Feb 4, 2021

Thursday February 4, 2021, Jeffrey Wechsler

Today's puzzler is brought to us by Jeffrey Wechsler, and I assure you that it's a real gas.   In fact it's full of gas!  The following themers are inflated with a different gas at different points in the answer.  Per the usual Xwd convention they each span 2 or more words:

18. Red River city: FARGO NORTH DAKOTA.  The setting for a 1996 Cohen Brothers crime dramedy starring Francis McDormand, who won an Oscar for best actress in it.  It also spun off a highly successful 4 season TV series. This answer is inflated with Element #18 ARGON.

30. Words of urgency: NOW MORE THAN EVER  it's VERY URGENT that you don't strike a match!  This answer is inflated with ETHANE, a highly volatile hydrocarbon gas:

47. Intro suggesting uncertainty: SOMEONE ONCE SAID.  Element #10 NEON.  Very illuminating.

 59. Pre-road trip detail ... and a hint to what certain parts of three long answers were doing as you solved them: FILLING UP WITH GAS.

 It's interesting that the first and last of these clues are INERT GASES, whereas the last is HIGHLY EXPLOSIVE.  I'm not sure if there's any significance to this.  Maybe Jeff will stop by and elucidate.

Here are the rest of the clues ...

1. Queens stadium namesake: ASHEArthur Ashe was an iconic sports pioneer among many greats. Not too many have a stadium named after them.  He was named in last Sunday's puzzle, clued by his book "Hard Road to Glory".

5. Elevated vantage point for Wile E. Coyote: MESA.  Wiley wasn't very wily was he?

9. Sister of Sasha: MALIA.  Malia came to the White House when she was 10.   She's now 22 and studying at Harvard.  Her sister SASHA is 19. 

14. Many a gamer: TEEN.

15. Oodles: A LOT.   It's misspelled ALOT.

16. Freezes: ICES UP.  It's doing that here in Charm City as I'm finishing this up.

21. Fronded plant: FERNEasy to grow, otherwise we wouldn't have so many of them in our back yard.

22. Exit in a hurry: BAIL.  You can only do this after you MAKE BAIL.  But keep an eye out for the BAIL BONDSMAN if you do. They're big dudes.

23. Oodles, with "a": SLEW.  Or OFFED. In the Biblical sense.

24. They, in Calais: ILS.  Today's French lesson.  But wait there's more ...!

25. Drawn from diverse sources: ECLECTIC. A school of philosophy "denoting or belonging to a class of ancient philosophers who did not belong to or found any recognized school of thought but selected doctrines from various schools of thought."  A good way to avoid COGNITIVE DISSONANCE.

29. Hound for payment: DUN.  And they won't stop until they're DONE.
33. Partners: COHORTS.

34. TV component?: TELE.  Don't watch much TELLY, except for British murder mysteries.

35. He hit his 600th homer exactly three years after his 500th: A ROD.

36. Medical suffix: ITIS.  Then there's ITISITIS, a.k.a. HYPOCHONDRIA.

40. Caesar's next-to-last words: ET TU.  "You BRUTE!"

44. "Take a hike!": GET LOST.  Not difficult to do, with my sense of direction.

51. Way off: FAR. What results if you do light a match around 30A.

52. Be decided by: TURN UPON

53. Sot's woe: DTS.

54. Caesar's last day, e.g.: IDES.  Some days you just shouldn't get out of bed!  You never know who'll run you thru.

56. __ act: RIOT.  Much in the news these days.

57. Summers in Bordeaux: ETES.  My favorite French region.  But not in the ÉTÉ.

64. Make certain: ASSURE.

65. Island in Micronesia: GUAM.  Looks like a nice place to visit.  Anybody been there?

66. Big name in digital imaging: AGFA.  Many will remember KODAK as the "big name" in photography compared to this Belgian competitor and others at the time.  But KODAK wasn't looking when the Internet hit and now what's left of them is a brand name applied to OEM products.  AGFA in the meantime has become a leader in digital imaging:

67. Jovial: MERRY.

68. Modern address letters: HTTP.  Look at the address line (URL) at the top of your browser.  The first thing in the address will be the letters HTTP, which stand for HyperText Transfer Protocol.  A protocol is a standardized agreement between computer programs about how they exchange data and documents across a network.  This particular protocol was invented in 1989 by computer scientist Timothy Berners-Lee (now  Sir) when he was working for the CERN particle physics lab in Geneva, Switzerland.  An initial objective of this protocol was to facilitate the transfer of documents among scientists world-wide, e.g. Hypertexts like the blog you're now reading.  The first programs using HTTP for document transfer were text-based, but after a team led by Marc Andreessen at NCSA developed a GRAPHICAL USER INTERFACE for it called MOSAIC, the protocol's usage mushroomed and the modern World Wide Web was born.

69. "Got it": I SEE.

1. DOJ bureau: ATF.  "Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms", a potentially incendiary mixture.

2. Shipwreck site: SEAFLOOR.

3. "Want to know the culprit? I'll tell you!": HERES WHO.

