Oct 1, 2017

Sunday October 1, 2017 Gail Grabowski

Theme: "Di-spirited Away"- DI is removed from the start of each theme entry.

24A Software update strategies? : VERSION TACTICS. Diversion tactics.

36A. Counsel offered by Carlo Rossi? : VINE GUIDANCE. Divine guidance.

54A. Dream about childbirth? : VISION OF LABOR. Division of labor.

67A. Views about poetry? : VERSE OPINIONS. Diverse opinion.

86A. Reminded guests that certain casual attire is required? : STRESSED JEANS. Distressed jeans.
99A. Uncompromising boss? : STRICT LEADER. District leader.

118A. Mastering a basic golf lesson? : STANCE LEARNING. Distance learning.

This is such a consistent & tight set. Notice how the new words and the original words share no roots at all?

Gail is a true master. She just makes things look easy.

1. Financial smartphone download : ATM APP.  Also 112. Smartphone display : TIME

7. Vague feeling : VIBE

11. Shot spot : ARM

14. Take up or let out : ALTER

19. More profound : DEEPER

20. Attention-getting type: Abbr. : ITAL

21. Gunk : GOO

22. Russian bread : RUBLE. Here's the real bread. Black bread.

23. Crooner Vic : DAMONE

27. Urban view obscurer : SMOG

28. Action-filled : SLAM-BANG. Great fill.

30. Get by succession : INHERIT

31. Stand in a loft : EASEL. Noun "Stand". And 47. State secrets? : RAT. Verb "State".

33. Title absentee : GODOT. Waiting for Godot.

35. Bridge installer's deg. : DDS. Dental.

42. Map in a map : INSET

45. Ristorante suffix : INI

46. Pursued : TRAILED

48. Container with slats : CRATE

52. Recommend : ADVISE

57. What alibis may be : LIES

58. Series of rings : PEAL

60. Ultra-secret org. : NSA

61. Like yoga devotees : LIMBER. Also 91. Yoga pose : ASANA. Hi there Lucina!

62. Naval strength : SEA POWER

65. Co-host Shapiro of "All Things Considered" : ARI

66. Celeb's freebie : VIP PASS

71. "That film is awful" : I HATE IT. Two great 7-letter fill in a row.

75. '60s-'80s Brit. sports car : MGB

76. Frozen fruit-flavored snack : OTTER POP. Favorite snack of D-Otto's dad.

81. Soda purchases : LITERS

82. 1999 Moviefone acquirer : AOL

83. Fluency : EASE

85. Normal beginning? : PARA. Paranormal.

89. Baseless accusation, to an alleged perp : BUM RAP. Snazzy!
92. Pic for a doc : MRI

93. "Dig in!" : LET'S EAT. Here is the recipe of my Eight Treasure Congee. Have any of you cooked red rice before? I just bought a bag of Lundberg red rice at Walmart. I presume it's the same way we cook wild rice.

96. When Le Havre heats up : ETE

97. Run through a reader : SWIPE. Scanner. Not you. We also have 5. Writer : PEN. Write-r.

101. Break down : SOB

104. Mar. parade honoree : ST PAT

106. Shake awake : ROUST

107. Taking in a sunrise, say : UP EARLY. I'm an early riser.

110. Crowd control weapons : RIOT GUNS

114. Headquarters : BASE

120. Golfer's starting point : TEE BOX

122. Salon dye : HENNA

123. Scepter top, perhaps : ORB

124. Salon, for one : E-MAG. You can find many old Life magazines at flea market for a dollar.

125. Not leave to chance : ENSURE

126. Concepts : IDEAS

127. They're often grad students : TAs

128. Wraps (up) : SEWS

129. Went bad : ROTTED. Traditional Chinese black bean sauce is made of fermented black soy beans that smell bad to the uninitiated. My grandma never put garlic in her sauce. So I never put it in mine either.


