Oct 31, 2015

Saturday, Oct 31st, 2015, Julian Lim

Theme: Happy Halloween~!

Words: 70 (missing X )

Blocks: 27

  We last saw today's constructor on a Saturday way back in January; I mention this not only because it's true, but I had just returned from upstate NY where my friend Garry has his wind- and solar-powered cabins - and this weekend I move into his house in Flanders. As for the puzzle, I was hoping it would not be too much of a brain-drain.  Gave myself a pat on the back for getting thru most of the gird, but it was a WAGfest in the NW.  Triple 9's crossing triple 7's in the corners are make for one of the worst kinds of grid - it usually means proper names/two-word answers/extreme vagueness;

1. Reaction to a piece of cake : NO PROBLEM - I seriously considered "YUM YUM YUM" because I had the "M"; I also pondered "LET THEM", as in "eat cake"

29. Amazon visitor's need : WEB ACCESS - hmmm, which Amazon~? The River, or the "go-to" online site for shopping~?

46. "Sure, let's!" : "I'M UP FOR IT~!"

60. Attempt : HAVE A GO AT - user-friendly vowel/consonant grouping; have a "goat~?"



10. Ustream offering : NET TV - oops, not VIDEO

15. Hyperlink feature : UNDERLINE - frequently seen in email addresses, between parts of names;

16. Missouri River city : OMAHA

17. Qatar-based broadcaster : AL JAZEERA - the Wiki (From C.C.: I think this underline is what 15A refers to, right, TTP/D-Otto?)

18. Equate : LIKEN

19. Org. concerned with pedagogy : NEA - $2 word for the method of teaching

20. Parliament : London :: Storting : __ : OSLO - sounded Scandinavian

21. "As if I care!" : "BITE ME~!"

22. Blending aid, briefly : CAMO - short for camouflage, Frawnche for "smoke in the face"

24. Not high : SOBER - 3,949 days and counting

26. Some univ. proctors : TAs

27. Balances (out) : EVENS

32. Make easier to eat, as fruit : DESEED

34. Noted source of rubies and sapphires : SRI LANKA

35. French vineyards : CRUS

37. Rank quality : ODOR - my first thought was about smell, but I ended going with ONE-A....bzzzt~!

38. Like some courses : REQUIRED

42. Cannonball consequence : SPLASH

48. Knighted conductor : SOLTI

49. "'I __ you liked your drink,' sez Gunga Din" : 'OPE

50. Confines : CAGES

52. Farm food : SLOP

53. Ford model : TAURUS

56. Senate minority leader : REID

58. Otolaryngologists, e.g.: Abbr. : DRs - long word for a short abbr.

59. Patronized, in a way : ATE AT

62. It's open at the end of the fall : CHUTE - ah, parachute - at least you hope it's open at the end....

63. Cattle site : OPEN RANGE

64. Works with keys : TYPES

65. Microbrewery product : WHEAT BEER - ooh, I was close with CRAFT beer


1. Far from clear-cut : NUANCED

2. Like some new mothers : ON LEAVE

3. "Death Comes to Pemberley" author : P.D. JAMES - utter WAG from mostly perps; a link to her website

4. "In Dreams" actor : REA - we saw him last week

5. Ingredient in some Italian wedding soup : ORZO - the little bits of pasta; I like the little bits of meatball; interesting fact about the soup's name origin here

6. Approve : BLESS

7. Hide : LIE LOW - oops, not LAY low

8. Covers up, in a way : ENROBES - I like when confectioners "enrobe" their treats in chocolate

9. Word of apology : MEA - we also saw this last week

10. __ me tangere : NOLI - Latin for "touch me not" - new to me - some history

11. Put out : EMIT

12. Stop for a bit : TAKE TEN

13. 1994 Jim Carrey film : THE MASK

14. Samuel Barber opera : VANESSA - WAG

21. Intertwines : BRAIDS - pondered SPOONS first

23. Like some hotel room coffeemakers : ONE CUP - I had one in my room when I stayed in Delaware

25. River from Cantabria to Catalonia : EBRO - ha-HA~! Nailed it from crossword experience~!

28. Finishing stroke : SERIF - TAP-IN (golf) fit, too, but it wasn't working for me

30. Old cobblestone road sounds : CLOPS

31. Mexican novelist Fuentes : CARLOS - WAG and perps

33. Large pigs : DUROCS - new to me; I only know this Durock

36. Shot contents : SERA - ah, the needle kind of shot

38. Babysitter's reading, at times : RIOT ACT - LULLABY and WANT ADS fit, too

39. Therapist's asset : EMPATHY - I pondered "GOOD EAR" to start

40. What waiters often do : QUEUE UP - those who wait; I spent 90mins in DMV to register my van yesterday - with no signal for my cell phone

