Dec 27, 2018

Thursday December 27th 2018 Bruce Haight

Theme: Corner Crossing Crowd - the first and last name theme entries connect with each other in one corner:

1A. Popular peck picker: PETER 
1D. ---: PIPER. This one's a bit of an outlier as the other theme entries emerge - a character from a rhyme, rather than from a cartoon or a movie.

6A. Sinister "Smallville" supervillain: LEX.
6D. ---: LUTHOR. Superman's nemesis.

9A. Ghastly gargantuan gorilla: KING.
9D. ---: KONG.

31A. Conniving carrot cruncher: BUGS.
31D. ---: BUNNY.

35A. Fantastic Four foe: DOCTOR.
35D. ---: DOOM. This was all crosses for me, but not too much of a struggle.

50A. Tall toon toothpick: OLIVE.
50D. ---: OYL. The focus of Popeye's affections.

54A. Flirty Fleischer flapper: BETTY.
54D. ---: BOOP. Oddly, these cartoons were played on British TV in the children's programming. In retrospect, a strange place in the schedule considering the subject matter.

60A. Dedicated DC damsel: LOIS.
60D. ---: LANE. Another from the Superman comics.

Impressive alliterative theme today. I wonder if Bruce played with PETER PARKER rather than PIPER as he would have been more of a fit with the rest of the theme entries, but that would mean stacking 6's in those corners, not always easy.

Let's see what else we've got:


13. Peaceful: IRENIC. A new word for me today. Derived from the greek word for "peace".

15. Wire service initials: UPI. United Press International. The HQ is in Florida.

16. Music halls of old: ODEA. Odeon in the singular.

17. Black-and-white bears: PANDAS.

18. Like the most rarefied air: THINNEST.

20. DFW postings: ETDS. You need help to decide between ETA, ETD and ARR.

21. Queens tennis stadium: ASHE. The legendary Arthur Ashe. The arena is home to the US Open.

23. Small type size: AGATE. 5.5 typographical points.

24. Seafood delicacy: ROE.

25. "I'm Free" musical: TOMMY. The composer, Pete Townsend, would object to the term "musical". He composed it as the first "rock opera". Here's Elton John as the Pinball Wizard.

27. White House foreign policy gp.: NSC. National Security Council.

30. __ school: PREP. Prep schools in the US prepare the students for college. In the UK, they prepare them for a school (which are private). Go figure.

38. Self-disqualification: RECUSAL.

40. Camden Yards team: ORIOLES. Baltimore ball club.

42. Fret (over): AGONIZE.

43. Like a short report: ONE PAGE.

44. Acted badly: SINNED.

45. Sticky situation: MESS.

46. "You said it": AMEN.

49. NFC East team, on crawl lines: NYG. New York Giants.

51. Big Pharma watchdog: Abbr.: FDA. Food and Drug Administration.

58. "Me? Never!": NOT I!

61. Scenic viewpoint: OVERLOOK.

63. Certifying exams: BOARDS.

65. Wine opener?: OENO-

66. It may be brown or golden: ALE.

67. Ball State University city: MUNCIE. Something else I didn't know today. The crosses were solid.

68. Soft call: PSST!

69. "Criminal Minds" agent: FED. I've never seen the series, which currently runs to 309 episodes. I don't think I have time to catch up on all those.

70. Chilly temps: TEENS.


2. Millay's muse: ERATO. The muse of love poetry. Edna Millay was a poet and Pulitzer Prize-winning author.

"What lips my lips have kissed, and where, and why, 
I have forgotten, and what arms have lain 
Under my head till morning; but the rain 
Is full of ghosts tonight, that tap and sigh 
Upon the glass and listen for reply, 
And in my heart there stirs a quiet pain 
For unremembered lads that not again 
Will turn to me at midnight with a cry."

3. Leanings: TENDENCIES.

4. Objectives: ENDS.

5. Narrow inlet: RIA.

7. Transitory things: EPHEMERA. Lovely word.

8. Number between I and XI?: XII. Tricky one, this. The number 12 sits between 11 and 1 on a clock face. Inverting the two clue numbers makes it even more obscure.

10. Creative spark: IDEA.

11. Fit together, as matryoshka dolls: NEST. Russian dolls, more informally.

12. Portal: GATE.

14. One side in "Gone With the Wind": Abbr.: CSA. Confederate States of America.

19. Word of dissent: NAY.

22. Indy brand: STP. Octane-boosting additive. I'm sure there are others, but STP seems to have the monopoly on race car sponsorship.

26. Digital video files: MPEGS. For the Moving Pictures Expert Group, a standards organization for audio and video compression.

