Oct 13, 2017

Friday, October 13, 2017, Morton J. Mendelson

Title: Text speak meets grid spanner = WTF _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

How interesting that after last week where Jeffrey inserted an acronym (IOUS) to create new fill, MJM uses initialisms as the introduction to a 15 letter in the language phrase. As someone who has used initialisms my entire life (e.g. DKDC), this was easier than it might have been, as getting a word from the perps got me started. When texting first was available, a friend and I would send each other
letter strings and try to solve them. The insane responses were usually better than the intended comment. Anyway, many fun words with interesting etymology. Off we go.

The themers:

17A. TW ... : DO NOT MAKE A RIGHT (15). Two Wrongs...

25A. DCYC ... : BEFORE THEY HATCH (15). Don't Count Your Chickens...

44A. CI ... : NEXT TO GODLINESS (15). Cleanliness Is...

58A. AGT ... : MUST COME TO AN END (15). All Good Things...

The rest:


1. Yanks' foes: JAYS. No, they are playing Houston in the ALCS.

5. Operation designed to hurt: STING. Hurt? To me, they either defraud someone (the oldest was by the Praetorian guard who sold the Roman Empire to Julianus in 193 C.E.) or to arrest someone. LINK.

10. Shipboard resident: SWAB. I think of swabbie/y, but the Urban dictionary says: "This term, frequently used by non-sailors to refer to sailors, is most likely a contraction of the term "swabbie" or "swabby", presumably derived from the notion of sailors "swabbing the deck". "Swabbie/y" is currently in use only among the elderly; 'swab' is the more common term among young people." Proving once again, I am elderly.

14. CFO, e.g. : EXEC.

15. Not as likely to mess up: ABLER.

16. Walk without getting anywhere? : PACE. I like this definition.

20. Shoelace site: INSTEP. Did you ever think about the origin of this word? Sounds like it is backwards - it is where you step in the shoe. But, the dictionary says: "late Middle English: of unknown origin; compare with West Frisian ynstap ‘opening in a shoe for insertion of the foot.’"

21. Shipboard chums: MATEYS. Mini-clecho with 10A.

22. Tenn. neighbor: ALA. Abbr. - abbr.

24. Apartment listing abbr. : RMS.

34. Nice with? : AVEC. The Nice, France trick.

35. Gobs and gobs: SLEWS. More dictionary- from the Irish Slaugh.

36. Cart for heavy loads: DRAY. "for delivering beer barrels or other heavy loads, especially a low one without sides."

37. Filly's brother: COLT.

38. Fighter eulogized by Bill Clinton, among others: ALI.

39. Old-time teacher: MARM. Based on a variant pronunciation of ma'am.

40. "The Grapes of Wrath" figure: OKIE.

41. Beams: GRINS.

43. Prime real estate? : EDEN. I like this clue.

47. Downed a sub, say: ATE.

48. In-law's wife, possibly: SIS.

49. Refrigerates: CHILLS.

53. One of a biblical ten: PLAGUE. Commandments clearly did not fit.

62. Like quality beef: AGED.

63. One "sitting lonely on the placid bust," in a classic poem: RAVEN.
“But the raven, sitting lonely on the placid bust, spoke only,
That one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outpour.
Nothing further then he uttered - not a feather then he fluttered -
Till I scarcely more than muttered `Other friends have flown before -
On the morrow, he will leave me, as my hopes have flown before.’
Then the bird said, 'Nevermore.”

64. Course with relevant tangents: TRIG.

65. Regular guys: JOES.

66. Finals, e.g.: EXAMS.

67. Spot: SITE. Mira, there she goes!


1. "Star Wars" warrior: JEDI. How many have seen THE Trailer?

2. Nerve cell part: AXON.

3. Cravings: YENS.

4. Ewan McGregor, for one: SCOT. More Star Wars.

5. They're often free: SAMPLES.

6. Sched. question mark: TBA.

7. Kind: ILK. A repeat.

8. Once called: NEE. Not FKA.

9. Sir Georg Solti's record 31: GRAMMYS.  Did you know? LINK.

10. Rotating rod: SPIT.

11. Conduct: WAGE. Like war.

12. Hurting: ACHY. I almost linked "Achy Breaky Heart" which was triple platinum in Australia, and number 2 on Blender magazine's 50 Worst Songs Ever.

