Showing posts with label Saturday. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Saturday. Show all posts

Aug 19, 2017

Saturday, Aug 19th, 2017, Matthew Sewell

Theme: None

Words: 68 (Pangram~!)

Blocks: 39

There is one other LA Times puzzle from Matthew, from Thursday March 23rd of this year.  Today's offering was a really pleasant solve, with very few proper names or abbreviations and plenty of clever clues to make it tough, but do-able.  I admit to not getting my "ta-DA~!" because of one cel, and I just switched to red-letter to find it; more below, and it's quite funny in retrospect.  Big block count today, a friendly grid, and just a pair of 11-letter spanners in the across and few 8-letter answers throughout;

33. Look for business? : WORK CLOTHES

Or how 'bout her~?

She definitely does not work at my terminal....

38. Peruse, as a catalog : LOOK THROUGH - I filled in "THROUGH" and waited on either LOOK or SCAN



1. Bass-baritone role in an 1885 Savoy Theatre premiere : MIKADO - never a good start when you have no clue - or is that answer~?

7. King Features Syndicate parent : HEARST

13. Brown world? : ACADEME - Funny, I wonder if Mr. Sewell knew I would be doing the blog, because half my world IS Brown - UPS brown, that is.  Since UPS did not fit, I wondered if it was a reference to Charlie [Brown], but no, it's about an ivy league school

15. "I have a bad feeling about this" : "OH DEAR...." - and a line from Han Solo - four times

16. Strike a chord : RESONATE - my first thought was guitar related

18. There's one right in front of you : PUZZLE - ah.  Yes.  I had Muzzle, which is technically correct, and hoMe before 'against' made sense, but not after as well

19. MSN, for one : ISP - Internet Service Provider

20. Wore with jaunty confidence : ROCKED - I like rocking my plus-fours on the golf course.  Not.
and Argyle socks~!

22. Scuttle : NIX

23. Most of a pool cue : SHAFT - like 99.5%

26. 11, at times: Abbr. : NOVember - I always get duped by this, especially since "11" to me is usually a guitar amplifier reference

27. Cooked : DONE

28. Vital vessels : AORTAS

30. W-9 filers : NEW HIRES

35. Panasonic flat-screen : VIERA

36. Welsh herder : CORGI

41. Majesty : SPLENDOR

44. Four-time WWE World Champion Brock __ : LESNAR - all perps

46. Wharf : QUAY - dah~! not DOCK

47. Dressy accessory : TIE - I went with BOA - 100% wrong

49. Curling piece : STONE

50. Audible pauses : UMs  - I had UHs to start

51. How cherries jubilee is served : FLAMBÉ

54. Dungeons & Dragons bird : ROC - I'm such a nerd.  I got this.  But hey~! I think I might have a cool name for my board game~!

55. Shout on arrival : I'M HERE

57. 1984 Winter Olympics city : SARAJEVO - didn't come to me right away - I got it after I had the "S" and "O"

60. Strongly suggest : REEK OF - the word 'reek' always reminds me of a band that played the night club I managed; they called themselves REEKING HAVOC - not WREAKING

61. Alito and Thomas : YALE MEN - I thought we were looking for two guys named the same, so I threw an "S" in at the end.  Bzzzt.

62. Danny, vis-à-vis the "Bloodline" siblings : ELDEST - no clue, via perps

63. Sharp weapons : SABERS - Dah~!  not SPEARS - that's 83.3% at 50% correct


1. Best Supporting Actress two years after Whoopi : MARISA - Ms. Tomei, for My Cousin Vinny, and Ms. Goldberg for Ghost

2. Exhibition with blades : ICE SHOW - Good clue.  Hockey games, too

3. '90s loser to Deep Blue : KASPAROV - I didn't know this.  More chess, too~! The Wiki

4. Flap : ADO - so what's a MIK   ADO~?  (nyuk nyuk nyuk)

5. Forest digs : DEN

6. "Rubáiyát" poet : OMAR

7. Word before and after against : HOPE - hope against hope - ah, that makes sense

8. Israel's Olmert : EHUD - perps and a WAG

9. Sharp-edged tool : ADZ

10. Nine Inch Nails founder Trent : REZNOR - the one proper name I did know - I'd link a song, but most of the popular stuff is a bit raunchy - if you must, check out "Closer".  On the flip side, Hurt was covered by Johnny Cash

11. Briny : SALINE - ah.  SALTY was too short

12. Natural history museum attractions, briefly : T-REXES

14. School with trimesters called halves : ETON

17. Cheap opening : ECONO-

21. Bellyache : KVETCH

24. Kan. Army installation : Ft. RILEY - I was pretty confident of my ACROSS answers, so the FTR--- to start helped a lot

25. Go up against : TAKE ON

27. Turn off and then some : DISGUST

29. Cape Cod catch : SCROD

31. Forensics ridge : WHORL - fingerprints

32. Stallone roles, e.g. : HEROES

34. Sitting Bull's people : LAKOTA

37. "Forget I said anything" : "IGNORE ME."

39. Downsizes : TRIMS

40. German royal house, 1714-1901 : HANOVER

41. Knight aide : SQUIRE

42. Buffet : PUMMEL - I didn't know if it was BUH-fet, or buh-FAY

43. Tied up : LASHED

45. Scouting ops : RECONS

48. Weird Al song that wonders, "Tell me why I bid on Shatner's old toupee" : eBAY - man that's funny; I DID buy a golf cart on eBay - and I found a rare Tom Jones CD, Rescue Me, sold by a guy in Russia....

The Wiki on the song

51. Picked dos : 'FROS

52. Took off : LEFT

53. Noteworthy times : ERAS

56. Stretch (out) : EKE

58. Like : Á LA 

59. Politico with a father, brother and son named George : JEB - the Bushes


P.S.> I was shocked to see that my name now appears in the "labels" settings~!

