Showing posts with label Wednesday. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Wednesday. Show all posts

May 24, 2017

Wednesday May 24, 2017 C.C. Burnikel

Theme: CONNECTS THE DOTS ( 37. Makes sense of a situation ... and, literally, what the quartet of answers to starred clues does) - DOT spans across each theme entry.

18A. *Submarine weapon launcher : TORPEDO TUBE

20A. *Catchall phrase : AND OTHERS

53A. *Martial arts maneuver : JUDO THROW.  For a ground finish.

57A. *Guacamole source : AVOCADO TREE

Hello everyone and welcome.  Boomer here, live from Minnesota.  No 300's to report, no hole in one to brag about. 

1. "No great shakes" : MEH - Questionable word

4. Croque madame meat : HAM- Almost a backward 1-Across.

7. Red Cross supply : PLASMA

13. Often hoppy brew : ALE

14. "The Reader" actress Lena : OLIN

16. Yell : HOLLER - Give a holler for the Minnesota Twins.  First place in the AL Central.  But it's a long season.

17. Vote of support : YEA - Just a fancy word for "Yes".  I think Congress invented it, or made it up. 

22. Pyeongchang's peninsula : KOREA - I cannot figure out how so many men and women from South Korea make a fortune in the U.S. playing golf, while North Korea spends its time and money on weapons.

23. Parts of hearts : ATRIA

24. Satisfied sighs : AAHS

26. Find a place for : USE

27. Country that shares a 3,300-mile border with Argentina : CHILE - I have a golf buddy named Jorge who is from Chile.  Great guy and a good bowler as well.

29. Quiet time at day care : NAP

32. iPhone talker : SIRI

34. Small battery size : AAA - overused in crosswords, but sometimes you need three vowels back to back to back.

35. Works on one's plumage : PREENS

40. "Anchors __" : AWEIGH - I learned something, I always thought it was Anchors Away.  Now I wonder what aweigh means ??

41. Leaves for socials? : TEA - Another frequent crossword filler

42. Sweater, usually : KNIT - Is a knitting needle a Knit Pick ?

43. Legal profession : BAR - the legal exam is a bar.

44. Mocha's land : YEMEN- When I see coffee, I think of Brazil - but yes, Yemen produces mocha coffee.

46. Bespectacled friend of Snow White : DOC - Did you know that Dwarfs and Dwarves are both accepted plurals of Dwarf.  Doc is the only one of seven who is not named with an adjective.  If you did not know this important fact of life, you may be Dopey.

47. Bun or beehive : UPDO - I cannot believe this is a word.

48. Praline piece : PECAN - Remember Jimmy Carter?  He and Miss Lillian raised pecans in Plains, Georgia. Not sure if he made as much money as when he was President, but he never called anyone a nut. 

50. "I __ thought of that" : HADN'T

59. Cleanup hitter's stat : RBI. Here I am in uniform for the Hopkins Babe Ruth League age 13 or 14. In my 15-year-old year, Honeywell no longer sponsored and my team became Hopkins Merchants. I think I was #10 Center Drug.

60. Illuminated like some domed structures : TOP-LIT

61. Crumb carriers : ANTS- spend their lives under hills. 

62. Told too often, as a joke : OLD - Reminds me of Milton Berle who told the same jokes for years.

63. Snarky expressions : SNEERS

64. East, in Munich : OST - I was in Munich once.  Oktoberfest 1969. Never liked the taste of beer, but still had a good time.  

65. Short shirt : TEE - No Way - Tee Shirts are not short. 


1. Early Yucat√°n dweller : MAYA- I would have clued "Miss Moore of the Minnesota Lynx".

2. Justice Kagan : ELENA - Supreme woman of the high court!

3. Eye candy : HEAD-TURNER - Atlanta Braves owner

4. Eye candy : HOTTIE

5. Wahine welcome : ALOHA - A bit generic.  Wahine is a woman, normally a girlfriend or a wife

6. Swampy ground : MIRE

7. Prof.'s degree : PHD - A PHD is a doctor of Philosophy.  Why is it not DPH ?

8. "Listen to me!" : LOOK HERE - When I was in Tennessee, many of the good old boys would say "Lookie here".