4. Many an MIT alum: ENGR.

5. Ralph Ellison's "Invisible __": MAN.  Born in 1914 in Oklahoma City, the grandson of slaves, Ralph Waldo Ellison and his younger brother were raised by their mother, whose husband died when Ralph was 3 years old. His mother supported her young family by working as a nursemaid, a janitor and a domestic.

6. "Livin' Thing" rock gp.: ELO.   The Electric Light Orchestra is an English rock band formed in Birmingham in 1970.  Here's an audio clip ...

7. Cold dessert: SORBET. What's the difference between SORBET and SHERBET?  They're both iced, fruit-based confections that contain sugar.  The former contains no dairy products and would be the suitable for those who are LACTOSE INTOLERANT.  The latter contains milk and is creamier than sorbet.  Neither sounds suitable for diabetics.

8. Stick on: ATTACH

9. Central dividing point: MIDLINE. Often a medical term denoting a bisection line or plane in the body, e.g. for an incision.

10. Here, in Juárez: ACA.  Today's Spanish lesson.  What little Spanish I know I learned from crossword puzzles.  And also from a group of Mexican nuns who used to do the housekeeping for a nearby monastery I visited every Saturday morning.  Before the world changed.

11. Albanian money: LEKSThe Albanian lek (ALL) is the national currency of the Republic of Albania.  The following image of a 1 LEK coin, worth approximately US $0.01, is licensed by the Wikimedia Commons (here are the Licensing details):

12. Tristan's love: ISOLDE.  Among other retellings of this 12th century story,  Tristan and Isolde is a 3 act tragic opera with libretto and music by RICHARD WAGNER.  Wagner is an acquired taste and this 4 hour opera (not including intermissions!) is not the way to acquire it.  It is rarely performed outside the MET in New York, and requires specialized "Wagnerian" singers with incredible vocal skills and stamina.  These people are literally musical Olympians!

13. Filmmaker with a distinctive style: AUTEURFREDERICO FELLINI and FRANÇOIS TRUFFAUT come to mind.

17. One before a king?: PAWN.  In addition to being a chess piece, it can also connote a HOSTAGE or a pledge to return money for an object that has been PAWNED.
19. "It's __ the other": ONE OR.  But not BOTH.  Unless of course we're talking about QUANTUM MECHANICS.  But as NOBELIST and bongo player extraordinaire RICHARD FEYNMAN once said:  "If you think you understand quantum mechanics, you don't understand quantum mechanics."  That's QM in a nutshell!

20. Try to strike: HIT ATSee 47D.

24. Old Peruvian: INCA.  They weren't called that when they were growing up?

26. Old TV component: CRTCATHODE RAY TUBE.  A CSO to the Cornerite who said she used to solder the electrodes for these during WWII.  Please correct me if I'm wrong.  I make some of this stuff up.  The problem is I can't tell which is which!

27. "__ Miz": LES.

28. Wile E. Coyote collectible: CEL.  See 5A for a whole bunch of these.

31. Surfing tool: MODEM. A  MODulator DEModulator converts analog signals (e.g. telephone, radio, coax, WiFi) to/from digital formats (i.e. usable by computers).

32. Bridal shop array: VEILS.

37. Source of some tadpoles: TOAD EGGS.

38. "Okay to come out yet?": IS IT SAFE.  Someone please tell me when it is!

39. Norms: Abbr.: STDS.  See e.g. 63D below.

41. Asian holiday: TET.  This word entered Western vocabulary in 1968 after a major North Vietnamese offensive during the VIETNAM WAR.  I've always thought that it was exclusively the Vietnamese Lunar New Year, but the Chinese celebrate it too.  However it starts at a different time because of a 1 hour time zone difference.  A CSO to CC for any additional details.

42. Competition: TOURNEY.

43. Strip of gear, as a ship: UN RIG.

44. Econ. yardstick: GNPGross National Product vs Gross Domestic Product?  GDP measures the value of goods and services produced within a country's borders, by citizens and non-citizens alike. GNP measures the value of goods and services produced by a country's citizens, but both domestically and abroad. GDP is the most commonly used metric by global economies.  You may have to perp it.  I didn't last week and FIW.

45. Environmentalist's prefix: ECO.  Last month it was clued "Novelist Umberto".

46. Principle: TENET

47. Cruelty named for a marquis: SADISM.  Nasty business.

48. Ultimatum phrase: OR ELSEOR WHAT?  "Is that a threat?".

49. "Just stop, okay?!": ENOUGH.  Or as my granddaughter says when I'm teasing her: "STOP ... STOP!"

50. Production: OUTPUT.

51. World Cup soccer org.: FIFA.  All I know about soccer is that PELE is a very gluey person and was one of the greatest players in the sport.  I'm more of a Cricket FAN.  It's much easier to take NAPS during a match.  A CSO to Vidwan827 - can you explain cricket scoring to us?

