Dec 20, 2018

Thursday, December 20th 2018 Frank Virzi

Theme: The Buck Starts Here: Slang terms for the mighty dollar bill head up five down entries, as the reveal explains:

35D. Highest price, and what five Down answers have: TOP DOLLAR. The dollar term is on the top of the answer, hence the need to have the themers running vertically, not horizontally.

3D. Uncovered, in a way: BUCK NAKED. Those Duluth Trading commercials have certainly had an impact, like them or not. That was the first thing I thought of when I filled this in.

6D. Grade-school formation: SINGLE FILE.

9D. Personal, as a talk: ONE-TO-ONE. I had one-ON-one first, that didn't work out so well.

31D. Political commentator who wrote "Men at Work: The Craft of Baseball": GEORGE WILL.

"Baseball, it is said, is only a game. True. And the Grand Canyon is only a hole in Arizona."

39D. Beach cookout: CLAMBAKE. Food! Now you're talking. Here's a New England version:

From New England to Old England, where I'm currently enjoying some typical British rain weather. Fun puzzle from Frank, the theme worked nicely and an absence of any "clunk" in the fill made for a smooth solve.

Let's see what else we've got to talk about:


1. Goes out: EBBS.

5. Car ad fig.: MSRP. Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price. I'm not quite sure how realistic the MSRP on cars actually is, no dealer ever sticks to their MSRP guns. Maybe Tesla?

9. Poppy extract: OPIUM.

14. Stretched to the max: TAUT.

15. Cambodian cash: RIEL. The British conveniently forget that trading giant Jardine Matheson was founded on the opium trade.

16. Italian grandma: NONNA.

17. West Coast gas acronym: ARCO. Atlantic Richfield Company. Known for cheap gas. I don't put it in my car, the engine doesn't like it.

18. Violation of trust: INFIDELITY.

20. Kipling's Rikki-__-Tavi: TIKKI. The mongoose in Rudyard Kipling's Jungle Book:

22. __ Dane: GREAT. What happened to the little dane? The great dane is certainly aptly-named.

23. Familia member: TIA.

24. Really get to: NETTLE. Tried NEEDLE, changed it.

26. Beeps and peeps: NOISES.

28. Fluffy neckwear: BOA.

30. Acts charitably: DOES GOOD.

32. Ararat lander: ARK.

33. "__ be married, / My grave is like to be my wedding bed": Juliet: IF HE.

34. Potentially offensive, briefly: NOT PC.

38. Bumbling one: BEE.

39. MDX ÷ X: CLI. Your Roman math. Ten into 1510 gets you 151.

40. Unlock, in verse: OPE.

42. Bit of soccer support: OLÉ.

43. Feature of some Gene Autry songs: YODEL.

45. Pasternak heroine: LARA. From "Doctor Zhivago". Inspired by the real-life Olga Ivinskaya, Pasternak's great love and literary support (or manipulative self-server, depending on who you believe).

47. "An everyday spud is a commentator," e.g.: PUN. Pretty awful, this one. "Common 'Tater".

48. Super Soaker, e.g.: WATER GUN.

51. It starts in Mar.: DST. Daylight Saving Time. Californians voted to keep daylight savings time year round this November. Sensible folk, no more springing and falling.

52. Distressed damsel's cry: SAVE ME! I went for HELP ME! first and made a virtual ink-blot fixing it.

55. Do business with: SELL TO.

57. Takeout menu general: TSO.

58. Moisten: BEDEW. Very poetic.

60. Tops off: FILLS.

63. Too high for people to catch?: ULTRASONIC. Not sure what I was thinking with "HYPERSONIC", but it seemed OK at the time.

66. Meh: BLAH.

67. Jacobi of "Murder on the Orient Express" (2017): DEREK.

68. UNC Chapel __: HILL. University of North Carolina.

69. Shakespearean schemer: IAGO. From Othello. Here's Laurence Fishburne and Kenneth Branagh from the 1995 movie version:

70. Nobel, for one: SWEDE.

71. Rights org.: ACLU.

72. 1990s-2010s slugging nickname: A-ROD.


1. Californie or Floride: ÉTAT. State, in yer French, of course.

2. Italian port: BARI.

4. Stir up: STOKE.

5. Hosp. test: MRI.

7. Browser button with a curved arrow icon: REFRESH. Ah, I've got one of those. I didn't see the HOME button last week, but my refresh button is right there.

