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Jul 8, 2020

Wednesday July 8th, 2020 Margit Christenson

Theme: A LONG LEASH (59. Lots of freedom, as illustrated in each set of circles)

17. "Horsefeathers!": BALDERDASH.

27. Imbibes to excess: DRINKS LIKE A FISH.

45. Wee-hours program with James Corden: THE LATE LATE SHOW.

Boomer again, filling in a blog schedule gap. LA Times debut for Margit Christenson. Congratulations!

C.C. has me on a short LEASH but I am happy to be here, I just want to help the ball club (Crash Davis).



Across:

1. More ironic, as a smile: WRYER.

6. Bunyan's blue ox: BABE.  Babe lives at the Paul Bunyan Center in Brainerd, Minnesota..



10. Questlove hairdo: AFRO.  I wonder if Colin Kaepernick will be offered a job this year.

14. "... said __ ever": NO ONE.

15. "Jeopardy!" host Trebek: ALEX.  I sort of backed off from Jeopardy,  I guess they can not tape new shows due to the virus, so they are showing replays.  Last week they showed the one where James got beat.

16. Dull: BLAH.  "The force can't do a decent job 'cause the kids have no respect for the law today ... and BLAH, BLAH, BLAH."  Save the Life of my Child.  - Simon and Garfunkel.

19. "Piece of cake!": EASY.

20. One-celled creature: AMOEBA.

21. Artist's paint holder: PALETTE.

23. Having prolonged success: ON A ROLL.  The only time I was ever "ON A ROLL" was in a bowling center.

26. Air traffic branch of the DOT: FAA.  The Federal Aviation Administration is probably not too busy these days.

32. Actress Chaplin: OONA. Granddaughter of Charlie Chaplin.



33. Instrument from the French for "high wood": OBOE.  "On Base On an Error?"  MLB is opening soon they say.  From a Twins fan - "Miguel Sano tested positive."

34. Cal. column: MON. "Monday, Monday, So good to me". Mamas and the Papas.

35. Sea debris: JETSAM.

37. Eateries' outdoor seating areas: PATIOS.  We have a few here, without problems so far.  It seems that the indoor restaurants and bars have trouble with social distancing.

40. Boater or bowler: HAT.  I am a BOWLER but no one ever called me a hat.  I've been called lots of other names though.

41. Sleeper agent: MOLE.

44. Org. that collects workplace injury data: OSHA.  I remember when Graybar had to reorganize the warehouse stock so nothing heavy fell on my head.

49. "Ouch!": YOW.

50. Take up again: RE-ADOPT.

51. Treatise on verse: POETICS.

53. Confession about the last piece of cake: I ATE IT.


58. Fencing sword: EPEE.  This is not a sign in a men's bathroom.

62. Alan of "M*A*S*H": ALDA.  "The game of life is hard to play, you're gonna lose it anyway."

63. Head of France: TETE.

64. App with pics, familiarly: INSTA. Instagram.

65. Get fresh with: SASS.

66. Canadian gas: ESSO.  "Canadian gas eh"

67. Early fur trader: ASTOR.  John Jacob had a few bucks. 

Down:

1. Org. with the Sun, Storm and Sky: WNBA.  We have the LYNX.  With former star Lindsey Whalen.  She now coaches the Minnesota Gopher Women's team.


2. Go here and there: ROAM.  Montana - Room to Roam.

3. "Life is short" initialism: YOLO. You Only Live Once.

4. "The Neverending Story" author: ENDE. Michael.


5. Adidas subsidiary: REEBOK.  No shoes, but I do have a comfortable pair of stretch pants perfect for bowling.  I also have bowling equipment.  Now all I need is a vaccine.

6. Word that oddly can mean "good" in slang: BAD.  or it could mean "Leroy Brown".

7. Chicken __ king: A LA.  "Oh moon of Alabama, we now must say goodbye". The Doors.

8. Custom-made: BESPOKE.  I used to have these on my beecycle wheels.

9. Sigh, say: EXHALE.

10. Have __ in one's bonnet: A BEE.  I have never owned a bonnet but I have swatted a few bees.

11. Common paint choice for ceilings: FLAT FINISH.  Only for FLAT ceilings.

12. Bob Marley and Bunny Wailer: RASTAS.


13. "I remember now": OH YEAH.

18. Kidnapper's demand: RANSOM.  I have never been kidnapped.  I must not be worth a RANSOM

22. Peruvian pack animal: LLAMA.  Since the Washington team is changing their name, Maybe Chicago NFL team could become the LLAMAs ??  Sorry TTP, I didn't mean it.

24. Neighbor of Greece: Abbr.: ALB.

25. 2016 Olympics city: RIO.  Now they are holding the Covid - 19 Olympiad

27. Attorney General's org.: DOJ.  You may want to pronounce it DODGE.  Oops, no politics.

28. __ v. Wade: ROE.