55. Omit a part of, perhaps: SLUR.

58. Asian takeout option: THAI.  CSO to anyone who knows if they celebrate 41D.

60. Mdse. category: IRR.

61. Angkor __: Cambodian temple: WAT. The answer to the question:  "What is the largest religious site in the world?".

62. Trickster: IMP.

63. Encl. with a résumé: SAE. Also a grading standard for  the viscosity of motor oils.

Here's the grid:





Lemonade714 said...

I feel like we are playing WHERE'S WALDO but Jeffrey's puzzles are what we are looking for and are no longer sure where they will pop up. Another fun and very doable adventure in words and phrases. It has lots of the letter G which I guess is fitting in a gas puzzle. I had trouble making myself put in TOAD EGGS and I am not sure why. I guess I just could not picture them...thanks Bill and Jeffrey- stay safe all

Wilbur Charles said...

Two Naticks today. Not knowing Albanian currency but being familiar with Barrack's daughter MALIA, I didn't recognize her sister Sasha. And I punted SAE, going with SsE again having no idea about AGFA. FIW. But… Speaking of, NATICK son Doug Flutie will be playing in the Celebrity Flag Football Challenge in St Pete this Saturday afternoon.

I had all sorts of problems in Texas starting with aTTn which lead to con for the trickster. I have used TOURNEY minus the "ment" (in my obsessively long NCAA poem composed c1995- email available, I certainly won't post it in here(meant to be sung to the tune:"Those Dear Hearts(and gentle people"))

Halfway through it hit me and I looked back for the constructor: AHA, It's Jeffrey W. He has an inimitable style(actually much like CC's).

Now onto Friday


Btw, ISOLDE(the link) was quite informative - it led to "Vertigo" a movie I should watch. I forgot to thank waseeley for a great write-up.

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Managed to solve this one without noticing the theme. Imagine that. But d-o finished in less than 10, which is about par for a Thursday, so life is good. Thanx, Jeffrey and Waseeley.

ECLECTIC: Good description for the music on my server -- from Beethoven and Bach to Bob Dylan, the Beatles, Boz Scaggs, Brenda Lee, Buddy Holly, and Bonnie Raitt. The unifying theme is that they're all dead...or almost. But so am I.

GUAM: Spent almost two years of my Navy hitch on Guam. Beautiful place. Loved it there, and tried to extend, but the Navy insisted that a sailor ought to actually go to sea. Silly idea. In WWII Guam was attacked by Japan on January 8th -- actually the same day as Pearl Harbor, since Guam is across the International Dateline. It's "where America's day begins."

unclefred said...

Wow!! FIR!! And I usually struggle with JW’s CWs but I flew through this one! AND got the theme!! Thanx JW, great CW, lots of fun, and not loaded with actors, actresses or foreign words, with which I struggle. I did make a mess of bottom center by writing WAT in 62d instead of 61d, and start writing BALI at 65a before realizing it was wrong and writing GU over the BA. So, several write-overs there. But for me, a good time for a Thursday! Terrific write-up, Waseeley, thanx for your time and effort.

desper-otto said...

Whoa. I meant December 8th. It's true, the mind is the second thing to go!

Hungry Mother said...

FIR without write-overs. I saw the embedded gasses after the solve, so they didn’t help. On the easy side today.

inanehiker said...

Solved online today - not sure when the paper delivery will happen- it's a cold rainy day - but no snow or ice so???
Nice theme as expected from JW. My dad was on Guam as WWII was ending - he said there were still some Japanese up in the hills of the island who hadn't heard that the war was over yet because of lack of communications at the time.
Like D-O - I'm an ECLECTIC as far as taste in music, art, books, movies- there are some I enjoy in many genres.

Thanks Bill and JW!

Bob Lee said...

I never could figure out the theme after I'd finished. Since the clue was filling UP with gas I looked at whether any of the Down answers intersected to form a gas. Nope. So never got it. But obvious now that it was pointed out.

For a long time I had moUse as the surfing tool crossing with aloU. But that U couldn't be right given it had to be E from Ettu. Finally I got it after much head scratching.

My favorite answer was TOAD EGGS. Quirky answer!

Big Easy said...

Question- When did A-ROD win the US Open in tennis at ASHE stadium?

I liked Jeffrey's puzzle with very few proper names. I didn't like ACA, LEKS, & AUTEUR (all perps) in the NE. The only other unknown was AGFA. I never noticed a GAS in any of the theme fills but it was an easy fill for a Thursay.

SADISM intersecting MERRY in the SW? If that makes you happy you need therapy.
Make BAIL- not if you in NYC and have just looted 5th Ave.
MODEM- I remember our first modem at work. 1200 BAUD.
SORBET pronounced "SOR-BAY" but SHERBET is sher-BET? Wonder why.
FIFA- I don't follow soccer but know of FIFA through criminal convictions of their executives.
SAE- Society of Automotive Engineers Or a Self-Adressed Envelope

AROD-Andy Roddick, also known as AROD claimed his first and only Grand Slam title, defeating Juan Carlos Ferrero, 6–3, 7–6, 6–3, in the final to win the Men's Singles tennis title at the 2003 US Open.

billocohoes said...