28. Dots on a transit map: STOPS.

29. Pop genre?: COLA.

32. What may be resorted to when words fail: USING FORCE.

33. Long look: GAZE.

34. Downhill racer: SLED.

36. Writer Sarah __ Jewett: ORNE. An writer new to me.

37. Majestic: REGAL.

39. Element of change?: COIN. Fun clue/answer combination.

41. Florida State athlete: SEMINOLE.

47. Called forth: EVOKED.

48. Safety device: NET.

52. Brought to ruin: DID IN.

53. Horse relatives: ASSES.

55. Pre-revelry nights: EVES. There's a couple of them at this time of year!

56. Teller's stack: TENS.

57. Leisurely pace: TROT.

59. "Let's put smart to work" company: IBM. Pure guesswork, but I got this first time.

62. Buffoon: OAF.

64. Last word of "Casey at the Bat": OUT.

"But there is no joy in Mudville - mighty Casey has struck out."

And I think that's the cue for my last out of the day. I'll be back on the west side of the Atlantic by next week. Here's the grid!


Notes from C.C.:

Happy 59th Birthday to our adventurous pilot Dudley, who started "Rabbit, Rabbit" tradition on our blog. This picture was taken during Montana's visit to Northeast in September, 2013.

Left to right: Marti, Dudley, Hondo & Montana


OwenKL said...

FIRight, liked the theme, all fictional, most from fav comics. Also appreciated alliterative appellations!
PETER -- nursery rhyme tongue twister
KONG -- movies, pulps
LEX, DOOM, LOIS -- superhero comics
BUGS, BETTY, OLIVE -- cartoons, comic strips.

IdylIC > (unknown) IRENIC, signs > FORCE, Ing > IBM, ONE PAss > ONE PAGE (a companion SO to yesterday's TROLL and anti-SO to NSC, RECUSAL), grod > KING (before I grokked the theme)

In a Bijou, a.k.a. an ODEA,
I thought I had an IDEA.
Had a brother, Ding Dong,
Who could supply him a musical aria!

PETER, Peter, pumpkin eater
Met Peter Parker in a theater.
Peter Cottontail
Began to wail
When he ate Peter PIPER'S pickled pepper!

BETTY BOOP was pleasantly plump,
OLIVE OYL was THINNEST with hardly a bump,
Brünnhilde was certain
When she sang at the curtain
That BUGS BUNNY had a fat rump!

{B+, B-, A-.}

Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Steve and friends. I liked this puzzle a lot. I initially tried KONG for 9-Across, but IDEA disabused me of that. It wasn't until the second pass, when I figured out LEX LUTHOR, that I realized the gimmick.

I learned that a Portal is not a Door, but a GATE. I also found it interesting that GATE crossed with AGATE.

I learned that a Long Look is not a Leer, but a GAZE, and that Horse Relatives are not Mules, but ASSES.

IRENIC is a new word to me, as well.

My favorite clues were the misdirections: Pop Genre = COLA and Element of Change = COIN.

Sarah ORNE Jewett (née Theodora Sara Orne Jewett; Sept. 3, 1849 ~ June 24, 1909) was from Maine. Most of her works were about Maine and the Maine seacoast. She was required reading when I was in high school.

Happy Birthday, Dudley

QOD: What the world needs is more geniuses with humility; there are so few of us left. ~ Oscar Levant (Dec. 27, 1906 ~ Aug. 14, 1972)

Lemonade714 said...

Once again a wonderfully creative puzzle with one of my favorite things- alliteration. I stand and applaud Bruce.

The puzzle was actually more doable than most lately with ORNE and IRENIC the only challenges, and with my mother named IRENE only the first required perps.

There was a mini-theme of independent women writers from Maine, with Susan telling you about SARH ORNE JEWETT . I will add the link to the life of EDNA ST. VINCENT MILLAY who I read in my school days. Their lives were controversial but their work was well admired.

Happy birthday Dudley and many more.

All of you subject to awful weather, be safe. The good news, the days are getting longer.
Thank you, Steve and I hope your trek home was all you wished for and more.

Lemonade714 said...

I seem to be unable to type without making errors anymore. Drat.

Big Easy said...

Well Steve, I'm glad I wasn't the only one who had never seen the word IRENIC or heard of Sarah ORNE Jewett. I also never knew AGATE was a type size either. I filled ELITE before KING KONG beat it up. DOCTOR DOOM & ORNE gave me fits as I had never heard of either. With the CTOR & OOM in place I kept thinking HECTOR, RECTOR and VICTOR as possibilities.

After PETER PIPER, the them was an easy guess but it was a DNF because I misspelled LUTHOR as LUTHAR, thinking TAMMY the musical instead of the Who's TOMMY. I fell like an idiot because I had that album along with Quadrophenia. Duh!

