Apr 17, 2014

Thursday, April 17, 2014 Stu Ockman

Theme: Tribute Puzzle

1. 59-Across role in 27-Across : EGON. Spengler.

17. 1978 film co-written by 59-Across : ANIMAL HOUSE.

27. 1984 film co-written and co-starring 59-Across : GHOSTBUSTERS.

44. 1993 film co-written and directed by 59-Across : GROUND HOG DAY.

59. This puzzle's honoree (1944-2014) : HAROLD RAMIS.

67. 59-Across was its original head writer : SCTV. Second City Television.  Breeding ground of many fine comics.

Although he has had several NY Times puzzles, I believe this is the LA Times debut for Stu Ockman. I had no idea who HAROLD RAMIS was, but the movies all filled in easily. Since he just died in February of this year, the tribute seemed appropriate and timely. Let's see what else is in the cards today.


5. Yenta : GOSSIP.

11. Sneaky chuckle : HEH.

14. Fish found in a film : NEMO.

15. Finger-shaped dessert : ECLAIR.

16. __ pro nobis : ORA. "Pray for us," Latin.

19. Ross musical, with "The" : WIZ. Diana Ross.

20. Reached, as goals : MET.

21. Zapped : LASED. I had tased at first.

22. Sly : CAGEY.

24. Server's warning : IT'S HOT. When they bring that sizzling, smoking cast iron pan containing your fajita to the table, do you really need to be told, "Careful, it's hot"???

26. 1997 Home Run Derby winner Martinez : TINO. All perps...

33. "__ la vista, baby!" : HASTA. Arnold Schwarzenegger's classic line in "Terminator 2."

36. Stout sleuth, in more ways than one : WOLFE. Is that a stout beer he's drinking?

37. Drench : SOP.

38. Pacers, e.g. : AMCs. Funny looking cars made from 1975-80.

39. "That's enough!" : CAN IT.

40. "Smiling, petite ball of fire," to Philbin : RIPA. Kelly.

41. Not paleo- : NEO.

42. Arrive : GET IN.

43. Assuages to the max : SATES.

47. Skye slope : BRAE. The Scottish Isle of Skye has BRAEs instead of hills.

48. Medicinal syrup : IPECAC.

52. Pastoral poems : IDYLS.

54. 5th Dimension vocalist Marilyn : McCOO. Her classic "Wedding Bell Blues." 3:01

57. Horseplayer's hangout, for short : OTBOff Track Betting.

58. Turkey : DUD.

62. Funny Philips : EMONo clue.  But on Thursdays, I guess "Expressive rock genre" would be too easy.

63. "Lost" actress de Ravin : EMILIENo clue. I never watched the show.

64. Fade : WILT.

65. GI's address : APOArmy Post Office.

66. Bulletin board admins : SYSOPs. SYStem OPerators.


1. As a friend, to Fifi : EN AMI.

2. "The Balcony" playwright : GENET. Quite a shady character.

3. Neglects to mention : OMITS.

4. 2-Down, par exemple : NOM. French "name."

5. Italian dessert : GELATO. Am I the only person in the world who doesn't like ice cream?

6. Protest singer Phil : OCHS.

7. Gin fizz fruit : SLOE.

8. King Faisal's brother : SAUD.

9. "__ for Innocent": Grafton novel : I IS. I think she is up to "W Is for Wasted."

10. On the nose : PRECISE.

11. "'Sup?" : HOW GOES IT?

12. Scary-sounding lake : ERIE. Eerie.

13. Not clear : HAZY.

18. Don Ho "Yo" : ALOHA.

23. Aardvark snack : ANT.

25. 5'10" and 6'3": Abbr. : HGTS. Heights.

26. Titmouse topper, perhaps : TUFT.

28. Mown strip : SWATH. Will we ever be mowing again? I woke up to snow on the ground yesterday morning!

29. "Pagliacci" clown : TONIO.

30. Showy jewelry : BLING.

31. Clue weapon : ROPE.

32. Cruise ship conveniences : SPAS.

33. Chill out : HANG.

34. AMA member?: Abbr. : AMER.ican Medical Association.

35. "Ruh-roh!" pooch : SCOOBY DOO.

39. Give up : CEDE.

40. Comedic Martha : RAYE.

42. Grinds in anger, maybe : GNASHES.

43. Flavor : SAPOR. Like sweetness or sourness.

45. Modern address : URL.

46. Some are light-emitting : DIODES.

49. "Cathy," for one : COMIC. ACK!

