Showing posts with label Jeffrey Wechsler. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Jeffrey Wechsler. Show all posts

Sep 19, 2019

Thursday, September 19th 2019 Jeffrey Wechsler

Theme: Squeaky Clean - who's washing your dishes?

17A. Tall display of dishwashing liquid?: IVORY TOWER.

27A. Global donation of dishwashing liquid?: JOY TO THE WORLD.

42A. Rock band's preferred dishwashing liquid?: DAWN OF THE DEAD. The Grateful Dead.

57A. Using dishwashing liquid in the shower?: SUN-BATHING.

A quiet sashay down Aisle 11 in the grocery store and dish washing options galore. I use Palmolive, so I was not represented here. Simple enough theme, but nicely done. As always, Jeffrey pays attention to the fill and makes sure there's nothing clunky to make you wince. Some nice longer downs as always - Jeffrey and C.C seem to be masters at that aspect of construction.


1. Barista's concoction: BLEND. I started on the wrong foot here with LATTE, and I still think it's a more appropriate answer to the clue. Baristas don't blend the coffee, they brew whatever beans are blended for them.

6. Domino dots: PIPS.

10. Rotating rod: SPIT. Barbecue! Food!

14. Construction rod: REBAR.

15. Square __: ROOT.

16. Skirt with a flounce: TUTU.

19. MiG developer: USSR. In an oddly non-Soviet personal recognition move, in 1939 the USSR named the MiG fighter airplane for its developers - Artem Mikoyan and Mikhail Gurevich.

20. Wee: TINY.

21. Soy sauce taste: UMAMI. The fifth "taste" - salt, sweet, sour, bitter and umami - savory or meaty. When I need an umami "bomb" to season a casserole, for example, I go with a mixture of soy sauce, anchovy paste and Marmite.

22. Sleuth of radio, movies and TV: CHAN. Jackie.

23. Sitcom star from Melmac: ALF. Crosses all the way, this series passed me by.

25. Sticker: DECAL.

32. Set in a golf bag: IRONS. Arnold Palmer was once asked what he did if he was caught in a lightning storm when he was out on the golf course. He responded "I walk down the fairway and hold a one-iron high in the air". When asked if that was wise, he told the interviewer "Yes, even God can't hit a one-iron".

34. TV exec Arledge: ROONE. Head of ABC Sports and later ABC News.

35. Barcelona bear: OSO.

36. Short dog, for short: PEKE.

37. Or so: ABOUT.

38. 1956 crisis site: SUEZ. A kerfuffle over a canal.

39. Chest-beating beast: APE.

40. Darts: FLITS.

41. Slow, to Ravel: LENTE. Here's a great excuse to revisit one of the great performances in Ice Dance from 1984 - Jayne Torville and Christopher Dean interpret Ravel's Bolero. The dance won them the Gold medal at both the 1984 Olympic Games and the World Championships.

45. "Supergirl" actor Jon: CRYER. He's most famous, I think, for his role in "Two and a Half Men".

46. It can be thin but not fat: AIR.

47. Glance through: SKIM.

48. Goaded, with "on": EGGED.

52. Seed used in smoothies: CHIA. Do the pets get smoothied too?

56. "O brawling love! O loving __!": Romeo: HATE. A tad conflicted, was our boy Romeo:

“Why then, O brawling love! O loving hate!
O any thing, of nothing first create!
O heavy lightness, serious vanity,
Misshapen chaos of well-seeming forms,
Feather of lead, bright smoke, cold fire, sick health,
Still-waking sleep, that is not what it is!
This love feel I, that feel no love in this.”

59. "__ that a lot": I GET.

60. One likely to snap: CRAB. I've just finished the latest season of "Deadliest Catch". Those king crab are snappy little buggers, steer well clear.

61. Spree: BINGE.

62. Like everything in a she shed: HERS. Is a "she shed" really a thing? I've only encountered the expression on a rather lame insurance company commercial.

63. Ballpark figure: OUTS.

64. Aconcagua's range: ANDES. 22,841 feet and the highest mountain outside Asia.


1. Pram pusher: BRIT. A baby carriage, more formally a "perambulator".

2. Son of Leah: LEVI.

3. Black, to a bard: EBON.

4. Zero, quaintly: NARY A ONE.

5. Martini specification: DRY. The only way, in my book. Ice, gin (NOT vodka!). Shaken. Glass. Twist. Drink.

6. Dance with a queen: PROM. Nice clue, it took a while for me to see this.

7. Captain Kirk's home state: IOWA. We learn something every day.

8. Common greeting card content: POEM.

9. Far from soothing: STRIDENT.

10. Masonry finish: STUCCO.

11. Bully: PUSH AROUND.

12. "Everything's ready to go!": IT'S ALL SET!

13. Chance at the spinner: TURN. Wheel of Fortune? There are some grand "Wheel" bloopers, some of which are not fit for a family publication. I'll leave it at that.

18. Clump of dune grass: TUFT.

24. Fleur-de-__: LYS. Finally - I got my LIS/LYS mojo. Nailed it!

26. Baa ma: EWE.

27. One whose work is laughable: JOKE WRITER.

28. Heavenly path: ORBIT.

29. Gear bit: TOOTH.

30. Word with hot or dog: HOUSE.

31. Zonk out: DOZE.

32. Tablet with Air, Pro and Mini models: IPAD.

33. Update the look of, as a product: REPACKAGE.

37. Like some bistros: AL FRESCO.

38. 1957 Coasters chart-topper with the refrain "Gonna find her": SEARCHIN'. Crosses, but solid. No real problem.

40. Opponent: FOE.

41. Fragrant chain: LEI.

43. MLB team with Mr. and Mrs. mascots: N.Y. METS. Crosses, but solid. I think this might be the refrain of the day for me.

44. Duchamp genre: DADA. Marcel Duchamp and Salvador DalĂ­ play chess:

47. __ Tzu: SHIH.

49. Trusted advisor: GURU.

50. Pesky bug: GNAT.

51. Goes back: EBBS.

53. Rear: HIND.

54. "Picnic" playwright: INGE. Crosses, but solid, here we go again. A 1953 play by William Inge which, I suspect, would be long forgotten except it was the Broadway debut for Paul Newman.