I filled XII correctly but it was perped. I might have understood if it had been clued clockwise as "Number between XI and I" instead of counter-clockwise.

PANDA are not bears

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Inked in KONG at 9a before I figured out the theme. That messed up Maine a tad, but was quickly fixed. The rule seems to be that names of two-named cartoon characters should both begin with the same letter. But there are plenty of exceptions: Bruce Wayne, Homer Simpson, Dagwood Bumstead, etc. I definitely didn't Haight this one. Thanx, Bruce and Steve.

ERATO: Learning moment -- she's not the muse of all poetry, just erotic poetry and mime.

RECUSAL: There's not enough of that going around nowadays.

Happy birthday, Dudley. Fly somewhere interesting.

BobB said...

Never heard of Sarah ORNE Jewett. My mother's maiden name (and my middle name) is Jewett and her family was from Maine. A distant relative?

I had Betti Boop and Olive Oil. Doh!

billocohoes said...

Hand up for KONG before the theme.

BRUTE force in the east, took a while to straighten that out, that's the trouble with working up from the bottom.

DNK S. O. Jewett, I think we've seen ORNE as a river in France (Normandy).

AGATE type is used in the horse-racing forms in the newspaper.

Arthur ASHE two days in a row

TTP said...

Thank you Bruce and thank you Steve ! Yes, I really liked this puzzle too.

Got a few answers here and there as I plucked the low-hanging fruit, but then got traction in the SW corner that led to BETTY BOOP and OLIVE OYL, so I knew what to look for in the other --- locations.

Didn't know IRENIC and ORNE, but didn't need to. The perps gave them away.

Steve, I had similar thoughts when I read "musical" and knew the answer was TOMMY. Uh, no. Also, save yourself the trouble of watching Criminal Minds, unless you like gruesome. There was good character development early in the series, but the story lines and scenes soon turned me off.

Happy Birthday, Dudley. 59 years old and born in 59. A neat birthday for you.

inanehiker said...

Enjoyed the creativity in this puzzle- once the gimmick/ theme was figured out early on it made it a quicker run than expected!

WEES about not knowing IRENIC, and the trickiness of the I and XI clue - I filled it in correctly but took awhile to figure out that I was right and wasn't going to have to change it.

Thanks for the CSO for KANSAS yesterday - good memory for those who mentioned it - I grew up in KANSAS but now live in Missouri (after first living in California,Missouri, Illinois, and Wisconsin).

Thanks Steve and Bruce! and HBD to Dudley!

Lucina said...

Actually, Sarah ORNE Jewett's middle name has appeared in many puzzles, still, I can never remember it. ODEA is another CW staple but I recall it more readily.

What a fun time this puzzle gave me. I love alliteration and with PETER PIPER in place I realized that the blank would complete the character's name. Brilliant!

TOMMY gave me fits only because I misspelled LUTHOR as LUTHER and have only heard of jPEGS so it took a while to realize it was MPEGS and TOMMY emerged. Yay!

My friend BETTY collects BETTY BOOP memorabilia. I think it started accidentally when friends and family began giving them to her as gifts.

IRENE often appears in crosswords as the goddess of peace so IRENIC seemed logical.

I like the word EPHEMERAL.

Agreed, PANDAS are not bears.

A very happy birthday, Dudley! Will you celebrate in flight?

Thank you, Bruce Haight and Steve. Travel safely, Steve.

Today I'm going to a luncheon and gift exchange with my ex-nuns group.

Have a beautiful day, everyone!

Oas said...

Thank you Bruce Haight for the challenge this morning . Even though the theme popped up from the first clue I struggled along almost giving up about halfway through .BUGS BUNNY gave me new life and I got the rest .
Thanx. Steve for the write up. Didn’t understand the XII till I saw the clock dial.
CSO to my oldest sister at 13A. We teased and fought a lot in growing up years making our childhood anything but peaceful. Complaining to mom didn’t help as she would say when you grow up you’ ll be the closest and best of friends of the bunch, Maybe not spot on but not too far off either. Mom now nearing 94 still living on her own able to impart timely words of wit and wisdom.

On line check in today for a flight tomorrow to see Baby Girl :-))

OWEN thanks for the chuckles and L714 for reminding us that the days are getting longer.
I love summer.

CanadianEh! said...

Thursday tussle. Thanks for the fun, Bruce and Steve.
This CW was just above my pay-grade and officially a FIW.
Eventually, I did see the across, down names which helped a little.
DOCTOR DOOM was my nemesis.
I did not know ORNE and thought Victor Voom might work for "the Fantastic Four foe".
Since I was working in my newspaper, I had no red letters to correct my error.

