Apr 23, 2014

Wednesday, April 23, 2014 Matt Skoczen

Theme:  Suddenly it all becomes clear, or Bring on the V-8 can. Each two word theme entry starts with the letters A, and HA, respectively, and represents the unifier in a literal way.  Without the unifier, there would have been no AHA MOMENT for me.  I can't think of anything else these four entries might have in common.

 17A. "The Autobiography of Malcolm X" collaborator : ALEX HALEY.  More famous for ROOTS, perhaps.

 24A. "The helpful place" sloganeer : ACE HARDWARE.  Ace is the place with the helpful hardware man. 

 36A. Many a circus employee : ANIMAL HANDLER.  Somebody has to clean up after the elephants.

 53A. Wayne Manor resident : AUNT HARRIET.  I know nothing about this character.  Do they keep her locked in the attic?

And the unifier -   62A. Light-bulb-over-the-head instance, and a hint to 17-, 24-, 36- and 53-Across : AHA MOMENT

Hi Gang, JzB reporting for duty.  It's been over three months since the Christian Feast of the Epiphany, but that doesn't mean we can't have our own little experiences of sudden and striking realization.  I had one once in a graduate level class on organic photochemistry.  I was spinning my wheels for half the term, then suddenly one day I got it.  Then I couldn't understand why I had ever thought it was hard.  Baffling experience.   Let's see if we can find any startling revelations in today's puzzle.


1. Spice organizer : RACK.  You can alphabetize your spice jars on a wooden structure specifically defined for that purpose.  Or you can randomly place them on a lazy susan, as I do, and hope for the best.

5. 48-Across brand : SOBE.  An abbreviation of SOuth BEach, as in Miami's upscale area.  They make teas, fruit-juice blends and enhanced water beverages, and are owned by PepsiCo.  Along with 48. Iced drink : TEA.  Tin Man - Is ice in tea acceptable?

9. Right-angled supports : L-BARSAvailable in a wide variety of shapes and sizes.

14. K-12, to textbook publishers : EL-HIELementary and HIgh school.

15. Neck and neck : TIED.  As in the score of an even game.   Or this.

16. Slightly moisten : BEDEW.  As if moistened by dew [or whatever.]  Goes back to the 14th century.

19. Green hue : OLIVE.  The only color I allow in a martini.  When Bluto made off with Popeye's best girl, was he OLIVE with envy?

20. Camcorder button : RECord.

21. Google executive chairman Schmidt : ERIC.  Alternate clue, JzB's son. I would have known it then.

22. Had too much, briefly : OD'EDOverDosed, as on Easter candy.

23. Antlered animal : ELKCervus canadensis, one of the largest species in the deer family.

28. Mu followers : NUS.  Mind your mus and NUS.  It's all Greek alphabet to me.  Is that news?

29. Pt. of a sentence : PHR.  Phrase.  Seems like an odd abrv.

30. Vote against : NAY.

31. Certain commuter's destination: Abbr. : STN  Station.

32. Belmonts frontman : DION.  DiMucci.  Do you wonder why?

34. 1930s migrants : OKIES  Escapees from the Oklahoma dust bowl.  About 15% of the population of the state fled to California along Rt. 66.

42. Scheherazade's milieu : HAREM. The "forbidden place," home to the many wives [and concubines] of a polygynous household, off limits to men.

43. Designer St. Laurent : YVES.

45. Tech sch. overlooking the Hudson : RPIRensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Founded in 1824, it is the oldest technological university in the English speaking world.

49. "Just an update" letters : FYIFor Your Information.

52. Pipe bend : ELL.

56. Actress Peeples : NIA.   AKA Virenia Gwendolyn Peeples. She was once young and restless.

57. Sasquatch cousin : YETI.  Distant cousins, I presume.

58. "The Dukes of Hazzard" deputy : ENOS.

59. Mt. Sunflower is its highest point : KANsas

60. Antacid, briefly : BROMO Seltzer.

64. When many take morning breaks : AT TEN. TEN AM also fits. 

65. Proofreading mark : DELE.  Delete.

66. Winans of gospel : CECE.  Not always, though.   C.C. - can you sing like this?

67. Calf-roping loop : NOOSE.  Greek cattle require NUS.

68. Sign : OMEN.

69. You might steer one with your feet : SLED.  Downhill racer.


1. Behind, or hit from behind : REAR END Back side [noun] of a car, for example, or collide with one from the back [verb.]

2. Christian chant : ALLELUIA.   Goes back to Middle English, via late Latin and Greek from Hebrew for a song of praise to God.  Lots of these on Easter.

