, pub-2774194725043577, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0 L.A.Times Crossword Corner: Saturday, March 6, 2021, Jamey Smith


Mar 6, 2021

Saturday, March 6, 2021, Jamey Smith

Saturday Themeless by Jamey Smith


Today we hear from Jamey Smith and his puzzle was a real challenge for this word cowboy. I told Jamey it was a "delightful struggle" and he replied that was exactly what he was going for! Here is a nice note from him that includes some fun references to his contemporary fills:

Hi Gary, 

Many thanks for your fun illustrated write-ups and for giving those of us who make puzzles an opportunity to talk about them. I appreciate all the Crossword Corner bloggers and the solvers who take the time to weigh in.

I’m a native Texan and worked at the University of Texas at Austin, my alma mater, for many years. While there, I moonlighted as a freelance writer for local nonprofits. Now semi-retired, I can devote more time to my real passion: taking it easy.  :-) A few years ago, in the mood for a new hobby, I blithely plunged into crossword construction. How hard can it be, I remember thinking. Well, dozens of humbling rejections later, it somehow continues to be an enjoyable and stimulating diversion. That’s been especially true this past year.

I’m finding the LA Times and I are a pretty good editorial match. That’s not to say by any stretch that Rich keeps all my clues. I probably go overboard on pop culture. My clue for CLOUD ATLAS referenced the novel/film by that name (author David Mitchell is a favorite of mine), while GUANTANAMO alluded to a Harold & Kumar movie.

Those who appreciate 80s nostalgia may be glad that my “Dynasty” clue for FOES survived. But [80s brand touted as “The world’s best-fitting jeans”] was evidently a bridge too far for CHIC. Or maybe just too long. 

Until next time!


1. Arrest: HALT.

5. Dwarf planet named for a goddess: ERIS - Hey,Pluto, you're on our team now!

9. Places to relax: BATHS.

14. Prefix meaning "personal": IDIO - We all have our IDIOsyncracies 

15. Caribbean isle seriously damaged by a 1995 volcanic eruption: MONTSERRAT - A minor eruption as seen from the International Space Station in 2009

17. Threshold adjoiner: JAMB - Door JAMB

18. Law enforcement tool that may be triggered by a siren: BODY CAMERA 

19. Natural healer: ALOE.

20. First-class freebie on long-haul flights: AMENITY KIT - I never saw one back in seat 43D

21. 1959 winner of 11 Oscars: BEN HUR - Charlton Heston did drive the chariot for some closeups 

23. Alfred of coffee fame: PEET 

24. Mollycoddle: COSSET The verb COSSET “to treat as a pet, pamper, coddle” is a derivative verb use of the noun COSSET “a lamb raised as a pet.

26. Jocular headlock accompaniment: NOOGIE - My uncles called these "dutch rubs" and they bordered on abuse

31. Yani __, youngest golfer to win five majors: TSENG - She was #1 in the world for 109 weeks starting in 2008. Now she has fallen to #387 but has earned $10,550,000.

32. Flip out: SNAP

33. Trendy: CHIC.

35. Head makeup: SUDS - Beer talk

36. Loose: UNLEASH - Seen more often as an adjective, here it is a verb. as in "He has LOOSED the fateful lightning of his terrible swift sword"

38. Some holy city dwellers: MECCANS - MECCA, Saudi Arabia is Islam's holiest city. A hajj to MECCA by an 11-yr-old girl

40. They go with guys: GALS - not

41. Ithaca opening: IOTA - 
Ιθάκη - Ithaca in Greek letters

43. Pirogue, e.g.: CANOE - Great for huntin' gators

44. Campaign buy: SPOT AD - Some broadcasts are now showing them in split screen mode while there is a break in the action

46. Reply card, say: INSERT.

48. Viral internet item: MEME - You can generate your own at this site

50. NFL highlight reel clip: TD PASS.

53. Barista's concoction: CAFFE MOCHA - CAFE AU LAIT fit beautifully but... 

58. Get in the game: ANTE  - Ya gotta pay to play!

59. Reference for budding meteorologists: CLOUD ATLAS - The cover of the 1956 edition with a page. Not the movie Jamey was thinking of

