Jan 10, 2019

Thursday January 10th 2019 David Poole

Theme: Read My Lips. As the reveal explains:

59A. Common campaign promise, and what four black squares in this puzzle create: TAX BREAK.

Four pairs of theme entries conceal a type of tax, broken up by the intervening black square:

17A Pinch pennies: SCRIMP.
18A. Strictly religious: ORTHODOX. Import tax.

23A. Toklas' life partner: STEIN.
24A Cupid cohort: COMET. Two of Santa's reindeer. I was looking for something to do with Eros at first. Income tax.

38. Lowbrow stuff: KITSCH.
40A. 58-Across type meaning "black dragon": OOLONG Learning moment regarding the tea.  School tax.

50A. Hallowed: BLEST.
52A. Starters: A-TEAM. Another little misdirection. I was trying to come up with a word for "appetizers".

It's a little easier to see the taxes looking at the grid at the foot of the blog, but there you have it.

This is one of those themes where it's extremely unlikely you're going to spot it while you're mid-solve, the challenge is to look back over the puzzle once you're done until you get the "Aha!" moment. Nicely done by David. Let's look over the fill:


1. Online shopping units: ORDERS. I get it, but "online" seems a little specific for something very generic.

7. 8 Series automaker: BMW. The base model for 2019 sets you back a cool $113,000 before you start adding upgrades. It's a good-looking car though, just a little outside my price range.

10. Comics possum: POGO. Cute little critter. I wasn't sure of the name, but the crosses quickly helped out.

14. Eagerly accept: LEAP AT.

15. Dinner table boors: REACHERS. Plain bad manners. My mom would have had a fit if any of us had tried that, along with eating off our knife, eating peas using the "shovel" technique and a myriad of other dire sins at the table.

19. __ out a living: EKE.

20. "My bad": I ADMIT IT. Difficult to parse at first.

22. "Kidding!": NOT!

28. "The Hunger Games" president Coriolanus __: SNOW. I think I should know this by now, it's pretty common in the puzzles Crosses to the rescue! Speaking of snow, did you see that Robert Frost's "Stopping by woods on a snowy evening" is now out of copyright, along with hundreds thousands of other works across the creative spectrum?

30. Flaps: ADOS.

32. "A Little Nightmare Music" composer P.D.Q. __: BACH. PDQ was my parent's version of stat! -pretty darn quick". This is an opera in one act by Peter Schickele - PDQ Bach is his pseudonym.

33. Hot under the collar: IRATE.

36. Canadian coin: LOONIE.

41. Disney's Montana: HANNAH.

42. Lamb's lament: BLEAT. I thought about Charles Lamb as my thought process's first port of call. I didn't stay there too long. "Lawyers, I suppose, were children once".

43. See 27-Down: URGE.

44. Whole lot: SCAD.

46. Hamburger's home: HAUS. The citizen, not the sandwich.

55. Durham sch.: U.N.H. University of New Hampshire. I got all confused here, jumping in with UNC, which was all kinds of wrong. Firstly, Duke is the school in Durham, NC - UNC is at nearby Chapel Hill.

56. '70s-'90s Pontiacs: SUNBIRDS. Why did I go for Sunfire? Some missteps for me today.

58. See 40-Across: TEA.

62. Tailor's measure: INSEAM.

64. Person-to-person: ONE-ON-ONE.

65. Rather thick: OBTUSE. I see obtuse more as being "stubbornly refusing to understand" than "thick". The dictionary doesn't agree with me though.

66. See 38-Down: MARX. Another one to annoy the x-ref dislikers.  Here's the memorial in the "new" cemetery. The "old" cemetery is across the road and is a nature reserve. It's a beautiful place.

67. Frowny-faced: SAD.

68. Chicken: SCARED.


1. Mary-Kate, Ashley and Elizabeth: OLSENS.

2. S'pose: RECKON.

3. "Do I __ eat a peach?": Eliot: DARE TO.

4. Prefix with graph or gram: EPI-

5. "Groundhog Day" director Harold: RAMIS.

6. Mid-Mar. honoree: ST PAT.

7. Trite saying: BROMIDE.

8. Sheep prized for its wool: MERINO.

9. Power unit: WATT.

10. Kiosk with a camera: PHOTO BOOTH.

11. Ref. work whose 2018 Word of the Year is "toxic": OED. Toxic environment, toxic workplace, toxic masculinity all got a good workout in 2018, along with the environmental toxicities.

12. Miracle-__: GRO.

13. Mac platform: OS X.

16. In vogue: CHIC.

21. First word in titles by Arthur Miller and Agatha Christie: DEATH. Death of a Salesman, and Death on the Nile for example.

