May 25, 2020

Monday May 25, 2020 Paul Coulter

Theme: ESSAY TEST (55. Exam answered in a blue book ... and a phonetic hint to 17-, 23- and 44-Across) - Each theme entry is in the pattern of S* A* and they're all study-related:

7. Old enough to start kindergarten: SCHOOL AGE.

23. Attend a foreign university, say: STUDY ABROAD.

44. Kind of exam with brief responses: SHORT ANSWER.

Boomer here.  

Greetings and best wishes for a great holiday! I am happy to join you in remembering friends and loved ones which have gone before us.


1. Terrible reviews: PANS.  I am not going to abuse this puzzle with cookware.

5. Dots in the Seine: ILES.  The Seine, the Seine, when will I again, meet her there, Greet her there on the moonlit banks of the Seine.  (Kingston Trio and others)

9. Shoelace tip: AGLET.  I hate when they fall off.

14. Baseball's Hershiser: OREL.  Dodger great with an odd first name.

15. Pie ร  la __: MODE.

16. Singer Lopez: TRINI.  He had a hammer.

19. Divided Southeast Asian island: TIMOR.

20. Sing to romantically: SERENADE.

21. Roll the dice: GAMBLE. There are many ways to gamble in Nevada, but my favorite is craps.

22. Academic URL ending: EDU.  Many are trying to decide whether to open in the fall.

25. Way to get off base?: JEEP.  I drove a Jeep at Fort Campbell.

26. Wind quintet wind: OBOE.

27. Native Alaskan: ALEUT.  Many Aleutian islands off Alaska's horse's leg.

30. Ability to float: BUOYANCY. We had many families in MN spending time at lakes and campgrounds this weekend.  Lots of kids bring plastic float toys.

34. Spill the beans: SING.  Sing a song, Make it simple to last the whole night long.  Don't worry if it's not good enough.  (Carpenters)

35. Done to __: perfectly cooked: A TURN.  I think you may have to give it A TURN to make sure it's done on both sides.

37. Numbered book part: PAGE.

38. Sonic, in gaming: HEDGEHOG.  If you can stand their looks, you may want to keep one in your garden to get rid of pests.

40. Old photo tone: SEPIA.  Reddish brown.

41. Dept. with a sun on its seal: ENER.

42. Carbon monoxide's lack: ODOR.  Texas Rangers Rougned.  Second baseman with a funny name.

48. Scratch the surface of: MAR.  More than one could be a planet.

51. Attached, as a corsage: PINNED. I guess there could be a bowling reference here.

52. Go up, as prices: INCREASE. Groceries are not too bad, except toilet paper. Gasoline is working its way up.  $1.79 per gallon here in MN. Was 1.49 two weeks ago.

54. Beelike: APIAN.

56. Pontificate: SPOUT.  I'm a little teapot short and stout.  Here is my handle and here is my SPOUT.  (Kid's song)

57. Fab Four fellow: PAUL.  McCartney. Yeah, Yeah, Yeah

58. Assert as true: AVER.

59. Three-card con: MONTE.  Nickname for Colin Montgomerie, British pro golfer

60. Heidi's range: ALPS.  Huge mountain range in Europe.  Often an answer on "Jeopardy".

61. Jared of "Panic Room": LETO.


1. Rapper's entourage: POSSE.  Hey Chester, fix one up for Marshall Dillon.  We need to catch bank robbers.

2. Rainbow-shaped: ARCED.  A decent bowling shot may arc from the 15 board out to ten. Then back to carry the back row.  For an arced golf shot - use the correct club.  That's all I know.

3. '60s jacket style: NEHRU.  I lived in the 60's but never had a NEHRU.  Funny collar.

4. Gin flavor: SLOE.  SLOE is a berry for this gin.  Slow is how you should drink it.

5. Behind-schedule comment: I'M LATE.  I'M LATE, for a very important date.  White Rabbit in Wonderland.

6. Amass, with "on": LOAD UP.

7. Barely defeated: EDGED.  Time to LOAD UP the edger with some of that plastic string and EDGE the garden.

8. Observe: SEE.  I joined the Navy to see the world, but what did I see - I saw the SEA.

9. "Way to go, fella!": ATTA BOY.  You can say it, but no high fives.  Social Distancing is the rule these days.

10. Scary scythe bearer: GRIM REAPER.

11. Dance under a bar: LIMBO.  How low can you go, Chubby Checker.

12. __ Gay: WWII bomber: ENOLA.  I was not alive in 1945, however I believe this B-29 was payback for the Pearl Harbor attack.  I don't think I agree with this but I was not around then.

13. Out of gas: TIRED.  Nope, I still have a way to go.

18. Initial stage: ONSET.  Interesting word in this age of Covid-19.  Stay safe.

21. West African country: GABON.

24. Part of BYO: YOUR.  Add a "B" for Bottle ??

25. Inexorable force: JUGGERNAUT.

27. Blond shade: ASH.  I think I have mentioned this before.  In a short time of my life, I used to smoke a pipe.  I bought tobacco from "Ashes" in a shopping center.  The owner was George Ash.

