Nov 8, 2016

Tuesday, November 8, 2016, Gail Grabowski & Bruce Venzke

Theme: Change of Life

20. *Old West transport : STAGE COACH. LIFE COACH

40. *Trailways, for one : BUS LINE. LIFE LINE.

11. *Handsome guy or gorgeous gal : DREAM BOAT. LIFE BOAT.

34. *Temporary group for a specific job : TASK FORCE. LIFE FORCE.

60. Having financial freedom ... and, literally, what the last words of the answers to starred clues comprise : SET FOR LIFE

Melissa here. Mostly a walk in the park, only one unknown, and perp help needed with a few. Solved without realizing the clever theme.


1. Catnip or coriander : HERB

5. Throw in the towel : QUIT

 9. Former "Idol" judge Paula : ABDUL

14. Old music halls : ODEA. Definition: A hall, theater, or other structure for musical performances. My unknown - maybe I'll remember next time.

15. Loosen, as laces : UNDO

16. Author John le __ : CARRE

17. Out of control : WILD

18. Road in old Rome : ITER. Latin for road, journey, or way.

19. Martial arts-based fitness routine : TAEBO. Can never remember if it's spelled with an I or E.

23. British brew with a red triangle in its logo : BASS

24. "Oops, almost forgot" : OH YEAH

25. Captain Marvel's magic word : SHAZAM

27. Felt sorry about : RUED

29. Workable, as an alternative : VIABLE

32. Good—and bad—dietary substances : FATS

35. Consumed : EATEN

38. Jiffy Lube supply : OIL

39. __ Fáil: Irish "stone of destiny" : LIA

42. Big fuss : ADO

43. Pennysaver contents : ADS

44. "Family Matters" nerd : URKEL

45. Kenton of jazz : STAN

46. Making a cake, say : BAKING

48. DVR pioneer : TIVO

51. Charlatans : FAKERS

54. Shoe polish targets : SCUFFS

58. Molecule part : ATOM

62. Bouquet __: chef's tasty bundle : GARNI. French for "garnished bouquet," a bundle of herbs gathered and tied into a bundle, usually to prepare soup or stew.

64. Retail complex : MALL

65. Took a tumble : FELL

66. One sent back down the river? : EX-CON

67. "Metamorphoses" poet : OVID

68. Russian river : URAL

69. Loses on purpose? : DIETS. Nice clue.

70. Nickname for José : PEPE

71. A great deal : LOTS


1. "In what way?" : HOW SO

2. Novelist Wharton : EDITH

3. Race with batons : RELAY

4. Annoys persistently : BADGERS

5. Pielike brunch serving : QUICHE

6. Golden rule word : UNTO

7. "Any more bright __?" : IDEAS

8. Olympic symbol : TORCH

9. Play a part : ACT

10. Words to a black sheep : BAA BAA

12. Metro regions : URBS. Not sure I've heard this shortened word before.

13. Many August babies : LEOS

21. Water in the Seine : EAU

22. Place of safety : HAVEN

26. Kindle read, briefly : ZINE

28. Furniture with a lock, maybe : DESK

31. North Carolina campus : ELON 

32. Personal trainer's target : FLAB

33. Verdi princess : AIDA. Opera.

36. 23-Across, e.g. : ALE

37. Lean : TILT

40. Camp bed : BUNK. Too many letters for COT.

41. Impulses : URGES

45. Deeply expressive : SOULFUL

47. Emphatic denial : I AM NOT

49. Wagner princess : ISOLDE. More opera.

50. 48-Across ancestor : VCR

52. Swab again : REMOP

53. Avoid, with "off" : STAVE

55. Sporty '80s Pontiac : FIERO

56. Note equivalent to E : F-FLAT

57. Flies off the shelf : SELLS

58. Like much whiskey : AGED

59. Prepare for takeoff : TAXI

61. Toss of a coin : FLIP

63. Elected pols : INS


fermatprime said...


Thanks to Gail, Bruce and Melissa!

Fun puzzle. Did not know PEPE. (That's a strange one.)

Read another book by Diane Vallere. Great fun!