3. Inspects : CHECKS ON.

4. "Kid-tested" cereal : KIX.  Puffed whole grain corn

5. Pasta or potato, e.g. : STARCH.  Cereal, too, like KIX, Trix or Chex.

6. More slippery : OILIER.

7. Nut-bearing tree : BEECH.

8. Big name in ice cream : EDY.  And a Crossword favorite.

9. Wall St. deal : LBOLeveraged Buy Out.  IPO also fits.

10. Subordinate to : BELOW

11. Athletic brand founded by Adolf Dassler : ADIDAS.  A new fact to quickly forget.

12. Backslide : REVERT.  To a previous inferior condition.  As in forgetting new facts?

13. Birthplace of Bergman and Garbo : SWEDEN.  Ingrid and Greta.

18. Accumulation : HEAP.  Pile up, not necessarily involving a rear end.

25. "Eso Beso" singer : ANKA.  Paul.  That kiss.

26. Picnic worry : RAIN.  Ants, too.

27. Turned green, say : DYED.  She dyed from envy, turning OLIVE.

33. Bethesda-based medical org. : NIHNational Institutes of Health.  American medial research agency, part of the Department of Health and Human Services.

34. Resistance unit : OHM.  Electricity

35. Devious : SLY.

37. Field with roots and logs : MATH.  Clever clue

38. __ rug : AREA.

39. King with three daughters : LEAR.  Regan, Cordelia, and the unfortunately named Goneril.

40. Symbol of balance : EVEN KEEL.

41. Faith : RELIANCE.

44. Italicized : SLANTED.   Some think I have Italicized political views.

45. Sunglass Hut brand : RAYBAN.

46. Mexico's __ Vallarta : PUERTO.

47. Altogether : IN TOTO.   "What happened to the meat balls I was going to have for lunch," inquired the Wizard.  "I believe they are all together IN TOTO," Dorothy replied.

49. Fireworks highlight : FINALE.   A big end, not to be confused with  REAR END

50. Naval petty officers : YEOMEN.  Maybe Spitz can elaborate.

51. "Make __": Picard catchphrase : IT SO.   Go get 'er done.

54. Movie listing listings : TIMES.

55. Bring up again? : REHEM.  Another clever clue.  A HEM is a narrow cloth edge folded over and sewn to provide a finished look and prevent unraveling. REHEMing a dress or skit would make it shorter.

61. What two heads are better than : ONE.

62. Disturbance : ADO.

63. Intro givers : MCS.  Masters of Ceremonies

That wraps up this nicely done puzzle.  Hope your forehead got through it unscathed.

Cool regards!


OwenKL said...

When he first asked her out, she said, "uh-uh."
The next time he asked, she said, "uh-huh."
She spoke hardly at all,
Yet in love he did fall --
And when he proposed, she said, "A-HA!"

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

I really wanted to like this one, but even after getting the AHA MOMENT it left me a bit cold. AUNT HARRIET? Seriously? And PHR? Ugh.

I struggled the most up North where (a) I didn't think of ALEX HALEY for quite awhile and tried ALEX HARDY instead (despite not knowing who that was either), (b) I went with EVEN instead of TIED and (c) had PECAN instead of BEECH. Whole lotta fail in such a small section. The fact that I don't drink Iced Tea and couldn't think of SOBE at first didn't help matters. And then there was my reluctance to accept PHR...

I did finally stick in TIED and then thought of ALEX HALEY, which got me going up there. But still, PHR?

OwenKL said...

AUNT HARRIET -- I thought she was just from the TV show, but then I haven't been able to afford comics in years.

Nit1: Mu is only followed by one nu, after that it's xi, omicron, pi, etc. As worded, this clue should not be answerable by the plural.

Nit2: R.P.I. has become crosswordese in Norris' quiver. Ditto EDY.

Natick at ?BAR ✜ ?BO, but was an easy WAG. Hand up for IPO before LBO, I-BARS & T-BARS > L-BARS. Also RELIGION > RELIANCE, BISMO > BROMO, ANTS > RAIN, CDC > NIH. And a lot of misspellings on the first pass: HALLY, ALLELUYA, others I've mercifully forgotten.

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Jazzbumpa and friends. Eureka! I Think I've Got It!! I had fun with todays puzzle. I got the theme answers before getting to the unifier. In fact, getting the other answers actually helped me with the unifier.

Behind = REAR END was my favorite clue. It was a great clue to start the puzzle and made me laugh out loud.

Hand up for wanting IPO before LBO.

Mt. Sunflower is 4,039 above sea level. The highest point in my state is only 535 feet above sea level. What is the highest point in your state?

Anyone remember this 1973 Twisted song which references two heads being better than one?

QOD: Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we are ourselves are a part of the mystery that we are trying to solve. ~ Max Planck (Apr. 23, 1853 ~ Oct. 4, 1947)

Lemonade714 said...

JzB there is a car in that picture?

I agree about Aunt Harriet being a really bogus Batman reference.

RPI is well represented here, so I do not think of it as crosswordtra. ELHI however...

I really enjoyed your wit JzB

buckeye bob said...

Thank you for the puzzle, Matt. Thank you for the interesting, informative, funny review, Jazzbumpa.

I thought this was a fun puzzle, and just right for a Wednesday. On the other hand, there did seem to be a lot of standard crosswordese.

I got 3 theme answers, then the unifier. After that, I went back and got ALEX HALEY.

