The Lighter Side of JzB

Here you will find photos, poetry, and possibly some light-hearted foolishness. For the Heavier Side
of JzB
see my other blog,
Retirement Blues. (There be dragons!)

I claim copyright and reserve all rights for my original material of every type and genre.


Every day visits*
From Moose, Goose, and Orb Weaver
All seized by Haiku


"Why moose and goose?" you may ask. Back on 2/04/13 Pirate wrote a haiku with an elk in it, and I responded with
one with a moose and then included him every day. A few days later in comments Mystic asked "Where's the goose?"
So I started including her with this post on 2/07. A week later on the 14th, Mark Readfern
asked for and received a spider. The rest is history.

*Well, most days, anyway. Grant me a bit of poetic license.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

L.A. Times Crossword Wednesday, July 17, 2019 Kevin Salat

Them: 'FRAID SO [Homophonically speaking.]  A bookend theme: the entries all begin with FR and end in AY, which when united spell the word FRAY, not to be confused with the extended FREY clan of Game of Thrones infamy. But I digress.

17 A. Squander little by little: FRITTER AWAY.  To FRITTER [without away] means to break into small fragments; as a noun, it means fragments or shreds.  So the definition given here is apt.

25 A. Unstructured recreation: FREE PLAY.  Also well defined.  Perhaps a way to achieve the previous theme entry with your available time.

38 A. Inlet in an Otis Redding hit song: FRISCOBAY.  Otis finds another way to achieve the first theme entry in this song, released after his death, entitled [Sittin' On] The Dock of the Bay.  This is getting a bit meta.





54. Ruffles snack company: FRITOLAY.   Maker of Fritos, Doritos, Sun Chips, Cheetos and more.  Can theses smallish items be considered FRITTERS?  You decide.

64. Worn-look fabric style that this puzzle's four other longest answers exhibit?: FRAYED EDGES.  Like this on fabric. Are the edges being FRITTERED AWAY?  And, of course, the split word FRAY bookends the theme entries.  So, there you have it.



Hi, Gang, it JazzBumpa, jumping into the FRAY.  Nicely executed theme - not much more to say about it.  So let us venture forth boldly into this puzzle - unafrayed.

Across:

1. Santa __: Sonoma County seat: ROSA.  Many Santas. Needed perps

5. Cordelia, to Regan: SISTER.  Daughters of King Lear, along with the unfortunately named Goneril.

11. Small ammo: BBs.  Spherical pellets shot from a certain kind of air gun.  Per Wikipedia, "The term BB originated from the nomenclature of the size of steel shots used in a shotgun. Size "BB" shots were normally 0.180 in (4.6 mm) . . ."

14. At risk of offending, for short: UN-PC.  Not Politically Correct.

15. "Play more!": ENCORE.  An additional song or musical selection played after the planned program is complete, as requested by the audience.

16. Variety: ILK.  Type

19. Foot the bill: PAY.  End up paying for something, especially if the charge is large or unreasonable.  Sad.

20. Expedia info: FARES.  Expedia is an American based travel company that provides FARES and other information for world-wide travel.

21. "__ Tu": 1974 hit sung in Spanish: ERES.



22. Boozer: SOT.  Alcoholic.

23. Nike rival: ADIDAS.  Sports shoes.

28. Back muscle, familiarly: LAT.  More formally, Latissimus dorsi the muscle connecting the upper extremity to the back bone.  Mine are typically tight, probably from my trombone addiction.

29. Garnet or ruby: RED.  Shades of meaning.

31. Double helix part: STRAND.  Come on, baby, let's do the twist.


32. Approximately: OR SO.  In the general vicinity of - or so it is said.

34. Old __: card game: MAID.


37. Small pies: TARTS. Small filled pastries without a top crust.

41. "Hello" singer: ADELE.

44. Subway fare?: HERO.  A sandwich of meat, cheese and vegetables made on a long roll that can be purchased at, frex, the Subway sandwich shop.  A fee is involved.

45. Pollen pouches: SACS.  The structures in seed plants where pollen is produced.

49. Overhaul: REVAMP.  Improve the form, appearance and structure of something.

51. Inquire: ASK.  Asking minds want to know.

53. Stick in the closet?: MOP.  "Stick" is a noun here, and it has a head.

57. Mogadishu native: SOMALI.  A resident of Somalia, a failed nation on the horn of Africa.

59. Master: ACE.

60. __ Bator: ULAN.  The capital of Mongolia, on the Tuul River.

62. "Beauty and the Beast" role: BELLE.  Per Wikipedia, she "is the non-conforming daughter of an inventor who yearns to abandon her predictable village life in return for adventure."  The rest is herstory.

63. Olive center: PIT.  A hard seed.

66. Ginger __: ALE. A carbonated soft drink made with -- wait for it . . . ginger!


67. 2014 boxing biopic: I AM ALI.



68. "Othello" villain: IAGO.  He is Othello's standard bearer, but he hates Othello and seeks his downfall by trying to make him believe his wife is unfaithful with his lieutenant, Cassio.

69. '60s hallucinogen: LSD.  Lysergic Acid Diethyamide. Have a nice trip.

70. Shiny photo: GLOSSY.  Type of finish surface on the photo paper

71. "You said it!": AMEN.

Down:

1. Mark who plays the Hulk: RUFFALO.


2. Tracked by air traffic control: ON RADAR.  What the bleep is that?

3. Bar supply: SPIRITS.  Liquors that have been distilled to increase the alcohol content.

4. Didn't just sit there: ACTED.  Did something.

5. "I __ what you did there": SEE.  Acknowledging someone's cleverness.

6. Memo starter: IN RE.  With regard to --

7. Winter neckwear: SCARF.  A fabric item worn to maintain warmth and ward off the elements.

8. Cell network structure: TOWER.  I was so stuck on biological cells that when this answer emerged I was totally confused.  Of course this refers to the place where antennae are place for cell phone transmissions.  Which prompts the question: does anyone still use their phone to actually call somebody?

9. Clears a whiteboard: ERASES.  Or a blackboard. Works either way.

10. King of Spain: REY.  Literal translation

11. Like many magnets: BIPOLAR.  Having both north and south poles.

12. Glaringly obvious: BLATANT.  In your face.

13. Big __ Country: Montana: SKY.  Don't let them fool you.  The sky is the same size everywhere.  But in Michigan, you often can't see it for the clouds.

18. Ivan the Terrible, e.g.: TSAR.  One of many Russian emperors, prior to 1917.

22. Turns the hose on: SPRAYS.   Fun way to end up single.



24. Rig on the road: SEMI.  Tractor trailer rig.

26. James of jazz: ETTA.



27. Golf course meas.: YDS. Distance from tee to green, in yards.

30. Superspeed boy in "The Incredibles": DASH.



33. Recently: OF LATE.

35. Curling surface: ICE.  This is a game in which large, flat stones are slid along a smooth ICE surface into a target area.

36. Toon explorer: DORA.  Found this on FaceBook recently.


39. San __, Italy: REMO.  A city on the Mediterranean located in the extreme western part of Italy.  San and Santa - near clechoes.

