Showing posts with label Jeff Chen. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Jeff Chen. Show all posts

Jul 18, 2019

Thursday, July 18th 2019 John-Clark Levin & Jeff Chen

Theme: Could I get the scam on the side? As the diner said to the huckster.

The reveal tells us what to look for:

54. Freelance for extra income ... and a hint to the answers to starred clues: SIDE HUSTLE. The first or last word is the hustle, depending on which side of the grid the entry is placed.

16A. *Goof off: FOOL AROUND

24A. *Mecca for sci-fi and superhero fans: COMIC CON. A lot of the attendees take it pretty "seriously", quite the colorful crew:

29A. *Trace-amount precipitation: SNOW FLURRIES. Thankfully rare in Los Angeles. I did my share of cold back in the old country. I'd not heard of "snow" in the context of a hustle before.

39A. *Object of Jason's quest: GOLDEN FLEECE. I always think of the skeleton-fighting scene from the movie "Jason and the Argonauts". Not bad special effects for 1963.

46A. *Make flashy modifications to: TRICK OUT. There's a whole culture of auto trick-outery here in Southern California.

This looks to be the second LAT collaboration between John-Clark and Jeff, the first was just back in May, and very enjoyable this was too. Entertaining theme, fun fill and some nice cluing and misdirection. Let's see what jumps out:


1. Like challah bread: EGGY

5. Obligations: DEBTS

10. Pistons' org.: N.B.A.

13. Broadway seductress: LOLA. From the musical "Kinky Boots". The Broadway production went dark this April after more than 2,500 performances. The impressarios got their money back on that one!

14. Threepio's pal: ARTOO. Star Wars droids, as we all know.

15. Take the show on the road: TOUR

18. Stunt legend Knievel: EVEL. His son, Robbie, continues the family tradition.

19. Suit parts: VESTS. Could be COATS or PANTS so wait for some help from the crosses.

20. Gross sales, on an income statement: TOP LINE

22. Juices up: FUELS

25. Jessica of the "Fantastic Four" films: ALBA

26. Mysterious power: ESP.

28. Votes against: NOES

33. Burden: TAX. Don't get me started.

34. Co-star/co-creator Issa __ of HBO's "Insecure": RAE. No clue, thank you crosses. I used to get HBO as a "bonus" when I switched providers, but I never watched anything on there, so I cancelled when my free trial was done.

35. Prefix with -gram: ANA. I find it disappointing you can't make an anagram out of anagram. I'm going to start a company called "Garmana" just so there is one.

36. Quick drink: NIP

42. Oil cartel: OPEC

44. Commotion: ADO

45. __ Stefani, returning coach on "The Voice": GWEN. She's great, I loved the third No Doubt album "Tragic Kingdom". Here's the breakout single.

49. Puts on Facebook: POSTS

50. Alerts on the road: HONKS AT. Generally not an alert, more a frustration-reliever.

51. Often-dystopian conflict: WW III

53. "Er, I'd rather not": UM, NO

58. Start of D-Day?: DEES. Two "D"s begin "D-Day". Nice clue.

59. Like Navy SEALs: ELITE

60. Run like heck: TEAR

61. Nursery roll: SOD

62. Intuit: SENSE

63. Watson who played Hermione in Harry Potter films: EMMA


1. Sprite: ELF

2. Muck: GOO

3. Car storage spot: GLOVE BOX. Very nice, took me a while to see the misdirection here.

4. Sonia Sotomayor's alma mater: YALE LAW

5. Pub flier: DART

6. Greek Cupid: EROS. No more Eros lessons, I think you've all got it now. Class dismissed.

7. Approx. 1,055 joules: B.T.U. British Thermal Units. Rule Britannia!

8. Depp's "Lone Ranger" role: TONTO

9. Genesis city of sin: SODOM

10. Beginner: NOVICE

11. __ Aires: BUENOS. A city on my bucket list to visit. I've worked for companies with an office there, but never managed to swing a trip.

12. "Over the Rainbow" composer: ARLEN. Harold Arlen was a musical machine - he wrote the melodies for many, many songs. "Over the Rainbow" was voted the 20th Century's No. 1 song by RIAA and the National Endowment for the Arts.