25. Flutist Herbie: MANN.

26. Vaper's need, informally: E-CIG.

27. With 43-Across, feeling often fought: THE. The urge.  This one seems a little forced to me, but here it is.

29. British courtroom fixture: WITNESS BOX. I hadn't really considered that the witness box was typically British. I guess you take the witness stand here. Here's the interior of the Old Bailey in London, more properly the Central Criminal Court, scene of some famous trials:

31. Blackthorn plum: SLOE.

34. Bloemfontein's land: Abbr.: R.S.A. Republic of South Africa.

35. Rhine whines: ACHS.

37. Ipanema greeting: OLA. Portuguese drops the "H" in "Hola!".

38. With 66-Across, German philosopher buried in London's Highgate Cemetery: KARL.

39. "Bus Stop" dramatist: INGE. William Inge, the playwright. The 1956 movie of the same name with Marilyn Monroe was only loosely based on it.

40. Not as current: OLDER.

41. Busy airport: HUB.

42. Hand-dyed with wax: BATIKED.

45. Place to put on a suit: CABANA. A bathing suit. Cute clue.

47. Filmmaker with a unique style: AUTEUR.

48. Anxiety: UNEASE.

49. Disgraced: SHAMED.

51. Go sour: TURN.

53. "Hasta mañana": ADIOS.

54. "The Beat with Ari Melber" network: MSNBC. I never watch it. Seems popular though.

57. Avant-garde sorts: NEOS.

59. Hiddleston who plays Loki in Marvel films: TOM. Thank you, crosses. I'm pretty bad with proper names in film and TV.

60. Santa __: ANA. A sure-fire way to start an argument among southern Californians is to aver that the "Santa Ana Winds" are not Santa Anas at all, but "Satanás" from the Spanish for "winds".

61. Boomer's kid: XER. Generation X.

63. RR stop: STA.

Which brings us to the grid, laid out in all its colorful glory with the tax breaks. Hasta!



fermatprime said...


Thanks To David and Steve!

Had to perp: SNOW, HAUS, U.N.H., SUNBIRDS, R.S.A., MSNBC and TOM.

Have a great day!

PK said...

OLA! Not quite on David's wave-length with this but found it fun somehow, thanks.

Thanks, Steve, for explaining the great mysteries of this one, like why OLA did not have a beginning "H". And the theme -- there was a theme?

I got SHAMED in more ways than one today. Did not come close to finding the theme. The SE was last to fill. I had HAUS, SHAMED and TEA. I've been to Durham which I thought was in S. Carolina so tried SCU. Didn't know there was one in NH. Did not know the word AUTEUR and UNEASE didn't enter my brain. Filled the section from the bottom up and a red-letter run for the SCHOOL. Duh!

1 across was not "aisles" but ORDERS. Confusion came from I ORDERS my groceries delivered from a store program called "Aisles on Line".

Unknowns: Bloemfontein & his land of RSA (ESP); KARL MARX was buried in Highgate, London; TOM, SNOW, BACH, MANN.

I changed my suit in a "closet". Never been in a CABANA.

Forgot about Pontiac SUNBIRDS. When I worked for the Buick-Pontiac dealership, we only had one SUNBIRD special ordered and the same model trade-in. Only memorable thing about the transaction: this guy bought the trade-in for his kids, three very obese teenagers. They decided to spend that evening driving around tearing up the grass at a city park and mowing down a SCAD of newly planted little trees. The "fun" ruined the car's radiator, etc. hitting trees. Car died and was left as a big clue to whodunnit. People heard them laughing all the way walking home. Father told me they were not drinking. He wanted to bring the car back, void the loan transaction and get them a different car.

OwenKL said...

P.D.Q. BACH, played by Schwarzenegger,
Once attended a college kegger.
When asked his preference
in ambrosial essence,
"I'll be bock", said Schwarzenegger!

COMET and Rudolph had a fling
Rudolph went and gave Comet a ring.
"But where it goes?
I've no fingers, just toes."
"In your nose, that's how I got my bling!"

{A, B-.}

Ben Franklin said...

With a puzzle highlighting taxes, is it not certain that the entry "DEATH" would appear so central in the grid?

Like I once said, "In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes."

Although 62a doesn't seem to be part of the theme(but shouldn't it?), using the technique from the other themers we get BREAK-INS. One could infer this crime is a subtle hint to how it feels when the tax man cometh.

One last observation. Steve mentioned Chapel Hill and Durham and its associated North Carolina colleges. He didn't mention NC State which is in Raleigh and completes the triangle of the research area located therein. This became funny to me because when researching who is credited with the quote I mentioned earlier, the first result was a restaurant located in Raleigh named "Death and Taxes"! The place looks appetizing especially the picture of roasted bone marrow with toast points. Mmmm

Boo LuQuette said...

Can't finish the puzzle so I'll be back later this PM.... Didn't look at any posts or the write up....

This is a tough one, but I'll get back on it fresh later

OwenKL said...

The puzzle wasn't too hard, tho I did have some w/os: I GUESS > RECKON, WANT TO > DARE TO, OLE > OLA, BROMINE > BROMIDE, COWARD > SCARED.