Aug 12, 2017

Saturday, Aug 12th, 2017, Doug Peterson & Patti Varol

Theme: DP & PV ( or Tony and Sony~?)

Words: 72 (missing Q,V,X,Z)

Blocks: 29

It's been over a year since we have had this duo of constructors on a Saturday.  This week's contribution was a bit lumpy for me, as I butchered the NW corner and had to cave in to red-letters for my mistakes.  On the flip side, it was an enjoyable solve, with some tricky cluing that I was able to get past, and proper names that slowed me down, but only slightly.  Friendly corners with two 14-letter spanners, a pair of 11's in the Down, and paired 10s in the Down corners;

5. "Candida" singer : TONY ORLANDO - as with most of the proper names, I had no idea about this one to start, but the perp(endicular)s and the familiar, "not-so-vague" personality helped

26. Pioneering music player : SONY WALKMAN - I thought we were looking for an actual person, and when I first filled this DOWN in, thought it was a guy named "Sonny" something....

35. Friend of the Fry Kids : RONALD McDONALD - had no clue, but when the perps started filling in, I shoulda known - I didn't remember the "fry kids" until I saw this image, and now I think of them as a bit creepy

42. It's generally celebrated on the same day as Tet : CHINESE NEW YEAR - nailed it.  Happy Year of the Rooster ( or Cock, if you prefer....) - I was born in the year of the Pig

Thank you all for your compliments on Wednesday about our debut puzzle - it's a bittersweet success for me - I guess you could say when it comes to published crosswords, I "don't have a clue."

Word N/A~?


1. Modern categorizing aid : HASHTAG - I have mentioned before that I do not Facebook nor Twitter - but I do see this "#" symbol on TV and in advertising frequently - have you seen the promos for "Garage Rehab" on Discovery Channel~?  I am friends with Russell, one of the hosts of the new show


15. Pennsylvania home of the world's oldest operating wooden roller coaster : ALTOONA - I tried HERSHEY, even though I knew it was wrong.  The famous ride which I have not heard of - but I am not a roller-coaster fan - is the Leap-The-Dips

16. "All will be well" : FEAR NOT - got it on the second pass from the "F"

17. Homophonically named '60s sitcom lady : JEANNIE - funny, I just linked this two weeks ago - I dream of "Genie"

18. Steel work : ROMANCE - knew it was author Danielle on the first pass, went with "FICTION"

19. It's cut and dried : JERKY - I'd like to try making my own some day

20. Fish-eating bird : LOON - not TERN

22. Really feel the heat : BAKE - ah, not MELT

23. Coast Guard pickup : S.O.S

25. Wave function symbols : PSIs - care to melt your brain~? Try to understand this

27. Night spot : BED - huh.  I wonder where my head is - I went with BAR - but I prefer BED these days

28. Financial pg. debut : IPO - a good WAG

31. "The __ of King William": Old English poem : RIME - dah~!  Should have known this from one of Iron Maiden's classics, the re-telling of the story "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner"

With a little of the poem narrated in at 7:50

33. "Golden Boy" dramatist : ODETS - perps

39. Place to buy a landscape : ART SALE - I filled in the "ART" part and waited

40. Unspoiled : IDYLLIC

44. Per person : A HEAD

45. __ con gas: Spanish soda water : AGUA - oh, duh.  I had no idea on the first pass

46. Nevada copper town : ELY - filled via perps

47. Troubling bank msg. : NSF - thankfully, I have not had a Non-Sufficient Funds message in a long time

48. Cutlass, e.g. : OLDSmobile - I had one, a '77 Supreme Brougham.  Clecho with 55a. Cutlass, e.g. : AUTO

Got about 8 gallons to the mile

51. Angels' org. : MLB - Anaheim from Major League Baseball

53. Peabody-winning journalist Ifill : GWEN - half perps, half WAG

57. Buckwheat porridge : KASHA

61. Waiting to get in, say : LINED UP - ah.  ON/IN LINE was too short

63. Studio mascot : MGM LION

65. Cover, as a cover charge : INCLUDE

66. __ glass : STAINED

67. Like most cartoon characters : AGELESS

68. Only president to win a Pulitzer Prize : KENNEDY


1. Pillar of Islam : HAJJ

2. Nautical direction : ALEE - not PORT, not AHOY

3. Michelin unit : STAR - ah, not TIRE 

4. Traffic chorus : HONKS

6. "The Phantom Menace" boy : ANI - Anakin Skywalker, a.k.a Darth Vader

7. Certain Celt : GAEL

8. High dos : AFROS

9. "Madam Secretary" actress : LEONI

10. Flee : LAM - oops, not RUN

11. Word with grass : CRAB - there's no crab grass on the golf courses I play - but there's a lot of "crabbing" - I was so angry with my game last Sunday I pitched my a tree.  I did buy a pull cart from eBay, only $42.  Now I need a new putter. 

12. Poe classic : ANNABEL LEE - Edger Allan's last complete poem

13. Make an unexpected connection with : POCKET DIAL - or BUTT dial, your cel phone - mine has a two-piece case, so there is little chance of me making this blunder

14. Stable population : STEEDS

21. Org. Indonesia left in 2008 : OPEC - ah, not NATO

24. Edge furtively : SIDLE

28. Radio host Glass : IRA

29. Rocker alternative : PORCH SWING - I had P-RC-, so I was not fooled by the "alternative" kind of rocker - like the ones in Iron Maiden

30. Torn : ON THE FENCE - again, because of perps, I was not thinking "ripped" for torn

32. Fr. titles : MMES - Dah~! Not STES

34. "The Voice" host Carson : DALY

36. Section in Disney's Animal Kingdom : ASIA - wow, vague.  Never been to Disney

37. "Correct!" sound : DING~!!!

