Feb 26, 2014

Wednesday, February 26, 2014, Bryan W. Young and Jeff Chen

Theme: TO GRANDMOTHER'S HOUSE WE GO. Not necessarily over the river, but definitely through the woods, where we encounter THE BIG BAD WOLF in hot pursuit of LITTLE RED RIDING HOOD.  Don't be alarmed if you had trouble finding them.  The forest provides lots of hiding places. [Full disclosure: I had to get help from C. C. to spot them.]  

Rich themage, and tight construction, as all of the WOLF's entries are the first words of two word answers (or first part of a compound word), hugging the left margin, and our heroine's entries are the second words of two word answers, hugging the right margin. Note also that from top to bottom, our antagonist's and protagonist's answers alternate. Unusual placement for some theme entries, along with a short letter-count for some of them makes this a bit hard to suss; but high marks for creativity in executing this difficult and original theme. Add in perfect alternating symmetry between the two answer types, and we have a very elegant execution.

16. "Blackadder" network : THE BBC.  British Broadcasting Company

26. Head honcho : BIG CHEESE.   Slang for top dog.

42. Unsavory sort : BAD EGG.  Can one spoil the whole crate?

 53. Borzois, e.g. : WOLFHOUNDS.  Top dog?

20. Impressionist whom Mel Blanc labeled "The Man of a Thousand Voices" : RICH LITTLE.  I found an example that's not political.

 35. Show shame, perhaps : GET RED.  Blushing, when you can't suss the theme.

48. Driving with abandon : JOYRIDING. An automotive pleasure cruise.  Couldn't find an appropriate clip.

63. Prominent Ore. peak : MT. HOOD.  A stratovolcano in the Cascade Volcanic Arc of northern Oregon, formed by a subduction zone on the Pacific coast.  It's last major eruptive period was about 200 years ago. Note abrv. in cl. & ans.

Hi Gang, JzB here. Let's grab our borzoi and see if we can make our way through this forest without getting lost or consumed.  But first, today's theme song.


1. McCarthy's dummy friend : SNERD.  Edgar Bergen's pals Charlie and Mortimer.  Here they are with a LITTLE-free impersonation.

6. Baltic, e.g. : SEA.  Water you talkin' about?

9. Cougar : PUMA.  Mountain lion, not that other kind.

13. Canadian dollar coin nickname : LOONIE.  Named for the loon on the reverse of its dohller coin.


14. "I threw away my golf shoes when I got a hole in one," e.g. : PUN.  Double meaning word play

15. Computer operating system : UNIX.  Apple's OS X  is a variant.

17. Hosp. heart exam : ECG Electro- Cardio Gram

18. Medicinal dose : PILL.  Alternative to a spoonfull.

19. Cutie pie : DOLL.  Like Nancy Wilson.

23. Baltic feeder : ODER.   Does this river smell funny?

25. "... a __ / By any other name ..." : ROSE.  Would still be surrounded by thorns.

30. Tolkien's talking trees : ENTS.  They aren't actually trees. They just look like them.  But not in this forest.

33. Equal: Pref. : ISO.  -bar, -metric, -tonic, -mer, etc.

34. "The Mod Squad" cop : LINC.   He's the man in the middle.

37. Smudge : BLUR.

39. '60s jacket style : NEHRU.

41. UFO-tracking org. : SETISearch for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence

44. Respectful address : MA'AM.

46. From, in some European names : VON.  Like the von Trapp family.

47. Star witnesses? : MAGI.  Clever.  They followed yonder star.

50. Hispaniola, por ejemplo : ISLA.  Spanish island, for example.

52. Poet __ St. Vincent Millay : EDNA.  Famous for her poetry and many love affairs.

57. Gratify : SATE.  Like a basket of goodies, perhaps.

61. Put out : EMIT

62. Low numero : UNO. Also a card game, which could have been cited to avoid the Spanish

 65. Wither in the sun : BAKE.

66. Porter's "__ De-Lovely" : IT'S.  Like this DOLL.

67. B beater : A-MINUS.  Making the grade

68. Raised : BRED.  Like a Borzoi.

69. Look at : EYE.   Ogle the DOLLS.

70. Super Bowl XLVII player : NINER. San Francisco Forty-Niner. They lost to the Baltimore Ravens, 34-31.


1. Area below Greenwich Village : SOHO.  Lower Manhattan area South of Houston St.

2. Sleigh ride song : NOEL. Here we go a-caroling.

3. As a whole : EN BLOC.  I'll bet you have never said this in casual conversation.

4. Kid : RIB. Like an elbow poke there.

5. Making pronouncements : DECREEING.

6. A writer may work on it : SPECSpeculation - writing a piece without a contract, in the hope of selling it.

7. Trick-taking card game : EUCHRE.  Pronounced Yooker.  Popular game in Michigan, Ohio, Illinois and Wisconsin.  People from other parts of the country might never have heard of it.