I didn’t know ADIDAS founder, but it was the only answer that fit.

Hand up for just didn’t like PHR. Yes, I know it is a valid abbreviation for phrase, but it seems clunky.

I am OK with NUS. Yes, there is only one NU in the Greek alphabet. Technically, mu points to nu, and followers points to plural. Maybe the clue could have been worded better. It’s just a puzzle.

I don’t see why 31A Certain commuter's destination: Abbr. : STN is OK. The station would never be the commuter’s destination, it would just be a waypoint on the route to the final destination.

HeartRx said...

Good morning Jazzbumpa, C.C. et al.

Fun write-up today, and I think I enjoyed it even more than I did the puzzle. Thanks Jazzb! I did have an AHA moment when I looked at the first three theme entries. (OK, so I was a little slow on the uptake this morning!) Had no clue who AUNT HARRIET was, but knowing that it would be A * HA * helped tremendously.

I never knew that ADIDAS was a German brand. I did some investigation, and now I will remember its founder: Adolf’s nickname was ADI – and his last name was DAS-sler. Interesting backstory on how the company got its big break – he traveled to the 1936 Olympics and persuaded Jesse Owens to wear a pair of his spikes. The rest, as you know, is history!

Hand up for thinking IPO and PECAN at first, and not liking PHR or plural NUS (as clued). But the rest was pretty smooth sailing.

Happy hump day, everyone!

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Let's see, it's been days and days (well, three actually) since we've had a Matt Skoczen puzzle. I came here expecting a DNF, because I couldn't believe that SOBE was a brand of tea.

My grid is correct, but it's a mess. I started with ANIMAL TRAINER and RELIGION. And it didn't help that I put MCS in the wrong spot. Thought the clue for MATH was cute. Thought the "Pt. of a sentence" was the point -- period (PER).

JzB, YEOMEN is just of many naval enlisted spcialties. Yeomen perform clerical duties, and their specialty is designated by "crossed quills" -- between the eagle and chevron(s) on the NCO's shoulder. If Radar O'Reilly had been in the Navy, he would've been a Yeoman.

desper-otto said...

Hmmm....I'm sure I put a "one" in there. Wonder where it went.

Mari said...

Good morning everybody,

Good puzzle today. I found a few unknowns (BEDEW, NUS, RPI), but did finish the puzzle. I wanted IPO instead of LBO and TEN AM instead of AT TEN.

I liked:
- 27D: Field with roots and logs: MATH
- 55D: Bring up again? REHEM

Have a great Wednesday!

Mari said...

Hahtoolah: The highest point in Illinois is Charles Mound at 1,235feet.

I wonder if you can see the ellusive AUNT HARRIET from up there.

TTP said...

Good morning all.

Thank you Matt Skoczen. Not an easy puzzle when working it with a serious lack of sleep. KIA and CECE in the southeast filled only due to taking out RELIGION since I couldn't make any crossing words with its last 4 letters. Finally got RELIANCE and then later, EVEN KEEL. KAN really helped. Mt Sunflower ought to exist in the Sunflower State, don't you think ? Speaking of RELIANCE, I have no faith that the Astros are going to make the playoffs this year.

BTW, Happy Birthday Wrigley. Cubs won't make the playoffs this year either. None the less, big birthday party today.

In the northeast, I stumbled for the longest time with IPO rather than LBO. Even though I BARS would be a stretch, PEDEW made no sense. Got it with the P to B change.

Never heard of SOBE TEA in the north central, but it had tobe. In the northwest, ALLELUIA was new to me, but I only needed the U and that was a wag with NUS.

Thank you JzB. Excellent write up. As always. Can't say that I've ever seen a Nissan Skyline before. Don't know that I would be able to identify one after studying that picture.

Anyone else ever had Beechnut ?

Time to get to work. See you all later.

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

I really stumbled on this one. An almost-Natick occurred where MCS crossed Cece, even though the latter has appeared in plenty of puzzles.

Morning JzB, always good to see your Wednesday wit.

Highest point in Massachusetts is Mount Greylock, over in the northwest corner of the state. Elevation is 3,491 feet. The view is nice from there.

thehondohurricane said...

A Happy Hump Day To All,

I've mentioned in the past that whether I like a puzzle or not, I will always respect the constructor for his creation. Today's puzzle fits that thought, sort of.

PHR, BEDEW & STN are three reasons why. NUS & IN TOTO were close to making it five reasons,

But there was a lot to like too & certainly areas of difficulty. Hand up for IPO before LBO. IBARS seemed Ok, but Pedew was certainly a ???????.

Tried Religion before RELIANCE ( to me, the former is a better fit), and Ten AM before AT TEN.

I was a Batman fan in my youth, but have no recall of AUNT HARRIET. Like many other fills today, perps were a big help coming up with Auntie.

Jazz, enjoyed the write up a lot. Your pictorial description of REAR END makes me wish I could REVERT back to my youth.

Now that I've had my AHA MOMENT for the day, I imagine there won't be any snags popping up at me. And of course, Hades will freeze over too.

Yellowrocks said...

JzB, very witty and informative blog. One of your best. This was a little crunchy for a Wed. but very perpable. I much prefer this type of puzzle to the type where you fill in the blanks with the first word that comes to mind and you're done lickety split with no need to think at all.
I wagged the AUN in AUNT HARRIET. The other letters were already filled. Although I didn't know of her, it seems a fair fill. The movie was not mentioned in the clue. She appeared regularly in comics and one full season on TV. Her character was phased out due to the actress's ill health.
Although I drink plenty of iced tea, I never heard of SOBE. Fair again, because of the perps.
I thought of STN as the happy destination of the homeward bound commuter's train ride.
The P in PHR was the last to fill. My response was AHA. V-8 can moment.
PEPTO before BROMO. Had the L so didn't think of IPO. PECAN before BEECH. We had beech trees on our elementary school playground. We used to pick the nuts and peel them for a treaT.
HeartRx, interesting about ADIDAS.

Yellowrocks said...

HG, I enjoyed your clever and informative blog yesterday. We are lucky to have such an able sub.

ANON T @ 9:22 last night. Gail and Bruce's is correct. It feels so right, but I did find a solid reference to prove it.
Link possessives

Yellowrocks said...

Rats! The link keeps breaking. Here it is.
If ownership is separate, make each noun possessive by adding the appropriate apostrophe or an apostrophe and an s:
During Christmas break, I'll be staying at my brother's and my sister's houses.
The brother and sister separately own separate houses.

If ownership is shared, make only the final noun possessive:
Every year, I visit my mom and dad's winter cottage and summer house.
Mom and dad jointly own both residences.

OwenKL said...

"A certain commuter" isn't a person. It's a commuter train!

A station is where a train stops. A terminal is where an airplane stops. At my work-station is a computer terminal...

Hand up for not liking PHR. The PT. of a sentence is a dot. Period.

Car? What car?

Highest point in my state? I dont need no steeking mountain. The city I live in is at 7000 ft.! The lowest elevation in NM is 2,842 feet above sea level!

Yellowrocks said...

At first I thought PT meant point. Then I realized that PT here stands for PART, a phrase is a part of a sentence. That was the V8 can moment.

The commuter's destination for that particular ride is where he disembarks from the train, i.e. the station. The station may not be his final destination (home or office), but it is his destination for that ride.
In the same way the destination of my flight to Chicago is a terminal at O HARE, but the destination of the whole trip is my sister's home.

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

This offering from Matt S. was far more to my liking than Sunday's referential roller coaster. Hand up for IPO/LBO and religion/reliance. Didn't care for phr or bedew. Nice shout out to Spitz and Splynter with RPI.

Nice job, Matt, and thanks to JazzB for a wonderfully witty write-up. BTW, that picture of Jude Law shows a nice head of hair that is no longer there.

Nasty day here today: cold, windy and rainy. Oh well, hope it's nicer where the rest of the Corner lives. Have a good one.

JD said...

Good morning Bumpa and all,
Hand up for religion and ten am.Lots of ah ha's in your amusing write up.The theme actually helped me decipher Aunt Harriet.Still not fond of abbreviations, yet I do see the necessity of using them.

HeartRx said...

TTP @ 8:08. With IPO giving you PEDEW, it’s a good thing you didn’t put REEBOK at 11-D. BTW, this is the only BEECH NUT that I ever chewed. 1:03

Husker Gary said...

I’m subbing for dollars today in MATH and am just now getting to blog. This school allows getting to blogspot, others, not so much. I saw A___H___ but not the other A until I arrived here. Fun puzzle and write-up. Never heard of SOBE, not ELHI until I came here and PHR…

-If you want and AHA moment, look at this image gently cross and uncross your eyes and an amazing 3-D image will appear. My first AHA moment took about 7 minutes and then I bought a book of them.
-Fav knock knock joke with granddaughter is, Knock, knock. Who’s there? Olive. Olive who? [You finish]
-Male guards of the HAREM are, uh, surgically altered. Talk about taking one for the team.
-If you add up the number of confirmed sightings of the YETI, Sasquatch and Nessie, what do you get?
-If you’re workin’ Nine to Five, 10 am seems to be early for a break
-Jazz, you shoulda put a picture of a car’s REAR END in that picture too.
-A HEAP for everything and everything in its HEAP. My college motto!
-Girls in the 60’s didn’t REHEM, they just rolled up the waist band when they were out of mom’s sight.
-Wonderful video (4:00) of Fr. Ray Kelly singing (H)ALLEULIA from the wedding at an altar. You will love it!
-Dang, somebody let some HS juniors in. Read y’all later.

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi Gang!

You are all such a lovable bunch. That keeps me coming back.

Sometimes we need to remember what the late Dan Naddor taught us - that sometimes the price of a good them and some good fill is some filler fill to fill in the fillets.

Yes there was some of that in this puzzle, but I think BEDEW and IN TOTO are perfectly cromulent.

The highest point in MI is Mt. Arvon [1979 ft], way off near the Keweenaw Peninsula in the U. P. The highest point in my home state is Campbell Hill [1550 ft,] in Bellefontaine [which is pronounced Bell Fountain.]

Wings are looking like toast at this point. They just can't score. Tigers almost blew a big lead in the 9th and made last night's game way too exciting. Phil Coke has got to go, I'm afraid. Poor guy was holding big tears as he walked back to the dugout.

It's a fundamental law of nature that no two Detroit teas can win on the same day.

Cool regards!

Jazzbumpa said...

The other fundamental law is that I can't type.


Maverick said...

My SE corner was totally hosed because of my RELIANCE on RELIGION. Not until I questioned my Faith and cleared the slate was I able to achieve the AHA-MOMENT.

Husker Gary said...

Musings 2
-I am subbing for my nephew whose wife delivered Grace Elizabeth into the world yesterday. He said, “Gary, just do anything you want with my students” and so guess who’s getting NASA stories and web sites today?
-The highest point in Nebraska is Panorama Point and it is only slightly higher than the surrounding prairie. Ya gotta love this guy making the summit!
-Can you find the ADIDAS logo in this lovely picture?
-Where does it switch from PUH KAWN’ to PEE’ CAN?

Anonymous said...

Nothing wrong with Aunt Harriet if you remember the old Barman TV show.

Anonymous said...

I mean Batman.

Anonymous said...

This puzzle is just begging for us to love it. I do.

Some people mistake above band to be from SWEDEN, but no, they are Norwegian.

Heard once during a French Open broadcast that Euros pronounce Adidas as ah di dahs or something like that.

Lucina said...

Hello, Puzzle lovers! Hi, JazzB. Nice going.

In a hurry because I'm going to a movie with a friend the TIMES of which are early.

Matt S., we meet again and so soon. A very nice grid, fast and easy but I went for TBAR which gave me TBO not LBO. I should know that by now.

I also transposed the e/o in YEOMEN. So a double whammy today and yet the puzzle itself was not difficult.

Have a fantastical Wednesday, everyone!

Tinbeni said...

Jazz: Outstanding write-up!!! Geez, that must take a long time. Good Job!!!

As for the question: "Is _ _ _ in TEA acceptable?" ... NO! Never touch the stuff.

Not my favorite theme for a Wednesday, but a FUN puzzle, nevertheless.

PHR as an abbr. earned a WTF???

Fave today was the RE-HEM clue/answer. I miss the '60's Mini-Skirt era.

Highest Point in Florida is Britton Hill at 345 feet. (Up near Alabama).
Don't want to brag too much ... but I climbed it without any Sherpa assistance. lol


Misty said...

My goodness, this sure was a Wednesday toughie. I didn't think I would get through it for the longest time, and when I finally did I still turned out to have some errors. For example, I had T BAR instead of L BAR (well, it has a right angle, doesn't it?) and I of course didn't know that Wall Street thing. But I did get the theme at some point and that helped me get ALEX HALEY. Anyway, it was nice to come to the Corner and see all the great pix on JazzB's expo. And I too thought REHEM had a clever clue.

Ah, PUERTO Vallarta! What a lovely place. I'm so glad we had a chance to visit there twice before my husband's stroke. We stayed in a modest hotel in the old town, right on the beach, and loved the sweet people there. Happy memories!

Have a great day, everybody!

Big Meh said...

Matt Skoczen's puzzles are CONSISTENTLY questionable.

Steve said...

Nice puzzle - I enjoyed the V8 moment with the theme reveal. Wasn't overly bothered by PHR. Also tempted by IPO but resisted.

Great write-up, JzB.

@Anon @ 11:37 - Brits pronounce it "ADDY-DAS". I got laughed at when I first moved to the US and came out with that!

I knew the elusive Aunt Harriet from working at WB's Consumer Products division which handled all the DC Comics licensed merchandize. You never know when some things might come in useful!

posterboy said...

Great puzzle today, I had trouble reconciling phr, I thought it should be per for period until I realized that a phrase (phr) is part of a sentence also

Anonymous said...

This was more like a thursday or friday puzzle. 10 abbrv answers. Finished it but it wasnt fun. Aunt Harriet was played by Mrs Mondello (Madge Blake) from "Leave It To Beaver." They were going to cut her out early in first season but the main actors protested so the producers let her stay.

Anonymous said...

Thought it was fun...initially had eelier for oilier, never heard of Sobe, so that made sense to me til I got to neck and neck. Didn't care for phr. Thought Aunt Harriet was kind of cute, brought back a way-buried childhood memory. I do believe yesterday was the anniversary of the start of the Oklahoma Land Rush, so Okies was very apprapo. Have a great day!

Spitzboov said...

Good afternoon everyone.

Just back from a couple days in Buffalo - death in the family.

A 'just right' puzzle for Wednesday. Got the unifier and used the A - HA hint to start several of the theme fills. Cool beans. Some good 'anchors' like SWEDEN and PUERTO helped. No searches needed but I did have to white-out pecan to insert BEECH.
D-OTTO explained YEOMEN well. Thanks.

RPI Alma Mater:

"Here's to old RPI, her fame may never die.
Here's to old Rensselaer, she stands today without a peer.
Here's to those olden days,
Here's to those golden days,
Here's to the friends we made at dear old RPI."

Never thought about it but I guess colleges are feminine, just like ships.

Abejo said...

Good afternoon, folks. Thank you, Matt Skoczen, for a fine puzzle. Thank you, Jazzbumpa, for a fine review.

Did this in the newspaper while going to Chicago. Went to the annual meeting of General Electric Co. I am not a shareholder, but my Lodge is and I am the treasurer, so I was invited. Never been to one of these in my life. Very interesting.

The puzzle was outstanding. Easily gotnstarted up North, except for SO BE. Eventually got it with perps.

REAR END was easy. Good clues.

OKIES was easy. I have been to Oklahoma a couple times. One was a funeral of a good friend.

I never thought of a calf-roping loop as a NOOSE. To me a noose is something you hang somebody with. Anyhow, I got it.

EVEN KEEL was a good one.

Schererazade was an unknown. Perps to the rescue for HAREM.

On my way home. See you tomorrow.


(8696636 64)

Bill G. said...

I didn't care for SOBE or PHR. I did enjoy MATH and REHIM as per Mari and others who came first. So WEES. Thanks Matt and JzB.(Good embedded photos!) I had a good time with this as I do with almost all LAT puzzles. Thanks Rich and CC!

Abejo said...


Thanks for entering the highest point in Illinois. The highest natural point. However, Sears/Wilis Tower is actually the highest point, albeit man made. I just could not help that. See you around.


john28man said...

The highest point in Colorado is Mt Elbert 14,433 Ft and the lowest is where the Arkansas River exits into Kansas at 3300 Ft.
We live 10 miles from Pikes Peak which is 14,115 Ft. Our house is at 6,413 Ft.

Kevin said...

Hi all,

Hmm.... I was looking for a little more than A Ha myself. I found EXHALE in 17A and scrambled INHALE out of 36A, but drew nothing out of 24 & 53A.

Thus, all that was left to pull out was:

17A: HEY,
36A: HAR
53A: HAR,
the joke is on me for misfilling IPO and MAKE IT DO, thinking PEDEW was only a word ENOD knew.

Well, I am off to grade fifty essays on whether or not it is okay to break up with someone through a text message; I cannot wait to see what the final tally on that vote is.

Have a great day everyone and thanks for the reprieve from teaching duties.

oc4beach said...

Challenging but appropriate puzzle for Wednesday. Great write-up JzB.

Hand up for IPO vs LBO. REHEM was cute.

Today's newspaper had an ACE HARDWARE sales flyer in it that I was looking at when I came to that clue. Easy fill in.

The highest mountain in Pennslyvania is Mount Davis at 3,213 feet in Somerset county in the southeast part of the state near the Mason Dixon line. The mountains where I live in the center of the state range up to about 2400 feet. I grew up in the mountains of PA and didn't really know what flat land was like until I bought a beach house on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. The high point in Ocean City, MD is 7 feet (at high tide).

Let's hope that everyone stays above high tide.

Unknown said...

This was an apt Wednesday puzzle with just the right amount of difficulty. Great write-up Jazzbumpa. I did make one mistake: ibar, which gave me IBO. Had no idea what that stood for.

Husker Gary, the singing priest video was wonderful.

Anonymous said...

HG: if you look closely at the picture you will see the rear end of a Nissan in addition to the one that everyone fixates on.

PK said...

Hi Y'all! I had several AHA MOMENTS with this puzzle and a few more WTHs. WEES. Good one, Matt. Very witty, JzB!

I knew the highest point in KANsas was near the Colorado border. I have driven past the turn-off to it countless times. Never knew it was called Mt. Sunflower.

My son's family just returned from a spring break trip to Puerto Vallarta which his wife won through work.

Didn't know either Wayne Manor or Aunt Harriet. All perps. My oldest daughter was about 3 yrs. old when Batman masks were a fad and she was terrified by them. I had a friend with a daughter who would get tired of entertaining my child when we were there. She'd put on her batman mask and my kid would start screaming bloody murder and trying to get out the front door. I'd just wave goodby and haul her out to the car. She'd scream all the way home. We couldn't go near a toy section in a store where batman might lurk. We had no batman stuff at our house. Ever.

CanadianEh! said...

Late to the party again so WEES. JzB thanks for the laughs!

Hand up for TBAR and TEN AM and EVEN before TIED.

AHA MOMENT when I got the REHEM clue!

Another Canadian singer today. Paul ANKA, ANNE Murray and CARLY RAE JEPSEN all this week. Different styles of music though.

I just booked tickets to see LEAR at Stratford Festival this summer.

Yellowrocks said...

The highest point in NJ is High Point State Park at Point Jervis at 1803 ft. Like oc4beach I grew up in Pa with no flat land, all hills. We did not have the very rugged mountains of the western states, or even WV, but we loved the so-called mountains.
On my first road trip to see my sister in the Chicago area I was flummoxed by the flat landscape of parts of Ohio, Indiana and Illinois. We walked one of her parks and were warned of a HILL!! in an area much flatter than the street where I live now. Later we traveled from the Chicago suburbs to the Lincoln attractions in Springfield and were again surprised at the extremely flat land.
During two weeks hiking in Scotland we traversed many hills and mountains, but there were many wide vistas and open spaces, even in the foothills. Upon returning to NJ I was surprised to feel hemmed in without the wide open vistas, but I soon became accustomed to the NJ hills again.

We have vacationed in the mountains and hollows of WV every summer for more than 40 years. I love the mountains.
Not a flat lander.

thehondohurricane said...

Bill g,

I hope you meant REHEM, not REHIM!

CrossEyedDave said...

No aha moment for me... DNF because I have never heard of Sobe, & I thought 6d, more slippery might be "wilier." I knew SWBE was wrong, but I just could not come up with anything better. LBO & PHR were below the belt, but filled in by perps.

I still don't remember Aunt Harriet...

FYI, A tour of Marietas Islands Puerto Vallarta Mexico's hidden Beach.

Fast Eddie said...

Jazz, nice pic for REAREND. Might I add one for RACK?

Ol' Man Keith said...

Happy B'day, Wrigley Field. Thanks for bringing it up, TTP. I have no particular reason to root for the Cubs, but they are a phenomenon in a country of exceptionalism and ever-hopeful winners.
The Cubs break the nold. My own pedagogical theories have a lot to do with "embracing failure," a belief that artists (and so why not athletes?) are autodidacts who learn chiefly from their failure. Think of growth as "correcting for error" or "recovery from catastrophe."
But then the Cubs give the lie to the whole theory, don't they? There is no natural pattern to which they adhere, right? Must devotees and fans of the Cubs resort to superstition? I am a novice here, so need help. Is there... a curse?

Billy said...

Naaaaaah Keith, there is not a curse.

Bumppo said...

Amen re NUS (plural), OwenKL at 6:28 a.m.

Lemonade714 said...

The Batman TV show with Adam West et al., while successful, was clearly not part of the long established comic creation, nor was Aunt Harriet.

Fast Eddie you read my mind.

Avg Joe said...

Lots to like about this puzzle, but plenty of nits as well. Liked most of the fill and had a few learning moments. Fell into the IPO/LBO and pecan/beech traps, but they sorted themselves out. Had no clue on SoBe, but perps made it so. Aunt Harriet? Who knew? But again those perps dictated. However, once completed, the payoff was a mouth full of feathers. Not enough there there to seem worthwhile.

Keith, I'm not enough of a sports fan to have an opinion worth heeding, but my feelings on the Cubs are that they are the ultimate Average Joe team in the land (not intended as a narcissistic self-reference). And that's especially true of their fans. Regardless of the record, they all maintain everlasting hope. You have to love it.

Lucina said...

The highest peak in Arizona is Humphrey's Peak, 12,633 ft. It is part of the San Francisco Peaks north of Flagstaff and part of a group of extinct volcanoes. Skiing is popular there in winter and in summer it offers a respite from the heat in the lower elevations.

Just back from seeing Heaven is for Real, a very good movie with Greg Kennear.

I've never been a big Batman fan so AUNT HARRIET was new for me but easy enough to perp.

Sharpie said...

"Harriet Cooper, best known simply as Aunt Harriet from the Batman television series, is a character that first appeared in the comic book Detective Comics #328 (June 1964).Created by writer Bill Finger and artist Sheldon Moldoff, the character is the maternal aunt of Bruce Wayne's ward, Dick Grayson."


"Despite the longstanding legend that the character was created for the television series to reduce the potential for homosexual interpretations of the Wayne/Grayson relationship, the character had actually been created two years earlier for the comic book. Some details from the television series (her last name, her status as a widow) were added to the comic stories in Detective Comics #373. "

Both per Batman wiki

Jayce said...

Hello everybody. After getting ALEX HALEY and ACE HARDWARE I thought the theme was simply A H. Didn't see the A HA until the aha.

The highest point in Calif is the one that used to be the highest point in the entire U.S. until Alaska became a state: Mt. Whitney.

Jazzb, liked the wit in your writeup.

The clues to MATH and ONE made me laugh.

We have relatives who live in Puerto PeƱasco, a cute little sleepy fishing village several hundred miles north of Puerto Vallarta, on the Sea of Cortes. Nice place.

Best wishes to you all.

Rex said...

Dick Grayson's Aunt Harriet was Alfred Pennyworth's replacement after his death. She was later famously recreated into the old Batman TV series.

Dudley said...

Batman sure seems gay to me. Robin too.

CrossEyedDave said...

Hmm, now that you mention it, maybe the show did need an Aunt Harriet...

TTP said...


Of all that I am, which is substantially far less than what I am not, being a Cubs fan is not one.

There are some real fanatics in this town though, and some of them really do have that "wait-until-next-year" belief. As if.

On the other hand, they do appear to have one of the better farm systems in terms of talent that's developing, but still...

For the Wrigley Field birthday party today, the Cubs donned throwback uniforms of 100 years ago, playing as the Chicago Federals, and their opponent was the Kansas City Packers, played by the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Par for the course of the "lovable losers"... they managed to lose after blowing a 5 to 2 lead in the top of the ninth by giving up 4 runs, and quickly bowing out in the bottom of the inning on three quick outs.

BTW, the Diamondbacks had only won 5 games all season until today. Worst record in MLB.

I don't "get" the Cubs phenomenon, nor the national fan base, other than that they are perennial underdogs.

I don't dislike them but I am not a fan. With all the free TV coverage of Cubs games, I get to see a lot of the teams I want to watch.

TTP said...


I preferred your Beechnut.

No one linked Beechnut baby food ? Or did I miss it ?

Bill G. said...

Gary, those 3-D images always take me a while. After I get it, it seems so easy. None of them are nearly as good and as pretty as the old View Master images though. I liked them.

My daughter just got her eyes lased. She seems to be delighted after just one day.

Anonymous T said...

JzB - great write-up and eye-candy!

WOS (what OwenKL said) re: write overs.

Jazz - ADIDAS - All Day I Dream About Sex. There, that should stick. BTW, his brother started Puma. For some reason I think or the Twix commercial.

Fave was 37d. I tried MARSh (oops) at 1st.

YR, thanks for possessive-essses' rules. Really, thanks. SPI was my stomping grounds. I still return every year to visit AUNTs and the rest of the fam.

TTP - 'Stros will be in the basement all season. Wait 'till next year. (I grew up with the Cubs - HBD WF and Will Shakespeare (450 according to the radio this AM).

Highest point in TX is Mt. Guadalupe at 8,751" near the New Mexico boarder. That's a long way west and up from 125" in Houston. Man made nearby is JP Tower downtown at 1,002".

Kevin - Inquiring minds want to know... I think before 19 TXT breakup is OK - it's not like it's serious then... Oh, wait, DW & I were married at 18. I'll wait for your NUS.

Cheers, -T

Kevin said...

Anonymous T,

Interestingly enough, my students are on average 19 years old, and 39 students argued that it is NOT acceptable to break up with a text while 10 students said it is acceptable (and 1 student has not yet turned in his paper, which is a surprisingly low number in of itself). Unfortunately, now that the fun part of tallying up their theses is done, I must slap some actual comments on these puppies.

Take care!

TTP said...

Anon T

That same lack of sleep affected my association of team and stadium. Of course the 'stros play in Minute Maid, and the Texans play in RELIANCE, nay, Reliant Stadium. D'oh !

OC4, yes, the whole area... Mt Davis (highest point), Ohiopyle (great state park), Ft Necessity (where G Washington lost his only battle), Seven Springs (great ski runs), Flight 93, and of course, the area was also home of the Whiskey Rebellion. We've all been taxed ever since.

Anonymous T said...

TTP - FYI Texans home grid-iron is soon to be NRG stadium. BTW, my fav ball park ever is Wrigley Field - I've only been there once... but, hey, batter, batter...

Kevin - thanks for the info. DW agrees at 19, TXT is wrong. There's a Freakanomics episode there.

C, -T

OwenKL said...

Husker: Thanks for the stereogram. Love the things because the rest/exercise my eyes, cut down the eyestrain from looking at a screen all day. It's also a good technique for spot-the-differences puzzles.

Actually, I think with the HAREM guards, they take TWO for the team. Just take one and you've got a unique eunuch. While he's a virgin, he could ride a unicorn! (Hmm, could that be a puzzle theme?)

fermatprime said...


Thanks Matt for "just right" hump day offering! Jazz: your write-up was terrific (except for that gal's rear end).

The usual write-overs. But no cheats.

Had a good night's sleep for a change.

Watched both episodes of Fargo last night. Anybody else??? Good, but grim. The star is a real villain!


Anonymous T said...

fermatprime - glad to hear you are feeling better. Re: Fargo - I saw the movie that's enough for me...

HG - maybe a beer will help with the stereogram. I think I'll try now.

TTP - my brother is moving from SPI to CHI (Naperville actually - why are the houses so cheap?) - he just got his first taste of overnight construction. An AHA MOMENT for him.

Cheers, -T

Anonymous T said...

Whoot! - Here's the link to ADIDAS and his Puma brother Forbes . G'Nite -T

Lucina said...

That is a very interesting article about the Dassler brothers. I had no idea about their feud or the origin of Adidas and Puma.

Thank you for posting it. It's just amazing the things I learn through this blog.

I'm glad you had a good night's sleep and are feeling better. I wish you many more.

G'night to all.