Feb 3, 2021

Wednesday, February 3 2021, Fred Ohles


18. Settlement for prisoners: PENAL COLONY.

24. Place to display tchotchkes: KNICKKNACK SHELF.
36. She voices Elsa in "Frozen" films: IDINA MENZEL.
49. Approximately 247 acres: SQUARE KILOMETER. 
57. Pocket money ... and what's in the puzzle's circles?: LOOSE CHANGE.
The circled letters (for those who can see them) spell a coin. Penny, nickel, dime, quarter. In order of value, even. Coins are rarely used any more. I was overcharged 55 cents at the post office yesterday and was given 3 quarters to make up for it. Didn't have any nickels or dimes. Looks like a Crossword Corner debut for Fred Ohles.


1. Playground game: TAG.

4. Theatrical backdrops: SCRIMS. In theater,
"a piece of gauze cloth that appears opaque until lit from behind, used as a screen or backdrop." Search google images for scrim, there are some neat ones.

10. Academic pds.: SEMS. Semesters.

14. 4-Down may be added to it: OIL. 4D is STP.

15. Tour: TRAVEL. Not too much of that going on these days.

16. Prose-fixing job: EDIT.

17. Expert: PRO.

20. Iberian river: EBRO. In Spain.

22. Countless years: EON.

23. One with cinco dedos: MANO. Spanish. Cinco dedos = five fingers. Mano = hand.

29. Die down, as a storm: ABATE.

30. Type: ILK. Often has a negative connotation.

31. "What was __ think?": I TO.

32. High-level H.S. classes: APS. Advanced Placement.

34. Prefix with cycle: UNI.

35. Linseed oil source: FLAX. U
sed as a preservative for wood, concrete, and an ingredient in paints, varnishes, and stains. It is also used in soaps, inks, and in the production of linoleum.

39. PC connections: DSLS. Digital Subscriber Line. Users get a high speed bandwidth connection from a phone wall jack on an existing telephone network. DSL works within the frequencies that the telephone doesn't so you can use the Internet while making phone calls. 

41. Little rascal: IMP.

42. "MASH" milieu: Abbr.: KOR. Korea. Love that show - my son and I watch reruns several nights a week.

43. Slippery swimmer: EEL. Yummy sushi, too.

44. Pre-1868 Tokyo: EDO. Three Asian-related entries in a row. And speaking of M*A*S*H, in the episode "Dear Uncle Abdul," (Season 8 Episode 12), Father Mulcahy writes and sings a tune with the lyrics:
"Oh, my dear, I can't wait to see ya, but I'm here in South Korea; the picture you sent was quite an eyeful; I've taped it to my trusty rifle." For fans, this is the same episode where Hawkeye tells the joke with the punchline: "That's all you do? Bird imitations?" HIGH-larious. One of the handful of episodes employing the literary device of letter-writing - my favorite episodes.

 45. Like Stout's Nero Wolfe: OBESE.

54. Govt. agency with an Informed Delivery service: USPS. United States Postal Service. I love them. My nonprofit gets hundreds of letters every week, and my small-town post office handles each one with great care.

55. Cry from a crib: WAH. Aw.

56. Distant relative of the emu: RHEA. Large, flightless, long-legged birds.

61. Supergirl's symbol: ESS.

62. Wheel cover: TIRE.

63. "That's unnecessary": NO NEED.

64. GPS indication: RTE. Route.

65. Soap since 1965, familiarly: DAYS. So sneaky! Soap opera, not Dial soap.

66. Like plans yet to be finalized: NOT SET.

67. Grass in a roll: SOD. Snort. Not that kind of grass.


1. Capital east of Denver: TOPEKA.

2. Site with many home pages?: AIRBNB. Nice clue.

3. Name spelled out in a Van Morrison song: GLORIA. "And her name is G-L-O-R-I-Aaaaaaaa."

4. "The Racer's Edge": STP. An additive for motor oil that improves performance.

5. Golf course hazard: CREEK.

6. Used as fuel: RANON. Not radon. Causes lung cancer.

7. Donald Jr.'s mom: IVANA. Don't hear too much about her any more.

8. Many-voiced Blanc: MEL. Blanc was the voice of Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig and many other Looney Tunes characters. Also Barney Rubble from The Flintstones and Mr. Spacely from The Jetsons.

9. Capital WNW of Denver: SLC. Salt Lake City.

10. Psalm instruction: SELAH. Interesting.

11. Three-time "Modern Family" Emmy nominee: ED O'NEILL. Also played Al Bundy.

12. Company that merged with Konica: MINOLTA. Japanese company headquartered in, wait for it ... Tokyo.

13. Oinker's digs: STY.

19. Siberian city: OMSK. Great crossword entry.

21. Eightsomes: OCTADS.

25. French military cap: KEPI. Has a flat, circular top, and visor.

26. French film: CINE.

27. "Hogan's Heroes" colonel: KLINK.

