Showing posts with label Kenneth Berniker. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kenneth Berniker. Show all posts

Feb 24, 2016

Wednesday Feb 24, 2016, Kenneth Berniker


Husker Gary back at the helm and after shuffling some vowels around, I got 'er done. Even I got Kenneth's fun theme of five, count 'em five, different ways of prefacing a word or phrase with SIN or one of its homophones. What a hoot!

16. Form by combining elements : SYNTHESIZE - The shuttle's 3 main engines SYNTHESIZE 
H2 + O2  from the orange fuel tank into H2O in the exhaust 

22. "Girls Just Want to Have Fun" singer : CYNDI LAUPER - Obviously in any language

33. Fictional voyager : SINBAD THE SAILOR - As I said, in any language

49. Sparkle : SCINTILLATE - Nothing SCINTILLATES like a girl's best friend

59. Host of the 2015 MLB All-Star Game : CINCINNATI - One of the biggest stars of that night was this ex-CINCINNATI player Pete Rose that MLB allowed to participate despite his lifetime ban from the game for betting 

And the reveal

44. Wicked ... and, homophonically, like five long puzzle answers : SINFUL - SINFUL desserts on a SIN City (Las Vegas) cart

Not one SCINTILLA of criticism or SINISTER comment from this corner. Let's examine the SINEW of Kenneth's fine puzzle! (Stop me before I SIN again!!)


1. Lobsters' sense organs : PALPI - Sensory organs on the mandible in the middle of the picture. What a 1 Across!

6. Celebs : VIPS

10. Flight from the law : LAM

13. Poker declaration : I'M OUT - Uh, I'M OUT!

14. "__ my guard down" : I LET 

15. Famille patriarch : PERE - Paris pop

18. One-piece garments, slangily : UNIS - UNIsuitS on 2012 Women's Olympic Rowing Team

19. Rome-based carrier : ALITALIA - Wake me when we land at da Vinci Airport

20. Toll road timesaver : E-Z PASS - It's faster but not this much!

24. Performer's supporters : FAN BASE

28. Guacamole, e.g. : DIP

29. Twisty letter : ESS

30. Diva delivery : ARIA - On Fridays, it's clued Nessun Dorma

31. Snoozed : SLEPT - Yes we did. 

40. Retired New York senator Al D'__ : AMATO

41. Rational : SANE

42. DDE rival : AES - Adlai Stevenson was the Democratic sacrificial lamb against Ike

45. Esteemed league member : IVY

46. N, in Morse code : DASH DOT .-- .... .- -  .-  ..-. ..- -.  .--. ..- --.. --.. .-.. . is "What a fun puzzle" in Morse code. Can you find the "N"?

52. Currencies : MONEYS

53. Irrationality : UNREASON -  "To be loyal to rags, to shout for rags, to worship rags, to die for rags -- that is a loyalty of UNREASON...invented by monarchy" Mark Twain - A Connecticut in King Arthur's Court

58. Bravo preceder : ALFA  - NATO alphabet

61. Not masc. or fem. : NEUT

62. Prod : URGE

63. Gold brick : INGOT - An INGOT of gold is 400 oz. and worth about $500,000 - give or take

64. Fashion monogram : YSL

65. Jury member : PEER

66. Fluff, as hair : TEASE


1. Italian capital of its own province : PISA

2. Kind of nitrite : AMYL - An ingredient that can be found in these "poppers"  to give you a quick rush

3. Actress Anderson : LONI - My fav WKRP In CINCINNATI character!

4. Golf stroke that can be practiced in a hallway : PUTT

5. Cornell University city : ITHACA - A 45 Across member

6. Brand that "gets the red out" : VISINE

7. Epic with a very big horse : ILIAD 

8. Refillable candy : PEZ

9. Metal playing marbles : STEELIES - Is that a STEELY Dominic is using?

10. Delaware Valley tribe : LENAPE - Most were eventually were forced into Indian Territory/Oklahoma by the 1860's

11. Comes into view : ARISES

12. Salutation abbreviation : MESSRS - Dear MESSRS Spock, Kirk and McCoy, Please beam us up some residuals. Scotty, Sulu and the Gang