28. Fish story, so to speak: LIE.  So remember if you lie, Everyone will know.  The Boogie Man will get you..  Your nose is gonna grow.  Johnny Crawford.

29. Call off: END.  A tight lineman in the NFL.  I wonder if they will play this year.  Probably for TV only.  That's okay with me.  I have not been to a game since the Metrodome.

30. Software glitch: BUG.

31. Day break?: NAP.  Don't BUG me, I'm taking a NAP.

32. Cinematic FX: CGI.

33. Vote for: YEA.  I am amazed that Congress still uses this word to tally votes.

35. Leading in the race: AHEAD.

36. In tatters: TORN.  Elmore "RIP" Torn was an American Actor.  He passed away last July. R.I.P. RIP

39. Diplomatic accord: ENTENTE.

40. "My bad!": SORRY.  "I'm Sorry, So Sorry, please accept my apology". Brenda Lee.

42. Says "My bad!": OWNS UP.

43. Car window stickers: DECALS.  There was a time when nearly every car had decals for where they had been.  Now bowling centers and golf courses don't give decals so my van windows are clear.

44. Involuntary jerk: SPASM.

45. Safari heavyweight: HIPPO.

46. Gibson garnish: ONION.  I do not drink alcohol now so my onions garnish a hamburger.

47. Rope fiber: SISAL.

48. "Circle of Friends" author Binchy: MAEVE.

49. Balance sheet item: ASSET.  A lot of assets slipped away in February.  Hope you all are okay.  Thank the stars, they did not whack Social Security.

50. Back in style: RETRO.  I have been watching RETRO baseball and golf on TV for a month.  I'm ready for the real thing again.

53. And others: Abbr.: ET AL.  No others, we are done.  Thanks for playing.

55. Org. concerned with PCB's: EPA.



OwenKL said...

Plowing thru the mortal lot.
With scythe in hand
Sev'ring the band
That keeps the soul from drifting aught.

Thought he'd GAMBLE on a whirl,
Went to SERENADE a girl.
Alas, his voice --
More croak than choice --
Brought peace-keeping siren skirl!

There was a talented ALEUT
Who folks agreed, was quite astute.
He could cook TO A TURN
A seal's intern,
And from its hide, make mukluks to boot!

Sonic the HEDGEHOG was feeling blue,
Of bee-stings, he had quite a few!
He'd spent the day
On the "APIAN way",
Gathering honey with a SEPIA hue.

{A-, A-, B+, B-.}

Wilbur Charles said...

FLN, xword took so long to solve(FIR) and so much going on I never got here. CADY surfaced because even reading the CC write-up I thought Do(t)Ted U? And that THE CRUCIBLE was a "Down(ie depressing) Play. And the others accordingly except I couldn't grok how Ward CLEAVER was sad. Enough.

I breezed through this morning until the MAEVE/LETO cross. But perp'able and WAG'able. Even on a Monday Paul C can be clever and entertaining. As of course is Boomer who had me wondering about a bowling pin changing direction. The right-handed bowler starts it from the left and the spin brings it around.

Yes, I watched the "Match" and Brady's hole-in-one for a FOUR on #8 amidst Barkley's trash talk. I suspect Tom neglects his Golf to spend time with family. Tsk, tsk. Golf joke*


*So hubby gets home late and says "Honey, I can't lie to you, I've been out drinking and carousing with women". Smash goes the Frying pan. "You liar, you've been playing GOLF!"

Paul Coulter said...

Thanks, Boomer. Glad you made it clear which Paul was part of the Fab Four. Let's see, for crosswords, my Fab Four would be C.C., Alex Eaton-Salners, Barry Silk, and Bernice Gordon. That's just off the top of my head. There are so many more great constructors worthy of a Fab.

"A seal's intern" - I see what you did there, Owen. But what did the Aleut do with Al's organs? Anyway, this one was originally for the CHE, with its education theme. But when the Chronicle dropped its crossword, Rich was kind enough to pick up the puzzle.

Lemonade714 said...

Paul, I enjoy your puzzles, love stories of your grandchildren, and appreciate your interaction with the Corner. You also create puzzles for ever day of the week. This was a good Monday, though I am not sure I have ever heard of a SHORT ANSWER test. I learned about and began reading MAEVE BINCHY from a LAT puzzle and recommendation from one of the early posters.

I would be hard-pressed to choose my Mount Rushmore of Constructors, but DAN NADDOR does come to mind.

Thank you, Paul and Boomer.

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Misread "island" as "land," and immediately inked in KOREA, but only five of the letters were wrong. Wite-Out, please. Otherwise this was a smooth glide to the bottom. Thanx, Paul and Boomer. (Toilet paper as groceries? Maybe with ketchup.)

ASSET: Yes, my graph has a major dip in it. It made a dead-cat bounce, but it's nowhere near where it was. [Sigh]

SEPIA: Boomer, your example photo didn't make the trip -- at least not on my browser. It looks like the proverbial white swan eating popcorn in a snowstorm.

Hungry Mother said...

FIR, but some weird writeovers: AGLET 4 iGLET, GAMBLE 4 tuMBLE, MONTE 4 MONTy. My bonus today was to fill in half of yesterday’s puzzle. I had a 5 mile virtual race early, then a Zoom session with a niece, then a 5 mile walk with my wife where she face-planted halfway through, then an afternoon of supplying icing for my wife’s fat lip, then a couple of phone calls from kids, then watching Temple of Doom.

Yellowrocks said...

Quick and easy today, as fast as the pen could write.
The only unknown was LETO, easily filled by perps.
Short answer tests have just a word or two for each answer, or simply true/false. They are very easy to grade. The opposite, essay tests, take lots of time to grade.
I had a college professor who asked us to choose: always true, mostly true, always false, mostly false. I hated those tests. As a student I liked essay tests. My Master's exam consisted of three essays written in several blue books in two and a half hours. The questions could be anything we studied in any of our Master's courses, very hard to prepare for. All supporting documentation and details for our essays had to come from memory.
An edger has a blade, but no string. It can be run along the edge of the lawn where it meets the sidewalk to make a neat edge. A weed whacker has a string.
I have read quite a few of Maeve Binchey's novels.
When my MIL lived in senior housing, my BIL called her friends the posse. It made me laugh.

Wilbur Charles said...

Hungry M, which half? The fairly easy half along with friendly perps? In which case with 2/3 filled you're barely halfway. Enjoy

Real fast: Today,yesterday, JeffWesch and CC.

Speaking of #2 and CADY, wasn't her "virtuous white woman" simply effective strategy?*


* NYT won't let the hoi polloi read without a subscription

desper-otto said...

YR, all of the professional yard crews around here use "weed whackers" as edgers. They can make the a really neat edge with one.

inanehiker said...

This was a fairly quick one - though our small city doesn't have a paper on holidays so I always have to adjust to filling out on-line!
I'm a fan of Maeve Binchy too - YR!

I had fun watching part of "The Match" yesterday - interesting to see the different styles of Manning and Brady - Payton was more of a "Let 'er rip" player and Tom was much more analytical. It paid off for Tom with his Eagle putt on the back nine.

I definitely liked the short answer or even short essay tests over those that had a blank blue book and 3 hours to fill it! Multiple choice were my favorite to use test taking skills, ( except the dreaded type K question which consisted of four choices A,B,C,D but then the answers were 1) A only; 2) both A and C; 3) both B and D; 4) A, B and C, 5) All of the above)

Thanks Boomer! and Thanks Paul for the puzzle and for stopping by

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Easy solve today. No searches; no erasures. Reveal clearly set the theme. 2 'ups'; LOAD UP and OWNS UP.
MAEVE is Prince Valient's daughter-in-law; Arn's beautiful wife.
HEDGEHOGS were part of the ASW suite on our DD. We had one mount on either side below the bridge on the O1 level. Each mount could fire 24 hedgehogs simultaneously about 400 ft in a somewhat oval pattern. The launcher was somewhat trainable.

Thanks Boomer for another fine intro.

Abejo said...

Good morning, folks. Thank you, Paul Coulter, for a fine puzzle. Thank you, Boomer, fort a fine review.

Puzzle went quickly. Never even looked for the theme. Saw it when I got here.

Needed perps for GABON. LETO as well.

JEEP was slow in coming, until I really thought about it.

The long downs came when I had some letters. The rest filled in easily.

Never owned a NEHRU jacket. Oh well.

I am sure ENOLA GAY dropped the bomb to quickly end the war. The enemy would not give up. The world was tired.

Rained a little this morning. Now it will get hot. Sounds like a muggy day.

See you tomorrow.


( )

PK said...

Hi Y'all! Great fun & fast puzzle with a few quirks, Paul! Thanks. Always a good start to the week with Boomer and our old favorite song lyrics.

Did not get the "S...A" part of the theme. I was busy looking at the first word of each answer. I thought I needed a word meaning multiple choice to go with ANSWER. I guessed SHORT is good for that.

DNK: TIMOR (but perps filled before I saw the clue.)

Couldn't get the "J" for JEEP until all of JUGGERNAUT perped in. I couldn't get off the kind of "base" in a ballgame. bEEP, pEEP, lEEP, wEEP. Nonsense there. Duh!

Hand up for being a MAEVE Binchy fan. Read all her stuff, I think, and mourned her death. RIP 1940-2012.

TTP said...

Good morning. Thank you, Paul.


The long answer is that I solved it in the early morning while watching a romcom movie on MoviePlex. The movie was "Prime", with crossword favorite Uma Thurman and fan favorite Meryl Streep. The movie was largely forgettable, but once again Meryl was fascinating to watch as the plot unfolded.

So Paul, in spite of your clean Monday level puzzle, it now holds the record for longest Monday solve all year.

Thanks, Boomer. I too thought of Colin Montgomerie for some reason. Probably from watching too much golf in the '90s.

Yes, our flag is out.

D-O, and Yellowrocks, same here. The "landscapers" just use string trimmers. Me too. My BIL had an edger as YR described, but he lived "in town" on a corner lot with a lot of sidewalk.

Hungry Mother, hope your wife is feeling a little better today. Ouch !

Inanehiker, I'm with you. But my issue would have been coming up with Both A and D, and not having a selection for it. :>)

Madame Defarge said...

Good Morning.

Thanks, Paul, for my Monday fun. It was pretty smooth sailing. Must have been the BUOYANCY! HEDGEHOG was a total WAG. I have heard him/her/it mentioned, but then realized Sonic must be a first name. I love AGLET. I learned it from a crossword long, long ago--perhaps when I was in High SCHOOL AGE.

Thanks, Boomer, for another informative and good humored tour. I enjoyed the Match yesterday and I don't play golf. It did make me realize that I enjoy watching golf without the gallery. I enjoyed not hearing some loudmouth who needed to be heard. Do you think Heidi's range is ALTO?

YR, my Master's Comps were 4 hours. I spent the whole summer reviewing our courses with a colleague. Thanks goodness for her because our frequent meetings kept me focused. I did well and was rewarded by being allowed to write my thesis on grammar and writing--a real show stopper. ;-)

Okay, mostly today I've learned I need to read Maeve Binchy. I may have long ago, but I'm due for reading some quality writing. Thanks for the high recs.

Have a sunny day, everyone.

PS: Isn't Anon-T about to become AARP eligible or am I hallucinating?

Madame Defarge said...

PS 2:

Thanks, Owen. I've misses your poetic self.

Lucina said...


Owen, your poems are brilliant today! It's so good to see you at the beginning once more.

Paul, thank you. You never disappoint and always please with your clean fill.

I didn't know POSSE in that context, only the Wild West ones. And what a blast from the past to see TRINI Lopez!

Our high SCHOOL purchased an army JEEP on auction, had it painted red and it was perfect to tool around the campus. One year the seniors painted it gold as a prank but the change was not well received and they had to repaint it.

I have definitely noticed an INCREASE in the price of groceries! My purchases don't deviate much from week to week but the bill keeps going up.

Hand up for being a fan of MAEVE Binchy and owning a few of her books.

PAUL, that was a clever way to insert your name into the puzzle!

Enjoy this Memorial Day as best you can, everyone! My niece and I are going to the cemetery to take flowers but there won't be a service as usual.

Lucina said...

My MA final was also four hours and the essay had to be preceded by an outline. It was an eventful day aside from the test. One of our neighbors had hosted a party the night prior, apparently much liquor was involved and at 7 A.M. was holding his family hostage after the police had been called. I wasn't allowed to exit my front door so had to sneak out through the alley to my sister's home and borrow her car. After that excitement, the test was a piece of cake!

Boomer, thank you! Every week I'm impressed that you still maintain your humor and provide us with quality analysis.

Yellowrocks said...

I guess I am wrong about the edger. Mostly we do not need any type of edger right now. The lawn edges of most of the yards on my street are very frayed and/or brown due to plows scooping up snow with salt on it and depositing it on the lawn edges last winter.
Madame D. I could have remembered the length of the Master's test incorrectly. It was very long and took many blue books. It could have been four hours. There were study groups, but I reviewed on my own. I remember better that way because other people mess up my thought processes. I did well. The Comps were the last requirement. My thesis was done just before that. I enjoyed doing the thesis, too.
Inanehiker, yes, I didn't like those devilish choices, either.
My hair is actually better this week. I had an outgrown pixie cut. Now that it is a little longer and doesn't look like a bad pixie cut, it is nicer.

Sherry said...

Good Monday. 3 unknowns: Timor, Gabon, & Cgi. All solved by crosses. What does CGI stand for? Enlighten me.

CanadianEh! said...

Marvelous Monday. Thanks for the fun, Paul (and for dropping by-I see you gave yourself a CSO!) and Boomer.
I FIRed today in good time with several white-outs. Perps to the rescue. Egged changed to EDGED; Trina changed to TRINI. Cel changed to CGI (for Sherry - CGI stands for Computer Generated Imagery; I didn't know FX stood for Effects! and had to look up both)
This Canadian also needed the perps to correct Bouyancy to BUOYANCY. At least it has a U which is more than I can say for ODOR! LOL!

I thought of Fib before LIE; are those fish stories fibs, white lies or bold-faced lies (requiring one to OWN UP and say I'm SORRY)?
Like Lucina, I am not familiar with POSSE associated with a rapper. Groupies maybe.
I have read MAEVE Binchy but not Circle of Friends. I just added it to my list.
I learned AGLET, OREL and ENER (as clued) doing CWs; JUGGERNAUT is a great mouthful for a Monday.

We saw HIPPOs on safari (Crescent Island boat ride in Kenya). They look sleepy and slow but apparently can move very quickly. Later in our safari, we saw their slide marks down a muddy hill into the water (apparently their nightly activity).

Another beautiful day here.
Wishing you all a good day (Memorial Day for my American friends!).

OMaxiN said...

FIR. It's Monday.
Memorial Day:originally known as Decoration Day and was celebrated on May 30th.
Needed a guess for Jared & Binchy.
Boomer Ft. Campbell. You probably didn't hesitate at yesterday's Austin PEAY .
Trini wanted a hammer then he got one.
Thank you Paul and Boomer

Husker Gary said...

-I really miss the services at my hometown cemetery today
-S___ A___ stood out like a brick in a punch bowl.
-Correcting SA’s was so tedious!
-Studio execs PANNED American Graffiti when it was shown to them. Not far away, UCLA kids loved it! It became one of the best returns on investment in the history of film
-Some prom dresses have precious little fabric where a corsage can be PINNED
-My golf partner can’t get his iron shots to ARC any more
-Involuntary jerk – There’s this one guy in our golf league…
-LOAD UP – How many homes now have a glut of toilet paper?
-ATTA BOY – I got lots of ‘em in lieu of cash
-Which pronunciation of DECAL do you use?

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

I AVOW AVERy easy Monday challenge that I EDGED AHEAD to the END

FIR with some inkovers: LOADon/UP. Chaos might result from a shout answer test..oh wait it's SHORT ANSWER...

Do current students actually use blue books? That would necessitate manipulating a "writing instrument" and "printing" (forget cursive) the letters of the alphabet. Unfortunately their fingers and thumbs are only adapted for keyboards on computers and phones.

Took a while to get the theme. But isn't STUDY A BROAD a bit demeaning and misogynistic just like claiming MAEVE is ...hold on ..sorry's BiNchy. My bad...

Learning moment: a JUGGERNAUT is not a subspecies of Jabberwocky

I picture a safari as a hunt slashing through the jungle to shoot down endangered specious. (Im sure, Canada Eh the only shooting was photographic.) Plus a vine swinging APIAN would likely intervene. Tarzan? Nope..a bee keeper with African killer bees. (Ape..italian (AH-peh) from Latin: apes)

Thought BUOYANCY referred to a young man who dated Beyoncรฉ? (Nice to see SISAL my favorite cartoon sea serpent included in the puzzle too.)

A NYT puzzle had interesting clueing of the ubiquitous answer OBOE. "Instrument French for 'high' and 'wood' ..let me think ..ah..haut bois the Shakespearean stage direction "exeunt hautbois: In SOPH English Lit class always thought it meant boys left the stage.

Enjoy Memorial Day. ๐Ÿ‘จ‍✈️๐Ÿ‘ฉ‍✈️

Anonymous said...

Lemonade- Dan Naddor was one of the best and most prolific constructors ever. I never met him but we were friends. We would email or call each other four, five times a week. He was a charismatic fun loving guy. A beautiful man.

Fun story. I made a puzzle that had the fill word GELDING. I had trouble coming up with a good clue for it. I contacted Dan and asked him how he would clue it. His immediate response was, "Gone nuts, horse-wise"

Rich published the puzzle, but not with that clue.

Miss him... too damn young to pass.


SwampCat said...

Fun friendly puzzle today. Thanks Paul for the clever theme. Boomer, always a pleasure!

Owen, glad you are back in fine form. I loved them all! Thanks.

Canadian Eh, thanks for the good wishes on this American holiday. But we also remember the 14,000 Canadians who stormed Juno Beach on D-day, among many others.

Shankers said...

Finished in 1 minute. Oops! Add a zero to that. I suspect that our friend anon finally broke the 4 minute barrier. Waiting for him to chime in. As a big track fan and speaking of the 4 minute mark, a high schooler from the Metro Phoenix area ran a 3:59 mile over the weekend at a meet in Ca. Most people don't have a clue about what a rare achievement that is. Only in my dreams.

Anonymous said...

Can someone please explain the connection between "Rapper" and "Posse"?

NaomiZ said...

Today being a holiday, it *felt* like Sunday, and I felt exuberant romping through the clues to FIR, but you all reminded me that it's Monday, and this is the norm. Fun anyway!

Years ago, edgers had blades and weed whackers had string. A couple of years ago, I bought a weed whacker to help cut back the ferns along a path, and the instructions indicated that if I turned it sideways, it was designed to work as an edger. So the plastic string instrument has crossed boundaries. It leaves little bits of plastic on the ground that are unsightly and probably dangerous to animals.

TTP said...


I always wondered about that song. They have so many hammers down at the hardware store that they sell them. Why didn't he just go buy a hammer ? :>)

For those that are interested, Nat Geo Channel seems to be running a marathon today on the America's Wilderness & the National Parks. They just had an episode about Saguaro National Park, and the episode airing now is on Yellowstone.

Ray-O, yesterday I was talking to my neighbor about Memorial Day cookouts, he said that his dad had already done the propane tank exchange and was ready to go. I said that although exchanging propane tanks is convenient, you don't get a 20 lb fill. Most of the exchange tanks are filled to 15 lbs. So you are getting about 75% of the fuel for about the same, if not higher cost, for the convenience of an exchange.

As I was saying I wasn't sure off the top of my head what that equated to in differences in volume (gallons), I told him he could do a simple weight test with bathroom scales to appreciate the difference. As I was saying it, he pulled out his phone and came back with the answer that a 20 lb talk holds about 4.7 gallons of propane, and 75 % of that would be...

He's 19. His phone is an appendage.

@ 11:27, a posse in that context is the crew of people that are in almost constant company of a Rap star. Tthey may be there for personal protection, for errands, or just for the image. It's a status symbol to have a large posse, just like gaudy displays of gold jewelry and chains, and grills on their teeth.

Misty said...

Delightful Monday puzzle, Paul! Many thanks, and thanks for checking in with us. As an academic, I naturally liked your EDU theme. Have to admit that at my age I barely remember grading MA theses, let alone writing an ESSAY for one. But fun to see the memories it evoked in so many comments.

Nice of you not to clue PAUL as "my name," Paul. Guess Rich wouldn't allow that. And Boomer you were in a real musical mood this morning, evoking all those songs from the past. Many thanks for that too.

Love seeing your poems here again, Owen.

Have a great week coming up, everybody.

Yellowrocks said...

I agree with TTP about posse and rappers.
I hear posse used often these days to refer to friends, the group of people you hang out with. See my comment about my MIL @7:25.We don't discuss the Wild West posse or the rapper's posse in my crowd.
The dictionary says, POSSE informal, a group of people who have a common characteristic, occupation, or purpose.

Irish Miss said...

Good Afternoon:

This was a nice, easy start to the week. I caught the education references, but the S A sequence went sailing right over my head until the reveal, which brought an Aha! No w/os and no unknowns because we just had Timor so I plunked it in immediately. Noticed the Ener/EPA cousins and Paul’s CSO. There was a mini creature theme with Bug, Hippo, Hedgehog, and Apiary. Maeve Binchy was a marvelous storyteller. I read many of her novels and enjoyed them, although I think her last few were not among her best.

Thanks, Paul, for a fun Monday solve and for dropping by and thanks, Boomer, for entertaining us with your wit and humor. Your memory for song lyrics is amazing.

Owen, all A+, IMO.

I hope everyone has a safe and peaceful day.

oc4beach said...

It was great to see a Paul Coulter puzzle today. Monday doable, but with some challenges along the way. Boomer added an additional layer of enjoyment to the puzzle.

I did need some perps along the way. Didn't know which Alaskan native was called for at first.

It also took a few minutes for JEEP to become apparent (neat clue), even though I have two of them, a Wrangler and a Grand Cherokee. Of course they are mostly just sitting in the garage and driveway with an occasional trip to the Post Office or grocery store. Still on the same tanks of gas since I filled them up in February.

YR @7:25am: When going to school I preferred the SHORT ANSWER type of exams. However most engineering courses (Undergraduate) were all math. Grad school (Management) was all ESSAY TESTs. My final Master's exam was broken into two three hour ESSAY TESTs. 9:00am to noon and 1:00pm to 4:00pm. The first was a regurgitation of all of the theories in management that we had studied over the previous three years and the afternoon was an application of the theories in a real world setting. Didn't enjoy it at all. Plus there were orals and a thesis before I could graduate.

Our County Commissioners took a lot of heat from the population for turning down the Governor's offer to go the Green Phase this week. Yesterday they asked the Governor to allow us to move to the next phase.

The sun just came out, so it looks like we will have a nice day after all. I hope everybody has a great day.

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

TTP @ 11:40

TTP like everyone else we hadn't seen family, even those who live nearby, in weeks. Finally my brother and wife came up to our ADK summer place yesterday. Got the propane grill fired up. Chattering over beers ๐Ÿบ๐Ÿบ we lot track of time and my grilling got "done to a BURN ๐Ÿ”ฅ.

But a great day...even the black flies behaved. ๐ŸฆŸ๐ŸฆŸ๐ŸฆŸ๐ŸฆŸ

Chairman Moe said...

Puzzling thoughts:

Thanks Paul C and Boomer; challenging yet doable puzzle for a Monday, plus an entertaining recap

I had a couple of WO’s, (spelling errors) and scored an “incomplete” when I failed at the Natick in the “FL Peninsula”, when MAEVE/LETO failed to fill. I’m not much of a book reader, and “Panic Room” was an unknown.

Not familiar with the phrase: “done to a turn”, so perps saved that entry

One of my original wine limericks contained 11 down:

‘Twas a wine aficionado,
Who also liked dancing the LIMBO.
She would balance her glass
While inverting her a$$,
Just to see how Merlot she can go ...

My haiku du jour:

Puerile sophomore
Went to France, for junior year,

Welcome back Owen ...

Wendybird said...

One lovely aspect of the puzzles is referencing books and music that are long-forgotten or “meant to read but never did”. I just downloaded Cry the Beloved Country in my Kindle, and I want to re-read The Elegance of the Hedgehog, a truly beautiful book.

Thank you, Paul, for a fairly easy but still creative puzzle. Boomer, I always start humming the songs you reference, so thank you for the trip down memory lane.

desper-otto said...

Irish Miss wrote, "There was a mini creature theme..." As I read that, dw was out in the road out front trying to keep the cars from running over a pair of armadillos that had come strolling through our yard. She's decided they must be young because a) they're smaller than most armadillos we've seen, and b) they must be confused since they're out in the midday sun. I've read that armadillos are omnivores, but these two weren't the least bit interested in canned cat food. Perhaps they were simply fed up with our neighborhood...

Bill G said...

Hi everybody.

I really enjoyed the movie "Circle of Friends." It was my introduction to Minnie Driver.

Chubby Checker did "The Twist." Was he responsible for the limbo craze too?

I thought the Enola Gay was because Japan would not surrender. I guess we need to ask HST.

While in college I tried smoking a pipe too. My father smoked a pipe occasionally. I liked the smell and the activities needed to light a pipe and keep it going. But it left such a bad taste in my mouth, even to the next day. The enjoyment became outweighed by the unpleasant taste. So I gave it up.

TTP, it's been my experience that they don't refill your propane tank all the way to its capacity either.

I think one of my favorite old-time constructors was Merl Reagle. I thought his puzzles ranged from very good to super excellent.

~ Mind how you go...

CrossEyedDave said...

48. Scratch the surface of: MAR. More than one could be a planet.

give this vid 30 seconds for the LOL!

Can't play today,
busy weekend on flight sims...
Just learned how to fly the Beaufighter
(twin engine, with CANNONS!)
Found out why I could not get off the ground...
too heavy! never use more than 25% fuel load!
Still trying to figure out how best to use the Superchargers...

Wilbur Charles said...

I think C-Moe's "How low can you Merlot" was in reference to Chubby.

Two great stories from Lucina and Jerome.


Hungry Mother said...

@Wilbur Charles and @TTP: my wife’s lip has gone from fat to purple. Thanks for asking.

I drove a JEEP in the Army for the year I was in Thailand with an Engineer unit. I was the Operations Clerk and drove my sergeant’s vehicle. I drove a 3/4 ton truck while Commo Chief in the same Engineer unit at Fort Bliss, TX. My favorite vehicle to drive was a deuce and a half which I occasionally drove stateside to drop off soldiers for guard duty. My Army driver license and training also included five ton dump truck and 5 ton tractor with 25 ton trailer. Fun things you get to do while young.

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

Everyone knows the popular entertainers Chubby Checker and Fats Domino. Unfortunately the little known singer Obese Chess had an unsuccessful career, remaining in relative obscurity..♟

Bill G said...


Heh,heh. Obese Chess. Good one! It just goes to show the importance of choosing the right stage name.

Ol' Man Keith said...

Despite his name, Rip TORN was quite a good actor--at his best in villainous and comic roles.

Great to see Owen back and in his stride!
Owen y Mowren, among the best, ahead of the rest and one of a kind.

A fine Coulter pzl today. I enjoyed working it from top to bottom.
A 3-way, verso.
The main diagonal does not have a wide range in vowels, but offers a few anagrams.
Q.--What is the red wine grape that's so lip-smackin' fine, it makes your eyes roll while you expostulate, "Shut my mouth!"? Why, it's vintage...
- or -
Are you in the petite range of Hawaiian frocks? You're a...

AnonymousPVX said...

I’m here rather late today.

Zipped right through the puzzle, seemed to be on the wavelength.

No write-overs today. But I almost inked in Korea...but it’s not an island. are correct about the difference between proper Edgers and Weed Whackers/string trimmer. Around here they use the string trimmers to “edge”, buts it’s not a proper edge, it’s a line.

The Edger, with its spinning blade, creates an “air gap” between the turf and the driveway/sidewalk.

The air gap actually stops anything from growing back for some time...I edge once a year. The trimmer “edge” is good until the next time they come.

Plus nothing looks as good as the real edger.

See you tomorrow...stay safe.

SwampCat said...

Bill G, you are right. Japan couldn’t surrender because they were bound by the code of bushido... basically death before dishonor. If the Allies had invaded Japan they would have had to kill everyone... while the Japanese were shooting at us.

Even after Enola the Japanese military didn’t want to surrender.

Terrible time.

CrossEyedDave said...

Thank you Bill G. @ 3:12

You saved me from Ray-O-Sunshines 2:58...

I was looking up Obese Chess thinking it was person...

oc4beach said...

I agree with Anon-PVX that a real Edger does the best job. Plus you don't have to do it very often each season like you do with a string trimmer.

Jayce said...

Hello everybody. Been very busy today but did have time to work and solve the puzzle, which I enjoyed. Also enjoyed reading all your comments. Here's wishing you all good spirits and good health.

Lucina said...

As you can imagine, the trek around the cemetery was hot even at 10:00 A.M.! But with our trusty map we found all the graves and noticed that someone, likely my brother and his wife, had already been there and placed flowers. We added to them.

Another thing, the cemetery was in better condition than usual; the lawns were mowed and the gravestones trimmed of excess grass. That has not happened before and it looked very nice. With the flowers everywhere and flags for the veterans, it was a fitting remembrance for today.

Ray - O - Sunshine said... Mom always wanted a mausoleum internment. She felt I wouldn't plant or take care of grave side flowers with the care she gave the geraniums at my grandparents monuments.

"Probably correct Mom" ๐ŸŒบ

I admire your diligence especially in a dry hot climate like Scottsdale.๐ŸŒต

Michael said...

Swamp Cat @ 4:18 .... IIRC, the Japanese only folded the next day, when the Russians went into Manchuria and the War Council realized the jig was up.

TTP said...

Ugh !

Today I made what had to be the absolute worst rack of pork ribs in the history of the universe. Inedible.

We normally get the extra meaty baby back ribs. They were out. We got the St Louis style spare ribs. I used the same amount of kosher salt that I use on the baby backs. Big mistake. Then, while finishing mowing the lawn, thinking they'll be ok for a few more minutes. Uber-salty char-blackened spareribs. Yuck !

There was no saving them.

The creamed corn and pierogis were fine. DW made those.

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

I'll be honest, I'm feeling about 30% today. DW's been in bed since Saturday. There's no way in heck we have the 'Rona [that's what the cool kids call it] be we have a serious case of lethargy. DW gets The Test tomorrow...

Thanks for the puzzle, PAUL. Took me all day [see: above] (on a Monday?) but I had fun playing with the pen an putting letters in boxes. @54a got extra letters because A BUZZ was right out.

Great expo Boomer!

Fav: That NE corner had something that kept evoking something... MONTE [sic] Python at GRIM REAPER [Meaning of Life], RUSH w/ GAMBLE (You Bet Your Life/Roll the Bones) and ENOLA Gay [Song: Manhattan Project].. I'd link it all but I'm TIRED [Blazing Saddles]

{A+, B, B+, Cute!} Good to see you back in fine fettle OKL.
OMK - not bad yourself....
C. Moe! You're ornery.
Ray-O - Really? :-)

Where's the love for Merl Reagle? Bill G. found it.

MdF - you're a month early but thanks for remembering.

Sherry - I could sit here for hours and bore you w/ background of CGI. My graduate work was on machine vision (one aspect of AI) and CGI. We've come a long way baby.

Hungry Mother - a) is your DW better by now?
b) Fort Bliss is such a misnomer it's silly. Did basic there. There was one Blissful time during bivouac in White Sands while doing pushups that I watched a tarantula near as the sun rose. That was pretty Zen.
Thought AWOL b/f JEEP.

TTP - Arggg! I've so done that before. I kept tasting things and ++Salt... Oy! worst ham-bean soup ever. Not feeling great, just dogs & corn on the cob on the grill today.

Cheers, -T

Lucina said...

We only do it once a year, on Memorial Day and it's usually preceded by Mass at 8:00 when it's a bit cool and in area is surrounded by tall, lush trees. The rest is open space with very few trees.

Besides, we're used to the climate and dress appropriately. In fact, my "uniform" from March to October is shorts.

I'm sorry your cooking didn't go well. That's probably a first!

Vermontah said...

Nice easy Monday. FIR. Misspelled MONTY instead of MONTE. I sure wish I had that $20 back that I stupidly gave up to a 3-card monte game in New York a hundred years ago. I thought I had it beat! Yes, I felt stupid, especially since I lived in NY and should have known better.

Takes more than the right club to get a nice ARCED shot. I use the right club all the time but as often as not it bounces right into the sand trap with no arc at all.

I would never have spelt BUOYENCY like that. Indeed, neither would my computer. As I wrote it here the little squiggly red line appeared indicating a misspelt word. Stupid computer.

BTW, I personally enjoy writing the word "spelt" instead of "spelled." I just asked Mr. Google about it, and it turns out "spelled" is the standard American English spelling of the word. It goes on to say, snarkily, I thought, that " It will certainly annoy a fair proportion of your readers." Dear readers and solvers, you guys know everything about words, are you indeed annoyed when I write "spelt?" I certainly mean no offense! (I was born in England so maybe that's why I like it. I also like "whilst.") My computer certainly is irritated; there's squiggly red lines under each repetition of "spelt>" Oops there's another one!

If something's done to ATURN, if you turn it again it will be overdone, AMIRITE?

Lucina said...

You can spell SPELT or any other quirky variation you like. We do not (speaking for myself) sit in judgment. I might cringe in the privacy of my solitude, but I would not say anything about it. Everyone here, I believe, is familiar with the vagaries of the English language.