I also did not know the Smallville supervillain's first name; since I had decided that the number between I and XI had to be either III or VII to fill the 3 spaces, I was puzzled. Very tricky to use the numbers on the clock!

Hand up for liking the words IRENIC and EPHEMERA.

Happy Birthday Dudley!
Wishing you all a great day.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Happy Birthday, Dudley. Maybe you can do a barrel roll to celebrate.

Flailed around a bit at first until I saw how the theme worked with the --- connections. PETER PIPER kind of set the stage. Two WAGS both worked; TOMMY and AGATE. Never heard of that type size. Wanted "mouse print". Steve, thanks for explaining XII.
Agree about PANDAS. But Wiki says: "For many decades, the precise taxonomic classification of the giant panda was under debate because it shares characteristics with both bears and raccoons. However, molecular studies indicate the giant panda is a true bear, part of the family Ursidae."
EPHEMERA - Streams that totally dry up after a precip event are termed EPHEMERAL.
OVERLOOK - When we visited the LaGrande III dam and reservoir complex of Hydro-Quebec. it featured a scenic OVERLOOK which the tour guide kept calling a belvédère.

Dudley said...

Hello Puzzlers -

Thanks for the birthday wishes today! It’s a nice day hereabouts, and I wish I could in fact go for a brisk airplane ride, but I cannot. A quirky coincidence of timing requires that I appear in a doctor’s office for an age-related exam known to senior gentlemen. Not fair, really.

As TTP May have noticed, the last digit of my age very neatly coincides with the last digit of the current year, because I was born so close to Jan. 1, 1960. I have benefitted from this little convenience all my life.

I smiled right out loud at Hahtoolah’s Oscar Levant quote. I’d like to adopt it for myself!

Steve’s observation about Betty Boop reminds me that I know absolutely nothing about Betty Boop. Even so, I’d have been willing to guess it’s not fare for children.

The photo C.C. posted reminds me of the nice day we four Cornerites gathered in Hartford, CT. It’s nice to have Montana posting with us again! I have had occasional email exchanges with Hondo, a very nice fellow. Sadly, I have lost contact with Marti (HeartRx). If you’re reading this, Marti, know you are missed.

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

Seeing Bruce Haight's byline is a guaranteed fun and enjoyable solve. Hand up for Kong before the penny dropped on the theme. I shared Lucina's confusion with the Luther ~ JPegs dilemma but, changing the E to O led to Tommy and the final Tada entry. I also went astray on Emoted/Sinned, Dime/Coin, Elite/Agate, and Gape/Gaze. I loved the theme and had at least heard of all the names, even if I didn't know their provenance, e.g., Dr. Doom, or spelling, Luthor.

Thanks, Bruce, for a terrific Thursday theme and thanks, Steve, for your cheery commentary. Safe trip home.

Happy Birthday, Dudley, hope it's a special day, at least after the medical visit! 🎂🎁🎈🎉🍾 Thanks to your guidance many years ago, I was introduced to Cruciverb and online solving.

TTP @ 8:00 ~ I agree with you on "Criminal Minds." I loved that show in the beginning, especially Mandy Patenkin's (sp?) character, but the gore and depravity soon turned me off. Some of the story lines were just too horrific to even contemplate, let alone watch.

I received an email yesterday telling me my Discover statement was online to review prior to automatic payment on Jan. 15th. I reviewed the charges, as usual, and all was in order. However, in the Transaction Pending section, there was a charge on Dec. 24 from Southwest Airlines for $348.80. After a call to Discover, a call to Southwest, another call to Discover, I learned that someone enjoyed a flight from La Guardia to San Antonio, courtesy of my credit card. This is the third time in two years that my Discover card has been used fraudulently and I have had to cancel the account and get a new card. Actually, it is the fourth time because there was an automatic cancellation after a grocery store hack where I had used the card. As the card has never been out of my possession, I have to assume that someone at one of the vendor sites is stealing customer data. Any thoughts?

Have a great day.

desper-otto said...

IM, you'll probably never learn how your Discover info was stolen. It's good that you keep tabs on your charge cards -- some folks never look at the statements. They just blindly pay 'em. I use my credit cards for just about everything, but I check my card balances online at least weekly. I've also frozen my credit report at all four credit bureaus, so nobody should be able to open a new account in my name.

SwampCat said...

What a clever theme! Like others have said, I caught on at KING KONG. What fun! Thanks, Bruce. I also loved the alliterative clues. Steve, thanks for the info-filled expo.

Owen, I loved these poems, and also yesterday’s. I didn’t get to work yesterday’s puzzle but I read over the comments.

Lemon, maybe it’s not your typing that’s the problem. Autocorrect does me in often!