9. Choir voices : ALTOS - Sopranos never fits.  I was a Bass. Not a fish. 

10. Disparaging remark : SLUR

11. "Don't Let __ Lonely Tonight": James Taylor : ME BE

12. General vicinity : AREA - Ground that Byron Buxton covers in center field.  "Put me in coach, I'm ready to play--Today". John Fogarty

15. "TED Radio Hour" broadcaster : NPR 

19. Morales of "NYPD Blue" : ESAI - Constructors love those four letter names with three vowels.

21. Family name of three popes : ORSINI - I'll take your word for this

25. Greek leader? : ALPHA - Second letter is BETA.  I have also found it interesting that  ALPHABET is our word for the whole bunch

27. Laser pointer chaser : CAT

28. Quickness : HASTE

29. Crayola shade similar to Atomic Tangerine : NEON CARROT - Amazing!  When I was a kid we had red blue green yellow orange purple, etc.

30. Opposing : ANTI

31. Wordless whisper : PSST

32. Wound covering : SCAB - Never liked this word.  BandAid did not fit.

33. Skunk River state : IOWA - Somewhere south of me.  Land of pork and corn - yum.

34. Needed a massage : ACHED

36. Subject of the musical "Mayor" : ED KOCH - presided at Simon and Garfunkel's Concert in the (Central) Park.

38. Carrier to Cairo : EGYPTAIR - I wonder if they overbook and drag people off their planes.

39. Much-used base : TEN - I would clue "Number of pins in a rack".

45. Magic spell : MOJO

46. Not fancy at all : DETEST - For those of you who might detest this puzzle, Take up Golf and see how you like that.

47. "I give!" : UNCLE - I wonder if pro wrestlers hollered this when caught in a four figure leg lock.

48. Keats and Yeats : POETS -  He's a poet but he don't know it, but his feet show it--- they're long fellows.

49. Highborn : NOBLE - We have a "Noble Avenue" a half mile from our house.  I think you have to be a Duke or Earl to live there.

50. They're sometimes felt : HATS

51. Mary Kay rival : AVON

52. Lowdown : DOPE - Finally, and adjective for me preparing this blog.

54. Actress Hagen : UTA

55. Beijing-born Bond villain : DR NO - Roger Moore, RIP

56. Off-target : WIDE - An adjective for my golf shots.

58. Rehab hurdle : DTS


Notes from C.C.: 
1) The Sixth Minnesota Crossword Tournament will be held at the beautiful Landmark Center in Saint Paul on Sunday, June 11, 2017. 

Constructors include Christopher Adams, George Barany, Victor Barocas (also our editor), David Hanson, Andy Kravis, Mark McClain, Andrea Carla Michaels, David Liben-Nowell, Tom Pepper, Andrew J. Ries and our own Jeffrey Wechsler, who's flying to MN again this year to help the tournament. Hope to see some of you there.

2) Indie 500 Crossword Tournament will take place on June 3, 2017. Angela Olson Halsted is PuzzleGirl who used to run the LA Confidential blog.

2) To foodies on our blog, hope you check out "The Gefilte Manifesto: New Recipes for Old World Jewish Foods", co-authored by Liz Alpern, daughter of the great Mike Alpern, who organizes the annual Cru Dinner. Liz appeared on the cover of last month's Hadassah Magazine. What fish is that?

May 17, 2017

Wednesday, May 17, 2017 Alex Eaton-Salners

Theme - LET"S ALL TAKE A BOUGH.  Vertical theme entries all start with, and are therefore TOPPED by letters that spell the name of a TREE.  Let's start with the unifier.

55 A. Canopy creators ... or what can literally be found in 6-, 10-, 24- and 34-Down : TREE TOPS.

Coming back down to earth we have the theme entries.