29. Overwhelmed with diner orders, as a server: IN THE WEEDS.  Where some of my tee shots land.

30. Like Fran Drescher's voice: NASAL.


31. Pics: FOTOS.  This seems to be spelled incorrectly.

36. Pong game maker: ATARI.  I spent hours attacking "PACMAN" back around 1980.  Now he shows up on the computer now and then.

37. Domesticated farm squealer: PET PIG.  Nice to call them pigs.  I think most are not pets, but rather a supply of pork.

38. "What have we here?!": OHO.

39. Carpenter's tool: SAW.

41. The first "M" in the MMR vaccine: MEASLES.  I had measles when I was a kid.  Must have been before the vaccine was invented.

42. Same __ story: OLD.  "Who you callin' OLD."

43. Philosopher __-tzu: LAO.

45. Ambitious, outgoing sorts: TYPE A's.

46. Hubbub: HOOPLA.  Quite a bit going on last weekend.  Celebrating USA's 244th Birthday.

47. Beer named for a Baja city: TECATE.


48. Latin "and others": ET ALIA.

52. High times?: TEAS.  C.C. is the TEA expert in our home.

54. Change for a twenty, maybe: TENS.  I don't think you can get change when spending a twenty,  Everything costs more than that.

55. Toward sunrise: EAST.  Most of the beaches on the EAST coast are closed, but a few are hangin' in there.

56. Analogy words: IS TO.

57. "__ she blows!": THAR.

60. Tie-breakers: Abbr.: OTS.

61. Classical prefix: NEO.

Boomer



59 comments:

Hungry Mother said...

FIR, no write-overs. Happy Hump Day.

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Looked at the circles about halfway through, and figured out that the word was LEASH. Does that count as getting the theme? I'm counting it, anyway. After finishing I had to look up "Questlove" -- news to me. Nice debut, Margit. Enjoyed the tour, Boomer. (BTW, your favorite group, the Mitchell Trio, also recorded that "Moon of Alabama" song. "Oh, don't ask why.")

JEOPARDY: Boomer, I've been enjoying the reruns. Some of the answers also come back to me. It makes me feel smarter. We record it at 11:30 AM and play it back after dinner. If I'm really a glutton for punishment, I can also record the 1:07 AM installment, which is an even older rerun.

REEBOK: I bought a pair of "desert boots" on Amazon last week. Bad idea. Those suckers weigh 1-1/2 lbs each, and the back of the upper is badly shaped, creating a rub spot on the calf. They're going back today.

KS said...

Tecate and bespoke had me flummoxed, still do, if not for the crosses.

Lemonade714 said...

D-O, where were you going in the desert boots? Welcome Margit, thanks for the puzzle and thank you Boomer for your pinch-hitting and entertainment.

I really enjoyed NEVERENDING STORY .

Happy hump day

desper-otto said...

Lemonade, I thought the higher top would provide some copperhead protection while tramping around in the back yard and woodlot, but the only thing good about those shoes turned out to be the price.

Yellowrocks said...

LEASH was evident right away and it repeated without scrambling. The reveal gave it some meaning. I use the phrase "long leash" for lots of freedom.
I have been thinking that for a dog it is only relative freedom. The dog is still under control of the owner. Lots of freedom for a dog would be off the leash. Many hikers leave the dog off the leash and it covers twice the territory running ahead and afield and coming back, and running off a gain.
Flotsam is defined as debris in the water that was not deliberately thrown overboard, often as a result from a shipwreck or accident. Jetsam describes debris that was deliberately thrown overboard by a crew of a ship in distress, most often to lighten the ship's load. Jetsam is related to jettison.
I read bespoke everywhere these days, but seldom hear it. Seeing TECTATE, I believe I may have come across it a time or two, but needed all six perps.
Boomer thanks for filling in with your wit. Margit, thanks for the puzzle.

Anonymous said...

Today's effort took 5:19.
Ende was new to me.

Per someone's comment recently about my habit of posting my times, I do it because I enjoy challenging myself, and when I first started visiting this blog/page, someone else would post times, which were significantly faster than mine. So, it helped motivate me to solve quicker. That's why I share my times, and kind of wait for some others to post theirs (alas, rarely happens). Also, considering the on-line site has a timer running automatically, I figured if they were kind enough to install that, I might as well pay attention to it.
To each their own.

Wilbur Charles said...

BESPOKE?!! I have it as to contradict

IN THE WEEDS??!. Never heard this one. I'll have to ask my waitress friend.

"Questlove". Where was that? ENDE and TECATE were all perps. The latter must be a Cali thing.

