Showing posts with label Bruce Haight. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bruce Haight. Show all posts

Apr 17, 2017

Monday, April 17, 2017 Bruce Haight

Theme: Change Lanes to Pass - but as always, keep to the right.

17A. Friends of man's best friend: DOG LOVERS. Lovers Lane.

24A. Sport involving some rolling on the grass: LAWN BOWLING. Bowling lane.

37A. Forgetting the unpleasant parts: SELECTIVE MEMORY. Memory lane.

47A. Tidy sum that doesn't sound like much: PRETTY PENNY. "Penny Lane" Beatles (Back story)

58A. Highway segment for slower traffic ... and, literally, what 17-, 24-, 37- and 47-Across each has: RIGHT LANE

Argyle here(in the middle lane, usually). Except for two corners, NE and SW, everything is well interconnected and a fun solve.


1. Drop a line from the dock, say: FISH

5. Normandy battle town: ST. LO

9. Massage targets: ACHEs

14. Together, musically: A DUE. (in Italian)

15. Chips __!: cookies: AHOY

16. Formal-sounding will?: SHALL

19. Columbus craft: PINTA. The actual name of Pinta is unknown. Wiki link

20. For each one: APIECE

21. Diving lake bird: LOON. Our crossword bird.

22. Knight's title: SIR

28. QB-to-receiver six-pointer: TD PASS. Touchdown pass.

30. Rent-a-car giant: AVIS

31. Landed: ALIT, leading to 43. Sitting on: ATOP

32. TV show shown before: RERUN

34. Banned bug spray: DDT. The U.S. banned DDT for agricultural use in 1972.

41. "Good" cholesterol initials: HDL. (High-Density Lipoprotein)

42. Wishes: HOPES

44. List of computer options: MENU

45. "Movin' right along ... ": "ANYHOO...". Humorous alteration of ANYHOW.

52. Overhead trains: ELS. Shortening of elevated trains.

53. Steak order: RARE

54. Contemporary radio station named for its former "easy listening" playlist: LITE FM. (generic name)

56. Leaves out: OMITS

61. Used up: SPENT

62. "So THAT'S what you mean": "I SEE"

63. Physics particle: ATOM

64. Bacon work: ESSAY

65. Lysol target: GERM

66. Drive-__ window: THRU


1. Craze: FAD

2. Knot-tying words: I DO

3. Drug test placebo: SUGAR PILL

4. Beatles' second film: "HELP!"

5. File-renaming command, at times: SAVE AS

6. "Supernatural" network: THE CW. The "CW" name is an abbreviation derived from the first letters of the names of its two parent corporations (CBS and Warner Bros). OK then.

7. Oscar winner Sophia: LOREN. In 1962, she won a Best Actress Oscar for "Two Women", a foreign-language film.

8. Kvetching cries: OYs

9. Nile snake: ASP

10. Flu symptoms: CHILLS

11. Asian capital: HANOI

12. "Tiny Dancer" singer John: ELTON

13. Much street talk: SLANG

18. Many Rembrandts: OILS

22. Squirrel away: STASH

23. Loafed: IDLED

25. Exposes: BARES

26. Reproductive cell: OVUM

27. Cellar reds and whites: WINE

29. Gobbled down: ATE

32. Tear to pieces: RIP UP

33. New Year's __: EVE

34. "Duh ... figure it out!": "DO THE MATH"

35. Slobber: DROOL

36. Printing goofs: TYPOs

38. Newscaster Huntley: CHET

39. Broadway award: TONY

40. Possibly will: MAY

44. Medit. volcano: MT. ETNA

45. Song before the game: ANTHEM

46. Vladivostok veto: NYET. Russian.

47. Narrative writing: PROSE

48. Boat launching aids: RAMPS

49. Great Lakes natives: ERIES

50. Beethoven dedicatee: ELISEFür Elise(3:38)

51. Algeria neighbor: NIGER

55. London apartment: FLAT

57. Muddy pen: STY

58. Fix, as a fight: RIG

59. Neither here __ there: NOR

60. Down Under bird: EMU


Apr 1, 2017

Saturday, Apr 1st, 2017, Brad Wilber

Theme: None

Words: 70 (missing J,Q,Y)

