Apr 3, 2013

Wednesday, April 3 2013, Erik Agard

theme: POWER TRIP. each theme answer consists of two words, each of which can precede the word POWER.

17A. *Career soldier : MILITARY MAN. Military power / Manpower

24A. *1995 movie flop dubbed "Fishtar" by some critics : WATERWORLD. Water power / World Power

29A. *Much-sought-after celebrity : SUPERSTAR. Superpower / Star power

44A. *Sun emanation responsible for the northern lights : SOLAR WIND. Solar power / Wind power

49A. *Petal pusher? : FLOWER GIRL. Flower power / Girl power

62A. Brangelina, e.g.—or, in a way, each of the answers to starred clues : POWER COUPLE

melissa here. SIX power-packed theme answers, love that. lots of great fill, too - let's power through …


1. Pressured, with "on" : LEANED

7. NASA citrus drink : TANG. engineered to taste like orange.

11. Digital doc format : PDF

14. Cry from an oversleeper : I'M LATE. i saw a white volkswagen rabbit once with the license plate ML8ML8.

15. Smokehouse order : RIBS

16. Meyers of "Kate & Allie" : ARI. vaguely remember that show. would love to see this POWERful-voiced ari clued.

19. Quaint curse : POX. a pox on you!

20. Yellowish green : OLIVE. drab.

21. "Gotcha!" : I SEE

22. Small craft concern : GALE. and 40d. Take a trip by ship : SAIL

she's a good old boat, and she'll stay afloat
through the toughest gale, and keep smiling

23. End of a New Year's song : SYNE. same old lang syne.

26. Word before chi or after mai : TAI. i recommend both.

28. Long tale : SAGA

35. Baker's 13 : DOZEN. from wikipedia: "Bakers who were found to have shortchanged customers could be subject to severe punishment including judicial amputation of a hand. To guard against losing a hand to an axe, a baker would give 13 for the price of 12 in order to be certain of not being known as a cheat."

38. Campfire residue : ASH

39. Beijing-born, say : CHINESE

41. Madhouse : ZOO. like it.

42. Green stuff : MOOLA. 

46. Unveiler's cry : TA DA. or solver's cry.

48. British verb ender : ISE. ex: british english - realise vs. american english - realize.

54. Walrus feature : TUSK

58. Dieter's gain? : LOSS. nice.

59. Singer Erykah : BADU

60. Political channel : C-SPAN

61. Word of repulsion : UGH. because ew.

64. "__ Big to Fail": 2009 account of the financial crisis : TOO

65. Gets to : IRKS

66. Mourn : GRIEVE

67. Clairvoyant's gift : ESP

68. Soft "Yo!" : PSST

69. Beginning bits : INTROS


1. Oscar night rides : LIMOS

2. "Our Town" girl : EMILY. thornton wilder play.

3. Too pooped to pop : ALL IN

4. Unworldliness : NAIVETE. great word.

5. Sermon ending? : ETTE. sermonette. in my experience, these are rare.

6. Deal-busting org. : DEA. drug enforcement agency.

7. Behind-closed-doors event : TRYST

8. 'Til Tuesday lead vocalist Mann : AIMEE

9. Cavs and Mavs : NBA-ERS

10. "The Pyramid" channel : GSN. game show network.

11. 29-Across chasers : PAPARAZZI (29a = super star). just great.

12. Dryly amusing : DROLL

13. Not likely to move : FIXED

18. River valley formation : RIA. new to me. wikipedia: coastal inlet formed by the partial submergence of an unglaciated river valley.

22. Disco adjective : GO-GO. leftover from yesterday?

24. Fingers-crossed thought : WISH

25. Angler's gear : WADERS

27. Place to play "Space Invaders" : ARCADE

29. "Skyfall" director Mendes : SAM. 2012 james bond movie.

30. GI's hangout : USO

31. Image-editing software : PHOTOSHOP

32. "__ a pity" : 'TIS. first part of the title of a john ford play. second half wouldn't pass the breakfast test.

