Oct 6, 2018

Saturday, Gareth Bain, October 6, 2018

Themeless Saturday Puzzle by Gareth Bain

Ach du lieber! Today we celebrate National German-American Day which is very noteworthy in Arlington, NE where I was born and now sub. Arlington was settled by many families from Germany who started many farms and the St. Paul's Church which was a true cultural force for generations.  This very strict Missouri Synod group forbid kids to dance, drink or smoke and girls were not allowed to play athletics. Needless to say this became a losing battle as the years rolled on - shades of the movie Footloose. My dad said that St. Paul members made great beer during prohibition!

Today's constructor is South African veterinarian Gareth Bain. In a very nice email from him, he has told me, " I am a shelter medicine veterinarian currently working in Gordon's Bay just outside of Cape Town and previously worked in East London". I sailed through Gareth's lovely offering in just over 20 minutes but the computer said I had a bad cell. A thorough search got me to finally change KASA/SO DUH to KANA/NO DUH

As a proud parent of a rescue animal, I am glad to blog Gareth's fun puzzle: 


1. Soap-drop indicator: PLOP - NASA shows the fizz you get when you PLOP an Alka-Seltzer tablet into a water sphere in weightlessness

5. Prepared for pie, in a way: CORED  - Here's what we use

10. Trunk extension: LIMB - Bartering tools

14. Buddhist priest: LAMA - Tibetan for high priest or chief  

15. The "A" in the Tokyo studio AIC: ANIME.

16. Stargazing subject?: IDOL - My stargazing involves astronomy 

17. Rural stopovers: INNS - This plaque proudly announces that George Washington slept in this Georgia INN belonging to Stephen Calfrey Pearce in 1791

18. Retro filter choice: SEPIA - My SEPIA wife and I at a famous venue

19. Importunate solicitor: TOUT  - Persistent salesman

20. Spin-off with a bluesy theme song by John Lee Hooker: NCIS NEW ORLEANS - Spinoff

23. 2000s political slogan: YES WE CAN - President Obama's catch phrase

24. Initial payments: ANTES  - Otherwise you want get any cards! ♥ ♦ ♣ ♠

26. European hub: ORLY  - Once your flight lands at ORLY, it's a 21 min trip to the Eiffel Tower

27. Industrious type: BUSY BEE - I married one

29. Nut: WEIRDO.

32. Ritual heap: PYRE - "Try now we can only lose, and our love become a funeral PYRE"

33. Rapper will.__: I.AM - Okay

34. Half a piano duo?: HAND - A beautiful four-minute video about playing piano with one HAND and dealing with a handicap

35. Chaparral plant: SHRUB - Here's some east of Colorado Springs

37. Longfellow's "The Bell of __": ATRI.

38. Iwo Jima flag-raiser Hayes: IRA - This first flag raised on Iwo Jimo was done by SSgt. Harold Schrier. Later the iconic Joe Rosenthal photo with Ira Hayes was staged

39. Half a classic cowboy nickname: KEMO.

40. Top of the order?: ABBESS - She's the CEO of the Abbey

42. DNA units: STRANDS  - Watson and Crick won the 1962 Nobel prize for discovering this structure of DNA

44. 1990s game console release, initially: SNES.

45. Strong feeling: THROE  - Many things are done in "the THROES of passion"

46. '60s-'70s singer born Ellen Cohen: MAMA CASS - John Phillips thought Mama Cass did not fit the image of the other Mamas and Papas who were string beans but he relented

50. Catcall?: HERE KITTY KITTY - What does a 500 lb canary say? 

53. Circumstances, idiomatically: BOAT.

54. Hilarious: A RIOT - Not usually a teacher's favorite student

55. Look for: SEEK.

56. Certain something: AURA - Captured with Auric or Kirilian Photography

57. "Obviously!": NO DUH - Rude!

58. Put away: SAVE - The ant put away food for the winter while the grasshopper frittered away his summer

59. Highland language: ERSE Inniu Dé Sathairn (Today is Saturday)

60. Irritations found in clouds: GNATS

61. Iowa Department of Transportation city: AMES - Straight down I-35 from  C.C. in Minneapolis


1. "Naturalis Historia" author: PLINY - The largest surviving publication from the Roman Empire 79 A.D.

