Dec 22, 2014

Monday, December 22, 2014 Roger Wienberg and Jeff Chen

Theme: A Royal Monday - I'll forgo the pictures because some don't like that first one.

17A. Vietnam War chopper : COBRA HELICOPTER. King Cobra

24A. Supernova named for its apparent resemblance to a crustacean : CRAB NEBULA. King Crab

40A. Publisher with an Antarctic bird logo : PENGUIN CLASSICS. King Penguin

50A. Shade similar to coral : SALMON PINK. King Salmon

60A. Lion, and a hint to critters that begin 17-, 24-, 40- and 50-Across : KING OF THE BEASTS

Argyle here. A lot of themeage for a Monday; three grid spanners, wow! Plus, it appears to be a debut for Roger Wienberg.


1. Address for a Southern belle : MA'AM

5. California wine county : NAPA

9. Chip-in at a doc's office : CO-PAY

14. __ mater : ALMA

15. Preschool basics : ABCs

16. Where to hear high C's : OPERA

20. Measuring stick : RULER

21. Sigh of delight : "AAH!"

22. Atlanta-based news channel : CNN

23. Reverent poem : ODE

29. Caesar's "vidi" : "I SAW". (veni, vidi, vici/I came, I saw, I conquered)

30. Pierre's "Done!" : "FINI!"

31. "Scram, cat!" : "SCAT!". I said, "It can't be SCAT" and yet....

34. Bounty alternative : VIVA. Paper towels.

37. Knife hyped on infomercials : GINSU. No Z.

43. Arrive by corporate jet : FLY IN

44. Sandstorm residue : GRIT

45. Eight, en español : OCHO

46. Pharmaceutical product : DRUG

48. Blessing : BOON

53. "Then what happened?" : "AND?

56. Cunning : SLY

57. Fleur-de-__ : LIS

58. Magazine copy : ISSUE

65. "Too rich for my blood" : "I'M OUT!". Poker, when the bet is too high.

66. Ecstatic review : RAVE

67. Dispense, with "out" : METE

68. Pond critters : NEWTs. The juvenile is called an eft. Both are crossword staples.

69. Was in debt : OWED

70. River of Hades : STYX


1. Close-up lens : MACRO

2. Not whispered : ALOUD

3. Walk leisurely : AMBLE

4. Mature filly : MARE

5. "Not for me" : "NAH"

6. President in a stovepipe hat, familiarly : ABE

7. Techie training site : PC LAB

8. Himalayan, e.g. : ASIAN

9. Murmur lovingly : COO

10. Like across and down: Abbr. : OPP. (opposite)

11. Place for animal vaccinations : PET CLINIC

12. Competition setting : ARENA

13. Entertaining story : YARN

18. Parts of circles : ARCs

19. "Hell's Kitchen" contestant : CHEF

25. Sitarist Shankar : RAVI

26. Bowling over : AWING

27. Major leagues, in baseball slang : BIGS

28. What singers sing in when they don't harmonize : UNISON

29. Trendsetting socialite : IT GIRL

31. Sunblock letters : SPF. (sun protection factor)

32. Cartoon frame : CEL

33. Words said with impatience : ANY DAY NOW

35. DVD predecessor : VCR

36. Suspect's need : ALIBI

38. Org. with .edu addresses : SCH. (school)

39. Support gp. for troops : USO. (United Service Organizations)

41. E pluribus __ : UNUM

42. Like __ of bricks : ATON

47. Game often involving a cart : GOLF

49. Dust Bowl refugee : OKIE

50. "Ghostbusters" goo : SLIME

51. The "N" in TNT : NITRO

52. "Fiddle-faddle!" : "PSHAW!"

53. Balance sheet item : ASSET

54. Off-the-wall : NUTTY

55. Spay or neuter : DESEX

56. Tattooist's surface : SKIN

59. Wal-Mart warehouse club : SAM'S

61. Belly : GUT

62. Extra-play qtrs. : OTs. (overtime)

63. Time for last-minute Christmas wrapping : EVE. Almost!

64. Stream bottom : BED


Note from C.C.:

Today we celebrate the 70th birthday of our sweet Misty! On and off the blog, she's gentle and caring. "Gimme a break" for some unfair clues is the harshest thing she's ever said on this blog.

Misty and her husband Rowland


Barry G. said...

Morning, all (and Happy Birthday, Misty)!

Well, I've always heard that the lion was the KING OF THE JUNGLE and not the KING OF THE BEASTS, and I've never heard of a KING SALMON before, but other than that this was a nice, smooth Monday solve.

A few other minor missteps along the way included trying to start 11D with VET instead of PET, and needing most of the perps to get ASIAN at 8D (I was actually thinking cats, believe it or not).

Billl V. said...

"It Girl" and "Salmon Pink" - Two unknowns. Needed perp help. Also not too big on "Desex"

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Argyle and friends. This was a speed run for me. My only stall was being convinced that Vet Clinic was absolutely correct, hence, looked at COVAY for the longest time trying to figure out what "chip in" at the doctor's office was. Oh. PET not VET!

What do you call a Veterinarian who treats only one species? *

Nice to see the RULER, albeit not in the Royal sense!

I tried Shoo before SCAT.

I also considered Dole before METE.

Happy Birthday, Misty on your milestone birthday.

* A medical doctor.

QOD: The First Lady is an unpaid public servant elected by one person ~ her husband. ~ Lady Bird Johnson (née Claudia Alta Taylor, Dec. 22, 1912 ~ July 11, 2007)

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

I liked the "chew" of this one. MACRO at 1d added to the chew. Nice for a Monday. Argyle, I also resisted SCAT until it became inevitable.

I liked all of the theme answers. AWING, not so much. And with GO__ in place I absolutely drew a blank for that game involving carts. Sorry, Husker.

Bill V. -- those on the receiving end are usually not "too big" on that procedure, either

Happy birthday, Misty! Hope you and Rowland do something special today.

inanehiker said...

Happy Birthday, Misty! and Congrats a day late, Lemonade!

smooth Monday solve - now off to see how many more people have gotten influenza over the weekend :( !

Tinbeni said...

Happy 70th Birthday, Misty My first Sunset Toast is to you.

HAPPY FESTIVUS (for the rest of us) EVE!!!
I already decorated my Festivus Pole.

OK, my pet got vaccinated at the "PET Center" before it became a PET CLINIC ... otherwise this was an enjoyable speed-run.

Thank you! Roger and Jeff for a FUN Monday puzzle.

Nothing to drink in the grid, but I got that covered here at Villa Incognito.


Lime Rickey said...

Speaking of DESEXing, I've never liked it when people refer to spaying and neutering as "fixing" the cat or dog.

Anonymous said...

Cruciverb not working for me today. Anyone else have that problem?

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

What Anon just said. Cruciverb is missing the puzzle file today. Rats.

southernbelle said...

Mornin' to all and congrats to Misty

Most Southern Belles are not ma'ams!

Enjoyed today's was a Fun Run!

North Korean Hacking Agency said...

Huray, we hack the L A Times croswerd.

Crucify the Cruciverb !@!

Take a that L A times, for carrying ads for The Interview, insulting to our grate leader.

Next New York Times. You next. Onward march.

Long live our Great Savior and Leader, (not ill) King Kong Jung. Our great leader is never ill.

Next we hack capitalist running dogs Christmas website.

Ho Ho Ho yourselves.

HeartRx said...

Good morning everyone.


Hahtoolah, I loved your question about veterinarians. I never thought of it like that!!

Happy Birthday, Misty! I hope you and Rowland get to do something special today. I'll eat an extra Christmas cookie in your honor. ;-)

RAW said...

Big shout-out to Jeff for helping me bring "Animal Kingdom" to fruition.
Brainstorming with him was fun.
Hoping you like the puzzle.

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Roger and Jeff for a fine puzzle. Thank you, Argyle, for a fine review.

Yes, no Cruciverb today. So, I walked out to the curb in my socks and picked up the paper. Cold outside, especially the cement driveway.

Got started easily, then COPAY was slow in coming. Got it after a few downs. Makes sense. Usually, when I COPAY, I always get another bill later on. Oh well.

I tried IN GIRL, then IT GIRL became obvious. My only inkblot.

NEWTS agin. Allright!

I even got FINI. Finally, I have mastered french!

GINSU was with perps. I am not a big TV guy.

Happy Birthday, Misty, and many more!

My shingles is about over. Five weeks was long enough. Now I have no feeling on my skin where the shingles were. Kind of numb. Right leg.

See you tomorrow.


( )

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

This was truly a fun puzzle. Knew there was an animal theme going on but the reveal tied it all together. Only miscue was shoo/scat. (That reminds me to thank Hatoolah for yesterday's QOD which I thought was funny but also wise.)

A very Happy Birthday to our dear Misty who is just as sweet and kind as CC mentioned. I hope your day is as special as you are.

Many thanks to Roger and Jeff for starting our week of puzzling with such an enjoyable offering. And thanks to Argyle for the spot on expo.

Have a great day.

desper-otto said...

RAW -- thanx for dropping by. Was this, indeed, your first published puzzle?


Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Happy Birthday, Misty. Drei Mal Hoch!

Didn't see the 'king' connection before coming here. But I enjoyed the puzzle. Nice varied fill. Liked the long downs, too. No searches or erasures were needed in the solve..
LIS - Couple weeks ago we had LYS.

SwenglishMom - From yesterday's blog. Is Farmors in Gothenburg a kind of 'Mall of Sweden'?

Qli said...

Nice Monday puzzle and expo. Hand up for VET CLINIC, but COVAY nixed that one.

Happy Birthday, Misty! lovely photo of you ad your DH.

Lucina said...

Greetings, friends! Thanks, Santa, for ushering in the week's puzzles. Shouldn't you be preparing for your big trip?

A very happy birthday to you, Misty!

Good thing this is quick and easy Monday because it's a busy one. I have not one, but two events on my calendar today.

I have a friend from Louisiana and she always addresses women, MA'AM. Yes, ma'am, no ma'am.

IT GIRL was slow in coming but SCAT gave it up and I enjoyed the misdirection of VIVA vs. Bounty. My CLINIC was a VET one for a while, too.

I missed you all yesterday but the whole day was surreal and luckily my illness lasted only one day, Saturday.

Now off to the races!

You all have a tremendously wonderful Monday!

Husker Gary said...

Argyle’s summative paragraph works for me!

-My good friend flew COBRA’S in Vietnam and then flew “fat tourists” into the Grand Canyon for years
-Find CNN on this liberal -> conservative scale
-ODE – What did she and Billy Joe McCallister throw off the Tallahatchie Bridge?
-Tech Caesar?
-GINSU, you’d be surprised at how few tin cans I cut
-The GRIT of the dirty 30’s drove a lotta OKIE’s out
-AND then… (2:54)
-STYX is the fifth confirmed satellite of Pluto, whatever that is ;-)
-I suspect our friend constructor/photographer John Lampkin has a great MACRO lens for his pictures like this one of an ant grooming an ambush bug
-A movie about the original IT GIRL
-If you COO, you’re probably pitching woo, uh, too
-Lily (see avatar) is pet of the month at our PET CLINIC. All right, it was just a random drawing, but still…
-We had an Asian man in town who got wealthy sexing chickens
-HBD, Misty!

Sallie said...

Good morning everyone.

Happy Birthday, Misty. I enjoy your comments.
I agree with Barry G. in that I've heard or read only "King of the Jungle".

HeartRx said...

HG, very interesting graph of liberal--->conservative news sources. I also found it interesting, that the two I always read are Slate (far left) and the Drudge Report (far right)!!

And I don't know what she and Billie Joe was throwin' off the Tallahatchie Bridge, but I do remember that her brother opened a store in Tupelo.

Yellowrocks said...

Several hours ago I edited in the preview mode and lost my post. Dang! Anyway by now it's all been said. I knew the theme answers were all animals but missed the KING connection.
VET CLINIC before PET CLINIC. COVAY showed me my error.
HG, my first thought for IT GIRL was Clara Bow, too.
To me, King of the Beasts is more common than King of the Jungle and makes more sense. Lions don't live in the jungle. In Africa, lions can be found in savanna grasslands with scattered Acacia trees which serve as shade. Their habitat in India is a mixture of dry savanna forest and very dry deciduous scrub forest.[
Abejo and Lucina, I am glad you are feeling better.
Happy birthday to Misty.
Is it incorrect to say "Yes, Ma'am," to a southern belle?

JD said...

Good morning all,

Fun puzzle..enjoyed the theme, but did take a minute to go over animals in a pond. if I had spelled okie correctly, the SE corner would have easily fallen in place.Having dole didn't help.

School is out, so Grandma has 3 energetic little guys today. name any game... We're playing it. RAVE reviews for hide 'n seek.

Lime Rickey said...

Well, for "King of the Jungle" vs. "King of the Beasts", there's always GoogleFight. The results are pretty lopsided.

Of course if you asked Bert Lahr he'd probably vote for "King of the Forest".

Anonymous said...

I can not access today's puzzle. Neither can me friend. Obviously others are able to. Does anyone know what is wrong?

Misty said...

My goodness, what a wonderful day to start the week--with C.C.'s lovely announcement, all of your sweet birthday wishes, and a terrific puzzle by Roger and Jeff, to boot. It truly doesn't get any better than this! Not a speed run, which was actually nice since I had to deal with those challenges everyone has already mentioned. But it all fell into place. Fun expo, Argyle. All a reminder of why I love this blog so much.

C.C. I still remember that your first birthday wish to me some years ago was written in the sand. Blew me away. What a wonderful spirit you bring to all of us.

Have a lovely day, everyone!

Yellowrocks said...

King of the jungle might be more popular, but it makes absolutely no sense.Crossword puzzles frequently use the less popular answer. And all those votes for beasts mean it is not unheard of.

Montana said...

Happy Birthday, Misty!

I needed perps for GOLF!
I missed the 'King' part of the theme until reading the blog.

Today I used the LA Times site on my iPad. I am getting more used to it when necessary. Still prefer Cruciverb, though.


Rainman said...

Happy Natal Anniversary, Misty.

Nice Monday puzzle. Thanks to both constructors and reviewer.

Not sure where I first heard of King of the Beasts, but it may have been a biblical reference. Samson, maybe. Didn't he kill a lion with his bare hands, or something like that? Don't have time to research it now.

Wimoweh said...

"In the jungle, the mighty jungle, the lion sleeps tonight."

- The Tokens (1961)

JD said...

Good morning all,

This I'm not an alien thingie drops me or just winds around. Does it get better? Maybe it doesn't like me going out! Boys out of school this week.

Enjoyed the puzzle, but did take some erasing in the SE corner. Spelled okie incorrectly and had dole, so that was my only issue.Also paused to think of pond pals and thought scat was wrong since it was so similar. Thanks Roger,Jeff, and Argyle...all fun!

Happy Birthday Misty...enjoy your day!

CrossEyedDave said...

The King of Beasts indeed!

HBD Misty! (& a repro of CC's sand pic classic!

SwampCat said...

Really enjoyable puzzle today, and great write up. My only nit is Measuring Stick at 20A. I was taught many years ago that Ruler is a monarch and a measuring stick is a rule, as in carpenters rule. I have no idea if that is still correct! Anyone know?

Ergo said...

Perfect Monday offering. Thank you Jeff and Roger. Thanks Argyle for the write-up. Happy birthday Misty.

Last night I saw the stage production of "Christmas at Leons" at Mahoney State Park (Husker Gary and Avg Joe have likely patronized this state gem of a recreational area).

Anyway, I warmed to the production during Act I and silently sobbed in my seat during Act II. I had no idea the absence of my Christmas spirit going in, and the saturation upon my exit.

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi gang -

Nice Monday puzzle, with a bit of crunch. Missed the king connection, and I was looking for it.

Mix of fresh fill and some X-word classics today.

Must have gotten IT GIRL all from perps. Never read the clue.

Today, Christopher Bill takes us to Hooville.

Bright and sunny here today. We're supposed to get some snow Christmas eve night, so maybe there will be a white Christmas.

So - Let it Snow.

For all the hard prep work I put in, my solo came out rather Meh! but Joe May on alto played a gem.

Cool regards!

Anonymous T said...

Hi all!

I started the puzzle before the coffee finished brewing and scratched my head a lot. I looked down - Chen? Noooo!, it's only Monday!

After the 1st dose of caffeine, everything fell into place and was quite enjoyable with no write-overs. Thanks to RAW (and for dropping by), Jeff, and of course Argyle.