28. Sly critter: FOX.

33. Derogatory: SNIDE.

34. Decision maker at home: UMP. Baseball, nice clue. Not mom or dad.

35. "Show Boat" author: FERBER. There's our friend, Edna.

36. Apparent: ILLUSORY.

37. Wild way to run: AMOK. Who knows what movie this line is from: "There's something amok with this sponge cake."

38. New way for many to meet: ZOOM.

39. __ Moines: DES.

40. Giant redwood: SEQUOIA.

44. Scots Gaelic: ERSE. Language.

46. Old anesthetics: ETHERS.

47. Makes sure of: SEES TO.

48. Took off the board: ERASED.

50. Altar areas: APSES. Below is
in the Basilica of Sant'Apollinare in Classe, a church in Ravenna, Italy.

51. Start of a demand: I WANT.

52. Bowling sites: LANES. Boomer!

53. "Well, shucks!": OH GEE.

57. Bygone Ford: LTD.

58. Current events TV channel: CNN.

59. "Woo-__!": HOO.

60. Savannah summer hrs.: EDT. Eastern Daylight Time.


OwenKL said...

FIWrong. Two proper names I didn't know how to spell, ED ONEILe + IDINA MENZEe. Both of them got as far as they did soley on perps.

An alchemist there was in TOPEKA
Cried out from his lab, "Eureka!
The Philosopher's stone
I'd thought it was a ball of paprika!"

It was rough in the Aussie PENAL COLONY,
That Britain established across the sea.
To get a visa there now
Thru your record they'll plow --
I guess one must still need a felony!

{A, B.}

Anonymous said...

Not sure if this was a real difficult puzzle or if it was challenging because I was a groggy insomniac working through the grid at 4AM, but it sure seemed more like a Friday’s than a Monday’s piece. I did manage to solve in 21:26 with no help and learned some new things along the way ~~ scrims, selah, Idinamenzel. Also noticed it contained every letter but “j”. Thanks for the fun puzzle Fred!

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Thought the "hazard" could be TREES, so STRIMS was allowed to stand until KNICK KNACK knocked it out. Not familiar with SCRIMS. With the P in place, I tried POP for the decision maker -- should've known better. Had the circles, but forgot to look at 'em until I was finished. The coins were obvious, but played no part in the solve. Thanx, Fred and Melissa Bee. (Thanx for 'splainin' DAYS. No idea.)

SELAH: Thought it was just an exclamation, like Huzzah or Shazam.

ETHERS: Ether was still in use when my tonsils were removed at age four. The bill came to some amount plus 50 cents. My father asked about that 50 cents. He was told it was for a bandaid for the doctor -- where I bit him.

Wilbur Charles said...

FLN C-Moe, re. Why not but…?
1. They're not good at it
2. Stats. HRs pay.

The mark of a Senior is 1. Exact change and 2. Paying $10.12 for a $9.87 bill to get back the QUARTER. Fortunately the clerk can compute change on the register else... The looks are priceless though

ESPs: SCRIMS,MANO(except I had nano forgetting that I actually am familiar with OMSK), SELAH, KEPI. I got IDINA MENZEL from DIME. Except I had rOOM*. Two bad squares for a disastrous FIW.

Re. ILK. Safire didn't like the negative connotation.

Lightbulb moment: DAYS(of our Lives)
Another ESP. And... Getting my IVANAs and Ivankas straight - aarrgghhh!

Both A's Owen. Your inventive imagination never ceases to amaze.

D-O, except in golf it would be tree. Augusta had This famous tree . Golfers would just say woods( or water but there are CREEKs). Re. "Bit the Doctor". Good for you.

Enjoyed the write-up Melissa.
JeffWesch tomorrow


*I was thinking on-line Chat room. The cross was pure Natick.

KS said...

Too many proper names, ugh!

Anonymous said...

I "spent" 7:16 on today's puzzle. Last square for me was the "I" for Idina/Illusory. I was debating between an A or an E for Ms. Menzel, then illusory became, well, um, apparent.

Hungry Mother said...

FIR, but I don’t know how I plowed through all of the names. I didn’t even know how to parse IDINAMENZEL. I’ve seen “Frozen” four times, thanks to grandkids, but don’t normally note the voice actors. I still think a good clue for items like 10d would be ?????.

Madame Defarge said...

Good Morning.

Thanks, Fred, for the puzzle and Melissa for the walk through. Much fun all around.

