Showing posts with label Alan DeLoriea. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Alan DeLoriea. Show all posts

Apr 28, 2017

Friday April 28, 2017 Alan DeLoriea

Theme: H-BOMB (29. Its testing awakened Godzilla ... and what's dropped, facetiously, into five puzzle answers) - B is added to the start of each common phrase. (I meant H. Thanks, CanadianEh!.)

17A. Cool site? : HIP ADDRESS. IP address. Every computer has one. You can google "What's my IP address" to find out yours.

38A. Android greeting? : HI ROBOT. I Robot. Crossing the reveal H-BOMB. Very nice.

62A. Congress taking some R and R? : HILL AT EASE. Ill at ease.
11D. When the punch line hits? : HAHA MOMENT. Aha moment.

27D. Lonely banquet reservation? : HALL FOR ONE. All for one.

C.C. here. Some of you are aware that Lemonade had a scare following his sciatica surgery. He was hospitalized for six long days to deal with a few terrifying health issues. He's now at home recovering. Hopefully he'll be back guiding us next Friday.

Today we have a classic Friday letter addition/deletion/replacement theme with a pinwheel design, which is frequently used when there is a reveal entry. Pinwheel often allows smoother fill, but it also limits long fill (8+ letter answers). In today's case, we only have two: LAST GASP (20. Like a Hail Mary pass) and  ALCATRAZ (57. "The Rock" (1996) setting). Both sparkling.


1. Smears : DAUBS

6. Warthog weapon : TUSK. What do you call the pair above his tusks?

10. Leave behind : SHED. As in fur. I was thinking of LOSE.

14. __ de l'air: French Air Force : ARMEE. Helpful clue

15. Bart Simpson's bus driver : OTTO. D-Otto's surname is Uttormark. I forgot what it means. Burnikel means "Don't kill the child".

16. Vendor offering : WARE. Was picturing food.

19. Melville's "grand, ungodly, god-like man" : AHAB

21. "Animal House" rivals : FRATS. Got via crosses.

22. "Suicide Squad" actor Jared : LETO

23. TV fantasy drama inspired by iconic brothers : GRIMM. Helpful clue.

25. Post-run feeling : ACHE

28. Younger Simpson sister : ASHLEE. Jessica's sister. Not LISA or MAGGIE.

30. Mining target : ORE. Also 18. Mining target : DATA

33. Clutch : GRASP

35. DealDash offers : BIDS. Never used DealDash. You?

36. Do a DJ's job : MIX

37. Press output : OIL. Not "The Press" press.

41. N.C. winter hours : EST

42. Seminary subj. : REL

43. Former L.A. Laker Lamar __ : ODOM. Troubled life.

44. Capp chap : ABNER

46. "Speak" follower : ARF

47. Liable to spill the beans : BLABBY. Never used this word.

50. Mediterranean hot spot : ETNA

51. Willow twig : OSIER. Learned from doing crosswords. This tree is very Osier-y.

53. CPR pros : EMTS

55. Show tune that begins, "The most beautiful sound I ever heard" : MARIA

61. Conductive nerve part : AXON

64. Wilder acting : GENE. I know "Acting Wilder" will lose the  "capital W" trick, but it sounds better grammatically.

65. Digging : INTO. So what was your sciatica surgery procedure called, Dave? You're so lucky that it's totally gone.

66. Up : ASTIR

67. Whole mess : SLEW

68. "The Hunger Games" president : SNOW. Stranger to me.

69. __ pad : STENO. Not LEGAL/MOUSE.


1. Oompa-Loompa creator : DAHL

2. Song from Strauss : ARIA

3. Frequent callers? : UMPS. Great clue.

4. Apple Records founders : BEATLES

5. Swamp growth : SEDGE

6. Trunks : TORSOS

7. Sch. that calls the Sun Bowl its home : UTEP. University of Texas at El Paso.

8. New Eng. sextet : STs (States)

9. Mayweather stat : KO'S

10. Be like bees : SWARM. Not STING.
12. Part of Q.E.D. : ERAT

13. Society newbies : DEBS

21. Gala gathering : FIESTA

23. Slick-talking : GLIB

24. Second shot : RE-DO

25. Prefix with 34-Down : AGORA. And 34. Irrational aversion : PHOBIA. Agoraphobia = Fear of public spaces

26. Town __ : CRIER

31. Up : RISEN

32. More than expected : EXTRA

39. "Spamalot" lyricist : IDLE (Eric)

40. Loud cry : ROAR. And  48. Loud cry : BELLOW

45. Childish descriptor of a childhood friend : BESTEST. Are you still in contact with your childhood bestest friend?

49. Where "It's fun to stay," in a disco hit : YMCA

52. Tendon : SINEW

54. Exit lines : TA TAs

55. Money and Fortune, briefly : MAGS
56. Winter Olympics leap : AXEL

57. Adele, vocally : ALTO

58. Use a Yelp account, say : RATE

59. Words used for a spell? : AS IN. Spelling.

60. Cold temperature : ZERO. It was so warm last weekend that Boomer and I started our garden. Then we had a  few cold days. Snow on our deck yesterday morning. 