41. The "rh" in "rhapsody," e.g. : DIGRAPH

43. Wrapping words? : "ALL DONE~!"

44. Cloud function : STORAGE - the web-based servers kind of cloud; RAINING did fit, tho

45. Cool cat : HIPSTER

47. Tube : TEE-VEE

51. Italian town with a biannual horse race : SIENA - perps

54. Give stars to, say : RATE - OK, how would you rate her~!?

55. Salt Lake City team : UTES

57. Dash : DART

60. wiki__: collection of online manuals : HOW

61. Jaw : GAB


Note from C.C.:

Crosswords LA puzzles are available here. $8 for the whole pack plus some bonus puzzles. All proceeds go to Reading for Kids charity.


George Barany said...

Interesting that the LA Times stays true to the calendar day, and goes for a themeless puzzle on Halloween.

If you don't mind, I've created Halloween Night in the Laboratory for your solving pleasure later today. Also, with all due respect to fans of the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Chicago Cubs, a bunch of us have created a Sunday-sized sports-fest called Citi-zens United.

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

My first pass through this thing was grim - nothing but Al Jazeera and a few small guesses. In the SW some of those guesses worked out, however, and traction was slowly gained. Managed a legitimate no-peeky ta-da!

Morning Splynter, I have much respect for your taste in legs and adjacent structures.

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Definitely a tough one today. I agree with Dudley's "grim" comment regarding the first pass through the puzzle and also actually knowing AL JAZEERA. The bottom section ended up being the most problematic. I finally recalled DUROC, which helped a bit, as did DIGRAPH (which is a word I only recently learned due to my son mentioning he learned it at school). Unfortunately, I had the most trouble with HAVE A GO AT. Even after realize that it wasn't referring to a GOAT, I went with MAKE instead of HAVE, which had me staring at TEEKE_ for "tube" and Wiki MOW. I knew neither of those could be right, but it's downright embarrassing just how long it took for the light bulb to finally go on...

Happy Halloween, and don't forget to turn your clocks back an hour tonight 9for those who live in places where they do such things)!

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

I was determined not to experience a repeat of yesterday's debacle. Whew! I made it through Julian's limbo and came out the other side. Again today, the NW was the last to fall.

I knew it was AL JAZEERA, but thought there was an "i" in there somewhere. At least I can pronounce it -- not Al-jazz'-uh-ree-yuh ala Dan Rather.

Hand up for CRAFT beer, Splynter. And thanks for 'splainin' NOLI ME TANGERE. Thought it meant something like "No lie, Grasshopper." Latin is not my strong suit. Perhaps you've noticed.

Nice CSO to Husker with OMAHA.

Yes, C.C., I agree with your "take" on the underline. There was also one quite evident in the photo Splynter posted.

JCJ said...

Fun puzzle but I initially misspelled ALJAZEERA with two Rs rather than two Es. WEBACCESS finally put me on the right track. I didn't think BITEME would appear in a puzzle.

Argyle said...

I told this puzzle, "Bite me" and it the NW.

Avg Joe said...

Drat. Had to google for the right spelling of Al Jazeera because of Lay Low. Then had to do it again for PD James because of puréed instead of deseed. Finally got it filled after those two cheats, but still had BET TV. So, FIW as well as two flagrant fouls. Hand up for really questioning Bite Me, but it just had to be.

Chairman Moe said...

