, pub-2774194725043577, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0 L.A.Times Crossword Corner: Friday, December 24, 2021, Jeffrey Wechsler


Dec 24, 2021

Friday, December 24, 2021, Jeffrey Wechsler

Title: Merry Christmas from a Beautiful Mind

Moe is back from visiting his adorable grandbaby, yet here I am doing a back to back for Christmas. First, I want to wish you all the best of holidays this year, be it Christmas, Festivus, Kwanzaa or those holidays that have already passed. I also want to wish the world better health for the rest of this year and all of next. I especially want to bring a year of good tidings to all the Cornerites starting with C.C. and Boomer. I won't be back here to blog until January 14, 2022. I also want to wish myself less dyslexia and other typing issues. 

On with the show. As is often a hallmark of JW's puzzles this has much going on with some diabolic cluing and a visual theme wrapped inside a word theme. All of this in his not uncommon 16 x 15 grid to allow room for all that is going on. And surprise, it all relates to Christmas.  The first level is the yuletime classic:

3D. Start of a seasonal title: THE TWELVE. 6D. Title, part 2: DAYS OF. 9D. End of the title: CHRISTMAS.

39D. With the contents of this grid's circles, part of the refrain in 3-/6-/9-Down: PARTRIDGE.

                     THE TWELVE DAYS OF CHRISTMAS

I really love this innovative interpretation by PENTATONIX. We also have the first verse PARTRIDGE IN A PEAR TREE which becomes the visual theme of the Christmas Tree (O Tannenbaum) come to life by joining the circles with the central clues/fill like this:

That is brilliant work which he augments with some new and fun fill  BIG MOMENT,  INLAND SEA, I'VE SEEN IT, MADE A RULE and PAPERLESS none of which have ever been in the LAT and the only one to appear in the NYT was in 1971 INLAND SEA. I hope he tells us how long this construction took.


1. Tbsp., for example: AMT. Abbreviation begets abbreviation.

4. Touchy monarch?: MIDAS. Touchy feely, watch out for the Me Too movement, gold or no gold. 

9. "United States of Al" network: CBS. Unless you knew the show, it is all perps.

12. "Very droll": HA HA. Ho ho!

14. Representation: IMAGE. Or perhaps ICON?

15. Edible seed: CHIA. Chia seeds contain quercetin, an antioxidant that can reduce your risk of developing several health conditions, including heart disease. But, they may cause an increased risk of choking

16. Port near the Red Sea: ADEN.  It is a city of Yemen and its temporary capital. It is situated along the north coast of the Gulf of Aden and lies on a peninsula enclosing the eastern side of Al-Tawฤhฤซ Harbour. This area is beset by pirates.

17. To date: AS YET.

18. Wild party: ORGY. This was wilder than the rave I began with.

19. Near-EGOT winner Midler (she's missing the O): BETTE. The O is for Oscar but she is special.

21. Org. with admirals: USNUnited States Navy.

22. Reviews briefly: SKIMS. Or a politician's retirement plan.

23. Gets gasps from: AWES

24. Bit of rebar: ROD. I thought of him as a douche bag not a rebar.

25. Philippine currency: PESO. The long term influence of the Spanish in the Philippines. Remember, one L two Ps.

26. Word often contracted: ARE.  We're challenged here. 

27. Text lead-in: PREFACE. A literal clue/fill.

30. "Oversharing!": TMIToo Much Information.

32. Home of the Green Wave: TULANE. I began my days as a poster at the Corner because someone suggested all college sports team mascots were plural.

34. Shrewdness: ACUMEN. Business skills which is guess why it was used to name this COMPANY.

36. Inventing middle name: ALVA. I doubt his middle name invented anything. 

37. Short two-pointer: TIP IN. This was a stumbling block as I wanted LAY UP. The crossing letters just would not work.

41. "Critique of Judgment" author: KANT. This was his third "Critique" and in it he distinguishes the beautiful from the sublime. Paraphrasing, the appeal of beautiful objects is immediately apparent, while the sublime holds an air of mystery and ineffability. A  statue or a pretty flower is beautiful, the movement of storm clouds or a massive building is sublime: they are, in a sense, too great to get our heads around. 

