Nov 19, 2017

Sunday Nov 19, 2017 Paul Coulter

Theme: "Twists and Turns" - Two words in each common phrase change place, in all but one where one word is replaced by its homophone.
1A: With 22- and 126-Across, saying about the difficulty of dieting? : A WAIST

22A. See 1-Across : IS A TERRIBLE THING. And 126A. See 1-Across : TO MIND. A mind is a terrible thing to waste.

36A: Proverb about creeps getting their just deserts? : TIME WOUNDS ALL HEELS. Time heals all wounds.

69A: Handles every objection? : ANSWERS ALL THE NOES. Knows all the answers.

96A. Fed up with a corporate VIP? : BORED OF THE CHAIRMAN. Chairman of the board.

114A. Spars during dance music? : PUNCHES TO THE BEAT. Beat to the punches. Isn't the saying "beat to the punch"?

The last one has no homophone change, turned, but not twisted.

I don't think I've seen a theme entry broken into three symmetrical parts. Very creative. Otherwise, we would have lost a 30-letter fun themer.


7. 1956 hot spot : SUEZ. Suez Canal Crisis. We also have 86. '60s hot spot : NAM

11. Healthful getaway : SPA

14. Lodge : STOW

18. Social classes : CASTES. Caste system still exists in India.

19. Trick joint? : KNEE

20. Consequently : THEN

21. Big name in spydom : HARI (Mata)

25. Part of Kurdistan is in it : IRAN

26. Code word : DAH. DIT too.

27. Bluesman Redding : OTIS

28. Nada, across the Pyrenees : RIEN. "De rien".
29. Grocery section : AISLE

30. Mrs. Addams, to Gomez : TISH

33. Deck (out) : TOG

34. Like the most popular beaches : SANDIEST. When was the first time you saw the ocean?
42. World Heritage Site org. : UNESCO

45. Surgeon's patient? : TREE. Tree surgeon.

46. __ Aviv : TEL

47. Difficult position : SPOT. In a spot.

48. Middle X or O : TAC

49. "Things Fall Apart" novelist Chinua __ : ACHEBE

52. Crisis of the middle ages? : SAG. Ha ha.

54. Flour may be made with it : SOY. I eat tons of soy products. Never tried flour though.

55. "__, Sing America": Langston Hughes poem : I TOO

57. Prynne's stigma : RED A. "The Scarlet Letter"

58. Street fleet : CABS. Not CARS.

61. Irregularly notched : EROSE. Like these leaves.

63. Tidal extreme : LOW WATER

66. Calf-roping loop : NOOSE

68. Cartoon genre : ANIME

72. __-Roman wrestling : GRECO

73. Like cornstalks : EARED

74. Cadillac SUV : ESCALADE
77. Mercury astronaut Cooper, to friends : GORDO. Learning moment for me.

78. Website for techies : CNET

79. Big celebration : FEST

81. More than tickle : SLAY. Our Peg! We also have 93. Tickled : AMUSED

82. Troy, N.Y., tech school : RPI.  Our Spitzboov & Irish Miss!

83. Lao Tzu's "way" : TAO. Lao Tzu spoke Mandarin, so he would have used DAO.

85. You don't have to face the music to do it : LISTEN. Thought the answer would be a noun.

87. Cremona crowd? : TRE. Three.

88. Lined up, with "in" : A ROW

90. IV league? : RNs. Cute.

92. Democratic donkey designer : NAST (Thomas)
101. Comic book artist's supply : INDIA INK. Ink was invented in China. Paper too.

102. __ Friday's : TGI

103. Winter cord : WOOD

106. Plant life : FLORA

109. "__ Nacht": German parting : GUTE

110. Vintner's prefix : OENO

111. Lingerie item : BRA

113. Noble title : LORD

119. Biblical brother : ABEL. Also the given name of The Weekend.

120. Principal : ARCH

121. Whaler's direction : THAR

122. Home to Napoli : ITALIA

123. Like a yenta : NOSY

124. "Not impressed" : MEH

125. __-Coburg: former German duchy : SAXE
1. Vinegary : ACID. Any of you tried sherry vinegar?