Blocks: 32

  We have not seen a solo Saturday from Brad since 2015; he contributed on two Saturdays last year.  I struggled with this one from Mr. Wilber, mostly by filling in the wrong answers on my first pass, and unwilling to let  them go.  Lots of one-word clues which can run into ambivalence and vagueness very quickly One 13-letter and two 11-letter spanners, chunky 8x6 corners in the NW and SE, and almost triple 8s in the opposing down corners.  Separation of the corners from the rest of the puzzle made it difficult to move from one area to another, too.  Some of the longer fill;

35a. Chart-topping instrumental of '76: THEME FROM SWAT

32a. Headed for a stall, quite possibly: OVERHEATING

38a. Time's Best Comedy Sketch of the 20th Century: WHO'S ON FIRST

19d. Fish with a prehensile tail: SEAHORSE

23d. Essentially:  IN EFFECT

24d. 1992 Nestle acquisition: PERRIER


April FOOLs~!

And now for the real puzzle....

Saturday, April 1st, 2017, Bruce Haight

Theme: Gotcha~!!!

Words: 72 (missing J,Q,V,W,X,Z)

Blocks: 29

Sorry, I couldn't resist~!  Three out of four weeks with a Bruce for a constructor - isn't that the nick-name for any guy from Australia~?  Anyway, a slightly themed puzzle for today, with a clever visual in the grid depicting something akin to the last Across clue featuring escalator; S T A I R S.  As for the rest of the challenge, it was looking grim on the first pass, but again, I did better with my first Down pass, which gave me something to work with on my second go.  Finished within my personal time, and nary a cheat or Google.  Chunky 8x8 and 6x6 corners with an ascending trio of "escalators" in the center.  Some of the longer fill;

15a. Slender smoke : PANATELA - I am making my way through Jonathan Kellerman's Alex Delaware novels, and his detective, Milo Sturgis, occasionally smokes a panatela

11d. Concert tix flashed at a singles bar, say : DATE BAIT - never heard the phrase; if they're offering Rangers tickets, I'm in - I hope she would be, too....

32d. It could involve a disappearance : MAGIC ACT

57. Like an escalator, and, aptly, like the six-letter word that begins where 40-Across ends : AT A SLANT



1. Shuttle facility : SPACE LAB

9. Auto shop purchase : RADIAL - I suppose "tire shop" would have been too easy for Saturday

16. Thorny shrub : ACACIA

17. Emotionally withdrawn : IN A SHELL

18. Buries : INTERS - I tried EMBEDS

19. Little laughter : TITTER

20. In a pinch : IF NEED BE

22. Autumn shade : OCHER - oops, not OCHRE

23. Many profs : PHDs

24. Oktoberfest supply : BIER

25. Transportation option : UBER

26. Whopper inventor : LIAR - ah, that kind of whopper....

27. Unites for a purpose : BANDS - usually with "together"

28. Jaunty topper : TAM


29. __ golf : MINI - oh, I would have gone with SKIRT; at least it could be answered MAXI, too

30. Ja, across the border : OUI - Yes, in German and Frawnche

31. Beezus' little sister, in Cleary books : RAMONA - learned from doing crosswords

33. Perfect : SPOT ON - I had SUPERB first, but then wondered if it was the verb perfect, and not the adjective perfect

36. Proper : APT

37. Delight at the comedy club : SLAY

38. Super __ : PAC - ugh, I had no clue

40. Hitches : SNAGS

43. Punxsutawney headliner : PHIL - the groundhog winter/spring weather forecaster for all of us, located in PA

44. Default result : REPO - default on payments

45. Doughnuts, geometrically : TORI - Latin plural of torus

46. "Growing Up in New Guinea" author : MEAD - just had to guess the "A"