8. Move in a tutu: PLIÉ.

10. Party pro: POL.

11. Monogram ltrs.: INITS.

12. Loosen, as laces: UNTIE.

13. Uxmal inhabitants: MAYAS. Important Mayan site on the Yucatan peninsula:


19. Five-O nickname: DANO. "Book 'em, Dano!"

21. "__ be an honor!": IT'D.

25. Work up a sweat: TOIL.

27. Altar words: I DO.

28. Treat with supreme care: BABY.

29. McFlurry flavor: OREO. I've never had a McFlurry. Do they do other flavors? Speaking of Oreos, I travelled to the UK with a roll-on sized bag full of Oreos and M&M's. My family are addicted to the more unusual flavors which they can't get this side of the pond.

36. +: PLUS.

37. Lowest price: CENT.

41. Songwriter with John: PAUL. Very few of the Lennon/McCartney songs were true collaborations.

44. Girl in a pasture: EWE.

46. Poison in some whodunits: ARSENIC.

49. Tight ends?: TEES.

50. Viet Cong org.: NLF. National Liberation Front.

52. Small earrings: STUDS.

53. Heaps: A SLEW.

54. "À __ santé!" : VOTRE. Cheers! To your good health!

56. Calf neighbor: TIBIA. One of your lower leg bones. A very close neighbor to your calf.

59. Persian Gulf capital: DOHA.

61. Mar-a-__: Florida estate: LAGO. Lago and Iago today.

62. Flip-flopped?: SHOD. Who was it who blew out a flip-flop? Ah yes ... Jimmy

64. Rosy: RED.

65. Gulager of "The Virginian": CLU. William Martin "Clu" Gulager to give him his full moniker. His nickname was given to him by his father, after the clu-clu birds, or martins, nesting at the family home.

That about does it for me. Time to find out if the rain has stopped! Here's the grid, and a picture of the old mill at dusk in Lower Slaughter, the charmingly-named village I'm staying in tonight (there's an Upper Slaughter as well!)

And finally the grid:


Notes from C.C.:

1) Hi Steve, hello from the other side!

2) Here are two pictures of Melissa's sweet granddaughter Jaelyn, who's going to be a big sister next year.

Jaelyn was a pink flamingo for Halloween. you can see her black eye - she was accidentally kicked in the face by an exuberant cousin just before trick-or-treating.

Jaelyn is going to be a big sister in may!


Lemonade714 said...

After all the grousing about harder puzzles, this seemed like an ok to easier Thursday with no "unfair" clues. Or perhaps it was just things I know and I lucked out.
I would guess maybe RIEL was the most obscure fill, but the perps were there. I did like seeing IAGO and LAGO in the same puzzle.

I have always admired DEREK JACOBI as an actor especially his tour de force I CLAUDIUS which for me is one of the best things ever done on television and a production shout out to Steve and the BBC.

Now to go read about the history of JARDINE MATHESON and what the 'ell it has to with RIEL .

Thank you steve and Frank

OwenKL said...

A BUCK may go around NAKED,
When his buck skin becomes faded.
In the neighborhood,
He might still be paraded!

{C.} Something better when I wake up.

Lemonade714 said...

BTW, beautiful pictures, we are certainly blessed with so many gorgeous grands here at the Corner.

I read and still do not get the connection Steve was making between RIEL and JM but it is early.

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Guess who didn't get the theme? Again. Yup. Same guy who didn't read the complete reveal clue. Again. REAL/RIEL, SANA/DOHA, and COST/CENT were my write-overs this morning. Nothing that couldn't be quickly fixed. Thanx, Frank and Steve.

CLAMBAKE: Strictly an east-coast phenomenon, methinks. That photo does look at lot like a Louisiana crawfish boil, complete with whole potatoes and corn-on-the-cob. I'm making myself hungry!

UXMAL: I can hear it now, "Uxmal! No hands!"

Acts charitably: Today I'm sending letters to three charities that received sizable donations in October, but failed to send confirmation-of-receipt letters. I need those letters to support my tax deduction.

Chore time...

Anonymous said...

I'd like to send Holiday Greetings to all my cyber-friends. I think of you often. I still solve the puzzles, but I can't get past the 'robot' to post.


Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

True, this wasn’t a tough puzzle, but nonna was unfamiliar, and that caused a pause.

Morning Steve, hand up for needing to go read about Jardine Matheson.

