Mar 9, 2015

Monday, March 9, 2015 Carol Hacker

Theme: Synonyms - Terms for changes in elevation.

17A. Past one's prime : OVER THE HILL

25A. Perilous course to go down : SLIPPERY SLOPE

43A. Achieves one's goal : MAKES THE GRADE

58A. Interest-paying institution : SAVINGS BANK

Argyle here. My first thought was this has a lot of echoes from recent puzzles. "Late in life" / "Over the hill" Ageism? We had a puzzle from Ms. Hacker last fall but still have no information about her. Personally, I found this effort rather flat with few redeeming qualities. I hope I'm missing something.


1. Works with yarn : KNITS

6. Anheuser-__ Brewery : BUSCH

11. Solomon, for one : JEW

14. Valium drug company : ROCHE. Swiss health-care company.

15. Snow-block home : IGLOO

16. Logger's tool : AXE

19. Doc for a kitty : VET

20. Thickness-measuring instrument : CALIPER

21. Hiker's tool : COMPASS

23. Mauna __ : LOA

24. Actress Zellweger : RENÉE

30. Margarita condiment, in Mazatlán : SAL

32. Tiny amt. of time : NSEC. (nanosecond)

33. Ballet skirt : TUTU

34. Vote in : ELECT

36. Tom Collins liquor : GIN

38. Red giant with a carbon-rich atmosphere : C STAR

39. Say with assurance : AVER

40. Red-shirted bear : POOH. No pants.

42. Prefix with bar : ISO

48. Skin openings : PORES

49. "Saw __": second "Saw" sequel : III

50. Popeye's adoptee : SWEE' PEA

53. Lacking a handle? : UNNAMED

57. Bother a lot : IRK

60. Alphabet finale : ZEE

61. Where embryos develop : UTERI

62. Do-or-die poker bet : ALL IN

63. Finale : END

64. Heat-resistant glassware : PYREX

65. Writer/director Allen with four Oscars : WOODY


1. McDonald's founder Ray : KROC

2. __ Scotia : NOVA

3. Atlantic republic at the edge of the Arctic Cir. : ICEL. All I'll say is that it's been used before(still doesn't make it right).

4. Roller-coaster ride feeling : THRILL

5. Climactic tennis match situation : SET POINT

6. Oktoberfest quaff : BIER. The 'k' clues it as German.

7. "That turns my stomach" : "UGH!"

8. Deli machine : SLICER

9. Ant complex : COLONY

10. Watson's associate : HOLMES

11. Perked pot contents : JAVA

12. Couple that's split : EXes

13. Dampens : WETS

18. Piles : HEAPS

22. Furrier's hides : PELTS

24. Cookbook contents : RECIPES

25. Streamlined : SLEEK

26. Take down a __: humble : PEG

27. Navel variety : OUTIE. Belly button.

28. School support gps. : PTAs

29. Peseta replacement : EURO

30. Tailor's line : SEAM

31. Thomas __ Edison : ALVA

35. __ suzette: dessert pancake : CRÊPE

37. Christmas quaff : NOG

38. Logger's tool : CHAINSAW

41. Round gasket : O-RING

44. Cleans with a paper towel, as a spill : SOPS UP

45. War-ending pact : TREATY

46. Shot put competitor, e.g. : HEAVER

47. Devil, in Durango : DIABLO

50. Small or medium : SIZE

51. Small songbird : WREN

52. __ out a living: barely got by : EKED

53. Windows alternative : UNIX

54. Bueno's opposite : MALO

55. City near Tulsa : ENID

56. Big Apple fashion initials : DKNY. Donna Karan New York

59. Anger : IRE



OwenKL said...

There once was a duck who lived on a HILL,
Along came a fox, with his purse needing fill.
Said the fox, "There's a fee
For excess gravity,
Since you live on a SLOPE, you must pay this bill!"

But this was a fowl who was nobody's fool,
In fact, as a flier, he'd attended 'high' school.
Said the duck, "I contest
This amount you assess;
What goes up must come down is Newton's third rule!

I know going up uses gees in excess
And if that was it, I'd owe this I guess.
But I pay them back in
When I go down again,
So I know that this tax bill's a HEAP of B.S.!"

Lemonade714 said...

Monday, Monday

Hope you all have adjusts to the tie change.