I had a really fine start here. ATTN: D-O, I cracked the circles and the code early with KNICK KNACK SHELF. This may be the only time I have ever done that. WOO HOO! (Misty's Shout out)

FLN--Lucina: My hub is president of our 47 unit HOA. No volunteers here or meeting attendees either. Although, meeting attendance went up this year when the meetings moved to ZOOM. Looks like we're going to a management company as this board and the those of the previous 36 years have maintained everything through volunteerism. Younger people are used to having everyone do something for them, beginning with their helicopter parents, little or no skin in the game. They don't see themselves as part of the larger effort. It's a conundrum. . . . You might try ZOOM for the meetings.

Off to finish my Italian homework for tomorrow, study some vocab, and get a much needed haircut. Have a sunny day. Stay well.

Malodorous Manatee said...

WC, I have doing that since I was in my twenties. Once in a blue moon, as they say, you get a clerk who immediately gets it and those looks, as you have undoubtedly experienced, are even more priceless.

Bob Lee said...

I also had TREES at first as the golf hazard, so 18 across the circles were PE--Y. Looked at the theme clue and guessed PENNY. Which gave me PENAL COLONY.

Then I hoped the change was all in ascending order, so filled in the rest of the circles.

Even so, I had a hard time as I'd never heard of SCRIMS, SELAH, nor IDINA MENZEL.

It was a real challenge for a Wednesday puzzle.

Husker Gary said...

-IDI and SEL_H crossing M_NO worked themselves out. Puzzle seemed novel
-I generate my blog in a Word document to make it easy to EDIT before copy/paste/publish
-They don’t build ‘em like that anymore: TIRES last longer and don’t go flat as often today
-My friend GLORIA always anticipates I will greet her with G L O R I A, GLORIA
-By September we can usually walk down into our CREEK hazard to retrieve a lost golf ball
-I was 74 (today) when I learned SLC is north of Denver
-A cute young girl asked to have a picture taken with Ed ONEILL at an airport and he agreed. Afterwards someone told him that girl was Britney Spears
-KEPI? C’mon, ya gotta think of Claude Raines as Louis Renault in Casablanca
-AMOK - is there another word spelled with an OK that rhymes with it?
-Rich missed a chance to clue ETHER as “an old number”

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

I liked (and saw early) the theme and the reveal. However, I had a rare (maybe the first) Wednesday FIW due to the Omsk/Selah crossing. In addition to the plethora of proper names, there were 28 three-letter words which, in that quantity, are distracting and annoying, IMO. No w/os and only the two aforementioned unknowns.

Thanks, Fred, and thanks, Melissa, for the informative summary.

DO @ 6:48 ~ I laughed out loud when I read “where I bit him.”

Have a great day.

Husker Gary said...

-Joann got great comfort in talking to her mother in her new long term care residence yesterday via the telephone. Martha seems to be quite at home and the staff seems great. Next step – ZOOM!
-My daughter and her husband are now struggling with getting both his parents into a facility. Her MIL has proven to be an "elopement" risk at home.

Anonymous said...

Have received that quizzical look from young cashiers many times - "just enter the amount I gave you into the'll see". Waited for the "aha" moment.

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

Academic pds? wha?. Not a happy clue/answer. Then took a few stoopid minutes to realize RANON is not a fuel (radon + xenon?). Otherwise the theme LOOSE CHANGE was clear. OHGEE! this time it's NOT an ESS molding.

Decision maker at home: "Dear Wife" wouldn't fit. Linseed oil source: the seed of of a LIN? Held off on ace for PRO.

Never remember EBRO!! But like hedera last week, "dedos" not a simple Spanish 101 word, for me at least. First had OnSK that produced nANO (dwarf in It.), the psalm clue didn't help . So performed an Alphabet run and stopped at OMSK..ergo MANO (dedos must mean fingers!)....Lucina has friends in high CW places 😉..... eventually FIR.

SELAH..I am a Lector (not the Hannibal type) at mass and recite the psalms and psalm responses. Never heard this term. LIUed, same wiki as Melissa, she found it interesting, I found it confusing (no surprise)

Pigs, cats, dinosaurs and easy bake bread......NONEED
Golf course sound. Knee joint ____ CREEK.
Delivery Docs....OBESE

Is a SEQUIOA a giant redwood? Wondered about Redwoods verses SEQUOIAs...

California Science Weekly: Mar 4, 2020
The primary difference
between sequoias and redwoods is their habitat. Redwoods live near the coast, while sequoias live in subalpine regions of California. Redwoods are the tallest trees in the world. ... The giant sequoia (Sequoiadendron giganteum) is Earth's most massive living organism....

