Showing posts with label Splynter. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Splynter. Show all posts

Dec 2, 2017

Saturday, Dec 2nd, 2017, D. Scott Nichols & C.C. Burnikel

Theme: Argyle SoC.C.ks~!

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

Blocks: 31

A Saturday collaboration between our Monday/Tuesday blogger and the host of the show, C.C.  Lots of multi-word answers today, and a few vague proper names, I caved in to red-letters to help me get the NE corner finished.  Staircase pattern grid, with a pair of 9x6 corners, and nothing longer than those;

15. [Yawn] : I NEED A NAP

12. Singer? : DIRTY RAT - the canary stoolie kind of singer.  I wondered if it was singe-er, as in one who singes

62. Big brother, often : ROLE MODEL

36. Legendary court figure : LANCELOT

 Monty Python~! - well I got "a" note~! @ 3:30


 1. Stay in the big house : SERVE TIME - I've done mine - time for someone else

10. Beach pretender : HODAD - I had no idea - I tried POSER to start -  tho I probably have seen this in crosswords before - filled via perps, but I had to Google to check it out

16. Many a Studio Ghibli film : ANIME - red letters told me INDIE was wrong - but only 60% wrong

17. Fund for incidentals : PETTY CASH

18. Character who dances on the beach at Stavros : ZORBA - the only Stavros I could think of was Stavro Mueller and his Beta nightclub - the scene of the climactic end to the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy 5-book trilogy

So long, and thanks for all the fish

19. Supporting : PRO - I waited to see if it would be "FOR" or "PRO"

20. Evil skill : SORCERY - I tried spelling it so"U"rcery for some reason

22. Talbot Jr. or Sr. on "Rectify" : TED - Googled; never even heard of the show

23. Obstacles on the set : EGOS

25. Confident response to "Your opponent is ready" : "SO AM I~!"

26. Funeral rite heap : PYRE

27. Poet Thomas : DYLAN - filled via perps

29. "Baby Blues" baby : WREN - filled via perps; I looked it up, realized it was the comic strip, which I read and like, but it did not register during the solve

30. Maranjab Desert country : IRAN - a WAG off the "I" - either this one or iraQ

31. Empty out badly? : ROB - ah, theft empty out

33. Repertoire : ARSENAL

35. Skeleton's place? : CLOSET

38. Do maintenance on, as a putting green : AERATE - I had "RE-" in the opening position, which stopped me from seeing this answer, better than "reRAKE" - but it works with sand traps....

39. Card carrier : LANYARD - generic cord for holding ID cards, etc., that is

41. Convene : SIT - MET would not work with the tense of the verb

42. Chill (with) : HANG

43. Kate of "House of Cards" : MARA - filled via perps

45. Grouses : CARPS - wait til we get to the leg picture, and the grousing shall commence~!

49. Welding sparks : ARCS

50. Better : AMEND

52. Tar on the ocean : SALT - sailor nicknames

53. Compete : VIE

54. Like free-range chickens : UNCAGED

56. West of Tinseltown : MAE

57. Country album? : ATLAS - clever

59. History buff's artifacts : AMERICANA

61. Tearful queen : NIOBE

63. First chips : ANTEs - poker, and such

64. Chaotic places : SNAKE PITS


1. Nursed : SIPPED

2. Zip : ENERGY - the 'pep' definition, not the 'nothing' one

3. Overhaul the plant : RETOOL - I pondered REPOTS, but it's the other kind of plant

4. Old hand : VET

5. Dessert company founded in 1928 : EDY'S - only so many ways to clue this four-letter word

6. Shells from stands : TACOS - I was thinking tomatoes, as in shelling a bad stage actor

7. Sequentially : IN A ROW

8. It runs in the shower : MASCARA - I suppose it would

9. Short-lived things : EPHEMERA - the plural of ephemeron, Greek for short-lived insect, and subsequently anything designed to be short-lived

10. Indistinct : HAZY

11. Noted resident of The Dakota in Manhattan : ONO

13. Pale order : AMBER ALE

14. Tone down : DEADEN

21. Washes out : RINSES

24. South Seas cover-ups : SARONGS - a golden opportunity for some leg~!

26. They're beaten at parties : PIÑATAS

28. Intrusive : NOSY - it's those uppity trolls around here that give "anonymous" a bad name - now that's funny

32. Tough guy's exhortation : BE A MAN - for the men, a leg pic can be found here

34. Church of country : ERIC - his name, not the location

35. Allergy sufferer's choice : CLARITIN

37. Mine carriers : TRAMCARS - oh, that kind of mine - I have been watching The Viet Nam War series on PBS, and those were the mines I was thinking of

40. "As if!" : DREAM ON

42. Caribbean city with cocotaxis : HAVANA

44. German chancellor Merkel : ANGELA

46. City west of Baghdad : RAMADI

47. Mercury, e.g. : PLANET - not the sedan/auto this time

48. Bargains beyond belief : STEALS

51. Teammate of Mariano for 19 years : DEREK - couldn't be a C.C. puzzle without baseball, and even though I knew who Mr. Rivera was, I went with JETER before DEREK

54. Exploits : USES

55. Small change : DIME - the one that fit, but CENT was a possibility, too

58. #16, familiarly : ABE - President of the United States

60. Booking agent? : COP - tell 'em, Steve~!

"Aloha, Suckers~!"