50. Skewed : ATILT.

51. "The Amazing Race" network : CBS TV.

52. Flash, perhaps : IDEA.

53. Get rid of : DUMP.

54. 3-D images : MRIs.Magnetic Resonance Imaging(s).

55. USAF Academy home : COLO.rado.

56. Swindle, in slang : CLIP.

60. March girl : AMY. One of the "Little Women."

61. Baby-viewing responses : AWs. Lemonade's granddaughter induces her share, I'm sure!

That's it from me for now!



Wang said...

Not knowing HAROLD RAMIS will take one point off your cool-o-meter! C'mon, Stripes? Caddyshack? Animal House? Groundhog Day? Ghostbusters!. It's like when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor. Everybody knows it.

What a great tribute!

Thanks Stu Ockman.

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

My first thought upon diving into this one was "Ugh, not another cross-reference puzzle!" Once I figured out it was a tribute to HAROLD RAMIS, however, I stopped minding and settled in to enjoy the ride. After that, it was smooth sailing until I hit the deadly clash of names down in the south. I was able to get HAROLD RAMIS immediately, but almost turfed it completely with MCCOO, EMILIE, COLO and AMY. Even CLIP seemed a bit of a stretch.

Fortunately, I finally figured out MRI which was enough to give me a toehold. And then I pulled MCCOO out of the deep dark recesses of my brain and made a wild guess at EMILIE. COLO is short for Colorado, how droll...

TTP said...

Good morning all !

I solved it. Almost. Did in by the NW, especially with the dual natick of EGON and GENET. And then to have two more frawnch answers in that area with EN AMI and NOM. I had a hard time finding NEMO ! Should have recalled EGON.

I also typed in AHS for baby-viewing responses at 61D so never noticed that I had hILT instead of WILT.

Got GROUNDHOG DAY with the GROU and Y, and was off to the races. HAROLD RAMIS was born here on the North Side. They had extended news stories and coverage on the boob tube when he died, and cited much of his work. Didn't need that TV coverage to get comedies ANIMAL HOUSE, GROUND HOG DAY and GHOSTBUSTERS.

Stu, great tribute puzzle ! Too bad you couldn't work in CADDYSHACK (IMHO the best golf movie ever made). Seriously though, excellent puzzle. Liked many of the clues and answers. Bulletin board administrators SYSOPS was a favorite, and who doesn't like IPECAC ?

Marti, thank you for the excellent write up. Wedding Bell Blues was one of my sister's favorites. It wasn't bad enough that the song was on the radio all the time. No, my sister had to play it as well. It came out a half year or so after she started dating her soon to be husband, Bill.

Shout out to Abejo's home town. I worked for my brother in law (Bill) in that town.

We just had INRUSH in the last week, and now DIODES. Feel like I'm back in school. TIN, thermistors are used to limit the inrush current and protect the rectifiers (diode bridges) in switched mode power supplies. Read more here: Thermistor applications

Time to go put the coffee on. See y'all later.

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Marti and friends. Interesting puzzle. Like Barry G, my first thought was, OH, NO! a cross-reference puzzle! But then all turned out well. Getting HAROLD RAMIS clearly helped me with the other theme clues.

I remembered Pacers were cars, so CARS was my initial answer. The perps slowly lead me to change that answer.

My favorite clue was the (Rex) Stout Sleuth = (Nero) WOLFE.

You are not alone, Marti, I am not a fan of ice cream, either, although when in Rome I ate my share of GELATO.

QOD: The best thing about animals is that they don’t talk much. ~ Thornton Wilder (April 17, 1897 ~ Dec. 7, 1975)

Al Cyone said...

WBS about cross-referencing clues. But I got GHOSTBUSTERS so, like Archimedes, I had a place to stand. In the end I had to totally WAG the "M" in AMCS and AMER (though of course in hindsight it makes perfect sense).

There was a very interesting piece on NPR's "Morning Edition" today on the data that UPS collects on its trucks (i.e. on its drivers). I had hoped I could link to it for Splynter but I can't find it online. Maybe it'll show up later. It mentioned the data center in Paramus, NJ, which is where my father would still be working if he hadn't retired. And if he was still alive. Of course he'd be 100 years old. So it's unlikely on several levels.


Hahtoolah said...

Al Cyone: here is the NPR/UPS link you were looking for.

buckeye bob said...

Thank you for the puzzle, Stu. And thank you for the excellent review, Marti.

