Mar 4, 2021

Thursday March 4, 2021 Bruce Haight



Today's puzzle was constructed by Bruce Haight.  As an ophthalmologist, Bruce spends a lot of time staring intently into the faces of his patients.  He experiences them FACE TO FACE, the theme of this puzzle.  Like his experiences with his patients, this puzzle's themers are multi-layered: he first asks us to look at 4 common-place objects and phrases and then to take a closer look.  We then see that these objects are word pairs consisting of 4 pairs of  "FACE types".  Let's take a look at each of the theme clues and answers and peel off some of their "makeup".  It turns out there's a lot more here than meets the EYE:

17. Circuitous: ROUND ABOUTROUND ABOUTS are used to speed-up the flow of traffic at intersections, especially in major cities.  Here is Washington State's illustrated MANUAL of rules for traversing ROUNDABOUTS (whatever happened to STOP on RED and GO on GREEN?).  ROUND ABOUTS can be real white knuckle experiences, especially when driving in England!  Or even worse in Harbin, China where my son and I visited when he adopted Ray, our 2nd oldest grandson.  I'm pretty sure this pic was PHOTO SHOPPED to remove all the traffic, which day and night was always 6 lanes deep and bumper-to-bumper all the way around.  Our driver Soong had a preternatural ability to make sharp left turns through to the center, zip around to the desired exit, and make a sharp right turn to get out.  And we're all alive to tell about it!

Roundabout in Harbin China

But wait there's more: ROUND also describes a common SHAPE for a face:


and ABOUT FACE is a military drill command to "do a 180" turn on the heels facing the way you came.

26. Unfilled, as a schedule slot: LEFT OPEN.   Simple enough, but a LEFT FACE is also a drill command to turn LEFT 90 DEGREES.  And if you do and look down, you'll be facing an OPEN FACE HAM and CHEESE sandwich:

36. No-frills card game: STRAIGHT POKER.  A variant of POKER, along with STUD and TEXAS HOLD EM.  BUT you need a STRAIGHT FACE (a.k.a. a POKER FACE) or your REVEAL will TELL on you and give away your HAND:

49. Short nightgown: BABY DOLL.  As clued, a type of LINGERIE (as this is a family blog I'll skip the pic for this (BLUSH)).   But it's also a CHILD'S TOY:

 ... and a BABY FACE:

 and DOLL FACE (I hear the originals are worth a fortune):

I think that's most of the MASCARA, so here's the reveal:

 60. In person ... and like 17-, 26-, 36- and 49-Across?: FACE TO FACE.

Oh yes, and there were other clues ...


1. Logo of The Hartford: STAG.   The Hartford Insurance Co. logo is derived from this iconic painting by English painter Sir Edward Landseer.  The word HART is an archaic synonym for STAG:

The Monarch of the Glen

5. Less noble: BASER. Seems to me there must be a less BASE word for less NOBLE.

10. Pueblo people: HOPI.  Just a little of the Hopi's history, customs, culture, and spirituality.

14. Thick book: TOME.  Repeat after me: 3 letters and it's OED, 4 letters and it's TOME

15. Amazon assistant: ALEXA.

16. Spoonbill kin: IBIS.  The National Aquarium in Baltimore has several of these stunning birds in its rooftop rain forest.
Scarlet Ibis

19. Daily vitamin, e.g.: PILL.  Also a pejorative for hard to swallow people ...

20. Puzzled: AT SEA.  Spitzboov can explain this a lot better than I can.

21. Some German imports: AUDIS.

23. PreCheck org.: TSA.  Expedited security checking courtesy of the Transportation Safety Administration.

24. Plump: FLESHY

28. Many MIT grads: EES.  I believe Dash T is a Double E.  Don't know his shoe size.

29. Roleo surface: LOG.  A portmanteau of RODEOS and LOG ROLLING contests.

31. "Expand on that," in improv comedy: YES ANDAll you want to know about it ...

32. Lummox: BIG APE. GALOOT didn't perp.  Apparently a distant synonym for a famous PHILISTINE.

35. Quite a stretch: AGES.

40. Emperor after Galba: OTHO.  Reigned in the Year of 4 Emperors (69 AD) .  OTHO lasted 3 months.

41. State bordering Arizona: SONORA.  But not one of the Estados Unidos.

42. Like a quarter's edge: REEDED.  Aside from describing OBOES, SAXES and such, this is also specialized adjective describing the RIDGED rims of COINS.

45. Podcast interruptions: ADS.

46. "LOTR" menace: ORC.  Really really mean MEANIES.

52. Turin title: SIGNOR.

54. "__ have what she's having": quip from "When Harry Met Sally...": I'LL.  A truly classic SCENE if you haven't SEEN it!

55. Super sexy: SO HOT.  Particularly when attired in a 49A.

57. "I'll pass": NOT ME.  And so will I.

58. "On the double!": STAT.  FROM the Latin STATIM, which means “instantly” or “immediately.”  Hands up everyone who swagged ASAP first?  MDs want it STAT, MBAs want it ASAP.

62. "Howdy ... you just get here?": OH HI.

63. "Looking 4 Myself" R&B singer: USHER.  Heard of him.  Never heard him.