47. Joint component : TENON - partnered with Mortise.  I am buying a biscuit joiner this weekend for two projects - fixing a split table, and building a new side station top

48. Hatchling from a green egg : EMU CHICK

50. Art incorporating architectural elements : MURALS - I considered this, and then it filled via perps

51. Judge's declaration : NO BAIL

52. Rule with many exceptions : I BEFORE E - seen this recently, too

54. Software giant : ORACLE

55. Yak, yak, yak : RATTLE ON

56. One way to break the news : GENTLY


1. Say scornfully : SPIT OUT

2. Emergency exit device : PANIC BAR

3. Something detested : ANATHEMA

4. Furniture mover : CASTER

5. Heavens : ETHER

6. Creepy look : LEER

7. Entirely : ALL

8. Its sung in the same act as "Some Enchanted Evening" : BALI HA'I

9. Comes down : RAINS - yesterday and today, in my neck of the woods

10. Unpopular spots : ACNE

12. Stuck at the ski lodge, maybe : ICED IN - run away Tin~!

13. Sack for company? : AIRBED

14. Surgical tools : LASERS

21. Wartime prez : FDR

23. Fruity cocktail word : PIÑA

26. Fuzz : LINT

27. Lift : BUOY - good WAG on my part from the "Y"

29. Challenging locks : MOPS

30. Colorful ring tone producer? : OPAL - I watched this cool NOVA episode on gems while I was in Delaware

33. Arrived home evasively : SLID

34. Clearing : OPEN AREA

35. Layered dessert : NAPOLEON

37. Colombian singer formerly a coach on "The Voice" : SHAKIRA

39. Agree : CONSENT

40. Hearing aid, briefly? : STENOGrapher - a bit meh, but the clue sort of salvages the "non-word" fill

41. "That's it for me" : NO MORE - "NO MORE  for me thanks, I'm drivin'"

Daffy Duck

42. Oranjestad native : ARUBAN

43. Pumping target, for short : PECtoral

44. Casino table do-over : RE-ROLL - I had REDEAL to start, slowed down the SE corner

46. Daughter of Billy Ray : MILEY

47. Medford school with a Boston campus : TUFTS - perps.  I work at UPS in Medford, LI - but it's not the same place....

49. Tobogganing spot : HILL

50. Prefix with carpal : META

53. Swing in a box : BAT - Baseball reference; I am sure C.C. is all keyed up for the new season


Mar 20, 2017

Monday, March 20, 2017 Bruce Haight

Theme: And it's a grand day to be sure!

17A. Change one's route to avoid heavy traffic, say: MAKE A DETOUR. Grand tour.

23A. Likely successor to the throne: HEIR APPARENT. Grandparent

37A. "You're confusing me": "I DON'T UNDERSTAND". Grandstand, verb or noun.

48A. Sprained ankle, often: SPORTS INJURY. Grand jury.

59A. Climactic show ending, and a literal hint to this puzzle's circled letters: GRAND FINALE. The word in the circles can follow GRAND and they are the final word in their entries.

Argyle here. We have a quick return of Bruce Haight, a grid spanner; we have circles, a tight theme, a very necessary reveal. I hope we all have great week on this first day of spring.


1. Negative attention from the press, briefly: BAD PR. (bad public relations)

6. Deep-voiced opera singer: BASSO

11. "I knew it!": "HAH!"

14. Blazing: AFIRE. AWORD.

15. Gossip spreader: YENTA

16. Abu Dhabi is its cap.: UAE. (United Arab Emirates) Visit Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, if you dare.

19. Org. for marksmen: NRA. (National Rifle Association)

20. "You __ here": ARE

21. Pipe-cleaning brand: DRANO. (Not recommended for tobacco pipes.)

22. Composer Stravinsky: IGOR. His wife's name was "Katya".

26. Magnificent: SUPERB

29. Epps of "House": OMAR. His IMDb page.

30. Have no doubt: KNOW

31. Fabulist mentioned by Aristotle: AESOP. (fabulist - a person who composes or relates fables.)

34. Soda: POP

41. Capitol Hill fig.: POL

42. Quarrel: ARGUE

43. Machu Picchu resident: INCA

44. "Me neither!": "NOR I!"