15. Bite-size Chinese appetizer : PU PU - Tastes better than the name

17. Tarzan portrayer Ron et al. : ELYS

21. Mothers of Invention musician : ZAPPA

23. Empty, as threats : IDLE - Must be an election year

24. Fourth notes : FAS - Long, long ways to run...

25. "Entourage" agent Gold : ARI

26. Diarist Anaïs : NIN

27. Rum-soaked cake : BABA - One way to add the rum!

31. "The Affair" airer, briefly : SHO

32. Morticia, to Gomez : TISH - Ah, great TV, The Addams Family

34. Peaceful relations : AMITY

35. Annual tennis team event : DAVIS CUP - This year's pairings if you're interested

36. Texting farewell : TTYL - Talk (probably Text) To You Later

37. Chap : LAD - It's time for Name That Tune with this lyric "When I was just a LAD of ten, my father said to me..."

38. Lennon partner : ONO

39. On Soc. Sec. : RET

42. The same number : AS MANY 

43. Places where élèves study : ECOLES - Even Splynter and I can translate this 

46. One of the reindeer : DANCER - Not DASHER I find out

47. "The Bell of __": Longfellow : ATRI

48. "Don't need to watch that movie again" : SEEN IT - What's the record for Caddyshack?

50. Spiffy : NEAT

51. Fencing attack : LUNGE

54. Celebrity chef Burrell : ANNE

55. Lengthy story : SAGA

56. Nebraska natives : OTOS - Let's play Find That County (alt. spelling)

57. Evening, in ads : NITE

60. Anger : IRE

Why do I keep hearing a McGuire Sisters song rolling around in my head?  Oh well, Let he that is without SIN cast the first snarky nit!

The Grid:

Dec 24, 2010

Friday December 24, 2010 Kenneth J Berniker

Theme: Y me? - The letter Y is added to the start of the first word of each common phrase to create a new phrase which is quite punny. A very simple theme (add a “Y”) executed to entertain. This is only our second puzzle from Mr. Berniker, who brought us the What’s in a Name Puzzle (WOODY, ROCKY and SANDY) back in April, though this emergency room physician has had a number of NYT and other puzzles published, the theme is simple and clean.

17A. Those who outwit safecrackers?: YEGG BEATERS. The lazy man’s egg product, meets a safecracker, better known as a YEGG. YEGG has been in detective fiction from the early 1900’s, but no one is quite sure where it came from.

26A. 1945 view for Churchill, Roosevelt and Stalin?: YALTA VISTA. YALTA was the site of the second of three wartime conferences between the leaders of Great Britain, Russia and the US. Churchill, Stalin and Roosevelt, were present, and the meeting took place on the black sea because the powerful dictator Stalin was afraid to fly. ALTA VISTA was one of the very early search engines for the world wide web, which like LYCOS, faded away under the Google onslaught.

39A. Chronologists?: YEAR SPECIALISTS. Chronology is the study of the sequence of events, and I bet you all know what an Ear Specialist is.

50A. Core of the dark side?: YIN ESSENCE. I really like this multi level clue, as it teases us with Star Wars like reference to the dark side, while literally meaning just dark. We recently discussed YIN being the shadowy side and YANG being the bright side, and of course, the essence of something is its core.

60A. Paradise brewing aid?: YEAST OF EDEN. Okay, I cannot help it, these puzzles just seem to hone in on me and my family, especially now that they both are beer maestros, with yeast the key to fermenting combined with the John Steinbeck novel East of Eden (which was made into a motion picture with James Dean) transformed into some biblical yeast to make great beer. Since beer predates wine, I guess it all makes good sense. When CAIN was exiled, it was to the east of Eden, to the land of Nod, which I mention since the book is sort of a retelling of that story. It is rumored a remake of the movie is in the works.

Lemonade here, and I enjoyed the cluing, lots of literary references with some deception and wit, for example:

33A. Bucks: BREAD. As the old joke goes, “What is a buccaneer? A really high price for corn.”

71A. Parts of pig tales: OINKS. The tails – tales reference is cute.

My favorite, 31D. Paper cutters, briefly?: EDS. Newspaper editors, tipped off by the “?” and the briefly…

38D. Lamb piece: ESSAY. Wonderful, no baa baa, but, the writer CHARLES LAMB who wrote as Elia, and had a very tragic life.