64. Each: A POP.  The origin of this phrase seems obscure.

65. Wall St. index: NYSE.  It's the New York Stock EXCHANGE, but is it an INDEX?  Like the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA), or Standard and Poors (S&P 500), or the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASDAQ)?

66. Fresh: SASSY.  Not really CW fresh, but still very GLUEY.

67. __ Martin Cognac: REMY.  All you want to know about Rémy Martin.  I would have taken you directly to their website, but you have to be older than 21 to login to it.  A CSO to CMOE to take a shot at this one.


1. Attack from above: STRAFE.  My Mother was never strafed, but she told me that Stoke-on-Trent, England where she grew up was regularly bombed during WWII.  Here family would black out the windows and all huddle under a big oak table in the basement

2. Mosey: TOOTLE.  As of 2001, the third largest selling children's book in the English speaking world:

3. Tickles: AMUSES.  I'm sure Tootle, tickles a lot of little children.

4. Parental units?: GENES.  Before anyone knew how they worked (and we're still a long way off  from that), the existence of discreet units of inheritance was demonstrated by Gregor Mendel, an Augustinian monk living in 19th century Bohemia. His discoveries were made around the same time as Charles Darwin's publication of The Origin of Species, but Darwin  died before Mendel's work became widely known around 1900 and thus the former knew nothing about the latter. The term GENE was actually coined by Danish botanist Wilhelm Johannsen in 1909.

5. Ewes do it: BAA.  As do lambs and rams.

6. "L.A.'s Finest" actress Jessica: ALBA.  If she's the "Finest" actress in L.A. how come she was nominated or won 5 Golden Raspberry Awards between 2006 and 2011?

7. Gangnam District city: SEOUL.  More than you want to know about Gangnam Style ...

8. Ooze with: EXUDE.

9. Formally approve: RATIFY.

10. Trendy: HIP.

11. Where to find departure info?: OBIT PAGE.  Clever clue.

12. Beer named for a Czech city: PILSENER.  Constructors tend to prefer ALES, not only because of their taste, but because they are SHORTER and much GLUIER.  But Stella Artois and Pilsner Urquell are pretty refreshing after a hot summer day in the garden.

13. Christmas and Easter: ISLANDS.  Clever clue.  I struggled with it for awhile.

18. Mexico's national flower: DAHLIA.

22. Office address abbr.: STE.  Short for street?

25. "You can observe a lot by watching" speaker: YOGI.  Wanted YODA.

27. 2020 US Open winner Naomi: OSAKA.

30. Pranks: GAGS.

32. "The Pianist" Oscar winner Adrien: BRODYBrody won an OSCAR for Best Actor in 2002 at age 29, making him the youngest actor to win in that category.  Here is the performance of the Chopin Nocturne No. 20 from the original soundtrack, performed not by Brody, but by pianist Wladyslaw Szpilman.

33. Beef broth soup: PHO.  Today's Vietnamese lesson.  I've had Pho ("fuh")  several times, as one of my sisters is a gourmet cook married to a Vietnamese born physician/scientist.  Delicious, but a lot of work.  Here's the recipe she uses.

34. Italian volcano: ETNA.

36. Like ninjas: STEALTHY.

37. Ennui: THE BLAHS.

38. Sci-fi vehicles: PODS.  Hands up everyone who swagged UFOS?  When it perped I was immediately reminded of a horror film called The Invasion of the Body Snatchers that came out when  I was 9 years old.  I had nightmares about it for years. The aliens in this film arrived in the form of seed PODS from outer space, captured human bodies, and then walked zombie-like among us.  In fact they may STILL be walking among us!  Very scary!

39. "Twelfth Night" duke: ORSINO.

40. "Only the Lonely" crooner: ORBISON.  Roy.  A torch song often follows a long and torturous path from its origin to the throat of a singer.  This song actually had its beginnings in the 18th Century from the pen of the great German polymath and poet  JOHANN WOLFGANG VON GOETHE in his 1796 poem Nur wer die Sehnsucht kennt ("Only those who know longing").  The gauntlet was later picked up by the Russian PYOTR ILYICH TCHAIKOVSKY in a song setting called  "None but the Lonely Heart".  His version became popular around the world and was eventually used in English translation by none other than FRANK SINATRA, circa 1958.  Orbison followed with his rendition in 1960 "Only the Lonely", which shot to number two on the Billboard Hot 100 and hit number one in the UK and Australia:

43. Slate slate, briefly: EDS.  An EzineEditors.

44. Inept one: DOOFUS.   I felt like a DOOFUS at times as I TOOTLED all over the landscape of this puzzle.

46. Saved, in a way: ON TAPETAPE can save you in more ways than one.  I picked this flowchart up years ago from the hilarious Canadian skit comedy series, THE RED GREEN SHOW.  Although they used DUCT TAPE way more than WD40 (another CSO to DASH T):

47. Hallmark Channel fare: ROM COMSee 54A.  Then see the flick if you haven't seen it.  I considered posting the YouTube clip here, but then again this IS a family blog.