8. Prefix meaning "English" : ANGLO.

9. Portable shelters : PUP TENTS.  For your young borzoi.

10. Curriculum part : UNIT.

11. Grain grinder : MILL.

12. Rod in a hot rod : AXLE.  Keeps the wheels from falling off.

13. Letters on some Brit. letterheads : LTD. For Private Limited Liability Corporation.  Its shares may not be sold to the public.

21. Dancer Castle : IRENE.  She and her husband Vernon were the best known ballroom dancers of the early 20th century, and appeared in films and musicals.

22. Oracle's opening : I SEE.  Did you see this coming?

24. UPS competitor : DHL.  Shipping, transport, and import-export services company.

26. Lettuce variety : BIBB. A type of head lettuce with a loose arrangement of leaves, known for its sweet flavor and tender texture.

27. Imam's faith : ISLAM.

28. Fondue choice : GOUDA. A Big Cheese!

29. Knucklehead : SCHMO. Typical Yiddish insult beginning with SCH-.  Originally an idiot or cuckold.

31. "Three Coins ..." fountain : TREVI.  In Rome.

32. Resolute about : SET ON.  RED was SET ON getting to Granny's

35. Reserve soldier : GUARDSMAN.  This took a lot of perp help.

36. Minor dent : DING. As in your fender

38. Put a bad present to good use : RE-GIFTED.  If "put to good use" means "got rid of."

40. Like daisies : RAYED.

43. Lillian of the silver screen : GISH.  Her movie career spanned 1912 to 1987.

45. Musical key abbr. : MIN.  Minor.  Here's an example from a major composer. Note the shift into major from 1:43 to 1:57 in this 3 minute clip.

48. Smart-looking : JAUNTY. Sometimes, I'm dumb looking, like when I can't suss the theme.

49. Enter quickly : DASH IN.

51. Character in "Donald's Nephews" (1938 cartoon) : LOUIE.  Along with Huey and Dewey

53. 5'7" Spud who won the 1986 NBA Slam Dunk contest : WEBB.  At 5'7", he's one of the shortest players in NBA history.  His career lasted from 1985 to '98.

54. "Rubáiyát" poet : OMAR. Per Wikipedia, Ghiyāth ad-Dīn Abu'l-Fatḥ ʿUmar ibn Ibrāhīm al-Khayyām Nīshāpūrī was a Persian polymath, philosopher, mathematician, astronomer and poet. He also wrote treatises on mechanics, geography, mineralogy, music, and Islamic theology.  Busy guy.

55. Enjoy : LIKE

56. Bouquet : NOSE. Aroma.

58. Top-of-the-line : A-ONE.  Better than A-minus.

59. Visit with a guide : TOUR.  Like this guided tour through the forest.

60. Money mgrs.? : EDSMoney Magazine Editors.  Sneaky.

64. Texter's "I didn't need to know that!" : TMI.  Too Much Information.

The theme was a tough nut to crack, and the long down fill further complicated the matter.  But still, a well-constructed, fun solve.  Hope you enjoyed it. Jeff Chen, of course, is a wily veteran who showed up in a collaboration when I last blogged two weeks ago. Looks like this might be Bryan Young's first L.A.T. entry.

Cool Regards


Argyle said...

No circles - I like it.

OwenKL said...

THE BIG BAD WOLF, once on a time,
Decided to seek a warmer clime.
He went down to Florida
Where the weather was torrider.
(And a poet could get away with that rhyme!)

LITTLE RED RIDING HOOD followed him South
Wondering if other parts matched eyes, ears, and mouth.
Since she was a stalker
The wolf up and shot her
(It was that hoodie she wore when she went out!)

THE BIG BAD WOLF in due course was acquitted
Though the deed he surely committed.
It was judged was a no-good.
(The NRA paid his lawyer, it's admitted!)

Guns Don't Kill People, Hoods Kill People!

OwenKL said...