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Mind's a bit fuzzy and it's still dark outside. I love the idea of Daylight Savings Time, but really wish they hadn't moved it so far forward. I don't need the extra daylight hour when it's still cold and snowy outside, and I really hate getting up in the dark...

Puzzle was meh. IRE and IRK together. HEAVER. CSTAR. ENID. ROCHE.

And then, of course, there was JEW. Maybe it's a generational thing, but my parents really hated being referred to as JEWS instead of Jewish people. According to them, calling somebody "a JEW" was almost always meant as an insult, especially since it was often preceded by an adjective such as "dirty" or "greedy." As a result, I still get a bit twitchy when I see the word.

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

I'll take an opposing stand. I liked this one. Thought it was just right for a Monday, and it had some interesting fill: CALIPER, DIABLO, SET POINT, MALO I'm sure Marti will have some comment about the spelling of ALLIN.

My POOH started out as POGO and my HEAVER was a HURLER -- he was toilet-huggin' in either case. It all came out OK.

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Argyle and friends. I wasn't bothered by this puzzle. The theme came easily to me and was just the right challenge for a Monday.

No mention of the two Logger's tools = AXE and CHAINSAW.

It's still pitch black as I do this puzzle. It always takes a few days to adjust to the time change.

QOD: Money is the great tool through whose means labor and skill become universally co-operative. ~ Leland Stanford (Mar. 9, 1824 ~ June 21, 1893)

Yellowrocks said...

This puzzle was okay by me for an early week offering. It had some interesting fill, as DO said,
I love the long evenings with DST. I like going out at night when it is still light. The dark mornings are short and only last a few weeks.
North Jersey is full of Jewish people. Around here Jew as an adjective is almost always pejorative, but Jew or Jews as a noun is usually neutral.
Plenty of CSOs to Tin, Busch, GIN, MARGARITA.

thehondohurricane said...

Good day everyone,

No complaints from me today, especially since I solved it. But, there're a couple of fills that I thought were questionable.

I'm not a big follower of TracK & Field, but I never heard anyone call a shot put athlete a HEAVER.

Have no idea what the "SAW" series is, but the III was predictable.

I don't have a dog in this fight, but like Barry, my thoughts were the similar to his for 11A.

Anyone know of a savings institution paying "real" interest these days?

No storms predicted for the work week, but on Saturday we could get slammed again.

John Lampkin said...

I half adjusts without incidence. Wide a wake hear.

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Carol Hacker, for a fine puzzle. Thank you, Argyle, for a fine review.

Well, I did this one last night on the IPad. So, I know I got it right.

The puzzle was fine. Good Monday level. Theme worked. Very well done.

ROCHE was a tough one for me. Got it with perps.

Had BEER then fixed that to BIER after IGLOO.

ALVA was easy. I worked near and visited Edison's birthplace in Milan, OH, many years ago.

DKNY was bot known to me. Got it with perps but had no idea what it was until I came to the blog.

Off to my day. See you tomorrow.


( )

Madame Defarge said...

Hello all.

Thanks, Carol for the puzzle.

I haven't done a puzzle since Thursday, as I am back in Dallas--to help out with my grandsons during Spring Break. I'm very busy here on my daughter's urban "farm": two boys, three dogs, eight chickens and a tortoise. This all made today's puzzle a welcome romp.

I always want nano for NSEC. ICEL sounds like an Apple system of some sort. We used to follow HS Track and Field. I never heard the shot put fellow called anything but the "Middle Linebacker from football."
KNITS, of course, was my fave--except works with yarn sounds like a job--I prefer plays with yarn.

WBS: my mom's best and life-long pals were Jewish, not Jews. For me, anything else sounds harsh.

I love rising in the dark: dawn and sunrise provide the best part of the day--beautiful and everything is yet to come.

Thanks, Argyle.

Bartlett said...

QOD: "North Jersey is full of Jewish people."

I suspect many contemporary Jews are reclaiming the J-word much as some African-Americans are reclaiming the N-word.

In any event, the term "secular Jew" is pretty common.

I always thought "Jewish" was kinda strange since "ish" usually implies "not exactly" (e.g. "We'll be there around seven-ish").

By the way, I'm not a Jew but, having grown up in the Bronx in the 50s, in some ways I'm kinda Jew-ish.

Yellowrocks said...

The athlete does heave the shot so, in a sense, he is a beaver. It is not what he is called but what he does. He is one who heaves.

Tinbeni said...