I liked this puzzle a lot, although the NW corner did me in. I could not remember EGON, and did not know EN AMI, GENET, or NOM. Puzzled over them a long time and finally had to resort to red letter help.

I had ELMO before NEMO, but no idea why. D’oh!

The tribute to HAROLD RAMIS is timely. I enjoyed Stripes, ANIMAL HOUSE, and GHOSTBUSTERS years ago.

Kevin said...

Ugh, now I know what it is to be slimed. Many missteps, including a initial shot in the dark that the speaker of "Hasta La Vista, Baby!" was our nominal honoree. ALAS, what such mislaid thinking and desires. If I had this day to live over and over again, I would have found a way to include Terminator, Total Recall, and that movie about twins, which might have actually been called Twins. Oh well, there is always tomorrow or just today again.

desper-otto said...

Good morning, I suppose.

OK, I'll admit it right off. DNF. Squares 1 and 2 are both wrong. I went with UN AMI and BENET, so the cross-referenced character role was UBON. Hey, it coulda been!

I did manage to repair PERFECT into PRECISE and DROP into DUMP. But no cigar! Sessed Lah Vye, as they say in Utah. Maybe I'll be smart enough to solve the find-a-word puzzle.

Stillman said...

I propose we link Harold Ramis today.

Some Stripes

More Stripes

Middletown Bomber said...

Nice tribute to Harold Ramis. over all a tough puzzle.

Wang's quote "... its like when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor"
I think that line has made its appearance in several Harold Ramis movies Animal House (by Belushi) and Stripes (by Murray) it is always followed by the straight man's line "leave it he is on a role". Great write up Marti, and a wonderful tribute puzzle Stu. RIP Harold you will be missed.

Clark said...

Harold Ramis on David Letterman when David Letterman wasn't all about David Letterman.

HeartRx said...

Wang, sorry to disappoint, but I am horrible with names. After watching some of the links, I now remember who he is. I just needed a face to jog my memory!

Mari said...

Good morning everybody! I didn't know HAROLD RAMIS worked on ANIMAL HOUSE. I know him best from GHOST BUSTERS.

There were several clues I got solely by PERP: ORA, TINO, RAYE, GENET, EN AMI, and SYS OPS.

I did know EMO Phillips, however. He hails from my home town Downers Grove, IL and I've been known to trick-or-treat at his house in my earlier years. When I see him around town sometimes he is in character, and sometimes he is not. But he is always recognizable.

Have a great day!

Husker Gary said...

eGon/Genet cost me a 100% on this fabulous puzzle. HAROLD definitely was a better writer than actor but his movies gave me lots of enjoyment and can be watched over and over…

-The fill ranged from opera characters to playwrights to schlock TV actors
-Haven’t we all had GROUND HOG DAY moments where we’d like a “do-over”?
-Has anyone had this LASED?
-1960 TV HOME RUN DERBY with incredibly low prize money and production values! (14:55 but you’ll get the idea in the first 4 minutes). CC, it has Harmon Killebrew!
-Oh, Pacers not in the NBA
-25 biggest commercial product DUDS of all time
-Oops, forgot to change AHS to AWS. HILT = fade? Make it two bad cells
-The history of the building of the ERIE Canal shows it was the Manhattan Project of its day
-You can be Precise but not accurate and vice versa
-SUP, Marti? HOW GOES IT on all your repairs?
-Can BLING be disgusting?
-UMAMI and now SAPOR. The learning never ends
-What HAZY song contains the lyric “Look around, leaves are brown, there’s a patch of snow on the ground...”

Husker Gary said...

p.s. CC, did you notice what uniform Harmon is wearing?

MJ said...

Wang, I guess it's time to take my "cool-o-meter" in for repair. Not only did I not know HAROLD RAMIS, but I didn't even know that the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor. How nerdy can I be?

HeartRx said...

HG, I asked our contractor how much he would charge to sheetrock the DR ceiling, do the joints and replace the molding (I supply all the materials.) Ya think $1200 is a little pricey?? Sooooo…DH and I will trot over to the big box store this weekend to rent a drywall hoist, and do it ourselves. Cost of rental: $32.

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Stu Ockman, for a fine puzzle. Thank you, Marti, for a fine review.

Well, finally my IPad worked. We will see if it works again tomorrow.

TTP: Thanks for the shout-out. My home town and home lake are more famous than I thought when I was a youth. Even though there is a lot of history there, Oliver Hazard Perry, et al.

Well, I could not finish this one. The NW corner got me. EGON, ENAMI, and GENET were impossible for me to figure out.

