Mar 15, 2015

Sunday March 15, 2015 Debbie Ellerin and Jeff Chen

Theme:  "For the Fun o' It" - The OF in each theme entry is humorously re-interpreted as O' F*, where F is merged with the next word.

24A. Irritating swarm? : PACK O' FLIES. Pack of lies.

26A. Halloween party invoice? : BILL O' FRIGHTS. Bill of Rights.

50A. Complex airline route map display? : THOUSAND POINTS O' FLIGHT.  I had to google "Thousand points of light" afterward. I missed the whole Bush Sr. presidency. It's likely coined by Peggy Noonan, who also wrote Bush's "Read my lips: no new taxes" speech.

62A. Guy who rakes leaves, cleans gutters, etc.? : JACK O' FALL TRADES. Jack of all trades. This is the only theme answer where the word following F does not start with L or R.

83A. What measures one's ability to endure traveling inconvenience? : DEGREE O' FRISK TOLERANCE. Degree of risk tolerance. Boomer did not go through TSA Precheck when we traveled last month, yet his boarding pass had special mark, which allowed him to go through the quick TSA line. Mine did not. Weird.

108A. Blundering physician? : DOCTOR O' FLAWS. Doctor of laws.

112A. Campus phobia? : FEAR O' FRATS. Fear of rats.

We have another new constructor, this is Debbie Ellerin's LAT debut. Congratulations!

I mentioned before, 15-letter entries often make the weekday puzzle easier to grid, but grid-spanning 21's are always challenging (19's and 20's are no better). Suddenly you have lots of letters in place (42 letters for Debbie and Jeff). And you have lots of entries that intersect two theme answers. Hard to make them clean. Today's grid is incredibly clean and smooth.


1. "The King and I" heroine : ANNA. And 5. "The King and I" (1956) co-star : KERR. We also have YALIE (88. Jodie Foster, e.g.). Jodie Foster also played Anna.
5. Lakers' all-time leading scorer, familiarly : KOBE. Why the additional "familiarly"?

9. Predator of ungulates : PUMA

13. Say yes : OPT IN

18. Horse coloring : ROAN

19. Spirits that come in bottles : GENII. Mine was GENIE, of course.

20. Pioneer in car safety : OTIS. Is this the elevator guy?

21. Puget Sound traveler : FERRY. Not person "traveler". Jeff lives in Seattle.

22. Cantata component : ARIA

23. Sumatran swinger : ORANG

29. Get off the leash : RUN LOOSE

30. ... and then __ : SOME

31. Sell : RETAIL

33. iPhones, e.g. : PDAS

34. They have heads : LAGERS

36. Square __ : KNOT. Could be MEAL/MILE. Also  72A. Cake __ : MIX. Could be PAN. Also 68D. Space __ : CADET. Could be OPERA. This type of fill-in-blanks clue is not easy.

38. DHs, as a rule : RBI MEN. We also have 82. Two masked men may be behind it : HOME. Home plate. Umpire and the catcher.