13. Puts money (on): BETS.

18. Dash: TEAR. Tear down the stairs.

19. Not at all reflective:: RASH. Impulsive.

23. On the lam: AT LARGE.

24. Backs up a videotape: REWINDS. Backs up? Made me think of re-recording.

25. Cobb salad ingredient: BACON.

26. Bring to mind: EVOKE.

27. Composer Mendelssohn: FELIX. He looks like a young Gene Wilder. Almost a CSO; I wonder if Morton's family removed the extra "S" and the "H." Then lent them to the green stamp people.

28. Good-sized wedding band: OCTET.

29. Prefix for "sun" : HELIO. I know only this one. Hélio Castroneves.

30. Madison Ave. Pitchers: ADMEN.

31. Carpentry, e.g.: TRADE. CSO.

32. Worries: CARES.

33. Church numbers: HYMNS.

41. Reacted to an arduous workout: GOT SORE.

42. Shoes without laces: SLIP ONS. Aha! More shoe references.

45. Gymnast's powder: TALC.

46. Ibiza, por ejemplo: ISLA. Spanish.

49. Key of the finale of Brahms' Symphony No. 1: CMAJ. Lots of classical music.

50. "Les Misérables" author: HUGO.

51. "Now it's clear": I SEE.

52. Old Fords: LTDS.

54. Hard-working colonizers: ANTS.

55. Spice Girl Halliwell: GERI. Still recording.

56. Second, e.g.: UNIT.

57. Sharp side: EDGE.

59. Reach capacity, with "out": MAX.

60. Actress Mendes: EVA. Many pretty pictures.  For Splynter.

61. President pro __ : TEM. Pres·i·dent pro tem·po·re.  Latin.

Well, MJM and I have finished our work here, so it is time to bid you all adieu and hope you enjoyed the puzzle, exposition and enjoy the upcoming weekend.  It is not often I get to reference a West Frisian word. Thank you Morton - I had an Uncle Morton - and all readers - be you a lurker, a regular or unpredictable member. Lemonade out.


Argyle said...


OwenKL said...

FIR, but took a while. "Cleanliness is NEXT TO HOLINESS" is how I know that phrase, and ScadS > SLEWS. Also REBS > JAYS, AXLE > SPIT, LEAD > WAGE, RUSH > TEAR, RUNNING > ESCAPED > ESCAPEE > AT LARGE, SWEATED > GOT SORE, LOAFER > SLIPPER > SLIP ON, BASE > UNIT, TOP > CAP > MAX ...
I liked the theme. Not seen that gimmick in a crossword before, but I'd BET we will see it more in the future. It's similar to a common type of number puzzle.

A JAY and a RAVEN compared how their colors show,
One black as night, one bluer than sky glow!
Said the Jay, "I have fame,
I've a team in the game!"
Said the Raven, "My color is more appro-Poe!"

Some overweight Masons thought they'd take charge
They'd build a new lodge hall, and seating enlarge!
The "circumferentially enhanced"*
Would have their comfort advanced!
If their whereabouts were questioned, they were reported AT LARGE!

*A favorite description for myself.

OwenKL said...

{A, B+.}

desper-otto said...

Greetings Triskaidekaphobians!

I did not fall into the REBS trap at 1a, but morphing GLINT into GRINS slowed me down. I figured out the theme, but the 15-letter phrase explained the clue, rather than vice versa. Thanx, MJM and Lemonade. Finished this one in better-than-normal Friday time.

Lemonade714 said...

All Young Kids Meet?

Aged Yens Kill Men?

desper-otto said...

Are you kidding me?

KS said...

FIR, but never got the theme. Guess I need to text more.

Argyle said...

D-O, on the nose.

PK said...

Hi Y'all! Whimpered a little when I first saw the letters as clues, but it was not as hard as I thought. I got about half the perps on first pass to give me 17a DO NOT MAKE A RIGHT. So caught onto the theme. Fine Friday puzzle, Morton. Very fine expo, Lemonade.

DCYC took awhile. I couldn't get HATCH as the other 3 words across in the middle east wouldn't come to me. Finally got GODLINESS and worked it out with a couple red-letter runs.

Never heard of Solti so had no idea of what he had 31. ESP

Tell us, Morton, are you related to FELIX?\

Old teacher was "rote" before MARM.

"ACHY Breaky" compelled me to dance with the first stanza. First heard it as a cover at a dance and dragged my husband to the dance floor then and thereafter. I think it was requested by someone at least twice more that night and whenever that band played a dance. Sure had fun. Hope never to hear it again.