38. Greek theater : ODEUM - oops, I had odeON

41. Word with war or far : CRY

43. Point in the right direction? : EAST - a weather vane/compass point to the right

44. Old name for England : ANGLIA

49. Praises : LAUDS

50. Con targets : DUPES

52. Dwarf who traveled with Bilbo : BALIN - despite my D & D upbringing, I never got into The Lord of the Rings

54. "The Old Curiosity Shop" girl : NELL - perps

56. Trans-Siberian Railway city : OMSK

58. __ wave : SINE

59. Broke ground : HOED

60. Red's pal in "The Shawshank Redemption" : ANDY

62. Expected : DUE - speaking of porch swings, you know this is "expected"

64. Former AT&T rival : GTE


Aug 5, 2017

Saturday, Aug 5th, 2017, Peter A. Collins

Theme: None

Words: 70 (missing J,Q,Z)

Blocks: 26

  We have not seen a Saturday construction from Mr. Collins since 2013; his most recent LA Times contribution was a Thursday puzzle this past June; that last Saturday grid was in June, as well.  I looked over my review from that one, and wrote that I had trouble with the long answers, but not the proper names.  This time, I breezed through the long answers, but got stuck on the shorter ones.  Imagine that.  The grids, however, are similar, with a non-intimidating look, the long fills on the 'inside', and triple 10-letter corners no so easy to parse in the Down.  Some of the longer fill;

17. Layoff order? : "DON'T START IN ON ME~!" - my attitude at UPS lately

51. Words shouted out an open window : "LEARN HOW TO DRIVE~!" - yes, I am good for this - along with HANG UP THE Fkn PHONE~!!!

Or this one~?

7. Giving up the ball after a fake punt, say, in football lingo : TURN OVER ON DOWNS - timely clue/answer - I saw pre-season football on TV this Thursday~!

On Wed.~!(8/9)


1. Part of the back forty : ACRE - for some reason I thought "back forty" was related to the states after the original colonies (hence my first thought being UTAH); in a sense, I was right - see here

5. Genghis Khan subject : TATAR - ah, as in a member of the lower class, not "a" class

10. Go after, as flies : SHAG - I had SNAG.  Shag~?  Yeah, baby, yeah~!

14. Words of self-pity : I'M A FAILURE

16. One heading for the cape? : TORO - my first fill was KENT, as in Clark, on his way to becoming Superman

19. Remnant : END

20. Water carriers : MAINS - I tried EWERS; this is a clever clue for the pipes of a city system

21. Rooney and Griffith : ANDYS

22. "Haven't the foggiest" : DUNNO

23. Calligraphy problems : SMEARS - knew what we were looking for, pondered SMUDGE(s)

24. Law school course : ETHICS

27. Area between highlands : VALE

29. Word whose meaning can be the same when read backward : PAT - and the reverse, TAP, which makes a very clever clue

30. Take the wrong way? : POACH - got it, but had STEAL to start

31. ADHD drug : DEXEDRINE - no clue, filled via perps, WAGed the "R" (tho it made sense)

33. Triangle relationship : SINE

34. Removed a cylinder from, maybe : CORED - kept thinking about car engines at first

35. Kurylenko of "Quantum of Solace" : OLGA - I know her well

36. Like throwbacks : OLD SCHOOL

38. Reacted to a call at home, maybe : BOOED - baseball fans

39. Came together : MET

40. Notable feature of Africa : HORN

41. Father's changing room : VESTRY - after the third look at this clue, I realized the father here refers to a priest.  A-ha~!

42. Plug : STOP UP - hah~!  I was looking for a "PITCH" like a sales campaign

44. Like "The Age of Reason" doctrine : DEIST

46. One of Israel's 12 tribes : ASHER

47. Vermouth name : ROSSI

48. Took : WON

54. Go south : TANK

55. Compilation publication since 1984 : UTNE READER

56. Factory regs. : STDs -the factory standard table for the back of an Airstream trailer does not work with reclining chairs, so my landlord's buddy who was in town for two weeks asked me to build him a custom one....

57. 30% of essentials : ESSES - hey, D-Otto, he does math like us~!

58. Proceed : WEND


1. Hamilton, to General Washington : AIDE

2. "What are you waitin' for?' : C'MON

3. Author born Alisa Zinov'yevna Rosenbaum : RAND - first (pseudo) name AYN

4. Baby newt : EFT

5. Cronus and Rhea, e.g. : TITANS

6. Harlem Renaissance writer Locke : ALAIN - filled via perps

8. Word in many degrees : ARTS

9. Outdoor gear giant : REI - seen this one before, so I have gotten used to it

10. Georgia's __ Mountain : STONE

11. Acura MDX relative : HONDA PILOT - my first "long answer" fill, and I was on a roll

12. Elite military member : ARMY RANGER

13. Sees only one person : GOES STEADY

15. To the same degree : AS MUCH - I had AS WELL to start

18. Called : NAMED

22. Does a kitchen job : DICES

23. Dog follower : SLED - oops, not STAR

24. Bath additive : EPSOM SALTS - I have added this to my bath in the past

25. Head rest? : TOILET SEAT - clever, but I got it from --ILE----T

26. Like some combat : HAND-TO-HAND

28. Winter Olympics maneuver : AXEL

31. Word with front or pocket : DOOR - my bathroom has a pocket door, and I just finished helping a friend frame out and trim his new bathroom pocket door

32. Stick in a cage : ROOST - the noun, not the verb

34. Martial arts move : CHOP

37. Agitate : CHURN

38. Not relevant to : BESIDE

41. Shade providers at golf clubs : VISORS - I like the trees that line the courses I play for shade; Cedars has more trees than Sandy Pond.  My golfing buddy Fred just invested $700 in a set of clubs - I was a little more frugal, and spent $42 on a pull cart from eBay.