48. Goosebumps-inducing: CREEPY.  Those 38As were pretty CREEPY to a 9 year old.

50. Potala Palace city: LHASA. The home of the LHASA APSO in the land of the DALAI LAMA.

51. Scottish vacation sites: LOCHS.  Fine if you don't mind PLESIOSAURS popping up on your beach:


53. Accomplish much: GO FAR.

56. Golf course areas: TEES.

59. Draw: TIE.  While I was TOOTLING around down here ...

61. Sample: TRY.      ... I got TIED up for TRYING.

Here's the grid:

 While putting this together I've been nagged by thoughts of a 5th themer pair: ROCK FACES.  Thought about illustrating it with a ditty from ROD STEWART and his house band FACES.  But Dw suggested this instead:





Lemonade714 said...

I am worn out already from the challenge of the puzzle and the tour. You really took us all over Bill and Bruce always presents a nice puzzle. I really enjoyed the juxtaposition of ORSINO and ORBISON ; a what a difference a B can make.

I did not know, as clued, REEDED which has the same beginning and end as RIDGED.

You asked, "6. "L.A.'s Finest" actress Jessica: ALBA. If she's the "Finest" actress in L.A. how come she was nominated or won 5 Golden Raspberry Awards between 2006 and 2011? The answer is clearly, 55A. Super sexy: SO HOT.

The month marches on, that you guys

Anonymous said...

I thought there was a lot of inelegant/awkward fill to make the theme work, like EES, BIGAPE, THEBLAHS, OHHI, OTHO, SOHOT, YESAND. I just don't find this kind of puzzle rewarding.

Lemonade714 said...

My typing skills diminish proportionately with my visual acuity, sorry all.

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Got 'er done, but found out that I screwed up: ORSENO/SEGNOR. (It's a tossup which is worse: my knowledge of Shakespeare or my knowledge of Italy.) Yes, Waseeley, hand up for ASAP, but not for PODS -- I'd already P'd on it; UFOS weren't in the running. When I visited Germany, many folk at the beergarden would order a "Pils"...or a Radler -- beer and lemonade. I prefer my beer non-fruity. Thanx, Bruce and Waseeley.

waseeley said...

Just to alert everyone - there was a glitch in the posting of the Chopin Nocturne video for "The Pianist" clue, which raises an error screen. Just click on the 2nd link on the screen and it's launch the video. A beautiful performance.

The Glitcher

Anonymous said...

This took 8:18 to finish, and I didn't see any of the theme until I came here.

I enjoyed the clue/answer for "yes, and...." Originally, I had "obituary" for "obit page," as I've never heard/seen anyone say "obit page."

Anonymous said...

22 Down: STE is short for suite.

waseeley said...

Anon @7:16AM Thanks for that, whoever you may be!


inanehiker said...

I always admire the puzzles that have a link with both halves of the theme answers to the theme!
Like the anon earlier - I had obituary before OBIT PAGE which messed up that section until perps forced a change.
"When Harry met Sally" is one of my favorite rom-coms - partially because it spanned my young adulthood - I think I had every hairstyle and fashion trend that she had throughout that movie!

Thanks Bill and Bruce!

Big Easy said...

LEFT OPEN describes what the south & SW looked like for a long time. The NE's ink fills needed some changes. The unknowns solved by perps up north- ALBA & SEOUL- filled themselves but BRODY, REEDED, & OTHO took some grinding to get. Ditto for EDS, USHER & LHASA. I'm glad I knew SONORA because the unknown ORSINO would have never made it.

In the NE I had to change OBITUARY to OBIT PAGE and PILSNERS to PILSENER (never seen that spelling) to finish.

I never noticed the two FACES that were FACE TO FACE (mano a mano?).
ROM COM- DW not only watches them but records them not ON TAPE BUT the DVR.

Let me TOOTLE outta here.

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

I missed the theme completely until filling in the reveal, but the solve offered little resistance other than Nero/Otho, Sonoma/Sonora (silly error), and Hot/Hit/Hip. Reeded was new to me but perps confirmed it. Cute mini critter theme with Stag, Ibis, Ape, Lhasa, and Baa!

Thanks, Bruce, for a Thursday treat and thanks, Bill, for the detailed expo and many rabbit holes to explore. I enjoyed hearing Mr. Orbison as much as the Chopin Nocturne. The breadth of your interests and knowledge amazes me.


Anon T, hope you’re feeling better and that you get your vaccine soon.

Have a great day.

Yellowrocks said...

The NW corner almost filled itself, fool's paradise. But the rest took patience, especially the NE. ISLANDS took a while. OBIT PAGE seems common enough and was a big help. That and spelling PILSNER correctly led me to the TA DA. Getting FACE TO FACE helped me to go back and fill in the open spaces. Nice theme, Bruce
Both sassy and fresh mean improperly forward or bold. I found this apt, not gluey.
Thanks, Bill. I often wondered why objectionable people are called pills. Hard to swallow. Interesting info about many things.
Anonymous @ 6:31. Are you the same ANON who posts every morning? If you always find nothing to like I am amazed that you turn to the LAT every day.
REEDED was new to me, but apparently is common. I say MILLED.
Time to tackle my paperwork. Living on Easy Street here, paperwork is my only PIA chore.

Husker Gary said...

