Showing posts with label Robert Fisher. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Robert Fisher. Show all posts

Apr 23, 2019

Tuesday, April 23, 2019 Robert Fisher

4 Parts of the Hand

17. Small plucked instrument: THUMB PIANO.

24. New York region, or its narrow bodies of water: FINGER LAKES.

33. Tropical tree leaf: PALM FROND.

51. Fluttering pitch: KNUCKLE BALL.

58. Popular necktie knot ... and a hint to the starts of 17-, 24-, 33- and 51-Across: FOUR IN HAND.

Especially for you Desper-otto, in case you've forgotten how:

How many years has it been ?


1. Barcelona buddy: AMIGO.

6. Scattered, as seeds: SOWN.  Sown and strewn. 

10. Rifle filler: AMMO.  A young Desper-otto and his pal Nate used their pea shooters on a pile of sand that was destined for a stucco finish on a nearby house.   Sprouts appeared on the walls.  Fortunately for the young lads, it was only the scratch coat.  

14. Hopeless case: GONER.  He might have been a goner if that sand was used in the finish coat.

15. Fast-food legend Ray: KROCRay Kroc & The McDonald's Brothers - The history as  summarized on the McDonald's website.

16. Enjoy a comic book, say: READ

19. Fall back (on): RELY.

20. "__ Been Awhile": Staind song: IT'S.  The genre is post-grunge, alt-metal. 

21. Columnist Landers: ANN.

22. Israeli president, 2007-2014: PERES.   Shimon Peres.

23. Blackjack card: ACE.

27. Petit or grand crime: LARCENY.

29. Docking fee: MOORAGE.  The verb moor (make fast, secure) and the suffix age (belonging to, relating to) creates the word moorage, which can be either the place where you moor or the fee for mooring.  Just make sure your hawser is large enough. 

30. Hog's nose: SNOUT.  A pig, not a hog, but you get the point.

31. Objective: AIM.

32. Fisher-Price product: TOY.

38. Busy IRS month: APR.  Internal Revenue Service /  April.

41. Not at home: OUT.

42. China's Zhou __: ENLAI.

46. Doesn't miss a thing: SEES ALL

49. Forbes publisher Forbes: MALCOLM.    He was fond of saying that he was loaded with "sheer ability, spelled i-n-h-e-r-i-t-a-n-c-e."

53. Dainty taste: SIP.

54. Gelatin dish: ASPIC.    Spaghetti-Os aspic with Vienna Sausage.  None for me, thanks !

55. Slugging legend Mel: OTT.  MLB Hall of Famer that played for the NY Giants for 22 years.  A great article about the legend.

56. Canonized Fr. female: STE.  Abbreviation of sainte, the feminine form of saint. 

57. Slimming surg.: LIPO.  Surgery / Liposuction.

62. Cookie cooker: OVEN.  The appliance, not the individual, which could be baker.

63. Big on: INTO.

64. Vital heart line: AORTA.

65. "Bill & __ Excellent Adventure": TEDS.   "High school slackers Bill and Ted travel back in time to assemble historical figures for their history class presentation."  - Wikipedia

66. Cap'n's underling: BOS'N.  Contractions of Captain and Bosun.

67. Wyoming's __ Range: TETON.


1. Ten-percenter: Abbr.: AGT.  Agent.  Talent and booking agents typically get 10 %.

2. Native American in a Cooper title: MOHICAN.  About James Fenimore Cooper.  We had a regular here that legally changed his name to one of the author's lead characters - Natty Bumpo. 

3. Not yet born: IN UTERO.  Latin, meaning in the womb.

4. Precious stones: GEMS.

5. Mars or Venus: ORB.  Most often in poetry.  I may have first heard orb used this way in the lyrics of a couple of songs on The Moody Blues Days of Future Passed album.

6. Like teenagers in the comic strip "Zits": SKINNY.  No idea, but the perps said it had to be.

7. Chimp kin: ORANG.  Monkeys have tails.  Chimpanzees and orangutans are great apes.  Tailless.

8. Was victorious: WON.

9. Sgt. or cpl.: NCO.  Sergeant / Corporal: Non-commissioned officer.

10. Unpaid debt: ARREAR.

11. Kalahari mongoose: MEERKAT.  The Kalahari Resorts are in the Wisconsin Dells, Sandusky, and the Poconos. 

12. Source of machismo, perhaps: MALE EGO

13. Epic journey: ODYSSEY.  My friend is going to take the Astro.  Thinking about a used Sienna even though I like the styling of the Odyssey a little more.  Mini vans are so versatile.  I have to order a Soccer Mom sticker for the back window.

18. Tylenol target: PAIN.

22. Gaza Strip gp.: PLO.  Group /  Palestine Liberation Organization

23. Capp and Capone: ALs.   Kaline and Hrabosky would have thrown many off, but not Boomer and Hondo. 

24. Greek cheese: FETA.

25. Mideast ruler: EMIR.

26. NFL analyst Tony: ROMO.  14 seasons with the Dallas Cowboys as a QB, and now partnered with Jim Nantz as the color commentator of NFL games broadcast by CBS.

28. Trophy shape: CUP.

31. Toward the tiller: AFT.  Nautical terms.

34. Hang around: LOLL.  Loiter.

35. Grand Canyon animal: MULE.

36. "Little" Dickens girl: NELL.

37. Org. hacked at its Watergate offices: DNC.  Organization / Democratic National Committee

38. Require much (of): ASK A LOT.

39. Lost in thought: PENSIVE.

40. Signed on for another tour: REUPPED.

43. Skill rarely practiced now: LOST ART.

44. Not aligned with: ALIEN TO.

45. Little rascal: IMP.

47. Descendants: SCIONS.

48. "Best in Show" org.: AKC.  Organization / American Kennel Club

49. __ of honor: MATRON.

