Jan 27, 2012

Friday, January 27, 2012, Marti Duguay-Carpenter

THEME: Let's all meet at the BAR. Each of the six theme answers abuts the three square bars which are joined in the middle of the puzzle, adding the word BAR to the beginning or end of the fill. We had a wonderful Don Hard-G's L-Bar themed puzzle, LINK last January and this puzzle goes another step in integrating visual as well as verbal clues. Really creative, as we have become accustomed with our second double dose of Marti, blog Thursday, construct Friday. I have added her note at the end. This seems a departure for M., with some very hard fill and the focus not on puns and giggles. Well let us see if the prayers for Friday clarity were answered. The SIX (6) theme answers plus unifier:

30A. Hiker's chewy snack: GRANOLA (BAR). I keep them in my desk drawer, not much hiking going on.

32A. Chart used for comparisons: (BAR) GRAPH. I like Pie charts better, especially Cherry.

41A. Steakhouse section: SALAD (BAR). They were introduced in steak places but abound now.

43A. Coming-of-age ritual (BAR) MITZVAH. This is where I got the theme, as I knew M. knew what the ritual name was. We all live by Mitzvah but that is another story.

7D. Trendy place to get gas?: OXYGEN (BAR). We have had reference to these places before, though I never been to one, unless you count my time in ICU. LINK. Dennis, you going to take a drive down there?

48D. Maine resort: (BAR) HARBOR. I will see if our Mainiac will tell you all about the place. I love it there, in August.
And the unifier,

62D. Row of black squares preceding or following six puzzle answers, thereby completing them: BAR.


1. More than irk: ENRAGE. I am always very pleased to blog Marti's efforts, but they also take me so much longer because I become so distracted with tangents from her cluing. Ah well, let us see how you all do.

7. Ending with neur-: OSES. Better than Psych-----

11. Ring leader?: REF. Boxing ring, my first thought was the old EAR Ring. Thought too much, nice clue.

14. "Take it easy!": COOL IT. Easy there pardner,

15. Bonus, in adspeak: XTRA. read all about it.

16. Actress Lupino: IDA. Was she married to Howard Duff?

17. Wichita-based aircraft company: CESSNA. But now they build planes all over the world to save money.

18. Accordion-playing satirist: YANKOVIC. Weird AL.

20. Soft spreads: OLEOS.

21. Pact: AGREEMENT.

22. Idaho crop: RUSSETS. I bet you did not KNOW.

24. Santa __: West Coast winds: ANAS. Anyone watching the golf fro Torrey Pines?

25. "Sonic the Hedgehog" developer: SEGA. They fizzled when Dreamcast was blown away by X-Box, Wii and PS2.

28. Western symbol: TIN STAR. Were you Marshall Dillon or Wyatt Earp fans?

36. "I didn't need to know that!": TMI. Too Much Information, not to be confused with its cousin TMJ, or its step sister TMZ.

37. Family leader?: DON. Knotts? Adams? Rickles? Oh. Don Corleone!

38. Early Beatle Sutcliffe: STU. Fifth Beatle, quit to be an artist, but died young mysteriously. Rumor is Sir Paul was jealous.
40. Lower land?: LEA. Where the lower lows? (Parse "Lower" as Low-er.)

45. Medium: PSYCHIC. No, but I wear a large now.

49. Grub: EATS. Gabby Hayes anyone?

50. Italian bubbly source: ASTI. They have given up the SPUMANTE.

53. The Dike Kokaral divides its two sections: ARAL SEA. More learning.

55. Earth's life zone: BIOSPHERE. SCIENCE. (2:28) Also a movie so bad, it has no trailer on You Tube.

57. Float __: A LOAN. Be careful.

61. Where many shop: ON THE WEB. Be careful.

62. One making big bucks?: BRONCO. Not Tebow? I kept trying to think of the name for a female moose.

63. Payable: DUE.

64. Default consequence, for short: REPO.-session.

65. They're often distinguished by degrees: ALUMNI. E.G., BA, MA and JD.

66. Slalom curve: ESS. I knew she would sneak in a skiing reference.

67. God of lightning: THOR. Ladies?

68. Fix, in a way, as a lawn RESEED. It is sodding easier to sod, right Steve, Nice Cuppa?

Really behind schedule, so we must pick up the pace:


