Dec 5, 2017

Tuesday, December 5 2017, Kurt Krauss

Theme: Old MacDonald 

20A. *Company that maintains network messages : E-MAIL HOST
30A. *Apple music player : I-POD NANO
36A. *Springsteen's ensemble : E-STREET BAND
46A. *"My stars!" : I DECLARE
52A. *Willa Cather novel set in Nebraska : O PIONEERS

1A. Place that can precede the starts of 20-, 30-, 36-, 46- and 52-Across : FARM
69A. Bird that can precede the starts of 20-, 30-, 36-, 46- and 52-Across : DUCK
13D. Animal that can precede the starts of 20-, 30-, 36-, 46- and 52-Across : PIG
57D. Animal that can precede the starts of 20-, 30-, 36-, 46- and 52-Across : COW
Get it? E-I-E-I-O?

Melissa here. I DECLARE, this was new and different - not to mention a tricky theme. Above a Tuesday level I thought, all the way around.


5. Spanish red wine : RIOJA

10. Office fill-in : TEMP

14. Yours, in Tours : ATOI. French.

15. Sign up, in Sussex : ENROL. According to the Grammarist, enrol is the preferred spelling outside of North America.

16. Jai __ : ALAI

17. The Volunteer St. : TENN. Ah. State, not Street. The nickname originated during the War of 1812, in which the volunteer soldiers from Tennessee, serving under Gen. Andrew Jackson, displayed marked valor in the Battle of New Orleans. Tennesee was named after Cherokee Indian villages called Tanasi.

18. Putting the squeeze on : PRESSURING 

22. Bygone Toyotas : SUPRAS. On a personal note - another bygone Toyota is their FJ Cruiser - my brother's car that was declared a total loss a few months ago. So sad. That thing was a tank and probably saved my life.

25. Lets up : EASES

29. '60s United Nations secretary general : UTHANT. Who??

33. Beauty at a ball : BELLE

34. Ivan the Terrible, e.g. : TSAR

35. Crime family leader : DON

40. "Mazel __!" : TOV

42. Take a chance : DARE

43. Soft leather : SUEDE

49. Counterbalance : OFFSET

50. Instruments for Yo-Yo Ma : CELLI

51. Traveled like Huck Finn : RAFTED

57. Arms-around-knees swimming pool jump : CANNONBALL

60. Gillette brand : ATRA

64. Curved molding : OGEE

65. Written reminders : NOTES

66. Worker finishing an éclair : ICER

67. Invasive plant : WEED

68. Terse summons from the boss : SEE ME


1. __ Tuesday: Mardi Gras : FAT. What is Fat Tuesday?

2. Chowed down : ATE

3. Potter pal Weasley : RON

4. Necessary nutrients : MINERALS

5. Meal : REPAST

6. Cross inscription : INRI

7. Baseball analyst Hershiser : OREL

8. Kid around : JOSH

9. "Not to mention ... " : ALSO

10. Kilt pattern : TARTAN

11. Inventor Whitney : ELI

12. Superhero suffix : MAN

19. Employed : USED

21. Painter Édouard : MANET

22. Long sandwich : SUB

23. Versatile vehicle, for short : UTE

24. Soil acidity measure : PH LEVEL

26. Most mournful : SADDEST

27. Eclectic musician Brian : ENO

28. Prince, to a king : SON

30. Grenoble's river : ISERE. In southeastern France.

31. Liver spread : PATE

32. Heavenly body : ORB

34. Drop of sadness : TEAR

37. Old cereal box no. : RDA. Recommended Daily Allowance. Interesting history.

38. To the same extent : AS FAR

39. Informal "No more talk" : 'NUFF SAID

40. Twitch : TIC

41. Poetic tribute : ODE

44. Low grade : DEE

45. Itinerary approx. : ETD

47. Copied genetically : CLONED

48. Fat-reducing procedure, briefly : LIPO

49. Words ending a threat : OR ELSE

53. Quaint lodgings : INNS

54. Bassoon kin : OBOE

55. Basketball Hall of Famer Archibald : NATE. Maybe a gimme to basketball fans?

56. Grade sch. level : ELEM

58. Single-malt datum : AGE

59. Family tree word : NEE

61. Longhorn State sch. : TCU. Texas Christian University - in Ft. Worth.

62. DVR button : REC

63. Genesis craft : ARK




fermatprime said...


Thanks to Kurt and mb!

Fun puzzle!

He was called U THANT, mb, the U evidently being a Burmese honorific.

No problems.

Really cold wind here. Still sick.

Hope to see you all tomorrow!

D4E4H said...

C E! FLN 811P
-"I did not understand your machines and Canadian citizenship question. Can you clarify?"
-My post 12-2, 411A  says " TTP653P Reports his new computer is twice the size of a toaster.  CanadianEh! my toaster wants to be a citizen of Canada now that machines can do that. Can you help me with the process?

