Showing posts with label Mike Peluso. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Mike Peluso. Show all posts

May 17, 2019

Friday, May 17, 2019, Mike Peluso

A Chipper By Another Name Would Still Be a Chipper.  Wait, what?  In this puzzle each time we are given the clue "Chipper" we get an entirely different definition.  Look how the first and last answers span the grid.  The two middle theme answers are symmetrically placed in the grid.  Nice!

17-Across. Chipper: JONES OF BASEBALL.  As in Larry Wayne "Chipper" Jones (b. Apr. 24, 1972).  He was a third baseman for the Atlanta Braves.

27-Across. Chipper: GREEN SIDE IRON.  A golfing reference.  I'll let the golf pros in this group provide you all details.

46-Across. Chipper: IN A JAUNTY MOOD.

56-Across. Chipper: MULCH MAKING TOOL.  This made me think of the wood-chipping scene from the 1996 movie Fargo.  Not for morning consumption, however.


1. VMI program: ROTC.  As in the Reserve Officers' Training Corps.  Such programs are found on at the Virginia Military Institute as well as many other university campuses.

5. '80s-'90s courtroom drama: LA LAW.  This television drama was on when I was in law school in the other LA.

10. On-call worker: TEMP.  As in a TEMPorary worker.

14. Assert as true: AVER.  A crossword staple.

15. Three-time A.L. batting champ Tony: OLIVA.  As in Tony Oliva (né Antonio Oliva Lopez Hernandes Javique; b. July 20, 1938).  He had a long career with the Minnesota Twins.

16. Pupil's place: UVEA.  As in parts of the eye.

20. Tetra- doubled: OCTA-.  4 doubled is 8.

21. Atonement: AMENDS.

22. Confuse: ADDLE.

25. Wrigley brand: ORBIT.  Chewing gum that comes in all different flavors.

31. Geological time span: EON.

32. Carpenter's joint element: TENON.  It's the projecting piece of wood made for insertion into a mortise of another piece of wood.

33. Hiccup cause: SPASM.

36. Genesis voyager: NOAH.

38. Protector with strings: APRON.  My favorite clue of the puzzle.

40. Mlle., across the Pyrenees: SRTA.  Today's French (Mlle.) and Spanish (Srta.) lesson.  Both are abbreviations for Miss in English.

41. God of Islam: ALLAH.

43. Called from the field: LOWED.  The sounds the cow makes.

45. Bordeaux vineyard: CRU.  More of today's French lesson.  A Cru is a vineyard or group of vineyards of high quality.

49. Rural wagons: DRAYS.

50. Response at the door: IT'S ME!  Sometimes the answer is: It is I, which has the same number of letters.

51. Fair-hiring problem: AGEISM.

54. "I don't like your __": TONE.

62. Tierra en el mar: ISLA.  More of today's Spanish lesson.  The Island (Isla) is a bit of land (tierra) in the sea (el mar).

63. Force to leave: EXILE.

64. Personification of victory: NIKE.  Nike was a Greek goddess.  Here is the winged victory wearing Adidas.

65. Dance basic: STEP.

66. Shemar's longtime "Criminal Minds" role: DEREK.  I have never watched Criminal Minds, however, Shemar Moore (né Shemar Franklin Moore; b. Apr. 20, 1970) played Malcolm Winters on The Young and the Restless for many years.

67. Plus: ALSO.


1. One of five characters on "The Big Bang Theory" to appear in every episode: RAJ.  Another show I have never watched.  Raj is played by Kunar Naayar (b. Apr. 30, 1981).

2. Ab __: from the start: OVO.

3. Cube root of 1,000: TEN.  Crossword math:  10 x 10 x 10 = 1,000.

4. Spicy cuisine: CREOLE.  Well, I rather suppose this depends upon one's definition of "spicy."    I don't consider Creole to be an especially spicy cuisine, but then, I am accustomed to this style.  The word "Creole" is derived from the word "criollo", which is Spanish or Portuguese for "born in the colony".  The word "Creole" initially referred to the first settlers of European descent in the French colonies, especially New Orleans.