60. Acid __: RAIN.

61. Sara Pennypacker kid-lit heroine: CLEMENTINE.

62. Capone capturers: T MEN - Eliot Ness worked for the treasury department and was not a g-man (FBI)

63. Evening stroll: PASEO - Also a boulevard in K.C.

64. Stone massage sites: SPAS.

65. Class with poses: YOGA Here's a bunch of 'em 


1. Muslim veil: HIJAB - Generally, they can't be worn for passport or driver's license pictures 

2. Allan-__: Robin Hood cohort: ADALE.

3. Citrus liqueur: LIMONCELLO - Ubiquitous in southern Italy. We sampled some at a concession stand near Pompeii. 

4. "Truth is ... ": TO BE HONEST 

5. Imprisons: EMBARS - EMBAR, debar, disbar 

6. Leeway: ROOM.

7. Thorough: IN DEPTH 

8. Composer Jule: STYNE - His song (lyrics by Bob Merrill) People, was almost cut from Funny Girl

9. Reach ahead of: BEAT TO.

10. Private employer: ARMY - Also a general employer 

11. Wisconsin-based bike brand: TREK - Headquarters in Waterloo, WI

12. Spydom name: HARI Myth?

13. Actuarial datum, e.g.: STAT.

16. Rocket __: SCIENCE 

Buzz Aldrin

22. Bob Jones Award org.: USGA - He never turned pro and so Yani Tseng a lot more money

25. Parrot: ECHO.

27. Prime spot for stargazing?: OSCAR PARTY - Hey, this meme generator stuff is fun!

28. Cuban city with a U.S. Navy base: GUANTANAMO Not the movie Jamey wanted

29. SSN, e.g.: ID NO.

30. To be, in Latin: ESSE - You don't have to be a rocket scientist to translate this: "ESSE aut non ESSE"

31. Harbor sights: TUGS.

32. Flip out: SNAP.

34. Mononymous supermodel: IMAN - She walks our cwd runway frequently 

37. Jazz group guy: SIDEMAN - Backup players for featured artists like Louis Armstrong

39. In the loop: CCED.

42. Accessory with a suit: TIE CLIP - I don't see TIES or TIE CLIPS much anymore

45. Artist Modigliani: AMEDEO - Painter, sculptor noted for elongation. Yeah, I knew that 😏

47. Equilibria: STASES - Achieving this state might be the key to long space flights

49. Big name in apple products: MOTTS - Small "a"

51. "The Girl Who Played With Fire" author Larsson: STIEG  - Flickan Som Lekte Med Elden in his native Swedish. More

52. Medicinal shrub: SENNA - This plant produces sennosides which are the active ingredients in many laxatives. I wonder who first discovered this?

53. Cosmonaut's insignia, once: CCCP - Yuri Gagarin was the first man in space

54. Spaghetti __ puttanesca: ALLA.

55. Krystle and Alexis on the 1980s "Dynasty," e.g.: FOES - Yeah, I'd say...

56. Stew: FUME - Krystle appears to be FUMING above

57. Maui's famously twisty Road to __: HANA - One of the stops on this twisty highway is Charles Lindberg's gravesite. 


OwenKL said...

DNF. Ugh. A Thumper today.

TO BE HONEST, this puzzle was a pain.
Too many times I didn't know a name.
I'd try to INSERT,
But nothing would work.
My thoughts on this mess? I don't like to complain.

There was a young buck from GUANTANAMO,
Would UNLEASH his Latin charm, you know.
But GALS, with disdain
Left him cold in the RAIN.
A pity there isn't a charm-type ALOE.

{A-, B-.}

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Not a chance. If I enumerated all the ways I went wrong, I'd be cited for an over-long post. Some puzzles are just outside my wheelhouse. I couldn't even see my wheelhouse on this one.

Anonymous said...

I liked a lot of the puzzle. I liked the CCED/CCCP/MECCANS "double-c" mini-theme.
I thought this was significantly harder than most Saturdays. Lots of proper nouns, many of which are not really guessable like LIMONCELLO, HANA, TSENG, and MONTSERRAT. And some of them are clued more obscurely than necessary. Seems unnecessary to clue TREK as a proper noun, for example. And an easier clue for USGA would help with the tsenG cross.

I did not know until now that a COULDATLAS was an actual thing. HuskerGary, you chose a beautiful picture!

TTP said...

Yeah baby ! No smears on this grid !.

What a workout ! Plenty of unknowns (ADALE, STYNE, TSENG, COSSET, MECCANS, AMEDEO, SIDEMAN, HANA and STIEG) and some corrections along the way, such as HARI replacing Bond, Emme before IMAN, STASiS before STASES, and SENNA replacing hENNA.

The southwest was a bear because of having a few of those names, and after trying to complete COFFEE(something) and for having Fret for FUME at "Stew", but then PASEO kept coming to mind. I remembered the PASEO de San Antonio in San Jose from when we stayed at his condo in The 88. That also helped with PEET as my nephew stopped frequently for coffee at Peets, Starbucks or local coffee shops as he gave us daily walking tours all around the city.

I thought of Canadian Eh at 1D "Muslim veil" because I remembre (see what I did there ? :>) she once explained about the different names for Muslim headgear. Burkas versus HIJABs, versus others if I recall correctly.

Speaking of thought of... Read "Pirogue" and thought of pierogi (Polish dumplings), but I learned of pirogue from doing crosswords.

Surprised that I got LIMONCELLO, but TO BE HONEST, although it rang a bell, it mostly perped in. The only momentary lapse there was the crossing ID_O and whether it was I or E, but I went with I because of the Mexican beers that add LIMON.

Great puzzle, Jamey ! I love the great challenge, and despite possibly having a few too many names, I also loved the cluing. Oh, and ignore the haters that are sure to appear. This site picked up a lot of newbies during the pandemic, and some just come to spew vitriol.

Have to delay reading today's blog write up but will get back to it later.

Big Easy said...

A DNF today. In the SW the cross of AMEDEO & PASEO was guessed wrong- bot unknowns.
CLEMENTINE unknown but was filled correctly
IRIS or ERIS- lucky WAG for ERIS because EMBARS and IMBARS both looked good.

The the NW was left because I stuck with EXODUS instead of BEN HUR and Allan ADALE & LIMONCELLO were both unknowns. I knew BURKA & HIJAB but the wrong movie wouldn't allow.

CLOUD ATLAS- never heard the term even in the meteorology class I took in college.

Hats off to those who FIR.

billocohoes said...

Other than spelling LeMONCELLO with an e, I got most of this but the SW, where AMEdeo and PASEO are total unknowns and I couldn't let go of Fret for FUME so the cloud didn't clear.

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

This was a bear and not a cute, cuddly one but a growling grizzly! It was also a DNF because I didn’t know Amedeo, Clementine, or Paseo and was too tired at the point for an alphabet run. The plethora of unknown proper names made for a very challenging solve and more than a little frustration. I made the exact same errors as TTP plus an additional one at Clubs/Baths and the wack-a-:mole string of Fret>Feud>Fuss>Fume. I never heard the term Amenity Kit but I haven’t flown in 20 years and didn’t fly First Class very often. That said, I enjoyed the challenge but would have preferred fewer proper names.

Thanks, Jamey, for the mental workout, though unsuccessful and for visiting the Corner and thanks, HG, for the wonderful, witty write-up. Loved the crossword-solving canine!

By the way, PK has disappeared again. I hope it’s due to technical problems, not health issues.

Have a great day.

Irish Miss said...

Correction: Crossword solving feline! I’m going to the dogs, I swear!

token creek said...

A big Thumper on this one

inanehiker said...

I had a similar experience as TTP - the SW was my most challenging corner. The "CLEMENTINE" books came out after my kid lit reading years with my children. I would have more quickly solved CLOUD ATLAS if clued as a 2012 Tom Hanks/Halle Berry movie - until I came to the blog I thought the clue should have a ? at the end as I didn't know it was a thing in meteorology! I have heard of Modigliani but he is one of those artists who is generally known by a one word name.

Others were gimmes - HG pic of the street sign for The Paseo is in my hometown of KC - and my dad graduated from Paseo High School. A friend, who is a big HAM radio operator in international contests, would often go for a big contest around Thanksgiving to MONTSERRAT until the volcano made it so he couldn't travel there. I've enjoyed LIMONCELLO in Italy but boy a small amount packs a big punch at a 25-30% alcohol content range.

Thanks Gary for another fun write-up and Jamey for the puzzle and stopping by!

jfromvt said...

Some really tough long answers that took a while for me, except didn’t get the SW. Too many Naticks down there for me to figure out. But overall, not a bad Saturday test. Ten long answers, which must be tough to construct.

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Great intro, HG; thanks.

Well, this was a Bridge Too Far. Ended up with 17 red letters, (I, too, use a red pen to mark my faux's.). But it had character and I enjoyed working on it. Had USSR before realizing we wanted what was on their uniform so changed it to CCCP. Couldn't get enough perps to trigger MONTSERRAT. Had 'inters' instead of EMBARS; also thwarting a solution in the NE. Sigh.
PEET's - I prefer Starbuck's.
SENNA - A legume. In the same family (Fabaceae) as alfalfa, birdsfoot trefoil, or vetch.
Tug - German Schlepper. German cognate Zug is a 'train'.

While writing the above, I got a call from someone with a foreign accent wanting to help me out with Medicare stuff. He asked about my diabetes (I don't have it) history. I told him that HIPAA laws prevented me from sharing that with him. He began to stew and FUME, and then rudely hung up. I think he needs to work on his interpersonal skills before calling anymore almost 83 yr-olds.

Anonymous said...

Hard, but not too hard. Crosses helped the fills... MUCH better than yesterday. Good job!

Shankers said...

Boo, hiss. No fun. Spent waaay too much time getting 3/4 of the grid with the SW, like others here, ending up a disaster. No smiles from this guy.

Malodorous Manatee said...

A challenging but ultimately doable Saturday puzzle. Fortunately, between Valerie and I, we knew many of the proper nouns from "life experience": - LIMONECELLO, HANA, MONTSERRAT, CLEMENTINE, STIEG, and STYNE. With those squares filled, the rest was made solve-able.

NOOGIE was dredged up from somewhere. TO BE HONEST we did not know,until perp'ed that BODY CAMERAs could be triggered by sirens or that the swag was called an AMENITY KIT.

Good job on the telephone, SPITZBOOV. When I get a call from a "contractor working in my area" the first thing I say is to ask them for their CSLB Number (Contractors State License Board). In years of this, only one, out of literally hundreds, even knew what I was talking about. I will have to remember the HIPAA approach.

Spitzboov said...

Here you go everyone. Read'em and weep: A New Edition of the International Cloud Atlas

Anonymous said...

Two unsatisfying days in a row. Congrats to those who figured out the southwest.


NaomiZ said...

This puzzle ate my morning, but I FIR with a few WAGs. Never heard of ADALE, ERIS, TSENG, pirogue CANOE, or SENNA. Certainly did not know Modigliani's first name. Had some trouble with the two Fs in CAFFE, as well. Thanks to Jamey for the mental exercise, to Husker Gary for the patient review, to Rich for the improved clue at 33 Across and undoubtedly many others, and to all who play along.

AnonymousPVX said...

I’m with JB2.

Otherwise, no comment.

Stay safe.

Unknown said...

The picture for Yuri Gagarin is wrong. You have a picture of Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman in space.

TTP said...

Oh duh ! MECCANS as in those that live in MECCA. That should have occurred to me during the solve but didn't, even after I got it. It was also the first thing I looked for when reading Gary's review.

I practically gasped when a friend told me how much he paid for his and hers TREK bikes. The purchase seemed to be more about status symbols as neither was really that much into bicycling. That was back in the early to mid 90s. It was him more than her. I remember him buying a nice used Mercedes Benz 190 and getting vanity plates with MBA GRAD. This was shortly after first getting into the MBA program and long before he got the degree. But, I guess it kept him motivated because he completed it, and has done quite well since then.

Gary, you posted a pic of my neighbor's cousin at 16D.

I liked your meme honoring C.C. !

Desper-otto, it must have been a bad hair day for you. I am surprised that you didn't continue to completion, even if you had a few wrong cells. So unusual that you didn't get through the puzzle.

Malodorous Manatee, you made me remember another one that I had to correct. That was dashCAMERA before BODYCAMERA. Perhaps dash cameras run all the time after the engine is started.

Irish Miss, I too have been wondering about PK and WikWak as well.

Lunch break is over. Back to the to-do list. See all y'all later n'at.

Wendybird said...

Anon. At 6:58, TREK is the brand name of a specific bicycle line, so it is a proper name. We used to each have one and enjoyed many beautiful rides.

Wow! What a workout! I finally was able to finish, but I had to ask Jack for a few hints here and there. Some of the words were unfamiliar, but I’ve expanded my vocabulary - now if I can just remember them next time!

Thanks, Jamey for a challenging experience, and thanks Husker GRy for your always delightful tour.

CrossEyedDave said...

Thumper said:

I know there was something I liked about this puzzle,
But right now my puzzle is trying to remember what it was...


I will try to get back to you...

desper-otto said...

TTP, I didn't give up easily. I filled in everything I could, fixing lotsa missteps on the way, but there were still patches of white space where I couldn't even make a decent WAG. Pondered, aren't all Mecca dwellers MECCANS? Oh, maybe it's "some" because Mecca isn't the only "holy city?" Dunno. Isn't SPOT AD redundant? Answers that weren't familiar even after Husker 'splained 'em: Limoncello, Caffemocha, Clementine (as kid lit), Hana (as a road), Tseng, Amedeo, and Bob Jones. That's when I gave up. I'm not complaining -- my file of useless information proved to be useless today.

Husker Gary said...

-Unknown, that is Gagarin
-TTP, tell Buzz hi for me if you see him. I should have posted the video of when he decked the guy who ran up to him yelling, “You never went to the Moon, it was a hoax!”
-D-O, I always wonder how many of the fills would benefit from further explanation. I remember LIMONCELLO at Pompeii because they made it with lemons as big as volleyballs.
-I could have posted Gene Pitney’s recording of MECCA
-Jamey wrote to me that he couldn’t believe I found that Cloud Atlas

Wilbur Charles said...

I just reread my previous Saturday comments. One box. Today, a living nightmare. The archaic EMBARS stopped me in NE. And, fret/FUME and the unknown PASEO.

Also as I said last week the ability to blank out squares is something I should take advantage of. I had inters for imprisons (ok a grave is certainly a prison).

Also, I shouldn't have given up albeit I'd been working in it since Friday noon. I actually had HARI, STAT, ARMY and INDEPTH. I missed ROOM and MOTTS. I agree with anon on the vaguely of TREK Clue amid its arcane neighbors. And FUME/Fret are very similar F words.

Needed more perpability. But I needed more patience. I had a Sunday nytimes in the bathroom for a month. But I wanted a peak at CC. Spoiled.

After reading some posts it's ironic that I had TSENG,USGA but not STYNE nor TREK.


ATLGranny said...

I had tons of white spaces and was ready to give up in both the NE and SW when a few more words came to me. Ultimately I FIW but got more right than I expected. ERIS and STYNE were problematic and I guessed wrong. A few other sloppy spellings gave me a total of four bad squares. For this puzzle an erasable pen would have been a big help. But at least the puzzle didn't puzzle me until bedtime today!

Thanks to James for a truly challenging Saturday puzzle and to Husker Gary for clearing up my questions and reaching out to James. I'll just INSERT here my greetings to everyone in our community: have a good weekend!

waseeley said...

I guess yesterday really WAS Friday, because today DEFINITELY IS Saturday. Not only did I FIW, but only after 5 LIUs and a couple of blanks to boot. And what a great puzzle this was for all the things I learned from both Jamie and Gary.

5A SEESAWed through ISIS and EROS but landed on ERIS after being guided there by perps.

15A MONTSERRAT is not only a volcanic island, but Montserrat Caballé (12 April 1933 – 6 October 2018) was one of the great operatic sopranos of the 20th century. She's probably better known to non-opera lovers for her collaboration on an album with Freddie Mercury

21A Saw BEN HUR when it first came out. I was 12 and my buddy Dave was 14 and on a snow day off we hiked 9 miles to downtown Baltimore then back, after seeing it at the HIPPODROME THEATER. They don't make 'em like that any more.

24A COSSETED is also a type of soft-boiled egg. You have to humor them to get them to turn out alright.

43A Had to LIU PIROGUE. It definitely wasn't French for PEROGIS, a Polish savory pastry filled with potatoes and onions, cheese,or sauerkraut. S.I.L. makes them. YUMMY!

3D One of my B.I.L.s and I split a bottle of LEMONCELLO at a party at his place one night and I haven't had a drop of it since.

12D There is also an exhibit on MATA HARI at the International Spy Museum. A great place to spend a day if you're ever in D.C. on a vacation.

13D "Figures don't lie, but liars can figure" is usually attributed to Mark Twain, but he may have been lying!

52D SENNA was probably discovered by an UPTIGHT NEANDERTHAL. Rumor has it they're still around.


waseeley said...

