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, November 4, 2015

L. A. Times Crossword Puzzle Blogging - November 4, 2015 Kurt Krauss

Theme:  DUPES.  The first word of each theme answer is a synonym for some kind of easily targeted victim.  

16 A. *Sneaky blow : SUCKER PUNCH.  A SUCKER is a gullible or easily deceived person.  The related PUNCH is a cowardly hit, often from behind, delivered to an unsuspecting opponent.  

55 A. *Peanuts : CHUMP CHANGE.  A CHUMP is a foolish or easily deceived person.  CHUMP CHANGE, aka peanuts, is an insignificant amount of money.  But, insignificant to whom?  YMMV.

10 D. *Place for brooding : PIGEON COOP.  Nice word play.  Brooding is the hatching of birds' eggs, and, in another context, thinking deeply about some troublesome matter.  A PIGEON is someone easily swindled, or the victim of a con man.  Cf Bernie Madoff.

26 D. *"Walkin' After Midnight" singer : PATSY CLINE. Ms Cline provides our theme song.  

A PATSY is someone taken advantage of, either by cheating or taking the blame for something. Again, YMMV, but for my money this is the only theme answer that really closely corresponds to the unifier fill.

35 A. Easy mark ... and a hint to the starts of the answers to starred clues : FALL GUY.   A scapegoat.   I don't really see a FALL GUY as an easy mark for a swindle - though all the other theme entries do fit that description.  So the whole thing seems a bit askew to me.  Or am I being too persnickety?

Hi Gang - JzB here, taking the FALL on another Wednesday.   My nits aside, this is a nicely constructed puzzle, with a pinwheel theme arrangement and the unifier in the middle.   Let's take a spin and see what else we can uncover.


1. See-through kitchen supply : SARAN. Polyvinylidene chloride [PVDC] was discovered accidentally in 1933.  It makes a great kitchen wrap because of it's low permeability, even in a thin layer.  So it preserves freshness by keeping flavor in and moisture and oxygen out

6. Mythical king of the Huns : ATLI.  This guy, also known as Atilla, was a very real leader of the Huns in the mid-5th century.  He does appear as ATLI in Norse mythology hundreds of years later.

10. Kitchen spray : PAM.   Comes in 8 varieties.

13. Flared dress : A-LINE.

14. Ancient Greek theater : ODEUM.  I thought it was ODEON.  Needed perp help.

15. Land in l'océan : ILE.  A French island.

18. Some kitchen appliances : GEs.  General Electric products.

19. Did a slow burn : SMOLDERED.

20. Passengers in flight, often : USERS.  I haven't flown in many years.  Can you use your electronic devices in the air?

22. Cyberspace marketplace : EBAY.

23. Snobbish : SNOOTY.   Said of those who look down their noses.

24. Chopper : COPTER.   

27. Mount Hood's state : OREGON.

29. Prominent periods : ERAs.  History.

30. Keep the censor busy : SWEAR.  Use bleepable language.

31. The NBA's Kevin Love, e.g. : CAV.  I recognize the name, but not being up on NBA players didn't know if he was a CAValier or a MAVerick.

34. Alternative to dis? : DAT.  For this and THAT.  Pretty lame entry.

37. Dressing ingredient : OIL.  From olives, vegetables or seeds.

38. High rails : ELs.  ELevated trains, as in Chicago.

39. Bassoon cousins : OBOES.   Both are double reed instruments.

40. Vending machine buy : SODA.  

41. "Absolutely!" : YOU BET.   For sure!

43. Kicked off the flight : BUMPED.   So your seat can be given to someone more important.  Another reason not to fly.

45. Well-protected : SECURE.

47. Sweater outlet? : PORE.  Not a discount clothing store.  The opening in your skin from which perspiration exudes. 

48. Island nation near Sicily : MALTA.   Not YALTA, on the mainland of Crimea.

49. Get in the game : SEE ACTION.  Players who are not starters often get to SEE ACTION at some point in the game.

54. Form 1040 calc. : AGI.  Adjusted Gross Income.

57. Nickelodeon pooch : REN.  Along with Stimpy, who is alleged to be a cat.

58. Spine-tingling : EERIE.  We should be safe now that we're past Halloween.

59. Hawaii or Alaska, on many a map : INSET.

60. Number before quattro : TRE.  French? Italian?  Why is "number" in English?

61. Editor's "Let it stand" : STET.   Ignore any correction or alteration.

62. Hoopster Archibald and rapper Dogg : NATES.  I'll admit I don't know these guys.  I had NATE Silver last Wednesday and resisted the urge to link to the song I composed and arranged for my grandson of the same name.  This time I'm FALLing for it.