1. Throws into the mix : ADDS

2. Group with lineups : TEAM

3. Exec's reminder : MEMO

4. Orbital high point : APOGEE. Learned from doing crosswords.

6. Put the squeeze on : PRESSURE

7. "The Four Seasons" composer : VIVALDI

8. It might follow a bullet : ITEM. Bullet point.

9. Zinger : BARB

10. "Frozen" princess : ELSA. Also 71. Rick calls her "kid" : ILSA

11. Disco phrase : A GOGO

12. Pal of Harry : RON. Harry Potter

13. Summon silently : MOTION TO

14. St. Louis landmark : ARCH. Been there for a short time. Never saw the Arch.

15. Renaissance instrument : LUTE

16. 1954 Ford debut : T-BIRD

17. Legendary Spanish hero : EL CID

18. Intervals of inactivity : RESTS

25. "Picnic" playwright : INGE

26. Queen's subjects : ANTS. Can't fool me any more.

29. Princess from Alderaan : LEIA

32. Spy-fi figs. : AGTs

34. Grammy-winning singer Krall : DIANA. Wife of Elvis Costello.

36. Medical containers : VIALS

37. Common film festival entry : INDIE

38. Skin lotion brand : NIVEA

39. Menlo Park middle name : ALVA. Edison.

40. Justice Gorsuch who replaced Antonin : NEIL

41. DJ's stack : CDs

43. 8/21/2017 celestial event : ECLIPSE. It was quite cloudy that day. So I did what Trump did. Look at the sun directly.

44. Vagabond : TRAMP

47. Violinist's need : ROSIN

49. Quartet named for its members : ABBA

50. They're usually seen with sandals : TOES. Cute.

51. Miscalculates : ERRS

53. Connection method: Abbr. : ISP

55. Cross inscription : INRI

56. Spark producer : FLINT
58. Apt to mouth off : PERT

59. Critical care ctrs. : ERs

63. Supervised : OVERSAW

64. Houdini's family name : WEISS. Unknown to me.
65. BOLO equivalent : APB. Be on the lookout.

66. Popular __ : VOTE

68. Expressive online image : EMOJI. "Hey, I just met you.... " This is so sweet.

69. Take in the wrong way? : OGLE

70. Apple mobile platform : IOS
72. Google successes : HITS

73. Quattro competitor : ATRA

74. Cold weather word : TEENS. Mall walk time. Grateful for the Springbrook Nature Center this summer. So quiet and meditative. No dogs. No bikes. No cameras allowed either.

77. Turntable letters : RPM

78. Took a little off : PARED

79. Give a keynote, say : ORATE

80. Morning read : PAPER. Important part of our morning.

82. TV spot seller : AD REP

83. U.S. dept. with a windmill on its seal : ENER

84. Wine city near Turin : ASTI

87. Unimproved property : EMPTY LOT

88. In-flight fig. : ALT

89. Railing feature : BALUSTER. Learning moment for me.

90. Western natives : UTES

94. Earl with a three-finger banjo-picking style named for him : SCRUGGS

95. Berkshire boarding school : ETON

98. Castaway's home : ISLE

99. Foment, with "up" : STIR

100. If all goes right : AT BEST

101. Rolls with rice : SUSHI. My favorite. Eel sushi.

102. Withdrew, with "out" : OPTED

103. "Moneyball" baseball exec Billy : BEANE. Played by Brad Pitt.

105. Mettlesome mounts : ARABS

108. Paquin of "True Blood" : ANNA

109. Pioneering TVs : RCAs

111. Column on the right : ONES
113. Nibble : GNAW

115. Be flush with : ABUT

116. Ill-tempered : SORE

117. Struck (out) : EX'ED

119. Period that may be named for a president : ERA

121. "Lux" composer Brian : ENO


OwenKL said...

FIR! Much better than yesterday's DIsmal showing, one of my worst-ever fails. Depression puts me off like that. My doctor has just retired, which has interfered with my supply of "happy pills". I look at all the disasters in Puerto Rico and elsewhere, and feel so unentitled to feel depressed, and that just seems to make it worse. Ah, well, on to lighter stuff:

His love, he said, was higher than a rocket's APOGEE 💩!
His love, he said, was DEEPER than the center of the SEA 💩!
She said she would ADVISE
He tell someone else his LIES --
At least until he learned that weren't a "chocolate kiss" EMOJI 💩!

Sometimes in my poems I espouse DIVERSE OPINIONS
About the the things expressed by other blogging minions!
My lines IDEAS boost and bolster,
Like railings held up by BALUSTER!
I do it because doggerel and VERSE are my dominions!


OwenKL said...

\/o \/o
White rabbit, white rabbit

Anonymous said...