The theme, on the other hand, was a bear! Before I broke down and looked at the reveal, BOOTH and BOX on the two longest words looked like a sure bet, but without a third candidate they were obviously red herrings. Even after the reveal, all I could find at first was STATE and INCOME. They were symetrical, another red herring, and ESTATE added another rotting fish. A few words for possibly taxable items also distracted: COLA (Cost Of Living), SATURN (car), GUN, ESC., LAN, KIN/BREAK-INS. Eventually I found SCHOOL and IMPORT, but they took an awful long time!

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Did d-o read the full reveal clue? No. Did d-o get the theme? No. Did d-o successfully complete the puzzle? Whew, yes. TTP and I accept the CSO at 59d. My biggest repair occurred where SEE YA crossed AFRAID. Oops. Hooray for Wite-Out! Thanx, David and Steve (Also was thinking Duke in Durham).

BMW -- Our friends in Munich drive an 8-series. When they visit us, they're treated to a 15-year-old Honda CRV. What a come-down!

WITNESS BOX -- Reminds me of a scene with Harrison Ford in Patriot Games.

SCHOOL Tax -- Makes up the lion's share of our property taxes. 1.67 per $100 of valuation. Fortunately for us, taxes are "frozen" for geezers.

Big Easy said...

OLA everybody. I ADMIT IT. A tough one to finish this morning. And only after changing IOS to OSX, RUIN to TURN, BLESS to BLEST, ONE-TO-ONE, and moving up north from NC to NH to get UNH. I was guessing NC State but it's in Raleigh. Unknowns filled by perps were TOM, NEOS, SNOW, STEIN, BATIKED, OSX, & MSNBC (the channel that people with TDS watch).

I never looked for the TAX BREAKs; just glad to finish. I've never heard of a SCHOOL TAX before.

POBO-DW & I call every opossum (correct spelling) that eats our cat's food POGO. Possum is what 'you play' when you act like you're asleep.

No more comments- ADIOS.

Big Easy said...

desper-Otto. We just have one property tax that has about 30 different millages that add up to the total; drainage, water, library, ems,...etc. But it's a real estate tax that's split up to list for every entity receiving the money.

desper-otto said...

They called George Jones Ol' Possum. When he was booked for a gig, there was only about a 40% chance that he'd show up for it. During the years he was married to Tammy Wynette, they were the king and queen of country music.

desper-otto said...

B-E, ours is also a real estate tax. The mil rate for the school portion last year was 1.67. In other Texas counties, though, folks pay the school tax separately.

TTP said...

Good morning.

Nuts ! Close, but no cigar. Had BLESs and never read the down clue so had sURN rather than TURN.

Found the INCOME and SCHOOL taxes, but didn't see IMPORT, and because of having the second S in BLESs would never have seen ESTATE.

Perps got the unknown BACH and BATIKED. They also let me know that Bloemfonteine's land was RSA, and there was somebody named SNOW in a program I've never watched - The Hunger Games. Ditto with TOM for Hiddleston as Loki in the Marvel films.

Had to change IOS to OSX.

Learning moment about UNH. Had the UN and was tempted for UNC, but they are in Chapel Hill, and Duke is in Durham. Didn't know that University of New Hampshire was also in a city named Durham. (Ed. note: Now that I've read Steve's write up, I see he wanted the same.)

I ADMIT IT. When I had _EA_HERS I was tempted to put in teachers for "Boors at the table." To my defense, I often look at the filled letters for patterns and possible words. After checking the clue, I ruled it out.

Desper-otto, ah yes, the Possum. One of my all time favorites. The epitome of classic country. Loved it when Barbara Mandrell gave him the shout out in I Was Country When Country Wasn't Cool and he joined in. My brother-in-law has the same voice and twang, but couldn't carry a tune in a bucket.

inanehiker said...

Solvable puzzle - but Steve's blog to the rescue to see the TAX BREAKs!

Off to work!

Thanks Steve and David!

I just read a novel that would appeal to those who are foodies- "The School of Essential Ingredients" by Erica Baumeister. Made me want to sign up for a cooking class!

Haiku Harry said...

Woman is paid to
Squeal on command. That's how she
eeks (EKE) out a living ...

jfromvt said...

Finished it, but never really got into it. Too many fill in the blank names (this isn’t a trivia contest) and See X clues for my liking. I got the theme, but not really interesting. And it’s a cold windy day in Vermont to boot!

Yellowrocks said...

I found the puzzle crunchy, but I enjoyed it. I missed the tax types. I also enjoyed the expo, Steve. One or two cross references per puzzle is plenty. Three? NOT!
Our property taxes include school taxes, garbage collection, and everything else, except for water and sewer.
WITNESS BOX reminds me of one of my favorite movies, Witness for the Prosecution, based on a play by Agatha Christie set in Old Bailey, London. It starred Marlene Dietrich and Charles Laughton. Spoiler alert. If you read the synopsis in Wikipedia it gives away the surprising twist at the end and spoils the movie.
Have a fine day.

Husker Gary said...