"Puzzling thoughts":

Sorry for my absence but the move is one week away and lots of last minute tasks as well as boxes to pack. I was pretty good about doing puzzles during the week but no chance to spend any time here other than occasional visits to see how y'uns were doing. I've noticed Owen's absence coincided with mine - purely coincidental, as I assure you we are NOT the same person! :-D

But if any of you are having a poem/limerick withdrawal, here's one that's somewhat on the "Halloween" theme I hope you'll find amusing:

After breaking the mirror, I see
That no bad luck was transferred to me.
My keen intuition
Says this superstition
Is just not what it's cracked up to be

Hope you get some good treats today!


Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

I was pretty satisfied with myself when I finally finished this, but, no tada! The culprit was pet TV/net tv, not having any clue to noli, anyway, a FIW. Had craft beer at first, too, and it took a couple of tries to spell Al Jazeera correctly. P. D. James was a gimme as I've read most of her books. Overall, a fairly easy Saturday with one miscue. Nice CSO to HG.

We have a lovely, sunny ☀️ day, although a tad chilly right now. Should be pleasant for the ghosts 👻 and goblins 💀 As they trick or treat! 🎃 Happy Halloween!

Have a great day.

TTP said...

Good morning all !

Correct first fill guesses were MEA, OMAHA, EVENS, ONE CUP, CLOPS, SLOP, CAGES, DRS, ATE AT, RATE, UTES.

Spelled it ALaljEERA, so that was mostly correct. You can catch Al jazeera newscasts on the MHz Worldview channel, along with RT (Russia Today ?) News, as well as broadcast news from the Ukraine, Euronews, Korea, Taiwan, France and others. In Chicago, it's carried on one of the WYCC (pbs) channels.

TEE VEE ? Really ? As if. Oh well, it takes a little rain to make the garden grow. Speaking of which, Texas has been getting more than their fair share all year. Again the last couple of days. More flooding and more deaths. All my relatives and their property is fine. So far.

Cattle site was not stockyard ? And Microbrewery product was not craftBEER ? Also had CANOE for Upstream offering and sow hat, no wait, so what for As if I care.
Cloud function...STORAGE...Yea, I wouldn't put personal / sensitive info "out there" no matter what you've heard. Companies of all sizes and the government agencies repeatedly fail with data security. Pictures, sure, if you remove the exif data first. Softcopies of state and federal filings ? No way.

Hi CC, yes, that would be a feature, although I never really did much with HTML. Worked with and created scripts in other markup languages, but not so much with HTML. Later, SQL for dataminimg purposes became a big focus.

C6D6 Peg said...

Yeah! Complete for 2nd Sat in a row. Thanks, Julian, for a challenge!

Splynter, great write-up and legs, as my DH says.

Happy Halloween to all!

Husker Gary said...

A perfect Saturday puzzle. Patience and knowledge I didn’t know I had carried the day.

-My Amazon visitors needed a SHOT of some sort first
-Yup, I saw U(p)stream offering first, didn’t you?
-An AL profiting from AL JAZEERA
-Four letter world capital city name? Hmmm, don’t tell me…
-The NEA made sure all teachers received equal pay regardless of skill
-A CAMO item to make a spring ritual more challenging
-Very funny EVEN Steven (1:17)
-Do you remember REQUIRED courses that were called “cattle call” classes?
-Oh, that open CHUTE, I was thinking of this one
-OPEN RANGE cattlemen vs farmers caused bloodshed
-I first wanted OUZO in that soup and a DRAM for a shot
-A hen on the bottom roost would LAY LOW
-Splynter – Four stars seems too low of a RATING!

desper-otto said...

Rain. Last weekend we were supposed to get a bunch, and wound up with 3-1/2"spread over three days. Last night we were supposed to get occasional showers ending about breakfast time. It's almost lunch time, and we've had a tad over 4" and counting. My ditch out front is bank full, and my wood lot is awash. Haven't seen so much water here since '07. I'm not worried about flooding, though a few streets in our little town are impassable at the moment. From the radar, it appears about ready to move on out of here.

Anonymous T said...

Hi all!

Well, I did better than I normally do on a Sat. Thanks J. Lim for a Wicked Halloween puzzle.

I had to look up 3 things (3d, 14d, and 31d) to get what I got. The SW is still mostly white because of Jazz for Salt Lake team and I don't know French Vineyards (I'm sure C. Moe does, but this is his busy season - we miss you C. Moe!)*

Thanks Splynter for unwinding the SW; Your write up is why I even try Sat pzls. FWIW, I almost put in Num num nuM for cake (but we all know that reaction is for Cookies!).


BITE ME almost got me fired. I'll explain... (I may go over 20 lines...)

There's a command in Windows networking that lets you pop-up a msg on someone else's computer. There's another command to map the next drive letter (D, E, F... Z) available. The latter is net use * \\computer\sharename, the former is net send \\computer "message"...

So, in my first 3 mo. on the job... I'm on the phone w/ DW and a buddy net-sends me "get back to work." Half paying attn, I type net send * "BITE ME." For those paying attn, * is everything. I made BITE ME pop up on over 150 computers in the office. Boss-man was not happy.

Fortunately, it was lunch time, I cleaned up most of the mess and told boss man I knew what he had to do. He needed me for the project, so I didn't get sac'd. (Actually, I stayed on for 15 yrs.)

How's that for a job story CED?

Cheers, -T
*I drafted this b/f I saw your post... LOL on me :-)
P.S.S - Pay attn to TTP's cloud comment - no real privacy in the sky. If you're not paying you're the product.
P.S.S.S. - D-O: I dumped the rain guage an hour ago (at 6") and have yet another inch. It should dry up by Trick-or-Treat time...

Anonymous said...


that picture you posted of the woman in the skirt posed provocatively at a desk is from a PORNOGRAPHY website,, which is clearly marked at the bottom of the image.

I guarantee that there are ladies on this blog, and even some men, who in no way appreciate your lack of decorum.

Clean up your act.

Bill G. said...

Thanks Julian and Splynter. I, for one, am not offended.

Hand up for GOAT.

Re. CAMO. I went to the store to buy to buy some camouflage shorts, but I couldn't find any...

Anonymous said...

I'm not so sure the "rh" in "rhapsody" is a DIGRAPH. Looks more like a simple case of a silent R to me.

Anonymous T said...

Shoot, I'll blow a post and feed the troll...

Anon @11:13 - Piss off. Splynter has his style and we come here to read his write-up after an attemped solve. From where he gets his pics is likely the 1st or 2nd link in a Google search. The pic is provocative yet tasteful. I could send you to and blow your sensitive mind.

IMHO - most of the "ladies" (women) on this blog are open minded, very smart, and funny ta' boot. (Just like DW).

So, unless you're going to add to the solve experience, I'll quote JzB, and say "STFU."

C, -T

Irish Miss said...

Another memory lapse: Thanks to JL and Splynter for a challenging puzzle and informative expo.

AnonymousPVX said...

Mr Lim poses quite the challenge today. This time I met the challenge but it was far from easy. I do my puzzles in ink, and this one looks like my pen got sick.

Nice Cuppa said...

Anon@11:43. DIGRAPH: I believe you are correct. The PH in DIGRAPH IS a DIGRAPH, as it is pronounced "F". The RH is RHAPSODY is pronounced simply as "R", so not a digraph, just a silent "H".

Unfortunately, the standard definition of DIGRAPH is "a combination of two letters representing one sound", but It does not unambiguously state DIFFERENT sound, and yet all of the examples typically given - ch, sh, ph, th - ARE different sounds. Poor lexicography if you ask me.

PK said...

Hi Y'all! I always like Julian's puzzles. Today was no exception, but the first clue was no piece of cake. I tried "salivation" then wondered if that was a word when it turned red.

First pass through the top tier, AL JAZEERA (even spelled right) was the only entry, shortly followed by THE MASK. My son graduated in 1994 and brought home the tape of that movie half a dozen times because he liked the music in it. Probably only picture I could tell you the year of release.

Baby sitter's reading wasn't "Dr. Seuss" but RIOT ACT, which took six perps then a WAG.

I used to get a heat-and-serve Italian Wedding Soup that I really liked, but they discontinued it in my store. However, hand up for ouzo. Too many cute names for pasta to remember correctly. Growing up they were just all noodles.

Thanks, Splynter. I wasn't offended by the leggy lady, but then I've never been accused of being a prude. You can see more pornographic images than that pushing carts in Walmart on a summer day.

Where oh where has our Yellowrocks gone?

Avg Joe said...

Perdue 42 Nebraska 16

Good thing I still drink.

Yet another Anon said...

I merely want to thank Lemonade, from yesterday, for his explanation of YOM TOV. I appreciate the consideration with which he treated my message. Thank you again.

chefwen said...

Anon T. - Hear Hear!

Avg Joe said...

I doubt anyone really cares, but the score noted earlier was before the end of the Nebraska Purdue game. Final: 55- 45.

Just didn't want anyone thinking "What's he talkin bout?!"

The second comment still applies.

GarlicGal said...

New words for me today - Duroc and Digraph. I have never heard or come across either one.

My first pass through was very grim, too. Eventually I perped and wagged my way to the end. I laughed at "bite me". Great story Anonymous T. Thanks CC for the link to the LA tournament x-words.

Ladies with long, gorgeous legs don't bother me. Now Tom Selleck or George Clooney....they would bother me! (In a good way, of course.)

Has anyone seen "Steve Jobs" yet? We're going to take in a matinee today. Looking forward to some Aaron Sorkin dialogue.

Happy Dia de los Muertos and All Soul's Day to all out there in Crosswordlandia.

Anonymous T said...

Anon@ 11:13 - I'm sorry. I was a bit harsh earlier. I hope you can still feel free to play in the post-puzzle sandbox and add to the ups, downs, & crosses.

NC - I still dono what a DIGRAPH is - I wanted Dipthong 'cuz that's all I know w/r/t pronunciation (thanks DW - she took R TV F and had to "fix" her southern drawl). Rh, to me, is a "soft R". It's not R as is Rake, but R as in "wrapsody". But pay me no mind, I speak 'merican.

On AL JEZEERA - my 1st thought was squiggly-squiggly-yall-dot-squiggly. I had to WAG the second E. I've watched their broadcast a few times; they seem relatively fair but maybe that's just the US version. C.C. will be disappointed, but I'm looking fwd to tomorrow's China Daily in the paper to see their response to US ships in "their" (built-up island) waters.

Some Courses @38a was not antipasti. Damn, I guess I'll just eat SLOP w/ the DUROCS (nope - never heard that word before and I grew up in the midwest).

AveJoe - at least it ended close(er)...

Neighbor and I are fixin' to set up the 40' screen for tonight's spooky movies in the Cul-de-sac. Happy Hallow's Eve!

Cheers, -T

Jayce said...

When I saw this puzzle was by Julian Lim I anticipated it would be hard. I guess I psyched myself out because I flat out couldn't do it without looking up far too many items. At least I did know AL JAZEERA, THE MASK, and SOLTI. Had THAILAND instead of SRI LANKA for a while until I got the K from THE MASK. Got flummoxed by GOAT until coming here. I RATE her at 5 stars.

Spitzboov said...

A farmer once planted a field of corn in a certain pattern. But the feng shui didn't feel right so he DEESEEDED it and replanted anew.

TTP said...

Was planning on and looking forward to seeing a lot of excited little ones this year. A Saturday Halloween. What could be better ? The early returns are in.

It was pouring earlier, and now it is drizzling. It's just after 5:00 PM and we have had 2 trick-or-treaters. 2 teenage boys with umbrellas. Looks like I bought way too many bags of candy.

Here's a PSA I saw earlier today. You need to be the one talking to your kids about undefeated Iowa — don’t let them learn about it from someone else.

Avg Joe, sorry about the Nebraska loss.

PK said...

AnonT: I had heard of DUROC because my husband's dad raised them in the 20's & 30's. I'd found a newspaper story by chance telling about their huge boar and how many pounds of hogs they'd just shipped in two railroad box cars to Chicago. The men traveled with them in the box cars then took in the sights of Chicago. Bet they smelled interesting when they got there.

My kids raised 4-h hogs and until just a few minutes ago, I had no idea what breed they were. So I started with DUROC and looked at the pictures of every other breed listed at the bottom. My kids had Yorkshire hogs, I guess. They are a pinkish white pig with very tasty chops. We had several big contract hog raisers in the county who produced exclusively for Farmland Industries. I had toured some of those facilities to write newspaper stories. They all had Yorkshires. They are an intelligent animal and very humorous.

One farmer had one which came to his back door and followed him everywhere. He could open gates, so he was left loose and stayed around the yard. When the farmer loaded the other pigs for market, the pet pig rounded them up and herded them into the truck. (Traitor to his own kind.) He seemed to think he was a dog. He lived to old age and never got eaten. He got a home carved tombstone when he passed.

Jerome said...

BITE ME- Request from Dracula's lover?

Big Easy said...

I finished 95% this morning with many perps a a few lucky WAGS, namely CARLOS and OSLO. Was gone for most of the day. Came back tonight and finished it. VANESSA ( Samuel Barber), NOLI, DUROCS, DIGRAPH, & NET TV- 100% perps- I had no idea and had never heard or seen before.

The double televisions kind of threw me, NET TV and TEEVEE. Perps also solved PD JAMES, OPE and SIENA. 58A- ENTS wouldn't fit so it had to be either MDS or DRS. Farm food was CROP before turning to SLOP. CRAFT and DRAFT BEER appeared before WHEAT.

I was really surprised that BITE ME made it into the newspaper, knowing its origin. But as with all Saturday puzzles, I cannot say NO PROBLEM today. But I finished. And I was one better than Dudley in that I had both AL JAZEERA and Harry REID on my first pass plus figured OMAHA was correct.

HIPSTER- a bad dressing wannabe phony

Splynter- keep the pictures coming. They don't bother me.

Anonymous said...

"So, unless you're going to add to the solve experience, I'll quote JzB, and say "STFU.""

If you ran into me in a dark alley and we were all alone, I'd make you very sorry for shooting your big mouth off like that.

Bill G. said...

Trick-or-treaters are starting to come by in dribs and drabs. A couple of times I've said to one of the older ones that I'd like a trick. They just look confused.

SwampCat said...

OMG...anon @ 11:13....get a life! Yes, I've read the comments since then. But I feel a real need to add my venom! I love Splynter's pictures and links!! And I am a rather prudish old broad!! But Splynter's pic's are just his mind set. NO!!! We do not feel offended by them.

And Anon T....don't you dare back off when accosting these clueless Anons!! They need to go back under their bridges!

Jerome, I loved the puzzle, even though you deleted me!

End of rant!

SwampCat said...

Oops that was DEFEATED me! Dumb auto correct....

Bill G. said...

I've got a plan. Let's divided the anons into two groups. Group A will be the thoughtful, intelligent, considerate anons. Group B will be the jerkwad anons. Group B will be responsible for deleting their posts before hitting "Publish your comment." If not, at least we will know not to take your post seriously. It will be self-policing. (You don't see any problem with this idea do you?)

Anonymous said...

I sincerely apologize for my tirade at 11:13,

You see, I was feeling guilty for blowing the image up to 200X to see something
that turned out to be be just a nicely shaped woman, (& decently dressed.)

Being angry at myself, I lashed out using only the name of a website that
I visit regularly when I am alone in the bathroom with my laptop.

I hope you will forgive me.

P.S. I hope I do not meet you in a dark alley because I am a wimp,
& the only strong part of me is one forearm caused by repeated use.

Anonymous T said...

Well, this Halloween was fun, but not as many folks we expected. I've got two cases of beer and a 1/2 gallon of Margaritas left over.... What to do,.. what to do.. Tin, help me here. ;-)

Yes, the rain kept some kids away, but Eldest had 6 friends over and watched "The Shining"... Here's Johnny! What was weird is the kids didn't think it was scary. It freaked my s*** out when I was a kid. The little kids were transfixed on Hotel Transylvania playing on the big-big screen in the cul-de-sac.

Anon@ 8:31p Kirk said it, "Get a life" BTW, if we met in a dark alley, I've gots Army Training Sir! . I hope for both our sake it doesn't come to fisticuffs.

Aha!, I have a solution to the 2 cases of beer. NO PROBLEM, I'll SOBER-up tomorrow :-) // wasn't it Churchill that said, "Yes I'm drunk, but your ugly; at least I'll be SOBER tomorrow" or something to that effect?

Cheers and Happy All Saints Day! -T

Magilla Go-Rilla said...

54D: You ask how I would rate her?

One great "A". Two great gams.