Apr 12, 2018

Thursday, April 12 2018 Bruce Haight

Theme: Hard Ates. I'm in Las Vegas, so "ates the hard way" was little craps-inspiration. Except there's no such thing. Sometimes when the reveal is so slick naming the theme becomes a challenge. Which I failed. Moving on:

17A. Carnivores: MEAT EATERS. That's me.

24A. Appliance needed for a hot bath: WATER HEATER

38. Latvia and Lithuania, once: SATELLITE STATES. Satellite states of the old Soviet Union.

47A. 2015 NFL controversy involving air pressure: DEFLATEGATE The Watergate cover-up has a lot to answer for, but at least you know that the latest "gate" is a controversy. The equipment manager for the New England Patriots was accused of letting air out of the match balls that QB Tom Brady would throw that game.

58A. It consists of a couple of couples ... and, when divided differently, a hint to something hidden in 17-, 24-, 38- and 47-Across: DOUBLE DATE. When divided differently, we get "DOUBLED ATE" for the very neat reveal.

I think this is a great puzzle from Bruce. The theme entries are snappy and the reveal is genuinely clever. Even with the quite heavy themage, Bruce still finds a way to add eight- and ten-letter entries in the downs.

We bloggers were discussing the quality of the fill in the LA Times, which C.C. describes as "gluey" on occasion, a polite term for "not very good". There's very little glue in the fill today, this is a high-quality puzzle.

Let's see what jumps out:


1. Jay-Z output: RAP CD

6. Reach great heights: SOAR

10. Attempt: STAB

14. White house?: IGLOO. Nice clue!

15. Fair: EXPO

16. Bear in the heavens: URSA. Two sizes of bear up there. Bear Major and Bear Minor. Sounds like two brothers at private school (or public school in the UK, which is the very opposite of what you would think it means).

19. Invite abbr.: BYOB. Bring your own B(ottle) or B(ooze). I'm not sure I'd be terribly impressed if I received an invitation that actually told me to bring a bottle. BYOB restaurants are great, you can take a great bottle of wine and not get held hostage by the wine list prices.

20. Job application fig.: S.S.N. Do you put your Social Security Number on a job application? I'm not sure this is a thing.

21. Hang around: STAY

22. "National Velvet" sister: EDWINA. Solid crosses filled this in for me. I saw the movie starring Elizabeth Taylor many moons ago.

26. Got the ball rolling?: PUTTED

30. Smooth-talking: OILY

31. "60 Minutes" regular: STAHL. Moderator Lesley.

32. Improvised jazz part: VAMP

34. Element Prometheus stole from Olympus: FIRE. Didn't go well, I seem to recall.

41. Harbinger of spring: THAW

42. "Beetle Bailey" dog: OTTO

43. 1990s-2000s skating champ Slutskaya: IRINA. I always try IRENA first and have to correct it when the cross doesn't work.

44. Davenport's place: IOWA

46. 1974 hit with Spanish lyrics: ERES TU. "It's you". Great 70's video, lots of camera-staring and men with questionable facial hair. I don't recognize the song, I have to confess.

52. Italy's __ Coast: AMALFI. This has been a regular reference recently, it seems.

53. Like arf and meow: ORAL. Fiendish clue. Very nice.

54. Hallucinogenic letters: LSD. Lysergic acid diethylamide

57. "Pleeease?": CAN I?

61. Writer Shere: HITE. Writer on feminism and women's sexuality.

62. Avant-garde: EDGY

63. Font flourish: SERIF. The default font on the blog is a "serif'ed" one.

64. "Regrettably ... ": ALAS

65. Grasps: SEES

66. Like horror films: SCARY


1. What "nothin' but net" shots don't touch: RIMS. No clanging on the basketball hoop. Just a swish as the ball goes through.

2. Periods: AGES
3. Not leave things to chance: PLAN

4. Foldable bed: COT

5. Succeeds: DOES WELL

6. Tuned to: SET AT

7. Daisy variety: OX-EYE. Pretty things.

8. Car ad abbr.: APR. Interest rate on the loan. You pay cash, no loan, no APR.

9. Botanical source of vitamin C: ROSE HIPS.

10. Commuter's cost: SUBWAY FARE. Could also be the picnic you eat on a long commute on the subway.

11. "Have a taste": TRY IT!

12. In harmony: AS ONE

13. Kiddie lit elephant: BABAR. The perfect gentleman, always doffed his hat to a lady. Which prompts a question - can you doff anything other than your hat? If you can't, the "his hat" part of the phrase is redundant, you should just "doff". If you can doff other stuff, what does doffing your shoe look like? We should be told.