2. Poker for knights?: LANCE - On March 10, 1524 Henry VIII was knocked from his horse by a LANCE in a joust

3. Old Dodges: OMNIS  - Along with the Plymouth Horizon, Chrysler's first front-wheel drive vehicle

4. It often looks like gibberish: PASSWORD - Programs generate these until you can put in something intelligible 

5. "No more discussion": CASE CLOSED.

6. Like turnpike ramps: ONE WAY - NO DUH!

7. Wisconsin college: RIPON - Their alumni include Harrison Ford, Al Jarreau and Spencer Tracy

8. Abu Dhabi bigwig: EMIR - Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan

9. Shaking event: DEAL - A recent historic one

10. Prolonged list, as of complaints: LITANY.

11. "It's safe to sit next to me": I DON'T BITE.

12. Onetime accessory for Britney Spears and Keri Russell: MOUSE EARS - Britney during and after

13. Nonkosher sandwich, usually: BLT - A 2015 Pew Poll showed 57% of Jews eat pork

21. Techie stereotype: NERD.

22. "Hakuna Matata" lifestyle: EASE - For your listening pleasure 

25. Ones in it for the long haul: SEMIS - Need a job,? They're all hiring!

27. Mitt Romney's alma mater: Abbr.: BYU.

28. Modern folklore: URBAN MYTHS - Some thought this curse dogged the Red Sox until they won the World Series in 2004 against the Yankees

29. Card game played by Phileas Fogg: WHIST - An illustration done for a printing of the Jules Verne classic

30. Annual observance celebrating commitment to the planet: EARTH HOUR - A world-wide event where lights and appliances are turned off for one hour at 8:30pm local time. The next one is 3/30/19

31. Behind: IN ARREARS

32. __ tem: PRO - PRO tem(pore) presides over the U.S. Senate when the V.P. is not in the building. John Tyler is the only one who ever became president

36. Darwin's __ Beagle: HMS - His work while traveling on that boat changed the world

37. Graph point's x-coordinate: ABSCISSA - A bit of arcana for us math peeps

39. Low joint: KNEE - A joint whose injury ends may athletic careers

41. Turtle's mouth: BEAK - Having this BEAK look back at you on the 9th hole on my golf course is scary

43. Vital vessels: AORTAE - Okay, okay ERSE showed me AORTAS is wrong

44. Didn't play: SAT OUT which is usually not done by the 47. Top squad: A TEAM.

46. Crete's highest elev.: MT IDA - Here's a hiking map in the local language

48. Martin or Miller: STEVE.

49. "I'ma Be Me" stand-up comic Wanda: SYKES - Yes, female comics can be profane also

51. Kodos' alien cohort on "The Simpsons": KANG - Okay, just not interested enough to look it up

52. It can be pumped: IRON - or...

53. Honey, in slang: BAE - a meh diminutive of Baby I guess



fermatprime said...


Thanks to Gareth and Gary!

Got through it OK dragging mob feet spelling ABSCISSA.

Have a great day!

OwenKL said...

FIWrong. SNE? was unknown, and I couldn't remember how to spell AB?CISSA. Ah, well...

If an ABBESS had an abcess, might it be a deep abyss?
Did Noah's BUSY BEES of the ark-hives reminisce?
Is the way dad jokes are corny
They pop into ears and bore me?
Does ABSCISSA square with ordinate because she orders it?


desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Only two missteps on this one -- forgot the S in NCIS and everything else was shifted by one space, and STOW before SAVE Knew there was a C in ABSCISSA, but couldn't remember exactly where. SNES just looked wrong, but I let it stand. Otherwise, this was a quick Saturday romp. Thanx, Gareth and Husker.

PASSWORD: I use LastPass, so all my passwords look like gibberish.

RIPON: Their alumni include Harrison Ford, Al Jarreau, Spencer Tracy, and my ex. The town is pronounced "rippin'" and there was a bakery factory that made Rippin' Good Cookies. Speed Queen laundry equipment also came from there.

IRA Hayes: Calls for a musical interlude.