-I am NOT going to say, “What a taxing theme!” I’m glad Steve unwound things for us.
-My only speed bump was KANT for K A _ _. IMMANUEL would not do in four cells.
-Segue – Speaking of speed, I was IRATE when I got stopped last night for speeding. Turns out the policeman was a former student and all I got was some teasing and a warning.
-Got to meet roofer for MIL in 20 minutes. Read ya later!

Anonymous said...

Not fun for me. Fill in the blanks,cross reference clues,proper names and throw in some vague cluing made this a slog. Oh well.

billocohoes said...

I Am sorry before I ADMIT IT caused numerous problems before resolving.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Toughie with much edgy cluing. Had to come back 3 times to finish it. Agree with Steve about ORDERS. Favorite clue was Rhine whines for ACHS. Didn't get the theme until reading Steve's explanation - twice. Not needed though.
OOLONG - Had some a long time ago. I liked it but it tasted smokey as I recall.
HAUS - English house, L. German Huus, Dutch huis. HAUS is pronounced just like the English house.

Jazzbumpa said...

Hi Gang -

Never thought I'd get through this one, but finally did. BELCHER for REACHER held me back. SLEW for SCAD didn't help. Union for Republic of South Africa. Many road blocks.

ORDERS was slow to arrive.


Quite displeased with THE URGE. As I should be - I ADMIT IT.

BROMIDE was the last fill to drop.

Even with the reveal, I could find the TAX BREAKs. Glad I blogged yesterday.

Famous POGO quote: "We have met the enemy and he is us.'

Cool regards!

Jazzbumpa said...

That should say could NOT find the TAX BREAKS.


Hahtoolah said...

Good Morning, Steve and friends. After finally getting the TAX BREAK, I was looking for stand-alone black boxes. The first tax break (IMPORT) is the odd man out, square-wise. This puzzle must be Rich's concession to those of us who do not like circles. This would be the ideal puzzle for circles.

UNH was a gimme. I earned my graduate degree at UNH.

PDQ BACH ("Prof." Peter Schickele) is a comedic musician, as you can probably tell by the title of his piece. If he is ever performing in your area, I highly recommend attending a concert as it is highly amusing. Here are some clips of his "music".

Hand up for wanting I'm Sorry instead of I ADMIT IT.

I also learned that a Whole Lot is not a Slew, but a SCAD.

QOD: The past is a source of knowledge, and the future is a source of hope. Love of the past implies faith in the future. ~ Stephen Ambrose (né Stephen Edward Ambrose; Jan. 10, Oct. 13, 2002)

Lucina said...

Thank you, David Poole, for the mental challenge. And thank you, Steve, for illuminating a few cloudy areas, like the theme.

SCRIMP/EKE was amusing as was recalling POGO. That used to be a fun read.

SUNBIRDS. It was the worst car I ever had. What a lemon! I got rid of it as soon as I could.

PHOTOBOOTH. Very popular at parties with accompanying accessories such as boas, hats, outsized sunglasses, etc. Not CHIC but cute and fun.

CSO to Canadian Eh! at LOONIES and one to our TOMs.

Hand up for instantly filling UNC at Durham though I know better. That soon changed.

Learning moment with OOLONG TEA.

Bloemfontein has been featured on Jeopardy!

We have SCADs of property TAXes and I'd have to have the list in front of me to enumerate them all.

So, ADIOS for now and have un dia muy especial!

Bifurcated penis said...

Possums and opossums are two different animals.

Possum is an animal native to Australia.

Opossum is native to the Americas and is the correct reference to Pogo.

Steve said...

@Bifurcate - did it cross your mind that Pogo might be Australian? Just a thought ...

Picard said...

Steve thank you for explaining the theme which had me totally stumped!

Last to fill was UNH. DURHAM definitely fooled me. I entered UNH thinking it was wrong. But I was wrong. FIR! But I never feel satisfied if I miss the theme.

Ben Franklin I also was stuck thinking DEATH had something to do with the theme.

PK thanks for the SUNBIRD story. I am glad my career as an engineer limited my exposure to dealing with the public. I am BLEST with my ignorance of how nasty people can be. I think our driver ed class in high school used SUNBIRDS on loan from the dealer. We did not damage them.

Once again, here I was wearing one of my prized BATIK shirts while I was still in Indonesia.

Our local swing dance group often provides a PHOTO BOOTH.

Here we were at the Valentine's Day Swing Dance PHOTO BOOTH last year at UC Santa Barbara

OOLONG TEA is probably my favorite tea. It has a rich flavor without being bitter.

desper-otto said...

BP, WIKI says: "Opossum, or possum, an order (See Below) of marsupials native to the Americas." I doubt that any Texan has ever uttered the word opossum, at least no true Texan.

Weird, Blogger hates the name of that order. If it's included in the post, the post won't post.

Walt (not Disney) Kelly said...

No he lives in the Okafenokee Swamp on the Georgia / Florida state line. As does Alfred, Beauregard, Porky and yes even Churchill.