Figuring out the theme was harder than anything else in the puzzle today. Other than a few uncertain spellings I had an easy time of it.
One nitpick is linking SETI and UFOs. The search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence is a responsible, legitimate scientific project, looking for life on other planets. MUFON (Mutual UFO Network) and its many siblings are mostly gullible wackos with no serious credentials, and looking for BEMs (Bug-Eyed Monsters) here on Earth.

Anonymous said...

Theme, there IS a theme?


Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Fine puzzle, although I was completely clueless on the theme.

To echo Owen's comments and repeat what I have said before, would somebody who deals with Rich on a regular basis please inform him that SETI has nothing whatsoever to do with UFOs? It's embarrassing to see this clued incorrectly again and again.

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

I'm usually the one who fails to spot the theme in a puzzle, but not this time. I made good and sure to suss it today. I'd say this is one clever and superbly executed collaboration. Nicely done!

Morning, JzB, thanks for Basie today!

HeartRx said...

Good morning Jazzbumpa, C.C. et al.

Fun write-up, Jazzb. You had me chuckling all the way through.

Is this Bryan Young's debut? If so, he could not have a better collaborator than Jeff Chen. The theme was brilliantly executed, and the fill was noticeably lacking in drek! Loved it.

I saw LITTLE and RED and wondered where CHEESE fit in, since I was only looking at the longest answers. Little cheese riding hounds???

Then I spotted RIDING and HOOD, and thought it was strange that they were placed asymmetrically. Hmmm…there must be more to this. I finally saw THE BIG BAD WOLF in the symmetrical entries. AHA!!

Have a happy hump day, everyone.

Martin said...

RICH LITTLE and BIG CHEESE were gimmes. I wasted time thinking up words that meant BIG and LITTLE (HUGE, MASSIVE, LARGE, TINY, SMALL, PUNY) thinking that they would come up in the theme answers.

thehondohurricane said...

Good day everyone,

I got it done, but it was a bear. Many clues/ fills were ???????? to me, such as EUCHER, BIBB, TMI, & Borzois. Then there was TREVI, which I wanted "In the" because I misread the clue.

The theme completely eluded me, but no big surprise there.

Even though 53D WEBB was a gimme for me, I thought it was pretty unfair for the non-sport fans in our corner. It was not a major event in the world of sports.

Had a lot of other possibilities for 61A before EMIT.
Couldn't decide if 62A was UNO, Dos, or Tre.

Favorite was 47A Star witnesses/MAGI.

Happy Hump Day to all & for all you good people in the NE, sounds like we might be in for significant snow next week along with the continuing cold temps. Whoopee dooo.

George Barany said...

Yesterday, Jeff Chen was published in the New York Times, today in the Los Angeles Times. each time in collaboration with a relatively new constructor. Wow! I hope to see Jeff a bit over a week from now at the ACPT in NYC, and (given my own track record with LAT submissions) maybe propose that he take me under his wing!

Shifting gears, it's a real pleasure to share What Do These Great Sluggers Have in Common?, constructed in collaboration with Brent Hartzell. This is my tenth sports-themed puzzle with Brent, and the answer to the title question is not what you think. We hope you like it, and tell your friends about it.

Al Cyone said...

This was almost a TDNF. JOYRIDING came late. I had "_AUNTE" and nothing made sense for the first letter. Then I decided JAUNTE must be some French word I didn't know. Which gave me JOYRIDING and everything else. Everything else, that is, except the "TaDa!". So I was off on a "typo" hunt. Changing SEE to EYE did the trick. Which, of course made sense of JAUNTY. And turned the formal LOUIS into the more familiar LOUIE.

Needless to say, the theme eluded me.


desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Today's theme was lost "honor itch offer lodge dock florist." I couldn't see the forest for the trees.

Why was WEBB, whoever he was, clued as a "Spud?"

I found several ways to go wrong with this one: ENTIRE/EN BLOC, EUCHER/EUCHRE, DART IN/DASH IN. But everything worked out with a little Wite-Out.

Big Easy said...

I never got the theme until I read the blog. Perps and WAGS enabled the solving of this puzzle about LRRH and BBW. 7D EUCHRE was unknown to me. I thought that milk or cheese might prevail after getting GOUDA and BIG CHEESE.

All our office personnel referred to our boss's (and owner) three sons as Huey, Dewy, and LOUIE. The other office people called them Mo, Larry, and Curly. They now own the co. I am glad I quit years ago.

I like the song" Little Red Riding Hood, you sure are lookin' good' by Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs.

thehondohurricane said...