2. Attended : WAS AT

3. Japanese beer brand : ASAHI

4. Shades-wearing TV cousin : ITT

5. "Didn't I tell you?" : SEE

6. Original Dungeons & Dragons co. : TSR. It stands for Tactical Studies Rules.

7. Trail access aid : SKI TOW

8. Tolerant : UNBIGOTED. I only know BIGOTED.

9. Fish that can swim backwards : EELS

10. What's at the heart of every calzone? : ZEE. Just the middle letter.

11. Reacted skittishly to : SHIED AT

12. Broke : PENNILESS

13. "The Ice Storm" director Lee : ANG

14. Islamic worshippers : SHIITES. I spell it as "worshipers". You?

15. Experienced crew : TARS

16. __ agreement : ORAL

17. Press release? : WINE. Nailed it.

20. Dilutes : THINS

23. Mechanically, after "by" : ROTE

24. Business : TRADE

29. Hearth residue : ASH

31. Google Maps lines: Abbr. : STs

32. Kool-Aid alternative : HI-C

34. Bygone blade : SNEE

35. "Enchanted" girl in a 2004 film : ELLA. The film title is "Ella Enchanted".

37. Bygone bird : MOA

38. Graffiti and such : URBAN ART

39. Hydrated magnesium sulfate : EPSOM SALTS. For hot baths.

40. Baggy : LOOSE

41. Eye affliction : STYE. Also 76. Checked out : EYED. Any of you wear Acuvue Oasys? I had two abrasions on my right eye. Been having antibiotic drops. Need to see the doctor again next week.

42. Payment made each mo. : UTIL

43. Gp. joined by Montenegro in 2017 : NATO

44. Environmental activist : ECO-WARRIOR

50. Canadian tribe : CREE

51. German gentlemen : HERREN. Plural of HERR.

53. Italy's largest port : GENOA

56. Had : OWNED

58. Ultra-aloof type : COLD FISH

59. Nova Scotia hrs. : AST

60. Strong request : BEHEST

62. Cambodian currency : RIELS. Like Chinese, their language do not have plural form.

64. English race place : ASCOT

65. Small partnership : TWO

67. "Bravo!" : OLE

68. RSA ruling party : ANC. African National Congress

70. Ed.'s request : SAE

71. Ferrara family name : ESTE. Often clued as [Noble Italian family].

72. Start playing for money : GO PRO. Tiny clue dupe with 80. Going rate? : ESTATE TAX
75. Challenge : DARE

77. Screen __ : GRAB. Not SHOT.

78. Assemble, as a computer system : CONFIGURE

84. J.Lo's main squeeze : A-ROD.  Beautiful couple.

85. Deficiency : LACK
89. In a strange way : WEIRDLY

91. Firm in principle : STAUNCH. Consonant-rich.

92. "Buffalo Stance" singer Cherry : NENEH. Another learning moment for me.

94. Big mouth : MAW

95. A, in Acapulco : UNO

97. Paternity suit evidence : DNA

98. Thumb : HITCH

99. Brush aside : IGNORE

100. Very funny one : RIOT

104. Dagger-shaped editing marks : OBELI. Plural of Obelus. No dagger here.

105. Exhaust : DRAIN

106. Custard concoction : FLAN. Amazed that pie crusts were nowhere to be found yesterday at Cub Foods. Did get rutabaga though. We only eat rutabaga once a year, thankfully.

107. Western wolf : LOBO

108. Mining haul : ORES

110. Dept. of Labor arm : OSHA

112. Hardly more than not at all : A TAD

114. Nonstick cooking spray : PAM

115. UFO crew, so it's said : ETs

116. Big success : HIT

117. WWII command : ETO (European Theater of Operations, 1942-1945)

118. Emeril catchword : BAM

Lemonade spent three weeks in Thailand with his wife Oo. Look at these two amazing pictures. He said "It was good to be king".