15. AT&T and Verizon: TELCOS. I think AT&T might be considered a little more than a telco with the acquisition of DirecTV and the takeover of Time Warner.

17. Pack animal: ASS

21. __ gland: organ that secretes melatonin: PINEAL

22. Extreme diet: FAST

23. Forearm bone: ULNA

24. Life-saving proc.: C.P.R. Cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Long desscription for something you need in a hurry. Thank you, abbreviations.

26. Mideast airline: EL AL

27. Took to court: SUED

30. Monastic garments: FROCKS. I call 'em cassocks, but what do I know?

31. South African capital: RAND

32. Recon target: INFO

36. One may trend on Twitter: NEWS ITEM

37. "Law & Order: SVU" actor: ICE T. The NYPD's Special Victim's Unit is the basis for this version of the franchise.

38. Pilot products: PENS. I've got one next to my laptop as we speak. I love the thin stylus and free-flowing ink.

39. Sticky-toed lizards: GECKOS

40. Wear (away): EAT

41. Chanel fragrance for men: EGOISTE. Seems to be missing a "T" and adding an "E", but that's what you get with product names. I suppose "EGOTIST" doesn't send many positive connotations.

42. Words that begin the line before "Deny thy father and refuse thy name": O ROMEO!

43. Determined precisely, with "down": PINNED

46. Dull sounds: THUDS

47. Caravan stops: OASES

48. Functional: UTILE

49. More, on a score: PIU. Learning moment for me, I think. I know I'm going to forget about it in about 30 seconds time, but at least I've seen it now.

51. Dampens: WETS

52. Roller coaster cry: WHEE! Not me, the only coaster that doesn't scare me to death is the one I put my cocktail on.

55. Racket: DIN

56. Quick flight: LAM. Nice misdirection, I was on the "short HOP" track at first.

57. Eventful chapter: ERA. The penny dropped, I was thinking of novels at first.

Here's the grid in all its "edgy" detail, and I think I'm out of blog.


Jul 2, 2019

Tuesday, July 2, 2019; Emily Ludoph & Jeff Chen

Oh, Say Can You See ...   
Invisible Tape

18-Across. Invisible impediment in the workplace: GLASS CEILING.  A Glass Ceiling is an unofficial barrier to advancement in a profession.  This especially impacts women and minorities.

58-Across. Invisible impediment in the sky: SOUND BARRIER.  Here is an explanation and some  photographs of jets smashing the Sound Barrier.

12-Down. Invisible impediment in the theater: FOURTH WALL.  The Fourth Wall is the conceptual barrier between the actors and the audience.  The audience can see "through" the wall, but the actors are oblivious to the wall.  The television sit-com show, The Office, would allow the actors to break through the fourth wall and speak directly to the audience.

29-Down. Invisible impediment in science fiction: FORCE FIELD.

1. Former NFL running back Jennings who won "Dancing With the Stars" in 2017: RASHAD.  I didn't get off to a good start with today's puzzle, as I am not familiar with RASHAD Jennings (né Rashad Andre Jennings; b. Mar. 26, 1985).  In 2009, he was drafted by the Jackson Jaguars.  He later played for the Oakland Raiders and the New York Giants.  In 2017, he was on Dancing with the Stars.  The following year, he joined the show as a judge.

7. Cuban dance: RUMBA.  Origins of the Rumba:

12. Govt. Rx watchdog: FDA.  As in the Food and Drug Administration, which is housed within the United States Department of Health and Human Services.

15. Give in (to): ACCEDE.

16. Thorny plant: BRIAR.

17. Belonging to us: OUR.  This Blog is OUR Happy Place.
20. The Pac-12's Trojans: USC.  As in the University of Southern California.

21. Solar phenomena: SUN SPOTS.  Sun Sports are the darker areas that appear in the sun's surface. They are the "cooler" areas on the sun.  You can learn more from The National Weather Service.

22. Kooky traits: QUIRKS.
One of these birds has a quirk.

24. Flub it: ERR.

25. Able to speak easily, as a language: FLUENT.  How many languages can you speak?

27. Badly mistaken: OFF BASE.

31. Average schlub: JOE SCHMO.  I think of a Joe Schmo as being a bit of a jerk.

34. 53-Down noise: CROAK.  //  And 53-Down:  Pond critter:  FROG.
35. Not worth debating: MOOT.  //  And 11-Down. Participates in a debate: ARGUES.

