Nonhuman singer of 1958 #1 song / THU 10-30-14 / Like liquor in Ogden Nash verse / Focus of Source magazine / Covert maritime org / French woman's name meaning bringer of victory /

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Constructor: David Woolf

Relative difficulty: Medium-Challenging

THEME: CHIP — CHIP rebus, in a grid shaped like a poker chip.

Word of the Day: PINEAL (23D: Kind of gland) —
The pineal gland, also known as the pineal bodyconarium or epiphysis cerebri, is a small endocrine gland in the vertebrate brain. It produces melatonin, a serotonin derived hormone, that affects the modulation of sleep patterns in both seasonal and circadian rhythms. Its shape resembles a tiny pine cone (hence its name), and it is located in the epithalamus, near the centre of the brain, between the two hemispheres, tucked in a groove where the two halves of the thalamus join. (wikipedia)
• • •

I'm all jacked up on baseball. The grid looks like a baseball to me. Baseball.

So it's a chip rebus where the grid looks like a chip, and that's about all I have to say about this puzzle. I mean, it is what it is. Somewhat interesting to look at. Somewhat interesting to solve, in the way that all rebuses are. Or most. Fill has some nails-on-chalkboard moments (EMEERS [ouch] STAC ICEL ONI). I thought ARIZONAN. ARIZONIAN googles better, but then again it is a brand of tire, so … Would've been nice if there were actually a famous VERONIQUE to pin that answer to. Do people still ELOCUTE? Did they ever? My favorite part of the puzzle was finding the "CHIP" in ARCHIPELAGO. That's some nice hiding. Plus I just like that word. SPY CAR feels like a barely real thing. Is anything 007 uses a SPY thing?

Took me a while to see the rebus, and to get started in general. Upper right went first, but once I got to 26D: Nonhuman singer of a 1958 #1 song, where I had -MU-K, I stalled. Restarted in the west with ECOL, then stalled out at 16D: Tribe of the Upper Midwest, where I had -PEW-. You see the pattern here. Once I built up everything *around* the "16" square (including SPY CAR and PIEROGI), the CHIP thing came to me. Puzzle got easier thereafter. Mainly I was glad to get to quite wondering whether QDOBA was a "spice" (29D: Fast-food chain named after a spice => CHIPOTLE).
    Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

    P.S. Wait. What? This grid is supposed to look like a CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE!? (56A: Treat represented visually by this puzzle's answer). Well that makes more sense, as it has chips in it, and less sense, as it is easily the ugliest CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE I've ever seen. Are the black squares also chips? Looks more like a throwing star or a mangled jack-o-lantern or a jack-o-lantern that's been disfigured by a throwing star. Seriously, though, black square destroy whatever cookie visual is supposed to be happening here.


    jae 12:04 AM  

    Neapolitan puzzle for me.  Top third medium, middle tough, and bottom third easy.  SCARNE was a WOE and AVOCET was close.  I  SORTA remembered it after it was filled in.

    I'm probably not the only one who had spca before OSHA thinking it was a trick (maybe it was a double trick?).  Also Rfk before RCA.  

    Unlike Russell Crowe, Guy PEARCE's career did not rocket after L.A. Confidential.

    Wanted to put an H in PIEROGI (Hi lms). 

    Clever, zippy, fun... liked it.

    Anonymous 12:06 AM  

    Quick question for puzzlers (as this seems like the best place to ask it). When I logged on tonight to solve the puzzle in "play against the clock" mode, the website advised me that the Java applet is "retired" and I need to compete using the "Play" button. Is there a way to compare my time to others' times in that mode? Is there a reason why this has been retired? Am I missing something as a non-iPhone/iPad/iAnything user?

    Zeke 12:07 AM  

    I took one look at the grid, found 56A & wondered when a squished pumpkin became a treat.

    Anonymous 12:07 AM  

    I live in Arizona. I have lived here for 18 years. I have never, ever heard ARIZONIAN. No. It is Arizonan.

    Jes Wondrin' 12:15 AM  

    So, what's the difference between allocution and ellocution, or is it just that Cockneys say 'allocution and Geordies say 'ellocution?

    Casco Kid 12:29 AM  

    Ungettable. 14 errors. 70 painful minutes. I rejected ARIZONIAN as a nonword (ARIZONAN is correct) and was able to shoehorn in pRIsON[EROFW]Ar. Ouch. I spent some time with various rebus permutations of ARIZSENAToR but that just wasn't going to work. Crosses didn't help solve it but they did help sort out the least bad of the wrong answers.

    I missed the CHIP in Chippewa and went ahead with okEnA, which felt wrong on many levels but looked like an Indian tribe name. PIEROGI is beyond my ken. WAG was well hidden, as was ONI.

    I spelled it GOcART, which I'm sure is fine as an unbranded use, and there was nothing branded about the clue. Burns with a camera became cEN, which I didn't recognize as KEN as I was trying and failing to remember Allen Funt from the original Candid Camera, which was clearly wrong.

    CHIPOENDALES' DANCERS really has that possessive plural inside? Really? Ok. I had oPENDALElDANCERS. Painful.

    I remember David Woolf from the E=mc debacle. Yep.

    Casco Kid 12:34 AM  

    PEARCE was a gimme as Memento is a terrific film. Drop what you're doing and see it. Then see it again. Uncanny story telling.

    Anonymous 12:58 AM  


    Born and raised in Arizona. Lived there for 44 years. No one from there says "Arizonian," ever.

    It's Arizonan.

    AliasZ 12:59 AM  

    Where is Arizonia?

    Loved the puzzle, but I had no CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE with which to satisfy the craving created by it. I ran out of milk too, and a source was not within arm's reach. I am so hungry now, but making PIEROGIs is too time consuming. Besides, I never attended pierogial school where they teach you how to make them. I'll just have some POTATO CHIPs. Candy is dandy, too.

    I discovered the CHIP trick at ARCHIPELAGO and it was clear sailing from there, except I almost entered AMIN for 42D.

    For a nice listen, try this: Lincolnshire OPPOSEy by Percy Grainger, performed by the Eastman Wind Ensemble conducted by Frederick FENNEL.

    @Anonymous 12:06 - try this link . It still worked for me today.