43. Exec's extras : PERKS - first thought, second guessed; I was thinking we need an abbr. because of exec

45. Competitor of Helena : ESTÉE - got it.  Upon reading both Wiki pages, they had quite a lot in common; Lauder; and Rubenstein

47. Breaks down : ROTS - the answer I was thinking we were looking for at 54a.

48. Off the mark : WIDE - not AWRY

49. Rising spot : OVEN - ah, not EAST

50. Stereotypical techie : NERD

52. Tangerine or peach : HUE - obviously FRUIT was not going to fit, and I had the "E" already

53. Unadulterated : RAW - so why is an "Adult" film considered "RAW", too~?


Jul 29, 2017

Saturday, Jul 29th, 2017, Mary Lou Guizzo

Theme: None

Words: 72 (missing J,Q,X)

Blocks: 30

 I did not recognize the constructor's name until I reviewed the list on the blog, and discovered we had Mary Lou twice on Saturday last year, both with Jeff Chen - and my success with those puzzles was mixed.  This week, she is flying solo, and I did fairly well, tho I did cheat and gave myself the "M" at 43a&d because my "ESE" corner was a mess.  Quite a few "quote" answers, and just a few too many proper names (* - 17~! - and I left out the geographic names) to make this really fun, yet I did get through them, and in my personal time.  Triple 10-letter across corners, and paired 10 and 11-letter downs crossing two nines;

17*. George Washington in New York, e.g. : TOLL BRIDGE - funny how recent events can alter one's perception; I was watching "The Story Of US" on History, and they discussed George Washington as a general in New York during the Revolution.  Totally missed the link to a bridge I regularly traveled over.  I crossed the new Goethals bridge from Staten Island a month ago - at a cost of $15, the same as the George - geez.  At least it's only one way.

It was supposed to be faced in granite

 30. Audacious : BALD-FACED - oops - I had bOld, but that's acceptable, too

36*. 2013 Nelson Mandela portrayer : IDRIS ELBA - WILL SMITH fit, too - but I was wrong

50. California Raisins ads production technique : CLAYMATION - like Gumby

O Drawn~!


1. Two-sided : BIPARTISAN - pondered something like JANUS FACED, the Roman god

11. Shows one's hand, in a way : GINS - I considered "TELL", since I have been following the World Series of Poker

15. "Is anyone else here?" : "ARE WE ALONE~?"

16. "My turn" : "I'M UP"

18. Middle of a classical trio : VIDI - ah, not AMO, AMAS, AMAT, but VENI, VIDI, VICI, Caesar's boast of "I came, I saw, I conquered."

19*. Tolkien character : ENT - the walking talking trees

20*. Pindar works : ODES

21*. 2,000-year-old portrayal for Eden : GENIE - oh, Barbara Eden.  Got it.

22. Word with steel or square : TOED - steel toed I got; I had to look up square toed - can you tell I don't own a pair of high-end men's footwear~?

23. "Semper Fidelis" group : MARINES

25. Baseball statistic : AT BATS

28. Tuscan treat : GELATO - oops, had an "I" at the end

29*. Model Cheryl : TIEGS - I knew the name, not sure of the spelling, but got it right

33. React to dizziness : REEL

34*. Kazantzakis title character : ZORBA - filled via perps

35. HR dept. concern : RELOcation - I have an appointment with my HR guy at UPS on Wednesday next week to discuss opportunities within the company - and I am not opposed to being re-located if it means I can get paid from the neck up; not sure I am willing - or able - to put in another 18yrs doing what I do today

38. Strained : TENSE

39*. Voice of Magoo : BACKUS - I remembered the name Thurston Howell the third....and I just found out he was in "I Dream of Jeannie", too

40. Shade-tolerant foliage : HOSTAS

41. Busts, e.g. : STATUES

43. The better part : MOST - ah.  I was on the wrong wavelength here

44. Took the trouble : CARED

45*. Fashion designer Jacobs : MARC

46*. Arctic coast explorer : RAE

49. Fling : HURL

53*. Pitcher Hershiser : OREL - the one proper name I did know

54. Cylindrical stuffed pasta : CANNELLONI - knew the name, got the spelling wrong

55. River in Rwanda : NILE - well, now, I didn't think of that river....

56. Not taken : UNSELECTED


1. Subside : BATE - dang, I had EASE

2. Pressing agent : IRON - at first I thought there'd be a "?" here, but an iron really is a pressing agent

3. Skin : PELT

4. Its point is often boring : AWL - oooh, I went with BIT

5. Completes an installation, perhaps : REBOOTS - last week I had to install a printer on the network at the restaurant - what a chore, with all the rebooting and connectivity, but I succeeded

6. "Buenas __" : TARDES - considered DIOS and AIRES, both too short, and I needed buenOs for the second try - this answer translates to "good afternoon"

7. Jaw-dropping courtroom admission : I LIED

8. Does lawn work : SODS - dah~! Not MOWS

9*. Director Lee : ANG - OK, I knew two names

10. Born : NÉE

11. "Enough already!" : "GIVE IT A REST~!"

12. "It wasn't me!" : "I'M INNOCENT~!"