42. Wise guy : SOLON. Not MAGI, for a change.

 43. Razz : TEASE

47. Gecko's grippers : SETAE. New to me.

49. Nagano Olympic flame lighter : ITO (Midori)

54. Johns of Scotland : IANs

55. Missays "say," say : LISPS

56. Weird Al Yankovic song parody : EAT IT. Parody of Michael Jackson's "Beat It".

57. Opponents : THEM. Not FOES.

58. ICU staffers : RNS

59. Torso muscle : PEC

60. Grub : FARE

61. Winner's prize : TITLE. Jeff Chen became a father last October. Here is his beautiful daughter Tess.

68. Watched over, with "for" : CARED. I miss my grandma so much, esp when I'm sick.

71. Upper limb bone : ULNA

73. Belle of the ball : DEB

76. Mariner's heading : ALEE

77. Occupied, in a way : SAT AT

79. Provoke : INCUR

87. Swing __ : ERA
89. Titter : TEHEE

90. French bean products? : IDEES. Can't fool veteran solvers.

91. Pre-Aztec native : TOLTEC. Hard to come up with fresh clue for this entry.

93. Poster mailer : TUBE

95. Thus far : TO DATE

97. Tarbell and Lupino : IDAs

99. Beaten on the mat : PINNED

103. Mr. Burns' teddy bear on "The Simpsons" : BOBO. Heard of the bear. But did not know he's in "The Simpsons".

104. Handlebar spot : UPPER LIP. Mustache!

114. Saintly glows : AURAE

115. Scads : A TON

116. Leading : ON TOP

117. Giggly redhead : ELMO. Fun clue.

118. Creator of Dogbert, Catbert and Ratbert : ADAMS (Scott). Googled afterward.  Those are Dilbert's pets.

119. Emergency room supplies : SERA. Tricky non- S answer.

120. Sloughs off : SHEDS

121. Kurt refusal : NEIN. Very curt.

122. Sonic Dash publisher : SEGA

123. Sub : TEMP


1. __ League : ARAB

2. Sushi wrapper : NORI. The dark toasted seaweed. I also like them in Ramen noodles.

3. Polish sites : NAIL SALONS. Great clue/answer.

6. Sign at a studio : ON AIR

7. Spree : BINGE

8. Skating figure : EIGHT. I like this clue also.

9. Stops by : POPS IN

10. Three-time Boston Marathon winner Pippig : UTA. Don't recall this name.

11. Very small: Pref. : MICR

12. Invite from the balcony : ASK UP

13. Not FDA-approved, as a drug treatment : OFF-LABEL

14. First female Speaker of the House : PELOSI

15. Salt-N-Pepa, e.g. : TRIO. I mentioned last time I thought they were a duo.

16. Ticks off : IRES. Wish it were IRKS.

17. Home to MMM and JNJ : NYSE. 3M is based here in MN.

19. Errand runner : GOFER

25. Tapped out? : ON DRAFT. I was thinking of "exhausted".

27. Signs : OMENS

28. "Star Trek" actor with a popular Facebook page : TAKEI. Funny guy. Fun cologne name also.

32. Letter writing, for example : LOST ART

34. "Mean Girls" star : LOHAN (Lindsay). Watched the movie ages ago. Quite a few ex-SNL members.

35. Xmas visitor : ST. NICK

37. Professor, at times : TESTER

39. Strength : MIGHT

40. Fictional landlady : ETHEL. "I Love Lucy".

41. "I'm innocent" : NOT ME

42. __-crazy : STIR
44. Mag wheels? : EDS. Magazine big wheels.

45. Smartphone download : APP

46. Nine-tap signal : SOS. Not familiar with "Nine-tap".

48. Parisian pronoun : TOI

51. Frequent "SNL" host Baldwin : ALEC

52. Cassady of the Beat Generation : NEAL.Interesting read.

53. "Honest!" : IT IS!

59. __ Thai : PAD

60. Keys home: Abbr. : FLA. Florida Keys.

61. Everycowboy : TEX

62. Heckle : JEER

63. Something worn : OUTFIT

64. Sudden outburst : FLARE UP

65. Naysayer : ANTI

66. Charm : AMULET. My friend Roberto wears an evil eye.

67. Critical : DIRE

69. Olds model : ALERO. And 70. Buick model : REGAL

73. Executed perfectly : DONE TO A TEE. Nice.

74. Role shared by Fey and Poehler at the last three Golden Globe Awards : EMCEE. They're a great pair.

75. Certain contests : BEES

77. Harbor seal : SEA CALF

78. Letters in many email addresses : AOL

79. Prez after Harry : IKE

80. Highest degree : NTH

81. Amateur golfer Charlie with three top-ten finishes at the Masters : COE. Had no memory of him. I just found out that he died the day I arrived in the US (May 16, 2001).

