Aug 12, 2014

Tuesday, August 12, 2014 Ellen Leuschner and Jeff Chen

Theme: Friends - Although there are circles, it's doubtful they helped in solving.

39A. Close associates, and a hint to this puzzle's highlighted squares : CIRCLE OF FRIENDS

1D. 39-Across, in slang : PEEPS. Short for the people one considers friends or close pals.

57D. 39-Across, in slang : POSSE. Short for the people that congregate around a leader of sorts.

Argyle here. Starting at 12 o'clock, PAISANO, COMRADE, BRO, and AMI. Friends around the orb. Four beefy corners to the puzzle. Ellen Leuschner is a new name to us; hope she stops by.


1. Aerospace giant __ & Whitney : PRATT

6. Oft-mispunctuated word : ITS. or is it IT'S?

9. Bravery in battle : VALOR

14. Like a foggy graveyard : EERIE

15. Letters in a graveyard : RIP. Finding regular letters in a graveyard might be considered EERIE.

16. Love a lot : ADORE

17. Name on a WWII bomber : ENOLA

18. Brewpub offering, for short : IPA. (India Pale Ale)

19. Actress Watts : NAOMI. Here with her little buddy.

20. Garden mulch : PEAT MOSS

22. Monkeylike : SIMIAN. or King Kong like.

23. Evening in Parma : SERA. Parma is near the top of the Italia boot.

24. Like shrinking violets : SHY

25. Fashion-designing twins : OLSENS. Famous for being famous.

26. "Conan" channel : TBS

28. Puerto Rico, por ejemplo : ISLA

29. Musical genre related to punk : EMO

32. Actor Quinn : AIDAN. Captain Gregson on TV's "Elementary"

35. Startle : ALARM

42. Become sour : GO BAD. But not bad if talking about some pickles.

43. Hard to startle : STOIC. Really?

44. Granola grain : OAT

45. Brest beast : BÊTE. As in bête noire.

47. Eponymous guitarist Paul : LES. Many guitars bear his name.

49. Smartphone feature : CAMERA

52. Vino opener? : VEE

54. Show appreciation, in a way : CLAP

58. Exaggerate : OVERDO

59. Legendary city of gold : EL DORADO

61. Heaven-sent food : MANNA

62. Usher's offering : ARM

63. Angler's bucketful : WORMS

64. Heaps : PILES

65. Pennsylvania, for one: Abbr. : AVEnue

66. Singer Costello : ELVIS

67. Slow-moving arboreal critter : SLOTH

68. "On __ Majesty's Secret Service" : HER

69. Blue-gray : SLATE


2. Three-time Golden Globe winner Zellweger : RENÉE

3. Riotous, as a crowd : AROAR

4. Charge, in a joust : TILT AT

5. Jets, Mets or Nets : TEAM

6. From Donegal, say : IRISH. Although born in Chicago, Aidan Quinn had Irish parents and spent time growing up in Ireland.

7. A bit buzzed : TIPSY

8. Place to chill : SPA. 62D. "Yeah, that's the spot!" : "AAH!"

9. Rapper whose name sounds like a dessert : VANILLA ICE

10. Water, facetiously : ADAM'S ALE

11. Sarge's superior : LOOIE. (Lieutenant)

12. Finance guru Suze : ORMAN. Often seen on PBS.

13. Buckboard controls : REINS

21. Davis who was married to Ruby Dee : OSSIE

22. Letters in the sand, perhaps : SOS. On a deserted isla, ok; in a cemetery, eerie.

27. "Horsefeathers!" : "BALDERDASH!". A nice long entry partnered with Vanilla ice. Hmm.

28. Facts and figures, for short : INFO

29. Heart chart: Abbr. : ECG. (electrocardiogram)

30. "O Sole __" : MIO

31. Mars or Venus : ORB

33. Two pills, e.g. : DOSE

34. Toward the back of the boat : AFT

36. "It's __-brainer" : A NO

37. Nutritional qty. : RDA. (Recommended Daily Allowance)

38. Hours in Tempe, Ariz. : MST. (Mountain Standard Time)

40. Popular wine grape : CABERNET

41. Hot under the collar : RILED

46. Lao Tzu's "path" : TAO

48. Move with a mouse wheel : SCROLL

49. Freebies : COMPS. Items received free of charge, complimentary.

50. Be of help to : AVAIL

51. __ Park, N.J. : MENLO. Thomas Edison set up his home and lab on the site of an unsuccessful real estate development, "Menlo Park".