18. Somewhat: A TAD

23. __ Taco: DEL. Not your first choice of venue for taco dining in Los Angeles

25. Lover of Shakespeare?: ROMEO. Nice cluing.

26. Sibilant "Yo!": PSST!

27. Its motto is "Industry": UTAH. Thanks, crosses.

28. "Cheerio!": TA-TA!

29. Jittery condition: THE WILLIES. Loved this one.

32. Curriculum __: résumé: VITAE. CV is the term in the UK and elsewhere for your job history.

33. Brief writer, briefly: ATT. Attorney. Took me a while to see this one.

35. Words before and after "what": IT IS

36. Dollars for quarters: RENT

37. Biblical twin: ESAU

39. Good times for beachcombing: LOW TIDES

40. Indefatigable: TIRELESS

45. Lummox: OAF

46. Lat. shortener: ET AL. Et alia if you want to be long-winded about it.

47. Russian country house: DACHA

48. Online message: EMAIL

49. Crush rival: FANTA. Fizzy fruit-flavored drinks. Fanta is most often associated with the orange version, but there are more than 100 flavors worldwide.
50. Overcharge but good: GOUGE

51. Chain known for roast beef: ARBY'S. "We Have The Meats"

54. Actress __ Flynn Boyle: LARA. Best known for her role in Twin Peaks, she appeared in all the episodes.

55. Show signs of life: STIR. I wasn't sure I'd be showing signs of life this morning. I'm at a convention in Las Vegas and last night was the industry association party at a nightclub. With an open bar. I actually felt rather jaunty.

56. Stand up to: DEFY

59. Laudatory poem: ODE

60. Usual Hanukkah mo.: DEC.

I think that does it for me today. Just need to add the grid and I'm done!



Anonymous said...

Great puzzle, ingenious theme. Very enjoyable.

OwenKL said...

FIRight with little problem, and spotted the gimmick before the reveal (tho mixed EAT with ATE before I got the whole of it). The reveal eluded me, tho. Clever re-parsing, I was expecting something about 8:8.

Weird day for me today, tho some of you have reported similar ones. Toilet in LW's bathroom flooded, so we had a work crew in undoing the damage most of the day, and fans still blowing now, so I assume they'll be back tomorrow if only to pick up their equipment. Bathroom chest, chair, hamper, and a plethora of shoes are crowded in the living room.

BTW, my knee and ankle are still a bit tender, but otherwise pain free, and the itching on my arm finally scratched out, 3 days past the fall. My thanks for all the good wishes!

Ran into a meme of Lewis Carroll, something called a "square poem". Decided to try one myself, before I looked it up and found it wasn't that rare, just something I'd never run across before. Since a few of you seem to like my poetry, here's my attempt.

Is      there   love    for     such     as       me?
There   is      one     whose   love     I'd      be!
Love    one     soul    in      all      the      world,
For     whose,   in      heart,   makes    loving   whole!
Such    love    all     makes   the      Earth    spin,
As      I'd     the     loving  Earth    would    hug.
Me,      be      world   whole   spin,     hug      thee!

Officer EDWINA was nicknamed EDGY veggie,
Called herself a "peas" officer at the ready!
Undaunted and TIRELESS,
Although still arrestless,
INDEFATIGABLE in chasing a heavy!

{B+ / C- (and a few D's or F's).}

Kent Mauk said...

One can doff any element of clothing, methinks. Hat, coat, socks, etc.

TTP said...

Good morning. Thank you Bruce Haight, and thank you Steve.


Especially liked the "Dollars for quarters" clue for RENT, and the "White house" clue for IGLOO.

Read Davenport and started to type sofa when I noticed the rest of the clue.

I also wanted to say thank you to all for the nice comments on Tuesday. I've spent the majority of the last two days running errands and getting this season's golf league set up. Just busy.

See all y'all later n'at !

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Nope, it wasn't RSVP, it wasn't an ENOTE, and Hanukkah doesn't normally fall in APR. (D'oh, I knew better!) Otherwise I liked this one, even though I screwed up the theme -- thought one was EAT EAT and another was ATE EAT, and two were ATE ATE. Double-D'oh! At least I'll take the CSO at 42a. Thanx, Bruce and Steve.

LARA Flynn Boyle: Reminds me of the daughter's name on Blue Bloods I always like Badalamenti's haunting Twin Peaks Theme.

SSN: I always leave that field blank when I fill out a form. I've only been challenged on it once. I responded, "Why do you need it?" They didn't know. They didn't get it.

I read an article this week about the letter most people can't draw. I easily recognize it on sight, but couldn't describe it or draw it. Can you? It's the lower-case G as it appears in a SERIF font. No peeking...

Oas said...

Thanks Bruce and Steve .

Looked to be too difficult at first pass but my TIRELESS effort paid off and FIR in reasonable time .