40. Overseer: BOSS.

41. Greeting at a dog park: ARF.

42. Throws off track: DERAILS.

43. Thrown out: EVICTED.

46. Dental filling material: AMALGAM.  Despite containing about 50% elemental mercury, it is considered to be safe.

47. Dartmouth, e.g.: COLLEGE.  An institute of higher learning.

48. Watches through binoculars, maybe: SPIES ON.

50. Like lions and tigers and bears: PLURAL.  Yes they are plurals.  No, I do not like self-referential clues.

52. 18-time NBA All-Star Bryant: KOBE.  According to some, the 12th best player ever.



55. Texas mission: ALAMO.  Famous for the battle of 1836, when Texas was seceding from Mexico.  In a 13 day siege the garrison stationed there was almost completely wiped out.

56. "Get Yer __ Out!": live Stones album: YAYASRead all about it.

58. Mass __: MEDIA.  With tulips in my mind, I guess, I confidently filled in MANIA.  That was a set back.  The correct answer refers to news and communication outlets, like publications, broadcasting and the internet.

61. Guitarist Cline of the band Wilco: NELS.  Was this a Natick for anyone else?

63. Buddy: PAL.  Amigo, BFF.

64. Cookie fruit: FIG.  Classic.


65. Kit letters: DIY.  The set of parts, pieces and tools required to build some thing.  Good luck and - yeah - do read the instructions.

OK, kids - we've frittered away time with this crossword puzzle.  Let's go take on the rest of the day.

Cool regards!
JzB




Wednesday, June 26, 2019

L.A. Times Crossword Wednesday, June 26, 2019 Dan Schoenholtz

Theme BATTER UP! Not at the ball diamond this time.  Instead, we find ourselves at the kitchen counter with eggs, oil and today's theme.  Let's check it out

17 A. It may be hard to turn down: NICE OFFER.  Not to be confused with an OFFER that you can't refuse.  The circled letters, here shown in red, can be rearranged to spell COFFEE.  Decaf for me, please - no cream or sugar.

26 A. Stockpiled: LOADED UP ON.  Acquired, collected, and kept; amassed. The red letters can be used to spell POUND.  Is this going to the dogs?  Probably not.

41 A. Sitting in an assigned seat, e.g.: TAKING ONE'S PLACE.  "Everyone take your places," is an in the language phrase.  So, have a seat.  Perhaps your cushion is a cushy SPONGE rubber.

51 A. Corporate annual report focus: FISCAL YEAR.  A 12 month period used for accounting and tax purposes that might not line up with a calendar year.  The red letters can spell LAYER - a ply of something in a built-up construction.  So what are we to make of all this?  Let's consult the reveal.

64 A. Baking conveniences, and a hint to this puzzle's circles: CAKE MIXES.  Aha!  Each of the words is also a type of CAKE, MIXED into the clue fill.  And a CAKE MIX is a store-bought combination of ingredients you can use to make a tasty sweet treat. Are you hungry?  I think CAKE is OK, any time of day or night.  Though, to be honest, I prefer cookies.

Across:

1. They may be exchanged in anger: WORDS.  Description of an argument.

6. Jet stream locale?: SPA.  SPA in this case being a whirlpool bath, with jets that stream water onto your aching body.

9. Ziti, e.g.: PASTA.  Per wikipedia, Ziti is an extruded tubular pasta that is smaller than rigatoni, but larger than mezzani.  Pasta is pasta.  Why if comes in so many shapes and sizes is a mystery to me.

14. Scrub, as a launch: ABORT.  From the mission control vocabulary of NASA.  A decision to stop a planned launch after the pre-launch sequence of activities has begun.

15. Short film?: PIC.  An abrv. of [moving] PICTURE

16. Pronouncement platform: ALTAR.  "I now pronounce you man and wife," is one of the kins of pronouncements that can be issued there.

19. Lumps: GLOBS.  Solid or semi-sold masses of no particular size and shape.

20. Small flightless bird: KIWI.


21. "Oye Como Va" songwriter Puente: TITO.  Hey, how is it going?




23. Barnyard noise: MOO. Cow talk.

24. Low-risk investments: Abbr.: CDsCertificates of Deposit.

29. Stooped (over): HUNCHED.

32. Beer container: CAN.  E pluribus unum.

33. "It matters to me": I CARE.  Back in the 60's we said, "Give a damn!"

34. "The Green Hornet" co-writer/star Rogen: SETH. [b 1982] Canadian-American actor, comedian, writer, producer, and director.

37. Scorch: CHAR.  Burn the surface of something with heat or a direct flame.

44. Editor's retraction: STET.  "Let it stand."  (used as an instruction on a printed proof to indicate that a correction or alteration should be ignored).

45. Picnic pests: ANTS.  Six-legged invaders.

46. Blows off steam: VENTS.  Pssssst.

47. Feverish, say: ILL. Exhibiting symptoms of sickness.

49. Doesn't continue, as an argument: LET'S DIE.  It's hard to know when to let up.  Sometimes continuing is futile.  I was arguing about socialism with some guy on FaceBook.  He wouldn't accept the dictionary definition.  I finally gave up and told him to have a nice day.

56. "Irreverence is easy--what's hard is __": Tom Lehrer: WIT.  Keen mental sharpness and inventiveness.

57. Lime ending: -ADE.  The juice of the lime ends up in a fruity drink.  In my house, it's far more likely to end up in a spicy guacamole.

58. 12-1 MLB victory, e.g.: ROUT.  A lop-sided victory.  Or, from the Tigers' perspective, a lop-sided defeat.

59. Davenport setting: IOWA.  Or my late mom-s living room.  A city and an item of furniture [if you want to couch it in those terms], respectively.

62. Like spinach, say: LEAFY.  As rose bushes are thorny, and trees are barky.

68. Tanning site: SALON.

69. Spy org. called "The Company": CIA.  Central Intelligence Agency.  We learn this vocabulary from a 2003 semi-factual novel by Robert Littell.

70. Hapless: INEPT.  Everybody, get yourself some hap, so you can be EPT.

71. North Sea county: ESSEX.  Located North and East of London, England.

72. __-country music: ALT.  ALTernate.  A loosely defined sub-genre of county/rock music.  Styles can be significantly different in style from mainstream or pop country.

73. "Get it done!": TODAY.  Stat! [Not stet]

Down:

1. Lacking color: WAN. Pale and weak looking.

2. Tokyo sash: OBI.


3. Large python: ROCK SNAKE.  A large, non-venemous, but extraordinarily vicious and dangerous snake living in sub-saharan Africa.