Irish Miss from yesterday - if I recall correctly, you were the one who asked about updated photos of MBee’s adorable granddaughter. Well done, you! Thanks Melissa and C.C. for bringing us those nice images.

inanehiker said...

This had enough crunch to make it a bit challenging - though part of that I did myself. I also said ONE ON ONE and I filled in MUCKRAKED instead of BUCK NAKED early on- even though I knew that was more of a Fri/Sat answer! 78% right as Splynter used to say!

Thanks Steve for the fun write-up, and mini travelogue of the UK. What flavors of Oreos and M&Ms do they like? I haven't met a flavor I didn't like - but some of the weird seasonal oreo filling colors are not my favorite like bright orange!

I'm with D-O , the CLAMBAKE looks a lot like a Door County Wisconsin Fish Boil(substituting the clams of course).

This is my last day in the office until after Christmas- we are having Ugly Christmas Sweater Day - even though everyone else will be there tomorrow.
Thanks for letting us know how you are Montana! Congrats on the grands- they are "adorbs" -wasn't that slang in last week's puzzle?

billocohoes said...


Plural "Heaps" with singular "A SLEW" took a while to parse.

I've been to what were called CLAMBAKES (or clam steams) but not a real one, which involves building a wood fire on top of rocks, then burying the rocks with the clams under the sand for a couple of hours.

Yellowrocks said...

Easily solved except in the SW corner. I had PRIZE and ROZ at first, creating such an inkblot I couldn't see to continue. I went to online masters mode to clear that corner and easily found the answers without cheating. However, I didn't find the theme. Silly me was looking at the across fill instead of downs.
Jaelyn is so cute.
Montana, good to hear from you. Merry Christmas. Maybe our Corner techies can advise you about your posting problem.
Uxmal and Derek were the only unfamiliar words
Being an ex kindergarten teacher (and later grades 1 through 5) Nonna reminds me of this book by Tomie dePaola, the classic, Caldecott Honor–winning story Strega Nona, Grandmother Witch.
I have Italian friends who call their Grandma, NONNA

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

No serious stumbling blocks but a few unknowns, as clued: Mayas, NLF, and Bari. I, too, had One on One, at first, and Needle instead of Nettle. I liked the crossing of Hill and Will. Tibia was almost Texas because I read the clue as Calif, not Calf. Add geographically impaired to visually impaired. (Tibia brought back memories of that horrific fall on Christmas Day, 2013.) CSO to Jinx at Untie! Favorite C/A was Flip-flopped=Shod. Did any else notice (or care about) the plethora of O endings: Arco, I do, Tso, (Sell) to, Iago, Oreo, Lago, and Dano.

Thanks, Frank, for a fun and enjoyable solve and thanks, Steve, for the across the pond summary. Hope you're having a jolly good time in Merry Old England!

Thanks to CC and Melissa for the sweet pictures (Hi Dudley) of Jaelyn. (Her poor eye!) I'll bet she's excited about being a big sister. Congrats to all!

Have a great day.

Big Easy said...

After they found Noah's ARK, the murderous NLF spent their last RIEL to sail to BARI to try and use their WATERGUNs to kill General TSO, they only found both NONNA and TIA Sophia BUCK NAKED. They yelled in unison-- SAVE ME. Then they set sail for the ETAT of 'Floride' hoping to reach Mar-a-LAGO and have the 'never Trumper' GEORGE WILL join them. Their nagivator wasn't too swift and they ended up in DOHA and that nasty SWEDE Nobel blew them out of the water. Let's just say, I'm NOT PC.

Good Morning VIET NAMese NLF. Not a hard puzzle but way too much foreign language. DEREK, IF HE, BARI, A VOTRE sante, were unknowns solved by perps.

Last I checked my leg, my TIBIA was IN my calf, not one of its neighbors. Leg areas- foot, ankle, calf, thigh. Agnes, TEXAS is not close to California.

YODEL- DW just told me that the girl who yodeled and sang CW won the Voice this week.
GREAT Dane- real name---Deutsche Dogge
SAVE ME- I also filled HELP ME before correcting it.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Agree with Lemon about it being on the easier side. Wanted bhat before RIEL became clear from perps. (I think bhat is Thai.) Much fresh fill; fun to work on.
SWEDE - We saw Nobel's home from the boat tour along Stockholm's waterfront on the L. Mälaren side. Beautiful area.
NETTLE - A NETTLE leaf is on the coat-of-arms of Holstein.
DST - My Dad kept DST year round on his dairy farm. Extension of WWII DST. Better for the cows vis à vis milking time.
ULTRASONIC - I had an ULTRASONIC procedure yesterday to confirm that an axillary mass was benign. Apparently a side result of a sentinel node removal 2 years ago. (See FLN.)
SINGLE FILE - When our destroyer squadron would form up that way it was called column formation. If the ships stationed alternately left and right for better ahead visibility, it was called column open order. Not a good deployment for ASW.