SpitzBoov @11:14AM Thanks for the atlas Spitz! I'm going to print a copy for my grandchildren.

p.s. You'd don't write a day over 60!

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

Did today's and yesterday's puzzle get reversed? 🤔 Although I FIW today at least I finished (unlike the Friday's sea of white, deader than the Aral), two single letter errors: iris/ERIS crossed with ibar/EBAR...and a wrong WAG at the last letter of TSENG and USGA....(You can emBAR or embar a lawyer)

Lotsa inkovers: Henna/SENNA, aper/ECHO, fogs/TUGS, g/TMAN, ideo/IDIO, passo/PASEO, Arturo/AMEDEO... With only three perps I WAGed CLEMENTINE. MOTTS apple juice and cups of applesauce 🍎 found in our fridge yet I still thought 'puters not fruit. Confused TREx, faux wood TREK 🚴‍♂️. Assume STASES is the plural of stasis equilibria/equilibrium

Why not a planet named "Iris"? Except for Venus the rest are masculine: Martial, Mercurial, Saturnine etc...and misogynistic. Even a male dog, Pluto takes preference.🪐

Jamey you scamp 😃 you coulda used any number of alla clues....alla puttanesca "in the style of the lady of the evening" in English "wh..e"..🙉...many theories on the derivation..

"Cloud Atlas" was a weird but fascinating Tom Hanks etc. Sci-Fi flick as Inanehiker and Jamey mentioned. (You're old enough to retire?)

Pugilist upper cut....HIJAB
Yellow string instrument....LIMONCELLO
Female beneficiary....ERIS

Noogies.... a neo benediction? 💒

My wife's parish priest Father Cas' (St. Stanislaus church in Utica) was Pope John Paul's roomate in seminary in Poland. He described then Karol Wojtiła as a studious and pensive fellow. The seminarians would pull pranks like short sheet him.
Father once showed us a picture of then Pope John Paul during a trip to the Vatican. The Pope had Father Cas' in a headlock administering NOOGIES in holy retribution.

waseeley said...


Anon @3:38PM re: "A bit of a nitpick but c-clamps are mostly used in metal working."

I do a fair amount of woodwork and C-Clamps are indispensable, as I'm sure some of the other bloggers will attest. I have a 3x5' piece of pegboard loaded with different sizes.

Ol' Man Keith said...

Nah. Not today.
I stand with Owen and his first poem.
Today's was a PZL too far.

Which is fine, 'cuz what would be the fun if we could knock 'em off, everyone?
Nice to have a visit from Mr. Smith. He set a "Reach ahead of" moi.
The NW corner fell my way pretty easily, but the range of subjects soon proved too particular--and outside my world.

Some were amusing. (SUDS)
Some were spelling variants. (I grew up with NOOKIE.)
One stumper was an LA Times misprint. (#21A)

Too bad we didn't have a diagonal to play with.

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

You grew up with NOOKIE?... hope past the age of consent 😉

sasses said...

Many, many years ago (1989?) we sang Happy Birthday to Pope John Paul on papal radio in his home parish of Cjestochova!

Emile O' Touri said...

DNF.There was so much about this puzzle that bothered me,I can't even choose among the nits. Knowing or figuring out names just isn’t that interesting to me especially obscure ones like this puzzle was full of.

Michael said...

From the IMO Bulletin, via Spitz @11:14: "The International Cloud Atlas is the world’s reference for the identification and classification of clouds and other meteorological meteors."

And here I thought meteors were NOT meteorological.... Did they move the goalposts again?

Michael said...

For sure, this was an example of the SxSW paradigm -- everything in that area was exotic.

And why can't the Italians spell AmAdeus right?

Jayce said...

Like yesterday's, today's puzzle was far too hard for me. I couldn't solve it even with Mr. Google's help. After an hour and a half I got too tired to try any more. I'm too worn out even to know whether I learned anything from it; I probably did (such as Yani Tseng's name) but very likely will soon forget.

Good wishes to you all.

unclefred said...

Well that’s two DNFs in a row for me. I was proud of myself for getting as far as I did but SW just stumped me, complicated by having IOWA where IOTA shoulda been, which led me to put WINGTIP where TIECLIP shoulda been, which totally irretrievably befuddled the SW corner. After a semi-heroic 39 minute struggle I threw in the towel. On coming to the Corner HG’d outstanding write-up showed me AI also had HENNA where SENNA shoulda been. I meant to come back to figure that out when I finished the CW since TDPASH didn’t make sense. But since I never finished, I never went back and did the easy correction. A real brain-buster, Jamey, thanx (I think) for the headache! We were warned yesterday that this was gonna be a tough CW and I said “Thanx for the warning, I won’t even try, I’ll wait for Monday”, but I tried anyway and was proud of how far I got. But a couple errors sunk me.