55. Forever: AGES.

58. Placeholder abbr.: T.B.A. To Be Advised.

I'm going to give the rest of this blog over to the cryptic puzzle which appeared in the UK's Guardian broadsheet last Thursday while I was in the UK - the top and bottom rows spell out a quite forthright political opinion. I encourage you to read the resulting article and click the interview with the constructor, who is also a heart surgeon. (Puzzles in the Guardian and Telegraph are published under a pseudonym, the Times puzzles are published anonymously).

And now here's the grid in all its glory:


Sep 12, 2019

Thursday, September 12th 2019 Jeffrey Wechsler

Theme: Back to Square One - and how is that? Let's explain.

40A. Classic American board game symbolized by this puzzle's circles: CHUTES AND LADDERS. In the UK, and, I believe, Canada, the game is called "Snakes and Ladders" although there are many variations. There are even a chain of coffee shops headquartered in Toronto called "Snakes and Lattes".

The game originated in ancient India under the name Moksha Patam, and traveled to the UK to be called "Snakes and Ladders", faithful to the Indian original, and thence to the Americas, where Milton Bradley renamed it "Chutes and Ladders" and produced the first US version in 1943. I hope the clue refers to the name of the US version, and not the provenance.

It's an interesting study of morality, the ladders reward virtue and the snakes, or chutes, punish transgression. The phrase "back to square one" originated from the game.

Here's a game board preserved in the National Museum in Delhi:

OK, history lesson over.

Jeffrey served up a wonderful puzzle here, it takes great skill to be able to hide the theme entries in multiple adjoining fill, and note that the "downwards" entries are all "chutes" and the "upwards" entries are all "ladders".

Downwards: TRASH, MAIL and LAUNDRY
Upwards: ROPE, FIRE and STEP.

As always, Jeffrey hides some landmines, so just when you think you have the thing beat, you find a section that you stare at, fiddle with, write stuff in, take stuff out, you just can't figure it out. For me this week was the top-center, I had terrible trouble getting that straight.

So Bravo! Mr. Wechsler. Let's take a look at what we have:


1. "Are you getting 100%?" cereal: TOTAL

6. Lover: FLAME. As I mentioned above, this section took me an age to figure out. I just couldn't see FLAME, OILER and even when I finally tripped to PULLMAN I was lost.

11. Excludes: BANS

15. Place to play: ARENA

16. Gulf of Oman vessel: OILER

17. Neutral tone: ECRU

18. Charcuterie fare: MEATS. Food! Originally a way of preserving meats, mainly pork, before refrigeration. Nowadays extends to pates, sausage, and all kinds of interesting stuff.

19. Quaint sleeping coach: PULLMAN CAR. The UK railways ran various all-Pullman services which were first-class only. White tablecloths, candles, waiter food service. I have a couple of Pullman cars on my model railway.

21. Target, as a receiver: PASS TO

23. "Moonlight Sonata" opening movement, e.g.: ADAGIO. Here's Beethoven's masterpiece adagio. Don't bother reading the snarky comments below the piece, it's amazing how those keyboard warriiors want to find some, any excuse to criticize. I think comments should be closed for YouTube.

24. Stand buy: ADE. Lemonade, Ice-T :) What was that commercial for? It was funny.

25. Dromedary feature: HUMP

28. Hybrid fruits: UGLIS

31. Cheerleader's cry: GO TEAM! Or GO WRONG TEAM! as this USC cheerleader celebrates Vince Young's winning touchdown in the 2006 Rose Bowl which confirmed Texas as the National Champions. Ooops.

33. Top __: BANANA

34. "Garfield: __ of Two Kitties": A TAIL. Unheard of, but an easy guess.

37. Deceptive appearance: GUISE

39. __ Plaines: DES

44. Fish often fried: COD. Back in me youth, we ate fish on Fridays, as did all good Catholics (or bad Catholics, in our case, but we had to keep up appearances). The local "chippy" was my mother's night off cooking, we had take-out of fried fish and chips. Three choices, battered cod or haddock; or my dad's favorite, breaded plaice. Wrapped in genuine newsprint. Happy days.

45. Famille member: ONCLE

46. Out of practice: RUSTY. Like my piano skills, I might be able to knock out a "Moonlight Sonata" but I'd have the dogs howling, and not at the moon.

47. Deceptive: TRICKY. A bit like Jeffrey's puzzles.

50. Took to heart: HEEDED

52. Sleep soundly?: SNORE. Loved this clue/answer.

53. Classic movie theaters: RKO'S. RKO had a crack at "verticalization" before anyone had even thought of the term. They figured that if they were producing the movies, they may as well air them in their own theaters and take the box office directly without giving a cut to the theater owners.

54. Maple yield: SAP

57. Martial arts teacher: SENSEI. Literally "one who comes before". An honorific shared in both Chinese and Japanese.

61. Knesset country: ISRAEL. The Israeli Parliament.

63. Brit's afternoon drink: A SPOT OF TEA. Tough to parse if you have all the letters from crosses: ASPOTOFTEA. What? It's the "POT" that throws you.

67. Raised landform: BUTTE

68. Stable baby: FOAL

69. Befuddled: AT SEA

70. It was originally a sitting meditation pose: ASANA. Now a yoga position.

71. Capital on the Tiber: ROME

72. With 22-Down, intimidate: PSYCH (out).

73. Reach: GET AT


1. __ Bay Rays: TAMPA. When did they drop the "Devil" part of the name? C.C. would know.

2. Nymph associated with Artemis: OREAD. Not one, but many. These were mountain nymphs, allegedly aggressive, but they didn't seem to have any trouble attracting attention. I wonder why?

3. Needle: TEASE

4. Tiny tunnelers: ANTS

5. Eighteenth, usually: LAST HOLE. My last hole is the nineteenth - the clubhouse bar.

6. Clotheshorse: FOP

7. Sch. with a Brooklyn campus: LIU. This innocuous little fill was the source of a good 20 minutes of head-scratching - couldn't see past NYU. NYU went in, came out, went in, came out, we do the hokey-pokey and we turn about and end up with NYU all over again. Long Island University - of course. Now if you were asking about Iced Tea, you'd be speaking my language.