36. Is in the red: OWES.

37. Civil suit cause: TORT.  A tort is just a civil wrong.  Not to be confused with the dessert, which is spelled with an "e".

Sacher Torte.

38. Predators in pool halls: SHARKS.

40. Designer Jacobs: MARC.  Marc Jacobs (b. Apr. 9. 1963) is probably best known for his line of handbags.  They are a tad out of my price range.

41. Set in stone, say: ETCH.

42. Benevolent: KIND.

43. Hägar's wife: HELGA.  A reference to the comic strip Hägar the Horrible.
44. Paul Newman caper film: THE STING.

46. Comedian Elayne: BOOSLER.

Elayne Boosler (b. Aug. 18, 1952)

48. Full of moxie: FEISTY.

49. Theater segment: ACT.  Tricky.  I initially thought we were looking for a section of seating in the theater.

50. "Reservoir Dogs" co-star Harvey: KEITEL.  Harvey Keitel (b. May 13, 1939) has starred in a number of films.  He usually portrays a tough-guy.  I never saw Reservoir Dogs, but it is known for its violence.

52. Find at a dig: ARTIFACT.  Here is an artifact recently discovered from an excavation in the City of David in Jerusalem.

57. Blackjack eleven: ACE.

61. Twitter guffaw: LOL.  Textspeak for Laughing Out Loud.  Jimmy received the following text from his mother:  "Your professor called to say you failed your math exam.  LOL.  Mom".  He called his mother and said, "What's with the LOL?"  She replied, " I just wanted to sent you Lots of Love, because I knew how disappointed you would be with failing the test."

62. Chose (to): OPTED.

63. Bit of ramen: NOODLE.  Several years ago, Blue Iris, one of our Blog members, provided a recipe for a Bird Seed Salad that uses Raman Noodles.  I make this salad on occasion when I need to bring something to a potluck dinner.
64. Football lineman: END.

65. Prerequisites: NEEDS.

66. "Communist Manifesto" co-author with Marx: ENGELS.  Karl Marx (May 5, 1818 ~ Mar. 14, 1883) and Friedrich Engels (Nov. 28, 1820 ~ Aug. 5, 1895) wrote the Communist Manifesto in 1848.  Engels died of laryngeal cancer at age 74.

Engels and Marx

1. Garb for many a Dickens waif: RAGS.

2. Rights-defending org.: ACLU.  As in the American Civil Liberties Union.

3. Read quickly: SCAN.

4. Gas brand with toy trucks: HESS.  I initially tried Esso, but that didn't fit well with the perps.

5. Marketing jargon: AD SPEAK.

6. Interior designs: DECORS.

Star Wars Living Room Decor

7. Grand slam quartet, in baseball shorthand: RBIs.  As in Runs Batted In.

8. Internet address letters: URL.  The Uniform Resource Locator makes frequent appearances in the puzzles.

9. 1002, in old Rome: MII.  Roman Numerals.

10. Regal meals: BANQUETS.

13. Nightfall: DUSK.  Dusk technically applies to that period between the darkest twilight and complete darkness.

14. Curved sections: ARCS.

19. French "to be": ÊTRE.  Here it the verb conjugated in the present tense:

           Je suis  //  Nous sommes
           Tu es  //  Vous êtes
           Ils / Elles est  //  Ils / Elles sont 

23. Workers' earnings: INCOMES.

25. Scandinavian cruise sight: FJORD.  Some beautiful sights of Norway.

26. "Please understand ... ": LOOK.

27. Eight-member ensemble: OCTET.  A String Octet typically consists of 4 violins, 2 violas and 2 cellos, but I will give you an example of an octet for wind instruments.

28. Suds: FROTH.  I had _ROTH, and all I could thing of was Broth, but that didn't make sense.  Then the lightbulb went on.