Fav: FLY IN as I'm looking forward to seeing my brothers & sisters when I fly in on 12/25.

I've already used my STYX and GINSU music links, so I'll spare ya'll.

HD - Interesting political spectrum link - I find it funny that BBC is on the list.

HBD Misty!

Cheers, -T

CanadianEh! said...

I'm still finishing the weekend CWs after all the excitement of early family Christmas celebrations and 3 grandchildren in the house. I must be out of practice because I found this a little crunchy for Monday but I did get the theme! (and I am familiar with using KING OF THE BEASTS.

My downfall was the NE corner. Hand up for having VET (we NEVER have a co-pay (or any payment) at the doctor's in Canada!! My mind was at the vet's and I was thinking that maybe COVAY was a microchip. LOL!

I must put GINSU into my memory bank. That is not a knife that is familiar to me. We must have escaped the hard sell in Canada.

Happy Birthday Misty!

Bill G. said...

Very happy birthday Misty!

Vet before PET, I had trouble with COPAY, CRAB NEBULA was a gimme; WEES. Thanks Roger, Jeff and Argyle.

I got my shingles shot a month or two ago. I don't envy what Abejo is going through. How come I never heard about shingles until about 10 years back?

JD said...

Bill, our parents and that generation never talked about any of the ailments that older people get, and asking their age was a real No No.. I did have a great aunt who suffered from hemeroids, but I guess in our house they were called piles. Whenever that word came up at the dinner table, my dad would pop up out of his chair and grab his bottom. We thought it was hysterical, but never understood why until later.

Yellowrocks said...

A ruler can be called a rule or a line gauge. I have been calling it a ruler for 70+ years. Where I taught they were always called rulers, in school and in the supply catalogs.

Avg Joe said...

Happy Birthday Misty!

A pretty easy Monday run for this one. I already had Copay in place, so I avoided the Vet / Pet trap. Didn't figure out the theme without the reveal, but enjoyed it.

Lime Rickey said...

A scrap from my ute:

Glory, glory, hallelujah,
Teacher hit me with a ruler.
I bopped her on the bean with a rotten tangerine . . .

Bill G. said...

If I had a nickle for every time I got distracted.....I wish I had a kitty...

Puzzle: How many squares are there on a chessboard (8 by 8 grid)? Not so fast! There are more overlapping squares of different sizes than you might think of at first. After you have solved this problem, could you easily tell how many total squares on a board with ten squares on a side? Fifteen squares on a side?

Jazzbumpa said...

Acchhh -

Forgot to say HBD, Misty.


fermatprime said...


Thanks to Roger, Jeff and Santa!

A bit crunchy for a Monday. NYT speed. 3 other puzzles easier. Two were by Gail G.

Many more happy birthdays, Misty!


Anonymous said...

Thank you, Argyle, for not posting the photo of the first beast. I have a phobia of those reptiles and would have probably damaged my IPad because I always jump in fearful surprise when the pictures come up. I am truly grateful!

Jayce said...

Happy birthday wishes to you, Misty.

Anonymous said...

Re 39D: Is anyone else getting tired of USO? That's about 13 appearances in the last three weeks.

Misty said...


What a treat to see that wonderful sandy birthday wish again! The best "card" I've ever gotten in my 70 years! Thank you so much for retrieving it! And thank you, C.C., for sending it!

Pat said...

Good evening. Thanks to Roger, Jeff and Argyle for this fun interlude to my day.

Nothing new to add to the conversations.

Happy Birthday, Misty! I hope you've had a great day.

Congratulations to Mr. and Mrs. Lemonade. May you have many years of wedded bliss.

Over the past few years we have remodeled the kitchen and remodeled or updated the bathrooms. None of them had the trim and doors painted, so, today was Day 11 of the "paint every surface in the house that hasn't been done yet". The basement and second story are done, now they're on the main level. By the end of the year it should be done. I want my house back!

Happy holidays to all, whatever you celebrate!


Bill G. said...

Misty, your sandy birthday card reminded me of an old song about love letters...

I headed out in sunshine for my bike ride but the fog rolled in. Still OK...

Bill G. said...

Another very cute kitten video!