46. Sacred river of India: GANGES

53. "Peter Pan" beast: CROC. Tic-toc croc.

54. Safe place?: VAULT

55. Help in finding the hidden treasure: MAP

58. Kept under wraps: HID

62. Blanc who voiced Bugs: MEL

63. "__ bet?": WANNA

64. Kind of panel or system: SOLAR

65. Keats work: ODE

66. Annual celebrations, for short: B-DAYS

67. Plot surprise: TWIST


1. The Crimson Tide, familiarly: BAMA. (Alabama)

2. In the distance: AFAR

3. Storied water barrier: DIKE. Dutch boy story, perhaps.

4. Ante-: PRE-. Prefixes.

5. Page turner: READER

6. Way to play music if you can't read it: BY EAR

7. Insurance giant: AETNA

8. Busybody: SNOOP

9. Good name for a lover of hearty meals: STU

10. Paddle: OAR

11. Gut feeling at dinner time?: HUNGER PANG

12. Packers quarterback Rodgers: AARON. Green Bay Packers, Green Bay, Wisconsin.

13. EKG organ: HEART

18. Smidgen: DRIB. Often found as dribs and drabs.

22. Nest egg acronym: IRA. (Individual Retirement Account)

23. Previously cut, as timber: HEWN

24. Penniless: POOR

25. Gig equipment: AMPs

26. Decide not to go to: SKIP

27. Loosen, as a knot: UNDO

28. Cylindrical water toy: POOL NOODLE

31. Director Lee: ANG. Taiwanese-born Ang Lee, not "Spike" Lee.

32. School URL ending: .EDU

33. "Comprende?": "SEE?". Spanish to English.

35. Fairy tale starter: ONCE

36. High-tech appt. books: PDAs. (personal digital assistant)

38. Sharp-tasting: TART

39. "Exodus" author Leon: URIS

40. Minuscule: TINY

45. Tolkien beast: ORC

46. __ of Mexico: GULF

47. Whistler, but not his mother: ARTIST

48. Blockhead: SCHMO

49. Jimmied (open): PRIED

50. The first Mrs. Trump: IVANA

51. Mary Poppins, e.g.: NANNY

52. Biblical betrayer: JUDAS

55. Timbuktu's country: MALI

56. "__, poor Yorick!": Hamlet: ALAS

57. Cheeky: PERT

59. Pres. #43: GWB.(George Walker Bush)

60. "Cool!": "RAD!"

61. "Immediately!": "NOW!"


Notes from C.C.:

1) Happy Birthday to dear Spitzboov (Al), our always cheerful and knowledgeable imp (Spitzboov is Low German for "rascal/"imp".) Spitzboov served in the Navy Reserve for over 20 years & retired as Commander. He continues to support the Navy in any way he can. The Annin flag he sent to me after I got my US citizenship is from the Navy. Hopefully you and Betty can meet with Argyle again this year.

Argyle and Spitzboov
(August 23, 2014, Washington County Fair)

2) Happy Birthday to John28man as well! He pops in on the blog from time to time.

Mar 16, 2017

Thursday, March 16 2017 Bruce Haight

Theme: RRepeats - the second letter in each theme entry is doubled and the resulting phrase clued according to the first three-letter part

17A. What Dobermans do for dinner? : GRRAB A BITE. Grr!

24A. Super-cold concoction at Baskin-Robbins? : BRRAIN FREEZE. Brr! Combining the two, here's a cold Doberman:

41A. World's stealthiest detective? : SHHERLOCK HOLMES. Shh!

52A. Cutest Baby contest champion? : AWWARD WINNER. Aww!

65A. Massage epiphany? : AHHA MOMENT. Ahh!