-Our new bypass shortcut to Lincoln will have three ROUND ABOUTS and three overpasses but NO stop signs
-Improv – Take whatever is thrown your way and keep it going
-States bordering Mexico and Canada open a whole new page in the atlas
-I remember when smart, entertaining movies like When Harry Met Sally drew us into theaters
-Dishes of chocolate ice cream were $7 A POP at the game Tuesday
-When leaving, SIL always says, “Well I should TOOTLE along”
-Roy ORBISON’s operatic voice filled many adolescent hours for me
-The Golf Channel and The Hallmark Channel are the reason we have multiple TV’s
-“He will GO FAR. I just hope he will GO SOON!”
-Nice job, Bill!

TTP said...

Nice puzzle and fine blog today. Plenty of links that caught my attention. Read while listening to a Roy Orbison compilation on YouTube. He's been a favorite since I first heard him sing. Then others from the 60s. Those links and then the songs led me down plenty of rabbit holes. Now, three hours later... Anyway, good stuff all around.

Shankers said...

I enjoyed this offering from Bruce. It had just the right amount of stickiness for a Thursday except for the SE which was the last to fall for a FIR and a rousing woohoo. CSO to Misty. Roy Orbison is far and away my favorite from my "yute" and I have 15 CDs to back that claim up. His vocal range was unmatched. I'm stuck in the '60s that way.

Bob Lee said...

Like others, I had RIDGED at first instead of REEDED. New word for me.

I loved PODS instead of UFOS. How many folks caught in the remake of the Body Snatchers that it was the original actor (Kevin McCarthy) who screams warnings that they are back, goes around a corner, and is run over by a car? Wow, he only passed away last September at 96. I can still picture him although not seeing the movies for decades.

I had ASAP cross with PEN at first instead of STAT with TIE.

Awesome YOGI reference. We want more!!

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

A lot of crunchy fill though still managed to FIR. The north half went fast, the south lagged. Let's face it, no clue on the theme

Dr. Haight, Is it true that the first day of residency is spent learning how to spell ophthalmologist (We have an on staff cardiologist named Dr. Love.💕)

Guessed first, like IM, at NERO cuz it fit, but ohno it's...OTHO.... SOHOT may be sexy but as fill, not SOHOT, add to that list OHHI, YESAND. Still dont get the EDS clue. I have a bud who's last name is Orsino, not a Duke though

Haven't seen a CW favorite ATSEA in awhile ...."It's only a flesh wound, the FLESHY part if the heart". Held off UFOS for perpwalked sci-fi PODS. So not really a hand-up

Hallmark fare...hokem wouldn't fit. Trendy: first had hot but then got HIP with the aide of an IBIS. DOOFUS must be Latin

The capital is heart and ____ of Korea.... SEOUL
Turn into a rodent.....RATIFY

Round-abouts work well at intersections with more than two crossing streets. When they put the first one in on our main street you'd think it was the end of the world but truly improves traffic flow. Plans for more.

Hungry Mother said...

Failed due to some mid-east muck-ups. I had OBITuAry and never quite cleaned it up. I was very distracted by the piles of trivia. Wordplay!

NaomiZ said...

Good puzzle, great blog! I have been playing along all week without time to drop in here afterward, but I needed Waseeley to explain the reveal. Thanks for that!

Spitzboov said...

Good morning everyone.

Lemon - Always like to read your missives. I ignore most typos.

Bill - Thanks for the fine expo.

Enjoyed today's solve. But got hung up on OTHO - - wanted Nero. The arcanity of the year of the 4 emperors was a learning for me. Liked the banks of longer downs. The theme got mostly by me, but it was clever and well done.
PILSENER - From Czech city of Plzeň in western Bohemia.
AT SEA - We were never puzzled as to our position AT SEA. Even though it was before GPS, we had celestial navigation, Loran, and radar to keep track of our location on the open ocean. Dead reckoning skills filled in the gaps. The AT SEA expression arose in days of sail at an earlier time, before the availability of the afore-mentioned techniques.

Yuman said...

State bordering Arizona had to be Nevada, nope was Sonora.
We had our second Moderna shot, I felt fine just have an itch on my arm, however my husband had a weird headache from hell and upset stomach. He stayed in bed most of the day, but by evening was much better and back to normal the next day.

Anonymous said...

Could someone explain 43 down answer. Thanks

Mark S

Misty said...

Well, Thursdays are always toughies for me, and this one was no exception--but still a lot of fun, many thanks, Bruce. And complex commentary, Waseely, thanks for that too.

Christmas and Easter, of course, suggested holidays to me, and the beginning "I" just troubled me. Oh, ISLANDS--how clever! So glad I always get ETNA, which shows up so often in puzzles. Didn't know the DAHLIA is Mexico's national flower--lovely! The things we learn from these puzzles.

Have a great day, everybody.

john28man said...

For roundabouts to work properly they should be of a diameter that requires you to only look to the left so safely enter the intersection. I have seen them at least 500 feet in diameter in Europe. When Ameerican cities try to do this at existing ihtersections they are no better than a four-way stop because you have to worry about the onesd from the right too.

Chairman Moe said...

Puzzling thoughts:

Thanks Bill and Bruce for the recap and puzzle today. Both were quite entertaining and full of surprises

I FIR with a couple of W-O’s: OBITUARY/OBIT PAGE; forgot the first E in PILSENER; NERO/OTHO. Everything else was cleanly penned into the grid.