Re. Times.
I have solved online but on an Android which is a bit non user friendly as an app. So a Mon/Tuesday May net to five minutes but it takes fifteen to type it in. Plus I leave a box blank so I can review - if I complete all squares with no "Congrats" it's FIW. Or as the CC says: YMMV(which is "To each their own" in CC-speak

As will be noted later, getting a Boomer recap midweek is a treat

WC

Yellowrocks said...

-TECATE, not TECTATE. See, I can''t even spell it. I see that it is sold in plenty of bars and stores nearby, but apparently I don't notice it.
I believe that many of the puzzle words we don't recognize might be in our purview, but we just do not notice them. That's why when I read I try to be mindful of new vocabulary and slow down to savor it. I often LIU to fix it in my mind.
-Anon. I find doing an early week puzzle in a flash is not very satisfying to me. I like to make it last longer and savor it. On tough puzzles I don't like the added pressure of trying to be fast and then being discouraged if it takes long. I just strive for a FIR and, if not, only one or two bad cells.
-Bespoke is not exactly a new term, but it seems to be gaining in popularity. It means the opposite of off-the-rack. Bespoke clothing is custom-made clothing. It is not made to measure, as featured by many good clothing vendors. Bespoke is made from scratch to your specifications. It seems bespoke was more popular among the British until recent years, when it pops up in books and articles here all the time. It is now used for more custom items than clothing. Bespoke

Yellowrocks said...

-IN THE WEEDS, Cambridge.com: "with so many problems or so much work that you are finding it difficult to deal with something:
We're down in the weeds here with customer service.
The cooks were so deep in the weeds, they were threatening to walk out."
I see that this often apples to restaurant staff.
-I don't use in the weeds that way. I use it in the second sense.
"concerned with small details, often when this prevents you from understanding what is important:
He's one of those rare people who can get down in the weeds and work on the details, but still see the big picture.
I don't want to get too lost in the weeds, but there is a margin of error."

Yellowrocks said...

Applies, not apples. Was that error spellcheck's or mine?

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

This was a pleasant solve with only two unknowns, Tecate and Ende and only one stumble, Noon before Teas. I saw the Leash theme, but the reveal was still a nice Aha moment. I enjoyed several lively entries, such as Balderdash, Hoopla, Poetics, and Jetsam. I’ve heard the expression “In the weeds” but never pondered its meaning. The good old “O” struck my fancy again: Afro, ESSO, YOLO, Rio, Oho, Lao, Neo, To, and No. CSO to CEh at ESSO.

Thanks, Margie, for a mid-week treat and Congrats on your debut and thanks, Boomer, for doing double duty and doing it so well!

Have a great day.

Anonymous said...

To anonymous @ 7:26 am
I love that you post your solve time! I feel the same way about solving puzzles and knowing how easy or hard they were to others. Time will tell!

inanehiker said...

This was a quick romp with the L-E-A-S-H filling in and making the theme answers go quickly.
Thanks YR for the explanation and uses of "IN THE WEEDS" in the language.

I have never had a TECATE because I'm not a big beer drinker - but I'm familiar with the name as Mexican beers are popular at events here (well not recently :) ) Here is an review of the most popular ones: https://vinepair.com/articles/7-best-mexican-lagers-ranked/ Of course Budweiser and Bud Lights are still the Kings of beer here being 2 hours away from St. Louis!

I am a fan of Questlove and the Roots on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon - so AFRO came to mind easily as it's a signature of his. I haven't seen much Jeopardy lately as I DVR it - but only new episodes....

Thanks Boomer for filling in and congrats to Margit!

Big Easy said...

Good morning. With the L-E-A-S-H in circles it was an easy spot to the theme. I didn't know TECATE was in Baja but I bought a 12-pack Saturday. I don't know who Questlove or James Corden are but it was either UPDO or AFRO for her/him and the perps took care of THE LATE LATE SHOW.

INSTA- I've heard of Instagram but it took perps to fill.
IN THE WEEDS- my drives often end up there but I've never heard that term before.
BABE- an ox or PET PIG?

Gotta run.

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

Suggest a theme? "Who Let the Dogs Out?"

A single inkover first letter. Dryer/Wryer otherside fairly easy humpday puzzle. Gave me the opportunity to find out the meaning of flotsam and jetsam. Besides being Ariel's two eel nemises..nemesi?...nemeisisis?...oh forget it. YR we used the same search engine.

So it's FOTOS now? Well that's not phine with me. The ever confused AMŒBA British cousin is back. MON confused me also till I realized Cal. meant calendar and not California. POETICS was a learner. Heard of "Instagram" but not INSTA. Is face short for Facebook too?

PETPIG an oxymoron when you consider pets are simply animals we don't eat.

BESPOKE, now I get it. INTHEWEEDS new term not familiar with. Regional expression?
ENDE was unknown...fits his title though so I hope I won't forget next time.


But forgettables:

My little girl buddy ____ ...PALETTE

A bright student should make the _____ ..ONOROLL

Add weed and lemon: you have ______ in London...HIGH TEA.