50. High: Pref.: ALTI.    Like in the ten dollar word altiloquence,  meaning lofty, pompous speech.   Or as in altimeter or altitude.

52. Boxing matches: BOUTS.

56. Horse's footwear: SHOE.   Fit to size by a farrier.

58. Innocuous falsehood: FIB.

59. Musician Yoko: ONO.

60. __ King Cole: NAT.

61. "The Da Vinci Code" author Brown: DAN.

Feb 19, 2015

Thursday, February 19, 2015 Robert Fisher

Theme: "Error Messages"

Four annoying computer pop-ups you might come across:

17-Across. "You're living in the past," nowadays : UPGRADE REQUIRED.

26-Across. "You can't go there," nowadays : ACCESS DENIED.

45-Across. "Nobody can go there," nowadays : PAGE NOT FOUND.

59-Across. "Never heard of you," nowadays : INVALID USERNAME.

I'm not sure how this ended up on a Thursday, since it seemed very Monday-friendly. Simple, straight-forward theme, without much dreck in the fill.  Maybe some of the names could trip up a Monday level solver, but the perps all quickly came to the rescue for me.


1. Explosive sound : BLAM. Boom?! (The perps said "no.")

5. Outer __ : SPACE. And a cross-referential clue at 7-Down. Prefix with 5-Across : AERO.

10. Not even ajar : SHUT.

14. "Born to Die" singer/songwriter Del Rey : LANA. See? All perps!

15. Stadium divisions : TIERS.

16. Son of Leah : LEVI. No perps needed.

20. Flower celebrated in an annual Ottawa festival : TULIP. It all started with a gift of TULIPs by the Dutch Royal Family to the people of Canada after the liberation of Europe in WWII.

21. Move the boat, in a way : ROW. I suppose you could also pedal it?

22. Painting option : SPRAY. Brush? Color? Latex?

23. Like a typical farmer's market : OPEN AIR.

25. "Gotcha!" : OHO.

32. Peace Nobelist Sakharov : ANDREI. Ironically, he was key in the development of the hydrogen bomb, and later played a role in the Partial Test Ban Treaty.

35. Elijah Blue's mom : CHER. With her second husband Greg Allman.

36. __ de coeur: impassioned plea : CRI. Literally, "Cry from the heart" in French.

37. "Gone With the Wind" setting : TARA.

38. "Whew!" : BOY!

39. Sit a spell : REST.

40. The Pac-12's Beavers : OSUOregon State University.

41. Ego : SELF.

43. Citrine or amethyst : QUARTZ. Amethyst is the February birthstone. Citrine is November.

48. A Bobbsey twin : NAN. Bert's twin. I wonder if she likes Indian flatbread?

49. Stops : DESISTS.

53. Early New Zealand settler : MAORI.

56. "Something __, something ..." : OLD. "Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue, and a lucky sixpence in your shoe." I wonder if brides still follow this old advice for a happy marriage on their wedding days.

58. Bug : EAT AT.

62. Cinch : SNAP.

63. Sci-fi staple : ROBOT.

64. Golf shot : CHIP.

65. Breton, e.g. : CELT.

66. Band tour stop, perhaps : ARENA.

67. Building additions : ELLS.


1. Olive Oyl pursuer : BLUTO. D'ah! I tried to cram "Brutus" in there.

2. Eagerly consume : LAP UP.

3. One with degrees? : ANGLE. This was acute clue.

4. Sauce of southern Italy : MARINARA. Mmmm...

5. Norm: Abbr. : STDStandard.

6. Capital ENE of Custer : PIERRE. WAG.

7. Prefix with 5-Across : AERO.

8. Intercollegiate sport : CREW. They row, row, row their boats.

9. Lawyer's letters : ESQ.

10. Moccasin, for one : SLIP-ON.

11. Man around the Haus : HERR. German.

12. Layer in the eye : UVEA.

13. Considerable : TIDY. As in "A TIDY sum."

18. Posthaste : APACE.

19. Escort : USHER.

24. "Here," on Metro maps : ICI. Nit: the Paris subway is called the Métro, with an acute accent.

25. "__ to Billie Joe" : ODE.

27. Act the cynic : SCOFF. "Scorn" fits, too. Just sayin'...

28. Coming up short : SHY.

29. Bakery specialist : ICER.

30. Before, to a bard : ERST.

31. Scatterbrain : DITZ. I use that word all the time, usually describing myself.

32. On the highest point of : ATOP.

33. Apollo's creator : NASA. No hint of abbr. because it is Thursday?

34. Pharmacopeia listing : DRUG.

38. Abbreviation on a lunch menu : BLT. Oh, so now we get the abbreviation hint!

39. Splendor : RADIANCE. Somehow "Radiance in the Grass" just doesn't have the same ring to it.

41. Gastropod for a gourmet : SNAIL.

42. Geochronological span : EON.

43. "¿__ pasa?" : QUE. "'s up?"

44. Three-time Indy winner Bobby : UNSER.

46. Transported : ENRAPT.

47. Favored to win : ODDS ON. E.g., a bet of "2 to 1 on" means that the team is twice as likely to win as not.

50. "60 Minutes" regular : STAHLLeslie.  I really admire her.

51. Sri Lankan language : TAMIL.

52. What a pedometer counts : STEPS. I bought DH a FitBit for Christmas, thinking it would encourage him to exercise more.  The first day he wore it, he announced that he had done almost two miles by just doing his usual stuff around the house.  (I was humbled...)

53. Catchall file abbr. : MISC.

54. Archer of "Fatal Attraction" : ANNE.  I had forgotten about her role as Michael Douglas's wife.

55. Common face shape : OVAL. ANNE's is a beautiful OVAL, don't you think?

56. Redolence : ODOR.

57. Jiffy __ : LUBE.

60. "Science Friday" radio host Flatow : IRA. He used to be on NPR, but moved to PRI (Public Radio International), which now airs the show.