Dudley, Happy birthday.

Husker Gary said...

-What can “1 –-“ mean? Oh, a lot of alliterative fun!
-The THINNEST air resides atop Mt. Everest and is only 33% of sea level air
-My cousin’s Xmas letter is only ONE PAGE but must be in AGATE type
-The ORIOLES and NYG’s have fallen on hard times
-OVERLOOK? Yes, this is actually Tom Cruise sitting atop the highest building in the world in Dubai for Mission Impossible 4
-In 1969, David Letterman got a B.A. in telecommunications from Ball State
-Unlike Leno, Letterman did not disguise his political TENDENCIES
-Even Rhett fought for the CSA eventually
-I remember trying to find my STOPS on this Berlin subway map
-Yeah, bill, Bruce eschewed the River ORNE for an obscure writer’s middle name
-A very sad and unusual safety net
-HBD Dudley! The picture has some great bloggers – one who posts regularly, two who post too seldom and one who no longer posts and is sorely missed.

Adele said...

Someone fill me in please... finished the puzzle but I don’t get “wine opener?”....OENO??

Cotton said...

The PANDA is, in fact, a bear. It is classified in the Family Ursidae. Recognize that word root fellow cruciverbalists? They used to be considered related to the raccoon or even the red panda but more recent DNA testing has confirmed they are related to bears and more specifically the spectacled bear of South America(per Google).

On another unrelated note, I am enjoying watching bowl games while the wifey and others are joining the masses using those gift cards they received. I see the Pinstripe bowl coming up this afternoon seems to be an exciting matchup to be played at Yankee Stadium in NYC. I think Wisconsin will have the temperature advantage and I wonder if Miami would rather have played in a warmer clime? Maybe someplace like Dallas? Oh, wait, never mind...

desper-otto said...

Adele, it's simply a prefix (opener) denoting wine For example from Merriam Webster:
oenophile noun
oe·​no·​phile | \ˈē-nə-ˌfī(-ə)l \
Definition of oenophile
: a lover or connoisseur of wine

Yellowrocks said...

Lovely puzzle, Bruce. Great theme. Despite grocking the theme immediately at PETER PIPER, this took me a long time and, still, I blew a few cells.
I missed the MY in Tommy, which I never heard of. I thought of NAH and NAW, but not NAY. Drat! That Y would have iced it. I know JPEG, but not MPEG. My other waterloo was the DO in Doctor Doom, also new to me. I have heard of Sarah Jewett, but could not dredge up ORNE. That O would have iced it.
Muncie was easily perped. AGATE and IRENIC were quite familiar. I remember LEX LUTHOR. Having been raised a Lutheran, I thought it almost sacrilege that LUTHOR and Luther are pronounced the same. I am glad of that U.
In retrospect, I wonder why I found this puzzle difficult.
I wondered why XII fit the perps. Thanks, Steve for explaining, and thanks for the interesting review.
I have a set of Matryoshka dolls.
A very happy birthday, Dudley. Enjoy your day.
We arrived home from David's at 11:00 AM today, having spent two days there. Yesterday we just hung out and relaxed, so pleasant and companionable. Today David had to report in person to the unemployment office in NYC.
Sorry, for my giVing the corner short shrift this week. I was quite busy early in the week with Christmas prep and baking, but I solved the puzzles and read everyone's wonderful contributions. At David's I find typing on the Kindle laborious and I hesitate to ask to ask the use of anyone's computer.
Have a wonderful day.

Jayce said...

I liked this puzzle a lot too. Extremely clever and fun. Had many of the same solving and learning experiences that many of you had. I also thought VICTOR VOOM seemed reasonable, not knowing anything about the Fantastic Four and having totally forgotten Sarah Orne Jewitt.

Happy birthday, Dudley. Like you, I realize that I know absolutely nothing about Betty Boop, except what she looks like.

Excellent write-up, Steve. Ron, your write-up yesterday was excellent too. Owen, thanks for your enjoyable verses. I think I like reading yours more than Edna Millay's.

Gosh, all my life it has been drilled into me that pandas are not bears, and today I learn they are part of the family Ursidae. At least the giant pandas are. Sheesh.

Not only did Oscar Levant play the piano pretty darn well, he had a wonderful dry sense of humor. He also smoked like a chimney.

Yeah, Marti sure dropped off the face of the earth, huh.

Good wishes to you all.

Misty said...

Well, the LA Times again wasn't there in the morning, but at least it arrived a bit later. So I did get to do the crossword puzzle this morning--a blessing since it was a Bruce Haight puzzle. Thursdays begin the toughies for me, but on this one I had AMEN and NOT I and that helped me get SEMINOLE and then filled in a chunk of that section. It was great to see Arthur ASHE again, after our discussion yesterday. And I even got the theme after filling in that crazy BUGS BUNNY. So, a fun morning, all things considered--many thanks, Bruce and Steve.

