Mar 3, 2015

Tuesday, March 3, 2015 Mike Buckley

Theme: The game is afoot! - "The Transient Associate Adventure" The various Dr. Watson portrayers.

Let's start with the author.

15D. With 48-Down, 1-/69-Across creator Arthur : CONAN.
48D. See 15-Down : DOYLE. And then:

1A. With 69-Across, subject of this puzzle : DOCTOR
69A. See 1-Across : WATSON ...and our cast.

7A. Portrayer of 1-/69-Across in "Sherlock Holmes" (2009) : JUDE LAW
38A. Portrayer of 1-/69-Across in the BBC's "Sherlock" : MARTIN FREEMAN


68A. Portrayer of 1-/69-Across in CBS' "Elementary" : LUCY LIU


Argyle here. Mike's puzzle two years ago was a pip. Link Scroll down to the grid to see the genius of that puzzle. Some fill and theme entries are the same length while four verticals are only bested by the central theme for length. It isn't a detriment to the solve. It has a fresh feel to it and I liked it.


14. Not straying from the subject : ON TOPIC

16. Satan : EVIL ONE

17. "The Diary of Anne Frank" police : GESTAPO

18. Muscle-to-bone connectors : TENDONS

19. Audio jack label : MIC

20. Took charge of : RAN

21. Wise folk : SAGES

22. Rewrite for the screen : ADAPT

24. Set a price of : ASK

26. Northern California town that once had a palindromic bakery : YREKA. Yreka Bakery is no longer in business.

29. Mentally sound : SANE

30. Live, in the studio : ON AIR

32. Kool-Aid instruction : STIR

33. Ostrich kin : EMU

35. "I __ Fine": Beatles hit : FEEL

37. Antlered beast : ELK

42. World games org. : IOC

43. A bit open : AJAR

44. "C'est la __" : VIE

45. Cry for seconds : MORE

47. Battery end : ANODE

49. Rise dramatically : SOAR

53. Sticking point : PRONG

55. Game won by discarding all your cards : UNO

56. Iditarod jacket : PARKA

57. Wood finish : STAIN

59. DKNY rival : YSL

61. Press __ : KIT

62. Dannon yogurt brand : ACTIVIA

64. Natives of Tibet's capital : LHASANS

66. Unlisted candidate : WRITE-IN

67. Erode, as savings : EAT INTO


1. Rigid beliefs : DOGMAs

2. Tableware company named for a New York town : ONEIDA. NNE of Elmira.

3. ER diagnostic tool : CT SCAN

4. Day care attendee : TOT

5. Eyeball-bending gallery display : OP ART

6. TV host Kelly : RIPA

7. Watercraft rider : JET SKIER

8. Eye layer containing the iris : UVEA

9. Dull-colored : DINGY

10. Senior officials : ELDERS

11. It's brewed in infusers : LOOSE TEA

12. Political writer Coulter : ANN

13. Director Anderson : WES. Nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for The Royal Tenenbaums, Moonrise Kingdom and The Grand Budapest Hotel, as well as for Best Animated Feature for Fantastic Mr. Fox.

23. Jury member : PEER

25. Paella spice : SAFFRON

27. Ceramics oven : KILN

28. Noah's flood insurance : ARK

30. Message-spelling board : OUIJA

31. Superman player Christopher : REEVE

34. Former Boston commuter org. : MTA. (Metropolitan Transit Authority)

36. "Welcome to Hawaii" gift : LEI

38. Secure in a harbor : MOOR

39. Quotation puzzle : ACROSTIC

40. Mork's sign-off : NANU NANU. 50D. Mork's people : ORKANS

41. Southwestern tableland : MESA

42. Tough kid to handle : IMP

46. Thing : ENTITY

51. Quite like : AKIN TO

52. Gives away to the cops : RATS ON

54. "Sold!" punctuator : GAVEL

56. Spanish silver : PLATA. Remember the state motto, "Oro y plata"?

58. Four, on some sundials : IIII

60. "Major Barbara" playwright : SHAW. (George Bernard Shaw)

62. Hole-making tool : AWL

63. French wine word : CRU. It means vineyard; we had it last month.

65. "Grab a chair" : "SIT"

Mike Buckley, Tuesday 3/3/2015



OwenKL said...

A CSO today to my LW, Brenda Watson! She only has a masters degree, so she's not a doctor. But I'd still better do some limericks today if I know what's good for me!

There once was a DOCTOR named WATSON
Who was awakened each morn by a tocsin.
This annoyed him no end,
So his peace to defend
His roommate every night he sure locks in!