4. German trio: DREI.  The number three.

5. Put away: STOW.

6. Sunscreen letters: SPFSun Protection Factor.  Understand it here.

7. Michelangelo masterpiece: PIETA.


8. Sharp: ACRID.  Having an irritatingly strong and unpleasant taste or smell.

9. Taoist temple: PAGODA.


10. Every one of: ALL. Don't leave me out.

11. Defeat soundly: STOMP.  In other words, a ROUT.

12. Off-limits: TABOO.  Forbidden.

13. Fiery crime: ARSON.  The crime of deliberately setting fire to property.

18. Computer menu heading: FILE. You can save and print, among other options.

22. Computer fixers: TECHS.

24. Vouchers: CHITS.  IOUs

25. Old European coin: DUCAT. Any of various gold and silver coins.

27. Eats too much of, as junk food: ODs ONOver-Dose, trivializing the real meaning.

28. Family tree figures: UNCLES.  What I am to my niece and nephew.

30. Blogger, at times: CRITIC. Or, in my case, almost always.

31. Farm clucker: HEN.  And egg layer.

35. Sinusitis-treating doc: ENTEar, Nose and Throat specialist.

36. Edison contemporary: TESLA.  Nikola Tesla [1956-1943] was a Serbian-American inventor, electrical engineer, mechanical engineer, and futurist who is best known for his contributions to the design of the modern alternating current electricity supply system. [Wikipedia]

38. Manually spiffed up at the carwash: HAND WAXED.  Manual labor.

39. When the duel occurs in "Hamilton": ACT II.

40. Start over: RESET.

42. Big name in California viticulture: GALLO.  Brothers Ernst and Julio.

43. Entry-level GI: PVT. Private.

48. Voice box: LARYNX.  the hollow muscular organ forming an air passage to the lungs and holding the vocal cords in humans and other mammals;

50. Scary-sounding lake: ERIE.  Toledo's lake.

51. Like many a rumor: FALSE.  Fake news?

52. Creative output: IDEAS.  Brain storms.

53. Makes airtight: SEALS.  Closes up.

54. Desert plant with sword-shaped leaves: YUCCA.


55. Source of net profits?: ETAIL.  Electronic - i.e on-line - retail.

60. Exclude: OMIT. Leave out, elide.

61. Sot: WINO.  Alcoholic.

63. Enemy: FOE.  Not a friend

65. Dennings of "2 Broke Girls": KAT.


66. AQI monitor: EPA.  The Air Quality index is monitored by the Environmental Protection Agency, established in 1970.

67. Muddy pen: STY. Home for swine.

One more in a long line of Wednesday puzzles, but this one takes the cake.   Hope you were able to slice through it without getting frosted.

Cool regards!
JzB



Wednesday, June 19, 2019

L.A. Times Crossword - Wednesday, June 19, 2019 Lewis Rothlein

Theme - WORD LADDER.  This is a word game invented by Lewis Carroll, in which a starting word is transformed into a target word by changing one letter at a time.  The challenge is to accomplish this in the fewest steps.  Here all the ladder words have circled letters, and are stand alone fill.  Let's see how this works.

1. Strong drink, and part 1 of a word ladder: DOUBLE.  A DOUBLE is a drink with 2 ounces of liquor.  It is also our starting word.  Looking ahead, our target word is SHIFT.  So, one can work a DOUBLE SHIFT.  I've never done that, and let's hope we don't have to.  But hold that thought.

20. Tabloid item (part 2): COUPLE.  A COUPLE in a tabloid is often referred to as an item.  Usually they show up because of some scandal, rumor, or bit of personal news involving them.  None of this is anybody's business, of course, but inquiring minds want to know.  The changed letters are highlighted in red.  Hang on a sec - letters!?!  Two of them? Should I call foul on this?  Let's defer that answer for the nonce.

28. Two-door cars (part 3): COUPES.  Cars with fixed roofs, two doors, and sloping rears.  Two letters changed.

36. Brunch order (part 4): CREPES. These are thin pancakes, usually rolled and wrapped around a filling.  My favorite is apricot.  Again, two letters have changed.



42. Underground tombs (part 5): CRYPTS. I can't improve on that definition.  Nor on the consistent changing of two letters.

48. Arts' partner (part 6): CRAFTS.  The skills involved in making things by hand.  Or craftally changing two letters at a time.

56. Wanders (part 7): DRIFTS.  Travels aimlessly.  Or changes by two letters at a time, with a specific aim in mind.  Hmmm  .  .  .

68. Work assignments ... and, preceded by 1-Across, the key to creating the word ladder (and part 8 of it): SHIFTS.  You can work several kinds of SHIFTS - day, night, third, or swing.  But, back to the puzzle, now all becomes clear.  Putting the first and last words together, we get DOUBLE SHIFTS - thus the alteration of two letters at a time.  Tadah!

That's a bit meta, but certainly clever, and I'll give some extra credit for that.

Hi, Gang.  It's JazzBumpa, not feeling at all SHIFTY.  So let's double down and see what the rest of this puzzle has to offer.

Across:

7. Kiss: BUSS.  From the Latin basiare, probably via French and late Middle English.

11. Injured, as a knee: BUM.


14. Damage: IMPAIR.  As, for example, a knee.

15. Private tutoring session: ONE ON ONE.

17. Theater walkways: AISLES.  Or in churches.

18. Injured, as an ankle: SPRAINED.  When the ligaments are stretched or torn.  We are having a rather bad leg day.

19. Cancels a dele: STETS.  Editor's marks for delete and let it stand, respectively.

21. The "S" of CSNY: STILLS.  I was stuck on NY as being New York.  That was a complete dead end.  This "S" is Steven Stills of Crosby, STILLS, Nash and Young.  Remember them?



24. "No more sharing," briefly: TMIToo Much Information - not on my need-to-know list.

25. Genetic material: DNA. Deoxyribonuclaic acid.  We all took biochemistry - right?

30. 1975 Tony-winning play about a stableboy: EQUUS.  About which I know nothing.

32. Former Boston commuter org.: MTA. Municipal Transit Authority.



35. Small, chirpy bird: WRENSeveral varieties.

37. "It can't be!": OH NO.  Dang!

39. Unsuccessful Ford: EDSEL.  But now a cult classic.

41. Personal care brand with a bird in its logo: DOVE.


44. Mining hauls: ORES.  Rocks containing useful metals.

46. Circus safety feature: NET.  To catch a falling star.

47. Owl sounds: HOOTS.  Do you give one?

50. Piercing tool: AWL. For puncturing leather, not owls.

51. Japanese assent: HAI. Means yes.

53. Sandal parts: STRAPS.  Keeps them on your feet.

59. Taxpayer's option: E-FILE.  Electronic submission.

61. Neckwear that makes a statement: POWER TIE.  It's all nonsense, in my humble opinion.

63. Older, as bread: STALER.  Not that I've ever made that specific comparison.

64. Like the print version of an e-book, say: DEAD TREE.  Paper pulp source.

65. Abrasion: SCRAPE.  Damage due to friction - more pain. Ouch!

66. Cook in oil: FRY.

67. Insolence: SASS.  Impudence and rudeness.   Thad says, don't do it.



Down:

1. Days in Quito: DIAS.  In Ecuador, they speak Spanish, todos los días.

2. Drops: OMITS.  Leaves out or excludes.

3. Hot and bothered: UPSET.  Disturbed, or - if you prefer - excited.

4. Like Estonia and Latvia: BALTIC.   Also Lithuania - refers to countries on the eastern coast of the Baltic Sea, across from Sweden.

5. Stays out of sight: LIES LOW.  Avoiding attention and detection, generally for the purpose of staying out of trouble.

6. Trauma ctrs.: ERSEmergency Rooms.

7. Pear variety: BOSC.  Unique in shape and color.



8. Removes for transplanting: UNPOTS.  Out of one pot, and into another - or, perhaps, the ground.

9. Antitoxin: SERUM.

10. Having more lather: SOAPIER.

11. Took a refresher course in: BONED UP ON.  You can BONE UP ON it here.

12. Half of deux: UNE.  Two divided by two is one.  This looks suspiciously like French to me.  Numbers in French go hilariously wonky, as you will soon see. My granddaughter Alexa, who has studied French, assures me that every bit of this is true.