My sister in Santa Rosa, California, was evacuated by the fires at 1 a.m. on Monday. She got out with her car and stayed in a motel. Then she went to stay with a friend who later had to evacuate. Last word was she was back in a motel and doesn't know if her house is gone, but thinks it must be. She is 74 and has chronic bronchitis so the smoky atmosphere isn't helping. She is texting her info so talking may be a problem. Can you imagine what a nightmare insurance settlements will be if the hellfires ever quit?

Yellowrocks said...

I enjoyed the puzzle, but not the theme. I caught on that these were common sayings with initials. which helped the solve, but I still disliked it. Rare for me to say.
Defrauding is designed to hurt the victim financially. Or maybe not, maybe it is just selfish disregard for the victim.
I thought WOAD for Grapes of Wrath figure, but EVOKE and FELIX quickly disabused me of that.
I wondered why REWINDS fit "backs up a videotape". Thanks, Lemony. BTW, great expo as always.
I knew Solti was a conductor. We still hear his recordings on classical radio stations. The GR evoked the rewards.
Fifth grade science experiment: Heliotropic plants turn toward the sun (or some artificial light). Also we taught about Copernicus, Kepler and Galileo with their heliocentric (the sun as the center) model of the solar systym, as opposed to the geocentric model ( the earth as the center.)
We square danced to Achy Breaky Heart for quite a while. Then it suddenly lost popularity and was not heard from again.
PK, I feel for your sister's nightmare experience wit the hellish fires.
CSO to Ave. Joe. I miss your posts. If you see this, please stop in once in a while.

Hungry Mother said...

Got it, but not without a lot of sweat. Once I realized that TW abbreviated “two wrongs”, I was off and running with the theme entries.

Anonymous said...


Chairman Moe said...

"Puzzling Thoughts":

FY, -T, thanks for noticing that my limerick did not read as political. I thought that, too, when I penned it, knowing I might eventually display it in this forum ...

SFSG, as this week of doing puzzles has been quite successful ... from a solving standpoint. Needed just a couple of passes through before I finally "got" the theme, as well as the four grid-spanning clues. The final one did it for me as I had pretty much filled in the "MUST COME TO AN END", and was able to connect the AGT to all good things ...

A couple of W-O's, but no WAGS. Had REBS > RAYS > JAYS. Otherwise, my sheet looks pristine. Maybe it's the Bolle Gel pen I'm using! No room for error.

Nice puzzle, Morton; great recap Lemon, although I think Splynter prefers his leggy models to wear pantyhose, as opposed to bring unclad and wearing SLIPONS.

Also, I noticed that WAGE and BETS were nearly side by side in the NE corner ...

My limerick du jour is not my best. I tried to use a spoonerism for the phrase in 25d. Maybe it's ok, but I'm a hard grader ... will see what Tony thinks ... 😜 ... :

At the dairy, inspectors may catch
When the farmers, their bovines mis-match.
And it's well-known in the trade,
When that mistake has been made.
"Don't count all your cows; heifer they batch".

Maybe next one will be better ...

A Moe-ku instead? With inverted rhyme scheme?

Chinese couple cooked.
Made bowl of brown rice.
Two Wongs did not make it white.

Chairman Moe said...

Being unclad ... dang autocorrect ...

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

ATIGT ---Solving the puzzle. All Things In Good Time.……

Interesting schtick today. Got it with Cleanliness Is ………
Only one look=up - should have remembered FELIX.
Two SO's to the sea people - SWAB and MATEYS. Neither term was heard on our DD.
IBIZA - One of the Balearic Islands - Part of Catalonia.
Liked the clue for WAGE.

Good job as always, Lemon. Thank you.

Jinx in Norfolk said...

Go figure - FIW on Monday and Tuesday, then FIR on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. No delusions about tomorrow; I'll give it a glance but I suspect that I won't be worthy.

I wouldn't have finished without the gimmick, but I started down the wrong path at first. For TW... I was stuck on That Was The Week That Was (and now the theme music is stuck in my head), and for DCYC I thought about the sailboat racers from District of Columbia Yacht Club. (Turns out I remembered it wrong - it's just "District Yacht Club".) But then I got AGT... with a few cross fills, and then all the rest made sense.

It didn't help that I had to erase the NE corner, having axle, lead and sore where SPIT, WAGE and ACHY belonged. I fell for rebS before JAYS, and had DorY before DRAY, frets before CARES, and loafers before SLIP ONS.

HBD to our Navy. It was formed in 1775, the year before the Declaration of Independence was signed. Norfolk is home to the largest naval base in the world, and is a crucial part of this region's economy. The people make great neighbors, too.

I'll probably just copy the mail tomorrow, and will return to my bloviating ways on Sunday.