33. Year abroad? : AÑO. spanish year.

34. Fam. reunion attendee : REL. relative.

36. Years and years : EON

37. Bob of hope, maybe : NOD. awesome.

43. Congressional output : LAWS

45. Triathlon attire : WETSUIT

47. Vine yards? : ARBORS

49. Champagne glass : FLUTE

50. Java's coffee cup et al. : LOGOS

51. Stares stupidly : GAWKS

52. Latin clarifier : ID EST. that is.

53. 1921 robot play : R.U.R. crosswordese.

55. Shoe top : UPPER

56. Simultaneous weapons discharge : SALVO. didn't remember this. "the simultaneous release of a rack of bombs from an aircraft."

57. Oft-patched clothing parts : KNEES

60. Trite stuff : CORN. as in corny.

62. Humdinger : PIP

63. Software-driven film effects, for short : CGI. computer generated imagery.


Notes from C.C.:

I just received this email from Norma Rosenfield of Marbles: The Brain Store:

"Marbles: The Brain Store’ will host its fifth annual charity crossword tournament at several U.S. Locations the weekend of April 20-21. Competitors will solve unpublished crossword puzzles provided by Will Shortz. The event will benefit the Brain Research Foundation -

More information and to register:

The L.A. event will be held at the Fashion Square mall location in Sherman Oaks.

INTERESTING SIDE NOTE: One of our L.A.-based judges is David Steinberg, a teen-ager from Palos Verdes, CA. David submitted a crossword puzzle to Will Shortz/NYT when he was 12; Shortz rejected it but told him not to give up. He didn't, and on his 17th try, when he was 14, David got the letter he had been waiting for and a check for $200. His puzzle ran June 16, 2011. Since then, David has had five more puzzles published in the Times.

More on David here:


Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Not much to say about this one. Struggled a bit in places (ALI was a complete unknown, didn't realize there was anything "simultaneous" about a SALVO, had trouble connecting NAIVETE with "unworldliness", was surprised that triathaletes wore WETSUITS instead of regular swimming suits, etc.), but nothing major. Didn't notice the theme until the end, but didn't need it to get the theme answers.


Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, MelissaBee and friends. This was a fun and easy Wednesday puzzle. The first three theme clues were also alliterative, so I expected them all to be. I was also looking for a pangram after quickly uncovering an X and Z, but alas, twas not to be.

Bob of hope = NOD was may favorite clue. It brought a smile to my face.

QOD: Never confuse the size of your paycheck with the size of your talent. ~ Marlon Brando (Apr. 3, 1924 ~ July 1, 2004)


Lemonade714 said...

Happy birthday Marlon. What more can you ask out of Wednesday, 6 theme answers and PAPARAZZI and Melissa's words.

Jane Curtain and Susan St. James have disappeared after years on tv.

Game of Thrones rules.

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Melissa, nice writeup. Thanx for the Gordon Lightfoot. I've always liked his music, especially The Wreck Of The Edmund Fitzgerald.

This was a quick solve, except I initially had GAPES before GAWKS. Didn't last, though.

I hesitated entering SOLAR WIND because, like Hahtoolah, I was expecting every theme answer to be alliterative. Nope. I never did get the theme until Melissa 'splained it.

Diane said...

The theme eluded me as I had "gazes " instead of "gawks" and "sally" instead of "salvo" --wasn't going to happen. I downloaded the app for Erik's puzzle but nothing happens when I click on the number--I'm using my iPad. It sounds intriguing, can anyone help?

Anonymous said...

Didn't understand the Bob of hope: nod -- even though I got the answer through perp.
I'm with Barry about naivete--think of innocence or not sophisticated-- but looked up the definition on Merriam Webster and unworldliness was the second to last synonym. When I hear unworldliness I think X-files/aliens, but I guess the other way to look at it is opposite of worldliness.
overall enjoyed the puzzle

Mari said...

Good morning everybody. Thank you to Melissa and Erik.