Got all the theme movies, but had a hard time getting HAROLD RAMIS. Did with perps. Of all those movies, GROUND HOG DAY was the only one I have seen, and that was about three months ago at my sister's house in PA. Pretty good movie. I am not a big movie watcher.

The rest of the puzzle was pretty easy. Most everything I knew.

TONIO was unknown. Perped it.

Remembered IPECAC. Never had any, however.

Regarding Ice Cream, I did not like it as a youth. When I became an adult I tried some and now I love it. The seven of us in our family used to go to the Dairy Queen in our 1948 Plymouth and get ice cream cones. I would get only a plain cone. No ice cream.

Anyhow, see you tomorrow.


(306 9385625)

Lemonade714 said...

Just back from my brief trip to Denver (18 degrees and 8 inches of snow)and really enjoyed this tribute to a very skilled comedy writer who caught my attention with SCTV many moons ago. The puzzle was not easy as some of the proper names were obscure by my mental database, but it is Thursday.

marti, fun as always and thanks for the Charlotte shout out. I did get to spend some tine with her yesterday and she is growing and talking.

Husker Gary said...

Musings 2
-OMG, Marti! For $1,200 you could hire Splynter, fly him in, put him up at your rental house and still have change back. Plus I’ll bet he’d be better company. BTW, I hate sheetrock and every drywaller I’ve known has been “a little off center”. What’s in that mud?
-The ubiquitous GELATO in Siena, Italy was €1.00 if you ate it outside and €1.20 if you ate it in the shop.
-HASTA is now part of a phrase for getting rid of someone, “He’s in a “HASTA go” situation!”
-The main use of IPECAC is, uh, very unpalatable. I ain’t linkin’ it!

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

Well, this was a tad chewy for a while, but with perps, wags, and luck, I did finish w/o help. I only know Harold Ramis as the kind doctor in As Good As It Gets.

Thanks, Mr. Ockman, for a fine tribute, and thanks, Marti, for an informative expo. Good luck with the ceiling project.

Sunny but cold on this Holy Thursday. Did any of you have the tradition of visiting all the churches on Holy Thursday years ago? We would walk from one end of the city to the other, stopping in each church along the way to say a prayer and admire the decorative preparations for Easter Sunday.

Have a great day.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Bit of a gristly puzzle today. I wasn't a big fan of RAMIS, but I liked some of his work, especially STRIPES and ANIMAL HOUSE. I had trouble in the center south, but finally sussed SYSOPS. MCCOO and EMILIE were total WAGS but I got lucky. Only white-out needed was that I had 'wane' before WILT. Also was thinking of 'savor' before IPECAC indicated it should be SAPOR.
I didn't care for AMER at 34d.
The puzzle had a lot of varied fill and was a good exercise.

Splynter said...

Hi there~!

Al and Hahtoolah, thanks for the UPS links - I know all about that little black box, and yes, it does keep track of all a driver's moves - and then there's a print out at the end of the week; # of times backing, # of times driving while on the DIAD (the little computer thingy), etc.

Despite the use of the info, and the new "Orion" system, it still boils down to one person who decides who gets to drive, and how much they deliver - and it's ridiculous.

Oh - I loved the puzzle today - Egon was my favorite from Ghostbusters, too bad I WAG-ed wrong in the South with the names and vague clues....


JJM said...

We really miss Harold Ramis here in the North Shore of Chicago. You could always see him out at one of the local restaurants in town. He loved Chicago. Funny, Funny guy, and a great humanitarian as well. He's is sorely missed.

And after a 25 year feud with Bill Murray, the two finally made peace before his death.


Avg Joe said...

Lots to like about this puzzle. Managed to wag my way through most of it despite several unknowns (Amy, Emilie and Tonio) but got completely mired at the starting gate. Went with DO's B is for Benet, and couldn't decide between E and U for the first cell, so it remained blank. I remembered the character, but could not remember the name Egon. So there it was one blank and one error. I'll take it.

Marti, I'd be happy to loan you my drywall hoist at no charge, but I don't $32 from Home Despot sounds like a pretty good deal.

Vidwan827 said...

Thank you Mr. Ockman for a challenging puzzle. Thanks to you I found out about Harold Ramis - a very talented polymath. Also thanks to (Mr.?) Stillman for all the knowledge so I could understand his achievements.

Thank you Marti, for your engaging blog.