13. __ school: MED.  Where one learns to be a doctor.

16. Zero, in soccer: NIL.  Exactly nothing.  Probably the same - or something close to it - in French.  I hope.

22. Angling needs: LURES.  Things that attract the fish.  In another puzzle I worked recently the answer to this clue, in the singular, was LINE.

23. Went like the wind: SPED.  If i do that, I get winded. 

26. Béisbol team complement: NUEVE.  A baseball team has 9 players, in any language.  Spanish numbers, if I recall correctly, make some sort of sense.

27. Desirable trait: ASSET.

29. Belgian painter James: ENSOR. [1860-1949] Read about him here.

31. Logician's "as was proven": QED.  Quod Erat Demonstrandum - loosely, that which was to be demonstrated.

32. Coffee flavor: MOCHA. A coffee-chocolate combination.

33. Host, as a party: THROW.

34. With no discernable pattern: ANY OLD WAY.  Whatever.

36. Chin indentation: CLEFT.


38. Back (out): OPT.  Choose to not participate.

40. Labeled times: ERAS.

43. Warm-weather wear: T SHIRTS.

45. Warm up before a run: STRETCH.

48. Boston and Chicago: CITIES.  Large municipalities.

49. "Green Hills of Africa" journey: SAFARI.  From the Arabic word safara - to travel.

52. Union that merged with SAG in 2012: AFTRA.  Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists.

54. Rice dish: PILAF.  Cooked in broth with spices and vegetables or meat.

55. Snoozed: SLEPT.

57. See 58-Down: RED.  The color of anger.

58. With 57-Down, loses one's cool: SEES.  To see red is to become suddenly enraged.  From an earlier expression "To see things red," from ca. 1900.  Probably not related to a bull fighter's red cape.

60. Part of a Spanish "to be" conjugation: ERES.  I'll leave this to a Spanish speaker to explain.

61. Adobe doc suffix: PDF. Portable Document File.

62. Atop, poetically: O'ER. As, for example, ramparts.

63. Griddle sound: SSS.  Onomatopoeia, I suppose.

That wraps up another Wednesday.  I'll add this, just because I can - a big trombone [and tuba] choir I participate in once a year.  This year it was on June 9th.



Cool Regards!
JzB





Wednesday, May 22, 2019

L.A. Times Crossword Wednesday, May 22, 2019 Roland Huget

Theme: LABOR.  The Circled letters spell various kinds of paid gigs.

17 A. Car engine part: CRANKSHAFT.  A SHAFT constructed of a series of CRANKS and CRANK pins that attach to the connecting rods of an engine. A CRAFT is a skill used in making items by hand.

24 A. "Tell me about it": JOIN THE CLUB.  A commiserating phrase along the lines of "I feel your pain." A JOB is a paid position of regular employment.

34 A. Custodian: CARETAKER. Someone assigned to look after a person, pet, property, or entity, depending on context.  A CAREER is a long-term occupation with opportunities for progress.

50. Lonely Planet publication, e.g.: TRAVEL GUIDE.  A book of information about a location designed for visitors and tourists.  A TRADE is a skilled job usually involving manual skills and special training.

58. Temporary fix, or what's found in this puzzle's circles: WORK AROUND.  A method for overcoming a problem or limitation is a system or program.  In the theme, various synonyms for types of WORK book-end the theme fill, so WORK goes AROUND the completed answer.

Hi, Gang - JazzBumpa here, as we WORK out way through this puzzle.  Let's get on the job!

Across:

1. Receives at one's roof garden: HAS UP.  I had to ponder this one. To receive visitors, you have them into your home.  You, you could have them up to your roof garden, should you be fortunate enough to possess such a thing.

6. "Shoot!": DARN. Exclamations of disappointment.

10. Bounces on the waves: BOBS.  Like a cork.

14. Food safety concern: E COLI.  Coliform bacteria that can be a food contaminant.

15. Miracle Mets outfielder Tommie: AGEE. [b 1942] He played for Cleveland and Chicago before the Mets.  The Miracle refers to their 1969 World Series win over the heavily favored Baltimore Orioles.  This was the 8th year of existence for the Mets, and their first year with a winning record.  AGEE is credited with making two of the greatest and most critical catches in World Series history in game 3, with the series tied.  He also led off the game with a home run.

16. Bell town in a Longfellow poem: ATRI.  You can read about it here.

19. Like racehorses: SHOD.  Having shoes.

20. __ Bora: Afghan region: TORA.  A cave complex in the mountains of eastern Afghanistan.

21. Roman 151: CLI.  Roman numerals.

22. Prolonged assault: SIEGE.  A tactic of surrounding the enemy's position to cut off supplies in hope of getting them to surrender.

23. U.K. honor: OBE.  Order of the British Empire, awarded for outstanding contributions to arts, sciences or public service.

27. Numbers to crunch: RAW DATA. Data in an unprocessed form.  Processing then leads to information.

29. Veer off course: YAW.  Twist around a vertical axis.

30. Poe's "Annabel __": LEE.



31. Stately horse: STEED.

32. Orbit segment: ARC.

33. Alpha-Bits cereal maker: POST.

38. Talk show host Cavett: DICK. [b. 1936]

41. Zamboni surface: ICE.  The Zamboni machine smooths the ice surface for hockey or figure skating.

42. Stretches out for a bit: RESTS.  Takes 5.

46. Bat wood: ASH. The best choice, but other woods are also used.

47. Aromatic garland: LEI.  Flowers strung together to be worn as a necklace.

48. Bob Cratchit's son: TINY TIM.  From A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.

53. Zodiac feline: LEO.  From July 23 to August 22.

54. Relaxed: EASED.  Let up.

55. Salem-to-Portland dir.: NNE.  As the crow flies

56. Gardener's bagful: SOIL.

57. Outdo: BEST.  Perform better than someone.

61. Came to rest: ALIT.  LAnded.

62. First name in stunts: EVEL.  AKA Robert Craig Knievel [1938-2007]

63. Superachievers: ELITE. A-list performers in some activity

64. Get out of bed: RISE. Even if reluctantly.  Can be alarming.

65. Obsolete demo medium: TAPE. A musical demo presented for possible publication or professional recording.

66. Cap bill: VISOR.  For shading one's eyes from the sun.

Down:

1. Strong-arms: HECTORS.  To bully, intimidate or browbeat,

2. Cirque du Soleil performer: ACROBAT.

3. "Us, too": SO ARE WE.  JOIN THE CLUB!

4. Radius neighbor: ULNA. The two long bones of the forearm.

5. Dental suffix with Water: PIK.  Device for cleaning teeth and massaging the gums.

6. Mexico's national flower: DAHLIA.


7. From the top: AGAIN.  One more time.

8. Sports replay reviewer: REF.  Always trying to get it right.

9. After-tax: NET.  What is remaining after all charges and deductions have been removed.

10. Not advanced: BASIC. The A-B-C's.

11. The lord in "O, beware, my lord, of jealousy!": OTHELLO.  From Shakespeare's play about jealousy and betrayal.

12. Irish accents: BROGUES.  I wasn't able to come up with better information.

13. Extra gambling action: SIDE BET.  An additional bet beside the main wager, generally involving a related issue/

18. Highlander: SCOT.  One likely to speak with a burr instead of a BROGUE.

22. Clinch, with "up": SEW.  Nail it down.

24. "Gotham" actress __ Pinkett Smith: JADA. [b. 1971]


25. Supermodel Banks: TYRA. [b. 1973]


26. Access illegally, as a computer: HACK.  To get unauthorized access to stored data or documents.

28. Swabbing site: DECK.  Naval activity

32. Tucked away: ATE.

33. One being hunted: PREY.

35. Cambodian currency: RIEL. .00025 U. S. Dollar.

36. Vaping product, briefly: E CIG.  It provides a mist containing nicotine, without burning tobacco.

37. Sea eagle: ERNE.  Old school crossword entry.

38. Baked snack with dried fruit: DATE BAR.  A cookie or cake-like item with fruit chunks or filling that is baked and then cut into bars.

39. Lod native: ISRAELI.  Lod is a city of 75,000 located 9 miles south-east of Tel Aviv, near Ben-Gurion airport.  The area has been inhabited since 5,000 B.C.

40. Car's supporting frame: CHASSIS.  The base frame upon which the body and other componentry is located

43. Midwest city named for a French king: ST. LOUIS.  In Missouri.

44. Connect with: TIE INTO.

45. Do a slow burn: SMOLDER.

47. Took charge of: LED.

48. Wind chime sound: TINKLE.  Tinkle, tinkle, little chime, playing in a windy time.

49. Creative spark: IDEA.

51. Sporty Chevy: VETTE.  Corvette, more formally.

52. Gen. Assembly member: U. N. REP.

56. Etudes, e.g.: SOLI.  An etude is an instrumental study piece designed to improve technique.  As such, it is a solo.. SOLI is the plural.

58. Not just damp: WET. On a spectrum from moist through inundated.

59. In vitro supply: OVA. Unfertilized eggs.

60. Race in the driveway: REV.  To race an engine to give it gas [rev] while it is not in gear.

That, my circle of friends, wraps up another Wednesday.  Hope you found the work to your liking.

Cool Regards!
JzB




Wednesday, May 8, 2019

L.A. Times Crossword Puzzle Wednesday, May 8 Sam Acker

Theme: ON THE DRAWING BOARD.  Here we will DRAW on our library of in-the-language phrases, to finalize certain concepts.  Since that seems a bit cryptic and abstract, let me DRAW it  more clearly.  This will be easier if we start with the unifier.

7. Infer ... or what the answers to starred clues end with?: DRAW CONCLUSIONS.  Gleaning the meaning from information that may or may not be complete.  In the theme answers, the 2nd word of two-word phrases can also follow the word DRAW to CONCLUDE another two-word phrase.

17. *Mint target: BAD BREATH.  Halitosis.



To DRAW BREATH is simply to breathe, or to pause a moment, and take a breath, before doing something, such as DRAWING a CONCLUSION.

20. *Overhead buzzers: POWER LINES.  Conduits for electricity.  Sometimes they're noisy.  To DRAW LINES is to set limits; figuratively LINES that should not be crossed.

31. *Lists of wrestling matches, say: EVENT CARDS.  Schedules of specific activities occurring at an event.  This phrase also has a variety of other meanings, which you can google, if interested.  To DRAW CARDS is to select specific cards from a deck as part of a game, trick or reading.

39. *Building sites: VACANT LOTS.  Plots of land that are currently undeveloped.  To DRAW LOTS is to decide something - such as who will do something, or in what order things will be done -by picking an item or items at random.

57. *HBO vampire series: TRUE BLOOD.  Never watched it.  Here's the season 1 trailer.



To DRAW BLOOD means to injure an opponent, either figuratively or literally.  Alternatively it means collecting a BLOOD sample from someone to run lab tests.

50. *Civil War volley: CANNON FIRE.  Cannons are now historical weapons.  To DRAW FIRE is to attract an enemy's attention in order to distract him from other tactical activities.

Hi Gang, JazzBumpa here to see what kind of CONCLUSIONS we can DRAW.  The first one is that with 6 theme entries and a grid spanning unifier, this puzzle is extremely thematically rich.  And second, with a central vertical unifier and two stacked theme answer pairs we have an unusual, and quite creative construction. So let us commence.

Across:

1. Try to punch: JAB AT.  Could be a swing and a miss.

6. Org. concerned with outbreaks: CDC. Center for Disease Control.

9. Follower of Guru Nanak: SIKH.  The word means a "disciple", "seeker," or "learner."  This is a monotheistic religion started in the Punjab region of India during the latter part of the 15th century.

13. Shapes for running laps: OVALS.  Typical track contour.

14. Shapiro of NPR: ARI. The host of All Things Considered.

15. Sunlit lobbies: ATRIA.  Often with a glass roof.

16. Crunch-like exercise: SIT UP.  Do it properly.



19. Soccer legend Mia: HAMM.




21. Verb type without a direct obj.: INTRansitive.   It' s always an action verb. Frex.: We arrived just in time.

23. Sing smoothly: CROON.



24. Bad guy you root for: ANTI-HERO.  Like Matt Scudder in Lawrence Block's mystery novels.

27. __ de cologne: EAU.  Originally a perfume formulation fron Cologne, Germany, but now a generic term for scented formulations.

30. Slangy "No reason": CUZ.  Cuz I says so.

35. Prepare to drag: REV.  Gun the engine in preparation for a fast take off.

36. Like maple syrup: VISCOUS.  Thick and slow to pour.

37. Geographical resource: MAP.  It lets you know where you are.  But, as Ned Stark often told his son Robb, "The map is not the territory."

41. "Wherever __": One Republic song: I GO.



42. "I see it now!": OH O or O HO!  Exclamation of surprise or discovery.

43. Yet to be tried: UNTESTED.

45. Flightless birds: RHEAS.  Large South American ratites, distantly related to the ostrich and emu.

49. Aspiring DA's exam: LSATLaw School Admission Test.  It's pretty well established that such standardized tests have little if any actual value, but they continue to be used.

54. Pet healers: VETS.  Animal doctors.

58. San Diego player: PADRE.  National League West baseball team

59. Like games in an arcade bar: RETRO.  Appealing nostalgically to a time in the not too distant past.

60. Protein-building molecule: RNA.  Ribonucleaic acid.

61. Shoelace tip: AGLET.  The plastic or metal tube the keeps the end of the shoelace from unraveling.

62. Young woman: LASS.

63. Mountain road curve: ESS.  A series of curves that double back in the shape of the letter S.

64. Spanish rulers: REYES.  Kings.

Down:

1. Kid: JOSH.  Tease playfully or joke.  Also, our 11 year old grandson is a kid named Josh.

2. Nike competitor: AVIA.  Brands of athletic shoes

3. Jewish girl's coming-of-age: BAT MITZVAH.  A ceremony held on the girl's 12th or 13th birthday, in varying traditions, after which she, instead of her parent, is considered to be responsible for her own actions.

4. Grads: ALUMNI.  Those who have completed a program of study and received a diploma from an educational institution.

5. Baker's meas.: TSP.  Teaspoon.

6. __ San Lucas: Baja resort: CABO.   Located at the southern tip of the Baja peninsula.

8. Fall drink: CIDER.  Unfermented juice pressed from fruit, most typically apples.

9. "Gone With the Wind" composer Max: STEINER.  [1888-1971] An Austrian born American composer of music for theater and films.  He was one of the first composers for movies and is known as the father of film music.

10. Shiraz's country: IRAN.  Located in the southwest of the country, Shiraz has been a trade center for over 1000 years.

11. Toy on a string: KITE.  A light frame with thin material stretched over it, to be flown in the wind.

12. Guffaws: HAHs.  Laughs

15. Woody's son: ARLO. Woody [1912-1967] died of Huntington's disease. Arlo [b 1947] is most famous for his epic recording of his narrative song Alice's Restaurant.

18. Pal: BRO.  Buddie.

20. Musician André with 11 Grammys: PREVIN.  [1929 -2019]  He was famous and highly accomplished in three areas - scores for over 50 films; music director and/or conductor for several major symphony orchestras; and jazz pianist, composer and arranger.




22. GIs' support gp.: THE VA. Veterans Administration.

24. Like six starred puz. answers: ACR. Across. A meta, theme-related clue that is not part of the theme.

25. New, in Nogales: NUEVO.  Literally, in Spanish.

26. Snooze: REST.  Sleep.

28. "Truth be told ... ": ADMITTEDLY.

29. Grammarian's concern: USAGE.  The manner in which words and phrases are normally and correctly employed.

32. Animation creation: TOON.  A cartoon character.

33. Nautilus cousin: CUTTLE.  A cephalopod having 8 arms and two tentacles with denticulated suckers to latch on to their prey.  They are typically 6 to 10 inches long.

34. Donkeys: ASSES.  Horse-like animals that are smaller, having longer ears and a braying sound.  They have been used as working animals for over 5000 years.

38. Sci-fi escape unit: POD. A small, secondary vehicle used to evacuate from the main vehicle when under duress.

40. Least gooey brownie pieces: CORNERS.  They bake harder due to having more edge surface.

44. Brutal: SAVAGE.  Fierce, violent, and out of control.

46. Stereotypical train hopper: HOBO.  The term originated in the western U.S in the 1890's, referfing to an impoverished migrant worker or vagrant.

47. Blowup: Abbr.: ENLargement.

48. Ere: AFORE.  Having occurred previously

50. Bottom row PC key: CTRL. A modifier key that performs a special operation when pressed with another key.

51. Real estate calculation: AREA.  Sizes of the lot surface, total dwelling and interior room spaces.

52. Bar freebies: NUTS. Either snacks, like peanuts, or the company of bar flies in questionable mental states.

53. Nutritional stds.: RDAS. Recommended Daily Allowances.

55. Christmas decoration: TREE. I'm going to quibble.  The tree is a symbol. It is adorned with decorations.

56. "Action!" places: SETS.  Places where movie scenes are filmed.

58. 72 for 18 holes, often: PAR.  The nominal proper score for a round of golf.

That wraps it up. Despite my one ADMITTEDLY picky nit, I found this puzzle to be quite up to par.  You, of course, are free to DRAW your own CONCLUSIONS.

Cool regards!
JzB




Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Wednesday, April 24, 2019 Ed Sessa

Theme: LEG LIFTS.



The letter sequence spelling LEG occurs in vertical theme fill.  Proceeding from left to right, this sequence appears successively higher in the grid.

45 D. *What makes Guy a guy?: LITTLE G.  Referring to upper and lower case lettering.  A bit strained, in my opinion.

37 D. *Post-apocalyptic Will Smith film: I AM LEGEND.  A virus has wiped out most of man-kind and the hero, Robert Neville, played by Smith, searches for a cure while battling nocturnal mutants.



30 D. *Gray wrote one in a country churchyard: ELEGY.  A poem of lamentation.  You can read it here.

10 D. *346-piece Big Ben, e.g.: LEGO SET.  Here's a 9 1/2 minute video if you're interested.




9 D. *Telegraphed message: CABLEGRAM.

And the unifier -- 66 A. Competitive edge, as illustrated in the answers to starred clues from left to right: A LEG UP.  This phrase means some sort of boost, assistance or circumstance that gives one an advantaged position relative to the competition.  In the puzzle grid the LEG letters climb from left to right, each time advancing by exactly one square - all the while maintaining perfect rotational symmetry.  This is an unusual construction in a couple ways.  Having the theme in the vertical fill isn't unknown but it's also not common.  Further, a phrase of the type "LEG UP" generally indicates that the letters would be climbing within the fill, so they would be reversed in the answer word(s). Here, the upward motion is within the grid, from one theme fill entry to the next.  This is, in my experience, unique.  So, high marks for both technical virtuosity and creativity!  

Hi, Gang, JazzBumpa here with both feet firmly on the ground.  Let's high step through the rest of this puzzle and see what tickles our toes.

Across:

1. Keepsake containers: CHESTS.  Large storage boxes, typically made of wood.

7. Biological pouch: SAC. A cavity enclosed by a membrane that contains air, liquid, or solid structures.

10. "I'm up for it!": LET'S.  We should do this.

14. Change in a big way: REWORK. I guess changing in a small way would be a revision.

15. Santa __ winds: ANA.  Hot, dry, downsloping winds that originate inland and blow toward the coast in California.  They seem to be named for the Santa Ana Canyon in Orange County.

16. Singer Adams: EDIE.  Probably most famous for this.



17. World's largest peninsula: ARABIA.  Perhaps it should be considered a sub-continent since it lies on its own tectonic plate.

18. Antagonist in many le CarrÈ novels: KGB AGENT.  Spy stuff

20. Nemesis: BANE. A cause of great distress or annoyance.

21. Teeny-tiny fraction: TRILLIONTH.  1/10^12.  Less than miniscule.

23. "Better Call Saul" actress Seehorn: RHEA.


25. Wrigglers sought by snigglers: EELS.  Rhyme time in the EEL creel.

26. Demean: ABASE. Degrade or belittle.

29. Floating ice hazard: BERG.  Properly, ICEBERG - a large piece of freshwater ice broken from a glacier or ice shelf floating in open salt water.

31. Hearing things?: EARS.   Interesting word play.  EARS are things that hear.  If you are hearing things that are not there, the ears are not involved - it all in your head.

35. Leader of a flock: Abbr.: REV.  An ordained minister leading her/his congregation.

36. Remote precursor: DIAL.  Playing with parts of speech again - in the past, the various DIALS on your TV set performed the functions of the various buttons on your remote control unit.

38. Hooch: ROTGUT.  Bad whiskey.

40. Sport-__: UTE.  Utility vehicle

41. Oatmeal-crusted treat: DATE BAR.  A baked item containing chopped fruit.

43. 12 meses: AÑO.  12 months make a year in Spain, same as here.

44. Uproarious confusion: BEDLAM. Named for an infamous British asylum  for the insane.

46. Places to shoot hoops: GYMS. Basketball venues.

47. Big kahuna: VIPVery Important Person.

48. Jai __: ALAI.  A sport involving a ball bounced off a walled space with a hand held device [cesta.]

49. Places, as a bet: LAYS.  Probably because you LAY your money down.

51. Signs of the future: OMENS.  Events considered to announce or predict some good or evil thing that will happen soon.

53. Those opposing us: THEM. Always us vs THEM.

55. Counting-out word: EENY. Meeny, miney, moe.

57. Seven-sided: HEPTAGONAL.  Literal, if you know Greek.

61. Saintly glow: HALO.  A circle of light around or above the hear of a saint to signify her/his sanctity.

65. "Madame Bovary" subject: ADULTERY.  The ultimately tragic story of a young French woman who lived extravagantly beyond her limited means.  Bored with her dull husband, she sought pleasure and adventure though affairs with two men who eventually grew tired of her.

68. Steady look: GAZE.

69. Bridal bio word: NEE.  Referring to the bride's original surname.

70. Excitedly unwrapped: TORE AT.

71. Layer over some cities: SMOG.  A combination of fog with smoke and other atmospheric pollutants.

72. Mar.-to-Nov. hrs.: DST. Daylight Savings Time - the clock is moved forward by one hour to extend daylight into the evening.

73. Genesis follower: EXODUS.  Second book in the Bible.

Down:

1. __ bisque: CRAB.  A rich creamy soup, typically made with shell fish.

2. Mount Olympus queen: HERA.  Sister wife of Zeus in the olympian pantheon.  She was jealous of his many lovers and offspring.

3. McGregor of "Christopher Robin": EWAN.  The actor portraying a now grown-up boy who once was the playmate of Winnie the Pooh.

4. Sleeps it off, with "up": SOBERS.  Recovers from non-fatal alcohol toxemia.

5. Prefix with atomic: TRI-.  Referring to a molecule composed of three atoms.  The clue is weirdly specific for a prefix with many other, more common applications.

6. Circle the rink: SKATE.  Ice or roller SKATING.

7. H.H. Munro's pseudonym: SAKI. [1870 - 1916] A British master of the short story form who satirized Edwardian society.

8. One opening a can of worms?: ANGLER.  A fisherman getting into a container of bait.

11. Paradise: EDEN.  The biblical home of Adam and Eve, before they got kicked out for disobedience.

12. Salon treatment: TINT.  Hair coloring.

13. Meyers of "Late Night": SETH. [b 1973] American comedian, writer, actor and television host.

19. Have a bug: AIL.  Be sick from a viral or bacterial infection.

22. Moroccan capital: RABAT. Located along the Atlantic coast along the Bouregreg River.

24. Gossip columnist Hopper: HEDDA. [1885 - 1966] American actress and gossip columnist for the L.A. Times, known for feuding with her rival Luella Parsons.

26. Dutch-speaking Caribbean island: ARUBA.  One of the 4 countries comprising the Kingdom of the Netherlands, along with Curaçao, and Sint Maarten.  It is located off the coast of Venezuela, about 1000 miles west of the Lesser Antilles.

27. Asian palm nut: BETEL.  Because of the materials it is prepared with, it is a serious health hazard in Asia, where it's use is very common.

28. "Plant-powered" hair care brand: AVEDA.

32. Tequila source: AGAVE. A succulent plant native to arid regions of Mexico and the American southwest.

33. Scrap: RUN IN. A disagreement or fight, especially with someone in an official position.

34. Puts an end to: STOPS.

39. Welles who played Kane: ORSON. [1915-1985] An American actor, director, writer and producer who worked in theatre, radio and film.

42. What "two" meant to Paul Revere: BY SEA. Paul Revere [1734-1818] was an American silversmith, engraver, early industrialist, and Patriot in the American Revolution. He is best known for his midnight ride to alert the colonial militia in April 1775 to the approach of British forces before the battles of Lexington and Concord.  The warning signal placed in the tower of the North Church indicated British troop movement by land with one lantern and by water with two. [Wikipedia]

50. Ovid collection: AMORES.  Ovid [b 43 BC] was a contemporary of Virgil and Horace during the reign of Augustus.  AMORES is his first book of poetry, in an erotic mode, but often humorous, subversive, and sometimes even absurd.

52. "You saved me!": MY HERO.

54. Tipped top: HAT.  Tipping one's hat is a sign of respect.

56. Make very happy: ELATE.

57. Fairy tale crones: HAGS. Witches.

58. Paraffin-coated cheese: EDAM. From the Netherlands part of the Netherlands.

59. "The Godfather" novelist: PUZO. Mario [1920-1999]

60. Nureyev's no: NYET.  Literal, if you speak Russian.

62. On in years: AGED.  I'm getting there.

63. Tropical party: LUAU.  Traditional Hawaiian party or feast featuring local foods and entertainment.

64. Chooses: OPTS. Decides either for or against.

67. Bagel topper: LOX. Fillet of brined salmon.

On that tasty note, we end up another Wednesday.  Hope you found the leg lifts exhilarating.

Cool regards!
JzB



Wednesday, April 10, 2019

L.A. Times Crossword April 10, 2019 Jeff Stillman

Theme: URBAN RENEWAL.  Steps in an aspect of property improvement are presented in their logical order.

18 A. Controversial excavation method: STRIP MINING.  Instead of digging tunnels, the top layers of soil are STRIPPED away, revealing an open pit from which ore or coal can be removed.  Forests, top soil, other plant life, and even entire mountain tops are removed.  This is a very environmentally hostile technique.  In theme context, we will STRIP off the old paint - or, perhaps, wall paper - to reveal a fresh surface for redecoration

20 A. Beach house?: SAND CASTLE.  Not a class home or rental on what 38A suggests, but an ephemeral bit of perhaps artistic handiwork near the shore line.  Check these out.  I couldn't pick one.  On a somewhat less grandiose scale here are some of my grandchildren filling the moat on their construction at Coldwater Lake in 2006.


You SAND the surface using SAND paper, to remove foreign material and provide a smooth substrate for the next steps.

38 A. Beachfront property, often: PRIME REAL ESTATE.  It's always pricey along the water.  At this point I was confused about the theme.  What did STRIP MINING have to do with expensive beach front property?  But the theme uses a different sense of the word PRIME.  To get a good, smooth finish, you often need to PRIME the surface. This seals pores in the material, provides better adhesion for the top coat, increases durability and provides more robust protection for the painted surface.

57 A. Breed of Tonto's Scout: PAINT HORSE.  This is a registered breed that developed from spotted horses with thoroughbred and quarter horse blood lines.  There are a few images on this Wikipedia page.  All of the preceding was preliminary to the finishing step, which is to PAINT the item that has received all this care and effort.

59. Handyman's work suggested by the starts of 18-, 20-, 38- and 57-Across: RESTORATION.  Returning something to its prior or original condition, or - in this case - making over and improving a property or item.  A new PAINT job can be a part of that freshening process.

Hi, Gang.  It's JazzBumpa here to supervise the job. We outsource this sort of work. It relieves me of a burden, and helps keep the economy moving. And to be honest, it gets done better.  Let us keep moving and see what we can uncover in the rest of the project.  

Across:

1. Punk rock subgenre: EMO.  More complex and emotionally driven than punk rock in general.

4. Catches red-handed: NABS.  Capturing the miscreant in flegrante delicto.  By analogy to catching  murderer with blood on his hands.

8. Medieval stringed instruments: REBECS.  As you can see here, there are two ways to hold it.



14. GoPro product, briefly: CAMera for taking action movies..

15. Many a homecoming attendee: ALUMnus/na.  A graduate of an educational institution.

16. Covent Garden offerings: OPERAS.  This place is London's main theater and entertainment district, and home to the Royal Opera House.

17. All-Star pitcher: ACE. the best starting pitcher on a baseball team, and generally the first in the rotation.

22. Little biter: GNAT. Any of many small two-winged flying insect that often form large swarms.  There are biting and non-biting varieties.

23. Bible book between Daniel and Joel: HOSEA.  The same 8th century B.C. Old Testament prophet of doom who appeared in my last blogging effort here.  Due to failing eyesight in his later years, he was often asked, "Hosea, can you see?"

24. Biblical pronoun: THY.  Wrinkle not THY nose at my attempts at Biblical humor.

25. Nursery cry: MAMA.  Baby talk.

26. Form 1040 agcy.: IRSInfernal Revenue Service, as they used to say on HeeHaw.  Or so I've been told by people who actually watched it,

28. Permanent sites?: SALONS.  Hair dos.

30. Sounds of contentment: AAHS.  Spa noises.

33. __ Fables: AESOP'S. He was an old Greek story teller.

37. Criticize harshly: RIP.  A figurative, not literal, rending.

41. Org. for netmen: ATPAssociation of Tennis Professionals.  They have an objective, merit-based system for determining entry qualifications and seeding in tournaments.

42. "Barney Miller" star Hal: LINDEN.  Harold Lipshitz [b 1931] began his career as a big band singer in the '50's.  The Barney Miller series, named for the character he portrayed, ran from 1975 to 1982.

43. Linear: ONE-D.  One dimensional.

44. Biathlon weapons: RIFLES.  This is hybrid sport that combines shooting for accuracy and cross country skiing for speed.

46. __ Bund: Swiss newspaper: DER.  Meaning THE Union, this publication has fallen on hard times in recent decades.

48. Skelton's Kadiddlehopper: CLEM.  A country bumpkin character who was slow witted and kind hearted.



49. Merit badge org.: BSA. Boy Scouts of America.

52. Tut-tutted: TSKED.  A tongue-clicking sign of disapproval.

56. Scottish family: CLAN.  A kinship group having a sense of shared identity.

61. Shortest surname in Cooperstown: OTT. Mel [1909-1958] played right field for the New York Giants from 1926 to 1947.  A 12-time star, he finished his career with a .304 bating average, 488 doubles and1860 RBIs.  He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1951.

62. Kin of jujitsu: AIKIDO.  a Japanese form of self-defense and martial art that uses locks, holds, throws, and the opponent's own movements.  "The name Aikido is composed of three Japanese words: ai, meaning harmony; ki, spirit or energy; and do, the path, system or way. Aikido is the way of the spirit of harmony. Martial arts are studied for self-defense and self-improvement but Aikido is different from other martial arts in that practitioners seek to defend themselves without causing injury to their attackers."

63. Yours, to Yves: ATOI. French

64. Once known as: NEE.  Referring to a married woman's maiden name.  Also French

65. Planted a red herring, say: MISLED.  Figuratively sending someone in a wrong direction.

66. Poolroom powder: TALC.  It's used to reduce moisture and friction in the pool players hand that is used as a bridge for the cue stick.

67. Drop the ball: ERR. A defensive mistake in baseball.

Down:

1. Cybermoney: E-CASH.

2. Chinese gambling mecca: MACAO. A former Portuguese colony that was returned to China in 1999.  It has a separate system of government from the rest of mainland China.

3. Forebodings: OMENS.  Events presumed to foretell ensuing good or evil.

4. Sprint Cup org.: NASCAR.  The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing is headquartered in Daytona, Fla.

5. Utah ski resort: ALTA.

6. Break open: BURST.

7. Word for word?: SMITH. A wordSmith is a skilled user of words, but the sense of this clue escapes me.

8. Tiber River capital: ROME.  In Italy.

9. Center starter: EPI-.  Prefix for loanwords from Greek, meaning upon, over, at or near.  Center comes to us from Greek, via Latin.

10. Cincinnati player: BENGAL. Professional football.

11. "Happy Days" actress: ERIN MORAN.  [1960-2017] She played Joanie Cunningham.

12. Inhabitant of ancient Palestine: CANAANITE.  Any member of several ethnic groups who occupied parts of modern-day Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, Syria and Jordan during the bronze age and earlier.

13. NCO rank: SSGT.  A Staff Sergeant is a Non-commissioned officer.

19. Work at, as a trade: PLY. Related to "apply," meaning to work steadily at one's business or trade.

21. Reason-based faith: DEISM.  Belief in the existence of a creator as "first cause" that rejects notions of miracles, revelations, or a God that interacts with humans

25. Easter liturgy: MASS.  The liturgical service of the Christian Catholic church.  Masses are certainly held on Easter - as well as every other day of the year.  This is a very poor clue/

27. One-piece dresses: SARIS.  The SARI, or saree, is traditional garb from India.


28. Go through: SPEND.  Use up one's funds.

29. Floored it: SPED.  Pushing the gas pedal to the floor boards.

30. On __ with: A PAR.  Equivalent or similar.

31. Constitution section that creates the executive branch: ARTICLE II.  Article I creates the legislative branch.  Article III creates the legislative branch.

32. On-the-sly alcohol containers: HIP FLASKS. A container that can be slipped into a pocket.

34. Poetic time: E'EN. Evening.

35. Downcast: SAD.  Unhappy or depressed.

36. Bullfight cheer: OLE. From Spanish-speaking countries.

39. K thru 6: ELEMentary school grades.

40. Upper body: TORSO.  The trunk of the body, exclusive of the head and limbs.

45. Soup legume: LENTIL. A small, round, lens-shaped bean.  As a food crop, the majority comes from India, Canada and Australia.

47. Cultural, as cuisine: ETHNIC.  Relating to a population subgroup with a common national or cultural tradition.

49. Sheep's cry: BAA. Or MAA.  You never know.

50. Occupy, as a desk: SIT AT.

51. Santa __ racetrack: ANITA.  The Santa ANITA park is located in Arcadia, CA.

53. Scandinavian coin: KRONE.  Currently equal to about  $0.12.

54. Fragrant compound: ESTER. They occur in many natural products and provide he aromas of most fresh fruits.

55. Discourage: DETER. Block, impede, hamper.

56. Pull an all-nighter: CRAM.  Last minute studying for a big test.  probably not a very good ides.

57. Urge: PROD.  poke, jab, nudge.

58. Item in a kit: TOOL. A device or implement - in this case hand held - used to carry out a particular function

60. "__ to My Right Knee": Rita Dove poem: ODE.  A lyric poem in elevated style addressing a particular object.  This one is not exactly an homage.

That completes this project.  Hope the results are pleasing.

Cool regards!
JzB