A PAWN is also a relatively powerless person not in control of his destiny, as in "Mongo just PAWN in game of life" - Alex Karras in Blazing Saddles.

IS IT SAFE?, repeated by torturer Laurence Olivier in Marathon Man, kept people away from the dentist the year after Jaws scared people out of the water.

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

I’m surprised to read that so many solvers found this on the easy side, as I struggled in several areas. For one thing, it wasn’t a fill-in-the-blanks, only one answer grid. I had to wait to get enough adjoining letters to see the correct answer, Fargo North Dakota being a perfect example for this geography-challenged solver. My time was in the normal Friday range, but, somehow, I had to work harder, yet unlike yesterday, I finished correctly and with satisfaction. I went astray at Shea/Ashe, Skip/Slur, and Lire/Leks. Fun duos were It Is crossing Is It, ELO/Eco, and Et Tu/Ides. Nice CSOs to Oo at Thai and CED at Imp which is becoming a frequent visitor. The theme was very clever and well hidden, my favorite feature.

Thanks, Jeffrey W, for a challenging but doable offering and thanks, Bill, for your very informative and enlightening review. I never knew Eclectic had a philosophical meaning; I always associated its use with real estate agents describing a house with shortcomings but with great potential, sort of like putting lipstick on a pig. Anyway, thanks for all the learning moments, although the technology tidbits might as well be in Sanskrit for all I understood.

Have a great day.

Linkster said...

Excellent Thursday puzzle by Jeffrey and an entertaining blog, Bill.

I had Shea for Queens Stadium until I realized it had to be a name - so ASHE. I then realized these two stadiums in almost the same location are anagrams (Even if it is now called Citi Field, I remember it as Shea).

"One before a King" was immediate but I ran into a conundrum with the cross "hound for payment" because I was sure it would be dog... I finally settled on DUN, after finishing I had to look up DUN and there it was "to make persistent demands upon for payment" - a learning experience.

I grasped the theme while filling in the reveal - and that helped.

Cold here in South Florida 34 degrees at sunrise - BRRRR.

Anonymous said...

FIR, I didn't spend much time looking for the gases, so I missed them. Regular Thursday level for me. Bill, I loved your information and your delightful phrasing.
LOL, I must have been a dexterous prodigy to be soldering electron guns during WW II. I was a few weeks short of 4 years old on Pearl Harbor Day. I worked at the TV factory in the mid 60's.
DECIDE BY/ TURN UPON. Whether or not we go to the beach turns upon the weather.
I like Wagner's arias, but can't sit through an entire opera of his. Way too long. I can't imagine attending his entire Ring Cycle, four operas taking 15 hours to perform. I prefer Italian operas. I can easily sit through them.
An idiosyncrasy of mine is to pronounce URL as earl instead of as three letters. No one else does that, but I can't seem to stop it. Of course, people don't know what I mean.
Canadian Eh! Since you enjoyed Ann Patchett's Bel Canto you might like the novel I read yesterday, Dutch House, by the same author.

Anonymous said...

From yesterday,
Ze COMPLAINANT, many solvers enjoyed yesterday's puzzle and FIR, some using perps and wags. Others had fun even though they missed a cell or two. Many more than 5% were happy. Many of us like challenging puzzles and think of them as learning experiences. I wouldn't like the constructors and editor to simplify all the puzzles. There are enough easy puzzles during the week. We need a variety of difficulty to satisfy eclectic tastes.

9:13 was mine, too.

Vidwan827 said...

Thank you Mr. Wechsler for a nice puzzle, and thank you Bill Waseeley for an fascinating review blog.

I was surprised you mentioned my name at FIFA, and Cricket...
I'm afraid, I have forgotten everything about cricket scoring, and have lost interest in the game itself. But I am well aware that in some countries, cricket is the most important thing in the universe, even more than politics. But I won't mention them because of the politics involved.

By the way, in Iran, Pakistan and India,... sherbet, is the common name for another one of our famous bloggers, Lemonade. It generally contains no milk products, but fruit juices and sugar.
Sorbet is probably a frenchified version, for the la-di-dah folks.

I have to go because I have a long trip ahead, this morning.
Have a nice day all.

Husker Gary said...

-Always a nice ride with Jeffery!
-FARGO NORTH DECODER from The Electric Company first got stuck in my head
-MLB welcomed A-ROD back when he admitted to steroid use. They BAILED on Sosa when he denied it
-GET LOST – My GPS once suggested I go through a corn field
-Hercule Poirot always says, “HERE’S WHO” in the penultimate scene
-The Invisible Man and Hidden Figures had similar, sad themes about racism
-4 hours of Wagner? Ach du lieber!
-IS IT SAFE for me to go back into a classroom after my vaccination?
-I saw Marquis and cruelty in the clue and put in DE SADE first
-D-O got in his mea culpa before I could correct him for once! :-)
-Nice job, Bill!