6 D. Brain part that produces melatonin : PINEAL GLAND.  It is tucked into the groove between the two halves of the thalmus, near the center of the brain.  It is so-named because its shape resembles that of a pine cone.  Topped by a PINE, an evergreen, and the first of our TREEs.

10 D. Cartographer's table : MAP LEGEND.  An inset that explains the meanings of symbols and other features used on the map.  The maple tree is prized for its lumber, used for furniture and decorative purposes.

24. Reason for a parking restriction : FIRE HYDRANT.  FIR trees are can be distinguished from other members of the pine family by their needle attachments and cone shapes.

34 D. "Wascally wabbit" hunter : ELMER FUDD.  Something we all knew.  But it gives me an excuse to post this --.

ELM TREES were used along streets all over America as decoration and to provide shade.  Most of these were lost to Dutch elm disease, caused by a microfungus carried by bark beetles.  Disease resistant varieties have since been developed.

Look for a clue gimmick when the theme arrangement is vertical.  This one is clever, with the tree names topping the theme fill entries.  Two of the four trees are hard woods, and two are conifers.   The conifers are adjacent to the vertical center line, and the hard woods farther toward the edges.

Hi, Gang, Jazzbumpa on duty, lumbering through this puzzle.  Let's see what we can saw.


1. Produced, biblically speaking : BEGAT.  Was the father of.

6. Racetrack stops : PITS.  For fuel and quick tire changes.

10. Finance majors' degs. : MBAS.  Master of Business Administration.  I have one.

14. Kagan associate : ALITO.  Supreme Court Justices.

15. Not yet out of the running : IN IT.  To win it, no doubt.

16. Strong lobby for seniors : AARP.  America Association of Retired Persons.  I belong.

17. One who wants to come home? : BASE RUNNER.  Baseball reference.  Most do not make it, though.

19. Insanity, in court : PLEA.  A formal statement in response to a charge, not [necessarily] a description of behavior.

20. Makes eligible for, with "to" : ENTITLES.  Supplies a legal or just right to something.

21. Sign up : ENLIST.  Or enroll, which sadly has the same number of letters.

23. Albacore, e.g. : TUNA.  Something fishy here.

24. Price of a crosstown ride : FARE.  In a bus or cab.  

25. 19th Greek letter : TAU.  

28. Eight pts. : GAL.  Pints and gallons, guys and gals.

29. "Just think!" : IMAGINE.

33. In unfamiliar territory : AT SEA.  Without a paddle.

35. "An Officer and a Gentleman" star : GERE.

37. Black, in poetry : EBON.

38. Castro of Cuba : RAUL.  Fidel's brother.

39. Adjust to fit : ALTER.  As clothing.

40. Statistician Silver of ESPN's FiveThirtyEight : NATE.  

41. British baby buggy : PRAM.  Short for perambulator.

42. "The cow is of the bovine ilk / One end is moo, the other, milk" poet : NASH.  Ogden.

To keep your marriage brimming
With love in the loving cup,
Whenever you’re wrong, admit it;
Whenever you’re right, shut up.

-  Ogden Nash

43. Floppy disk successor : CD-ROM.  Data storage media.

44. Solemn ending? : SILENT N.  Holy N, Batmen.

46. Vote in favor : YEA.  parliamentary procedure.

48. What's up to you? : SKY.  Sometimes hidden by clouds.

49. Cheese coat : RIND.  More than you want to know.  

50. TiVo products : DVRS.  Digital Video Reordings.  Nobody tapes any more.

52. Confuse : BAFFLE.  Wait . . . what?!?

59. Free speech org. : ACLU.  American Civil Liberties Union.  We won't talk about it here.

60. Three, to nine : SQUARE ROOT.  A number that when multiplied by itself yields another specified number.  Round roots are things like carrots.