OKL l thought EAT ATE had some merit as ATE follows EAT in mEATEATEr waterhEATEr. Over thinking the theme I guess.

Some unknowns filled by perps and crosses were AMALFI, HITE, LARA and RENT of all things took too long to register.

Always love your poems and I’m happy to hear you’re on the mend OWEN

Argyle. Hope to see you return to the blog soon.

Jinx in Norfolk said...

FIR, but like DO and OKL I first thought the theme was going to be eat / ate pairing. Erased glib for OILY, eras for AGES and ohio for UTAH. Didn't know EDWINA or IRINA. If I were a woman whose last name starts with "Slut" I think I would change it. (I once knew a lovely lady whose father owned a Chevy dealership and had changed his last name to Cheap before she was born. A pillar of my home town was named Otto Carr, and I worked with a really smart analyst named Hyman Wiener. None changed their names. I guess if it's YOUR name it doesn't seem so strange.)

Thanks for a fun puzzle, Bruce. I especially liked "dollars for quarters" for RENT, but I still don't get "tuned to" for SET AT. And thanks to Steve for another fun tour.

Big Easy said...

What was I thinking? I started to fill MUSIC for 1A. Then I came to my senses. I filled RAP CD. Almost gave me THE WILLIES. The dodo that I am, even with the DOUBLE DATE and the puzzles completed I still didn't see the DOUBLE-D ATE, even after circling ATE twice in each theme fill. Thank you Steve because I would have never understood.


Curriculum VITAE- resume- Never had one. Worked part time in college and before I graduated the owner asked if I wanted to manage his company. Age 21. Ran it for 28 years. Then quit. Didn't bother with a CV. Life's too short. Having a good time for the last 18 years.

Madame Defarge said...

Good Morning.

Just lurking. A bit under the weather--more fussy than ill--some pesky little virus.

Enjoyed both yesterday and today's puzzles. Thanks, all.

Glad to hear Argyle is doing well with his rehab.

Enjoy your day.

Montana said...

Good morning, everyone.
. Late last night I caught up doing puzzles from M-W. Thursday puzzle was there, so I started working on it. Decided it was too difficult. Went to bed. When I got up this morning, I solved it one clue after another. I don’t know why it seemed so hard. I guess sleep, helps.
I didn’t get the theme. Thanks for the expo.
More SNOW headed into Montana this afternoon. Many records for amounts of snow have been broken this winter.


Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Interesting solve. Got the theme fill ok, but other than seeing a bunch of 'ATE's', the precision of the theme eluded me until just as I began reading Steve's lead-in, I said "DOUBLED ATES", and then saw Steve nailed it. I had RSVP before BYOB, and eras before AGES.
No issues with the solve, great job all around.

Have a great day, everyone.

Unknown said...

Great Thursday offering from Bruce, and another excellent EXPO through the grid from today's guide, Steve.

Quite a few answers were lurking in the depths of my subconscious or were totally absent, and only the perps were able to retrieve them: ROSEHIPS, EDWINA, IRINA, and AMALFI for starters. Can't believe I wanted AMALFa until the odd-looking LOW TaDES straightened me out, but I'm A TAD slow this morning, I guess.

Even after finishing, I stared at the reveal trying to figure out DOUBLED ATE, which took me forever to parse. Congrats, Bruce, this was a lot of fun!

A great day, all....

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

Impressive construction today. Favorite clue has to be “Dollars for quarters”.

Back in high school, I sang in a quartet; “Eres Tu” was one of our repertoire, in its English version “Touch the Wind”. The lyrics were sappy and stupid. I was told the original Spanish version was much better, but that’s not something I can judge.

Back in SCUBA classes, we were taught the skills for “doffing and donning” our equipment underwater. (It’s necessary in cases of entanglement) Because of that, I’ve generally assumed doff and don to be equal & opposite verbs. Doffing a jacket sounds right, for instance.

Cornerites know that I am not sports-involved. I don’t know squat about football. What’s the big freaking deal about a slight loss of pressure in a football? Aren’t both teams equally subject to the ill effects? Assuming that some employee in some equipment room is the one actually charged with maintenance on the balls, why drag the high-profile quarterback into it?

Morning Steve, I can’t be sure whether you’re a trooper or a trouper, but surely you’re one of those for having pried yourself upward this morning and putting together a coherent write up! Well done.

CanadianEh! said...

I came here earlier today after lurking all week due to busy schedule. Thanks for the fun, Bruce and Steve.

I started slowly but then got on a roll; thought the theme had something to do with EATER after MEAT EATERS and WATER HEATER. When I got to DOUBLE DATE, I went back and saw the double ATEs and looked in vain for the Ds. Thanks for parsing the DOUBLED ATE, Steve.