Nov 25, 2017

Saturday, Nov 25th, 2017, Greg Johnson

Theme: None

Words: 64 (missing Q,X)

Blocks: 37

Some nice cluing deception today, with about a half dozen of them fooling me.  We last heard from Mr. Johnson in July, and this is #5 for his LA Times Saturday constructions.  No Google, no red-letters, and I wrapped this one up in half of my personal allotted time.  Today's grid reminds me of a Christmas package bow, with two pairs of central 11-letter spanners and climbers, with a pinwheel of four 10-letter fills surrounding;

7. Engine part often connected to a flywheel : CRANKSHAFT - I was thinking the other end, as in CLUTCH PLATE, which didn't fit

38. Shaking one's head, maybe : FRUSTRATED - This is me; I was hoping to get a head start on saving for a house now that I make better money with the new job, and then my landlord tells me two weeks ago that he's selling the house; now I am under the gun to get a place to live.  I did find the perfect "fixer-upper", so say a prayer that I can find the money to afford it. 

27. Desk accessories : NAMEPLATES

29. Some partners' workplaces : LAW OFFICES - NEWS CHAIRS fit, but I didn't think that was right; still, most broadcasts featured two people bringing the nightly news; growing up, I remember Roger Grimsby and Bill Beutel on Ch. 7 

 Hoping your news is good news....


1. __ cord : SPINAL - extension and umbilical cord did not fit.  SPINAL Tap~!

7. Considered, with "on" : CHEWED - oops, not STewed

13. Leader of the track : PACE CAR - my mind was on foot race to start

15. "To the end of the block! C'mon!" : "RACE ME~!"

16. Immediate slap shot after receiving a pass, in hockey : ONE-TIMER - this one was right in my wheelhouse, and a great play to see in any hockey game

Alex Ovechkin may be the best at this

18. Biology notebook doodle : AMOEBA - good WAG, but then again, most doodles look like amoebae

19. __ Mahal : TAJ

20. Parsons School sketches : DESIGNS - "parson" made me think "deacon", and it fit - I even tried to find a "sketch" of a "deacon"

22. __ Kan: Alpo rival : KAL

23. "A Jug of Wine ... " poet : OMAR - filled via perps

25. Brought along : TOOK

26. Plural contraction : WE'RE - not gonna take it~?

30. Blue ghost in Pac-Man : INKY - the others were Blinky, Pinky and Clyde

31. Recycling center debris : GLASS SHARDS - Sssss - and the new job contributes mightily towards this

33. Opposite of hastens : SLOWS - had it, took it out, put it back in

34. Gets under control : TAMES

35. "This doesn't concern you" : STAY OUT OF IT

37. Order of encyclopedias : A TO Z - oh, well, duh - So easy, it was hard for me to see

42. Cook seen on TV specials : DANE - ah, not a 'cook', but Dane Cook, the comedian

43. Cut down : FELL - not HEWN

44. Cover on the street : PAVE - another deception; I was thinking news team, again

45. GI grub : MRE - Meals, Ready-to-Eat

46. Like the most substantial sum : TIDIEST - I didn't think LARGEST was going to stay, but maybe the "-EST" would

49. Social post : PICture

50. Leaning to the right, in a way : ITALIC - ah, nothing political, just political

52. Cheese from the Italian for "sheep" : PECORINO - Italian 'sheep' is pecora; I thought it might be something "ovine"; Bzzzt

54. Entertain lavishly : REGALE

55. Strength : POTENCY

56. Puts up : ERECTS - curious that potency should be followed by erects....

57. Golfer's short irons : WEDGES - OK, I tried EIGHTS


1. 100% correct : SPOT ON - only if it's 100% 100% correct, right D-otto~?

2. Southernmost location in continental North America : PANAMA - ah, NORTH America, not US America; I tried to figure out what is the last place you can visit in Florida before you hit the Keys - and isn't Panama in central America~?  Meso-America~?  Doesn't matter, here's Van Halen~!!!


3. It may delay river traffic : ICE JAM - LOG was not going to work with my hockey one-timer

4. Realize : NET - dah~! not GET

5. Sour : ACID

6. "That's so weak!" : LAME - I find "Sour" for "Acid" a bit lame

8. Stage embarrassments : HAMS

9. Prefix with tourist : ECO

10. Time off for many : WEEKENDS

11. Boards a ship : EMBARKS

12. Dallas plaza in 1963 headlines : DEALEY - I did not know this; the website

14. Lead-in to a promise : REST ASSURED

17. Gets out of control : RIOTS

21. Calls it a night : GOES TO SLEEP

24. Do some window maintenance : REGLAZE

26. Evidence-gathering device : WIRETAP

28. Tactic : PLOY

32. "The Kite Runner" boy : AMIR - filled via perps

33. Pre-metalworking period : STONE AGE

35. First course : STARTER

36. Spring festival focus : TULIP - couldn't see this with HEWN in the way

37. Esteem : ADMIRE

39. Recording : TAPING - I still refer to my DVR shows as ones that I "taped"

40. Show clearly : EVINCE

41. Red herrings, perhaps : DECOYS

46. Arcade game ender : TILT - pinball, not Pac-Man

47. Harbor hauler : SCOW - made me change my golf club; from an 8-iron to a wedge

48. Handy bag : TOTE

51. "Hotel du __": Anita Brookner novel : LAC

53. Light color : RED - traffic light, clever; not the 'tone' or intensity of the color


Nov 18, 2017

Saturday, Nov 18th, 2017, Ed Sessa

Theme: None

Words: 68 (missing J,Q,Z)