SwampCat said...

I thought this was going to be hard and was surprised when it was all filled in. Thanks Frank the challenge. I had very few unknowns but my brain was slow to engage on some. YR, I also thought of Tomie de Paola’s Strega Nona. I also learned Cyanide has the same number of letters as ARSENIC.

I went to Duke and Chapel HILL was 7 miles away according to the highway sign. The sign in Chapel Hill said Durham was 12 miles away. I never did solve that little puzzle, and I’m not sure anyone else did.

Thanks Steve for the picture of the mongoose. Rikki Tikki Tavi is one of my favorites.

TTP said...

Good morning. Thank you Frank and thank you Steve.

In addition to the various terms for DOLLAR, we also had CENT. Fran's puzzle came one S short of being DOLLARS AND CENTS.

No problems. Just a couple of slowdowns that needed to be filled by perps. DEREK, CLU, NONNA.
I've never been to a CLAM BAKE or a fish boil. Not my cuppa.

Hello Montana. Right back at you. Happy Holidays !

Cute pics of Melissa's granddaughter.

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Frank Virzi, for a fine puzzle. Thank you, Steve, for a fine review.

My first entry was CLI. So, I started in the center and worked outward in all directions. Got it all (eventually).

My last area to finish was the SE corner. I had THIGH for 56D. When I erased all that everything else fell into place, which gave me TIBIA.

I liked the theme. Had MUCKRAKED for 3D until I realized we needed a dollar somewhere in 3D. So, I put in BUCK and then NAKED became obvious.

Lemonade: I believe Steve meant to enter his Jardine Matheson next to OPIUM which was 9A. He just missed it by a couple entries, 15A.

Now I have to clean up the kitchen from all the cooking I did yesterday. When I got home last night I was shot.

See you tomorrow.


( )

CanadianEh! said...

Thursday toughie. Thanks for the fun, Frank and Steve (have a wonderful time in the Olde Country!).
This Canadian found this CW a little 66A and crunchy. Other people here may complain about too many sports, arts, language clues; I complain about too many American clues! So I will chalk my DNF up to my Canadian disadvantage today.
Of course you all know that we have not BUCKs, CLAMs, SINGLEs, GEORGEs or ONEs; we have Loonies (and no CENTs!). (And RIEL was a Canadian politician and leader of the Red River Rebellion.)

I could not remember that West Coast gas, ARCO, although we have had it here before. Since BARI was also unknown, the R square was blank.
In the south, WILL was unknown as was ACLU and CLU (I had another blank square where the U was needed.) I did figure out the Amerian Civil Liberties section but our Canadian version, CCLA, is called an Association.

Baste (thinking of turkey again) before BEDEW left me questioning how those Teas had tight ends!
I had Ends before EBBS, and hand up for ONE on ONE before TO. My Nobel was a Prize before a SWEDE.
I looked at the 5 blank squares for "Monogram ltrs." and wondered who had that many names to give a 5 letter monogram (royal family members maybe, eh Steve!) Lightbulb moment with INITS.

Smiled at "Flip-flopped=SHOD".
I knew AnonT would know NONNA immediately. There are so many versions of Grandma, Grandpa, Oma, Opa, Poppa, Nana in the different languages. I must LIU to find the Italian word for Grandpa (NONNO?)

IM - I missed noting all those O words. I did see CLI and CLU, OPE and OLE.

Merry Christmas, Montana. Good to hear from you.
d'otto- when I donate to charities online, I almost always get an immediate e-receipt. Some charities here wait until the new year and issue one receipt for the whole tax year. Saves them money (stamps) and they hope you will donate more than once!
Great photo of the granddaughter, Melissa. Such excitement to have another grandbaby on the way!

Enjoy the day.

Lemonade714 said...

Thank you ABEJO, and duh me. Opium indeed.

Hey Montana, been to Denver anytime recently? Devin is working in a hotel bar now.

Rick said...