SUPER puzzle today. I also with with GAPES over GAWKS. I tried FROZE before FIXED and OCHER over OLIVE. I guess OCHER is more of a yellowish-brown.

I never heard the word PAPARAZZI until Princes Diana died. And then the "PAPARAZZI" were everywhere.

I liked NAIVETE and POX. That's a word we don't hear often. I wish no POX on you! Have a great day.

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

Pretty much WBS - no major stumbling blocks, a few unknowns that got perped into being. Erykah Badu is new to me; come to think of it, all of today's proper nouns were unknown.

Hello MBee, thanks for today's word works!

Cheers all

Sfingi said...

It's Thurs., so expected trouble. It came at North Dakota.

I Googled CAVS and MAVS and could see they were basketball teams, but that didn't help. (Sports; need I say more.)I Googled Pyramid TV show and got CBS and ABC. Never heard of GSN. So, those 2 had to wait.

After all was done, never heard of ARI on that show, CGI, and never noticed Java's logo.

Saw baTShIT before I read the clue for WETSUIT. Clue could have been "guano, for real."

Didn't really understand the theme. How is WATER WORLD a POWER COUPLE. It was a boring movie, which I, unfortunately saw.

Got all the "big" words. PAPARAZZo (singular) was the photographer in the Italian film, La Dolce Vita, a great flick. I guess it means a buzzing insect.

Sfingi said...

P.S. WETSUIT was on yesterday's USA Today puzzle, so I guess copycats aren't always unidirectional.

Montana said...

Nice writeup, Melissa. I missed the theme—needed your explanation.

I thought this puzzle was hard at first, but then when I was done with acrosses, I saw I was only missing 6 words. But, a DNF by the end because I did not know BADU, RUR or IDEST. Perps filled in the rest.

PK from yesterday: There are different whitewater experiences in Montana. I first thought of The Lochsa, where you need to wear a wetsuit and helmet, but the minimum age is 15, so doubt your family is going there.
Some whitewater trips have minimum ages of 5 and 6, and the guidesmen are experienced so the trip is a ‘safe’ one. Also, the ‘best/worst’ of the rapids are in the early spring, so if your family is going after June 15, the trip will be tamer.

Diane, I could not get Erik’s puzzle to work on my iPad. I also had two large blank white spaces in the writeup. I went to my computer and they were YouTube videos. I tried Erik’s puzzle and can’t figure out how to work it there either.

Most of the snow on the prairie around me melted over the weekend. Last day of skiing in mountains near me was Saturday. Saw golfers out in shorts as I drove to my daughter’s home. I still have ice in the shade in front of my own home. Hope it melts today.

Have a good day everyone,

kazie said...

Full of natticks for me. Names were all unknown except Brangelina but that didn't help with GAZES for GAWKS. Never heard of GSN and for some reason PDF didn't occur to me since a doc. is what you change into a PDF. Not the same thing in my mind.

Gotcha doesn't signify I SEE, which, however, could be a response after explanation of the gotcha. I had POO for POX. Pretty much summed it up for me.

Diane said...

Montana I too had the big white spaces....I guess our iPads have limitations, but I downloaded the app that was specifically for the iPad to do Eric's puzzle. Good thing it was free!

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Erik Agard, for a swell Wednesday puzzle. Thank you, Melissa Bee, for a swell review.

Very good puzzle, even though I still do not know what the word "Brangelina" means. I assume it is a name. When I am done I will look it up.

Got through most of this fairly easily. My last to fill in was POWER COUPLE. I had the COUPLE, but had GAPES for 51D and that gave me no perp about POWER. Did not know RUR for sure. I know we have had that before, but it has been a long time. Finally messed around and got it done.

Had MONEY for 42A for a while, then fixed that yo MOOLA.

Never heard of the movie WATER WORLD. Perped and wagged it.

Read the bio on our constructor. Very impressive. Doing a Wednesday puzzle in 2 1/2 minutes is amazing, to say the least. Took me about an hour and a half this morning.

See you tomorrow.



Abejo said...