Blocks: 25

From no Saturdays this year to two months in a row for Mr. Sessa, again with a triple-axis symmetrical construction, and for the second week in a row, we have a hashtag pattern of 15-letter spanners and climbers crossing the grid.  I believe this might be the second hardest crossword grid to work; although there are plenty of words that connect the corners together, the chunky 7x7 corners are unforgiving if you have nothing to work with.  I was stumped in the North until I was able to solve the two climbers - which I had  an inkling about, but not enough to commit to filling them in.  The 4 big clues/answers;

17a. Evidential standard : REASONABLE DOUBT - hear it all the time on Law & Order

3d. Happy way to end : ON A POSITIVE NOTE

A positive note~? Is that a B+, or a B#~?

12d. More than just stabs : EDUCATED GUESSES - or in the crossword sense, educated WAGs

54a. Foil-wrapped treats : CHOCOLATE KISSES - started to put Klondike Ice Cream in, but it didn't fit.


1. Buy in quantity : STOCK UP - "shop at BJs/Costco" didn't fit

8. Places of rapid growth : HOTBEDS

15. Commiserate : CONDOLE - one cel from my "ta-DA~!" was the "L" here; I had condone, and I knew it was not working with6d.

16. One taking the prize : AWARDEE

19. Old Egyptian symbol of royalty : ASP

20. Former Defense secretary who wrote "Worthy Fights" : PANETTA - filled via perps

21. __ scan : CAT - CAT~? or PET~?; had to wait

22. Pronoun not heard as often as it should be : WHOM - for whom the bell tolls

24. 2016 presidential candidate : RUBIO - I thought it was rubiN, and that was close enough

25. British art house : TATE

26. Player over 21, perhaps : LOSER - cards, and blackjack; I took $135 at poker last week

28. Common base : TEN

29. __ Hebrides : OUTER

30. Large beer mugs : SEIDELS - this filled via perps, and I had to go to Google to see if it was right; oddly, it also led to a reference about an EYE TEST, also in the puzzle, below

32. Ones in their 40s, e.g. : GEN-XERS - guess that's me

34. Crime scene barrier : TAPE - huh; filled this in, and never noticed it was correct until now

35. Squeezed (out) : EKED

36. Greet warmly : SMILE AT

39. One convinced by a drive : PLEDGER - my first thought was cars, then it was golf, and then I got it; public broadcasting TV

42. Chekov's first name on "Star Trek" : PAVEL - I typed in ANTON, and knew that was not right - I kept recalling this scene from Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (P.S., ironically, the "new" guy who plays Chekov is named Anton Yelchin, but I can't get into the new characters)

"...rank, Admiral" @ 1:45

43. #4 at Boston Garden : ORR - hockey great

45. "__ Got Mail" : YOU'VE

46. Said yes to : OK'ED

47. Monty Python product : SPOOF - I pondered SKITS, which could work with the singular/plural of 'product'

49. Trickle : SEEP

50. Kricfalusi cartoon canine : REN - I had no clue about the name, but three-letter cartoon dog is usually REN - the Wiki

51. Taking away : REMOVAL

53. Sign at a popular play : SRO

57. Winner of the Breaking News Reporting Pulitzer for 2016, briefly : LA TIMES - hey~!! A group shout-out~!

58. Most loaded : RICHEST - the owner of the winery might have the dollars, but not a lot of sense

59. Exam involving reading letters : EYE TEST - and for the second week in a row, we will hear from Zed in Men In Black

 60. Chicken requests : BREASTS


1. Hard-to-read words : SCRAWLS

2. Ballerina's footwear : TOE SHOE

4. IRA options : CDs

5. Surgeon general under Reagan : KOOP - I could picture the guy's face (you can't forget it, really), but it took the "-OO-" before I could recall his name - C. Everett

6. __ nerve : ULNAR

7. A toy piano is often seen in it : PEANUTS - Schroeder

8. Uncertain : HALTING

9. Have because of : OWE TO

10. Cry with a flourish : "Ta-DA"~! - I did not get my "ta-DA~!" once the grid filled

11. Main man : BRO - I tried C E O

13. Con, half the time : DEBATER - as opposed to "pro"

14. They may be Irish : SETTERS

18. Neuwirth of "Cheers" : BEBE - one of the only proper names I actually knew

23. Got the gold, say : MEDALED

25. Black-tie wear : TUXEDOS

27. Turn back : REPEL - like the bad guys in a James Bond movie

29. In tune : ON KEY

31. Pastoral expanse : LEA

33. Sea scavenger : EEL - did not know they were scavengers; three letters and one "E" was already there

36. Trivia quiz website : SPORCLE - never heard of it, and it looked funny in the grid; the website is here - I played the "mis-matched movies" game, and missed one - only because I got too itchy with the mouse finger

