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

Jul 26, 2011

Tuesday, July 26, 2011 Jeff McDermott

Theme: Toast Toppings - The four themes contain a synonym for that sweet spread you might slather on your toast. Two in front. Two in the back.

17A. Filled to capacity : JAM PACKED

27A. Certain wildlife refuge : STATE PRESERVE

47A. Hit from the "Moulin Rouge!" soundtrack : LADY MARMALADE. A unique version.(3:36)

62A. Spineless one : JELLYFISH

Argyle here, in the grip of a summer cold. Luckily I didn't have to think much on this one.


1. Aaron of Cooperstown : HANK. Cooperstown, NY, home of the Baseball Hall of Fame.

5. Fast ender : MEAL

9. Drink in a Dixie cup? : JULEP

14. Lotion additive : ALOE

15. ___ breve: 2/2 time : ALLA

16. Get under one umbrella, so to speak : UNITE

19. Panel member : JUROR

20. Soaking and relaxed : IN A TUB

21. One seeking repayment : CLAIMANT

23. Form W-4 fig. : SSN

24. NFL mike wearer : REF

26. Ballpark fig. : EST.

34. Annoying kid at the pool : SPLASHER

36. Catch, as a podcast : TUNE IN

37. Panache : ELAN

38. What a fluid oz. measures : LIQ.. Man, did I overthink this one.

40. Half of MCDII : DCCI. 1402/701

41. Geometry measure : LENGTH

44. Was in pain : SUFFERED

49. Ending with Cray : OLA. Oddly worded clue.

50. CBS's Rather : DAN

51. Shakespearean exclamations : AYs

54. Ticking danger : TIME BOMB

59. Summer pitcherful : ICE TEA

61. Stradivari's tutor : AMATI

64. Star in the same constellation as Betelgeuse : RIGEL

65. Latin 101 infinitive : ESSE

66. Collette of "United States of Tara" : TONI. United States of Tara (TV Series 2009– ) on Showtime. "A woman struggles to find a balance between her dissociative identity disorder and raising a dysfunctional family." Ms Collette has many looks so I'll link Google Images..

67. Ouzo flavoring : ANISE

68. White House maiden name : TODD. Mary Ann (née Todd) Lincoln.

69. Name-dropper, often : SNOB


1. Pilgrims to Mecca : HAJIS. Once again, wait for the perps to determine the spelling.

2. Greenspan and Turing : ALANS

3. Area of uncertainty : NO-MAN'S LAND

4. Held on to : KEPT

5. Shakespeare's shortest tragedy : MACBETH

6. Yellowstone grazer : ELK

7. Guinness of "Star Wars" : ALEC. Obi-Wan Kenobi.

8. Soup kitchen volunteer : LADLER. Dispensing the soup.

9. Martial art emphasizing throws : JUJITSU

10. Word on a dime : UNUM. E pluribus unum.

11. Pre-euro Italian currency : LIRA

12. Harrow rival : ETON. Eton College and Harrow School.

13. Cheeky : PERT

18. New Age-y emanations : AURAs

22. Words before "of rules" : A SET

25. Have a hunch : FEEL

28. Like some barbecue sauce : TANGY

29. Periscope part : PRISM

30. Wrapped up : ENDED

31. Hiking or biking : RECREATION

32. Nasty habit : VICE

33. Oklahoma city : ENID

34. Broker's order : SELL

35. Entreaty : PLEA

39. Four-sided campus space : QUAD

42. BlackBerry network choice : T-MOBILE

43. Saintly ring : HALO

45. Made things harder for the lifeguard : FLAILED

46. Ornate : FANCY

48. Engine for missiles : RAMJET

52. Like some easy questions : YES/NO

53. Indian honorific : SAHIB

54. O'Hara plantation : TARA. It was a different Tara (66-Across) but still....

55. "See you," in poker : "I'M IN"

56. Star-struck trio? : MAGI

57. Hot times in the cité : ÉTÉs. L'été dans la cité Clip.(2:03)

58. Anka's "Eso __" : BESO. How about "Eso Beso" but by Trombones Unlimited.(2:09)

60. Young newts : EFTs. Image.

63. Source of some '60s trips : LSD


Apr 29, 2011

Friday, April 29, 2011, Jeff McDermott

Theme::  How to have great ABs. The letters AB are added to the beginning word of a known phrase to create a new and humorous new phrase.  We still see so many addition on puzzles, so let's look and find what I believe new constructor Mr. McDermott has done to amuse us.