Easy? You should see my newspaper crossword. Steve talked about ink-blot - mine looks like a horse, which I put in place of YODEL. Rorschach would be proud. Frank Virzi's puzzle made my mind dizzy. But I was glad to see that THE BIG EASY has taken over my old gig of making stories out of the words from the puzzle. Nonna and Tia Sophia buck naked? Translating as grandmother and aunt. I like my Swedes Muckraked, or sorry BUCKNAKED. Hand me that opium pipe and don't put any ARSENIC in it.
Thanks to all you crazy bloggers, Merry Christmas! ...and stuff...

Tinbeni said...

D-N-F ... Not even close ...

Knew I was in trouble when 67-a, DEREK wasn't clued as "Former Yankee Captain, Jeter."

Though 72-A, A-ROD was a former Yankee.

Well my Sunset Toast will be a little soggy.
It is coming down in buckets here.


Misty said...

Well, like CanadianEh, I found this a little tough, but for me that's pretty normal for a Thursday. And the theme was clever and fun--so many thanks, Frank. Only I still don't get GEORGE as having to do with money? And I'm also still a little puzzled about what flip-flopped has to do with SHOD? I had a busy day yesterday, so am still a little tired this morning, I guess. Glad you're having a good time, Steve. And sweet pictures of Jaelyn.

Happy holidays to you too, Montana.

Have a good day, everybody.

Lucina said...

Thank you, Frank Virzi (Italian?) for an enjoyable grid journey!

This was a trip down memory lane for me.
SINGLE FILE (teaching)
BARI (a Canadian friend was born there)
ARCO (we have it here but I don't use it)
DEREK (he is a marvelous actor whom I've seen many times)
IAGO (love some Shakespeare) Juliet, too.
SWEDE (Sweden is a beautiful country I visited long ago)
PLIE (my daughter and granddaughter had ballet lessons
BUCKNAKED, LOL! (what Steve said about those ads)
TIA (my last living one is 94 years old)
MRI (I remember being in that tube and it's not a good memory)

Sigh. Since I relate to Nana I misspelled NaNNA even though I've read the books mentioned above.

After filling TOPDOLLAR I looked for them and found them all on TOP!

Thank you, Mr. Virzi and Steve! Enjoy your holidays with your family.

C.C., thank you for posting Jaelyn's photo. It's great to know that those beautiful genes will continue to be passed on.

Have a happy day, everyone!

Yellowrocks said...

Shod wearing flip flops. Flip flopped.
George, dollar bill with George Washington on its face.

Picard said...

Fun puzzle, but I did not get the theme until I was almost finished! Hand up for MUCK RAKED before BUCK NAKED. I wonder if that was an intentional diversion? If so, it worked! Last area to solve to FIR!

Hand up NE was tough, too, with unknown NONNA. DEREK, CLU, IF HE, RIEL also unknowns.

Here I got to see PAUL McCartney perform at the Hollywood Bowl 25 years ago for an Earth Day concert.

JOHN and PAUL were truly legendary as SONGWRITERs and as musicians. And PAUL still is. I think he would do it all for no money; he really seems to enjoy every minute of it.

The guy on the right is a real MAYA who was a good friend in graduate school.

His name was Edgardo Rodriguez. He was from near Merida in Yucatan and his first language was MAYAn. I tried to find him there years later. It turned out he died here in California. I still miss him.

I have lots of photos of the constructions of the MAYAS, too.

Never saw the BUCK NAKED Duluth Trading Ads.

Here is a BUCK NAKED Duluth Trading Ad. I found it a bit unpleasant to watch, actually.

I had a hard time figuring out the Common Tater pun. Until I said it out loud.

Misty said...

Thank you, Yellowrocks, glad to understand those clues now.

Picard said...

From yesterday:
Big Easy thanks for validating that you also have never heard ORT used in real life. Nor had you heard the CHEESE line in FARMER IN THE DELL.

AnonT I never saw Mork and Mindy, so I did not know about the Robin Williams rainbow suspenders. But I think I saw him once as a street performer in San Francisco in the late 70s. I assumed the tunnel rainbows were a gay pride thing. A learning moment that it was just a public works person trying to brighten the day of commuters!

As for the rocket launch with bad capacitors, the article does not say where it is supposed to happen.

BillG and AnonT yes, we have tried each time to catch the Vandenberg rocket launch. Most recently yesterday at 5:44PM. We will try again today!

desper-otto, Yellowrocks and Lucina thanks for the CHEESE and ORT observations!

xtulmkr said...