OK, I just looked it up. Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. Brangelina. I don't get out much.



JD said...

Good morning Melissa, CC et al,

Great to hear Gordon Lightfoot. Reminded me of houseboating on Lake Shasta YEARS ago.

Wed. are always fun, but always a bit sticky in spots.For fingers crossed I first thought of liar, but of course it was wish. Loved paparazzi, altho I don't think super stars would agree.

Didn't see where the theme was going until I came here. Thanks for the write up, Melissa...very interesting about a Baker's Dozen.Ria was new to me too.

CC, always enjoy your interviews with the cruciverbalists.

HeartRx said...

Good morning melissa, C.C. et al.

Interesting interviews and puzzle links - thanks for posting those, C.C. And thanks melissa for linking Ari Hest. I was not familiar with him, but he does have a great voice!

Same stumbles as others with Erykah BADU, Gapes before GAWKS and GSN. But perps held my hand and showed me the way. This theme reminded me of Janice Luttrell and Patty Varol's "Double Feature" puzzle from February 12th. Loved the reveal, but like Hahtoolah, I was expecting them all to be same alliterative entries. SOLAR WIND disavowed me of that notion.

Off to try the video puzzle now. Have a happy hump day everyone!

Husker Gary said...

What an enjoyable puzzle and insightful interview, Erik. BaDu/iDest got me.

-Voyager 1 was launched in 1977 and some scientists think it has finally sailed beyond all SOLAR influence and into interstellar space after 36 years.
-One of literature’s most famous FLOWER GIRLs tried to sell ‘enry ‘iggins some of her wares
-TANG never fooled anybody into thinking that it was freshly squeezed (squozen?)
-I am a lot of things but, unlike the white rabbit, never LATE
-I’ve subbed for classes that were a ZOO before I got there but got it settled down tout de suite
-Rick Gale loves his TA DA moment on American Restoration
-Amen on sermonETTE, I got it after the first 5 minutes, already!
-Sean Penn’s idiot son hurled racial and homophobic slurs at a PAPARAZO last week
-That little girl WISHing looks like me after a putt
-Several ARCADES in town had to shut down due to a few kids’ bad behavior
-Jon Stewart’s hilarious revelation that Kim Jung Un used PHOTOSHOP @ 3:45 to enhance his military
-The SALVO fired at a funeral for a MILITARY MAN can startle people
-Put away your inking pen, Walt, Mickey and the gang are now CGI
-QOD corollary – 60% of pro athletes are dead broke five years after their career is over

HeartRx said...

Erik's video puzzle is a hoot! It's a simple Monday level, but I found myself clicking on all the clues, both across and down, just to watch the silly antics. My favorite clue was 35-Across. Hilarious!

Misty said...

This was certainly no speed run for me, but in the end I got the whole thing--even though I thought Triathlon athletes were runners. Go figure. So, many thanks, Erik, and I enjoyed your interview. Loved the fingers-crossed photo, Melissa.

Very clever puzzle with so many cross-references like BRANGELINA, SUPERSTAR, PAPARAZZI. Abejo, I hate to say it, but you really must subscribe to "People" magazine. That's what we did after we realized were never going to get topical crossword references unless we kept up with the celeb world. We can tell you more about BRANGELINA than you (or we, for that matter) ever wanted to know.

Have a great Wednesday, everybody!

Anonymous said...

GOTCHA=I SEE what you mean=I got your point.

Abejo said...

Thank you, Misty, for the advice. Maybe I will buy one and check it out.



Anonymous said...


Didn't really understand the theme. How is WATER WORLD a POWER COUPLE. It was a boring movie, which I, unfortunately saw.

"Water power" and "world power."

Hope that helps.

melissa bee said...

sfingi: Didn't really understand the theme. How is WATER WORLD a POWER COUPLE.

the theme answers consist of TWO words (thus the couple), each making a phrase when preceding the word POWER.



Misty said...

Abejo, an occasional copy of "People" actually makes a lot more sense than a subscription. It's full of a lot of silly stuff, including a silly crossword puzzle you might want to check out. Have fun!