61. Greek "H" : ETA. Or, Greek "n"?

It's omega for me!

Nov 8, 2012

Thursday, November 8, 2012 Robert Fisher

Theme: "Fly by night..."

This is a "definition" type puzzle, where the same clue typically has totally different meanings in each answer.  In this case, they are all the same meaning.  But each one gets the point across in a different way.

17S. Fly : OBSERVER ON A WALL. "I'd love to be a fly on the wall when he gets the axe..." Origin.

25A. Fly : SWATTER'S TARGET. Here's how President Obama did it during a BBC interview. 0:36

42A. Fly : SPIDER'S INVITEE. "Will you walk into my parlor?" from the poem by Mary Howett.

56A. Fly : OINTMENT SPOILER. "There's a fly in the ointment..."  Just a slight drawback.

Nice theme, and I smiled at each "definition" of this annoying pest. So let's see what else Mr. Fisher has for us this week.


1. Act the troubadour : STRUM. Not my first guess.  Left it blank and came back to it.

6. Gp. that includes Venezuela : OPEC. Not my first guess. Left it blank and came back to it.

10. Show disapproval : JEER. Not my first... (Are you sensing a pattern here?)

14. Despicable character : LOUSE. ...came back to it.

15. ___ stick : POGO. Chop? Drum? Glue? Yard? Slap? Sigh....

16. Drive train component : AXLE. Yay! I finally filled in an answer.

20. End of eternity? : WYE. The letter "y" at the end of the word "eternity." Clever clue.

21. Script snippet : LINE.

22. Like some excuses : FLIMSY.

23. Seafood order : SOLE. Like this.

24. Rural valley : GLEN.

31. Lo-cal : LITE. The commercial-ese clue suggests the commercial-ese spelling for the answer.

32. Longtime Mississippi senator : LOTT. Chester Trent Lott, who served from 1989 to 2007.

33. Two-minute warning giver : REF.eree

35. From scratch : ANEW.

36. Opted for : CHOSE.

38. Twofold : DUAL.

39. Uncle Sam poster word : YOU.

40. Give it up, so to speak : CLAP. Did you ever wonder where that phrase came from? Let's give it up for The Grammarphobia Blog!

41. Church alcove : APSE.

47. Stuff : CRAM.

48. Barrel-bottom stuff : LEES. Dregs are never singular, are they?

49. Go up against : TAKE ON.

52. Smelting waste : SLAG.

53. Sailor's assent : AYE.

59. Show whose cast holds the record for the most charted songs on the Billboard Hot 100 : GLEE. It's on my Netflix list...

60. Protein-rich bean : SOYA.

61. Soft palate projection : UVULA. Ewwww...word of advice: Do NOT search for "uvula images" on google!!!

62. Between ports : ASEA.

63. It usually loses in war : TREY. The card game "War" uses a standard French deck. The "trey" is the card with a value of 3.  The only card it would beat is the 2. Hence, unlikely. (Bill G., what are the exact odds of a trey beating a deuce?)

64. Holiday hires : TEMPS.


1. Brake : SLOW. My first entry in the NW.

2. Country singer Keith : TOBY. You remember him, don't you? 4:05

3. Bit of subterfuge : RUSE.

4. Manipulate : USE.

5. Red wine choice : MERLOT. Mine would be Carménère. And not in a red solo cup, either!

6. Warmup act : OPENER.

7. Epidermal opening : PORE. Does that make it a warmup act?

8. It can be bruised : EGO.

9. Fuse into a single entity : CONFLATE. Interesting that this word comes from the Latin root word "flatus," meaning "blasts." Gives a whole new erudite meaning to flatulence, don't you think?

10. Gabfest activity : JAWING.

11. Entrance requirement, often : EXAM.

12. Plumbing bends : ELLS. Not to be confused with the 2012 Open winner Ernie.

13. Bank (on) : RELY.

18. Beastly : VILE.

19. On the qui vive : ALERT. Another interesting clue. "Qui vive" is French for "Live [short 'i'] who?"  A sentry would shout this out to an approaching person, as a short form of the question "Long live...who?"  By answering, the approaching person would reveal their loyalties.  I guess a good answer would be "The king"?

23. Jambalaya, e.g. : STEW.

24. Mustang contemporaries : GTOS.

25. More than amuse : SLAY. "You just slay me!"

26. Skid row types : WINOS. How about us carménère types?

27. Really enjoyed : ATE UP.

28. Pours messily : SLOPS.

29. Blow : ERUPT. In Latin, "erumpant" ( that why it is called a rump?)

30. Offer with no intention of giving, say : TEASE. many photos I can't link here.

34. Beat a hasty retreat : FLEE.

36. Detergent ad superlative : CLEANEST.

37. Hippocratic oath no-no : HARM. "Primum non nocere" (or, "Primum nil nocere"). "First: do no harm." Is there a doctor in the house?

38. Spot for a lectern : DAIS.

40. Data storage medium : CD ROM.

43. Summer beverage : ICE TEA.

44. "No argument from me!' : I'LL SAY.

45. Spring-___ cycle: tidal phenomenon : NEAP.

46. Watch the boob tube, say : VEG OUT.

49. Frat party wear : TOGA.

50. Has a bug, or bugs : AILS.

51. Joint sometimes replaced : KNEE. "Hip" was too short.

52. Eyelid affliction : STYE.

53. Grad : ALUM.

54. Sharp cry : YELP.

55. Distinctive periods : ERAS.

57. Hide-hair connection : NOR. We saw neither hide nor hair of CrossEyedDave for a week!

58. "To All the Girls ___ Loved Before": 1984 #1 country hit : I'VE. Albert Hammond's original version was overshadowed by Julio Iglesias and Willie Nelson. 3:06

It's been real.  See you next week!


Note from C.C.:

Here is an adorable Halloween picture Irish Miss sent to me.