Hungry Mother said...

The only error was LeMONCELLO, which I really knew was wrong. I think I jotted down the “lemon” and then just went with it. On many cruises and other trips, my wife has enjoyed LIMONCELLOs. Quite the slog, almost successful.

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

Why can't theAmericans spell JamIE? 😉

Ol' Man Keith said...

Ray -O- Sunshine ~
LOL. No, I'm talking about roughhousing as kids. No sexual innuendo.
Nobody ever spelled it out, of course, but in our neighborhood, it didn't sound like a hard "G."

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

Waseeley - I beat you by 1 Google but you won by not overtly cheating :-)

Thanks for the puzzle Jamey. I had four Googles and two down-right cheats off of HG's grid (only 1 G in NOOGIE? ahh, BATHS; I knew 12d couldn't be Bond w/ TREK sitting there).
What do (did?) you do at UT? How'd you fare the freeze? Austin was hit harder than Houston...

Thanks for the expo and some extra-play HG. And, who is Unknown questioning your Space Knowing? ;-)

WOs: Hold -> HALT; g-MEN
ESPs: Yeah, many...
DNFs - no fill at ERIs, PASEo, ImAN

Fav: LeMONCELLO (Hi Bill-O & HungryMother!). That was our nightly night-cap before another cappuccino when DW & I were in Italy. I like'd the LIMON so much, I buy these candies in bulk (along with licorice and mint ones. Oh, and the orange ones are yummy too.).

TREK - easy fill. My brother co-owned a bike shop in SPI. I think he bought-in to get discounts on his hobby. When he got his fourth bike He gave me (his wife made him) his used Specialized; I've paid less for cars.

Learning moment: Pirogue is how you spell PEE-ROE (which is how my Cajun buddies say it).
//Went to a b-day party once and the host had an entire pirogue filled with ice and beer and another one filled with boiled crawfish. Nothin' better.

TTP - congrats on the solve. I noticed your time; about 1/2 of mine (b/f cheats!) :-)

Let's add PK and WikWak to the 'Bill-G where are you?' list.

Waseeley - never seen that Freddie Mercury clip nor new of his love for opera(?). Thanks.

HG - Buzz had every right to punch that guy. I loves me a good conspiracy theory but reality is.

Well, this morning I got the garden ready for next week's planting. Hard to imagine we were freezing w/o water & power three weeks ago and in a week from now it's time to put in tomatoes.

Cheers, -T

Wilbur Charles said...

-T, I'm not sure I ever paid as much for a car

I closed out an oqnwr-finance. The buyer said she has was a Realtor.

Then I saw where she'd wrote: "Release of LEAN"
My Sherlock shackles were raised.

But the check cleared, all is well

I can't complain about TREK, he threw in USGA and TSENG.


waseeley said...

T @4:46pm. Tomatoes? Around here we plant them in early June. Hopefully the swarm of 17 year LOCUSTS will be gone by then.

Anonymous T said...

Waseeley - Yes.
Latest frost we've had in South Houston (Sugar Land) was 12 March so the Ides seems about right to put them in the ground.
If I wait 'till later, 50 days out, it will be too hot (>74F) overnight for the flowers to set -- too hot is around June 20th-ish.

If I garden right (I seldom do) the tomatoes will take fruit again around September 10th.

The sad thing is: I'm Charlie Brown with Lucy holding the football...
Every year I put $ into my garden but for 1/10th of that I coulda just went to the grocery store.

That said...
One garden tomato & a few peppers is worth 100x a grocery's tasteless fruit.
//oh, and my herbs - I've had chives (great w/ everything!) for the whole year!
The chives (and Italian parsley & rosemary) made it through the Big Freeze. Whoot! :-)

Now, pitch me a ball.
This year will be different.
#Go Cubs, er, Astros!


Cheers, -T

Unknown said...