Spud was his nickname. Can't remember if I ever knew his given name or if it is simply to deep down in my memory bank to appear.

Mari said...

Good morning everybody.

I got a DNF on this one, but just barely. I missed ODER/DECREEING because I had SNERT instead of SNERD.

I never heard of WEBB the Spud.

The theme was confusing, but I can see it now.

My favorite clue was 47-A: Star witnesses? MAGI.

Have a great day!

buckeye bob said...

Thank you for a fun puzzle, Bryan and Jeff. Thank you for an entertaining review Jazzbumpa. I enjoyed your witty comments!

This puzzle was about right for Wednesday. I did not see the theme, but didn’t need it to solve the puzzle.

7D EUCHRE was familiar to this Ohioan. Many years ago, we played it at lunch, or on card nights with friends.

53D Spud WEBB was unknown. Still is.

Favorite clue / answers were 47A Star witnesses?: MAGI and 60D Money Mgrs.?: EDS.

I thought 24D UPS competitor: DHL was just a little tricky. I think of FedEx as the UPS competitor, but it didn’t fit, and the 2 out of 3 perps pointed the way.

I agree with OwenKL and Barry that SETI should be clued differently. But hey, it’s just a puzzle.

George Barany said...

Hello again, sports fans. First Olympics, then baseball, and now basketball. Anthony Jerome "Spud" Webb has his own website. Despite being only 5' 7" tall, he actually won a slam dunk contest in 1986. Video links are on the aforementioned website.

By the way, I am not aware of any sports fan who ever knew Webb by anything other than "Spud." Read the first two paragraphs of this for insight as to the origin of the nickname, which is not referring to a potato.

buckeye bob said...

George Barany –

Thank you for the What Do These Great Sluggers Have in Common? puzzle you constructed with Brent Hartzell.

I liked it a lot. I thought there was a lot of fresh cluing.

Any puzzle that is focused on baseball is good, in my opinion. Non-baseball fans might struggle with the names, but the perps will probably get them past that.

I agree, the answer to the title question is not what I thought.

Middletown Bomber said...

Tough puzzle for a Wednesday blew my time limits on this one. Kept think did the LAT people make a mistake by using a themeless puzzle. Fortunately the blog clued me into the theme.

D-O: Anthony Jerome "Spud" Webb was the 3rd shortest person to play Basketball in the NBA at 5'7" tall in 1986 he did the incredible and won the NBA Slam Dunk Contest hope this helps.

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Bryan and Jeff, for an excellent puzzle. Thank you, Jazzbumpa, for the fine review.

This was a slow start for me. NW corner stumped me so I moved way down and started there.

Got OMAR easily, then EMIT, then BAKE, then BRED. At least I was started.

At the top, I eventually got Mortimer SNERD once I had a perp or two.

NE corner was easier. UNIX, PILL, AXLE, MILL, and UNIT came. PUMA arrived. PUP TENTS appeared.

I basically bounced around and filled it all in.

My toughest area was GISH crossing WOLF HOUNDS. I finally got it with a wag.

Never caught the theme until I came to the blog. I should have studied it a little harder. Nevertheless, a great puzzle.

I did yesterday's while eating lunch at my class. Got home last night and took my test, which killed the whole evening. Now I will go to yesterday's blog and check in.

See you tomorrow.


(29 28999422)

Husker Gary said...

-Re: Jazz’s summation of this remarkable Wed. puzzle – What he said.
-A good BIG CHEESE brings out the best in his people
-A melodic 1952 invitation to do some JOY RIDING
-We’ll see MT HOOD this summer in our tour but no LA blog pals live up there
-The LOONS! from a fabulous movie
-Some research seem to concur with Sheldon who says, “Vitamin PILLS just make expensive urine”
-A tax by any other name (revenue enhancement) is a tax is a tax
-Another WEBB, Jack, made a career out of pithy dialogue like, “Just the facts, MAAM”
-My iPhone EMITed an unfortunate ring tone in the middle of church last weekend. Oops.
-I’m not allowed to BAKE any more since I broke Joann’s mixer. Oops.
-A lotta gov’t work is not on SPEC. If they mess up, they just get more money.
-Angle (ANGLO) people conquer and rename the island Angle Land and today, well you know…
-Wordsworth on retribution:
Though the MILLS of God grind slowly;
Yet they grind exceeding small;
Though with patience he stands waiting,
With exactness grinds he all.