42. Animals drawn in the Lascaux caves: DEER. This fits the fill but I believe they were ancestors. 

43. Opposite of aprรจs: AVANT. Simple after and before en francais.

44. Madrid pronoun: ESTO. On to some masculine Spanish.

45. Like email notifications: PAPERLESS. I get some free stuff for going paperless.

48. 33-Down members: Abbr.: SRS. 33S. Organization for 48-Across: AARP. I was disappointed during my time as a member.

51. Update follower, perhaps: RESTART. Yes, the plight of modern technology; they keep updating which makes your restart your computer which requires that you forget what you know how to do. This blog is a perfect example.

52. "'And when I __ my lips let no dog bark!'": "The Merchant of Venice": OPE. It is a trademark of Jeffrey's to include some Shakespeare but now it seems all the Friday constructors do it. And joy, it intersects with 52D. Puck handler?: OBERON. Ooo ooo a second Shakespeare but hidden so well; not from hockey but from Will's  A Midsummer's Night Dream!

55. Old TWA competitor: PAN AM. Who cares?

57. Coastal raptor: ERN. Birds and dinosaurs.

58. Shady place: ARBOR. You can ask Ann.

60. Signs: OMENS. Do you take them seriously?

61. __ al-Fitr: end-of-Ramadan feast: EID. Eid is an Arabic word meaning "festivity", while Fiแนญr means "to break fast"; and so the holiday symbolizes the breaking of the fasting period, after the end of the Islamic month of Ramadan, on the first day of Shawwal.

62. Greek letter: THETA. Why not?

63. Apple product: i-PAD. Of course you can also use it to add to your resume.

64. "Therefore ... ": AND SO.

66. Natural resources: ORES. When is an ore a rock? The BBC says an ore is a rock that contains enough of a metal or a metal compound to make extracting the metal worthwhile: low-grade ores contain a small percentage of the metal or its compound. high-grade ores contain a larger percentage.

67. "Star Wars" role: LUKE. If you do not know Skywalker you probably do not know...

68. Star in Orion: RIGEL. This is a big boy Star

69. "That's that!": DONE. Not quite.

70. 1974 CIA spoof: S*P*Y*S. This was a failed attempt to capitalize on the popularity of Gould and Sutherland in M*A*S*H.

71. Word with home or bed: STEAD. Homestead I know not beadstead:the framework of a bed on which the mattress is placed.

72. Tiny crawlers: ANTS.


1. Obsessed mariner: AHAB. Poor guy, they never leave him alone.

2. Added to the official playbook: MADE A RULE. This was vey hard to parse but the perps were fair.

4. Fla. NBA team, on scoreboards: MIAmi. A gimme for which...

5. "Not a doubt in my mind": I'M SURE.

7. Chair's prep job: AGENDA. The Chairman of the Board has his/her/their staff prepare it, let's be honest.

8. Wimbledon division: SET. Tennis anyone? I do worry about Peng Shuai.

10. Drumroll follower: BIG MOMENT

11. Comments: SAYS. Says you...

13. Part of a pot: ANTE. Followed by ...

15. Smelting fuel: COKE. Hmm.

20. "Around the Horn" airer: ESPN

22. It's risky to work on it: SPECulation.

26. Slightly: A TAD. A day late for the Abe Lincoln References.

28. Fix a messy package, say: RETAPE. An appropriate clue/fill for gluey time.

29. Certain rider's pace: CANTER.  I hope you are into this video...
31. Grooving on: INTO.

35. Short strings?: UKES.  


38. Comment about a familiar film: I'VE SEEN IT.  A rather killjoy comment. I liked Lovejoy better.

40. Salton, for one: INLAND SEA. There are a number of landlocked many can you name?

46. __ control: ARMS. Was it only me who went here?