8. Penne __ vodka: ALLA. Food! I know you wanted "A LA", as did I - but we are speaking Italian, not French. Here's my dinner tonight - ragu Bolognese I made yesterday (the flavors develop if you leave it overnight), linguine, Parmegiano Reggiano, basil from my own bush and - the killer - a poached egg. So I present "Lingine alla Bolognese con l'uovo" in my terrible Italian.

9. Fuse: MELD

10. Writer Bombeck: ERMA. I still struggle to remember ERMA vs IRMA. Sorry, Irma - I mean, Erma.

11. Inoffensive: BENIGN

12. Praise: ACCOLADES

13. New Deal agcy.: NRA

14. __ La Table: cookware shop: SUR. There's one next to the original Farmer's Market on Fairfax here in LA. It has a magnetic attraction - when I shop the market, I swear they teleport me in there and do the hypnosis finger-snap just after I've finished buying something. I have a rather lovely paella pan from my last telekinetic moment, but I have to say it's had a lot of use.

20. Bonn : Wasser :: Barcelona : __: AGUA

22. See 72-Across: OUT

26. Soccer star Rapinoe: MEGAN

27. Beer belly: PAUNCH

29. Unlikely to react: INERT

30. Likely to react?: SASSY

31. "Scram, varmints!": GIT

32. 2017 "Hello, Dolly!" Tony winner: MIDLER. Bette, of course.

33. TV's Arthur: BEA

34. Billing nos.: ACCTS

35. "This __ / Doth to our rose of youth rightly belong" (Shakespeare): THORN. The "thorn" of love.

Countess: Even so it was with me when I was young:
If ever we are nature's, these are ours; this thorn
Doth to our rose of youth rightly belong;

All's Well that Ends Well, Act III sc i.

36. Intrusive MP3 files: AUDIO SPAM. Is this a thing? I know the two words go together, but had anyone ever had an unwanted intrusion of MP3 files? I know U2 came in for some flak a while ago when they gave their latest album away free to anyone who had an Apple iTunes account, but I can't think of anything which might come close to spam. Anyone?

38. Aerodynamic: SLEEK

41. __ sauce: SOY

42. Bridal gown storage option: DRESS BAG. Hmmm, OK.

43. It'll never work: DUD

48. Big Easy cuisine: CREOLE. Food!

49. Co-worker of Lane and Olsen: KENT. Superman in his day job.

51. "Where __ sign?": DO I

54. Pulled a chair up to: SAT AT

55. Insurance giant: AETNA. Founded as the Aetna (Fire) Insurance Company of Hartford, Connecticut. Why Aetna? Based on the name of Etna, the active volcano beloved of crossword constructors.

56. Skirt fold: PLEAT

58. Dove, e.g.: SOAP

59. Young salamanders: EFTS

60. Wee: ITSY

62. Sleight of hand: RUSE

63. Egypt's cont.: AFRica. If you'd like a little different take on the by-now bland "Toto" song, here's my favorite Norwegian heavy metal and legendary cover artist Leo Morachiolli. Ear defenders advised for the weak at heart, or hearing.

64. Jack of "Barney Miller": SOO

65. Common Market letters: EEC. European Economic Community.

66. Hot tub sigh: AAH!

I'm in the UK for a few days, I'm crossing my fingers that civil war doesn't break out while I'm here and the hordes descend on Heathrow Airport with pitchforks and torches. If that happens, I'll just pop into the pub for a pint or two and maybe a spot of tea and wait for it to rain. The last time there were major riots in England when I lived there it was during a spell of nice weather. Once it started raining, the rioting subsided. No-one likes to riot in the rain.

Pip-pip, old Chaps! Toodle-oo!


Note from C.C.:

Happy 60th birthday to dear Steve, the Cal Ripken Jr. of our blog. Steve has a busy job and travels often, but he always prioritizes our blog and writes many posts on the road. Thank you so much for your incomparable dedication and humor, Steve!

Steve and Jill, June 12, 2016
Tea at The Queen Mary

Aug 23, 2019

Friday, August 23, 2019, Jeffrey Wechsler

Title: I must P!

Hi, Lemonade here back with my Friday foil, Jeffrey Wechsler. It was fun to read Tom's slant on JW's last two Fridays. It reminded me of when marti was reviewing Jeffrey's Thursdays when he first appeared here at the LAT. But now I am back on the clock with another over-sized offering that no doubt was the product of (my guess) the inspired 16 letter fill - PART APPRECIATION (16). With Jeffrey's background as a  curator, I am betting that was where this gem started. Of course, he had to then make the rest of the themers grid-spanners, the middle two at 15 spaces and the outside two 16 spaces. He also introduced some unused fill, one with one prior appearance in any mainstream puzzle (ICY HOT), and AHIAHI brand spanking new. We also get to reveal EXTERNS, HOE CAKE, NYMPHET,  TITULAR, HANDKNIT, and PURLOINS.  There are some very fun words there.

17A. Gratitude for a well-played role?: PART APPRECIATION (16). A literal but funny clue/fill.

27A. Crackin', peelin' and fadin'?: PAINT MISBEHAVIN' (15). By far my favorite, as I could hear the music in my head as this filled.

45A. Couples therapist?: PAIR CONDITIONER (15). How many have ever tried couples therapy?

55A. Extreme example of layering for cold weather?: PANTS IN ONE'S PANTS (16). This is absurd which is its charm, though the second P is distracting.

Time to solve...


1. Irrigation need: PIPE.

5. '90s trade pact: NAFTANorth American Free Trade Agreement.

10. "Go no further!": HALT. Reminds me of Sergeant Schultz from Hogan's Heroes.

14. Heart: CRUX. The heart of the matter. Hey marti, hope you are well.

15. "... __ player, / That struts and frets his hour upon the stage": Macbeth: A POOR. Jeffrey's Shakespeare quote.