Brruce brrings us a nice Thursday offering. A solid 59 letters of theme entries and a generally pleasing fill around those. I might have tried to not repeat the RR with the first two themers as it could indicate all the following entries will follow the same convention. Not a major nit though, the idea is fun. Let's see what jumps out in the rest of the entries.


1. The Miners of the Lone Star St. : UTEP. University of Texas, El Paso.

5. Eurasia's __ Mountains : URAL

9. Fundraising gps. : PTAS. I had the P and tried PACS first until nothing would fit around it and forced a change of mind.

13. Caesar's France : GAUL. We studied Caesar's book "Conquest of Gaul" in Latin class at school. Cracking stuff for schoolboys.

14. Marner of fiction : SILAS. Great book. The movie adaptation starring Ben Kingsley as the eponymous weaver was excellent also.

16. Hindustani language : URDU. Hindi has given us quite a few English words, but I can't find any examples from Urdu.

19. Innocent : BABE

20. Retro wall unit : STONE. Retro? Pretty sure we still build with stone.

21. Titanic undoing : BERG. Least accurate damage assessment ever: "We've just stopped for a short time to take on some ice".

23. Not very bright : DIM

28. Yale alum : ELI

31. Longtime Yankees announcer __ Allen : MEL. No clue. Thanks, crosses.

32. First to play James : SEAN. 007-portrayer par excellence Connery. Dr. No was the first movie in the franchise, released in 1962.

33. Tall and lean : LANK

35. "Sadly ... " : ALAS

38. Box : CRATE

44. Got out of bed : AROSE. I arose early this morning to try to shake myself out of time-change clock-lag. I can fly across 11 or 12 time zones and get no jet lag, but that hour in Spring messes me up. It was nice and peaceful at the top of the Hollywood sign though - I'll find out tomorrow if my body clock is reset.

45. "So __ say" : THEY

46. Crowd-sourced review site : YELP. Can be useful if you ignore the obvious outliers (and the reviews obviously written by the buddies of the establishment).

47. Asian takeout option : THAI

49. Little trickster : IMP

51. See 56-Down : SLY. Sylvester Stallone of the movies. I've met him, his brother plays jazz at my local Italian restaurant. He's not as short as people seem to think. However, he's listed at 5'10" on Wikipedia, but I think that might be a little generous.

57. Security briefing org. : CIA

58. Clothing part that might split : SEAM. Especially if you're wearing a size to small or you've eaten a big dinner.

59. Epic tales : SAGAS

63. Singer James : ETTA

68. Agenda detail : ITEM

69. Gets mud on : SOILS

70. Phi __ Kappa : BETA

71. Banks of 2000s TV talk : TYRA

72. Doing business : OPEN

73. "The Osbournes" patriarch : OZZY. Quite the character. I saw Black Sabbath play in London once with Motorhead and Hawkwind. Quite the eardrum assault. Fun through. Here's Hawkwind - imagine this cranked up to 11. Awesome.


1. Brand of sheepskin boots : UGGS. Australia's finest.

2. Biting : TART

3. Italian capital : EURO. No more Lira. It's a shame a lot of the European currencies disappeared with the introduction of the Euro.

4. Fallback option : PLAN B

5. __ Today : USA. Their distribution network is amazing. I'm always astonished how early the paper is delivered to the various hotels I've stayed in across the USA, even in remote locations.

6. Tease : RIB

7. "I was out of town," e.g. : ALIBI

8. Approach midnight : LATEN. Hmmm. I looked sideways at this one when it appeared. I'm still looking askance at it. Not a word I would use.

9. Place to hoist a pint : PUB. I've seen the inside of a couple of these. I pulled pints at the Queen's Arms in Kilburn, north London when I was 19. A lot of Guinness and shots of Bushmills - most of the patrons were Irish demolition workers. Tough crowd.

10. DBA followers : TRADE NAMES. "Doing Business As".

11. Madison Ave. field : AD BIZ

12. In-your-face challenge : SUE ME

15. Feudal laborers : SERFS

18. Protective barrier : BERM. There were a lot of berms bulldozed out of the sand here in Southern California last winter to protect the beach cities with the expectation of major storms. They're very effective.