47. RBI, e.g.: STAT.

48. Booty: SPOILS. So then a booty call would be the reward...

49. Increase: RAMP UP. See above, he may need a ramp one day.

50. Not at all up-front: SNEAKY. This is from 1550s (implied in sneakish), perhaps from some dialectal survival of Middle English sniken "to creep, crawl" (c. 1200), related to Old English snican "to sneak along, creep, crawl," from Proto-Germanic. Of feelings, suspicions, etc., from 1748. Transitive sense, "to partake of surreptitiously" is from 1883.

53. Strong: POTENT. With so many older solvers this might be considered cruel and unusal fill.

54. Gets rid of: ERASES. Those wrinkles around your eyes and crepe legs...

56. Long range: ANDES. A long mountain range.

59. Mary's upstairs neighbor: RHODA. Being a specialist in all things trivial, this was easy as I knew Mary Richards and Rhoda Morgenstern when they were young. I do find it odd since Mary lived on the top floor where Rhoda actually lived.

64. MGM motto word: ARS. Art for art's sake.

65. Stale: OLD. I hope this week's review was not too stale, but I did leave it out on the counter last night and forgot. Presumably this wonderful crowd will get us back to where we need to be. Have a spectacular Christmas and a better New Year.  Lemonade out for 2021.
Notes from C.C.:
Boomer was out of the recovery room yesterday. Now he's back to his old room. I'll update you when I have more info. Thanks for the thoughts and prayers!


OwenKL said...

I really love my CHIA pet,
I took her to an ORGY.
She made out with a Hummel SET,
Now she loves Georgie Porgie!

Tradition was that TWELVE wise men
Trekked to baby Jesus
Along came CHRISTMAS cards, and then
Drawing more than three was tedious!

Once there was a tall PEAR TREE
That didn't have a PARTRIDGE.
It had the nest of a chickadee
And pear juice was his beverage

{B+, B, B-.}

Jinx in Norfolk said...

First of all: Lemony, who is ROD and what did he ever do to you?

FIR, but erased us air for PAN AM, tango for THETA, tada for DONE, i spy for SPYS, and rewrap fot RETAPE.

I wanted ECHL (East Coast Hockey League) for "Admirals", but 1) the clue wasn't capitalized, and B) the fill was three letters.

I tell my project management students to never chair a meeting without getting buy-in on the agenda from the attendees.

COKE is one of the few substances that I tried and disliked. I blame it for the disco era. Great for steelmaking though.

I am also a former AARP member. I think that a lot of oldies-but-goodies belong only because the discounts exceed the dues. Good Sam (campers) discounts are just about the same for my travels.

I'm all for ARMS control, but it doesn't work with rogue nations like North Korea. I'm also for gun control, and always use both hands to aim my 9mm.

It must be the Christmas season. Colter and Wechsler back-to-back! Thanks, JefWech for today's fun. And thanks to Lemonade for the interesting explanation. But seriously, WHAT IS YOUR PROBLEM with ROD?

Lemonade714 said...

Any thoughts on the extremely large grid which I included to show the tree more clearly?

Good morning all and I hope Boomer is wakening up better already.

desper-otto said...

Good morning!

Wow, that was a pleasant 10-minute romp, but not without some snags. Figured "behind" should be "not at all up front," but that would be wrong. Was thinking "dings" or some such for that "email notification." Tried to put PEAR TREES where PARTRIDGE needed to go. Wite-Out, please. On the other hand, COKE popped into my mind immediately. Everything came together in the end, so life is good. Thanx, Jeffrey and Lemonade.

PESO: When I visited the Philippines, the girls in Olongapo preferred the U.S. dollar. Actually insisted on it. Subic Bay was our home-away-from-home during that WestPac cruise.

PAN AM: Flew them to Asia frequently back in the day. I've still got a PanAm comb. I keep it in my Ozark Airlines ditty bag.

ORES: Freshman chemistry for engineering majors was all about ore extraction. It played a role in convincing me that I didn't want to be an engineer.

Merry Christmas to all who participate.

