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, February 17, 2016

L.A. Times Crossword Puzzle Blogging - Wednesday, February 17, 2016 Todd Gross

[Cross-posted at The Corner.]

Theme: It's all about space.  But what about time, I wonder?  What would Einstein say?  Actually, that's misleading.  Today's theme goes off to a different dimension - or at least in a different direction.

No double meanings in today's straight forward, sideways and up and down theme.  Simply the grid-spanning titles of three 3-D movies.   No - that's not quite right, either.  As we are about to see, it's the THREE D titles of three movies.

So, first the unifier.   63 A. Like some movies ... literally including 17-, 37- and 56-Across : THREE D.   Usually, this designation indicates that the movie is presented in THREE Dimensional format, where interesting or frightening objects seem to jump out of the screen at you.   But here, it's reconsidered to mean movies with the letter D appearing THREE times in the title.

17 A. 1986 movie set partly in the Australian Outback : CROCODILE DUNDEE.   As near as I can tell, this movie was only released in TWO D flat screen format.  And as near as I can recall, it's a movie about a knife.

37 A. 1988 movie set in a Southern California high school : STAND AND DELIVER.  About a math teacher who inspired a tough group of drop-out prone kids to excel in calculus.  Originally released in 2D, it was re-released in 3D in 2012.

56 A. 1996 movie set in Nevada's Area 51 : INDEPENDENCE DAY.  A seemingly invincible alien force attacks earth on July 2nd.  The scrappy earthlings - specifically Americans - figure out a way to win, a mere 2 days later.   A THREE D rerelease was planned in 2012, but cancelled.

Hi gang, JazzBumpa here to explore what goes along with this solid [see what I did there?] theme.  Let's dig in. 

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

L.A. Times Crossword puzzle Blogging Wednesday, February 3, 2016 C. W. Stewart

[Cross-posted at The Corner.]

Theme:  Something you find on a fish.  No, not FINS or GILLS.  Think more musically - no, not even Vince Gill - and the reveal will make it clear.  So let's start there.

38 A. Musical sequence found at the starts of the answers to the starred clues : SCALE.   This word has many disparate meanings as both a noun and a verb.  Here, we are talking about a set of musical notes, ordered by pitch.  This puzzle has them ordered in ascending sequence, though, of course, you can also go the other way.  We're not told if the quality of the scale is major, minor, nor if it is one of the many modal variants.  But we can sing along anyway.  

The beginnings of the first words of eight in-the-language phrases name the notes of the SCALE.

1 A. *Where deliveries may be left : DOOR STEP.   The spot where mail-order deliveries end up.  DO is the first scale note, and the tonal center, aka tonic, for the SCALE and any music based upon it.

17 A. *Airport pickup : RENT-A-CAR.   The plane does not take you to your final destination.  You usually need to drive there, and you can use a conveniently located vehicle for a price.  RE is the 2nd SCALE step, a whole tone above the tonic.   We won't talk about the Phrygian mode, the comma of Pythagorus, nor vibrational frequencies.

20 A. *Modest garment : MIDI-SKIRT.  Mid-calf-length to protect delicate legs from winter winds and prying eyes.  Seems a bit awkward.  MI is the third scale step, another whole tone above RE in a major scale, but only a half tone up if the quality of the SCALE is minor.  BTW - the distance from one note to another is called the interval.

26 A. *Hiker's pouch : FANNY PACK.  A container on a belt, often perched over a person's back side. [But not in England.]  FA is the fourth scale step above the tonic.  This note does not vary between major and minor scales, and its interval above the tonic is called the perfect fourth. 
51 A. *Infant's dietary prohibition : SOLID FOOD.  Mom's milk is best, formula is OK.  Save the bran flakes for when they're a bit older.  SOL is the fifth scale step, always a perfect fifth above the tonic.  

58 A. *Breaking point : LAST STRAW.  An ancient measure of camel capacity being the last straw minus one.   LA is the 6th scale step, a major or minor sixth above the tonic, depending on the quality of the scale.

67 A. *History book chart : TIME LINE.   A graphic representation of what happened when.  TI is the penultimate SCALE step, either a major or minor seventh interval above the tonic.  As you may have gleaned by now, the natural minor SCALE differs from the major by having lowered 3rd, 6th, and 7th SCALE steps.   There are other versions, but we needn't get into that here

72 A. *Words of admonishment : DON’T DO IT.   Have we heard these words?  Have we heeded them?  Probably not.  This brings us to another DO, a perfect octave above where we started.  Despite what I said earlier, I'll point out that the frequency is exactly twice that of the previous DO.

Hi gang.  JazzBumpa conducting for today's thematically rich excursion.  Note that though the spellings are right on for the eight notes, the pronunciations vary a bit.  Rogers and Hammerstein wrote a song, based on a major scale, that illustrates all this, but I hate it and will not link. However, I will wave my arms around - so let's see where the music takes us.