62. Half a matching set : HIS

63. Place to stay : INN

Some of you probably still remember Wayne R. Williams, who used to edit our old Tribune Media Daily crosswords. He passed away on Tuesday morning.

Our local Star Tribune now carries Timothy Parker's crosswords and the 6-week-behind New York Times crosswords. Does your paper have two puzzles or only one puzzle? Do they give bylines? Let me know in the Comments section.


Feb 9, 2017

Thursday February 9 2017 Alan DeLoriea

Theme: "He who hesitates is last" - Mae West

17A. War film with a cast of 60-Across? : APOCALYPSE LATER. Apocalypse Now. Coppola's 1979 Vietnam War release. And a perfect excuse for some dramatic background music from Richard Wagner.

28A. Newspaper with a staff of 60-Across? : USA TOMORROW. USA Today is missing one staff member, the crossword editor. Allegedly.

44A. 1969 hit song by a group of 60-Across? : NEXT MAGIC MOMENT. "This Magic Moment" passed me by unnoticed. Research tells me that the song was originally recorded in 1960 by Ben E. King and the Drifters, then Jay and the Americans took it to Number 6 in the Billboard Chart in 1969. There it has lain, untroubled by history, until today.

which leads us to

60A. Off-putting sorts? : PROCRASTINATORS. Great word. This has also sat, dusty and forgotten by crossword constructors since an appearance in the New York Times back in 1976. Welcome back!

Yay Thursday! Time for me to focus on the work I'm meant to get done this week. But first - there's a crossword to finish.

Welcome also to today's constructor Alan DeLoriea and an LAT debut. He also debuted in the NYT back in December, so a nice two-fer, considering how long it takes for a puzzle to actually appear in print. A quick Google reveals that he's one of the West Coasters among us, and he plays scrabble.

Three grid-spanners and one 10-letter theme entry means the grid has mirror symmetry, not the usual rotational, so that's a little different. "Now/Later", "Today/Tomorrow" are a solid couple of theme pairs. "This/Next" requires a little more thought and the addition of "week" or "month" etc. to fully come to life. There is quite a lot of three-letter fill, but there's some sparkly longer stuff to offset that.

Good effort!

Let's see what else catches the eye:


1. Subj. for a non-native speaker : ESL. English as a Second Language. Some native speakers could do with a refresher class, I swear.

4. __-top: Beatles' style : MOP

7. Much of "Star Wars" FX : CGI. Special Effects/Computer-Generated Imagery. I was blown away when I saw the first movie in the theater (or theatre?) back in England in 1978.

10. Clumsy type : OAF

13. __ Michele, 8-Down co-star : LEA. Good morning, cross-referenced clue. Thank you, eventually, perps.

14. "The Princess Diaries" princess : MIA

15. Tetris shape : ELL

16. Sporty truck, briefly : UTE. I can't help but think of "My Cousin Vinnie" and chuckle when I see this word.

21. "Rock and Roll All __": Kiss hit : NITE. Paul Stanley played my first guitar shortly after it was given to me as a present. Well, he picked it up, showed me an "E" chord and gave it back to me. My girlfriend at the time worked for the record label and he dropped by for drinks at a party we had just after New Year.

22. Reckon : 'SPOSE

23. Custardy dessert : FLAN Food! Flan is grande in Mexico.

24. Thrown for a loop : DAZED

26. Cool, once : HEP. Can't you still be a hep cat? I know you'd have to be wearing a zoot suit and playing sax, but still ..

27. Campus groups : FRATS

31. Dough for ramen? : YEN. Nicely done. Some of these: ¥ for a bowl of these:

Food! I've been learning some of Masaharu Morimoto's recipes recently, including making your own udon noodles for ramen.

32. Square __ : ONE

33. Traveler's aid : VEHICLE

37. "Hamlet, thou art slain" speaker : LAERTES. Act V, sc ii. There was so much jiggery-pokery going on in that scene (as well as Osric making a nuisance of himself) that it was difficult to keep track. I believe Queen Gertrude, Laertes, Claudius and Hamlet (appropriately) shuffled off the mortal coil in that order. Rosencrantz, Guildernstern, Ophelia and Polonius had already beaten them to the Pearly Gates. Cracking stuff.

42. Political __ : ARENA

43. Big name in big tractors : DEERE

50. Write in code? : PROGRAM. Come on over and help me with my Linux shell scripting. Please.

51. Actress Ramirez of "Grey's Anatomy" : SARA. More crosses - thanks very much.

55. __ d'Alene : COEUR. Nailed it (finally)!

56. Mideast sultanate : OMAN

63. Pie choice : À LA MODE. It's always a sneaky task trying to parse this with a few missing letters. I'm always looking for a fruit or savory filling.