Results of runaway HELSINKI steam roller .......FLATFINISH.

Exeunt Hautbois.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

DNK ENDE. Everything else fell in OK or perped EASily. Saw the stretched-out LEASH theme right away and prefilled it into the circles @ THE LATE LATE SHOW. Kinda simple but OK, I guess.
LONG LEASH - A kind of 'cousin' expression is heard in the military/Navy: "some slack" or "cut (someone) some slack". "I think we should cut Anonymous some slack on posting solving times." (We all have our own ways of expressing our interest, excitement or dispair in this crossword hobby.)

Das ist das ENDE.

Bob Lee said...

TECATE was a gimme for me since I watch boxing and they are a huge sponsor.

IN THE WEEDS for overwhelmed seems strange to me. We would use it for someone basically off on a tangent and not knowing what they were doing when searching for a solution to a problem.

I thought OFF THE LEASH but that didn't fit, and I had PIGLET for a while before PET PIG so that threw me off until I saw I had misread the Sleeper Agent clue (Sleeper Giant? I guess I need new glasses!)

Had MATT FINISH at first so upper right was 2nd to last fill.

ENDE was new to me, so upper left was last to finish.

Another fun puzzle. Thanks!

Malodorous Manatee said...

FIR. 9:03 for me as long as we're posting times. That is longer than usual for me for a Wednesday.

I did not know ENDE and although I knew the word BESPOKE I was reluctant to fill it in because I was not familiar with the definition as it was used here. After solving the puzzle I looked it up and learned that the usage was, indeed, appropriate. I had read Kitchen Confidential soon after Bourdain published the book so I was familiar with IN
THE WEEDS. I do not use Instagram so INSTA did not immediately come to mind. Do people actually refer to the app in that way?

Husker Gary said...

Musings
-An easy solve and obvious gimmick but I blew POETI_S/TE_ATE. ENDE was all crosses
-I’ve been ON A ROLL with my golf swing and then yesterday…
-After a few years of “open classrooms” most schools did RE-ADOPT self-contained classrooms
-It’s harder to tell who gets the last piece with this pattern
-ASTOR was a billionaire but went down with the Titanic in 1912. His pregnant wife survived and named their son John Jacob ASTOR VI
-The Music Man Harold Hill buttering up the mayor’s wife, “Oh, every move you make, Mrs. Shinn, BESPEAKS Delsarte”
-To me “IN THE WEEDS” is when some of our great computer experts here get technical. I follow as far as I can :-)
-Fran Drescher talking about her TV voice (1:49)
-Around here we say pictures and not photos or FOTOS

Yellowrocks said...

Your definition of in the weeds depends on your wheelhouse. In the weeds for overwhelmed with work is basically restaurant lingo. If restaurant lingo is not common usage with someone, they may not have heard it. I have seen its use seep into other areas, such as mothers handling twin infants, both needing changing, hugging, nursing at the same time. I believe it's not regional. I don't use it this way, but I know I have heard about it.
Neither is the off on a tangent use regional. That one is really in my wheelhouse and I see it often in print. It is more often written than spoken.
I thought of matte finish first, but it needs five letters.
Listing solving times? YMMV. To each his own, or in modern language, to each their own. The singular they was the word of the year in 2019. It appears often in newer novels, even when the gender is obvious.
Can you tell? I am doing a task I hate doing, so I play on the computer. I have about used up my number of posts for today. How else can I delay?.

oc4beach said...


As I've said every time there are circles, I use the Merriam-Webster site which has no circles, therefore I didn't get the theme or even look for it. Otherwise it was an interesting puzzle from Margot Christenson. Nice to see Boomer again this week.

I didn't know some of the word usage today but was able to fill it all in thanks to perps and a few wags.

We've had INSTA recently so I plopped it in.

I agree with others about IN THE WEEDS being someone buried in the details. Never heard it referring to a waitress being overwhelmed. Also, BESPOKE was new to me in this context. It seems like there could be a different word for custom made apparel.

FOTOS and PICS are not what I consider to be real words, so in that context they are perfectly acceptable as answer and clue.

Again it was nice to see AMOEBA spelled correctly.

At first I had RASPY for Fran Dresher's voice before it was corrected to NASAL by perps. She does have an interesting voice and laugh, but I don't think I could stand it for more than a half hour sitcom.

I also didn't know ENDE. I originally guessed INGE just because he's a four letter author that we see a lot. This was straightened out by perps.

I think we are starting to wear out ESSO. I don't recall seeing EXXON in any CW.

Well, enough ramblings. I think I'll go and make some sausage and peppers for lunch.

Enjoy the day everyone and wear your masks.

Madame Defarge said...

Good Morning.

I can't seem to get out of my basement. I started one of my purging and organizing projects that drives my DH nuts. It's in the everything's out and messy stage. He has a defib-pacemaker so I'm not worried. He'll survive.

I did Tuesday and today this morning. Thanks, Margit and Boomer and Evan and Hahtoolah!!

YAY!!! to Abejo!

Back to the chaos. Have a sunny day.

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

Paul Bunyan has stood in the "Enchanted Forest" fantasy fairlytale land in Old Forge NY in the Adirondacks since the mid 50s. Here he greets visitors from decades ago. Multiple generations have taken their photo with him including me and my bro as tykes, later my kids in the 80s and now my grandkids

A water park was added, grown to one of the largest in the NE. Except for this year we never missed a trip.

Misty said...

Fun Wednesday puzzle with a neat theme. Liked the way the LEASH got farther and farther apart each time, making it a LONGer and LONGer LEASH. So, many thanks, Margit, and always enjoy your wit, Boomer.

Never heard of Questlove but there are only so many hairdos and A BEE got me AFRO right away. Have never seen a picture of OONA Chaplin, so thanks for posting it, Boomer. ALAN Alda shows up a lot in puzzles, doesn't he?--with either his first or last name.

Have a good day, everybody.

Shankers said...

To both Anons above I totally agree with you regarding posting times. As I commented about it last week, my timi,ng habit no doubt goes back, waaay back,to my running days and always striving for a better time. I time almost everything which, again as I said last week, my son would call OCD and he might be right. I always time long road trips in the car keeping track of mileage and average miles per hour. Doesn't every guy? Back to today's puzzle. I thought bespoke and in the weeds were stretches. Despite that my time was a so-so 11 minutes with my benign tremor.

Lucina said...

Hola!

Thank you, Margit Christenson, for the EASY fun! I especially enjoyed seeing ALEX Trebek. I love Jeopardy and will continue to see reruns, first runs or whatever is showing.

I don't usually watch Jimmy Kimmel but a few times when I have, Questlove has made an impression because of that unusual name. Then there's his hair.

BALDERDASH! That is just fun to say!

TECATE was the favorite beer of one of my late friends.

TYPE A next to HOOPLA seems appropriate.

I did not get YOLO so thank you for that, Boomer, and for your midweek subbing.

I'm familiar with the phrase, IN THE WEEDS, but don't recall exactly why or where I heard it.

Have a fine day, everyone!

CrossEyedDave said...

It is always an interesting puzzle
when it gives you free rein to explore...

Learning moment:
in the weeds...

Prior to this puzzle,
I thought they were talking about my backyard...

Of course,
this puzzle does require a nod to Fran Drescher...

I actually tried walking my neighbors Husky
by tying it to one of those electric wheelchairs
(batteries were dead)
thinking it would be like a hot weather
dogsled team.
Unfortunately the leash was too long & kept
getting caught under the front wheels
But todays puzzle has given me a new idea to try out...

Wheels42 said...

I finished this one in 4:24. As much as I enjoy trying to improve on my time, I get more pleasure out of savoring a puzzle and working it with pen and paper. I find myself reading and appreciating more clues, looking more closely for the theme, etc. But since I solve most of these puzzles during quick work breaks, I think I'll be sticking with the speed runs (at least for the weekday puzzles). Since Anon has requested times, I'll try to post mine more often and I'll try to post on good days and bad so as not to skew the sample.

Anon, perhaps you should make an account so we know you're not being imitated?

Wheels42 said...

I should also add that I'm solving through a browser with a keyboard, so my time is as fast as possible (compared to, say, solving using a keyboard-less iPad or with a clunky app).

Anonymous T said...

Claire the chrysalis is now a Butterfly.

Play later! -T

TTP said...

Margrit, Congratulations on your debut at the LA TIMES, and at the Crossword Corner !

Boomer, I'm ON A ROLL, with my second consecutive failure. Wait, that's a streak. Never mind, it's not a good one. Oh, and that's OK about the Chicago team. I'm a Steelers fan. You may, however, need to apologize to Madame DeFarge. She was a season ticket holder for (I seem to recall) over 30 years !

Today, I had READaPT instead of READOPT. D'OH !

Alright, Desper-otto, now I know you are just messing with me, when you wrote, "After finishing I had to look up "Questlove" -- news to me."

The answer and my explanation at 10D:
tuesday-february-5-2019

The answer and my explanation at 8A:
friday-march-27-2020

That's it ! I'm never blogging a puzzle again if you guys aren't reading it !

BTW, what did you have for breakfast yesterday ?

TTP said...


Ray-O asked " INTHEWEEDS new term not familiar with. Regional expression? " I am familiar with it, but not in the sense of the clue.

To a T, what Bob Lee said, but also in that sense of off in the weeds searching for the root cause to a defect. Then that person can go off in the weeds looking for the solution :>)

Kinda sorta like someone that's off in left field with their detailed conspiracy theories, as in "Wow ! That came out of left field."

Or being caught up in non-relevant minutia and trying to make it relevant. I've authored my share.

OC4BEACH, I think we'll continue to see ESSO much more frequently than we have, or will ever see Exxon.

It's kind of like getting the clue "Tic-tac-toe winner." It's almost always going to be OOO rather than XXX. Esso is easier for the constructor to work in to.

Yellowrocks, who is counting ?

Dash - T, Claire the butterfly looks like she's ready to fly the coop.

AnonymousPVX said...


This hump-day grid was a good one.

No write-overs today.

WC - I think you might be conflating BESPOKE with BELIE?

And on to Thursday. Stay Safe.

desper-otto said...

TTP, what can I say? It's just proof of that old saying: "Memory is the second thing to go." Not sure if I had breakfast yesterday. Wait, I think I did. I just don't remember what it was.

Brian said...

I've heard the expression IN THE WEEDS, as someone or something hiding IN THE WEEDS. Especially as a problem waiting to attack at the most inopportune moment.

oc4beach said...


TTP @ 1:38pm: I think you're right about ESSO and EXXON. But EXXON would give a constructor a challenge as long as Tic Tac Toe isn't used like XXO or OXX as a clue or Roman Numerals.

Ol' Man Keith said...

Thanks, Yellowrocks, for providing the data supporting IN THE WEEDS. Like others, I never heard this expression--except as Boomer used it for a golfing mishap.
I get it now--I think--although it still doesn't apply exactly to the "overwhelmed" diner server who, it seems to me, is more swamped by an abundance of orders than by too many fine details among them.
I think the clue should have stayed on the green.

Otherwise, this is a fine pzl, an excellent humpday diversion. Thank you, Mr. Christenson!
(Too bad it lacks any diagonals. I was spoiled yesterday,)

The LEASH theme reminds me of the good ol' days when I used to walk our dogs. As I grew less and less mobile, so our three lil' guys have seen less and less of the world beyond our gate.
We are fortunate in having a lot of fenced space surrounding our home so they don't lack for running room or gardens to hide in. But I wonder if they miss those wide-open spaces.
I don't think I remember where I last saw a LEASH.
~ OMK

LEO III said...

Very nice puzzle. Did most about two-thirds of it early, early this morning, and finished it a little while ago. FIR, but I wouldn’t have if I hadn’t gone back and proofread it CAREFULLY!

IN THE WEEDS – What Boomer said. Spent lots of time there while hacking around the golf courses. Have retired twice now. Don’t know or care where my old clubs are. Quoth the raven, “Nevermore.”

Knew (and loved) TECATE, back in the last century. I was basically a Coors Light kinda guy, but I did my share of Tecate when I lived in El Paso (especially when we’d go shopping over in Juárez) and even here in Houston. Had the shirt too: “First the salt, then the lime, and THEN THE GULP OF MEXICO.”

Didn’t know ENDE, RASTAS, or OONA, nor did I know Fran Drescher and that her voice was NASAL. Perps were kind again. Tried to mess up FOTOS, because for some dumb reason I wanted MIN (minimum) instead of MON (Monday). I didn't recognize the clue meant calendar. Finally figured out that one. Last fill was the Y and the E in 1A. Never equated wry with irony, but that’s just me.

Good day yesterday! Picked up a six pack of white out at Sam’s – just in time for the upcoming toughies! I don’t have to print out two or three copies of the puzzle grid anymore --- or at least not until I use up all the white out.

WikWak said...

Well OK, If’n everyone else is doing it... FIR in 7:53. A tad longer than usual for a Wednesday but within average range.

BALDERDASH is such a fun word to say. I remember listening to a radio show (yes, before we had a TV) where the lead male character would say it almost like a tag line. I have no idea what the show was. Something makes me think it was The Great Gildersleeve but I am absolutely not sure.

TECATE is widely sold in the Chicago area.

BESPOKE is something I’m quite used to seeing in British novels. Not so much here.

Congratulations to Claire!

Lemonade, I liked that movie too... a lot. I occasionally rewatch it.

Going back over the puzzle I see there were quite a few in the DOWN column that I never saw a clue for; all filled in with perps.

I think I will go shoot some pool; the former owners of our new house left a regulation table with all the balls, cues, racks etc and I’m showing all the signs of a misspent yute. They also left an air hockey table and an electronic darts game. Our house has suddenly become a grandchild magnet.

Stay well.

Maci45 said...

Thank you, YELLOWROCKS, for the clear definitions of BESPOKE and IN THE WEEDS. I had no idea on either.

WikWak said...

Oh, and Boomer, I had measles too, and somewhere I have a very aged and fuzzy photo of the front door of our house with a huge red heavy cardboard sign from the Morgan County Health Department: QUARENTINE! MEASLES. There was one for Chicken Pox too.

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

Tell you what... I spent more time in the SW corner than solving the rest of the puzzle. Also kept thinking, "what's another word for sycophant that starts with a T?" [45d] Finally, SASS dawned on me [not how I was thinkin' of getting' fresh :-)] and ink finally started flowing again.

Thanks Margit for a (relatively) quick mid-week puzzle. And, congrats on the debut!

Thanks for stepping in Boomer - hope there's no (health) issues with our Wednesday revealer(s).
I saw Big BLUE in Bemidji, MN when I consulted for IHS. Also hung at the bar with a guy that turned out to be the Chief's son.

WO: TEkATE. Seen recently on taps at the airport.
ESP: ENDE
Fav: HOOPLA. Starship (nee Jefferson Starship; nee Jefferson Airplane) lyrics "Knee deep in the HOOPLA" came to mind. //I would not do that to you - the link is not the song.
BALDERDASH is fun too.

Knew Questlove. Before bed I now watch all the bits of LATE shows that hit the internet. Quarantine is the loneliest number. [Three Dog Night]

YR - thanks. I was only familiar w/ BESPOKE as in "to speak for something." (MManatee - yep, same hesitation here)
Also, I was only familiar w/ "getting down in the details" for "IN THE WEEDS."
Bob Lee: I always thought of it as knowing so much about something they describe in excruciating detail [I plead guilty].
Brian - I've not heard it in the "gonna bite you in the arse" context.

@7:26a - post your time if you want if for nothing else to have a permanent record. Or what Spitz said :-)
I have really have no idea re: time as I puzzle-play while waiting on various process to complete / boring meetings.

HG - your link illustrates the proper way to slice pizza.

MdF - LOL the "everything out stage" of 'purging.' That's about where I left the garage before everyone started getting sick. Guess I should get back to it this weekend...

Oc4 - I get sausage & peppers tomorrow! MIL is building them for me //better than a cake!

TTP @1:33 - too funny! @1:38 - about 25 minutes later she took to sky AND I happened to be right next to the jar when she did! She was way too fast for me to get my iPhone out for another FOTO.

Cheers, -T

Jayce said...

I liked this puzzle.

I learned a whole new meaning for BESPOKE that I didn't know before.

I learned there is an author named Michael ENDE. I will have forgotten by next week.

I learned the expression IN THE WEEDS. I will probably remember this beyond next week.

I learned there is something (a TV show?) called QUESTLOVE. I don't know if I will still remember this by next week or not.

I learned that REEBOK is a subsidiary of Adidas.

I learned about TECATE beer when I was in San Angelo, Texas. It seems it is always served with a squeeze of lime in it. I also learned about the Texas version of nachos, of which I consumed copious quantities. Um, copious quantities of Tecate, too.

I also had measles when I was a kid, which was definitely before the vaccine was invented. My family quarantined me in the guest bedroom so I wouldn't get others in the family sick. It worked.

When I finished this puzzle the timer read 12:02.

I like the word BALDERDASH, too.

Good wishes to you all.

Malodorous Manatee said...

Timing puzzles. I had never even thought about it until I saw the movie Wordplay. In one scene, a solver was talking about his/her solving times and, of course, in the competitions speed is very important. I use the Shortyz app for my Monday thorough Friday puzzling. Shortyz has a timer feature. One of the app's "awards" features was solving X number of puzzles in under five minutes. So, when I first started using Shortyz, I undertook that challenge and, after fulfilling the requirements, I have been noting, but not really caring about, my times.

Several years ago I happened to attend a competition in Santa Monica, CA. I met Merl there and had the chance to talk to him for a while. As I recall, we talked about Rocky and Bullwinkle and bad puns. Some time after that, I was driving north on Interstate 5 with my girlfriend. We were solving the Sunday L.A. Times crossword puzzle by Merl Reagle. I was driving so I could not/would not actually look at the puzzle. As an aside, that is good practice if not a good practice. Immediately after finishing the puzzle, she opened another section of the paper and, wham, there was the notice that Merl had passed away. Very, very weird.

Yellowrocks said...

Misty, interesting that LEASH progressively becomes farther and farther apart. How clever of you to notice!
OMK @ 2:16, you seem to be conflating the two definitions of IN THE WEEDS. With the first definition the waitress is over whelmed by so many orders. It has nothing to do with the second definition, overly concerned with unimportant details. One of my sisters gives long accounts on the phone deep into the weeds of minutia.
Our language is always changing.
Update

There are many words and names I do not know, but I can learn from them. I do not call them iffy, obscure, a stretch, not used by anybody. They are just not in my wheelhouse. Why diss what we do not know? Many words that are dissed are very much in the language. Let's just admit they are new to us. That is what I do. What is the objection to new ideas or new words?

TTP said...