Have a great day!

Barry G. said...

Morning, all!

Not really my cuppa, to be honest, what with stuff like URBS, GARNI and ZINE. And Across Lite apparently doesn't like dashes in the clues, so I had to deal with "Goodand baddietary substances" for 32A.

Sorry, I'm not in a very good mood today. I'm going to go vote this morning and then spend the rest of the day curled in a fetal ball under my desk trying to avoid listening to any election results. I refuse to be one of those people who abstain from voting because they don't like either candidate, but it's so soul-crushing having to vote for the person you hate the least instead of the person you actually want in office.


OwenKL said...

{B+, B-, C+, C.}

In Oxford or places like that,
Where students gather to chat
And grade rooms to let,
You certainly can bet
No one wants to rent an F-FLAT!

A wealthy widow (built quite fine)
Operated a tourist BUS LINE.
She felt much insulted
By a gent who consulted
To ask to inspect her bust line!


From the WILD they move in on the URBS.
Their presence there often perturbs!
An invasion of deer
Causes some folks to cheer,
Others fear for their gardens and HERBS!

They've have EATEN as much as an army,
Leaving chefs without BOUQUET GARNI.
While some looked askance
At their DIETS of plants
Others thought that the whole herd was barmy!

OwenKL said...


It's the day folks go to the polls
To fulfill their most civic roles!
We all get to vote
Who will captain our boat
Across the threatening shoals!

My ballot I've already mailed in!
Some people will say I have sinned!
Vote left or right
You'll give others a fright,
Good luck, may the best lady win!

Politics is here not allowed,
We want to keep peace in this crowd!
We cross words but not swords
Like the vast trollish hordes,
And our words by perps are avowed!

Lemonade714 said...

While I agree URBS is not used, it was both easily inferred and historically accurate as the Latin word for a walled city. It is interesting to note that the obverse, suburbs, did not always have a positive connotation. LINK.

With both Pontiac and the Fiero long gone, I wonder the longevity of this ( and the Olds Alero) in crosswords. Do we also need to remember the SPEEDSTERS ?

Thanks Melissa

Oas said...

Thank you for a doable thurs morning puzzle. A few unknowns but filled in fairly quickly . Here's hoping the rest of the day moves as smoothly.

Anonymous said...

No politics, no religion and no personal attacks.

Magilla Go-Rilla said...

Thanks for posting "Swinghouse" by Stan Kenton. First time I saw the band live was the summer of 1955 in Asbury Park, NJ. They played this and I immediately recognized it as a Gerry Mulligan composition which I had on a Mulligan Quartet album.

unclefred said...

A bit over my usual Tuesday time, but I got 're done. Thanx, GG and BV, for the brain exercise!! Thanx, too, Melissa, for the terrific write-up!! Owen, "They've have"? Huh? And IMHO, "surely" would have fit better than "certainly": right number of syllables. C, C+, A, C on your first batch, B, A, B on your second. Thanx for the grins!

Tinbeni said...

Melissa bee: Wonderful write-up & links.

Gail & Bruce: Thank You for a FUN Tuesday puzzle. Liked the theme.

Fave today, of course, was the AGED whiskey. Go figure, LOL

Needed ESP to get ISOLDE and GARNI, both learning moments that I'll probably forget by noon.


Jinx in Norfolk said...

WBS re: election. Heaven help us until we can replace the winning dud - whichever dud it is - in four years.

I thought this was a hard puzzle for a Tuesday, but I got it without lookups or mistakes. Had to erase Emag for ZINE and rack for BUNK. Didn't know John le CARRE, LIA fail, URKEL, bouquet GARNI, PEPE for Jose or LIDA Rose. Warwick probably couldn't have made a hit song out of "Do You Know the Way to San Pepe".

The Fiero was a fabulous little car - peppy (not Jose), good looking, handled great, but with one ironic flaw. The Fiero tended to go up in flames.

ODEA was fairly easy for me. When I was young I used to go to an amusement park named Camden Park, which had a nickleodeon. Not too much of a stretch to get ODEA as the plural of odeon.