-Yeah, I put IN THE for “Three coins…” fountain
-A woman in the lounge Monday gave me TMI about her horrible life but I tried to be empathetic

kazie said...

Felt like a Friday, completely out of my wheelhouse and consequently a DNF. When I got the T for THE BBC I guessed TURNER, and never got more of that corner out. Ditto for the SW. Parts of most theme answers remained blank too, and not having those ruined the rest for me.

Can't help but admire the ingenuity of this though! And that of our intrepid blogger JZB and C.C. for sussing it all out!

Husker Gary said...

Another Oops! The man who wrote of those MILLS of eternal justice was Henry Wadsworth Longfellow not William Wordsworth. Ever make that mistake?

Montana said...

Good morning, everyone.
Can't say its been good, but I still enjoy the crossword each day. Like others, I didn't get today's theme, but solved without it.

My avatar is a picture of my 6' fence that some fellow drove through yesterday. He knocked down part of the west fence, crashed into the north fence, backed across the yard to the south fence and crushed it, then sped out to the street through the rest of the west fence and drove off. Someone saw him and reported. By afternoon, police had caught him. Probably a felony DUI but meanwhile I am left with the mess!

Train derailment 16 miles east of me. Small earthquake this morning in NE Montana. -29 degrees predicted for night temps. Ugh!

I haven't concentrated on puzzles the last few days, but still have relaxed each day for a little while while solving our crossword.

Things can only get better!


LaLaLinda said...

Hi All ~~

As others have said, the puzzle went smoothly but it took me quite some time to sit and analyze the long answers trying to figure out the theme. Well, now I know I shouldn't pay attention to just the long answers!

When I finally saw all the words I needed, I loved the theme ~ so clever! Thanks Jeff and Bryan and thanks JazzB for your always entertaining write-up.

~ I wanted 'Redden' for 35A - Show shame, before GET RED.

~ I, too, wanted the three coins IN A fountain.

~ Favorites: Star witnesses / MAGI and - B Beater / A MINUS.

~ At 25A "A rose... I thought of the Corner sometimes-poster ARBAON.

Enjoy the day!

Montana said...

Sheriff just left. Tire tracks don't make sense. All fence hits were by front end of pickup. There was a witness he is on the way to interview. Guy does have good insurance. Not alcohol-related; probably drugs.

On my way to regular doctor appointment. 190 mile drive.

Thanks, Corner friends, for letting me vent my frustrations!

(I have number Captcha. Things are looking up!)

Hahtoosub said...

QOD: If you have it and you know you have it, then you have it. If you have it and don't know you have it, you don't have it. If you don't have it but you think you have it, then you have it. ~ John Herbert "Jackie" Gleason (Feb. 26, 1916 – Jun. 24, 1987)

Avg Joe said...

This was a challenging but enjoyable solve. Lots of crunch and some thing not often seen, e.g. Sate and Enbloc. (Nope, never used it in conversation. But have used in toto many times.....people always look at you like they don't want to be in a little dog....after all, it's too dark to read in there).

But once complete, I could NOT figure out the theme. Tried the big-little idea. Tried the CH pairing idea. Looked at the downs for any thread. Nope. Gave up after a few minutes and said: "This better be worth it!". It was!! Fantastic theme and exceptional execution. Just too tricky for me to figure out.

On another topic, I guess age changes all perspectives. Peggy Lipton ranks a few hundred mili-helens lower today than in the 60's.

Ha! 2 Lah said...

Her actual QOD:

QOD: Virtue is the fount whence honor springs. ~ Christopher Marlowe (Feb. 26, 1564 ~ May 30, 1593)

Mitt said...

Whenever I see or hear about a LOONIE, I think of this story.

While I found this sneaky act to be harmless, even funny, I shudder to think how the world would react if an ugly American had pulled this stunt in Vancouver. I imagine it would have validated our "despicable reputation", huh Dudley?

Yellowrocks said...

I like the theme and its execution. I picked up on LITTLE RED RIDING HOOD AND BIG BAD WOLF, but didn't notice their placement, an extra layer of cleverness.
Smooth solve, except for a slight hiccup in the NW. ENBLOC took a while and adding THE to BBC seemed odd, but okay.
WEBB was very perpable. George B, interesting story of his name, Spud.
I knew EUCHRE is a card game, but little else about it. EUCHRE is more familiar to me as a verb meaning to cheat or swindle. Many scam artists EUCHRE the elderly out of their bank accounts.
I could never see why Sleigh Ride is a Christmas song. There is not one word about Christmas in the lyrics. It seems to me to be a winter or a snow song.
JzzB, very funny and informative blog. I liked your choice of Edna's poetry. It reflects her life style.
I though of Three Coins IN A at first. On second glace, that reading would have needed a ___ after the clue. We had . . .

Montana, so sorry to hear about your fence. It seems strange he hit three sides of your fance. I hope all things look up for you soon.

Lucina said...

Greetings, Puzzlers all! JazzB, you are numero UNO! Thanks for explaining the theme as I didn't even look for it.

WMS, what Mari said. I confidently printed SNERT and then sashayed right along with the rest then realized TECREEING made no sense. When the caffeine kicked in so did DECREEING.

Not to worry about WEBB. Though I didn't know it, EMIT,BAKE,BRED and WOLF HOUNDS perped it. Didn't know WOLF HOUNDS, either, but it was an easy guess. NINER emerged as well.

Lettuce variety was a toss up between COBB and BIBB but BIG CHEESE decided that outcome.

Loved the same cluing you all did:

I love to go on TOURs.

Have a fantastic Wednesday, everyone!

H. Ford said...

In other words, Jackie, whether you think you can, or think you can't, you're right.

C6D6 Peg said...

I, too, didn't get the theme until I read the blog. Thanks for clearing that up, C.C. and JzB!

Very nice puzzle, and loved the variety in the fill!

JzB - Loved your starting with "Little Red Riding Hood". Loved that version!

Qli said...

Shoulda known it was you doing the blog, JazzB, with all those musical clips! Totally enjoyable! Even though I didn't get the theme till I got here, I had fun with this one, Bryan and Jeff.

ENBLOC was the one that almost got me. Don't know that I've ever heard anyone use it in a sentence.

DH and I used to enjoy watching Spud WEBB run around under those tree-sized teammates of his!

Saw a Borzoi in person this winter. That is one tall hound! Gorgeous breed of dog.

I'm with you, Montana; number captchas are so much easier to read. We will have temps in the below zero range as well in the next few days. Highs for the day below zero...hope my hubby will give me a ride to work so my poor car doesn't have to sit out in that cold during my 12 hour shift this weekend and then not want to start. My sympathy for your fence trouble. Meth makes for really out-of-control criminals; maybe that was it.

Al Cyone said...

Is it me or does the Borzoi in the picture have five legs?

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

Thought this was a tad crunchy in some areas for a Wednesday, but perps guaranteed a solve w/o help. After finishing and a few minutes of staring and perusing some of the long answers, the light bulb came on with the theme!

Congrats, Bryan and Jeff, for a fun challenge and a brilliantly executed puzzle. And, thanks, JazzB, for your witty summary.

As Hondo said, the frigid air is back but I hope he's wrong about more snow coming our way. Then again, March can be a treacherous month, snow-wise.

Have a great day.

Qli said...

Al C, I noticed the five legs too. and two tails. I sure hope there is another dog somewhere in that picture!

Miss Beckley said...

That Borzoi does have five legs! And thanks for the Betty Boop cartoon. I used to watch her on Saturday mornings when I was a kid. Children's programming sure has changed -- I don't think the sexual innuendo would make it today. Not that I noticed it back then. We're hoping for rain here!

CanadianEh! said...

Hard work for a Wednesday but I completed it and then came here to find out there was a theme!

Like Honda Hurricane, I wanted the Trevi clue to be "in the" fountain.

I filled in the S for plural for STAR WITNESSES and then couldn't understand MAGS. Light-bulb moment when perp filled in properly.

Last member of VON Trapp family died a few days ago. She was 99.

Loved CSO of Canadian LOONIE. $2 coin is called TOONIE.
RICH LITTLE was born in Ottawa.

Lemonade714 said...

I think Jeff Chen is on a mission to mentor every person who wants to create a crossword, and he is doing great work.

This was a very intriguing visual theme, and on a Wednesday. The fill was not difficult and if you look really hard for themes, it was there.

It is impressive how much time Spud Webb is getting here, but he was one of the people born to play basketball who just happened to stop growing too soon. As a short person, he and the other short NBAers are quite inspirational in teaching people to believe in themselves, no matter what.

George B. liked the puzzle very much.

Ave. Joe, thanks for reviving our milihelen system. The Loon, in addition to being the Minnesota state bird, is the official bird of the Corner.