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

Haven’t needed the word abscissa since high school, but somehow it popped out from a cranial fold. SNES was and still is a total unknown. Paused at bae and no duh, but otherwise zoomed right through.

Morning Husker, cat lifting looks like more fun than weight lifting!

D Otto - a classmate of mine went to Ripon College, and decided to stay there over the summer, getting a job at Rippin’ Good Cookies to pay the rent.

billocohoes said...

Joe Rosenthal's Pulitzer-winning photo was most definitely NOT "staged". There's film of the second flag-raising in which one frame exactly matches the photo. You can see it in the Wikipedia article at Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima

Rosenthal said he staged "a" photo but he wasn't referring to the famous one.

SwampCat said...

Billacohoes, thank you!! The famous Iwo photo was taken just to test the camera settings as the flag raising was being prepared. Joe claimed he didn’t even realize what he had until the film was developed. (Remember “film”?).

Yes, he did stage the formal shot with everyone standing around the flag pole. That’s why he said he staged “a” shot.

Anonymous said...

I knew this was impossible within 15 minutes and reluctantly got on with my day.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Got'er done to my satisfaction for a Saturday. Not my first choice for hub but when the 'r' fell for NERD, ORLY was the only 4-letter hub I could think of. Had ham before BLT. Finally got the NE corner with wite-out aid, and the only look-up was ATRI. Four nine-letter downs knitted the puzzle together nicely.

Thanks HG for the background on the author. I'v always enjoyed Gareth's puzzles over the years.

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning

Two days in a row with a FIW due to the Abbess/Abscissa crossing. I found this offering very challenging, mostly due to several unknowns: Pliny, as clued, Kang, Ripon, SNES, and "Hakuna Matata", plus the aforementioned Abscissa. I also had trouble with some of the cluing, but that can be blamed on a fuzzy brain. Lots of fresh fill made for a an enjoyable, if somewhat snail-like, solve. Favorite entry was Here, Kitty Kitty, a big CSO to our Mr. Meow.

Well done, Gareth and kudos to HG for the cheerful and informative write-up. Loved the clip from "The Lion King", it makes me want to see the movie! The kitty pics were cute, also.

Have a great day

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

Wait, Whaaa? 20 minutes? I listened to WWDTM & Ask Me Another and then flew the white flag... I got the East side OK(ish), but LANCE, OMNIs, AORTA- (wait for it....) was it (correct) West of NERD KNEE.

Thanks Gareth for my Saturday 'learning day.' EARTH HOUR, eh? I had -EARTHDAY because of the KITTY tHERE.

HG - Re: commentary on PYRE: The Doors?, Nice. Very Nice. The Alka-Seltzer in space GIF was cool and M.A.S.H. clip inspiring. Thanks for doing what you do.


PASSWORD - I use KeePass. LastPass lives in 'The Cloud' in which I've never had much trust.* [Bloomberg: China-SuperMicro-Chip. Awesome hardware hack! [very long article]].
NO DUH - Put it on someone else's computer (the Cloud) and you trust them to do the right thing by you... Riiiiight, SEE: LastPass breach.

DW is now over Russia on her way to Beijing. is pretty cool; I can stalk her from my laptop. :-)

Cheers, -T
*I mean, really, where do you keep your passwords to your IRA/brokerage [not FDIC insured] accounts?

JJM said...

The upper part of SE corner got me. I had to Red letter 3 cells as I have never heard the word ABBESS (and I'm catholic). ABSCISSA and SNES also need a red letter in each. Had it not been for those three cells I would be out riding my bike now before it rains .... again.

Have great weekend all!

Yellowrocks said...

Fine puzzle, Gareth. Interesting expo, Gary. I had one bad cell, thinking of it as a Natick.
I did not know AB-CISSA and SNE_. Now I regret that I missed that S. I know NES is a game console. I let the first S fake me out. Crunchy, but doable.
Somehow I remember Will I AM, probably because it is so weird.
The Bell of Atri by Longfellow is one of my favorite poems.
The Bell of Atri
I also like A Bell for Adano, a 1944 novel by John Hersey, the winner of the 1945 Pulitzer Prize for the Novel. It tells the story of an Italian-American officer in Sicily during World War II who wins the respect and admiration of the people of the town of Adano by helping them find a replacement for the town bell that the Fascists had melted down for rifle barrels.