You may not have heard about Sophia.  She is all the news now that she has been declared a citizen of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.  You may meet here here at--Sophia

I hope you enjoy her.  I had trouble with that pronoun until I remembered that we call ships her.

D4E4H said...

C E!,
Here is a video for --

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Kurt Krause, for a fine puzzle. Thank you, Melissa Bee, for a fine review.

Got through the puzzle easily, being a Tuesday. Must admit, I do not get the theme. Got the eieio, but not sure how FARM in front of MAIL HOST means anything. Any help?

I can relate to SEE ME. I had a boss that wrote that on notes all the time.

Never heard of RIOJA. Perps.

On my way back to Illinois. Then I turn around and come back to Pennsylvania for my best friend's funeral. Will be one of the saddest days of my life.

See you tomorrow.


( )

Jinx in Norfolk said...

Natick Tuesday! EWAGged RxN x ATxI correctly, so FIR with no erasure. Also didn't know RIOJA, ENROL or ISERE, but Tuesday-friendly perps came to the rescue. I thought the nursery rhyme theme was clever, once the V8 can finally hit.

DW still remembers her SUPRA fondly, as well as her vertically-aligned headlight Mercedes. Both were red, as is she (albeit chemically enhanced these days). My first car was a Corvair convertible, a terrible car for a teenager but great for delivering newspapers. I think the perfect car for a new driver is an old Mercedes 300D stick shift. Slow, solid and reliable. The only problem is that these cars have huge back seats.

MB - I'm so happy that you were in the FJ and came through the accident. I used to have a Sequoia and felt that I was well protected in it, even though I never wrecked it. I loved that thing, but it can't be towed behind a motor home so it had to go.

Thanks to Kurt and Melissa for a fun puzzle and tour.

Off to teach project management for three days, then five days next week.

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

No, I didn't get the theme until I'd already finished the puzzle. Interesting that each of the theme letters (can I call 'em letters) are stand-alone and pronounced as in the song. Thanx, Kurt and Melissa Bee. (Are you still a bee?)

Anybody else hear an earworm? "In 1814 we took a little trip..."

Ah, OREL Hershiser. That's the guy I confused with TRIS Speaker. Only know of 'em from cws.

New Orleans thinks their Mardi Gras is as fat as Rio's. And now Galveston thinks their Mardi Gras is as fat as New Orleans'.

inanehiker said...

Very creative theme- it took a bit to process it - even though it filled in easily.

@Abejo- "Old MacDonald had a FARM - EIEIO"
"And on this farm he had a PIG - EIEIO" It's not the whole theme answer FARM and PIG (and other animals) precede just the first letters - hope that helps!

and sorry to hear about your friend- we are in the same mode this week - one of our closest friends here died a few days ago after a 2 year battle on and off with leukemia. Preparing for a service on the same day as my community choir concert is a clash of emotions!

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Melissa and friends. Interesting theme, especially for a Tuesday. I am not usually a fan of cross-referenced puzzles, especially when they start at 1-A. I got the PIG before the FARM, and misread the clue, so thought at first we were looking at a PIG FARM. The theme fell into place with the i-POD NANO.

The Red Red Wine really killed me. Is today only Tuesday?

I saw NATE "Tiny" Archibald play B'ball back when I lived in Boston. His nickname is "tiny" because his is only 6'1''.

I have a vague memory of U THANT and a connection with the Vietnam War.

À TOI is actually 2 words.

QOD: I never accepted the idea that I had to be guided by some pattern or blueprint. ~ Little Richard (né Richard Penniman, b. Dec. 5, 1932)

OwenKL said...

Sorry, no poem yet. I got sidetracked searching a sequence of articles for the following.
Old McDonald words (ones with vowel characterization EIEIO).
2 Common words:
38 Less common words:

Now, off to write a poem about old McDonald's perihelion!

D4E4H said...

Thanks to Kurt and Melissa for a workable, and interesting puzzle and review.  I work the puzzles sans theme.  In this case that didn't matter as theme answers filled easily.  Once she revealed how the words belonged in front of the theme answers I sang along.  I now have yet another earworm.  Spell Check doesn't like that it is all one word. When I checked, I confirmed that it is, and found--D J Earworm-Summermash '14

My first pass A & D almost filled the puzzle.  My first theme answer was 36A with 11 letters.  Other long fills in sequence were 57A 10, 26D 7, 46A 8,  52A 9, and 18A 10.  They each gave me many letters to work from. My old friends OBOE, and ENO showed up.  Always glad to see them.  When I entered OREL Hershiser I thought "How do I know this word?"