30. Packaged buy including shower curtain, towels, etc.: BATH SET.

32. Join the flow of traffic: MERGE.  In the ideal world ...

33. Basketball Hall of Famer Robertson: OSCAR.  Oscar Palmer Robertson (b. Nov. 24, 1938) had a long career in the NBA, first playing for the Cincinnati Royals, then the Milwaukee Bucks.  He was also the plaintiff in the 1970 anti-trust lawsuit, Robertson v. National Basketball Association.  The lawsuit settled in 1976 and resulted in today's current free agency rules.

35. Like some stray mutts: MANGY.

38. Slalom setting: SKI SLOPE.

39. Clue: HINT.

43. Producer of curls: HOT IRON.  My hair is just wash and wear.

45. Attaches with rope: TIES ON.

46. Cutting remark: BARB.

47. Number on a pump: OCTANE.  Think gasoline.

50. Curly leafy green: KALE.  Hubby is not a fan.  I could take it or leave it.

51. Micro or macro subj.: ECON.  As in Micoreconomics or Macroeconomics.

52. Tacks on: ADDS.

54. Staff helper: AIDE.

55. Phone in a pocket: CELL.

56. "__ chic!": TRÈS.  More of today's French lesson.

59. Sporty truck, briefly: UTE.

60. Nancy Drew's beau: NED.  Ned Nickerson was Nancy Drew's beau.  They used to get around in a roadster.  I loved this mystery stories when I was a in grade school.  The stories were so exotic to this 4th grader.

Here's the Grid:

I'll leave you with a QOD:  Prohibition didn’t work in the Garden of Eden.  Adam ate the apple.  ~  Vincente Fox (b. July 2, 1942), President of Mexico

May 21, 2019

Tuesday, May 21, 2019 John-Clark Levin & Jeff Chen

"Tiny Bubbles"

4. It's often worn with a hood and mortarboard: ACADEMIC ROBE.  10-6 or 0.000001

10. Computer screen array: DESKTOP ICONS.  10-12 or 0.000000000001

25. Longtime late-night host: CONAN OBRIEN.  10-9   or 0.000000001 

26. Don Ho's signature song ... and a hint to this puzzle's circled letters: TINY BUBBLES.

The circled answers are three of the twenty metric system "unit prefixes" used in the International System of Units (SI).   The prefixes are used for multiples or  fractions of the seven base units of measurements, which include second for time, meter for length, kilogram for mass, etc.   In case you missed the news, big changes occurred yesterday, May 20, 2019 as the redefinition of the base units went into effect.

However, the theme is Tiny Bubbles, and we have:
  • Microbubbles - Used in biomedical imaging and for targeted drug delivery.
  • Nanobubbles - Change the characteristics of water molecules, with widespread potential uses.
  • Picobubbles - Being studied to improve extraction in phosphate production.  
Who knew ?  I only knew of microbubbles, and that led me to see if there were indeed, nanobubbles and picobubbles. 

If you aren't buying in, just count all of those zeros in the SI unit prefixes as Tiny Bubbles.

Moving on...


1. Fur-protesting org.: PETA.  People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals

5. Criminals, to cops: PERPS.  Perpetrators.   Perps, to cruciverbalists:  perpendicular answers.

10. Idiotic: DUMB.

14. With, in France: AVEC

15. Paying careful attention: ALERT.

16. Biblical twin: ESAU.  The hirsute one that sold his birthright.

17. California county known for vineyards: NAPA.

18. JFK Library architect: I.M. PEI.  As you are aware, he died last week at 102.  Jackie Kennedy chose an unknown architect named I.M. Pei to design the Kennedy Library

19. Talked like a rat?: SANG.

20. Shoe brand with a three-stripe logo: ADIDAS.

22. Jabbing rudely: POKING.

24. Rescue helicopter: MEDEVAC.

26. Something for serving the English breakfast?: TEA TRAY.

27. Spanish hand: MANO.  Anatomy.  Mano a Mano: hand to hand. 

28. Crushing on: INTO.  Adoring on, or idolizing. 

29. Fronton game word: ALAI.  Didn't know the word fronton.  Had the clue been "Cesta game word" jai alai would have come to mind.   As it was, perps provided the answer.   If you are looking for a venue where you can watch a match, here's a list:  Frontons in the USA

32. Like about-to-be-toppled dominoes: ON END.

34. Surreptitious summons: PSST.

38. Branded wares, informally: MERCH.  Merchandise.

40. American gymnast Raisman with three Olympic gold medals: ALY.  Three Golds, Two Silvers and a Bronze in Olympic competition:

41. Magazine name: TITLE.  Caught me thinking of masthead names. 

42. Preface, briefly: INTRO

43. Tip of a quill: NIB.

44. Ensure the win: ICE IT.

45. "The Tempest" king: ALONSO.  Shakespeare.  That's about all I know about it. 