37. What some do while the sun shines? : MAKE HAY

38. Rigging support : TOPMAST

39. Words of wisdom : PROVERB

40. Hillary's conquest : EVEREST - not the politician aiming for the presidency

41. Announces again, in a way : REPOSTS - the 21st century way - although I am not on Facebook

44. Heart : ROOT

47. Two-time US Open winner : SELES - I had just the last "S", so it was not EVERT

48. Hindu ascetic : FAKIR - filled via perps

51. Cooking apple named for an Ohio township : ROME - oops, I had POME

52. Minute parasites : LICE

55. Op. __ : CIT - the period made this clear that it would not be "ART"; instead the Latin 'opere citato', the "work already cited", found in footnotes

56. Doo-wop syllable : SHA


Nov 11, 2017

Saturday, Nov 11th, 2017, Kristian House

Theme: Eleven-eleven~!

Words: 68 (missing J,Q,X,Z)

Blocks: 30

Good day and a salute to all Veterans.  I did not recognize the constructor's name, but he has three puzzles under his LA Times belt, his last being two years ago.  Today's offering was a smooth one, done in half my personal allotted time, with a lot of proper names that filled via perp(endiculars).  Just one bad cel that I should have recognized as being wrong, but had to change to red-letters to find it.  A hashtag pattern of 15-letter spanners and climbers, with 9- and 10-letter fills paired to them;

20. Unplanned acquisition : IMPULSE PURCHASE - that's why the candy is at the register

10. Dreaming, at times : WISHFUL THINKING - most people say "Eleven-eleven, make a wish~!" - I change it to 'say a prayer'
50. Litmus test for fun? : BARREL OF MONKEYS - here's a barrel that does not look like fun;

Note the forklift

4. Statement after an ordeal : "I COULD USE A DRINK" - this sometimes slips past my lips, even though I have been in a 12-step program for some 12+ years; good thing I read "24 Hours A Day" every morning;  Nov 8th had this quote -

Philippians 3:13~!


1. It sold its mobile phone business to Microsoft in 2014 : NOKIA - When I first read this, I thought it said mobile HOME business - and I thought "what would Microsoft need that for~?"

6. Econ. numbers : GDPs - Gross Domestic Product; I tried GNP, that which I learned way back in economics - the Gross National Product

10. Beverage sometimes boxed : WINE - oh yes it is~!  In fact, it is rather popular among our clientele - we are down to the last of last year's supply in boxed wine.

 The Tasting Room in front of the office/warehouse

14. Build : ERECT

15. Square calculation : AREA

16. Title type: Abbr. : ITAL - TYPE type I get, but Title type, not so much.  It crossed "IT'S A SECRET", but mine started with "I'VE" - thus my bad cel

17. Serf of Sparta : HELOT - filled via perps, but now that I see it, I have heard the term before

18. Backstage accesses : VIP PASSES

22. Kylo's mom in "The Force Awakens" : LEIA - And Han is daddy - er, or, was - should I have called spoiler alert~!?

23. Hairdos made popular by Marie Antoinette : POUFS

24. Home to the National Gandhi Museum : NEW DELHI

28. Showing faith in : TRUE TO

31. Jesus on a diamond : ALOU - my first thought, but I waited; baseball reference

32. __ Linda, Calif. : LOMA - I'm East Coast - filled via perps

34. Metal giant : ALCOA

35. Kia subcompacts : RIOS - knew this

36. Smartphone downloads : SONGS

38. "Divergent" heroine __ Prior : TRIS - never heard of the novel/movie, so I didn't know this character; 

sounds a little like "The Hunger Games", which I have read, 
but only attempted to watch; I just don't care for the casting.

39. Trainee : CADET

41. Zoomed : TORE - SPED did not work

42. Prefix with ski or pad : HELI - heli'pad', yes, heli'ski' - not in my vernacular.  I had to look it up - oh, now I recall the "spoRt", not the "spot"

43. John Williams quintet : OSCARS - I wanted VOWELS, but he's only got four (o,i,i,a), not five

45. Ones eating on the house? : TERMITES - cute. and clever.

47. "You've got __" : A DEAL

49. Novelist Hunter : EVAN

56. Judicious : ADVISABLE

57. "But wait! There's more!" knife : GINSU - "and if you act now, we'll throw in an additional set of knives for JUST the shipping and handling~!!!".  Handling~?  I don't recall getting any extra money for "handling" a Ginsu knife package....

58. Property attachment : LIEN - almost too easy for Saturday

59. Campus official : DEAN - same here

60. Tatted up : INKED - not for me, yet, but I have a design idea

61. Sting target : MARK - "The Sting" - great movie

"The Entertainer"

62. USMC rank : SSGT - staff sergeant

63. New __ : AGERS


1. Radar's pop : NEHI - oh, duh, his soda pop, not his DAD pop

2. Where Utah's minor league Owlz play : OREM - four letters and Utah~? Try OREM

3. Wet forest growth : KELP - forest~?  I just learned that "forest" is an underwater area with a high density of said kelp

5. Churchill's 1945 successor : ATTLEE

6. Cared : GAVE A HOOT

7. Worn-out washer result : DRIP - had my share at the restaurants; in fact, I think I have replaced every faucet in both places after four years of working at the locations

8. Invigorate : PEP-UP

9. Fungal disease affecting 40-Down : SAP ROT

11. "Shh! Don't tell anyone!" : "IT'S A SECRET~!"