Btw, His full name is Ponce de Leon Montgomery County Alabama Georgia Beauregard Possum – a parody of the blueblood aristocracy of the Old South.

Gary Perdue said...

I got sidetracked when the first "tax break" I saw was 6 down and 35 down "TACHS". Had me looking for homonyms instead of actual taxes!!

Picard said...

From Tuesday:
Thanks for the learning moment about the TOTO band But I am still not sure I understand. Wikipedia says:

According to popular myth, at the first recording sessions, in order to distinguish their own demo tapes from other bands' in the studio, Jeff Porcaro wrote the word "Toto" on them. In the early 1980s, band members told the press that the band was named after Toto the dog from The Wizard of Oz.

Why would they write TOTO on the tapes? What does it mean? Other than the Wizard of Oz reference?

From Yesterday:
AnonT thanks for the appreciation for the photo of me holding the KOALA. I don't remember the claws being sharp. The KOALA was very passive in my arms. I don't think it did anything with its claws.

The conference I was attending was sponsored by the Queensland Brain Institute (hence the QBI lanyard around my neck in the photo.) One of the brain researchers at QBI explained a most interesting story about KOALA brains. He claims that eating toxic eucalyptus poisons their brains and makes them stupid and lethargic. He identified the toxin by odor when dissecting KOALA brains. There is more to the story if anyone is interested.

I was surprised no one commented on my ARK cartoon yesterday.

Here again is that ARK cartoon.

It was such a funny coincidence because I had just bought the card to send to a family member!

AnonymousPVX said...

Got the solve despite the crunch of this Thursday puzzle.


And I’m out the door, see you tomorrow.

Misty said...

Well, Thursdays are toughies for me, so although I got the northwest corner and some other areas this took a bit of cheating for me to make it all the way through. But still fun, thanks, David. I saw RHINE WINES before I noticed the H, which cracked me up. My German kicked in right away and I put in the ACHS. Same thing with Hamburger's home--HAUS popped up right away. But I had a bad senior moment with Toklas' life partner. I knew it was a women, and knew I knew her from my reading and writing, but it took a minute before Gertrude STEIN popped up. Got INGE right away, though. Am still puzzled by LOONIE. Never heard the term--is it like a penny, CanadianEh? Anyway, fun puzzle and expo, many thanks, Steve.

Boo, hope you come back here with you commentary.

Fun poems, Owen.

Have a great day, everybody.

desper-otto said...

Misty, the Loonie is a coin worth one Canadian dollar. It's got a picture of a loon on it. They also have a two-dollar coin. Not sure if it's called a Twooney or a Toonie, probably the latter.

Irish Miss said...

Hi Everyone:

This had some crunch but nothing the perps couldn't handle. Hand up for the UNC/UNH confusion and not knowing Snow and RSA, as clued. Witness Box and Photo Booth struck my fancy. After filling in the reveal, it took me several minutes to find the four taxes. Well done, David.

Thanks, David, for a Thursday toughie and thanks, Steve, for the neat and tidy summary.

Inanehiker @ 8:10 ~ The minute I read your comment, I checked my bookshelves and, just as I thought, there sat "The School of Essential Ingredients". Although I read it 10 years ago, I remembered liking it but I also remember being annoyed by the overly abundant use of metaphors and similes. Did you find that to be the case?

We get a school tax bill, a property tax bill, a water bill, a recycle bill and, as of last year, a trash collection bill. (Certain homeowners are exempt from the trash collection levy which previously had been included in the property tax bill.)

Have a great day.

SwampCat said...

BP, Pogo the Possum can’t possibly be from Australia. He ran for President.

Bill G said...

Hi everybody. I was pleased that I was able to finish the puzzle and find the 'reveal.' However, I spent lots of wasted minutes looking for the theme but I never found it. I see I've got some distinguished company. Thanks David and Steve.

YR, I'm a big fan of Witness for the Prosecution. I've enjoyed it through several watchings and knowing how it comes out doesn't spoil it a bit for me. "Want to kiss me, ducky?!"

Yes I liked the Noah's Ark cartoon though I didn't comment on it.

Misty, I think a Loonie is a Canadian dollar coin with a loon on its face. A Toonie is a two-dollar coin made with two different metals as I remember.

Bill G said...

Pogo used to be my favorite cartoon in the newspaper comics page. Then my favorite became Calvin and Hobbes.

CanadianEh! said...

Thursday toughie. Thanks for the fun, David and Steve. It took a while to finish this CW and I have a few inkblots but I did it. But the theme eluded me. I was looking in vain for the word TAX broken four times by a square. Thanks for explaining it Steve.

I had Bad BREAK for the theme reveal at first, which didn't exactly make sense re "campaign promise"! Oh, we're getting political! Read my lips, "No new taxes!" NOT!
Interesting observation re DEATH and taxes, Ben Franklin @6:14. (Are you the same observant Anonymous from yesterday??)
And while we are on the subject, does anyone here wish to discuss KARL MARX's views on taxation??