62. Get rid of : SHED. Discard, as leaves, skin, hair or clothing.

63. Change directions : TURN.  Don't get steered the wrong way

64. Box cutter insert : RAZOR.  Actually a blade.

65. Top dog : HEAD.  Of an organization.

66. Not hard : SOFT.  Pretty straight forward.

67. Prefix with foam : STYRO-.  Expanded polystyrene.  I worked with it on my first job.


1. Innocent one : BABE.  One who is at a severe disadvantage in the woods.

2. Panache : ELAN.  Confidence, flair, style, enthusiasm.

3. Heart of the matter : GIST.  Get the point?

4. Absorbed the loss : ATE IT.  Financial indigestion.

5. Haitian island whose name is Spanish for "turtle" : TORTUGA.  Located north of the north-west arm of the main island.

7. Overnight stops : INNS.

8. 50-50, e.g. : TIE.  Even score in a sport or game, usually settled by some sort of overtime play.

9. Party decoration : STREAMER.  Colorful ribbons used for ornamentation.

10. Cartographer's table : MAP LEGEND.  An inset that explains the meanings of symbols and other features used on the map.

11. Indonesian island : BALI.  Immediately to the east of Java, it is home to most of Indonesia's Hindu minority.

12. "Iliad" war god : ARES.  Greek.  Mars to the Romans.

13. Petty argument : SPAT. It caused a SPAT what he spat on my spats.

18. Forearm part : ULNA.  The longer of two forearm bones, extending from the elbow to the little finger.  The radius extends from the elbow to the thumb side of the hand.

22. New Deal prog. : NRA.  The National Recovery Administration was created in 1933, under the National Industrial Recovery Act.  It had a two year charter and expired in 1935.  At that time the Supreme Court also determined that it infringed on separation of powers and was therefore unconstitutional.  Many of its provisions reappeared under the National Labor Relations Act that same year.

25. Camping cover-ups : TARPS.  Baseball diamonds, too.

26. Centipede creator : ATARI.  Electronic game company.

27. Garden-variety : USUAL.  Typical

30. Bridge beams : I-BARS.  Structural elements named for their cross-sectional profile, which resemble the letter I.

31. Against the rules : NOT OK.  Let the OK - Okay battle begin.

32. Redcoat, to a Minuteman : ENEMY.  American revolutionary war.

36. Sci-fi visitors : ETS. Extra-Terrestrials - off world entities, who sometimes claim to be friendly.

39. Colonies crawling with critters : ANT NESTS.

43. Board game with an "Unemployment Office" corner : CAREERS.

45. Zip : NIL.  Zilch.  Nada

47. Penultimate word of many fairy tales : EVER.  Penultimate -- hmmmm.  I wonder what comes after?

51. Classic guitar, briefly : STRAT.  Fender Stratocaster.  Costing $600, and up.  Buddy Holly's were stolen twice in April, 1958.

52. Shindig : BASH.  Spree, blow out.  Have fun, but make good choices.

53. Bruise symptom : ACHE.  Owie!

54. One in the doghouse? : FLEA.  One hopes not

55. Gang land : TURF.  Claimed territory.

56. Like slime : OOZY.  Moving like this?

57. Substandard : POOR.  Like certain movies from 1958.

58. Houston athlete, for short : 'STRO.  ASTRO evidently has too many syllable to be spoken conveniently.  The STROs are currently atop the A. L. Western division.  Let's give them a bough.

61. Status __ : QUO.  The current state of things.

That wraps up another Woden's Tag.  Hope you got through it without feeling board.  But now I have a strange desire branch out - maybe even join a splinter group.  Perhaps I should just go with the phloem.  Now it's time to leaf.

Cool regards!

May 10, 2017

Wednesday, May 10, 2017, Agnes Davidson and C.C. Burnikel


Our own Irish Miss and C.C. have doggedly produced a lovely Wednesday puzzle that provided a fun exercise for me while their theme escaped my blood hound instincts. There was also just enough challenge to make my solving experience enjoyable.

What these ladies did was to supply five two-word theme answers wherein both words can serve as a "LEAD" for the word DOG. This is all tied up in their theme reveal:

37. Iditarod front-runners ... or what both parts of the answers to starred clues can do? : LEAD DOGS - As you can see by the picture here, being the LEAD DOG does have its advantages!

The previous puzzle I blogged was last Wednesday's where the phrase OUT OF could precede each word in a two word phrase to give two new phrases and so there was some similarity. 

Now let's take a look at the theme fills, some of which are canine related and some not so much:

18. *Suffering harsh criticism : UNDER ATTACK which yields

55. *Highway patrol group : STATE POLICE and we also get

 3. *Deep trouble : HOT WATER 

6. *Member of a 1960s Chinese paramilitary group : RED GUARD

36. *Hard-to-control blaze : WILD FIRE where Agnes and C.C. also give us

Let's see what else is in their, anything but shaggy, dog story:


1. __ Wednesday : ASH - The day after Mardi (Tuesday) Gras (Fat)

4. Rock of comedy : CHRIS

9. Miata automaker : MAZDA - The star of the movie Husker Gary's Midlife Crisis

14. 6-Down leader : MAO

15. Moocher : LEECH

16. Cannes concepts : IDEES - En France, les bonnes IDEES peuvent impliquer des vin (In France, good ideas can  involve wine)

17. CPR pro : EMT

20. Attach, as a patch : SEW ON 

22. All skin and bones : GAUNT

23. See 39-Down : LEE 39. With 23-Across, "Life of Pi" Oscar winner : ANG - ANG LEE - Lots of CGI required

24. Put up, as wallpaper : HANG

25. Fleecy boot brand : UGGS - Tom Brady was a spokesperson at one time

26. Word on a sample check : VOID

27. Sneaky guy? : PETE

28. Charlotte of "The Facts of Life" : RAE

29. Lawman Earp : WYATT

31. Portable gifts for book lovers : E READERS - Do you like turning the pages like I do?

33. Very long spell : EON

34. Part of mph : PER - Do you really want to get your 'vette going this fast?

35. Exchange rate abbr. : USD - Your Canadian loonie is worth about .73 USD

36. Like some smiles : WRY

37. NYC airport code : LGA

40. Cat, often : PET - We have one of those


41. Clam : SIMOLEON - Ah, the euphemisms abound

43. "Sailing to Byzantium" poet : YEATS - I did better understanding calculus and relativity

45. Where LeBron plays home games, on scoreboards : CLE - Has any athletes ever meant as much to one city as LeBron has to CLEveland?

46. Yin partner : YANG

47. Standard : NORM

48. Passed down, as folk mus. : TRAD - I didn't understand TRAD until I saw mus. Hence TRADtional music

50. Antique shoppe adjective : OLDE

51. Wilder's "__ Town" : OUR

52. "Mrs. Dalloway" novelist : WOOLF - I ain't afraid of her

53. Bicycle part : PEDAL - Once you attach your foot to the PEDAL there could be issues

58. Have debts : OWE

59. Ancient Aegean region : IONIA

60. Bugs of crime : MORAN - George "Bugs" MORAN was on his way to the garage on Valentine's Day 1929. Good thing he was late.

61. Came down with : GOT

62. Chopper blade : ROTOR  - One horizontal and one vertical

63. Gushes : SPEWS

64. Caution to drivers : SLO 

Down - Picture seemed appropriate here with the clue direction and the theme...

