Aug 4, 2016

Thursday, August 4th, 2016 Mike Peluso

Theme: Cross-Referenced Circle Chicanery

The reveal:

33A. With 43-Across, acting like an unscrupulous contractor ... and a hint to this puzzle's circles : CUTTING

43A. See 33-Across : CORNERS

Clockwise from the northwest corner, we find the nicely alliterative SEVERS, SHAVES, SLICES and SHEARS highlighted by the circles. If you don't get circles in your publication and you don't like cross-referenced clues, then this puzzle won't win your personal popularity contest.

With O'ER, E'ER and E'EN I was looking for EBON to complete a poetic quad-fecta (Yay! New word!) but we capped out at three. I have to say that there did seem to be a preponderance of bitty three-letter fill today. Let's see what else we've got going on:


1. Retro photos : SEPIAS. Suitably stern-looking gentleman in this one:

7. Condescends : STOOPS

13. Tympanic membrane : EARDRUM

15. Half a notable San Francisco intersection : ASHBURY. Hippie central at the corner of Haight.

16. Heavy marble : STEELIE. We called 'em something different in England - "dobber" springs to mind but it was many years ago that I last used one.

17. Worried about : SWEATED

18. Brandy letters : VSO. Very Superior Old. Often followed followed by "P" for "Pale".

19. Some grad students : TA'S. Apparently in middle school you are now a "paraprofessional".

21. P.O. boxful : ENVS. Envelopes stuffing your post office box. Most of the mail I get stuffed into my mailbox is junk.

22. One of a divided trio? : DEE. Three "D"s in "divided".

24. Like some room fresheners : PINEY

26. Anthem contraction : O'ER

28. Lucid : SANE

30. Tony winner Martin in the 2013 "Pippin" Broadway revival : ANDREA. No clue. Thank you, crosses.

32. Cargo wts. : TNS. Tons. I'm not sure if I've seen this abbreviation before - "t" is more common.

35. Prom dress material : TAFFETA

37. They may be crunched : ABS

38. Bollywood star Aishwarya __ : RAI. No clue. Thank you, crosses. Here she is:

39. Curaçao cocktails : MAI TAIS. Rum, curaçao and lime juice. Cheers!

47. RR schedule listing : STN.

48. Land on a lake? : REEL IN. Nice clue. Landing a fish.

50. Psyche's beloved : EROS

51. Letters on old TV dials : UHF. Ultra-High Frequency. I remember these things. I recall UHF was where the local channels lived, VHF was where the other stuff was. We only had four channels in England for the longest time. I grew up with two, went to three when the BBC introduced color TV on VHF and finally Channel Four added the second commercial channel. You didn't really need a remote - there was not much channel-hopping between the two primary channels (the publicly-funded BBC and the commercially-funded ITV).

52. Strainer : SIEVE

53. For time eterne : E'ER

54. "Girls" creator Dunham : LENA. Dug up from the deep recesses.

57. "There's __ in ... " : NO I

58. XL squared : MDC 40 x 40 = 1600. I still can't figure out how the Romans did math. "Borrow X and carry VII". Hopeless.

60. Old Buick : LE SABRE

62. Indian spiced drink : CHAI TEA

66. Wearing, with "in" : ATTIRED

67. Lots of shots : SALVOES

68. Juiced-up Roadsters? : TESLAS. A colleague of mine owns one. He lives in Texas, I thought he'd get some stick from the oil industry folks, but he says no-one's been mean to him yet.

69. Breastbones : STERNA. Really? I've never, ever had the need to use this word.


1. French possessive : SES. His, her or its plural possessive. Parisians love to tell you that you should use "son" instead of "ses" when the vowel begins with a consonant. I love to tell them that all their vines are grafted onto Californian rootstock after the phylloxera virus devastated their vineyards in the 1860's.

2. Take in : EAT

3. Hinder : PREVENT

4. Ominous date : IDES. March got a bad rap. The other nine ides didn't have such an ominous cloud looming over them.

5. Patron of Alice's : ARLO. Arlo Guthrie's song. If you can put up with 18 minutes of it, here's your link.

6. __ generis : SUI. Unique. Why use one English word when two Latin ones will do?

7. Louisville-to-Nashville dir. : SSW

8. Fare-well bridge : THEE

9. Scottish resort town known for its whisky : OBAN. In 2011, about $10,000's worth of fireworks were ignited all at once due to a computer glitch. The show was originally planned to last 30 minutes, it was all over in less than 60 seconds. Classic!