16. Lake near Carson City: TAHOE. It may be the perfect place on Earth.

20. Papal messenger: LEGATE. Now it is an ecclesiastic delegated by the pope as his representative. Historically it was a provincial governor of senatorial rank appointed by the emperor in ancient Rome.

21. On the other side of: Abbr.: ACRoss.

22. Enzyme suffix: ASE.

23. Unscrupulous: AMORAL. As opposed to Anthony Gael Moral.

25. Youthful maiden of myth: NYMPHET. I think of Lolita and Nabokov's words, "Now I wish to introduce the following idea. Between the age limits of nine and fourteen there occur maidens who, to certain bewitched travelers, twice or many times older than they, reveal their true nature which is not human, but nymphic (that is, demoniac); and these chosen creatures I propose to designate as 'nymphets.' " - Part One, Chapter 5." Please no Jeffrey Epstein comments.

31. Clean, as greens: RINSE.

32. Newton honorific: SIR. Isaac.

33. LGBT History Mo.: OCTober.

34. '60s campus gp.: SDSStudents for a Democratic Society.

35. Start growing: SPROUT. Add an "S" and you have the newest grocery chain coming to my neighborhood, LINK.

37. Hem partner: HAW. Hee.

40. Asian language: LAO. Like THAI, just the beginning of the land.

42. Hammer site: EAR. The ear bones - the malleus, or hammer, the incus, or anvil, and the stapes, or stirrup.

43. Kofi Annan's birthplace: GHANA. His BIOGRAPHY.

49. Like Macbeth in "Macbeth": TITULAR. Like eponymous. A bonus Shakespeare reference.

50. Jumpy: ON EDGE.

51. Jeff Lynne rock gp.: ELOElectric Light Orchestra

52. HP product: INK. Funny, not technology.

53. Hit: STRUCK. No violence, please.

60. Discrete things: ITEMS.

61. Poetry Muse: ERATO.

62. Fruit with fuzz: KIWI.

63. First name in Latin bands: DESI. Arnaz.

64. "Holy cow!": YIPES. Yipes?

65. Venerable college that owns a river island: ETON. Did you know? Queen's Eyot (pronounced 'eight') is an island on the River Thames close to Windsor. The island has been owned by Eton College since 1923 and has a beautiful clubhouse used for weddings etc.


1. Angel dust, briefly: PCPPhencyclidine.

2. Investment option, briefly: IRA.

3. Misappropriates: PURLOINS. There was a famous letter.

4. Nonresident doctors: EXTERNS. Intern ≠ extern.

5. Controversial combat material: NAPALM. This is a highly flammable sticky jelly used in incendiary bombs and flamethrowers, consisting of gasoline thickened with special soaps.

6. Cal. entry: APPT. Calendar - appointment.

7. Golf alert: FORE. Mini-clecho.

8. Golf club part: TOE.
9. Understood by few: ARCANE. Jeffrey's middle name?

10. Seuss title top: HAT. Cat in the...

11. "Aloha __": Hawaiian "Good evening" that sounds like a repeated fish: AHIAHI. Not to be confused with AHI AHI. Timing so soon after the lovely Jimmy B. C.C. puzzle.

12. Ease: LOOSEN.

13. Principle: TENET.

16. Lighting area?: TARMAC. My guess is this refers to the runway lights at airports. Very Friday clue/fill.

18. Patterned mineral: AGATE. This one is for sale at $4,200.00
19. Lidocaine brand endorsed by Shaq: ICY HOT. The second appearance of this brand, It was introduced to the LAT and all major newspapers by one C.C. Burnikel July 25, 2017.

23. Car loan nos.: APRS. An annual percentage rate (APR) is the annual rate charged for borrowing.

24. Hotel employee: MAID.

26. Mil. rank: PVT.

28. Comcast, e.g.: Abbr.: ISPInternet Service Provider.

29. Warning sound: SIREN.

30. Wide-ranging: BROAD.

35. "You're not the only one!": SO CAN I.

36. Ocean State sch.: URI. The University of Rhode Island.

37. Like some homemade sweaters: HAND KNIT. We have a friend who gives Oo something she knitted every time we see her. I am not sure she should have retired.

38. Rare blood type, briefly: A-NEG.

39. Word with hard or soft: WARE.

40. Lucy of "Elementary": LIU. Dr. Watson.

41. Bygone HBO series about a sports agent: ARLISS. You can now stream this series.

43. Generate: GIN UP. Not a phrase I know. The idiom gin something up means to increase something, to get something going, to stir something up, to agitate or perhaps make a little trouble, sometimes through less than honest means.

44. Southern cornmeal fare: HOECAKE. A hoecake is cornbread made minimalist—a thin, unleavened round made from the simplest batter (cornmeal, water, and salt).

45. "Ecce homo" speaker: PILATE. His Latin name was Marcus Pontius Pilatus. As a child, I heard him called Pontius Pilate (Pilot). It should have been said like the exercise.

46. Makes up (for): ATONES. A continguous clue with religious overtones.

47. Scottish archipelago: ORKNEY. You can READ ALL ABOUT. More arcane knowledge about Great Britain.

48. Ancient statuary fragments: TORSOS.

49. Unenthusiastic: TEPID.

53. Cinch: SNAP.

54. Parisian bean?: TETE. Bean as noggin or the like in French.

56. "That's quite enough": TMIToo Much Information.

57. "Do it, __ will!": OR I. Sounds ominous.

58. What a V-sign probably means in a restaurant: TWO. I love this clue. Very visual.

59. Envy, say: SIN. One of seven supposedly deadly ones.

Where do all the Fridays go? Another gone, but not before some good old fashioned Jeffrey Wechsler challenge and humor. My two granddaughters are now going to school after a very fun summer. Labor Day approaches. Thank you, Jeffrey and all who read. Lemonade out.

Notes from C.C.:

Here are a few cute pictures of Lemonade's grandchildren Charlotte, Harper and Owen. You can see more pictures here

2) Happy birthday to the always cheerful and happy Tinbeni, who's been with our blog for a long long time. Hope it's a day full of adventure and fun, Tinbeni!