HeartRx said...

Abejo, if you go get a pedicure, they usually have free copies of "People" magazine to read while you are in the chair, LOL!!!!

Lucina said...

Hello, friends. Thank you, Melissa, for clarifying the theme. Now it makes sense.

And thanks, Erik Agard, for a fun and a bit challenging puzzle. Most of it was fairly easy and a good sashay.

Of course, I didn't know AIMEE Mann but as soon as TRYST emerged so did RIBS and I was off and running to the finish line.

GAWKS also held me up some as I had GAZES then GAPES but when I saw POWER and that brought GAWKS, too.

Loved the cluing, gets to,IRKS

One unchanged G at SOLAR WING kept me from finishing with a flourish.

What a good idea to buy an occasional People magazine to keep us with celebrity news. I sometimes force myself to watch Entertainment Tonight for that reason and I read the celebrity birthday list. Most of the names are unknown to me. I sse, however, that Doris Day turns 91 this month. And happy birthday, Marlon. I miss you.

Have a lovely Wednesday, everyone!

Tinbeni said...

Melissa: Excellent write-up. Great "WISH" photo.

Barry G. said: "ALI was a complete unknown" ... where was ALI in the grid???

ARI Meyers, AIMEE Mann and Erykah BADU were all "perps" and are obscure answers already forgotten.

My Quaint curse was hex before POX.
Thought GI's hangout would be a BAR before USO.
Dieter's gain? for LOSS was today's fave.

Sfingi: It felt like Thursday for me TOO. Alas, it is only Wednesday.

A "toast" to all at Sunset.

Anonymous said...


pas de chat said...

Bob of hope, maybe : NOD. awesome.

I don't GET it.

melissa bee said...

PAS: a bob of your head, same as a nod of your head.

pas de chat said...

Noooo, Melissa!
A nod of your head is an assent,
consent - approval - approbation - agreement - accord.. not HOPE.
I bobbed my head in response to his question.
There was a lot I disliked about this puzzle.
There seem to be a lot of things you can pair up with POWER

airpower brainpower candlepower
counterpower empower
firepower horsepower hydropower
impower manpower multipower
outpower overpower repower
superpower warpower waterpower
willpower womanpower

And "unworldliness" for NAIVETE
doesn't cut it for me.
Meh, for me.

CanadianEh! said...

It took some work to get the TADA today. Theme helped as did the perps for some unknowns.
Loved Bob of hope=NOD.
Hand up for GAPES.
Thanks MelissaBee for the link to the wonderful lesser-known Gordon Lightfoot song. I thought the Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald might have been appropriate also. Now that song (by a Canadian icon) was about a GALE!
I use "ize" endings not the British "ise". Some of us have been Americanized. LOL

melissa bee said...

PAS: haha, can't love 'em all, i guess.

NOD - yes, it's a stretch, but it did say 'maybe.' just fun to pair bob with hope.

there are lots of things that pair with power, but the tricky part is finding a two word phrase that makes sense on it's own, and, each of the words can precede POWER, making two new phrases - so three common phrases for each answer. now find five of them. and fit them in a grid. not so easy.

i have no problem with NAIVETE / unworldliness. seems straightforward to me.

canadianeh, welcome. i grew up on lightfoot, and lived in canada for a short time as a tyke. the wreck is a great tune, but there are so many lesser-known songs that are just as good. the don quixote album is a gem.

Irish Miss said...

Hi Everyone:

Late to the dance due to doctor's appointment and lunch with my sister, Eileen.

Hit a few bumps but perps solved those. Clever theme and some cute cluing. Thanks, Erik, and thanks, MelissaB, for your fine expo.

Another day of bone-chilling winds! I am patiently waiting for Spring to "spring".

Happy Wednesday.

Lemonade714 said...

New employee:

"Boss do you think I can make the presentation to old Fitzroy? Please."

(silently nods).

Nerdy Joe:

"Marvelous Mavis will you go to the prom with me? Will you at least think about it?"