1. Iowa college town : AMES

2. "One for me, too" : SAME HERE

4. Held tightly (to) : CLUNG

5. Coop resident : HEN

7. Glacial periods : ICE AGES

8. Show of indifference : SHRUG

9. Baker's accessory : MITT

10. Electronic security corp. : ADT - The telephone ran them out of their original business

11. Fanatic : ZEALOT

12. Duplicity : DECEIT

13. Posed a question : ASKED

19. Mom's demand for an explanation : ANSWER ME - Been there, heard that!

21. Top draft status : ONE-A - This IV status card was "found" on him on 11/22/63 using an alias

26. Moving vehicle : VAN

27. __ rally : PEP 

28. Road trip convenience : REST STOP

30. Go up and down : YOYO - A lot of this motion is NOT up and down

32. Tune for two : DUET

38. Left base illegally : GONE AWOL

40. Kitchen spray : PAM

41. Edible mollusk : SCALLOP

42. Country singer Lovett : LYLE - Yeah, I know who he was married to for two years and I don't know why either

43. "Right back atcha" : YOU TOO

44. Off the mark : ERRANT - William Tell pulled two arrows and told Gov. Gessler that the second arrow would have been for Gessler if the first shot was ERRANT and had killed his son and then... 

47. Respectful refusal : NO SIR

49. Destinations in Clue : ROOMS - The original ROOMS

50. Pops the cork from : OPENS

52. Be dressed in : WEAR

54. Jared of "Suicide Squad" : LETO

56. Juan's uncle : TIO - An Almost Perfect Uncle

57. Bit of cornfield cacophony : CAW

Now, after my DOG and pony show, let's have some good comments 


May 3, 2017

Wednesday, May 3, 2017, Thomas Takaro

Title: I CAN'T GET NO... 

Thomas has given us a fun mid-week puzzle which was a pleasure to solve. However, like the cartoon below, the gimmick evaded me and then hit me OUT OF left field!

Every starred answer was a two word phrase to which OUT OF can be added to either word and make two more common phrases. Very nice.

The fill went very smoothly with only this proper noun speed bump on the way

11. Tony-winning actress for "Miss Saigon" : LEA SALONGA - A name we had recently and I had already forgotten but it solved itself.

THEME ANSWERS, (plus adding OUT OF to first word):

18. *Cubicle, e.g. : WORK SPACE - becomes OUT OF WORK and OUT OF SPACE. - Conducting research while OUT OF WORK?

27. *Singing skill that enables good phrasing : BREATH CONTROL - OUT OF BREATH and OUT OF CONTROL - Breath holding is now a sport called Static Apnea. Here German Tom Sietas beats Brazilian Ricardo Bahia

45. *Number after a circled "c" : COPYRIGHT DATE - OUT OF COPYRIGHT and OUT OF DATE - In Canada, books are OUT OF COPYRIGHT 50 yrs after the author's death. That's January, 2015 for Ian Fleming

60. *Unobstructed view : SIGHT LINE - OUT OF SIGHT and OUT OF LINE - Less is more.

...and the reveal

69. Lacking, and what can go with each word in the answers to starred clues : OUT OF - This silly 1920's song tells of the vendor who is OUT OF bananas!

Now, before I am OUT OF time...


1. Greek played by Anthony Quinn : ZORBA

6. Small plateau : MESA

10. Slick-talking : GLIB - Have I got a lemon car for you!

14. "That is to say ... " : I MEAN

15. Channel showing many games : ESPN

16. Sommelier's prefix : OENO - What he probably won't tell you

17. Incessantly : NO END

20. Kids' racing vehicles : GO KARTS

22. Chicken __ king : ALA - A high school favorite of mine when served on homemade biscuits

23. Prefix with pass or plus : SUR

24. Cultural funding org. : NEA

25. Mottled : PIED

26. MGM motto word : ARS

32. Get an __: ace : A ON

33. Casino gratuity : TOKE - Short for TOKEN of appreciation

34. Overseer : BOSS - The dealer above must call out "TOKE for the dealer" and tap the table to satisfy the pit BOSS that he or she is not stealing.