Aug 2, 2019

Friday, August 2, 2019 Jeffrey Wechsler

Defining Cricket




59. [Crickets]: AUDIENCE SILENCE.

Four gridspanners !


1. Center of the Milky Way?: CARAMEL.   Thought this might be about the candy bar and not the galaxy, but the use of THE Milky Way, rather than A Milky Way made me wait for a couple of perps.

8. Calder creation: STABILEAlexander Calder.  Here's a pic of his 53' Flamingo 50 ton stabile in front of the Miles Van Der Rohe designed Federal Building in downtown Chicago.

15. First state, in a way: ALABAMA.   If the states are listed in alphabetical order.   That wasn't my first thought when reading the clue.

16. Journey's end: ARRIVAL.

19. Once, in olden days: ERST.

20. 2000 Bell Atlantic acquisition: GTE.  The birth of Verizon.

21. Slashed pronoun: HE / SHE.   I struggled with this one.   I had the ending HE, and so I tried a beginning SHE, then a nonsensical HER and a HIM.  Not surprisingly nothing fit until, as Steve says, "The penny dropped".  D'OH !

22. Suspect: PRESUME.

33. Seed-to-be: OVULE.

34. LAX calculation: ETA.  Los Angeles Airport / Estimated Time of Arrival.  Not that you needed me to spell it out...  Oh, by the way, the X means nothing.   It's just a filler so the airport code has three letters.

35. Energy source: ATOM.  Incredible reactions when harnessed.  Atom Ant was a mid '60s Hanna Barbera cartoon.   He was incredibly strong.  Of course, so was Mighty Mouse and Underdog.

36. They might help you change your position: WANT ADS.   One place you might visit if you are looking for a job.

39. Prepare for coating, as aluminum:  ANODIZE.

41. Within: Pref.: ENTO.  ENdO wouldn't work this time.  You must rely on the perp to get the third letter correct.

42. Land of Freud: Abbr.: AUS.  I completed a puzzle the other day and the clue was, 'Birthplace of Freud".   It needed 7 letters and I confidently entered Austria.   The perps didn't support that, and it soon worked out that the answer was Moravia.  That answer sent me to the internet.

Both are correct.  Moravia was part of the Austrian Empire in the year of his birth, 1856.   The area of Moravia became part of Czechoslovakia in 1918 with the breakup of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.  When Czechoslovakia broke up in 1993 to become the Czech Republic and Slovakia,  the Moravia region became part of the Czech Republic. 

44. Scrooge: MISER.

49. Beat by a hair: NOSE OUT.  Edge.  Made me think of a photo finish horse race.

50. Wheat species that's also a British past tense: SPELT.   Not fooled.  Wheat belt farmers like PK would know this.

54. Article in Bonn: DER.   All nouns in German are either masculine, feminine or neuter.  The little word in front, the article, will tell you the gender.  Another tidbit ?    As you know, in English, only proper nouns are capitalized, but in German, ALL nouns are capitalized.   

Here are the German definite and indefinite articles:

der - the (masculine)
die - the (feminine)
das - the (neuter)
ein - a (masculine and neuter)
eine - a (feminine)

Thank you Rocket Languages for the lesson.

Your challenge when solving a crossword is to recognize the gender, but like a number of Spanish clues that don't give you a hint (compare the clue "Other, in Spanish" to the clues, "Juan's other" or "Juanita's other")  you are going to have to get the perp to be correct.   Or get lucky.

55. Fraternity activity: RUSH.   "He doesn't always listen to RUSH, but when he does, the whole neighborhood does too".

63. Like answers that lower test scores: IN ERROR.

64. Pre-owned item: USED CAR.  A specific answer to a general clue.  Friday worthy.

65. Top-rated TV show of 1984-'85:  DYNASTY.   Who shot JR ?   Oh wait, that was Dallas.  This was prime time show designed to be competition to Dallas, and it eventually worked.

66. WWII vessels: PT BOATS.  Patrol Torpedo.  Saw my first one watching McHale's Navy.


1. Source of tweets ... or growls: CAGE.   Another very good Friday clue that required creative thinking.

2. Defunct fruit coating: ALAR.  The FDA approved the spray that was used on apple trees (and cherries) to regulate growth so the apples didn't ripen and fall to the ground too early.  A few years later, questionable EPA testing and a questionable 60 Minutes feature story incorrectly terming it a pesticide raised significant public awareness that it was a carcinogenic.  Public concern (deemed "hysteria" by many, but especially the apple growers) created the "Alar Scare" that caused the manufacturer to withdraw the product.

3. Barrels into: RAMS.

4. Help the bad guys: ABET.

5. Big mouth: MAW.

6. Political refugee: EMIGRE.

7. Barista's output: LATTES.  Didn't we have LATTE ART recently as the answer ?

8. Understood: SAW.  Tried got first.  No bueno.

9. Start to cycle?: TRI.   I had to go from one wheel to three wheels to complete this answer.

10. Many a Middle-earth combatant: ARCHER.  When I see Middle-earth, I think of J.R.R Tolkein. You ?

11. Eco-friendly carrier: BIKE.  Clever.  Bicycle, and arguably, motorcycle when compared other motorized vehicles.

12. Composer Charles: IVES.

13. Plastering strip: LATH.

14. Other than this: ELSE.

18. 1946 Literature Nobelist: HESSE.  Perps.  Don't know how a person could answer this based on the clue alone, unless they were were a literature expert.  It is Friday.

22. __ bargain: PLEA.

23. Sports gp. that originally had "Lawn" in its name: USTA.  I usta play tennis.  Got smoked in the very first tournament I entered.   It was a small town contest run by the parks department.  Still have the Wilson T2000.

24. Nasty: MEAN. Ilie Nastase's nickname was Nasty, but I think that was a bit unfair. He was no shrinking violet.  That's for sure.  But he wasn't nasty.