She said, 4D APOGEE, learned from doing crosswords. Um, yeah, I learned from smoking marijuana from their bongs.

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Can it really be October already? Where did this year go?

I managed to suss the theme almost immediately. That made this one a real quickie. Vic DAMONE would be a natick for anyone under 60. The V in VIPPASS/VOTER was my final fill. It took an alphabet run...a long one. Thanx, Gail and C.C.

C.C., your Nature Center photo reminds me of our nearby Mercer Arboretum. It used to be a beautiful place for a nature walk. The drought a few years ago killed off a large number of their trees. Just as the park was recovering, floods of 2014, 2016 and Harvey this past month devastated the place. The flower beds were washed away, and everything is covered with silt. It's closed to the public indefinitely. The director says it'll take months and several hundred thousand dollars just to get it to a state where the public can be allowed back in.

The Juice said...

I'm back BABY!

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

Gail, Gail. you did me in. Oddly enough, I got the theme fairly early and was going along quite nicely, overcoming a few hiccups but, overall, working my way to the finish line. But, no tada! So, I visually went back over the fill but found nothing amiss. So, I turned on the Show Errors button and quickly saw the error of my ways. I had Ella instead of Elsa, ATM instead of Arm and Tom instead of Ron. I thought the Harry referred to every Tom, Dick and Harry, ergo, a friend of Harry's was Tom. Even after seeing the correct Ron, I thought, that's strange; Harry Truman and Ron Reagan were friends? No excuse for the silly ATM entry and Ella was just the wrong character. Was Ella the Beauty, or was that Elle? I continue to get Ari of NPR mixed up with Ira of NPR. VIP Pass was Swag Bag and Otter Pop needed ESP as I've never heard of them.

Thanks, Gail, for a true Sunday stumper, at least for me, and thanks, CC, for your detailed and informative review.

I had to put the heat on this morning for the first time. A week ago today, it was in the 90's. If the roller coaster spring and summer, and fall weather, so far, are any indication of what the winter is going to be like, hold onto your hats! We have lots of sunshine right now but I think the high is going to be only in the 60's. That's fine with me; time to get the "fleecies" out.

Have a great day.

MJ said...

Greetings to all!

What a great puzzle! Thanks, Gail. DIANA Krall, TEE BOX, and Billy BEANE were all unknowns, and misspelling BALUSTER as BALiSTER slowed things down a bit. My favorite theme answer was STRESSED JEANS. Thanks for the thorough expo and lovely photos, C.C., as well as for sharing your porridge recipe.

IM--Are you thinking of Belle from "Beauty and the Beast"?

Enjoy the day!

Big Easy said...

The first thing I noticed was the theme answers starting with V. I caught the DI at VISION OF LABOR, which technically is before childbirth, aka 'delivery'. But we can have DI-VERSE OPINIONS on that one. I can never remember if the Frozen princess is ILSA or ELSA but the perps solved it and ILSA showed up later in the puzzle as a bonus. RESIN & ROSIN always get mixed up so I let the cross take care of it.

The two unknowns in the SW, BEANE & ANNA, were 100% perped, as was OTTERPOP. I liked the 'Bridge installer's deg.' and the 'It might follow a bullet' clues. Made me think a little.

ATM APP- what good is it if your phone doesn't dispense cash?

TEE BOX & STANCE LEARNING- the hardest thing in golf is getting a proper STANCE to line up where the ball actually goes, NOT where you think it will go. How far away you stand from the ball and where you have the ball in your stance-front, middle or back, and if your swing will actually propel the ball to where your eyes and brain think it should go. And then you have to consider whether you 'normal' shot is a fade or draw because hitting it straight is nearly impossible.

'Morning read'- how many others besides me solve the puzzle using the PAPER using INK? My only write over was SPOKE to ORATE at 79D. There is no RED LETTER help there.

Big Easy said...

To 'The Juice'- let's hope you're back in jail soon. I cringe when 'you' share the same last name as me, were BORN is the same town as me- Shreveport, LA- your parents were from the same itty bitty town as my father-Rodessa, LA (population 262), and hope that 'The Juice' is NOT somehow distantly related to me, as my grandfather died in 1916 and dead men tell no tales after 101 years.

Husker Gary said...

-Even the title was masterful! Wonderful, Gail!
-Watching TV online requires different VERSION TACTICS for IOS or OSX
-Mindset of some who INHERIT
-I’ve never been a VIP nor received a VIP PASS so designating
-Box Office Robbery – “I HATED THAT MOVIE, give me everybody’s money back”
-Medical CC’s and Soda Liters seem to be the only metric units we see commonly here (unless you’re into track or film)
-A BUM RAP cost these people 70 collective years behind bars
-Is there a prettier view from a TEE BOX than the 7th at Pebble Beach?
-Gotta run!

Anthony Gael Moral said...

Glad to see the great Vic Damone remembered. (Vivaldi ain't bad either.) But Vic was named "King of the Baritone," even though he was a tenor, and referring to him as a crooner seems to diminish his miraculous voice. Dean Martin was a crooner. Today, I'm not sure it matters as I'm probably the only guy left who cares about such things.

Bill Graham said...

Several really tricky and clever clues today. Thanks for the fun and challenge.

Some people put words together because they sound good rather than because they make sense. For example, I was listening to the news on the radio at 8 am and they said, "OJ Simpson will be released this morning, almost nine years to the day after he was locked up." Almost *** to the day? One word means not exactly while the other words mean exactly. Hmm?

Freond said...

I don't know the movie Frozen but it appears that the princess is Anna not Elsa, who is the queen. But Anna was used someplace else. A bit of poor editing I think.

PK said...

Hi Y'all! An enjoyable challenge from Gail. Thanks, C.C.

Got the theme early with VISION OF LABOR, but was expecting them all to start with V when two did. So STRESSED JEANS caused me long diSTRESS trying to come up with a V-word.

TEE BOX: Anyone else watching the President's Cup?

Unknowns: OTTERPOP, ARI, MGB, LEIA (because Alderaan was unknown).

IM: I had to dig out my good 'ol favorite sweat shirt this week too.

After being housebound for a week, my son got back from his trip and came with his portable battery charger which is plugged into my car right now. He'll be back after my grandson pitches parts of a couple baseball games. He has a plug-into-the-wall charger for me to use from now on. Such a comfort that we raised a mechanic.

Big Easy: Did your great great grandfather own slaves? Don't blame you for not wanting "juice" on the family tree! Definitely a black sheep.

Yellowrocks said...

Great theme. I was distracted watching Meet the Press while I solved this, so it took a while to see the theme. When I sussed it, I finsihed 1-2-3. FIR Last fill was TEE BOX which is new to me. I had the TEE. Then I realized that flush meant adjoining giving me ABUT and the B for BOX. From cop shows I know BOLO, be on the look out for, but it took me almost to the end to recall it.
CC, the eel sushi, my favorite, looks delicious Those who are turned off by raw fish might like it. It is glazed and roasted before topping the sushi.
I solve in pen and ink. When I am absolutely stumped (usually with a big inkblot) I type the difficult section online at Master Level.That usually works. If not, I turn on red letters to find my error and then go back to Master Level to finish. Occasionally I google if I am totally stuck. After I complete the puzzle I almost always google many topics, just out of curiosity. I give myself no FIR if I use red letters or google to solve.
Bill G. almost to the day does not bother me. It is like "nearly perfect." We can say something is just a hair short of being exact.
I consider childbirth the whole process, labor and delivery. I may be wrong.
IM, you and I are among the rare people who have not seen Frozen. I have no wish to do so now.

Chuck Lindgren said...

How is "state Secrets" (plural) answered as RAT??? 47Across ??? Not explained above.

North Central got me as I filled in "BAR" for shot spot and boogy for Disco word. Then Gydot for what I knew was gAdot. Oh well.

Jayce said...

I do love a Gail Grabowski puzzle, and this one is no exception. Excellence in every way. I did have to turn on red letters to see that my ROUSE needed to be changed to ROUST and that I made a typo at 78d which put PAPED in the place of PARED. I have heard of balustrade and banister but not BALISTER, but that didn't impede my solving in that area.

Every time I see LETSEAT, Or Let's go eat, I think of how I like to say, "I'm hungry. Squeet."

I fondly recall the song "Call Me Maybe" and it makes me think of "that maybe guy" with whom a meet-up was never followed through on.