1. Danish shoe brand: ECCO. Latin for behold, who knew about this SHOE?

2. Seasonal number: NOEL. No not FOUR, the singing kind.

3. Obeyed a court order: ROSE. All rise, and give a shout out to our ARBAON.

4. One who didn't get in: ALSO RAN. E.g. Rick Perry.

5. Infomercial knife: GINSU. "But wait, there's more!" The precursor to all infomercials. LINK.

6. LAX listing: ETA. Estimated Time of Arrival.

8. Kicks off: STARTS. You think from Bicycles, or Motorcycles?

9. One of the Gallos: ERNEST. With brother Julio the purveyors of lots of wine, some very good, some very cheap.

10. Drink with sushi: SAKE. Cold or hot?

11. Torn asunder: RIVEN. A nice $10.00 word from the Old Norse.

12. Minneapolis suburb: EDINA. Fancy part of town? C.C.? Jeannie? (C.C.: Some rich folks like Twins' owner live in that area. Quite a few nice golf courses as well, including Interlachen, which hosted US Women's Open a few years ago. Also Solheim Cup in 2002.)

13. Things to face: FACTS. What does this mean, and why do I hear the theme to The Facts of Life in my head now?

19. "My World of Astrology" author: OMARR. Grew up reading the newspaper horoscopes of Sydney.

21. Turkey diner, probably?: ASIAN. Not nibbling a leg, but the country. Nice clue.

23. WWII invasion city: ST LO. Is there a ST. Hi anywhere in France?

25. Certain NCOs: SGTS. Many served at St. Lo.

26. "Forever, __": 1996 humor collection: ERMA. Bombeck, a CW staple, and a funny lady.

27. Author Sheehy: GAIL. I have heard of but not read her BOOKS.

29. Bust __: A GUT. Laugh very heartily so the jelly belly gets rolling; you will not bust a gut reading Gail Sheehy.

31. Ironically, they might be even : ODDS. Cute clue/fill. Loves irony.

33. Inventing middle name: ALVA. Finally an easy one; thanks Mr. Edison.

34. Three-__: sports portmanteau: PEAT. Winning an event three years in a row. Never in Super Bowl History.

35. Derisive cries: HAHS. Dangerous habit.

38. Prepare to be shot: SMILE. What happens to you after the derisive laughs. Be careful.

39. Some twitches: TICS. Well I already used up my Clouseau and Dreyfus clip. How many recall Herbert Lom did not appear in the original Pink Panther movie?

42. Like copycats: APISH. Free pass.

44. Enthusiastic: ZEALOUS. When his girlfriend kissed another girl, he did not get jealous, he got zealous.

46. G-d, in Judaism: YAHWEH. Boy is this a complicated topic, but yes and no.

47. Sleazeball: CREEPO. Nice Webster's word.

50. Humble place: ABODE. Welcome to my....

51. Skull cavity: SINUS. I guess it really is a Friday.

52. Popular rubbers: TOTES. Not Trojan, but she must know DUREX fits in this space? Oh, that kind, I have not worn rubbers in a long time. I SEE.

54. Canadian poet Birney: EARLE. Egads, they know how to rhyme in Canada? My learning moment. All perps. LINK.

56. Saucy: PERT. When I see these words, I now think of two things; shampoo and our own Heart Rx.

58. Pub offer: ON ME. Okay, a Beer reference, sort of. I tried that line in a BAR, but she did not get on.

59. Trouble spots for teens: ACNE. How many proactiv users are there? And are they all pretty women?

60. Reason for being denied a drink NO ID. My first thought was this old Domino's AD. (0:32). Anyone else? Well don't get annoid with me, trivia does stick to my brain.

Answer grid.

Well another Friday puzzle in the record book, another wonderful time with one of our own, and time for me to go back to reading the Game of Thrones books; halfway through the 1125 page book 3. Enjoy all, and here is Marti.

"I was playing around with grid designs, trying to make a puzzle theme from the different shapes. I thought of crosses, x's, squares, and finally came up with this one, with "bars". I thought it would be fun to incorporate the bar shapes into the theme answers. I hope you enjoy the result!"

Jan 26, 2012

Thursday, January 26, 2012 Billie Truitt

Theme: Ham and Jeez. Four cross-referential answers that hinge on the unifier for definition.