Anonymous T said...

Nothing-apropos-lonely-guy-watching-DW's-flight-status Says...

Do some things make you go 'hummm'?
Mattress Firm is filing for Chapter 11. DUH. If you drive around Houston, you have to wonder, "Why so many stores?, Selling Mattresses (mattress-i?)"

My Bro (CEO one, not Army one) said the same thing a few years ago upon arriving after the ride from IAH, "WTF? How does this business-model work?"

I remember telling him that I read an article that it was "marketing;" see stores everywhere and that's where you go every 10 years or so.... Yeah, total BS.

Dig into it and you discover the company raised money from Gareth's hailing (South Africa) & Germany* by showing growth; Growth not by revenues but by stores opened. IMHO, it was a Ponzi scheme near the order of Enron. #Houston(?) #GoStros!

BigE, you seem to follow the financial-pages, what's your take?

Cheers, -T
*I love the journalist's aptronym by-line - her name is Blunt!

Yellowrocks said...

When we solve on the computer and FIR without using red letters and without looking things up we are singing the same tune. We used no assistance. Whether we solve on paper or with the computer, when we don't get something or have something wrong we admit to have FIW. Then we feel compelled to look it up on the computer or elsewhere to fix it in our minds for the next time.
95% of the time I use pen and ink, but I am not a Luddite.

Sandyanon said...

Listening to the ballad motivated me to look up more about Ira Hayes. A tragic story in many ways -- not quite all. It makes me wonder again about what shapes the direction of our lives. Destiny? Accident?

Irish Miss said...

Anonymous @ 11:11 ~ Please read my posts from today and yesterday. I have been solving on my iPad for several years and have NEVER used any electronic help. I either finish the puzzle correctly, without help, or I do not finish, or I finish it incorrectly, in which case I admit failure. Please also read YR's clarifying comments @ 11:47.

Picard said...

Yes, it is Saturday. Tough, but no double Natick crossings for me.
Unknowns: KANG, SYKES
BAE is annoying, but we have seen it before

Husker Gary How many hours does it take for you to create your write-ups? I am in awe of your illustrations and videos. Loved the PLOP in space!

Irish Miss and Yellowrocks I am with you. I use pen and paper without assistance. Others are free to do as they will, but I am with you.

Almost all of my hikes go through CHAPARRAL with many a SHRUB.

Here is one example of a hike I led through CHAPARRAL with many a SHRUB. And many a cave!

I have seen STEVE Miller perform here and in Los Angeles. No photos that I can find. I love his music!

I was sure BEAVER was the industrious type before realizing it has too few letters. The MIT mascot is a beaver.

Did anyone else think Dodge DARTS before OMNIS? We had a 1967 Dodge Dart when I was growing up. A "compact" car that is bigger than any car today. You could squeeze three just in the front bench seat!

desper-otto said...

PASSWORDS: Anon-T, I figure having complex passwords is preferable to the simple, memorable ones I could come up with. I agree that keeping the passwords in the cloud is risky. But I use two-level security on my financial accounts -- if the login attempt comes from an unrecognized computer, I'll get a phone call with a validation code that must be entered in order to complete the login. T'aint perfect, but so far, so good. 'Course that's what the guy said as he passed the 50th floor after jumping off the Empire State Building.

Picard said...

From yesterday:
Mike Sherline Thank you for the kind words about my RIO/COPACABANA photos!

Not sure if anyone saw my HIKING/Biking photos in ACADIA National Park.

Here again are my HIKING/Biking photos in ACADIA National Park if anyone is interested.

My most interesting adventure there was being on a sailing ship there and being part of the crew while being a tourist. Maybe I will share those photos another time.

CanadianEh I am with you regarding SAS Shoes and being comfortable as the top priority! I had friends living in San Antonio in 1991 and I was pleased to visit the SAS factory store there.

Magilla Go-Rilla said...