47. Send to iCloud: UPLOAD

49. "Doctor Who" airer, familiarly: THE BEEB.    "...a nickname originally coined by Peter Sellers...and popularised by radio DJ Kenny Everett."

50. Smoothie maker: BLENDER.

52. Gained altitude: ROSE.

53. "Survivor" faction: TRIBE.  If interested, here's a list of the tribes of "Survivor" through the years.  I think I've watched perhaps a total of 10 minutes of it in the 38 "seasons" it has been on TV.  They must average about two seasons a year, since Wiki tells me it has been on since 2000.   Apparently it's a very popular reality series.

55. Stud farm stud: SIRE.

56. Latin art: ARS.

57. Not yet sleeping: STILL UP.

59. Chicago ballplayer: CUB.

60. Show on which Tina Fey co-starred for six seasons: SNL

61. Cooks' prep tools: PEELERS.

62. India pale __: ALE.

63. "Yo!": HEY !

64. Bar tender in Tokyo?: YEN.  Two words for the currency clue rather than the singular word for an occupation.

65. For instance: SAY.  FREX, as JzB would abbreviate FoR EXample.

66. Blanc who voiced Bugs: MEL.


1. Former Delta rival: PAN AM.  Never flew Pan Am, but was a Delta frequent flyer member.  The only thing I got from them in return was lost and misrouted luggage at Hartsfield.   Still have my card

2. Give the slip: EVADE

3. Lukewarm: TEPID.

5. Italian chum: PAISANO

6. Massachusetts state tree: ELM.   They also have a state rock.  It's called Plymouth. And a state cream pie and terrier dog, both called Boston.

7. U.S. House member: REP.

8. Cursor beginning?: PRE.  Precursor - a person or thing that comes before another of the same kind; a forerunner.

9. Grad student's income: STIPEND

11. Delta rival, as it was once known: US AIR.  US Airways, nee Allegheny Airlines, merged with American Airlines.   I remember the expansions of Pittsburgh International in the 70s and 80s, largely to support Allegheny / US Air.   TWA was the other major carrier that had a hub at Pittsburgh.

12. Exodus food: MANNA.

13. Glitch-ridden, as software: BUGGY.   Hopefully the bugs are caught in Beta Testing.

21. "Selma" director DuVernay: AVA.

23. Bread grain: OAT.

29. "What __ missing?": AM I.

30. "Stormy Weather" singer: LENA HORNE.

31. In a naive way: ARTLESSLY.

33. Giants QB Manning: ELI.  The New York Giants of the National Football League.

35. Stabilizer for movie shooters: STEADICAM.   Invented by Garret Brown.  He also invented Skycam, "the robot camera that flies on wires over sporting events."

36. Outmoded calculator: SLIDE RULE.

37. Hanoi New Year: TET.

39. Sharpen: HONE.

41. Shower wall piece: TILE.

46. Divan kin: SETTEE.

48. Thorax membrane: PLEURA.  More anatomy.  Thank you perps.   The Crossword Corner's  resident physician wouldn't need to look these up, but I had to.  The last anatomy class I had was in high school...
  • Thorax - "the part of the body of a mammal between the neck and the abdomen, including the cavity enclosed by the ribs, breastbone, and dorsal vertebrae, and containing the chief organs of circulation and respiration; the chest.
  • Pleura - "each of a pair of serous membranes lining the thorax and enveloping the lungs in humans and other mammals."

49. Garbage: TRASH

51. Defy authority: REBEL.

54. __-at-ease: ILL.

57. MI6 agent: SPY.

58. "Gangnam Style" musician: PSY.   The video, if you care to watch it.   Now with 3,349,033,725 views and counting.   That's 3.349 billion  (109)  or 3.349 gigaviews,  if one were to use the SI unit prefix.