17A. See 38-Across : RADIO ENTHUSIAST. Ham radio operators are amateurs without any monetary interest, as opposed to commercial broadcasters.

26A. See 38-Across : SCENERY CHEWER. A ham is one who acts melodramatically. They "chew up the scenery" by focusing all attention on themselves, rather than the stage set or other actors.

43A. See 38-Across : HOLIDAY ENTREE. Most popular entrées for Christmas are ham or turkey. For Hanukkah (or Chanukah), I think it would be brisket? But I defer to Hahtool for that one.

57A. See 38-Across : NOAH'S WAYWARD SON. Noah begat Ham, Shem and Japheth when he was 500 years old. Wow! I want to know where he got his Cialis?

And the unifier:

38A. Clue for 17-, 26-, 43- and 57-Across : HAM. Jeez, how simple!

How about "GREEN EGGS SIDE"? Can you think of others to fit this theme?

Marti here, signing in for this Thursday's theatrics.


1. Utah's state gem : TOPAZ. November birthstone, and also a symbol of friendship. So gals, if he gives you a topaz ring instead of a diamond...better start looking elsewhere.

6. Stable newborn : FOAL

10. Emblem : ICON

14. "Don't try to be ___" : A HERO. "Billy, don't be...". That song was released by Paper Lace in 1974, so many thought it referred to the Vietnam war. It was actually a reference to the Civil War.

15. ___ jure : IPSO. "By the law itself"

16. Slicer's warning : FORE. Does a hooker also yell this?

20. Passed down, as folk mus. : TRAD itional. Abbr. of "music" suggests the correct answer.

21. Shop gripper : VISE. Workshop. Not a security guard in a store.

22. Four Holy Roman emproers : OTTOS. Starting with Otto I who died in 973, and ending with Otto IV who died in 1218.

23. '40s-'50s pitcher Maglie : SAL. He was known as "Sal the Barber" because he gave close shaves: i.e., he pitched inside to hitters. So, another baseball name to add to my ever-growing list!

24. Tangle of hair : MAT. Sometimes found on the bath mat.

25. P.D. alert : APB. "Police Department" All Points Bulletin.

33. Silver and gold : METALS. Anyone else fill in "medals"?

35. Absorb, as a loss : EAT. Eat it. Just too "Weird" for me to link...

36. Via, à la Burns : THRO. "Comin' thro the rye...". Did you know that the book by J.D. Salinger was named after this poem?

37. "___ you clever!" : AREN'T. Me? No. Jerome? Definitely, yes!

39. Intersect : CROSS. Like "perps".

40. Unlike Wellesley College : CO-ED. One of the "Seven Sisters" colleges in the Northeast. Without looking on Wiki, can you name any of the other six?

41. Board partner : BED. I usually think of "room and board", so this one eluded me for a while.

42. Downloadable media player : I-TUNES

46. Clunker : DUD

47. Cruet fluid : OIL. "Vinegar" wouldn't fit...

48. Corn serving : EAR

51. That and that : THOSE. Clever clue!

54. Proverbial equine escape site : BARN. To "close the barn door after the horse has bolted" means doing too little, too late.

56. Sharp part : EDGE. Like a knife edge.

60. Plotting : UP TO. Whenever we were quiet, my mother would always yell from the other room, "What are you kids up to?"

61. Head start? : IDEA.

62. Neutral shade : BEIGE

63. Dry run : TEST

64. No sweat : EASY...peasy lemon squeezy.

65. Being pulled : IN TOW


1. Knave of Heart's loot : TARTS.

"...The Knave of Hearts
He stole those tarts,
And took them clean away..."

2. Fictional plantation owner : O'HARA. Frankly, I don't give a damn...

3. Guitar played with hands and feet : PEDAL STEEL. This was a total unknown for me. Maybe Jazzbumpa knows?

4. Dry : ARID.

5. San Diego attraction : ZOO. J.D. just visited it with her grandsons last week on her birthday visit. How was it?

6. Having limits : FINITE

7. Makes a choice : OPTS

8. U.S. Open stadium : ASHE. Arthur Ashe Stadium in Queens, NY.

9. Rickey broke his stolen base record in 1991 : LOU. Lou Brock was outdone by Rickey Henley Henderson, known as "The Man of Steal". His 1,406 career steals record is 50% higher than the previous record of 938 by Lou. (Did I get it right, C.C.??) (From C.C.: Just one short of 50% more than Brock's. Rickey Henderson holds quite a few MLB records, including leadoff home runs, stolen bases in a single season.)