22. El __ : GRECO. "The Greek". Doménikos Theotokópoulos was born in Crete, but spent most of his life in Toledo in Spain.

25. Authentic : REAL

26. Dole out : ALLOT. If you hand out a large amount you allot a lot.

27. Like birds with worms, so it's said : EARLY. The Early Bird was me this morning. No worms caught though, probably a good thing.

28. Designer Schiaparelli : ELSA

29. Cowardly Lion portrayer : LAHR. Bert in The Wizard of Oz

30. Facing serious trouble : IN HOT WATER

34. Singer who formerly stylized her name with a dollar sign : KESHA, or rather KE$HA

36. "__ du lieber!" : ACH. "Oh, my dear!"

37. Yarn purchase : SKEIN. I misread the clue as "yam" at first which had me puzzled.

39. Squeal : TELL. As in rat someone out.

40. Catch sight of : ESPY. I'd clue this as the sports award, being more "in the language".

42. Raises : REARS

43. Many a gospel song : HYMN

48. Brainstorms : IDEAS

50. Uruguayan money : PESO

52. Nail a test : ACE IT

53. Like Oscar Wilde : WITTY

54. Mackerel relative : WAHOO

55. Beatnik's "With ya" : I'M HIP

56. Repeating movie role for 51-Across : RAMBO. Sly's character.

60. "Sheesh!" : GEEZ

61. Animated bug film : ANTZ

62. Time at a hotel : STAY. I've had quite a few of these in my time.

64. Org. for docs : AMA. American Medical Association.

66. Pint to drink : ALE. In the pub too.

67. AOL alternative : MSN

Short blog today, a lot going on for me. Hopefully no more explications required. The regulars in the comments section can handle any gaps. Here's the grid!


Mar 11, 2017

Saturday, March 11, 2017 Bruce Haight

Theme: None

Words: 70 (missing J,Q,Z)

Blocks: 27

We are witness to Bruce Haight's hitting for the cycle - this is his first Saturday construction for the LA Times, and has now been published every day of the week. Congratulations to Bruce, but I gotta say, too many proper names(*) in this one made it a fun sponge - can't win them all. 10x6 in two corners and triple 8-letter stacks in the others, with two more 8-letter fills as well. 

15. Fizzled : PETERED OUT - what do you call a guy who tires easily~? Peter; how about the guy who's creative~? Art; The guy who stirs up trouble~? Buck - or - Russell; The wealthy one~? Rich; The one who's brutally honest~? Frank. I can go on....

14. Displaying polish, perhaps : OPEN-TOED

52. Symbol of ancient Egypt : SACRED IBIS - dah~! I had ICON, IDOL, and knew it wasn't correct - took a moment to remember the sacred bird - and also the God Thoth

31. "Brava!" : ATTA GIRL - I had the "G", and the "a" at the end of the clue helped me nail this

atta girl~!

Spring ON forWARD~


1. Participated in a movie gunfight, say : SHOT BLANKS

11. Symbol of purity : HALO - not DOVE

16. Junket : TRIP

17. Really hot : EXTRA SPICY

18. Bud : MATE

19. Passes : ENACTS

20. Getaway car driver : WHEELMAN

22. Comforter : DUVET - I have such a resentment for this word, only because my friend's wife used it in a Scrabble game, and I challenged - it's Frawnche - and yet it counted.  Ugh, ugh, ugh.