17A. Entrance exam study guide?: ABOUT DOORS. I really like the trickery of ENTRANCE EXAM cluing DOORS.

62A. Behar's home?: ABODE TO JOY. Beethoven's WORK is trivialized into the View hostess, Joy Behar.

11D. Steal office supplies?: ABDUCT TAPE. We recently discussed duct tape, now we our ABDUCTING (kidnapping) TAPE, fun.

28D. Missing letters?: ABSENT MAIL.  SENT MAIL being an email concept, making this a fresh clue.

Happy Friday; Lemonade back on the job, with a doable but cleverly clued puzzle, with a simple theme, but many common answers clued differently, and 7 fill-in-the blank clues. When you are teaching some one to do crosswords, everyone suggests they start with the FITB clues.  While you do this effort, I will highlight all the fill that I can twist into having a meaning directly for me, maybe you can do the same with different angles.


1. Put one's hands at ten and two: STEER. Very visual, but seldom followed by anyone after they secure their license.

6. Aptly named lotion: AFTA. A brand of AFTER shave.

10. 1970 NBA expansion team: CAVS. The Cleveland Cavaliers, and ex-home of LeBron James.

14. Poet Neruda: PABLO. He is becoming our poet laureate.

15. Affect, in slang: GRAB. How do Mr. McDermott's clues GRAB you so far?

16. Reed in a pit: OBOE. Orchestra pit, another nice visual.

19. Jim Davis pooch: ODIE. Well first you need to know who created GARFIELD, but better than the usual drool clue.

20. Parlor treat: SUNDAE. Lois and Carol probably had different treats in mind in their parlors.

21. "Break a leg": GOOD LUCK. You are never supposed to wish an actor good luck, though no one is sure why they must break a leg. One myth says it came from John Wiles Booth, who broke his leg when he leapt on stage to shoot Lincoln, bu that hardly makes sense.

23. Mediterranean high spot: ETNA. The mountain in Sicily. I would have LOVED the clue if left out the "spot."

25. Dazes: TRANCES.

26. They go nowhere: DEAD ENDS. Because of all our canals, Ft. Lauderdale has more dead end streets than any other city. (I just made up that fact!)

30. Lead singer Michaels of Poison: BRET. He had a very trying year with health problems, and the Donald, but he was once quite the STAR . ( I represent rock and roll bands).

31. Sphere: ORB. From the Latin Orbis, meaning circle. (It also can mean eye, and I studied Latin for years).

32. American Patriot Deane: SILAS. I suggest you read about this one time hero, one time pariah. LINK . (he was born in Conn. near where I was born).

34. Legally prevent: ESTOP. Both Latin and a legal term.

37. Game with a Ural territory: RISK. This game never thrilled me; not into war  I guess.

39. Only part of Egypt in Asia: SINAI. Hard to recall Egypt is an African country.

41. "Ditto": SAME.  How many remember DITTO and MIMEOGRAPH machines?

42. They're tucked in a cannonball: KNEES. Jumping into the pool to make a huge wave.

44. Suisse capital: BERNE. Ah ha, not EURO; I went to Switzerland to Ski. Berne? No it was quite chilly, actually.

46. Selfish sort: PIG. Ah, more about this.

47. Russian refusal: NYET.  A shared MEMORY ?

49. Squash relative: RACQUETS. Squash actullly derived from this  GAME .

51. Flanders city: ANTWERP. Belgium.

54. Sink or swim, perhaps: NOUN. Tricky, but becoming common.

55. Cross, often: MEMORIAL. So sad to see them on the edge of the highway.

57. Title for Bovary: MADAME. M. Flaubert's novel.

61. Man __: O WAR. Since we are approaching the Kentucky Derby, it is appropriate to see the first super horse in a puzzle.