    Good night.

    Steve J 2:02 AM  

    "Treat represented visually by this puzzle's answer": CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE. If you say so.

    Setting aside that enormous stretch, I liked this. Of course, I was going to like pretty much any puzzle after watching the Giants win their third World Series in five years, and watching Madison Bumgarner become a pitching legend. Tremendous fun.

    Some nice fill with PIEROGI and CHIPPENDALES DANCERS (two things that ordinarily don't go together, unless you're Chris Farley in a classic SNL skit). (Meanwhile, to take a somber turn, it's sad that in a clip that's only 25 years old, featuring people in their 20s and 30s, three of the five primary actors in this are now deceased.)

    I also enjoyed reminders of two excellent movies: Guy PEARCE's "Memento" and the fabulous "The Double Life of VÉRONIQUE".

    And I enjoyed the Giants winning Game 7. Just in case I hadn't mentioned that.

    Anoa Bob 2:04 AM  

    If you can see a cookie (or a poker chip) in this grid, you're putting more than CHOCOLATE in your recipe.

    At 51, does this set the record for most black squares in a 15X15 NYT puzzle? The online grid version leaves out the four-corner six-pack black stacks, maybe to save printing ink or cyberspace space? As Rex's version rightly shows, they're there.

    Always good to see OCCAM of razor fame.

    Have trouble sleeping and waking on a regular schedule? Your PINEAL gland may need some circadian synchrony adjustment. Since light is its zeitgeber, regular, consistent, repetitive 24-hour cyclic exposure to light and dark can do the trick. Think paleo.

    jae 2:18 AM  

    @anoa - did you mean 16 x 16 ?

    chefwen 2:21 AM  

    Haven't finished the puzzle yet, busy day, just wanted to see if my new avatar was successful, I'm so incompetent at anything computer related, Jon will back me up on that.

    chefwen 2:26 AM  

    Whoo Hoo! Success!!! Thank you young renter boy aka Alex.

    Moly Shu 2:54 AM  

    Liked it except for the ARIZONIAN and my complete guess at the A in PINEAL. Agree with @Casco on Memento. One of the best last lines in a movie. "Now, where was I".

    Danp 6:21 AM  

    Arizonan gets 46,400 google hits. Arizonian only gets 18,700.

    When I finished the puzzle (The play button does time you), the grid turned brown and tan in hopes that I could actually visualize a cookie. The black squares turn white. Macadamia nuts? Whatever, I wouldn't eat a cookie with fennel in it, anyway.

    Glimmerglass 6:44 AM  

    OK, the grid with the corners rounded looks vaguely like a cookie, but most people add more chocolate chips than five.

    mac 6:56 AM  

    NW was the hardest for me. Didn't we see a Guy called Gerard a few days ago? Hand up for spca, the double trick.

    I seriously considered Arizona-an, that i came out of left field.

    Beautiful cat, @Chefwen!

    LHS 888 7:02 AM  
    This comment has been removed by the author.
    LHS 888 7:05 AM  

    Very challenging for me, and I almost got it done. I was getting nowhere in the north (and I mean zero guesses), so I headed to the bottom of the clue list to see if any traction could be had there. The first clue I could work with needed a second clue to confirm: peru vs. OHIO needed iris vs. LENS. Once OHIO and LENS were in the grid, I was able to build upwards from there. I got the rebus at CHOCOLATECHIPCOOKIE.

    Back in the NW, I finally saw the clue for PEARCE, but I couldn't spell it. I had PieRCE, then PEiRCE (because FENNEL). I have no idea why I never checked the cross for LAUDS, but I didn't, so I was stuck with the error on PEiRCE/LiUDS (?!?).

    I had DANCERS, but had a hard time getting CHIPPENDALES until CHIPPEWA finally came into view.

    SCARNE was a WOE, but a guess at RCA worked out.
    PINEAL was another WOE which I missed due to inability to spell ARCHIPELAGO. (I had ARCHIPELeGO/PINEeL.

    Final score: 65 min., 0 googles, 2 errors for an official DNF.

    Strange combo: ECOL, ECOLE, ECHO
    Favorite clues: URSA, SINUSES, QUICKER, MOSS
    Favorite word: VERONIQUE (just looks cool in the grid)
    Agree with @Rex on the beauty of the CHIP inside ARCHIPELAGO.

    Even though I didn't quite crack this nut, I had a fun time with the struggle. Thanks DW / WS!

    LHS 888 7:12 AM  

    And I'm with @Casco et al. re: Memento. It is an amazingly creative piece of storytelling!

    LHS 888 7:15 AM  

    @Mac - It was GIL Gerard.

    Anonymous 7:18 AM  

    The print edition does not have the black squares around the edges of the puzzle.

    George Barany 7:41 AM  

    Like @Rex, I was entranced by game 7, which was one for the ages. The race is on to put MADBUM into a grid, given that MADISON_BUMGARNER is 16-letters (although, come to think of it, it would have worked today).

    I am a huge fan of @Hayley Gold, so it was a real delight to read her brilliant take on today's puzzle. Check out and decide for yourself.

    Gill I. P. 7:50 AM  

    The cutey pie CHIPPENDALES DANCERS gave me the rebus pretty early on. For the life of me though, I couldn't get SINUSES at 13A and didn't know PEARCE. Doesn't ICEL look horribly wrong?
    I like the foreign[y] words but I guess I need to learn how to spell PIEROGI. Such a RICHE word.
    Since I probably knocked my PINEAL gland out of whack and I'm up at 4:40 I'll share with you VERONIQUE Sanson'sAmoureuse

    Charles Flaster 7:52 AM  

    Medium in 20 minutes with one huge omission. Did not see the chip in ARCHIPELAGO and thought pshot was a golf term I never heard.So DNF pour moi.
    Got the rebus at CHIPMUNK and recalled the human in the song--David Seville.
    Wondering if DW ever thought of placing the CHIPS symmetrically.
    Liked clues for SINUSES,ECHO,ETCHER and LOOTED.
    Madison Bumgarner has to be the most relaxed person on earth. He was in total control especially after the ninth inning error.
    Great game and best playoffs in a while.
    Thanks DW.