Thanks yesterday, to Bill G. for the watermelon math problem - on percentages and Spitzboov for the correct answer - and to Tinbeni for explaining the concept. I had the common erroneous misconception - percentages can be very tricky. I tried the problem on my wife - she had no idea, either.

Thank you Husker Gary for teaching the difference between accurate and precise. I read some more elsewhere, and I am shocked I never knew the difference. So, Accurate is 'statistically averaged - dead on' and Precise is 'closely correct, and reproducible'. But, you have to need BOTH. I faintly remember the need for a premise to be both necessary and sufficient, in calculus.

Have a nice day, all.

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

The EGON - GENET double Natick got me off to a bad start. Who knew there was a Targaryen in GHOST BUSTERS?

Stumbled on SAPOR - IPACAC also.

Yes, Marti, you are the only person who does not like ice cream!

DROP before DUMP. Other problems I've already forgotten.

Fade = HILT? Don't get that at all.

This Thursday, the bear got me.


Cool regards!

Magilla Go-Rilla said...

7D - Sloe is a flavor in the gin itself. Not a fruit added to a Sloe Gin Fizz as I inferred from this deceptive clue. I went with lime.

1A - I've seen Ghostbusters but this name is beyond my recollection. Is it the ghost?

6D - I lived thru the period of protest singers and don't remember Phil Ochs at all. Probably a good thing. I tried to ignore that type of singing. So juvenile.

48A - I don't know about "ipecac".

A definite DNF.

Fiscal Hawk said...

On the matter of a big brother watching the UPS drivers ...

The UPS is a profitable, private company, run efficiently and the drivers have one of the highest wages in the industry. They are always striving to improve their productivity.

The (U.S.) postal service is quasi govt., has a monopoly and runs a 16 Billion dollar deficit - despite increasing postal stamp rates. The mail is generally inefficient, perennially late and their mailman are often sleeping in their vans, in the afternoons, at the back of a strip mall, behind my house - because they are under orders not to return to the office, before 5 p.m.

Tinbeni said...

Stu: Thank You for a wonderful HAROLD RAMIS tribute puzzle.
(Though I will admit to searching for STRIPES, in the grid, along the way).
Liked how COMIC crossed his name AND into SCTV.

This turned into a WAG/Perp fest. Like at the 'G' in Ganet. A total WAG over 'B'.
It wasn't "that the unknowns" needed to be perped ... but if it wasn't for Wild Ass Guesses ...
I would have been in the weeds.

But that "V-8 Can Smack" when I figured out 'March girl' AMY ... actually hurt.

Fave today (of course) was SLOE (Gin fizz fruit) ... go figure. LOL

TTP: Thank you for the INRUSH info. A learning moment I'll forget by Sunset.


Lucina said...

Good day, puzzle solvers! Witty commentary, Marti, thanks.

WEES about referenced puzzles but I liked this one since HAROLD RAMIS was quite likeable and with all the publicity at his death much of the information is still fresh.

I loved GHOSTBUSTERS and GROUNDHOG DAY but it's been a long while since seeing either so EGON escaped me as did GENET and NOM. DNF!

Otherwise, fairly easy, even TINO Martinez for some reason. Puzzles, maybe?

TONIO was a Jeopardy answer not too long ago, EMILIE and SYSOPS pure WAGS but I forgot to finish the P in IPECAC which I have in my cabinet but have never had to use.

This was quite enjoyable thanks to Stu Ockman even though it beat me.

The Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Well, I didn't know that!

Is visiting all the churches an Irish custom?

Have a peaceful Maundy Thursday, everyone!

Misty said...

Our boy doxie, Dusty, woke up squealing in pain this morning, so I never got much of a start on the puzzle. Called the vet and took him in for an 8:30 appointment--acute back pain, as usual. Have to keep him in my study so he won't jump off the sofa, he's miserable, and I can't concentrate on anything. I finally get everything (I think) except the south-middle (didn't know MCCOO or SYSOPS.

I did think the clue for ERIE was funny. And Marti, sweet pic of Charlotte.

Hope you all have a better day than I'm having (well, than Dusty's having).

fermatprime said...


(Am waiting for prospective pool-heater repairers to come so am up early, after only 3.5 hours sleep, or so.)

Thanks for great tribute puzzle, Stu. Swell expo, Marti. Whizzed through this one but got stuck in the EGON and MCCOO spots mentioned. Eventually hammered the whole thing out with no cheats.

Once, log ago, when I returned home from teaching, my 3 kids had eaten green walnut shells (to annoy the babysitter). Their faces were green! After having had many trips to the ER, I decided to use a different approach and gave them all IPECAC. THey were not happy campers. (I left them in the "back forty.")