Nov 18, 2017

Saturday, Nov 18th, 2017, Ed Sessa

Theme: None

Words: 68 (missing J,Q,Z)

Blocks: 25

From no Saturdays this year to two months in a row for Mr. Sessa, again with a triple-axis symmetrical construction, and for the second week in a row, we have a hashtag pattern of 15-letter spanners and climbers crossing the grid.  I believe this might be the second hardest crossword grid to work; although there are plenty of words that connect the corners together, the chunky 7x7 corners are unforgiving if you have nothing to work with.  I was stumped in the North until I was able to solve the two climbers - which I had  an inkling about, but not enough to commit to filling them in.  The 4 big clues/answers;

17a. Evidential standard : REASONABLE DOUBT - hear it all the time on Law & Order

3d. Happy way to end : ON A POSITIVE NOTE

A positive note~? Is that a B+, or a B#~?

12d. More than just stabs : EDUCATED GUESSES - or in the crossword sense, educated WAGs

54a. Foil-wrapped treats : CHOCOLATE KISSES - started to put Klondike Ice Cream in, but it didn't fit.


1. Buy in quantity : STOCK UP - "shop at BJs/Costco" didn't fit

8. Places of rapid growth : HOTBEDS

15. Commiserate : CONDOLE - one cel from my "ta-DA~!" was the "L" here; I had condone, and I knew it was not working with6d.

16. One taking the prize : AWARDEE

19. Old Egyptian symbol of royalty : ASP

20. Former Defense secretary who wrote "Worthy Fights" : PANETTA - filled via perps

21. __ scan : CAT - CAT~? or PET~?; had to wait

22. Pronoun not heard as often as it should be : WHOM - for whom the bell tolls

24. 2016 presidential candidate : RUBIO - I thought it was rubiN, and that was close enough

25. British art house : TATE

26. Player over 21, perhaps : LOSER - cards, and blackjack; I took $135 at poker last week

28. Common base : TEN

29. __ Hebrides : OUTER

30. Large beer mugs : SEIDELS - this filled via perps, and I had to go to Google to see if it was right; oddly, it also led to a reference about an EYE TEST, also in the puzzle, below

32. Ones in their 40s, e.g. : GEN-XERS - guess that's me

34. Crime scene barrier : TAPE - huh; filled this in, and never noticed it was correct until now

35. Squeezed (out) : EKED

36. Greet warmly : SMILE AT

39. One convinced by a drive : PLEDGER - my first thought was cars, then it was golf, and then I got it; public broadcasting TV

42. Chekov's first name on "Star Trek" : PAVEL - I typed in ANTON, and knew that was not right - I kept recalling this scene from Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (P.S., ironically, the "new" guy who plays Chekov is named Anton Yelchin, but I can't get into the new characters)

"...rank, Admiral" @ 1:45

43. #4 at Boston Garden : ORR - hockey great

45. "__ Got Mail" : YOU'VE

46. Said yes to : OK'ED

47. Monty Python product : SPOOF - I pondered SKITS, which could work with the singular/plural of 'product'

49. Trickle : SEEP

50. Kricfalusi cartoon canine : REN - I had no clue about the name, but three-letter cartoon dog is usually REN - the Wiki

51. Taking away : REMOVAL

53. Sign at a popular play : SRO

57. Winner of the Breaking News Reporting Pulitzer for 2016, briefly : LA TIMES - hey~!! A group shout-out~!

58. Most loaded : RICHEST - the owner of the winery might have the dollars, but not a lot of sense

59. Exam involving reading letters : EYE TEST - and for the second week in a row, we will hear from Zed in Men In Black

 60. Chicken requests : BREASTS


1. Hard-to-read words : SCRAWLS

2. Ballerina's footwear : TOE SHOE

4. IRA options : CDs

5. Surgeon general under Reagan : KOOP - I could picture the guy's face (you can't forget it, really), but it took the "-OO-" before I could recall his name - C. Everett