    NCA President 8:04 AM  

    First, @Rex, I'm so disappointed that you did not include a link to the Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald. I can't read the word CHIPPEWA without hearing Gordon Lightfoot. Warning: clicking on the link can produce a serious ear worm. You've been warned.

    Second, I kinda (SORTA) liked this puzzle...but it did remind me of a $4 cookie I bought once at a coffee shop. For $4 you should get a lot of chips...but I only got maybe 4. That's a dollar per chip. This "cookie" was seriously low on chips as well. I did like the randomness of the the placement...that was the challenge for me.

    ICEL...that's a for real abbreviation? According to this site, it does not exist in the top 6 ways to do it.

    Had kindA before SORTA. STAC is okay, but staccato is usually abbreviated stacc. I liked TEAT...cheeky. I put in OSHA but definitely kept spcA in the back of mind.

    Does anyone with the resources know when the last time the NYT had a weird shaped puzzle like this? Seems very unusual.

    As someone who grew up in Nebraska, does today's puzzle make me a Nebraskian?

    Gill I. P. 8:09 AM  

    Well, sorry about VERONIQUE Sanson's voice not appearing. I can't get the blog to accept the html for whatever reason.
    Quelle deception.......

    jberg 8:29 AM  

    Alvin the CHIPMUNK gave me the rebus, but I looked at the missing corners and decided that we were dealing with chips off the old block. So I needed the revealer for the theme -- though it came right away when I saw it.

    As @Rex and everyone else noted, the visual cookie doesn't work. If you take out the bard at the cardinal compass points, the black squares could be chips; but if you take the rebus squares, which are literal chips scattered through the dough, there just aren't enough of them.

    What I learned today: "Candy is dandy, but liquor is quicker" is actually not by Dorothy Parker.

    Sir Hillary 8:41 AM  

    Nope. Today, the short crud (STAC, ICEL, LIPO, ASEC, ONI), non-things (SPYCAR, ARIZONIAN) and non-cookie-lookingness of the grid combined to outweigh any cleverness and [CHIP] placement.

    As I solved, I was hoping to find one more chocolate nugget, with Amsterdam's airport as one of the clues.

    Danp 8:43 AM  

    "Chips off the old block" would have been great!

    mathguy 8:43 AM  

    When my son was in Vegas before the season, he put $100 on the Giants to win the World Series at 22-1. The counterman printed the ticket and said, "Thanks for the sucker bet." When my son looked at him, he said, "I'm a Dodger fan."

    The counterman was correct. All these future bets are sucker bets regardless of the team. Not only are the odds too low, the casino keeps all the money for several months before having to give part of it back.

    My son understands all that which just makes winning all the sweeter.

    Mohair Sam 8:43 AM  

    I know it's called Occam's Razor . . but ain't he William of Ockham?

    The Capital of @Alias Z's Arizonia is probably Phoenics. Arizonian indeed!

    Hand up for loving "Memento."

    Lost a ton of time by misspelling PIEROGI (perrogi), didn't correct until we discovered the rebus (at ARCHIPELGO no less).

    Often when I bring a FENNEL bulb to the checkout at Wegman's the cashier asks what it this so he/she can check for the UPC in the book. I say "FENNEL", but you'll find it under A for anise. Aren't they different foods? Can one of you chefs explain?

    Any complaints I may have had about this puzzle pale when faced with the beauty of AR(CHIP)ELAGO.

    Andrew Morrison 9:00 AM  

    I am surprised so many people found this a challenge. Played easy for me (not claiming any special genius.). Once I got CHOCOLATE I knew there was some sort of rebus to be had. Grid surrendered with only a brief struggle with an S, as in, 'I guess the DANCERS belong to a guy named CHIPPENDALE.'

    I agree the picture is, well, rather an abstract representation of a cookie.

    Fun puzzle. Better than I could do.

    Joseph Welling 9:00 AM  

    Puzzle felt easy for a Thursday, but I'm still baffled as to why POTATO CHIP works for "Wise one?" Is that a brand name or something? Must be a regional thing.

    joho 9:00 AM  

    I print my puzzles in gray scale to save on ink so the black CHOCOLATECHIPS showed up quite nicely on the COOKIE. Plus for a crossword COOKIE I think this looks great! It's round, it's got CHIPS ... and it's not a real COOKIE, guys!

    I loved that I didn't figure out the rebus until CHOCOLATECHIPCOOKIE. My favorites were ARICHIPELAGO and CHIPOTLE, but the others were fresh and fun, too.

    My word of the day was SCARNE. Which made me wonder if sCoNEs have CHIPS?

    Original! Not a half-baked idea!
    Thanks, David Woolf!

    Z 9:32 AM  

    People from Michigan are Michiganders, not Michiganians. But again, clues only have to be not wrong, they don't have to be right or preferred. If Michiganian were to appear I could point out that "real" Michiganders prefer Michigander, but I know parochials from elsewhere make the mistake. Besides, isn't the right answer "Grumpy old war-monger?"

    Personally, I really liked this puzzle. Criticisizing the black squares for ruining the illusion is like complaining about seeing the strings at a puppet show. No, this is a nice conceit with a nice reveal (I didn't get the rebus until the reveal) with some fun answers.

    SPY CAR is absolutely dead-on, everything Bond is "SPY." The difference between James Bond and Dominic Flandry is "near future" vs. "far future" spy sci fi. I think SPY CAR captures this perfectly.

    Bumgarner should get the win. He still isn't as impressive as Mickey Lolich, but that's his manager's fault for not starting him. I think he would have thrown a complete game shut-out if he had had the chance. Highly entertaining series, even if the announcers did their very best to grate on everyone's ears. ELOCUTION that made people think of electrocution.

    Charles Flaster 9:35 AM  

    Totally agree on the betting. Way too low of a ROI. However it is
    nice to win.

    Anonymous 9:37 AM  

    Can we no longer see how we did against others in the NY Times applet? Is that gone? I hope not....

    If anyone knows I would love some feedback...

    Laurence Katz 9:39 AM  

    Considering how much imagination is required to see the image in other picture-type puzzles, I'd say this representation of a chip-studded cookie was pretty darn good. OK, the black squares have to be ignored, but no biggie. Fun puzzle. PS: If "The Arizonian" was good enough for the title of a King Vidor movie, it's good enough for me.