Pat said...

Marti, thanks for your explanation of the puzzle. Stu Ockman, a great effort. I haven't seen any of the movies and never heard of Harold Ramis, so this is a big DNF. I'll take Thumper's advice today.

Misty, I hope Dusty feels better soon.

Have a wonderful day.


Maverick said...

Tough puzzle for a Thursday. Got it mostly, though, missing on some unfamiliar names, but just 2 letters. BENET seemed like a good guess, which gave me EBON, rather than GENET/EGON. I was "Lost" on de Ravin's name. Perps gave all but the ending. I went with EMILEE/CLEP rather than my alternate EMILIE/CLIP.

C.C. Burnikel said...

MJ & Lucina,
I learned recently that "Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?" was actually written by Harold Ramis himself.

The Senators. Great clip. Never saw it before.

I have no planning to go to the East. Sorry your gathering did not materialize.

Anonymous said...

Why USPS is in debt:
Link USPS debt

Irish Miss said...

Lucina @ 11:48 - I don't know the origin of the church visitations; it was just a customary rite, practiced by many where I live. I suppose it is passé now, like so many rites and rituals from my younger years. Not to mention that most of thoses churches have been closed.

Misty, I do hope Dusty gets better soon.

TinoTechie said...

Husker Gary. It's "A Hazy Shade of Winter" from Simon and Garfunkel Bookends album.
Great puzzle and writeup.

Jayce said...

Hello everybody. Well, the proper names did me in. Some of them I will remember, some not. Kinda weird having CBSTV cross SCTV. Best wishes to you all.

Tinbeni said...

I had the same thought about CBSTV crossing into SCTV ... then I tried to think of words that ended in 'V' and accepted it.

Want to THANK those who 'linked' clips today.
Spent way to much time Laughing-Out-Loud watching them (and the "others" on the side-bar).
Always enjoy a day with that much laughing!

Misty ... maybe Dusty just wants some bacon.
Hope the 'little guy" feels better soon.

Off to the Tampa Bay Rays -v- N.Y.Yankees game.
Big problem ... who to root for. I like them both!

PK said...

Hi Y'all! Interesting puzzle! Never remember hearing the name HAROLD RAMIS. My youngest kid brought home videos of GHOST BUSTERS & GROUNDHOG DAY multiple times so those got me started. I thought Bill Murray wrote them. I wondered when he had died.

This turned out to fill easier than expected when I didn't know any of the names except RIPA & NEMO. ENAMI was a lucky WAG.

IPECAC: Many years ago, I found my 3-yr-old trying to spit stuff out while holding a can marked "rat poison" with gray stuff all around his mouth. He'd found it in the barn. Called husband. No answer. Rushed to hospital ER. Nurse & I battled boy to get IPECAC in him. Boy regurgitated same all over front of nurse. Dad walked in, looked at can of "rat poison" and said it was "Hi-Dri", a clay compound used by mechanics to sprinkle over and absorb oil spills. Aaargh!

Fiscal Hawk II said...

To the 'Other' Anonymous on the reason for the U S Post Office debt.

As the linked article explains the USPS is in debt because of the pre-funding requirement of 55 Billion dollars.

There is a very simple solution.

1. The USPS has a Defined Benefit Retirement Plan.

2. It cannot afford that sort of plan - only Federal and State govts. and quasi-govt. agencies - who have unlimited taxing powers can afford that plan.

3. It should do away with the Defined Benefit retirement plan - and institute a Money purchase plan which the other 99.99 % of all other employers have. That will solve the problem. Everyone should live within their means.

4. There is nothing more.

HeartRx said...

Magilla Gorilla - IPECAC is in every parent of young children's medicine chests. It is given to induce vomiting in case of accidental poisoning.

PK said...

Marti, thanks for the expo. Hope your ceiling goes all right.

Back before we knew there was such a thing as a drywall hoist, my family did a kitchen ceiling we are all still laughing about. Dad was on a ladder, holding up the drywall with one strong arm and nailing with the other. Our son was bracing Dad on the ladder stiff-armed with both hands on Dad's butt. I was at one corner holding up the drywall with a big push broom. Two girls were at two other corners holding up the drywall with rakes. We did a whole 16'x16' ceiling this way.

Chickie said...

Hola Everyone, My Cool-o-meter is clear down in the zero range today. Sorry, but even though I knew the names of the movies, the co-author and director was an unknown. Also, the Mc Coo, Genet, Egon, Emo, Clip and Sysops were beyond me.