10. "Assuming that's accurate," biblically :IF IT BE TRUE.

11. Winter garb : COAT. We don't need them so often this year, but I can live with that!

12. Guesstimate words : OR SO.

13. Takes home : NETS

18. Rogers's partner : EVANS. Roy Rogers and Dale Evans. "Hammerstein" wouldn't fit...

19. Last year's frosh : SOPH

24. Hot sandwich : MELT. Yummm, tuna melt!

25. Sequence of scenes : ACT

27. It's not posed : CANDID SHOT. Like this?

28. Aptly named author : READE. Charles, best known for "The Cloister and the Hearth". Has anyone reade it?

29. Holiday tuber : YAM. To go with the ham?

30. Dismissive bit of rhetoric : WHO NEEDS IT?

31. Highland tongue : ERSE

32. Legendary seamstress : ROSS. Betsy, famous flag seamstress.

33. Eponymous physicist Ernst ___ : MACH. Austrian physicist who studied shock waves. You wanna mach something of it?

34. Switch add-on : EROO. Ah yes, the old switch-eroo.

38. "I'm talking to you!" : HEY! (Yes, you!)

39. PC key below Shift : CTRL. On my Macbook, it's "Fn"

41. Wicked : BAD. Not the play...

42. Turner memoir : I, TINA

44. Member's payment : DUES

45. Where kroner are spent : NORWAY

49. Disco era term : A-GO-GO

50. Sign up for more : RENEW

51. Letter-shaped fastener : T-NUT. C-clamp, U-bolt, L-bar, S-hook, I-beam...???

52. Optimism : HOPE

53. Granola grain : OATS

54. ___ Bing!: "The Sopranos" nightclub : BA-DA

55. Some votes : AYES

56. First lady's garden site? : EDEN. Not this "rose" garden.

58. Golfer Michelle : WIE

59. Hitter's stat : RBI. Ha! Nailed this one. Hitter = Runs, ergo: Runs Batted In.

So, I hope this puzzle was a home run for you solvers? Friday is coming, and may not be so easy peasy lemon squeezy.!


Note from C.C.:

Re: Marti's comment on 5-Down: Here is wonderful picture from JD's visit to
Safari Park on Jan 14. She said "The baby gorilla is playing with some kind of rodent who keeps coming out of his little hole. The baby touched him several fear with either of them."

Here is a picture of the cute little Cameron looking at a sea turtle.

Jan 25, 2012

Wednesday, January 25, 2012 Nancy Salomon

Theme: SOFT DRINKS. Three long theme answers each take a common verb phrase and give it a humorous twist, while ending in a word that signifies a kind of (typically non-alcoholic) beverage. I loves me this kind of word-play.

19A. Outdo other guests seeking a party drink? : BEAT TO THE PUNCH. Do something before somebody else can, a term probably derived form boxing. PUNCH: A drink made with fruit juices, soda, other flavorings, and typically served in small cups from a large bowl.

36A. Order one so-so ice cream drink? : GET A FAIR SHAKE. To get a fair or unbiased opportunity for success. SHAKE: A cold drink made from milk, ice cream, and fruit or chocolate. Very amusing clue.

53A. Activate a dispenser for a fruit drink? : TURN ON THE JUICE. Flip the switch to "on". Activate the energy. JUICE: Fluid naturally contained in plant or animal tissue. Emphasis on the plants here, as we don't usually drink animal juices, though some can be quite potable.

Hi, gang, it's JazzBumpa, noting that any of these drinks could be made alcoholic, if one so chooses. With that in mind, shall we have a sip, or a big gulp? Onward!


1. Kid's summer spot : CAMP. Lots of options: I went to Boy Scout CAMP as a kid, some of the granddaughters have been to Theater CAMP. Oldest grandson will go to Band Camp this Summer. What are your experiences?

5. Ain't it the truth : FACT. No made-up CAMP stories, please.

9. Melville's Billy : BUDD. A sailor in a story left unfinished when Melville died in 1891. The story has a confusing history.