Favorite today was "lose on purpose" for DIET. Gets me every time. Least favorite was "one sent back down the river" for EX CON. Although "sent up the river" connotes going to prison, "sent down the river" does not connote being released from prison - it connotes being sold into slavery.

Thanks to Gail and Bruce for a good early-week workout. And Melissa's expo was spot on as usual.

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

Never was there a stronger case for WHAT BARRY SAID.

Except for the puzzle, that is...I liked it just fine. Thanks MBee!

MJ said...

Good day to all!

Fun puzzle, neat and clean as per usual from Gail and Bruce. Learning moment was that Jose's nickname is PEPE. Definitely needed the reveal to see the theme. Thanks for guiding us through today's offering, Melissa. Great jazz link.

Enjoy the day!

Lucina said...

Thank you, Gail and Bruce, for another brain tickler. It was mostly quick and easy until the SW which delayed my finish for a long time. I had TASK but just couldn't come up with FORCE until it hit me hard! Then "one sent back up the river" seemed so strange I had to look it up (drat!) Of course, then it all made sense. GARNI is familiar to me but I just could not dredge it up.

I wish I could express my feelings about today; I'll just say my notion is quite opposite from most people. I'm excited!

Have a happy voting day, everyone! My ballot was mailed weeks ago.

Lucina said...

PEPE was a given for me as I know several of them with that name.

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

As usual, Gail and Bruce delivered a fun, fresh and satisfying solve with just enough bite to wake me up. (Still adjusting to the time change.). The reveal was a complete surprise; having filled in boat and coach, I was thinking of something to do with vehicles but force and line put the kibosh on that idea. So, an aha! at Set for life! Noted Lida and Aida but the pronunciation is completely different. Spelled Urkel wrong at first as I've only seen the name in cw's and never watched the show. I also knew a Jose whom everyone called Pepe.

Well done Ms. Gail and Mr. Bruce, you have added more sunshine to this perfectly glorious November day and thanks to you, too, Melissa, for being our steadfast guide.

I'm getting my hair cut later and because I am so far overdue, I may get charged extra! I have become a perpetual procrastinator about certain things. Is this an aging feature, I wonder? Anyway, I'll be happy to lose the shaggy dog appearance.

Have a great day, despite the circumstances, You know what Scarlett said about tomorrow......... 😇

Yellowrocks said...

*Easy-peasy, fun and breezy. Blew through this as fast as I could write, using across and down together. Didn't get the theme until Melissa explained it.
*Only unfamiliar entry was PEPE, easily WAG-able from P-P-. Why the nickname PEPE? This article helps just a tad.
*I like BASS ALE with steak. Also with Merlot at times.
*Our family loves a crustless spinach quiche. I have tried a few other quiche recipes, omitting the crust.
*SHAZAM always reminds me of Gomer Pyle.
*We saw LIA FAIL in Ireland.
*I like John Le Carre novels.
*I have used a bouquet garni, but more often just use similar dried HERBs.
*We used to find URKEL funny, now he is more like annoying.
*I like listening to Wagnerian operas like Tristan and Isolde in smaller doses. The entire opera in one sitting is too much. We have two nearby street names, Tristan and Isolde.
*Owen KL loved all your rhymes today. A's all around.

CrossEyedDave said...




Yellowrocks said...

CED, cute kitty pictures.
I said, "I like BASS ALE with steak. Also with Merlot at times." I meant "Also STEAK with Merlot at times", not BASS ALE with Merlot. I am getting careless.
Lucina, I am excited about this election in a way, but will be totally bummed with an untoward result.

oc4beach said...

Nice smooth puzzle from Gail and Bruce. Melissa did a great expo. Finished it quickly with only a few hitches.

I didn't know ITER, LIA and LIDA, but perps easily filled them in. It took a minute to figure out that ODEA was the proper entry for Old music halls. Other than these, today was a speed run.

I'm off to do my civic duty. Mid morning usually has a lull around here. Some go vote before going to work, then others go on their lunch break. Mid afternoon should be slow, but for some reason it's busy at the polls. Then those on their way home will jam the voting booths. Being retired gives one flexibility.

Jinx from yesterday: Mom never used random roadkill. Only first quality and fresh roadkill. LOL

Try not to let today depress you. It's never as bad as we fear nor as good as we want. We will survive.

Husker Gary said...

-GARNI yea, FRAUDS nay slowed the process a little but I enjoyed the puzzle.
-My former sister-in-law is the only LIFE COACH I know and her Facebook posts are filled with profanity and her partisan politics. Yikes!
-Toys sprayed with Catnip are favored “LOTS” here
-On our last night in Rome we ate at a café on the Apian Way
-I said something I RUED last Friday night when I intimated our QB was playing badly and I was seated behind his mother.
-Gotta run! We have to vote, remove leaves from MIL’s yard and decide what to do about her teeth when the dentist wants to invest thousands of dollars of dental work for a 94-year-old woman.

Anonymous said...

"Elected pols : INS"


Chairman Moe said...

"Puzzling thoughts":

Tsk tsk Owen - your 6th poem should've said person in the last line. You should've quit while you were ahead. No one cares who you voted for, really.

The puzzle was a bit chewy for a Tuesday. I should've paid attention to both up and down clues before committing to a few answers. Namely: had AMOK before WILD (17a); VHS before VCR (50d - then realized I gave the format instead of the device); that error led to me putting SHINES before SCUFFS in 54a. But eventually everything worked out.

No limerick today; please vote as this is not only our right but also our privilege. Whether the person on the ballot is running for dog catcher or POTUS, they deserve your choice. Good luck to all.

Chairman Moe said...

"News Flash"!!

The "Chairman" wins Election!!

Exit polls report that the majority of the voters today went into the booth and began their choice with: "eeny, meeny, miney ...", and then voted "MOE"!!! 😜🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸

thehondohurricane said...

Thanks for an enjoyable writeup Melissa. I never heard of URBS either. URKEL was a complete unknown.

Thought we were headed for a panagram, but unless I missed it, no J to be found.

How the heck does PEPE become a nickname for Jose? Señor, amigo, or Joe are good, but PEPE?

Voted early, polls were crowded, but moving quickly. I'm so sick of this campaigns back and forth threats and hollow promises, just glad it's ending, or is it?

Chairman Moe said...

Best I could find about the PEPE and Jose nickname relationship is: here.

Lucina said...

Melissa, I'm so sorry, I failed to acknowledge your lovely and helpful commentary. Thank you!

Big Easy said...

Never notice the LIFE connection until the reveal. IMHO anybody who needs a "LIFE COACH", needs to get a life. The only hangup was the LIA on top of the ADS because I had no idea what 'Pennysaver' was or knowledge of the 'Stone of destiny-LIA Fail'.

GARNI- never heard of it. URBS- suburbs, exurbs, urban I know, but URBS? PEPE, LIDA and BASS- all perps. Seventy-Six Trombones wouldn't fit 30D.

Lemonade- How about REO, GTO, GTI?

Yellowrocks said...

Chairman Moe, your Jose/Pepe agrees with my post @ 9:06.
Congrats on your win, "eeny, meeny, miney, MOE." LOL

melissa bee said...

hey everyone,

wanted to pop in and say hello, thank everyone for the nice comments on my blog days, and apologize for coming here so rarely, i know i've missed replying to some things. work tends to take over most of my time so it's nice having something else for a little balance - will try to get here more often.

Chairman Moe said...


Steve S said...

I also struggled in the SW but once I got I AM NOT and EXCON it all fell into place. Still not sure about INS...

I wasn't familiar with LIDA Rose either but now I am.

Jayce said...

Slightly harder than I expected it to be, but very enjoyable. Bruce and Gail somehow always come up with fresh, fun, interesting, and informative puzzles. Loved the clue for DIETS, and in spite of the connotation of "down the river" I liked that clue, too. Like Irish Miss, with whom I have come to realize I often agree, when I saw COACH, BOAT, and BUS I thought we were going for modes of transport. (I also seem to agree with Bill G a lot. Heck, I usually agree with most of you! Everyone has something to contribute.)

We mailed in our ballots a couple of weeks ago. We didn't vote for Moe. Or eeny, either. :)

The Mensa site also had the "Goodand baddietary substances" clue. I thought the mashing of words together like that was somehow significant to the answer. Nope.

Did the mere statement that we mailed in our ballots violate the no politics rule? I don't think so. No more than pointing out my dad's middle name was Adam violates the no religion rule. Please let's not go overboard, folks.

Best wishes to you all.

Jinx in Norfolk said...

thehondohurricane, you make a lot of sense. I'm glad that we stick to the nicknames that are intuitive,like Jack for John, Peggy for Margret, Bill for William and Bob for Robert.

desper-otto said...

Twice in the past two weeks I stopped at the Courthouse Annex with the intention of early voting. And twice I got back in my truck when I learned the wait to vote was running 2+ hours. So it was with some trepidation that I drove to our normal voting location. Arrived at 12:17 PM. Got checked in, found a machine, voted, got my "I voted!" sticker, and was back in my truck at 12:21. Woohoo!

Michael said...

Anent 'Pepe' and 'Paco':

Here's another one: St. Ignatius comes out in Spanish as "Ignacio" (or, locally, as in "Ygnacio Valley"), but the diminutive is "Nacho"!

As Jinx just noted at 12:47, nothing at all like our sober and restrained nicknames.

Spitzboov said...

Hello everyone.

Easy solve today. A little meh on the theme, but not bad. More f's than usual. No searches or erasures.
HAVEN - Today's rumination. It or linguistic cognate appears in place names from several countries:
New Haven - USA
Milford Haven - Wales
Wilhelmshaven, Cuxhaven, Bremerhaven - Germany.
Copenhagen (København (Merchant's port)) - Denmark
Tórshavn (Thor's port) - Faeroe Islands
Le Havre - France; also Havre, Montana

Bill G. said...

Hi everyone.

Thank you Gail, Bruce and Melissa. Very enjoyable. I was just whelmed by the theme though.

I just back from voting. Our polling place is at the school district office building, about two blocks away from where we live. It was busier than usual but still no line to speak of, for which I'm grateful. I like voting in person instead of using a mail-in ballot. I enjoy seeing Democracy in action, first hand. I thanked all of the volunteers.

I love Lida Rose and all the rest of The Music Man.

Ol' Man Keith said...

Good answers about Pepe and Paco. If they aren't really true, they deserve to be.
I once played an old Villista, complete with crossed bandoliers, in a bilingual play that we took to the Edinburgh Festival. The script didn't give him a name, but I called myself Paco in rehearsal improvs. I had no idea it was a nickname. Or the formal name it stood for.
Yellowrocks - I'm with you. This can be a very exciting election day, even uplifting, unless [gulp] it isn't. Whatever the outcome, there will be a good many depressed citizens tomorrow. Let's hope this most divisive campaign can lead to an historic healing. Great trauma often precedes profound change; pray it is for our nation's good.

tawnya said...

Hi all!

I enjoyed the puzzle today, I feel like Gail and Bruce almost guarantee a good time with some learning and funny clues as well. Thank you MBee for the write up!

WBS about today. I have a break between classes right now and am avoiding Facebook and the news until after the polls close.

I went to vote this morning at 6:15 and although I had to wait in line, I was still out by 6:45 and made it to school for my 8:00 exam without any problems.

@Owen - I liked the second posting! Well done!

Evidently Snoop Dogg and Martha Stewart have a new show and I haven't seen it but it could be interesting! It reminded me to a funny clip of Snoop narrating nature. Enjoy!

Wishing you all a happy Tuesday!


Irish Miss said...

Back from the beauty parlor feeling so much more light-headed! (Pun intended)

CED, very cute pictures but I'm partial to the first one as I'm a big Pepse fan. (Today would be a good day for you to show some pet bi-partisanship, would it not? Wink, nod, hint, woof-woof!)

YR, your Merlot/Bass Ale comment gave me a chuckle but I knew exactly what you meant!

