanks.

Argyle said...

You're welcome.