82. Really enjoyed oneself : HAD A BLAST. Love this fill.

84. They can make your pupils greater : EYE DROPS

85. Dictator's assistant : STENO. Gimme for veteran solvers.

86. No longer burdened by : RID OF

92. Steering system part : TIE ROD

94. Goes for on eBay : BIDS ON. Topps Heritage is just out. It'll take us lots of bidding to complete the Chrome set.

96. Double-reed winds : OBOES

98. Temptation on the rocks : SIREN. Not drinks.

100. Annual coll. tourneys : NCAAs

101. Practice piece : ETUDE

102. Snug headgear : DO-RAG

104. Alleged visitors : UFOs

105. Phnom __ : PENH

106. Hors d'oeuvre spread : PATE. Want some? I just got a big cup of home-made cornichons from Nelson's Meat yesterday.

107. Lacking color : PALE

109. Avatar of Vishnu : RAMA

110. Virus kin : WORM

111. "Darn it!" sound : SNAP

113. Response to an oversharer : TMI (Too Much Information)



Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

I figured out what was going on with the theme pretty quickly, but couldn't quite figure out the point of it because I wasn't able to read the title of the puzzle. Once I got here and saw that it was "For the Fun o' It," the penny dropped.

Pretty smooth overall, with plenty of nice *AHA* moments and minor feelings of superiority as I managed to successfully dredge up stuff like KERR, TOLTEC and ETHEL.

Wasn't too crazy about RBI MEN, partially because I've never heard the term and mostly because it landed in the one section of the puzzle that was not smooth and gave me the most grief. I had FOES instead of THEM, which led me to enter VIGOR instead of MIGHT and NOT SO instead of NOT ME. It all seemed to work so well together, except that I was left with IF_S at 53D for "Honest!" and finally had to admit something was wrong somewhere. I finally decided to jettison FOES, and that was enough to let me figure out what was going on there.

George Barany said...

Congratulations to DEB-bie Ellerin for her LAT DEB-ut (and for sneaking DEB into the grid), as well as to the prolific Jeff Chen for this fun puzzle, and to C.C. for the delightful writeup. Peggy Noonan crafted Ronald Reagan's memorable speech after the Challenger disaster. If you have 5 min, listen to and watch this.

Yesterday, I told you about a Sunday-sized puzzle by John Child. Today, two more: Say Cheese! by Alex Vratsanos and Would'Jew Look at This?! by Martin Ashwood-Smith. The latter, as edited by David Benkof, has all clues customized for solvers with a Jewish background, and is particularly extraordinary because it contains two themed triple stacks. Hope you enjoy these challenges!

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

I finished in good time, but not without a few inkblots. I couldn't get the person out of my mind with "Poster mailer," so TUBE was slow to appear. And I was certain the "Sub" would be a HERO sandwich. Nope. Nice puzzle.

I always thought "Saintly glows" were HALOES. AURAE could be any old glow.

RBI MEN? Really? I've nevah evah heard that expression.

C.C., I think "familiarly" fits, because you don't call somebody by his first name unless you're on familiar terms.

Anonymous said...

Answer in re: 20a

Link video


Unknown said...

The Week in Review: M 8:32 T 6:17 W 7:52 T 8:07 F 16:00 S 36:55 S 30.24

Friday: I enjoyed Marti's puzzle and appreciated her posting the two theme fills that didn't make the cut. Good stuff.

Saturday: Another Saturday nail-biter that required perp-severance. I was especially stumped trying to think of a complex number that ended in "LAD". In the end, it came down to WAGs in the SE corner since ALAI was an unknown, I was torn between TAX and LAW, and EWES for "crimped-haired critters" still doesn't make sense to me.

Sunday: Getting the theme told me "OF" would be in the middle of each theme fill. That helped. Not knowing UTA I struggled to come up with PUMA (for some reason POPS IN never occurred to me; I had HOPS IN at first).

I should note that most of these would have been DNFs if I was doing them on paper.

See y'all next Sunday. In the Spring!

HowardW said...

A challenging puzzle, with some nice clues. Aside from those mentioned in CC's (excellent) write-up, I especially liked "opponents" for THEM, and "handlebar spot" for UPPER LIP.

By the way, the "nine-tap signal" is "SOS" in Morse code -- it's 3 dots (S), 3 dashes (O), 3 dots (S).