She said:

"Dahlia, dressed as Eliza Doolittle after her transformation, is my 10 year-old great, great niece and Amelia, dressed as Cat-woman, is my 5 year-old great-niece."

Sep 26, 2011

Monday, September 26, 2011 Robert Fisher

Theme: Fill It Up - First word of the first four theme entries represents the descending levels of the unifier leaving just a drop at 66A.

18A. Ceremonial uniform : FULL DRESS

23A. Necktie knot : HALF-WINDSOR

38A. NCAA Elite Eight team : QUARTER-FINALIST. Between the Sweet Sixteen and the Final Four.

50A. Parent whose kids have moved out : EMPTY NESTER.

59A. Dashboard device, and a hint to the starts of 18-, 23-, 38- and 50-Across : FUEL GAUGE

66. What to add when the 59-Across gets low : GAS

Argyle here. Cute theme. 1-Across sets the level for the puzzle, I felt. Some of the cluing was dodgy. Neat how GAS fit under the GAUGE; that's when I buy gas.


1. Minister's home : MANSE

6. Inst. that turns out lieutenants : OCS. Officer Candidates School.

9. Poker game similar to Texas Hold 'em : OMAHA. Player receives four down cards instead of two but must play only two of them.

14. Polynesian greeting : "ALOHA"

15. Rock music's __ Fighters : FOO. Foo Fighters - Bridges Burning (Snippet)(0:30)

16. Tied, as shoes : LACED

17. Crest dispensers : TUBES. May have ADA on them.

20. Turf grabbers : CLEATS. Cartoon of a ball player, wearing cleats, making a shoestring catch.

22. Yo-yo string feature : LOOP

25. Tidal return : EBB

28. Ample shoe width : EEE

29. Temple with a minaret : MOSQUE. Image.

31. PC key for getting out of trouble : ESC

34. Way up : STAIR

37. Emanation detected by psychics, so they say : AURA

42. __ no good : UP TO

43. Kept secret : SAT ON

44. Faux __: blunder : PAS. May result in a "mea culpa".

45. Main thoroughfare : ARTERY

48. 41-Down sound in the comic "B.C." : "ZOT!". This guy. 41D. Threat to tiny workers : ANTEATER. This action.

49. __ of the land : LAY

57. Civil rights org. : ACLU. American Civil Liberties Union.

58. Work that ridicules folly : SATIRE

64. Carryalls : TOTEs

65. Out of port : AT SEA

67. Create, as a statute : ENACT

68. Back at the track : BET ON

69. The USA's 50 : STs. States

70. Takes in tenants : RENTS


1. Fire lighter : MATCH

2. Gene Vincent's "Be-Bop-__" : A-LULA. A significant early example of rockabilly. (2:35)

3. __ Prize : NOBEL

4. Grain bundle : SHEAF

5. How latitude lines run : EAST/WEST

6. On vacation : OFF

7. "This __ be the last time": Stones lyric : COULD. Clip(4:03)

8. Goes it alone : SOLOs

9. Rookie's mentor : OLD PRO

10. Make a dent in : MAR

11. Poker "bullet" : ACE

12. Bucks and rams : HEs

13. Commercials : ADs

19. Weaver's machine : LOOM

21. Seven, in Sinaloa : SIETE. Sinaloa is a Mexican state. Map.

24. Approaches : NEARS

25. Supply with gear : EQUIP

26. Sac between a bone and tendon : BURSA. Inflammation of a bursa is bursitis, most commonly of the shoulder.

27. Cop's rounds : BEATS

30. Gal of song : SAL. Clip.(1:08)

31. The same : EQUAL

32. Old sporty Toyota : SUPRA. Early, Late.

33. Spiteful, as gossip : CATTY

35. "__ tree falls ..." : IF A. Did you hear that?

36. Swanky : RITZY

39. Fish eggs : ROE

40. High hours? : NOONS

46. '80s Cold War leader : REAGAN

47. Song spelled with arm motions : YMCA. No, no, no! No clip!

51. Spark providers : PLUGS. Barney Google and Spark Plug.

52. Pull on : TUG AT

53. Rosetta __ : STONE. Image. The Rosetta Stone is an ancient Egyptian stele inscribed with a decree issued in 196 BC. The decree appears in three scripts: the upper text is Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs, the middle portion Demotic script, and the lowest Ancient Greek. Because it presents essentially the same text in all three scripts (with some minor differences between them), it provided the key to the modern understanding of Egyptian hieroglyphs.

54. Giant : TITAN

55. Standing upright : ERECT

56. Concludes one's court case : RESTS

59. Detergent brand : FAB

60. Jeep or Land Rover, briefly : UTE. Any type of utility vehicle.

61. Superlative suffix : EST

62. Lion sign : LEO

63. Dollar sign shape : ESS


Jul 18, 2011

Monday, July 18, 2011 Robert Fisher

Theme: Look At This - Three long entries that, if you add their first word to the end(or FINISH) of PHOTO, you will get a compound word like the unifier.

17A. Penning ads and such : COPY WRITING. PHOTOCOPY.

26A. Mall habitué's motto : "SHOP TIL YOU DROP". PHOTOSHOP.

42A. Instrument Bob Dylan was once booed for playing : ELECTRIC GUITAR PHOTOELECTRIC.

56A. Race decided by a camera, or what the start of 17-, 26- or 42-Across literally is : PHOTO FINISH

Argyle here. You don't need me today.


1. Gold medalist's place : FIRST

6. Buddies : CHUMS

11. Use a stun gun on : ZAP

14. Boise's state : IDAHO

15. Saigon's Vietnam War counterpart : HANOI. Map.

16. "__ had it!" : I'VE

19. Wee one : TOT

20. PC key next to the space bar : ALT

21. Buttery and creamy, as pastry : RICH

22. Browsing the Web, say : ON-LINE

24. When doubled, make light of : POOH. "Oh, pooh-pooh!"

25. Church alcove : APSE

32. Ending for micro- or oscillo- : SCOPE

33. Puppy's protest : YELP

34. Big Band __ : ERA

35. Tackle box item : LURE

36. Equine, to a 19-Across : HORSY

38. Odds partner : ENDS

39. Like most codgers : OLD

40. Long-haul rig : SEMI

41. Postal postings : RATES

46. Gold medalist, vis-à-vis competitors : BEST

47. Egyptian snakes : ASPs

48. "Comin' right up" : "IN A SEC"

51. Part of a blind : SLAT

52. "Unbelievable!" : WOW

55. Whopper junior? : FIB

59. Seasonal malady : FLU

60. Crowbar, essentially : LEVER

61. How objects are seen through a mist : DIMLY

62. "Is it soup __?" : YET

63. Skip the announcement, invitations, etc. : ELOPE

64. Old Montreal team : EXPOS. Baseball.


1. Payroll tax acronym : FICA. Federal Insurance Contributions Act(Social Security).

2. Teen favorite : IDOL

3. Totally absorbed : RAPT

4. Hardly outgoing : SHY

5. Line on a tugboat : TOW ROPE

6. Showy to a fault : CHICHI. French.

7. "What __ God wrought?" : HATH. Samuel Morse sent his first telegraph message: “What hath God wrought.” Why that phrase? It was a biblical quote selected by the daughter of one of Morse’s key financial backers. It is a phrase from the Book of Numbers (Numbers 23:23). "Surely there is no enchantment against Jacob, neither is there any divination against Israel: according to this time it shall be said of Jacob and of Israel, What hath God wrought!"

8. Prefix with verse : UNI

9. Game with tiny hotels : MONOPOLY

10. Volunteers (for) : SIGNS UP

11. Penne relative : ZITI. Pasta.

12. Skin So Soft maker : AVON

13. Townshend of The Who : PETE. Musician.

18. Mob disorder : RIOT

23. Was in front : LED

24. Benedict I, e.g. : POPE

25. Affirmative votes : AYEs

26. Oar : SCULL

27. Large crowd : HORDE

28. Emotionally expressive, as poetry : LYRIC

29. Avis __ Car : RENT A

30. Tell the waiter what you want : ORDER

31. Avoid flunking : PASS

32. Gin fizz flavoring : SLOE

36. __ Bernardi, who played Tevye on Broadway : HERSCHEL. Image. Some might remember him as Lt. Jacoby on TV's Peter Gunn.

37. Fail to mention : OMIT

38. Diner sign : EATS

40. Church topper : STEEPLE. Stowe, VT.

41. Scary beach current : RIPTIDE

43. TV network with an eye logo : CBS

44. In great numbers : GALORE

45. "Wild Blue Yonder" mil. group : USAF

48. Far from certain : IFFY

49. River through Egypt : NILE

50. Be contiguous with : ABUT

51. Aerobics accessory : STEP

52. Spineless one : WIMP

53. Norway's capital : OSLO

54. __ and wherefores : WHYS

57. Lacto-__ vegetarian : OVO. A vegetarian who does not eat animal flesh of any kind, but is willing to consume dairy and egg.

58. Put the kibosh on : NIX


Note from C.C.:

Our "Hard to Believe" series continues. Guess who this cute baby this. Here is another one of him and his younger brother. And yes, the boy yesterday is Splynter. (Added later: Today's mystery boy is Barry G.)

Mar 8, 2011

Tuesday, March 8, 2011 Robert Fisher

Theme: Insults 101 - Four common insults for when someone does something stupid are the last word of the theme entries when they precede the first word of the unifier.

17A. Not-so-humorous humerus spot: FUNNY BONE.

23A. Exam taker's dread: MENTAL BLOCK. Blockhead. 

39A. Daydreams: CASTLES IN THE AIR. Airhead.

49A. Devoid of niceties, as some politics: BARE KNUCKLE. Knucklehead.

61A. Racer's edge, or the ends of 17-, 23-, 39- and 49-Across, unflatteringly: HEAD START

Argyle here. I liked the theme; some of the fill, not so much.


1. Pert : SAUCY. If you remember, we had this before.

6. Top grade, in slang : ACE. I did find it used this way in, listed as the last use as a noun.

9. Trees along tropical beaches : PALMS

14. Aptly named cooler brand : IGLOO.

15. Small island : CAY. Sorry, not AIT today.

16. Perpendicular to the keel : ABEAM

19. Tri- plus bi- : PENTA-

20. Drink from leaves : TEA

21. Hockey legend Bobby et al. : ORRs. A stinker entry.

22. Sea north of Poland : BALTIC

25. Grubs and maggots : LARVAE

29. Manhattan sch. : NYU. The Manhattan in New York City, this time.

30. "Garfield" pooch : ODIE

31. Fan mag : ZINE

34. Annual parade celeb : ST. PAT. It should have indicated an abbv., not for PAT, that shortened version was indicated by 'celeb', but for ST.

42. Joe Cocker's "You __ Beautiful" : ARE SO.

43. Formal coiffure : UPDO

44. Alan of "The Aviator" : ALDA

45. Slangy "No reason" : 'CUZ. Based on BECAUSE.

47. "Amen to that!" : "I'LL SAY!"

55. Disinclined : AVERSE

56. Works a tough row? : HOEs. Easy now.

57. "The Amazing Race" airer : CBS. TV show(I never watch).

60. Prove apt for : BEFIT

63. Mountain ridge : ARETE

64. www address : URL

65. Otherworldly : EERIE

66. IHOP condiment : SYRUP

67. 1/30 of abril : DIA. Spanish. 1 abril - el Día de los Inocentes. (All Fools Day)

68. Seed anew : RESOW


1. Sort through, as for clues : SIFT

2. Fit of fever : AGUE

3. It's near the 17-Across : ULNA. Diagram that shows where the ulna nerve stretches over the bone in the elbow. That is what tingles when you hit it.

4. Put one over on : CON

5. Cellist with 16 Grammys : YOYO MA.
Elgar Cello Concerto, 2nd mvmt.(3:00) The Jimi Hendrix of classic music.

6. Item in a fall stash : ACORN. If you're a squirrel.

7. Art able to : CANST. Dost thou knoweth this word?

8. Tropical cyclone center : EYE

9. 41st president, affectionately : PAPA BUSH

10. Clear as __ : A BELL

11. Slowly, in music : LENTO

12. "It slices! It dices!" gadget Veg-O-__ : MATIC

13. Wallop : SMACK

18. Zephyr : BREEZE

22. Journalist Nellie : BLY. Nellie Bly (1864 – 1922) was the pen name of American pioneer female journalist Elizabeth Jane Cochran.

24. What all good things come to : AN END. That English proverb from yesterday.

25. Crazy, in a Ricky Martin song : LOCA. "Livin' La Vida Loca".

26. Month after Shevat : ADAR

27. Increase : RISE

28. November honorees : VETS

32. Liar Joe in old TV car ads : ISUZU. David Leisure as Joe Isuzu,
Isuzu Pup - Island Ad.

33. Hip flask quickie : NIP

35. Greenish blue : TEAL

36. Sidekicks : PALS

37. Verdi opera : "AIDA"

38. Projector's slide holder : TRAY

40. Rigidly inflexible process : LOCKSTEP.

41. Worked arduously : TOILED

46. Arles article : UNE. French.

48. Like the preferable evil : LESSER

49. Rum-soaked cakes : BABAs

50. Lincoln Center's __ Fisher Hall : AVERY. The hall was named for Fisher in 1973 after he made a $10.5 million donation to the Philharmonic. (Well, no wonder.)

51. Allude (to) : REFER

52. Verdi aria that means "It was you" : ERI TU

53. Strasbourg sweetheart : CHERI. Strasbourg is the capital and principal city of the Alsace region in northeastern France.

54. Eucalyptus muncher : KOALA

57. Jaguar and Impala : CARS

58. Verve : BRIO

59. Hearty entrée : STEW

61. 1963 Paul Newman film : "HUD"

62. Casual top : TEE

Answer grid.


Jun 15, 2010

Tuesday June 15, 2010 Robert Fisher

Theme: Hirsute Tuesday - The four targeted entries contain an item to tame this Tuesday puzzle. 50D is the unifier.

21A. *"The simplest solution is usually correct" principle: OCCAM'S RAZOR. Warning: spelling variation! Occam's razor or Ockham's razor is the principle attributed to 14th-century English logician, theologian and Franciscan friar William of Ockham (or Occam).

46A. *Speedy square-rigger: CLIPPER SHIP. Image in a bottle.

3D. *Bees' creation: HONEYCOMB. Here is an image of a honeycomb that isn't within a structure. It doesn't happen much in the northern climes.

32D. *Fast-spreading blaze, perhaps: BRUSH FIRE. Let us hope our Southwest friends are spared from any this year.

50D. Target for items found in the answers to starred clues: HAIR. Here's a HAIR clip.

Argyle here. Wow! I think I put on ten pounds reading yesterday's comments. I have to find me some Ro*Tel today.

The Across entries cut the hair and the Down entries do the grooming.

Mr. Fisher has given us two Monday puzzles before; now he has moved on to Tuesday. I'm looking forward to his Wednesday. Thirty-six four letter entries and 24 five letter entries. Are there cheater squares? You tell me.


1A. Soda since the 1920s: NEHI. Walter "Radar" O'Reilly's favorite, grape.

5A. "Get lost!": "SCRAM!".

10A. Hangs (around with): PALS.

14A. Sour milk tip-off: ODOR.

15A. Barter: TRADE.

16A. Elide: OMIT. Word Origin & History (Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper) Elide - 1590s, a legal term, "to annul, do away with," from M.Fr. elider, from L. elidere "strike out," from ex- "out" + -lidere, comb. form of laedere "to strike." Phonological sense is first recorded 1796.

17A. Tomato ripening spot: VINE. I thought of (window)sill first.

18A. Tiny bits: IOTAs.

19A. Bear with cold porridge: MAMA. Papa's was to hot but Baby Bear's was just right. From Goldilocks and the Three Bears fairy tale.

20A. Absorbed, as a loss: ATE.

23A. Tugs: YANKS. Not the NY kind this time JD.

25A. Where the Styx flows: HADES. In Greek mythology, Styx is the river that forms the boundary between Earth and the Underworld.

26A. Repeating series: CYCLE. First thought, baseball.

28A. Solid or liquid, e.g.: STATE.

30A. Nocturnal forest sounds: HOOTS.

31A. Turns on the waterworks, so to speak: BAWLS.

32A. Sports car protector: BRA. Image.

35A. Writer Bombeck: ERMA.

36A. Sentry's duty: VIGIL.

37A. It may be mopped or furrowed: BROW.

38A. Spider's "parlor": WEB.

39A. Jaunty cap: BERET.

40A. Something to fight for: CAUSE.

41A. Surfacing diver's concern, with "the": BENDS. Also called decompression sickness. The Wikipedia article was confusing, do we have a diver among us who can explain "the bends"?

42A. Ready to strike: POISED.

43A. Composer Edvard: GRIEG. Edvard Grieg (1843 – 1907) was a Norwegian composer and pianist. He is best known for his Piano Concerto in A minor, for his incidental music to Henrik Ibsen's play Peer Gynt (which includes Morning Mood and In the Hall of the Mountain King), and for his collection of piano miniatures Lyric Pieces.

45A. What some serum elicits?: TRUTH. Remember some of the old B-movies where the hero was threatened with truth serum. "We have ways of making you talk!"