Since I "Rate" all crossword puzzles based on the number of "Booze-Answers" this one grades out as A-PLUS.

Especially liked BIER crossing into BUSCH.
And GIN crossing into NOG (mine would have some rum in it ...

Then my morning Mug-of-JAVA made its appearance.

Carol: Thank you for a FUN Monday puzzle.

A "toast-to-ALL" at Sunset.

HeartRx said...

Tin, I also noticed lots of drinking going on in this puzzle, and figured you would approve. ;-)

WBS about JEW. And WAS about the puzzle. I "got" the theme, but thought it fell flat. (Pun intended.)

Is a BANK really synonymous with HILL? It's a stretch, IMO.

And ICEL and HEAVER? Ugh.

Lemonade714 said...

That is what I get trying to comment from Kindle before I am awake. I did not wear a tie today, so I have nothing to adjust.

I am a Jew and a Rabbi friend does agree that the term Jewish is offputting as being non-committal. The word in a puzzle does not offend me, I have been called much worse.

Ergo said...

Thank you Carol and Argyle.

Good Monday speed run. Enjoyed the charming clue 'Red-shirted bear.' Spent a fair amount of time trying to recall what Yogi used to wear (I believe it was merely a necktie. A pair of perps then set me straight on POOH.

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

I agree with Argyle's assessment. There is not a lot to criticize but there is also not a lot to praise, either.

Still adjusting to the time change. The weather has turned milder but a possible storm come Saturday.

Have a great day.

C6D6 Peg said...

I agree with Argyle and Marti on the puzzle, theme, fill. Wasn't too exciting, although it was easy.

Last week's Mon and Tue puzzles were a lot more interesting.

Thanks, Argyle, for the nice write-up.

Avg Joe said...

Yeah, it was a little tame. But it was day appropriate in difficulty. It's got a decent beat and you can dance to it.

CrossEyedDave said...

Yeah, I tried to do one of these once. Live & learn...

I guess they weren't slippery enough...

I always thought of grades as making access easier...

You need a bank at this bank. or maybe some steps...

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

What Avg. Joe said: it was day-appropriate in difficulty. Easy Monday romp, just right for a foggy brain not yet adjusted to Daylight Saving Time.

Irish Miss from yesterday: do you mean you have a BBC channel available? All of the British programming we see is what's offered on PBS. Dunno whether any of it is bought from BBC, or if that's even possible. Meanwhile, Grantchester just concluded its first season; the central character is a young, handsome, imperfect vicar with a knack for detective work.

Lucina from yesterday: Marigold 2 sounds good. And yes, Maggie Smith is a gem! We're glad she's keeping busy. Let's face it, she's a perfect fit for Downton Abbey.

Hahtoolah said...

Technically, King Solomon was an Israelite. The word Jew, which is derived from the House or Tribe of Judah, did not come into usage ( in the local language ) until after the Babylonian exile around 538 BCE.

Misty said...

What a relief to get a doable Monday puzzle after the rough Friday and Saturday. Many thanks, Carol--and you too, Argyle. I too almost put POGO before POOH. Nice to see WOODY Allen in a puzzle. Figured Tinbeni would love the booze.

Owen, thanks for a delightful poem.

Time to get our taxes done today. Have a great week, everybody!

Chickie said...

Hola Everyone, A finished puzzle with no help is always a plus for me. It was a quick solve, but with a few un-Monday words, like Caliper and Cstar.

However, the theme escaped me until I came here and read Argyle's explanation. Things just filled in with no thought of a theme, other than sayings we hear from time to time.

I thought Lacking a handle for Unnamed was a fun clue.

Other than that WEES for the general overall puzzle.

Still on jury duty--but with days off in between court appearances. I'm not sure when this will end.

Have a great day everyone.

Lucina said...

Greetings, friends.

No DST here so it's bright and sunny.

WEES about the puzzle though spelling KROC as KOCH wasn't a good start. OVER THE HILL forced me to reassess that and I was off and running.

I, too, thought Tin would like the boozy theme and noticed IRK and IRE as well.

WEES about JEW, too. My late brother did extensive research and concluded we were descended from conversos in Spain during the inquisition but that was 500 years ago.

I also noticed ALLIN over WOODY. It's all in the pronunciation.

Thank you, Argyle and Carol Hacker.

Have a lovely Monday, everyone!

Chairman Moe said...