23. Metered lines : POESY

24. Rudder location : AFT

25. "Now!" : STAT - not ASAP

26*. "Buddenbrooks" author : MANN

27. Farm follower? : E-I-E-I-O - not "STEAD"; this was almost funny....

29. Moolah : GELT - not CASH

30. Pop-up producer : ADWARE

31. How many games are won : AS A TEAM - the NY Rangers finally figured out their Power Play, and still managed to lose on Thursday

35. Cuddled : SPOONED - yeah, one of these days I'll get around to this again

36. Wine flavor component : TANNIN

37. Compact __ : DISC

38. Jerks : TWITS - my mother's affectionate name for the NY Rangers

39. "No __!" : DICE

40*. Inventing middle name : ALVA

44. Six-pack to be proud of : ABS - the 'other' six-pack produces the exact opposite

45*. Big name in '50s-'60s civil rights : EVERS

47. Take turns? : STEER - got it, but pondered DRIVE, too

48. Cuts to a roving reporter : GOES LIVE - Ha~! Nailed it

50. Introductory language class : LATIN I

51. Digging : INTO

54. Shipping hazard : REEF

55. Wary : ON THE ALERT

56. Exam for some college srs. : LSAT

57. Tourist attraction : RESORT AREA


1. Radar pickups : SPEEDS

2. Threaded fastener : HEX-NUT - this is the crenellated version

3. Interval for Rossini : OTTAVA - musical reference, octave

4. Three-line stanza : TERCET

5*. Benjamin of "Law & Order" : BRATT - was never a big fan of his character - I think cutting out Chris Noth's "Mike Logan" was not a good move for the show - tho he did return on "Criminal Intent"

6. Frequency modulation word? : LESS - filled via perps; not sure I "get it"

7. Payroll service initials : ADP - I see this on the UPS truck daily

8. "Forget it!" : "NO I WON'T~!" - I had YOU WISH to start, and it was working for a while

9. German coffeecake : KUCHEN - OK, I'll take das word for it....

10. Optical maladies : STYES

11. Webmaster's code : HTML

12. Ancient Syrian : ARAMAEAN

13. Got ready to grill : LIT A FIRE

21. Focus group member, casually? : EYE DOC - ah.  Clever

23. Date provider : PALM - the tree, not the singles website

26. Average : MEAN

28. WWII battle site, for short : IWO - Jima

29*. Theodor whose middle name was Seuss : GEISEL -even guessing this was "Dr Seuss" did not help at all

30. It adjoins the altar : APSE


32. Surgeon, slangily : SAWBONES

33. Aromatic brew : ANISE TEA - been popular in crosswords lately

34. Blaster : TNT - oops, not GUN

35. Unleashes : SICS

37. Runs : DIRECTS

39*. William of "24" : DEVANE - I liked him as Carter in "Payback"

40*. Fifth-century invader : ATTILA - just read a true "science fiction" novel from Bradbury and Baxter where Genghis Khan meets Alexander the Great in battle

41*. Elvis Presley lyricist Jerry : LEIBER

42. __ facias: jury pool (from the Latin for "make come") : VENIRE - all my Law & Order watching did not get me this

43. Grain bristle : ARISTA - mostly perps

46. Sun block : VISOR

47*. '70s-'80s Egyptian president : SADAT - an another, but I knew this one

49. Permissive : SOFT

50. Suggestive gander : LEER

53. Letter after pi : RHO


Jan 25, 2017

Wednesday, January 25, 2017, Bruce Haight


Bruce has supplied us with a clever puzzle with two switcheroos. First he supplied the names of all the fingers on a hand with cluing/fill that had nothing to do with actual fingers. Secondly he gave the reveal with a two-word phrase DIG IT that could be consolidated to make DIGIT which of course is an alternate name for fingers.


55. "Pay attention, man!" ... and, in a different way, what the end of each answer to a starred clue refers to : DIG IT/DIGIT - Fun! Here are some DIGITS being used to DIG IT.

Here's the "handy" grid with the theme and reveal fill that as you can see is further enhanced by the appearance of the fingers being in order from LITTLE TO THUMB.

Now let's look at Bruce's well-executed theme fill:

18. *"C'mon, loosen up!" : LIVE A LITTLE - A PINKY swear gives us an alternate name for our tiniest DIGIT

23. *Place for lefts and rights : BOXING RING - Waddaya think? A little gaudy?

40. *Compromise : MEET IN THE MIDDLE - George was sure she was giving him the infamous MIDDLE finger. 