Anonymous said...

Al, beautiful puppy. I imagine he is gone. Mine too. She was a special spotted coach dog. We called her Bailey.

Rainman said...

Got the theme early on, and finished relatively quickly but really never completely understood the O'it, or whatever the title is, until reading C.C.'s explanations for each theme entry. Not to say I didn't have other difficulties... I had to go thru the alphabet to get the X at the TEX/MIX crossing. Everycowboy? One word, for TEX? Don't geddit.
The theme has a faintly familiar letter-substitution effort to it, but I HADABLAST, anyway.
I see Scott ADAMS is mentioned again.
Interesting clue for COE. Charles Coe declined to turn pro golfer, partly because he didn't need it and also we can remember that when he played, the prize purses were very small compared to today. Wasn't Bobby Jones an amateur? I thought he was the best.

Unknown said...

Anon@8:12 . . .

Yes, she was a great dog. A stray so I never knew how old she was (I had her for about seven years) and, when people would ask what her name was, I would say I didn't know. But that got old so I took to referring to her as "The Gypsy". Taking her on the last trip to the vet was the hardest thing I've ever had to do and so, despite the well-meaning advice of others, I'm pretty sure I'll never get another dog. Fortunately my neighbors have dogs so I can get a needed "fix" when I need it.

Anonymous said...

May 16 2001?

I thought long and hard. Probed deep into my history. I remember that day. It was the Wednesday before the Memorial Day week Wednesday that I spent preparing for the big move to Florida!

desper-otto said...

Rainman, just as Rover is "every" dog, Tex is "every" cowboy.

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, C.C., and friends. Ouch! I thought this was a difficult Sunday puzzle.

I wanted Agree instead of OPT IN for Say Yes.

Hand-up for Foes before THEM.

I also thought the Highest Degree would be PHD instead of NTH.

My hubby is going STIR Crazy, since he can't yet leave the house following his surgery. He is will enough, however, to make a mess in the kitchen for me to clean up!

QOD: So that’s the dissenter’s hope: that they are writing not for today but for tomorrow. ~ Ruth Bader Ginsburg (b. Mar. 15, 1933).

Hahtoolah said...

Funny PAD THAI story: I ordered out some Thai food earlier this week. As I was paying for the food, a woman walked up to the cashier and said she wanted to order Mai Tai. The cashier questioned her, "You want a Mai Tai?"
"Yes," the woman insisted. "You know, the dish with noodles and shrimp."

HeartRx said...

Good morning everyone!

I figured this one out right away, sort of. When I came to 26A, I entered BILL OF FRIGHT. Bzzt! When the crossing words weren't making sense, I erased FRIGHT. Then I saw the shift and looked at the title again. DUH!!

It was pretty much smooth sailing from there. I did question how two masked men would be behind "HOME," so thanks for clearing that one up for me, C.C.!!

maripro said...

Loved the puzzle. The theme entries were apt and not strained. Thanks Deb and Jeff.
Thanks also to George Barany for the "Jewish puzzle." I've printed it to give to my Jewish friends.

Rainman said...

D-O, thx, but my question was why "everycowboy," one word?

Madame Defarge said...

Greetings all.

Thanks for a Luck o' the Irish puzzle and to CC for the details--especially the masked men.

Rainman: During the Middle Ages, Morality Plays had characters with trait names, such as Honesty and so on. These characters interacted with the protagonist whose name was Everyman--apparently relating to all of us.

Miss hanging out here. Have been very busy grandson sitting in RAINY Dallas. Lots of puzzles and Monopoly!!!

Avg Joe said...

This was a workout. I got the "O" theme from the heading, but it took until my third theme fill before I realized the F had stuck around only to be relocated. That helped in the end, especially in changing Pesky Flies to Pack O Flies. Had the most trouble in N Dakota where I had Kobi and wouldn't let got, preventing Eight from showing up. In the end, it worked out fine, but it took the better part of an hour.