The term "Creole", when referring to food, is a style of cooking that originated in Louisiana, that blends French, Spanish, Portuguese, West African, Native American, Caribbean, German and Italian influences.  Traditional Creole dishes include red beans and rice, jambalaya, gumbo and creole sauce dishes.

5. Plunder: LOOT.

6. Italian wheels, briefly: ALFA.  The Alfa Romero Automobile company was actually founded by Alexandre Darracq (1855 ~ 1931), who was French.
7. Ad-__: LIB.  An appreciation for ad libitum, which is a Latin phrase translated as "at one's pleasure".

8. Director DuVernay: AVA.  Ava DuVernay (b. Aug. 24, 1972) is probably best known for her 2018 film A Wrinkle in Time.

9. Horseradish relative: WASABI.  Wasabi is a plant of the family that includes horseradish.  Apparently, however, most of what American's think of as Wasabi really a mixture of horseradish, mustard and food coloring.

10. Casual summer garments: TUBE TOPS.
This tube top doesn't look very comfortable.

11. Former Indiana governor Bayh: EVAN.  Evan Bayh (né Birch Evans Bayh, III; b. Dec. 26, 1955),  is the son of Senator Birch Bayh, Jr.  Both father and son served as United States Senators from Indiana.

12. Amalgamate: MELD.

13. Chums: PALS.

18. Crime scene clue, maybe: SCENT.

19. Arab bigwigs: EMIRS.  This has become a crossword staple.

22. Gemini rocket stage: AGENA.

23. Eagerly anticipate, with "over": DROOL.

This baby is too cool to drool.

24. North America's highest peak: DENALI.  Mt. Denali is in Alaska.

25. Fragrant: ODOROUS.  I think of odorous as being more stinky than fragrant.

26. Fame: RENOWN.

28. Large expanse: SEA.  Yup.  It goes on and on.

29. Part of the picture: IN PLAY.

30. Busters: NARCOS.

34. Four-decades-plus first name in the Senate: STROM.  As in Strom Thurmond (né James Strom Thurmond; Dec. 5, 1902 ~ June 26, 2003).  He served as a United States Senator from South Carolineafor 48 years.  In 1948, he ran for President as the States Rights Democratic Party candidate.

35. Title role for Bea: MAUDE.  As in Bea Arthur (née Beatrice Frankel; May 13, 1922 ~ Apr. 25, 2009).  She would have celebrated her 97th birthday earlier this week.

37. Links equalizer: HANDICAP.

39. Take-home: NET.  The amount of money you have after taxes.

42. Tough to hear, as criticism: HARSH.

44. Like embers: DYING.

47. Stuck: JAMMED.
48. Medit. tourist attraction: MT. ETNA.  Italian volcano.

51. Author Martin: AMIS.  As in the British novelist Martin Louis Amis (b. 1949).  He wrote the novel Money, which I read, but didn't enjoy.  He is the son of novelist Kingsley William Amis (Apr. 16, 1922 ~ Oct. 22, 1995).

52. Unexpected blow: GUST.

53. Couture monthly: ELLE.

54. Roof piece: TILE.

55. Fraction of a meg: ONE K.  One Thousand (one K) is a fraction of a million (meg.).

57. Men's grooming brand: AXE.

58. Aperitif named for a former Dijon mayor: KIR.  The cocktail is made with crème de cassis topped up with white wine or champagne.  It was named after Félix Kir (Jan. 22, 1876 ~ Apr. 26, 1968), a Catholic priest, resistance fighter and politician.  He served as mayor of Dijon from 1945 until his death in 1968.

59. Good thing to strike: OIL.  The first oil well in Louisiana was drilled in late 1901-early 1902.

60. Signs off on: OKs.

61. Sign of summer: LEO.  Sign of the Zodiac.

Here's the grid:

I'll leave you with a QOD:  The trouble with words is that you never know whose mouth they’ve been in.  ~  Dennis Potter (May 17, 1935 ~ June 7, 1994), British screenwriter and journalist

Jun 26, 2018

Tuesday, Jun 26, 2018 Mike Peluso


20. "Fast Times" school (Japan): RIDGEMONT HIGH.    Hai  はい

35. 2014 U.S. Women's Open champion (France): MICHELLE WIE.  Oui

42. North Atlantic stretch with no land borders (Mexico): SARGASSO SEA

56. Permission from the big boss ... and a hint to the ends of 20-, 35- and 42-Across (in the country indicated): FINAL APPROVAL.

You have permission.  


1. Tug or ark: BOAT.

5. First assembly instruction: STEP A.  Aren't assembly instructions most often numbered ?

10. Mt. Rushmore's state: S. DAK.

14. Gas brand on the Trans-Canada Highway: ESSO. This one is in Ladysmith, BC.
 15. Word before basin or wave: TIDAL.

16. Actress Taylor: LILI.

17. "Now!" letters: ASAP.

18. Summer month in Argentina: ENERO.   January.  "Argentina is in the southern hemisphere, thus the seasons occur during the opposite months from Europe and North America. Spring arrives around November; January and February mark the peak summer months and March is the end of summer when children return to school." - Bradt Travel Guides.

19. "__ something I said?": IS IT.

23. South Korean capital: SEOUL.

24. Bootlegger's gin container: BATHTUBBootleggers, bathtub gin, and grape bricks during the Prohibition....   "One wine brick company, with a barely disguised hint, wrote on the packages of its product: “After dissolving the brick in a gallon of water, do not place the liquid in a jug away in the cupboard for twenty days, because then it would turn to wine.” 

27. Drag racer's fuel, briefly: NITRO.  Nitromethane.  World's fastest 1/4 mile Top Fuel speed:

31. Do penance: ATONE.

32. Actress Thurman: UMA.

38. Hip-hoppers Salt-N-__: PEPA.

40. Two under par: EAGLE.

41. Dexterous: DEFTNeatly skillful and quick in one's movements.  Origin: Middle English: variant of daft, in the obsolete sense ‘meek’. - Oxford Dictionaries.    

"Apparently, deft and daft shared a sense of "gentle, and becoming" in Old English. Their different pronunciations (which only later formalized into spellings) experienced different metaphorical extension in Middle English. Deft continued to develop the meaning of "skillful".
But daft seems to have experienced systematic semantic deterioration from "mild-mannered" (1200), to "dull and awkward" (1300), and eventually to "foolish and crazy" (1500) under the added influence of the third word daffy. "  - English Stack Exchange

45. Fleur-de-__: LYS.

46. Ohio natives: ERIEs

47. Skin care prefix: DERMA.

49. Counts up: TALLIES
"...Since fingers are somewhat limited to 10 , a new invention was introduced – the tally system (earliest known proof of that is from around 35 000 B.C.). The tally system revolves around scratches on sticks, rocks or bones. The number of scratches represents the number of items counted – five birds would be represented by five scratches, seven mammoths would be represented by seven scratches etc. The “modern” tally system, which we’re still using in this day and age, organizes the scratches (tallies) into groups of five – four vertical scratches and one diagonal (that is drawn across the vertical ones). Eventually, tallies were replaced with more practical symbols – numerals (1, 2, 3, 4, 5,...) – which are in wide use today." Mathemania -Counting

52. Thinning atmospheric layer: OZONE.

60. "Let's go!": C'MON.

62. "Chicago" actress Zellweger: RENEE.

63. Crass: RUDE.

64. Arctic chunk: FLOE.

65. News article intros: LEDES.  Origin in the 1950s as an alteration of lead, first used in instructions to printers, in order to distinguish the word from text to be printed.  Now lede is mainly journalism jargon for the introductory portion of a news story—or what might be called the lead portion of the news story.  We've had LEDE before in the LA Times crossword puzzles. Once.  Sept 22nd, 2017. Irish Miss was the only one of the regulars that knew it.  Did you remember it from last time ?

66. Tiger Woods' ex: ELIN.

67. Frying liquids: OILS.

68. Prefix with foam: STYRO.

69. Vaccine fluids: SERA.


1. Chicago NFL team: BEARS.   99 seasons.  Record (W-L-T): 749-579-42.   New head coach Matt Nagy and quarterback Mitch Trubisky are looking to lead the Bears to an NFC North title and the playoffs.  Their biggest rivalry is with the Green Bay Packers, who currently have the lead at 96–94–6.  It is the longest rivalry in the NFL, having started in 1921.  

2. Actor Davis: OSSIE.

3. Pollo __: Latin American grilled chicken dish: ASADO.

4. Cruise/Kilmer action film: TOP GUN.

5. Education acronym for four fields of study: STEM. Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

6. Ex-Yankee Martinez: TINO.  Constatino.  
A key component of the 1996, 1998, 1999 and 2000 NY Yankees World Series Championship teams.  They lost in Game 7 of the 2001 World Series to the Arizona Diamonbacks, or he would have garnered a 5th World Series ring.

7. Genesis garden: EDEN.

8. Medicare option: PART B.

9. Honolulu hello: ALOHA.

10. Snubbed: SLIGHTED.

11. Kitchen cloth: DISH TOWEL.

12. Boxer Laila: ALI.

13. Do-it-yourselfer's buy: KIT.

21. Single __: tournament format, briefly: ELIM. Single Elimination.  The loser of the match or game is out.  The NCAA's "March Madness" tournament is an example.

22. Slanted type: Abbr.: ITAL.

25. Bring together: UNIFY.

26. Sugar sources: BEETS.

28. Deadlocks: TIES.

29. Some TVs: RCAs.

30. 1977 George Burns film: OH GOD.

32. Unexpected victory: UPSET.  Happens fairly frequently in the early rounds of the single elimination March Madness basketball tournament.

33. Stiller's comedy partner: MEARA.

34. Springtime prank: APRIL FOOL.

36. Ultimatum word: ELSE.

37. Sideways glance: LEER.

39. Facial wrinkles: AGE LINEs.

43. F-foxtrot link: AS IN.

44. Latin love: AMOR.

48. Islands west of Portugal: AZORES.  "The Azores, an autonomous region of Portugal, are an archipelago in the mid-Atlantic. The islands are characterized by dramatic landscapes, fishing villages, green pastures and hedgerows of blue hydrangeas."

50. British peers: EARLs.

51. Icy winter weather: SLEET.

53. Developing egg: OVULE.

54. Apex's opposite: NADIR.

55. Kagan of the Supreme Court: ELENA.  She was also an answer in Saturday's LA Times Crossword.  The clue was "John Paul's successor."   Saturdays can be so tough.

57. Mayberry's Sheriff Taylor: ANDY.

58. Look intently (at): PEER.

59. Durango dinero: PESO.

60. Corp. money manager: CFOChief Financial Officer.  What is a 'Chief Financial Officer - CFO' ?  - Investopedia

61. Mid-11th century year: MLI.  M = 1000,  L = 50,  I = 1,  thus MLI  =  mid-11th century year 1051.   Viking descendant William of Normandy was building and consolidating powers at the time, and strategically married the more noble Matilda of Flanders.   In 1066, he conquered England, became known as William the Conqueror and was the first Norman King of England.  Two of their sons - William II and Henry I - ascended to the throne as King of England.   The English word for agreement at the time was yea, and before the 1600s,  yes was often used only as an affirmative to a negative question.

That's a wrap.  Wait, one more link: How to say yes in many different languages.

Nov 5, 2017

Sunday November 5, 2017 Mike Peluso

Theme: "Gridiron Glossary" - Football terms are re-phrased.

23A. Goose's medical concern? : LOSS OF DOWN. Geese seem to be here year-round now.

25A. F? : FALSE START. Creative clue.

45A. Ginger cookie factory statistic? : SNAP COUNT

69A What results from failure to stop at a deer crossing? : DELAY OF GAME. We saw two deer last time when we walked at Springbrook. They also have wild turkeys.

91A. So-so haul in the fishing industry? : FAIR CATCH

110A Home security system at no cost? : FREE SAFETY. Quite a few ADT signs in our neighborhood.

114A. "Hamlet" in progress? : PLAY ACTION
32D. Prohibited courtroom procedure? : ILLEGAL MOTION

35D. Unpleasant singles bar come-on? : OFFENSIVE LINE

Re-phrasing is one of my favorite theme types. You don't need to be a fan to solve the puzzle, though your enjoyment will be enhanced if you're into football or golf or other sports. Mike Peluso is a Seahawks fan, by the way.

Mike also arranged his theme entries nicely, placing 7 in Across and the two 13s in Down slots. Great design for a 9-themer.


1. Museum curators' degs. : MFAs

5. Considers : DEEMS

10. "Ain't happening" : NOPE. Also 28. Ain't right? : AREN'T. So is IS NOT.

14. Hobbyist's knife : X-ACTO. Owned by Elmer's.

19. 1814-'15 exile site : ELBA

20. China's Zhou __ : ENLAI. I mentioned last time that he protected many from being persecuted during Culture Revolution. Read here to see how he helped the last wife of the last Chinese emperor.

21. Pats on the table : OLEO. Not on our table.

22. Tiger Woods has won a record 21 of them : ESPYs. Of course I was thinking of tournaments. Not that I can think of any. 
27. Basketball Hall of Fame coach Jerry : SLOAN. Wiki says "Sloan had a career regular-season win–loss record of 1,221–803, placing him third all-time in NBA wins at the time he retired. Sloan was only the fifth coach in NBA history to reach 1,000 victories and is one of two coaches in NBA history to record 1,000 wins with one club (the Utah Jazz)...."

30. Hastings head : LOO. Hastings is also a county here in MN.

31. Two-element tubes : DIODES

33. Energetic mount : STEED

34. One of Jupiter's Galilean moons : EUROPA. The only other Jupiter moon I know is LEDA.

38. Woody's son : ARLO

39. Ones with will power? : HEIRS. Nice clue.

41. Discontinued allergy brand : ACTIFED. Never heard of this brand.

42. Sundae topping item : WALNUT. Brain food.
49. Brut alternative : AFTA

50. What "L" may mean: Abbr. : LGE

51. Fared reasonably well : DID OK

53. Melodious : ARIOSE. Or ARIOSO.

55. Short albums, for short : EPs

56. Crystalline rocks : GEODES

58. __ to go: eager : RARIN'

60. Troubling spots : ACNE. Saw ACNES in a puzzle once and had to ask Argyle and D-Otto.

62. Longtime Priceline pitchman : SHATNER

64. Cries over : LAMENTS

66. Perp stopper : TASER

68. Beer ingredient : MALT

72. "__ le roi!" : VIVE

73. Equally irate : AS MAD

75. Male escorts : GIGOLOS. Learned this word from "American Gigolo".

76. Kenny Rogers quartet : EX-WIVES. Crossing 71. Joe Namath, notably : EX-JET. Tiny dupe. Also 14. Crosses off : X'ES OUT.

78. Socks : HOSE

79. Subject for Archimedes : LEVER

80. Convince using flattery : CAJOLE. Nice fill.

81. Window sill item : POT. Love my pot of rosemary. So good with roasted potatoes.

82. Yellow Teletubby : LAA LAA

85. Kitchen gadget : CORER

86. Hasty departure : LAM

89. Enthused : AVID
94. Raising a ball, with "up" : TEEING

96. "Il Trovatore" heroine : LEONORA. Also 101. Verdi title bandit : ERNANI. Both learning moments for me.