The Pebble Beach Pro-Am golf tournament started when Bing Crosby invited friends to play golf, enjoy a CLAMBAKE and a raise a little money for charity. For this reason, I associate a clambake with the west coast.

ARCO or Atlantic Richfield COmpany seems a misnomer for a "west coast gas acronym".

I was raTTLEd before NETTLEd and my thigh was my calf's neighbor. The clue seemed to call for muscle to muscle rather than bone to muscle.

Montana said...

Spending some time trying to be more computer literate.
I’m signed in again. Now I’ll see if I can get by the loop of a dozen 'robot' screens!

I think I did it.
Lemon, I was just in CT for the last 2 weeks of November, with family, then babysat in Denver, the first 2 weeks of December. I am now home in Montana with no travel plans for awhile.


desper-otto said...

Montana, when you're logged in with your Blogger account, you can just skip those robot screens -- you don't need to prove you're not a robot.

Michael said...

Not bad for a Thursday puzzle.

One quibble, though: 37d, 'lowest price', a "mil" (1⁄10-cent) or a "basis point" are lower than a cent.

Lucina said...

My sinus allergies persist all year but I find relief with Stinging NETTLES in tablet form. They are quite effective!

That is a handsome MAYAN friend. I'm sorry to hear he's gone now.

It's good to see you post again!

Husker Gary said...

-Subbing today - I had a DVD player break down and had to scramble to get the videos shown. The kids were great while I fixed the problem
-Then the admin. paid for and served a nice soup/salad lunch for staff and one sub!
-I subbed in grade school once and had to learn how they have to LINE UP to go anywhere
-Infidelity has run wild here with our middle-aged faculty pairing with younger teachers
-James Michener of Hawaiian missionaries - "They came to the islands to do good, and they did right well."
-Seniors I had yesterday thought it was stupid that some Christmas songs are suddenly NOT PC
-Remember when we had “BABY” our cars to get them to start on a cold day?
-Nice pix and write-up today!

Jayce said...

An enjoyable puzzle. I stepped into all the same pitfalls that many of you did.

To clarify what California voters approved regarding Daylight Saving Time, the ONLY thing that the Proposition did was to allow the state legislature to decide DST start and stop times without requiring voter approval to do so. It did not make DST effective all year around; to do so requires an Act of Congress. Current Federal law does not allow any state to have DST all year around. If Congress does make a law allowing DST all year, then and only then can the state legislature opt for it if it wants to, without voter approval.

Merry Christmas!

Anonymous T said...

Hi all!

Well, I was BUCK-stupid and FILL-Stubborn in the NW leaving mUCKrAKER in place. I went to find the Italian port (so I could finally fix what's wrong) on Steve's grid and the first thing I saw was BUCK. Well, *UCK.

Thanks for the puzzle Frank - kept me company waiting for the dermatologist. (why do they set an appointment at 10:15 but keep you on ice for 30 minutes?)

Thanks for the expo during your Holiday Steve. Hope the rain lets up; but if it doesn't, just close your eyes and head to Margaritaville.

WO: Nv- b/f SELL TO showed up.
Fav: CSO to Pop's wife - NONNA (I'll have to call and see if she played today)


Hi Montana - good to see you "blue" again!

Wanna see a big Super Soaker/WATER GUN? [9:07, but you get the idea after 2 min]

Cheers, -T

Ol' Man Keith said...

Ta~ DA!
A tough, enjoyable puzz requiring P&P, but doable...
OK, so I needed a little help changing SPR to DST, but that was just a pebble on a rocky road.

Ol' Man Keith said...

Owen ~
You may only give yourself a "C" on today's Corner poem, but you deserve a solid "A+" on your Jumble opus!
No lie.

Yellowrocks said...

Calf, rather than being the whole lower leg, is just the fleshy back portion of the lower leg. It does not include the bones, so the clue is legit.
Montana, I'm glad you are blue again. I missed your posts. You sure do travel.
I made ginger boys this morning with a new recipe. I didn't care for them at first, but after sitting few hours, they are yummy.
Spitz, it is great your ultra sound procedure showed benign results.
I am going for an MRI in early January to see whether I need cervical spine surgery, which is most likely. I dread the long recovery period because I am on my own. The worst is not being able to drive. I can find work arounds for most things. I wonder how I will change my collar for showering.
I raise a glass of wine to all my friends here. A votre sante. Happy holidays.