Speaking of Thai, we had a late birthday outing with 2 of our kids in Omaha yesterday and went the a Laos Thai Restaurant. Wonderful food. I had Ba Mee Moo Dang. A truly wonderful soup, but the rice noodles were about a yard long and it was embarrassing to eat. Whole lotta slurpin' goin' on, but worth it in the end.

Rainman, think along the lines of "everyman".

Anonymous said...

So nobody's got a problem with MICR?

Big Easy said...

After yesterday's flame out, I persevered and finished this one. I had trouble in the same two spots- NW & SE. I don't eat sushi and NORI finally fell due to a stupid mistake on my part. I filled 54A as THE USA AND POINTS O' FLIGHT instead of THOUSAND. I couldn't think of any word that Finished -SALEN. After laying the paper down after 30 minutes I realized my mistake. Finishing the SE was tougher as I tried HERO for TEMP, GERM for WORM, A LOT for A TON, and I wasn't expecting the full spelling of TO A TEE (TOAT).

I loved the clue-'Two masked men may behind it'. I didn't like the SNAP clue- "Darn it" sound. There were unknowns aplenty here- SETAE could have been SEMAE because MOI or TOI could have crossed. SEGA, KERR, BOBO UTA, TAKEI, SEA CALF, COE- all were 100% perps.

Midori ITO had the gold medal stolen from her NOT from Katerina Witt but by the biased judges. All the 'sports' that have subjective judging will always give the top places to the judges' 'favorites', whether these winners deserved it or not.

Big Easy said...

Barry- I also had FOE and VIGOR with NOT SO initially before figuring MIGHT, THEM, and NOT ME.

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

Caught the theme early on but it was a FIW due to the micr/Otis crossing. I had macr/Otas, not associating car with elevator. Still, a silly mistake on my part.

Congrats to Deb on the debut and thanks to both constructors for a pleasant Sunday stroll.

It's gloomy, chilly, and windy here today with some snow showers predicted for the next day or two. St. Paddy's Day doesn't look too promising, weather-wise.

Have a great day.

A. Aajma said...

RE 16 down: My dictionary does not have ire being a verb. Irks would be better.

Steve said...

Congratulations, Debbie! Nice concept.

I've got NORI and sesame wraps in the pantry. It's fun making sushi rolls.

@Anon 9:49 MICR - I'd agree with you. I can't find any word where the prefix is anything other than MICRO.

SETAE was new to me, so I had a WAG between S, M or T and with the 3/1 odds got the winner!

@Rainman - yes, Bobby Jones was an amateur, and he created the Augusta course and the Masters tournament. He's the only golfer to win the "grand slam" - in his era, the major championships were the the Open Championship, the US Open the British Amateur and the US Amateur. He won all four in 1930.

As it's St. Patrick's Day on Tuesday, thoughts naturally turn to corned beef. I've just found a recipe which takes 17 days to make, so I'm going to trot down to the market and get some brisket and start the process. I'll report back at the end of the month.

Lucina said...

Greetings, Word Wizards!

Congratulations to Debbie Ellerin on her debut puzzle! And to Jeff Chen who I feel sure is a great mentor.

It was a fun romp, easy in parts and difficult in others, especially the NE which just took me an inordinate amount of time until I decided to accept MICR as an abbreviation. Really?

The O' theme helped get a jump start on the long answers.

FBIMEN seemed like a sure thing but then ONDRAFT interfered with it.

I have fond recollections of the FERRY ride on Puget Sound last summer. We likely won't go on a sister trip this year because my niece's cancer has advanced to her brain and she requires constant care.

Thank you, Debbie and Jeff for the nice outing and C.C. for your always clear and concise review.

Have a special Sunday, everyone!

Lucina said...

Forgot to say it was DNF for me because I failed at DORAG/SEGA where I had a blank. I didn't even think to parse DO RAG. Drat!

Bill G. said...

That was a fun puzzle. I enjoyed the theme and the clever cluing. Thanks Debbie, Jeff and CC. (I didn't know SOLON and I didn't care for MICR either.)