Happy Birthday, Dudley, and lovely picture of our Cornerites!

Have a great day, everybody!

gmony said...

I hate to say this but this was real easy for a thursday. I got the theme in about 4 answers. Then it was cruise time. The north west slowed me all.

Adele said...

Desper-otto.... thanks....maybe I’ve seen it before but I guess it didn’t stick...hopefully I’ll remember it for the next time it finds its way into a puzzle!!

Kupier said...

I feel ya Jayce. Remember when My Very Educated Mother Just Showed Us NINE Planets. And then this uppity astrophysicist, Neil deGrasse Tyson, tells us that Pluto isn't a planet. (Btw,I used to respect the guy but then he started telling me that my religious beliefs were wrong and I lost most admiration for him. Then it comes out he likes to abuse women and I feel vindicated that he should worry about his own beliefs and not mine.)

Anyway, science changes its mind daily.

Ol' Man Keith said...

How fickle is our national attention!
I'm pretty sure the present-day equivalent to OUT, the final word of Casey at the Bat, would be INTERCEPTED--as in "Young Goff was... etc."

Ta- DA!
A most enjoyable pzl today from Mr. Haight. Tough and somewhat daunting for one who doesn't keep up with pop types and super heroes, but in the end doable because of the characters' alliterative names.

Thanks for the write-up, Steve and for the fine choice of that wonderful erotic-nostalgic verse by Edna St. Vincent Millay.

HBD Dudley!

Ol' Man Keith said...

Sorry, Kupier @ 1:17pm ~
But I feel obliged to keep the record straight. Dr. Tyson has time and again emphasized that he does not object to your (or anyone's) religious beliefs. He limits his opposition to certain activists who seek to inject religion into science classrooms.

In posting this "correction," I have no wish to step on your toes. And I do not take a position regarding the recent allegations against the man, certainly not based on the partial public reports, and not until the evidence is clarified and tested.

Irish Miss said...

My replacement Discover card was delivered by FedEx at 11:56 am. I wouldn't have known this, though, if I hadn't been tracking the package online, because my FedEx delivery person never, never, ever rings my bell to alert me. I'd like to ring his bell, if not his neck! Good thing there were no Porch Pirates lurking.

DO, I, also, froze my credit report but, as recent events have shown, I'm still vulnerable to theft. On the positive side, this latest sticky-fingered felon could have run up some serious charges beyond the airline ticket. The previous thief charged almost $2,000.00 on web domains.

Dave 4, best wishes, if you're reading the blog. Hope you're feeling stronger by the day.

Abejo said...

Good afternoon, folks. Thank you, Bruce Haight, for a fine puzzle. Thank you, Steve, for a fine review.

Caught the theme with the names. Got LEX LUTHER early, but could not figure out the Roman Numerals. I did not think of a clock. Duh! So simple.

For 60A I was thinking of some D.C. person (District of Columbia). Anyhow, worked out.

MUNCIE and Ball State University reminded me of Edmund F. Ball, Chairman of the Ball Corporation, and also a Knight Templar and one of the founders of the Knights Templar Eye Foundation. He was also heavily involved with the Wilmer Eye Institute.

My daughter and her family arrived late last night from Ohio. Nice to see them. Her mother is home now and will be seeing her doctor on Monday.

See you tomorrow.


( )

Irish Miss said...

Just read a tasty tidbit over at Crossword Fiend regarding Bruce's puzzle which, I believe, no one else noticed or commented on. The clues, as well as the answers are also alliterative. Wow, Bruce, just Wow!

Ol' Man Keith said...

Irish M ~
I believe Stave mentions the alliteration in his blog, and Owen was the first of several to point it out in the clues (the multi-word "Also appreciated alliterative appellations").

SwampCat said...

IM I did notice the alliteration in the clues, actually before getting the answers. I thought I commented on it but maybe didn’t make myself clear. The puzzle is a masterpiece!!

PK said...

Hi Y'all! Fulfillingly fun puzzle, Bruce, thanks! Fantastically fun expo, Steve!

I caught on to the theme with the first two which certainly helped all the way down. Some of the cluing was too tricky to get a name from without perps. AGONIZE over the clues? NOT I. Just kept going. Dr. Doom was unknown. Also tried hECTOR hOOM & rECTOR rOOM besides "V", "S", "N". Finally, got "O" for the 2nd letter and straightened it OUT.