DOCTOR WATSON was once Nigel Bruce
Whose acumen was sometimes quite loose.
But Sherlock still liked him
And would often invite him
To show off what he could deduce!

But a bumbling sidekick won't do.
She's a very effective
Consulting detective
And often beats Holmes playing Clue!

OwenKL said...

There once was a DOCTOR named DOYLE
Who always prescribed castor oil,
"For you'll never get sick
With a colon that's slick,
Though your intestines may tend to uncoil!"

The consulting detective was willin'
To consign every potter to prison,
"For with flame, every day,
They are baking their clay,
Break their ovens, and we'll have no more KILN'."

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Man, I have to imagine this puzzle would be a real bear for anybody not a rabid Sherlock Holmes fan. Fortunately for me, I am such a fan and have seen all the various incarnations and knew who played Dr. Watson in each. OK, so maybe I've never actually had the chance to watch the new "Elementary" television series, but at least I'm aware of it and know who stars in it...

Anyway, I''m generally not a fan of puzzles with lots of cross references, but once I figured out the theme early on it was all good.

I really couldn't believe that YREKA was a real place and never would have guessed it without the palindrome mention in the clue. Have I been misspelling it EUREKA all these years? Nope, according to Wikipedia YREKA and EUREKA are two different cities in northern California. How confusing!

Really wanted LUCIFER for 16A. Right amount of letters, but every one of them was wrong.

Totally forgot that ACROSTICS were quote puzzles, but was able to make a WAG after getting a few perps in place.

OwenKL said...

JUDE LAW did a decent job in 2 movies as WATSON, though he carried on the sidekick role of Nigel Bruce. MARTIN FREEMAN ditto, but did it with a style I enjoyed. And LIU? At first I was upset about a revisionist female WATSON, but her competence (both the actress and the character) has won me over! I think the writers and directors have successfully tried to focus on FREEMAN's and LIU's WATSONs as the main character, even though Sherlock still looms large.

Lemonade714 said...

A truly fun puzzle and I am glad to see Nigel Bruce get some love, thanks Owen. Now if we can get David Burke and Edward Hardwicke some ink....

EVIL ONE, GESTAPO next to each other, LHASANS, ACTIVIA and YREKA made it an interesting Tuesday.

Good luck to all in the storm's way

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Argyle and friends. Well, I am not keen on cross-reference puzzles and I am not a fan of Sherlock Holmes, but I was fairly easily able to complete this puzzle.

There were some brilliant clues in this puzzle. My favorites were:
Cry for Seconds = MORE!
Sticking Point = PRONG

My flatware is ONEIDA, so that clue was a gimme.

When is a door not a door? When it's A JAR!

YREKA. Really? Who knew?

QOD: My life is full of mistakes. They’re like pebbles that make a good road. ~ Beatrice Wood (Mar. 3, 1892 ~ Mar. 12, 1998)

desper-otto said...

Good morning,

Stumble, mumble. I went wrong in a few places -- ON POINT/TOPIC, AUX/MIC. Still, it was a quick solve and there was some interesting fill. I liked it.

I was saddened to learn that the MTA is no more. What ever happened to Charlie?

Somehow, YREKA just popped out of my file of useless information. No idea why.

Madame Defarge said...

Sweet start to another busy day. It was a pretty easy run with all the "elementary" clues making it easier to work around the rest of the puzzle.
Thanks, Mike.

Thanks, Argyle, for the run through.

Answer Man said...

The MTA became the MBTA in 1964. Charlie is presumably buried under more than one hundred inches of snow.

Bill said...

A puzzle that starts off with a cross reference is, by my definition, a bad puzzle. I actually finished the puzzle without problems, but not because I got the them or knew much about Sherlock Holmes.

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

Hand up for being a big fan of all the Sherlock & Watson portrayals out there. Lucy Liu is so good there's no room for outrage over the gender substitution.

No room for outrage over the puzzle either, straightforward and nice. Few unknowns. I recall stopping in Yreka one day to look at a roadside attraction - a collection of old railroad cabooses that had been turned into small guest cottages.

CrossEyedDave said...

Oh bother!

I finished the puzzle, but the SW corner made no sense, & I could not fix it.

I was so sure wood finish was "grain" I could not change it, making Thing an Enrity? Quotation puzzles - Acrogtics?

(Well, if Yreka is correct, then why not....)

Thank goodness for the Blog!

HeartRx said...


(Yes, even having stopped in YREKA.)