13. Film with few costumes? : NUDIE - new term for me.  My generation calls it 'porn'.  I went Googling, and I kept getting this; when I forced Google to connect the word with film, the original term was "nudie cutie", and I found this website

14. Infiltrators : SPIES

21. German count : GRAF - I shoulda known this - I am reading the "Bernie Gunther" novels from Philip Kerr, mostly set in WW II Germany

22. Pasta commonly served with Bolognese sauce : TAGLIATELLE

23. Peach __ : MELBA - interesting history
recipe~? It's ice cream, syrup and fruit....

24*. Pierce portrayer : ALDA - Captain "Hawkeye" Pierce, portrayed by Alan Alda

25. Abruzzi bell town : ATRI - dah~!  Took too long to recall this crossword staple

26. Even : TIED

27. It might be tapped : BEER BARREL

28. Costumes : GARBS

30. Hard pill to swallow : BOLUS

31*. "Frozen" queen : ELSA

32. Impersonates : DOES - argh~! Not APES

34*. Cowardly Lion's farmhand alter ego : ZEKE

37. Skim along, as clouds : SCUD

38. Built like models : TO SCALE - oh, those kind of models, the ones I used to build in my "ute"

40. Spam source : HORMEL - the "other" kind of SPAM

41. "Danke __" : SCHON

42. Alpha __: Bull constellation star : TAURI - Aldebaran, the red eye of taurus the bull - we should get some data from Pioneer 10 in about two million years....

43*. ESPN journalist Kenny : MAYNE

45. Operates : MANS - ugh.  Not RUNS

46. Fracas : RIOT

47. Excellent : A ONE

48*. Lover of Geraint : ENID

50. Ward for heart patients, briefly : CCU - the Coronary Care Unit

51. PC connection : LAN - Local Area Network, like the one at the restaurant

52. Attention in a 50-Down : TLC


Jul 22, 2017

Saturday, Jul 22nd, 2017, Erik Agard

Theme: None

Words: 70 (missing J,Q,X,Z)

Blocks: 30

Mr. Agard is on a roll with another Saturday puzzle, three months running now.  I was able to move through this one pretty smoothly, with just a couple of hang-ups, and yes, I decided to cheat and red-letter once to see if I was off-base - and I was.  Oh well.  A friendly-looking grid, though I did not see the two 15-letter climbers in the DOWN, and yet they filled in via perpendiculars, despite the fact that I had never heard of either answer.  We also had a stagger-step of triple 13-letter answers in the center:

3d. Nonprofit that won a 2007 UNESCO Confucius Prize for Literacy : REACH OUT AND READ - their website awards page
31a. False pretenses : MOUNTEBANKERY - from the Italian, meaning "mounted on a bench", where charlatans would hock phony medicines - according to the M-W site

35a. They win audiences over bit by bit : STAND-UP COMICS - bits, that's punny....

37a. Denzel Washington's directorial debut : ANTWONE FISHER - The Wiki

11d. First black U.S. Congresswoman : SHIRLEY CHISHOLM - her Wiki - and a Congresswoman from New York, no less

9-irON WARD~!


1. Veal __ : PARM - argh~! I was not thinking of an abbr.  Got us a rhyming start;

5. Seal : SHUT

9. Actress Thompson of "Creed" : TESSA - I only know of actresses Leah and Emma

14. "Gotcha" : "I SEE." - At first I thought we had a "!" in the clue, so I was looking for something like "A-ha" at first

15. Posh "Peace!" : "TA-TA~!" - My buddy Mike always signs off with "Peace"

16. One remaining : OTHER

17. Israeli foreign minister during the Six-Day War : EBAN

18. It began in 2010 with the Tunisian Revolution : ARAB SPRING - good WAG with half the letters filled in via perps

20. Legendary Shawnee leader : TECUMSEH - also filled in after half perps

22. __ Rico : PUERTO - my first Across fill

23. Suffix suggesting wiggle room : -ISH - I am good for saying things like "I made a birdie(ish)" - because I might have taken two extra swings from the tee....yesterday I hit three pins - twice with my pitching wedge, once with the putter from the fringe. No -ish.

24. Uncertain utterances : UHS....

25. School squad goal? : PEP

26. English __ : LIT - another acceptable abbr.

27. Greek walkways : STOAS - remembered it once I had the two "S"s

29. Spy-fi employer : CIA

30. Boggy biomes : FENS

39. Gigging group : BAND

41. Shakespearean interjections : AYS - there's the rub~!

42. Company with "It's what you do" ads : GEICO

The camels, Europe and medieval bosses are my favorites

43. Briefs brand : BVD

44. Woolf's "__ Dalloway" : MRS. and a semi-clecho with; 47a. 44-Across, in Andalusia : SRA

45. Pit stuff : TAR

48. __ beef : CORNED

50. Separated seed from : THRESHED

52. Epic salvo of social media missives : TWEET STORM - I do not Facebook, Tweet, or Instagram - but I am addicted to Pinterest

54. What you might pass, but can't fail, in school : NOTE - cute

55. Hair extension : WEAVE

56. Instrument often made of African blackwood : OBOE - really good WAG, and a great change of cluing for a crossword staple

57. Spread on the table : OLEO

58. More bizarre : ODDER

59. Watched carefully : EYED

60. Iraq War concerns, for short : WMDS - dah~!! Weapons of Mass Destruction~?  I tried I.E.D.s


1. Old doctrinal Lutheran movement : PIETISM

2. Mineral involved in much litigation : ASBESTOS - always a concern as a home inspector - and any time you see 9"x9" floor tiles, assume they have asbestos in them

4. List with sides : MENU

5. Illicit collection, perhaps : STASH

6. Some bounders : HARES - because ROOS would not fit

7. Where I-15 and I-80 meet : UTAH - great guess on my part - but then again, a western four-letter state~? (figuring it was not a city)

8. Where charges are entered at the bar : TAB

9. Refill : TOP UP

10. Tours to be? : ÊTRE - Tours, the Frawnche city

12. Submitted : SENT IN

13. Specialized idioms : ARGOTS

19. Discuss : SPEAK OF

21. Forbidding contraction : MUSTN'T

25. __-nez glasses : PINCE

28. Vishy __, World Chess Champion before Carlsen : ANAND - only had to guess the "N"

29. Crunch and others? : CAP'Ns

30. Bichon __ : FRISE - cute dog breed; knew it, but not sure how to spell it

32. "Breakfast at Tiffany's" director : EDWARDS - again, perps

33. Lifts up : BUOYS

34. Expatriate : ÉMIGRÉ

36. Hidden away : SECRETED - I have 35 boards on Pinterest, and some of them are "secret"

38. Bus meets, e.g. : ROADEOS - new word for me, but it makes sense

39. "The Great British Bake Off" airer, initially : BBC TWO - the B, B, and C filled in early, and then it was a matter one "ONE" or "TWO"

40. Declared : AVOWED

44. One fed on the street : METER - clever

45. Sharp pang : THROE

46. Fortified : ARMED - I'm trying to come up with a clever name for my board game, and Fortified was one of the words I was pondering - any suggestions....?

49. Campbell of the "Scream" franchise : NEVE

50. Belch in "Twelfth Night" : TOBY - perps

51. Word with bank or board : SNOW - until I changed my IEDs, this was not coming to me

53. It may be jammed : TOE -there's two ways to interpret this....


Jul 15, 2017

Saturday, Jul 15th, 2017, Robyn Weintraub

Theme: None

Words: 70 (missing J,Q,X)

Blocks: 33

 I do believe this is Robyn's first LA Times Saturday, and upon review, I see her first Sunday was this year, too, and now there's only Tuesday/Thursday left for the cycle.  Slow start for me, finally got some answers filled at the halfway Across point, and then had a good run in the Downs.  The NW however, refused to fill in, and I was tempted to cheat on 6d., but then 5d. came to me, and I was able to close out - and rather quickly, I noticed.  A friendly grid, no crushing chunky corners, no "trapped" corners, very little in proper names, and 6 10-letter fills spread over the construction;

23. Sebastian in "The Little Mermaid," e.g. : CRUSTACEAN - I thought he was a lobster, but it turns out he's actually a crab.  Live and learn.

 44. Be prudent : PLAY IT SAFE

11. One or two may arrive on Valentine's Day : DOZEN ROSES - has Ms. Weintraub been the recipient~?!?

26. It's often labeled "B" : BACK-UP PLAN



1. Shoots down : DEBUNKS - learned this word from the endless use of it in the TV show "The X-files" - but I had deCRIEs to start

8. More than just passed : ACED IT - ah.  Two words.  Got me.

14. "My two cents ... " : AS I SEE IT - there's 12 step literature called "As Bill Sees It"

16. Variation of the Latin square puzzle : SUDOKU - my first consideration, but I thought Sudoku was Oriental, not Latin - but then I went and did some research; Latin Square; Sudoku; the latter mentions the former

17. Motherboards, etc. : HARDWARE - computers in the physical sense

18. They may be ribbons : PRIZES - MEDALS~? No, AWARDS is better.  Bzzzt~!

19. You usually can't see your shadow on it : LID - um, OK.  Can't see my shadow on my liP, either.  Oh, EYE lid.  Duh.  Thanks Argyle.  So what's a birP call, anyway~?

20. Scornful grin : SNEER

22. Underhanded type : SNEAK

25. High wind? : OBOE

27. They get checked at airports, briefly : ETAs

28. One on the E. Coast? : RTE - cute.  Route One runs from Key West FL to Ft. Kent ME.  I did not know it uses the George Washington bridge here in NY

31. Mechanic's supply : SPARE PARTS - oops, not sparK pLUGs; let's see - that's 60% 100% correct

34. Does some yard work : MOWS - clecho; 52d. Does some yard work : HOES

35. Shreds comics? : HECKLES - there's a guy who plays cards with us who claims he was once a stand-up comedian (comic).  So at the poker table, he tends to treat every one as a heckler - and I could not for the life of me recall this word.  harass~?, haggle~? hamper~? Ah-ha~!

36. 561-piece White House, for one : LEGO SET - nailed it.  Still have my Lego sets.  I like the new architecture series

Where's the extra piece go~?

38. Works on, as comics : INKS - the other kind of comic

39. Shortcuts : TIME SAVERS - that they are.  The 21st century term for this is "life hack"

41. Sun Devils' sch. : ASU - hah~! Nailed it.  Been doing crosswords for too long, I guess

42. Grammy winner James : ETTA

43. It has a Yakutsk card : RISK - yes, yes it does.  Nailed this one, as well.  My board game uses elements from Risk

Top right in green

48. Dodge two-seater : VIPER - my Grand Caravan is a two-seater as well - if I fold the three seats in the back into the floor, that is

50. Yemeni neighbor : SAUDI - not OMANI

51. Grinch victim : WHO

Cindy Lou Who
54. Not coastal : INLAND

56. Habitat that comes and goes : TIDE POOL - pondered ICE SHEET

58. No. 2 terminus : ERASER - good clue/answer.  No. 2 pencil

59. Like some stag party members? : ANTLERED - good WAG

60. Blush producer : WINERY - ah.  The drink, not the make-up

61. Venus, say : GODDESS


1. "George's Marvelous Medicine" author : DAHL - I wondered if this was Curious George, but couldn't remember the author's name anyhow.  It's "Rey".  This is a different book and author; more here; check out the disclaimer at the end of the article

2. Morales of "La Bamba" : ESAI - just about the only proper name in the puzzle, and a gimme for regular solvers

3. __ call : BIRD

4. Amer. capital : USD - $ $ $ $ $ $

5. Old 34-Down preceder : NEWSREEL - ah.  I thought we were looking for the 'invention' prior to the 'movie'

6. Name that means "cool breeze" in Hawaiian : KEANU - argh.  I knew this

7. Parts of some stable relationships : SIRES - I caught the "other" definition of "stable" on my second pass

8. Hieroglyphics creature : ASP - made me change my AWARDS

9. Maledictions : CURSES

10. Minneapolis suburb : EDINA - C.C. knew this

12. Furniture giant : IKEA

13. Mastodon feature : TUSK

15. Have trouble balancing : TEETER - I tried WOBBLE

21. Engine concern : RATTLE

23. 60-Across supply : CORKS

24. Grammarian's concerns : CASES

25. Goes on first : OPENS

29. Suggestive dance : TWERK

30. Insurance co. requests : ESTs

31. Second-largest branch of Islam : SHIA

32. Nickel-and-dime : PETTY - like the way UPS runs its local operation.  I was cheated out of my personal day for July 3rd, so guess what~?  I was "sick" Friday. 

33. "Given the circumstances ... " : AS IT IS

34. Fox product : MOVIE - 40 years since Star Wars saved the company from bankruptcy

37. President for 200 days : GARFIELD - had half the perps in place.  Second President assassinated.  The Wiki

40. Swahili word for "problems" : MATATA - filled via perps

42. Bacon recipient? : EARNER - "bring home the bacon"

45. Form for a letter? : LEASE - think "let-ter", or one who lets

46. Seeking damages : SUING

47. Heighten : ADD TO - actions by my supervisors at UPS add to my aggravation

48. Hotel upgrade option : VIEW

49. Cross letters : INRI

51. Sported : WORE

53. Auto pioneer : OLDS

55. Hang on a line : DRY

57. Walker, for short : PEDestrian


Jul 8, 2017

Saturday, Jul 8th, 2017, Samuel A. Donaldson

Theme: None

Words: 64 (missing J,X,Z)

Blocks: 30

Our last construction from Mr. Donaldson was one co-authored with Brad Wilber in October last year; prior to that, he had a Saturday dating back to 2009.  No hang-ups during the solve for me, a few proper names and some odd 'rare' words, but overall a fun puzzle. Chunky corners, only 4 three-letter words, and a friendly "get-there-from-here" grid which included single nines, paired nines and a couple of 10-letter answers;

30a. Riding in the far-left lane, perhaps : CARPOOLING

Check out the next door neighbor over the fence

37a. Producer who developed "The Jeffersons" : NORMAN LEAR


12d. "No need to be scared of me" : I DON'T BITE - hard.  Or maybe you like being bitten....?

29d. Big storm : NOR'EASTER - where I live today, this type of storm and a full moon could lead to flooding.  Scary.

StO(n)p WA(rd)ffling~!


1. Gone for the summer, perhaps : AT CAMP - Figured it was school related, and started with AT HOME, which was close

7. Elegant pool entrance : SWAN DIVE - I was thinking we were looking for a noun like 'diving board', not the 'action' of entrance; I had a diving board go out on one of my trucks yesterday - there's no limit to what we will ship these days....

15. Jet Ski competitor : SEA-DOO - I knew SKI-DOO would not fly, but I was close

16. NFLer from 1982-'94 : L.A. RAIDER

17. Trick : TRIP UP

18. Last of Sophocles' Theban plays : ANTIGONE

19. Off-base : ERRANT

20. Post-sunburn phase : PEELING

21. Midway game : RING TOSS - ah, not SKEE BALL

23. Number of hills di Roma : SETTE - knew the answer was "seven", but spelling it was....

24. "30 for 30" documentary series airer : ESPN

25. Touch with gauze : DAB AT

27. They may be fake : TANS - my favorite fake tan look

34. NYSE debut : IPO - New York Stock Exchange, Initial Public Offering

35. "Ciao Italia" chef Esposito : MARYANN - perps

36. Cable co. acquired by AT&T : TCI

39. Ocean hazard : REEF

40. Unalaska native : ALEUT

41. Blocking action : VETO

43. Performs surgery on, in a way : LASES

45. Braised chicken dish : COQ AU VIN - we've seen this before on Saturday

49. Runner with big eggs : OSTRICH

51. Final syllable : ULTIMA

52. Lobster sensors : ANTENNAE

53. Otis of elevators : ELISHA - I did not know his first name - his Wiki

54. Men's department fixtures : TIE RACKS

55. Forwarded : SENT ON

56. Decorative herbs : PARSLEYS - spell check is not happy, but it's OK with me

57. Training aids : TREATS - ah, dogs


1. Michaelmas daisy : ASTER

2. Country singer Gibbs : TERRI - filled via perps

3. Memorial rocks : CAIRN - oops, not STELE

4. Much magazine content : AD PAGES - well, I knew it was AD 'something', or 'something' AD(s), but PAGES took a while

5. Goes up : MOUNTS

6. Coke holder : POP-TOP CAN - "Coke" seems a little too specific - I can get Diet Dr. Pepper in a pop-top can, too - or is the author trying to throw us off with the "gram" type of coke~?

7. High-fives, e.g. : SLAPS

8. Ebb : WANE

9. Crafts in Cancún : ARTES

10. Attached by pounding : NAILED ON - I was close, had NAILED TO

11. Technology catchall : DIGITAL - I'm not a huge fan of all these companies that jumped on the Apple bandwagon and offer their products with "i-something" names; did you hear about Apple's new make-up line~? It's called iShadow.