12. Scottish resistance : NAEs

13. Otherwise : ELSE

19. Legend maker : ACURA - crossword foolery - this car

21. Spots for flowers : SILLS - delicate flowers~!

Is that toile~?

24. DEA employee : NARCO - I prefer "NARC" to the added "O"

25. Literature Nobelist Canetti : ELIAS

26. Geppetto, for one : WOODCARVER - I tried wood WORKER, which was a big help

27. "__ kidding!" : "I'M NOT..."

29. Decorative curtain fabric : TOILE

30. Source of relief : OASIS - I needed some serious relief yesterday; got sawdust in my eye, and I tolerated it for half the day - then I tried to drive, and that exacerbated the irritation like I could not believe

33. Accord : AGREEMENT - HONDA didn't fit (har-har)

37. Electronic control mechanism : SERVO - funny how a word is common, and can be used in conversation, but when you get right down to it, I could not tell you exactly what a servomechanism really was, so I went to Wiki; their example suggests that a power window control is not, but cruise-control is. 

40. Pines, say : TREES - ah, this time, it's the noun, not the verb; 9d. should have clued me in

44. Menu heading : SALADS - ah, restaurants, not computers

46. Italian "Eat!" : "MANGIA~!" - my mom used to say this at dinner - and she is 100% English

48. Frontal and temporal : LOBES

50. Lip application : BALM

51. 1998 Sarah McLachlan hit : ADIA - vowel friendly crossword staple

52. Mark for attention : FLAG - Mark's a popular guy in the is crossword - see 61a.

53. Three-time speed skating gold medalist Karin : ENKE

54. 1914 battle river : YSER - I'm reading a book from Christopher Reich called "The Runner", set immediately after WWII, and he mentions the ISAR river; seems odd that a man named Reich would be writing about post-war Germany

55. Kegger quaff : SUDS - A quote from one of my favorite movies;

we have kegs of wine at Lieb, too

Nov 4, 2017

Saturday, November 4, 2017, C.C. Burnikel

Theme: CCCW~!

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

Blocks: 30

Another puzzle from our ever-producing blog hostess C.C. - four constructions for the LA Times in October - that's impressive.  This time, however, there was to be no "STOG" - that Straight TO Google beast I got roughed up by in September.  Not even red-letter this time.  A plethora of 9-letter answers, and pairs of 10-letter answers in the down corners;

1a. It features remotely controlled utilities : SMARTHOME - I was not sure if this was an actual brand name, or just a phrase - turns out to be both.  I can argue that I have a smart home because Alexa can turn my lights on for me with just a voice command, and I can do it thru my "smart" phone as well

11d. Restaurant freebie : DINNER ROLL - PEPPERMINT fit as well, and even worked with my crossing WINE @ 35a.

53a. Crowdfunding website : INDIEGOGO - no clue.  Perps and WAGs.  What a great idea this is.  I might have to look further into the website as a source of funds to get my board game started.  Speaking of which, my buddy Mike was in Orlando this weekend for a Toy Convention - recognize the guy he's with~?

 Hint - go fish

 26. Program that holds you up? : RANSOMWARE - never heard of it - scary - the Wiki



10. Blue Moon of '60s-'70s baseball : ODOM - Baseball~!  "Johnny Lee" to his parents, I am guessing - his Wiki

14. One who fits perfectly : MALE MODEL - yep, damn ski(m)ppy

15. Your, of yore : THINE

16. Consequences of compliments : EGO BOOSTS

17. Seashore birds : ERNES - ERNES or TERNS~?

18. Oscar Wilde, e.g. : WIT

19. Bud : BRO

20. Biscotti bits : ALMONDS

22. Lane of "Unfaithful" : DIANE - crossword popular lately

24. Sunny : UPBEAT

25. Without question : TRULY

27. Expo display : DEMO - Home Depot once had a store here on L.I. called "Expo", and it was all high end home improvement items; they had vignettes of kitchens and bathrooms that were over the top expensive, but way cool, too.

29. Deli option : RYE

30. Action film scene : CHASE

31. Works out : PUMPS IRON - ah, the exercising kind; I wondered if this was the "this came out good" works out

33. Hair piece : HANK - dah.  Not LOCK

34. Lines at department stores : SEAMS - wow, that's vague.  SEAMS on clothing.  How 'bout these seams~?

35. Blanc, e.g. : MONT - my first thought was WINE.  Can you tell I work at a vineyard now~?  I spent the last two weeks re-working the warehouse with better shelving that is customized to what needed to go on them.  Here's a pic of what I accomplished, for TX Ms.; yes, there's carpentry and mechanics involved, so this is just about the perfect place for me.

36. Online place for handmade goods : ETSY STORE - seems redundant.  I am familiar with the website - here;  I have bought some cool stuff there.