98. Stop before surgery : PRE-OP

100. Pesky biter : GNAT

102. Invigorate Dry Spray maker : ARRID

104. Soprano Fleming et al. : RENEEs. Also 57. James and Jones of jazz : ETTAs

107. Private eye : TEC

108. Manila envelope feature : CLASP

109. Infamous fictional motel : BATES. That's a scary movie.
119. Martini partner : ROSSI
120. Logical beginning? : IDEO. Ideological.

121. Long-legged fisher : EGRET

122. Sein, across the Rhine : ETRE. I did not know the the meaning of Sein, "to be" in German.

123. Lessen : ABATE

124. Swiss capital : BERN

125. DEA activity : RAIDS

126. Connecticut senator Chris : DODD. Former.

1. 2-Down's boss : MEL. And 2. 1-Down's sitcom employee : FLO

3. Crunch targets : ABs

4. Hairstyling legend : SASSOON. Here is one of their ads in China.

5. Friday creator : DEFOE (Daniel)

6. Hyphen relative : EN DASH

7. North Carolina university : ELON

8. Cavernous opening : MAW

9. Rat Pack leader : SINATRA

10. Like some bank services : NO FEE

11. Chan portrayer : OLAND (Warner). Charlie Chan.

12. Bombard : PELT

13. Daybreak deity : EOS
15. Oregon port : ASTORIA

16. Auditing pro : CPA

17. Norse war god : TYR. MARS in Roman.

18. Opposite of west, in Dortmund : OST

24. Stale : OLD

26. Puts into office : ELECTS

29. Court defendant: Abbr. : RESP (Respondent)

31. Bore : DRAG
33. Go down : SINK

36. Tardy people, to some : PET PEEVE. You won't ever find Boomer late. He's always a few minutes earlier, rain or snow.

37. Courtroom figs. : ADAs

38. Leatherwork tool : AWL

40. Those, in Oaxaca : ESOS
41. "Is that __?" : A NO

43. Hokkaido noodle : UDON. I love seafood udon. 

44. Helped through a tough time, with "over" : TIDED

46. Tend to : CARE FOR

 47. Letter-shaped gaskets : O-RINGS

48. Utah range : UINTA. Looks like a great hiking spot. I recall Dave linked this clip once. I reached all the peaks.

52. Loosening of govt. standards : DEREG

54. Take in : EAT
58. Duracell competitor : RAYOVAC

59. Whac-__ : A-MOLE

61. Nitpick : CAVIL

62. Wee, in Dundee : SMA

63. Discuss in detail : HASH OVER
64. California-based shoe company : LA GEAR

65. Feature of a no-holds-barred campaign : SMEAR. Politics can be so ugly.

67. Legal thing : RES
70. Actress Palmer : LILLI
74. Costa __ Sol : DEL

77. Eroded : WORE

80. Pacific salmon : COHO. Huge.

81. Ashen : PALE

83. Toto hit that mentions Kilimanjaro : AFRICA. Helpful hint.

84. Routing org. : AAA

85. Included in the email loop, briefly : CC'ED
87. Santa __: dry winds : ANAs

88. Corp. big shots : MGT

90. Proof of paternity, perhaps : DNA TEST

92. Loan figs. : APRS. Annual Percentage Rate.

 93. The Beatles' "Day __" : TRIPPER

95. Spewed : EGESTED

97. Baby's first garment : ONESIE

99. Implored : PRAYED

102. Not leave as is : ALTER

103. Belted tire synthetic : RAYON
105. La Floride et La Virginie : ETATS. Interesting, states are all feminine. I think Mike speaks fluent French.

106. Japanese chip maker : NEC

108. Turn over : CEDE

109. Adriatic port : BARI

110. Monastery title : FRA
111. Carl's director son : ROB. Mel Brooks mentioned in a interview that he and Carl Reiner meet every day. They love watching movies together and chatting. 

112. Conductor __-Pekka Salonen : ESA

113. It's not a bad lie : FIB. I was picturing a golf ball in an uphill lie. Definitely not a bad lie. Easy to hit.

115. JFK alternative : LGA

116. Simpson trial judge : ITO
117. Command from a maj. : ORD. OK, order.

118. Actor Beatty : NED