The puzzle was multilingual.  Jai Alai comes from Cuba. Mazel tov is Hebrew.  There was French and Latin, INRI.  The PH in 24D means "Potential of Hydrogen."  No wonder it is abbreviated.  NATE at 55D was new to me.  I'm done Ta Da.

OwenKL said...

McDonald's Comet was nearing the sun,
A CANNONBALL fired from the Kuiper gun!
Solar wind PRESSURING,
Bright tail lengthening,
The ORB was peering at its pErIhElIOn!

Old McDonald had a prEdIlEctIOn
For FARM animals to add to his collection!
He had a PIG, and COW, and DUCK;
He didn't have a tame roe buck!
His condo demanded a hobby rEdIrEctIOn!

{B, A-.}

Unknown said...

E squared I squared O

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Got the eieio theme about half-way through, as the 'animals' began to drop in. Nice bright fill for the EIEIO lead-ins; especially O PIONEERS. Well done, Kurt
ISÈRE is a Rhône tributary as is Saône; all of which we get from time-to-time.
Sometimes get U THANT confused with U Nu. (Both Burmese)

Abejo - My condolences on the loss of your dear friend.

TTP said...

Good morning. Thank you Kurt Krauss and Melissa.

Abejo sorry for the loss of your friend. It is never easy.
As well for you inanehiker.

I DECLARE a victory today !

Took my good sweet time today en route to the TADA. Read the 1A clue and thought it odd that the theme hint would be given right off the bat. Jumped to each of the five theme answers. E STREET BAND was a gimme. Started filling from that center area. Then was even more surprised as I saw and solved the PIG, DUCK and COW clues and referenced each of the theme answers again. AHA ! Old McDonald.

Fun stuff.

MJ said...


A fun theme from Kurt, well executed. The only unknown was RIOJA, but the perps were friendly. Thanks for the expo, Melissa. What a lovely photo of the ISERE.

Abejo--Condolences on the loss of your dear friend.

Fermat--Continuing best wishes coming your way.

Lucina and YR--It sounds like you were both well celebrated!

Enjoy the day!

Yellowrocks said...

After getting FARM and PIG and seeing the hint at 13 D, I realized that the E in 20 A and the I in 30 A indicated EIEIO. Fun theme, Kurt. I quickly filled in the other theme answers and had plenty of perps to work from. RON was unknown and SUPRA was vaguely remembered. Perps to the rescue. No other unknowns. I read TREE WORD in 59 D as TREE WOOD until perps corrected me.
Thanks for the fine expo, mb.
ELEM is a CSO to many of us elementary school teachers. With single malt I thought of Irish Miss and Tinman. I remember fondly how inexpensive Scotch was in Scotland.
Inanehiker and Abejo, sincere condolences on the loss of your close friends.
I have come across I declare in books and movies. It is so old fashioned that I haven't heard it in current conversation.
We PA Dutch called FAT Tuesday Fasnacht Day. Fasnachts are doughnuts made with yeast and deep fried. My mom made them every year.
Spitz, did your family use the word Ashepuddle or it it only the PA Dutch? It was in our tradition.
When I became Episcopalian I thought the German Fasnachts were so much tastier than the traditional English pancakes for that day.

Husker Gary said...

-Me too on Melissa’s summary. Obtuse me did finally get the gimmick
-I’m a TEMP today
-Trees and Mountains make traveling through TENN on interstates markedly different than in wide-open Nebraska
-Willa Cather moved to Nebaska as a 10-yr-old. Her Virginia birthplace looks like a real fixer-upper.
-Doncha ya just hate it when you first get “_ _ A R” for Russian royalty?
-RAFT became an anagram for an embarrassing body noise in our house
-My lovely bride leaves me NOTES here on the door to the garage
-Whitney’s invention and Stowe’s book helped bring on the civil war
-My granddaughter will be ensconced on the ISERE for 20 more days
-Liverwurst is the only way I can eat liver and not retch
-SUBway has three stores in our little town of 27,000
-Don’t say OR ELSE to your children or students unless you’re willing to follow through
-As you can see Nate “Tiny” Archibald played in Omaha at one time

Coach J said...

ABEJO, so sorry for your loss.

I had to laugh when I saw 67A WEED given my limerick yesterday. Overall an enjoyable challenge...had a little trouble in the north-central area but it finally came together. Hope everyone has a nice day.

There once was a little PIG boy named RON
Who was a FAT SON of a mafia DON
He ATE a SUB everyday
Man, he could put it away
Much like his father’s enemies: gone!

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

I thoroughly enjoyed the unusual theme, as well as the satisfying solve. It took awhile for me to figure out what was going on, but when the lightbulb went on, there was a big Aha moment! My only w/o was Monet/Manet; I think we see Monet more often, don't we? I chuckled went I filled in ATRA because of yesterday's ATRA/AFTA mix-up. I did need lots of perps but no serious hang-ups.

