Jul 31, 2017

Monday, July 31, 2017 ~ Lila Cherry

Theme: Play Ball! - We can't! All the bats are broken.

17A. Popular pool game: EIGHT BALL

32A. Nearly: JUST ABOUT

40A. Bulletin board sticker: THUMB TACK

5D. Healthful cereal: OAT BRAN

42D. Doctor's order: LAB TEST

58A. Cause of wood splinters in the infield ... and what each set of puzzle circles represents: BROKEN BAT

Argyle at the plate and "Really Rich" pitching. You should draw a walk but you still could be caught in a "pickle".


1. Outdoor party area: PATIO

6. Hot tub: SPA

9. In-the-wall security devices: SAFEs

14. Andes beast of burden: LLAMA. Two 'L'. In 29A. Great Wall continent: ASIA we have 60A. Tibetan beast of burden: YAK

15. Fox foot: PAW

16. Flashy display: ECLAT

19. Pretense: GUISE

20. Sneaks out after being grounded, say: DISOBEYS

21. Spinach-eating sailor: POPEYE

22. College dorm VIPs: RAs. (resident assistant or resident advisor)

23. Loo: LAV. (lavatory)

24. Blame for the crime: RAP. Noun usage: take the RAP, Slang. to take the blame

25. Capital One's "What's in your wallet?," e.g.: SLOGAN

31. Singer Rimes: LEANN

37. Eduardo's eight: OCHO. Spanish.

38. Brown-toned photo: SEPIA

39. Crowd silence: HUSH

42. Doone of Exmoor: LORNA

Badgworthy Water, a small river flowing through Malmsmead on Exmoor.

43. Israeli statesman Abba: EBAN. Abba Eban died in 2002.

44. Poland's capital: WARSAW where you might see 26D. Peace Nobelist Walesa: LECH. Lech Wałęsa.

45. Sophs, two yrs. later: SRs

48. Milk buys: Abbr.: QTs

49. Kernel holder: COB

50. Bernadette of "Into the Woods": PETERS

52. Surprise winner of fable: TORTOISE

57. Japanese mushroom: ENOKI

59. Hollywood VIP: CELEB

61. Barely enough: SCANT

62. Garden plantings: SEEDS

63. Ambulance initials: EMS. (Emergency Medical Services)

64. Short and not so sweet: TERSE


1. Asked earnestly (for): PLED. Pleaded, plead, or pled, per, et al.

2. Et __: and others: ALII

3. Clothing price sites: TAGS

4. Texter's "If you ask me": IMHO. (in my humble opinion)

6. Neuters: SPAYS

7. Buddies: PALS

8. Punching tool: AWL

9. Classical guitarist Andrés: SEGOVIA

10. __ of coffee: A CUP

11. Advertising handout: FLIER

12. No-sweat grade: EASY 'A'

13. Precipitous: STEEP

18. Lima or fava: BEAN

21. Linguine or tortellini: PASTA

23. Eye surgery acronym: LASIK

25. One in a casino row: SLOT

27. Honolulu's island: OAHU

28. Pointy-hatted garden decoration: GNOME

30. Detest: ABHOR

32. Lees on your legs: JEANS

33. Scannable mdse. bars: UPC. (Universal Product Code)

34. For us: OURS

35. Pres. Carter's alma mater: USNA. (United States Naval Academy)

36. Unfreeze: THAW

38. Runs, hits and errors: STATS

41. Backyard beef on the bone, briefly: BBQ RIBS

44. Employment: WORK

45. Project details, for short: SPECS

46. Actress Zellweger: RENÉE. Post surgery.

47. Took badly?: STOLE

49. Broth-spoiling excess?: COOKS. "Too many cooks spoil the broth".

51. Barely managed, with "out": EKED

52. Theme park transport: TRAM

53. At a former time: ONCE. Once upon a time. (In to the Woods?)

54. Letter-shaped beam: I-BAR

55. Without, in France: SANS

56. Suffix with kitchen: ETTE. (kitchenette)

58. "Ciao!": "BYE!". "See ya later!"


Jul 30, 2017

Sunday, July 30, 2017, C.C. Burnikel


Husker Gary reporting on another fun C.C. Sunday puzzle. The creative and prolific den mother of our blog has taken eight common two-word phrases and replaced the D that begins one of the words with TR which generates  a silly phrase as you can see below.

Four of the swaps took place in the first word and four in the second word. 

Here are my attempts to make sense of the nonsense products of C.C.'s fun swap as the original phrases seem self-explanatory. 

23. Gathering of zombies? : TRANCE (DANCE) PARTY - Michael DANCING in a TRANCE

25. Vacation including Caribbean dance lessons? : SALSA TRIP (DIP) - Kids getting down on that vacation after lessons

50. Dumpster illumination : TRASH (DASH) LIGHT - Trash can be a 24/7 proposition

53. Case with a strict time limit? : SPEED TRIAL (DIAL) - A possible characteristic of this proceeding 

85. Semi driver's superstition? : LUCKY TRUCK (DUCK) - A LUCKY DUCK in a TRUCK

88. Bugs' wealthy heir? : TRUST (DUST) BUNNY - Would he live like this?

113. Photo including six-pack abs? : TRUNK (DUNK) SHOT

115. Vocal technique used at seders? : KOSHER TRILL (DILL) - You might hear it here

Hmmm... I wonder what a TRAMP WASHCLOTH would look like

Let's see what ELSE C.C. has for us this morning: 


1. Moving manga : ANIME -  Japanese cartoon style - the word "manga" comes from the Japanese word 漫画 composed of the two kanji 漫 (man) meaning "whimsical or impromptu" and 画 (ga) meaning "pictures" This issue will run you about Fifty 27. Currency exchange table letters : U.S. Dollars

6. Celebratory smoke : CIGAR

11. Cause of inflation? : PUMP

15. Winter Palace ruler : TSAR

19. "Hallelujah" songwriter Leonard : COHEN - I tend to think of Handel's magnificent chorus first

20. Mozart work : OPERA

21. Sport involving protective suits : EPEE - I would hope so

22. Sch. publishing the Daily Bruin : UCLA

28. Dietary figs. : RDAS - I don't exceed my Recommended Daily Allowance of salt any more

29. Goad : EGG ON

31. Faithfully following : TRUE TO

32. Awards originally for radio only : PEABODYS - NBC won a PEABODY for this series the year I graduated from high school

34. Is strongly held, as a belief : RUNS DEEP 

36. Long while : EON

37. Burro bellow : BRAY

38. Chatty bird : MYNA

39. Line in an Ellington classic : A TRAIN - You could take a 78  RPM spin on this line

41. Company with a spokesduck : AFLAC - as annoying as that GEICO gecko

43. South American squeezer : BOA

45. Bundle up : SWATHE

47. Eyelid malady : STYE

55. Screen door stuff : MESH - Ours are Kitty-proof

56. Ranch rope : LARIAT

58. Leader who resigned in his sixth yr. : Richard Milhous Nixon and 66. Water gate : DAM - Speaking of RMN and 95. Like some interviews : ON TAPE - Speaking of RMN

59. Wings it, in jazz : VAMPS - When the singer forgets the words, what the band must do

60. Matching pair : SET

61. Subdue, in a way : TASE

62. City WSW of Bogotá : CALI

64. Attorney general before Dick Thornburgh : ED MEESE

67. Pricey mushroom : MOREL - This is an Iowa area code

68. 2015 Verizon purchase : AOL

69. "Kojak" actor : SAVALAS

73. Tinseltown pooch : ASTA - Nick and Nora's Wire Fox Terrier

74. Blighted urban area : SLUM - This perfectly good farm ground had to be declared legally blighted to build a $300M Costco Chicken Plant one mile from me

76. Commonly injured knee ligament, briefly : MCL - Your knee has many ligaments

79. "__ Like You": Young Rascals hit : A GIRL

80. Baggage-opening org. : TSA

82. Exactly right : SPOT ON

84. Harbor sound : TOOT

90. Antoinette's head : TETE - La TETE de Marie Antoinette s'est retrouvé dans un panier (The head of Marie Antoinette wound up in a basket)

91. Remove forcefully : RIP OUT - In Dead Poet's Society, Robin Williams had his students RIP OUT the pages that dared to quantify poetry

93. Apnea-treating doc : ENT

94. Come in : ENTER

97. Note at the office : MEMO

99. "And step on it!" : ASAP

100. Sailor : TAR 

102. Flipped before serving, perhaps : OVER EASY - A mandatory practice in one of Warren Buffet's companies or your next one's free!

104. Gmail lifesaver : UNDO SEND - "I just laid the babysitter" Dang, "I meant I just paid the babysitter!"

108. Safari runner? : IPHONE - Safari's the browser I use on my iPhone

110. Pub fun : DARTS

111. American assignment : SEAT - Ben appears to be   assigned to SEAT 17E

112. John in Wimbledon : LOO - Even John McEnroe had to use the LOO occasionally when he played at Wimbledon

118. Theater section : LOGE

119. Unlikely to bite : TAME - Ask before you pet!

120. Irritated : IRKED

121. Kindergarten refrain : E-I-E-I-O 

122. Slaughter of the Cardinals : ENOS - He was a 125. Risk taker : DARER who is remembered for scoring from first base on a single in the 1946 World Series

123. River of Flanders : YSER

124. Drops of sorrow : TEARS


1. Cause a ruckus : ACT UP

2. Like Thor : NORSE

3. "It's been fun" : I HAD A BLAST - A likely refrain heard after completing a C.C. puzzle

4. Kings and bishops : MEN - The Chess Pieces around here 

5. Make gradual inroads : ENCROACH

6. Number at a doctor's office : CO-PAY

7. "Count me out" : I PASS - "Would you like some liver, Gary?

8. Lang. where all nouns are capitalized : GER

9. Major route : ARTERY

10. Futuristic arms : RAY GUNS - Take that Stay Puft Marshmallow Man!

11. Cancún cash : PESOS

12. "Time to start the day!" : UP AND AT 'EM

13. Brooks of comedy : MEL

14. Heckled : PESTERED

15. Sugar Plum Fairy's dress : TUTU

16. Hours often set by parents : SCREEN TIME - Hmmm...

17. O'Connor successor : ALITO

18. Knock at : RAP ON - Halloween Day will mark the 500th Anniversary of when Luther did RAP ON this door.

24. Whirlpool : EDDY

26. Plucked instrument, in Padua : ARPA

30. Chews (on) : GNAWS

33. Hardly humble : BRASH

35. Hydrocarbon gas : ETHENE - Gotta love all those E's

38. When doubled, fish often grilled : MAHI

40. Its anthem is "Hatikvah" : ISRAEL - The Hope

41. Devices with shielded keypads : ATMS and 109. Slot machine inserts : ONES - One machine giveth and one machine taketh away

42. On the house : FREE

43. Slant : BIAS

44. Mythical monster : OGRE

46. National Pecan Month : APRIL - Puh can/Pee can/Puh cawn/Pee cawn

48. Barks : YAPS

49. Besides : ELSE

51. Guanaco cousin : LLAMA - A definite family resemblance

52. Fiesta fare : TACOS

54. Marge Simpson or June Cleaver : TV MOM - Granddaughter knew the former but had never heard of the latter

57. Knave of Hearts' loot : TARTS - He brought them back when the King commanded him to do so

61. Score : TALLY

63. Moved like a kangaroo : LEAPT - On the East side of the Atlantic and LEAPED on this side

65. Unnerve : DAUNT

66. Dim : DARKEN

67. Auto-painting franchise whose name reverses three letters of a transmission franchise : MAACO - The transmission place of course is AA (beep beed) MCO

69. Margarita flavoring : SALT

70. Fever and shivering : AGUE

71. Quasimodo's creator : VICTOR HUGO - Research at the Tate reveals that HUGO probably based this character on a very respected but reclusive stone mason who was working at Notre Dame when the author was there. No bell ringer that hunchback.

72. Mark on a bass : STRIPE

74. Leave thunderstruck : STUN

75. Going around in circles, say : LOST

76. Only state capital without a McDonald's : MONTPELIER - but you can get to one 10 min away in Berlin, VT.

77. Roadwork marker : CONE

78. Nearly six trillion mi. : LT YR - The light we currently receive on Earth from Proxima Centauri left there in May of 2013

81. Saint's home : SUPER DOME - Also the home for homeless after Hurricane Katrina

83. One may be crumbled on a sundae : OREO

84. Albacore and yellowfin : TUNAS

86. Sham : TRAVESTY

87. Harold's movie pal : KUMAR - I never miss their movies. I never see 'em and I never miss 'em.

89. Lit : BESOTTED

92. Radon detection aid : TEST KIT - $17.57 at War~Mart

96. Honky-__ : TONK

98. Indian city known for its silk production : MYSORE - I found this title amusing and disgusting if read a certain way

99. Purim month : ADAR - There it is in this Jewish year of 5777. My goodness, I think I am still writing 5776 on my checks!

100. Pope, for one : TITLE

101. Splash guard : APRON

103. Food processor? : EATER - ...and not gain a pound

104. Lead to a seat : USHER

105. Has to have : NEEDS

106. "Seriously!" : NO LIE

107. Sorrow : DOLOR - Roethke's poem DOLOR "explores the persona’s response to a life constrained in a grindingly repetitive institutional environment."

114. Exhibits, as doubts : HAS

116. Calypso offshoot : SKA

117. Coastal inlet : RIA

Comments are welcome, even from a TROLL HOUSE

Jul 29, 2017

Saturday, Jul 29th, 2017, Mary Lou Guizzo

Theme: None

Words: 72 (missing J,Q,X)

Blocks: 30

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

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

It was supposed to be faced in granite

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

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

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

O Drawn~!


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

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

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

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

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

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

20*. Pindar works : ODES

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

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

23. "Semper Fidelis" group : MARINES

25. Baseball statistic : AT BATS

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

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

33. React to dizziness : REEL

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

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

38. Strained : TENSE

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

40. Shade-tolerant foliage : HOSTAS

41. Busts, e.g. : STATUES

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

44. Took the trouble : CARED

45*. Fashion designer Jacobs : MARC

46*. Arctic coast explorer : RAE

49. Fling : HURL

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

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

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

56. Not taken : UNSELECTED


1. Subside : BATE - dang, I had EASE

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

3. Skin : PELT

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

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

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

7. Jaw-dropping courtroom admission : I LIED

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

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

10. Born : NÉE

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

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

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

14. Infiltrators : SPIES

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

22. Pasta commonly served with Bolognese sauce : TAGLIATELLE

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

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

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

26. Even : TIED

27. It might be tapped : BEER BARREL

28. Costumes : GARBS

30. Hard pill to swallow : BOLUS

31*. "Frozen" queen : ELSA

32. Impersonates : DOES - argh~! Not APES

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

37. Skim along, as clouds : SCUD

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

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

41. "Danke __" : SCHON

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

43*. ESPN journalist Kenny : MAYNE

45. Operates : MANS - ugh.  Not RUNS

46. Fracas : RIOT

47. Excellent : A ONE

48*. Lover of Geraint : ENID

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

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

52. Attention in a 50-Down : TLC