6. __ nerve : ULNAR

7. A toy piano is often seen in it : PEANUTS - Schroeder

8. Uncertain : HALTING

9. Have because of : OWE TO

10. Cry with a flourish : "Ta-DA"~! - I did not get my "ta-DA~!" once the grid filled

11. Main man : BRO - I tried C E O

13. Con, half the time : DEBATER - as opposed to "pro"

14. They may be Irish : SETTERS

18. Neuwirth of "Cheers" : BEBE - one of the only proper names I actually knew

23. Got the gold, say : MEDALED

25. Black-tie wear : TUXEDOS

27. Turn back : REPEL - like the bad guys in a James Bond movie

29. In tune : ON KEY

31. Pastoral expanse : LEA

33. Sea scavenger : EEL - did not know they were scavengers; three letters and one "E" was already there

36. Trivia quiz website : SPORCLE - never heard of it, and it looked funny in the grid; the website is here - I played the "mis-matched movies" game, and missed one - only because I got too itchy with the mouse finger

37. What some do while the sun shines? : MAKE HAY

38. Rigging support : TOPMAST

39. Words of wisdom : PROVERB

40. Hillary's conquest : EVEREST - not the politician aiming for the presidency

41. Announces again, in a way : REPOSTS - the 21st century way - although I am not on Facebook

44. Heart : ROOT

47. Two-time US Open winner : SELES - I had just the last "S", so it was not EVERT

48. Hindu ascetic : FAKIR - filled via perps

51. Cooking apple named for an Ohio township : ROME - oops, I had POME

52. Minute parasites : LICE

55. Op. __ : CIT - the period made this clear that it would not be "ART"; instead the Latin 'opere citato', the "work already cited", found in footnotes

56. Doo-wop syllable : SHA


Nov 17, 2017

Friday, November 17, 2017, Alex Eaton-Salners


Husker Gary in the cockpit for one more Friday. Alex's puzzle today has the word GREAT escaping the puzzle on all sides! Alex has taken ten phrases that start with the word GREAT and has put them on the perimeter of the gird sans that leading word. I have decided to try to show both ideas with the grid below where I have chosen a graphic that illustrates the entire phrase and placed it so that it abuts (a fav word here) the word that would follow GREAT.

Here are Alex's GREAT themers starting in the NW and going clockwise.

1. "Holy cow!" : SCOTT - SCOTT had to be correct but the implied GREAT didn't hit me until the next fill. I sometimes confuse Doc Brown's phrase with what Clark Kent's boss used to say on TV.

6. "Atta girl!" : JOB and 13. Considerable achievement : SUCCESS - Both remind me of our lovely blogmistress C.C.!

9. Like thinkers : MINDS - The GREAT ones here often do think alike and then there's yours truly

49. Scotland's island : BRITAIN - Scotland's division with Britain is the Cheviot Hills seen here and not Hadrian's Wall as I thought

74. Wheeler Peak's national park : BASIN - Defined as being a contiguous watershed between the Rockies and the Sierra Nevadas and Cascades with no outlet to the sea as you can see in the yellow part of the map above

73. Bonobo, for one : APE - A word I appreciate greatly as a noun and not as a verb

72. Dogs in the AKC's Working Group : DANES - GREAT is a pretty good adjective here

42. Oldest of the Seven Wonders : PYRAMID - Using cosmic rays, scientists have recently discovered evidence of a hidden chamber in the GREAT PYRAMID where Khufu is 53. Lay to rest : ENTOMBed

1. Blue Ridge range : SMOKIES - Our only trip through the beautiful GREAT SMOKIES range was in a driving rain storm.

and the reveal

39. Landmark that, in a way, is a border feature of this puzzle and a hint to what's missing from 10 answers : GREAT WALL - Finally we see our word escapee that is forming an implied WALL around the grid! 

The FLOTUS touring the GREAT WALL last week
...and now for Alex's other, uh, GREAT clues!


14. Group that bestows a "Select" distinction on five board games annually : MENSA - The 2017 winners

15. Barnyard mother : EWE - Not so much on HEN, COW or SOW

16. Paris parting : ADIEU

17. Arkansas' __ National Forest : OZARK - Kind of a gimme doncha' ya think?

18. X, maybe : TEN 

19. Something to talk about : TOPIC

20. Kit__ bar : KAT

21. Ones responsible for paper cuts, briefly? : ED.S -  Clever!

23. Comedian Rogan : JOE - I've never seen him work

25. 39-Acr. locale : PRC - Of course that wall in the reveal is located in the Peoples Republic of China!