ATLGranny said...

FIR and it seemed to go easily for a Thursday. After the reveal, I found the gases just fine. A few WOs like bOard for MODEM and others caused by sloppiness, but a relatively clean grid today. TOAD EGGS? I guess so....Thanks Jeffrey for a welcome puzzle this morning and thanks to waseeley for his MERRY review.

Another sunny day to lift our wintery spirits. Walk later when it warms up some. Have a good Thursday, all!

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Good job, Waseeley. Thanks.

Note it's a 16 x 15 grid; guess it was needed for the long answers. Seemed pretty easy for a JW solve, but liked the ECLECTIC fill. Only one wite-out; I had 'palm' before FERN. Looked for the gasses after it was done and noted the 2 noble gasses and one fuel gas.
No mishaps; FIR.
ETHANE typically comprises about 4%, by volume, of natural gas.
We drove through FARGO on our way to Medora, ND, some 20 years ago. Very flat there. It was the SEA FLOOR of glacial Lake Agassiz during the last ICE Age. The Red River of the North has no valley there to speak of, and looks like a small creek, which is the state border.
ENOUGH - How did the final sound become an 'f'? I guess 'rough' and 'tough' are other examples. ENOUGH is akin to German 'genug'. Also L. German 'genoog' and Dutch 'genoeg'. The final 'g' has a soft elision like the 'ch' in loch or ach.

Malodorous Manatee said...

I liked the puzzle, really liked the recap, and loved the licensing details.

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

Some clues drawn from diverse sources gave me an ECLECTIC shock but...eventually FIR... Filliing in the Banner answers was like playing Wheel of Fortune only I was the lovely Vanna White revealing the letters...☺. Thought "here" in Spanish was aquí so perpwaited. HERESWHO a bit contrived.

Our department used AGFA film for years otherwise a fairly remote clue/answer. Fujifilm, Kodak, whoever offered the best deal. Those days are long gone.

So if I settle a debt by paying it off with a dog (hound for payment) that's a DUN deal?. Descartes originally said "ICEUP, therefore I am" then he thought about it.... BAIL on BAIL, end up in Jail. If Norm's got STDS he needs antibiotics NOWMORETHANEVER!! 😲

....OK. Just got a warning from the CW police..."get serious or GETLOST"


Consuming asparagus and cabbage._____ FILLINGUPWITHGAS
An achy equine....SORBET.
an angry bovine is _____ the ground...PAWN
Is that a______ my salad?....TURNUPON.
My overgrown lawns? finally ____ MODEM.

Ahh, ooh, oho..finally see the (NEON) ETHANE and ARGON gas
Took so long, what a MORON, 🙄 but then spent another 20 minutes examining each answer figuring there had to be more gases than three... gave up with a burp.

Shankers said...

I've said it a hundred times before, well maybe only 99, that JW is far and away my favorite constructor. Never saw a theme since my paper didn't print one nor were there any circles. Like others I had Shea before Ashe, Mays before Arod, unarm before unrig, ensure before assure. Not being a tech savvy person HTTP and AGFA filled by perps. Sadism crossing merry was, shall we say, questionable. I like the word auteur. It just rolls off the tongue and sounds so sophisticated.

CanadianEh! said...

Terrific Thursday. Thanks for the fun, Jeffrey and waseeley (thanks for reminding me what ATF. stood for).
No complaints about this elegant CW. I FIRed and found the gases ( after the themer sent me looking for them).
Probably only this Canadian wanted Winnipeg, Manitoba for that Red River city. It fit the spot and ended in A, but I knew it would never be chosen (too obscure for you American solvers). Who would have known it here?

AKA and LEKS were all perps.
We had French, ILS and ETES,Spanish, ACA, and Latin (ET TU, IDES) today.

I changed Assess to ASSURE, Lots to ALOT (and noted a SLEW).
I wanted Tournament but was forced to shorten to TOURNEY. Is that not considered an abbreviation? There was no sign of abbreviation in the clue.
I don’t think of BAILing out as necessarily being in a hurry.

YR- yes I have read Dutch House also, and enjoyed it.
Ray-O - thanks for the chuckles today.

Wishing you all a great day.

Lucina said...


Thank you, JeffWex and Waseeley! It was chilling to solve this puzzle, starting with NORTH DAKOTA and SORBET. But I warmed to it with ASHE and ISOLDE as well as ET TU and IDES. No, I didn't SEE the gasses so thank you for the reveal, Bill.

I wonder if Jeff is a big Wile E. Coyote fan?

ACA means here as does aqui. It's a regionalism and depends on where you are which will be used.

Do TOADS have tadpoles? I thought only frogs did.

Spitz: is UNRIG a standard term?

The nail tech who works on my fingernails talked to me about TET and Chinese New Year which he and his family celebrate. I believe it is the year of the ox and starts on February 12th.

I thought AROD is Alex Rodriguez now Jennifer Lopez's boyfriend.

Have a delightful day, everyone!

