SATURDAY WITH GAILHusker Gary reporting from the Great Plains on a very challenging Saturday exercise by Gail Grabowski shown here in a previously posted picture. This is a Gail Grabowski interview with C.C. from a few years ago as well. She said her Dad's everyday practice of a cup of coffee with a crossword puzzle started down the path to solving and then to construction. She further states that her teaching background steered her towards using wordplay in many puzzles.
Traction today was as hard to obtain as was our icy streets last week. The NE corner bewitched, bothered and bewildered me. As often happens I got started at the bottom but I definitely found Gail's puzzle fair and challenging.
Now here's a few of the long fills I found interesting:
1. Steve McQueen's co-star in "The Getaway" : ALI MACGRAW - So good they made a sequel!
17. Defect : BREAK RANKS - Not many do here
12. Portmanteau for workout clothing worn socially : ATHLEISURE - Ah, my vocabulary continues to grow
66. It helps you get up : STEP LADDER - STEP LADDER? Nifty! Footwear choice? Dicey
68. Commercial challenges : TASTE TESTS - Remember?
Here's what else Gail has for us on "If Pets Had Thumbs Day"
11. Hollow : VALE - I got the geography connotation eventually
15. It doesn't include overtime : BASE SALARY - The BASE SALARY at my most recent school is $37,000 and my salary maxed out at MA + 36 would have been $76,000
18. Online shopping option : CHAT - Their webpage
19. Organic soy milk brand : EDEN - Okay, it's Saturday cluing
20. Org. hacked during the 2016 presidential campaign : DNC - Her book was a fascinating read but I don't think she'll be getting any Christmas cards from Hillary
21. Some edible plant parts : STALKS - Rhubarb would be my favorite
23. Morally base : SORDID
26. Vein contents : ORE and 30. Vein contents : DEPOSITS
27. Texas-Louisiana border river : SABINE - Even when Texas was not in the Union yet
34. Red-hot : ON A TEAR
36. Superfan : NUT
37. "On the Road" narrator : SAL - SAL Paradise was the name Jack took in his book
38. Company with back-to-school buys : BIC - Is anything as uBICuitous as a BIC pen?
39. Flowery lines : ODE
40. Crock-Pot and Cuisinart: Abbr. : TMS - TradeMarkS - Indicated by ® or ™
41. News gp. : UPI - United Press International
42. 1940s mil. zone : ETO - Here is an Eisenhower jacket with a European Theater Of Operation insignia high on the left shoulder
43. Excite, with "up" : REV
44. Wilde forte : EPIGRAM - Here's one I have always liked
46. Sounded right : RANG TRUE - Oscar's EPIGRAM RANG TRUE to me the first time I heard it.
49. Joan of Arc's crime : HERESY - Pope Leo X called Martin Luther " a true heretic".
50. Shorten a yard to mere inches? : MOW - I'm still using my snowblower and so it may be a while
51. Crate up : ENCASE - "We drug Kong, ENCASE him in a crate and take him to New York. What could possibly go wrong?"
53. Where Excalibur was forged : AVALON
56. Buff end : OON - Not ALO
57. Bering Sea port : NOME - Also the home of the finish line of the world's most famous dog race
61. Amy's "Sisters" co-star : TINA - Amy Poehler and TINA Fey of SNL fame. Rotten Tomatoes said, "Meh"
62. One with a lot of wheels : AUTO DEALER - Mine sold my MIL an 58. GM line until 2004 : OLDSmoblie 27 years ago and it is still going strong!
65. Bands in the East : OBIS - More clever Saturday level cluing
67. Substantial content : MEAT
1. Calais cleric : ABBE and 11. Parish priests : VICARS - ABBÈ Jacques Seck, VICAR General and Curate of Dakar Cathedral (Retired)
2. Hog product : LARD - The secret of my MIL's great apple pies
3. Understanding answer : I SEE
4. Is not to be taken lightly : MEANS IT
5. What it doesn't hurt to do : ASK
6. Checkout counter device : CARD READER - At the Apple Store last week my "genius" used a handheld device to scan the UPC on my purchase, READ my credit CARD and send me a receipt via email. I don't know what he would have done if I'd wanted to use cash
7. Sweat __ : GLAND
8. Like bad butter : RANCID - Gail got two scents in on these last two entries
9. Craft for couples : ARK - Couples of animals. Why did Noah take two mosquitos?
10. "The Swiss Family Robinson" author : WYSS - I truly thought this would be an author I would know but, uh, no
13. News source, perhaps : LEAK - Many a "LEAK" is just a trial balloon
14. Defib specialists : EMTS
22. Places for piggies? : TOOTSIES
24. Very few : ONE OR TWO
25. End of a ristorante request : DENTE - Si prega di fare la mia pasta al DENTE. (Please make my pasta just firm to the bite)
27. Unlit? : SOBER - Lit is one of many euphemisms for drunk
28. One of the original Pointer Sisters : ANITA - How 'bout a little Pointer Sister disco to pump up your Saturday
29. Passion caused by strips : BACON MANIA
32. Cantina fare : TAPAS - Estas tapas en Granada, España un aspecto delicioso (These TAPAS in Granada, Spain look delicias)
33. Disreputable : SLIMY
35. Cabaret offering : REVUE - I suspect a critic would offer a review of this, uh, REVUE
45. Hurled weapon : GRENADE and 60. Throws wildly, say : ERRS - Not a good combination
47. Bring up the rear : GO LAST - I will read this at my MIL's funeral. She always waits until all are served before she is.
48. Online reminders : E-NOTES
52. Appropriate : COOPT - "uh PRO pree ate" not "uh PRO pree uht"
53. Splitting target : ATOM
54. Hard-to-describe feeling : VIBE
55. Tweed's caricaturist : NAST - People like Kim Jung Un don't have such impediments as Thomas Nast
59. Fulfill : MEET - Just because you can MEET the requirements to teach doesn't mean you can do it!
63. Hagen of the stage : UTA - UTA was the original Martha when Albee's Who's Afraid Of Virginia Woolf opened on Broadway in 1962. I'll bet most of you know who played Martha in the 1966 movie
64. Down : EAT
What say you?