25. Knocked the socks off: WOWED.

26. Grand Prince of Moscow, 1328-'40: IVAN I.

27. Litters' littlest: RUNTS.  Easy to think the response would be singular.

28. John of music: ELTON.  Sir Elton.

29. "Barbarella" director Roger: VADIM.   I saw the movie but didn't think much of it.  Kinda goofy. Would never have got this without the M in JIMINY.   And four others.

30. Formal identification: IT IS I.  Formal, in the sense that it is the grammatically correct response. Nice clue.

31. Deceive: COZEN.  To trick or cheat, or obtain by deception.  There's a large law firm in Philly called Cozen O'Connor that has probably had to bear the brunt of many jokes.

32. Board at one's fingertips: EMERY.

37. How "The Banana Boat Song" begins: DAY O.  Why was this song popular ?

38. Fills in: SUBS.  Substitutes.  Husker Gary is apt to fill the void when a teacher needs time off.

40. Drop: OMIT.

43. Soft leather: SUEDE.

46. Takes the stage: ENTERS.  Thespians, musicians, emcees, comics, public speakers etc.  They all strive to take the stage.

47. Becomes harder to afford: GOES UP.   What goes up, must come down.   Spinning wheel, got to go 'round.

48. Legal scholar: JURIST.

50. Came out with: SAID.

51. Inconsequential: PUNY.  Not of significant concern.  Mere.

52. Early banishment site: EDEN.

53. Pre-Euro currency: LIRA.

55. Start from scratch: REDO.

56. Donald, to Huey, Dewey and Louie: UNCA.  Comic strip vocalization of uncle.  The characters are a Walt Disney production.

57. "Get lost!": SCAT.

58. "... nor shall ever see that face of __ again": Lear: HERS.

60. Excluding: NOT.

61. Shout: CRY.

62. Syr. neighbor: LEB.  Syria and Lebanon.

Jul 19, 2019

Friday, July 19, 2019 Jeffrey Wechsler

Breeding Assignment

Jeffrey mates a leading B to the first word of common phrases that start with an R... to a homophone R word... and creates new life with these phrases and definitions.  Breed 'em and weep.  Or laugh, as I did.

17. That necessary morning cup of coffee?: BREWED AWAKENING.   Rude Awakening.

24. Prepare some fish for frying?: BREAD HERRINGS.   Red Herrings.

44. Good nickname for Stephen King?: BRAIN OF TERROR.   Reign of terror.

58. Part of the Hulk's healthy diet?: BRUTE VEGETABLES.    Root vegetables.

I first tried my hand at it with "rags to riches" and came up with "Boasts about personal wealth" for "brags to riches" but the spelling doesn't change, so although it rhymes it's not a homophone and not consistent with Jeffrey's lead.  

How about "Crumple new bills ? for "Break in the money ?"  That might work.   How about "Male chauvinist's belittling comment about a confident, busty woman ?"   Rest assured that I could never make it as a constructor.   Hats off to those with the wordsmith skills.

Let's examine some of the other clues and answers.


1. Martial arts move: CHOP.   First thought was kick.

5. Lawrence with an eponymous college: SARAH. No idea.  Sarah Lawrence College

10. Oppressive atmosphere: PALL. An air of gloom

14. Dynamic opening: AERO.    The top 10 most aerodynamic production cars.    I guessed the Teslas and the Prius, but not the Alfa that Dash - T's wife drives.   Top aerodynamic production cars.

15. British Columbia neighbor: IDAHO.

16. Court contemporary of Bjorn: ILIE.   First name in the clue, first name in the answer.   Tennis courts.  Borg and Nastase.  Borg beat Nastase in the 1976 Wimbledon men's final.   In more recent news, Novak Djokovic beat Roger Federer in this year's men's final.

20. Persevere, with "on": SOLDIER.   Having the tenacity to keep going despite the obstacles.

21. Great Society era, with "the": SIXTIES.

22. [There's another doc]: ENC.   Enclosure.   A reference, often in the footer area of an introductory page, that alerts you that there are more documents in the mailer or folder.     There were tons of enclosures in the mailer when I did a ReFi mortgage by mail with Norwest Bank in the mid 90's.  Plus a lot of sticky note arrows telling us where to sign and date.

23. "The X-Files" subjects: ETs.   Extra-Terrestrials.   I learned from crosswords that they eat Reese's Pieces.

31. Nashville awards org.: CMA.   Country Music Association.

33. Very: REAL.     

34. Baku native: AZERI.   Baku is the capital city of Azerbaijan.   "The modern ethnonym "Azerbaijani" or "Azeri" refers to the Turkic peoples of Iranian Azerbaijan and Republic of Azerbaijan. They historically called themselves or were referred to by others as Muslims, Turks, Turkmens, Persians, or Ajams" - Wikipedia.

"Local scientists consider the Abseron Yasaqligi (Apsheron Peninsula) (including Baku and Sumqayit) and the Caspian Sea to be the ecologically most devastated area in the world because of severe air, soil, and water pollution; soil pollution results from oil spills, from the use of DDT pesticide, and from toxic defoliants used in the production of cotton; surface and underground water are polluted by untreated municipal and industrial wastewater and agricultural run-off"  - CIA World Factbook.

Not in our travel plans.  

35. Decided in court: RULED.

38. Show set in Vegas: CSI.  Crime Scene Investigation.   There's a long-running German crime / drama series I enjoy that runs on the MHz channel.   It's called Tatort, which translates to Crime Scene.  I have to read the subtitles to understand most of it.  There's a lot of $10 words in German, like Tatortermittlung, which translates to Crime Scene Investigation.

39. Discontinue: SEVER.

40. Theater area with no seats: AISLE.   Freshness in the clue for a common crossword fill.

41. Work with an Ethiopian princess: AIDA.   Verdi's opera.

43. Lea feeder: EWE.

48. Cedar Rapids campus: COE.   A liberal arts college named for one of the early donors.  Wikipedia tells me that the man that invented CorningWare,  S. Donald Stookey  was an alumni of Coe College.

49. __ canto: BEL.   Italian for beautiful singing or beautiful song.  Various definitions.