Aug 14, 2018

Tuesday, August 14, 2018 Jon Markman & Jeff Chen


16. N.L. West team's pests?: GIANTS ANTS.

22. N.L. East team's untruths?: PHILLIES LIES.

28. N.L. East team's parties?: BRAVES RAVES.

39. A.L. East team's cheers?: ORIOLES OLES.

46. N.L. Central team's pitchers?: BREWERS EWERS.

57. Ace relievers, briefly ... and a hint to 16-, 22-, 28-, 39- and 46-Across: MLB CLOSERS.

Loved this puzzle.  I think it was made a little tougher because the cities weren't named in the clues.  If you don't follow sports in general and professional baseball in particular, you may have had to work a little bit harder to get the solve. 


1. __ tag: game with infrared beams: LASER.

6. Make full: SATE.

10. Bro: BUB.

13. 10th-century Holy Roman emperor: OTTO I.  I believe one of his descendants lives in Roman Forest under an alias !

14. Letter-shaped fastener: T-NUT.

15. Restaurant list: MENU.

18. Martial __: ARTS.

19. Muddy pen: STY.

20. Not quite a B: C PLUS.

21. Illuminated from below, as a statue: UPLIT.

24. Reach: ATTAIN.

27. "Peachy-__!": KEEN.

32. Cry from a crib: WAH.

35. Sumptuous: LUXE.

36. Swelled head: EGO.

37. Metered ride: TAXI.

38. "You rang?": YES.

43. "Around the __": ESPN panel show: HORN.  Weekday program targeted at sports junkies,  with a cast of sports journalists opining and arguing about current sports events and sports headline stories.

45. Exercises, as power: WIELDS.

51. Dice throws: ROLLS.

52. Govt. security: T-BILLT-Bill Explained at Investopedia

53. Milne hopper: ROO.

56. Poker buy-in: ANTE.

59. "O.G. Original Gangster" rapper: ICE T.

O.G. Original Gangster was his 1991 album.  It is often referenced as one of the key factors in developing the genre of gangster rap.

A rapper turned actor, Ice-T plays Detective Odafin "Fin" Tutuola on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.

Here shown with Mariska Hargitay who plays Lieutenant Olivia Benson.

60. Glimpse: PEEK.

61. Flat-package furniture stores: IKEAs.

62. Neither's partner: NOR.

63. "American __": Starz series based on a Neil Gaiman novel: GODS.  Never heard of it, but easy to perp in.

64. Nabisco wafer brand: NILLA.


1. Ships' records: LOGS. Spitzboov would know about these.

2. "They're __ again!": AT IT.

3. "Don't move, Rover!": STAY.

4. Ages and ages: EON.

5. "Sherlock Holmes" director Guy: RITCHIE.  Name looked familiar.  Was married to Madonna.

6. Slot in a stable: STALL.

7. Declare void: ANNUL.

8. Rwandan tribe: TUTSI.

9. Sci-fi visitors: ETs.

10. Cold War dividing line until 1989: BERLIN WALL.   Who famously proclaimed,  "I am a jelly doughnut !"  ?

11. Loosen, as laces: UNTIE. "Bad spellers of the world..."

12. Sculpted works: BUSTS.

15. Breakfast syrup type: MAPLE.

17. Manipulates politically: SPINS.

21. Exploits: USES.

22. Cover with asphalt: PAVE.

23. __ out a living: EKE.

24. With competence: ABLY.

25. Loyal: TRUE.

26. Financial adviser's suggestion: TAX SHELTER. Tax Shelter Explained at Investopedia

29. Outdoor gear brand: REI.  Recreational Equipment Incorporated. 

30. Earlier: AGO.

31. Encyclopedia bk.: VOL.

33. Chopped down: AXED.

34. King cobra warning: HISS.

37. On one's __: alert: TOES.

39. Mine contents: ORES.

40. Mil. time off: RNR. Rest and (Recuperation, Relaxation or Recreation).  Here's an image of a  booklet of unused scrip from my trip to Armed Forces Recreation Center Ski School Berchtesgaden for  a little R&R.   Learned Alpine skiing there.  Of course, went up to Obersalzberg to see the "Eagle's Nest" while there. 

