Feb 19, 2013

Tuesday, February 19, 2013 C.C. Burnikel

Theme: AMBER Alert - There are four tots lost amidst the odd-numbered theme entries. Your job is to find them.

17A. Reached an agreement : CAME TO TERMS. Every TOT is in the very middle of each theme entry.

23A. Thoroughly evil : ROTTEN TO THE CORE

34A. Very eager : HOT TO TROT

50A. "My pleasure!" : "NO NEED TO THANK ME!"

57. Sibling who stereotypically feels left out, and a hint to the little one hiding in 17-, 23-, 34- and 50-Across : MIDDLE CHILD

Argyle over here, I'm here! C.C. didn't give me an inkling she had a puzzle today. And a fine puzzle it is. Two grid spanners, seven letter climbers in the corners, and a minimum of dreck. (Lois didn't make the orgy yesterday but today's offering may draw her out.)
"AMBER Alert", Wiki, is a child abduction alert bulletin in several countries throughout the world. It also is used for missing persons, in some cases.


1. Edged out : BEAT

5. Haka dancers of New Zealand : MAORI

10. NetZero, for one : ISP. (Internet Service Provider)

13. South American chain : ANDES

15. 36-year Senator Hatch of Utah : ORRIN. (age 78)

16. Neither partner : NOR

19. Civil War nickname : ABE

20. Bordeaux buddy : AMI

21. Mothers on a farm : EWEs

22. "I'd like to say something" : "AHEM ..."

28. Laundromat lineup : DRIERS

29. Snug as a bug in a rug : NESTLED

30. Followers: Suf. : ISTs

31. Doesn't enunciate : SLURS

33. Magazine VIPs : EDs. (editor)

38. Atty.'s group : ABA. (American Bar Association)

41. Naval slammers : BRIGS. Somehow, I thought it was a drink at first.

42. Peril : RISK

46. Rainy season : MONSOON

48. Family support group for some rehab patients : AL-ANON

53. Squeezes (out) : EKES

54. "__ Yankees" : DAMN. "Damn Yankees" ran for 1,019 performances in its original 1955 Broadway production.

55. California ball club, in sports crawl lines : LAA. (Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim)

56. Census datum : SEX

61. Having four sharps, in music : IN 'E'

62. Bit of broccoli : STALK

63. Singer Tennessee __ Ford : ERNIE. A song for you old farmers out there.

64. Do simple math : ADD

65. Hal Prince's record 21 : TONYS. Broadway producer, Awards and Nominations

66. Quaint oath : EGAD


1. Rum brand with a cocktail named for it : BACARDI. Made with Bacardi rum, grenadine, and lime juice.

2. Bewitches : ENAMORS

3. "Fess up!" : "ADMIT IT!"

4. Golf bag item : TEE

5. Choral work : MOTET. A polyphonic choral composition used as an anthem in the Roman Catholic service. (IDK, I admit it.)

6. Childish comeback : "ARE SO!"

7. Bruin great Bobby : ORR

8. Part of most eyeglasses : RIM

9. Car owner's pmt. : INS. (insurance) But not every state.

10. Having serious debts : IN A HOLE

11. Got serious : SOBERED

12. Docs-in-training : PRE-MEDS

14. Herd member : STEER

18. Holds : OWNS

22. Make a move : ACT

24. New Ager John : TESH. Here with his wife, Connie Sellecca.

25. Letter-shaped fasteners : T-NUTS

26. Haus husband : HERR

27. Pump name seen in Canada : ESSO. (gas pump)

31. Stretch : STINT

32. Fireplace fuel : LOG

35. Wind in the orchestra : OBOE

36. Walked all over : TROD

37. Air__: Florida-based carrier : TRAN

38. Memory malady : AMNESIA

39. Shelf support : BOOKEND

40. Took over, as territory : ANNEXED

43. Hint : INKLING

44. Horn of Africa country : SOMALIA. Map Looks like a rhino horn.

45. Prepared for baking, as bread dough : KNEADED

47. French possessive : SES. (its, plural)

48. [Sigh!] : "AH, ME!"

49. With 58-Down, judge in '90s news : LANCE. 58-Down. See 49-Down : ITO. Judge presiding at the O. J. Simpson trial.

51. Not in a predictable way : ODDLY

52. Spills the beans : TALKS

57. Rockies hrs. : MST

59. "The __ Patrick Show": sports talk program : DAN. Syndicated radio and television. Plus online and, of course, Twitter.

60. Centuries-long realm dissolved in 1806: Abbr. : HRE. (Holy Roman Empire)


Notes from C.C.:

This is my original submitted grid. Rich thought the cheater square in the lower right (The one above 52 HUE) was unnecessary and re-did the section. See, you can't cheat when there are other options.


Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Another fun puzzle from our fearless leader. Interesting to see the original grid and realize just how much things get changed by the editor (especially that SE corner).

Minor struggles today included not knowing TRAN and being overly confident with SHEEP instead of STEER, but overall it was a very smooth solve today. I didn't get the theme until after I finished and went back to look, but it was nice to see the TOT being consistently split in each answer.


C.C. Burnikel said...

Rich normally asks constructor to re-work the grid if he's unhappy with the fill. This is a rare case he operated on a grid and effectivly proved that cheaters are not needed.

Anonymous said...

I liked the theme answers and enjoyed working the puzzle. Figured out the TOT connection, but thought the revealer a little weak.

You are a prolific puzzle constructor c.c. I'm in awe!

Anonymous said...

Too easy.

Anonymous said...

C.C. loved the puzzle. It just didnt last long enough. Liked EGAD. One of my favs. Good Expo Argyle.

Blue Iris, are you getting snow?

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Argyle and friends. I thought we were about time for another C.C. creation. Fun puzzle, but it sure made me think. A tad harder for me than the usual Tuesday fare.

Like Barry G, I just knew that Sheep were the Herd members, and not the STEER. Most of the letters fit!

I also wanted Age instead of SEX for the Census Datum.

Neither rain NOR sleet nor gloom of night will prevent your mail from being delivered, but come August, Saturdays will prevent delivery.

I wanted Interns for Docs-in-Training, because an Intern will become a doctor, whereas most PRE-MEDS are actually biology or other science majors in college.

Jury duty starts today.

QOD: A dog teaches a boy fidelity, perseverance, and to turn around three times before lying down. ~ Robert Benchley


desper-otto said...

Good morning, crew!

This one turned out to be a quick romp from top to bottom with nothing too obscure. OK, LAA was obscure. Nice job, C.C.

It was good to see the old pea-picker in the puzzle. He does his singing in an Alta Mesa cemetery now.

Was there really a Boeing 717? How did I miss it?

Hahtoolah, jury duty "starts" today? Does Louisiana do it differently than Texas? We have the one-trial/one-day system. You show up, and if you're picked for a panel, you serve for that trial. Otherwise, at the end of the day, your jury duty is complete.

Hahtoolah said...

Desper-Otto: Jury duty is "on call" for the week. If I am called for a panel today and get bumped, than I'm out. If I don't get called for a panel today, then I get to go back again tomorrow.

thehondohurricane said...

Good morning everyone,

Nice Tuesday romp. Thank you CC & Argyle, thanks for the enlightenment, especially pointing out Somalia on the map. I looked all over my globe and never found it.

The North went smoothly, but once I got below the Mason-Dixon line, I needed a lot of perp help. IN E was driving me up a tree until Argyle explained it.

I'm not a bid fan of Country music, but always enjoyed old 'ERN.

41a was fav clue today. I was thinking of a consumer type chain. They must exist in So America.

In Ct., if you are called for jury duty, you have to phone the evening before your service begins, If you are told not to show up the next day, your obligation is complete.


Dudley said...

D - Otto: no cause for alarm. When Boeing bought McDonnel Douglas, the MD-80 Series was still in production. Boeing simply renamed the ship the 717.

Mari said...

Good morning everybody. Nice puzzle today, and great expo.

Nice shout out to us MIDDLE CHILDren. I'm #2 in 3.

Chicago area jury duty sounds similar to those mentioned above. I've been summoned 3x. The first time was an interesting sounding murder trial that I had to get out of as I was unemployed and desparately looking for work with interviews scheduled.

The last two times I spent the day reading all day as I was never empaneled. Not a bad gig if you can get it.

Very cold and super windy today in the Windy City. BRRRRRR!

TTP said...

itratioGood morning all. Thank you CC and thank you Argyle. This one required some thought.

New word for me is motet.

I had aDDLe for 51D and TONeS for 65A for a minute. 48D was oHMy.

I liked the "South American chain" clue. I got Andes, but have been off reading about South American and country specific food chains for awhile.

Hondo, same here with the prior night check in for jury duty, but I have never been excused that way.

I have been called for state Jury Duty 3 times in 25 years here. My buddy has been here 35 years and has never been called.

No federal yet, knock on wood. Of the three times, not picked for a panel once. Of the two times picked for a panel, one was settled before the jury was chosen.

On the last, I was juror # 11. A day and a half to finalize the jurors. There were probably 40 on that panel when jury selection started, and there may have only been 8 left in the panel by the time the 12 jurors and two alternates were selected. The judge had advised beforehand that the trial would likely be a week or two.

Can't believe some of the things people said to not get picked for that jury. Thought the judge was going to throw a contempt charge at a couple of them. This one smug hot shot was confident enough to brag about how he would be discharged during voir dire. The judge displayed great restraint in not charging him with contempt before he was discharged. Too bad the judge wasn't aware of the guy's attitude and contempt for the process. That guy should have been found guilty of contempt. It's exactly what it was.

OK, time for me to get to work. I'm sure that you retirees can recall what it was like...

Have a great day all !

Spitzboov said...

Good morning all.

Belated HBDY to Lois and AWOL.

Mostly easy Tuesday, today. Only unknown was MOTET, but the perps helped nail it pretty well. Cool theme with all the TOTS:-). No lookups needed.

Interesting story from C.C. on deleting the cheater squares. Upper left, no problem; lower right, a whole lot of work. Good puzzle, C.C., and thank you.

Husker Gary said...

Seeing CC’s mastery of American phrases and slang never fails to amaze me! I thought the theme was simply using TO as a preposition or infinitive but as Maxwell Smart would say. Also enjoyed the “inside baseball” on construction.

-Retirement was hard until I CAME TO TERMS with my new life
-After my NASA presentation to 100 kids yesterday, the teacher presented me with a card signed by all the kids and a $25 gift certificate. I, of course, appreciated it but said, “NO NEED TO THANK ME”
-My workout friend is an Incan born in the ANDES and is named Ralph
-My REB was defeated by ABE – again
-Some SLURS are clearly enunciated
-I first thought of two HOT TO TROT NAVALS slamming together. Lois?
-I could have used AL ANON as a child
-Damn Yankees, Hmmm…. Would you sell your soul for a baseball pennant?
-16 year old Emma ordered broccoli STALKS as a side dish Sunday
-The view from the BACARDI is spectacular
-When you’re IN A HOLE, quit digging!
-My 36 year STINT at Fremont Middle School was followed by a 6 year one at Elkhorn Ridge
-AIRTRAN used to offer non-stop flights between Omaha and Orlando. Now others do.
-Omaha ANNEXED Elkhorn, NE (but not the school district) 5 years ago in a bitter fight
-Would I be a pirate in SOMALIA if my family were starving and I had no other prospects?
-Gotta get some gas for the snowblower as 12” of snow is coming Thursday. Love the moisture but…

Tinbeni said...

Argyle: Thank you for another wonderful write-up & links.

Hahtoolah: Hand-up for Interns before PRE-MEDS at 12-D, Doc's-in-training.

Otherwise a smooth solve.
Really liked how TOT was in the MIDDLE of each theme.

If I was SOBERED would that really mean I "Got serious" ... Seriously?
Well not to worry, my broken dial tells me "It's Five O'clock Somewhere" ...
Time for a BACARDI cocktail?

pjmugs said...

Good Morning!

A pretty easy Tuesday, loved the theme but had to figure it out after the puzzle was complete. MOTET was also new to me. A very enjoyable Tuesday morning diversion as I sit here waiting for the snow/sleet and/or rain to start falling, could be all of the above.

In our county, we call the night before to see if our assigned number made the cut for jury duty. If not, then we are done, if so, then we report the next day and are on the hook for one day or one trial. I have been called faithfully every two years since we moved here, DH has yet to get a notice. If I make it to the courtroom for the voir dire, I am always discharged in short order because I have an extensive law enforcement background (as a good guy, not a criminal, lol). I'm always kind of bummed because I would love to sit on a jury just once so I could see the proceedings from another angle.

It is funny to see what folks will come up with to try to get out of jury duty. We had a gentleman in the jury pool once who went on a rant about God, guns and the government which was more than a little unsettling. Our county has some very rural pockets so there's no doubt in my mind he was living in a booby-trapped cabin somewhere in the woods. Not only was he discharged in short order, he was escorted out of the building.

Have a good Tuesday everyone!

Avg Joe said...

Good morning. Another fun puzzle, C.C., and an informative write up Argyle. No major snags, but it required some head scratching and wags.

Like Gary, we're bracing for snow. The weather liars are all over the board with this one, and most aren't even discussing quantity at this point (though some are saying 12-18"). But all are in agreement that it will be a "significant snow event". Glad I got the John Deere in running order. Looks like it will be needed.

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, C.C., for a very good Tuesday puzzle. Enjoyed it. Thank you, Argyle, for the very good review.

Enjoyed the Ernie Ford tune. Never heard that one before. I have always enjoyed his singing, especially "Sixteen Tons."

Well, I started in the South this time and worked North. Just because I did not roll up my sleeves, or button them, and the loose sleeve just rolls up the bottom corner of the paper as I go North to write answers. By the time I got to the North I had fixed my sleeves. It is what it is.

So, I had the theme clue right away with 57A. One of my sisters is a MIDDLE CHILD and that has always been the family joke, about Middle Children missing out on lots of stuff. The big one when we get together is the time the family, all seven of us, were on a car trip and we left the Middle Child sitting at a gas station. Eventually she was missed and we went back. She was pretty much full of candy by the time we got there, compliments of the owner.

The Theme answers came easily as I moved North. All common terms and with a TOT in the middle.

I, as well, was not familiar with MOTET, but MAORI gave it to me.

Interesting note about the original puzzle and the Cheater Squares. Kind of explains further the process. Thank you.

As far as Jury Duty, I have lived in Illinois for 29 years and have never been called. My wife has been called several times. In California, in a few years, I was called twice, but never had to sit on a Jury. Who knows.

Well, yesterday it rained all last evening here and well into the night. This morning it is snowing lightly.

See you tomorrow.



thehondohurricane said...


My description of the jury process in Ct was in effect when I was called.. twice... in the '80's. I don't know if it has changed. I was always disappointed about not being assigned to a panel. I think I'm too old to be considered for duty today.

Mari said...

TTP @ 8:16 am: When I got dismissed from the panel (at DuPage County), my reason wasn't because "I was looking for a job". I came up with something better. It was a long day and we were all tired. When I was dismissed the rest of the panel cheered for me!

Avg Joe said...

I've been summoned for county jury duty twice in the past 4 years. You must be available ("on call") for a period of 2 full weeks, but don't report until instructed to do so. Once you report, if you are impaneled, your duty ends with the completion of the trial. If you are not impaneled, you remain on call. It's not terribly onerous, but it is disruptive to someone who is self-employed......and the pay? $35 a day!

Yellowrocks said...

-Neat puzzle, CC. I liked finding the TOTs in the middle of everything -typical two year olds. Argyle, interesting expo.
-As the second of six, I was, in a sense, a middle child. I never felt left out. We called the three eldest the "big kids" and the three youngest the "little kids."
-I thought of INTERNS first but had enough perps to rule that out immediately.
-I am sure that some of our choir and chorus people have sung a MOTET. I like the way the sounds interweave. Here is a short example.
-We have the “ call the night before” jury system, too. I have had to appear maybe five times. Only once did I get as far as VOIR DIRE. The defense used peremptory challenges to dismiss all professionals. They apparently wanted a blue collar jury. So I have never actually heard a case.

Husker Gary said...

Jury Musings
-Once I showed up at 8 am on the 9th instead of 9 am on the 8th but since no jury was needed on the 8th, I was forgiven
-Another time during voir dire the prosecuting attorney found out I had had considerable experience planting and staking up hundreds of trees. Therefore he dismissed me because his suit was against a family who had a staked up a tree in their yard and his jogging client had left the street run across that yard in the dark, tripped and fell. I heard they settled before trial anyway.
-A lawyer memorized all the names of our jury pool and called us by name during questioning. Impressive or a creepy parlor trick?
-The OJ/ITO jury experience must have been very, uh, trying. Were they guilty of jury nullification? Depends on your perspective. OJ’s true nature did him in anyway.

HeartRx said...

Good morning Argyle, C.C. et al.

Fun puzzle with the perfect reveal for the MIDDLE CHILD in each theme entry. Loved it!

C.C., Rich usually asks me to re-do problem areas, too. Other times, he might suggest some fill for the change. Only a couple of times has he made changes himself, when there were only one or two letters to change. It was very interesting to see the before and after grid. He always makes it work, though, doesn't he?

I was the "baby" of our family, and my older sibs always thought I got away with murder. I think that after 5 children, mother just didn't have the energy to be as strict as she was when the first one was born.

YR, thanks so much for the MOTET link - beautiful!

Have a wonderful day everyone.

AnnieB8491 said...

Good Morning All - Great Tuesday puzzle. Thanks C.C. And thanks to Argyle for your enjoyable comments.
Got all the theme clues but missed the theme entirely. Our MIDDLE CHILD (of 3 boys) was the most energetic and probably gave me most of my gray hairs. Come to think of it my middle sister (there were 5 of us) gave my mother most of HER gray hairs. :)
Had ADMITTO originally, but quickly fixed it with DRIERS.
Had a moment not quite sure how to spell Senator Hatch's first name, but got it with the perps. I was stumped on 5A and 5D. Had all but the M, guessed on that and Ta Da! Not familiar with MOTET, but MAORI came to me from somewhere in the recesses of my brain.

Have a great Tuesday everyone.


Anony Mouse said...

Thank you C.C. for a challenging puzzle, for a Tuesday. Thank you Argyle for an interesting commentary. Funny, I found the 1,2,3, 4 entries the most difficult. Fortunately, the long 'acrosses' were standard, and that gave me a toehold, and made me realize why this was still a Tuesday puzzle.

If, more than 5% of 'premed' majors actually became Doctors, of any type (MD, DO, OD, Ph.D. etc.), they would be cheaper by the dozen, and you could rent the doctors by the hour.

I was once called for jury duty, for a civil case in Federal district court, and when they learned of my qualifications - the plaintiff's lawyers summarily excused / excluded / dismissed me. They were 'counting' on a decision based on emotion, not on cold hard facts and figures. The American justice system has more options than the ways to 'skin a cat'. In Ohio, it used to be that attorneys and medical doctors, were at one time, automatically excluded from jury duty - the former, because they were 'too smart' and the latter because they were .... too stupid ? In my humble opinion, the Lance Ito case was a glaring example of the farce the American justice system has become. This is a personal opinion, no politics.

Have a good day, and best wishes.

LaLaLinda said...

Hi Everyone ~~

Thanks for a very enjoyable puzzle, C.C. I had just a couple of missteps with the fill: Alas before AH ME and Bergs before BRIGS. I will ADMIT IT ~ I didn't really catch the theme before the unifier. I saw the __ TO__ theme answers but never noticed the T following them! I know C.C. always adds an extra layer of fun to her puzzles ~ this one wasn't even challenging but I missed it until seeing 57A.

Thanks for the informative write-up, Argyle - great explanations and pics. I really liked your opening comments re: Amber Alert and the "missing tots" - clever!

~ I correctly filled in DRIERS at 28A and yet I always see ads for washers and 'Dryers.' My "change the Y to I" ... dilemma continues!

~ I almost always think of DAMN Yankees in something other than a musical context.

~ I think this is the second or third time I remembered MOTET after learning it in an earlier puzzle ~ some things do stick!

~ Thoughts to those in the path of the snowstorm ~ our huge snow banks have been shrinking after some days of 40 degree weather.

Enjoy the day!

AnnieB8491 said...

RE Jury Duty - We are sent notifications, given a jury number, then have to call the night before to see if we have to report, if not reporting, have to call the next night to see about the following day, and so on for the week. Unless you are told in the message that your are not needed and excused. I have been called twice. First time, we were all sent home as the case was settled. 2nd time I got as far as the interview, but as my last name was the same as the local Congressman, and they decided to let me go.

Montana said...

I had to work at this puzzle. It was not easy for me, but I completed it. Couldn’t figure out what INE meant but perps were solid. Needed Argyle’s help to see in ‘E’. Cool clue!!

For federal jury duty, we need to call in the morning. I live 4+hours from the city and to be there by 8 am I would need to leave in the dark of night. With lots of elk on the roads, it is wise to add extra time. I was called once, so drove down the day before. Case was settled out of court, so no reimbursement for me. That summons was also the first round of jurists. I heard there are so many drug cases, that persons at the ‘head’ of the list are often called a second time before a year is up. I held my breath, but didn’t have to go again.
My husband was summoned to jury duty 2 years after he passed away. I did fill out the form and send it back. Also had an uncle who died and was summoned 3 years later. The list is based on driver’s licenses, so I imagine theirs had not expired yet.
I have been called to county jury duty as often as 3 consecutive years. Never had to go.

I was called as a witness (now, that is scary!) in a trial when an insurance company sued our school after the middle/high school burned down. The insurance people said teachers have nothing to do with equipment or supplies so have no idea of value. In our school, teachers were given a budget and ordered themselves, so we did. I was one of the first to embrace computers, so had a 34 page inventory of the chemistry department with all the info you could ever want. After a couple questions, the lawyer was done with me! By the way, the school won the lawsuit and we got a new school.

Have one hour to be on the road to Great Falls, where the airport is. Four+ hours on icy and snowpacked roads. Better get going.

Have a great day, everyone,


Anonymous said...

Argyle, Santas come in many shapes and sizes.

One more example Secret Santa

Caution DF. Enjoy.

Anonymous said...


Sfingi said...

Didn't "get," but got INE, SES, TRAN, LAA.

Easy, since I got MIDDLE CHILD first, my husband being 3rd of 5, and a whiner about it.
What I didn't care for was that all 4 TOTs were built on the preposition "TO."

@Montana - I'm often told there's a moose about, but I've never been able to see one. Your elk are handsomer, though.

Was called to jury duty and put on the jury despite my husband being attorney for a co-defendant and my having listened to 50 tapes. I tried to point out their error. They isolated me, and I had to sneak into the DA's office to steal coffee. Finally, they had a private hearing and had to declare a mistrial. Dumb. Oneida CO. NY.

CrossEyedDave said...

I could not get Motet/Orrin, or ists/tesh crossings. I always have trouble with names. Finding the "tots" was a great help & fun in solving the rest of the puzzle though.

Musings: (sorry for stealing that HG)
I guess it can't be called a Motet, but what "do" you call this. (note: if you don't want to hear the whole thing, at least FF to 2:40)

Yesterday I learned how to make Tater TOTS at home, mmmm sweet potato with bacon bits & creamy honey mustard dipping sauce,,, oh yeah!

AND, I read the late night comments last night, but did not know if i should respond to Manacs post with a hahaha, or "we are not amused." But in the end i was left speechless because that guy kinda looks like me!

Here Manac, this link is for you...

PK said...

Hi Y'all, Really liked this puzzle, C.C. with TOT exactly in the middle? Interesting and doable. Thanks for your input and links, Argyle? Maybe Lois had a secret orgy and is too tired to check in.

44D I thought, "Sailing around the horn or bottom tip of Africa (or was that S. America)" you hear of in nautical tales. Somalia was a big surprise.

Didn't know who Hal Prince was. Knew John Tesh, but not who he married. Handsome couple.

Took perps for 1a & d BEAT/BACARDI. Sounds like a cheerleader yell. Well, I guess you'd be of good cheer if you drank the BACARDI! Salut!

I'm without heat at the moment. The gas company is replacing the gas line and meter. Hope they get done today, we have big snow storm predictions for Wed. Nice of them to do it now before I reseed or resod my lawn in April. The back was dug up for a new sewer line last fall. Now the front is dug up.

Knew STEER. For me, sheep is flock. Wonder if our Windhover is lambing yet?

Qli said...

Hi everyone,

Thanks to C.C. for a good puzzle, and a peek into the mechanics of construction and editing. Loved the TEF link, Argyle. He was one in a million.

Totally missed the theme, but did finish, which I haven't done much of lately. I wonder if it's because I've been skipping the little "starter" puzzle in our paper (in the interest of saving time to get other things done), so my brain doesn't get it's stretched enough before I tackle the LA Times puzzle?

Good day to have off. We're in a weather warning again; -50 degree wind chills expected before noon. EGAD!

CanadianEh! said...

Nice Tuesday puzzle and solved itself fairly quickly. Thanks to C.C. for the fun!
My MIDDLE CHILD is in the HORN of AFRICA but thankfully not Somalia!
Some Canadian fill today with ESSO and ORR (Parry Sound, Ontario native).
Hand up for wanting AGE and was also thinking of a consumer chain for 41A.
I was trying to fit EMAJ before INE fell into place.
It has been years since I was called for jury duty. Only had to go for 1 day and was not picked so that was that. Only got paid for mileage.

Qli said...

or should that have been "contructing and editing"? what about "construction and edition"? DAMN!
I know I am far from perfect, but along with LaLaLinda, I think that our national spelling and grammar have been worsening. Now the incorrect versions have become so mainstream that they are "alternative" in some places. It makes me even more impressed with the command of language/slang that C.C. shows.

Misty said...

I always love seeing a C.C. puzzle in the paper, and this one was really sweet with all those little TOTs in the middle of the family of words. I still have a little trouble understanding "cheater" squares, so will go back and study C.C.'s explanation more carefully, after another cup of coffee. And thanks for the always great expo, Argyle.

Almost goofed in two place: first had BERG instead of BRIGS on the assumption that it was ICEBERGS that slammed into ships. And, of course, I had TELLS instead of TALKS at first.

We get ITO a lot in puzzles, but getting LANCE as well was really special, I thought.

And as soon as I saw BACARDI, I thought Tinbeni is going to love this!

Have a great Tuesday, everybody!

Anonymous said...

Hot to Trot
In A Hole
T Nuts

Ah me!

Irish Miss said...

Good morning:

Always happy to CC as the constructor as I know I'm in for a treat and today was no exception. Clever theme and lots of good fill. Thanks, CC, for an enjoyable Tuesday romp, and thanks to Argyle for his usual witty write- up.

Received a disturbing phone call this morning from Masrercard Fraud Unit questioing some activity on my account. Seems that there was a $1.00 charge by Groupon and then and immediate $1.00 credit by Groupon, and then a $59.00 charge by, none of which were made by me.

I asked what triggered the Fraud Unit's involvement as $59.00 is not a huge amount and I was told that the $1.00 transactions were made just to see if the card was active. Then, the $59.00 purchase was made. I have no idea how anyone got my card number. I rarely use my Mastercard because I prefer using my Discover card. Coincidentally, I just received this card about ten days ago because my old one was reaching its expiration date.

Happy Tuesday.

Lucina said...

Hello, friends. Thank you, HERR Argyle. Nice explanations.

Amber Alert? Hmmm. And I thought that was an Arizona thing. It's good to know it extends throughout the country. Those abducted TOTs need rescuing and quickly.

Fun times, C.C., with your puzzle. Again I did it in ink but very slowly and SOBERLY as I had to ensure that the crosses were correct. I hate write overs in ink.

All went well and had to laugh at ROTTEN TO THE CORE. It just seems funny to me. For about the past ten years students from SOMALIA have been moving here. Most are sponsored by church groups. They are lovely, gentle people.

AnnieB8491 described our jury call system. I have been called three times but did not stay beyond the first day. Now having reached the magical age of 75 I am excused for life.

I had a good time with this, again, thank you C.C. and Argyle.

I hope your Tuesday is going well, everyone!

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

Unlike some of you, I found C.C.'s offering to be a bit on the crunchy side for a Tuesday. Also, never would have gotten the theme without the reveal.

My parents had two kids, I had two kids, Gloria had two kids. There are three middles among the grandchildren, though.

Motets sound rather sterile to a modern ear. That music lacks harmonic drive [which was unknown at the time] and dissonance, which is a characteristic of the motet style. Texts were in Latin, on religious themes. Each voice is of equal importance - though not all at the same time. Here's an example by Palestrina, possibly the greatest composer of his time.

Gary - I slid effortlessly [as a trombonist should] into retirement and never looked back.

Cool regards!

Misty said...

Okay, I now get the cheater square thing, and my goodness, it did make a huge change in the SE corner. I can't believe how complex puzzle constructing is. Makes me admire our constructors more than ever!

Lucina said...

Upon further reflection I see that ROTTEN TO THE CORE is not funny at all when one thinks of Hitler, Stalin, Attila the Hun and various other really evil historical figures. Even some medieval popes fit into that scenario. They were not all saints by any measure.

JJM said...

I am married to a "middle child". I heard an adage a long, long, time ago. It's about middle children and it goes like this:


Chickie said...

Hola Everyone, We'll have lots to talk about when the Calif. Coven has lunch today. First, the puzzle C.C. gave us today, the fun parts of the puzzle, and whether or not it was easy or hard! I have a feeling it will have been easy for most of the group.

I started out with the upper half filling in in record time, then I came to the French SES, the Tran airlines, and put in Drat for Egad. I had to work a bit harder to finish up, but finish I did.
A lovely Tuesday journey.

I worked on the puzzle while waiting for my ride to lunch. We're going to meet JillD. today for the first time. We're going to lunch closer to Garlic Gal's home as she travels to have coffee with us, so we decided to give her a little bit of a break today. We'll fill everyone in later on our get together.

Have a lovely day everyone.

Lucina said...

That adage does not hold true in our family. My sister who is the middle child of the seven of us, was always spoiled and pampered. She is now 70 and is the most generous of us all.

Chickie, Jd, Garlic Gal and Jill:
Anyone else? I know you will have a wonderful time chatting. I can almost hear it now. Do fill us in when you return.

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

Congratulations C.C. On yet another publication. Your sample of the earlier submission was certainly interesting. I get the idea that Rich has a sharp eye and takes his job quite seriously!

No speed bumps today, just a clean solve all the way (except for having Ites where Ists needed to be).

My county also has the system of phoning in the night before jury duty. I have appeared a number of times, but sat for a case only once; the lawyers settled the matter during lunch break. The judge soon visited us in the jury room to explain the outcome and to thank us for our time. He was a decent fellow.

My wife landed on Federal Grand Jury service a couple of years ago. This was much worse - a six week commitment at a courthouse much farther away, in an unpopular city, with terrible parking and a long wintry walk to the building. She had to listen to evidence of some of the worst of human misdeeds.

In connection with a house building project, I have a blaster coming over tomorrow. I'm really looking forward to seeing this guy do his thing.