Red Sox didn’t win the 2004 World Series against the Yankees. They beat the Yankees in the league playoffs getting the Sox into the World Series where they beat the Cardinals.

PK said...

Hi Y'all! Thank you for a challenge, Gareth. However, this ONE did BITE! The top third was as snowy as Wisc. in winter after the first pass. Later when the snow persisted, it took a lot of red-lettering to shovel out. The bottom was more doable for me. Still pretty fun.

Thank you, Gary, for the well-prepared lesson.

MOUSE EARS? HERE KITTY KITTY! True to form our African Veterinarian gave us a big helping of animals: MOUSE, GNAT, KITTY, BEAGLE, BEE, turtle mouth = BEAK. I had forgotten those girls were on Mickey Mouse Club (never watched it) and the name of Darwin's ship. Made me smile: I DONT BITE crossing BUSY BEE. Would it BITE if it weren't so busy? Interrupt the BUSYness and find out.

ABSCISSA: never heard of it. Ouch! RIPON: ditto, new one for me.

I thought John Lee Hooker was a retired local DJ I met once.

Why anyone cares how anyone else does the puzzle amazes me. Working cws is such a private & personal thing.

Michael said...

Okay, so far no one has given any explanation for "Honey, in slang = BAE". The letters fit because of the perps, but I live in the wrong ghetto, so the word is meaningless.

FWIW, the Urban Dictionary says, "AAVE (African-American Vernacular English) pronunciation of "babe," used as a term of endearment toward loved ones. "Bae" can be a pronoun or an adjective. The term caught fire to mainstream colloquial Standard American English jargon and, due to unfamiliarity with its origins, developed multiple definitions. Trolls and people who dislike its use will often incorrectly juxtapose "bae" with Danish "bæ" which means "poop" (often to shut people up). Others will treat it as an acronym such as "before anyone else." The term is frowned upon by many, as it is seen as ghetto and uncouth, although its origins are simply dialectal."

Jayce said...

Too hard for me. SNES? BAE? Sheesh.

CrossEyedDave said...

Irish Miss, there are many great scenes in The Lion King.

And some words of wisdom too...

AnonymousPVX said...

Kang and Kodos are hysterical.

Got the solve despite some truly tough clueing. Not many mark overs as most spaces were left blank before crosses and WAGs provided clarity.

Enjoy the weekend all.

Ol' Man Keith said...

I can't remember who told me, but I thought KEMOsabe was Comanche for "Meathead."

Not much into math - or game consoles - so ABSCISSA was a major Natick. I seem to have shared that problem with others. ("Sheesh," indeed, Jayce!)
Otherwise, this was a truly amusing pzl from Mr. Bain.

Picard, Irish Miss, & Yellowrocks ~
May I join your pen/paper club?

One diagonal today.
The mirror line, NE to SW, offers a partial anagram. Half its letters spell ...
I prefer that to DREAM BORE and even, if one can imagine such a thing, DREAM BOER! (There isn't much else available among all those leftover vowels.)

Northwest Runner said...

Maybe reading Rex Parker's NYT blog has made me extra grouchy, but I found a cloud of irritation in the puzzle. Mt Ida rose high above the plains of Natick, but still in the shadow of urban myths which are not a thing. And when did the Lone Ranger become a cowboy? I'll finish with something nice though, the NE was very well done.

WikWak said...

WEES. Tough, tough, tough... but doable. IRA Hayes was familiar because I’ve often heard the Johnny Cash song linked by D-O. Not sure where ATRI was hiding among the little grey cells, but it popped up when needed. ABSCISSA crawled out of the same place I guess.

Loved BUSY BEE and HERE KITTY KITTY. Poker for knights? = LANCE took much longer to fill than it should have; I got stuck on variations of the card game and didn’t want to give up on that for a long tome.

HG, the comic (Far Side?) illustrating KEMO Sabe was great! Also the "Alka-bubble." How long do you spend each week finding things like that to liven up the blog? Thanks!

I’ve come to look forward to a Gareth Bain puzzle. At first I found him too difficult but once I got used to his style I began to enjoy it.

'Bout time for my first early evening nap. Have a great weekend, All!

WikWak said...

And oh, yes—GNATS. Love those GN*** words.