41. Tom of "The Seven Year Itch": EWELL.

42. Beef cut: SIRLOIN.

44. Little hooter: OWLET.

46. Really smart person: BRAIN.

47. Veg-O-Matic maker: RONCO.

48. Canonized pope known as "The Great": ST LEO.

49. Flowed back: EBBED.

50. Candle threads: WICKS.

53. Film spool: REEL.

54. __ hygiene: ORAL.

55. Legendary Greek mount: OSSA.  If you are going to climb it, consider stopping by REI to buy your ice axe, backpack and other hiking equipment.

57. Fuel efficiency stat: MPG.

58. Hit the slopes: SKI.

Abejo would like to pass along his CONGRATULATIONS to the Elk-McKean Little League team from Kane, Wilcox, JOHNSONBURG and Ridgway, Pennsylvania in making it to the Junior League World Series. Only 12 teams from around the globe make it this far. Elk-McKean plays tonight at 7C.   You can watch the games at

May 19, 2018

Saturday, May 19, 2018, Jeff Chen

A Themless Saturday puzzle by Jeff Chen

The third Saturday in May has  been designated National Armed Forces Day and I am happy to call attention to such a noble day. Many thanks to all who have served and especially to our veterans who blog here with us.

Today's puzzle comes to us from Jeff Chen who has an MBA from the Foster School Of Business at the University of Washington. Here he is displaying an incredible grid he created.

One thing that caught my eye on Jeff's fine puzzle was a plethora of J's. He had nine in all but the stair step of four J's in the middle stands out like an honest politician. I wonder if that was just serendipity. Last Saturday's Greg Johnson puzzle only had one J - DON'T JINX IT!

Every corner had speed bumps for me but worked out beautifully with Tintinnabulation being my last head scratcher but the bell finally rang and I got it. Yeah, I know, don't quit your day job!

Here are the balance (MBA, get it?) of Jeff's Saturday-worthy clues:


1. Begin another chapter, e.g.: WRITE - ...and the plot thickens

6. Gets high at a moment's notice?: JET SETS - I don't think these are people I want to, uh, "get high with" at a moment's notice!

13. Country name on "The Woman in Me": SHANIA - Now, on the other hand, Shania... 

14. Cell package: DATA PLAN.

15. Suppressed guffaw: TITTER.

16. Art using locks: JIU JITSU - "When I say no..."

17. Verbalize: UTTER.

18. Double over?: FOLD - An elementary teacher taught me this FOLDING mnemonic 

19. Grave: TOMB and 8. Part of a historic 19-Across name: TAJ - It costs 1,000 rupees to enter the TAJ MAHAL to see the TOMB of Mumtaz Mahal.  It is open everyday but only Muslims can enter on Friday


20. Bit of tintinnabulation: PEAL - The Moon has no air, so if a bell is rung there does it make a TINTINNABULATION? 

21. NBA great __ Olajuwon: HAKEEM - The two most famous NBA stars with Nigerian parents. 

Giannis Antetokounmpo                          Hakkem Olajuwon

23. MIT mentors: RAS - Resident Assistant. In our dorm their thankless job was to keep beer out of the dorm

24. Lilly of pharmaceuticals: ELI.

25. Insert into an email, as a video: EMBED.

26. Buckets: A TON - It is supposed to rain buckets today

28. Hard-boiled genre: FILM NOIR - Turner Classic Movies is a good place to find them

30. Self-titled 2001 album: J.LO Jennifer LOpez, her boyfriend (our cwd friend A ROD) and their four children from other marriages 

31. Voter's choices: YES OR NO - It surprised me on Tuesday how many bond issues around here got a YES vote!

32. Worried about losing one's place?: JEALOUS

36. Spree: JAG

37. Source of trial figures: JURY LIST - This is the JURY LIST of the men who found Al Capone guilty. Judge Wilkerson got wind that the original panel had been bribed by Capone and so he swapped Capone's original jury with these men who had been empaneled for another trial across the hall

38. Asian genre influenced by The Beatles: J POP Japanese POP music. Here's sample with Japanese lyrics and the English translation. 30 seconds should give you the idea that this ain't Mozart!