HeartRx said...

Irish Miss, you are so lucky that they caught the fraud immediately. I hope you closed the account?

My bank even goes so far as to put a hold on my card whenever they see a charge from a location that is not "typical" for me. I wonder what kind of computer program they use to make these decisions?

Dudley said...

CED 10:22 - just went back and viewed your musical link. Great Googly Moogly! That guy's good!


windhover said...

Twins born about an hour ago bring the total to 18, around 1/3 of the number expected.
Yesterday afternoon the dozen or so that are already outside with their mothers (they lamb in the barn) were having lamb relays, racing from one corner of the pasture to the other, resting a moment, then racing back. After a few laps, they all find their ewe and nurse, then start another round.
Just one more reason we don't miss TV.

Avg Joe said...

Dudley, I have no idea what you're having blasted, but if it's woodwork and it's a soda blaster, keep a very attentive eye on the process until you see it's going well. I saw a house a couple of years ago where 3 rooms worth of southern yellow pine had been soda blasted. It was so badly chewed up I would have insisted on it being replaced completely. No clue if the blaster was simply incompetent, or if he was using the wrong medium. But the result was really awful.

fermatprime said...

(Note to self: must stop blogging at ridiculous hours!)

Hello at more sane hour today.

Thanks for fun puzzle and expo, CC and Argyle.

Had never hear of air TRAN, DAN Patrick, but easily completed.

Can't wait to see next week's Castle.

Speaking of Castle(s), here is the beautiful Scottish castle from

Love the Palestrina, Jazz! Have played it thrice while reading/writing. Thanks also to YR for MOTET.

Have a fine day, all. [clooose]

Irish Miss said...

HeartRx @ 1:18 - Yes, they closed that account and will be sending me a new card. Apparently, that $1.00 charge and an immediate credit was the tip-off; this must be a pattern they have identified from previous cases.

I still can't figure out how my card number was compromised. I can't even remember the last time I used that card but it was a long, long time ago. Oh well, as you said, I was lucky they caught it quickly, although they said I wouldn't be liable for anything I didn't charge.

Jayce said...

Hello everybody. Fun puzzle today; I liked it. Only noticed the middle TO and didn't spot the TOTs until reading Argyle's writeup. The construction process is interesting.

The only writeover was at AGE, which I changed to SSN when AMNESIA came along, then rechanged to SEX when ANNEXED came along. Smooth going everywhere else. Well, except at DRIERS, where I left one letter blank until ADMIT IT revealed it was an I and not a Y.

Interesting cross of ORR and ORRIN.

Best wishes to you all.

Bill G. said...

I enjoyed the puzzle and the writeup. Thanks. I was flying along in the top two-thirds but slowed down considerably when I got to the southern sections.

Regarding cheater or helper squares; aren't there ones at the very top (between BEAT and MAORI and in the symmetric location in the bottom)? If so, which of the two side-by-side squares is it? Either one could be removed without changing the word count.

A tiny suggestion regarding links. I almost miss some if they are just one word in lower case letters in the middle of a sentence. Those few little blue letters just don't stand out. Better to make them all caps to stand out if they are just one word. Just my two-cents worth.

desper-otto said...

Dudley, thanks for the update on the 717. I do remember the MD-80 series. Not fondly.

Avg Joe, $35 a day? That's wonderful. When I lived in Harris County they paid $6/day and charged about $6.50 for parking. Here in Montgomery County we also have the Call-the-night-before (or go on-line) to see if you need to go. If not, your service is complete.

CED, that street musician was somethin' else!

Last summer we drove to Alexandria, VA to move FIL into a retirement community. MasterCard took that opportunity to put a hold on my credit card. They released the hold after I phoned in, but it's still embarassing to have your card rejected at checkout with a line of people behind you.

Yellowrocks said...

-ROTTEN TO THE CORE reminds me of beautiful looking eggplants I bought last week for eggplant parmigiana. When I sliced them I discovered they were ROTTEN TO THE CORE, all brown with a strange texture. I imagine they were caught in one of those rare southern frosts. I ended up substituting a much simpler meal.
-Jazz, thanks for the Palestrina. I greatly enjoy motets in small doses. A whole evening of them would not be as thrilling.
-Irish Miss, I'm glad they caught your credit card problem quickly.
-FYI, when you take a trip out of the country it is wise to notify your Card Services provider. I always do. I had a friend who did not. Her card was flagged and she couldn't use it for credit or ATM withdrawals in Mexico. The company thought it had been stolen. It is very difficult to be so far from home with no access to cash or credit.

Awol said...

C.C.: Artful construction made more interesting by further clarification of the mechanics of cheater squares. Special thanks for ROTTEN TO THE CORE. Juicy.

Anonymous (10:54) does have a point.

Qli (10:43): Degradation of English usage case in point: "FACTOID" is (in fact) a piece of spurious, unverified or fabricated information, yet it is increasingly misused in today's vernacular to mean a small fact; another thing entirely.

Had the pleasure to serve as foreman on a Melvin Belli case in SF. He was getting a bit dotty by that time and his minions had their hands full trying to keep him reined in.

Lovely Palestrina link. Thanks, Jazz. Took me back to my days in a Madrigal choir. Even downloaded the National Lutheran Choir rendition of Sicut Cervus. They gently capture the grace and delicacy of the lyrics.

Not Miles Davis, to be sure. Another esthetic entirely. BTW, would be interested in your trombonist take on Ryan's new album ("Music is Emotion"). Catharsis
Cheers, [econtyll]

Bill G. said...

Desper-otto, Alexandria, Virginia eh? You were probably about two or three miles from where I grew up. Did you pass through Seven Corners?

My father used to be able to make a glass sing like that by rubbing it. He never tried to make pretty music though.

Senior citizen cheerleader: WHAT DO WE WANT?


Cheerleader: WHEN DO WE WANT IT?


Rain due here tonight. I look forward to it. Snow predicted for the local mountains. High surf predicted tomorrow.

PK said...

BillG: great cheer!

My daughters and I went to see my 13 yr. old granddaughter play Mrs. Beaver in "The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe" at her school. It was pretty good acting but the costumes were lacking. The Lion didn't look at all like a lion.