Steve, here we can get perfectly excellent corned beef brisket seasoned and ready to cook at the supermarket. (Maybe you look forward to the adventure of starting from scratch?) Thanks for the reminder. We'll have to get a brisket, a big cabbage, some potatoes, carrots, etc.

It's REALLY hot for Lucina and me. The 30th LA Marathon started a couple of hours ago. I ran just one marathon, the 4th I think. I managed just under four hours. For a mediocre athlete like me, that was quite an accomplishment.

coneyro said...

A good Sunday to all.

Today's puzzle theme was fun and clever. Enjoyed it much. I also had an issue with MICR and IRES. Glad it wasn't just me.

Was a mixture of easy and hard. Did not know what DH stood for at 38A, until my husband hinted BASEBALL...Then I knew it meant DESIGNATED HITTER, but the answer still took time via perps.

Speaking of corned beef. I grew up eating sandwiches on rye in New York Kosher delis. Rich, fatty, bright red pieces of delicious meat piled high, with potato salad and a pickle. I've found the quality quite lacking nowadays when eating in regular restaurants. Searched for a long time, and found a Jewish style deli, THE LUCKY DILL, in Palm Habor, Florida. They have food reminiscent of my grandma's, and the best bakery this side of Flatbush Ave, Brooklyn. People come from all over and on St. Patty's Day they expect a full house for corned beef and cabbage.

Sunday's puzzle is too much to do in one sitting. I take several turns, but it gets done eventually. Usually need some assistance, but finishing it is my goal with no blanks left. Then I try to remember new bits of info for future reference.

A beautiful weekend. Birds singing, Flowers blooming. Delightful Florida weather. Lucky me!

May the rest of your weekend rock.

Steve said...

@Bill G - I'm going to get some pre-prepped from Ralph's today as well, but I do enjoy the adventure of the from-scratch approach. However, I once spent a whole day making tomato ketchup from a french variety of heirloom tomatoes that I grew myself. When the time came to unveil the culinary masterpiece with a big "TAD-AHHHH" fanfare - it tasted exactly like Heinz.

Expecting 84F today in Studio City.

Anonymous said...

As per dictionary
ired -simple past tense and past participle of ire

I do agree that MICR is unlikely as a prefix.

Fact Checker said...

MICR is an acronym for Magnetic Ink Character Recognition; it refers to the formulation of toner used to print the specialized font at the bottom of checks and other negotiable documents.

I would think a clue could have been based on that.

Lucina said...

Thank you for that! At least it adds some sense to MICR.

Yes, Bill, it unseasonably hot. We'll be reaching 90 this week. That's much too early for it but not unheard of.

Barry G. said...

Did somebody say corned beef? Not a drop of Irish blood is in me, but once a year I do enjoy the whole shebang with corned beef, cabbage, potatoes, onions, carrots and, of course, spicy brown mustard to top it all off.

I've been cooking a five pound brisket in the crock pot since 8:00 this morning and it should be ready to eat around 6:00 PM tonight. The house is smelling wonderful right now...

Irish Miss said...

As everyone is weighing in on corned beef and cabbage, I'll bet my sister is the only one cooking 14 briskets, plus untold pounds of "praties", cabbage, carrots and spinach for those who don't like cabbage. Last head count was 35. Lots of good food, Irish music, noise and laughter and maybe, just maybe, a wee dram or two!

Rainman said...

I learn something every day whether or not I want to, and I do.

Re. the term "everyman"... thanks sincerely to Madame Defarge and others of you who helped me realize that English literature really is one of my many poor subjects.
However, I wouldn't have brought it up if the clue had just been 'everyman.' "Everycowboy" threw me off like a bucking bronco because it just looked like a mistake. It was a take-off on the term which Mme. Defarge so eloquently pointed out was a morality play (also called interlude), one of which was titled, wait for it... Morality Play. I hope I have all that right.
This goes further and may illustrate why our language has evolved so much from the 15th century. Also, it shows to me why English literature (and History, and Physics, etc.) is important. Another learning day. Yea!!