Thanks, Kurt, for a fun Tuesday and thanks, Melissa, for a spot-on expo.

My sincerest sympathy to Abejo and inane hiker.

Anon T, FLN, I'll relinquish any comments on Stephen Colbert to my dear friend Thumper.

Have a great day.

Chairman Moe said...

"Puzzling Thoughts":

Only error was CELLO > CELLI --> otherwise, very easy and straightforward solve. As others said, I solved this "sans theme"; didn't understand the theme until reading m bee's excellent recap. Theme was "meh". Clever, but it didn't cause any smiles or groans.

Two poem entries:

Moe-ku du jour:

Little Miss Muffit
Is lost. No tuffet nor curds.
Help her find her whey


Under sheets, Jewish man felt some shame.
And he had his ancestors to blame!
"Who made the decision
For my circumcision?
My betrothed wants more skin in the game."

Irish Miss said...

Sorry, went should be when, of course.

Yellowrocks said...

Coach J, good lim.

Coach J said...

Thanks, Yellowrocks. I think it’s a record for me using 7 theme entries. By the way, I love the expression on the face of your profile photo. It has that, “I know something you don’t know”...kinda sassy and fun. Anyway, my limericks will never rise to OWEN’s level but I will endeavor to do so. Have a great day!

Lucina said...

I used to buy RIOJA each time I went to Spain. It's quite good. And it was surprising to see it in today's puzzle all of which filled fast.

I'm grateful for perps when those Harry Potter clues appear. RON is unknown to me. Actually, JAI ALAI originated among the Basque people in Spain and was exported around the world.

It's been decades since reading O PIONEERS and don't recall ever hearing about SUPRAS. Besides a sprinkling of Spanish, we see some French: ISERE, A TOI, NEE, too.

Thank you, Kurt Krauss and Melissa. This was quick and fun.

Abejo and inanehiker, my condolences on the loss of your friends.

Have a peaceful day, everyone!

Big Easy said...

For some reason my WSJ from Monday was delivered today with the Tuesday edition. As I was winding my way through the A section I noticed C.C.'s name beside a puzzle titled "Isn't it Bromantic". So out of respect for our 'fearless leader' I worked it, but since I didn't watch "Brokeback Mountain" I definitely didn't get the connection. After completion of the unifier- MALE BONDING- I noticed MALE being part of both theme fills.

As for the LA Times puzzle, I never heard of RIOJA and the EIEIO oink oink, quack quack, moo moo theme eluded me. I did notice all the foreign words across the top- TOI, RIOJA, IN RI, ALAI and the British spelling of ENROL-L. That's NUFF SAID today.

CrossEyedDave said...

At my age, any new form of vowel movement is appreciated...

Misty said...

Okay, I have to admit I hated seeing that first clue with just a bunch of number references and got more and more irritated as others kept appearing. What the heck was going on here? But thank goodness the non-number items filled in pretty readily and before long I had the whole thing but just didn't understand how those FARM animals, PIG, DUCK, and COW could fit in front of those theme answers. This puzzle was driving me nuts. But I was so irritated that I kept trying to figure it out--and then I got it--I got the EIEIO. At that point I cracked up and thanked Kurt for a very clever, crazy puzzle. But please, no more--I can't handle this much stress! Because of it I goofed on two items, put MONET although I considered MANET, but didn't stop to consider that SUPRA sounded more like a car than SUPRO. And I failed to notice the plural and put CELLO, figuring that LOPO was some sort of "low" mineral thing, or whatever, and so missed LIPO. But no matter--this was an unusual and interesting morning solving experience--thank you, Kurt. Thank you too, Melissa.

So sorry you're still feeling sick, Fermatprime. And my heart goes out to you, Abejo and inanehiker, for your sad losses.

Owen, lots (actually tons) of EIEIO words! Dave, thanks for noting the multilingual items this morning.

Have a great day, everybody!

Bill G said...

Hi everybody. I confess, I finished the puzzle but never figured out the theme until coming here. Thanks Melissa B and Kurt.

Sympathy for FP, Inanehiker and Abejo. Best wishes.

Irish Miss, I can understand that Steven Colbert could be offensive to those who don't share his opinions. What exactly prompted your Thumper reference from last night?

AnonymousPVX said...

Like others, I solved this puzzle no issue and could not see the “theme” until I got here. Yet another example of the tail wagging the dog...was a theme even needed? Seems like a real long walk for zero payback. Like another poster....”meh” to the theme.

Also, I agree this was a Tuesday plus level.

PK said...

Hi Y'all! Thanks, Kurt, for a fun puzzle!

E-E-I-I - O you'd think a FARM owner would immediately get the theme, but it took dear melissa to translate this one for me. Thanks, mb! Glad the FJ protected you. I'd like a dollar for every time I sang "Old McDonald" to my four kids. A favorite always. "Hear (sic) a moo, there a moo..."