49A. Govt. mtge. insurer: FHA. Federal Housing Administration

52A. Popular trend: RAGE.

53A. Lavish celebrations: FETES.

54A. Primitive timekeeper: DIAL. Sun DIAL reference, I assume.

55A. Bone-dry: ARID.

56A. Render harmless, as a gunman: UNARM.

57A. Spring bloomer: IRIS.

58A. River bottoms: BEDS.

59A. Cerebral segments: LOBES.

60A. Fiddling emperor: NERO.


1D. Bygone Chevy compact: NOVA.

2D. Make changes to: EDIT.

4D. Choler: IRE. Word Origin & History (Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper) Choler - late 14c., "bile," as one of the humors, supposed to cause irascibility or temper, from O.Fr. colre "bile, anger," from L.L. cholera "bile".

5D. Remote area, with "the": STICKS.

6D. Swamp swimmers: CROCS. Great alliteration.

7D. Pro __: RATA. In proportion; according to a certain rate.

8D. "The Wealth of Nations" author Smith: ADAM. Adam Smith (1723-1790) was a Scottish moral philosopher .

9D. Soldier's eatery: MESS HALL.

10D. 50-Down ointment: POMADE. Bonus theme related.

11D. Leave in shock: AMAZE.

12D. Upscale rides: LIMOs.

13D. Brigadier general's insignia: STAR.

21D. Binary system digits: ONES. The other binary system digits are zeros.

22D. "Phooey!": "RATS!".

24D. Calgary's prov.: ALTA.. Province of Alberta, Canada.

26D. Masticate: CHEW. Masticate - a word to make young boys snicker (because it sounds similar to masturbate.)

27D. Olden times: YORE.

28D. Swamis: SAGES. Some how the word, swami, developed a hokey feel even though swamis are religious teachers.

29D. Idiot, to a Brit: TWIT.

31D. Celtic great Larry: BIRD. He played basketball for the Boston Celtics through the 80's.

33D. Pink wine: ROSÉ.

34D. Impressed profoundly: AWED.

36D. Seeking payback: VENGEFUL.

37D. Worm on a line: BAIT. My favorite clue today.

39D. Electronic alert: BEEP.

40D. Cabal's plan: COUP. A cabal is a small group of secret plotters, as against a government or person in authority.

41D. Kangaroos and humans, e.g.: BI-PEDS. Come on, they use their tail as a third leg, should that make then tri-peds?

42D. Light benders: PRISMS.

43D. Harsh light: GLARE.

44D. Unbending: RIGID.

45D. When repeated, comforting words: THERE.

46D. "Hermit" crustacean: CRAB.

47D. Ashcroft's predecessor: RENO. John Ashcroft, 79th United States attorney general. Janet Reno, 78th Attorney General (and first woman in the position).

48D. Wild guess: STAB.

51D. Moreover: ALSO.

54D. Confused roar: DIN.

Answer grid.

JD's Crossword Story continues. Here is the updated version with letter E.


Mar 22, 2010

Monday, March 22, 2010 Robert Fisher

Theme: Body Parts - Four theme entries containing two parts of the body in a common idioms.

20A. Hopelessly, as in love: HEAD OVER HEELS

29A. Field sobriety test: FINGER TO NOSE

46A. Fierce way to fight: TOOTH AND NAIL

56A. Facetious: TONGUE IN CHEEK

And a single NAVEL (31D. Umbilicus).

Argyle here. Another serviceable Monday puzzle from Mr. Fisher. Doesn't need much explanation but still fun to do.


1A. Prefix with brewery: MICRO

6A. Quite a ways away: AFAR

10A. Field furrow maker: PLOW

14A. Like a specially formed committee: AD HOC. Latin, for this

15A. Infrequent: RARE

16A. Learn about aurally: HEAR

17A. Track shoe part: CLEAT. SPIKE would be better; CLEATS are for field games.

18A. Canon shots, briefly: PICS. Canon, the camera, not cannon, the big shooter.

19A. Dark and murky: INKY

23A. Meal remnant: ORT

24A. Cribbage piece: PEG

25A. Writer's coll. major, often: ENG.

26A. Piper in the air: CUB.
In flight. Check out the leg stuck out the door and what is that; the wash drying on the line to the tail wheel?

32A. Fossil fuel: COAL

35A. Draw a bead: AIM

36A. Keeps for later: SAVES

37A. A single time: ONCE

38A. Theater chain founded in 1904: LOEWS

41A. __ Beach, Florida: VERO. On the Atlantic side, a little over midway down to Miami.

42A. Firestone products: TIRES

44A. Bit of a chill: NIP

45A. Formerly, previously: ERST

50A. Reply: Abbr.: ANS.

51A. __, dos, tres ...: UNO

52A. '50s car embellishment: FIN. Probably should have been plural; a rare sports car may have had a single fin.

53A. "Antiques Roadshow" airer: PBS

60A. Forte of a certain "doctor": SPIN

62A. Eye blatantly: OGLE

63A. Throw with effort: HEAVE.
Caber Toss.

64A. Political alliance: PACT

65A. Mass transit option: RAIL

66A. Game show host: EMCEE

67A. "The Sun __ Rises": ALSO. The first major novel by Ernest Hemingway, 1926.

68A. Somewhat: A TAD

69A. Competed in a bee: SPELT. This will draw some comments.


1D. Virile: MACHO

2D. Work shirker: IDLER

3D. Copy from your classmate's paper, say: CHEAT

4D. Willie Nelson's "On the __ Again": ROAD.

5D. Squid cousins: OCTOPI

6D. Broken chord, in music: ARPEGGIO. I'll leave to our experts to discuss.

7D. Expo: FAIR

8D. Shooter with a quiver: ARCHER

9D. Bristle at: RESENT. William Tell bristled at being called an archer. He used a crossbow and was known as a bowman.