26. Like Vivaldi's "Spring" : IN E - In the puzzle I blogged last Friday, I showed Ray Charles's great Mean Woman Blues also written IN the key of E

27. More diverse : MOTLIER - This is one Shakespearean word that has stuck with me

29. Suffix with brom- : IDE

30. "Bambi" doe : ENA - ENA and her daughter Faline are on the right. ENA is Bambi's aunt and becomes his mother-in-law

31. Jane of fiction : EYRE

32. __ Island: NYC prison site : RIKERS - A destination for many a bad guy on Law And Order

34. Blood fluids : SERA - Plural for serum. Getting diptheria SERA/antitoxin to Nome in 1925 was done by dogsled in a heroic effort 

36. Director Riefenstahl : LENI - Adolph's favorite filmmaker

38. Buenos __ : AIRES

42. Gumby's pony : POKEY

45. Othello, for one : MOOR - Olivier and Dame Maggie Smith as Othello and Desdemona 

46. Workers' rights org. : NLRB - National Labor Relations Board - a 1935 board established by FDR

50. "... through __ window breaks?" : YONDER - Leonardo DiCaprio and Clare Danes as Romeo and Juliet

52. Together, in Toulon : UNIE - Notre famille a besoin d'être unie (Our family needs to be united)

54. Back to front? : IER - You can put IER on the back of front to get FRONTIER

55. Line score initials : RHE - Baseball fans will recognize this 1956 line score as perhaps the most famous in baseball history

56. Taken (with) : SMITTEN 

58. Egg: Pref. : OVI

59. In the manner of : A LA - Next Friday's blog should be A LA Lemon

60. P.O. box item : ENV

61. Short order? : BLT -BLT and mayo started out as diner lingo but are now mainstream

62. Badminton need : NET

63. Familia member : MADRE

65. Tuna variety : AHI

67. Tippett's "King Priam," for one : OPERA and 69. "King Priam" is based on it : ILIAD - Nice juxtaposition 

70. "Kidding!" : NOT

71. Argentine soccer superstar : MESSI - Lionel MESSI plays for FC Spain for $42,000,000/ year


2. "The Card Players" artist : CEZANNE - What does it say about a Qatari family who can spend $250,000,000 for this painting? 

3. Winning steadily : ON A TEAR

4. Train syst. across Russia : TSR - Trans Siberian Railway - Dr. Zhivago inspired great interest in this railway but the train scenes were actually shot in Finland

5. "I wanna go too!" : TAKE ME

6. LAX-to-JFK flight shortener : JET STREAM - LA to NY takes about 40 min. less

7. Be shy : OWE

8. Dog star : BENJI

9. Stand-up's need : MATERIAL

10. Words often heard after "shall live?" : I DO - " long as we both shall live" (or decide  we can't do this anymore)

11. Colder : NIPPIER

12. Tragic heroine of Irish legend : DEIRDRE - New to me but I like the painting

22. Watson's creator : DOYLE - No, I am not going to say "Elementary..."

24. Anthem preposition : OER - It is sung five notes before the real test of hitting the note for "FREE" without going into falsetto 

28. Offered free use of, as a library book : LENT OUT - They LENT OUT every Hardy Boy Mystery to me in my ute!

33. Pottery oven : KILN

35. Treated like wine : AGED

37. "You're safe with me" : I WON'T BITE - Unless...