CrossEyedDave said...

Oh, I get it now!

It's the stain that brings out the grain...

Haha, very clever Mr. Buckley

SwampCat said...

I'm glad to see some of you liked this puzzle. I found it very unpleasant. All the cross-references are such a bother. I ignored them and the theme and just filled in the rest until the theme became apparent. I finished it without much trouble.

Just proves successful, even easy, isn't the same thing as enjoyable!

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Mike Buckley, fir a fine puzzle. Thank you, Argyle, for a fine review.

Wow, this puzzle was excellent! I got through it with some difficulty, but I won the race.

Theme became obvious after a little reading of the various clues and a few answers.

Never heard of JUDE LAW or MARTIN FREEMAN. After some perps and a couple wags I got them easily.

LUCY LIU I am familiar with. I have seen that show a few times.

Got YSL with three perps and I have no idea what or who DKNY is.

Very familiar with SAFFRON. Ate a lot of it in the middle east many years ago.

I have been to both California towns, YREKA and EUREKA, when I lived and worked there.

GAVEL was easy. I have used one for years.

Well, we got two inches of snow in Chicagoland last night and now it is raining on top of that snow. Could get interesting. We have much snow already on the ground from the winter. Flooding could loom if it melts too fast.

See you tomorrow.


( )

Lemonade714 said...

Yes CED, it should be plain that it is the stain that brings out the grain.

Swamp Cat, many of us have had many hours of pleasure from Sherlock Holmes' books, movies and TV shows that the puzzle was a joy; sorry it was not your cup of tea.

Nice post Answer Man, too true.

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

A thoroughly enjoyable Tuesday treat! Very, very clever positioning on Doctor Warson and two of the portrayers, full names, no less. Also liked the intersections of rats on and Watson, and akin to and eats into.

Martin Freeman was an unknown but after checking Wiki, his face is familiar. I love Lucy Liu in Elementary. I think she and Jonny Miller have great chemistry.

Nice job, Mike, and spot-on summary, Argyle.

More snow, sleet, (whatever) tonight and more on Thursday. I wonder what Mother Nature is punishing us for?

Have a great day.

Tinbeni said...

Well this felt more like a Wednesday since I had to rely on perps to get the themes.

OTOH ... any puzzle that has FEEL crossing into LEI is "Aces
to me.
Plus there was MOOR crossing MORE.

Good job Mike Buckley.

Liked the CSO to Lucina at MESA.


Ergo said...

Not a fan of any of the theme offerings. Thank goodness for PERPS.

Still looking for some edification. What is the name of the palindromic bakery, and what are DKNY and YSL?

Thanks in advance.

Answer Man said...

Yreka Bakery.

You can Google YSL (Yves Saint Laurent) and DKNY (Donna Karen New York).

Rainman said...

Great effort by Mike Buckley, as usual. He's one of the most creative constructors; it's hard not to like his product. He's certainly an inspiration to other constructors and, like me, constructor wannabes.

MARTIN FREEMAN is one of my favorite actors, now that I watched him in the mini-series Fargo. Up to that time, I was unfamiliar. He and Billy Bob Thornton were both nominated for (Golden Globe) best actor in a mini-series, etc., and MARTIN lost out. Tom Hanks' son, Colin, won for best supporting actor and therefore did not lose out. Just knowing what MARTIN is capable of makes it more exciting to watch him portray any character, IMO.

Most Californians know YREKA, as well as Eureka. Neither has much in common with the other, except for being in Northern CA. Both have weather that is often untenable... Eureka has equable temps and rain, YREKA has wind, heat, cold, you name it. Fun to visit, both.

Answer Man said...

Correction: Donna Karan

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Enjoyed the puzzle even though I'm not into the current versions of Sherlock Holmes. So got some of the theme fill from the perps. No white-out needed today.
Favorite clue was 'sticking point' for PRONG.
23d - PEER - Reporters interviewing a 104-year-old woman:

"And what do you think is the best thing
about being 104?" the reporter asked.
She simply replied,
"No PEER pressure."

Anonymous said...

yrekabakery -reads the same both ways!
Ysl -yve st lauren (not sure if I spelled that correctly)
DKNY - Donna Karen New York..

Lemonade714 said...

Martin Freeman was a wonderful Bilbo Baggins in the Hobbit trilogy. It seems appropriate to link this TRIBUTE.

Magilla Go-Rilla said...

26A: not exactly palindromic. Yreka backwards is almost b-akery but that's not really palindromic.