My wool was Angora before MERINO.
Kidding was Nah before NOT.
Mensch changed to KITSCH with perps. Wrong Yiddish word and almost opposite meaning.
IOS changed to OSX. IOS is the mobile Apple platform that I am familiar with on my iPad. But the clue did say Mac!

"Scads" is more familiar to me than a single SCAD!
I smiled at "rather thick"=OBTUSE.
Lightbulb moment when I realized that Starters were the A TEAM, not appetizers.

Yes, Misty, d'otto beat me to the LOONIE answer. (I saw my CSO.) Canadians do not have any One or Two dollar bills; we have Loonies and Toonies (one & two dollar coins). We also do not have any cents (or the joke is "sense") but round up or down to the nearest nickel value.

We get a quarterly property tax bill here, which includes municipal & regional taxes (roads/police/snow removal/garbage/recycling etc. plus education tax). Water bill is separate from taxes and comes every 2 months. We also pay HST (Harmonized Sales Tax) of 13% on nearly everything we purchase except groceries. And then there is INCOME TAX. Sigh!
But we do not have an ESTATE TAX per se - we have Probate Tax.

Enjoy the day.

TTP said...

Picard, there may not be a logical answer as to how TOTO became the name of the band.

Just search "Toto band name" to see some of the theories, like:
a) they hadn't picked a name yet but wanted something simple and easy to remember
b) they picked it when they were sitting around getting stoned and it sounded funny
c) the drummer had seen Wizard of Oz the night before, so he used it just to mark the tapes
d) they wanted something easily recognized and easily pronounced around the world
e) one of the band members real last name was Toteaux
f) it's short for Latin in toto

The band's official website doesn't mention how they got the name. Different Toto fansites have different explanations.

The band members have been asked again and again how the band originally chose the name, and they have provided various answers through the years. Even the drummer that wrote toto on the demo tapes when they still didn't have a name has given conflicting answers as to why he wrote it on them.

He may be the only one that knows how or why he chose to write toto on the demo tapes, but he won't be telling anyone. He died in 1992.

Similar questions abound for other bands like Pearl Jam, 10CC etc.

CanadianEh! said...

For those of you wanting to know more about the Loonie & Toonie (regular edition that was updated in 2012). We frequently have special edition coins, as in 2017 for our Canada 150 celebrations.


Tinbeni said...

Well this was a tough, but doable Thursday puzzle. (But a slow solve).

A "Toast-to-ALL" at Sunset ... though It will be inside.
I can't take 50 degree weather, LOL


CrossEyedDave said...

DNF, around the Karl Marx area...

(*who am I kidding,)

Also around the bromide/reacher/merino area...

Makes me wonder why "obtuse" came so easily...

Yes, a frustrating puzzle in every way...

TTP, one of the lyrics to "I was into country when it wasn't cool" was a mention
of the combination of salted peanuts and Coke? I never heard of such a thing.
Intrigued,, I had to find out more...

Hahtoolah, I only watched about 20 seconds of the PDQ Bach link, when I smelled "classic" all over it, and had to bookmark it for later when I could watch it with some peanuts and Coke...

TTP said...

CrossEyedDave, nice video. You are going to have to let us know what you think when you try the peanuts and coke. I guess it was a regional thing.

My Property Tax Bill is broken down into three segments. County, Local, and Education.

The ELHI SCHOOL TAX portion of my property tax bill represents 72.3 % of the total.
78.3 % when you add in the levies for community college funding.

The rest of the property tax bill (21.7%) is for County and Local:
1) County,
2) County Health Dept,
3) Forest Preserve District,
4) Airport Authority,
5) Township,
6) Township Road District,
7) Township Special Police,
8) Fire District,
9) Mosquito District and
10) Library District

10 of the 12 the taxing districts mentioned above have an additional line item as a levy for their Pension Funding.

There is no Pension Fund levy for the Airport Authority or for the Mosquitos.

desper-otto said...

I don't think it's fair that the mosquitos get no pension. They gotta live, too.

Ol' Man Keith said...

Ta~ DA!
But I didn't see all the tax theme fills that I should have. I spotted SCH-OOL right away, then saw ST-ATE, without seeing EST-ATE, and similarly saw P-ORT but not IMP-ORT.
I missed IN-COME altogether, but I saw another that, while of a different kind, ought to be counted as a phonetic equivalent. I mean the end of 6D combined with 35D, giving us:
Definitely a type of TAX BREAK.
*PS. Ah, I see Gary Perdue spotted it too.

TX Ms said...

Thanks, Steve, for the recap - sorry you missed out on food this week. Re: 70-90's Pontiac, your first thought, "Sunfire", was probably caused by your memory of Firebirds. Totally forgot about Sunbirds but since I had WitnesS Box, I remembered.

I think, we've had "Stein" clued as Toklas' something or other, but perps helped jog the memory. Never watched or read anything about Hunger Games, but again perps. After a coupla minutes, I just gave up on finding the theme and moved on.

D-O, yay for turning 65 in June - my school taxes have been at least 60% of my total property tax (total of 8 taxing authorities). Nearly fell out of my chair when I opened my tax notice - reduced to $3600 from $5500 in 2017 for a small 2BR 65 yr old house. I live in a "gentrification" subdivision - tear-downs replaced by $1M+ McMansions, built easement-to-easement. And Houston city officials are worried about flooding - really? [end of rant, sorry].

Ol' Man Keith said...

It is hard to keep track of all the taxes we pay, given the various levels of government that can levy these official pourboires.
In some regions, such as SoCal, on top of county and city taxes and utility charges, we are assessed additional fees by our residential neighborhoods--for private services that are added on to the municipal ones that somehow don't quire reach us.

CrossEyedDave said...


I may be the wrong person to get a review from...

Looking for a healthier snack than caramel coated popcorn,
I opened the (nearly bare fridge) and made my version of ants on a log.

One celery stalk
Bacon bits
wasabi sauce...

(I thought it was great!)

billocohoes said...

PDQ Bach also invented several musical instruments, notably the tromboon, a trombone with the double-reed mouthpiece of a bassoon, which he said combined the disadvantages of both.

Jinx in Norfolk said...

FIR, but thought it was as hard as calculus. Erased LOONey for LOONIE, ncs then unc for UNH,BORMInE, and mohair for MERINO.

I loved the Allman Brothers' album "Eat a Peach".

Lucina - For the game of Worst Car, I'll see your Sun Bird and raise you a Suzuki Samurai. The only good thing about that joltwagon was that my boss quit asking me to pick him up at PHX from my office in the Pinnacle Peak / Black Canyon Highway area.

D/O, Mosques don't get pensions, so why should little mosquitoes get them?

High was 58 degrees today. I think I brought Yankee weather with me when I came south.

Thanks to David for the ability-stretching puzzler. And thanks t Steve for 'splainin the gimmick. I was so tuckered out that I forgot to look for it.

Wilbur Charles said...

FLN. Re. Mary Queen of Scots. Was there any Golf? Allegedly, Mary, a player (eg Scottish) played while in exile and had cadets carry the clubs, hence the term caddies.
Also, there was a HO,HO Horizontal in Head HOncHO.
As a phone poster I have battery issues

I misspelled BLEAT not to speak of thinking DEATH rhymed with it. Huh? So, another in my string of missed boxes in otherwise difficult FIR's.

This was a labor. I only started looking for TAX BREAKS when I started reading the write-up. Missed ESTATE.

Picard, yes that unicorn cartoon was funny. Sirius Beatles had a Koala reference to Koalas getting stoned on eucalyptus. And then Paul's Ode to the Koala. More prescience.

Misty, I knew it was STEIN but didn't know if it was I<E or not. Remember the place where there was no there there?

I only lived in NH for 25 years and had to perp UNH.
BillG, all I have to do is like a cartoon for it to disappear from my newspaper.


Boo LuQuette said...

Ok I'm back.......... Got time to sit and not rush the puzzle.........

I admit....... I had the IT at the end
Tein ......... I had the S in front
Ados ......... Blank all the way
Kit_ _ _ No SCH

Those were my hangups and stopping point... So the red letters were turned on and I didn't have any......

Finally finished with WAGS and a few red letters..... I also was looking for T a black square and a X..... There was one I saw at the end of COMET and ORTHODOX.

Hathoola mentioned This might be the alternative to circles...... I love doing circle puzzles, but I can't find a good site that's not full of ADS interrupting the puzzle...... I might try Cruciverb again since I have a better PC....

Does cruciverb show circles in the puzzles ??????

Plus Tard Mes Amies from Cajun Country ...........

Jayce said...

Whew, tough! Didn't see any of the taxes. Loved the clue "Rhine whines".

Lucina said...

Wilbur Charles:
No, there was no golf in Mary Queen of Scots. Lots of horseback riding though. If the movie was meant to portray the bleakness of the era and Mary's sad fate, they succeeded.

I always admire your colorful shirts as I love bright colors and I thought your card yesterday was cute but didn't mention it. Yesterday was a taxing day for me. But not today.

Abejo said...

Good afternoon, folks. Thank you, David Poole, for a fine puzzle. Thank you, Steve, for a fine review.

Got a slow start. Had some errors that threw me off for a while. Big one was ANGORA at 8D. I finally deleted it and worked across and low and behold eight perps fixed the problem. MERINO.

I knew KARL MARX was the answer to 38D and 66A. Just did not know which went where. WITNESS BOX solved that problem.

I knew LOONIE. I have a Canadian friend.

Did not catch the theme. After coming here it became obvious. Very clever.

Have to run. See you tomorrow.


( )

TTP said...

Desper-otto, "I don't think it's fair that the mosquitos get no pension. They gotta live, too."

My bug zapper doesn't think so.

Of course, winters here eliminate just about every type of outside bug there is, but they'll be back in the spring.

That statement should have been, "There is no Pension Fund levy for the Airport Authority or for the Mosquito DISTRICTS."

Didelphimorphia. Just testing. Maybe they got it fixed by now.

CrossEyedDave, EWWW !

Picard said...

TTP thanks for the further TOTO insights. I meant to tag you in my post; thanks for spotting it! Yes, I did all those searches and found many of the same bits that you found. Perhaps they were so stoned that no one remembered. I liked their close harmony songs "Rosanna" and "Africa".

Bill G, Wilbur Charles and Lucina glad you appreciated the ARK card humor! And I am happy you appreciate my shirts, Lucina! I ordered a few more today on EBay! They don't make anything like them anymore.

Here is my favorite saying that I invented:
The opposite of progress is fashion.

Wilbur Charles, learning moment about the Beatles and Paul McCartney KOALA references. There is more to the eucalyptus/brain damage story.

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

WEES - tough going today. FIW @ KITtSH; I didn't know there should be an S in there. Also, I had BLEeT and wondered why folks would say OLE when greeting each other... Oh, Thanks Steve :-)

Thanks David for the TAXing puzzle. Thanks Steve for finding all the TAXes; I only found INCOME and STATE (oh, ESTATE).

WOs: Hand-up w/ UNC, STn b/f STA, MoRINO b/f I was disgusted by RoACHERS at the table.
ESPs: BROMIDE was the only thing that fit - I had to look it up; as clued it's secondary def (I only knew as a chemical), TOM, MERINO, BATIKED, STEIN, INGE, BACH & MANN were +WAGs
Fav: COMET as clued - provided an AHA! Moment.
Runner-up: LOONIE - I just love it (Hi C, Eh!)

Powdered Wig was right out @29d.

{B, B+}

In addition to the TAXes y'all mentioned, who else pays HOA (HomeOwner's Association) "fees"?

I enjoyed reading everyone. Looks like all the questions were answered (even Didelphimorphia) and I don't have much to link.

Alright then, lets see if anyone enjoys The Presidents of the United States of America's ode to Peaches [3:31] complete with Ninjas(?!?). I had that song rattling in my head all morning :-)

Have a wonderful evening.

Cheers, -T

billocohoes said...

For Worst Car Ever, hard to beat the '73 Chevy Vega. Had what they must've thought was engine protection - the fuel pump shut down if the oil level got too low. With no warning. Not good in a car that burned a quart of oil every 200 miles (aluminium engine block was too soft for the piston rings.)
Also had an early-onset body corrosion problem. Dave Barry said when Vega owners had a convention, they brought their cars in manila envelopes full of rust.

Ol' Man Keith said...

Anonymous T @8:12 ~
Yep, that's us! All those extras, on top of all the regular taxes: we have homeowners' fees--plus extra assessments for our neighborhood.

Misty said...

Thank you, CanadianEh, and everybody else for explaining LOONIE to me. I'll be sure to remember it the next time it comes up.

Lucina said...

Yes! I pay a monthly assessment fee to the HOA. I've been looking for my tax statement but can't locate it.

Our Community is small, 57 units but we have a sharp treasurer who budgets our money in such a way that we don't have to ask for any extra money. The last time we did that was several years ago to build block fences around each property. It was a small amount and it took three years to complete the project but it was paid for as it progressed.

Anonymous T said...

OMK - Oy! one more way The Man gets their money from us Proles we, no? :-)

Misty - I first encountered the LOONIE in '99 or '00 on my first trip to the Great White North (Vancouver) for a hacker conference. I LOL'd when they said they had a Toonnie too.

What I took away from that experience [other than the new hacking tools and Canadians gladly take $USD when one was short of $CA] is the Canadians bested us in logic - see a $CA coin (LOONIE) is good for / stays in circulation for about 35yrs while we have to reprint a Washington ($1US) every 18 months at a cost of $0.049-ish.

Pennies up there are a thing of the past (it costs US [mixed USA / us intended :-)] about $0.015 to make $0.01... and those Abes just sit useless in our couches :-)
Silly, right?

Hahtoolah - I'd forgotten of PDQ BACH (lucky WAG today) until I watched your link. Victor Borge on 'roids, PDQ is. Thanks for that.

Cheers, -T

Ol' Man Keith said...

It has been a while, a matter of several years, since I visited Canada. I don't remember LOONIEs.
Maybe it's because I didn't even have to change my money. I found everyone so hospitable--they were quite willing to accept my Yankee dollars.

Oh, Canada...

Michael said...

Dear Anon-T @ 8:12: Thanks for expanding the repertoire ... the concept of peachy ninjas saved today from, well, too much fuss and trumpery.

And who has not heard of PDQ Bach's magnum opus, "Iphegenia in Brooklyn"? The Hoople Chamber of Commerce will be after you!

Anonymous T said...

For Michael - Iphegenia in Brooklyn... I think. Thanks & Nite, -T