Like others, my favourites were the clues for RENT and IGLOO.
I noted IOWA and UTAH, as well as DEC and APR (but not clued as the month!)
(For others like me who did not know APR, it stands for Annual Percentage Rate. I think we have had it before.)
Other unknowns requiring perps were STAHL, IRENA, LARA, ERES TU, DEL.

Canadians are told to protect their SIN (our version of SSN) and would not give it to an employer until hired.

My first thought for the clue "Latvia and Lithuania, once" was the usual SSRS, but the allotted space was much larger. I guess Soviet Socialist Republics were SATELLITE STATES and are now independent.

Enjoyed the poetry OwenKL.
Healing wishes for fellow bloggers who are not feeling well, YR, MadameD, OwenKL,Lucina, fermatprime, and of course Argyle. (Hope I didn't miss anybody!) How is Betty coming along, Spitzboov?

Still patiently waiting for spring here.
Enjoy the day.

SwampCat said...

Interesting Thursday! I even got the theme, which is unusual. Add me to the camp of admirers of RENT and IGLOO. I also liked "got the ball rolling" for PUTTED. Thanks, Bruce.

Steve, I also admire your posting early this particular morning! Hope you are enjoying your stay otherwise.

Dudley, thanks for explaining DOFF and don. Makes sense. I think of DOFFing a hat as a greeting, not just uncovering a head. Steve, please don't doff your shoe at me!

Owen, I loved the poetry this morning.

Argyle, just thinking 'bout ya!

C6D6 Peg said...

I enjoyed Bruce's puzzle today.... took a minute to figure out the reveal, but got it finally! Thanks for a great outing today, Bruce!

Thanks, Steve for a great write-up.

Best to Argyle on his recovery! We look forward to seeing you back!

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

There is so much to like about this puzzle, I hardly know where to begin! Let's start with Arf and Meow, e.g.=Oral. Equal treatment of the canine corner and the feline fans. Then we have the ubiquitous cartoon canine, Otto. I think DO is slowly catching up to Abejo (Erie) in the CSO department. As TTP and Jinx have mentioned, a favorite C/A was Dollars for quarter=Rent. A nice tie in could have been made cluing Lara as Lara Logan of "60 Minutes" with Lesley Stahl, her co-reporter. My only w/os were Era/Ages, Jump/Vamp, and, inexplicably, MYOB instead of BYOB. The only unknown was Eres Tu which I had parsed in my mind as Erestu. Loved, loved The Willies! That's right up there with Heebeejeebies! (Sp?)

Thanks, Bruce, for a delightful theme and execution. If ever a reveal was a surprise, today's was certainly a big one. Thanks, Steve, for entertaining us while enlightening us, as well. Your previous evening's jauntiness carried right over into your expo. Cheerio, pip pip, carry on!

Picard, welcome back and I'm happy to hear that your Yahoo fiasco is straightening itself out. I don't understand much of what transpired, from a technical standpoint, but I hope it's finally resolved to your satisfaction. Against my better judgement, I looked at your pictures of the Glass Skywalk which only reinforced the severity of my acrophobia. I can say, without a doubt, there isn't enough money in the world to entice me to walk out on that, let alone lie down on it! Bravo to you and your wife.

Madame Defarge, best wishes for a speedy recovery.

I, too, did the BEQ puzzle from yesterday and enjoyed it, particularly the grid-spanning Superstar! I was a little taken aback by one entry but BEQ marches to his own drummer and can use any fill he likes.

Best wishes to Argyle!

Have a great day.

Husker Gary said...

-I did the puzzle while watching 17-yr-old boys lift weights in P.E. Both activities are easier than you might first think.
-Jaunty Steve, do you get hit with a corkage fee?
-Edwina is a M*A*S*H episode where this EDWINA plays a female Joe Btfsplk (It took a while before I remembered where I had heard that name!)
-Spring harbinger? When I spot a robin and my neighbor!
-Some winters with very low temps but very little moisture don’t really have a THAW
-Grammar aside, it is A TAD odd to have a 6’5” boy-man ask me, “CAN I to the bathroom?”
-The Spanish teacher lasted a year here in Eastern Nebraska but is now returning to his family in UTAH
-How ‘bout the dolars for these quarters?
-GOUGE? Hotel rates in downtown Omaha during the College World Series!

Misty said...

Woohoo! Woohoo! I got a Bruce Haight Thursday puzzle without a single error or cheat. Exciting! I got IGLOO instantly and it made me laugh and ready for fun. My favorite, like that of many others, was RENT for Dollars for quarters. And although I'm generally at a loss about sports, I got DEFLATE GATE and instantly thought of Tom Brady. Well, I do watch the news and that one got a lot of attention. And to my delight, I got the theme as soon as the reveal fell into place. By then, a number of double ATEs were visible, and the reveal helped with the rest, including SATELLITE STATES which initially puzzled me a bit. So, many thanks, Bruce, for a great way to start our morning. Lots of fun, and thanks for your always helpful write-up, Steve.