Montana, hope it all gets fixed easily though where you live it all sounds deliberate.

HG remind people of your trip and you will unearth some NW Cornerites, as we used to have a few regulars. Are you driving?

Lemonade714 said...

In addition to the second tail, you can see the fourth back leg If you look closely.

CanadianEh! said...

Jan Hudec won bronze in Super-G for Canada in this Olympics after burying loonie in snow at base of ski hill.

Jazzbumpa said...

Al -

I noticed that when I put the picture up. I'm guessing there is a small dog mostly eclipsed by the big one. I hope so, anyway.

All -

This was a fun puzzle to blog. Glad you enjoyed it, despite all the Getting Red.

I wrote a response to Edna's poem, sort of lamenting my Catholic upbringing.

Bright sunshine and 15 degrees today. I am SO ready for Spring.

And baseball.

Shiveringly Cool regards!

Jeff Chen said...

Hi all!

Thanks for the nice words. This one was a very fun co-construction. We tried to fit in GOOD and EVIL in the corners to help as a quasi-revealer, but the fill got too tortured.

Happy humpday to all,

Bill G. said...

I'm writing this after reading JzB's analysis but before reading your comments. I found this harder than expected starting right off in the upper-left with trouble at the intersection of BBC and ENBLOC. Then trouble with BLUR and GOUDA, LINC, GET RED and EDS. But I finally finished, enjoy the process but couldn't suss out the theme. I looked and looked until JzB finally made it clear. I think I wasn't looking at all the right words making up the theme. I'm sure I would have gotten it if they had been marked with circles or stars or ??? I would have liked to have been able to figure it out on my own but I didn't. I wonder who did? I guess I'll find out now...

OK, I see I'm in good company with lots of others who didn't find the theme easily either. It makes me feel a little less incompetent.

Hand up for SETI. I used to have a SETI screensaver that would search through their tons of data to help look for possible signals from alien worlds; nothing to do with UFOs.

CrossEyedDave said...


Euchre, enbloc, jaunty? (I wanted Natty...)

or some reason 38D, "Put a bad present to good use" rubbed me the wrong way. The answer should be "regift." I had to look at it & reread it several times before "regifted" actually makes sense because I realized there is no other way to word the clue...

I did manage to fill in all the blanks after I had to Google Borzois (& several other names.) Who knew it was plural? (I thought it was french.)

Anyway,,, A big "D"id "N"ot "F"ind the theme... (Hmm,, maybe there should have been circles...)

Oh, & I remembered the guys name from the Mod Squad as "Link," which made a "skhmo" out of me for a while.

I had a huge crush on Peggy Lipton way back when. (but what teenage boy didn't...)

Dennis said...

Thought you all might enjoy this: Netflix response to the Amazon drones.

Nicely done little jab.

Anonymous said...

I am SO ready for Thursday.

Misty said...

Fun puzzle--many thanks, Bryan and Jeff--but I could not suss the theme to save my soul. I assumed that LITTLE and BIG went together but there was nothing else that seemed to work with a SIZE theme. Then I thought maybe PUP and HOUNDS meant we had a DOG theme. Nope, that didn't work either. I was going to complain that we should have gotten some clue about the theme in the puzzle, but Jeff's post made me realize that might be harder than I thought. Well, it was all fun anyhow, and never did I appreciate the blog explanations more, Jazz B. Couldn't wait to find out how in the world MONEY MANAGERS could be EDITORS, but you 'splained it!

I was a little ticked off by ENBLOC. Had ENTIRE for the longest time and have never heard of ENBLOC. I guess you learn something new all the time. Learned for the first time why SOHO is called SOHO.

Never heard of a LOONIE. Great pic, JazzB. Alex Trebek has done more than anyone to make us all aware of things Canadian, I think. But even he never mentioned a LOONIE.

Daisies are RAYED? Give me a break.

Since I don't text I'm getting the whole texter's vocabulary from the Corner.

Finally, Husker, thanks for the Longfellow verse.

Have a great Wednesday, everybody!

Tinbeni said...

Jazz: Outstanding write-up & links (they took as long-a-time to enjoy as my solve today).

Well after the V-8 can smack (from figuring out the theme) all I can say ...
This is my FAVORITE PUZZLE of 2014!
WOW! Great job Jeff & Bryan!

And I say that knowing "full-well" there was not a "booze clue/answer" anywhere in sight.
(My "normal" way of "Rating-a-puzzle.")