Schoolcraft Jazz Band Chicago Tour - Spring, 2011


1. Back talk : SASS. Rude and impudent.

2. Homecoming guest : ALUM.   One who graduated from the place of interest.

3. Affluent, in Andalusia : RICO.    Rich in Spanish.

4. Low socks : ANKLETS.
5. (If) required : NEED BE.

6. Together, musically : A DUE.  Literally, for two, from the Italian.  Taken to mean all the players with a given part, such as the first violins.  They often sit two to a stand, but that might just be a coincidence.

7. Watch over : TEND.   As livestock, children or a bar.

8. Director Jean-__ Godard : LUC.  Of whom I know nothing.  With the mythic ATLI, the cross became my natick.  Misspelling ODEON didn't help, either.  

9. "Can't wait to eat!" : I’M HUNGRY.

11. Watchful : ALERT.

12. Embarrassing, as a situation : MESSY.  

14. Nashville attraction : OPRY.   It's grand.  And old.

17. Bring up : REAR.   As children.

21. Great Lakes' __ Canals : SOO.  Located along the St. Mary's river between the upper peninsula of Michigan and Ontario, Canada, the canals connect Lakes Superior and Huron.
23. 10-time All-Pro linebacker Junior : SEAU.

24. Hand over : CEDE. As territory, to a superior force.

25. Taken by mouth : ORAL.  As medication.

27. Young hooter : OWLET.   An owl hatchling.  What were you thinking?

28. Rules, briefly : REGS.   Regulations.

30. __ gin fizz : SLOE.   The SLOE is the drupe of the blackthorn bush.   SLOE gin is made by soaking the drupe either in actual gin or cheaper grain neutral spirits.  Sugar is added to aid in the extraction, or corn syrup to get really cheap [and vile.]  The fizz is a drink made with this concoction,  plus lemon juice and carbonated water.  

32. Trusted underling : AIDE.   A good one might make you a nice cocktail.

33. Prince who inspired Dracula : VLAD.  Posthumously named "The Impaler."

35. Loser only to a straight flush : FOUR ACES.   Poker hands.

Or these guys

36. Calais cleric : ABBE.   French abbot

40. "The Bartered Bride" composer : SMETANA.

42. Away : OUT.  As in OUT of the office, or OUT of town.

43. Former U.K. carrier : BOAC.   British Overseas Airways Corporation, formed in 1940 by the merger of Imperial Airways and British Airways Limited.  In 1974 it was combined with British European Airways to form British Airways.

44. Mischievous boy : URCHIN.   Or girl.

45. Snazzy-looking : SMART.  Sharply dressed.

46. Ready and willing : EAGER.  Let's go!

47. Love-crazy Le Pew : PEPE.  Possibly the most DF cartoon character.

49. "Absolutely!" : SURE.

50. Give out : EMIT.  As the sun's rays or a skunk's odor.

51. Scientific acad. : INST.  Academy and Institute.

52. Architectural S-curve : OGEE.   Commonly an S curve, but more generally, any profile with a reverse bend.

53. Fishing gear : NETS.  Rods, reel, bait, pole, hook, lure  .  .  .

56. Riled (up) : HET.   Past tense of heat, in dialect.  First known use was in 1909.

Well, that wraps it up.  I had a nit or two, but overall, a pretty good outing.

I learned while doing the Boston Globe puzzle on Sunday that the British term for a sucker is a LOLLY.  So - would someone who silences a dupe in London be a LOLLY GAGGER?   No - wait - that's the other kind of sucker - hard candy on a stick.  So, never mind.

I'll just show myself the door.

Cool regards!

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