Jul 31, 2022

Sunday July 31, 2022 Michael Schlossberg

Theme: - "Reboots" - Each TV show is humorously rephrased.

23. Show about monks who form a rock group?: BAND OF BROTHERS.

25. Show about Alfred E. Neuman and company?: MADMEN.

37. Show about some St. Louis sluggers and their fixer-upper?: HOUSE OF CARDS. Cardinals.

55. Show about a mom-and-pop neckwear business?: FAMILY TIES.

70. Show about mug shot photography?: ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT.

88. Show about a village and its mountain lion problem?: COUGAR TOWN.

102. Show about a red sock, a blue sock, and the love they found in the dryer?: THE ODD COUPLE.

120. Show about a school pep squad?: CHEERS.

121. Show about Quaker Oats, Mikey, and the partnership that changed cereal forever?: THE FACTS OF LIFE.

Such fun clues. The red sock and blue sock love story made me chuckle!

Rarely do we see 6-letter theme entries on Sundays, but they're perfect for this grid. Very clean 142-worder. Patti's grids are always clean, and consistently so.


1. Wild hog: BOAR.

5. Latish lunch hr.: ONE PM. We have lunch at 11:00am.

10. Place for "me time": SPA.

13. Inflame with love: ENAMOR.

19. Atlanta Hawks arena until 1997: OMNI. Wikipedia says the Omni was closed and demolished in 1997. Replaced by State Farm Arena.

20. Cause of in-flight turbulence: AIR POCKET.

22. "__ Bovary": MADAME. Emma. Kind of like the lady in "The Necklace".

26. Start: ONSET.

27. Comedian Mandel: HOWIE.

28. Consecrate: ANOINT.

29. Charming person?: SORCERER. Great clue.

34. "Who here hath __ these two days buried": "Romeo and Juliet": LAIN.

36. "Queer Eye" grooming expert Jonathan Van __: NESS.

41. "Fiddlesticks!": NUTS.

43. Lhasa __: APSO.

44. Tea party attendee: DOLL.

45. Highway scofflaw: SPEEDER.

48. Old dietary std.: RDA. Recommended Dietary Allowances.

51. Physicist Nikola: TESLA. The electric car is named after him.

53. Delta deposit: SILT.

57. Sign up: ENROLL.

59. Ceremonial pile: PYRE.

61. Clog front: TOE.

62. Letters of urgency: ASAP. Sometimes Boomer's blood draw is marked as STAT.

63. Gal: LASS.

65. NBA Commissioner Silver: ADAM.

67. Muted colors: PASTELS.

75. Fitness coach: TRAINER.

76. City near Tahoe: RENO.

77. Foil kin: EPEE.

78. Cal's twin, in a Steinbeck novel: ARON. "East of Eden".

79. Ortiz of "Ugly Betty": ANA. Here with Betty, her sister in the series.

81. Storage tower: SILO.

83. Pats gently: DABS AT.

92. Actress Merrill: DINA.

94. Old-school: RETRO.

95. Hooting bird: OWL.

96. Tiny garden planting: SEEDLET. I simply use "seed", no matter how tiny the "seed" is.

98. Attic pests: MICE.

100. Exploit: FEAT.

101. Uneven do: SHAG.

105. One-word warning: DON'T. And 129. Declines: SAYS NO.

108. Black shade: COAL.

111. Loses enthusiasm: RUNS COLD.

112. "Ooh! There!": I SEE IT.

114. Zenith's opposite: NADIR.

116. Go off-script: AD LIB.

126. Sniggler's trap: EEL POT. Nothing beats freshly roasted eels.

127. Network announcement: STATION ID.

128. Facility: EASE.

130. Yang counterpart: YIN. Yin food for summer. Yang for winter.

131. Give some space: LET BE.

132. Deliver by parachute: DROP.


1. Former wrestling star __ Brazil: BOBO. Learning moment for me. His real name is Houston Harris. Wikipedia says he's "credited with breaking down barriers of racial segregation in professional wrestling, Harris is considered one of the first successful African-American professional wrestlers."

2. Muscat's sultanate: OMAN.

3. Writers Patchett and Brashares: ANNS.

4. Goes it alone: RIDES SOLO.

5. Dolt: OAF.

6. Tip for a writer: NIB. Pen tip.

7. Make a typo, say: ERR.

8. HMO alternative: PPO. Preferred Provider Organization.

9. May honoree: MOTHER.

10. Distort, as data: SKEW.

11. Danger: PERIL.

12. Utterly lost: AT SEA.

13. Name that means "God is with us": EMMANUEL. Hebrew meaning.

14. Flatbread served with tandoori chicken: NAAN.

15. Bells and whistles: ADD-ONS.

16. First lady after Bess: MAMIE.

17. Signs: OMENS.

18. Uses for a fee: RENTS.

21. Guitar Hero combinations: CHORDS.

24. Native Nebraskan: OTOE.

30. Baton: ROD.

31. Heads of cabbage, for short?: CFOS. Oh, cabbage can mean "money".

32. Celestial event: ECLIPSE.

33. Come from behind: RALLY.

35. The Shins' genre: INDIE POP. We also have 47. Punk offshoot: EMO. The Shins is from Albuquerque, New Mexico.

37. Not fancy: HATE. Verb "fancy".

38. Double-click, say: OPEN. As a link.

39. Cold War letters: USSR.

40. Beach bottle letters: SPF. Mostly 50 these days.

42. Attempt: TRY.

46. Wonderland cake message: EAT ME.

48. Ascended: RISEN.

49. Passed out: DEALT.

50. Nile vipers: ASPS.

52. __ wrench: ALLEN.

54. Sports page news: TRADE.

56. Name on four British art galleries: TATE. Tate Britain, Tate Modern, Tate Liverpool & Tate St Ives.

58. Use a surgical beam: LASE.

60. Idyllic spots: EDENS.

64. Battlefield board game: STRATEGO.

66. Elude: AVOID.

68. Copied: APED.

69. Makeup mishap: SMEAR.

70. Shape hidden in the FedEx logo: ARROW.

71. Fauvist painter Dufy: RAOUL. French for Ralph.

72. Key holder: RING.

73. Southern inflection: DRAWL.

74. November meteor shower: LEONIDS.

75. __ Tuesday: TACO.

80. Silent assent: NOD.

82. Spanish citrus fruit: LIMON.

84. Discombobulated: BEFUDDLED.

85. Fitbit unit: STEP.

86. Asian lake memorialized by UNESCO: ARAL. Fresh clue angle.

87. Pledge drive freebie: TOTE.

89. Volcanic debris: ASH.

90. Is affected by: REACTS TO. This new oral chemo Olaparib is very toxic. Poor Boomer is dealing with a few side effects.

91. Volleyball court divider: NET.

93. Electrically flexible: AC DC.

97. Economy: THRIFT.

99. Earth-friendly prefix: ECO.

101. Brews: STEEPS.

103. Continental travel pass: EURAIL.

104. Snowman in "Frozen": OLAF. Built by our crossword regular ELSA.

105. Chops up: DICES.

106. "Straight Outta Compton" actor __ Jackson Jr.: OSHEA. Son of Ice Cube, whose real name is O'Shea Jackson.

107. Bruins legend Cam: NEELY. Hockey Hall of Famer.

109. On edge: ANTSY.

110. "Chicago Hope" Emmy winner: LAHTI (Christine)

113. Wrinkle remover: IRON.

115. Faculty head: DEAN.

117. Perjurer: LIAR.

118. "In that case ... ": IF SO.

119. [The light's green!]: BEEP.

122. Cedar Rapids college: COE. Founded in 1851.

123. Blast letters: TNT.

124. Bro or sis: SIB.

125. Tribute in verse: ODE.

Boomer and I ventured out to Wisconsin last Monday and visited his childhood friend Carol, whom he had not seen for over 60 years. We enjoyed the breaded walleye strips and the Bang Bang Shrimp Tacos at The REC on the Yellow Lake. 

The trip was tiring for Boomer, esp with the nausea issue. But he recovered quickly. He was so happy to be outside again. He had a minor fall on our stairs on Friday. I was able to get him up. Nothing was broken, so it's all good. 

Have any of you visited Danbury, WI before? The Yellow Lake is so quiet and pretty, a little paradise in the middle of nowhere.


Jul 30, 2022

Saturday, July 30, 2022, Kate Chin Park

 Saturday Themeless by Kate Chin Park

Kate is a custom furniture maker who is a proud non-whiz when it comes to solving and wordplay. Originally from Spokane, she has lived in San Diego, Brooklyn, London, and Brooklyn again before settling down in Oakland. She began solving crosswords in 2019 and 
making them in 2021, and credits mentorship both formal and informal for her growth as a constructor. When not awash in words or sawdust, Kate loves to read, eat the food her partner cooks, snuggle with her hostile-to-everyone-else cat, and watch the Golden State Warriors. Here is her website 

Some of Kate's work


1. Spa service: MUD BATH - Yeah, I know, MASSAGE fits too.

8. Rosebush pest: APHID.

13. Acrobatic Brazilian martial art: CAPOEIRA - This came letter by crossing letter.

14. Sleeping spots for some dogs: CRATES.

16. Firm hold: IRON GRIP.

17. Decorative threads: TINSEL.

18. Dispatched: SENT - Robert E. Lee greatly regretted he SENT Pickett on that charge 

19. Stands out: POPS.

21. Either parent, for some kids: MOMMY - Our neighbor's grandson Peter in Minneapolis has two wonderful mommies

22. [I'm a ghost!]: BOO.

24. Many a "Thirty something" character: YUPPIE.

26. Be imminent: IMPEND.

29. Many modern diets: FADS.

30. "Bright Dead Things" poet Limón: ADA.

33. Running early?: FALSE START - A FALSE START and a face plant

35. Neutrogena product: T/GEL.

36. Some journal entries: IDEAS.

37. Clinch: ICE - Clinch and ICE both infer that the other team can not now possibly win even though the game is not officially over yet.

38. "Love Actually" actor: GRANT - Hugh is in the top middle and had a 
39. Main role: LEAD.

40. "Good gravy!": JEEZ LOUISE - My last fill was changing the the G to a J

42. Head for Vegas?: LAS.

43. Achy: SORE.

44. __ Awards: high honors for comic books: EISNER - Named for Will Eisner

45. Regard: ESTEEM.

47. Looney Tunes explosive: TNT.

48. Unforced __: ERROR - Hitting the ball into the net is one

50. Pointillism elements: DOTS. Just such a painting of a 
56. Late gathering: SOIREE by Edmond Cross

52. They might be game: FOWL - A good friend skipped my daughter's wedding for the first day of pheasant season.

58. Not much at all: JUST A BIT.

60. Person to split a bill with: COSTAR - The playbill not the restaurant check

61. Age line?: I FEEL OLD.

62. Home and away, e.g.: TEAMS.

63. Braced: STEELED - We've all STEELED ourselves for possible bad news


1. Zebra mother: MARE - As it is for all equines 

2. After: UPON - UPON further thought...

3. "I also have good news, though!": DON'T BE SAD.

4. Beseech: BEG.

5. MagSafe Charging Case inserts: AIR PODS.

6. Goals in a hat trick, e.g.: TRIO - A hat trick is accomplished when one player scores three goals in one game. Huh?

7. Features of some positive messaging: HAPPY FACE EMOJIS  or...

8. Make a scene?: ACT.

9. Takes one's time at the mirror: PRIMPS 

10. Capital west of Ha Long Bay: HANOI - About 2hrs west by car

11. Message during phone tag: IT'S ME AGAIN - Cell phones have helped with this issue 

12. Believe: DEEM.

13. Opposite of trans: CIS - Short for CISGENDER - "Denoting or relating to a person whose sense of personal identity and gender corresponds with their birth sex." CIS is from the Latin for "on this side" as opposed to trans which means "on the other side" 

15. Underhanded: SLY.

20. Family name on "Ugly Betty": SUAREZ.

23. Singles: ONES.

25. Hrs. at T-Mobile Park: PDT - Here we see the roof at this Seattle park closing and opening.

26. Journalist Gwen honored on a U.S. postage stamp in 2020: IFILL.

27. Tyler Perry persona: MADEA.

28. Standing order?: PLEASE RISE - "Here come da judge!"

31. Packed: DENSE.

32. Change one's skirt?: ALTER.

34. Like a pagoda: TIERED.

35. Hands-on experience, hopefully: TRUST FALL - No! Fall backward!

38. Enter: GO IN.

40. __ Bruin: UCLA mascot: JOE - Joe and Josephine

41. "Decisions, decisions ... ": LET'S SEE and 46. "Yes and no": SORTA as sung by our cwd friend Ella Fitzgerald:

First, you say, you do
And then you don't
And then you say, you will
And then you won't
You're undecided now
So what are you gonna do?

43. Twitch __: STREAM - Make your own STREAMing channel

48. F1 neighbor: ESC.

49. Daikon, e.g.: ROOT - Radish

51. Hairy bunch: TUFT - A combover challenge?

53. Thin reed: OBOE - It is a beautiful addition to the chorus of this song

54. Stormy: WILD.

55. Pt. of LLC: LTD What they are and 8 examples if you're interested 

57. Critical-care ctrs.: ERS.

59. Workout wear: TEE - TEE shirts are not allowed on many golf courses.

Jul 29, 2022

Friday, July 29, 2022, Emet Ozar and Matthew Stock

Theme: Bugs Be Gone!

Puzzling thoughts:

FIW, with my lone Natick of 23-down and 23-across.

There were several unfilled squares throughout, as I worked from top left to bottom right. It was in the very bottom right corner where the reveal: (71-Across. Work on software, and work to make sense of the answers to the starred clues?) DEBUG, resided. Once I saw that answer, I thought, OK, now the circles make sense! As I continued working at the "southern border" of the grid, I got the "aha" moment when I filled in (67-Across. *Cherry variety:) BROACHING, as I saw that when you get rid of the ROACH, what's left is the word "BING", or a "cherry variety". Very clever.

Now, a brief commercial message from our sponsor, Johnson Wax:

Back to the blog ... Constructors Emet Ozar and Matthew Stock have collaborated on a Sunday puzzle @ Universal, but I think this is the first of theirs @ LA Times. Both Ozar and Stock appear to have found the crossword puzzle constructor "itch", post-pandemic. Kudos to you both, and I hope you'll visit our blog to offer some comments on what gave the seed idea for this; I promise I won't bug you further!

It's not often that you'll see SIX entries AND a reveal in a 15x15 puzzle. I know that some critics would ding them for having 17+ three-letter words; or ding them for using circles; but c'mon! This had to have been extremely tough to fill while maintaining a tight and clean "feel". What struck me is that all SIX entries with the hidden bug are all quite common (as you'll see in the explanation below).

It also appears that Patti was lenient with Emet and Matthew in the clues, as none were too obscure for a Friday. Perhaps the puzzle was tough enough. Let's look at the other five entries:

15-Across. *Like sweater weather: CHANTILLY. Remove the ANT and the word "CHILLY" definitely refers to "sweater weather"

23-Across. *Spanish verb similar to the French "être": SMOTHER. OK. The word "SMOTHER" is quite common, but when I removed the "MOTH" the word SER did not make me "see the light". Guess I should've taken Spanish as my foreign language elective instead of German!! So Lucina, if Hamlet were done in Spanish, would the soliloquy be: "¿SER o no SER?"

29-Across. *Soft drink size: LITE BEER. Take the BEE from the LITE BEER and you're left with a "LITER" of (soda, pop, tonic, Coke) ... remember, we had that discussion of what people call a soft drink the last time I blogged?

48-Across. *River through Kazakhstan: G NATURAL. Swat the GNAT from this entry and you're left with URAL - the crosswordese answer for an Asian River. Not familiar with G NATURAL? Try this, but turn the volume down on your device before playing:

53-Across. *Top: LIMITED. I HOPE none of you were "ticked" off at today's puzzle, but I MITE understand if you were! OK, Moe, put a LID on it ... zip up your FLY ... show us the grid this time ... and 'splain to us all of the other clues!

1. Cheap kegful: PABST. Oddly enought, PABST is one of the domestic, non-craft BEERs that I'll drink. LITE BEER doesn't do much for me

6. Seal hunter: ORCA. Killer whale

10. Title for Horatio Magellan Crunch: CAP'N. They made this clue weirder than it had to be, TBH. How many other "CRUNCH's" do you know other than CAP'n?

14. "With any luck": I HOPE. Different meaning than when I used this phrase in the introduction

17. __ cut: PIXIE. The upper left corner was easy to perp today. Wanna see a PIXIE cut? OK:

18. Question that may elicit "Todo bien, gracias": ¿Cómo estás?. Are you "all good" with this clue and answer?

19. "Must you be like everyone else?": ET TU. "No, I'm not a BRUTE!"

21. __ card: SIM. Having recently upgraded my iPhone 7+ to a 13 Pro, I know all about SIM cards. I got two of them in this phone

22. Four quarters: ONE. A good "Friday" clue; four 25cent pieces = ONE dollar bill

26. "Latino USA" airer: NPR. WAG. I very seldom listen to any radio airers, but NPR seemed logical once I filled in around it

28. Choice word: EITHER. Moe-ku:

The two canoeist's
Decision on who sat where?
Your choice, EITHER oar

34. Sandwich not found in a kosher deli: BLT. And yet a lot of my Jewish friends LOVE bacon

35. Sap: DRAIN. I HOPE you weren't DRAINed by doing this puzzle - quite the opposite for me ... I am pretty amped up today

37. One of India's official languages: HINDI.

38. Footnote abbr.: ET AL. Moe ku:

Israel's airport
Shows a list of carriers:
There's El Al, et al

40. Rock collection?: ALBUM. Hmm not my most favorite clue today. "Rock", of course, refers to the music genre "rock 'n' roll". I still have several ALBUMs but no turntable

42. Slender: SLIM. Both of my SIM cards are quite SLIM

43. Crew member: ROWER. Only ONE bad ROWing pun allowed per blog

45. Rink ploys: DEKES. Are any of our male cornerites members of a college fraternity? Anytime I see the word DEKES I think of this fraternity, "Delta Kappa Epsilon", commonly known as DKE - or - Deke is one of the oldest fraternities in the United States, with fifty-six active chapters and five active colonies across North America. It was founded at Yale College in 1844 by fifteen sophomores who were discontent with the existing fraternity order on campus"[Wikipedia]. Several past US presidents were DEKES, including the two Bushes and Teddy Roosevelt

47. PC pioneer: IBM. Did anyone else wonder if the "PC" in the clue meant "politically correct"? If so, FDR fits, yes?

50. Roughhouse: RASSLE. I had TUSSLE before RASSLE

52. "Real talk," from a texter: TBH. To Be Honest. Don't you hate when someone answers a question with "To be honest ..."?? My reaction is always, "well, haven't you been honest with me before?"

54. "It's all about me" attitude: EGO. Moe-ku:

You can shut down one's
EGO, by telling them to:
"Put an ID on it"!

57. Deli slice: RYE. HAM fits on RYE, too

59. Article: ITEM.

60. Sacred Buddhist symbol with heart-shaped leaves: BODHI TREE. So, isn't there one word/phrase that always seems to show up in a puzzle, just when you think you knew them all? What's a BODHI TREE? I think it's in the banyan family. This:

63. Gulf ship: OILER.

68. Petting zoo critter: LLAMA.

69. Light-footed: SPRY. There is a village by this name near to where I grew up. Misty might know it, too

70. Dole (out): METE.

1. Spot on a die: PIP. One of several meanings of the word "PIP". But if you "double" the word PIP it means "goodbye" (PIP PIP, Cheerio!)

2. Pacific tuna: AHI. SKIPJACK just wouldn't squeeze into those three squares

3. Check point?: BOX. Good mis-direction clue

4. Jordan who won the 2017 British Open: SPIETH. Golfers around the globe refer to this as The Open Championship; not the British Open, FYI ... Jordan SPIETH finished in the top ten of this year's OPEN, won by Cameron Smith

5. Raised canines, say: TEETHED. Did anyone else have a dog in mind instead of a tooth? My grandson (age two+) went through his TEETHing stage - see his canines??

6. Transpire: OCCUR.

7. Density symbol, in physics: RHO. Once again, only ONE RHOing pun per blog allowed

8. Nanny __: security devices: CAMS. If the editor/constructor had known ahead of time, this clue could've been: "Nicknames of the top two finishers at The Open Championship" (Cameron Smith - first; Cameron Young - second)

9. Formally choose: ANOINT.

10. Gender prefix: CIS. [Wikipedia] "Cisgender describes a person whose gender identity corresponds to their sex assigned at birth. The word cisgender is the antonym of transgender. The prefix cis- is Latin and means on this side of."


When a sheep explodes
In front of straight cheerleader
It goes: CIS, boom, baa

11. Type of flute: ALTO. [Wikipedia] "What is the difference between a flute and an alto flute? The bore of the alto flute is considerably larger in diameter and longer than a C flute and requires more breath from the player. This gives it a greater dynamic presence in the bottom octave and a half of its range"

12. Think ahead: PLAN. This was my PLANner of choice back when I was a working stiff

13. SEC concern: NYSE. When I first saw "SEC" I was thinking "SouthEastern Conference" of the NCAA (which would have fit into that space, BTW). But this SEC is the Securities and Exchange Commission

16. Vegan protein choice: TEMPEH. How does this compare to tofu, you ask? Well, here's what I found: "Is tempeh the same as tofu? Tempeh is like tofu that's been hitting the gym – hard. Like tofu, tempeh is still made from soy but the whole bean is used in a fermentation process. Using the whole bean gives tempeh it's chunkier texture which holds its shape better, making it ideal for crispy cubes or 'bacon' rashers"[]

20. Veggie chip brand: TERRA. Perps filled this in

23. Actress Jean of French New Wave cinema: SEBERG. The other half of my Natick today. A brief bio

24. __ Bradley: MILTON. When I lived in Springfield, MA way back when, MILTON Bradley had a facility in East Longmeadow. I sold them some packaging materials ... click on the link to learn more about the games they created, as well as a short bio on MILTON

25. Home of the Senators: OTTAWA. NHL team, and a CSO to Canadian, Eh?

27. Clutch hitter's stat: RBIS.

29. Smear with ink?: LIBEL. TATOO didn't seem to fit

30. Arctic native: INUK. Singular form on Inuit. This word appeared just once before @ USA Today on April 24, 2021 by Erik Agard

31. Join up: ENLIST. What I would've done back in 1973 if the draft was my only other option

32. Consumer-friendly?: EDIBLE. Lots of play-on-word clues today

33. Horn-__ glasses: RIMMED.

36. Director of the final episode of "M*A*S*H": ALDA.

39. Baltic native: LETT.

41. __ badge: MERIT. Anyone know how many MERIT badges are required to make Eagle Scout?

44. Guide for grading: RUBRIC. [Utah Education Network] "a RUBRIC for an essay might tell students that their work will be judged on purpose, organization, details, voice, and mechanics. A good rubric also describes levels of quality for each of the criteria"

46. "The usual": SAME OLD.

49. Blues partner: RHYTHM. I'm thinking that several of us Boomers remember this single that reached #3 in the Top 100 tunes in 1967 and made "The Happenings" a lot of money, I suspect. And they made a George and Ira Gershwin song from the 1930's "retro"

51. Literary device: SIMILE. A CSO to Yellowrocks. How does a SIMILE compare to a METAPHOR? [Merriam-Webster says] "A SIMILE is a figure of speech that compares two otherwise dissimilar things, often introduced by the words like or as ('you are like a summer's day'). A metaphor is when a word is used in place of another to suggest a likeness ('you are a summer's day')"

53. Feudal lord: LIEGE. One definition (as an adjective): concerned with or relating to the relationship between a feudal superior and a vassal. Wonder if this is the root of the word "allegiance"?

54. Dwindles: EBBS.

55. Trail mix: GORP. An acronym for "Good Old Raisins and Peanuts"

56. Compost bin emanation: ODOR. But composting truly makes the best dirt/soil

58. Lake whose name comes from Iroquoian for "long tail": ERIE. A crossword puzzle editor (not from the LA Times) once told me "hard clues can't be made hard with factual references that many/most won't know". Sage advice

61. Part of a stable diet: HAY. OAT fit, too. Note the play-on-words in the clue. Well, TWO can play THAT game! Moe-ku, and a CSO to Boomer, an erstwhile Grainger guy:

Bostitch employees
Get a free lunch at work. A
True, staple diet

62. Thyroid specialist, for short: ENT.

64. Where lots of cultures come together: LAB. Ha Ha

65. Aussie bird: EMU.

66. Dust cloth: RAG.

Well, look at me! I'm all "bug-eyed" from looking up word meanings and images!! Don't forget to comment below ...