Never heard of NATE. He was before my time as a basketball fan. Strangely, after ten years as an avid BB fan, I can't get interested this year. They've transferred all the players to different teams and brought in new ones and I watch 15 min. for NUFF SAID.

jim, bOb, tOm, dON, Oh RON Weasley. Perseverance pays.

I remembered U THANT, but not the "H" in his name. Easily corrected.

Inanehiker: my condolences. Still thinking of you, Abejo.

As for FAT Tuesday, it will be interesting to see how my granddaughter, raised among the prudiest of four prudes, gets through her first Mardi Gras in New Orleans. My daughter was always afraid I, the non-prude, would say something about "S-E-X" and contaminate her little girl. Then she sends her to one of the sexiest places on earth. Wow!

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

and on Kurt's FARM he had a puzzle, EIEIO... Tuesday? -- not so much in the top of the grid [where in the world are we?]. I thought I was headed for a DNF w/ blocks 6 & 7. Whoot! I guessed right only to realize later I forgot the S in TSAR [--AR, right, HG?]. (I filled it before I got to it in MB's expo so it counts :-))

Thanks Kurt & mb for a good Tuesday start.

Place and animal X-refs kinda gave it away after iPOD NANO and ESTREET BAND filled. It was EMAIL HOST that held me up the longest... I inferred a business name / ISP w/ 'company' in the clue - not a generic host [many a Sendmail server I've built HOST'd by me #NetNetrality]

WOs: I put ATE in 1d's boxes; CELLo before the O was LIPO'd out.
ESPs: RIOJA, ATOI, ALAI (knew it-ish, but spelling!), U THANT (thanks Fermat - din't know that re: Burmese honorific) OREL, NATE.

Fav: How can I not link South Park's intro to Tom Sawyer @RAFTED? :-). I think Twain woulda written the crossing 'NUFF in his capture of colloquialisms.

Abejo & inanehiker - SADNESS ensues... So sorry to hear about your losses.

{B+, A-} {ha!} [nice :-)]

Too much fawning over CB, IM? No need to answer - I know the Thumper rule.

D-O: Funny re: Galveston. The Girls did like kids' day and it was a shorter drive.
PK - I should be in NOLA for FAT Tuesday - I'll look out for your grand (in a non-Weinstein sorta way) too cover her eyes after dark.

CED - LOL vowel movements redux.

SEE ME? One of those NOTES that put a CANNON BALL in your gut...

Cheers, -T

PK said...

Tony, I'm not sure your offer isn't like sending the fox to guard the DUCKs. LOL! However, you have daughters and a right attitude about your wife, so maybe that's a good sign. Thanks.

Picard said...

I am writing this during a brief period that we have power. A massive fire near Ventura, CA has knocked out power to tens of thousands of us even though we are almost 50 miles away. It is crazy that we still have a power grid left over from the 1930s. The fire has destroyed many structures and is threatening many more.

This seemed more like a Thursday puzzle with some seriously unknown words: NATE, RIOJE, TCU, ISERE, RON but crosses took care of them. The ICER/TCU cross was last to fall.

Hand up that I solved the entire puzzle and then puzzled quite a while to figure out the theme. Then the light went on and I laughed out loud. So, I consider this a good puzzle!

Here are some of my photos at the New Orleans workshop that makes FAT TUESDAY/MARDI GRAS happen

Have you been to this MARDI GRAS workshop, Big Easy? It was a very long walk along a back trail from the ferry to get there.

One of the workers was very friendly and generous. He was from Brazil and he worked six months a year on Carnival as well as working in New Orleans. He sent me a video of Carnival that was amazing and led me eventually to go to Carnival for real.

Bill G said...

It's hard to find anything on TV right now except coverage of the big fires to which Picard was referring. They are about an hour north of us. They are being pushed by the substantial Santa Ana winds (20 mph to 40 mph). Very depressing...

Anonymous T said...

PK - LOL! DW will ask "Do you think she's pretty?" "Um, yeah, but I don't need two of you." Then, I get a dope-slap :-)

Picard - I saw the Ventura fires on TV this AM (I'm still not 100% so working from home and beat C, Eh! today :-)) - not good w/ the winds. Stay safe.
I've been to Mardi Gras World. Somewhere, on some hard-drive, is a pic of last year's Krew of Bacchus (my buddy's Krew) float in progress. Nice shots you!. BTW, no walking for us, Girls & me took the hotel shuttle to their front door. Cheers, -T

CrossEyedDave said...

"had" farm, "had" a farm... Why is it always past tense?

Old McDonald in later years...

Actually, he did quite well...

CrossEyedDave said...


I don't know why this was under EIEIO,

But it is too cute not to post...

Spitzboov said...