52. Enthusiasm : VERVE

53. Toon hunter who has twouble with some wanguage : ELMER. Bugs called him, "poor little Nimrod".

55. Immature insect : LARVA

56. Let in or let on : ADMIT. Neat clue.

60. Is in the red : OWES



OwenKL said...

Although crossword puzzles are square,
And this place is a corner, I'm aware,
We gather here lends
A camaraderie to this hobby we share!

When nobody else is at home
The crossword I work all alone.
But I found here my PEEPS
To talk solving techniques,
This corner's now my cyber-home!

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Nothing challenging today. A bit on the bland side, but I'm sure it would have been more interesting had there actually been circles in my puzzle. Fortunately, they were not needed to solve any of the clues.

R.I.P. Robin Williams. He brought a lot of laughter to my life.

Yellowrocks said...

Quick sashay today. I filled the puzzle in without the circles and added them later to find the synonyms for friends.
My BIL called my 95 year old MIL's friends her POSSE. It struck me as funny.
I first heard ADAMS ALE for water as a teen age waitress. Nowadays I like SAMUEL ADAMS ALE and Sierra Nevada IPA. Also CABERNET. Hi, Tin.
I was looking for a specific French beast before BETE.
In Dublin we took an EERIE ghost tour on a bus decked out as a coffin through graveyards where corpses were dug up for medical schools. The dead came back to haunt the graveyard.
I try to be STOIC or imperturbable as I wait for the test results.
Have a great Tuesday.

HeartRx said...

Good morning!

Fun write-up, Argyle, I also paused at "Hard to startle," for STOIC. To me, it means enduring hardship without complaining.

Thank goodness we finally had a clue that actually helped me to remember a rapper's name: VANILLA ICE. And, of course, CABERNET was a gimme!

The theme was a cute idea, with all the synonyms of "friend" in a circle. It may seem simple, but bear in mind that this type of theme imposes unusual restrictions on the fill. The entire grid must be filled with letters already in place in every section.

There could be some jiggling around of the circle entries, swapping positions, etc. But to get clean fill with so many letters in place was a real feat. I'd like to hear from Ellen and Jeff how they pulled it off!

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

The Barnacle had the circles, but I didn't notice them until Argyle pointed them out. This was a goods Tuesday-level offering with some nice fill.

I don't remember hearing ADAM's ALE or POSSE, as clued. And my clue for ELMER was simply "Toon hunter."

The rule, as I learned it, is that the possessive gets no apostrophe, but the contraction does.

thehondohurricane said...

Good morning all,

I found this puzzle to be a bit on the difficult side because there were quite a few unknowns or "not sure of's" that I had to muddle through. ADAMS ALE, ORMAN, OLSENS, AIDAN & BETE were the main culprits. I eventually got it done, but it wasn't a quick solve.

HMMMMM... Wonder if a fellow poster from the West coast of Florida might claim a DNF rather then fill in the final three letters for 9D?

Meteorologists are predicting a monsoon for tomorrow. Well, we can use the rain, so hopefully some will stick around . Pretty dry in our area.

Sadly , Robin RIP. Your immense talent will be missed.

Dan said...

Some annoying cluing and a lame theme. What else is to say.

Mari said...

Good morning everybody,

When I saw the circles I thought this was going to be a toughie for a Tuesday, but it wasn't so bad.

I wasn't sure about PRATT and IPA, but they filled in.

I sometimes call my friends "PEEPS."

Have a great day everybody.

Anonymous said...

This review contained some very insightful, clever, and witty comments.
Did Argyle actually write this?

NASA, Not another snarky Anon, said...

Whaaat, now we have snarky Anons panning the main Blogger ?

Oh, the Chutzpah of it all ....

kazie said...

I join others in mourning Robin Williams. Such a pity that genius so often has to be coupled with depression. I saw him once in Paris in 1992 I think it was. He was entering the Musée D'Orsay just as I was leaving with a group of students. I stared across the space separating us, and he seemed embarrassed to be recognized, but I didn't approach because of uncertainty. Then later, I saw the movie that he must have been there to film, set in France, with him sporting a mop of red hair, which had been my reason for hesitation at the museum entrance. Opportunity missed.