Afterwards we went for yogurt. My granddaughter and her aunt were talking about an electronics game they both play. I had been talking to my SIL and started listening to their conversation late. I thought my daughter had gone nuts and was "talking in tongues" or something. Or maybe I'd fallen into a strange warped world where I didn't belong. My other daughter saw my horror and laughingly explained. Very strange!

Windhover: your gamboling lambs sound delightful. Thanks for sharing this.

The gas company finished installing the new line and meter and left my yard in remarkably good shape. I went out and expressed appreciation. They seemed surprised.

PK said...

Irish Miss: Sounds pretty scary about your credit card. You said you got a new one recently. Could someone have picked the letter it came with out of the trash? I can't remember whether those have the numbers on them.

I always shred anything with names, addresses, etc. I dumped some junk mail at the post office trash can once which included credit card info and turned around to see a homeless guy going through the trash, sorting out some stuff.

Dennis, You haven't been around in a while. I hope you are out polishing your golf game and haven't had a serious relapse of that nasty flu. I also hope you aren't pouting because I dissed your lack of chest hairs. I really don't think you are lacking in all the things that matter most.

Yellowrocks said...

Those interested in changes in the English language might like to read this article. It also describes how British English and American English developed their differences. I am sure that every generation mourns the changes in the language of their times and considers them ruinous. Later generations consider this new language very proper and, in their turn, mourn the new changes of their times. That is why we no longer speak Elizabethan English. People from that period would be horrified by the "barbarous" language we now consider oh so proper.
Link RUINING THE LANGUAGE I especially liked reading about the English speaker’s distain for the American colonists usage of BLUFF as a noun for cliff. Now the English have adopted that usage, too.
A language that does not change dies.

Manac said...

Afternoon All,
Couple of slowdowns for me today but nothing to get into a snit over.

Double Dag Nabbit Dave! I thought I slipped that one by you last night. To make it up to you I'll link a Cat Pic for you.

And one for Dog Lovers

And lastly Re: Yest. I heard that the Girl scouts have since changed their Marketing Strategy.

Lucina said...

Very interesting to read the article on the evolving English (American?) language.

In what seems eons ago I took a course entitled "History of the English Language." The course traced English to its obscure origins as first a mixture of Celt and Anglo-Saxon. Then in the year we call one that changed the world, 1066, when the Normans conquered England and English merged with 11th century French,and began the gradual evolution of modern English.

Latin as we know coupled itself with regional dialects and became French, Spanish, Italian and Romanian. It's a fascinating evolution which continues today. Thank you for reminding us of that.

Bill G. said...

I see where President Obama has come down on the side of retiring the penny. Good on him, and while he's at it, I would be OK with getting rid of nickels too. When I'm getting change from cash purchases, I put pennies and nickels in a charity box at the supermarket and include them with larger amounts of money in the tip jars at the local coffee shops, etc. The manager at the supermarket, when he's filling in as a checker, always rounds my change up to the next nickel without my asking.

I learned a new word while watching the first season of Downton Abbey. It's TERMAGANT meaning a harsh-tempered or overbearing woman. What's the male equivalent I wonder?

Lucina said...

Oops. I forgot Portuguese.

Irish Miss said...

PK @4:10 - No, there are no numbers on the letter enclosed with the new card. I'm going to check my account to see when and where I used it last; that may supply some clue.

Awol said...

Bill G (4:47): Normal ?

Just kidding. Just kidding.


Chickie said...

Windhover, Your lambing stories are great. I know this is one of your busiest times, but to see them frolic in the pasture when they are so little is a treasure to put into your memory bank.

Our CA Coven lunch was another wonderful get together. Garlic Gal picked the restaurant. Fresh seafood for all of us and of course, non-stop talking. We did talk about the puzzle, about our families, and about recent trips, books we've read, and the school where three of us attended. Six degrees of separation is indeed alive and well.

One of Jill's college professors was a good friend of mine. So it is indeed a small world.

Oh, and Garlic Gal gifted each of us with a beautiful head of garlic, wrapped in a netting and tied with a ribbon.

Dudley said...

Avg. Joe 1:37 -

Never thought of that type of blasting! The guy who is due tomorrow is Ed the Enthusiastic Blaster, making a place for a cellar hole in the notorious red ledge of which my property is made.


Avg Joe said...

Dudley, That sounds like an interesting project. Keep us up to date. Sorry for the brevity of my earlier message, I was going out the door to an appointment, but wanted to pass that warning along. I'm serious...this house I saw looked like the soda blaster had used silica sand on that woodwork...or even metal filings. It had ridges on the annual rings and 1/2" indentations in the spring wood.

DO, I literally LOL'd at your comment about jury pay and parking fees. Sounds like a profit center to me:-). At least they do provide parking in Lancaster Co, but with $35 a day, it's just painful to sit there and watch the clock tick.

The weather liars are tuning the forecast. Looks like 8-13" are likely here. PK, you are in the bullseye!!

TTP said...

Mari @ 9:14, I didn't mean to confuse if I did. I literally meant I had to get to work (today). Not to get out of jury duty.

This was a murder case. When the entire panel was first brought into court and the judge stated it, you could almost sense a collective "oh no."

Even though I was juror # 11, I was the last of the primary 12 that was selected. Then the two alternates.

Will never forget the whole experience.

Hahtoolah said...

Avg Joe: $35 / day? You live in a rich location. Here it is $12 / day and $.12 / mile.

Avg Joe said...

I'm not sure if it matters if it's $35 or $6 or whatever. I'm assuming that the law is uniform that employers have to pay if you are on jury duty, but my employer is a complete a$$hole that doesn't seem to care.

Pat said...

I thought this was harder than usual for a Tuesday, but after I corrected a couple entries it got much easier. Thank you, C.C., for a fun puzzle. Thank you, Argyle, for a great explanation of my mistakes.

As the third of nine children, I don't consider myself a MIDDLE CHILD. That was for the middle three. Now that the older two have passed away I'm the eldest.

Time to go read the comments. Happy Tuesday evening.



Pookie said...

Extremely late.
Thank you and congrats C.C. !
Fun and entertaining puzzle.
Solo effort last few times.
Thanks, YR and CED and Jazz and AWOL for the music links.
AWOL's nephew(?)is a talented trombonist. See he went to Manhattan School as did DH. And studied composition with a great writer.
Here's my music contribution for the day.
Funny cheer, Bill G :-)


Manac said...