    Airymom 9:40 AM  

    "Wise" potato chips---grew up eating them in NYC. Best chips money can buy! Took me forever to get Chipotle, which is a true embarrassment since my college son and his pals view it as the promised land.

    David Woolf 9:44 AM  

    Hey folks,

    Constructor here dropping in to comment (it's becoming a habit) beyond what was already said on wordplay/over at xwordinfo. First, I always appreciate the feedback, because it's pretty hard to know how a puzzle will be received when I'm constructing it. Second: as for looking like a cookie, it seems like everywhere other than Across Lite leaves the corners out, which actually sells the visual. And lets be honest, CHOCOLOATE CHIP OCTAGON just doesn't sound as good as CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE, so some imagination is required.

    And third, @AliasZ and the many others: Arizonia is right next to Canadia. :) (In all honesty, my understanding is that Arizonian is an old term used by old people like John McCain, and I recognize that Arizonan may have won out in current usage. But just because something is old doesn't make it not a thing.)

    That's all for now, and again, thanks everyone again for the feedback, critical and otherwise.

    OISK 9:48 AM  

    Finished it, enjoyed it, although "Chippendalesdancers " means nothing to me. Who are they, or were they? (I guess I'll Google it.) Happy to be able to complete all of this week's puzzles correctly, after 3 DNF during "Meta week." Avocet's are rarely seen in NY, but I have a nice picture of one I saw in Tanzania. (very unusual beak shape) Very clever, well executed theme, just right for a Thursday. Thanks Mr. Woolf.

    Joy Moore 9:56 AM  

    The chip clue I got was chocolate chip cookie...I though it was chocolate "spookie" for Halloween Eve!

    Joy Moore 9:58 AM  

    I meant, the "first" chip clue...

    NCA President 10:00 AM  

    @Joy Moore: If this were a "Halloween" cookie, there would have been a razor blade hidden in it somewhere...

    chefbea 10:02 AM  

    Fun puzzle. Of course loved all the food stuff including the whole chocolate chip cookie. I make potato ship cookies as well.

    @chefwen - nice new avatar

    My good friend who is Polish gave me a lesson in pierogi making ..yummm

    Go Tar Heels

    chefbea 10:03 AM  

    should be potato chip cookies

    picking a nit 10:04 AM  

    I don't think PINEAL is a "type" of gland. It IS a gland. It is called the "PINEAL gland." Is the pancreas a type of gland? A "type" of gland would be "exocrine" or "endocrine". When it comes to the gland, PINEAL is a noun.

    Casco Kid 10:05 AM  

    Had the McCain cue included a (var) I might have gotten it. As it was, I really did proactively reject ARIZONIAN, which made for a radically different solve.

    Bob Kerfuffle 10:31 AM  

    ONI as a "covert maritime org." was/is completely unknown to me. Why doesn't it have its own TV series. Surely CBS could find room for it.

    Otherwise, we might have to go with:

    Oni are a kind of yōkai from Japanese folklore, variously translated as demons, devils, ogres or trolls. They are popular characters in Japanese art, literature and theatre. Wikipedia

    Arlene 10:33 AM  

    I did a real double-take when I opened to the puzzle page this morning - in a good way.
    I got the rebus at POTATO CHIP - and everything flowed from there. I actually had CHOCOLATE in there for a while before getting the rebus.
    This is the longest time I've spent on a puzzle without resorting to Googling (34 minutes). Some sixth sense evidently telling me to suss this one out. Enjoyed this one!
    And I just took at look at Hayley Gold's website - absolutely brilliant.

    wreck 10:35 AM  

    There will never be a greater Chippendale than Chris Farley with Patrick Swayze.

    Fred Smith 10:40 AM  

    Hey, hey...

    Nothing wrong with a (var) in a presidential reference. Geez, Dubya had "strategery" and "nucular!"


    RooMonster 10:46 AM  

    Hey All !
    I thought it was a cool puz! So nyah! :-P
    Did it online, and that version didn't have the 6 black squares in each corner, they were gone, so if you squinted your eyes, you could get to the CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE. Thanks to @jae for pointing out the 16x16.

    Took a while to grok the theme, had the _PEWA and _OTL_ and couldn't for the life of me figure it out, even after running the alphabet. Finally thought of CHIPOTLE, then saw what was happening, and got the revealer.

    So overall give it a cool rating (as in the puzzle is cool, not cool as in hot/cold) :-)


    David Woolf 10:46 AM  

    @Bob Kerfuffle
    I would have loved to clue ONI as "Japanese demon" or something similar, since I'm more familiar with that definition. But I think Japanese folklore (as well as the game Legend of the Five Rings, which contained oni) is pretty niche.


    Hartley70 10:57 AM  

    An ugly chocolate chip cookie is better than no chocolate chip cookie at all in my opinion. This one made me smile. I started out with QUICKER and moved from the bottom up. I thought the north was tougher it the only answer that I didn't get was SCARNE, but it was there from the crosses. This was light-hearted fun for me.

    ARIZONIAN sounded right to this New Englander even tho spellcheck disagrees. Maybe that's cause I'm old, but not as old as McCain, thank God.

    WISE is a brand of chip, but a little on the hard side for my taste. I like the old STATE LINE brand from my youth.

    FENNEL/anise/licorice yuck.

    @Anonymous I believe you must buy a Premium subscription to the NYT crossword for timed competition now. Hey things are tough in print media ad sales. The gray lady needs all she can get!

    Z 11:00 AM  

    ARIZONIAN with some interesting literary usages listed. Maybe an "archaic" was needed in the clue.

    @DW - thanks for stopping by.

    RooMonster 11:06 AM  

    Also wanted to say...
    It would've been cooler if there were no other c's in the puz, but I'm sure that would have made the fill more compilcated. (Unless he was going for the misdirect...)

    Just a minor nit...

    (Too many ...'s!!)


    RooMonster 11:07 AM  

    Also, would have messed up the reveal!!!!!!!


    Z 11:11 AM  

    @nitpicker - PINEAL glands are a type of gland found in vertebrates. I think it works fine. "Type" is a wishy washy enough word that really doesn't help exclude many possibilities.

    Hartley70 11:15 AM  

    BTW Dr. Oz has sent me an email to say that chewing a spoonful of fennel will help the gassiest gasbags among us feel much better. Good to know.

    Anonymous 11:24 AM  

    A big ugh to ChippendaleS dancers. They are either the Chippendales or the Chippendale dancers but not both.

    jdv 11:27 AM  

    Medium. Couldn't figure out how to spell PIEROGI. ONI crossing POTATOCHIP was a guess. SAVER before SAINT and DOMINIQUE before VERONIQUE.

    @anon. I believe there was some kind of problem last night with the play against the clock mode. As of writing this, there are only 40 solvers, which is a lot lower than usual. I don't think we'll be seeing Sanfranman data today.

    picking a nit 11:34 AM  

    @Z 11:11,
    I hear you but beg to differ. Would you say the heart is a "type" of organ found in animals? Methinks not. It is an organ found in animals. "Circulatory," or "digestive," would be a type of organ.
    The heart is an organ. The pineal is a gland.

    old timer 11:39 AM  

    John McCain is an Arizonan, but Barry Goldwater was an Arizonian -- its in the title of one of his biographies.

    Just happened to see "Tar Heels Sch" and wrote in the answer, which led be to the easier S part of the puzzle. Hence I had CHOCOLATE, space, COOKIE right away. Could that be a CHIP in the middle? The rebus was solved before I even knew there was one.

    I had to think for a long time about those DANCERS in the NW. But once they came to mind, the puzzle was solved.

    Too bad there was no hit song about VERONIQUE as there was about her near-namesake Dominique -nique -nique.

    Mm-mm and A 11:42 AM  

    mm-mm. Chocolate chip cookies. Rivaled only by c. rolls. Homemade cc cookies can be any old shape, so the visual worked fine, here.

    mm-mm. "Memento". Be sure to watch it all the way thru to the beginnin.

    mm-mm. Potato chips. Not familiar with that Wise brand, so clever clue was lost on m&e, until the end. Memento-like.

    mm-mm. Neat grid design. I did the newspaper printout version. Always the safe option, on a ThursPuz day.

    mm-mm. OREAD. Cookie commercial??

    mm-mm-mm. Weeject Cafe three-letter themer *IN.

    mm-mm. STAC. Kitties rising up??

    hm-mm. I wonder if one could make a Memento-like crossword puz? Yer thoughts?

    mm-mm-mm-mm. 007 U's. SPY CHARS!


    Anonymous 11:47 AM  

    Loved this one today.

    Signed, Chip J.

    quilter1 12:08 PM  

    Does anyone ELOCUTE and did they ever? Yes, I am probably the last person alive to have taken elocution lessons as a child. I learned to project to the back of the room and pronounce my words clearly. It has been of great value in many parts of my life and career. Especially when the PA system breaks down.

    Martel Moopsbane 12:10 PM  

    @NCA - didn't you see Occam's razor hiding in the Halloween cookie?

    Master Melvin 12:17 PM  

    Since the black squares in the corners are missing from the dead tree version, it looks a bit more like a CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE. Not a very appetizing one though - as several have noted, it needs more chips.

    Don't do business travel any longer. Do Doubletree Hotels still have those great CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIEs?

    @NCA: You mean OCCAM's Razor?

    M and Also 12:33 PM  

    Loved the puz, and loved Hayley Gold's take on it.
    She also likes Oreos. mm-mm.

    Someone mentioned that they wanted more chips in their puz cookie. Could chip in the dark squares, I reckon. What the hey...


    Andrew Heinegg 12:46 PM  


    Leapfinger 12:46 PM  

    Thought this was all that and a bag of chips! Hope it wasn't cheating to have some in the house within easy RICHE. Of course, those were Lay's instead of WISE, so maybe it's still all right!

    With all those bits of chips around, I kept waiting for the dip to appear, then the chips turned to chocolate, and I turned to hoping for a strawberry, but no joy there either. Hard to take so much disappointment, eh, @DarrylV?

    I don't know about chocolate pierogie, but I won't say no to a bit of cabbage strudel.

    @chefbea, I've also heard of potato chip and mayo sandwiches, a Jeff Foxworthy-worthy thing.

    After a farley sparse start, I had enough in the NE quadrant to let me see MUSIC. That corrected my idea of the Singing SkUNK [remember Flower in "Bambi'?]; after Alvin and the CHIPMUNKs, the rest was a snack attack, and a delicious one, with a chewy CENTER, LAUDS to love. ARIZONIAN sounds mellifluous, PINEAL has a CONE ECHO, and yes, people used to learn Rhetoric as well as ELOCUTion, back before ELO became xwordeze.

    Like @AndrewM, I frowned at square 17, having heard only of 'the CHIPPEDALES' or 'CHIPPENDALE DANCERS'. Does that make it a Plural Of Convenience or a Possession Of Convenience?
    Didn't see why OSHA referred to lab safety in particular; most of OSHA's reports are injuries in manufacturing, sawmills and factories being the leading locales [at one time, anyway]
    Missed opportunity to clue ETCHER with "Gödel, ____, Bach"

    Enjoyed the Woolf's visit at this Grandmother's house. Now have to go chew 'smore on that iliaC HIPbone

    Lewis 1:32 PM  

    @leapy -- That's EsCHER (unless you were just joshing with us).

    According to Wikipedia, CHIPPENDALESDANCERS is correct. There it is, right under the picture. I liked the double letter rich FENNEL/ZEE/OCCAM column. If the main complaint about this puzzle is not enough chocolate chips and is ARIZONIAN correct, then this must be a pretty good puzzle.

    @MetA -- loved your Memento comment!

    George Barany 1:44 PM  

    I exchanged e-mails with @Deb Amlen over at the New York Times, and they're well aware of the problems that several of you have noted. I was assured that the technical team is on the case.

    If I may shift gears, @Charles Flaster who has been a regular commentator on this blog for the past couple of years contacted me about his interest in the baseball postseason. It was an absolute delight to work with him on an appropriate tribute puzzle called Even Odds. This will likely be yesterday's news before too long, but until then, a hearty salute to both teams for a wonderfully exciting October.