I, too had trouble seeing the FACE TO FACE connection to the identified entries, but Bill’s recap explained it perfectly.

Spoiler Alert: when y’all read tomorrow’s blog be prepared for a “two-prong” explanation...

SONORA —> we here in TVOTS (aka Greater Phoenix) are well aware of our neighboring state to the south. Lots of our veges come from there as well as lots of laborers who come to AZ or CA to work the farms here.

YOGI —> my favorite expression of his was “When you come to a fork in the road, take it”

STE —> didn’t associate it with “suite”; I was thinking a female honorific

See you mañana

Yellowrocks said...

Round about conversations are called circumlocutions. The Japanese concept of politeness requires round about communication. There are few yes and no answers. When I invited sensei and a fellow student for dinner there was a little of a favorite dessert left over. I asked sensei three times if she would like it. She said three times, "I am fine." When John and I split it she seemed disappointed.
I often have trouble knowing what my Japanese DIL really means. She hints she needs something done without really asking. Sometimes I offer when she doesn't mean me to do it and she automatically accepts it. Sometimes I don't offer and later discover she wanted me to. David and I are quite straight forward people.
When I won a three week scholarship to join a teacher program in Japan we needed our interpreter to help us navigate this.

Chairman Moe said...

Mark S @ 11:41 —> Slate is a magazine name; slate is also synonymous with roster; many editors work for Slate; so Slate’s slate, for short, is EDS (abbr of editors). A bit out there but that’s what Thursday, Friday, and Saturday clues are generally about. Causing some deception

Yellowrocks said...

43D Slate slate, briefly: EDS. An Ezine. Editors.
A slate is a roster. Slate is an online magazine. A slate slate is a roster of editors.

Lucina said...


Thank you, Bruce Haight, for this tough (in some places) challenge! I completely missed OSAKA and OBITUARY PAGE. OBITUARY never changed and of course I did not know PILSENER. My knowledge of beer is akin to my knowledge of French. Non, mon ami.

Ha ha. YOGI next to GAGS! It AMUSES me.

I do, however, know that DAHLIA is the favored flower of Mexico and SONORA is our next door neighbor to the south. Many of my students doodled by sketching DAHLIAs. HOPI is another local CSO. My knowledge of card games is equally lacking so POKER never made it. I had PONYS and why not?

And speaking of our southern neighbor, so much for having a wall across the border. Yesterday it was breached by cutting a huge opening and driving through it but, sadly, with an unhappy ending when the vehicle collided with another and many of the occupants were injured.

Many local restaurants have PHO in their name.

ORSINO is in my wheelhouse and I always welcome any reference to Shakespeare.

ROUND ABOUTs are appearing here, too, in all the new developments.

Thank you, waseeley, for your detailed expo.

Have an excellent day, everyone!

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

Thanks Moe and Yellow...never heard of that mag. Am generally not a fan of all the Ewords that haunt crosswords. 😬

waseeley said...

Bob @10:27AM Try googling the name of the star you mentioned and your first hit will likely be one of the zombies I mentioned who are still with us. And I'll have nothing further to say on this topic. :-).

Spitzboov said...

John28 - - Good point about roundabouts, We've just gotten a couple here in Utica, and many drivers act as it they were AT SEA. Same at Malta, NY, a few years back. But they're better than 4-way stops or lights that are not linked to traffic.

unclefred said...

FIR, but far too much assist from Google to get any satisfaction. This was a tough CW for me. 11D “Where to find departure info?” OBITPAGE is particularly clever. Like many others, REEDED was not familiar. Seems like I came across it before in a CW but it didn’t stick in my memory. All perps. My struggles started with 1a: I wanted to enter DEER but could see from the perps that was wrong, then it took forever to finally have STAG appear. Thanx for the brain-buster Bruce. And the fine write-up Waseeley. My GF works at Publix. They are giving the jabs by appointment to those over 65. Yesterday somebody didn’t show up and her manager asked her if she wanted it, so she ended up with her first jab of Moderna. She’s 55 y.o. W/ hypertension and the aftereffects of having polio as an infant, so I’m glad she got the jab. I can’t believe Publix employees are not prioritized: they face hundreds of people everyday in their jobs. To be denied the vaccine while watching others come into their store and get it seems especially cruel. My gf just got it by luck.

desper-otto said...

unclefred, most places make an automatic appt for the second dose when administering the first one. Did your gf get an appt for shot #2?

CanadianEh! said...

Terrific Thursday. Thanks for the fun, Bruce and waseeley.
I FIRed and then remembered to come back and find the FACEs.
Some crunch today. Like YR, I started off well in the NW and then . . .

I guessed at Nero but OTHO finally perped. That was a possible Natick area for me since I did not know BRODY, and Ridged seemed better that REEDED😮
This Canadian has enough trouble remembering the location of your states without adding the Mexican ones. Sheesh! I’m glad to hear that some of you wanted Nevada too.
Thanks CMoe and YR for explaining EDS.

I smiled at the clue for OBIT PAGE. Another smile at HIP crossing HOPI😁🎶
Yes waseeley, Red Green is well known in this household. His many uses for duct TAPE are hilarious.