64. John __, the Lone Ranger: REID. How many recall our discussion of the Green Hornet (because of the movie) who is Britt Reid, the nephew of the LR?

65. Atty.-to-be's exam: LSAT. I used to teach an LSAT prep class, to help kids get into Law School, many are now suing me for getting them in.

66. Maternally related: ENATE. Well, NATAL we know is birth, but did not know this word.

67. Six-sided rooms: ELLS. A nice change from the overhead trains.

68. Guidelines: Abbr.: STDS. Now for me, I would clue this Crabs and Clamydia, because of the following clue,  69. Battle of the __: SEXES.

Ok, on to the rest.


1. Mudbath offerers: SPAS. Also many places in the south now.

2. House of Dana perfume: TABU. This perfume was introduced in 1932, and used the creative spelling to get attention, something the Beatles capitalized on.

3. "By a swan's __ bill": Keats: EBON. Maybe CA knew this line, but the perps filled with this common poetic abbreviation.

4. Gave the runaround: ELUDED. My FAVORITE .

5. Spins: ROTATES.

6. Back: AGO.

7. Throat trouble: FROG. Got a frog in your throat, or are you croaking?

8. Card worth a fortune?: TAROT.  Nice fresh way to clue this standard. With, 43D. 8-Down user: SEER.

9. Engross: ABSORB.  A bit of a confusing fill, as it conflicts with the theme; deliberately?

10. Snoopy-wearing-shades trait: COOLNESS.  he actually is Joe Cool, when he wears them.

12. Declare: VOICE. As in opinions, which reminds me where are WH?

13. Looks for: SEEKS.

18. Menace with a blond cowlick: DENNIS. A shout out to our own.

22. Schoolyard pressure: DARE. I like this clue, and certainly my earliest memories of the schoolyard were a series of stupid dares.

24. Stage surprise: AD LIB. It was always fun to watch White Fang and Black Tooth deliberately change things to throw Soupy Sales off his game.

26. Doofus: DORK. Funny, I just was explaining this to a foreign friend of mine.

27. "__ Brockovich": ERIN. Did you like the MOVIE ?

29. Less fruity?: SANER. Like fruit cake? Meh.

33. Wrap around a wrap, maybe: SARAN. Nice play on wrap/wrap.

35. Drop: OMIT.

36. Identifies: PEGS. My ex-wife's least favorite nickname. She thought she had me pegged.

38. Googling elements: KEY WORDS. Actually, it is AOL that used that term.

40. Net __: INCOME. When I was a kid I was fascinated why anyone would consider money GROSS income.

45. Puts on a par (with): EQUATES.

48. Olympic qualifying events: TRIALS. Well he could have use a legal clue....

50. Incomplete: UNDONE. We are almost done, so hang in.

51. Martin's "That's __": AMORE DEAN remember when we loved our drunks?

52. Staircase support: NEWEL. We have had this clue before; also my son Devin's middle name is Newell.  Speaking of brewers of beer, he is offically a brewer now, with business card.

56. Pack: LOAD. I caution him not to get too loaded at work.

58. Trojan War hero: AJAX. I am sure you all recall this giant redheaded warrior, and my betta.

59. Floating speck, perhaps: MOTE. Which is what I have floating in my eyes because of all the surgeries.

60. Looks closely at: EYES. Did I mention eyes?

63. Some NFL linemen: DTS. Last week it was Delerium Tremens, I guess that means the draft is on and we all need some Defensive Tackles.

Well, another new guy, another new experience.  have a great week-end, here comes May!