64. Like bread knives : SERRATE. I wanted SERRATED. I'm sure the usage is fine, but I would never describe a knife as "serrate" - I'd say "serrated", incorrectly as it turns out. Learning moment. Here are my knives - the serrate is third from the left next to the cleaver and the boning knife. The cleaver cost me $16 from an Asian restaurant supply store, weighs 2lbs and makes you feel like a bad-ass when you're chopping stuff with it.

65. Well-to-do : MONEYED

66. Unpredictable : ERRATIC


1. Twisty-horned antelope : ELAND. Twisty robber-baron and founder of Stanford? LELAND

2. Photo app effect : SEPIA

3. Founder of Taoism : LAOTZU. My last fill was the "A" as LEA was unknown. I just couldn't pull the correct spelling out of my memory banks. LAO looked better than LEO so that's what I went for.

4. Sport for Ronda Rousey, for short : MMA. Mixed Martial Arts. Her reputation's taken a bit of a beating(!) after the last couple of fights. I wouldn't like to get on the wrong side of her though.

5. Aromatherapy array : OILS

6. Outmoded public convenience : PAYPHONE. It's amazing how quickly these things have disappeared. I'm not sure I'd be able to remember how to use one.

7. Center of moral corruption : CESSPOOL

8. TV show with mashups : GLEE. Never seen the show. The mashups are well known though. Check out YouTube.

9. Down with something : ILL. My first thought went with the modern parlance "in favor of" then I talked sense into myself.

10. Wanted one : OUTLAW

11. Bothered a lot : ATE AT

12. Fronded plants : FERNS

18. Mediocre marks : CEES. I'm not a big fan of these "grade" fills, especially when pluralized. I'd have tried to find something else.

19. Sonnet, e.g. : POEM

20. Do maintained with a pick : AFRO. Strictly speaking, shouldn't it be 'Do?

25. Kids' summer activity : DAY CAMP

27. "Another word for nothin' left to lose," in a Joplin hit : FREEDOM. "Me and Bobby McGee" and a classic. She never sang it at Woodstock, contrary to what a lot of people think. She only recorded it a few days before she sadly passed away.

29. __ Aviv : TEL

30. Genetic messenger molecule : RNA

33. The Scooby gang's Mystery Machine, e.g. : VAN. All together now: "Mr. Jenks!!!" "And I'd 'a gotten away with it if it hadn't been for you darned kids!"

34. Ode preposition : 'ERE. As the cockney Grecian Vase thief said to his accomplice "'ere, 'ode on to this while I go back fer the uvver one".

35. Spell : HEX

36. QB's mishap : INT. I still can't get over Sunday's "Big Game".

38. Dream state letters : R.E.M. Rapid Eye Movements; not dreaming about Michael Stipe.

39. Technical foul signal, in basketball : TEE. "Tee him up Ref!"

40. West ender? : -ERN

41. Place : SET. So wait, a place setting is a place placing? Or a setting setting? English is a great language.

45. Centipede home? : ARCADE. Atari video game from the '80s.

46. Stimulated : GOOSED

47. "Oh, now __ it!" : I GET

48. All-in-one vacation : CRUISE

49. Eliot's weaver : MARNER. Silas. I'm not sure the book would go over too well if it was written and published today.

51. Canned meat used in Hawaiian cuisine : SPAM. Food! I love Spam musubis. My Japanese "Auntie" Satchi makes them at Christmas.

52. "The Good Dinosaur" dinosaur : ARLO. Crosses. Mr. Guthrie gets a rest today.

53. Reddish horse : ROAN

54. Source of cartoon explosives : ACME. Made me laugh. Wile. E. Coyote was a good customer of theirs.

56. Other, south of the border : OTRA. Down Mexico Way. Canadian Eh! might argue this one.

57. Castle defense : MOAT

58. Basic class with easels : ART I. Funny, after my question regarding LATIN I last week, now we see another "I". I always thought it was "101", but then again I never went to school here.

59. Tiny time pd. : N-SEC. A nanosecond. Tiny indeed. 1 nanosecond:1 second:31.71 years.

61. Siegfried collaborator : ROY. Their performance days were pretty much over when Roy was bitten by one of the tigers and almost died.

62. PDX info: Abbr. : ARR. Arrivals into Portland International Airport. The terminal is famous for the carpet design; the original was replaced in 2015; swatches of the original carpet being sold off to the public. The last time I was in PDX I was changing planes on my way home from Seattle to LA in a torrential rainstorm in a little turbo-prop puddle-jumper. We deplaned outside the terminal, I dripped a lot onto the new carpet when I finally got inside. Here's the old (left) and new side-by-side:

And with a carpet swatch, I think that wraps up this one! Heeeere's the grid!


(I just noticed that if you blur your eyes, the grid looks like a Teddy Bear with a "Sting" 80's spiked haircut. And I promise I've not been smoking anything.)

Notes from C.C.:

1) Steve, grids with left/right symmetry tend to have funny looks. Re rice balls, did we miss an important event in your life?

2) Happy Birthday to dear Splynter (Richard), who turns 46 years old today. Splynter started blogging for us since March 2011 and only missed one Saturday when he was sick. He's this dedicated to our blog and readers. We're so lucky.