Look: I am eager to learn stuff I don't know--which requires actively courting and posting smart disagreement.

But as you will understand, I don't like to post things that mischaracterize and are aimed to mislead.

-- Brad Delong

Copyright Notice

Everything that appears on this blog is the copyrighted property of somebody. Often, but not always, that somebody is me. For things that are not mine, I either have obtained permission, or claim fair use. Feel free to quote me, but attribute, please. My photos and poetry are dear to my heart, and may not be used without permission. Ditto, my other intellectual property, such as charts and graphs. I'm probably willing to share. Let's talk. Violators will be damned for all eternity to the circle of hell populated by Rosanne Barr, Lady Gaga, and trombonists who are unable play in tune. You cannot possibly imagine the agony. If you have a question, email me: jazzbumpa@gmail.com. I'll answer when I feel like it. Cheers!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

L.A. Times Crossword Puzzle Blogging

Saturday, March 27, 2010, Brad Wilbur

Theme: None

Total words: 70

Total blocks: 28

No extra-long stacks this week.  More words and fewer blocks than last Saturday.  Pretty open-looking grid. These are not details I usually pay much attention to.  Hi gang, it's JazzBumpa taking a big step out of the comfort zone.  C.C. wished a Brad Wilbur puzzle on me, and her wish came true.  Regular readers will know themeless Saturday Puzzles are not my favorite.  This one seems perhaps a bit easier than usual, though I went for technical assistance early and often, in the interest of getting to bed before dawn.

Pretty good puzzle.  By my reckoning, a Q and X away from a pangram.



Across

1. Google oneself: EGOSURF.  First thing tomorrow, I'm googling myself!

8. Produce greenery:  FOLIATE.  Burst out in leaves.

15. Exceeded, as a time limit: RAN OVER.   If I exceed my time limit tonight, tomorrow I'll feel like something RAN OVER me.

16. Scale used in summer weather forecasts:  UV INDEX.  A warning of sun exposure danger, a bit like a terror alert.

17. Way back when:  AGES AGO.   "When I was a young man, never been kissed . . ."

18. Researcher's garb:  LAB COAT.  Traditional protective garment for all sorts of experimantation.  What you wear with it is optional.

19. Mlle. counterpart:  SRTA:  Abbrv. for SeƱora.  Now how can you possibly know this is looking for a Spanish answer?

20. Card game declaration:  I CALL.  Guessed, and got it.  In poker, a call is a decision to match the latest bet.  Alternatives are to raise or fold.

22. Start to dominate?  PRE.  Where would we be without the mandatory affix?

23. Want-ads fairness pledge: Abbr.: EEO.  Equal Employment Opportunity, a promise to be fair, according to Federal guidelines.

24. Only non-actor ever chosen as People's Sexiest Man Alive, familiarly: JFK,  JR.  I didn't know this, but it's not a surprise.  His was a very poingnant story, on many levels.  He and his wife and her sister died when he crashed his plane in bad weather.  He had a leg injury and shouldn't have been flying.  Here he is as a man, and in a famous sad picture as a boy.

25. Like some kitchens:  EAT IN.  A kitchen with a place to eat at - either a dinette set or standing at the sink.

27. Apology element:  REGRET.  No RUER today.  I don't regret that.

29. Cockpit reading:  AIR SPEED.  I know one of our regulars will be able comment on this one better than I can.

31. MGM co-founder: LOEW.  I had no idea.  MGM is Metro Goldwyn Mayer.  Maybe this explains the MGM lion since the name LOEW is not indicated by the initials.  LOEWE is "lion" on German

32. Dagwood's boss:  MR. DITHERS, shown here with some of his peers.  Not the best boss, ever.

33. "Star Trek" (2009) villain: NEROThis guy.  Nope.  Never watched any of the later generations.

35. Case for notions:  ETUI.  A little decorative box for storing doodads.  My notion is, I'd almost rather have RUER. 

36. Life partners:  TRUE LOVES.  If you're lucky enough to find each other.  I mean, really - what are the chances?

40. Chimes in:  ADDS.  Makes a coment that advances the conversation.  Presumably.

 43. Extemporized:  WINGED IT.  Hemmed, hawed, add libbed (my original answer - I know, it doesn't fit), improvised, made stuff up, read crib notes off your hand . . . 

44. Faux:  ERSATZ.  We've discussed this at length in the past.  Poor quality substitute for the real thing.

46. Crawling with creepers:  IVIED.  I was relieved by this answer.  It could have been something creepy crawly, that I don't want to link.

47. In advance:  EARLY.  They both indicate before some specified time, but they seem non-equivalent to me.  What do you think?

49. Dude:  BRO.  Just some guy.  By the way -- Don't tase me, DUDE.

50. Tip for an exam taker?:  NIB.  The tip of a pen, not a bit of good advice, like study, or write the answers on your hand.

51. Key of Mahler's "Symphony of a Thousand":  E FLATNever heard of it.  Had to get perp help, then it was easy.

52. "Kisses Sweeter __ Wine": Jimmie Rodgers hit:  THAN.  I like dry red wine and sweet wet kisses

53. Italian pistol:  BERETTA.  An actual firearm.  Not this son of a gun.

56. Database with openings:  JOB BANK.  They have a web site for job seekers

58. Deforestation concern:  EROSION.  Trees and other green growing things stabilize the soil and prevent runoff.  But you knew that.