50. Truly enjoy something: EAT IT UP

54. Most beneficent: KINDEST.    Like L. Frank Baum's Glinda. 

60. Lot measure: ACRE.   There are 640 of them in a Section.   A quarter-quarter section is 40 acres. 640/4 and the resulting 160/4 = 40,  which is how far it was from our house to the next neighbor when I was growing up.   Well, except for the high school vice principal.   She lived directly across the street.  I had to mind my P's and Q's.  

61. See some sorority sisters, say: REUNE.   I've seen this word most often in crosswords.

62. One of Chekhov's "Three Sisters":  OLGA.
Oh, this is the Chekhov.  Sounds the same, but spelled differently than the Star Trek character.

63. "__ Cassius has a lean and hungry look": YOND.

64. Belgian expressionist James: ENSOR.    Last Friday, I got the answer ENSOR ("Former CNN journalist David") because of the 5 perps.    This time I had 4 of the 5 perps and I missed it.   Didn't get the S in GUS.   D'oh !

65. Oenology datum: YEAR.   Wine related.  As in Boone's Farm Strawberry Hill, 1973. 


1. Many have meters: CABS.  Taxicabs. 

2. Sub: HERO. Grinder, hoagie.

3. Russian city: OREL.   Did not know, but as Abejo would say, "Four perps and I got it".   This city is also spelled Oryol in English.

4. Ground material: POWDER.    In spices like chili and cinnamon powder, talcum in baby and cosmetic powders, in fireworks and ammunition as gunpowder, et alia.  

5. Cognac cocktail: SIDECAR.   Never had one, but recognized the drink name with a few perps.

6. Month after Shevat: ADAR.   Guessed ADAR and built around it.    It's the one month on the Hebrew calendar that comes immediately to mind.   Elul if pressed for another.   IDAHO gave me the needed confidence.

7. Cold and damp: RAW.  Similar to dank and clammy, but more bitter due to the cold.     Unlike the Arizona weather in the summer.   Hi, Lucina !  Hello, Yuma !  You too, CartBoy !    It's pretty warm right now in much of the rest of the country.

8. Signs of solutions: AHAs.   Or TADAs.   

9. Apt to use more corn?: HOKIER.  I used to be addicted to the hokey-pokey.  But then I turned myself around.  Hey, that was almost Boomer-esque !  

10. Wee: PINT SIZE.

11. Et __: ALII.  "Et alii (masculine), et aliae (feminine) or et alia (neuter), in all cases meaning and others. Mixed-gender groups would use et alii".  - Wiktionary

12. Black Friday likelihood: LINE.

13. Durability metaphor: LEGS.   Usually with has, as in  "That story has legs and we're going to be hearing about it for a long time".    You have to be on your toes and knuckle down as you solve Jeffrey's puzzles, or he'll make your head swim and pull the wool over your eyes.   But if you keep a stiff upper lip and your nose to the grindstone, you can get the upper hand.

18. German article: EINE.    A.

19. Epic film budget line: EXTRAS.   Along the lines of Ben-Hur, with a cast of thousands.

24. Model material: BALSA.    A very light,  yet strong,  hardwood.  It was an answer on Jeopardy!   last week.

25. Dunkin' Donuts option: DECAF.  Coffee flavor without the caffeine.  Not my cup of tea.

26. Is charismatic: HAS IT.  The "it" factor.   The It Factor Quiz

27. Omit, in speaking: ELIDE.

28. "Not happening": NEVER. A different take on never:

29. Expanded: GREW.

30. Royal address: SIRE.

31. Food often served with a mallet: CRAB.    A restaurant in San Antonio features a crab and mallet.
I just checked their prices.  The Snow Crab is now 23 and  the King Crab is now 32, but the Lobster is still 24.

32. Naturalist John: MUIR.

36. Drew out: ELICITED.

37. Indicate: DENOTE.

42. Settler?: ARBITER.   Are arbiter and arbitration arbitrary?

45. Haydn's includes 106 symphonies: OEUVRE.   Complete body of work. 

46. "General Hospital" Emmy winner Sofer: RENA.  Don't remember her, but I remember Luke and Laura.  Yeah,  I watched it for the better part of one year during college.   It was a girlfriend thing.

47. Member of an exclusive network: OLD BOY.    In England.  Not to be confused with a Good Old Boy network in the southern US.   Both can loosely be defined as "who you know and have ins with" but the Old Boy network in England largely stems from relationships and ties to prestigious universities, such as ETON and Oxford.    A new learning for me.

50. Major success of the dot-com bubble: EBAYebay 

51. Oil acronym: ARCO.   Atlantic Richfield Company.   We had the Atlantic gas stations here and there when I was growing up in the Youngstown Pittsburgh area.   Then they became ARCOs, and soon thereafter were retrofitted as other gas station chains. 

52. Dice roll, say: TURN.

53. Hammer part: PEEN.  Only on a few of the many hammer types.  55 Types of Hammers – The Ultimate Guide

54. Numbers game: KENO.

55. Cosmo rival: ELLE.

56. Phantasy Star Online publisher: SEGA.   An online Role Playing Game (RPG). 

57. Bygone dynast: TSAR.   In my mind, the spelling for the hereditary Russian rulers should be TSARs.    The spelling for business leaders and heads of departments should be czars, such as "Energy Czar William Simon".   When solving crosswords, I follow that self-created rule unless the perps force a change.  Rich seems to have the same proclivity.

59. Mouse in Disney's "Cinderella": GUS.    The intersection of Gus and Ensor did me in today.    If I ever knew of this little fellow, I forgot.

And with that, here's the grid:

Jul 6, 2019

Saturday, July 6, 2019, Jeffrey Wechsler

Themeless Puzzle by Jeffrey Wechsler 

Archie League
On July 6th, 1936, the National Air Traffic Control System was created and it has progressed immensely since the days of the first air traffic controller - Archie League of St. Louis in 1929.

We now have a very high tech group of professionals that keep us safe in the wild blue yonder. To appreciate their job please click on this site that shows where every plane is that is currently flying anywhere in the world. I was shocked when I first saw how many planes are aloft at one time.