I much preferred the 1982 Song "GLORIA" by the late Laura Branigan. Originally written and performed in Italian in 1979

Gloria: Laura Branigan version

The original 1979 version

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

Long winded today sorry...just watching the snow accumulate.


Lucina, if I understood you correctly you as a board member of your HOA are disappointed that owners don't show up at meetings. That are doing an excellent job. 99% of the time owners only show up when they want to complain about something. Not attending mean they have no issues.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Got it all but had the same questions as others with SELAH, IDINA MENZEL, and SCRIMS. But perps were solid and so it came out OK. FIR. Lots of circles; got the theme as I finished.
CNN - Never watch it.
ILK - FLN, -T used it in not describing a co-cornerite, so it was fresh in my mind.
EBRO - Sure glad it wasn't the other big river in Spain; Guadalquivir.
KNICKKNACK - Germans have 'Schnickschnack' with the same meaning.

Enjoy the day.

Anonymous said...

FIR. Found the theme early on. So many names. The I in Idina Menzel was my last fill. All perps. I thought all along that the constructor was going for for ILLUSORY, but it seemed like an antonym for APPARENT. Finally I realized that "Apparent means obvious, but — and this is confusing — it can also mean something that seems to be true but isn't definite." That's the English language for you.
I have often seen SELAH in the Psalms and frequently LIU. I don't remember the meaning because there is no consensus. The meaning is not APPARENT, but ILLUSORY.
I got DAYS. Huh? Never thought of the soap opera. I never think of them as THE SOAPS.I hardly think of them at all. Meh.
KANSA CSO to PK. So glad you are back online.
Love M*A*S*H. I have seen most episodes countless times.
There's that mouth watering sushi eel.
WC Most young people give the 12 cents back saying, "You don't need this," even before they enter it into the computer.
Let me see if this post will disappear into the ETHER like yesterday's did.

JB2 said...

To me, this was a good/meh/not Wednesday puzzle. Readily "apparent" theme filled lots of squares. Words like selah and omsk (never heard of either) took a while to unravel. In the end, FIR but too many names and 3 letter words to be fun. Another great write-up by Melissa Bee made it all worthwhile though.

Mother Nature caught us up on snow last week and we enter the deep-freeze for the first time starting tomorrow. Lots of single digits and minus temps. At least it is February.

Another version of Gloria is by Patti Smith. I like it, but a pretty hard rocker.

And D-O...good story.

Be safe and well everyone.


Shankers said...

Seemed more like a Thursday or Friday. I never pay attention to circles except for today when loosechange filled in first, then the light went on above to complete all the coin spellings. Had ace before pro and a few other changes til the north filled left to right. As if anyone cares, I came into the Catholic church at Easter Vigil 2005. Six months later I wrote a 35 page "conversion" story, kind of a mini-autobiography, explaining to my friens, family and co-workers how I got from A to B. I ended the missive simply with "Selah". That's my story and I'm sticking with it.

Lucina said...


Thank you and congratulations to Fred Ohles! This was a good way to TRAVEL and review U.S. geography! Then we got USPS to deliver. I quickly saw the LOOSE CHANGE and didn't have to run AMOK. And thank you, Melissa Bee, for such a fine expo.

How unusual to see FERBER instead of Edna.

I have heard IDINA MENZEL sing at other venues, besides on Frozen, which I've never seen.

EBRO and MANO were my first fill. Me too, Spitz, but Guadalquivir would make a nice spanner. I hope Boomer is pleased to see LANES and not alleys used.

If you work among drama teachers (which I have) you would have heard of SCRIMS. One of our assistant principals was named RHEA and at the time I didn't know the meaning.

My first experience with ETHER was when I was about 10 or 11 to have a decayed tooth pulled.

MINOLTA was my first good camera which helped me fill a dozen photo albums. I don't know what will become of them. My distant goal is to transfer all those photos to digital because they represent all my TRAVEls and I'd like my grandchildren to know of them.

Yes. We interpret those absences in that way and you are right. Any time someone has a complaint they do attend to let us know. Thankfully it's not often. They also e-mail the management company. This year we increased the assessment fee for the first time in 13 years and had only one complaint of which I'm aware.

Hasta la vista, amigas y amigos! Les deseo un buen dia! (I wish you a good day.)

Lucina said...

That is very interesting. Thank you for sharing your story.

NaomiZ said...

I enjoyed Fred's puzzle and was impressed with the progression of coins in order of value which helped me to FIR. SELAH is familiar from the Psalms, but it might have been written differently depending on the translation you read, I suppose.

Smiled at CSOs to Picard (UNIcycle) and to Misty (Woo-HOO).

OwenKL deserves an A+ today for the first poem. It is humorous, makes great use of the puzzle answers, and has two excellent rhyming words for TOPEKA. Quite a feat!

Thanks, melissa bee, and Cornerites all.

Misty said...

Delightful Wednesday puzzle, Fred--many thanks. And your pictures and comments are always a pleasure, Melissa--thank you for that too. By the way, I too was a big MASH fan in the day, and I too should watch some of the old episodes again.

Nice to see ED O'NEILL and EDNA FERBER in the puzzle. But like others, I too had trouble with SCRIMS, SELAH, and IDINA MENZEL. And thank you for the kind shout-out, Madame Defarge.

Your band-aid joke, cracked me up, Desper-otto.

Enjoyed your poems, Owen.

Great that your family is working hard on securing good elder care for those who need it, Husker Gary.

Have a great day, everybody

Picard said...

NaomiZ Thank you for the UNI shout out!

Here is the spot at MIT where I learned to ride the UNIcycle.

I posted that set before to illustrate the MIT CHAPEL designed by EERO SAARINEN... who we had again this week on January 31. In the second photo you can see my then-girlfriend (in the denim shorts) teaching people to ride the UNIcycle nearby. She actually emailed me this week to recommend a book.

I enjoyed finding the LOOSE CHANGE today. Almost had a Natick at crossing of MENZ?L and F?RBER. Could have been A or E for all I knew. Lucky WAG to FIR.

A few days ago we had BELIZE. I was going to pick out some of my many photos in BELIZE.

Instead, I will share this article I published this week on someone I know at UC Santa Barbara who does research in BELIZE.

I also have SLC and SEQUOIA photos which perhaps I will share another time.

CrossEyedDave said...

Fiw'd so many times
I have to claim a DNF even though all the spaces are filled.

Learning moment:Scrim. yes I googled it...

Still to not really understand solan, or how to use it...


I did find the theme easy enough,
But no silly links as the funniest pic was a half dozen cats rooting thru the couch cushions,
And it's just not funny...

Here is a mild diversion regarding Knick knacks
as presented by Pixar.

CrossEyedDave said...


I know I typed Selah!
Hmm, could be spell check doesn't know what to do with it either...

Oh, I almost forgot!

I hereby formally cede my Imp title (temporarily) to Desper-Otto

And one last thing that I need help from Boomer to possibly understand.
MAybe it's a regional thing, but I honestly do not understand today's non sequitur comic.
I don't get it...

JB2 said...

Maybe this helps....

Holler House in Milwaukee is actually home to the nation’s oldest certified bowling lanes and has been owned by the same family since it opened in 1908.

Lots of bowling in Milwaukee.


Anonymous said...

A slog. I really disliked this puzzle so much!! Possibly the worst ever. Too many three-letter answers, too many tortured clues and wayyyy to many names. Just awful.So awful that I quit which I rarely do.This is easily the worst clue/answer combo ever10. Academic pds.: SEMS. Semesters. In spite of this I really enjoyed the theme.

CanadianEh! said...

Woo-HOO (hello Misty) Wednesday. Thanks for the fun, Fred and melissa bee.
I saw the small (oh it was LOOSE!) CHANGE at the NICKEL level and filled in DIME and QUARTER.
But I arrived here to discover that I FIWed. I associated Mash with NAM (not sure why all these years I have been carrying this wrong information!), and forgot to correct it to KOR when ZOOM gave the O.

I agree there were a lot of names today; I almost had a Natick at KLINK crossing MENZEL (and of course my incorrect Nam). FERBER was messed up also. WAH!
I also agree that "Academic pds.:SEMS" is a nose-wrinkle. I had no idea what pds. meant.

I waited to see if it would be KILOMETER or the Re. Ditto for UNI (hello Picard) or Tri.
Hand up for Ace before PRO.
And of course this Canadian does not know her way from Denver. Had to come here to find out what SLC stood for (but I think I was supposed to have put that in my memory bank from a previous CW!).
I also am not familiar with the term "Informed Delivery Service" and USPS required perps. We have Canada Post Tracking which may be similar.?

I knew Lucina would know that Spanish, but MANO finally perped.
I am familiar with SELAH (never sure if it is going to be spoken when congregation reads a Psalm out loud together).
Is there an Elf on that SHELF? No, today we have tchotchkes (is it AnonT who has photos?)

Wishing you all a great day.

PK said...

hi y'all! thanks fred & Melissa for your endeavors.

who sez there isn't much travel going on? My relatives are traveling all over the US all the time. drives me crazy. they are having a great time. Me, not so much.

we had our daily serving of EEL.

golf hazard was not rough, trees, sands, traps, water, but creeks.

dnk: proper names and WEES.

My computer is running AMOK the last few days. I did a grocery order and wanted to scream, it was flipping back and forth. dont know what i'll get in my sacks. shift key triggers some strange stuff. i may give up capitals altogether.Lost my posts the last two days.

d-o: my grandson when 5 yrs old had minor surgery. He told the nurse who was trying to put a needle in for iv: "if you stick me with that thing one more time, i'll kick you in the balls."

Ze Complainant said...

i completed the puzzle, but IMHO, in order for the constructor to get the 'loose change' progression, he had to use some rare words ... Omsk, scrim, selah, Manos ... which he also clued in an arcane manner. Double jeopardy.
Basically, I agree with what Ray-O-Sunshine wrote. Very apt and appropriate.

Not very enjoyable. Also 'Days', was clued oddly. Who has time for soap operas ?
As a general rule, if you clue to reach the five percent of people who are 'hip' on to your wavelenght ... does that justify a well made puzzle for the rest of us ?

On another subject, the relative ignorance of cashier clerks on things, mathematical and lack of - common sense. Some kids have no sense of even simple division, but get hired because of the paltry wages, which will not attract the smart kind.

I once bought 10 oranges, @ 6 for a dollar. The clerk charged me, $ 1.00 for the six, and then five cents per orange, for the remaining four. I was astounded. Then I realized...

1. She was 'in training', and her supervisor was standing at the end of the packing section. She could not afford to alert her Super as to her inadequacies, so she charged me as low, as possible, so I would 'not complain'. She could not calculate one-sixth, or 16 or 17 cents per orange.

2. I once returned some items to a K Mart store, for credit on my Master Card. This was only a small Part of my original shopping list bill.
But the credit, the 'Returns' clerk, issued me, turned out to be larger, by over $66, over my original bill of goods, I had purchased.(!) I was dumbfounded.
This was because the clerk was giving me credit at the original list price, when I had bought the items on a sale discount.(obviously !), which was clearly marked on the bill itself.
When I pointed out the discrepancy, the clerk glared at me with a withering look, and told me not to teach her how to run her own business !

Subsequently, I instructed my stockbroker to never have anything to do with any K Mart stock in my portfolio. Ever.

Yuman said...

Here in the desert not many creek golf hazards, but lots of rattle snake hazards, especially when looking for balls in the rough “cuidado!”
Thanks Ray- of- Sunshine for the explanation of Redwoods vs Sequoias.
Misty and others, received my Merl Reagle Sunday Crossword book, and completed “Gridlock” that some editors consider one of his greatest puzzles.

desper-otto said...

Here's another take on Gloria.

Misty said...

Woohoo to you too, CanadianEh! And Yuman, I am so happy that you've gotten the Merl Reagle puzzle book. Have a wonderful time solving it!

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

To be peevish CW fill shouldn't rely on foreign language words unless they are in common usage in English. The fencing sword Épée can be found in the OED but the French word for summer été is not.
Scrabble rule: Some foreign words are accepted

According to the official Scrabble rules, “all words labeled as a part of speech” are allowed, including those listed as “archaic, obsolete, colloquial, and slang.” Foreign words are permitted as long as they appear in English dictionaries"...Sep 18, 2019

AnonymousPVX said...

This midweek crossword had its moments,

Ended 24a with STAND before SHELF.


Is anyone still using DSL?


Did not care for 23A shouldn’t have to be able to read a foreign language to understand and fill in the answer, also in Spanish.

And how does a TIRE “cover” a WHEEL?

Happy to get the solve.

Stay safe.

Ol' Man Keith said...

Well conceived & executed by Mr. Ohles--a tough Humpday PZL.
But TA ~ DA!...
It yielded to me because of the theme. True to form it was the long fills that opened the door to victory.

SELAH? It is clued as "Psalm instruction," but most scholars admit not known what the word means. Some say a musical notation, others say an unknown punctuation mark.
Hardly an "instruction."
Melissa B wisely threw up her hands & linked it to a Wiki article.

The last to fall for me was 10A. Wasn't sure what "Academic pds." meant.
Sure, SEMS should have been EZ, but I spent over 35 years on an academic campus that did not use SEMS.
Our pds. were QTRS.
A three-way on the odd side.
The central diagonal gives us an anagram (13 of 15 letters) the speaks of an armory incident wherein the stored weaponry ended its life with a reversal of its intended conclusion.
I speak of an...
In another universe, the same available letters might speak of what happens when a group of fathers watching their offspring at a soccer match bite their tongues rather than use their fists when they see their youngsters fouled by bullies on the rival team.
Here I am speaking of...

ATLGranny said...

Late checking in today but FIR the puzzle early before the day got busy. Thanks, Melissa, for confirming that. Like others I saw what was happening with the circles by NICKEL, making the last two easy to prefill. The reveal was apt. Only one WO so my grid is neat. (I'm not saying what it was. Too embarrassing!) The unknowns were perpable with the first letter of IDINA my last fill. I noticed that many of you had the same unknowns. In general I enjoyed the puzzle and thank Fred for his debut offering.

We've talked before about learning how to make change back in the day before cash registers would calculate it for you. Well, WC says we'll see Jeffrey Wechsler tomorrow. Get ready!

Shankers said...

Lucina, how did I know that you would be the only one to comment? I do so sincerely appreciate it.

LEO III said...

WOW! I messed this one up to a fare-the-well! I don’t think I could have done any worse on a Wednesday puzzle had I tried!

First, the good news: I got the theme clues and the reveal immediately, although I did have SPARECHANGE before LTD corrected it to LOOSECHANGE.

There I was, rock-‘n’-rollin’ along (G-L-O-R-I-A!) when I hit the wall. Didn’t know DEDOS, so I missed MANO/OMSK/SELAH (which I also didn’t know anyway), didn’t know KEPI (we didn’t really have advanced placement per se way back in the dark ages), and didn’t even think of FERBER (all the rest of IDINIAMENZOL was perps), and didn’t know RHEA.

SCRIMS, EBRO, EDONEILL, OCTADS and ERSE were all perps. I never watched “Married … with Children.”

Other than that….

My original thought for 65A was ATWT (As the World Turns), but LTD came to the rescue there too.

Thanks, Fred and Melissa!

CrossEyedDave said...

I really wanted to add my 2 cents worth,
But none of the loose change links were funny...

a couple of beers later...

The Curmudgeon said...

DNF. (I deem LIU to be cheating.) My Natick was ED O'NEILL with MANO and IDINA MENZEL. Never watched "Modern Family", don't know the cast, and don't keep track of the Emmys. I've seen Idina before (probably in CWs) but couldn't remember well enough to guess. I thought of MANO, but didn't know dedo and figured I would DNF anyhow.

42a waited for perps to see if KOR or ROK.

>> Roy

Big Easy said...

After noticing PENNY & NICKEL in the circles I went ahead and filled DIME & QUARTER in the other two LOOSE CHANGE fills. I had to change the unknown IDINA MENDEL to MENZEL to get ZOOM. There's an immensely popular video game series that's been around a very long time named DOOM and I would bet there have been at least 100 million people playing it. And they do meet online.

Took a WAG for the cross of MANO & SELAH to FIR. SCRIMS- perps, never heard of it.

Bygone Ford- The Ford Custom in the 70s became the LTD which became the Crown Victoria and Mercury Grand Marquis. The last two were discontinues a few years back and policemen hate their replacement Ford Explorer.

CNN & FOX in the same puzzle. I noticed they weren't close on the grid.

G-L-O-R-I-A-- the first song that just about every garage band learned to play.

Ray & Lucina- the problem with my HOA is that the same of 20 us have been doing all the work for 25 years. It's a voluntary HOA @ $100/year and almost all 435 owners belong. But they don't show to help with the gardens, Christmas displays, flags, helping with the Easter Egg hunt, Mardi Gras party, Pumpkin painting party, or Night Out against Crime Extravaganza (but they show up for all the free food that the 20 of us get restaurants to donate).

Lucina said...

Big Easy:
But they show up! Ours don't, even for free food.

Jayce said...

Sorry, the abbreviation for (South) Korea is not KOR; it is ROK. Just as the abbreviation for The United States of America is not AMER or whatever, it is USA.

"dedos"? "CINE"? Sheesh. Wei shemma yung waigwo hwa?

I thought of Misty at Woo-HOO and of Picard at UNIcycle.

At least Owen's poems, melissa's write-up, and all your comments were a pleasure to read.

inanehiker said...

This was a fun theme made even faster by the circles! I'm with RoS - I like Laura Branigan's
"Gloria" the best partially because it's a fun dance song - but also the unofficial theme song of the St. Louis Blues hockey team.

I'm a happy camper - came home during daylight! and it is 57 degrees! Walk time at the conservation area near me on the way home! By Sunday the high will be 17 - so glad the Chiefs will be playing in Florida instead of a home game!

Thanks Melissa and congrats to Fred on his debut!

LEO III said...

d-o --- That’s FUNNY!!! He was probably charging two cents for the Band-Aid and the rest for PAIN AND SUFFERING. I lost my tonsils when I was six. I can still see them putting whatever it was over my face to knock me out with the ether. It is one of my oldest memories.