13. Craft seen at many a 1-Across : CANOE. Watercraft, not arts and craft, and only if the camp is on a lake or a river.

14. Banned apple treatment : ALAR. This plant treatment regulated the growth, improved the color, and made the harvest easier. Per Wikipedia, it was also intended to be used on cherries, peaches, pears, Concord grapes, tomato transplants and peanut vines. It actually was not banned. It was withdrawn from the market when the EPA proposed banning it. Details.

15. Current about : UP ON. It pays to be UP ON your FACTS.

16. "Family Matters" nerd : URKEL. Waaay too annoying for a clip.

17. __ dry eye in the house : NOT A. We were all wailing and gnashing our teeth.

18. Hindu music style : RAGA. Indian music sometimes uses quartertones - notes between the scale notes we in the West are used to hearing. This gives it quite an exotic sound. Here is an example. It's over 9 minutes, but you can sample less.

22. Hotel annex? : IER. Hotelier. Typically cliched misdirecting clue for an affix. We are not amused.

23. Carson's late-night predecessor : PAAR. Jack.

24. Thurmond who was a senator for 47 years : STROM.

26. Fancy neckwear : CRAVATS. Warnings to not tie them too tightly are CRAVATS caveats.

29. Bay Area airport letters : SFO.

31. Lux. locale : EUR. Abbrv. for Europe. Luxembourg is a tiny land-locked country, over there somewhere. Maybe one of our world travelers can enlighten us.

32. Pitcher of milk? : ELSIE. Needed lots of perp help, 'til the light came on. ELSIE was the advertising spokesbovine for Bordon Dairy Products. Great clue.

34. Size up : ASSESS. When you ASSESS, you must also mind your spelling.

39. Throw in the direction of : TOSS TO. As what one might do with a hot potato.

40. __ one's game: performing below par : NOT ON. As when one drops a hot potato.

41. Bribe : SOP. More perp help needed. Couldn't bring this together, but it's legit. Also, an acronym for Standard Operating Procedure. Hmmmmm . .

42. Slice of history : ERA. Frex, Jazz ERA.

44. Hardly silk purse material, in an idiom : SOW'S EAR. Cute, but obvious clue.

48. Building brick : ADOBE. A brick of sun or kiln dried clay. Not this. Not him.

50. Bearing : MIEN. Probably from the same root as demeanor.

52. Unnamed degree : NTH. Specific, but unspecified. Oh, the uncertainty.

57. Civil rights icon Parks : ROSA. Perhaps the most famous bus rider, ever.

58. "You bet, señora!" : SI SI. As we say to our esteemed hostess, "SI SI, C.C." See?

59. Rye fungus : ERGOT. This fungus renders the grain toxic. Those who speak of it in arcane terms are using ERGOT argot.

60. A very long time : AGES. It's been a long, long time.

61. Lobe adornment : HOOP. Check it out.

62. Slasher's title hangout, in film: Abbr. : ELM ST. The slasher is Freddy Kruger from the Nightmare on ELM ST. Movies

63. Schools of whales : PODS. Does anyone know why?

64. Pops the question : ASKS. Put this way, it could be any old question. Shouldn't it be the specific one for Lida Rose?

65. H.S. junior's exam : PSAT. Pre-SAT. Let's not teach to the test, though.


1. Job, and then some : CAREER. Engineering used to be a a CAREER. Now, it's just a job.

2. Asian capital on a peninsula : ANKARA. Turkey

3. Champagne brand : MOET. Now here is some French I can go for.

4. Assail (with), as snowballs : PELT. Definitely different from TOSS TO. PELT implies force and/or violence. We PELTED him with snowballs until his pelt was caked and soggy.

5. Classic film with dancing hippos : FANTASIA. This is one of the worst pieces of classical music ever, IMNSHO. I had to play it once. After Allan Sherman, it's almost impossible to keep a straight face. Still, here is the clip.

6. Hawaiian hi or bye : ALOHA. Indicates you most likely have recently or are about to get leied.

7. Works a wedding : CATERS

8. Catch : TRAP

9. Too well-done : BURNT. This would qualify as well done, but not done well.

10. Where not to be paddleless? : UP A CREEK. Severity of the dilemma depends on the nature of the creek. Best not to be in a concrete canoe.