Today's offering was a bit crunchy for a Tuesday, but I got it all and was delighted to see that the friends were all in different languages, hence really from around the "orb"--at least if you consider BRO to be a different vernacular from COMRADE.

Bête is another example of the French to English transition involving the "ê" indicating the following "s" in the English equivalent.

desper-otto said...

From last night....

Anon-T, we didn't get so much as a drop of rain. I was watching the storm on radar, and it looked just like Moses parting the Red Sea. It went right around us. We did lose power for one microsecond -- long enough for the DirecTV receiver to forget everything it ever knew. A brief 30 minute reboot and it was read to work again.

Bluehen, actually vultures (buzzards in these parts) do migrate. Although you can see one here at any time of year, in spring it's not uncommon to see 40-50 roosting in a single tree. A week later and they're gone.

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Jeff and Ellen, for a fine puzzle. Thank you, argyle, for a fine review.

I used my IPad and did get the circles. Very clever the way they constructed this. I am really amazed. I had to write out the letters in the circles to find the four friends. But, it worked.

Puzzle was fairly easy. A couple of tough ones for me. NAOMI and ORMAN. Also AIDAN. VANILLA ICE was slow in coming.

ADAMS ALE was interesting.

Yellowrocks: I agree with you, Samuel Adams and many IPAs are great!

Tried TILTED before TILT AT became the obvious.

I just contracted to take down three of my five ash trees which died due to Emerald Ash Borer. The village is catching the two by the road. So be it.

see you tomorrow.



Tinbeni said...

Argyle: Wonderful write-up. 'nough said!!!

Ellen & Jeff: Thank you for a FUN Tuesday puzzle.
My head still hurts from the "V-8 can smack" after I finally parsed out the CIRCLE OF FRIENDS, in the circles.

OK, who-da-hell is this rapper VANILLA _ _ _ ????
As such, a DNF! I have my scruples ... they're low ... but they are there!

Faves, of course, TIPSY crossing IPA. Hmm, a visit to my 50-Craft-Beers-On-Tap Pub seems likely later.

But first, I have an appointment to renew my Driver's License.
Only need my:
(1) Original Birth Certificate
(2) SS Card
(3) Passport ... and
(4) Two pieces of mail (addressed to me, at my residence)
To prove I-am, who-I-am, and live-where-I-live.
(Plus something about "My first born male child" ... geez, they are getting tough here in Florida).
[Ed.Note: My unexpired Driver's License (with picture) doesn't prove IT'S me.]

Stiff drinks to follow ...

Lemonade714 said...

The visual puzzle is becoming all the rage where it is not only the words but the picture they make that we must discover. I know Jeff who writes daily on the XWordinfo site likes the challenge of creating and mentoring. This was very ambitious for a Tuesday.

I had trouble seeing where to begin the circle, but once one word appeared the rest feel right in place. I never have heard of Adam's Ale; why not Adam's Apple Cider?

Tinbeni said...

re: ADAM'S ALE (my learning moment of the day, that IT'S water).

W.C. Fields gave this rationale for not drinking water:
Fish f*ck in it.

Anonymous said...

I saw BRO but didn't leap to clockwise continuation. Was pressed for time so looked it up. Hadn't even seen COMRADE. That would have done it. I could have just ignored the pesky circles. But no, I'm too OCD for that, as we puzzlers tend to be. At least I have a life to get to; hence my looking it up.

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

This had a bit of a bite for a Tuesday, but all fell into place easily enough. CSO to Marti with Cabernet and to Tin with that bland _ _ _ and, yours truly with Irish.

Nice job, Ellen and Jeff and great expo, Argyle. Snarky Anon at 8:18 must be, (A) Seriously myopic, (B) Seriously dense, or (C) Seriously Snarky. Every regular reader of Argyle's write-ups knows they are always insightful, clever, and witty. As Jack Nicolson said in As Good As It Gets, "Go sell crazy somewhere else!"

Hondo, we're expecting the same rains as you are, later today.

RIP, Robin. You will be greatly missed.

YR, I hope the results of Alan's test provide some answers and directions.

Have a great day.

thehondohurricane said...


Too funny. I have a two foot figurine of WC on my desk, but the SOB never talks!

NASA, v. s., vide supra, as above said...