Picard said...

From Yesterday:
NaomiZ, CanadianEh, Jayce, AnonT, LEO III, Wilbur Charles Thank you for the UNI shout outs and thank you for taking the time to read my Maya BELIZE article. I first brought Anabel Ford to speak at our Museum of Natural History in 2007 and I am in awe of her tireless work.

From Last Saturday:
Becky, Lemonade, waseeley, Wilbur Charles, AnonT, Husker Gary Belated thank you for the kind words about my GUADALUPE Dunes photos and regarding the LOTS OF NEW CARS puzzle joke.

Husker Gary Our GUADALUPE is pronounced "Gwad uh LOO pay" as you guessed because it is a Spanish-speaking town.

Loved finding the hidden GAS today, but only after I already FIR. My father used AGFA film when we lived in Europe. Learning moment they survived the transition to digital imaging.

Did anyone else think SHEA stadium before ASHE? Interesting that they are anagrams of each other! I had family who lived in Queens near SHEA.

When I was 14 years old I took these photos of TOADs laying EGGS.

Since I shared those once before I will share a new set of photos:
My article last week on local "Outdoor Joys" includes photos of other SURFER TOOLS that I spotted while practicing my music.

Spitzboov said...

Lucina - UNRIG - - I didn't see it in my nautical glossaries but Merriam Webster has:

: to strip of rigging
//unrig a ship

We 'rigged' a lot. Rig for high-line transfer; rig for heavy weather.
The boatswain's mate manual is rife with "UNRIG" activities that the bo's'n has to be familiar with.

PK said...

Hi Y'all! Good one, Jeffrey. Interesting, BillS. Thanks for getting my mind off the cold & light snowy day.

Thought the puzzle was chewy. A few entries were hard to swallow like LEKS (didn't know they had money in Albania) and AGFA (never heard of it). But I didn't have to make any red-letter runs. Despite FILLING UP WITH GAS, there were no real GAS pains. Found the theme easily.

Had to let the perps come to me for ATF after FBI turned red.

CITI, Shea, oh ASHE.

Learning moment: AUTEUR (ESP). Thought they wanted a proper name.

YR: In the 1930's my mother & her first cousin were talented musicians in college. They took the train from Kansas to Chicago to attend performances over several days of Wagner's "The Ring". It was one of the highlights of their lives. Mom had a set of books on the stories which we pored over as children. I only saw one opera in which my brother sang in college and would have left after the first act if he hadnt been in it.

Misty said...

Always a delight to see a Jeffrey Wechsler puzzle, and this one had many fun items. I love the way the Obama girls, SASHA and MALIA, turn up in puzzles these days. Also, always nice to see Arthur ASHE, who is also a frequent visitor. And, then there's opera, and today we got Tristan and ISOLDE! Delightful crossword, many thanks, Jeffrey. And Bill, your commentary was very helpful, thank you for that too.

Have a good day, everybody!

Alice said...

I so appreciate Jeffrey Wechsler puzzles. They hit that spot between requiring some thought, but not impossibly difficult. FIR, but didn’t expect to do so.

Have a great day!

Edward Duarte said...

I’m a chief civill engineer with the Federal Aviation Administration. I was the resident engineer at our sector office in Guam. I designed and installed the radar facilities at Anderson Air Force Base (Mt Santa Rosa).
Wonderful people, delicious food, bountiful nature, snakes, great snorkeling, Lovers Leap, island culture.

Wealthy Japanese honeymooners go to Hawaii, middle class go to Guam.

Edward Duarte said...

Caught between the Air Force base and the naval station, there were raucous drinking weekends, I miss it!

Ray - O - Sunshine said... standard Italian "here" is qui (kwee). But I remember in the Calabrese dialect (in between Latin and modern Italian) my Grams spoke it was ACA instead. Spanish influence on and off during the 13th to 19th centuries (not to mention Greek, French, Norman, etc. you name, they showed up. )

I can imagine what a mess my DNA must be.

desper-otto said...

Inanehiker, when I was on Guam at the end of the '60s, we heard stories of a former Japanese soldier still hiding out in the boonies. He knew the war was over, but was afraid of what might face him back in Japan. He finally did come out of the jungle and went home to Japan in '72.

We used to enjoy "boonie stomping" on the island to the tank battlefield (with deserted American and Japanese tanks), Marbo Cave where you could swim to a "hidden" chamber via an underwater channel, and Talofofo Falls north of Inarajan. Today the falls is a paid tourist attraction, but when we were there we hiked from the main road through the NASA tracking station to the river. The NASA station is no longer there. Neither is the Naval Communications Station where I was assigned. Satellite communications obsoleted both of 'em.

Chairman Moe said...

Puzzling thoughts:

Did you ever notice that Shea and Ashe are anagrams? Easy now to see how folks interchanged this at 1-Across . . .