Anonymous said...


cosmopolitan, smart, SOPHISTICATED, WORDLY-WISE

guileless, ingenuous, INNOCENT, NAIVE (or naïve), UNSOPHISTICATED, untutored, unworldly, wide-eyed

PK said...

Hi Y'all, Interesting puzzle, Erik. Didn't quite GET the connection to POWER COUPLE without Melissa's great help though.

This is one puzzle where we got the TADA before finishing.

I'd like to have a dollar for all the KNEES I patched.

Bob of Hope really confused me. I couldn't separate my mind from the name. But I guess if someone asks you to dance and you NOD because you hope it will lead to something better...

I saw WATERWORLD. The best part was the popcorn.

My first curse was "POo on you!" Smallpox is eradicated.

Otherworldliness and NAIVETE describes one of my brothers perfectly. Very smart & successful but lives in Lala Land.

Montana, Thelma & Tinbeni: Thanks for your answers about whitewater rafting. They are going to Big Sky, Montana, but don't know when. The kid can swim, but I wish they'd wait a few years to go--like 20.

Keeping my fingers crossed for Sallie.

Montana said...

PK: Here is a quote from a Big Sky operator that might ease your worries:

I have a family with young children.
Which trips can I take?

Our minimum age for all trips is six years old, however due to water levels this can change. We often have a section of river to float even if another section requires an age limit that doesn't work for you. Typically, If you are visiting in June and have kids less than 14 choose the Upper Whitewater or Scenic Float. Visiting in July with kids 6-10 probably the Upper is best but the Lower may be available. In August kids 6 and older can do all the trips.


Bill G. said...

Good morning. This was not my favorite puzzle but I seldom feel qualified to constructively criticize. The theme didn't do much for me. Not bad but just OK. I was whelmed. It's been covered pretty well by now.

I had a doctor's appt. for a physical today. I'm a reasonably intelligent person, I know my strong dislike of going to the doctor is irrational but it's there nevertheless. It's over.

My hope of an undefeated season for the Dodger's has been unceremoniously dashed. Weak hitting so far just like last year. Oh well...

Yes. Continued good wishes for Sallie.

Dennis said...

Good afternoon, gang - fun puzzle, great write-up. Have to admit, I didn't see the theme until the end.

I had the same problem as several of you with GAPES and not knowing BADU. Didn't know SAM Mendes either. I did get a kick out of 'Behind-closed-door event'.

Melissa Bee, I never equated a bob of the head with a nod of the head. Interesting.

Have a great rest-of-day.

Dennis said...

Forgot to mention - 2 1/2 minutes on a Wednesday puzzle is just sick. I barely get inside 4 minutes on an easy Monday puzzle. Very impressive, Erik.

Hope Sally came out the other side better than ever.

Anonymous said...

I can't solve a puzzle in two and a half minutes, even when every answer is a gimme.

Chickie said...

Hola Everyone, I've been on a roller coaster with company and meetings these past few days. I've done the puzzles, skimmed the blog and tried to keep up.

I found today's puzzle easy in some parts and hard in others. I had a DNF today as I had Gapes crossing Ires, instead of Gawps and Irks. That prevented me from getting PoWer Couple. Nothing would come to mind. I still have a lump on my forehead from the; V-8can thump.

My favorite clue today was "Petal pusher"/Flower Girl. A close second was Dieter's Gain/Loss.

Thanks, Melissa for another stellar writeup. I always enjoy the links you find to go with your comments. The theme eluded me, as well until you explained all.

We so seldom get to the movies, and while on a working vacation we took in "Water World". It was the most miserable movie I've ever seen. Unfortunately we were in a small town and there was only one theater and one movie to see. Ugh!

Have a great day everyone.

Avg Joe said...

It's been an interesting range of experiences today:-)

First, a pox on you MB. I've spent a half hour or longer checking out Gordon Lightfoot songs. I agree completely that he had a lot of good material that never really got noticed. Just one I picked up on my side trip was Early Morning Rain. Thanks for the tip on Don Quixote. Even a Shel Silverstein cover on that one.