10D. Golfer Mickelson: PHIL

11D. Camera's protective cap: LENS COVER

12D. Cask material: OAK

13D. Droll: WRY

21D. Bribable: VENAL. VENAL bad; VENERABLE good.

22D. They're big in Hollywood: EGOS

27D. Online surfers, e.g.: USERS

28D. Stupefy with booze: BESOT

29D. Hertz inventory: FLEET

30D. Edit: EMEND

32D. Terra __: pottery clay: COTTA. The TERRA COTTA

33D. Burger topper: ONION

34D. Puzzles involving quotes, usually: ACROSTICS

39D. Hall of Fame outfielder Dave or actor Paul: WINFIELD

40D. Madrid's country: SPAIN

43D. Steer clear of: SHUN

47D. Long-haired cat: ANGORA

48D. Chewy candy: NOUGAT

49D. Yard's 36: INCHES

53D. What a V-sign may mean: PEACE

54D. Slanted edge: BEVEL

55D. Trapshooting: SKEET

59D. Natural rope fiber: HEMP

60D. Place to be pampered: SPA

Answer grid.

Picture of the Day: Here is a sweet photo of our fellow LAT solver Barry G, his lovely wife from Tianjin, China and their adorable son.


Dec 7, 2009

Monday December 7, 2009 Robert Fisher

Theme: Shady Deals - Three ways that you can be conned.

20A: Prospecting swindle: SALTING THE MINE Planting bits of gold in the ground to make the mark think that a mine is valuable.

37A: Multilevel investment swindle: PYRAMID SCHEME This is not the same as a Ponzi scheme which investors are paid out from the funds from new investors. In a pyramid scheme, those who recruit additional participants benefit directly. (In fact, failure to recruit typically means no investment return.) It is bound to collapse because it requires exponential increases in participants to sustain it.

53A: Sleight-of-hand sidewalk swindle: THREE-CARD MONTE The mark has to pick the target card from the three face-down cards presented to him. The three shells and the pea is a similar swindle. TUTORIAL

Argyle here. Trust me.


1A: Ringing phone on stage, e.g.: PROP A classic blooper from the days of live TV was the phone that wouldn't stop ringing even after it was picked up.

5A: Place to unwind: SAUNA

10A: Complacent: SMUG

14A: Medal recipient: HERO Finally, a HERO that isn't a sandwich.

15A: Panama divider: CANAL Bisects the country

16A: Ice cream parlor order: CONE I like this clue for CONE better then a construction site marker, especially if it's chocolate.

23A: USN rank: ENS Navy Ensign.

25A: Shadow: UMBRA Nothing shady about this shadow.

27A: Suffix with farm or home: STEAD I guess you could have a homestead on the farmstead. Currier and Ives

29A: Fly in the ointment: SNAG

32A: North Pole toy maker: ELF They better be busy!

33A: Thinner, as smoke: WISPIER

36A: Temptation on a hook: BAIT

40A: Stratagem: PLOY

41A: Accomplished with a single try: ONE SHOT

43A: Quiche base: EGGS

44A: Inuit craft: KAYAK Inuit are members of the Eskimo-Aleut family.

48A: Essence of roses: ATTAR

50A: Sigma follower: TAU Greek alphabet.

52A: King beater: ACE

58A: Brit's elevator: LIFT

59A: Cube or sphere: SOLID

60A: Similar (to): AKIN

61A: Load to bear: ONUS

62A: Reclassified planet: PLUTO

63A: Golfer Ballesteros: SEVE Spanish professional golfer has announced that he is planning to play in the 2010 Open Championship at St Andrews. He has been treated for a brain tumor. Now he's 66A: Ready to drive, as a golf ball: TEED

64A: Like the stepsisters in "Cinderella": UGLY

65A: Red Sea republic: YEMEN


1D: Parts of a cycle: PHASES

2D: Stinging crawler: RED ANT

4D: Big name in breakfast cereal: POST They began in 1895 with the first Postum, a "cereal beverage". The first cereal, Grape-Nuts, was developed in 1897

5D: Barely adequate: SCANT

6D: Stereotypical pirate's cry: AARGH!

8D: Poet Ogden: NASH A short NASH poem: "Fleas" Adam had 'em.

10D: Curtain material: SCRIM Not familiar with this word. The Dictionary has two main entries; the second is: "A transparent fabric used as a drop in the theater to create special effects of lights or atmosphere."

11D: Ray from a natural satellite: MOON BEAM Ray Walston

12D: Be situated beneath: UNDERLIE

13D: "My goodness": "GEE"

21D: Gandhi's land: INDIA

22D: Java holder: MUG

26D: Shipboard direction: AFT

28D: Bad way for plans to go: AWRY

29D: Go-with dishes: SIDES

30D: Loch of lore: NESS North-West of St Andrews.

31D: St. Louis's Gateway __: ARCH

35D: Bullet-on-metal noise: PING Also, makers of golf clubs. I think our constructor today might be a golfer.

36D: Second in a series: BETA

37D: Cooking up a coup: PLOTTING Jeannie, do you have a recipe for cooking up a coup?

38D: Like kids' enthusiasm: YOUTHFUL

39D: Folderol: HOKUM Not a good match.

40D: Actress Zadora: PIA In her younger days

43D: Before, of yore: ERE

45D: Derek Jeter, e.g.: YANKEE

46D: Busy: ACTIVE

47D: Wailed: KEENED

49D: Culturally pretentious: ARTSY Old coots would say someone was artsy-fartsy.

50D: Hackneyed: TRITE

51D: Home builder's afterthought: ADD-ON

54D: Notice: ESPY

55D: Nat or Natalie: COLE

56D: School reunion attendee: ALUM

57D: Hops oven: OAST

58D: Singer Rawls: LOU R&B and Soul.

Answer grid.