Jinx in Norfolk said...

FIR, but this one was right at the edge of my capabilities. Made most of the erasures others mentioned: RIaL, raTTLE, NOn PC, oaf==>BEE, Bare NAKED, and Thigh==>TIBIA.

At first I was thinking of Elton John's husband Bernie as the songwriter's partner, but I couldn't remember his last name.

Most of the stuff mentioned by Lucina were unknwns to me.

Thanks for the fun, fellas.

PK said...

Hi Y'all! Great fun puzzle, Frank! Great expo, Steve!

I got all the theme entries, but didn't think GEORGE was a money word. Guess it is, if you say so. His picture is on the bill.

DNK: RIEL, ARCO, DEREK, BARI, NLF, A VOTRE. Learning moments.

CLAMBAKE & earlier puzzle MUSSEL: my husband was leveling a field for flood irrigation years ago. The scrapers kept running into piles of MUSSEL or CLAM shells. The field was in the bend of a river where a creek ran into it. Lovely place that apparently had been a large Native American village & corn field. That would have been before more modern machinery tilled the soil and the silt in runoff killed whatever lived in those shells in the river.

WATERGUN: most successful birthday party I ever hosted was the one where nine little 6-7 yr.old boys received a WATERGUN and were shown the big water tank for refills on a hot Sept. day. Much running about and giggling from those little squirts.

Like B.E. I did the progression of foot, ankle, Thigh. The T stayed black to clue me into THIGH.

More bad news: my son-in-law had to have emergency surgery for a detaching retina then two more emergency surgeries on following days for tears. Daughter says his poor face looks like something out of a monster film with a prominent blood red eye. We hope the sight will be saved.

Melissa: Darling picture of Jaelyn. Where did you get that feathered flamingo outfit?

Spitzboov said...

YR - Thanks for the good wishes.

On your surgery, I would think you have access to post-operative home nursing or assistance as needed to do thinks like change dressing, assist with prosthesis, etc.

I have decided I do not like the automated blood-pressure cuffs that much of the medical community now uses. In the run up to get the systolic reading, way too much clamping is exerted on the arm IMO. Being on Warfarin exacerbates getting black and blue marks.
Yesterday, when the nurse came in with the automated blood pressure unit, I very politely asked (BH was sitting next to me.) if she could do it manually with the cuff and bulb. She graciously did so and even asked my typical systolic reading so she wouldn't over squeeze the arm needlessly, She got a reading of 122/66 and we were all happy.

Lemonade714 said...

Great BP Spitz; Montana you were in all of my places - my Connecticut birthplace and and regular visit to Devin in Denver. Glad you are back.

billocohoes said...

For all the times crosswords have "Abe" for five-dollar bills and pennies, GEORGE deserves at least one mention for a single

Wilbur Charles said...

I had to perp in a lot of fill. I had just finished and hadn't thought out the theme when I got a request to take an abused woman to a safe house. Problem?(And only lemony will appreciate this) she needed to go to immaukalee. *

I didn't get the TEES =Tight ends????


I could have ALLEY-OOPed to Lemonade-ville. Weather was horrible

Anonymous T said...

WC - there's a T on each end of tight...

MB - I was remiss in complementing you on your grands. Cutie!

Spitz - My Dr. exclusively does BP manually; it's always better than the $60 machine.

Cheers, -T

fermatprime said...


Thanks to Frank and Steve!

Only a few questions: BARI, STOKE, REFRESH, NLF and DOHA. But FIR after a little work. Also finished yesterday all right!

Cute pics, mb!

Hope to see you tomorrow!

Spitzboov said...

Anon-T @ 2138 - - My regular doctor does, too. In fact he gets the pressure off a mercury manometer. It's the the other specialists' offices with whom I have the issue.

Lucina said...

Does anyone else watch Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries? I just saw one that involved two feuding Italian families and they bandied the word NONNA, the grandmother, throughout the show. The grandfather was called NONNO. Too late for me, though. I could have used it this morning.

Anonymous T said...

Lucina - had a scene down by the docks w/ all the tomato sauce exploding? With older families fighting over a recipe?
Nope, never seen it :-)

DW & I love Miss Fisher - seems like we've seen them all twice.

Ciao! -T

Lucina said...

That's the one, AnonT. NONNA Luisa was the murder victim.