40. Some field starters : RYE SEEDS - RYE is used as a winter cover crop here

41. Red-headed Disney princess : ARIEL 

43. "Très chic!" : OOH LA LA 

44. Add, as raisins to bread dough : KNEAD IN - As this cute little kitty is learning to do

47. Elsa or Nala : LIONESS

48. Game with two-toned discs : REVERSI - When I played this game, it was known as 45 Across

51. Watergate pres. : RMN - It's usually the coverup that gets 'em

57. Donald Jr.'s mom : IVANA

64. Singer Carly __ Jepsen : RAE 

66. Hip follower : HOP - The rhythms are infectious but some of the "lyrics" are so offensive 

68. Green sphere : PEA

As Tony the Tiger would say, we are ready for your GRRRRREAT comments:

Nov 16, 2017

Thursday, November 16 2017 Jason Chapnick and C.C.Burnikel

Theme: Beer me up, Scottie! The beer part of the boilermaker is highlighted:

18A. News provider in front of a camera : TV REPORTER

This is the cleanest example of TV Reporter incidents I could come up with. Google "TV Reporter Fail" and you'll see what I mean.

24A. 1993-2002 Ford-Nissan minivan : MERCURY VILLAGER

40A. Banish : CAST OUT

51A. Many a Poe work : HAIR-RAISING TALE

60A Half a boilermaker ... and what's aptly hidden in 18-, 24-, 40- and 51-Across : BEER CHASER

Whisky shot, beer to back it up. Purdue University are nicknamed The Boilermakers, and have a game shout "Boiler Up", which I always find comical. Go Irish! Go Blue! Fight On! Woo Pig Sooey! Those are shouts I can get behind. Boiler Up? What the heck is that all about?

A corner duo today with Lemonade (Jason) and C.C. - the first joint effort was back in 2014. Neat theme, I've just started a new job with a company who's offices provide free draft beer - five varieties - in the common area. Next time I'm in the office I'll "cheers" you all with as many of the theme beers I can find. Forget the free coffee, I'm going for the Pilsner.


1. El Misti's land : PERU. What? I asked my Peruvian friend who was conveniently sitting next to me, it's a volcano.

5. Want as a price : ASK

8. Debit card action : SWIPE. Less common now, more INSERT with the chip thing.

13. Shock jock Don : IMUS. I think Howard Stern out-shocked him.

14. Invoice stamp : PAID

16. Schumer's "Trainwreck" co-star : HADER. I was so close to a personal Natick with HADER crossing PEELE. The "E" seemed the most likely.

17. Attend : COME

20. Takes too much, briefly : OD'S

22. Field mouse : VOLE. Is a vole a mouse? I thought they were different beasts.

23. Head light : HALO. Fun clue.

28. Status symbol suit : ARMANI. I have an Armani blazer, I never thought of it as a status symbol. I bought it in a thrift store in Toluca Lake for peanuts and I wear it often.

29. Pull : TOW

30. Lion's home : LAIR

31. Squad : TEAM

35. Cut corners : SKIMP. I majorly skimped on the blog last week, as in I didn't write it up at all. C.C. was so generous with my faux pas.

39. Subj. for many an au pair : ESL. I dated a Danish au pair many moons ago in London. She was a classic Danish blonde, smoked a pipe, drank LAGER and drew a lot of attention in the pub. Her English as a Second Language what just what you would expect from a Scandinavian. I was a mess at "Hello". She was working for the family of a great musician, she married a guitarist in a huge rock band. I could never compete with the riffs. Happy memories.

42. __-wop : DOO

43. Best Picture Oscar nominee directed by Ava DuVernay : SELMA

45. Little chirp : PEEP

46. Big name in banking : CITI

47. __ de Triomphe : ARC

49. Musical works : OPUSES. OPERA is the plural in Latin. Irregular.

57. MLB playoff event : ALCS. Hi, C.C! American League Championship Series

58. Like webs : SPUN

59. Bailed-out insurance co. : AIG

63. Avian crop : CRAW. Something to get food stuck in. Pheasants eat little pebbles to avoid the sticking problem. I know this from dressing wild pheasant back in the old country.

66. Like Wrigley Field's walls : IVIED

67. Fraught with danger : DIRE

68. Luke's sister : LEIA. I always struggle with the Star Wars clues. I know all the names, I never know who is related to whom.