    Leapfinger 1:57 PM  

    @Z, Thanks for your ARIZONIAN link. However, I was hoping to get through the day without once coming across 'sphincterectomy', so thanks for nothing.

    @NCAP, Gordon Lightfoot, eh? Your stock just rose. Who's next? Guy Carawan? Bruce Cockburn?

    @Hardley70, imo, there's no such thing as an ugly choc-chip cookie, though there may be a difference of opinion about chewy vs crispy. To my taste, it's chewy all the way, the best being from the Tollhouse recipe on the back of the bag.
    Will now have to look up the background of that Tollhouse name...

    re PINEAL; There are in fact types of glands. The ENDOcrine (ductless), that secrete into the bloodstream and act on distant parts of the body, and EXOcrine (ducted) that act locally, like salivary and sweat glands. That said, the answer PINEAL was good for a double-take in its specificity, and I may have to sleep on it.

    But remember, there'll always be an EN-gland.

    Carola 2:15 PM  

    Yesterday CHEW UP, today the COOKIE. Enjoyed this Thursday treat. I has to nibble my way around the righthand edge all the way around to CHIPPER before I caught on (then had my "D'oh" moment, over not having gotten CHIPPEWA from ??EWA, native Wisconsonian that I am). I liked the scattered CHIPS, fun to ferret them out.

    ARCHIPELAGO is lovely; and I liked the cross of CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE with CONE, as CCC dough ice-cream is a favorite around here. Didn't know SCARNE; misspelling PeiOGI kept me from seeing SINUSES and CHIPPENDALE for a long time.

    BillyM 2:25 PM  

    There goes Barany again, using this blog to promote his puzzles.

    Do you have any used cars to sell, George. Why not list them here also ....

    Lewis 2:33 PM  

    Factoid: In addition to being an expert on card games, John SCARNE was a magician specializing in sleight of hand, and in the motion picture "The Sting", he doubled for Paul Newman's hands in scenes that involved card manipulations.

    Quotoid: "Publishing a volume of verse is like dropping a rose petal down the Grand Canyon and waiting for the ECHO." -- Don Marquis

    Fred Romagnolo 2:36 PM  

    Bumgarner for President; Bumgarner for Pope; Bumgarner for Ebola Czar. Aren't you non-San Franscians (sic) jealous? Never heard of Wise POTATO CHIPS and question the possessive in CHIPPENDALES. Agree that Memento is a super movie, and PEARCE is a super actor. If you're into PIEROGI, you'll dig fried cheese pelmeni. yum! I also GOcARTED until I figured out that "Burns with a camera" was KEN. Dynasty!

    Anonymous 2:38 PM  

    ONI soit qui mali pense.

    Billy M 2:47 PM  

    Anon2:38 --

    Close, but that's:

    "Honi spit qui mal y pense"

    Billy M 2:50 PM  

    Oops, "soit"

    Gr-r-rrrrr, darned spell-corrector!

    LaneB 2:57 PM  

    Am usually flummoxed (sp?) by rebuses and today no exception. Pain of yet another rebus-caused DNF assuaged by Giant's 3rd World Championship. No complaints despite a Thursday "medium-challenging" failure. Come to the parade!!

    Martel Moopsbane 2:57 PM  

    I figured "mali pense" just meant Anon 2:38 was thinking of a non-Ebola African country.

    Martel Moopsbane 3:02 PM  

    On third look, perhaps "mali pense" is really a naughty anagram?

    Whirred Whacks 3:29 PM  

    @Fred Romagnolo: liked your suggestion of Madison Bumgardner as Ebola Czar. He's got at least much medical/scientific knowledge as Ron Klain, the under-qualified political fixer Obama picked for the job.

    Saturday Night Live spoofs Ebola Czar Ron Klain video

    @Casco Kid, Mohair Sam, @Steve J and others:
    Agree with you about that gem of a film Memento.
    Another (often-overlooked) Guy Pearce film worth checking out is "The Proposition" (2005), which also has Ray Winstone playing out of character.

    picking nit 3:41 PM  

    @leapfinger: nobody is arguing that there aren't types of glands. My first comment above referred to actual types of glands. The pineal, however, is not a type of gland. It is a specific gland (see the definition in rex's word of the day.) No endocrinologist, when asked "What types of glands are there?" would answer "endocrine, exocrine, pineal..." Now, types of GLANS are a different story--ask the chippendales.

    Elephant's Child 3:53 PM  

    It's one thing to correct "Gödel, ETCHER, Bach" (that was quite sweet, @Lewis), but when people fall over themselves to straighten out 'ONI soit qui mali pense', it really IS ynough to make a body spit, if not outright despair for punditry.

    If not for the likes of Charles Martel, there could well be an end to Aggravated Moopsbanery.

    Last Silver Chipin 4:07 PM  

    I've been notified that I failed to memorize the closing @63 snark, before offerin up my dark squares = chocolate chips suggestion. I feel so day-um unoriginal. Make it raisins.

    All U folks who liked that cool 10-A flick... I just got one thing to say*.


    * gruntz

    Leapfinger 4:15 PM  

    @picking nit(2), I'm not arguing against you; I saw later that we said pretty much the same thing. It just didn't bother me as much. The upside is that it offered you the opportunity to get in a GLANSing blow.

    In the interests of full disclosure, I'll further admit I first thought to complete 4D I-EL with an S, till it occurred to me that ISraEL is nowhere near the North Atlantic. A little geographic knowledge always pays off.

    Ludyjynn 4:19 PM  

    Loved it!!! Speaking of ARIZONIAN, aren't state/city descriptors fascinating--I grew up as a New JerseyAN (less preferred, New erseyITE), went to college as a VermontER and LondonER, lived a bit as a New YorkER and am now a long-time MarylandER. Sure beats being called a Marylandian! Go figure.

    Ate Wise POTATOCHIPS and Charles Chips as a kid. Best chips I've had lately are our regionally available UTZ chips from Hanover, Pa. Yum, esp. the kettle chips.

    So many clever clues/answers and a well-executed theme. Unlike yesterday, fill was a-ok. But WHOAMI to judge? For me, a perfect, medium level blueCHIP Thursday.

    Thanks a lot, DW and WS.

    Anonymous 4:26 PM  

    @Picking Nit "kind of ___" is standard crossword clueing for "word that kind of goes with ___". Yes, it's wrong, but it's standard.

    Pepin the Short 4:29 PM  

    @Martel Moopsbane:

    It just occurred to me to ask whether your handle has its basis in medieval history? Specifically, is it based on Charles Martel repelling the Moops, 732?

    sanfranman59 4:31 PM  

    In case anyone cares, I've not been posting stats the past couple of days because the "Scoreboard" on the NYT Crossword page has gone kerflooey (a technical statistical term). FWIW, my solve time today places this puzzle in my Medium Thursday range and yesterday's was in my Easy-Medium Wednesday range.

    And how 'bout them Giants?!? This city was rockin' last night! Screaming, fireworks, car horns filled the air. Woo-hoo!!! Now if only my Indians could pull this off at least once in my lifetime. I'm afraid that they're running out of years for me.

    picking nit 4:32 PM  

    If it's so "standard," please show me some other examples from NY Times puzzles. I've noticed constructors' language to be pretty precise in general and I found this clue to be an exception.

    Martel Moopsbane 4:33 PM  

    @Pepin: in short, yes.

    Well, that and Seinfeld.

    Anon 4:26 4:50 PM  

    @Picking Nit For gland, try this. The same construct is used widely for other than gland.

    Pepin, still Short 5:26 PM  

    @M. Moopsbane

    Always love a good backstory, a decided advantage in the Punic Warzone.

    It was indeed the Seinfeld tipped me off today.

    Anonymous 5:44 PM  

    It figures that the self-same BillyM who can't deal with GBarany is also in the fly-by zone with 'ONI soit qui mali pense'. No sensayuma a tall.

    @sanfranman, we care, and regularly look to see if there's a personal message included along with the daily stats.

    mac 6:01 PM  

    Sanfranman59: yes, I did notice and missed you. Nice of you to check in.
    And congratulations on those Giants!

    Z 6:02 PM  

    @nit - The PINEAL is a kind of gland. The heart is a kind of organ. PINEAL glands are a type of gland found in vertebrates but not in invertebrates. Expect to see this type of clue again because English isn't nearly as picky as specialists are.

    @Leapy - a day without a sphincterectomy is a day without sunshine... Or maybe "evil unto him who thinks evil of it." (BTW - English heraldry? This is an eclectic crowd)

    @ Billy M - a) Rex doesn't care, b) many people appreciate links to other puzzles, c) Please give it a rest.

    Anonymous 6:02 PM  

    @Whirred Whacks, re SNL's Ebola Czar

    Of course, Bush was spot-on with 'You're doing a helluva job, Brownie!'

    Oops, sorry. Katrina was a real crisis, instead of a potential one. Best not go down that road.

    WestCoastTom 6:12 PM  

    This is my bathroom read (solve?). I'm a Left coaster, so I set about solving in the a.m. Got the rebus right away at ARCHIPELAGO after KEN and GOKARTS gave me the G. Easy solve from there, fun finding the chip shots after that. Shoudn't ETE be banned for overuse? Sometimes seems like it's in every third puzzle.

    Billy M. 6:40 PM  

    @Z --

    Re:your response to my Barany complaint:

    a) I wasn't addressing Rex, and don't particularly care about his thoughts on this issue;
    b) there are already more links to other puzzles already on the right side of the blog than anyone could ever use, AND I have already suggested that Professor Barany ask Rex to put his links there; and
    c) I'll give it a rest when Professor Barany does.

    Thanks for your interest in the matter ...

    -- Billy

    Leapfinger 6:52 PM  

    Silly Z. A sphincterectomy is precisely where the sun don't shine, though I'll admit to being AROAR when I read that.

    Before any more thoughts spring to mind, shall close my eyes and think of EnGLAND.

    Teedmn 8:10 PM  

    I hoped for a rebus today and found this one chocolate cookie sweet. Thanks David Woolf!

    Got the trick between 56A and 26D. It wasn't until I pulled VERONIQUE out of some pocket I didn't know I had that the N gave me MUNK. Previous to that, I was looking for the name/breed (slash=or) of the dogs that barked Jingle Bells. For a while, I thought it would be some Husky type, like aMUoK.

    I was surprised to get the happy pencil with only leaving Cs in for the chips. It's the first real rebus I've solved in AcrossLite so I'm glad it was forgiving.

    Happy to see we didn't have to rehash the AMIN vs ASEC again. And I'll agree ICEL made my teeth hurt. TGIF tomorrow.

    Mohair Sam 8:31 PM  

    @Ludyjynn - Grew up on Wise, now living on Utz. Utz is the new Wise, no question. Wise, however, often left a few chips in the bag that were slightly burned - no chip has ever matched that flavor.

    Opus2 11:37 PM  

    Slow. As a Canadian (it's not Canadan) I've never heard of Wise potato chips or chipotle restaurants. No idea where McCain is from. And I proudly wrote in BURLESQUEDANCERS and a few other plausible but wrong answers. That gave me B_EW_ for the Indian tribe, and then I hit a wall cause I know the Brewers are from Milwaukee, not Cleveland. I read up on NATO, and after tripping over LUXEmbourg, settled on ICEL. Finally saw the MUN of CHIPMUNK and realized that the Wise things must be potato chips Finally finished after(wait for it) chipping away at it for another while.

    nick 11:48 AM  

    Veronique means 'true image', not 'true victory'. (Despite what has to say.)

    Ste. Veronique is the patron saint of photographers and filmmakers because, in the bible, when she wiped Christ's face with her veil at Calvary, an image of his face appeared.

    Also, Arizonia??

    Anonymous 4:25 AM  

    What's up, you whiny bitches! Yes, that includes Rex, the whiniest bitch of them all.

    This is just to say that "Arizonian" is indeed in the dictionary, so shut the fuck up.

    spacecraft 12:01 PM  

    No profanity filters here? Tsk. But I'll join the whiners: ARIZONAN is proper. Also, 16a seems green-paintish, with the S. Wouldn't you say "Chippendale dancers" or simply "Chippendales?" That S, of course, has to be there to stretch the grid to 16-wide, in order to accommodate the revealer at 56a.