Since mostly I receive bottles of Dimple Pinch ... they are NEVER, EVER ... REGIFTED!!!


desper-otto said...

Yay! Internet is back up!

Hondo, George and MB, thanx for 'splainin' Spud. Who'da guessed he was named for Sputnik?

BTW, George, I enjoyed your baseball puzzle. Got it all correct, even though I'd only heard of two of the players.

Lemonade714 said...

Jeff Chen, are you involved in some intricate intrigue to take over puzzle construction? Thanks for stopping by.

JzB wonderful forlorn love poem.

Bill G. said...

We had an Old English Sheepdog who would run upstairs, lay her head back and howl like a wolf whenever a fire engine would go by with its siren wailing. Here is a husky doing something similar with a little fellow.
Dog in sync with little kid

Husker Gary said...

Lemon, we are flying into Seattle and home out of San Francisco with a nice Globus Tour down the Pacific Coast in between. My map shows that there doesn’t seem to be any regulars out there in that neck ‘o the woods. I was going to meet JD but she says she will be out of town, or, so she says ;-)!

Ol' Man Keith said...

A tough one for me for this hump day, but completely solved with just a little more patience than usual. My only re-writes were BLUR over BLOT and DHL over DSL.
THE BBC delayed me because of the addition of the article "THE," and REGIFTED fooled me for a while because of the irregularity of the verb "Put" in the clue. (We always need to be mindful of that one.)

I enjoyed JazzBumpa's musical selections very much--the "Lil' Red Riding Hood" number and the Bach! Where else do we get such eclectic but choice pieces?

And a big thank you to Mssrs Young & Chen for the clever theme - well done! And a curtain call to JzB for explaining it. I had no idea even while solving it how smart it all was!

Ol' Man Keith said...

Bill G @ 3:08,
I once owned an Old English Sheepdog too. They are prone to strange habits. Lacking originality, we called him "Beowulf." He was deaf and had to be trained to handsignals. But he was also blind (as most of them are), so it wasn't easy to get his attention for the signals.
Hmm, I see that I have already written about him once before on this blog - in connection with the appearance in a puzzle of the author Alison Lurie.
Here is a re-print from over a year ago:
"Alison Lurie was the author of "Love and Friendship" (1962), a book that was passed from hand to hand when I was teaching then at Williams College. It was a frank expose of genteel corruption and adulterous games at a small elite New England college, curiously like our own. What caught my eye was that one of the book's young couples owned an Old English Sheepdog with the same name as my Old English Sheepdog. Er, uh, no, just a coincidence, I'm sure...."

OwenKL said...

EN BLOC is two words, not one. Jazz & d-o are the only ones who seem to have noticed that.

While trying to figure out the theme, one of the things I considered was that Captain Marvel (now renamed as Shazam) was nicknamed THE BIG RED CHEESE by one of the BAD guys he battled, Dr. Sivana.

JazzB, I really liked your poem! Maybe because I identify with it so well -- I was a prudish youth, and left far too many lips unkissed.

fermatprime said...


Whizzed through this one late last night and did not bother with theme.

Cannot believe that I was faster than Al Cyone.

It's getting colder here--must be 60 degrees. Supposed to rain. Whoopee!


Swamp cat said...

OwenKL, you have made me see Red Ridinghood in a WHOLE new light!!

Magilla Go-Rilla said...

15A: UNIX and OSX are both computer operating systems. OSX is windows based while UNIX is command line based. I wouldn't call one a variant of the other. A variant has to be similar. These two are not similar with respect to the user interface.

Bill G. said...

Grandson Jordan is a BIG fan of games on Grandma's iPhone. Sometimes I get discouraged when I want to teach or show him something and he's impatient wanting to get back to a digital game. But today was a bright spot. Grandma taught him about prime and composite numbers. Then I showed him about inertia. We got a drinking glass, put a playing card on top and a quarter on top of the card. Then we took turns flicking the card away fast while the quarter fell straight down into the glass. He thought it was so cool.

Dudley said...

Holy Cryogens, Batman! It's some kind of cold 'round here. Hovering near zero. This winter has been a bee-otch.

Bill G. said...

The sound of lots of rain on the skylights. A very welcome sound.

Good night.

Maci45 said...

Harder than usual for a Wednesday, I thought. Started it on the Gold Line to Pasadena but didn't get far. Met a friend for coffee and we finished it . Didn't get the theme til I read it here.