Also, in keeping with Friday and my blogging day, there are many law related references:

15A. Accustom: ENURE. We love this word, used in describing rights which enure to the benefit of someone.

16A. Its law sch. is in Concord: UNH. University of New Hampshire Law School is in “Cahncahd.”

23A. Law school standards-setting org.: ABA. American Bar Association.

56A. Auspices: AEGIS. Like ENURE, a favorite word in legal writing.

Well, enough of that, on with the show:


1. '50s headline event: A TEST. What is it with the fascination with A bombs and H bombs lately? We also have the tie in with President Eisenhower from the 50’s.

6. Architectural style: TUDOR. One of the long lasting results of the BRITISH ROYAL FAMILY.

11. Status follower: QUO. This is an Anglicization of the Latin STATU QUO, which the state in which.

14. Princess Toadstool's rescuer: MARIO. Which was played on 65D. Old console using Game Paks: NES. My boys came along just in time for me to learn all about those wacky brothers Mario and Luigi.

19. "__ Believer": I'M A. I am sure most remember this SONG but for my fellow Connecticut followers, I remind everyone Peter Tork is the son of a UConn professor (Nee Thorkelson) and Peter now lives in Storrs.

20. Artist Matisse: HENRI. He was featured in a recent puzzle, and was a master of color and a friend and rival of Picasso.

21. Regarding: AS PER. Okay, also used by lawyers but I do not want to overdo.

29. Beef: RED MEAT. I quoted Clara Peller last week, remember?

32. Really riles: IRES. A real crossword word.

34. See 51-Down: IKE. And, 51D. With 34-Across, '50s slogan: I LIKE. My earliest memory was when Lauren Bacall and Humphrey Bogart came to my small home town, campaigning for Adlai Stevenson, and my father met them at the train station and took them to meet the mayor etc.

35. Zap with a weapon: TASE. And this VIDEO was a proud University of Florida moment.

43. Asian wrap: SARI. Cute, made you think of food didn’t he?

44. TV world: ORK. Enough already, is Robin Williams paying the constructors?

45. Chimú conquerors: INCAS. Last week I had the Aztecs now the Incas and the CHIMU .

46. Light bites: NIPS. Why many people do not like little dogs, who are yippy and bite.

48. Botanical cavity: ALVEOLA. We also had this as the cavity in the lungs, for example, but it is the same in Botany and Zoology.

54. Miss Pym's creator: TEY. How timely, as Fermatprime brought her up Wednesday; Elizabeth MacIntosh produced only ten or twelve books under various pseudonyms, but did line into her 50s, and is said to have influenced all the great cozy writers like Agatha Christie. Martha Grimes recently paid tribute to her The Daughter of Time in two Inspector Jury novels.

55. Woman in a "Paint Your Wagon" song: ELISA. I love the version sung by CLINT EASTWOOD ; where is our author Elissa?

59. Do some bartending: MIX. Yes, a bar, that is what my oldest and my nephew want to open in Buffalo.

66. Squeeze (out): EKE. The second of this puzzles tired but needed crosswordese.

67. Ranch wanderer: STRAY. Why do I picture a loose crouton trying to escape my fork? kinda goes with 64D. Forest ranger?: ELK. Well, luckily there are not many three lettered animals in the forest.

68. Boosted: STOLE. This comes from the organized shoplifters, who used a booster box, a device with a false bottom, which would be placed on top of merchandise, which would then get taken out. The store detective never saw the perp touch the merchandise.

69. Neighbor of Homer: NED. Not the author, but the Simpson, and the religious Mr. Flanders.

70. Newbery Medal winner for "Island of the Blue Dolphins": ODELL. Never heard of the BOOK or Mr. O’Dell. Whew, we are thru the acrosses.


1. Etiquette guru Vanderbilt: AMY. With a name like Vanderbilt (you all should tour the home in Newport, R.I.) who would not read this TOME .

2. Inventing initials: TAE. Thomas Alva Edison. The wizard of Menlo Park.

3. Fraction of a joule: ERG. All you need to know about ENERGY.

4. [I give up]: SIGH. Come on, no time to quit now, we are going to finish.

5. Start of a classic question: TO BE. Or not to be, that is the question; in my all boys high school, I played Gertrude in our production of Hamlet; the rest were too insecure.