Best wishes to Boomer. We'll be sending good thoughts his way as he spends this holiday in the hospital, and to C.C. who'll be spending this holiday at home alone.

desper-otto said...

Yes, Lemonade, your grid graphic was effective. Nicely done.

unclefred said...

No time to do the CW today. Just a quick but sincere Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all.

Irish Miss said...

Good Morning:

What a nice Christmas present from Santa AKA Jeffrey! I enjoyed the solve, even though I miss JW’s playful themes and word wizardry. No real hang ups except needing perps for Oberon and Tulane. I went astray at Coal/Coke and Net/Set. A couple of fun duos were Set/Yet and Ante/Ants. CSO to Lucina (Peso and Esto) and dear Spitz and DO (USN). I thought the puzzle was on the easy side for a Friday, but that could be part of the “present.”

Thanks, Jeffrey W, for a timely treat and thanks, Lemony, for an upbeat and informative review. Your illustrated grid added another layer of appreciation for the overall theme and execution. Nice job.

Mother Nature surprised me this morning with a slight dusting of snow on the ground. I’m not sure if this counts as a White Christmas motif but I’ll take it!

I hope Boomer is recovering and will soon be home.


Ray O, thanks for the thumbs up on Being the Ricardos. I plan on seeing it whichever way I can.

Have a great day. Stay safe and healthy.

YooperPhil said...

Fitting for Christmas Eve, JW has gifted us with a cleverly constructed puzzle and a not-to-difficult solve, as a lot of us probably don’t need any more stress added to this possibly hectic day. Thank you Jefferey, you are certainly a master of your craft! And another fine constructor, Paul Coulter has a nice puzzle on Universal today.

The perps helped to fill EID, ESTO, OBERON, and I originally had TEMPLE instead of TULANE, and misspelled CANTER as CANTOR, but worked it all out in the end. On a side note, OBERON is also a summer beer made by Bell’s Brewery.

Thank you Lemonade for your detailed synopsis, especially the colorized grid which really showed how the theme all fit together! Also I didn’t realize there was an extra line in the vertical making it a 15X16. But even with your paraphrasing I’m not sure I can get my head around KANT, seems pretty deep.

Merry Christmas to those who celebrate it, but as Lemonade stated, whatever holiday you hold dear my wish is ☮️ And ❤️ to all.

Continued ๐Ÿ™’s for Boomer and C.C.

ATLGranny said...

Yes, to what has been said already. Fun puzzle which went fast, thanks to the themers. An appropriate one for today, Jeffrey. Thanks for my FIR.

Lemonade, thanks for your rich review and for pointing out the Christmas tree shape in the grid, which I missed seeing. Very enjoyable start to the day.

Amazingly, I didn't have many WOs and the fill flowed in as I wandered around the puzzle. Lots of fun twists in the clues.

Hope everyone has a special holiday weekend, and I'm looking forward to good news from C.C. about Boomer!

OwenKL said...

Lemon, I like the large grid, but if your purpose was to show off the pattern, I'm afraid it fails. Only half of it can show on my screen at a time. A smaller grid I can see all at once.

Paul Coulter's Universal crossword, "Silent Night".

Anonymous said...

24. Bit of rebar: ROD. I thought of him as a douche bag not a rebar.

Since when is "douche bag" acceptable language here? Aren't we all more mature than that?

inanehiker said...

This was a fun way to get in the holiday mood - thanks Lemonade for the large and colored graphic of the crossword so it was even easier to see the tree!

I've got lots to do today - as I spent 3 hours Wednesday trying to get someone direct admitted and most of the hospitals in my region were full so I had to finally send them to the ER to board until a bed opened up! Tough times for our hospital based colleagues and staff!
Weirdly it is supposed to be 68 today - so no White Christmas here like Irish Miss - Agnes it definitely counts!

THanks Lemonade and JW!

Lucina said...


What's a Friday without a JeffWex puzzle and Lemonade analyzing it? I love it.

This was a Goldilocks, not too easy, not too hard. Just right! Since I had to print a copy of the puzzle the circles were very faint, but still visible. No newspaper today.

Obviously the TREE sahpe was not apparent. Thank you, Jason, for that.

I caught the theme early on and was on the lookout for each piece that connected. It was a BIG MOMENT when I finished, but no drumroll.

I've never seen "Around the Horn" but CBS emerged without incident.

The only unknown was EID.

Thank you, IrishMiss, for the CSO. I'll take it.

And thank you, C.C., for the continued updates on Boomer.

Have a happy day, everyone, as we enter into the joyous season of CHRISTMAS and its TWELVE DAYS of observance!

Lucina said...

Definitely no white Chrstmas here but a wet one. It's raining!

Big Easy said...

Who is ROD and what did he do? Must be a real scumbag.


In my wheelhouse today. Caught the theme at THE TWELVE. After filling SW&SE corners and looking at the circles, PARTRIDGE was easy to guess.

CANTER-all perps along with CBS.

oc4beach said...

A unique puzzle from JW, and Lemon's grid tour worked for me.

I didn't know TULANE, KANT and AVANT, plus I had to change LAY UP to TIP IN. Perps to the rescue.

Irish Miss: We had about an inch of the white stuff last night and it is disappearing as the day gets warmer. We're scheduled for a rainy Christmas vs a White one. However, I think we will get our fill of snow eventually.

C.C. our hopes and prayers are with you and Boomer.

Well, its off to do all of the last minute things that need done before tomorrow.

Have a great day today and a Merry Christmas tomorrow.

CanadianEh! said...

Fabulous Friday. Thanks for the fun, Jeffrey and Lemonade.
I FIRed eventually with several inkblots.
Loved the CHRISTMAS theme (thanks for showing us the visual TREE too, Lemonade. I can see it all on my I PAD mini.)
Was LUKE (the book telling the Christmas story) an Easter egg?

Hand up for Net (to divide the court) before SET.
My first thought was Self control, but ARMS perped.
You all know I wanted a U in ARBOR. (Thanks for thinking of me yesterday with Limousine, WC. I left out the U originally LOL!)
It took a minute for RESTART to make sense re the computer reference.

Continued prayers for Boomer and C.C.
We have about an inch of snow, but like oc4beach, it is scheduled to get warmer and then rain tomorrow.

Christmas and Season’s greetings to all here at the Corner.
(Our Minister of Transport has cleared Santa for travel in Canadian airspace!)

Yellowrocks said...

I was looking for the rest of the tree shape. Oh! Partridge. That made the puzzle really special. Thanks, Lemonade.
We had an inch of snow in the predawn and early AM hours. It was wet and slippery. It looks lovely and Christmasy. I delayed picking up Alan for an hour to give the road crews time to plow and salt. No problem at all, except for the group home's steep, unplowed driveway. A counsellor brought Alan and his baggage down the driveway in a van to meet me. How kind!
Merry Christmas to all.
TTYL, I hope.

waseeley said...

Thanks JeffWech for a great holiday puzzle. Loved the theme as it helped with the fill and a Friday FIR. The clever misdirection in many of the clues was masterful.

Great review CMOE, truly worthy of the season. Particularly liked the intro clip. When they started I was thinking, this group doesn't have 12 members, so how are they going to pull it off? And then they got to the 6th day, it suddenly dawned on me that the PENTA in PENTATONIX was 5 and then I had a Bart Simpson moment ... Oh and Moe, FWIW, I've never noticed any lysdexia in your reviews.

A few favs and then it's back to wrapping gifts ...

15A CHIA. Had CORN, but I couldn't chew on it.

19A BETTE got me anchored. The ultimate torch singer, here's her cover of Amanda McBroom's "The Rose".

21A USN. Thanks for remembering our dearly departed Spitzboov Jeff.

21A KANT. I'm more familiar with his "Critique of Pure Reason", which asserts that reason has it's limits. Mine certainly does.

45A PAPERLESS. We're up to our shoulders in the stuff right now. Gee, could I get rich by inventing PAPERLESS gift wrap?

51A RESTART. Second childhood MOE?