11. Whence a front yard growl : DOG HOUSE. From yon DOG HOUSE emanateth yon bark.

12. It may be used to ID a perp : DNA. Not our kind of perp. Genetic material used to I.D. a criminal

13. Like dice, shape-wise : CUBIC.

20. Chooses : OPTS FOR

21. G.I. entertainment : USO SHOW. Bob Hope did these in WW II and for decades after. Here is one example. We play this song for the 4th of July park concert every Summer, while honoring the service vets. Even for crusty old me, it is very moving.

25. Robinson of song : MRS. From the movie, The Graduate. Still sounds good.

27. November honorees : VETS. See 21 D.

28. Support group for kids of substance abusers : ALATEEN. Fortunately, this is outside my experience.

30. Scam that's "pulled" : FAST ONE

33. Hamburger's article : EIN. German for "one" or the indefinite article "a."

35. Without : SANS. I could do SANS the French

36. All set : GOOD TO GO

37. Championed, as a cause : ESPOUSED

38. Fruit used as a vitamin C supplement : ROSE HIPS. From the same plant that gives us the flower. Somewhere, there must be a lady named ROSE HIPS.

39. Airport safety org. : TSA Transportation Safety Administration.

43. Prenatal tests, for short : AMNIOS. Abbrev. for amniocentesis, a rather dangerous procedure.

45. Baffling problem : ENIGMA. Speaking of Soviet Communism, Winston Churchill said: "It is a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an ENIGMA." I hope that is clear.

46. Not marked up : AT COST. This has to do with selling prices, not graffiti.

47. Classic role for Clark : RHETT. From Gone With The Wind. Do you give a damn?

49. Military bigwigs : BRASS. Looks like this might be a shortened form of "BRASS Hat," so called for the gold braid on the hat.

51. "Everything's fine" : IT'S OK.

54. Worker protection agcy. : O. S.H.A. Occuptional Safety and Health Administration. Not the impudent wilding woman who knows that Winter Is Coming, here seen holding her own against Theon Greyjoy.

55. Cherokee maker : JEEP. The 2012 lineup only has a Grand Cherokee.

56. www addresses : URLS. Universal Resource Locators on the World Wide Web.

57. 50 Cent's genre : RAP.

Answer grid.

Ahhhh! A fine, refreshing quaff from one of puzzledom's greats. I'll admit, though, that I did all this with a snifter of Pinch at my elbow.



Jan 24, 2012

Tuesday, January 24, 2012 Julian Lim

Theme: Not Quite Black - Five entries whose last word, if placed after the word DARK, form a new phrase.

64A. *When night owls thrive, or where the last words of the starred answers can go : AFTER DARK. (shouldn't have had a star on this clue though.)

17A. *Artsy-sounding microbrew : CRAFT BEER. DARK BEER are usually brewed from a pale malt or lager malt base with a small proportion of darker malt added to achieve the desired shade. Other colourants—such as caramel—are also widely used to darken beers. Very dark beers, such as stout, use dark or patent malts that have been roasted longer. Some have roasted unmalted barley. (as per Wiki, perhaps Lemon can elaborate more fully.)

29A. *Brains, informally : GRAY MATTER. DARK MATTER - "By fitting a theoretical model of the composition of the Universe to the combined set of cosmological observations, scientists have come up with the composition that we described above, ~70% dark energy, ~25% dark matter, ~5% normal matter. What is dark matter?

We are much more certain what dark matter is not than we are what it is." NASA Science

47A. *Officially restricted yet widely known information : OPEN SECRET. DARK SECRET, often proceeded by DEEP; we all have them, eh?

10D. *Many "South Park" jokes : TOILET HUMOR. DARK HUMOR - Humor that is viewed as dark, morbid, cruel, offensive to some, and or graphic in nature and is yet, still found funny. (per Urban Dict.)

25. *Classic Greek ruse : TROJAN HORSE. DARK HORSE - A term used to describe a little-known person or thing that emerges to prominence, especially in a competition of some sort.

Argyle here. I was here yesterday and so were a lot of the answers. Not much excitement so let's get to it.


1. __ facto : IPSO. (by the fact itself)

5. Cut in stone : ETCH

9. Carell of "The Office" : STEVE

14. Tex-Mex snack : TACO

15. "That's not enough!" : "MORE!"

16. Reason for a skull-and-crossbones warning : TOXIN

19. Spoke (up) : PIPED

20. Sci-fi computer : HAL. From the film, "2001: A Space Odyssey".

21. Crumpled into a ball : WADDED

23. Unhappy times : LOWS

24. Newspaper big shot : EDITOR

26. "Fantastic!" : "SUPER!"

28. Honeybunch : DEAR

34. High-pitched winds : OBOEs

36. "La __": Puccini opera : BOHÈME

37. Muslim pilgrim : HAJJI

40. Spot for a facial : SPA

42. Like pulp magazine details : LURID

43. It's held underwater : BREATH

45. __ salts : EPSOM

49. Gave the go-ahead : OKed

53. Sonnet feature : RHYME

54. Basic chalet style : A-FRAME

56. Cookie used in milkshakes : OREO

58. Security request, briefly : ID CARD

61. DVR button : REC

62. Pitcher Martinez : PEDRO. Retired now, he is an eight-time All-Star, three-time Cy Young Award winner, and 2004 World Series champion.

66. Humiliate : ABASE

67. Sound from Simba : ROAR. The Lion King.

68. Play to __: draw : A TIE

69. "See ya!" : "LATER!"

70. Taxpayer IDs : SSNs

71. Mix : MELD


1. Bugged, as a bug bite : ITCHED. ???

2. Event with floats : PARADE

3. Justice Antonin : SCALIA

4. Gut-punch response : "OOF!"

5. Ban on trade : EMBARGO

6. See 18-Down : TOED. 18D. With 6-Down, kind of sloth : TWO

7. Believability, to homeys : CRED. Short for "credibility".

8. Joan of Arc's crime : HERESY

9. Sponsor at some NHRA events : STP. National Hot Rod Association (NHRA)

11. Overseas trader : EXPORTER

12. Hillside house asset : VIEW

13. Finales : ENDS

22. Not bright at all : DUMB

27. Renaissance painter Veronese : PAOLO

30. High-__ monitor : RESolution

31. "__ your instructions ..." : AS PER

32. Brit. record label : EMI

33. Lobster color : RED. Not in their natural state.

35. Itsy-__ : BITSY

37. "The Wire" airer : HBO. Central to the structure and plot of the show is the use of electronic surveillance and wiretap technologies by the police—hence the title "The Wire".

38. Dadaist Jean : ARP. Sculptor, painter, poet and abstract artist. Also, frequent crossword visitor.

39. Derided : JEERED AT

41. Orangutan or chimp : APE

44. Prefix with sphere : HEMI

46. Rubberneckers : STARERS

48. Trees used for shingles : CEDARS

50. Discipline with kicks : KARATE

51. "Kick it up a notch!" chef : EMERIL. His site.

52. Floored with a haymaker : DECKED. A haymaker is slang boxing term for a wild swinging punch, using much of the same motion of someone using a scythe, twisting his waist and shoulders round before turning back.

55. Depression era pres. : FDR

56. Down Under gem : OPAL

57. McEntire sitcom : "REBA"

59. Corp. cash mgrs. : CFOs. (chief financial officer)

60. __ earlier time : AT AN

63. Opposite of 'neath : O'ER

65. River blocker : DAM


Jan 23, 2012

Monday, January 23, 2012 Johanna Fenimore

Theme: Do En Do Do - Clip(3:05) I hope it shines on all of you.


27A. Surprised party, metaphorically : MONKEY'S UNCLE

44A. Destination not yet determined : PARTS UNKNOWN

58A. Beatles song, and a hint to the hidden word in 17-, 27- and 44-Across : "HERE COMES THE SUN"

Argyle here with your earworm for a Monday. I believe this is our constructor's first LAT puzzle. She has collaborated with Andrea Carla Michaels on several other puzzles and Andrea had her own solo effort here last September. Two full length themes anchor the grid firmly and aside from a shortstop, the fill is pleasant.


