Showing posts with label Kyle Dolan. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kyle Dolan. Show all posts

Jun 27, 2020

Saturday, June 27, 2020, Kyle Dolan

Saturday Themeless by Kyle Dolan

Kyle Dolan returns for another themeless puzzle and the solve went very nicely for me. Here are Kyle's comments on this puzzle: 

Hi Gary, 

We're doing well too, thanks.

Here are some thoughts on this puzzle:

I began constructing this grid in March 2019 and I sent it to Rich Norris a couple months later. In October 2019 Rich asked for some revisions in the short fill. Soon after I completed these, he accepted the puzzle. 

DANCE LESSONS was the seed entry for this grid, inspired by the fact that at the time I wrote it, my wife and I were learning how to rumba for our wedding dance! REGINA KING was another early entry, as she had just won her Oscar for "If Beale Street Could Talk". My research indicates that, as of this writing, her full name has never appeared in a newspaper crossword grid before; if that's true I'm very happy to debut it and I hope solvers enjoy seeing her in the grid.

Overall I'm pleased with the way the long fill in this puzzle turned out, but I think now there are a few too many clunkers in the short fill for my liking: A DUB, A TEST, SPAKE, and the like. If I were constructing this puzzle today, I'd try to reduce the number of these kinds of entries if not eliminate them entirely.

By the way, this is my 10th LA Times puzzle, all of which have been Saturday themelesses--including my very firstnewspaper crossword back in 2009.  My thanks to Rich Norris, Patti Varol, and the editorial team who have given me the chance to share my puzzles in this venue; to the bloggers at Crossword Corner and elsewhere, thanks for sharing your thoughts on my puzzles; and to the solvers reading this, I hope you enjoy it!

Thanks again,



1. Gym supplies: MATS.

5. Affectionate-poke-on-the-nose word: BOOP.

9. Cut souvenirs: SCARS - Some SCARS don't show

14. Without instruments: A CAPPELLA - "In the manner of the chapel" Usually two words, two P's and two L's. The A CAPPELLA group, Pentatonix, provides some instrument-like voice accompaniment in this haunting piece.

16. "Haystacks" painter: MONET - This time it was MONET
17. "What?": COME AGAIN.

18. Soaked: SOGGY.

19. "The Twilight Zone" (2019) host Jordan: PEELE - Much more familiar with the guy on the right who created the series in 1959

Jordan PEELE                     Rod Serling
20. Distress: VEX.

22. Ballet move: PLIE.

23. Two-step tutorials, say: DANCE LESSONS - Kyle's seed entry - Let's see a lesson

26. Take a bad turn: GO SOUTH - Some people have seen their businesses GO SOUTH this year

29. "Semper Fidelis" composer: SOUSA - Oorah!

30. "Concord Sonata" composer: IVES - Wow, Charles!

31. Race units: LAPS.

34. Talked like Moses or Abraham?: SPAKE - And thus God SPAKE unto Noah,"Uh, you're gonna need a bigger boat"

36. Tart finish?: LET A tart is a baked dish consisting of a filling over a pastry base with an open top not covered with pastry. 

37. In actuality: DE FACTO - I may be listed as "head of household" but...

39. The last pope named Clement: XIV (1760 - 1774) Obverse: Clement XIV. Reverse: Jesus, Peter and Paul expelling the Jesuits which Clement did in their name

40. Cleaner brand with a macron on its first vowel: DRANO which makes the drain 42. Circulate: FLOW better

1950's Can
43. Cornmeal product: PONE.

44. Ones known for excellent service: ACERS - 163mph tennis serve is the record

46. Many people make them at work: LIVINGS.

48. Blizzard portmanteau: SNOWMAGEDDON - A news media image after a 6" snow was predicted

51. "Rub-__ ... ": A-DUB - Three men in a tub

52. Root that may be cubed: YAM - We math peeps appreciate the two red herrings

53. Big battery: D-CELL.

56. Realm of Tolkien's Dwarves: MORIA Here 'ya go!

58. Are useful: FILL A NEED - For good or ill, I do that here on Saturday

61. Cleared in a diner: BUSED.

62. Proverbial nonexistent meal: FREE LUNCH.

63. Nuclear trial: A-TEST.

64. Pamplona pronounESOSESOS pantalones están sucios (Those pants are dirty)

65. BFN alternative: TTYL - Bye For Now vs Talk To You Later


1. Buddy: MAC and 32. Buddy: PAL.

2. "Rent-__": 1988 film: A COP - This turkey had some big name stars

3. Unlikely to titillate: TAME.

4. Small trunks: SPEEDOS - Google if you must

5. "Go easy on me": BE GENTLE when correcting any 
49. Faux pas: GAFFE I make here

6. Copacabana greeting: OLA and 48. Copacabana steps: SAMBA OLA. ¿Te gustaría SAMBA? (Hello. Would you like to SAMBA?)

7. Tree sacred to Athena: OLIVE What's that all about?

8. "Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!" group: PANEL - Here is Tom Hanks serving as a guest host

9. Texting format, briefly: SMS - I use Short Message Service for texting and love it when people respond quickly. 

10. Confines: COOPS UP - We've all had months of this recently

11. Norman Conquest victim: ANGLO SAXON - When the last ANGLO SAXON king, Edward the Confessor, died childless in 1066, William of Normandy (later The Conqueror) invaded to take the British crown from two others 3-minute summary

12. 2019 Best Supporting Actress winner for "If Beale Street Could Talk": REGINA KING - Kyle is happy to have introduced her name into crosswords. Her IMDB

13. They may be treated with compresses: STYES - Saturday cluing for a staple

15. Country in the Caroline Islands: PALAU - Peleliu is a small island in the PALAU archipelago and saw bitter fighting in WWII

21. Strike symbols: XES - Here's the last two XES on Boomer's twentieth 300 game

24. Source of livestock feed: CHAFF - Dried chopped forage used to add bulk to animal feed
25. Okay: SO SO.

26. Deceptively adorn: GILD - There's no need to GILD the lily

27. Transmission conclusion: OVER AND OUT 

28. Start of typical "Star Trek" navigation orders: SET A COURSE 

33. Admonish: SCOLD.

35. Tense times, maybe: EVES - This dystopian song came to my mind

37. School house: DORM - My first DORM room was #237 in Morey Hall in 1964

38. Turns idly, as a pencil: TWIDDLES.

41. Green ones: NEWBIES.

43. Pesto ingredient: PINE NUT - among other ingredients

45. For example: SAY.

47. Inclined to opine: VOCAL.

50. Mideast dignitaries: EMIRS.

54. Advanced: LENT - I LENT/advanced a family member a lot of money to help adopt a child from China and in my heart I knew I would never get it all back. BTW, she was worth it!

55. Goranson of "The Conners": LECY - Then/now

57. Big name in home security: ADT - Is the sign enough to deter criminals?

59. Summer sign: LEO.

60. FedEx rival: DHL 

Comments for Kyle?

Nov 2, 2019

Saturday, November 2, 2019, Kyle Dolan

Themeless Saturday by Kyle Dolan

This is the seventh Saturday themeless puzzle constructed by Dr. Dolan that I have had the pleasure of blogging. It was a real challenge but eventually became  a smooth solve.

Last month Kyle was in Rapid City, S.D. for a tech conference and witnessed Britain's precision flying team, The Red Arrows, pass overhead. Kyle was quoted as saying,  “The flypast of Mt. Rushmore was the piece de resistance of the Red Arrows appearances at numerous American landmarks,” said Kyle Dolan, Head of Science & Innovation at the British Consulate-General in Chicago. “The Red Arrows’ visit celebrated the close links between the United Kingdom, the United States and Canada, particularly our economic, defense, and science and technology relationships.”

In my communication with Kyle, he told me that the U.K. mini-theme I saw [Dickens, Macbeth, ADELE, BRIT, TWEE, Long TON, The Crown" star Foy: CLAIRE, Loch NESS,TAM and BEELZEBUB (John Milton] was not his intent and it happened by either by accident or by Rich's editing hand. He further told me that though he works at the British Consulate he was born in Boston but has lived in Chicago for quite a while now. Here you can peruse Kyle's impressive resumé

Now let's do a flyby of Kyle's puzzle 


1. Farm call: BAA

4. Picnic game: BOCCE - BOCCE in its current form dates back to at least Rome in 264 A.D.  where soldiers played it during the Punic Wars

9. Informed as a courtesy, perhaps: CC'ED - The physical Carbon Copy part of this is now mostly a remnant of another time and technology

13. Tote: LUG.

14. Dickens' "The Pickwick Papers," originally: SERIAL - A first edition of Dickens' Posthumous Papers Of The Pickwick Club can be had for $2,500

15. QB-turned-commentator Tony: ROMO.

16. "... __ the set of sun": "Macbeth": ERE - I imagine Wyatt Earp told the bad guys to "git outta town before sunset" and not "Depart ERE the set of the Sun" 

17. Picks up: LEARNS - A good solver LEARNS a lot in doing these puzzles

18. Bonobos, e.g.: APES - They are a very close relative to humans

19. Have no weaknesses: DO IT ALL - Great baseball players are said to be a "five-tool player" - Able to hit for average, hit with power, field, throw and run

21. U.S. border river: NIAGARA.

23. Fake: ERSATZ - "Captain ERSATZ" is a phrase denoting a blatant copy that uses a slightly different name and/or image

24. Web streaming service: FEED is a streaming site that streams many events of the small school where I sub

25. A mechanic usually keeps one handy: RAG.

26. Innocent: LAMB.

27. Its 1948 inaugural flight began in Geneva: EL AL A fascinating story

29. "Skyfall" singer: ADELE.

31. "The Vanishing Hitchhiker" subject: URBAN LEGEND Here 'ya go

34. Misty tropical ecosystem: CLOUD FOREST - Monteverde CLOUD FOREST in Costa Rica

35. Edge: BEAT BY A NOSE.

36. Catcher in the World Series' only perfect game: BERRA - Yogi caught Don Larsen's gem in 1956

37. U.S. : Grammy :: U.K. : __: BRIT.

38. Daughter of Uranus: RHEA -If you must know

42. Uranus, e.g.: ORB - A mythical and a now a real Uranus 

43. Excessively precious, to a Brit: TWEE - We had treacle yesterday from Dr. Ed Sessa

45. Six-time NBA All-Star Kyrie: IRVING - Kyrie won a World Championship with LeBron James at Cleveland but got tired of being the second banana Now they are friends again but on different teams

47. Indignant lead-in: SEE HERE.

49. __ fair: SCIENCE - I can't count how many I've judged

50. Movie plantation: TARA - It's a 26 min drive down I-75 from Atlanta to the newly refurbished Stately Oaks Mansion which was used for TARA in Gone With The Wind

51. In addition: AT THAT - She became a teacher and was a good one AT THAT

53. It may be short or long: TON If you must know

54. Egg cell: OVUM.

55. "The Crown" star Foy: CLAIRE - A very enjoyable Netflix series

Claire                             Elizabeth II

56. Stick in: ADD.

57. Urquhart Castle's loch: NESS - My neighbor just got back from two weeks in Scotland and while she was in Inverness next to Loch NESS, she was assured there was no monster but she did see this shop. She brought me a golf divot tool from St. Andrews and thankfully not a 52. Part of Highlands regalia: TAM.

58. Neat: KEMPT - Sheveled? 

59. It may be iced: TEA.


1. Alexis of "The Handmaid's Tale": BLEDEL Her IMDB

2. Creator of a colorful atmosphere: AURORA - While fishing at 55N latitude, the AURORA Borealis (Northern Lights) we saw were spectacular

3. What unconscious bias training may deal with: AGEISM - Most young clerks look right through those of us, uh, more seasoned customers

4. "Paradise Lost" fallen angel: BEELZEBUB - I finally remembered how it was spelled

5. __ surgeon: ORAL.

6. Columbus in NYC, e.g.: CIR(cle)

7. Cylindrical pasta: CANNELLONI - Spinach and ricotta in CANNELLONI pasta

8. Dinsmore of kid lit: ELSIE - Here is a group of 22 Martha Finley Dodd's ELSIE Dinsmore books for sale online

9. Climbing challenge: CRAG.

10. Share rearing duties: CO-PARENT 

11. Colombia is this gem's largest producer: EMERALD - The EMERALD in Romancing The Stone, set in Columbia, was called El Corazon (The Heart)

12. Amount in a shot: DOSAGE - I doubt if medical people use a shot glass to measure DOSAGE

14. Bed board: SLAT.

20. Like spreadsheets: TABULAR - I used Excel spreadsheets and had TABS at the bottom to access a sheet for each class

22. Saws: ADAGES.

24. Majestic greeting: FANFARE.

28. Natural enemy of aphids: LADY BEETLE - We call them ladybugs and here's one eating the aforementioned aphid

30. Merit: DESERVE.

32. Have angular velocity: ROTATE - Skaters tuck in their arms to increase angular velocity

33. Some Ernst works: EROTIC ART - Google at will

34. Multi-headed dog that guards Hades, in Greek myth: CERBERUS - Nice doggy, nice doggy...

35. Deprive (of): BEREAVE - Too many of my friends have become BEREAVED lately

36. Commonwealth Avenue city: BOSTON - If you lived at the Windsor Place Condominium on Commonwealth Avenue, you'd only have a four-minute drive to Fenway Park

39. Refer to subtly: HINT AT - You might as well just go ahead and ask for the money!

40. Disguise, in a way: ENCODE He helped decipher ENCODED Japanese messages before Midway

41. Chair's document: AGENDA - The one who presides over that AGENDA can be called a Chairman, Chairwoman or simply the Chair. 

44. Ruin partner: WRACK Origin of the phrase

46. Bat mitzvah, e.g.: RITE.

48. Carved dishes: HAMS - Spiral sliced HAMS replaces much of the carving 

49. Hold holder: SHIP - How did Carl Denham get King Kong into the hold of the SHIP S.S. Venture in 1933?

How about some comments about the good doctor's efforts today? I invited him to drop by and see what his our good citizens here had to say and I hope he does.