JW puzzles are usually a huge challenge for me, but not today, although the lower half was a bit of a slog compared to the upper . . . I did not notice that it was a 16X15, nor did I notice any gasses wafting until I went back and had a mini-"AHA"

FARGO NORTH DAKOTA --> guess I should add this city as a place to visit someday. N DAK is one of just 3 of the 50 US States I've not stepped foot into; should I go to MINOT or BISMARCK instead?

I had Brussels Sprouts last night - a form of cabbage - and I DID Fill up with gas ... TMI??!

French? Nope. "IL_" had to wait for the "HERE'S WHO" before getting that one correct

TOAD EGGS, AUTEUR, WAT, SEA FLOOR, and LEKS were a bit different; but I'm sure this grid was not a piece of cake for Wechsler to fill. Anytime you have two 15's and two 14's, the intersects are particularly difficult. I think I counted either 41 or 42 black squares, and 18 3-letter words. Lots of abbreviations, too, but that goes with the territory of a puzzle such as this one. I'm sure that had a new puzzle constructor submitted this to an editor, it may have been rejected, or asked for some re-work. I'm sure that Jeffrey gets away with more, due to his experience and clever themes.


W A Seeley --> excellent recap. My "learning moment" was that your current city is aka "The Charm City". I grew up just 50 miles from "Ballimer" and never knew that to be a nickname.

I'm on deck for tomorrow's puzzle recap; better get crackin'

CSO to yours truly with MESA as that's where I reside

waseeley said...

Vidwan827 @9:29 AM Thanks for your comments on Cricket. My Uncle Arthur (where I got the "A" in "waseeley") had a passion for the game and when he immigrated from England he dreamed of founding a Cricket league here, but was never able to. As the rules of the game seem long and complicated I was going to suggest that you take as long as you like to explain them. And so you have!


waseeley said...

YellowRocks @9:13 AM I think I had you confused with my Mother, who at age 14 was drafted into the British WWII war effort. She spent a year or two welding the fins on 500 pound bombs. One of the original English Rosies.

AnonymousPVX said...

“IS IT SAFE” still chills me. Really good film.

And another really good JW crossword, as expected. (No pressure, JW).


waseeley said...

MM @9:38 AM After all of our discussions about licensing details, I was confronted with a ringer. I found the image on the Wikipedia, and it had a "Creative Common's License", but it's the first time I've encountered a string attached: the user had to include a link to the actual license. A message to that effect popped up when I first opened the image. Go figure.

Chairman Moe said...

W A @ 1:52 ... I found a few images as you described when preparing my tomorrow blog. I noticed that one was not in the "Creative Common's License" domain, but the copyright on the picture said it was sharable so long as you gave proper credit to the image maker. I think you'll notice it . . .


waseeley said...

Picard @11:26 AM Great photos Picard, especially the one of the Windsurfer "catching air". Funny that I never saw any TOADS in Amplexus while passing through Silver Spring. I'm surprised you can get away with that on a family blog. :-)

Lucina said...

As always you have the most unusual and interesting photos! Thank you for sharing.

If my memory (which these days is iffy) serves me, the story of that "lost" Japanese man was printed in the newspaper at the time it occurred. He was shocked to discover the war had ended and to learn about the modern conveniences that were available. Talk about living in a cave! He had been.

Anonymous said...

Sot’s woe is an insensitive and insulting clue and the answer is, too. Alcoholism is nothing to make jokes about or make into puzzle clues.

Wilbur Charles said...

Diana as an AA in his 43rd year of recovery I had a little twinge. But I stay too cheerful to be bothered and if it tweeks memories that's not a bad thing.

I'll drink a decaf and remember those still sick and suffering tonight at a mtg I'm thinking of going to.

Our dearly beloved Splynter used to mention his recovery. I hope he's well.
I quizzed him once "What's the Baseball Step?"

And hoping y'all have some patience I have a few lines of my (NCAA) TOURNEY ditty following.


Wilbur Charles said...

I've cut this down to a few verses, probably still too long for some. But I want y'all to sing along

This is from an old Patti Page or perhaps Doris Day song of my era.
The original was pretty hokey and I sorta changed the sentiments around. Most of this came out of my caffeine wracked, insomniac brain in the wee hours of the night.

Enjoy if you can, try to picture Doris.

**** Warning, Extremely Long and Boring Poetry Alert **** Tread warily

I love those dear hearts and gentle people,
The NC Double-A(yay,yay)
Those dear hearts and gentle people
That rule and gov the NCA(A)(yay,yay).

They run their tourney
From Thurs till Sunday.
They make the weekend go.
They run the tourney
From Thurs till Sunday
And roll and roll and roll in dough.

I love those dear hearts and gentle people
The suits from CBS.
Those dear hearts and gentle people
That call the shots at CBS.

We must have Kansas
Alive on Sunday.
They make the sponsors beam.
And the Tar Heels from Carolina
The advertisers' favorite team.

Those dear hearts and gentle people
That make the Sweet Sixteen.
Those dear hearts and gentle people,
Shashefsky and that Snuffhead Dean.

They jump and holler
From tap till buzzer.
They whine the whole game long.
They grab their collar
They groan and grumble
And never do a damn thing wrong.