40. Throws out: JUNKS - Those temporary taxes never seem to suffer this fate

41. Debt-laden Wall St. deal: LBO - Leveraged Buy Out

42. Small Indian state: GOA - Yeah, I'd go with small

43. Hardware with elongated heads: T BOLTS.

45. Awestruck: AGOG and 25. Unable to look away: ENRAPT and  I think some of these 600 kids were this on Monday during my Manned Space Flight presentation. Uh, that's yours truly in the Carrot Suit.

46. Game with a 2210 A.D. edition: RISK - An angry Ukrainian took exception when Kramer 
52. Hint at, with "to": ALLUDED to negative characteristics about Ukraine while playing RISK with Newman 

48. Et __: ALIA

49. Arcade giant: ATARI.

50. Retirement obstacle: INSOMNIA- Retire for the night

53. Dessert analog to turducken: PIECAKEN.

54. Puts on: STAGES - Let's PUT ON A SHOW!

55. George Carlin was the first, briefly: SNL HOST - TV Guide announcement 

56. Firefighter, at times: HOSER - A popular Omaha event


1. Slight fiction: WHITE LIE - Think carefully before you answer Honest Abe

Does this dress make me look fat, Abe?
2. Faddish '80s-'90s hairstyles: RAT TAILS.

3. Agents' gathering: INTEL - His skill and diligence at gathering INTEL by decoding Japanese messages made the difference at Midway

4. Level with fans: TIER - Wanna see the Yankees and Dodgers in Yankee Stadium? The price depends on which TIER you choose - $24 - $2,000.

5. __ trumpet: EAR - Eh? Not quite the same as my Bluetooth hearing aids!

6. Given a sentence to complete: JAILED - With Nebraska's "good time" law and good behavior, you can get out after completing only half that sentence 
7. Manuscript with dense notes?: ETUDE - I would say the notes in this Chopin ETUDE are pretty dense!

9. Hot rod?: SPIT - Improvisation

10. Corrida combatant: EL TORO 

11. Eponymous explorer of Australia: TASMAN - Abel TASMAN was the first European to see this area that is now a southern state of Australia 

12. Intentionally overlooks: SNUBS.

13. Make one's eyes pop out: STUPEFY.

14. Nickname for tennis star/prankster Novak Djokovic: DJOKER.

18. Icon often pictured with wind-blown hair: FABIO - Heartthrob FABIO then and now

21. Chinese ethnic group: HMONG - In Grand Torino Clint Eastwood plays an ex-marine that helps a HMONG family

22. Ringgit spenders: MALAYS - The price of a Big Mac Combo meal in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia is RM15 (three of these ringgits) which is about $4

27. Passing charge: TOLL.

29. Magical power: MOJO - Gotta get your MOJO workin!

30. Yanks: JERKS - Derek Jeter was one Yank who wasn't a JERK!

32. Post-fall cabal: JUNTA - Zimbabwe’s new President, Emmerson Mnangagwa is being accused of having formed a JUNTA after overthrowing Mugabe last year

33. Pressure indicator: OIL GAUGE.

34. Part of it was a 2016 campaign issue: US BORDER - Mama don't allow no politicking here

35. Cheap smokes: STOGIES - Famous STOGIES of song at :50

37. Assange of WikiLeaks: JULIAN - A man without a country

38. Hum along, say: JOIN IN - If you don't know the words, just make 'em up like my mother did!

39. Scores, with "a": PASSEL - Dropping an "R" after a vowel and before a consonant is common in English like PARCEL - PASSEL and Curse - cuss

40. City where Jake Blues was in prison: JOLIET - Played by brilliant, disturbed John Belushi

42. Some movie set techs: GRIPS - Here they are setting up a camera dolly

44. Hold-up targets: BANKS.

45. Hold-up man?: ATLAS - He did not hold up the aforementioned institutions

47. "Mayor" author: KOCH - Ed

49. One not often hitting the high note: ALTO - ALTO daughter had no shot at the soprano ingenue lead of Laurey in Oklahoma. She was a great Ado Annie

51. Leader with a jacket named for him: MAO - When paired with my Nehru and Eisenhower jacket, my wardrobe is internationally complete!

52. Elastic wood: ASH.

Hug a serviceman today and then comment: