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, Mrs Miller [look her up], 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!

Friday, October 1, 2010

L.A. Times Crossword Puzzle Blogging

Friday, October 1, 2010 Scott Atkinson

Theme: HEAVE HO. To get rid of something, a forcible dismissal, as throwing something overboard. Heave, by itself, means "throw." Here the thing thrown is the letter combination HO, from a common phrase, leaving a humorous new uncommon phrase.  As much as I love puns, these might have SPANNED a bit too far.

18. *Ancient Chinese cote occupant? : MING PIGEON.  Homing Pigeon - a bird that always finds it's way back to the coop - or "cote." Here, one from the MING dynasty.

25. *Observation after a Bush walk? : W'S ON FIRST.  Who's on first - from the famous Abbot and Costello routine.   Here, W is an affectionate term for our 43rd President, who was the managing general partner of the Texas Rangers from 1989 to 1994, best known for trading away Sammy Sosa.  Afterwards, he said, "Big Texas (Nolan Ryan) is here. The reason I like to keep Nolan around is he is a reminder that when we got done with the Sammy Sosa trade, there was still some talent on the Rangers."

36. *Nickname for a so-so Navy officer? : CAPTAIN OK.   Captain Hook, whose associate Mr. Smee is an occasional visitor to puzzles.  I thought this one was actually funny.

57. *Kenyan healthcare worker? : RN OF AFRICA.  Horn of Africa. A peninsula jutting from East Africa, into the Arabian Sea.  Lots of hardship there.   Not sure who the Registered Nurse would be, but they could probably use her.

50. *Habitually drunk panda? : BAMBOO SOT.  Bamboo shoot.  We all know about the panda who eats, shoots, an leaves.  I didn't know he was drunk.

And, of course, the unifier:  42 D. Dismissal, and a hint to how the answers to starred clues were derived : HEAVE HO.  This may conjure a variety of images. Discuss in comments, if you dare.

Hi gang, JazzBumpa here, feeling quite beat-up by this tough puzzle.  Lots of technical assistance required to get through it in reasonable time.  I found the theme to be deeply opaque, and never would have sussed it without the unifier.  Technically, very impressive: besides the theme, just 1 Q away from a pangram, a tight cluster of 4 Z's, and a dozen 7-letter non-theme answers.  Alas, a total of 39 three or four letter answers reduce the average length to 4.91.


1. Aloe target : RASH.  Aloe vera is a succulent yielding a medicinal fluid good for all sorts of skin conditions, including burns.  This fill is a bit of rash judgment.

5. Indian royal : RAJA.  We often see his wife or daughter.

9. Treat meanly : SHAFT.  In the skyscraper of life, a select few get the elevator; the rest get the SHAFT.  It's mean to shaft someone on purpose.

14. 1990s Expos manager : ALOU.  If it's a baseball clue and a four letter answer, fill in ALOU and move on.

15. Approach shot club : IRON.  Golf clubs.  I got mine out a few weeks ago for the first time in years.  Didn't miss them a bit.  Had a good time at a driving range with my grandsons Danny and Ryan, though.

16. "Platoon" co-star : DAFOE.  Illustrious actor and Appleton, Wisc. native Willem DAFOE was born William.   As the story goes he changed it to "Willem", the way his Scottish childhood babysitter pronounced his name, so people would not call him "Billy".

17. Bubbles : FIZZ.   As in Champaign.  I heard once that the import duty on the bubbles was more than on the alcohol.  Can anybody verify?

20. Tasseled toppers : FEZZES.  You all know what they look like.  Here is how they get around.  Not sure where the Shriners found them.

22. Happy hour order : ALE.  Ever on the alert for new clues for this favorite x-word stalwart.  But if you want some FIZZ in your FEZ, you're better off with ginger ALE.

23. Partook of : ATE.  Why is it part-took, if you ate the whole thing?

24. Bit of dental work : INLAY.  INLAY, ONLAY - you always need a perp.  I have both.

28. "Hold on!" : SEE HERE.   Hold on, I object to what I SEE HERE!

30. Japanese-American : NISEI.  Yes, but not necessarily.  "NISEI" is a Japanese language term used in countries in North America, South America and Australia to specify the children born to Japanese people in the new country. The Nisei are considered the second generation; and the grandchildren of the Japanese-born immigrants are called Sansei. The Sansei are considered the third generation.

31. "If __ only listened!" : HE'D.  This threw me. I and I'D are too short, I HAD is too long.  But it won't get me again: I'm paying heed to HE'D!

32. Shade sources : ELMS.  But not like they used to be.  Once ELM-SPANNED streets were common.  At least there are disease resistant varieties.

35. Florida's __ City : DADE.   Maybe our Fla. contingent can fill us in.

39. Lead player : STAR.  The star of the show.  The lead player in the trombone section might or might not be a star.

41. "Even Napoleon had his Watergate" speaker : YOGI.  The one and only Lawrence Peter "YOGI" Berra, who learned all about baseball and language from Casey "Good pitching will always stop good hitting and vice-versa" Stengel.

42. I followers? : HOP.  IHOP - International House of Pancakes.  Lewis Black's health club.  Sorry , can't come up with a link.

45. Stoop : PORCH.  I think of a PORCH as something more expansive that would not stoop to being a mere stoop.

47. Dry cleaner's supply : HANGERS

53. Sheikdom of song : ARABY.   Classic old song.

54. Carpenter __ : ANT.  Aunts are not to be confused with siblings.

55. Exxon Valdez cargo : OIL.   Big disaster in Prince Willem Sound on March 24, 1989.  The ecology of the region has not yet recovered.

56. "All in the Family" family name : STIVIC.  Meathead and Gloria, not to be confused with JazzBumpa and the LW (Gloria.)  Caused some problems.  BUNKER also fits.

61. Genesis brother : SETH.  ACH.  Automatically filled in ABEL.

62. Many a dance club tune : REMIX.  An alternate version of a song, made from a new master.

63. Fiendish : EVIL.  But where on earth is the Axis of Fiendishness?  Plus, 21 D. It may be evil : EYE.  Like this one, I guess.  Wrong kind of clecho, though.  Is that EVIL, or just unfortunate?

64. The old you : THEE.  The archaic second person singular objective case pronoun.  Of course, I wanted THOU, the archaic second person singular nominative case pronoun.  SEE HERE, I have a hard time being both archaic and objective.

65. '50s flop : EDSEL.  But a classic, now, named for Henry Ford's son EDSEL, father of Hank the Deuce..

66. Guitar's fingerboard : NECK. So called because it is narrow compared to the guitar's voluptuous body.  But anything that can be done, can be overdone.

67. Repairs, as a green : SODS.  The putting green of a golf course.   Probably not like this.


1. Picaresque : RAFFISH.  Picaresque: involving clever rogues or adventurers especially as in a type of fiction.  I guess that works.  The things you learn . . .

2. Property recipient : ALIENEE:  "One to whom or to which ownership of property is transferred."  The things you learn . . .

3. Drunk, in slang : SOZZLED.  "Drunk" probably has more synonyms than any other English word.  Am I supposed to know them all?

4. Old-fashioned "Way to go!" : HUZZAH.  Archaic, I'd say.  Hast THOU ever spoken yon word?  Has it been spoken at THEE?

5. Wheel parts : RIMS.  Perfect for your hot wheels.

6. Paul's "Exodus" role : ARI.  Cast of thousands, cost of millions, but it's always ARI.

7. With 56-Down, eponymous bacteriologist : JONAS,  and 56. See 7-Down : SALK.  Discovered and developed the first safe and effective polio vaccine.  This is a well done cross-reference,

8. Saxon opening : ANGLO.  ANGLO-Saxon is a collective name for the germanic peoples who migrated to the British Isles around the sixth century.  The language they spoke was Englisc, pronounced "English."

9. Star Wars letters : SDI.  Prez. Reagan's Strategic Defense Initiative, commonly called STAR WARS, but without the John Williams score.

10. Witchy woman : HAG.  I guess so.

11. Lackin' gumption : AFEARED.  I'm Eskeerd to say I had trouble with this one.

12. Under-the-table diversion : FOOTSIE.  Nothing I can relate to.

13. Article of faith : TENET.

19. Keystone State founder : PENN.   William PENN, not known to have been called either Willem or Billy, the founder and "absolute proprietor" of the Province of Pennsylvania, the English North American colony and the future U. S. State of Pennsylvania. He was an early champion of democracy and religious freedom, notable for his good relations and successful treaties with the Lenape Indians. Under his direction, the city of Philadelphia was planned and developed.  Well, he got most of it right.

25. "The Optimist's Daughter" writer : WELTY.  Eudora WELTY's highly regarded novel.

26. Generic pooch : FIDO.  His best friend is ROVER.  They don't care much for SPOT.

27. "Out of Africa" author Dinesen : ISAK.  Karen somebody  -  we just had her a couple days ago.

29. Good name, briefly : REP.  Reputation.  Not a sales Rep

33. He said "Learn from the masses, and then teach them" : MAO.  Chairman MAO Zedong, founder of the People's Republic of China in 1949 and one of the founders of the Chinese Communist party in 1921.  To my knowledge, there is no chicken dish named after him.

34. Common sense? : SIGHT.  SEE HERE - along with taste, smell, touch, hearing, and the uncommon sense, ESP.

36. Atkins diet no-no : CARB.  Carbohydrates, aka sugars and starches.  We recently had the good Dr. as well.

37. Gas brand seen at ampm stores : ARCO.  I recognize ARCO as the old Atlantic Richfield, acquired by EXXON-MOBIL some time ago.  Don't get the clue, though.  Anybody?

38. Peeples of "Fame" : NIA.  Nope.  Don't know her.

39. Reached across : SPANNED.  Like a bridge.  Or those old ELM trees (sigh.)

40. Powwow communication source : TOMTOMS.  Drums used in ceremonial fashion by Native Americas, but versitile in other contexts, as well.

43. Traveled from point A to point A? : ORBITED.  The fancy way of going around in circles.

44. Analysts' concerns : PSYCHES.  I wanted PSYCHOS.  But all of us have PSYCHES - the forces  that influence thought, behavior and personality

46. Clopper : HOOF  Horses go clop, clop, with their hooves.

48. Former RFK Stadium NLer : NAT.  Here, the odious "NLer" is an abbrev. indicating that NAT is short for Nationals - a specific team, not the whole league.

49. Mill inputs : GRISTS.  Grains to be ground.

50. Ballet rail : BARRE.  It's just bar, spelt funnee.  Dancers use it in training.

51. Fire indicator, perhaps : SIREN.  The alert sound of an emergency vehicle.

52. Green shade : OLIVE.  Didn't we just have OLIVES yesterday?  I had some tonight.

58. Old cry of disgust : FIE.  EGAD! Rather a lot of RETRO in this one, dost thou not think?

59. Rose of rock : AXL.  AXL Rose of Aerosmith, here doing the best quasi,-pseudo-ersatz Led Zeppelin song EVAH!

60. Prez, to GIs : CIC.  Commander in Chief.  Not sure this abrv is valid, but it's too late to quibble.

I quoted liberally and carelessly from Wikipedia, without attribution - until now.  You can probably tell where.  I didn't know any of the information transmitted herein.  Well, maybe some. Hope this covers it.


UPATE:  X-posted at The Corner, with commentary, and a correction of my biggest gaffes - no, Kenya is not one of them.


Anonymous said...

57A) Kenya is not part of the Horn of Africa - think Eritrea and Somalia instead. Maybe typical American knowledge of wworld geography!
Jumak in Phuket, Thailand

Jazzbumpa said...

Jumak -

Thanks for stopping by. But, hey - lighten up a little. All I did was link to a map.

I'll admit, I did not know that the Horn was in East Africa. Always eager to learn.