You can zoom in and out to see what plane is flying over your head right now and understand how hard it was to get all those planes on the ground on September 11, 2001

Today marks the second Jeffrey Wechsler themeless Saturday I have blogged in my year-and-a-half tenure here at the Corner. My first Wechsler Saturday puzzle blog was on the first Saturday of this year. He is shown below as the second from the left in this Minnesota event.  We all know the beautiful lady who is front and center. C.C.'s interview with Jeffrey

Now I will try to guide you through Jeffrey's crossword flight path from my Nebraska control tower. Wechsler flight 7.6.09 is now leaving the gate with various ETA's for the end of the trip:


1. Copper container?: POLICE CAR - The thought of copper meaning slang for a policeman occurred to me but I thought, nah, Jeffery wouldn't start with that. Well that was the first turbulence I hit on this flight. I most remember Car 54 and Adam-12

10. Avian sounds: CAWS - Not COOS it turns out

14. Clues in: MAKES AWARE.

15. Bypass: OMIT.

16. Field of operations?: ARITHMETIC - No new iteration of New Math makes sense to this math teacher. Pearson Publishing makes big bucks if you choose New Math as shown here.

17. Infiltrator: MOLE.

18. Car wash supply: RAGS - What? No SOAP?

19. Follower of TV?: SET.

20. Grapefruit stuff: PULP 

21. Penultimate of 24 letters: PSI - Next to last in Greek alphabet

22. Soup base: PEA 

25. 2002 Soderbergh film based on a 1961 sci-fi novel: SOLARIS - Rotten Tomatoes thought more of George Clooney's space effort that came eleven years later

27. "Stone walls do not a prison make" poet: LOVELACE - "Nor iron bars a cage" from Richard's 1642 poem To Althea, From Prison

30. Go bad: ROT.

31. Boxy conveyances: ELEVATORS - Art Deco entrances to said boxy conveyances in the lobby of the Empire State Building

33. Tolkien terror: ORC - Hello old cwd friend 

35. Accommodate: SUIT.

36. Pull apart: RIP - Just RIP that bandaid off!

37. Part of a bust: KILO - Illicit drugs (correction) often come in these 2.2. lb lots

39. Mideast group with observer status at the U.N.: PLO.

40. "After the Gold Rush" musician: NEIL YOUNG Here ya go!

43. Bushes seem to flourish in it: Abbr.: GOP - Of these GOP Bushes, W's library is at 
50. Dallas sch.: SMU.

45. Playful Pacific Northwest marine denizen: SEA OTTER.

46. Like pens designed for detailed work: FINE NIB - We crossworders are familiar with a pen's NIB

51. Auditor, often: Abbr.: CPA.

52. Bank product: LOAN.

53. Position, briefly: POV - It all depends on your Point Of View 

55. Where the tibialis anterior originates: SHIN.

56. Opposed to: ANTI.

57. Dismissed lightly: POOH POOHED - A 1939 NYT editorial POOH POOHED the idea that  TV would ever replace the radio. Origin of the phrase

61. In __: unmoved: SITU - An IN SITU mosaic in a Pompeii bathhouse 

62. Conscience: INNER VOICE 

63. Robert of "Airplane!": HAYS - The funniest movie I have ever seen (Robert HAYS on trumpet)! Craziness in the air traffic controller tower was a big part of this movie

64. Insignificant: PENNY ANTE - Also a low rent poker game


1. "The Mikado" props: PARASOLS.

Emma Kerr as Peep-Bo
2. "Just tell me already!": OK I GIVE UP, "What do you call a boomerang that won't come back?" (*Answer at the bottom of the blog)

3. With 23-Down, chow line: LETS 
23. See 3-Down: EAT 

4. Cousin of -like: ISH.

5. Cell feature: CAM - I wonder if this lens would really enhance my cell CAM

6. One of Bo Peep's charges: EWE - She can't find 'em!

7. Best Musical Tony winner after "Nine": CATS.

8. First of 12: ARIES - Where the sun is during the spring equinox.  Why it really isn't in ARIES any more

9. Clerical leader: RECTOR.

10. Niels Bohr, to Victor Borge: COMPATRIOT - Fellow Danes in two very different disciplines 

11. Affaire de coeur: AMOUR - Love is an Affair of the heart

12. "__ ever!": "Yes!": WILL I 

13. Prominent Lincoln Memorial features: STEPS  - There are 58 STEPS from the plaza level up to the chamber.

14. Sleuth who knits: MARPLE - Margaret Rutherford was Agatha Christie's Miss Jane MARPLE in film from 1961 - 1964

22. Military group: PLATOON.

24. Seed with a prominent cap: ACORN 

26. "And another thing, buddy ... ": LOOK YOU.

28. Typical Bond foe: EVIL GENIUS - Here's some (I can only name Dr. No and Goldfinger)

29. Iroquois enemies: ERIES.

32. Infiltrators: SPIES.

34. Walk-off home run, e.g.: CLUTCH HIT - Baseball's most famous (1:00)

38. Swimwear option: ONE PIECE - In 1922 this D.C. cop's job was to make sure these ONE PIECERS were no more than 6" above the knee

41. On the __: LAM.

42. Starbucks size: GRANDE.

44. Repetitive British farewell: PIP PIP - Cheerio old bean!

46. Word with mob or card: FLASH - Gotta love this as it builds for six minutes

47. Ancient Greek region: IONIA Map

48. Dapper: NATTY.

49. Northernmost Kentucky county: BOONE - Our 4,800 mile trip to Rome began at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport which is in BOONE County KY just across the Ohio River from Cincinnati 

54. Lindsey on skis: VONN.

55. "For violent fires __ burn out themselves": Shak.: SOON - "
His rash fierce blaze of riot cannot last. / For violent fires SOON burn out themselves" John of Gaunt said of Richard II

58. Farm female: HEN.

59. Explore where you shouldn't: PRY.

60. Fertility clinic supply: OVA - It's also the name of this In Vitro Fertilization clinic in Zurich 

*A boomerang that won't come back is called "A Stick"

Now put your seat backs and tray tables in their upright and locked position and feel free to comment.