52. *Market measure : STOCK INDEX - Several Husker VB girls had their INDEX fingers raised after winning the 2015 National Championship.

62. *General principle : RULE OF THUMB - A good use of that DIGIT that separates us from most of the animal world and my assessment of C.C. and the rest of you word warriors here at our little conclave!

Now let's explore some more of the fine fill Bruce has, uh, fingered for us today:


1. Put a spell on : HEX

4. Organizes from best to worst, say : SORTS - One of my favorite Excel features

9. Arizona landforms : MESAS

14. Wrath : IRE

15. Longtime "At the Movies" co-host : EBERT - He listed Casablanca and Citizen Kane among his ten best

16. One bit : AT ALL

17. Shake up : JAR - Definitely a little JAR! Cell phone user?

20. Do penance : ATONE

22. Certain string musician's need : VIOLA BOW - Re-hairing a bow

26. "Star Wars" extras : ET'S

27. Word of passione : CARA - Ya gotta love Jay and the American's singing CARA Mia - My Beloved in Italian

28. Cheek : SASS

31. "Alas!" : AH ME

34. Elementary bit : ATOM

37. Water nymph : NAIAD

43. Orchard trees : PEARS

44. "Ready are you? What know you of ready?" speaker : YODA

45. Low in fat : LEAN

46. Supermodel Banks : TYRA

48. Gross : ICKY

50. PD alert : APB - Calling all cars!

58. French president Hollande : FRANCOIS - His progression of domestic partners in chronological order. He didn't always tell them that someone else was coming in from the bullpen.

61. Sees red : BOILS

65. Bygone muscle car : GTO

66. Holiday visitor : IN-LAW

67. "Science of Logic" author Georg : HEGEL

68. Shy person's note? : IOU - A day late and a few dollars shy

69. Branch quarters : NESTS - Nests are fine, but... 

70. Philadelphia pro : EAGLE

71. "Major Crimes" network : TNT


1. Muslim veil : HIJAB

2. Sister of Calliope : ERATO

3. Maker of ColorQube printers : XEROX

4. One-named singer portrayed by Jennifer Lopez in a 1997 film : SELENA - SELENA on the left and JLO on the right playing Selena in Jennifer's breakout role.

5. Japanese sash : OBI

6. Gun, as a V8 : REV

7. Roman fountain : TREVI

8. Spot : STAIN

9. Pony Express concern : MAIL - Orphans preferred? Yikes! 

10. Vocalist James : ETTA

11. Plopped down next to : SAT BESIDE

12. Apportion : ALLOT

13. Boatloads : SLEWS

19. Stack under a tarp : LOGS

21. "Close, but no cigar" : NICE TRY 

24. Family nickname : GRAN(ny)

25. Threadbare : RATTY

29. Boy in "Star Wars" prequel films : ANI

30. "I wish I could" : SADLY NO

31. Bit of band gear : AMP

32. Small snicker : HEE

33. Sub filler : MEATBALLS

35. "So THAT's what's going on here!" : OHO - I'm shocked there is gambling going on in here!

36. First responder : MEDIC - At Omaha Beach

38. It borders the Fla. panhandle : ALA

39. Hideout : DEN

41. Medit. country : ISR

42. Big name in big rigs : MACK - Inside the most expensive MACK truck 

47. Dating from : AS OF

49. Cat dish tidbit : KIBBLE

50. Nasal spray brand : AFRIN

51. Danish fruit : PRUNE

53. Parishioner's pledge : TITHE

54. Milo of "Barbarella" : O'SHEA - Sorry, Milo, yours is not the first name that leaps to mind when I think of Barbarella 

56. John of The Red Piano Tour : ELTON

57. Strikes through : X'S OUT

59. "Far out!" : NEAT

60. Stockholder's assets? : COWS

63. Trendy boot brand : UGG

64. Blanc heard but not seen : MEL - Not necessarily as in this classic routine (Si, Sy, Sue, Sew) with Jack Benny.

Now let's get your DIGITAL comments: