Feb 15, 2020

Saturday, February 15, 2020, Julian Lim

Saturday Themeless by Julian Lim

Another fine puzzle from our Singapore professor Julian Lim. As I look at his specialties at Duke University - University of Singapore I can find many traits of mine that could use remediation

As an educator, I am very interested into seeing the results of his research on mental fatigue and fluctuations in cognitive ability. Taking the SAT or other big tests in one setting may not be a good thing to do. Julian?

I struggled most in the NW corner with ENOKI, EKCO and TYGA


1. Toys with tails: KITES 

6. Mineral used in roofing: MICA - Hey, a portmanteau! 

10. Short answer?: RSVP.

14. Sukiyaki ingredient: ENOKI.

15. Disney theme park designer: IMAGINEER - Hey, another portmanteau!

17. Bounce: EJECT- Not evict it turns out

18. 55-Down warranty brand: APPLE CARE - I've always bought it for my Apple products 

19. Publish: PUT OUT - Rich has to PUT OUT a puzzle per day

21. Salmon or coral: RED.

22. Pathetic start?: SYM - Okay... 

23. George's musical sibling: IRA - The Gershwin Brothers got a little help 
from Dorothy and DuBose Hayward on this fabulous song.  It was written in 29. Key with no sharps or flats: A-MINOR.

24. One may be turned or earned: PROFIT 

27. Convergence points: FOCI - Our Sun is at one of the two FOCI of Halley's Comet's orbit which will next be seen from Earth in 2062

28. Feline rapper?: TYGA - I suppose, a TIGER is a feline and TYGA and a rap device is changing an "ER" ending to an "A" ending as in GANGSTER/GANGSTA

30. The Rams of the Atlantic 10 Conf.: URI Go RAMS!

31. Only Nobelist besides Marie to win the prize in two fields: LINUS - Pauling - 1954 prize for Chemistry and 1962 for Peace as he opposed weapons of mass destruction 

32. Convert wrongly: MISTRANSLATE - Khrushchev later claimed he did not say 

"мы похороним тебя" ("We will bury you") but rather "Мы вас похороним"  ("Your working class will bury you"). Oh... 

36. Game with a pecking order?: SPIN THE BOTTLE - There are G and R rated versions of what is ostensibly a kissing (pecking) game

38. OkCupid alternative with an oceanic name: PLENTY OF FISH - The former is an American-based dating app and the latter is Canadian-based. How does a man who was born in and works in Singapore know this? 😏

39. Droid's "surname": DETOO - Last phonetic half of R2D2 phonetically

40. Fellow: LAD.

41. Swerves at sea: YAWS - The boat can point in a different direction (YAW) than the boat is actually moving.  

45. Boobird's output: JEER.

46. It unfolds before you retire: DAY BED Sleeper, DAY BED or Futon?

49. Mortal Kombat's __ Kang: LIU - Google at will

50. 30-day mo.: APR.

51. Column angle: Abbr.: POV - Point Of View is pretty easy to see on these two networks 

54. Botch: MISMANAGE - You say our country is $20T in debt?

58. Sight sharpener: LASIK.

59. Webinars, e.g.: E-LEARNING - Some smaller Nebraska schools offer upper level courses like 52. Pre-coll. class: AP CALC by using E-LEARNING from teachers miles away

60. Classic TV nerd: URKEL Jaleel White on type-casting

61. Match: SYNC - Our cable company can't SYNC the TV picture with the live radio feed for Husker Football. The TV picture is at least 10 seconds behind

62. Brand with a Chop House variety: ALPO - PETA says the owners shouldn't call this lovely dog a "pet"

63. Kind of tire: SPARE - Getting at and lowering your SPARE is much more complicated than grabbing it out of the trunk


1. Generous words: KEEP IT - Words wait staff and taxi drivers love to hear 

2. Tear, perhaps: INJURY - The verb INJURE works too

3. Item seen in the "Six Feet Under" title sequence: TOE TAG - Pretty easy to suss out for a show I've never seen

4. Corningware sister brand: EKCO 

5. Bit of middle management?: SIT UP - Oh, that middle is your tummy

6. "Crimson Peak" co-star Wasikowska: MIA  - Her IMDB

7. Prankster: IMP.

8. __ pants: CAPRI - Also clam diggers and pedal pushers?

9. Tip that prevents fraying: AGLET - From the Old French aguillette for needle. This shoelace tip can be wielded in a variety of ways

10. Org. chaired by Ronna Romney McDaniel: RNC - Mitt Romney's niece 

11. Available periodically: SEASONAL - Those good home-grown T's for BLT's aren't available until July

12. "Aww!": VERY CUTE.

13. Basic part of a TV sa pitch: PREMISE - A very funny PREMISE (:30)

16. Guerrilla combat weapon: Abbr.: IED - Improvised Explosive Device

20. Steed modifier: TRUSTY - Dudley Do-Right's TRUSTY steed was named, uh, Horse

25. Right at the start?: ORTHO 
a combining form occurring in loanwords from Greek, where it meant “straight,” “upright,” “right,” “correct” (orthodox) and on this model used in the formation of compound words (orthopedic).

26. Night light source: FIREFLY - We put ours in a mason jar and poked holes in the lid

27. __ rich: FILTHY - The two presidential adversaries this November?

31. WWII craft: LSTS - LST-134 loading casualties in Normandy, France on D-Day +6

33. Digging a lot: INTO.

34. Saunders/French Britcom: ABFAB - Title for this show that forms another portmanteau

35. "Wish I knew": NO IDEA.

36. Tired way to talk: SLEEPILY.

37. William who plays Grissom on "CSI": PETERSEN His IMDB

38. "A Taste for Death" author: PD JAMES Phyllis Dorothy James, Baroness James of Holland Park, OBE, FRSA, FRSL (3 August 1920 – 27 November 2014), known professionally as P. D. James, was an English crime writer. 

42. Kenai Fjords National Park site: ALASKA - Could be a slog for me to get there!

43. More cagy: WILIER.

44. Nurse: SUCKLE.

46. Summer of disco: DONNA - Get down with DONNA Summer!

47. Use: AVAIL.

48. Report card blemish: D-PLUS.

51. Scorecard number: PAR.

53. Koi, e.g.: CARP - Koi is just a CARP who knows someone!

55. Tech brand since 1998: MAC - July 1998 

56. Economic stat: GNP - Difference between GDP and GNP

57. Certain maniac's focus: EGO A ten question quiz to determine if you are an EGOMANIAC. I got a 34%

Any comments for Professor Lim?


TTP said...

Good morning. Thank you Julian, and thank you Husker Gary !

I was up early and ready for a challenge, and boy oh boy my wishes were granted.

In the end, 1 solitary incorrect letter and I'm kicking myself for not thinking it through. Had INJURe / TeGA where INJURY and TYGA belonged. So close to acing this very tough puzzle.

I skipped to the bottom after rejecting KITES as too obvious, and not seeing any other low hanging fruit except IMP at the top.

DONNA, AVAIL, POV, PAR, ABFAB, DAYBED, DPLUS and ALPO were my first 8 entries and gave me good traction in the south. SLEEPILY, PETERSEN, CARP and ALASKA came soon. Then NO IDEA, which describes my thoughts at 38D "A Taste for Death" author.

SPIN THE BOTTLE had a great clue, and although I'm really not familiar, I've seen and heard references to PLENTY OF FISH. Finished filling in the blanks for everything below 32A MISTRANSLATE, and got that unknown author via perps.

Back up top, I went from fancy pants to chino pants to CAPRI pants. Was pretty certain of AGLET and that gave me enough for MICA and then chino to CAPRI. Total guess at MIA. In the NE, I had to recover from in SEASON and PREMIer.

That NW corner was the toughest for me. I thought the rappers stage name was TiGA. And I wanted hearse or casked for the unseen "Six Feet Under" clue, but that didn't work with IRA.

I'd had EKCO in a puzzle I wrote up, and read about the history of the Chicago company so I relented on KITES and then tried KEEP IT, and that E and K were enough to "see" ENOKI. Filled the rest of the NW in a flash, including INJURe. D'OH !

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Julian put a blotch on my calendar this morning. Got most of it after a struggle (UZI/IED, HUE/RED, I'm lookin' at you), but that Wash/Ore corner contained only KITES and IRA. Tried ECCO for that Corning brand, but took it back out. Couldn't make anything work in that corner, and I finally threw in the towel. DNF. Thanx for 'splainin', Husker (18%).

Anonymous said...

I had nothing but IRA in the NW corner for a long time. Eventually got TYGA; I've heard of the man but know none of his songs. Then the rest eventually fell, but it's nice to know that others found the NW really hard as well!

desper-otto, what does "18%" mean?

TTP said...

Should have been, "... rapper's stage name" and "... hearse or casket for the unseen program..."

William PETERSEN's CSI costar Marg Helgenberger was born in Fremont, NE. Our blog host today writes from there, as evidenced by his frequent comments and the map today. Proud Nebraskan.

Husker, I took that quiz and got 35 %. I don't know whether that's good or bad. Fractured. I mentally counted the mirrors around the house before reading the answers. D-O, you are a saint.

I took Speech. Ironically, our teacher spoke in a monotone voice. The class was mind numbing. It didn't help that the class was after lunch period. I gave my first speech on fatigue, standing stiffly behind the lectern, droning on and on, looking only at my paper and the wall in the back of the room, delivering it in the best monotone I could muster. The teacher was in the back of the room, making notes on his clipboard. I made my closing point, waited a couple of seconds, and then emphatically slammed my palm down on the lectern as if to reinforce the point, and then said thank you for listening before sitting down. The teacher just said something to the effect of, "Well, that was interesting" and then called for the next student. Never got any feedback from him.

desper-otto said...

TTP,was this your speech instructor?

TTP said...

Desper-otto, no, our speech teacher didn't have that much inflection in his voice. I don't think he really wanted to be there or teaching that class.

That movie is one of our all time favorites. That and My Cousin Vinny crack me up no matter how many times we watch them.

Thinking back about that class brought to mind our biology teacher. He got bright red flushed in the face when he had to speak about sexual reproduction in organisms. "Mr ----, I understand sexual reproduction, but how does asexual reproduction work ?" I used to get in my share of smart alecky trouble. One morning, I faked laryngitis in Homeroom, only to have the same teacher come up behind me while I was talking to a friend in the hallway after first period. Oops.

Lemonade714 said...

FLN, the newspaper PEANUTS STRIPS are recycling stories Mr. Schulz wrote, as he did not want ANY new strips.

Julian is always one of my biggest solving challenges and this was no exception. It really requires much persistence.
Thank you, Gary and Dr. J.

desper-otto said...

TTP, I managed to get kicked out of biology permanently on the first day of my sophomore year. Don't remember what it was that I said, but it must've been prime. The only other class being taught at that hour was commercial typing, so I took that. I think I got the better end of that deal.

Lemonade714 said...

Tom, you were (are) such a bad boy! The girls must have swarmed all over you.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Had much the same experience as D-O in the NW. Took red-letter help with ENOKI and TYGA, and also in the SW with PD JAMES. Got everything else, though, and so, on a Saturday with Lim, I'm satisfied.
Initially had C MAJOR vs, A MINOR since it was 50/50 toss-up, but crosses weren't working. Even the easy ones were not that easy.

Thanks Gary for another fine informative intro.

SwampCat said...

Lemonade, thanks for the Peanuts info. I’ll keep hoping there is a denouement.

Anonymous said...

Oh, I knew I was in trouble right away, so I put it down and just got on with my day. Shoot!

Jayce said...

Mr. Lim beat me again. I flat out could not solve the NW corner. DNF.

Jayce said...


Misty said...

Well, I got KITES right away, which made me hopeful, but 'twas not to be. Went on to get IRA Gershwin, and FILTHY and YARS (which turned out to be YAWS), but that was pretty much it. Hey, Saturdays are bound to be toughies and this was a bit tougher than most. But lots of interesting and clever long items, so still, many thanks, Julian. And thank you too, Gary.

Have a good weekend, everybody.

Becky said...

A daybed is not unfolded.

AnonymousPVX said...

So many esoteric clues, completely unenjoyable.

I’m guessing the goal for the author was to make solvers aggravated to the point of quitting.

Mission accomplished.

Enjoy the weekend, see you Monday.

Spitzboov said...

Milliard, a DAY BED seller has an ad that says in part:

"Simply unfold your Milliard Daybed for hosting done right. Perfect for the unexpected guest, college dorm or sleepover. So much more comfortable than an air mattress, unzip and unfold in seconds. This triple function mattress wins hands down as the ultimate in space solutions. When not being used for sleep, the mattress folds to a comfortable floor couch, perfect for lounging or gaming. Constructed of high-density foam for unmatched comfort when sleeping and sitting,"

Wendybird said...

As a Duke alum, I enjoyed learning Julian Lin is there! Unfortunately, it was way too tough for me without Jack hauling me along to the finish line.
My favorite long one was Spin the Bottle.
I can’t keep the meaning of portmanteau in my brain.

Way before CSI, william Peterson starred in a
movie called Long Gone, which Jack considers the best movie about minor league baseball of all time. His character’s name is Stud Cantrell, and Virginia
Madsen is his love interest - “Miss Dixie Lee Boxx”.
Lots of fun to watch even if you’re not a baseball fan.

18% - “you have no ego “. I think I need a do-over!

NaomiZ said...

My better half insisted that "the Rams of the Atlantic 10 Conf." was URI, which changed "on cue" to "ortho" and "miscalculate" to "mistranslate." That cascaded into other solves. This is one of the few uses I have for my honey's interest in sports. Thanks to Mr. Lim for a challenge that was ultimately met, and to Husker Gary for all the explanations.

Unknown said...

The RAMS are VCU, not URI.

Wendybird said...

URI is the women’s basketball team.

PedantTheBrit said...

I've lived in the US for a total of 25 years now and I've never come across the word "Boobird" before. (It's interesting that this site's spellchecker doesn't recognize it either.)

Lemonade714 said...

I agree with Becky that a fold-up bed is not a DAYBED as the accepted definitions are:
daybed, divan bed(noun) - an armless couch; a seat by day and a bed by night; chaise longue, chaise, daybed(noun) - a long chair; for reclining. Obviously, MILLIARD has created a variation, but the folding characteristic is not what makes it a daybed. My only experience with Daybed is when we converted Aaron's Crib to Daybed.

My Back Pages said...

I usually avoid click bait, but did take the Ego test. 16%. What was most interesting was answering through the lens of someone approaching retirement. If I'd taken it 30 years ago, the result may have been quite a bit different.

Hungry Mother said...

I never spent longer on any puzzle. I’m doing it on paper these days and I use ink, so this was a nasty mess when I was done, but it was all correct. TYGA was my last gasp and I went for the sound. So my cMajOR turned to AMINOR when the dust settled. I can’t say that I enjoyed the slog, but I proved that I’m still the stubbornest one in my family.

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

Close but FIW. One error: put an "e" Enoke/setup instead of ENOKI/SITUP.

Corrected Cargo to CAPRI.

NOIDEA what a boo bird is.

Some clues were quite clever,others VERYNICE.

Wagged the "L"..had the last four letters of LINUS. Appropriate having a Charles Schultz quote yesterday and today one of his most endearing cartoon characters....huh?...wha?...not THAT Linus???

Like others too quickly jotted in Cmajor.. too predictable for a Saturday challenge. Should have been WILIER.

SPINTHEBOTTLE: analog potential dating precursor of the app PLENTYOFFISH.

Speaking of fish. The never satisfied Koi..always one to CARP.

Attempting to keep warm this weekend in the Mohawk Valley

Till Monday.

Ray - O - Sunshine said...


PS glad I didnt get involved in the foldable daybed debacle. Sounds like the blog police are out in full force.

Who yelled "hold the Prof down and break his thumbs!"

Egad...A bit extreme methinks

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

One more time..CUTE!!!

Ol' Man Keith said...

Congratulations to those who stuck this one out.
Double congrats to any who actually finished.
When it comes to toughies, I can usually work my way through if I take two or three cheats. But not this one. It is way beyond my pay grade,
or... shall we say, way beyond my level of tolerance.

I agree with Ray - O - Sunshine's Koi; I am definitely one to CARP!
Do not feel bad, Jayce or Misty! All due respect to Mr. Lim, we have other things to do of a Saturday...
Just the one main diagonal, NW to SE.
The anagram appropriately identifies my attitude toward today's Corner offering, clearly my...

Dick Vitale said...

Re: 30 Across - The Rams of the Atlantic 10 Conf.

Actually, there are 3 teams in this conference that have "Rams" as their mascot:

Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU)

Fordham University

University of Rhode Island (URI)

Anonymous T said...

Listen to this and you'll never forget AGLETs.

Hi All!

Typical Saturday; way over my pay-grade. A peek at HG's grid in the NE gave me another quarter to put in the machine but, still a DNF in the NW. D-O, I had EcCO too.
Misty - I had the same false sense of hope inking KITE and IRA out of the gate. But, like most, traction began in the South and I worked my way north and west.

Fun puzzle, as always, Julian. Your playfulness with the fill is admirable. HG, your expo holds a candle to the puzzle - VERY CUTE both of yous.
//HG - Britcom, the clue for ABFAB, is also a portmanteau. No?

WOs: CArgo pants b/f CAPRI (Hi Ray-O!), AP CHEM b/f CALC, A ONE [steak sauce?] b/f ALPO; E-trAiNING b/f PAR fixed things.
Fav: SPIN THE BOTTLE over a dating app one day after Valentine's.

LOL OMK. I kept at the puzzle today 'cuz I was running hacks against 3 virtual boxes testing anti-malware responses. Each run took forever and I had time to noodle.

(27%) I didn't like the "Done right" question. If I know how (or have a pretty good inkling on the steps required), I'll do it myself to make it right or at least learn a bit more after a few "Well, sh**s."* If something's out of my bailiwick, I'll sub it out.

DW and I watched ABFAB in the '90's. Brilliantly cringe-worthy funny. The best bit is how it was Saunders' teen daughter being grown-up supervision.

TTP - Same actor but in War Games: Lightman answers who first suggested asexual reproduction.

Cheers, -T
*See the picture frame Eldest & I built for her double-sided Italian sheet music page. Forgot to calculate the depth of the groove before our cuts, we did (the frame, w/ grooves, is too big). Back to the drawing board.
//I'm also reconsidering the biscuit joints; not sure if they'll be strong enough over time.

Yellowrocks said...

DNF Ran out of patience and fun so I quit early on. The hardest puzzle I have seen here in many months.
Tonight both my Kindles do not have internet connectivity sitting right here next to the router, but my computer and smart phone have no problem.
Not my day.

Yellowrocks said...

I called Kindle support and am reconnected. Things are looking up.

Anonymous T said...

YR - In the words of Misty... Whoot!

I hope you're settle'd in w/ a nice book. I'm still working on Mobituaries... He's penciling Ada Lovelace as a footnote to Babbage? [p.105] No. Those of in the know knows she was a visionary in CompSci.


Bobbi said...

Spent the whole day doing election work (lots of walking-10 hrs). Sat down with today's entry and was sound asleep after filling KITES in the NW. Woke up at 9 pm, ate a salad and restarted. Near midnight caved and just copied in the many blanks I had. Memo to self: no Saturday puzzle after a long, hard day.

Wilbur Charles said...

I finally gave up on Saturday. A few quick comments (TTP a "juvenile delinquent?).

Someone gave me INJURE/Y. I wanted PEKES for those "Toys with tails". And HUE. Someone listed xword lingo and there was AGLET. The NW got me good and it's East counterpart worse.

But: IRA was a lyricist. I was thinking of "George" Harrison.

Julian definitely separated the men from the boys. Nobody thought of KHAKI Pants?

Perhaps I'll actually post this onto Saturday after all to play fair with CC etal.


Oops. Thank you Wendybird for the tip on "Long Gone". I'll watch it tonight. Two of my friends, with enthusiastic backing of their fathers, had major league careers. My father feared that I might have a "Minor" league career. He had a friend*, who played minor league ball for a decade, had a cup of coffee with the old Boston Braves and that was it. My father said "I don't want that to be your story."

Of course ten years of Minor league baseball would have been my dream.


**I found him. Joe "Tweet" Walsh.

PS. I just had to quit the solve and read the write-up