10. Defeat at the polls : OUTVOTE

11. Gift : PRESENT

12. Barrett of Pink Floyd : SYD

14. Doling (out) : METING

15. Declare : ASSERT

20. Furthermore : AND

22. Mil. bravery medal : D.S.C. Distinguished Service Cross. One notch down from the Medal of Honor.

23. Evian, par exemple : EAU

24. Colorful flowers : PANSIES

25. The very beginning, figuratively : YEAR ONE

27. Pretoria's land: Abbr. : R.S.A. Republic of South Africa.

29. Virginie, to Eugénie : ÉTAT. State.

31. A long way away : AFAR

34. Support beam : I-BAR

36. Penalty for wrongdoing : FINE

39. The Bulldogs of the SEC : M.S.U. Mississippi State University.

40. Game player : ATHLETE

41. Overruns : INFESTS

42. Fished with a net : SEINED. Fished with a seine net, like this:

43. Study of government : CIVICS

44. Meccano construction set : ERECTOR. The "Erector" brand is now being retired after the company was purchased by Meccano in 2000.

45. 1973 Court decision alias : ROE vs. Wade.

46. Old map abbr. : S.S.R. Soviet Socialist Republic

49. One of the fire signs : LEO

55. Attach, in a way : NAIL

56. Magical opening : ABRA-cadabra

58. Beer ingredient : MALT

59. Act like a loon? : DIVE.

60. Map coordinate: Abbr. : LAT. Latitude.

61. Legal thing : RES. More Latin.

63. Possesses : HAS

64. Poetic dusk : E'EN. More poetry.

65. Simile center : AS A. As happy as a clam in the sand where no-one's digging.

I'm back in LA this week. I was asked last week how many miles I fly each year - it varies, but never less than 50,000; usually quite a bit more. I'm up to about 45,000 so far in 2016. United puts your name on a plane if you hit the 10 million mile lifetime mark, I'm a LONG way from that milestone, thank goodness. I'd rather have my sanity and my home life than a 777 called "Steve".

Aaaand - here's the grid.



Robert Emerson said...

Good morning.
Fast, easy fills. No problem there. But I did have a couple of issues.

60A: Latitude is not a coordinate, it's a line. A coordinate is a point, say the intersection of the latitude and longitude.

32A: TNS for TONS. It seems to me that somebody made this abbreviation up. It may be legitimate but to drop one letter from a four letter word just seems wrong. The dictionaries that I checked for measurement abbreviations all use T for ton.

fermatprime said...


Cool puzzle, Mike! Great expo, Steve!

Things that were perped: ANDREA, RAI, OBAN, MSU. Otherwise no problems!


OwenKL said...

"I bequeath THEE tens of TONS
Of poems written just for puns!
V.S.O. brandy
Should be kept handy
For Very Special Old son-of-a-guns!"

The contractor's funeral had plenty of mourners,
His underpaid workmen were nearly all foreigners.
The coffin's odd shape
Led some to gape --
Right up to the end, he was still CUTTING CORNERS!

Don't you hate the frustrating "Whatever"?
A desired response to a question, not EVER!
Such utter apathy
Borders on blasphemy,
Drives one to wishing their tongue you could SEVER!

Let's send the bigots to San Fran in a hurry,
Let the city of cable-cars worry.
Its PANSIES contingent
Should be sufficient
To keep them in check so they only Haight-ASHBURY!

OwenKL said...

~ ~ Another Cinderella Story ~ ~
Cindy went to the ball ATTIRED in TAFFETA.
Too many MAI TAIS exceeded her stamina!
The dress' wide hoops
Interfere when she STOOPS,
So she left it behind when to ralph she would haveta!

Sailors may sail AFAR cross the briny,
Feeling homesick, and for family PINEY.
For sweetheart or wife
Who brightened his life --
How they SWEATED abed when they got entwiney!

Beauty queen RAI was nicknamed the ERECTOR
For her effect on each male elector!
She'd but to emote,
Her fans would OUT-VOTE
Any odd judges who tried to reject her!

OwenKL said...

~ ~ At The E.S.L. Conference ~ ~
Ting Lee felt tingly to address the meeting!
A measure of knowledge they hoped he'd be METING.
Everyone PRESENT
Wished to PREVENT
Poor grammar. They groaned when he opened, "Me Ting!"

SALVOES of advertising have become
An insult to the SANE of consumerdom!
To the eyes, intrusive,
To good sense, abusive,
And TV commercials assault the EARDRUM!

ANDREA's kisses left her swain fairly REELIN',
Psilocybin lipstick left him no pain feelin'!
While he was numb,
He was under her thumb.
Her hook was set, it was time to REEL IN!

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

How do I hate this puzzle? Let me count the ways...

OK, so "hate" is too strong a word. Let's just say it wasn't the most enjoyable experience for a variety of reasons, including:

* No circles, so no theme
* RAI and OBAN were compete unknowns
* DEE (my best guess is that it was referring to AC/DC, which really made no sense at all).

I'd go on, but the rest were really just sour grapes since by this point I had already made up my mind that I just didn't like the puzzle. I'm sure OUTVOTE is a perfectly cromulent word, for example. I just didn't like it.

PK said...

Hi Y'all! Good one, Mike! Very interesting, Steve!

I did this on the LAT site so I had circles. Interesting to see them fill in. Finding the reveal only helped on SEVER which wasn't yet filled. With all the remodeling I did through the years, I'm glad I had good conscientious contractors. Only bad ones were my roofers a few years ago. Their company went bankrupt shortly thereafter.

18 years ago I cracked my STERNum. Thank goodness I didn't have plural of them. Pain. Bad. Where would you ever use STERNA except in a CW? (I really don't want to know.)

OwenKL said...

No particular problems with the puzzle today, but didn't have circles, and failed at figuring them out before I looked.

I've been wanting to see how many poems I could squeeze out of a puzzle. I got 11 by deadline, dropped 1 for quality. But I could still cover SHAVERS, SHEARS, SLICES, CHAI TEA, SEPIA, STEELIE, SIEVE, and a few others, I'm sure!

A couple things I looked up:

Aishwarya Rai ... is often cited as the "most beautiful woman in the world".[2][3][4][5][6][7]

VSOP Cognac: Meaning ‘Very Special Old Pale’ or actually, officially, Very Superior Old Pale.

For March, May, July, and October the ides is the 15th day of the month. For other Roman calendar months it is on the 13th. For modern calendars, ides is 15th on 31 day months, 13th on shorter months. At various periods, new years day was Jan.1, Mar.1, or The Ides of March.

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Steve and friends. I must have been on the right wave length today because I was able to sail through today's puzzle. I did have a bump or two, but nothing that further contemplation couldn't resolve.

I learned that Colorful Flowers are not Peonies, but Pansies. So many letters of those flowers correspond!

I also wanted Mail to be in my P.O. Box.

Even though the SEC is all around me, I went for the Georgia Bulldogs instead of the Mississippi Bulldogs.

Syd Barnett (1946 ~ 2006) makes frequent guest appearances in the puzzles.

Barry G: I think the DEE stands for the letter "D" because there are three "Ds" in the word "Divided."

QOD: Only nature knows how to justly proportion to the fault the punishment it deserves. ~ Percy Bysshe Shelley (Aug. 4, 1792 ~ July 8, 1822)

Anonymous said...

Barry, you re right, this was a terrible puzzle for all the reasons you stated.

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Lotsa 3-letter entries, and several of 'em were obscure. That detracted from the fun of this puzzle, but not from the speed. This one came together in Monday time. My newspaper printed the circles so that wasn't an issue. Forgot to look at 'em, though.

Regarding VHF/UHF: The lower-frequency VHF channels (channels 2-13) were preferred, because you could cover more area with less transmitter power and you didn't need a "converter" box to receive it. The FCC decided that Madison WI would be an experimental all-UHF TV market. But somebody with "pull" in Washington managed to sneak in a VHF CBS-affiliated station, giving them an automatic advantage.

TTP said...

Good morning all. Thank you Mike Peluso and Steve. Good stuff.

Had to start by filling in the middle. Worked out from there. Got CUTTING CORNERS early.

Some initial errors, but managed to overcome them. Like wanting ISLAND for land on a lake. That was just wrong on so many levels. But then tried to prove it with ASH for "One the fire signs." Good thing I wasn't climbing a rock wall. There was no foothold to be had there.

At the finish, I was so busy patting myself on the back that I forgot to go look for the theme answers. Instantly disappointed when I opened Steve's review. All I had to do was open the puzzle at the Chicago Tribune website rather than MENSA. Very clever puzzle !

PEONIES before PANSIES. Didn't know ANDREA, but she had to be, per perps. So peonies had to go. Some other unknowns perped in such as OBAN, RAI, SUI. Unique, eh ? Thanks Steve.

Loved the "Penalty for wrongdoing" clue. Oops, my bad. It can't be ELSE. It looked like it could be ELSE during the time I had "Prom dress material" spelled as tafetta rather than TAFFETA. Sounding out the word helped. Ok, I like the clue for "Penalty for wrongdoing." FINE ! Divided trio was good. Buono !

Ominous date was not DDAY. DDAY slowed me down. I threw it in without proof. Couldn't get anything to work with it except EARDRUM.

They may be crunched. Oh, it's ABS. Had NBS. That's right. NBS are fudged. Is that being too cynical ?

Liked TESLAS clue. Travel Tip: The Hop On-Off bus tour drives past that famous intersection.

And I thought it was CADABARA opening. Never heard of ABRAmagical. (My attempt at humor. Save your corrective feedback.)

Lemonade714 said...

Steve, you are missing out a fine comedic actress who I have enjoyed since her days on SCTV with John Candy and theothers ANDREA MARTIN .

Barry, since you have many choices as to where to access the LAT (Latitude CSO to the LA Times)why don't you get the puzzles with circles from another source so you will not feel left out and frustrated. It is clear you have a sense of humor and cruciverbal IQ that is quite
CROMULENT. Have fun not frustration.

Never heard of OBAN, STERNA is just the Latin plural of STERNUM and when I took my kids to watch firework on the pier in 1991 when they were little, the first one blew up on the ground, killing one of the operators as well as setting off the rest. Not a pretty site.

SEINED? Is it from the river?

THanks Mike and Steve

inanehiker said...

Creative theme and layout - though I'm sure it would be less satisfying with no circles included.
I'm with Hatoolah putting UGA before MSU - I wonder if they joined the SEC at different times since athletic conferences hardly ever have the same mascot with 2 teams.
WEES about STERNA - since we only have one I can't think of an instance of using the plural.

Finally had a night not disrupted with cracking thunder, looks like we'll get a break from the flooding.
Thanks Steve and Mike!

Yellowrocks said...

-I loooved this puzzle. Of course, I had the benefit of the circles. ABRAcadabra and it was solved, as if my magic. I liked that all the corner words began and ended with S.
-I suppose, unless one is in the medical field, one sternum at a time is all we speak of.
-I can't think of a one word replacement for SUI GENERIS, so I prefer it to "in a group of its own," or "not like anything else."
-All through K-12 (not ELHI) the school system where I taught had paraprofessionals who were like teachers' aides. In college the TA actually replaced the professor most of the time. Sometimes I thought we were gypped, having an entry level teacher while the master was involved in publishing.
-FARE THEE WELL is still used today as an idiom. The tot played the part of an injured party to a fare thee well when his brother teased him.
-"In geography, latitude is a geographic coordinate that specifies the north–south position of a point on the Earth's surface." The lines on a map or globe are called LINES OF LATITUDE.

Husker Gary said...

-The circles made for a striking grid and the gimmick for a fun solve. Add in Steve’s write-up and “Bob’s your uncle” and the day has a wonderful start
-This great documenary told of how the paradise on Haight collapsed when non-hippies started taking advantage of free food and shelter. Imagine that.
-This next installment told of how the pill, ROE v. Wade and women’s lib transformed America. Imagine that.
-We counted on our TA because our calculus prof from India was hard to understand
-DANG, I had PINED and left it and who knew it was RAI not LAI . Two bad cells which was “My Bad” not Mike’s.
-RESORT (RE _ _ _ _) changed to REEL IN when lake was seen as a verb
-The IE/EI conundrum took care of itself at SEINE/SIEVE
-Francis Scott Key watched SALVOES O’ER the ramparts
-So, you’re telling me the Grand Ole Opry is SSW of Churchill Downs
-“Fare THEE Well my fairy fay” I finally looked up the last two words to that lyric
-People of my advanced years who think they are still ATHLETES are making the PT business very lucrative
-What song has the lyric, “Charlie’s wife goes down to the Scoally Square STAtion every day, at quarter past two”?

Tinbeni said...

D-N-F ...

Was not-even-close to the Constructor's wave-length.

But there were some things to enjoy: VSO, MAI-TAIS, OBAN (a Scottish resort I had the pleasure of crossing-off my "Bucket-List" 10 years ago) ...
And I did enjoy their whisky!


Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

Spectacular grid design. I'll put up with a few imperfections such as "Tns" for such balance.

Who remembers Sheldon asking Raj about Aishwarya Rai, later deciding that Raj knows nothing about Indian cinema?

D-Otto - a few days back, I considered mentioning that our trusty Zenith color TV had that up-to-date feature, a UHF knob.

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

Despite a few nits, this was an enjoyable solve with a very well executed theme. Any unknowns (Rai, Oban, Andrea) were filled by perps.

Thanks, Mike, for a fun Thursday and thanks, Steve, for being our trusty guide.

Have a great day.

Yellowrocks said...

Example: Two teens involved in the auto accident were in the hospital with fractured STERNA and ribs.

HG, your point about the TA is well taken. We had an incompetent prof who assigned each of us one aspect of the course to write about. She then used the best essays, accumulated over the years, to read as her own lectures. She couldn't pronounce names and difficult words and resented being asked to repeat them. I became the world's worst speller and asked her to spell what couldn't be understood. She gladly read the spelling from the paper. She gave obscurely worded and ambiguous test questions. Once she said her briefcase with the test papers had been stolen from her car. We suspected everyone did so poorly she needed to "lose" the tests. A neophyte TA would have been preferable.

PS My post @7:58 should have read "as if BY magic," not MY magic.

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Mike Peluso, for a fine puzzle. Thank you, Steve, for a fine review.

Puzzle looked ominous at first glance. Then I dove in. Bounced around and finally got a foothold in the SE corner. That entire corner just fell together. I felt better.

Got through the puzzle much quicker than a normal Thursday. I had the circles and they all made sense with CUTTING CORNERS.

OBAN was unknown. Perps. Same for SUI.

The rest I pretty much knew once I had a letter or two.

This puzzle must have been quite a challenge to construct. I really enjoyed it!

See you tomorrow.


( )

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Very nice puzzle today with lots of meat on the bone. Loved the theme, and the way the circles nipped off the corners. BZ to a fine concept.
OBAN - In the 90's there was a very fine OBAN Inn at Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont. As good as the Prince of Wales but with more restricted seating.
LAT - A point's location can be defined by its LAT and Long. coordinates. So LAT would be a coordinate. The clue is correct. This agrees with the (noun) definition in Merriam.

desper-otto said...

Husker, Charlie picked up his sandwich at the Scollay Square Station on the Kingston Trio's MTA.

YR, as Steve said, "unique" is a single-word synonym for SUI GENERIS. According to M-W, "peculiar" could be another.

Whitey said...

Couldn't agree more with Lemon @ 7:33. As soon as I open the Tribune CW and see circles, I know that Barry's post will contain his tired complaint about not having the circles. Go get them, and kwitcherbitchin!

C6D6 Peg said...

Very nice theme and puzzle. Thank you, Mike! Best clue was "Landed on a Lake"!

Thanks, Steve, for your informative review. Good luck on your miles!

SwampCat said...

I must have been on Mike's wavelength because I liked this one and finished in good time in spite of the unknowns. Steve, thanks for 'spraining ' the hard parts, like DIVE for act like a loon. Oh! That kind of loon! Perps filled it in but it made no sense to me. Pass the V-8 can.

Lucina said...

I loved this puzzle and entered into Mike's wave length quickly. Seeing the circles, I filled the NW all the way down the ladder to read SEVERS then saw CUTTING and knew CORNERS would be at 43A. Good job, Mike Peluso!

Haight was too short for starters so ASHBURY went in. I liked the DEES in divided. ANDREA and RAI were pure guesses. Had ECHO before EROS. Must get those mythical lovers straight! But, alas, I had STERNI instead of STERNA. My guess would be what YR posted, several person's STERNA.

You gave us a PRESENT, Mike Peluso, thank you and thank you, Steve, as well.

Have a delightful day, everyone!

Michael said...

FWIW, I tanked on 24a: I read "like some room fresheners" as a plural, so had 25d as "Sea....", which led to that ol' sinking feeling.

Chairman Moe said...

"Puzzling Thoughts":

WEES, the three-letter answers at first made this puzzle seem easy; but they weren't your run-of-the-mill variety, so for me - even with printed circles - it was not an easy solve

Write-overs included: TOLL before THEE in 8d; LTRS before ENVS in 21a; DSA before DSC in 22d; FOUL before FINE in 36d; UGA before MSU in 39d; and LA SALLE before LE SABRE in 60a

OUT VOTE clue seemed odd but I don't know if there's a better one - strange phrase IMO

Owen, I gotta hand it to you that you are off the charts when it comes to rhyming. I'm not sure I'd have the time or patience to do this for every crossword puzzle, every day. But you do inspire me to come up with a limerick every now and again ... one that fits today's puzzle - and using a word that you didn't - is:

A big fight commenced with eldest daughter,
Over present my husband had bought her.
She just couldn't forgive
That he got her a SIEVE!
His apologies just won't hold water.

Betsey C. said...

Very enjoyable puzzle with a clever theme. The Chicago Tribune is tossed on my porch every morning, and that is where I find the puzzle, so I had the circles. I feel lucky!

Yellowrocks said...

D/O oops! Thanks.

CanadianEh! said...

Very elegant puzzle today with no corners cut. Thanks Mike and Steve.

Hand up for Mail before ENVS and for waiting for PANSIES to fill in (as it could be any flower). Enjoyed the cross of SIEVE, SEINE and REEL IN. It was ASSERT today, not Aver or Avow. Loved the TESLA clue.

Funny how 26A is clued as Anthem contraction assuming everyone will automatically think of the American anthem. Come to think of it, O Canada does not have any contractions.

My DIL who was born in India says that CHAI TEA is a redundant phrase because Chai IS Tea!

Spitzboov, you beat me to the OBAN Inn comment. There was a fire in 1992 that destroyed the original building (which dated back to 1824) but it was rebuilt within a year as a replica of the old inn and is still in operation. We have not dined there lately but must try it again.

Anonymous said...

TOOWBS ( the opposite of what Barry said ).
I enjoyed this puzzle. Thanks Mr. Peluso.
I agree it must have been a challenge to construct.
Fireworks: The same thing happened in Philadelphia's Fairmount Park around 1980.


unclefred said...

Terrific grid. Same gripes as others about STERNA. But overall a beautifully designed and constructed CW, thanx, Mike! Terrific write-up, thanx Steve! Owen you went totally overboard today, I don't know how you do it. Thanx for the limericks!!

Madame Defarge said...

Late to the game. Very. Thus, WES.

Thanks, Mike. The circles cutting corners was great. Thanks, Steve, for the tour.

Enjoy the rest of the day.

Misty said...

I loved this Thursday puzzle, though I discovered that I goofed by one letter--had VHF instead of UHF. But other than that I got the whole thing--Yay! (Well, I did have circles and that helped a lot). Anyway, many thanks, Mike, and you too, Steve, as always. Thanks for explaining the DEES--I got them, but didn't understand them. And I must say, I've never heard of SEINED, even though I got it right. But this is what challenging puzzles are all about, isn't it.

Barry, I'm not sure you should be complaining if you ply us with a word like "cromulent."

Anyway, have a great day, everybody!

Jayce said...

As Abejo said so aptly, "This puzzle must have been quite a challenge to construct. I really enjoyed it!" Pretty much exactly what I was going to say.

I get the feeling Barry G has been out-voted. (Happens to me quite often.)

Funny what we know and don't know. I knew RAI immediately but not ANDREA, OBAN, and LENA. Instead of LENA I put in CHIP, who's the only person named Dunham that came to mind. Turns out he's a comic strip author. What Gary said about the I's and E's in SIEVE and SEINED.

My dad, a dyed-in-the-wool Buick loyalist, once had a LeSabre before he later upgraded to the Roadmaster and later to what they called the Electra 225. Man oh man those were mushy rides; made me violently carsick every time.

Best wishes to you all.

Jerome said...

Is an ERECTOR set two viagras?

"I love your suit"
"Yeah, but MAI TAIS ugly"

"I miss you, dear"

Jayce said...

By the way, the LA Times puzzle page has recently posted the following notice: "Daily Crossword is updating to a new version on Tuesday, August 9! Enjoy all the same features with a new look and additional options to customize your game to control the way you want." I wonder if that means they're moving away from using Adobe Flash and/or switching to a format other than Arcadium. I do hope they, and eventually all websites, scrap Flash and move to other technologies such as HTML5. One good thing about Arcadium is that it does show the circles.

Jinx in Norfolk said...

Jayce, I'm sure it will be Flash-free. That's good for all of us. I think we got an accidental peek at the new format last week.

I liked today's puzzle. Plenty of learning opportunities, but no crosses that were total unknowns to me. Used a lot of perps, but got it all with no help. I like that in a Thursday challenge.

It is true that there is no "I" in team, but there is an "M" and an "E".

TX Ms said...

Speaking of teams - today is the 23rd anniversay of Ranger Ryan Nolan's fight with a White Sox player. Best view of the whole thing is at 5:11. It was a pummeling! Can someone please link it for me? Thanks.

Jerome said...

Jayce- I'm a dinosaur when it comes to computer programming. So, would you explain a couple of things simply as you can without using computer related lingo.

There is no doubt that Rich sends out the puzzles for publication with the circles. If the circles don't appear in certain publications where lies the problem?

Is it an easy fix or an impossibility for a few hundred publications and websites to all be on the same page?

I print out the LA Times puzzles, and many others, through the Cruciverb website. It's fast and simple. The circles always appear. Can someone else's computer and printer not detect the circles?

Jayce said...

Jerome, I don't know all the nuts and bolts inside the various ways web pages display the crossword puzzles, but I just did a bit of quick and dirty research. The LA Times website uses crossword presentation technology called Arcadium, and it does show the circles. Same with the Chicago Tribune website. The Cruciverb site takes you to the LA Times website when you select the LA Times puzzle. The LA Times puzzle on the Mensa website (which I'm looking at right now) does not show the circles; it is presented by a company called Universal Uclick. All of the above use Adobe Flash as the underlying graphics "engine." There may be presentation software programs other than Arcadium and Uclick, but I think every site that uses Uclick will have no circles and every site that uses Arcadium will have them.

Anonymous said...

"There is no doubt that Rich sends out the puzzles for publication with the circles."

I'm neither Rich or Jayce, but since I've actually written crossword programs, here's my two cents. :)

I don't know if Rich (or other publications) send these out in Across Lite format, which is the most common format for crossword puzzle distribution on the internet. It is a dated format, that doesn't technically support Unicode (which is the modern text standard to allow accented characters, among other things) which may be why -- without knowing the details of distribution, one can only guess -- some publications mangle clues that have accented characters.

As to the loss of circles, there are several tables inside the AcrossLite file, one of which has to be read to determine if there are circles. If the software doesn't read that table, there won't be circles.

There are all sorts of legal issues around the AcrossLite format (including, at one time, threatened lawsuits about using the term "AcrossLite" to anyone who dares to read the format without licensing it -- which encourages people to not implement the full version of "AcrossLite" in their software, since they can't be sued if they don't claim to support all of it.) There have been all kinds of attempts to move away from AcrossLite for various reasons: the legal claims made by the owners of the format, and the lack of Unicode support among them. An internet search would fill out these observations, but may be beyond your computer abilities.

It's not like crossword puzzles are a billion dollar industry. There's no reason to fix what ain't broke. And if people don't complain in large numbers about missing circles, it's just cheaper for publications to ignore a relatively rare complaint.

Jerome said...

Jayce, Anon... Got it... Thanks.

Wilbur Charles said...

I'm too late with my MTA answer. Scolley or was it Sculley was razed to make way for the government center circa 196?

I remember that 'The train came rumbling thru"

I remember a diner named Mondo's in that area. And of course, Mrs Mondo who did the home fries. Before tats for women became du jour.

SEINE and REELIN through me for awhile not to speak of that pesky NW. I forgot all about the circles and didn't know what Steve was talking about.

Mike P. keep em coming. You too, Owen.

Oh. I guess if my proposal fails I've been OUTVOTED. I wanted OUTpolled

Not to speak of OBSTRUCT at 3d.

Speaking of'keepem comn..", you to Chairman Moe

Chairman Moe said...

TX Miss @ 2:56

Here is your link to Nolan Ryan's fight.

For future reference, here is how you make a link appear as text:

CrossEyedDave said...

Started off this eye opener of a puzzle early this morning while trying to go back to sleep...
What I remember most is being amazed that I actually finished it, when I thought it was going to be impossible...


Learning moment: Cromulent.

There's no "I" in team?

Even God cut corners?

Yellowrocks said...

Cromulent means legitimate or acceptacle, but tongue in cheek, it means the opposite, spurious or made up. Which was Barry's meaning?

I like the I in Dave's team.

Steve said...

Lemon - I looked for a link between the fishing net and the river, but couldn't find any connection. The river name is a derivative of the original Latin (Caesar was happy to name anything he could slap a label on during his conquest of Gaul!)

AnonymousPVX said...

Got to it late. Kind of crunchy, but I got the solve. See you tomorrow.

TX Ms said...

Thanks, Chairman Moe! As I have one foot in the cave when it comes to computers and am pretty much computer-challenged, I'll review your info link tomorrow. Thanks again!

windhover said...

No circles for me, but Enjoyed it anyway. Typically Thursdays are my favorite puzzles; just the right amount of crunch but (almost) always doable. That said, tonight I FIW. I had UHV. I knew invest was wrong @ 41D but didn't let go of it. Could have done a letter run, and I'm not above it, but just didn't.
Jayce, my Dad was a Buick man also, with a '48, a '52, a '55 (which yours truly totaled), and a '60 LeSabre. He didn't live to see the Electra225 (known in these parts as the Duece and a Quarter) but he would no doubt have driven one. I once (1989) rode from here to Washington, DC in one on a trip that commenced at midnight (don't ask). It was a very smooth ride, as I recall.

windhover said...

Think we aren't being watched? When I returned to the blog after posting, guess what was at the masthead? A Buick ad. Damn!!

Anonymous T said...

Hi Puzzle Pals!

DNF - I STOOP'd for 2 lookups: How to spell ASHBURY (I had Ashbery (and I've been there!)) and TAFFETA? Getting the right perps helped with a FIW -- I had LE SABLE. D'oh. [What do you know? I'm car-lexic too... Sable is a Chevy]

Thanks Mike. This had to be a bugger to create. I had the same circle-grid idea for STEP UP but C.C. wisely PREVENTED that. Anyway, Tip o' the Hat; nicely done.

Steve - always a fun expo. Enjoyed the 0:60 OBAN firework show; finale all once! I'll enjoy ARLO later; not that I don't know every word to Alice's Restaurant.

Also, Re: TESLAS in TX. We still love 'em - esp the ones powered by a nat-gas plant.

WOs - NE is full of ink. LTRs b/f ENVS (that stayed the longest since we oft have the former) and being directionally challenged (WSW b/f SSW). Also, LisA b/f LENA to nearly NAIL that CORNER

ESPs - most of the TLAs (Three Letter Acronyms / Abbreviations)

If 27d was clued as Crypto inits, I'd have known RSA [<-Link] instead of perping it in.

Fav: Theme & Execution. I also liked ERECTOR set - ONE of my favorite toys.

{A,A,A,A+,B+... I lost track. Thanks OKL!}. {A for C.Moe too}

YR - thanks for saving me from looking up Cromulent in a dictionary; the iPad doesn't know that word.

CED Both links, sans cats, were LOL!

What Jayce said. As a CyberSec expert I'll say it: Flash is a security-SIEVE; Flash must die!

Windhover - aren't tracking cookies fun? I read of a hack today that "fingerprints" you based on your laptop battery power-drain rate. Don't worry; it works only in special cases on Linux.

Think the LAT will be sued by the IOC for mentioning Game and ATHLETE in the same puzzle the day after an Olympic theme?

Cheers, -T

Jerome said...

SEINE- From the Old English SEGNE, which means "drag net". SEGNE is from the Greek SAGNE, which means "fishing net".

And since SEINE was in The LA Times crossword today you could call it a seine of the times.

PK said...

AnonT: A Sable is a Mercury model. Not a Chevy.

Speaking of hacking, I can't help but wonder if a certain wealthy candidate paid a certain foreign country to hack a certain political party just before their convention?

George Noory said...

Yup PK! Not only that but he (I assume you mean the rich male not the rich female candidate) also funded the 2nd shooter and the fake moon landing videos.

That guy is something else!

Anonymous T said...

PK - Crud, I even got the Make wrong. My new mantra: don't trust memory, trust the Google :-)

The elections were "hacked" long ago (Andrew Jackson? Dawn of TV? Your guess is good as mine). Normal folk can't / don't want to run because of the press / opposition sausage-grinder the process has become. So, we get a choice between two Ids. My $0.02 and I'm shutting up.

Funny George, I thought you were on the air now interviewing David, a "virologist" who's claiming there's a sub-atomic virus / bacteria.* Why do you never answer my fast-blasts?

Cheers, -T
*That's real (not the virus, the inane topic) - I'm listening to CoastToCoastAM now.

Picard said...

I have had my STERNum fractured. Hopefully never STERNA.

Completed the puzzle correctly, but this time without the circles I was unable to find the CUTTING CORNERS.

If you SWEATED the details, remember: Don't sweat the petty things. But, even more important: Don't pet the sweaty things.