69. Works behind, as a bar : TENDS. I was a bartender in an Irish bar in London as my evening job when I first moved to the Smoke when I was 18. Filing marine insurance claims during the day, earning minimum wage, pouring Guinness and whiskey (with the "E") and be quick about it. I really enjoyed it. I can still pour a perfect pint of the black stuff. That was the Irish boilermaker along with a shot of Jameson's.

70. List-ending letters : ETC

71. Reef dwellers : EELS


1. Many a JPEG file : PIC. Technically every JPEG is a picture.

2. Expressive rock genre : EMO. Usually miserably expressive. I'd post a musical link here to The Smiths but I'd only depress you all.

3. Means of spreading dirt? : RUMOR MILL. Located next to the water cooler.

4. Wheels with a history : USED CAR. I wanted all kinds of varieties like FERRIS or MODEL-T and found nothing would fit. Eventually the cent dropped.

5. On the mark : APT. An apt remark, an apt comment.

6. Shrewdly informed : SAVVY

7. Former name of the Mariinsky Ballet : KIROV. Learning moment, thank you. I didn't know that the Kirov underwent a name change.

8. "Shameless" network, briefly : SHO. Had the "O". Went with HBO. Was wrong.

9. Bellicose sort : WAR HAWK. The WAR part was new to me. I know Hawk and Dove to describe the two opposing opinions.

10. Pet pendant : ID TAG

11. Comedy duo Key & __ : PEELE. See Natick note at 16A

12. Computer warning : ERROR

15. Sub station : DELIcatessen

19. Hide : PELT

21. One rising at dawn : SUN

24. Guys : MALES

25. Clear data from : ERASE

26. Actress Wilson of "Sleepless in Seattle" : RITA. Wanted OWEN and then read the clue properly.

27. Without a clue : LOST

32. Clairvoyance letters : ESP Both ESL and ESP today.

33. Put away the dishes? : ATE. Because "Empty the dishwasher, polish and replace in the cupboard" doesn't fit.

34. Stooge with bangs : MOE

36. Contrarian's reply : I DISAGREE

37. Econo Lodge, e.g. : MOTEL

38. Composure : POISE

40. Oakland Raiders' quarterback Derek : CARR. Oakland have had about five thousand QB's. It's hard not to have been a Raider quarterback.

41. Informed about : UP ON

44. Color that isn't an Earth tone? : MARS RED

46. Manicure concern : CUTICLE

48. Twenties, say : CASH

50. Vardon Trophy org. : P.G.A. The USA's Professional Golfer's Association award to the year's leader in scoring average. There's also a Harry Vardon Trophy in Europe too, awarded by the European Tour for a completely different reason just to muddy the issue. The P.G.A. Championship, the year's final major, awards the Wanamaker Trophy to the winner. Confused yet?

51. Order clothes : HABIT

52. Advil alternative : ALEVE

53. Strand at a chalet, maybe : ICE IN

54. Apple tablet : IPAD

55. Girl in "Calvin and Hobbes" : SUSIE. I loved the Calvin and Hobbes strip, I was surprised didn't remember her name

56. Like argon and krypton : INERT. And me, after a long day.

61. Burnable media : CD'S

62. TiVo button : REC. REC/REW - wait for the cross.

64. Feel sick : AIL

65. "That __ close!" : WAS 

Well, here's the grid, and I'm on my way to blog redemption. I'm no longer the Cal Ripken Jr. of the corner! Sorry, C.C!

I'm off back to the UK tomorrow for a vacation over Thanksgiving week before I dive into my new job; so next week's Turkey Day blog will have an English accent. Quite ironic, really.


Notes from C.C.:

1) Congratulations on your new job, Steve! Sounds like a fun company. Do you still need to travel a lot?

2) Here are the two pictures Abejo (Bradley) took yesterday. Make sure you read his comments here. What a fun encounter. Nice to "see" you, Madame DeFarge!

  Madame DeFarge's License Plate

3) For those who are new on the blog, you can click here to see all the pictures of blog regulars. Please email me if you want your picture included in the Blog Pictures archive also. I snipped some of yours from your blog Comments, Picard. I hope you don't mind.