YR - Ashepuddle. No, we did not used that word. PA Dutch German is based more on the middle German or Franconian dialects as I understand it. Our home used the patois of the Schleswig region.
But we did seem to make a fair use of 'Pudel' which kind of means 'unkempt' or 'hairy'. It tended to have a disparaging connotation or implied a status a bit behind the eight-ball. I remember "pudel-dick' which implied 'fat from having eaten too much at a meal'. (Sated?).

Tinbeni said...

D-N-F ... missed it by one letter, has CELLO (not CELLI) for Yo Yo Ma's instrument.
(and LOPO, not LIPO made no sense to me ...)

Though I did enjoy the "E I E I O" theme.


Jayce said...

Fun but somewhat difficult puzzle. Took a while to get the theme, but then I chuckled a little. Also chuckled a little bit at seeing FAT, ATE, REPAST, PIG, PATE, and then LIPO. Also noticed OREL and ORELSE. Isn't saying RIOJA wine like saying red wine? When I saw ATRA I thought of you, Irish Miss. Gary, yep: is --AR going to be TSAR or CZAR? Itty bitty TEAR settled that. I remember U THANT.
Good wishes to you all.

Ol' Man Keith said...

I didn't get the theme until reading MelissaB's commentary. I thought the animals were to precede each of the openings, not all of them. My mistake!
Actually, a very witty pzl from Mr. Krauss!

At first glance, one mightn't suppose today's grid pattern would allow my favorite solving method. Those who know of my ever-renewable quest to first solve diagonally from the first square to the last (NW to SE) may be daunted by the many black squares that seem to block the way.
However, today's pattern admits to a method I refer to as a "Touché Solve" - for a reason that will be obvious.
If you set a straightedge from square one through square 225 (using actual, not game rule numbers), you'll see that there is no black interruption.
Zip. Zilch.
This is because we may allow the minimalist contact between white squares that touch only at a single corner. My usual method requires side to side contact among several white squares, sometimes allowing for 2 to 3 abreast as the solving proceeds from the upper left to lower right corner of the grid.
But with the "Touché," I need only the slightest contact between the lower right and upper left corners of individual white squares.
In today's pzl, this demand is satisfied by the following conjunctions:
(Squares using actual, not game numbers) 33/49, 81/97, 129/145, 177/193.

... and I thank you.

Ol' Man Keith said...

Misty, I feel your pain!
I've been there too many times - getting irritated, then frustrated at a pzl that won't give up its goodies. And then - surprise! - comes the breakthrough!

As I read through other postings today, I see that CELLO was the common error. People either let it slide or caught it at the last moment. I was among the latter group, and so reckon it to be one of those rare phenomena, the "universal error."
Every now and then one mistake seems to stand out for all of us. While I found today's pzl relatively easy, CELLO was the one that needed my re-write.
CELLI required either dissatisfaction with LOPO, or a keen eye to spot the second "s" in the clue word, "instruments."
A cruciverbal unifier - the "universal error."

Misty said...

Oh dear, how worrisome to hear about those California fires north of us.

Ol'Man Keith, I'm afraid your solving method is so sophisticated and complicated I can't even begin to imagine it. But it works, clearly, so good for you! Mine is to go through the across items and check right away to see if they'll help me get any of the downs. I first do all the acrosses, then all the downs--pretty primitive, all things considered. Maybe that's why I get a lot fewer Ta Das! than you and many of our other colleagues. But it's relaxing and works for me, so that's what I'll keep doing.

Yellowrocks said...

TA DA, I have turned the sounds in my computer back on and have unblocked my Adobe Flash Player. Now I can enjoy the blogger's links. Thanks to Google. You can learn almost anything there.

Realtors in Florida are looking to get in touch with the woman I bought this house from 26 years ago to discuss her Florida condo.. They found my telephone number connected to this address and so I have received multiple calls Sunday through today asking to speak with her. Finally I googled her name along with Fort Myers, FL. where the calls come from. In one minute flat I found her obituary which mentioned her association with NJ and her deceased husband's name which rang a bell. I told that to the next caller. I have received only one call since then. Isn't google the obvious first step instead of looking at her residence of 26 years ago? Sheesh!

Your advice, please. We are told that handwritten thank you letters are better than typed ones. My handwriting is not easy to read and is difficult for me to do. Would you rather receive a very brief hard to read handwritten note, or a longer, heart-felt typewritten one? Would I send the typewritten note folded inside pretty, blank note paper?

Spitzboov said...

Misty @ 1534. I tend to use your solving method. Must be a UB thing.

Inane hiker. Condolences on the loss of your friend, too. Sorry I missed it earlier.

D4E4H said...