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

Never been on the Puget Sound Ferry. At the moment I'm on the Bridgeport to Port Jefferson Ferry, heading for Splynter country.

Had to chug through today's large grid bit by bit, but got there in the end. Lots of trial and error.

Rainman said...

There are something like dozens of Puget Sound Ferry routes. If you are staying downtown Seattle, I recommend the Bainbridge Island Ferry. No car needed either end. Not sure who you were responding to, but had to interject. Enjoy your ferry ride.

Manac said...

Irish Miss, My money is on the two ;~)

Dudley said...

Rainman 4:51 - sorry, nowhere near Seattle (a nice city in my experience). I just arrived in Noo Yawk, specifically Long Island. For a New Englander like me it's always a culture shock. However, I intend to scout out a deli and order up some tasty, unhealthy stuff!

fermatprime said...


Fun puzzle! Thanks, Debbie and Jeff! Congrats to Debbie! Thanks to dear CC!

CC: Did I ever mention that a daughter-in-law is originally from Beijing? My grand daughter, Sarah, is quite beautiful and a champion swimmer.

No cheats, but took a while.

Lucina, so sorry. Can't imagine how you are coping. How old is your niece?

Has been 80 degrees and above here. My kind of weather.


Jayce said...

Very cool puzzle. Seeing that Jeff Chen had a hand in constructing it, I expected to be stumped, and I was. Just like Barry G, I had FOES and VIGOR. Lots of enjoyment, nevertheless. Good stuff!

Jayce said...

It was on May 1, 2001, that I and 119 other people got suddenly and harshly laid off due to the "dot-com bust." All the senior and middle managers were "out sick" that day, the cowards, so none of us knew what the heck was going on. Only the overworked HR guy and his assistant were there to guide us through the process and give us our severance packages.

Lucina said...

Thank you. It has been a shock to all our family and Christina's friends knowing she was a ticking time bomb. She is 57 and was always dynamic, imaginative and entrepreneurial in her business. We are all heartbroken to see her in that tragic circumstance.

Bill G. said...

Lost on a rainy night, a nun stumbles across a monastery and requests shelter there. Fortunately, she's just in time for dinner and was treated to the best fish and chips she's ever had. 
After dinner, she goes into the kitchen to thank the chefs. 
She is met by two brothers, "Hello, I'm Brother Michael, and this is Brother Charles." 
"I'm very pleased to meet you. I just wanted to thank you for a wonderful dinner. The fish and chips were the best I've ever tasted. Out of curiosity, who cooked what?" 
Brother Charles replied, "Well, I'm the fish friar." 
She turns the other brother and says, "Then you must be...?" 
"Yes, I'm the chip monk."

Valerie said...

We had the same experience when traveling last month. We were told.that people were selected randomly for TSA Precheck. Funny thing though. Out of 3 separate couples going through at about the same time it was always the man who had the TSA Precheck mark.

It was causing a bit of confusion so they told the men they could go through the regular line if they wanted to stay with their partner but they didn't have to take off their shoes.

Irish Miss said...

Manac @ 5:24 - I have absolutely no idea why you would think that! 😌 Slainte!

Lucina said...

In January when my friend and I flew out, she had the precheck on her ticket. When we asked about it, we were told it was random selection.

Anonymous T said...

Just Lurking says...


I saw this two or so weeks ago on HBO Killing Cancer. The treatment is still in trials and may be too late for your niece, but it may be something to look into as one segment specifically addressed brain tumors. Good wishes and God speed.

Anonymous T said...

Oh, I should have warned every one, my link has graphic surgical procedures included. Sorry. -T

C.C. Burnikel said...

This is the first time you mentioned that your daughter-in-law is from Beijing. Did she attend college here? When did she come?

Valerie & Lucina,
Ha ha. Boomer thought he was special. He got the mark on our trip back home also.

Anonymous said...

Awful puzzle. I'm a baseball fanatic, but didn't understand 2 masked men behind home until I read about it. I usually can solve the sunday puzzle, but this one was awful. Sorry, first try I guess, but you've got to do better.