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

Wait, how is Bosier City / Shreveport Louisiana not 18a?
No I didn't fill it but I SEE I had the wrong Red River in mind. (there's another one way up there?)
//also the Red River Rivalry is Oklahoma [Boomer Sooner!] vs Texas played annually at the Cotton Bowl (North Dallas wasn't going to work w/ PAWN ink'd :-))

Great puzzle JW! Top filled easily but bottom was a struggle. Reveal made me look for GASes and then I saw NEON (solving the GdP/GnP conundrum). That ultimately (un)lead(ed) to a satisfying FIR.

Waseeley - Wonderful expo! You new kids are doing a bang-up job (but aint nobody gots time for all those links! :-)) Your synopsis of HTTP was spot on; I was there before & after Gopher & Veronica.

WOs: ARON [sic] -> AROD
ESPs: ACA, LEKs, ISOLDE(?), AGFA -- WAT are y'all talkin' 'bout?

Fav: ECLECTIC. Say that to Mom (cuz she is) and she'll tell you to wash your mouth-out for using words like that. //she doesn't know what it means until you explain it has nothing to do w/ her solar panels (yes, she is now off the grid but still has Facebook for "news").

BigE - 300bps on an Apple][e was my 1st MODEM. //ok, it was a buddy's who had a rich uncle but we wrote code to reach out and hack (er, touch) SOMEONE. (AT&T -- fun behind the scrims (nope, too soon) side-bar.)

BobLee - I was headed for MOUSE too but ETTU had to be right; right?...

TOAD was nearly pOnD EGGS.

HG - I read Invisible Man as a Frosh in HS -- English teach said pick a book and read for the last 10m of class. I found it on the shelf & thought is was the monster-movie book.
There were monsters in it, no doubt.

RAY-O: LOL! a pooch to square up the DUN deal.

Enjoyed reading everyone (cool snaps Picard - 14? See: FLN :-)). Play later!

Cheers, -T

Jayce said...

I liked this puzzle, your write-up, waseeley, and everyone's comments. Nifty photos, Picard.

Good wishes and thanks to you all.

Spitzboov said...

Just saw the ISS pass overhead @ 1825 local time. Approached from the WSW and continued overhead and to the ESE, Went right down Orion's belt.

Anonymous T said...

Spitz - is that some kinda innuendo? :-o


LEO III said...

Thanks, Jeffrey and waseeley!

Thanks to some strategically placed perps, I ALMOST finished the whole thing correctly. It took some doing, though. Got most of the puzzle done rather quickly early, early this morning, and then I came back to it later to work out the unknowns. I finally messed around enough in the NE to correctly remember MALIA, but I failed down in the SE with AGFA/SAE. Is that supposed a self-addressed envelope? I had AGFI. All in all, though, I’m quite pleased with my effort on a Jeffrey Wechsler puzzle. ONE STINKIN’ LETTER!!!!!

Alas, a 36-year career in the wholesale credit departments of two major oil companies involved a fair share of dunning customers for payment. It never was a fun thing to do, but it was part of the job. Luckily, I didn’t work in the credit card departments, chasing money from individual credit card customers. At the end of the ‘80s, most of OUR dunning went away, with the introduction of EFT. Of course, if I did the OTHER part of my job correctly (financial analysis and credit approval), then I didn’t have to do that much money chasing.

HG, I've been asking the same question. From what I understand, it will be safe, but I will still have to mask up and take all the other precautions. While the vaccine would make ME immune, I might still become a carrier and can infect other people.

Masks After Vaccine

If anyone knows something different, PLEASE CORRECT ME!

waseeley said...

T @5:27PM I remember GOPHER! In fact I think I went down that MARMOT hole when BOOMER joggled my noggin with a reference to some Minnesota football team. It was really the first widely used distributed FS. Except maybe for BITNET. I'm sure TTP would remember that. I'll bet he acquired that moniker before Hypertext was born.

Lemonade714 said...

SHANKERS I have said it a hundred times, or maybe only 99, the Los Angeles Times does not provide titles to their Monday through Saturday puzzles. The titles mentioned in this blog flow from the minds of the daily recapper.

Big Easy, were you serious about your comment that AROD as clued with home runs was Andy Roddick and not Alex Rodriguez?

You guys certainly knew your computers; did they each have names? Shirley? Big Bertha?

Wilbur Charles said...

For what it's worth, I just did Friday. Quite a slog, let the diss-cussing begin.

In five hours.


Wilbur Charles said...

I did finish - not sure about FIR. I had a sea of white a la Saturday

Linkster said...

In response to Canadian Eh: February 4, 2021 at 10:41 AM
"I don’t think of BAILing out as necessarily being in a hurry."

Urban Dictionary - To Bail: To leave in a rush or abruptly with great urgency
"I gotta bail on you guys, my lady is coming home soon."

I remember this emerging as slang for those one generation younger.

CanadianEh! said...

Thanks Linkster!