1. Thumbs-way-up reviews : RAVES. "Have you ever been to a rave?" (quote from a really strange PSA.)

6. Knocks with one's knuckles : RAPS

10. Not feral : TAME

14. Low-budget, in company names : ECONO

15. Happily __ after : EVER

16. October birthstone : OPAL

20. Dined : ATE

21. Twosome : PAIR

22. Heart chambers : ATRIA

23. Positive thinker's assertion : "YES I CAN!"

25. Cleopatra's river : NILE

32. Beelzebub : SATAN

35. Oboe or bassoon : REED

36. Baled grass : HAY

37. "Jurassic Park" terror, for short : T-REX

38. Meanspiritedness : SPITE

40. Home plate, e.g. : BASE

41. Above, in verse : O'ER

42. Apple computer : IMAC

43. Showed on television : AIRED

48. Detest : HATE

49. Oscar-winning film about Mozart : "AMADEUS"

53. End of __ : AN ERA

56. Yard sale warning : AS IS

57. British mil. award : DSO. Distinguished Service Order.

62. Opera solo : ARIA

63. Like a steak with a red center : RARE

64. "That is to say ..." : "I MEAN ..."

65. Double O Seven : BOND, James BOND.

66. "P.U.!" inducer : ODOR

67. Willy-__: sloppily : NILLY


1. Satisfy, as a loan : REPAY

2. Like most triangle angles : ACUTE. (less than 90°)

3. Chooses at the polls : VOTES

4. USNA grad : ENS.ign

5. Slight trace : SOUPÇON. Origin: 1760–70; < French: a suspicion, Middle French sospeçon < Late Latin suspectiōn- (stem of suspectiō ), for Latin suspīciō suspicion. What is that little mark under the C? Cedilla, a character ( ¸ ) placed underneath a c before a, o, or u, esp in French, Portuguese, or Catalan, denoting that it is to be pronounced (s), not (k). The same character is used in the scripts of other languages, as in Turkish under s

6. Symbol of financial losses : RED INK

7. State firmly : AVER

8. For each : PER

9. Málaga Mrs. : SRA. Map of Spain showing Málaga.

10. Best-seller list : TOP TEN

11. Mimic : APER

12. West African country : MALI

13. Jazzy Fitzgerald : ELLA

18. Indian bread : NAAN

19. "To your health," to José : "¡SALUD!"

24. Big-screen format : IMAX. No connection to 42-Across : IMAC

25. Russian rejection : NYET

26. "That's clear now" : "I SEE"

28. Angels shortstop Aybar : ERICK. This guy.

29. Sear : CHAR

30. Operate with a beam : LASE

31. Kept in view : EYED

32. Halt : STOP

33. Zone : AREA

34. Alaska, once: Abbr. : TERR.

38. Obscene material : SMUT

39. Glazier's fitting : PANE. (window)

40. Tough spot : BIND

42. Newton or Stern : ISAAC

43. Inundated with : AWASH IN

45. Needle's partner : THREAD

46. Sadat's predecessor : NASSER. He was the leader of a successful military coup to depose King Farouk in 1952. Nasser became the president of Egypt in 1956 and remained president until his death in 1970.

47. Leave out : OMIT

50. '50s Ford flop : EDSEL

51. Typical : USUAL

52. Hot-headed Corleone brother in "The Godfather" : SONNY

53. Moby Dick chaser : AHAB

54. Fiddling emperor : NERO

55. "__ Brockovich" : ERIN. "Erin Brockovich" is a 2000 biographical film directed by Steven Soderbergh. Julia Roberts won the Academy Award, Golden Globe, Screen Actors' Guild Award and BAFTA for Best Actress

56. Flying prefix : AERO

59. Gold, in Granada : ORO

60. Insane : MAD

61. Record label initials across the pond : EMI. (Electric and Musical Industries)


Note from C.C.:

JD and her family went to San Diego to celebrate her birthday last Saturday (Jan 14). Here is a beautiful picture of the happy family. Let's see if I get the order right.

Back row from left to right: Bob (JD's husband), JD, Shelby (JD's oldest daughter) and Shelby's husband Joe, who is holding their handsome son Cameron.

Front row from left to right: Derek (Corie's husband, a Welsh) and son Grady, Corie (JD's younger daughter) is holding her son Truman. Grady is Truman's little brother.

JD said "We saw the zoo on Fri. Sea World on Sat and the Safari Park on Sunday. It was my best birthday ever, and we didn't even have time for cake.