    The S is also needed for my starting gimme, John SCARNE. He was a pioneer in gaming statistics and probability. Working off that, I knew the nonhuman '58 singer had to be a CHIPMUNK, so I strongly suspected rebus but kept it open for the moment. Next gimme was Nash's QUICKER, so the French name ending was -QUE. This made the SE easy, and gave me the -KIE ending for the revealer--obviously COOKIE--and by extension, CHOCOLATECHIPCOOKIE, thus the rebus was confirmed.

    AVOCET was a WOE, but V looked like the only letter to start -ERONIQUE. I don't know any famous VERONIQUES, but VERONIC is a headline singer here in Vegas. I'm told she has an amazing array of different voices. Gotta go see her sometime. I call the SE the "French quarter," with her and ECOLE.

    Lateweek cluing made for a medium-SORTA-toward-challenging rating for me. Theme clever and well-executed (FL, you gotta stop being so literal about puzzle images! What do you want to do, cut the grid out of the paper and eat it?); fill pretty good, considering. Give it an A-.

    1889: where's my abacus? Lessee, 26...hey, 8, not bad at all!

    rondo 1:40 PM  

    I guess by some logic out there that I am a Minnesotian.
    Don't like the S in the midst of those male strippers.
    The Source mag must be quite a read, wonder if it rhymes?
    EMEERS and ICEL are just painful.
    Got the rebus at CHIPOTLE.
    Only a solo TEAT today; had a PAIR yesterday.
    Plenty of French with ETE, ECOLE, RICHE and VERONIQUE. When do we start using some Swedish words so I will not feel left out?

    10208 - SORTA bad

    rain forest 2:26 PM  

    Neat puzzle. I didn't have a lot of trouble once I got started: RCA, RNA, FENNEL, URSA game me enough to get going after a bit of staring. I had to get to _MUNK and _PEWA before I spotted the rebus, and then it went well.

    I can accept EMEERS as well as Ameers, Amirs, Emirs. Who knows how the Arabs spell it anyway?


    I don't think there's a rule--just usage, and I have no idea about Arizona, so ARIZONIAN seems just dandy.

    Really nice to see a Gordon Lightfoot shout-out up there.

    Only one question: what or who is O.C.? SOCAL, which I assume is Southern California, had to come on the crosses.

    3023 - tied with @Spacey, for now.

    rondo 3:16 PM  

    @rainforest O.C. = Orange County. I believe there was a TV show some years ago called The O.C.

    rondo 3:21 PM  

    BTW - on the maps and on their planes the spelling is Emirates - I'm supposing that comes from emir, not EMEER or the others.

    eastsacgirl 3:58 PM  

    Great fun puzzle. Got the rebus quickly.

    And I know really late but awesome job by my GIANTS and MadBum!

    DMG 4:25 PM  

    Got the rebus atCHIPMUNK, but still fell short, knowing neither the actor or the author. And couldn't get enough good crosses to make a stab at them, e.g. my space figure was NASA. Finally accepted POTATOCHIP because it fit, but needed someone to explain it is some kind of regional brand. Also appreciated @Rondo's explanation of O.C. I was thinking of something like Oceanside College. Not my best puzzling day, but look


    leftcoastTAM 5:35 PM  

    Thought SPYCAR was too simple and resisted putting it in until it cleared up the NW for me. My final entry was the S between CHIPPENDALE and DANCERS. Interesting rebus.

    Anonymous 5:38 PM  

    Not bad for a Thursday. I rate it easy/medium. No complaints here. Had to look up the spelling of archipelago and Chippewa but got all the rest.

    There are many people I know who call themselves Arizonians so that was no problem. They're old like me so maybe that makes a diff. The locals here, in San Diego, sometimes call them "Zonies."

    Ron Diego 707=5 = LOSER

    Dirigonzo 5:40 PM  

    I was struggling mightily trying to make sense of the grid where nothing would seem to fit. The key to my epiphany was changing Lima, Peru to Lima, OHIO, thus revealing the CHOCOLATE_COOKIE. Now I'm usually slow on the uptake but even I could see that a CHIP was needed. Finding where the others fit in was a piece of cake. PEARCE and SCARNE went in on crosses, as did the gland.

    4400 - let's see, WHOAMI tied with?

    Z 5:40 PM  

    @rainforest - If Wikipedia can be believed they spell it أمير

    rondo 5:45 PM  

    @Z good one!!, I almost looked it up in Translate to do the same

    Anonymous 6:04 PM  

    On the west coast, I've never heard of Wise potato chips? Are they better than Lay's?

    Anonymous 6:45 PM  

    Dear Anonymous, there is almost nothing better than a Lay.

    Ron Diego

    sdcheezhd 11:58 PM  

    I'm a native Zonie as, as noted, we call them here so it counts that I think ARIZONIAN is OK, right? I will call foul on the CHIPPENDALESDANCERS instead of Chippendales or Chippendale Dancers and on SPYCAR.

    Anonymous 12:41 AM  

    You should see what the clues looked like when published in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser today! It is to laugh...
    Took me a long time to realize that these crazy typos were not part of the theme!

    dmast 3:56 PM  

    Absolutely terrible puzzle. For a Sunday-Thursday quality solver like me, this was a Saturday puzzle without all the long answers. Plus, some awful clues. As mentioned many times, Arizonian is not a word. Other extremely obscure clues, "Transfer RNA", "wise one" (potato chip?), " kind of gland" (pineal?) which evoked spell checker when I typed it into this message!, "group associated with many tourist destinations" (unesco? you're kidding, right?)

    I hope someone who has any control over NYTimes puzzles reads this blog, and if they do, that they wait for all of us not in NY to chime in. If so, please do better! This was not a Thursday puzzle as viewed from a "Thursday puzzler". And neither was it an acceptable puzzle.

    Milo Loamsdown 8:52 PM  

    I liked this one a lot...I got the theme from chipmunk, since it was Christmas time when I actually got around to working on this puzzle. By the way, The Arizonian was directed by Charles Vidor, not King Vidor, and it was released just a year before McCain's birth. As others have said, I think an old term, with a clue about an old man, is valid for Thursday.

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