38. Vexes : GALLS

39. Bustle : ADO

40. Koi __ : POND

41. In a romantic fashion, lighting-wise : DIMLY

42. "Grey's Anatomy" star Ellen : POMPEO - never watched the show, did not know this actress; filled via perps.  Strange that she was born in Everett WA, and came to NY - I was thinking about leaving NY for Everett WA about 15 years ago

44. Running legend : OWENS - my first thought was the crossword staple Emil (Zátopek), but neither name fit; instead, we were looking for Jesse Owens

46. Rabbit danglers : DEWLAPS - I tried LOP EARS.  Bzzzt.  I did not know that this was called a dewlap - I know only of the kind on iguanas

48. 2015 World Golf Award winner for Golf Course Designer of the Year : ELS - three letters and golf related~?  Ernie ELS

49. Ended a standing ovation : SAT

52. Light __ : AS AIR - SABER worked, too - at least the "R" did

56. Focus quartet : TIRES - a-ha~! My first thought.  A FORD Focus, that is - I would love to tear up the road in one of these

57. Disorderly places : RATS NESTS

58. "Vous __ ici" : ETES - Frawnche that translates to this

59. Bar item : SHOTGLASS


1. Eurasian duck : SMEW - Dah~!  Not TEAL - they're North American

2. Star followers : MAGI - "WARS" fit, but didn't jibe

3. Loads : A LOT

4. Gray : REBel - The Confederate side of the Civil War.  I tried APE, was thinking ALIENS

5. Sprint competitor : T-MOBILE

6. "Woo-hoo!" : "HOORAY~!"

7. Can't stop eating, as snack food : ODs ON

8. Bumped into : MET

9. Animated queen of Arendelle : ELSA

10. Laura's classic cry on "The Dick Van Dyke Show" : "OH, ROB."

13d. Private dining rooms? : MESS TENTS - dining for army privates

12. Sale limit : ONE DAY ONLY - Macy's seems to run sales like this

15. Playing speeds : TEMPOS

21. Sweetener units : LUMPS - not GRAMS

22. Like late twilight : DUSKY

23. Facebook co-founder Saverin : EDUARDO

25. "I've had enough!" : "THAT DOES IT~!"

28. Palindromic supermodel : EMME - Dah~! Not "ELLE"; never heard of this first-of-her-kind plus-size model

30. Easy-to-please companion : CHEAP DATE

31. Grunt : PEON

32. Mosque leaders : IMAMS

34. Condescend : STOOP

37. Sticks a fork in : SPEARS

38. Root widely used in traditional Chinese medicine : GINSENG

41. Remove from an exchange : DE-LIST

43. Barre bends : PLIES - forced me to change my LOP EARS

45. United with : WED TO

47. Formal addressees : SIRs

49. Player who failed to lead the league in all three seasons in which he hit 60+ home runs : SOSA - a lot of clue for a little answer - but it's more baseball from C.C.~!

50. CIA operatives : AGTs

51. Scrap : TOSS

54. Casual denial : "NAH."

55. Holder of locks : GEL - I could not find a decent hair gel until I spoke with Maggie, who cuts my hair (I was there on Thursday) - I actually resorted to using Elmer's Glue - hey, it's water-based, and it worked.  Maggie had Suavecito pomade - I like it.


Oct 28, 2017

Saturday, Oct 28th, 2017, Daniel Nierenberg

Theme: None

Words: 72 (missing Q,X)

Blocks: 29

This puzzle gave me a mental wedgie.  It didn't help that I massacred two sections with constant overwrites - had I done this one in pencil, there'd be no paper left.  I thought I had enough to solve this one, but most of the clues just didn't give me anything to work with, and then some of the answers didn't look right anyway - I'm looking at you, 17a & 45d.~!!  Caved in to red-letters.  No exceptionally long answers, and that might have contributed; just triple 9's in the across, and triple 8's in the down;

17. Florida beach ranked by TripAdvisor as #1 in the U.S. in 2017 : SIESTA KEY - Argh~!! siestakey~? Had I parsed this properly, it might have made sense - but the furthest south I have ever been is Jacksonville, FL, and "key" never occurred to me

14. Construction protection : HARD HATS - clever plural misdirection

60. Insect world raiders : AMAZON ANT - ah, the wonders of nature - the Wiki

34. Curse deterrent : SWEAR JAR - if I had one for this puzzle, I could have bought my own vineyard; here's a picture of the vines surrounding the owner's house - see below, too

Rainy Day



1. Takes a risky leap : BASE JUMPS - I got the JUMPS part, but 'HIGH' was all that came to mind

10. Teensy bit : SKOSH - learned from doing crosswords

15. Baked fruit dessert : APPLE TART

16. Actress Campbell of "Martin" : TISHA

18. Furry fish eater : OTTER - seemed to simple, so I waited

19. Drink with a polar bear mascot : ICEE - dah~!  Not COKE - this ad mascot

20. Mag wheel? : HEF  - R.I.P.

21. Let loose : UNTIED

22. Dishonorable sort : CAD - Dah~!  Not CUR - the NW corner was the first disaster area

23. Without breaks, as a tennis set : ON SERVE - in desperation, I tried "ONE-LOVE", and the "O" and "N" remained after I switched to red-letters.  That helped.

25. Degree of uncertainty : NTH - again, I hesitated

26. One hanging around in the forest? : SLOTH

28. Eurasia's __ region : URAL - I had aRAL, which made it almost impossible to make sense of 7d.

29. Cantina snack : TAPA - ugh.  Not TACO

30. Tombstone shootout participant : EARP - Yay~!  I got one~!

32. Natural home : HABITAT

34. Domino's competitor : SBARRO - knowing this was a huge help in the SW

37. Fruits often cubed : MELONS

38. Hopeful : WANNABE

40. Acted like : APED - I think this is better than the "Did" clue we had about two weeks ago

41. Lighting hrs.? : ETAs - think "a"-lighting, as in landing

42. Eye care brand : ReNu

44. City on the Shatt al-Arab river : BASRA - filled via perps

48. Hawaiian yellowfin : AHI - a good WAG, since it could have occurred at 39d., too

49. String around the collar? : BOLO TIE - I so wanted NAME TAG here

51. Harley Davidson's NYSE symbol : HOG - knew it

52. Prayer string : ROSARY

54. British society page VIP : NOB - I tried FOP; this was the start of my "four corners from hell" - I was missing the "N" and "B" and those choices were not at the top of my list; "M" and "Z" from 60a. were the other pair in the across clue

55. Tiny particle : MOTE - Rrrr - not ATOM

56. Interim ruling group : JUNTA

57. Entertainment for the whole gang : FAMILY FUN

59. Many a Pacific resident : ASIAN

61. Tears : RENDS - tEErs or tArEs~? I can never tell in a blank grid

62. Ceremony with a Best Female Hip-Hop Artist category : BET AWARDS


1. First things to learn : BASICS - "THE ABCS" didn't fit

2. Forming a summit : APICAL - new word for me

3. Tight-fitting suit : SPEEDO - ah, that kind of suit. I'm an equal opportunity sexist....

take that you misblogynist~!

4. If-then-__: programmer's flow : ELSE

5. Fast flier : JET - not SST

6. Roseanne Barr, for one : UTAHN - F%$#ing not COMIC

7. Partner of kisses : MAKES UP - HUGS didn't fit; then I wondered what went with Hershey's Kisses; the phrase "kisses and makes up" did not cross my mind

8. Choose over, with "to" : PREFER

9. Farm dwelling : STY

10. It may be skipped : STONE

11. Talking Trans Am of classic TV : KITT - Knight Industries Two-Thousand - the Wiki

New movie in 2018~?  I think I've seen that clip before....

12. Repeated melodic pattern : OSTINATO - filled via perps

13. Bit of bakeware : SHEET PAN

21. Tanning aid, for short : UV LAMP

23. "Ten North Frederick" author John : O'HARA - again, perps

24. Motivational speech component? : "RAH~!"

27. Beach birds : TERNS

29. "Michael Clayton" Oscar winner Swinton : TILDA

31. Whisky cocktail garnished with skewered cherries : ROB ROY - whiskey~?  I'm into "merlot" these days.  Here's another pic of the vineyards, taken from the second floor of the owner's house (which I have access to, since I upkeep that place as well)

33. Early bathysphere user William : BEEBE - vague

35. Safe haven for cave dwellers? : BAT HOUSE

36. "Delta of Venus" author : ANAIS NIN

39. Sushi fish : EEL

40. Early fast-food eatery : AUTOMAT

43. Unpopular sort : NO NAME - this clue/answer was unpopular with me; the missing "N" and "M" from the Across clues

45. Instrument made from a ram's horn : SHOFAR - can you tell I'm not Jewish~?  The Wiki

46. Stout : ROTUND

47. Spies : AGENTS

49. Fiber-rich cereals : BRANS - spellcheck doesn't like the plural

50. Spanish vacation island : IBIZA - and the final "B" and "Z"

53. Minimally : A TAD

55. Avian motormouth : MYNA

57. Swell : FAB

58. Like a carefully kept profile : LOW - reminds me of George Clooney's line from this scene in Dusk Til Dawn - caution~! - strong language.  I am going to find me a '68 Cougar just like theirs and restore it some day

I once had a '69

Oct 21, 2017

Saturday Oct 21, 2017 Ed Sessa

Theme: None

Words: 72 (missing F,Q,X)

Blocks: 29

Wow - I find it hard to believe that we have not had a Saturday Ed Sessa puzzle in over a year - I went looking for his last Saturday construction in 2017, and didn't find one.  Huh.  Anyway, today's contribution was an easy one, for me, with only one small area that had triple crossing proper names which slowed me down - WAG to the rescue~!  A triple axis symmetrical grid, with 7x7 corners and nothing longer than 7 letters;

17. Dryer component : AIR VENT - TUMBLER fit, too.  As a Home Inspector, I strongly suggest cleaning out your dryer hose and vent....

Which can lead to this 

12. Rodents on wheels, perhaps : PET MICE - it was hamsters for me when I was a "ute".  Pet mice became the feed for the ball python snake that we had later on....I have already been called a "ghoul" for sharing this info in previous blogs

38. Brought down a Giant, say : TACKLED - the capital "G" made me think this was a SF baseball "strike out" reference, but no~! -  it's football, and right in my neighborhood - the NY Giants

how it feels to know the Jets have a better record

66. Hooks or lures : TEASERS - ah, this kind of lure....

what lies....


1. Get lovey-dovey : SNUGGLE - makes me think of the George Thorogood song and his land lady

@1:05 & 2:45

8. Ramble : TRAIPSE - I like using the word traipse

15. Fertilizes, in a way : MANURES - as a verb~?  Meh. Just go with fertilizeRs....

16. Spousal consent : YES, DEAR

18. Creamy rice dish : RISOTTO

19. Tiruchirappalli title : SRI

20. California region named for a literary hero : TARZANA - part of the three-crossing proper name section that had me stumped at the very end; great WAG going with a "Z" on my part

22. It can lead into day or night : MID - mid-day, midnight

23. Shade-loving plant : HOSTA - my first thought, but I waited

25. Big chunk of time : EON

26. State probably named for a French province : MAINE - could only be this, IDAHO or TEXAS - and I am pretty sure that last one is not Frawnche

28. Mobile app? : UBER - part of last week's Sat blog, too

29. Relay settings : MEETS

31. Object of veneration : ICON - dah~! Not iDoL

32. Edible conifer seed : PINE NUT - got it

34. Part : SEGMENT - pondered SECTION

36. Many an IKEA buy : KIT - isn't all their furniture "ready to assemble"~?  I have not been there in a decade

37. Slangy refusal : NAH

42. Arrivals : COMINGS

46. Kyrgyzstan range : ALAI - oops, not aRaL

47. Interior design : DECOR - one of my responsibilities at the new job is maintaining the owner's house, which is this spread right down the road from the warehouse nestled among the vines - but the original owner's decor choices are, um, shocking; I'll see about getting a pic

49. Glitzy affair : GALA

50. Informed, with "in" : CLUED

52. Sound heard going up a mountain, maybe : POP - think inner ear

53. Film in which the title character says, "I don't permit the suffering. You do" : OH, GOD! - this movie; IMDb

54. Yoga class syllables : OMs

55. "Please, please ... " : "I BEG YOU..."

58. Half-hearted : WAN - that's half-Ben, too - OBI Kenobi, that is

59. Asphalt : BITUMEN - nope, not MACADAM

61. Prevailing conditions : CLIMATE - oooh~!  Good guess for me

63. Absinthe flavoring : ANISEED - I thought it was ANISE, but the "SEED" part didn't come to mind right off

64. Solemnly commands : ADJURES

65. Gets new players for : RECASTS - I was thinking DRAFTS, but this is stage, not sport


1. Road wreck : SMASH UP

2. Capital south of Addis Ababa : NAIROBI - I had the ---BI part, so this is what I figured it had to be

3. Not yet up : UNRISEN - I still get up at "UPS time", but now I use that 2-3 hours for my own enjoyment

4. Bloke's address : GUV - British slang, which I was familiar with from watching BBC shows growing up

5. Actress Scacchi : GRETA - I knew the actress' name, but couldn't recall anything that she starred in - until I looked at her film credits; the one movie I saw that was a real thriller was "Shattered"

6. Siberian river to the Arctic Ocean : LENA - one of the three proper name crossings; the "LEN-" part filled via perps, but the last letter was going to have to be a WAG

7. Where the Boss' band once rehearsed : E STREET

8. Hard heads : TYRANTS

9. Buttermilk holder? : REIN - I had no idea what this was getting at, until I had the "REI-" filled in, and then I figured Buttermilk must have been a popular horse - can you tell how young I am~?  I had to look up who made Buttermilk 'famous'....the Wiki

10. Indian tea region : ASSAM - I just had to fill in the "A"s

11. Bachelor's last words? : "I DO."

13. Attended informally : SAT IN ON

14. Like the wind : ERODENT - a force which erodes, not an online PET MOUSE (e-rodent~? C'mon, that's funny)

21. Muppet friend of Elmo : ZOE - third proper name crossing, no clue.

24. Any one of the male "Big Bang Theory" main characters : TREKKIE - I cannot stand the show - not even the commercials featuring the characters - but I did tune into "The Orville" on demand, and I like it - total Star Trek TNG rip-off, but with that Seth McFarlane twist.

27. Shoot for the moon : AIM HIGH

29. Softened : MUTED - like colors

30. Man of La Mancha : SEÑOR

33. Nada : NIL

35. Whale group : GAM - I had the "A", and thought the answer was "POD", but no - here's a list of animal group names. When I punched in "whale gam", I got "game" instead - and this was interesting to read....

38. Buffet featuring tortillas and fixings : TACO BAR

39. Hog's call? : "ALL MINE~!" - at the taco bar~?

40. Biting : CAUSTIC

41. Conditioned response? : "DEPENDS."

42. Repro man? : COPYCAT - har-har

43. Source of some annoying online messages : NAGWARE - I tried MaLware

44. Crowing type : GLOATER

45. The blues : SADNESS

48. Gear tooth : COG - I thought this was synonymous with "gear", but it is actually the tooth OF a gear

51. Mercury money : DIMES - I did not understand the clue, so I went to Google after the fact and found out that we had a different coin prior to 1945 - which makes sense, now; the Wiki

53. Medium board : OUIJA - ah.  The carpenter in me wondered what size lumber is a "medium" board....duh.  Oh, that medium

56. Source of folic acid : BEET

57. Quaint retail adjective : OLDE - Ye Olde Croffwerde Blogge

60. Letters on some tee tags : USA

62. Ancient Greek statuary site: Abbr. : MUSeum