Last fill was the "P" in PREP/MPEGS. Had PRE but didn't think of PREP school. Only one that I know of in this state so it didn't come to mind. Also had trouble with the "C" in NSC/COLA cross. I got stuck on NSa. Forgot there was also a Council.


Learning moment: I must confess that until today I didn't know the meaning of ALLITERATION. Another hole in my learning processes.

Happy Birthday, Dudley, you young whippersnapper! I graduated HS the year you were born. The audacity of you being so young!

Loved the EROTIC_ Millay verse.

I wondered if Marti had a reoccurrence of her previous medical problems when she quit so suddenly.

PK said...

IM: if you are having problems with Discover Cards, would changing to a different company solve the problem? I would wonder if someone employed with Discover was using private info since it keeps happening. I recently had to change card companies but not because of that.

Roy said...

I remember Millay from high school literature; I don't remember what poem of hers was in our textbook. It certainly wasn't the one that appeared here.

Irish Miss said...

OMK @ 3:38 ~ Yes, I did notice both Steve's and Owen's reference to the alliterative fill but I completely missed Swamp Cat's specific reference to the clues being alliterative, also.

Swamp Cat @ 3:39 ~ Mea Culpa, Mea Culpa. At least I used an "I believe" qualifier in my "news" alert! 😇

Wilbur Charles said...

IRONICALLY I was discussing the most unsuitable children's movie ever: Bambi to wit the scene wheee her father gets a bullet through his head.

Of course Bambi gaves us ENO her favorite xword aunt much like the reappearance of ISAO Aoki yesterday.

I never got in here this week much like some others . I knocked off Tuesday and Wednesday back to back. When I did the latter I thought "Gee, this is tough for a Monday" .

It was tougher than today .

YR, a belated HBD . Btw, I'm typing this on my smartphone so I'm with you on Kindle.


WikWak said...

Late to the party again, again. You'd think that now that I'm feeling better I would be getting at this earlier, but nooo.

Cruciverb was down for several days again and I am finding that I don’t have the patience to do the puzzle if I can’t download it to Crossword (the app I use). Thank goodness it was back today.

WEESAME. Except that I knew DOCTOR DOOM, LEX LUTHOR, etc; signs of a misspent youth.

I really reveled in all the alliteration. Pretty perky puzzle. I knew I would like it when I saw who the author was. And Steve, great job as usual.

HG: the second stop from the bottom of the red line on your map is Oncle Toms Hütte—looks like Uncle Tom's Cabin, no? I wonder what the provenance of that name is?

Good evening, all.

Ol' Man Keith said...

Ah, yes, IM but isn't Owen's "appellations" enough of a reference to the clues? Especially going out of his way to repeat the key words four times?
Credit where 'tis due...

Corner colleagues can catch clever curiosities quicker'n crazed cat's claw!

billocohoes said...

IM, thieves can scan your card even if it’s still in your pocket. That’s how you found out about Venmo, an app for sharing money between phones. Somebody used it to wipe out my checking account. The bank caught it and cancelled the transactions, but I needed a new card

They sell protective wallets, but I’m told just lining your wallet with aluminum foil is effective

billocohoes said...

No, it’s how “I” found out about Venmo. I blame autocorrect

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

Wow, that was tough for a while, what with not having down clues to work with before catching the gimmick. After the aha!, it's smooth sailing (except for DOCTOR DOOM; until looking up ORNE, --CTO- wasn't enough to 'see' it. (Hi C,Eh and YR!). So, Technical DNF for me.

My first themer was Peter Piper - but that was after a couple of passes through the snow.

Thanks for the fun Bruce. Nifty execution; I'm sure it was tough to find gridable names (like Steve said, PARKER fits characters but that's 6 letters on the down).

Thank you Steve for the fine expo. I think "rock opera" gives away too much - appropriate, maybe, for a Monday for solvers that don't know TOMMY and "I'm Free" by heart :-)

WOs: USING Fists; ones b/f TENS in the till; Sta'ns (Stations - don’t judge :-) ) b/f STOPS.
Fav: TOMMY. It was also first fill inked.

{B, A, A}

Loved the QOD Hahtoolah.

IM - If you've yet to click HG's Tom Cruise link don't!!! My feet tingled the second I looked at it...
Also, about that credit-card: Count the ways -- Online shopping (other than the big-boys like Amazon), check-out / ATM skimmers, or even, discrete ones for waiters to "palm" your card.

BillO - I assume you have an RFID-type "contactless" card (those with a "WiFi" symbol on them). I don't want that nor any other "wireless" pay, thank you. I choose security over convenience.

Happy Birthday Dudley!

Cheers, -T

SwampCat said...

All this talk of hacking credit cards makes me want to return to cash In lieu of clam shells!

billocohoes said...