A clue last week finally made it clear:MENSA members spend lots of time solving crossword puzzles. Since my IQ is miles below those who qualify for MENSA, I struggle every Saturday (and many other days). My reference library helps, but a lot of clues are about pop-culture ... mostly media personalities ..of whom I have little knowledge or interest. I'll continue devoting many weekend hours to these puzzles, even though IQ-wise I don't really qualify. As I age, I think giving my atrophying brain a weekly work out is sooooo important. Please understand: I'm showing remorse, not disdain.

TTP said...

Desper-otto, I wouldn't think you would give up easily, but given your solving prowess...  I threw in the towel on a Birnholz puzzle a few weeks ago, but I guess now it may have just been the frame of mind I was in that day.  

Husker, I would say hi to Buzz for you if I ever saw him, but I doubt that I ever will.  I've lived next door to her for 33 years and he's never been around to visit.  Although they are very close in age, she said that even way way back when they were in Indiana and young that he was always driven and focused and intense.  She said hasn't seen him since they were young.  She is the recent widow that I referred to a month or so ago.

Dash T, my friend didn't pay nearly that much for the two Treks, but if I recall, it approached $2K even way back then.  Maybe it was more.    To each their own.   What waseeley said, not ready for planting, but I was out there today tending to some of the perennials and doing some spring clean up.   I have a very long row of spirea (bridal wreath) that gets 8 to 10 feet high, and easily that as it mounds out from the fence line.  Last year I noticed a few volunteer maples and choke cherries that were growing in the midst.  Took my sawzall out there today and did the army crawl underneath the growth to get to them before this season gets started and they got any bigger.   Can't hardly wait until I can get my hands back in the soil.  The gardens are a labor of love for me.  

Yellowrocks said...

OKL said:
DNF. Ugh. A Thumper today.

TO BE HONEST, this puzzle was a pain.
Too many times I didn't know a name.
I'd try to INSERT,
But nothing would work.
My thoughts on this mess? I don't like to complain.

Me, too, brother. I cried UNCLE.

PK said...

Hi Y'all! A plethora of learning moments from Jamey. Thanks, Gary, for bringing another enlightening blog.

I joined the struggle, but am proud of some of the ones I did get. I remembered a song with a "pirogue down the bayou". After giving up on Haiti where some friends of mine went to help with an earthquake aftermath, I somehow came up with MONTSERRAT since I had a M & T ending.

Thank you friends for wondering about me. I have a lot of trouble with things disappearing on me from my new HP laptop. I also am having a lot of trouble with me eyes which blur over if I am very long in reading on the laptop. Also I have been sleeping 10-15 hours a day and am up at night a lot. Very strange time for me. I have been doing the puzzles and sometimes get to the blog. Wanted to read it today since the puzzle was so hard.

Anonymous T said...

LoL WC... always enjoy reading you.

TTP - until I've dirt under the fingernails, it ain't Spring.

Unknown - Xwords is like golf. We're just playing against ourselves... IQ has nothin' to do with it.

PK!!! - So nice to read you're doing well. We Love you. Good luck w/ the new HP and your sleep.

I wish I had something funny to INSERT here but I'm tapped out.

BillG, WikWak... you're up.

Cheers, -T

Lucina said...


Wow! Two days in a row the puzzle has browbeaten me. I thought that would never happen, not to me, a master solver!! Ha! In my dreams.

For some reason my mind just hit too many roadblocks. Yesterday I finished most of it and today CLOUD ATLAS, TDPASS, STABES and even LIMONCELLO stumped me. I had LEMON/IDEO. After a while I just was tired of it.

I heartily congratulate those of you who finished sans help. Even if you finished with help that is more than I did.

You got me, Jamey Smith! Thank you, Gary, for your detailed and erudite expo.

I hope all enjoyed your day. The days here have been gloriously sunny and pleasant.

Lucina said...

I did some planting, too. My poinsettias which are still alive are now gracing a corner of the patio. I expect big blooms from them in the future.

Good to see you!

Lucina said...

I forgot to mention that my late DH and I took that twisty road to HANA one year. he was always up for a challenge! We did not see the plaque, however. Once we saw Hawaii, he loved it and we went every year until he was too sick to travel.

TTP said...

PK, can you share some of that sleep ? Can't remember the last time I slept more than 6 or 7 hours at once. Again today, up at a quarter to three.

Wendybird said...

Waseely, thanks for the Monserratt/Mercury clip. She has a glorious voice. You post such interesting stuff.