2D MADE A RULE. I got it, but I still don't get it.

29D CANTER. Thanks for the video. I'm saving it for my horse-crazy granddaughter. ๐Ÿด

52D OBERON. GOALIE wouldn't work. Felix Mendelssohn wrote an overture to A Midsummer Night's Dream when he was only 17 and it put him on the map. Here's the part everyone knows. OBERON is the guy on the left and his wife TITANIA is obviously the one on the right.

See 'yall tomorrow.


Husker Gary said...

-A brilliant early Christmas gift from Jeffrey!
-The NE and SW corners had “naughty” cluing for me but the gimmick helped
-Computer issues? Refresh, restart, turn off/on
-Lemon, HOMESTEAD is a very familiar word out here. As a matter of fact…
-The NFL is never afraid TO MAKE IT A RULE. MLB is.
-This very large CONTROL ARM. has its country of origin printed right on its side
-Lovely grid expo and write-up, Lemon.

Ray - O - Sunshine said...

An easy Friday, the carol was a fast reveal and helped with perps. Cute how PEAR and TREE create the ๐ŸŒฒ For the PARTRIDGE.

Apparently Mr Wechsler agrees with the slogan..."Let's keep CHRISTMAS in crosswords."๐Ÿ˜Š. Glad to see a Muslim holy day mentioned as well ๐Ÿ•Œ. I was sure it was tapin or is that golf? ⛳ ASYET or "sofar", I let the perps decide.

Do any of you say cave "drawerings"? ๐Ÿคญ. I thought they were bulls,now extinct "aurochs" not DEER. "The Neanderthals are coming, leave the paints, Lascaux!!" ๐Ÿ˜ฎ Speaking of antiquity Cretan digs reveal that MIDAS had a gold muffler in his chariot.

Mary's upstairs neighbor, her mother-in-law, Joseph's Mom. But didn't know her name was RHODA. ๐Ÿ˜‡

Don't lie but without perps how many put coal not COKE for "smelting fuel", ๐ŸŽ… will find out you were naughty and put a big lump in your stocking tonight. I wonder...would Pepsi or RC Cola work just as well?

Didn't know that about "The Divine Miss M"

My non-returnable Christmas gifts to you all...๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ

Like an Emir.....SALTON
Strong imp with ED...POTENT
Where to wear your mask....PREFACE
Relaxing paintings...RESTART
Many highways....TULANE
Droll Miss....RIGAL

Looks like we're going to have what as a kid I thought Bing was crooing, " A Wide Christmas" ❄❄❄

Lucina said...

BETTE Midler and others were honored this week at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

Most of my bills arrive PAPERLESS on my computer.

I never flew on PANAM but took TWA several times before it folded.

It helps to TAPE, i.e. record, a program and be able to fast forward the ads.

What kind of accommodations to you have for Alan when he spends the night?

Misty said...

Woohoo! Christmas Eve puzzles don't get any better than this--what a treat, Jeffrey--thank you so much. And on top of that, Lemonade gave us the lovely grid bringing the Christmas tree right to the front. Thank you for that too.

So glad that Boomer is getting better--what good news, thank you, C.C.

I got off to a great start as soon as I got BETTE Midler, which instantly gave me AHAB, and then the top left corner filled in, helped by remembering Thomas ALVA Edison.

Once you've been at the University of Michigan for a decade or more, you don't forget Ann ARBOR.

Which MARY had an upstairs neighbor? Oh yes, Mary Tyler Moore's pal, RHODA, of course.

Have a lovely Christmas Eve, everybody.

Malodorous Manatee said...

Lemonade,that grid was a work of both art and engineering. Bravo!

Merry Christmas Eve or, as an old friend used to say, Gut Erev Yuntif!

tiptoethru said...

Oh, how I like to come to this site and see my lapses and successes! This puzzle was Christmas-y fun! However, I've been flummoxed! Our newspaper isn't publishing papers tomorrow or on Sunday either. Today, they combined the Friday paper with the Saturday paper and I thought, whoa, I have several headscratchers in this puzzle???! Oops, it's the Saturday puzzle! Oh, Scrooge! But, I know it will be fun to come tomorrow and find the answers, which will be as fun as the presents, I'm sure. Wishing all the Cornerites a very merry Christmas, Holiday, Puzzling Time! I appreciate everyone's efforts to make this site so much fun and a great place to see where I can find my crossword help. Celebrate safely!

waseeley said...

My thanks to everyone for not pointing out the obvious fact that Lemony ๐Ÿ‹๐Ÿ‹๐Ÿ‹ was the constructor today - I should have known without all the MUG shots and MOEKUs. The next time MOE blogs I'll give you a tip 'o the hat Jason. I did like the grid very much, and I don't find you lysdexic either.

Chairman Moe said...

Puzzling thoughts:

Bill @ 11:07 —> Jason (aka Lemonade) did today’s recap. Not me. Sorry that I can’t take credit for the write up.

As Lucina pointed out, the Arizona Republic did not produce a print version of the paper today. And even though I get the puzzles electronically, some days I don’t solve them UNLESS they’re on paper. Today was one of those; Margaret and I are just enjoying some carols and Xmas music on Pandora, as well as prepping for tomorrow’s dinner

Lemony, thanks for taking over today’s puzzle. You had a lot of fun with it, I could tell!

Merry Christmas to all of my Crossword Corner family who celebrate it. Hope all of your wishes come true!

Peace out,


Ol' Man Keith said...

An eminently do-able PZL from our indefatigable Wechsler, a timely-themed entry to grace this Christmas Eve!

I almost changed 45A to a PAPER LOSS, which we all dread in the market. All because I thought CANTER at 29D was spelled with an "o." Good thing I caught it in time, to avoid any decrease in my already-shaky stake.

Alas, no diagonals today--but made up for with that seasonal bird on the branch!

Nice to know Boomer is doing well. So far, so good, continuing best wishes for a full, speedy recovery, a real-life-event well timed for a Merry Christmas!

Ol' Man Keith said...

Just a brief note (or maybe a reminder) to subscribers to the Arizona Republic & to any others whose newspaper is going PAPERLESS over the holiday:
So long as you can access the digitized version, you can do what I do whenever my LA Times delivery fails to arrive...

Just print out the crossword.
Yep, you can always have a paper version to work your PZL on.
Just line it up on screen, be sure you have paper, press a coupla buttons--and BINGO!

Anonymous said...

71 a , a stump the chump clue. Other than that great. Mr Wechsier is my favorite crossword maker!!!!

Jayce said...

I loved this clever puzzle.

Holiday cheer to all!

Yellowrocks said...

Lucina, I have an office den with a day bed where Alan sleeps every Saturday night and on
holidays. He has his newest TV in there. I am not allowed to have overnight guests for more than two consecutive nights. Alan will be here tonight, then two nights at David's and then one more night here. Dave has a bedroom with a king bed where Alan and I sleep. He will sleep at home after that and return on New Year's Eve Day. I used to have Alan for an entire week between Christmas and New Year in my prior home, but rules are rules.
Happy holidays.

Anonymous T said...

Hi All!

Whoot! I FIR a JW Friday!

Thanks for the perfect Christmas challenge, Jeffrey. Theme gave me the PE in PEAR and hlped unlock the SW.

Thank you for the excellent expo, Lem. The color'd grid makes the fir easier to 'see.'

WO: Thomas ALdA
Fav: Clue for MIDAS was a nice 'touch'

Rhoda - at 52yrs, I recall Rhoda the neighbor and Rhoda the spin-off. I wonder if anyone under 40 knows this.

Boasting (to PhD DW) MOMENT - I knew KANT as clued :-)

{?, LOL, B}

PAN AM - DW's Aunt was a stewardess for them and saw the world and history. IIR the story Correctly, she was on the first flight from US to China when they opened back up in '81(?).

Jinx - LOL "gun-control" quip. It always cracks me up in movies when they've a weapon in each hand and think they're going to hit something.

D-O: re: ORE - Petro Engineering? E.E. Frosh was Math, Math, and Math with a programming and English class thrown in for good measure.

Cool catch / reading on LUKE's book, C. Eh! (and cute turn of EASTER phrase :-))

Christmas here (80+ deg F) has just been canceled. BIL is coughing, fever(ing), headache(ing?) and can't find a C19 test in the area to schedule b/f Sunday (and the pharmacies seem to be out of quick tests).
With MIL being frailish (don't tell her I said that - she'll strike me with her cane :-)) and DW scheduled for a procedure on Wednesday, we can't take chances until BIL gets a (negative) test. Knock on wood we eat ham on Monday.

And yet, I have no complaints about this... 'cuz... C.C. & Boomer are having a worser Christmas. Get strong soon Boomer!

And a Merry Christmas Eve y'all - may Santa not dump COKE in your stockings.

Cheers, -T

Wilbur Charles said...

Anon-T, DEC as in Digital Eq. Corp. A pre-2000 Computer Giant. Also…
Solving online I held my breath filling the last square as if no congrats it's a technical FIW. Btw, discussion reminds me of the "Jury" I impanelled a few years ago on a technical FIW. YR and Lucina were on it*

Not to speak of TAP IN which held me up until I grok'ed I'VE SEEN IT, my last fill

I had a senior moment and needed a perp or two for AVANT.


Speaking of Peng Shuai, Celtics have a guy called Freedom. I finally realized it was Enis Kantor who's very outspoken re. Chinese Free Speech issue(Turkey kicked him out)

I too wasn't sure of the author of the write-up then it became clear. Speaking of… I started this write-up this morning.


*Guilty!!! Unanimous

Acesaroundagain said...

Never heard of bed stead. I'm rooting for you Boomer. Get better.

PK said...

Merry Christmas, Y'all! Really enjoyed this seasonal puzzle, Jeffrey. Very clever word-wise & visually. Thanks Lemony for enhancing the fun.

Vidwan827 said...

Very late for posting ... again.
Thank yo Mr. Wechsler, for a lovely puzzle that I enjoyed very much. I didnt do the circles but partridge seemed appropriate, for today.

THank you Lemonade, for a very nice review ... I was a little confused when Moe's name appeared, and then your name was at the bottom credits...

I was a little curious also about Rod, who, you think, is apparently not a nice person ... Maybe its the baseball player.?

Merry Christmas to everyone, whether you celebrate it or not. (If you dont, ignore the good greetings...) What with all the sad news going around, we could sure use some good cheer, irrespective of our personal preferences on higher beings ....

BTW, I am making some candied peel, from navel Oranges and Lemons, from the raw fruits ... so I can add other dried fruits, like apricots, raisins, prunes and walnuts, and make a bunch of fruitcakes. I've never made a fruitcake before ( only acted like one ...) so this happy season, I thought why not, make one or two or three from scratch ?

I even bought a bottle of Rum and a bottle of brandy, to make the fruitcake a little boozy ... unless of course, the alchohol evaporates during the baking process.... in which case, I will have an inebriated oven ....

MY prayers and Best Wishes to Boomer and CC and hoping for a good prognosis.

Again, Merry Christmas to all, and Peace and Harmony to Mankind, ... atleast for these coupla days.

Lucina said...

Congratulations to you on baking a fruit cake! I tried it a few years ago and it cost a fortune in fruity ingredients! I wish you a successful outcome. Now I just order one and sometimes add my own brandy as they tend to be dry.

The rain finally stopped so I am going with Plan A to attend Mass tonight at 11:00. Had the rain continued I planned to go in the morning. My grandchildren won't be at my daughter's and SIL's until 2:00 so I won't have to rise at the crack of dawn.

PK said...

Vidwan, after the fruitcake is baked, I always poured the booze over it to soak in. Usually I made my fruitcakes in November then poured wine over them and froze them in my deep freeze. They were so good by Christmas. We didn't like the candied citrus peel in ours so I left it out -- that's an acquired taste especially for kids.