"puzzling thoughts"

Meh; this was pretty basic and quite easy - only reason for a few ink blots was because I forgot to check the perps. Easy start to the week as far as puzzles go

Read an article in the newspaper saying that the correct term is Daylight Saving Time, not Savings time. Did not know that! Been using the wrong phrase for umpteen years.

Just returned from the frozen north; my DW and I were visiting family (my mother, son, daughter and son-in-law; her son, daughter-in-law and grandson). We both decided that unless there is a life-changing situation, we will not venture north again during the winter months. Call us "chicken" if you will . . .

I now can say I have empathy for those of you who DO live up north and for the winter you "survived". Hoping that Spring will come gradually, as all of the melting snow has to go somewhere . . .

Have a good week, all . . .

coneyro said...

Happy Monday everyone!

This puzzle was kind of "meh". The theme was boring, and honestly, most of the cluing was, as well.

The only hiccups were that I couldn't get 1D because I'm not familiar with the name KROC, and no help with 20A because I've never heard of a CALIPER. The rest went in 1..2..3.

As a fellow JEW (or technically a JEWESS), the word by itself does not bother me. It's how I've heard it in a negative context that does. But sticks and stones
and all that....

Getting up in the dark is not something I like. I woke and saw it was after 7:OO AM, but it felt like the middle of the night. My body is being thrown for a loop.Getting older makes it take longer to adjust.
Oh, well...

That's all for me today.

Dudley said...

I'm glad to learn that I'm not the only one who is squeamish about the word Jew. It seems to be freighted with a derogatory slant, so that even when used innocently, offense might be taken. I like Bartlett's 9:07 idea that the word might be taken back, but presume this would be a slow process.

Irish Miss said...

Dudley @ 11:16 - Yes, I get the BBC America channel. I keep forgetting that I have it but the ads for Broadchurch caught my eye.

For anyone interested in the Brian Williams debacle, there is an excellent article in today's NewYork magazine. It gives a lot of behind-the-scenes info that I had not read anywhere else. Quite enlightening.

Anonymous said...

ENID is not anywhere close to TULSA. Same state but 100 miles to the West!

Husker Gary said...

-A 1,000’ SLIPPERY SLOPE in Bellevue, NE
-Dudley and other pilots here: Have you ever doubted your COMPASS when you just felt it was wrong?
-Ageism? I ordered a Tom Collins from a very young bartender at a wedding reception last month and he gave me a look like – Huh?
-Current ISOBARS
-Wearing fur is pretty passé now
-Joann has mined Pinterest for some great RECIPES

Rainman said...

Was going for speed today... got to six minutes and thought I was finished, but ... then got to nine minutes and had a mistake which took another three minutes to find: SWEEPEE/HEEVER. Very poor. Maybe next Monday I'll shoot for six minutes and a new record. If it's very, very easy.
But overall, I liked the puzzle. I would have used a clue like "Wandering ____", for Jew, if I used it at all. Wandering Jew is a beautiful plant, but surely not PC. Not sure. But other than that, no complaints. Nice theme. Typical Monday, I thought. Fine review and fine comments, FINE. As in barely satisfactory? I enjoyed it. Thanks, Carol Hacker.
John Lampkin, your avatar must be Kevin Spacey... do you see it?
Thanks, CED for the unusual photos...
Hand up for those who recognize a reviewer can influence opinions. I vote for letting the solver make the conclusion and remaining mostly neutral.

Dudley said...

Husker 1:15 -

It depends on the compass. If it's the standard Airpath model, the most common in America, it's considered nearly infallible so long as its liquid has not seeped out. My airplane has been changed over to a Hamilton vertical card dry compass which has a better presentation of heading, but reduced reliability compared to a wet compass. Sometimes you have to give it a minute to figure out what's happening.

I've never flown in areas of large magnetic disturbance, as far as I know. Therefore I've never seen freaky Bermuda Triangle compass weirdness.

Anonymous said...

I like to have puzzles that aren't so clever and are quicker to do. Not everyone has the time or patience to try to figure out the obscure and hidden clues before we head out the door to work.

Lucina said...

I thought the same thing about ENID v. Tulsa as I've been to both though a long time ago. If memory serves, ENID is not far from the I-40 and we stayed in a motel there. Tulsa is much farther north.

I don't say often enough how much I enjoy your poems.

And, I passed emissions testing today. That's saying a lot on a ten year old car with over 100K miles.

CanadianEh! said...