Wilbur Charles said...

Re. Curse of the Bambino, I've noted before that if such a curse existed, it would have had it's birth in 1945. This article is the best I've seen.

The Curse in detail

I too am a P&I man. And I FIW ed on the same cross as YR. And, this wasn't as difficult as some Saturday offerings. It's not Mensa it's just that this is what we do.
I penned in PLINY right away then had doubts. There were two of them, pere-fils. BEAK had me buffaloed. Why Turtle?


D4E4H said...

Good evening Cornies.

Thank you Mr. Gareth Bain for this challenging Saturday CW. I needed P & P, and WAGS to FIR.

Thank you Husker Gary for your excellent educational review.


Lemonade714 said...

Northwest Runner - if not a Cowboy, why was the lone ranger riding his horse through the old west?

GB, I can't believe it has been more than 2 years since you had a puzzle published here. for many years he had 10-15 published every year in the LAT, and today, I believe is his 91st LAT, starting back with this effort in 2009 as well 15 in the NYT. This shows the problem with working for a living and constructing. Welcome back Gareth

Scout said...

"I see by your outfit that you are a cowboy..."

Abejo said...

Good evening, folks. Thank you, Gareth Bain, for a fine puzzle. Thank you, Husker Gary, for a fine review.

I started this puzzle late. Spent all morning and part of the afternoon at church taking down dead trees and cutting them up for firewood. Had about 20 people out. Nice.

The puzzle was tough. I bounced around with an answer here and there. I got a foothold in the South and worked my way up.

Getting NCIS NEW ORLEANS and HERE KITTY KITTY helped me out.

ABSCISSA stumped me for a long time. Finally winged and lucked out.

A couple tricky ones, ABBESS and CORED.

Getting late. See you tomorrow.



Yellowrocks said...

The Lone Ranger fictional character was a Texas Ranger, one of six Rangers ambushed by an outlaw gang. Only Reid, hence the Lone Ranger, survived and was saved by Tonto. The Rangers rode horses and uses guns to fight outlaws. They did not herd cattle.
The real Texas Rangers

Ol' Man Keith said...

"♬... and if you get an outfit, you can be a cowboy too.♪♬"

I was also bothered by the reference to KEMO as part of a "cowboy" nickname. I was a great fan of both the radio and TV Lone Ranger programs, but I never, ever thought of him as a cowboy.
He and Tonto helped decent citizens, including farmers and ranchers, as well as local sheriffs (who were never quite up to the task on their own). They helped prospectors and stage coach drivers and assisted the cavalry when called upon.
They were even known to aid some good Native Americans (formerly known as Indians).
And, yes, they helped an occasional cowboy or two, but I don't believe either personally ever punched a cow.


Anonymous T said...

Oh, there was a fun paper & pen / online argument earlier that's now not there*... I'm a newsprint (I know, right?, a GenX'er still gets a newspaper?) guy.
Honestly, I get too distracted on my comput Squirrel! to play online.

YR - I do now recall that back-story re: The Lone Ranger. Thanks. //and, DUH, no real cow-poke would wear a getup like that :-)

D-O: Ah, Grasshopper, you are stronger than 99.9% (including DW!**). MFA (Multi-Factor Authentication) is the best way to go. SMS (text) is worst-case MFA, Yubikey / push-auth is a step up, token-codes is 'most-trust' [um, except that one time RSA's algorithm was hacked -- they reissued hundreds-of-thousands of tokens]. I wish my IRA/Options account-provider offered some form of MFA -- I sold off shares for Eldest's tuition and xfer'd $$$ to my bank w/ just a UID & PWD!

Cheers, -T
*thanks TTP!
**Oh, I try. "It's just to inconveeeenient" is all I hear. [risk-mitigation: her account isn't allowed to go over $x, where x==we can lose it and not hurt for the electric bill].

Anonymous T said...

Want to hear a funny? DW just called from China - "Help us! What's a good place to eat near Beijing Zoo? We can't Google from our phones!"

//sigh, I'm still giggling...

Since I'm already posting, I guess I should provide a sample-cite for my criticism of SMS MFA..

Cheers, -T