Magilla Go-Rilla said...

From the dictionary:

: a word, phrase, or number that reads the same backward or forward
Full Definition
:a word, verse, or sentence (as “Able was I ere I saw Elba”) or a number (as 1881) that reads the same backward or forward
— pal·in·drom·ic \ˌpa-lən-ˈdrō-mik, -ˈdrä-\ adjective
— pal·in·drom·ist \ˈpa-lən-ˌdrō-mist\ noun


Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms

Answer Man said...


Y R E K A B A K E R Y reads the same left-to-right and right-to-left. The name of the bakery is the palindrome, not the name of the town.

C6D6 Peg said...

Really liked this puzzle, although the cross-referenced clues didn't produce answers until start of the downs.

Thanks for a great puzzle, Mike!

Argyle, another fine review!

kazie said...

Like Swamp Cat, I normally don't appreciate cross references throughout a puzzle like this. But I found this quite enjoyable, despite not knowing YREKA or that JUDE LAW was in a movie I've not seen, or the name of the marvelous MARTIN FREEMAN.

I was hesitant for a while because I read Mork as Monk. I will really enjoy my new glasses next week!

Bill G. said...

I enjoyed the puzzle very much though I got stuck in places (like most of the southeast. It had an unusual feel to it though I couldn't put my finger on why. I've always liked the old Sherlock Holmes and found Nigel Bruce's Dr. Watson a likeable bumbler. I could never imagine why Basil Rathbone's super-intelligent Sherlock would ever tolerate such a bumbling friend and companion. It was fun to watch but it never made much sense.

A bit of silliness I just found: "His mother should have thrown him away and kept the stork." ~ Mae West·

Anonymous said...

Oh young Magilla, I believe you have anagram and palindrome mixed up. Yes YREKA is almost an anagram of bakery but YREKA BAKERY is absolutely a palindrome.

Misty said...

Many of my reactions to this puzzle have already been voiced--many thanks, fellow bloggers! I didn't think I'd enjoy it/ I enjoyed it, after all. I worried about people who wouldn't know all the Sherlock Holmes productions, etc. etc. Amused to find Mork mixed in with Sherlock. Love Lucy Liu as Watson--in fact, we're going to watch a taped "Elementary" tonight. Didn't know all kinds of things but got them with perps. And first put MORGAN FREEMAN, thinking "I don't remember him playing Watson in any of the productions." Thanks, Rainman, for reminding us of MARTIN's role in "Fargo" too. It's a good thing we all have a TV, isn't it!

Fun poems, Owen, many thanks.

Have a great day, everybody!

Anonymous said...

Harte had arrived in California in the [eighteen-]fifties, twenty-three or twenty-four years old, and had wandered up into the surface diggings of the camp at Yreka, a place which had acquired its mysterious name — when in its first days it much needed a name — through an accident. There was a bakeshop with a canvas sign which had not yet been put up but had been painted and stretched to dry in such a way that the word BAKERY, all but the B, showed through and was reversed. A stranger read it wrong end first, YREKA, and supposed that that was the name of the camp. The campers were satisfied with it and adopted it.

- Mark Twain (per wiki)

The name comes from the Shasta language /wáik'a/, for which Mount Shasta is named.[5] The word means "north mountain" or "white mountain".[6][7] Mark Twain tells a different story:

- Also per wiki

coneyro said...

The theme was evident, but Lucy Lui was the only actor I was familiar with. I watch Elementary every week and love her interaction with Jonny Miller. I just wish he wouldn't speak so fast. His British accent is indecipherable sometimes.

The rest of the puzzle was meh...Did not know YREKA.

Nothing else of note to comment on.

kazie said...

Anon @ 11:31,
Thanks for clearing up the palindrome mystery for me--I was trying to make a palindrome of the one word, so started by putting in AKIKA. When ELDERS and the other perps killed that, I just scratched my head and moved on!

Concerned Anon said...

Dear Misty,

I was just catching up on missed blogs in order to complete old puzzles and I came across your post from Friday.

I am SO sorry! Many here at the corner have also lost pets and therefore understand your pain. But to learn you lost a pet in such a fashion has devastated me. I cannot imagine how you feel. Please accept my heartfelt condolences. I pray you are coping well over these last several days. Your husband and Dusty as well.

Lucina said...

Greetings, puzzlers.

Late to the party because I was saying goodbye to my company as they left to return to NY. I hope their weather permits them to arrive safely.

Here the rain stopped and we'll return to the 80s.