-On the puzzle, why is ESTREETBAND highlighted with a red square at the natick with ISERE? 
-I DECLARE!  I just had a brief REPAST of a Ritz HaNdi-SnACKS crackers 'n cheese dip, quite satisfying.
OKL 727A
-Your  2 Common words: perihelion,and predilection remind me. I do have a predilection for beer from the Perihelion Brewery, Beacon Hill's Own Brewery.
Picard 117P
-Thanks for the pics.  Now I know why you are "Picard."  May you stay powerful!
AnonT 138P
-My wife used to say "Do you know her," when she caught me?
CED 203P
He's just in from milking the COW.
OMK 313
-Square 225 = SE corner.  I see your diagonal.  Glad you're pleased.
WEES for Abejo, Fermatprime  and inane hiker.

Jayce said...

Yellowrocks, between a very brief hard to read handwritten note or a longer, heart-felt typewritten one I would rather receive the latter. The sender's salutation, closing, and signature would suffice for the handwritten part.

PK said...

YR: I agree with Jayce. In every instance communications need to be clear and legible or fail in purpose. Can't you type on the pretty paper? I've been sending emails if I know the address lately. I use special fonts and sizes and color to make them more festive for thank yous, birthdays, congrats. Snail Mail delivery is less than good out here and I'm more fluent on the computer now so... Unless I'm adding a money gift, then I use USPS.

Picard: enjoyed your Mardi Gras PICS. I hope your power will be restored soon.

Bill, Misty, Picard and any other of our California cornerites, I hope you stay safe with no fire damage. Such a terrible year in your state with all the fires. Please keep us posted on your welfare. By the way, my sis who was in the middle of fires in Santa Rosa some time ago notified my SIL that her house was still standing in the middle of destruction, but never let anyone know whether she was allowed to move back in and had utilities. So we really don't know her status. We're hoping NO news is GOOD news. She didn't show up on anyone's doorstep here anyway.

Misty said...

Thanks, Spitboov--glad I'm not the only one solving that way. PK, I'm so sorry to hear about your sister's home worry and like you, hope she's back in her house. Let us know if you learn anything.

Anonymous T said...

YR - I believe it goes: hand-written, typed, phoned, emailed, Txt'd "Thx!" for measure/level of appreciation. Fax is right-out.

SO, I left the FARM (ok, just my house) to fill-up my car (big day tomorrow, sick or no)... Whilst paying, Two Princes [Spin Doctors - calling tawnya!] came over the Musac -- made me think of today's 28d and yesterday's family TREE.

//Little story re: Spin Doctors -- They were just about to hit it big in the '90s. DW was an RTVF* major (b/f switching to Eng.) and tried to (to her eventual harassment) get an interview w/ Pauly Shore (which she got - interview and creepy comments about her outfit).

All the while, her crew ignore'd those grungy-stinky guys HANG'n in the production room. After she decided to switch to Eng b/c of One! Shakespeare class, I said "Good move. You missed The Spin Doctors - the biggest story of the summer." [yes, I said that aloud and a dope-slap ensued... I'm a slow learner :-)].

Anyone watching Victor Borge on PBS? A master with such virtuosity he could just JOSH about.

Cheers, -T
*RTVF - Radio, Television, Film

Mark S said...

Good challenge. A bunch of unknowns. Seemed like a later in the week puzzle to me. Fat Tuesday, Ron, Rioja, Isere, cello learning experience. Don’t know how eclair worker becomes icer.



Anonymous T said...

Mark - he gets promoted from filling to coating(?) -T

Wilbur Charles said...

Count me in on clueless on the theme. It required thinking. I should have spent the time to grok it out. It's part of the solve.

Old Mac brings back memories of my early childhood along with Uncle Wiggly. Then we moved into the city. Nice to nasty.

And that picture of the KC-Omaha Kings was amazing. Bob Cousy. And, Toby Kimball of UConn fame. Cousy actually suited up that year I think.

Ferma-T sorry you're feeling down and condolences to inane-H and Abejo.

I know why I had Battle of NO in my head-Sirius Radio. Why'd someone else have it?

As far as solving, with pen it's a good idea to check the downs before writing in the acrosses. Also, I'm usually moving pretty fast and can save thinking time.

YR, it was the tense of ABLY that threw me. I concur that we have to give constructors a lot of leeway. Perhaps, Rich edited his own xword.

Enjoyed all the doggerel today. And the xword and Melissa's write-up.

Misty, you almost have me doing jumbles and suduko.


PK said...

My neighbors have been moving out for the past four days. Most unique style of moving I've ever seen. Don't think they used any boxes at all -- Just carried out armloads of clothes, toys, stuff and dumped it in the big U haul truck or the SVU or piled it on the curb with the trash cans. Kid was riding his bike then left it too close to the curb. Heard the scavengers in the night. Today what was in the cans has been pawed through and dumped in the yard. The bike is gone.

melissa bee said...

D4E4H: i could claim some deeper meaning - but the answer is that across lite highlights whichever word/clue the cursor is on. i tend to select the center square for the symmetry of it.

SwampCat said...

Thumper and I will ride out this puzzle. Theme seemed strange. Thanks, mb, for explaining it.

Picard, most people in New Orleans go to Blaine Kern's warehouse at some time or other. It isn't really a workshop. Just where they make and store the floats until the parades. And there are other warehouse around town.

Yellowrocks pointed an important distinction between Mardi Gras and the pre-Lenten celebrations of other cultures. If you are going to call it Mardi Gras, which is French , it really has to refer to the French Catholic celebration which has nothing to do with lard, or fat or pancakes. "Fat" simply refers to excess, as in Fat Cats, or Fat City. It is the feast of excess before the austerity of Lent.

One symbol is the Boeuf Gras or fatted calf, the last meat eaten before sacrifice of meatless Lenten meals. It is an irony in New Orleans that there is no sacrifice in giving up meat because our seafood supply is so exnsive. Ah well.

PK, In spite of the racy publicly, Mardi Gras doesn't always involve debauchery. There are very tame celebrations in the outlying areas. The main celebration seems to St Chas Ave which is mostly families, barbecue pits, and ice chests!

Yes, college students will probably search out the excesses of the French Quarter, but it is well patrolled and generally tamer than they hope for! I'll be interested in hearing of her adventures.

Have a happy Tuesday!

Misty said...

But don't give up on crosswords, Wilbur. Even when they're a crazy pain, they're worth it in the end!

Picard said...

D4E4H: What made you realize the meaning of Picard? Thanks for the good wishes!

Thank you PK and others for the kind words about my MARDI GRAS workshop photos. And thank you SwampCat for explaining a bit more about that workshop. They definitely were working on the floats while I was there. Not sure how many would have survived Katrina.

I was surprised that they re-use the art from one year to the next. Our local parades recycle the materials, but the art must be entirely new each year.

Thank you all for the good wishes regarding the fire. We are getting a lot of ash and smoke and are advised not to be outdoors too much. The power has stayed on for most of the day, but that can change any time. The fire is still about 40 miles from us. But I have quite a few friends who are way too close to it in Ventura and Ojai.

This Google Map shows the fires in yellow and the evacuation areas in red.

What is especially awful and scary is that an apartment complex in the downtown area of Ventura was destroyed. In Southern California, people who live in rural areas or canyons have to be prepared that eventually their place will burn. But people usually assume they are relatively safe in the city.

Misty said...

I loved your complex and sophisticated Mardi Gras discussion, Swamp Cat.

Lucina said...

In this day and age, ANY note of gratitude is appreciated, handwritten or typed. Often it is rare to receive any kind of recognition for gifts given, brides, birthdays or others. Today I mailed my thank you notes for the many and generous birthday gifts I received Saturday.

I'm glad you explained about your early birthday party as I was afraid we had missed it here at the Corner. Then you reminded us that you were a Christmas baby!

There is nothing primitive about your solving technique. Like others, I solve across then check the downs for accuracy.

Why all this talk about Mardi Gras? It's barely the first week of Advent.

Anonymous T said...

Lucina - 'cuz FAT Tuesday was 1d :-)

Re: Solve technique: I read all the clues in the area and place all possibilities (usually only one - I'm not that swift) in my head and then fill. Move to next section, rinse and repeat.

PK - Swamp's right. Mardi Gras is more tame than rumors imply. I've never felt more safe in a city at 2a than in the Quarter.

All our California Cornerites stay safe and please, even if it's just to say Thumper, check in tomorrow.

Cheers, -T

Yellowrocks said...

1 D FatTuesday, Marti Gras prompted our discussion.

I sympathize with all those endangered by the horrifying fires in the Venture area. I hope you all will be safe.

My David suggested I start my typed thank you notes with an apology pleading my arthritic hands. I will use fancy paper as PK suggested.

PK said...

SwampCat: I've only read about MardiGras in novels and seen pictures & heard tourist tales. Pretty lurid. Partial Nudity and orgy stuff. My daughter went one year and was scandalized. She wouldn't tell me why. Glad to hear there are some family-oriented celebrations and tamer pursuits. I really didn't think my blog friends were engaged in debauchery. College kids, you never know.

Misty said...

Thank you, Lucina--nice to see a number of us have similar solving techniques. But I do think Ol'Man Keith's are pretty brilliant--though I'd never be able to do them!

Lucina said...

I agree. That sounds like a brilliant method for solving. Too much work for me.

Those fires look terrible and are causing such horrible damage. I hope the residents are safe though their property is gone.

AnonT: Thanks.

YR: Good idea.

CartBoy said...

Best LAT Tuesday puzzle ever.

Anonymous said...

Just a little too clever ... goofy