Dang, WikWak, that was nice of the sellers ! I'm sure there's nothing wrong with having the grandchildren over more often. Good deal !


Dash T, glad Claire is out and about. It was time for her to spread her wings and explore the world. BTW, your pic looked more Lampkin-like than the previous one.

Lemonade714 said...

C.C. crafted today's USA Today puzzle. A fast romp for you timers. I guess as opposed to us oldtimers. I used to time as well, but with vision fading and appreciation changing I do not anymore.

Abejo said...

Good evening, folks. Thank you, Margit Christenson, for a fine puzzle. Thank you, Boomer, for a fine review.

Puzzle went pretty easily. Worked it at midnight last night. Could not sleep.

IN THE WEEDS and POETICS crossing was tough. Some perps and deep thinking helped.

Theme was fine. Easily found.

Don't know if I have ever had TECATE beer. I thought I had had them all.

PET PIG????? OK.

Well, I am going to try to get some sleep tonight. Wish me luck. See you tomorrow.

Abejo

( )

Malodorous Manatee said...

Lemonade, being kind of new here I am less familiar with the personnel than are the longer-term inmates. I do the USA Today puzzles everyday on the Shortyz app. Neither today's nor tomorrow's puzzle has a by line that would seem to be C.C. What name should I be looking out for?

Anonymous T said...

Abejo - You don't remember Arnold?.

TTP - I'm blushing... What's funny is (well, you know Houston) the jar fogged as soon as Eldest brought Claire outside to show me.

For anyone that's never seen Wordplay, do.
MManatee - that you met Merl... Cool!
Oh, C.C. - that's who's Blog you're reading. AKA Zhouqin Burnikel when she has a NYT published.

Cheers, -T

Malodorous Manatee said...

Cool! Brokerage by Zhouqin Burnikel. 6:08, LOL. Thanks, Anonymous T.

Anonymous T said...

Boomer! I almost forgot...

So, Youngest is now eligible to register to vote (18yro in Sept) and needed Birth Certificate and SSN card to prove stuff.
Anyway, while I riffling through the safe I found (front) [and] (back) Biggio's Rookie card. Knowing of your baseball card collection, I thought you (and Astros fans) would get a kick out of it.

Cheers, -T

Misty said...

Thank you, Yellowrocks. You are always so kind.

oc4beach said...


- T: The sausage and peppers was a good lunch. DW doesn't like it, so if I want any it's either go to a good Italian restaurant or make it myself.

Enjoy yours tomorrow.

Wilbur Charles said...

Re.BESPOKE. Merriam Webster has this to say:
" Bespoke is an adjective, which comes from the past participle of the verb bespeak, which has been with us since Old English. Bespeak has had an arrangement of meanings far more varied than simply being a slightly longer and Old-Englishy way of saying “speak”; it has also meant “to complain,” “to accuse,” and “to order or arrange in advance.”

I said "to contradict" which I must have got from an old English reading. Dickens? I was unaware of the current usage for which an example was given of a custom made pizza.

Gary, I call it crosscut and it's how I like my Hawaiian pizza- but with strips of ham not chunks eg BESPOKE.
And now I see Harold Hill uses it the opposite way???

Well I finished the entire week of Latimes xwords. I finished Wednesday-Friday yesterday. Then this morning I thought I'd take a peek at Saturday. Then I started reading this blog and my phone ran out of juice. So, I took another look at Saturday. The best news I can give you is that Wilbur solved it. And nothing more.

So that's why I'm so late. -T, when I water walked "We Built this City" was constantly playing. I looked at the lyrics. Since when does anybody care? Look at the Beatles lyrics. Grace Slick, wow there is an Afterlife.

WC

PK said...

Hi Y'all! Fun puzzle & expo, Margit & Boomer! Thanks!

Gimmee: I've visited TECATE, B.C. Saw the brewery there but didn't go in or drink any beer. Had a lovely brunch on a Sunday at a country club there.

Son works for FAA from home right now & remains busy.

Did a fun story once with a farmer who had a remarkable PET PIG (not on a LEASH). PIG would leave the pen and come to the farmhouse back door and watch thru the screen door for the farmer to come out each morning then follow him around like a dog. When the farmer needed to round up the less-friendly porkers to take to the packing plant, the PET PIG would round them up just like a dog and herd them into the truck. Farmer talked to him just like he would a canine friend.

Anonymous said...

Totally baffled by the issues with bespoke. As far as I have ever seen, the usage in the clue is THE definition. I am not familiar with a different one. I guess that is what keeps the puzzles interesting. In the weeds means dealing with details that others outside your area of expertise probably don’t know and quite often are irrelevant to the discussion. Weird that restaurant jargon uses it as harried.

Yellowrocks said...

Not THE definition. In the weeds has TWO definitions. Crosswords take us beyond our assumptions and widen our horizons