WEES about the puzzle. Referential clues are far from my favorite nor am I a Sherlock fan, but this one filled so quickly and easily I hardly noticed.

What Hahtoolah said.

Thank you for the CSO.

Have a delightful day, everyone!

Unknown said...

Best one yet!!

Unknown said...

This Brenda has an EDD and finds your limericks a delight!!

billocohoes said...

desper-otto, Charlie is still remembered in transit systems in much of eastern Massachusetts with the use of Charlie Cards and Charlie Tickets stored-value paper tickets and smart cards have replaced metal tokens.

Chickie said...

Hola Everyone, This was a bear for me. The only person I knew who plays Dr. Watson was Lucy Liu.
Jude Law and Martin Freeman were unknowns. Also for a Tuesday, I thought Entity (I put in Object at first), and Acrostic were hard. Yreka would be obscure to some people, especially those not from CA.

I did manage to finish the puzzle on my own, but it was a struggle. the perps gave me just enough clues to make guesses as to the rest of the words.

I've had Oneida flatware for over 60 years. It lasts a lifetime! That clue was a gimme.

My jury duty today consisted of an hour commute to downtown, parking, and then less than 15 minutes in the courtroom when we were asked to come back on Thursday afternoon. We had a week and a day in between the last time we were there. I hope this isn't what we're in for the next few weeks. Sigh. I don't mind doing my civic duty, but I felt sorry for teachers, nanny's and other people who had to take a day off work to spend less than 15 minutes in the courtroom.

Have a great day, everyone.

Avg Joe said...

This one had some challenges. I'm another who rarely likes cross-referential clues, but in this case it didn't slow things down too badly. Just forced more reliance on perps. Yreka was all perps, but the clue, even though it seemed pretty odd, at least gave enough of a hint to figure out that the answer was likely correct. Good puzzle overall.

CrossEyedDave said...

Thank you Answerman @ 9:22.

I looked at the clue to 26A & immediately thought, "Hmm, palandromic, it would be nice if the answer was in the clue..."

& now you point out that is was...


I could have spent a lot less time trying to brighten up "dingy."


Anon @ 11:38, Mark Twain?
Thank you, it is input like yours that make the comments so enjoyable. I had no idea!

I would like to thank all that mentioned Yreka, but it seems we have broken that Control + F function. My PCs Ctrl F now only loops thru the 1st 10 mentions...


I see many of you are not familiar with the BBC version of Sherlock, I envy you as you have something to look forward to.

Quote from Watson: Nobody could fake being such a Dick all the time...

BBC Sherlock best moments season one, Spoiler Alert!

My favorite is episode 1 of season 2, but you cannot possibly enjoy it without seeing what leads up to it.

My second favorite episode is Watsons wedding. (Imagine the possibilities...)

Jayce said...

I loved this puzzle. Extremely well constructed, and some terrific cluing such as Kool-Aid instruction and Noah's flood insurance. Fun fun fun.

Incidentally, YREKA is pronounced Wye-reeka.

Lucina said...

Thank you, Jayce. I wondered about the pronunciation.

I hesitated a long while before adding the Y but when I saw the whole name, YREKA Bakery the light flashed on!

Argyle said...

We now know Martin Freeman(Dr. Watson) was Bilbo Baggins, "The Hobbit". Now know this; Benedict Cumberbatch(Sherlock Holmes) was the voice of Smaug, the dragon in "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug". Short Clip

CrossEyedDave said...

Thank you Argyle!

Not only did I enjoy that clip, I got lost in the side clips. One of which was interviews with Benedict, in which he mentions being greeted by fans who said "I was in love with your mother!"

Intrigued, I had to Google Image Wanda Ventham. SciFi fans will know her well...

fermatprime said...


Great offering, Mike! Swell recap, Santa!

Love all things Sherlock Holmes, so puzzle was lots of fun and filled in quickly. When is Masterpiece Mystery going to give us another? Benedict really great in those!


Yet another Anon said...

... Down the road from Yreka - 'Wye-reeka' are 2 other towns -

The first town downwind, is ... Ynot - Wye-not ....

And ... another town called 'now-you-know-why'.

BTW, is Eureka pronounced Eww-reeka ??

Thanks Argyle for a lovely blog.
I passed thru a town south of you, Nyack (!).

Happy evening, everyone.

Misty said...

Concerned Anon, I just read your incredibly kind message--thank you so much. I'm not sure I understand exactly why condolences are comforting, but they are a huge help in coping with a loss. I am so thankful to everyone, and especially for your last message just now.