I never time myself on paper with a #2, but doubt seriously that I can do the easy commuter type "warmup" puzzle our paper offers in 2.5 minutes. 5 to 7 minutes probably is the best time early week...sometimes over an hour on Friday and Saturday. Not interested in a race, the solve is enough of a win without additional performance pressure.

Hope all went well Sallie!

e.a. said...

thanks so much for solving, folks (and for the fantastic writeup, melissa).

Misty said...

My goodness, you're all reminding me about Sallie. Do we have any way of finding out how she's doing? If she had surgery with intestine removed, she'll surely be out of commission for a little while at least. Wish we had asked her to commission someone to check in with us and let us know how she's doing.

Argyle said...

All right, e.a., what were you thinking?

Ree said...

A good puzzle today , not into the power couples , but know that Ari Meyers played Annie on Broadway ! Enjoyed the interview & the clue for over sleepers , that's me , late , but always have the best of intentions!!!

Bill G. said...

I wandered into a little Greek café for lunch on my bike ride. Their homemade Greek special lemon/chicken/rice soup wasn't ready yet. I had a Greek gyro. Good stuff.

PK said...

Montana, thanks for the info on Big Sky raft trips. I'll feel a little bit better about the whole thing. My DIL sponsored a church group of teenagers on a Colorado rafting trip and had a very good time about 14 years ago. She said she couldn't wait for the youngest to get old enough to go and she thinks he is now, so she must have seen the site you quoted. I should have googled.

AvgJoe: thanks for "Early Morning Rain".

melissa bee said...

for those of you still paying attention - i got an email from a crossword corner reader about 32D:

'Tis pity" the letter a intruded.

he's absolutely right - there's no 'a' in the john ford play title. something to file away for next time.

thanks charles.

Lucina said...

I just tried two puzzles by our prodigies, Neville Fogarty and Erik Agard in which they swapped the answers/clues from one to the other. I'm sorry, not fun and not enjoyable. I guess I'm too much of a traditionalist.

Blue Iris said...

Didn't understand theme until I came here.
Little girl with crossed fingers was almost as cute as Lemonade's Charlotte.

Bill G. said...

How do you pronounce 'often' and 'length'? I pronounce the 'g' in length and strength softly while some others say 'strenth.' I don't pronounce the 't' in often at all. You?

downtonabbey said...

Thanks for the writeup Melissa. My 2nd owlet fledged the nest this morning. I have been busy watching ustream live feed of two great horned owlets in Oklahoma City. They are just about to fledge also.

I had gazed before GAWKED. Happened to have gone to a Bonnie Raitt concert in the Woodlands where Ms. BADU opened.

My sweetie and I had our first date going to see WATERWORLD.

Have a good Thursday.

Lucina said...

My pronunciation is the same as yours, no t sound in often and soft g in strength, length, etc.

Another feature I was taught is to pronounce "the" in two ways: say thee in front of a vowel and the in front of a consonant. So, thee apple, thee end, thee onion but the movie, the sound, etc. What about you?

Bill G. said...

Lucina, that sounds OK to me but to be honest, I don't know if I make that distinction or not. I have a feeling that if I'm speaking casually, I probably don't say 'thee' very often.

OK, I just listened to myself talk a little bit and I think I do say it the same way you do but I don't ever remember being taught it as a guideline. I think it must be just a speech pattern I picked up somewhere along the way.

Lucina said...

I believe those nuances of pronunciation were once taught by our very conscientious and well trained teachers, but they gradually fell into disuse. Possibly too much detail.

I also recall being taught the variances of th and wh by blowing into my palm when I said it.

Well, good night. Time for bed. I'll "see" you tomorrow.

Anonymous said...

Call me puzzled as ya'll are way better than I at this for sure. Took parts of two days to finish. Got 'er done and enjoyed it. Stumbled into this "site" and got several grins out of your comment. Will return if I can remember how it happened.