Jayce, I find it so interesting to read everyone's interpretations of certain themes or clues. As many times as someone else thinks the way I do, there are so many others who go in a completely different direction. This adds another layer of enjoyment, IMO.

gmony said...

Wtf today is tuesday right?

Irish Miss said...

Autocorrect may prefer Pepse but my soda of choice is PEPSI!

Hungry Mother said...

I needed this easy one after DNFing on the NYT puzzle today. I wanted "amok" instead of WILD. Otherwise, no sweat.

Bill G. said...

Jayce, I find I most always agree with you too. Coincidence? I think not...

JD said...

Thanks so much Gail and Bruce for a fun run. Perps helped me fill Lia , tier and idea. Learning moment: Pepe is a nickname for Jose. I'm always so sorry that I rarely catch onto the theme, especially when it is so clever and your starting point.

Always good to hear from you Melissa, a double delight today.

C.C., I like your new format. :)

JD said...

well, I can see that the computer speller doesn't like iter AND odea! :(

TX Ms said...

Tawnya, Snoop Dogg/Martha Stewart??!! Surely a parody of some sort on YouTube. Nope. Sundays at 10PM, VH1. In the one link I viewed (fried chicken), Martha was her usual serious self, and I've not a clue about Snoop Dogg's as I only know about him reading the news.

I-M, totally agree - bi-'petisan' links are needed! Hope CED complies.

Me, I'm catching up on recorded movies tonight - not even watching local news as those newscasts are infested also.

Now, where is that Chardonnay?

TX Ms said...

Oops, forgot to paste the link - maybe someone can post it correctly or post a better link. Thanks in advance.

Irish Miss said...

Tx Ms - Love your "bi-petisan"! Hope it gives Mr. Meow "Paws for thought" or, Thought for Paws! 🐶

CrossEyedDave said...




TX Ms said...

CED, spluttered then laughed out loud - loved (and I'm positive that Irish Miss will also) the lab pup slurping up his favorite brew. How perfect! And thanks for the pampered pup and lap-hogging yellow lab pics. That was nice of you to oblige, CED, considering my request came across as a demand. Good antidote for tonight...

Irish Miss said...

Thank you, Dave, for humoring me and TX Ms. Loved the Pepsi-drinking pooch best but all three "hit the spot!" 🎯

Anonymous T said...

Hi all!

3 WAGs all right? I must be SET FOR LIFE! Thanks Gail & Bruce for a fun (if not crunchy with the names xing) puzzle. Melissa B., a nice expo confirming my WAGs. Good to see your write-up again. Thanks.

WOs: started Temp... @34d; Had SELF_RL_F_ for a spell.
ESPs: STAN and LIDA + WAGs above

Are we sure about SHAZAM?

DREAM BOAT took too long to see w/ TAiBO in place.

Fav: TIVO xing VCR. Down w/ the old across-in the new...
I also enjoyed HERB and URBS.

{A,A,A,B, - A}

Moe C. - This year, yes, I'll select moe :-)
YR - LOL Merlot w/ BASS ALE :-)
Tawnya - Funny Snoop link.
TXMs's link

Hondo - Astute. Jack :-)

DW & I voted this morning - no line. Then we went for brunch [a cocktail each] and went to work. I had a user's group meeting (Splunk> user group) "meeting" that turned out to be at Karbach's [now owned by InBev] brewery - the pub was fixated on the TV as the 1st returns came in. At least I had the right shirt on: "See your world. Maybe wish you hadn't." :-)

Anyone think the media, just to keep us tuned, are a bunch of FAKERS as the returns come in? DW is getting anxious; I say it's only the top of the 6th. OTHH, overseas markets are going nuts - let's see what OIL does :-)

Cheers, -T

OwenKL said...

Moe: On the ballot for president in New Mexico, we have 3 women and 5 men. Downballot in my precinct, there are 7 races with only wemen, and only 2 with only men running. My using a female pronoun may not be as revealing as you assume. Or maybe it is. ;)

Anonymous said...

Here's my problem. I'm watching msnbc and they're telling me to get ready for a trump presidency. How do they know! I think its all decided. The msnbc desk is devastated