Interesting wide-spaced poem, Owen.

Hope you feel better soon, Madame Degarge.

And have a good day, Argyle. We're thinking of you with affection and good wishes.

Have a great day, everybody!

Lucina said...

What a thrilling Thursday with a jaunty puzzle and Steve at the helm! Thank you, Bruce and Steve!

My reference for EDWINA is a religious Sister EDWINA who was the principal at a Catholic school in Escondido, CA for many years. National Velvet is too far removed in time to recall.

Hand way up for IGLOO and RENT as clued. IRINA, Shere HITE, and LARA Flynn Boyle are unknowns to me. For 26 years I taught on Tuesday and Thursday evenings so I missed anything on TV on those days. Leslie STAHL I do know.

Of course, I didn't see the theme, so thank you again, Steve, and many thanks for the music link. After ERES TU, Leonard Cohen came on with his beautiful Hallelujah and more. Nice! In calligraphy a SERIF dominates most of the script if it is well done.

It's a shame you can't understand the lyrics of ERES TU; they are truly beautiful. I'll look for a good translation.

I really liked that style. Your talent impresses me daily though I may not always mention it.

Have a very special day, everyone! We reached 100 degrees on Tuesday and that is the earliest date for that kind of heat.

Lucina said...

Today is the second time I've seen Lithuania and Latvia in a puzzle and last night Lithuania was featured on PBS.

Dudley said...

Hello Lucina! I suspect the original lyrics have more soul, or feeling, or some such. Touch the Wind was just trite.

Jazzbumpa said...

HI gang -

I'm always amused by alternate parsings, so was delighted by the reveal - which was also an aha! moment, since the theme was eluding me.

Overall good puzzle.

We sometimes see VAMP clues as an improvised part, but nobody I know thinks of it that way, and it really doesn't fit the definition - a repeated figure in an accompaniment or introduction.

Dudley - in the NFL, each team supplies their own game balls, and they are certified to be inflated at 12.5 to 13.5 psi 2 hours before game time. A slightly under-inflated ball will give the quarterback a better grip, and therefore a slight advantage in throwing passes - which can make a huge difference in the outcome.

Gloria has had a bad cold for a week now, and is still coughing. We went out to breakfast this morning and the restaurant was full of coughing - including the wait staff.

I've avoided the cold so far, but i wonder if the odds are now stacked against me.

Cool [not cold] regards!

Northwest Runner said...

I would disagree that the former SSRs were satellite states. Countries like Hungary and Poland were Soviet satellites, but because the SSRs were part of the Soviet Union itself, they weren't satellites. Editor should have fixed the clue here.

Picard said...

Creative new theme that stumped me for awhile! I saw the DOUBLE ATEs and got the reveal but then had to laugh when I figured out DOUBLED-ATE. Thanks, Steve, for the OXEYE image. Learning moment. I always just called that variety "daisies".

CRUSH RIVAL had me thinking of a romantic crush. Anyone else? I am guessing that was the intended misdirection. Hand up with Big Easy almost put MUSIC before RAP CD. Also not my kind of music. Apparently DOFF means to remove any item of clothing.

From yesterday:
Lucina: Way cool you live in the Phoenix area. We stayed there on the second night of our travels. We went to the Westgate Entertainment District on recommendation of the hotel staff. An interesting concept: Not quite a true downtown, but more than the usual mall. We have places like that now in Silicon Valley.

Here is my short video of windmills near Palm Springs

We stayed there the first night. I have a long video of us ascending the Palm Springs Aerial Tram which will take awhile to upload. Has anyone else been up there? I did it a few years ago and enjoyed hiking in the snow at the top while it was about 90 degrees below!

AnonymousPVX said...

Super crunchy today, had a few mark overs. But got the solve, which felt like an achievement.

Misty said...

Picard, I too thought of romantic for CRUSH. Guess those high school memories never quite disappear.

JazzB, stay healthy and I hope Gloria recovers soon.

Bruce, I love flowers and just realized you gave us both daisies and roses this morning. Many thanks.

Wilbur Charles said...

I came up with a cold after a "Mediation" from a bumper thumper six years ago.

I missed Wednesday due to spillage. I might try the online .

Thanks to Bruce and Steve and of course Owen. Glad you're better.

I had RSVP and tried Socialist Republics. And, with the foggy head started real, real slow .

I was just talking about Joe Blftsplk *(Blitterspik) . Not only that MASH episode but the entire Al Capp anthology is un-PC . By today's standards (ugh) .


* In the shuttle . That's the prononciation I heard once from a NewYorker

Chairman Moe said...

"Puzzling Thoughts":

Just one WO in the NE ( Vermont ) when I wanted ONE instead of SUB. But that solve (10d) prompted this Moe-ku:

Hungry commuter
Grabbed a Footlong. Would you call

Lots of great clueing by Bruce, and as always, a great recap from our indefatigable one, Steve. WEES, the clues for IGLOO and RENT were excellent. But I even liked 29d better, as it spawned this 5-7-5 poem:

I dislike Army Jeeps.
Riding around in them, just

And once I saw that Jay-Z had a RAP CD, I knew what 1d was; again, it creATEd this silly ditty:

Drummer, turned hoop star,
Had short stay, in NBA:
Too many RIMShots

Nice job, Owen, with the square poem. And speaking of which, I sometimes wonder if Owen and I are like the yin and yang of poets here? For example, if Owen and I were to create a poem, with the last word being "Timbuktu", his might be:

Across the vast Sahara sand
Rode a desert caravan.
Air was hot; sky was blue.
Destination? Timbuktu!

And mine would be:

Tim and I a camping went,
Met three ladies, in a tent.
They, being three, and we, but two,
I bucked one, and Timbuktu!


Wilbur Charles said...


D4E4H in BLACK said...

Thanks Mr. Bruce Haight for this excellent Thursday CW.  I had spots in almost every cell where I thought I would have to BAV, and yet P, P, and P eventually Prevailed, and I FIR.  The last to fall was 47D DACHA with double Naticks with 57A CANI, and 61A  HITE.

Thanks Steve for your excellent review.


Bill G said...

Hi everybody. (ATE^2) Fun puzzle. Thanks Bruce and Steve. Hands up for RENT and IGLOO. Good stuff.

About a week ago, my Camry was run into at an intersection. It had moderate left-front body damage. I got it back today. No charge. It seems to be like new. They even washed the whole car. Free rental car, a Ford Fusion hybrid. I finally got used to it and learned how things worked. Many of the controls weren't intuitive to me. The car seemed stodgy but maybe that was because I wasn't used to it. I'm happy to be back in my Camry again. Thank you AAA.

Then I stopped on the way home to pick up some prescriptions that were ready. No co-pay. It has been a good day so far...

WikWak said...

Greetings, all. I really enjoyed this puzzle. Not surprising, seeing who the author was. And Steve, I always like your efforts.

It’s becoming less and less common for forms to require (“request”?) your SSN. People are finally wising up and being very reluctant to provide that number. I thought I remembered that Medicare was no longer going to use a person's SSN as an ID on those cards. The FCC quite a while ago started assigning applicants for licensing and those already licensed an FRN (FCC Registration Number) and requiring that number on paperwork. No SSN involved.

Jinx: you can have your radio tuned to WGN, for axample, and you can have it SET AT 720 On the dial.

Lots of sparkle to some of the entries today. I especially liked DOLLARS FOR QUARTERS and THE WILLIES. WHITE HOUSE —> IGLOO too.

It’s in the upper 60’s in NE IL, and lots o' sunshine. Crummy time to get sick, Madame D!

Have a great day, all!

WikWak said...

And oh, yes—today I celebrate (?) the 23rd anniversary of my 50th birthday. I think I'll just go take a nap until the realization goes away. :P

PK said...

Hi Y'all! DOUBLED ATE: hope we don't gain weight because of this. I ATE before solving too. Got the theme okay. Enjoyed the puzzle, Bruce. Gotta love a man who only gets high and stays coherent, Steve. Great expo.

There were some trouble spots for me. Last to fill was the VAMP/ROMEO/OILY/DEL section. Finally got it. Also had trouble with RAP CD: tried an "O" thinking company. Couldn't get a "GO" for IGLOO or AGES. Duh!

WEES didn't know EDWINA, HITE, or LARA. But yay for me, I knew IRINA Slutskaya. They talked about her on a recent Olympics related show. I think she was the last lady figure skater to win gold for Russia after they dominated for years. I used to be a big skating fan. Jinx: about her name, it probably doesn't have an adverse meaning in Russian. Did you ever hear of the rich Texas socialite Ima Hogg? Never married altho she certainly had good reason to bury the name.

Weather in the 70's here the last couple of days. Bradford pear tree is blooming across the street. I may DOFF my sweatshirt when I get done here. Sneezing my head off. But the true sign of spring: I just heard the ice cream truck jingling down my street.

Get well all ye who suffer! Is there anyone who isn't challenged by some malady right now? Hi, Argyle! ET AL.

Unknown said...

I thought of "Crush" as beating someone in a sporting even or game by a large margin. and I still don't know what or who a Shere Hite (or a Hite shere ?) is thus I had one empty cell. First weekday puzzle DNF in a long while.

I think referring to Lithuania and Latvia as satellite is correct at least how it was used in the 60's and 70's. Poland , East Germany etc were referred to as Warsaw pact allies. The "Republics" of the USSR were Latvia, Georgia, Ukraine,etc are now separate countries. Then they were the satellites the orbited mother Russia.

PK said...

Happy birthday, WikWak! Happy napping!

Spitzboov said...

CanadianEh! - Betty is improving day-by-day. She has started PT. Thanks for asking.

Plagiarism checker said...

Old saw, Moe. Tsk, tsk.

Jayce said...

I agree this is a well-constructed puzzle and the theme is clever and entertaining. Had to use my noodle just the right amount. Loved the way IGLOO, RENT, IT IS, and PUTTED were clued.

Lucina said...

Stay well! Don't give in to those maladies.

Several years ago I went on the tram ride and though it was summer temps down below, there was snow on the ground at the top. But the view was spectacular!

Oas said...

Jinx you made my day /:-)

Ol' Man Keith said...

Ta- DA!
I made good time on Mr. Haight's opus, finishing sooner than usual for a Thursday-level pzl. The theme didn't matter one way or t'other, although now that I look back, aided by Steve's insights, I can appreciate the extraordinary effort involved.

I once almost played Prometheus in an undergrad show (couldn't cast enough Chorus), so I have a slight idea of the fate he had to undergo for helping humans. According to Aeschylus, he was chained to a rock with a vulture gnawing at his side and, because he was immortal, unable to die:

"Thou would'st find it hard
To bear what I must bear: for unto me
It is not given to die--a dear release
From pain; but now of suffering there is
No end in sight till Zeus shall fall."

Diagonal Report: Three. The full mirror 3-way (NE to SW). No hidden message yet.

Ol' Man Keith said...

Northern Runner:
Interesting observation about SATELLITE STATES, that SSRs couldn't be considered as such. It may be a legalistic point (on which I'm not qualified to comment), but on an everyday man-on-the-street level those citizens may well have felt themselves so subjugated they would accept the "satellite" label.
I have never been to Latvia or Lithuania, but if they are anything like their Baltic neighbor, Estonia - another former SSR - the folk may well agree with the lesser status.

When I was in Estonia, one of the first things I learned was how thankful the people feel that the Russians are gone.
People would point out the tall, empty apartment buildings where their former Soviet "managers" used to live - always muttering the Estonian equivalent of "Good riddance!"

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

I found Bruce's effort easy for a Thursday. I nailed the themers with nary a perp (PSST - I'm lying about SATELLITE; I can never spell that right - ATE fixed me up), understood the parsing of DOUBLED ATE, but,, but, but,,,, FIW! It's not DACrA in an SSR's country-side :-(

Thanks Bruce. WEES -- beautiful concept beautifully constructed. And clue for RENT - priceless.

Thanks Steve for the EXPO, ERESTU was ESP and, for what it's worth, I've never heard it either. LOL doffing the shoe (until Dudley made clear what doff meant; then the Python sillywalk-esque image went away)

Fav: I don'e tol' ya! Clue for RENT was tops.

{?, C+; glad you're better} {ha, cute, budump-bah, LOL}

BigE - I got a giggle at your MUSIC before you came to your senses.

PK - Ima Hogg is still a big deal here. I think I read about galas in her name in the paper.

Everyone (me too - ear ache today, allergies I'm sure) get better soon.

Happy Birthday WikWak!

Cheers, -T

Anonymous T said...

Insofar as FANTA and trickiness... I already wanted DEFLATE GATE and decided to check perps... R.E.M. [<---Link for musical interlude] ] came to mind and both fills fell. -T

CrossEyedDave said...

Very late on this busy Thursday,
I found this puzzle to be an excellent challenge.
(which beat me!)

I WAG'd Vamp/Vitae correctly.

Had no possible chance at the Natick of 47d/61a
("H") Hite/dacHa?
(dang it! 26 letters and none of them make sense!)
And got so hung up on the above Natick, I never realized
I had not finished the best clue/answer of the day!
Dollars for quarters=rent! (left out the "N")

I love a puzzle where I get stuck,
and HAVE TO figure out the theme to continue...

Jinx, tuned to = set to seemed like a natural for me,
because in my day, if this gizmo was not set to the right position
your radio station would not come in...

This site explains
the BYOB corkage fees, and some ways around it. (But I keep seeing after images
from that yellow background...)

Fanta was a favorite beverage growing up,
Then I heard it was created by the Nazis?
Not entirely true trivia...

WikWak! Happy 1150! (Google doesn't make a cake for that advanced age...)

Anywho, How i felt after trying to complete this puzzle...

Anonymous said...

I never get the themes. I do the puzzles 85 % of time just working it through, each day progressively more difficult. Saturday is the most difficult for me.

MJ said...

Thanks, C.C., for linking Brendan Emmett Quigley's puzzle yesterday. A fun solve, and as other have said, grid-spanning 37A was a no brainer. Very exciting!

Sorry to hear of so many maladies here at the Corner. Best wishes to all for healing and improved health!

Steve said...

@Anon 5:50 - You're experiencing exactly how the puzzle constructors, and especially the editor (Rich Norris in the LA Times) want you to progress through the week. There are some words which would never appear early in the week - some more obscure entries particularly - but the skill of the constructor/editor is in the way the clues are written. Good examples of Thursday-level cluing today are the "Dollars for quarters" and "White house" gems. A puzzle earlier in the week would have something like "Monthly expense" or "Arctic home" instead.

You should try and work at the themes to uncover them, they are genuinely helpful. The tough part about Saturdays is that they have no themes, hence no help. When I solved the DOUBLE DATE clue today and found the theme, I went back up and filled in a couple of gaps which helped me with the rest based on what I'd learned from the reveal.

Happy solving!

SwampCat said...

Steve and Anon @ 5:50. I'm embarrassed to say that's exactly how I work the puzzles. Just jump in and see if I know anything. If I do get the theme....seldom!....that might help. But if the clues are clever, that's lagniappe.

Ol' Man Keith said...

Maybe a quarter of the time I find the theme can help me. Mostly I catch on after I'm nearly done.
When the theme is a help, it is because I'll know which embedded word or group of letters to seek; i.e., to hunt for and fill.

Lucina said...

Happy birthday! And please explain your age. I'm at sea!

SwampCat said...

Oh dear Lucina. Please come in from the sea. He's 50 plus the 23rd anniversary 73.

PK said...

AnonT: A bus trip to Houston that I took had a step-on guide take us around to noted mansions & landmarks and give us information. Ima Hogg's home Bayou Bend is one place we saw from the outside. I LIU. She was the daughter of Governor James Hogg. She died in 1975 after giving the family home to the public. Now a museum and place a gala certainly could be held there.

CrossEyedDave said...


Happy Birthday WikWak!

(You sneaky devil, you had me counting the candles on this monstrosity...)

CrossEyedDave said...

(from yesterday)

Picard! Good news on the photo website!

I was fascinated by those cave/rock formations...
I assumed by the labels it is Rocky Pine Ridge at Santa Barbara, Ca.
But when I tried to look into how those formations were made,
except for sandstone, nothing came up from Google...

I heard it was a tourist trap,
You pay one price to take a bus in,
and have to pay three times that price to get out...

(plus an entry fee when you get there that they don't tell you about...)

CrossEyedDave said...

Oh, just one more thing...

If you do not care about golf, pass this by...

several days ago, we had a discussion about "AMEN CORNER"
or, the 12th at the Masters.

Today, in The Star Ledger,
A reporter covering the event won a chance at
playing the course as it was set up for the pros.

Here is the article, Just say Amen...

Picard said...

Irish Miss: Yes, the Skywalk is not for everyone! The Yahoo situation is resolved for now. But they never gave an explanation for shutting down the site. They refused to talk to the Better Business Bureau. And they never even told me that it was back up. Or why. They could turn it off again at any time. Very scary to have so much invested in building it. Like building a house on land owned by someone else.

Misty: Glad you also thought of a romantic CRUSH!

Lucina: Glad you also enjoyed the magic of the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway!

Cross-Eyed Dave: Good news for now. But note what I wrote above to Irish Miss. It really does feel like I built a house on land owned by someone else. And they can fence off and padlock my house any time they feel like it.

The Skywalk is not as bad of a deal as you heard. You have to pay for a "package" which includes the bus and the Skywalk. The bus also goes to another viewpoint which was actually more spectacular in a way. But it is quite expensive. I would have to say that taking a helicopter ride is a better deal. I think they cost about the same per person!

Anonymous T said...

CED - Thanks for the article by Steve Politi - his style evoked memories of Dave Berry and Houston's Ken Hoffman (who also rated Waffle House's "food").

D-O: Ok, I tried your SERIF 'g' challenge. It was on my 8th try I got everything, including the "hat," right. It was the top-o bottom-oval connect that I kept mixing up left/right. Spoiler if you haven't played .

@5:50p - Yep. That's how I felt 10 or so years ago (and had to wait for the following day's paper for the answers! [without theme explained!!]). Steve's spot on inre: the intentional gradations of difficulty. Keep playing and you'll see the constructor's lagniappe for that extra AHA! To that end, stay and play with us at the Corner.

Cheers, -T

Lucina said...

Swamp Cat:
Thank you! My head hurts from the V-8 can dent!

Unknown said...