37. Harbor protectors : JETTIES - The Bussleton JETTY in Western Australia is well over a mile long and has its own railroad

39. "Vitruvian Man" artist : DA VINCI - Robert and Sophie find her dead grandfather in the Louvre posed as the Vitruvian Man at the beginning of The DA VINCI Code

42. Pacific Rim continent : ASIA

43. Mozart's "__ fan tutte" : COSI - "All women behave the same"

44. Jupiter or Mars : GOD

50. EPA pollution std. : AQI

52. Wetland plant : REED

53. Capri suffix : OTE - CAPRIOTE - A resident of the beautiful island of Capri or a conical hat worn by Spanish Clerics. Yeah, I know what they look like.

54. Bit of wordplay : PUN

55. Aviation stat. : ALT - At an ALT of ~50 miles, the sky starts to turn black and you are on the threshold of space

56. "Flags of Our Fathers" setting : IWO JIMA - The Marine Memorial is a sculpture of the raising of the flag on IWO JIMA's Mt. Suribachi and is just "a stone's throw" north of Arlington National Cemetery

63. Inn postings : RATES

64. Cosmopolitan rival : ELLE

65. Gold diggers' objectives : ORES

66. First in a line of Russian princes : IVAN I - 14th century Grand Duke Of Moscow

67. River crossed by Charon : STYX

68. Old or Wild follower : WEST - A 9-part series that tells all you need to know about The West and how it was won/stolen. It may not make you feel very proud.


1. Zest : ZING - "ZING, ZING, ZING went my heartstrings"

2. Melville novel set on Tahiti : OMOO - His second novel - a sequel to Typee and four years before the one about that big fish, uh, mammal

3. Really stink : REEK

4. Split fruit? : BANANA - ~800cal but...

5. Mario who won IndyCar races in four different decades : ANDRETTI

6. Sussex stable area : MEWS - A row of houses or apartments converted from stables. Now you know as much as I do.

7. Anka's "__ Beso" : ESO - This has been a frequent visitor this spring

8. Common sports injury : SPRAIN - The Morris Boot is a way to ice 'em down and still be somewhat mobile

9. Short sock : ANKLET - When you don't need the boot

10. Rep. group : GOP

12. Run up, as debts : INCUR - $19,000,000,000,000 and counting here in the U.S.A. Your share is ~ $61,290.

13. Afrikaans speakers : BOERS

19. Iraq's __ City : SADR

21. Western border lake : TAHOE - Or a humongous SUV

25. "The Purloined Letter" writer : POE - Dupin replaces The Purloined Letter with a fake

27. Westernmost Mexican state, familiarly : BAJA - BAJA California is the home of my best friend from school (I'd say ELHI if I didn't despise that word)

28. Small deer : ROES - A Eurasian deer

29. With allure : ENTICINGLY

30. Bank statement listings: Abbr. : CKS - I can't be out of money, I still have some CKS!

31. Japanese sash : OBI

35. Edinburgh native : SCOT - Edinburgh native Stu Sutcliffe quit the Beatles to pursue an art career. They did however, picture him on this famous cover - Far left, third row from the top. I doubt that he got any royalties.

36. Agree (with) : SIDE

38. Eastern spiritual path : TAO

39. One may be fetching : DOG

40. __ of hands : A SHOW

41. Director De Sica : VITTORIO - Did you see his academy award winner Il Giardinao dei Finzi-Contini? Me either.

43. Spanish hero El __ : CID

46. Start to fall? : PRAT - A PRAT fall by Patrick Swayze in Ghost

47. Soccer penalty card color : YELLOW

48. Make more time for hobbies, say : RETIRE - Yeah, like crossword puzzles

49. "Here we go again" feeling : DEJAVU - Didn't I just blog a puzzle recently...

50. Cathedral areas : APSES 

51. Blanket that's often hand-sewn : QUILT

56. Superlative suffix : IEST

57. "Do __ once!" : IT AT

58. Less, musically : MENO - With (Un) slightly (poco) less (MENO) motion (mosso) as you see here

59. "Not a chance!" : AS IF - AS IF I knew what Un poco meno mosso meant!

61. Bad spell : HEX

62. Game console letters : NES

Now for some comments from you that hopefully are not OUT OF whack:

The Grid