Watching 'The Wolf of Wall Street', I saw/heard Leo DiCaprio using Lemon 714. Brought back memories.

Lemonade714 said...

FYI, 10:24 comment; the pill was Lemmon 714, two M's.

The old joke was the preacher at a temperance meeting putting a glass of whiskey and a glass of water in front of the crowd. He then took two worms, and placed one in each glass. The one in water swam happily, the one in whiskey died.
He asked the crowd if they understood what they had just seen, and the drunk in the back said,
"Yes, if you drink alcohol, you will never have worms."

Anonymous said...

D-O, BlueHen, more on non migrating Vultures.

Anonymous said...

You're so smart Lemmon. Quick, give us another stock tip!

Anonymous said...

29D The chart is an electrocardiogram, not electrocardiography (that is the method). And when will the constructors learn that the shorthand is EKG, not ECG?

Lucina said...


This was fun! And quick. Did not know PRATT but the downs filled it. I definitely know the time in Tempe, AZ, MST though not in summer as we don't observe daylight saving time.

I love the word VERVE.

Once the grid was complete, the different FRIENDS were quite readable. Well done, Ellen and Jeff, thank you.

And thank you, Argyle, for your clear and concise review. CLAP! CLAP!

Have a great Tuesday, everyone!

Hospitalist said...

BTW, EKG and ECG are both one and the same thing. The German EKG is preferred in hospitals in America, so as not to be confused with EEG - Electro Encephalo Graph - Brain waves. Hospitals in England and Canada and Australia, have no such problems.

Zoos that not only display their wares, but also serve them as food.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Engaging little puzzle today ending on an eclectic circle of friends. - from BRO - COMRADE as Argyle said. Got VANILLA ICE from the perps. Tinman won't like that.
No searches needed.

I leave you with today's thought:

It matters where you put the price tag.

Misty said...

Wow! Two brilliant puzzles in two days! A week doesn't start any better than this--many thanks, Ellen and Jeff. Of course I had the circles in the LA Times, and loved that interior CIRCLE OF FRIENDS! Just a delight!

Argyle, thanks for pointing out that AIDAN Quinn is Gregson on 'Elementary'--one of our favorite TV shows. I didn't know that.

Owen, what sweet limericks!

So, Tinbeni, what do you think of CABERNET?

Have a great Tuesday, everybody!

Jayce said...

Hello everybody. I am very impressed with the structure of this puzzle. And it has some nifty fill and fun clues. I'm a happy man.

Off to a good start with PRATT, which was a gimme. No pratfalls for me on that one. ADORE and NAOMI made me change lieut to LOOsomething. Ah, IE, not ey. Ooh eee AAH!

So, when an entertainer receives rounds of applause, has he/she gotten the CLAP?

We have a MENLO Park here in Calif, too. I used to work with a guy who lived there. We all called him Menlo Mike.

Mmmm, CABERNET! Love it!

When I filled in ADAMS--- for the clue water, I thought, "Please please please let it not be PEE!"

Apparently Adam also had a spare rib. I wonder which side it was on. Was it put to good use?

Best wishes to you all.

Chickie said...

Hola Everyone, A DNF for me today, as I spelled Olsen, Olson. That crossed Looie. Looio made absolutely no sense, but I couldn't find the mistake as I didn't know the slang for Lieutenant. Oh Well, always a learning experience, right?

I didn't know Aiden Quinn. I'm of Anthony Quinn's generation!

Adams Ale was another unknown, as was Bete. All in all this was a bit of a slog for me today.

Thanks, Marty, for the explanation of how a puzzle of this sort must be constructed. We don't always appreciate the work that goes into a puzzle like this.

Have a great day, everyone.

Bluehen said...

D-O @ 9:00 re: its vs. it's Ditto, that's the way I learned it. An apostrophe only for the contraction. As our teacher explained, "After all, there is no apostrophe in the possessive word 'hers'".
Re: vulture migration I stand corrected as a quick internet search confirmed. Thank you. Maybe I wouldn't have been so ignorant had I seen the behavior you described.
And now for something completely different. Like to see that so many remember and apparently appreciate W C Fields, one of my all-time favs.

Casual Observer said...


Loved your Price Tags, and also from yesterday, loved your Christ the Redeemer construction maintenance crew and the British vacuum cleaner commercial. Makes coming to the blog, all worth it.

Is the Pirelli company, the official sub contractors for maintaining the concrete statue structure, I wonder.

Chickie said...

Tinbeni, Renewing your driver's license shouldn't be so hard. However, I can see where ID would be necessary, but we use our driver's license with our picture for ID. You'd think that the DMV would take their own document for ID now wouldn't you?

We happen to have a friend at the DMV--the mother of a former employee. She knows us, but we still have to show her our ID.

I'm sure my granddauther will know Adams ale, as she works in a local pub. They were bussed to the Sierra Nevada brewery and had a 54 taps night at their pub as a result. She was really impressed that there were 54 different Sierra Nevada beers. Her birthday gift to her grandfather was a special bottle of ale that could only be purchased at the brewery--not for sale to the public. He was pretty impressed.

Chickie said...

Oops, Granddaughter. Where was I when I proofread this?

Irish Miss said...

Owen - Forgot to say how much I enjoyed today's limericks. Bravo.

Avg Joe said...

I guess it was my day to be whelmed by the theme. Impressed by the construction intricacy, but there just isn't enough payoff. Still enjoyed the crunchiness of the solve and only had 1 erasure, changing Louie to Looie.

Blue hen there no apostrophe in hers, but there is in his'n. :-)

Favorite Fields quote: It was a woman that drove me to drink....and I don't believe I ever thanked her.

Chairman Moe said...

Ready for another groaner? Here goes:

When water spurts from the ground IT'S a geyser;
When it rains, and you're out, wear a visor.
Since IT'S called ADAMS ALE,
Let this beer man regale:
I now feel somewhat sadder, Budweiser!!

Sorry, couldn't help myself! Or maybe I DO need help!!

Today's "puzzling thoughts" . . .

I get the print version of the puzzle in my paper, so when I saw the "circles" arranged in a "circular" pattern, I knew something fun was up. I started in the NW corner and breezed through. Dittos with the NE, although I did leave the ALE part of ADAMS ALE out since I had never heard of this.

I was able to navigate through the crossword with no look-ups or cheats, but did have a few write-overs: had STEEL before SLATE in 69A; had RAP before EMO in 29A; and somehow saw VIGOR instead of VERVE for 52D. Although for me, 52D's clue would have been better if it was Ella and Diana's Label. As a jazz lover, VERVE has a much different meaning!

Great Tuesday puzzle! Thanks, Ellen and Jeff.

Chairman Moe said...

OwenKL - nice lim's. BTW, I joined the Lim Group on Yahoo . . .

Tinbeni - I live just down the coast from you, and a couple of years ago I figured I'd better establish my FL DL (I was two years removed from my previous State, but still with a valid DL and plates). So I know what you're referring to with all of the red tape and proofs you need. I know that once I completed my DL and Auto Registration, my bank account was nearly depleted. And get this, in case you weren't aware, the DL in FL is good for 8 or 9 years. But if you move within the state, the cost to change your address is almost the same as the renewal fee.

I guess not having a state income tax gets offset by what it costs for the other "bureaucratic" services . . .

Kevin said...

Hello everyone,

After I got CIRCLE OF FRIENDS, I got a little worried that I was going to have to remember all of the character names from the TV show "Friends." Luckily, there were not enough circles.

Paisano took me a while to remember; I think I recall the word from Ignazio Silone's WWII novel, "Bread and Wine." I will write the word out five times on a piece of paper and hopefully remember it if it ever reappears.

I was sadder this morning about Robin Williams. In my regard of him, beyond his clear gift for comedy, Williams gave some excellent dramatic performances, which revealed the amazing depth of his humanity. One of my favorite scenes of his (and one which helped merit his being awarded the Oscar for that role) was the park bench scene from "Good Will Hunting":

William's Park Bench Scene

CrossEyedDave said...

45A Brest Beast was incomprehensible, but perpable. I normally complain about any French in an English puzzle, but after HeartRxs (no apostrophe) comment, I realize with the difficulty of finding fill for this work of art, I should be glad to have this puzzle to work on...

"I can't spell Paisano, it's Italian!" (I 1st thought 18A was "ale" & then something, something, "P" for the longest time...)

In the end a DNF via FIW (Finished It Wrong) because the 28A V8 can went right over my head, & I put "Isle." I came to the Blog to find out what kind of French "Adamsele" was....

I never heard of Adam's Ale! & worse yet, I cannot find any funny images for it. But I spent so much time looking, I might as well post what I did find:



Anon @10:32, fascinating link on vultures, I had no idea, I just thought we were all fertilizer...

Yesterdays Christ The Redeemer gave me goosebumps...

Oh yes, the theme, a PSA about "circle of friends..."

Tinbeni said...

Misty @11:39 re: CABERNET
ITS Gal-Pal's favorite, so when it comes to wine, I like it just fine.

Chickie @12:45 re: Documentation
Since I have had a Florida Driver's License for 46 consecutive years you would think they would accept their issued ID (my former Drivers License, with my picture) as proper ID.
The nice Lady, who waited on me, explained the additional requirements had something to do with new Homeland Security rules.

OTOH (On The Other Hand) ... I had to wait (and I'm NOT making this up) a total of 4 seconds before I got served.
(Probably the time it took to hand me my Appt.Slip. lol!)

... like I have "all the time in the world" waiting on these bureaucrats ... lol

Chairman Moe @1:22
Good thing you never had any problems during those first two years.
In Florida you have a whooping 10 tens to get your license when you move here or change your residence.

My new one is good for 8 years.

The Brewpub is calling ...

Husker Gary said...

-Okay, I admit it. I wrote out the letters to get the theme on Ellen and Jeff’s lovely puzzle
-Athletes and rappers sometimes have had problems when they continue to hang with their POSSE from their younger days
-IT’S seems to be possessive but, uh, it’s a contraction
-I’ve only seen RIP in cartoon cemeteries
-CELBARS yesterday and IPA today
-An old farmer is a poster child for STOIC. My neighbor’s fields are lush and full of grain and he told me, “I’ve seen hail in October”
-If you haven’t exercised in a while, don’t OVERDO
-Now you (and everyone else) always have a camera at hand! One picture is worth…
-The Duke in EL DORADO
-Did the windmills at which he TILTED charge Don Quixote?
-I’ve got an opinion, why do I need INFO?
-The 2014 Super Moon ORB has been amazing this week
-Edison took some undeserved credit for work that came out of MENLO PARK
-Robin William’s dramatic roles are his most memorable work to me (Dead Poet’s Society and Good Will Hunting. I heard commentators today say that many geniuses have a dark side that bedevils them. One mentioned Gauguin and Michael Jackson…

Blue Iris said...

I think it IT'S cute and funny to see the old western term, POSSE, morphing into a "circle of friends." I've heard my daughter's friend use it.

Liked IRISH and TIPSY side by side.

Thought maybe WORMS was too simple to be the right answer.

Yellowrock, we went on a ghost tour in Savannah, GA. It was in a horse and carriage. I found it to be more historic info than EERIE. Also,I think I've missed info concerning Alan's present challenges. E-mail me, if you have time.

There is a reproduction of Edison's MENLO park lab at Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village, in Dearborn, MI. IT'S worth taking a trip to see it.

JD and CC, I hope you saw my late night post.

Chairman Moe said...

CED @ 2:47

One of my all-time favorite Robin Williams sketches involves your link to "two". The line is uttered at 5:50; and what follows is hilarious: God gives men a brain and a penis, and only enough blood to run one at a time.

What a talent; and what a shame that his addictions and demons (I'm guessing) caught up with him. May he RIP.

Blue Iris said...

I was just thinking about the first time I heard of Robin Williams. We were in Kenya and a prof at Nairobi U., ask us, "What is this crazy show in the USA, Mork whatever? Do Americans really like it?

Avg Joe said...

As nature takes its course in any number of ways, some perverted and some natural, we as a public lose several wonderful entertainers each year. But I don't remember ever feeling such an overwhelming sense of loss as I did yesterday when Scott Pelley gave a brief mention of the news of Robin William's death.

Reinforcing the scope of this loss, our local paper carried it as front page news, not buried in the back. I also don't recall that ever taking place. World leaders, certainly. But not comedians and actors.

As is my wont, I'll offer a song as homage. It was never written with anyone of our era in mind, but I can't think of anything more appropriate today than Vincent

Fare thee well, Robin. You left the world a better place than you found it, even if that wasn't enough for you.

PK said...