Was PODS crossing “Podcast interruptions” a NoNo?
A Doctor barking out STAT will not be satisfied with ASAP! The two terms are not equivalent. “On the double” was a good clue.

Wishing you all a great day. Trust ATLGranny’s surgery went well.

Madame Defarge said...

Thanks Bruce and Bill. This was an unintended part time attack for me, so it took me most of the day here to finish. Great puzzle and an amazing walk through. Have a sunny afternoon.

CanadianEh! said...

I hate ROUNDABOUTs any larger than two lanes! I am never confident that everyone else is going to stay in their lane or enter properly.
I think that I have mentioned before about the multiple roundabouts in Nairobi and the traffic gridlock requiring police to direct traffic in rush hours. Thankfully, we were not driving; you just have to close your eyes and let the taxi or tour bus driver manoeuvre their way.

Kelly Clark said...

Delightful puzzle, for me -- and the commentary was icing on the cake. Thank you!

CrossEyedDave said...

Mark S @ 11:41am
(Aka anonymous)
Re: 43 down,

I wondered about this also,
The nearest I can possibly fathom
is something I found on this website
But for the life of me, I thought it had something to do with that thingie on people of powers desk
That names their position. Like the name tag "principle", or supervisor, Or president...
But I can't google it because I have no idea what that dang name thingie is called...

What do you call the plaque on a desk that describes how big an asshole you are....?

Anonymous said...

How to annoy me...let me count the ways.Full of achingly marginal words and definitions.Stuffed a week’s worth of trivia and names into one day.This one is caught up in its own imagined cleverness.
How do you not see that when you're making this??

token creek said...

CED : Well said. Anon : Tell us what you really think

waseeley said...

CEh! @1:51PM My all time favorite RG skit went something like: RED makes a Helicopter out an old Ford Fairlane convertible with the lift provided by two OARS duct-taped together into a X and attached to a shaft coming up through the floor. And the thing actually flew! (although early CGI I'm sure). Always followed by his motto "If the women don't find you good lookin' at least they'll find ya' handy". And the other was the way he ended his fly tying monologues with a final wrap of the fish line: "Don't worry, I'm pullin' for ya', we're all in this together". I'm saving my pennies to buy the complete DVD set for my grandsons, but right now it's going for $149 A POP!


Jayce said...

I enjoyed this puzzle. Having the "A" as the last letter of a 6-letter state bordering Arizona I got hung up on NEVADA for a long time. Also, having "O" as the last letter of a 4-letter Roman Emperor's name tricked me into entering NERO; soon it became apparent that was incorrect and that the first letter (crossing ORBISON) was also "O" led me to entering OTTO. Double bzzt. BIG OAF was wrong, too. Triple bzzt. Hand up for not knowing REEDED. Hand up also for having OBITUARY before OBIT PAGE. Also didn't know ORSINO but perps revealed it. I had always thought the Italian term was SIGNORE but after looking it up I see SIGNOR is correct. My knowledge of Italian is about as good as Lucina's knowledge of French.

I love Roy Orbison's voice and songs.

LW and I finally finished doing our TurboTax filings. It took several days because my wife, bless her heart, makes everything more complicated, difficult, circuitous, and mystifying than need be, so there was a lot of deep delving to do.

Gotta go. Take care, all.

CrossEyedDave said...

Roundabout reminded me of a story...

(Your clue to skip ahead now...)

Back in my late teen years,
(I warned you!)
I and a couple of friends embarked on a hiking/camping trip
To New Hampshire, to see a part of the Appalachian trial.

This was enabled by one of said friends having a Ford Van,
Including mattress in the back, cooler etc...
Since he wanted to sell the van (that had a milli9n miles on it)
After this trip, he had the bright idea that disconnecting the speedometer cable
Would save a lot of mileage.

It was about North Rhode Island/Massachusetts that the van ground to a halt
Because all the engine oil had leaked out of the speedometer cable connection.

Now, in Brooklyn, these roundabouts you refer to are called "traffic circles."
(The story continues...)

A Mass. State Trooper was kind enough to stop and assist us with directions to
The nearest transmission shop, and stated that we should continue 5 miles north,
And take the right fark, and go left at the rotary..

We thanked him, and asked two questions.

What's a fark?
& what's a rotary?

That's when he got made at us...

desper-otto said...

Waseeley, you can get the complete 50-DVD Red Green Show set for $81 on Ebay (free shipping).

CrossEyedDave said...

Dang autocorrect

He got "mad" at us.

And the van was fine, it just would not move
Until we added transmission fluid.

Which br8ngs me to how a torque converter works...

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

DNF & FIW! :-(

Thanks Bruce for the puzzle but OTHO xing BRODY wasn't going to happen. Too, I had SONOmA near Arizona.

Excellent expo waseeley! So many links left to click.
//Yes, EE and yes I have both duct-tape and WD40 :-)

WOs: A for ASAP b/f checking perps, ROManc[e] -> ROM COM
ESPs: Most of the south
Fav: DOOFUS - how I feel about myself re: today's grid :-)

ROUNDABOUTs in Cairo were nutz!

Wait, did you say ROUNDABOUT? [YES]

YES AND - the staple of Improv. [Tina Fey 2:03]

IM - Feeling well; even worked out today w/ my trainer.

Lucina - I too was AMUSED at the juxtaposition.

Ray-O: hokem describes it perfectly! When Eldest comes home for Christmas Hallmark is the only thing on TV.

Yuman - my (Army) Bro said to me last night, if you had C19, the second Moderna shot puts you down for 2 days. I donno if it's true, just what he said.

CED - should a duct-taped that cable shut :-)

Cheers, -T

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

Jayce @ 3:33

signore = gentleman.
Signore = Lord (the big guy upstairs)
Signor Jayce = Mr. Jayce.

What is confusing is

signore also means ladies (plural of signora.)

I walked into a restroom labeled Signore thought it meant "gentleman" when it acrually meant "ladies "

Oops 🥺

Yellowrocks said...

Moe, they say great minds run in the same circles. We posted almost simultaneously.

Today is the first time I have eaten in an indoor restaurant in a year. Two long time friends and I had a long lunch in an excellent Chinese restaurant. The Peking duck was yummy.
Two wonderfully normal days in a long time. David and Motoko last week and Geri and Judi this week.

TTP said...

Many here might enjoy reading the headlines and stories from around the country at from time to time: What is Fark ?.

Today is National Grammar Day. Be sure to thank your teacher.

Java Mama said...

Good afternoon, everyone! Thanks to Bruce for a challenging, yet fun, late week puzzle, and to Bill for a rousing review. Had to work for it, but eventually FIR.

I needed the reveal to appreciate the clever theme. Like many of you, I had to do some rethinking before the SE came together. I mistakenly placed Turin in Spain instead of Italy and had to swap SIGNOR for Senora. Loved TOOTLE, which is just fun to say. And, yes, that book was a childhood favorite. Bill, I got a chuckle out of your ON TAPE graphic for 46D, as we are big Red Green fans (Hi, C-eh!) The “Adventures with Bill” segments always had me in stitches. I might just have to follow D-Otto’s advice and hunt down the DVD set on e-Bay.

After weeks of daily scouting multiple scheduling sites, DH and I were finally able to score our first Covid shot yesterday. Only side effect so far is a little muscle soreness. It seems availability is getting better with increased production and the recent approval of the J&J vaccine.

Have a great evening!

Ol' Man Keith said...

He may have reigned only 3 mos., but he did me in.
I would have had a perfect PZL but for him. Who can remember all the Caesars?
Non est hic.
At least this one lasted longer than Caesar himself.

And REEDED too. I mean,...!

Ah, springtime is fast approaching. After yesterday's strange rain & gloom, today's warm sunshine reminded me of why I live in SoCal. (Else it would have been Back to SF!)
I just came back inside from a lovely nap in the sleep-inducing air of Irvine.
A 3-way on the near side.
The central diagonal yields an anagram (14 of 15 letters!) to make Cupid proud of a physicist or a chemical engineer who, in the throes of his love pangs, pays verbal tribute to the phrase, "I'm so stuck on you!"
You guessed it! That praising-singing scientist is saying,...

waseeley said...

D-O @3:37PM You're a prince D-O! I can probably swing that.

Ol' Man Keith said...


If you think my DR was bad today (@ 4:36), you should check out the solution for today's Jumble!

Gag me.

waseeley said...

-T @3:49PM We know you're a Double E T, but you're still SIDE STEPPING the question of your shoe width.

TTP @4:25PM Seriously considering becoming a farking member. Quick - how do you catch a squirrel? Stand in a tree and act like a nut! And let's face it. English spelling is impossibly inconsistent and a key to making this forum possible. The beauty of English is its ambiguity, and thus the source of all puns. It's why the greatest poets (IMHO) come from Great Britain.

Wilbur Charles said...

I filled routinely but never got back to the FACES. Haste makes..

We called them Rotaries in Boston. Everything went just ducky until some crank asked the Boston Globe "Who has the 'Right of Way' in a rotary?". A great debate ensued with every agency chiming in. A decision was reached that the car IN the rotary had the right if way.

That wasn't the way most people (locals) understood it. People just merged never looking nor acknowledging the other car. Many had to be converted to traffic lights because traffic backed up because main artery traffic no longer could enter the rotary. The decline of western civilization can be marked at this point

This is the Brod(ie) that came to mind. I remember a Gunny telling me in 'Nam that the winner of the Oscar was Maggie Smith and I thought he was making it up.

"Invasion" was a political allegory, Marxian in tone.

Re. 40A... Bum, bum, bum ba bum bum

We've seen STE for suite before else I'd not known it

I believe OTHO and Galba were the fill-ins between Claudius and Nero. Ok, I'll LIU.

Yep, nothing like a good Write-up to find those rabbit holes. My son just clued me to that term. I learned a lot about something or someone yesterday.

My fav Roy is still A Legend in my Time

More: "Nobody goes there anymore, it's too crowded"

Thanks waseely and Bruce


Spitzboov said...

The 'v' in Dutch has the English 'f' sound. So:

Varken are pigs. Varken fokken means 'pig husbandry'.

Anonymous T said...

Spitz - K sound like a G too? Johnny Dangerously [0:02] -T

LEO III said...

Thanks Bruce and Bill! Nice puzzle and expo!

DNF, with a couple of WRONGOs thrown in for good measure. REEDED was a true learning moment, and I didn’t know BRODY (but it was a name, so who cares --- my new mantra for names I don’t know). Saw the faces. FACETOFACE fell very early.

I actually didn’t have too many problems with the rest of the puzzle. As I was able to fill the long answers, the resulting perps pointed me to where Bruce was taking us.

My dear departed father-in-law had a long career in Chicago with The Hartford, so STAG got me started off on the right foot.

“Charlie” said sorta the same thing to “Maverick” in TOP GUN: “I’ll have what he’s having…hemlock, is it?”

Roundabouts don’t work in Texas, because of --- uh, Texans! There is only ONE rule (as just explained by WC), and if everyone would follow it, there would be no problems (well, fewer problems). We are supposed to learn the rule in driver’s ed. However, like remembering where to add the turn signal fluid, nobody remembers who has the right of way in traffic circles. I agree with john28man, though.

Glad you’re feeling better –T.

Regular work tomorrow, and I have to work a birthday party Saturday night. Unless those puzzles are at my level (the Chairman has already warned us about tomorrow’s TWICE), I probably won’t be back until Sunday.

LEO III said...

Oh, "L.A.'s Finest" is the name of a TV show. It is NOT a critique of her talent.

Spitzboov said...

-T @ 1745. No, the 'k' has very much the hard voiceless guttural sound of English 'k'. The reason for the double k's is to preserve the sound of the short vowel in the 1st syllable. Else, the vowel would have a long sound like the 'o' in 'rote. Dutch spelling is virtually 100% phonetic since 1949. Older surnames and place names tend to retain their legacy spellings.

unclefred said...

Desper-otto Yep. Which is a good thing.

ATLGranny said...

Back to the blog, at last. Had time to do the puzzle this morning. WEES about trouble spots, but found my bad square tonight, caused by sloppy proofreading, maybe: the crossing of SIGNOR and GO FAR. So, a FIW for today. Thanks, Bruce, for the diversion and to waseeley for explaining so well the unknowns. After the reveal, I understood the theme entries fine.

My surgery went well today so the healing process begins. Hope you all had a good day too. Looking forward to seeing you tomorrow after doing the puzzle.

CanadianEh! said...

LOL that so many of you Americans love Red Green. He was doing some live show tours after he retired and we saw him in person. Just as hilarious. My nephew knows his son.

ATLGranny- good to see you here tonight after a successful surgery. May the healing process go just as well.

Spitzboov said...

ATLGranny - Good news! Hope you have a speedy and successful recovery. Good to see you back.

TXMs said...

Hand up for YODA instead of YOGI until I filled to the west and knew DAHLIA. The clue did sound more like a Yogi-ism rather than a Yoda-ism, although I've never seen a Star Wars movie. SW was ink-blots - ridged b4 REELED (not familiar with specie lingo); looking for a fancier word for ennui b4 THE BLAHS, STAT finally appeared after ORBISON showed up (could hear the song but drew a blank on the actual singer).

Anon-T @3:49 - thanks for the Cairo roundabout link. I visited Egypt 33 years ago and the traffic was bad but not that horrendous. Arrived at my hotel @ 3am, and the constant horn-blaring kept me up. Taxi driver told me that's because whomever honks first gets to go first. Roundabout: Visited the Museum of Antiquities which was on one, and I stood waiting to cross for about 10 minutes, hoping to time a mad dash across. A woman carrying a baby and holding her toddler's hand came up - aha - here's my chance. Confident that she would be able to maneuver across without anyone hitting her and the children, I VERY closely followed her. Traffic has certainly gotten worse in those 33 years.

Haven't visited in a while - glad to read everyone's distinct sense of humor as usual.

Anonymous T said...

ATLGranny - Surgery and you're already posting? Heal well...

Nice to see you TXMs. My buddy from Cairo (who I met in Sugar Land, TX but lived in Cairo when I visited) told me there is an entire 'horn language.' Yes, the constant honking took a few days to get used to.
Did you go to the Citadel? Same buddy took me there and gave me a history lesson. Cool stuff! I remember standing on top and seeing Giza's pyramids off in the distance and thought "The guys that built what I'm standing on, saw the pyramids (built ~2000 years earlier!) while laboring" #MindBlown

C, Eh! Some of us US'ers are cultured. I love Red Green, The Kids in the Hall, Bob and Doug, and, of course, RUSH.

Cheers, -T

Anonymous T said...

I forgot to ask...

Bill G. Where are you? Doing OK?

Cheers, -T

TXMs said...

Anon-T, I was with a 10-person tour group visiting the Egyptian tombs and temples with visits to Aswan and a Red Sea resort, using Cairo mainly as a arrival/departure destination. I opted to visit the souks instead of the Citadel, which were real eye-openers. I won't go into that - not suitable for breakfast reading. The tour included a 4-day cruise down the Nile to Luxor. Strange juxtaposition: At sunset we enjoyed drinking gin and tonics and listening to Jimmy Buffett, while in the background the occasional muezzins' calls to prayer were broadcast from the bank's minarets. Though we did feel a bit guilty and decadent.