LW once bought a package of "mixed rice" which I think included red rice. It was pretty good but some of the kinds of rice in the mix got overcooked because some kinds of rice simply cook more quickly than others. This was an example of how "one size fits all" actually doesn't.

I always get mixed up between ILSA and ELSA.

Anthony Gael Moral, I agree with that you said about Vic Damone, Dean Martin, and Antonio Vivaldi. I liked the voices and styles of the first two and the compositions of that third guy.

Bill Graham, what you said brings to mind that it seems to me news announcers, or the writers whose teleprompter text they mindlessly read, are often so sloppy, inaccurate, and just plain wrong. Just this morning a news item about the disaster in Puerto Rico mentioned "the mayor of Puerto Rico." Just yesterday a reader (I won't call her a reporter) read a quote of what Julia Louis-Dreyfus wrote about her breast cancer. Julia's actual words, which were being displayed on the TV screen, were "1 in 8 women get breast cancer. Today, I'm the one," and the announcer, who was speaking in her I'm reading a written quote voice, actually said, "I am that one." I guess she obviously can't read. Or, as I said, just sloppy.

Best wishes to you all.

inanehiker said...

Fun, steady solve from Gail today. I thought the theme clues were all going to start with V until she changed to the ST for the last half.

I actually saw "Frozen" its opening weekend as I was down to Texas for Thanksgiving that year and my great niece Elizabeth wanted to see it. It is an empowering message for girls as they don't rely on the prince to rescue them and rely on each other to figure things out. @Freond: Both Anna and ELSA are princesses for the first part of the movie, but then their parents are lost at sea and ELSA being the eldest is slated to become queen in the second half.

Thanks CC - the park looks beautiful - next time I'm Twin Cities way it would be good to stroll through. It seems there are a lot of parks in the area.

Jayce said...

Chuck Lindgren, as C.C. noted in her write-up, the word "State" in the clue to RAT is a verb. Think of ratting as stating, i.e. revealing, secrets.

Wilbur Charles said...

I thought I'd checked everything but OTTERPOP got me. I had stupidly(Rich, if you ever want to clue that word I'll send you a selfie) put SUGER POP. So, Owen I'll trade you're victory vibe for mine from yesterday. Win a few...

I agree that seeing Gail's name means a fun solve. I've got the President's cup taping. Btw, I'd say correct grip is #1. And, use good equipment that fits.

I'm a pen and ink no google guy except when I'm 95% sure but want 100%. I'll ask my son a video game question and my wife a yoga or equestrian question. I recalled ASANA but not which xword.


Anonymous said...

"Pen and ink is redundant, no?

Anonymous said...

Pen for me.


desper-otto said...

Ink for me.

Yellowrocks said...

Is “pen and ink” redundant? For many centuries ink was separate from the pen. The quill pen was dipped in ink. Later pens with steel nibs were dipped in ink. I remember the fountain pen. You had to fill the reservoir inside periodically with ink from a bottle. I also remember the cartridge pens. They had enclosed ink cartridges. You could remove an empty cartridge from the pen and insert a full one. The cartridges were easier to carry and less messy than using an ink bottle.
Then came ball point pens which carried their own long lasting supply of ink. At first there were interchangeable refills when the ink ran dry. Nowadays there are many inexpensive ballpoint point pens. When the ink runs out, you just discard it.
Calligraphy pens are still dip pens. Today pen and ink drawings are made with ball point pens, fiber pens (Magic Markers) and for the finest work, dip pens with separate ink.
The phrase pen and ink survives from its old-fashioned beginnings and is still in the language, especially in opposition to pencil writing or typed writing.
PS, I still call a Bic pen that has run out of ink a pen.

WC, why not goggle if you cannot solved the entire puzzle? I don’t pretend to have solved the puzzle myself, but I have certainly learned more this way than by just giving up and looking at the solution. When I research something I am more likely to remember it for next time, especially since my googling leads me on many side trips. If I can no way solve the puzzle without help, at least I can increase my knowledge base.

Irish Miss said...

MJ @ 10:14 ~ Thanks for coming to the rescue! Yes, I was thinking of Belle; I guess Elsa puts me in mind of the lion and so then I thought it must be it Elle. Between "Frozen" and Harry Potter characters, I'm out to sea. And, of course, my Ella, ATM, Tom debacle led me to invent a new word for Software update strategies=Verliom tactics. Looked okay me! 😳

Anonymous said...