Avg Joe, Oh so true regarding the self employed. It took a lot of explaining that it was a financial hardship with three young uns and sole wage earner at the time to be excused. You were usually there for two weeks or more if picked for trial. But that was then and this is now. Don't know all the new rules. All this talk of jury duty is giving me a bad feeling about opening my mailbox now. I can't sit still for ten minutes let alone all day listening to a mouthpiece.

PK said...

AvgJoe: Don't I know it! I have the new gas line and laid in a two-week's supply of food from the grocery store today. I'm as ready for a major storm as I can be.

I saw my male neighbor, who I don't don't know, out chainsawing an old elm that's been age drying for two years. I figure he's taking it in for his fireplace. If my gas furnace won't work because of an electronic pilot light, I'll slide across the street and pound on his door. He's half my age, but he seems like someone who would pity a freezing old lady.

One of my SILs is in the south visiting his very ill
father and is supposed to fly back on Wed. Hope he makes it home before things ice over. His father went into the hospital and had carpal tunnel surgery then got MERSA in the wound after he came home and had to go back to the hospital.

PK said...

Just went back and played the motets, aka music by which to re-read "Pillars of the Earth" by Follett.

Bill G. said...

I assume I can get out of jury duty these days what with old age and various medical complaints. The one time I did serve I found worthwhile and interesting. I got selected foreperson. It was a second-degree murder trial. We finally were almost of a like mind with one holdout. The perp and his girlfriend had been drinking all afternoon. He had held a gun right up to his girlfriend's head and it had gone off and killed her. The holdout kept saying that he would never have meant to kill her because she was his girlfriend. We kept explaining to her that second-degree murder doesn't require premeditation. I asked for the gun to be brought into the jury room. The defence lawyer had said it had a hair trigger and it was all just a bad accident. We played with the gun and found it was hard to fire unless it was cocked. So either he had to pull the trigger hard or he had to cock it first, than hold it against her head, all of which fits with second-degree murder. The holdout finally saw it our way.

I did get paid by our school district. Of course, that means I had to turn over the nine dollars a day either back to the court system or to the school district, I can't remember which. Rats!

Sfingi said...

Bill G
Just got a new laptop.

What kind is it?


pennybank said...

This was a fun puzzle, thank you C.C. and Argyle.
Hmmmm..10D Having Serious Debts: in deep dodo...didn't fit. 42A Peril: in deep dodo....still didn't fit!

So glad our CA Coven had a very fun lunch. I hope someone took pictures??

Manac...great links! I do believe our 'Rocky' has been doing the exact same thing on the sly(not successfully, so far)! The Meth Lab was hilarious!!!

Irish Miss: When we went to use our card at PetSmart, it was denied. We paid cash and went to the car and called the bank. There had been some strange purchases (for us, anyway) and the bank had flagged it and blocked the card until we called. Nope, they weren't ours so we got a new card. It happened one more time after that but I had noticed the charge on the statement. Again, another new card. I believe I had heard that the crooks have a computer program that runs numbers and when it hits a combo that the $1.00 charge works on they go shopping. Don't know if it is true but it sounds like something they would cook up. I black out and shred anything with any hint of our numbers on it.

A restaurant out here caught one of their cashiers keeping numbers from cards and using them. It's everywhere and you just need to keep a close eye on your statements.

Gee, I wonder if getting rid of the penny would give the gas company a reason to increase each gallon by increments of 5 cents (or a dime) every few hours rather than pennies. Of course, it would go down by increments of a nickel(or a dime)....oh, wait a minute...that can't be right.
But having worked in a bank for many years it would have been nice not to have to fool with the dang things!!

Great cheer Bill G!!!
Stay warm folks!!

Bill G. said...

Sfingi, huh?

Cool golf video on Ellen.

Avg Joe said...

Manac, when I was on jury duty, I at least didn't have to warm the bench at the courthouse. During the two duties recently I was only there a total of 4 days. That allowed me time to work, but it made it hard to plan daily activities since I never knew what maƱana might bring. Had it been a lengthy criminal trial, I'd have pled hardship, and think I'd have gotten off. But the strangest part was talking with other jury members that were being paid by employers and that had no clue what I was bitching about. In their world, they were getting a few days off with pay. What's not to like about that?

All told the worst part was simply being on call. For two weeks in both cases I had to plan for the unknown. That's tiresome....and ultimately unprofitable.

PK, we've got a week or two of food on the premises at all times (as I'm sure your used to). We could get bored with the options, but we won't go hungry. Hope you aren't snowed in for too long a period!

Manac said...

Joe and others, One reason that this weekend was busy was that we lost power early Sunday and lasted very late into the night. I'm always prepared for this and was comfy with the generator going and stoves burning. Then My daughter came down and asked if I had any wood for sale.
Her best friend and mother just recently moved up the street from us and it never dawned on me that they were not prepared for a power outage in below 20 temps. So I loaded the truck with wood, kindling, water, flashlights and any thing else I could think of. Her mother was very grateful and then shocked when I wouldn't take any compensation. I told her..That's what neighbors do around here... We look out for each other.

pennybank said...

Winter can be so hard on people but when Mother Nature throws her hardest punches we find some pretty special people peeking out from the 'Corner', making sure all is taken care of!!!!

Bill G. said...

Manac, I would consider myself lucky to have a neighbor like you; and like all of the other CC denizens too...

Blue Iris said...

Anon@7:00AM-No snow yet, but the temp. 23 and dropping and wind chill very uncomfortable.

Happy B-DAY Lois and AWOL!
Happy Anniversary, Gary and Joann!

CED, Monster U. yesterday was a very funny link. You could waste a lot of time there. It does a good job of satirizing college's outreach material.

C.C., I think you have a better command of the English language than many of us born here. Very imaginative. Loved ROTTEN TO THE CORE.

Watched ERNIE on What's My Line on YouTube. That generation was so humble about their celebrity. A very hard quality to find nowadays.

We have no MIDDLE CHILD. Older daughter and then six yrs later twins.

I wish Al ANON was available for my mother 60 yrs ago. She had many difficulties as a child of an alcoholic. We have made some progress even though the underpinnings of mental health care is mostly in shambles.

We am cleaning out our basement to remodel it and leave the 70s behind. My husband brings boxes, etc upstairs for me to go through. Dusty, dusty, dusty.

Dayle ~ A Collection of Days said...

Enjoyed this one.

C.C. Burnikel said...

The other 2 cheaters are needed to produce smooth fill.