I had most of the puzzle done, but with some pretty big gaps--so a DNF today.

Thanks, Marti for the great writeup, as usual.

With all the babies at the shower this last weekend, I heard a lots of ahs, but aws, didn't come to me. Wilt for fade didn't either. Oh, well, I tried, I learned, I will do better next time.

Have a great day everyone.

Ol' Man Keith said...

This should have been easy, but my old brain stayed blank for ages on HAROLD RAMIS' name. Once that came through, of course, the rest fell into place -- with the exception of the middle west. That cross of AMCS and AMER resisted me until the absolute end.
I'm talking hours here before I finally remembered the AMC cars. I didn't mind waiting, as the cluing was fair, BUT then I hated AMER as an abbreviated "member" of the AMA. I would have gone with "part" instead of "member." OK, sure, I got it, but it just didn't feel like an honest misdirection.

Chickie said...

Oh Marti, The most expensive three words when renovating and remodeling are, "while you're here". We learned that pretty early on, but some jobs we just couldn't do ourselves.

Good luck.

Unknown said...

Great puzzle. The only Harold Ramis movie I've seen is Groundhog Day, but all the movie titles were easy to fill in from just a few letters. The cross of Egon and Genet was a WAG.

The last letter filled in was the M in AMC. I was thinking of the sports team but suddenly remembered the AMC Pacer. In the 1950s and 60s, my father worked for an AMC dealership. Needless to say, the demonstrators he brought home weren't exactly cool.
He later owned a used car lot, and when I was old enough to drive, I got to drive some really neat cars: an Oldsmobile 442, a Corvette Stingray, a Thunderbird convertible, and a Mustang fastback. At the time I had the T-Bird, I did something that angered my father, and he took the car away from me for a while. I've always identified with the Beachboy's song "Fun, Fun, Fun Til Her Daddy Took the T-Bird Away."

kazie said...

I screwed this up right royally. Couldn't get most of the names, HAROLD RAMIS, though I remembered his EGON character was not on my radar at all. i got all the movie names, then was looking for someone from SNL--never saw SCTV, and couldn't figure out what the extra letters were for in CBSTV.

So I was left with about a third of it blank, mainly the NE corner and most of the south.

thanks for clarifying, Marti!

Anonymous said...

Fiscal Hawk II, I have a logical, ready answer for you, but this not the time or place.
Some of us have family members in the USPS. They are not slackers and takers, but hard workers. I am offended.
You broke the rule of no politics on the blog and I was suckered in to answer you. No more. You started it and I am man enough to stop it. The rule of no politics is here for a good reason.
Anonymous 2

Lemonade714 said...

Nancy Murphy,

I love your T-bird story and reaction. What year was 'reposessed?'

Unknown said...


I'm not sure after these years, but it was a '61 or '62.


Manac said...

*Water, limestone, expanded perlite, ethylene-vinyl acetate polymer, attapulgite, and misc.

I did not hear of the passing of Harold Ramis til today. Loved his movies, in front and behind the camera.

Marti, as with Joe, you are also welcome to the use of my drywall lift. But alas, it would take over $30 in gas just to get it to you. So I thought the next best thing was to give you my number in case you had any questions. but then it dawned on me.... Who would take the advice of someone who is at times "A little off center" :)


HeartRx said...

Avg Joe and Manac, thanks for the offers of a "lift"…(I think?) I just am happy to spend $32 vs. $1200.

Manac, I think it must be the ethylene-vinyl acetate polymer, to answer HG's question. After all, attapulgite is just clay, right?

TTP said...

Hi all, Long day at work. Catching up on all the comments.

JJM, just as I've heard about Ramis there on the North Shore. Really nice and affable guy.

Hanging the drywall isn't the problem. That's the (relative)easy part, eh Manac and Joe ?

Taping and mudding requires the proper tools and skills. I've bedded all of my joints and all of the inside corners, and put up the corner bead on my closet project. But now it's down to the finish mudding, and I've called in my brother in law.

He'll be here tomorrow to do the finish coats of mudding. A man has to know his limitations, and know when to call in a pro...

Good luck Marti. I wish you and your husband well.

Hey Tin, I thought I would just throw that out there. I once breadboarded an astable multivibrator so I could sync up the horizontal sync circuit on the back porch of the color tv signal. The cable companies used to clip that sync signal so you couldn't watch cable unless you paid. The picture was scrambled without that sync signal. Never did sell any of my little black boxes though...