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

I have mixed feelings about this offering. On the plus side, the theme is unusual, if somewhat uninteresting. On the negative side, (strictly my own opinion) I thought a lot of the cluing had a forced-cleverness which made the solve more of a chore rather than a pleasure.

Thanks, Morton, for a Friday workout and thanks, Lemony, for the excellent summary.

PK, what those poor people in California are enduring is unimaginable; I'm glad your sister is safe.

Have a great day.

Husker Gary said...

-It took the last theme fill before I grokked this fun theme
-I am binge watching this series where the Volstead Act generates many STINGS
-Doc Brown married the school MARM in in this movie
-I loved the first Star Wars and fell asleep at the only subsequent one I saw
-COSTCO offers many SAMPLES at “grazing” stations
-Dwarf fortune teller escapes! (Small medium AT LARGE)
-Early astronomers advocating the HELIO-centric theory got into big trouble
-SANDALS? Nope! My wife said she’s not walking with me if I wear socks with sandals
-This event certainly requires TALC (:28)

marthamartha said...

Re: Talc as gymnasts powder - I believe they use Rosin powder which is not talc. Rosin is designed to help hands stick, not slide. The clue is incorrect if the answer needs to be talc.

CanadianEh! said...

Fun Friday CW. Thanks Morton and Lemonade.
Things started filling in from the bottom up and I saw the theme in the middle with NEXT TO GODLINESS.

Hand up for Rebs to JAYS (Toronto was done early), Scads to SLEWS. I had Sore for 12D but then needed it for 41D, and changed to ACHY. ISLA was a WAG.
Is TRIG that common that it did not need an indication of a short form in the clue?

I was misled by 11D conduct thinking lead not WAGE (as in war). My wedding band was a ring (too short) before an OCTET. Like Lemonade, I was backing up my info on that tape before Rewinding.

EVA reminded me of the stir caused by Mendes and Ryan Gosling attending Gosling's mother's graduation from Brock University in St. Catharines in 2012.

Owen & CMoe - smiled at 1st verse and Moe-ku especially today. Thanks.

PK-glad your sister is safe but heartbreaking about the fire damages.

d-o -re Triskaidekaphobians! - good weather for all the bikers who will descend on Port Dover today for traditional Friday the 13th gathering.

Enjoy the day. Should I cross the border to get the new Buffalo latte (with Buffalo sauce!) at Tim Hortons? Any Buffalo folks here to report?

Yellowrocks said...

All Things Chalk says, "Chalk for gymnastics is made up of a naturally occurring white mineral called magnesium carbonate (MgCO3). Magnesium carbonate is different from the material used in sidewalk chalk or blackboard chalk. It is not like baby powder either. Although baby power absorbs moisture, it decreases friction so it weakens the grip."

Big Easy said...

I agree. WTF are you referring to? What do the initials that you wrote- TW ...etc have to doe with anything? Oh, I NEVER bothered to look at any of those clues and filled the spanners after a few perps were in place. The puzzle was easy to guess and any of us 'old' people know what preceded the spanners' fills. But I wouldn't have known or cared what the initials were for. The puzzle was already finished.

As for "Mendes" the only one I know of is Sergio and Brazil 66, 77, & 88. EVA was perped and as for Brahms' Symphony, I lost my sheet music and had to fill it with the crosses.

Clinton might be eulogizing Weinstein in the near future; two birds of a feather.

D-O, my birthday is a 13th so triskaidekphobia is not one of my fears.

Picard said...

I have never texted and hope never to do so. It has to be one of the worst human-machine interfaces ever contrived. Still, I did get the theme after a bit and I enjoyed it!

Learning moment about INSTEP! Thanks, Lemonade!

Hand up thinking RE-TAPES before REWINDS. Hand up for REBS before JAYS.

I am getting good at spotting NICE as a clue to "French".

I am going to try to make a live link of me overlooking NICE:
Me Overlooking Nice

Yellowrocks said...

Big Easy, if you must be political please be accurate.
Reuter headline: Hillary Clinton talks Weinstein in UK Interview."
"Former U.S. presidential candidate Hillary Clinton tells the BBC she is 'shocked and appalled' by the Harvey Weinstein revelations."

Anonymous said...

I'm pretty sure Big Easy was referencing Bill Clinton's eulogy of Ali. Had nothing to do with Hillary. If you must correct someone...

Anonymous said...

Clues like TW, DCYC, etc.---do not belong in this crossword puzz

desper-otto said...

Nice picture, Picard! You seem to have way too much hair to be Picard.

YR, I think BE is referring to a different Clinton. Still political, though.

Today's NYT is a CC creation -- triple stacks of 11's in the NW and SE. Spoiler alert: The financial website is not Morningstar. D'oh! Good one, CC.

Mark S said...

After a good run early in the week, I got whupped today. Only had about 30 or so answers. A lot of the clues were over my head. Oh well, another go at it tomorrow.

I did get Felix, though. Thanks MM for that and your puzzle.

Lucina said...

This turned out to be much easier than it looked at first. Unable to make progress at the top I started in the center and at NEXTTOGODLINESS I got the theme. Thank you, Mr. Morton J. Mendelson. Your unusual cluing forced me to stretch my mind because like Lemonade, I'm one of the aged ones but I like a challenge.

REBS instead of JAYS got me off to a wrong start but that changed. CSO to Spitz at SWAB and MATEYS though he denies their use. Downed a sub also reminded me of Spitz because in its literal sense it could be . . . but ATE was obviously referring to the food.

CSO to average JOE! Apparently he has abandoned us.

EVA Mendes and Will Smith in the movie, Hitch, are hilarious.

FELIX Mendelssohn's Midsummer Night's Dream is one of my favorites and as YR said, his music is often played on the classical station.

Nice photo. You, too.

Have a delightful day today, everyone!

Lucina said...

Thank you, as well! You always make it all sound so easy even when it isn't.

Lucina said...

Looking out my window just now I see that monarch butterflies are feasting on the lantana flowers in my patio. I've never known them to do that before but I'm glad they like it. Hummingbirds like it, too. It's grand to see nature so animated.

Anonymous said...

I didn't find BE's post to be political. I found it factual. For far too long women have been in fear of sharing their stories of abuse at the hands of powerful men because of the repercussions. Just look at what happens to their lives and reputations. Good for Rose McGowan! You go girl!

Ol' Man Keith said...

How is it that every year we find more and more signs that we're "elderly"?
You'd think we'd have exhausted them by now....

Today's pzl took a while. I'm never sure what kind of answer to give to a clue that's just initials. My first reaction was to treat them as Roman numerals. but that didn't last long. But, anyway, it gave me an honest Ta- DA! once I got on Mr. Mendelson's wavelength. (What happened to your "h," good sir?)

Mark S,
Thanks again for the tip to the film True Beauty (Real Beleza). which I streamed yesterday.
Brazil is an enormous, beautiful country, apparently inhabited by extraordinarily gorgeous people.
Aren’t there any plain-looking types there? A sprinkling of non-models?

Anyway, it’s a lovely soft-sell of a movie, honestly sweet - in ways I didn’t expect. Furtado gives his modern tale a myth-like structure. I especially enjoyed the clashes of the new and old, like early in the story when the pissed-off model smashes her tart on the landscape painting - and later when the movie pans through Pedro’s library as we listen to the sounds of Joao’s camera snapping Maria.
Sexy in a wholesome, refreshing way. Exquisite.

desper-otto said...

I disagree. Clinton had a sleazy, consensual extramarital affair, perhaps several, but so far as I know, no sexual harassment was involved. The comparison to Weinstein is politically motivated. It'd be more appropriate to compare Weinstein to a different mysogynistic political figure who comes to mind.

Misty said...

Well, I got most of the bottom of the puzzle, all the way across, before I had to start cheating. But a fun puzzle, Morton, many thanks. Like Picard, I instantly thought AVEC when I saw the "Nice with?" Lemonade, loved your printing the RAVEN verse out for us. Great write-up, as always.

PK, so sorry to hear the worrisome news about your sister. Hope she'll be okay.

Owen, loved your first limerick.

Lucina, I don't know if I have lantana in my garden, but I'm happy to still have Monarch butterflies flitting about this late in the season.

As I wrote yesterday, I finally switched from Frontier to Cox for my telephone yesterday. The downside is that Cox also does my internet and TV. This morning my computer suddenly wasn't working the internet and I picked up the phone and there was no dial tone. I couldn't believe it! Walked across the street to my neighbor's house to call Cox and complain, and it turned out that her phone (also Cox) was dead too. She finally used her cell phone to call Cox and learned that there was some problem in the neighborhood that caused us all to be without phone or internet power for a while. Aaaaarrrrggg! My first day with Cox after decades--not great.

Hope you all have a good weekend, everybody.

Wilbur Charles said...

I've got so many notes. I think BE was referencing BC and ML.

AB is the father of HM (the series)

Oh. The xword. Anytime it's FIR results in 😄😄😄 it's a great one by me. Kudos MJM. And same for lemony. Let's see Splynter top that pic.

Jinx- me too exactly. FIW,FIW,FIR,FIR,FIR. Ok. Maybe I had one slip.

Finally. On the way to NH from Grand Rapids I just had to stop in Niagara falls for Tim Hortons. Only way out was over that international bridge which is like one of those Tarzan rope bridges from one of those movies.

WC who will be back for more

PS. W+,W and any haiku is a good haiku.

Ol' Man Keith said...

Sorry, Misty, that your first day with Cox started badly.
I am feeling slightly guilty because I spoke up for the company. But then, I am writing this very message on a Cox-served computer - so I don't hesitate to categorize your problem as a local anomaly.
A word of advice. If your cable service springs a leak of any kind, it may require a call once every three or four months to get them to re-jigger something or other from their home base. Apparently Cox can have some build-up in their system when you use a lot of program storage - as we certainly do.
Just keep this in mind if you record many shows.

Mouse said...

Rosin too sticky and messy. They usually use chalk to absorb the moisture in their hands to give them a better grip. But, they also need to be able to slide (unparalkel bars, rings, etc) and easily change hand positions

Anonymous said...

That's exactly what is wrong DO!!

It's most definitely is sexual harassment when a powerful man takes advantage of a wide eyed immature girl under his spell and/or employment. Your comments are exactly the opinion we are striving to change. Bill O'Reilly, David Letterman and on and on have done this and it has nothing to do will race, religion or political affiliation. It has to do with a Neanderthal way of thinking.

Anonymous said...

Forgot to add, yes that certain someone you referred to is a Neanderthal too!

Wilbur Charles said...

Now I can't find my notes. But... I tape the PGA but with the baseball playoffs I didn't see the final round until Tuesday-wed.

At that point I noticed the Safeway was being played in Napa. How close did those fires come? Everything was so pristine and innocent on Sunday.


Avg Joe said...

This theme put up a fight at first. I just couldn't come up with Rash for 19d, so even with the rest of the across filled by perps, I couldn't see what was going on. Roughly half of 25a gave me that fill, so then the game was afoot. Enjoyed it.

I too saw the CSO at 65a. Thanks for noticing YR and Lucina. I haven't abandoned anyone, just don't have anything to add.

Jinx, I laughed at your story about the Tampa Bay Bucs tickets and passed it on to my brother. He reciprocated by telling another tale from that same era. Apparently a sports reporter was interviewing the coach after yet another loss (John McKay?):

Reporter: "So Coach, what do you think of the teams execution?

McKay: "I'd be in favor of it."

Jayce said...

I have the same feelings about this puzzle that Irish Miss has. After seeing the clues that were, to me, just meaningless letters, I think the only motivation I had to try to solve the puzzle was to stubbornly figure out what the heck was going on. Just a little too "cutesy-poo" for my taste. The hardest part for me, and the last area to get solved, was the northeast corner. My stubbornness again: I couldn't let go of AXLE for rotating rod which led to AHAB as the shipboard resident, which led to HOLD for conduct (as in to hold a meeting). At least I knew FELIX, HUGO, and GERI right away, so got first footholds with them. Very familiar with Sir Georg Solti, but didn't know what he had 31 of; I wanted RECORDS but the word "record" was already in the clue.

I'm glad some of you enjoyed Achy Breaky Heart. From the first time I heard it I thought it was a terrible song sung terribly. Coincidentally or not, Billy Ray Cyrus's abominably rude and disruptive behavior as a contestant on Dancing With The Stars a few years ago increased my dislike for him as a person as well as a singer. No wonder Miley was so messed up.

PK, I am so glad your sister is alive, and I hope her house survived. News of the fires and the terrible damage they have caused has dominated the air waves here. Even here in San Jose, some 100 miles away, the air stank and was hard to breathe; it must have been far worse there.

Picard, nice (haha) photo. Best wishes to you all.

Misty said...

Thanks, Ol'Man Keith. I am just praying that this was an anomaly and that the future will be brighter. That power outage this morning lasted less than ten minutes, thank goodness, but Barbara says she had a two-day Cox outage a couple weeks ago. I think I will go down to the Verizon office on Tuesday and see if I can get a cell phone I can keep plugged in in the house so I have a back up at times like this. Again, thanks for the concern.

PK said...

D-O: Anytime you have a habitual hunter/seducer (either male or female) there is going to be sexual harassment. S.H. is simply making unacceptable remarks to someone who is not receptive. I once talked to a guy who said there is no such thing as sexual harassment. Interestingly enough, he had been fired for that and sued the company for wrongful termination and won. The women who brought the complaints were too traumatized and embarrassed to testify.

Over the years, I had two bosses that couldn't keep their hands to themselves. I was single both times. All the years I was married to a well-known big muscular guy, I didn't have a problem. At age 20, when harassed, I found a different job. But before I quit, Boss man got too "affectionate" in front of a couple customers. I turned and gave him a look of hatred that probably shriveled his jewels. The two guys laughed long & loud and told the story all over the country club.

I decided when it happened at age 60 with an older boss, I had enough money to retire. His business partners knew why and retired the old coot. They'd had two customers complain of the same thing. Some guys just don't know how to behave.

AnonymousPVX said...

Well, you have your terrible theme, which of course gets the terrible clueing.

I know it’s bad when I get the solve and still have to work hard to figure out the gimmick. And then I saw it....oh, we’re going to use PRETEND text abbreviations.

I’d ask “what next?” but I’m very very afraid that will be taken as a challenge.

Jinx in Norfolk said...

Husker Gary, I'll bet you are a fan of Pearls Before Swine (as am I). Avg Joe - Funny. That sounds in-character for McKay.

Misty, sorry about your phone troubles. If you have a smart (wireless) phone, you likely can easily set it up as a wifi hotspot (just like a restaurant, but secure) and use any device you have that has wifi capability. If you have a desktop or laptop computer that doesn't have wifi, a little device to provide it costs about $25 and simply plugs into a USB port. In a couple of years wireless 5G technology will likely make cable and satellite provisioning for phone, data and entertainment economically undesirable. Hang in there.

WC - The tournament director fled his room at the resort Sunday night / Monday morning and left most of his stuff behind. Most of the pros were gone, but a few also evacuated in the middle of the night. They lost some skyboxes, but the buildings got through intact. Many nearby homes burned to the ground.

TX Ms said...

Like Lemon, I thought WTH–I might as well throw in the towel on this one. Great recap and informative links!

If it weren’t for the very well-placed perps, I would never have gotten this one. Thank you, MJM! Still wondering about SECOND being a unit; is it referring to second, vis-à-vis, hour? My brother says that to his DW, cleanliness IS and EQUAL TO godliness. She’s pretty obsessive when it comes to cleaning and even the exact positioning of entryway rugs.

Forgot (thankfully) about Achy, Breaky Heart. In my CW club days of yore, we line-danced to it. Triple platinum in Australia - what?! And another thanks, Lemon, for NOT linking it!

HG, smiled at your dwarf fortune teller and sandals posts.

PK, I do wish your sister could travel far away from the fires; can’t even imagine what everyone is going through, not much less having bronchitis. Positive thoughts for your sister’s and others’ safety.

Jinx in Norfolk said...

Remember the Bob Newhart commercial where he is supposed to be talking on the phone, and retorts "I'm not any kind of retentive, I just like things neat"? Moderately risque for those days.

The other woman said...

DO, I feel sorry for you. You should delete your last post. To say that Bill's antics, known and unknown, did not include any sexual harassment actions is appalling.

Misty said...

Thank you for the advice, Jinx. I'm so techie-disabled that I'll have to study your suggestions carefully and see if I can sort them out before I go down to Verizon on Tuesday. But many thanks for the suggestions.

Ol' Man Keith said...

Smart, Misty,

I too keep a T-Mobile cell - for emergencies & backup. I don't give that number out, because it is just for me to make calls from.
I resisted having a cell for years. I used to do a lot of business by phone, so I relished the hours when I would be away from a telephone. When mobiles became popular, I thought, "It's too much like belling the cat! Why would I give up my privacy?"

But it has been handy a few times, especially the only time I had to make a 911 call.

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

After 2 false-start posts whilst my head wasn't in this game - let's move backwards...

No comment re: Weinstein nor Clinton (Bill, 1EA) nor President groper-in-Chief. How a guy gets his jollies from that is beyond me. //Ok, I guess a little comment

Ave Joe - LOL inre: the coach. Reminded me of the Wizard of ID comic:
"Sir, the peasants are revolting!"
King: "You can say that again..."

Good to see you MATEY.

{A+,A} {Ha!, HA! w/ beer out the nose}

PK - So sorry to hear of your sister's loss. At least in a flood we can move stuff upstairs (and the sink/toilet still works when you get back in!). Fire is holisticly horrific. :-(

HG - cute Small medium AT LARGE - some jokes just don't get old.