6. Claw: TEAR AT. This too is timely, if you have ever seen a rabid group of children and their presents on Christmas morning.

7. Up to: UNTIL. The punch line, “Up to now, everything was okay.” The joke?

8. Anticipated: DUE.

9. Boston sports legend: ORR. Another New England reference.

10. Back up anew: RESAVE.

11. Marx forte: QUIPS. Karl? Groucho? Both?

12. Like certain expectations: UNMET. Life unfulfilled desires, also apt at Christmas as we see bonuses dwindling, presents shrinking…

13. "Pal Joey" author: O'HARA. Another author and a contemporary of John Steinbeck. When Steinbeck won the Pulitzer prize O’Hara sent him a telegram saying, he could only think of one other author who deserved the prize. O’Hara was great with dialogue, I still read his books.

18. "A Day Without Rain" musician: ENYA. Our new age queen is back.

22. __ Chapel: SISTINE. Another ceiling reference?

23. Fast food chain known for roast beef: ARBY'S. One of many food chains that began in Ohio, the name is not RB for Roast Beef, but RB for Raffel Brothers, the founders. They were the first chain to ban smoking in their facilities.

24. First multiracial coed college in the South: BEREA. The history of this COLLEGE is amazing, but I will leave the details to our own Windhover.

25. "Be __ ...": A DEAR. And get me a beer while you are up. Or take out the garbage.

27. Kind of torch: TIKI. Very big in south Florida.

28. Gazetteer figure: AREA. Gazetteer is an atlas including information like population and area.

30. Quantico inhabitants: MARINES. A shout out to our soon to be traveling and resting Dennis.

34. Opposite of "Yum!": ICK. Recall this MOVIE ?

36. English racing town: ASCOT. Next year will be the 300th anniversary of the world’s most famous horse race course.

37. Old hat: STALE. Not a fedora, or the race track Derby.

40. Opens, as a hood: POPS. Okay buddy, pop open the hood and lets see what’s making that noise.

41. Gaelic tongue: ERSE. This is the root word for what we now call IRISH.

42. Tyler of "The Incredible Hulk": LIV. Poor CHILD started out thinking she was Liv Rundgren, Todd’s daughter.

47. Words after "Because": I SAY SO. The magic words of parenting, changed my life.

48. Like a vinegar radical: ACETYL. ACETUM is the Latin word for vinegar, which is a weak acid produced by fermentation like alcohol.

49. One of more than 245,000 in a Christmas tree at a California theme park: LEGO. TREE .

50. Oman neighbor: YEMEN. Ah back in Oman.

52. Put the kibosh on: NIXED. Pronounced KIE bosh, likely from Hebrew which oddly does not use vowels.

53. Like a cold sufferer's voice: NASAL. SOUND .

57. "Say that's true ...": IF SO. Hmm, lawyers and logicians use this…

58. "The X-Files" gp.: SETI. Search for Extra Terrestrial Intelligence.

61. LAX listing: ETD. If it is an airport, it is going to be ETA or ETD. A=Arrival, D= Departure.

62. Exist: ARE.

63. Tough boss: DON. The Godfather.

Answer grid.

Golly, the year is almost done, I do not expect many will have time to comment today, but I wish you a very happy holiday week, until next time.


Apr 6, 2010

Tuesday, April 6, 2010 Kenneth Berniker

Theme: What's in a Name? - A humorous take on the first "earthy" name of some famous people.

17A. Jazz bandleader and lover of forests?: WOODY HERMAN. Woodrow Herman (1913–1987), neat twist,
The Woodchopper's Ball. Woody played the clarinet and the saxophone.

36A. Former heavyweight champ and lover of mountains?: ROCKY MARCIANO. Born Rocco Marchegiano (1923 – 1969), Rocky was the heavyweight champion of the world from 1952 to 1956, when he retired as the only heavyweight champion in boxing history to retire having won every fight in his professional career.

60A. Ex-Dodger pitcher and lover of beaches?: SANDY KOUFAX. Sanford Koufax was a lefty who played his entire career for the Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers, from 1955 to 1966. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1972. Arthritis ended his career at age 30.

Argyle again. I believe this is our first offering from this constructor. He has several NYT submissions and is very scrabbly (just short a 'B' from a pangram today). (Update: There is a 'B' in the SE corner. Thanks, Hahtool.)

A nicely interconnected grid today, also. I did spot a sub theme...or I imagined it.


1A. Jack's partner: JILL (from the nursery rhyme.)

5A. Not exactly lined up: OFFSET

11A. Stanford-Binet nos.: IQ'S. The Stanford Binet Intelligence Test is a standardized test that measures IQ and cognitive abilities in children and adults aged two to 23.

14A. On the less breezy side, at sea: ALEE

15A. Jacket part: SLEEVE

16A. Actor's signal: CUE

19A. Common Market inits.: EEC. European Economic Community.

20A. Dazzling celestial events: NOVAE

21A. Source of a hot tip: INSIDER

23A. 737, for example: PLANE. A twin-jet engine airliner, 737 has been continuously manufactured by Boeing since 1967.

25A. Singer Domino: FATS. His thrill,
Blueberry Hill.

27A. Trig function: SINE

28A. Corn unit: EAR

29A. "No __!": emphatic denial: SIREE

31A. Is able to, biblically: CANST

32A. It may wash away castles: TIDE . Sand castles

34A. Postal motto word: NOR

35A. Yellowfin tuna: AHI

41A. Madhouse: ZOO

42A. Golfer's accessory: TEE

43A. Base runner's goal: HOME

45A. Divided Asian land: KOREA

48A. Give up amateur status: GO PRO

50A. Up to, briefly: 'TIL

51A. Express line unit: ITEM

52A. Lass: GIRL

53A. Spiteful: NASTY

55A. "Strangers in the Night" singer: SINATRA. His

57A.Prefix with physics: ASTRO

59A. Sault __ Marie: STE.

64A. Russian fighter: MIG

65A. Postwar British prime minister: ATTLEE. Clement Attlee, (1883 – 1967) was a British Labour politician who served as the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1945 to 1951.

66A. Farm field unit: BALE. Bales come in so many different sizes now, I'm not sure there is a standard 'field unit'.

67A. Ending for Vietnam: ESE

68A. Dwell: RESIDE

69A. Like the Mojave: ARID


1D. Mandible site: JAW

2D. UN workers rights agcy.: ILO. International Labour Organization

3D. Kate's "Titanic" co-star: LEONARDO Kate Winslet & Leonardo DiCaprio

4D. Gave false hopes: LED ON

5D. Workplace watchdog org.: OSHA

6D. Try to escape, as pursuers: FLEE FROM

7D. __-de-lance: pit viper: FER. Fer-de-Lance is French for spearhead (literally "iron of the lance"), and may refer to several tropical snakes.

8D. Arab or Jew: SEMITE

9D. Cowgirl Dale: EVANS. Roy Rodgers and Dale Evans found their thrill on
Happy Trails

10D. Change for a 20: TENS

11D. Stranded at the chalet, maybe: ICED IN

12D. Brooklyn neighbor: QUEENS. New York City boroughs

13D. Whispered thing: SECRET

18D. Actor Montand: YVES

22D. Old Testament prophet: ISAIAH

23D. Teacher's favorite: PET

24D. Home in the wild: LAIR

26D. Faucet attachment: AERATOR

30D. California county in which Mount Whitney is partly located: INYO
Map. Inyo County is the home of Mount Whitney, the highest peak in the lower 48 states and Death Valley National Park, the lowest point in the United States.

31D. Greek X: CHI

33D. Itchy rash cause: ECZEMA

35D. Expert server: ACER

37D. "Kampgrounds" company: KOA. Kampgrounds of America.

38D. Showed over: REPLAYED

39D. "Up to this point, no": "NOT SO FAR"

40D. Fail to include: OMIT

44D. Bridge expert Culbertson: ELY

45D. Pecking order?: "KISS ME!". Great clue, though we've seen it in LA Times before.

46D. Ear inflammation: OTITIS

47D. Go back on a promise: RENEGE

48D. Meadowlands Stadium team: GIANTS

49D. Not tricked by: ON TO

52D. Fireplace feature: GRATE

54D. Resort island off Venezuela: ARUBA

56D. Ivan IV, for one: TSAR

58D. __-Ball: SKEE. The best way to explain it, is to show it.

61D. Mid sixth-century year: DLI

62D. Baba of fiction: ALI

63D. Deleted, with "out": X'ED

Answer grid.