Quick solve today with this Monday level puzzle. Probably all that my brain which is still adjusting to DST could handle!

We still have enough snow on the lawn to build an IGLOO and the neighbourhood has plenty of SLIPPERY SLOPEs!

Argyle, is that photo of Nova Scotia from Peggy's Cove? Beautiful area even if a tourist trap in summer.

Wishing you all a good day.

Answer Man said...

Yes, it's a picture of Peggys Cove (no apostrophe, apparently). You can search Google for images by right-clicking on the image. Pretty handy.

Jerome said...

Comparing the N-word and Jew is way off the mark. The former was created by racists to abase and abuse Africans. Africans didn't use the word. Those from a certain ancient Semetic tribe and those who practice Judaism call themselves Jews. What else would you call yourself? If that were my roots I'd proudly define myself exactly this way.

When I was about seven I met a kid who told me he was Jewish. I remember asking him what that meant and he said that they worshipped God in a temple. In my mind I pictured this great palace filled with gold and silver and great statues and all kinds of neat stuff. And dang, all I had was this drab little Baptist church with a crummy paint job!

Spitzboov said...

Good afternoon everyone.

WEES said. Easy Monday. No issues.

fermatprime said...


Thanks, Carol and Santa!

Nice to have an easy one after the weekend!

I love DST!


Yellowrocks said...

All the print and TV outlets here and the Jews themselves use the terms Jew and Jews.
Temple Beth Am's website mentions "Jews-by-birth and Jews-by-choice."
Link Temple Beth Am

The American Jewish Historical Society mentions "stories of Jews in America"
See the middle pane in the first row “American Jewish Interactive Timeline”
Link American Jewish Historical Society

Anonymous said...

Jerome@3:13: "Those from a certain ancient Semetic [sic] tribe and those who practice Judaism call themselves Jews. What else would you call yourself?

How about . . . Jewish.

Lucina said...

Last week a contestant on Jeopardy was described by Alex Trebek as "an observant Jew" and for that reason was wearing a hat. Can anyone explain the meaning of "observant Jew?"

Thank you.

SwampCat said...

Puzzle was okay. Write-up was better. Owen you were more wonderful than usual!

DST...I HATE it! I would love to rant and rave...I feel that strongly about getting up in the dark....but I really don't have anything else to say! It was bad enough when it started later in the year. Does anyone know why they keep moving it back earlier?

SwampCat said...

Lucina, an "observant" Jew is one who practices the religion of Judiasm as opposed to someone who is Jewish by reason of having been born into a Jewish family. (Specifically, having a Jewish mother.). He or she "observes" the religious practices such as celebrating Shabbat and Passover, etc.

Rainman said...

I'm not religious at all... I don't believe in spirits. But I do support and respect religious freedom and the enrichment many people get from their spirituality. I'm just not one, even though I minored in Bible at University. But, I have always wondered about Judaism, if that's the correct term. A convert, for example... would he be welcome at Temple? Would he officially be a Jew then? Or is it a nationality thing, like Solomon was said to be in today's puzzle? (Thanks to, was it Hahtoolah?, for pointing out the error.)

Is a Jew always an Israeli? Dumb question? Dunno. I should know these things but alas... my diminutive cell matter can only absorb so much at once. Thanks for explaining it to me. Appreciated.

Hahtoolah said...


Check you e-mail. I sent you a message.

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

Like D-O, I'll look at this glass 1/2 full. It MADE THE GRADE as a Monday with some sparkle. Arglye's write up was OVER THE top (of the HILL). Thanks.

No real (K)NITS, but CHAIN SAW xing Saw III was particularly gruesome.

I was hoping 53a was Anonymous; a CSO?

Fav: UNIX!

Hondo - To get decent interest on SAVINGS these days, join a Ponzi Scheme. Just get in & out early :-)

Abejo - we had DNKY last week as a clue to YSL.

Jon Steward often calls himself a Jew. I donno and won't go down the SLIPPERY SLOP of elaborating...

Tin - tee-hehe.

SwampCat - I understand there was a concerted effort by the BBQ lobby to move DST up in spring and back in fall. I'll see if I can find a source later (DW is calling).

Cheers, -T

Anonymous T said...

Yep, I heard it in 2007 - DST influence transcript on NPR. C, -T

Lucina said...

Many thanks, Swamp Cat and Hahtoolah. As I've said before, this Blog is a wonderful place of learning.