I work my puzzle with pencil and ink usually. But on occasion, when the puzzle is more difficult, I'll use a pen so I can erase if need be.

Big Easy said...

PK- I have absolutely no idea. All my grandparents on both sides were dead before I was born. My dad grew up in Texas (about two miles west of Rodessa, Louisiana) on a farm.

YR & Wilbur Charles- glad there's another 'dead tree' version solver out there. I never use anything to help solve the puzzle. This blog is my only source to see if I have done it correctly. There's no challenge in looking it up. It's either pass or fail. No middle ground for me.

In the 60s, I went from pencil to fountain pen from an inkwell to fountain pen using cartridges to ballpoint. Lindy pens, Parker pens, and Bic 19-cent pens.

Wilbur Charles said...

Yellowrocks, I refuse to google because every time I did it the answer would be obvious and I hated myself. Plus, it's psychological. I have to force my brain to keep working, no cheap cheaps.

Now having said that I have a NYT in the bathroom that has a few Naticks and no perps. But, I won't give up.

It may take until my birthday but I swear I'll get it


Yellowrocks said...

After an admitted fail, I do not consider it cheating to go back and learn from the experience. So you two always win? You never have anything you absolutely cannot get? Not finishing it at all is worse than a fail in my book.

Anonymous said...

Geez Yellowrocks, it's just a crosswords puzzle. To each his own.

Wilbur Charles said...

I agree, YR except I'll keep at it for awhile. And I was going to google FOREGO yesterday but I said, Wilbur, by the time you get to the blog Yellowrocks will have posted a most excellent explanation, as she does so often and so well.


And as for "pen and ink". You hit it on the nose. It's like "Irregardless". Seemingly redundant but having a different connotation.


Anonymous T said...

Sunday Lurk say...

{A, B-}

Big E. - Always newsprint & ink (unless I'm out of town and then I print Mensa if the local paper doesn't have the puzzle). I use a Pilot G-2 .05 pen with built-in ink.

YR - you left the fun part out; The first part of the childbirth process is conception :-)

Re: Googling a clue... As soon as I do, it's not a "win" but becomes a learning day. I won't Google unless a corner is impossible or I just can't get a toe-hold anywhere [see: Saturdays]. Sometimes, I will take a Mulligan on the spelling answers I "know" but there's so many vowels I couldn't possibly spell it right [see: Tiramisu (yeah, I just asked Google (again) on how to spell it) last week].

New topic - CROUD SOURCING this... DW and I are considering a trip to Italy in late Feb. We're looking at Rome followed by a little island off Sicily w/ a population of 127 homes... Any suggestions? I've never been to Italy [I know, I'm a bad WOP] but DW has been there 3x w/ her students. We're looking for "off the beaten path."

Cheers, -T

Anonymous T said...

Can you guess that @30a yesterday I had to change a U to a double-U in CROWD source... I've said it before, I'll say it again - Dyslexia sucks. -T

Cynthia Sumner said...

C.C. I'm curious about the Springbrook Nature Center. Do they really not allow cameras? If so, why? I'm asking as a Board member of the Flat Rock Brook Nature Center in Englewood, New Jersey. We're always interested in how other nature centers are run.

C.C. Burnikel said...

Nope, no cameras. That's what the entrance sign says. I never asked why. You can visit it here:

The banned items on the Park Polices is not complete though.

Picard said...

I was sure I was going to FIW but I was wrong. Last to fall was INGE/GODOT crossing. We read Waiting for GODOT in high school English and I even got to see it performed back then. Enjoyed when I finally got it!

Got the theme fairly early with VERSE OPINIONS. Helped a lot. But some of the fill was quite challenging for me.

Unknowns: DAMONE, RON, ELSA, TEE BOX, BEANE, ANNA. SCRUGGS a hazy memory from somewhere.

Thanks for explaining BOLO, CC. Got APB with ESP.

Hand up with Jayce: I have heard of balustrade and banister but not BALUSTER. Learning moment.

Interesting about the park, CC. I know dogs are sacred in this country and people bring them into every store and restaurant here. But I would love a retreat away from them.

That eel sushi looks very yummy!

Big Easy I also solve the puzzles in pen on paper. I print them from the LA Times site.