WOs: Ooops, wrong 10 Profits in the Good Book (BTW - I Googled and found there are >75 profits in the Bible according to //did you know there was such a site?)

And TWFNE - Jayce and Jinx had the same issues. I too had Axle/ Ahab and just made my own little-snugly-puzzle corner in the NE. I even tried to justify X-er(cis)E...

Not at all reflective ≠ DULL.

Finally, I crib'd from Lem's grid for 10 & 19d. The pzl finished itself. Thanks Lem for the expo and Splynteresque link for Eva.

MJM - cute what you did. As C, Eh!, I filled from the bottom-up and got the 'theme' after 58 & 44a. Trying to parse the clue w/o the revealing "clue", though, was fruitless.

Fav: MUST COME TO AN END. Just because AGT was the last episode of TNG.
Sparkle: c/a for TRIG & HYMNS are really good.

No Q nor Zed.

Lucina - any pics of the butterflies for the Corner?

DO - For triskaidekaphobics: I heard on MarketPlace that Flt 666 landed in HEL for the last time today.

Argyle - LOL! - DO nailed it - I'da added an F but that's just my vulgar vernacular.

Cheers, -T

Anonymous said...

I just watched an interview with Hillary when she was asked if the current accusations remind her of past events. She replied, "close, but no cigar."

Anonymous T said...

@8:32 - not appropriate. But, that's funny, Good one. -T

Lucina said...

I can take the pics but posting them is another challenge. Maybe I'll send them to C.C. first. They are most active in the morning so I'll see what I can find. They are such fun to watch as they flutter around.

Big Easy said...

Wow! I didn't know I started a firestorm by mentioning a person in the clue for 38A and another of his type that has been in the news lately.

They are what they are and I doubt anybody at 'The Corner' will disagree with that. Would any of you guys want you wife around either of them? Would any of you nice people let your children spend the night at Michael Jackson's house?

Anon@8:32- that was a good one.

PK said...

D-O: I think you are a very nice man who has no clue what these predators are capable of doing. Stay as sweet as you are! I always enjoy your humor and wisdom.

Dow Jones said...


The Friday Edition of the Wall Street Journal (10/14/17) features a C.C. 21 x 21 Crossword Puzzle (Living in the Past). It is available now at

E.F. Hutton said...

Re: Dow Jones @9:25 pm

The above referenced puzzle is in the Saturday Edition of the Wall Street Journal.

The world is flat said...

Flashbacks in blog history:

Most Cringeworthy moment:

deper-otto posted October 13, 2017 at 1:46 PM:

" Clinton had a sleazy, consensual extramarital affair, perhaps several, but so far as I know, no sexual harassment was involved."


Anonymous T said...

@9:48p - there's a difference w/ smitten by character/power and thus consenting vs. quid pro quo. 'Wanna movie part?' 'Here, drink this Mickey,' or Grab them by the P....
There's plenty of rock-stars that had women throw themselves at 'em vs. making women uncomfortable / feel hesitant about it. None is right, IMHO, but there's a difference. I'll stand up for DO's 1:46p.

Now, we're getting too far from puzzledom. Let's just GRIN an move on. -T

Anonymous said...

It's a good man who doesn't take advantage of smitten girls.

The world is flat said...

Now I'm wondering if it is a blog problem or a Houston problem.

Twif said...

Pun intended

Wilbur Charles said...

Jinx, thanks for the information on the Safeway tournament. It was surreal watching it and hearing the name "Napa". Even more so for the golfers when they realized they were mere hours ahead of disaster.


Anonymous said...

I am SHOCKED by these comments. AnonT, really? I mean, really?!!?

Big Easy said...

I didn't know I was such a dipshit. I thought I was the same as the rest of you normal thinking people. Don't you know that because I was successful that my comments represent the way normal people think ?

PG said...

AnonT, if you posted that comment on The Fiend, you may have had to visit the hospital from the abuse you would have endured.

TX Ms said...

Dear, sweet, Lucina @ 9:01 pm, please do send your Monarch butterfly pics to C.C. to post! Some of us need an antidote. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Men who use their power positions and other advantages to lure women into their trap are predators. predation>harrassment

Zulu said...


Michael said...

OMK @ 7:39 --

What's nice about having no mobile phone, is that when you get in the car and go somewhere, there is NO NOISE. As I ripen, I find silence to be a positive thing in my environment -- I live in a home where the TV is mostly on, due to three children -- so anywhere quiet is good.

Lemonade714 said...

Zulu, D-O decrypted Argyle's comment - Are You Kidding Me - at 6:56 AM CDT and confirmed at 8:04