Me too, Gary. WORD makes writing/editing/correcting so much easier. So THAT’S what a KEPI is. Might remember it now.

Spitzboov – FLN – I really enjoyed the USS Truman video; I never get tired of those kinds of videos.

Martin the Gecko said...

Maybe you remember Idina Menzel from this TV commercial

sasses said...

I said the same thing to my dentist. He said he might enjoy it!

sasses said...

This was an informative and timely lesson. Thank you for sharing!

Misty said...

Thank you, Jayce.

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

Thanks Fred for the puzzle; congrats on the debut. I got all the LOOSE CHANGE but some fill just wasn't gonna. DNF.

Thanks mb for the fun expo to take my mind off of this Thumper (see 12:43); enjoyed the Van Morrison too - thanks.

WOs: SCENE -> SCRIM(?), OCTetS (Hi PVX!)
DNF: EDO-EILe | ID-NAMENZae | FaRBER & KEP- | O-SK, SEL-H. NE didn't turn out so well... OR, what LEO-III @4:43 said :-)

Fav: I'll go w/ ILK since I unknowingly just used it :-) //Hi Spitz!

{A, B+}
Both DRs are fun OMK.

ED O'NEILL - I could see him in my mind's eye (was also on Married ... With Children) [LEOIII - funny! clue was Modern Fam!) but only knew the ED part of his name.

CED - Thanks for the PIXAR short. Been a long time since I've seen it.

PVX - I have both a cable-modem and DSL modem for redundancy.

Lucina - My first real camera was Mom's hand-me-down '70's MINOLTA SLR with auto-winder and flash (think Austin Powers') that her second husband bought for her. I also had a tri-pod and a "remote" shutter opener - great for extra-long exposures of cactus blooms. I never got Picard-quality snaps but, then, I was 12 :-)

Enjoyed reading everyone!

Cheers, -T

jfromvt said...

Fun puzzle, if a bit on the easy side for a Wednesday.

LEO III said...

-T --- Yeah, I never watched THAT show either. See how confused I get!

Picard --- Just finished reading your article. Very interesting. Thanks.

waseeley said...

Thank you Fred for a very crunchy (almost brittle!) Fridayish puzzle, which I enjoyed immensely, despite an FIW, due to two stupid mistakes. And thank you Melissa for an excellent review. Favorite clue was SELAH, which I have read many times in the PSALMS, but the Bible footnotes, like your link, are divided as to what it means. I'm sticking with the theory in the link that they are instructions to "The Choirmaster" as a placeholder for an intstrumental interlude. They were sung afterall and somebody had to keep them on key!

Yuman @2:25PM Like several other cruciverbalists, after the recent paeons here to Merl Reagle (whom I knew from "WordPlay"), I ordered two of his books and received one on Monday. I started with Book Number 1, which contains the absolutely remarkable puzzle "GridLock", a metaphor for Xwd puzzles writ large. It took me the better part of the day to solve it. Imagine two 3 lane highways, spanning the entire width and depth of the grid and intersecting in the middle with dozens of different car models, clued by lists of mfgers, all trying to get through the intersection at once. What Spitz might term a TraffikMarmalade!

Dw and I also watched the Simpsons episode someone recommended (Series 20, Episode 6) with Lisa, who is competing in a community crossword puzzle contest. Who shows up to counsel her but Will Shortz and Merle Reagle themselves, voicing their own characters. Great fun.


Wilbur Charles said...

I'm late because of the great posts and links today
Picard, glad we lured you in. Fascinating article on Maya. Their astronomy is fascinating too. Did you explain to "Voice of Reason" the difference between a thousand years of climate change vs <100? Also, I spent time at Harvard Square but never MIT.

CED, there was a Mash-like series, minus the humor, that was Nam-based. No true Nam series could pass the censors.

"Who has time for soap operas ?". Funniest note of the day.

RayO, saw your "Rules" then noticed it was Scrabble. I have an advantage with French (and Sports) but lose it with Spanish and Latin. Actually what folk knew and didn't was fascinating. I agree that if the answer is obscure Then the clueing shouldn't be.

So that's IDINA MENZEL. Big E, that's how to do politic- with humor. Nothing like freebies.


unclefred said...

Thoroughly enjoyable, thanx Fred! Seemed more like a Monday to me. FIR with a couple WOs due to careless spelling, caught by perps. Thanx for the nice write-up, MB!! And I agree, I too love the USPS. I have a sticker on my front door just over the mail slot that says so! Who else will pick up a letter at my house and deliver it to the home of my friend in Sequim (I live in Fort Lauderdale) for ~$0.50?? I bet Biden’s gonna get ‘em some new electric trucks!!