59. Orchestrate:  ARRANGE.  Assign the notes to the specific instruments.  I've done a bit of that.  Ravel was the master.

60. "__ Creek," TV series that launched Katie Holmes's career.  DAWSON'S.  The show, Dawson's Creek, which I never watched, had my homie girl Katie in one of the starring rolls. What is it about Tom Cruse and gullible Catholic girls?

61. Pack rat: HOARDER:  Designation for somebody who can't throw anything out.  Know anybody like that?  But they, speaking of creepy crawlers, are also real critters.


Down

1. Tip for an exam taker?  ERASER.  Aha! the tip at the other end of the pencil.  Misdirection, in more ways than one.  Very clever.

2. Common DVD bonus feature:  GAG REEL.  This often contains humorous out-takes, mistakes, etc.

3. Pizzeria shout:  ONE TO GO.  Alright.  this is a legit answer, but I don't think much of it.  We had Costco pizza tonight.  Not bad.

4. Cubs' all-time home run leader.  SOSA.  A pretty good baseball players, and The other slammin' Sammie.

5. The Cavaliers of the ACC:  U. VA.  University of Virginia Cavaliers of the Atlantic Coast Conference.

6. Wrap again, with questionable etiquette:  REGIFT.  Got a gift you're not fond of?  Next time around, wrap it up and give it to someone you're not fond of.

7. Monastic attire:  FROCK.  That about wraps it up for monks, but they can still have a fine time.

8. Enviable scholarships:  FULL RIDES.  An all expense paid excursion at the University that choses you.

9. Many a racetrack:  OVAL.  For cars, sure.  What about horse races?  Are those tracks oval or round?  Don't ask me.  I'm not a racist.

10. Empowerment word:  LIB.  As in "Women's LIB," I suppose.  Does liberation = empowerment?  To me, this looks close, but not quite on target.

11. Entrepreneurial monthly:  INC. : The perfect magazine for the kick-ass start-up promoter in you.

12. Anne of Green Gables, for one:  ADOPTEE.  One who is adopted, generally after being orphaned.   Presumably, a better second chance.  I don't know anything about Anne.

13. Less stoic:  TEARIER.  Shedding more tears.  I guess big stoics don't cry.

14. Stretches:  EXTENDS.  For example muscles, before and after exertion, or the mind, by taking on a Saturday puzzle.

21. Slightly cracked:  AJAR.  Neither quite opened, not quite closed.  A slightly cracked jar is something all together different.

24. Like Faberge eggs:  JEWELED.  Just in time for my family's early Easter celebration.  Though they may be slightly too elaborate for our humble tastes.

25. Puget Sound, e.g.:  ESTUARY.  An estuary is a water passage where the tide meets a river current.  Your current events item of the day.

26. Rose garden bane: APHIDS.  They will eat your plants.  Lady bugs will eat them.  I believe it's bugs, all the way down.

28. Back out:  RENEGE.  Just this morning, I reneged the car from my garage.  Otherwise, it means to fail to carry out a promise or commitment.  For shame!

30. Slowing, in mus.:  RIT.  Abbrev. for RITARDANDO, literally, slowing down in Italian.

32. Oscar night devotees:  MOVIE FANS.  I guess I'm not one, since I just don't care.

34. Poet McKuen:  ROD.  An American poet.  Here is his home page.  Clear Ayes, do you have a favorite?

36. Half a sleeping pair:  TWIN BED.  Another nice misdirection.  A pair of matching beds, each suited for a single sleeper.  I wanted jammies.

37. Mediterranean hot spot:  RIVERA.  The Mediterranean coast of France and Italy with many nice beaches.  Those who have been there can tell us about it.

38. Bert has one, but not Ernie: UNIBROW:  A single continuous eyebrow extending over both eyes, or a condition with enough hair between the brows to suggest that effect.  Here's the boys.

39. "Too many more to mention" abbr.:  ET. AL.  Latin for, "and others."

41. Expert:  DAB HAND.  Evidently, this is a British Isles expression.

42. Idiosyncratic:  STRANGE.  Close enough, I guess.  One of my favorite novels was Idiosyncratic in an Idiosyncratic Land.

44. Banderillero's foe:  EL TORO.  In bullfighting, El  Banderillero sticks little flags into the bull's shoulders.  Don't ask me why.

45. "Doonesbury" hippie:  ZONKER.  A cool dude, BRO.

48. Indian royal:  RAJAH

51. Hugh Laurie's alma mater:  ETON.  Is ETON everybody's alma mater?  And Who is High Laurie?  Anyway, nice EAT IN - ETON echo.

52. Vanishing slope sight:  T-BAR.  A device to pull you up the ski slope, so you can slide back down again.  Why are they vanishing?

54. Three dots, to Morse:  ESS.  Three dots indicate the letter "S" in Morse code.  Hence the famous dot-dot-dot, dash-dash-dash, dot-dot-dot for SOS.

55. Familia member:  TIO.  Tio is Spanish for uncle.

57. Top at the shore:  BRA.  The top part of a lady's two piece swim suit, and a great way to top off this puzzle.

Well, I might not have EXCEEDED my time tonight, but I certainly EXTENDED it.  

Cheers!
JzB 

Cross-posted at The Corner, with corrections and comments.


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