13. Retaliation : VENGEANCE

14. Word of relative time : ERE - I had ERA, and did not get my "ta-DA~!"

22. Jam : SNARL

26. "What a long week!" : TGIF - Thank God It's already past July 4th, as far as I am concerned

27. Turner of music : TINA

28. Michael Corleone's first wife : APOLLONIA

31. Reuben setting : RYE - ah, had me confused at first

32. Finnish distance runner Nurmi : PAAVO - OK, I cheated - I Googled this answer to get a foothold in the middle

33. For the asking : ON REQUEST

35. __ instinct : MATERNAL

38. Summons (up) : MUSTERS

39. Dancer's program : ROUTINE

42. Like one looking down on his neighbor? : TALLER

44. On account of : SINCE

45. Musical whose plot involves a two-person tournament : CHESS - I had "-HE--", and this seemed like a logical WAG.  The game I conceived went with me again to Delaware last weekend and I worked out the details with Mike as a two-player version; now I need to get some people together and try it with four players

46. Windows 7 precursor : VISTA - I'm still with XP, and content - but Firefox has stopped supporting the software.  Gonna have to cave at some point to the "future"

47. Cry from one on a streak : I'M HOT - also got lessons from Mike on how to really play Texas Hold'em, since he gets out to the Dover casinos once in a while

48. Asian breads : NAANS

50. Like dried mud : CAKY

52. Novak Djokovic's org. : ATP - sounds like a tennis name to me


Note from C.C.: 

I'm sad to let you know that Leah (Chickie on our blog) lost her husband Bill on July 6th. Chickie was very active on our blog for many years. She and Bill just celebrated their 63rd wedding anniversary last month. You're in our thoughts, Chickie.

Jul 1, 2017

Saturday, Jul 1, 2017, Greg Johnson

Theme: None

Words: 64 (missing J,Q,W,X,Z)

Blocks: 44~!

Second Saturday in 2017 for Mr. Johnson - and despite a slow start, I ended up breezing through today's offering.  I reviewed his puzzle from March 25th, and also his debut back in 2013, just to see if there was any reference to him being Australian - which has been a topic of his clues/answers these last two constructions.  None that I could see.  Unusual grid design, sort of a backwards "S" ( or is that "Z"~? ), which again strands us in corners and little to work with getting into the others.  Lots of long across answers, which leaves us with nearly 60% more down clues and answers;

14a. Elaborate sci-fi costume component : FULL BODY MAKE-UP - big fan of the show "Face Off" on SyFy, and much as I like making movies, make up was not one of my strong points - but I certainly would like to try

46a. Spicy meatless dish : VEGETABLE CHILI

24a. Australian Stock Horses, perhaps : POLO PONIES - enough downs to figure this out

36a. They may be excuses : SOB STORIES



1. Annual July 1 celebration marking the 1867 signing of the British North America Act : CANADA DAY - the "DAY" part appeared via crossings, and then it was a sensible WAG being that it was North America

10. Some Australian carvings : ABORIGINAL ART - "ART" showed, so I figured this was another sensible WAG

16. Supermarket count : AISLES - ITEMS was too short - and appears at 21d.

17. Old Andorran currency : PESETA

18. Arrive : GET IN - first thought, but hesitated

19. Dickensian denouncement : BAH~!

22. Guided : LED

23. Get out of Dodge : FLEE - in my case, I have to get IN the Dodge to get out of Dodge - my Grand Caravan, that is

28. Annex : ADD - oops, not ELL

29. musician : CAT STEVENS

30. Having a short cut : BOB-HAIRED

31. Like home, say : FOUR-LETTER - yes, but it's such a pleasant four letter word

33. Hang (around) : PAL

37. Didn't miss, as a bus : MADE - I didn't miss my putt on the 3rd hole last Wednesday, and as a result, had my first birdie - yay~!

38. "Gr8 joke!" : LOL

39. Unisex nickname : SAM - I tried "PAT"

40. 4/8/74 record breaker : AARON - half perps, half WAG

41. Brie who played Trudy on "Mad Men" : ALISON - half perps, half WAG

45. Home Depot work apparel : APRONS - I used to don one (Don Juan~?) when I was a kitchen designer back in 2002

50. Legacy Hartsfield-Jackson tenant : DELTA AIRLINES - looked like one of those "huh??" clues until I had half the crossings, again

51. Thinking indicator : LONG PAUSE - ah, not LIGHT BULB (which connotes "idea"), not HOUR GLASS (like the Microsoft icon)

1. Beardie, for one : COLLIE

2. Former senator Specter : ARLEN

3. Twizzlers pieces : NIBS

4. Ancient history adjective : AGO

5. Completed : DID

6. This, that or the other : ANY

7. Not soaked yet : DAMP

8. Winglike parts : ALAE - first of a couple 'plural' misdirections (no "S" ending)

9. Centuries-old Asian wool sources : YAKS
10. Off-topic : AFIELD

11. Out of order : BUSTED

12. Catch from the pier : REEL IN

13. Learners, hopefully : TUTEES

15. Shoulder protection : PADS - "singular" clue with a plural answer

16. Imaging company once big in film : AGFA - the Wiki

19. Bugs : BOTHERS

20. Ancient French region : ALSATIA

21. It flies off store shelves : HOT ITEM

24. Artist Picasso : PABLO

25. Netanyahu's predecessor : PERES

26. CBer's punctuation : OVER - always reminds me of the movie "Airplane!"

27. Friend of Homer : NED - Flanders~!

29. "Harold and Maude" co-star Bud : CORT - perps

30. Mover of many : BUS - ah, not "ARK"

31. Misled : FOOLED

32. Do a favor for : OBLIGE

33. Sentence ender : PAROLE - good one - not PERIOD

34. Head turner : ADONIS

35. It helps you focus : LENS - ah, a singular noun with an "S" ending~!

36. Many a Balkan : SLAV

37. Nautical : MARINE

40. Plant-ruining genus : APHIS

42. Make believable : SELL

43. Palindromic fellow : OTTO - and a clecho;

44. Palindromic bread : NAAN

45. Rights org. : ACLU

47. Lunch holder : BAG

48. In most mammals, the upper one has a groove called a philtrum : LIP - ha~! I knew this

49. Memorable time : ERA