Ah, the good old days...

Avg Joe said...


Loved it Dan. I expected that response, and you didn't disappoint. Evidently it's true: those who fail to remember history are doomed to repeat it.

Mikey said...

I just finished hanging & taping my 30x30 garage, now starting on the finish work. My drywall guru Ron wanted $,3000 to do it, and I'm thinking I'd have been glad to write the check. I'll spend the next week turning mud into dust; Ron doesn't even have sandpaper on his truck, as far as I know. Good luck...

Manac said...

Joe @ 7:48,
Unless I misread your post, it should be noted that my comment @ 6:51 was purely tongue in cheek.

Anonymous said...

You forgot an essential additive for drywall joint compound: cigarette ash. I don't think I have ever seen a professional drywall finisher without a cigarette hanging from his lips and keeping the floors clean by letting the ash fall into his mud.

Argyle said...

LOL That's a good one.

Anonymous said...

Chickie@3:42:"The most expensive three words..."

The most expensive two words are I DO - the longest sentence in all of mankind.

Anonymous T said...

Hi All:

WBS - But, as soon as I had GHO, STBUSTERS filled in and HAROLD RAMIS, two letters gave me ANIMAL HOUSE ( Germans and Perl Harbor) and U in URL gave me GROUNDHOGDAY. Then I slogged through the rest of it. Still a DNF, but the theme made it so enjoyable, I don't care that I don't know MCCOO or SAPOR. Thanks Stu, but I CEDE.

Like TTP, SYSOPs was fav.

Did anyone else see the x-ref in the puzzle? Casey Kasem cameo'd in Ghost Busters and was Shag's voice in SCOOBYDOO.*

Mari - I remember EMO Phillips from the late '80's comedy. Not Carlin, but so different it was funny. I can almost do his voice.

Poor Dusty - get well wishes.

Marti, 1st thanks for the writeup. We had "rockers" in the office this afternoon (after the crew put up the framing and electrical / network drops). These guys did 3 offices in about 2 hours (was 2 big offices - gives a different meaning to down-sizing :-)).

My uncle was a carpenter & rocker. He helped pop rock a room one day. He (uncle) did the whole room in 45 minutes. Dad looked at all the cracks. Uncle said "That's the taper's job". Dad nodded in agreement until realizing he was the taper....

Cheers, -T
*Maybe a stretch, but you see there are 10 letters in Casey Kasem, 12 in Ghostbusters, and 11 in Scoobydoo. 11-10=1; 12-11 =1; 1 and 1, or 11 - exactly the number of letters in HAROLDRAMIS. See? :-)

Lucina said...

I'm surprised so many don't know about Marilyn McCoo, one of the beautiful voices who sang Aquarius as well as many other numbers.

Lucina said...

Oops. Meant to say Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis and other members of the 5th Dimension singing group.

Anonymous T said...

Lucina: Thank you. I just Googled and found McCoo singing a song I recall hearing when I was 4 or 5 years old, though apparently it was released before I was born. Mom was a hippie :-)

BTW, Hand up for the AHS at 61d. hILT seemed good enough. (sigh...)

C, -T

Bill G. said...

AnonT, I'm impressed with your mathematical analysis!

I like how MCCOO looks in a crossword.

Lucina said...

That's the one and though I was never an actual hippie I might have been had I been born about a few years later. LOL.

I just realized I hadn't thanked you for the info on "when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor". With a bit of research I realize that Harold Ramis was even more talented than I knew.

Anonymous T said...

Lucina: I linked when Bluto gave his speech after getting a 0.00 GPA and the Delta House was kicked off campus. Maybe this provides more context.

Mom wasn't a real hippie, just married too young. And after two boys, she when "Running for the shelter of the mother's little helper..."* It was the 70's

i'm sure everyone can name that Stone's song :-)

Cheers, -T
*For the record she's cool now with a bookstore and a farm in IL.

Anonymous T said...

Oops - not the prequel link. This is the one. Don't watch the last 5 seconds if you have a week stomach... C, -T

Freond said...

Great tribute, but great puzzle??? Maybe 30 years ago. Am I the only one who thought this was horribly dated? AMC Pacer? McCoo? Ipecac is no longer rrcommended...for at least 4 years. Sysops? The Wiz (1978)? Hasta la vista.. OK that makes it to "classic" level and is fair game. Looks like a puzzle for oldsters. Being one, I was able to finish. But not impressed.