Hi Y'all! Great puzzle, Ellen & Jeff! Great expo, Argyle, and thanks for yesterday's heads up about the circles. I finished the puzzle on MENSA then went to your CIRCLE diagram, copied it on paper and went back to Mensa. There I had to reconstruct the words coordinating with the puzzle to glean the CIRCLE letters. By that time, I was tired. I caught on to COMRADE and BRO, but couldn't parse AMIPAISANO going round the ORB. DUH! Had I written it out on a line, I might have had a chance. Oh well, very clever construction.

Owen, your limerick today is so appropriate.

A program on Tibet on TV several years ago had a segment on "sky burials" or feeding human corpses to vultures. I almost thought it sounded more appealing to be bird food and fly around rather than going underground.

I think vultures fly a broad range in search of carrion. We never saw them where I was from until they built a lake and the deer migrated in with the buzzards following. Now a tree full is a fairly common sight. One hog farrowing place always has a bunch waiting for lunch in case some of the huge litters don't make it.

Yellowrocks said...

Blue Iris, thanks for caring. I replied in an email

Bill G. said...


~ Favorite baseball movies? Recently, maybe The Natural, A League of Their Own and Bull Durham? Older, The Pride of the Yankees?

~ Football movies? We just rewatched parts of Rudy while I was eating lunch. I love that movie.

~ I tried a pastrami sandwich at a local deli instead of the fast food place we usually get it. The fast food place's version was significantly better we thought.

~ Gary, Barbara also loves Dead Poets Society. (I'm not sure where to put the apostrophe if at all. Google's choices don't seem to be sure either.)

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

Late post again but I had to stop in and say how much I loved Ellen & Jeff's offering and Argyle's writeup.

26a - How did I put TNT there while thinking White Collar? I donno either. AIDAN was last to fall - that Quinn!

PRATT was a gimme off the bat - I know I've dealt with them but can't remember when (weed-whacker?).

ITS is something I always mess up and DW repeats the lesson. She's in the no.

Hand up for writing out all the circles to figure out my FRIENDS. 39a fell early, but didn't realize the ORBal theme until later.

Fav was MANNA - I don't know why...

CED - Carlin quote priceless. C. Moe - I loved the Williams bit. Did anyone listen to Fresh Air on NPR today? They had a 2006 interview with the seemingly personally SHY Robin Williams.

Cheers, -T

Anonymous T said...

Well, crap - news of Lauren-Bacall's death just hit my radio. IT'S not a good week for CAMERA friendly people. RIP.... -T

Kevin said...

Anonymous T @ last night - I am so glad that you included Mitch in your list of comedic greats cut short. He is one of my favorites. I always file my doughnut receipts under D; I say I do so because I am a Virgo, but my wife always says, "Kevin, stop hiding behind your sign, you have OCD." Oh, the labels and masks we hide under; thank goodness for the great minds that help us pull them back.

Avg Joe @ 5:27 - Thank you for the Vincent link. That is a beautiful song to listen to at this moment.

As the sadness I feel for the loss of Robin Williams refuses to ebb, and because I am IRISH and TIPSY, I would like to offer another swan song for all of the tipplers out there to honor such a great:

Death of a Clown


Bill G. said...

Hey Kevin, I've come to look forward to reading your stuff. I looked at your résumé. What and where do you teach? What part of the LA area do you call home? Anywhere near Manhattan Beach?

I just picked up a half of an El Pollo Loco chicken and some cole slaw. I'm not a big fan of cole slaw but theirs is especially good.

Kevin said...

Bill G. - You're still one of my all time favorites because of that link about the Indian person who cleaned up trash with their machine on a flatbed... sorry, but I do not know how to better describe what that was, only that it was amazing.

I teach English and Composition at California State University, Los Angeles. It's my home away from home.

As for my dwelling history, I have ironically lived next to Dodger Stadium for the past fifteen years. I use the word ironically because I grew up in the Bay Area and I am Athletics fan (in theory), and more importantly because I lost faith in the sport of baseball due to the 1994 strike--I was only sixteen-years-old, so it was one of my first major moments of disillusionment.

On Saturday morning, according to my wife, I woke up and apparently said, "I must have a tostada and it must be from Acapulco; I don't know what a tostada is, and I have never been to Acapulco, but it must be from there." Brandi avows that that is what I said word for word, and then I fell right back asleep. When she got home from the gym with our son, she had bought me a tostada from Del Taco; "I asked her what the heck is this?" She thinks I am crazy, but loves me for it.