Anon-T, as far as I can tell I don’t have RFID cards, I can’t be sure how the intrusion was done, I’d just never heard of Venmo before.

Yellowrocks said...

Bruce, the puzzle was indeed a masterpiece. Havin alliteration in the clues and the fill was spectacular.
IM, so sorry to hear of your Discover card woes. It is scary that chicanery happened with more than one card. I agree that you need to find a different company's card.
I notice Dave4 is not up to posting. He gave his phone number a while ago. Could someone find it for me, please, if it is not too much trouble?
So now pandas are bears? I accepted what I had been taught, but my gut kept saying, "They must be bears." Aside from the occasional scammers and frauds, true science is among the most open minded of professions. With sufficient proof these scientists are willing to drop their most deeply held convictions and acknowledge the new evidence. In fact they look for alternative explanations. Their pronouncements are according the most compelling evidence "at this time." They are willing to change and grow. In these days of alternative truths and beliefs based on no evidence, I find true scientists comforting.

Anonymous T said...

YR - (502) 645-0822. -T

Anonymous T said...

BillO - in this video he cuts out the RFID chip. Notice the wave-graphic in the first minute - if you have that graphic on your card, it's RFID.

Venmo is a mobile payment service owned by PayPal - it's for smartphones; I was not aware it could read a credit-card.

Cheers, -T

Ol' Man Keith said...

When - oh when?
When will they make koalas bears?!
PS. And Teddies.

SwampCat said...

OMK.. hehehehe

Anonymous said...

I thought you folks were all confusing pandas with koalas, because I've always known pandas were bears and koalas marsupials, though many call them koala bears, incorrectly. My wife is a bear expert.

Mike Sherline

Yellowrocks said...

For many years it was not at all cut and dried that pandas are obviously bears. There are many scientific sites that until recently considered pandas were more related to raccoons. Wiki: "For many decades, the precise taxonomic classification of the giant panda was under debate because it shares characteristics with both bears and raccoons. However, molecular studies indicate the giant panda is a true bear, part of the family Ursidae.These studies show it differentiated early (about 19 million years ago) from the main ursine stock; since it is the most basal member of the group, it is equidistant from all other extant ursids.The giant panda has been referred to as a living fossil."
panda bears
Mike, I would be interested in your wife's take about the over population of black bears in northwest NJ. What should we do about it? Are they becoming like the deer here? We have more deer in NJ than there were in George Washington's time. They overwhelming their habitat.

Yellowrocks said...

BTW, of course koalas are marsupials and so are not bears. No argument there.

Bruce Haight said...

Thanks Steve!

OwenKL said...

Big Easy et al: as it happens, DOCTOR DOOM'S actual name is Victor VonDoom!

d-o: Dagwood Bumstead may not be alliterative, but Blondie Bumstead is!

Ol' Man Keith said...

Yellowrocks @ 7:33 ~
Thank you! Your comments about science are right on point--well-stated and so timely when some folk are apt to denigrate science for posing only "theory."

Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson said...

Yes OMK, but can we all agree that philosophy is a useless enterprise? As a matter of fact, a philosophy major can really mess you up!

Dudley said...

YR 7:33 - well said. Throughout the human acquisition of knowledge, there have been turning points large and small at which old understandings have been updated or replaced; like you, I’m glad humankind is sufficiently open-minded to accept.

PK 4:00 - I smiled right out loud at that one!

Thanks again for the kind wishes, all.

Anonymous said...

Yellowrocks @ 2217 - she believes the proliferation of deer is due to the near elimination of their natural predators, as well as their adaptability - ease of acquiring food from human farms & gardens, etc. As to the bears, she loves them more than almost any other creature, and feels that there are too many people enroaching on their habitat - that we should go away and leave them alone. I guess they don't have much in the way of predators, do they? (Other than us).
Mike S.

Ol' Man Keith said...

As Bertrand Russell so wisely put it, philosophy deals with those matters that science cannot measure with any exactness. As science solves more and more questions, he reminded us, philosophy has fewer areas for its inquiries.
Still, he argues, philosophy's noble calling is to establish those propositions and hypotheses that science must address in the future.

Picard said...

Catching up on some of these puzzles from our time away. This was a clever theme that took me too long to figure out! But I FIR!

Steve hand up thanks for explaining XII! Very clever!

One of my best friends is named IRENe and I knew her name means "peace". So, IRENIC makes sense to me.

OlManKeith I agree with everything you said about Tyson and philosophy.

I got to see TOMMY performed live in Los Angeles about 25 years ago. I love the music and seeing it as a rock opera put it in better context.

Hand up for unknowns ORNE and DOCTOR DOOM
And trying ELITE before unknown AGATE. Learning moment.