Cannon ammo in sci-fi / THU 4-30-20 / Easiest rating for ski slope / Video game series since 1989

Thursday, April 30, 2020

Constructor: Caitlin Reid

Relative difficulty: Medium (6-something)

THEME: CORNER KICKS (35A: Goal-scoring opportunities in soccer ... or a hint to this puzzle's theme) — a rebus with different "kicks" (slang for "shoes") in every "corner":

Theme answers:
  • [BOOT] LEGS (1A: Pirates, say) / [BOOT] CAMPS (1D: Rigorous training courses)
  • GAS [PUMP] (10A: Refilling site) / [PUMP] FAKES (13D: Deceptive basketball moves)
  • FALLS [FLAT] (39D: Doesn't land, as a joke) / [FLAT] TOP (60A: Type of short haircut)
  • SAND [WEDGE] (62A: Bunker need) / LEMON [WEDGE] (44D: Common seafood garnish)
Word of the Day: EIN (30A: Fig. on some I.R.S. forms) —
The Employer Identification Number (EIN), also known as the Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) or the Federal Tax Identification Number, is a unique nine-digit number assigned by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to business entities operating in the United States for the purposes of identification. When the number is used for identification rather than employment tax reporting, it is usually referred to as a  Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN), and when used for the purposes of reporting employment taxes, it is usually referred to as an EIN. These numbers are used for tax administration and must be not used for any other purpose. For example, the EIN should not be used in tax lien auction or sales, lotteries, etc. (wikipedia)
• • •

This theme was cool. I had a little trouble getting started (unsurprising with rebuses) and a *lot* of trouble figuring out the "kick" in the NE corner (could think only of "gas station" and then "head fakes" or "ball fakes"), but overall the whole thing played smooth and very mediumish for a Thursday. Whatever difficulty came from the inherent difficulty of sussing out a rebus and the occasionally weirdly difficult clues was offset by the fact that we know exactly where the rebus squares are going to be. That was a huge help. I'm looking in the corners, and I'm looking for a type of shoe. Got it. No problem. No problem with difficulty. Some problem with the fill, however. I winced at ESKIMO KISS, which just has this feel of "white people cutesily describing and appropriating a meaningful Inuit greeting" (30D: Affectionate nose-rubbing). Honestly, I just steer very, very clear of the word "Eskimo" in general. It's got a complicated history and is not *inherently* derogatory, but in Canada it is generally understood as pejorative and has been replaced, in official documents, by "Inuit," as I understand it. The [Affectionate nose-rubbing] is a traditional Inuit greeting called a KUNIK, which seems like a word that would really, really like to be in a crossword grid. I also winced at MAN UP, which is just bullshit gender stereotyping of the worst variety. Any language reinforcing "tough guy" behavior or designed to sort the "real men" from the "sissies" can honestly **** off. Also, the toughest people I know are women, so the whole "MAN UP!" thing just doesn't translate for me.

There was some pretty awful fill here and there today. I have no idea ... no, scratch that, I do have some idea who thought it would be a good idea to make EIN an I.R.S. abbr. (!!???!), but wow that is horrible. If you have to put EIN in your grid in the first place just go with the well-known German word and move on. Don't do ... whatever you did here, because now you're not only subjecting us to EIN (not great to begin with) but you subjecting us to an abbr. that ... well, first, who cares? Can there be anything less interesting than an I.R.S. form abbr. And second I have a hard time believing that abbr. is universally known, because I did not know it. I was like "Earned Income ... something?" Whether you knew it or not, this is just an awful thing to do with cluing. Use your words, not your abbrs., and esp. not your dreary financial abbrs. of dubious fame. I OR is pretty awful too (29D: "Should ___ shouldn't ..."). CHOO, same (as clued). I misspelled LEIF (flipped the vowels) (16A: First name of an early explorer of Vinland). I did not misspell ERMA, but only because I already had the "E" from GLENS. I will always make the ERMA/IRMA and ILSA/ELSA errors. Al. Ways.

IONS! IOS! IOR! Farewell.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Facebook]


Loren Muse Smith 6:12 AM  

Surprisingly, I didn’t have as much trouble as Rex. Got the rebus really, really early with BOOT CAMP/BOOT LEGS. The rest of the puzzle played easy since all the rebus squares were, necessarily, in the other corners. The reveal is terrific. Terrific.

I love that shoes can be called KICKS. It feels so playful. I’ma suggest right now that we start calling gloves slaps. Yo – I’ll meet you at the hill with my sled. I just have to find my snow slaps.

Fun to have GREEN/REDDEN.

The default tv station at my Kia dealership is Fox. Same at Mom’s house. GOD NO.

ACTIVEWEAR had me stop and stare off in introspection. Oh crap. Is that the department I’m drawn to now? No more pencil skirts and blouses. No more sports bras and sport leggings. ACTIVEWEAR. Where I can buy the Christmas sweatshirt and matching velour pants, lying to myself that I’m a snazzy dresser. The term announces Screw it. I have officially given up - whether you’re a designer (Kathie Lee Gifford, whose pieces are sold near the Goodyears) or a former Talbot’s wearer (me, whose pieces are getting more and more stretchy). I looked it up, and ACTIVEWEAR seems to be synonymous with sportswear. But still. It feels like it’s has-been pseudo sportswear. What I’ll wear as I do my daily chair aerobics and then glare out the window at the squirrels eating all the birdseed.

Ok. So I just did a google dive into this ESKIMO KISS, and it seems that while rubbing noses does occur, it’s more of a sniff greeting, the human equivalent of dogs . . . well, you do the math. Anyhoo, I read that it occurs most often not as a romantic gesture but rather as a gesture of affection. A parent gently sniffs babies and young children. I would suggest also using this smell maneuver if you have a teenager who comes in past curfew with REDDENed eyes. Maybe, too, that history teacher who is consistently late and way too cheerful.

Rex is right about the word ESKIMO; it’s a no-no. Apparently its etymology involves “eaters of raw meat.” [See also chew the FAT] But a few argue that it means “one who laces snowshoes.” Whatever the case, Inuit is the preferred name. And I learned a couple of cool words as I read about this: endonym (a name a group uses to describe itself) and exonym (a name given to a group of people by another group). Hence the endonym Cameron Crazies and the exonym A&$holes Just kidding. Sorta. Can’t be too mean here – they’re just young adults, deserve to be handled with kid slaps. Go Heels.

Lewis 6:23 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
CDilly52 6:51 AM  

Well, Ms. Reid fooled me! I was very smug as I slapped in “peg” as the Rebus at 1, without any, none. . . not a whit, a nanosecond, a scintilla of hesitation, and I proceeded to slay the remainder of the puzzle. I roamed from NW diagonally to SE as the central three answers at the top did not automatically reveal themselves. Since I only recently learned what a peg CAMP is, I just about broke my arm patting my smug self on the back. Our Career Tech campus has a spectacular Programming, Engineering and Game Design Camp (PEG) program that rounds out its nationally recognized ore-engineering curriculum for high school juniors and seniors. So I remained in utter disbelief that this answer, so very clever and Thursday-quality-difficult could possibly be incorrect! AS IF!

Had a bit of difficulty with some of her cluing. Her use of language did not immediately match my early morning brain. Enjoyed seeing A A MILNE clued first something other than Pooh. Despite the rather sad expose his son wrote later in life, I still enjoy Milne’s work and eagerly await a grandchild with whom to share “Edward Bear coming down the stairs, bump, bump, bump on the back of his his head.”

My husband was the best reader of Milne aloud. I remember so vividly our daughter asking repeatedly for particular parts of the Pooh stories and the poems.

She and her dad would occasionally riff in the Milne style. It started early one morning when Kate was not yet 5 and was uncharacteristically quiet at breakfast. We thought nothing of it as she is, like her mother, never an early morning person. On this particular morning, though the quietness continued as we drive to school. When she would not converse as usual in the car, Dad asked “Kate, how are you feeling this morning?” After a beat punctuated by a 4 year old heavy sigh, from the back seat, in her dad’s very best imitation Eeyore voice, “I’m not very how, thank you Pooh.” From that moment on it became a family “thing.” Just this weekend in our weekly FaceTime visit from California, Kate in response to my query said that “We’re all not very how. This virus crisis is getting us down.”
So much for my Milne soft spot.

Enjoyed the mini-theme of the 20 questions categories. Also haven’t seen old NESSIE for a while and the clue was less obvious than usual. Don’t know anything about Vin Diesel other than his name always sounds absolutely made up to me. Also struggled a bit getting GOD NO (a good example of Ms. R’s not so easy clue style). Straightened the SE out with the very easy WEDGES,

So when I finished, but got no joy from the app, I spent at least 5 minutes repeatedly looking for my typo and being certain I had none. Just about the moment when I was ready to lodge a complaint, the meaning of the reveal “kicked in,” and I finally understood that the theme had nothing at all to do with soccer and everything to do with shoes!!!

Fun theme, good puzzle. Happy Thursday!

Lewis 6:53 AM  

I love puzzles where the solving experience is varied, as this one was. There were some E-Z-fill-in zones, some areas that shooed me away several times because I couldn't make much of a dent, and some places that wouldn't fall without effort on my part, but where I didn't have to tear my hair out.

I also loved the echo of yesterday's double-the-word theme with CHOO and KEN. Nice variety of old and new in the answers as well.

Thank you, Caitlin for a terrific time!

Jon Alexander 7:05 AM  

After 30 seconds of staring at the NW, I got the BOOT rebus and everything fell from there...finished in about half my normal Thu time.

Once ADHOC dropped, I somehow got the revealer with just the O, given me entry into the whole middle section and ultimately the rest of the grid.

As Rex said, the fill was no great shakes (ORI and EIN were especially atrocious), but NIHILISM (as clued) and HOGWASH were nice longer answers.

CDilly52 7:05 AM  

Oops.Typo alert: pre-engineering (not ore-). Oklahoma is not known for mining

Dave in Florida 7:09 AM  

EIN (Employer Identification Number) is pretty obscure, sure, but definitely not so if you own a small business, many of whom are getting thoroughly screwed by our federal government these days. But that's a comment for a different forum.

Here, sure, EIN is going to be a challenging answer for many, but isn't that the nature of tougher clues in general? I have zero background/experience with playing a musical instrument besides the trombone in fifth grade (which constitutes the only thing my parents ever readily allowed me to quit before the year/season was over!). So I always struggle mightily with the ATEMPOs, ADAGIOs, and ALLEGROs of the crossword world. But give me a sports-based, college mascot, or legal jargon clue, and I'm all over it.

And also, you are complaining about EIN because Ms. Reid tried to clue it in a non-crosswordese manner. I, for one, would be completely fine with a world where "German articles" or "German prepositions" no longer existed in crosswords.

Anonymous 7:12 AM  

Pumps, boots, wedges, and flats are all shoes, but none are kicks. Kicks are sneakers and most especially basketball-derived sneakers. Appropriating that term for shoes generically seems overeager and “fun” and probably means that kicks is now obsolete in its original sense and belongs now just to Boomers.

Frantic Sloth 7:21 AM  

I love a rebus. Good, bad, ugly, easy, hard, clever, banal - I'll take them any day of the week. This one had a fun little revealer as a bonus. If only it weren't over so soon...
Let's nit!

That singular CHOO seems lost, having wandered over from yesterday's theme. Either that or that is some kind of anemic train if just 2 syllables are beyond all effort. C'mon, little dude - MANUP!

Not crazy about the double 20 questions clues for MINERAL and ANIMAL. Given their ho-hummity as fill, something a little snappier should be in order.
No, I have no recommendations. I just come here to complain because I want to support our heroes.

What surprised me a little was how quickly LALALA went in. What's that about?

The moment I saw ESKIMOKISS, I felt an irresistible urge to "duck and cover" in anticipation of all the flying "racisms!" that will no doubt be flung about by Rex and some others here.

Loins girded. Here we go!

amyyanni 7:35 AM  

Re @LMS's proposal: when I was small, my mom insisted I wear my white lace slaps to church on Sundays. Ha! Love it!
And the puzzle as well.
Off to navigate Blursday.

Suzie Q 7:38 AM  

Solved at the speed of light until I got to the SE corner. I didn't know the movie or the singer so they were no help. I wasn't thinking golf so my bunker had a sand bag. In my mind I justified lemon bag as those pieces of cheesecloth tied around your lemon to keep the seeds from getting in your food when you squeeze it.
Oh well.

kitshef 7:39 AM  

Knew something rebical was afoot when my GAS (station) and (head) FAKES didn’t quite fit. It took all the way down to the WEDGEs before I realized that those both needed replacing.

Good fun. Any puzzle with AA MILNE is going to get a smile out of me (he said, drinking from his cup with Tigger, Pooh and Piglet on it).

I like that Rex included the Pumped up Kicks video.

@LMS – Inuit is only the preferred expression when discussing the Inuit – which not all northern natives are. Calling a Yupik an “Inuit” is like calling a Greek a “Brit” or a Lao a “Japanese”.

Yeah, LEIF gets all the press, but Bjarni saw it first.

webwinger 7:40 AM  

Dullest Thursday in a long time. I got the rebus quickly, in the NE, but failed to see the “kick” connection until I read @Rex. Still didn’t do much for me, though I got a little extra kick from @LMS’s shoe comments. (I have bought one pair of shoes annually for almost the past twenty years, always the same: Merrell’s jungle moc, waterproof, in gunsmoke gray. Sure that endorsement will make everyone want to go out and get them, especially with malls reopening.)

I have a feeling that if today’s puzzle had been created by a male there would have been a lot more venom from OFL. Note how he appears to diss WS for EIN—which I consider a well-known abbreviation and a welcome departure from the German article—and seems not to hold the constructor accountable for MAN UP.

I think, though, that I’m getting closer to the “acceptance” stage with regard to RP’s CRAY CRAY insistence on ferreting out offensiveness to the marginalized. It was actually pretty amusing to see him paw at ESKIMO KISS before kinda sorta deciding there might be a way to find it OK. And I agree that it’s good to be aware of potential for offense from casual utterances. It’s just the sanctimoniousness that irks me, and the presumption that the offender must be a bad person.

QuasiMojo 7:44 AM  

I found this exceedingly tedious. Plus I had a DNF at SAND/LEMON because I thought it was a bunker like the kind survivalists build. So I had BAG. Sandbag and Lemon Bag (yeah I know, not good but where I get my seafood they put a half lemon in a little mesh sack!)

So many clunky clues. Leif Ericson discovered "Vinland" but I wouldn't say he explored it. He was exploring the new world. Would you say the Pilgrims explored Plymouth? Or that Columbus explored San Salvador Island?

LET AT?? Shouldn't that be "Free UP to attack"? Makes no sense as clued.

A TRIDENT has prongs not TINEs.

To me ZONE Out implies an absence of thought, not a daydream.

You buff a HANGNAIL or soak it and treat it with ointments. Clipping it is not the first option.

And what was that sibilant AEROSOL clue? Maybe when we all used Aqua Net. But the aerosols today are mostly silent.

pabloinnh 7:49 AM  

CORNERKICKS! Ole, ole, ole, ole. I was certainly happy to find that in the midfield revealer position, because otherwise I was struggling. At first I thought it would involve kicking actual words or letters out of the corner, as KICKS for footwear is only vaguely familiar. but once that became clear it was fun to see what was needed. The times we live in had me thinking forever of what you would need in an end-times bunker, so even with LEMON___, that took a while.

True story--I took all the corner kicks on my college soccer team. That started in high school where I did the same thing. I used to bend the ball over the end line and back in front of the goal until a ref called the ball out of bounds, even if airborne, which is true, and also when I found out you can't do that. Live and learn.

Thanks for all the fun, CR. A Thursday that knows how to Thursday, if I may.

Anonymous 7:52 AM  

EIN is fairly common, sometimes used as a SSN alternative.

George 7:52 AM  

I just knew Rex would blanch at both ESKIMOKISS and MANUP, but I never knew ESKIMOKISSes were real things that real Eskimos, er... Inuits, did. I thought it was something made up to amuse 5 and 6 year old kids. As far as MANUP, I prefer the gender-bending phrase, "Just put on your big girl panties and MANUP!" Still, I enjoyed the puzzle and plowed through the dross without annoyance.

BarbieBarbie 7:57 AM  

@anon712, nope, boomers get their KICKs on Route 66.

I had no idea KICKs meant shoes, so I thought everything must refer to actual soccer kicks, about which I also have no idea. So, Conceptual Natick for me in the SE corner, where SANDBAGS made perfect sense in the other kind of bunker, and LEMONBAGS... sure, they come in those little cheesecloth things; maybe those are LEMONbags?

So, what I’m saying is, DNF. But clearly my own fault. I love rebus puzzles, so I still had a good time with this one.

mmorgan 8:02 AM  

Oh. Shoes. I thought the rebus corners were some sort of sports-terms for kicks (given the revealer), and the puzzle lost me at ___FAKES. I’m thinking GAS cap or GAS tank and I didn’t know if those did or didn’t go with FAKES but none of them made sense. Even after I had the other three corners. Oh. Shoes!

EIN was a gimme, don’t ask why.

It just figures — here’s one puzzle I sorta didn’t like, and it’s one Rex kinda liked.

GILL I. 8:09 AM  

I'm glad you found the theme cool, @Rex....I found it rather tedious. Another day of you liking your hamburger well done and I liking mine medium rare.
Where to start? I'm not sure. I stared at my only entry - ERMA - then did my usual get up and move around. Can CHOO be right? Doesn't it need another CHOO? HOGWASH says I. I might've got something going at GAS (PUMP) but I've never heard of a (PUMP) FAKES. My bad. Got the reveal CORNER KICKS fairly early so that made me go back up to the attic and fill in the BOOT thing at 1A and 1D. Oh. So that's it? GOD NO! (I had GAG ME)...another my bad.
From what I understand, that whole ESKIMO KISS was invented by Hollywood. They invent lots of stuff. Then I heard that they do that because they don't want their lips to freeze together. Such a life....
Every time I see Vin Diesel's name I think of wine gas.
CAPITOL O reminds me of yesterday's SOFT G. Ugh.
Only smile today was GREEN crossing EGGS .....if only HAM had been added.

Frantic Sloth 8:11 AM  

@LMS Thank you for you endonym/eponym tutorial and application. And I don't know about anyone else, but slaps it is!

@CDilly52 651am Yet another charming anecdote from your life - loved it. Your stories never disappoint. Thank you for sharing.

I've taken to using MANUP ironically because sometimes I'm just too weary.

It seems the awaited ESKIMOKISS flap has been more of a sideswipe than a full head-on collision. A rather tepid far. The day is young.

I am looking forward to the possibility of more LEMON bags in the discussion. It just seems like a term - and idea - whose time has come. Something in the Handi-Wipes vein perhaps...

OffTheGrid 8:12 AM  

Mini sports theme with basketball, soccer, and golf, played while dressed in ACTIVEWEAR and KICKS with the GOAL of beating your FOE.

Headslap; I initially asked myself, what's a CAPITALO?

Joe Welling 8:17 AM  

I winced at SARDINE.

Anonymous 8:20 AM  

Is there any visual evidence that Oregon's o is CAPITAL? Sure, the abbreviated word is capitalized, but on a cap or a jersey or a helmet, lowercase would look pretty much the same.

DSM 8:25 AM  

I don't love EIN as fill, but it's no worse than SSN. An individual has a SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER, a business has an EMPLOYER IDENTIFICATION NUMBER. I often sense a bias displayed by Rex against business, industry, and technology. They are either evil (as in, tools of capitalist oppression) or boring (as in turning the passionate purity of higher education into a joyless capitalist training academy). The fact is, some people get involved in business not to sell out, but because they enjoy it. People study engineering or computer science not to turn their back on their first love of comparative literature in favor or profits but because it is fun to invent stuff. I vaguely remember there being a kerfuffle about COMSCI being Not A Thing a few weeks back. I had the same thought then about this bias. If you've ever been anywhere near the engineering quad, you know it is Very Much A Thing. It's telling. These are my people: the businesspeople, the technologists. I am both. Hey, I value the humanities and those who study them; I'd like them to value me as a human as well!

Hungry Mother 8:31 AM  

I love rebuses, I wasn’t looking for synonyms for shoes until I needed them. Thinking of being on a cruise ship near IOS, I wonder if I’ll ever be on a cruise again.

Anonymous 8:43 AM  

Seriously? Oregon is a proper name and so capitalized. Why would it be changed to a lower case “o” for a cap, jersey, or helmet?

Anonymous 8:45 AM  

One of my faster Thursday times - but I really enjoyed it. As I filled in each of ESKIMOKISS and MANUP, I cringed that either are still getting used in 2020 crossword-ese, and hoped Rex would rightly call them out. Got the middle CORNERKICKS relatively quickly, and proceeded to have the Foster the People song bouncing around my head for the completion. Jumped to Rex’s blog, and it’s like I could have written it myself today!

Frantic Sloth 8:47 AM  

Not Handi-Wipes. Wet-Naps or something in the Moist Towelette family.

For those who skeeve at the sound of it, sorry about the "M" word.

Frantic Sloth 8:49 AM  

ARRRRGH autocorrect!! endonym/exonym

Devo 8:49 AM  

Slaps! I’m in!

Frantic Sloth 8:55 AM  

@Anonymous 820am & 843am

Are you really the same person trying to foment a false argument or does one of you (I won't say which) not get it?

Skylark 8:57 AM  

I thought of "Do something for KICKS" or fun. That led me to think the rebus in the corner was all for fun before remembering kicks was slang for shoes. FYI, it was hobo slang and jazz slang before street slang. I fell for sandbag(s) for survival bunker, and lemonbag(s), before turning to golf and sanity for WEDGE.

Nancy 8:57 AM  

I know personally how hard this puzzle must have been to pull off* (more about that later), but also put me in the camp who had no idea that KICKS was a slang word for shoes. I Googled first, before coming here, to see if it was, and, sure enough, there that definition was -- but at the bottom of the list.

I had already guessed it, though. When I saw BOOT, I thought all the corners would be some sort of kick. Was there a PUMP kick in some sport or other? Once I got WEDGE and FLAT I realized that we had to be talking about shoes. And there's no such thing as a CORNER SHOE.

*At some point in the past year I had an idea for a "corner" rebus puzzle. Like this one, it had four different rebus answers. But the constraints imposed by the geography proved to be just too much.
Let R = rebus.
NW corner: R-----/R-----.
NE corner: -----R/R-----.
SW corner: -----R/R-----.
SE corner: -----R/-----R.

Even my brilliant and experienced collaborator couldn't make it work once I had crashed and burned. And we had to abandon it. It was a different corner concept than this one, and perhaps somewhat harder. But having tried and failed, I am filled with admiration for this puzzle's execution -- which is a hell of a lot harder than it looks.

Barbara S. 8:58 AM  

I thought this was a puzzle with attitude, thanks to

I finished the puzzle without much problem, but I didn't realize that it was about footwear until I got to Rex. Like others, I thought we were talking soccer kicks, although I thought "FLAT kick" was a pretty odd term. "WEDGE kick," on the other hand seemed fine.

CAPITALO was a classic DOOK (or should I say SLOPITCH), at least for a couple of seconds.

It's true that the term ESKIMO has been gone from Canada for a long time; the only remaining holdover I can think of are the Edmonton ESIMOs, CFL team.

I, too, am very fond of A.A. MILNE and everything POOH -- lovely childhood memories of those books. Thus I was horrified to learn from a cryptic crossword puzzle that A.A. MILNE is a perfect anagram of "Melania."

Tricky clues for SHINE (Liking), IONS (Cannon ammo in sci-fi), KEN (Burns up in films?), SKEET (Something to shoot for)

. 8:58 AM  

You really are precious Rex.

pabloinnh 9:06 AM  

Since we just got over the E-only discussion of French novels, translations, and former crosswords, I would point out that today's Spelling Bee is also monovocalic, which is a word I just made up.

puzzlehoarder 9:16 AM  

While solving I assumed the themers were some kind of soccer jargon for actual kicks. The real theme was not hard to figure out once I'd put WEDGE in.

My last square was the N of EIN. It went in solely on the strength of KEN. My best guess for the acronym was "estimated income number." Ironically "number" was the word I was least sure of.

An average Thursday solve.

Suzy 9:27 AM  

What a fun Thursday puzzle!! Thank you, Ms. Reid! Milne was a childhood favorite— does anyone else remember
“James, James, Morrison, Morrison, Weatherby George Dupree?”

three of clubs 9:34 AM  

Toughest guy I know works in the philosophy department and confronts the problems of existence head-on daily.

Nancy 9:40 AM  

I always feel a real affinity with a fellow Rexite who turns out to have shared one of my own childhood passions. Today it's A.A. MILNE and the passion is shared by @kitshef, @Barbara S and @CDilly 52. But while Barbara and kitshef mostly remembers the Pooh stories, CDilly also waxes nostalgic about the poems -- which were my particular passion. In fact, I think you can trace my early writing of verse and eventual writing of lyrics to A.A. MILNE more than to anyone else.

I love your memories of those poems, @CDilly, and I would have loved to hear your husband read them aloud. In fact your whole family sounds like people who I would have enjoyed spending time with -- not least of all your grandmother. Unlike you, I don't remember "I'm not very how" from the Pooh stories. I don't remember much about them at all, in fact. But when "The king asked the queen and the queen asked the dairy maid" or when they were "Changing guards at Buckingham Palace" and "Christopher Robin went down with Alice" or when "James James said to his mother: Mother he said, said he" or when "...And it's lovely rice pudding for dinner again" crop up, I can recite them as lovingly as I did when I was 6.

For those of us of a certain age, MILNE was our Dr. Seuss. For those with young grandchildren, I highly recommend his two poetry books" "When We Were Very Young" and "Now We Are Six".

Nancy 9:41 AM  

Yes, Suzy!! I surely do!! We were typing at the same time so unfortunately I didn't mention you in my above post. But I can still recite it by heart, and it sounds like you can, too.

Brook Slee 9:48 AM  

Slaps is brilliant! Thank you for that

Z 9:49 AM  

I have to disagree with Rex on EIN, but probably because I really like that the IRS clue wasn’t for SSN. I thought that was a nice piece of misdirection.

I am right with Rex on the “it is way too complicated so the easiest thing to do is just avoid it altogether” thing. I’ve been following the Land O Lakes thing with some interest. Just read an interesting piece by the son of the Ojibwe artist who did the logo. Dad was quite careful not to make it stereotypical, so son is a little bothered that some say it is stereotypical. Way too complicated and no matter what the company does someone is angry with them. The CEO SLYly claims that dropping the logo is purely because they want to emphasize that they are a farmer collective. Not sure I believe her, but nice side-stepping.

@LMS - Nice endonym/exonym explainer. I’d have gone with The Ohio State University as my example, but hey, I’m from Michigan (the peninsula, not the AVE).

@kitshef - Helpful.

Got a HAH Moment at the notion that KICKS as shoe slang is somehow new or related to basketball shoes. It goes back to somewhere around 1900. I’m pretty sure nobody was wearing Air Jordans back then.

John R 9:53 AM  

It took me a while to figure out the rebus theme today. I had BOOT first, then FLAT and WEDGE (another nice golf reference). I wanted head fakes in the NE corner. Gas Head sounded like some kind of addict though. I finally settled on PUMP. That was when I finally understood the revealer.

This was my first time solving a puzzle with rebuses online. I had to learn to use the rebus button.

@Joe Dipinto- just saw your question from yesterday about my cat. At the time of the picture she was bored with me, I think. While I was doing the puzzle she had been sitting on the arm of the chair trying to get my attention by periodically attacking my pencil.

TinPT 9:55 AM  

Had Peg in NW and Bag in SE, but figured out the shoe thing after FLAT + getting the revealer and was able to recover. Fun Thursday. Not too tricky.

TinPT 9:56 AM  

Also, I’m totally calling my gloves slaps from now on, @LMS. Hubs is on board, too. We had a chuckle.

Anonymous 9:57 AM  

A gas pump is not a "site." It is located at a site.

Ernonymous 9:57 AM  

Even having BOOT, FLAT and PUMP I didn't see the shoe theme. I thought maybe these were a type of soccer kick. Probably because they are usually called Flats and Pumps. Boot is said in the singular. I am thinking that is why it didn't click. Or maybe that fake Aldi Corona is making me lose brain cells.

I had the whole puzzle done except for lower corner square which needed to be added to SAND and LEMON. Am I the only one who never heard of Bunker being a golf term? I thought it was a bunker bunker, like in a war or a hiding place like a bomb shelter.

These types of bunkers can be built with SAND BAGS so I thought the answer was BAGS. But alas I never heard of a Lemon Bag except Kate Spade sells them. I could not think of any other thing you needed in a bunker starting with SAND beside BAGS. For lemon I had sauce, rind, zest, peel - none worked with SAND and bunker. I finally thought of WEDGE for lemon but still I thought SAND WEDGE? I guess you can wedge the sand into your bunker. I never heard of a SAND WEDGE as a type of golf club.

To me these are specialized terms that only a golfer would know. It's like on a bike I am sure you all know what handlebars are but I would not expect non-cyclists to know what a derailleur hanger or chain suck is.
But it seems I'm in the minority, even Rex had no problem and he claimed the other day that he hated golf.

I know that crossworld puzzles you need some specific knowledge of just about everything, so I will chalk it up to that.

Ernonymous 9:58 AM  

@quasi yeah same here, sand bags!

Z 9:59 AM  

Oh, I forgot. GREEN took me forever. First, the easiest slopes are the bunny hills. You know, where all the new adult skiers get embarrassed falling on their asses while the three year olds zip around them. Second, everywhere I have ever skied the rating system isn’t GREEN, blue, black, it is GREEN circle, blue square, black diamond, double black diamond. Always the color and the shape. So I’m sitting here with G—EN in place and racking my brain for some rating for the bunny hill that I must have forgotten. More of a GOD NO moment than an Aha moment when I finally sussed out GREEN/REDDEN.

Ernonymous 10:01 AM  

@frantic it's cute the 2 anon posters arguing with each other. Which one will get the last word?

RooMonster 10:05 AM  

Hey All !
MAN UP Rex! Or maybe you'd like LGBTQIA UP!

Get Your KICKS on Route 66. Or in this puz, in the CORNERs. A fun theme, different shoe types rebusized.

@LMS got GREEN crossing REDDEN, but she missed GREEN crossing EGGS!

With Rex on the dyslexic LieF first, ssN-EIN, bunny-GREEN, pareS-THINS.

Rita ORA again, but this time it was her last name, and amazingly enough, the ole brain remembered it from the other day!

Overall a pretty good ThursRebusPuz.

Is there any other clue for MAH out there? Suggestions, please.

Five F's ( including Rebussed FLAT)

Anonymous 10:12 AM  

Like mmorgan, I didn't get the kicks/shoes conversion. Now it makes sense. I was thinking sports/soccer.

Another Anon 10:13 AM  

Do you ever get tired of yourself?

OffTheGrid 10:19 AM  

I solve on the e-edition format on a laptop. I don't remember how I discovered it but the INS key activates the rebus.

Geezer 10:21 AM  

I'll stick with gloves, thanks.

Sir Hillary 10:27 AM  

Great theme, artfully done. Ms. Reid is an emerging star.

There were only two things I didn't like -- IOR and the too-cute clue for ARM. Aside from those, top marks all around. NIHILISM as an entry is awesome -- one of those words that looks and sounds so cool, if one can just forget that it actually means something.

Loved @LMS's endonym/exonym example -- with everything cancelled, maybe the Heels can pretend this season never actually happened. Seriously, exonyms are a major reason our society can't have rational debates these days. Liberal elite, deplorables, SJWs, fascists, zombies, etc. Commenters here avoid such nonsense far better than @Rex, politicians, pundits and much of the population at large. Much thanks for that.

Hopefully, we'll soon get MUKLUKS clued as "Eskimo kicks" and have the mother of all appropriation discussions. Racism, classism, imperialism, ageism -- whee!

xyz 10:27 AM  

I be dense equating kicks for shoes, so I had BAG in the SE for a while (Golfer here apparently not thinking Shortz could get golf correct)

20 Q's clues a bit soft and uninteresting, agreed

Are Eskimo pies now offensive and do you get splattered with raw red meat for eating them in PC-Land? ... ... ... ... ... ... Sheesh

Had LEMMINGS for SARDINE for a while

This one took a bit of time on paper, even though the CORNER KICKS came quickly, the shoes connection didn't

Overall decent stuff

JBT 10:28 AM  

I got the revealer early and thought I would be looking for types of kicks, like a round house, or high kick, etc. Then I got SAND WEDGE/ LEMON WEDGE. However, if these are types of shoes, shouldn't they all be plural. In normal English one wears boots, not a boot; one wears flats, not a flat.

bauskern 10:31 AM  

"I winced at ESKIMO KISS, which just has this feel of 'white people cutesily describing and appropriating a meaningful Inuit greeting.'" -- And that folks, is the perfect example of virtue signalling. Rex seems to do a lot of wincing. Must make life difficult. Also EIN is a pretty common abbreviation, and certainly fine for a Thurs. puzzle. I agree that KICKS should really apply just to sneakers, but I thought the theme was just fine. And fun.

mathgent 10:34 AM  

Rebus Thursday! You’re always welcome in my house.

Good sparkle. NESSIE, HOGWASH, GREEN ski slope, BOOT CAMPS, PUMPFAKES, NIHILISM, ARM (as a knockoff of Greek sculpture), MANUP.

All I really need to know I learned from doing the NYT crossword. That’s where I learned that shoes are sometime called kicks.

I prefer rebuses where the bulging squares pop up in unexpected places.

I like crosswords with lots of long entries. They aren’t exactly crosswords, but Patrick Berry’s Rows Garden puzzles have all entries six letters or more. Last Saturday’s WSJ ran his latest one. I’ve started to count entries of six letters or more in the puzzle. Today’s had 21 out of 72 which seems to be above average.

TJS 10:36 AM  

Isn't there something called a "gashead"? If you filled in "corner kicks" without reading the last half of the clue, "head" works just fine in that top corner. Take my word for it. Anyway, started off really disliking this puzzle and ended up admiring the cluing and the fill. Nice Thursday.

Isn't declaring "the toughest people I know are women" just the other side of the same coin?

By the way, there is a neat thing you can do with the Indian girl logo for Land A Lakes, but it's too complicated to explain, and you have to be in 5th grade to appreciate it.

egsforbreakfast 10:39 AM  

Yesterday we TEEd IT UP and smashed a ONE WOOD right down the middle. Unfortunately, our approach was weak and we need a SAND WEDGE,to get on the GREEN.

Sorry, but I just love glove stick humor.

If people go down to the end of the town, well what can anyone do?

Anonymous 10:41 AM  

for an 'English' instructor, y'all ought to know the EIN is an acronym, not an abbreviation.

didn't make the connection as shoes, but since the first to fall was BOOT, it didn't make much difference. and, I believe, the shoe is a WEDGie - yes, yes it is.

Barbara S. 10:44 AM  

Oh, please please will someone someone post a link to the Chad Mitchell Trio's song, "James James Morrison Morrison"?

(Thanks thanks in advance.)

oisk17 10:45 AM  

Something to shoot for...stars? no, got the K from corner kicks. Skies? No, it isn't Milni. Skeet. No one else was bothered by this, so maybe I am wrong, but I thought one shoots AT skeet, not FOR skeet. I liked this puzzle, glad to see that a female constructor doesn't share Rex's political correctness, and included a perfect answer for "put on your big boy pants." Since "man" is the gender equivalent of "boy" one is not implying any male superiority here. Of course, I had no trouble with Eskimo kiss either. Tried to buy some Innuit Pie ice cream, but the grocer had never heard of it.
But I DNF on a careless error, compounded by one of the few annoying (to me) clues here. Role for Vin Diesel??? How about "Joe's baseball brother"? Or "Deluise" For "made good" I had written "atuned" (brought into harmony...makes enough sense), and that meant I had "Dum." Never saw Fast and Furious, why can't there be characters named Dum, Def, and Blind ? And I don't like "made good" as a clue for "atoned" anyway.

Still, I enjoyed the puzzle. Well done, even though it done me in...

Joe Dipinto 10:45 AM  

Gee @Rex, thanks for mitigating the horrific Eskimo debacle with that delightful upbeat tune by Foster The People.

More asinine cluage on view today. How is Ken Burns (or anyone, for that matter) "up" in film? A clever play on words, you say? Well it IS NOT clever. It FALLS FLAT. I do like the clue for ARM though. That one is inspired.

Prediction for tomorrow's grid: FINGERNAILS

Where to go to buy shoes.

And we can't leave without playing this.

CDilly52 10:47 AM  

@Dave in FL. I couldn’t agree more with the eradication of crosswordese usage of foreign language articles. Could not occur soon enough for my taste.

I think using the EIN as exactly what it is was a much better clue. And after all, I believe that EIN is printed on the tax forms along with instructions “or taxpayer’s SSN” (or something like that). The crosses were fair and those who were not familiar with the term EIN had the opportunity to put a new answer in their cerebral crossword vault, one of my favorite things about crosswords. I thought it was every bit as fair as LEVERET from last week.

CDilly52 10:49 AM  

@Anon, 7:12. Really? I had no idea that kicks is limited to athletic shoes. I have maybe once or twice heard a teenager refer to liking someone’s kicks, but since they all wear athletic shoes, when I finally understood the reveal, I just assumed shoes. I await with great interest the opinions of the collective!

kitshef 10:52 AM  

Use the open-faced club -- the sand wedge!

Mmmm ... open-faced club sandwich.

CDilly52 10:56 AM  

@FranticSloth. Didn’t LALALA start in the Seinfeld show? I, also was surprised when I just dropped that in without hesitation and have been musing one its origins a bit myself. I think Seinfeld May be it.

Joaquin 10:56 AM  

It seems to me that using "dreary financial abbrs. of dubious fame" is one of those factors that make these things "puzzles" and not "fill-in-the-blanks".

And (again, IMO) MANUP does not reinforce any "tough guy" image; rather it means act with integrity and moral courage. In other words, be a mensch.

Anonymous 10:56 AM  

As Skylark said above, "I fell for sandbag(s) for survival bunker, and lemonbag(s), before turning to golf and sanity for WEDGE." Mostly because the other three corner words had 4 letters, so that's what I was looking for.

CDilly52 10:58 AM  

Hey, @Quasi, your sand bags aren’t as idiotic as my peg legs!

Pamela 11:01 AM  

What a nightmare! This puzzle belongs in a sports publication. I had everything but the first K in the revealer and had no idea what the letter should be. Licks? Picks? No clue. Eventually I got the rebus FLAT, but couldn’t find anywhere else that it would fit. Funny that Rex gave us such a rant about EIN- I knew that, but also knew FID (Federal ID number), and put that in, along with Edd Burns Finally I gave up and came here for a look. Even after putting in BOOT I was lost.

To many made up phrase- ASIF, LETAT, LALALA, ASKME (I had mole at 50D, crossing ills at 58A, so that whole section was lost), along with the sports references and some unfamiliar names (even though AAMILNE and ERMA were gimmes). Just awful. Here’s looking ahead to tomorrow!

And now I’ll read what you all said, and find out how dense I really was today ;)

CDilly52 11:05 AM  

@Joe W. I have never heard SARDINE applied to train commuters (subway, el or commuter), but have heard: strap hangers, hangers, strappers , and strappies. Spent lots of time on the Chicago, NY, Boston and DC systems, so I doubt my accumulation of words is purely regional. Maybe.

Anonymous 11:07 AM  

Maybe it’s regional but I’ve been hearing kicks as a slang term for any type of shoes my whole life and I’m in my 50s.

Leslie 11:07 AM  

@Nancy, @CDilly 52 and all the others. Oh yes, such fond memories of the AA Milne poems. My father would read them to me at bedtime;I would beg for one more, one more,one more. Finally, it was. . . "John had great big Wellington boots on,and THAT said John was THAT" and I knew it was the end.

JC66 11:13 AM  

for @Barbara S

Anonymoose 11:15 AM  

@TJS 10:36. I am abreast of your Land O' Lakes "thing".

Malsdemare 11:16 AM  

I’m late to the party, I know, but I am still kicking myself for some pretty spectacular mistakes, the most awesome being scalewaGS for 1A. What do I know? I had gotten CORNERKICKS, knew I had a rebus in the first square and why wouldn’t there be a soccer kick called a scale, never mind that I have edited my share of soccer text books and never seen “scale” anything in any of them? I had put in and taken out CAIRO so I was wrestling with figuring out something for 1D (Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?) when I saw that 3D had to EITHER, which gave me scalewEGS and no way could that be right. But let me tell you, I hated giving up scalewags; it was just so perfect, even if it was misspelled.

Lots I didn’t know so—damn Star Trek clues always screw me up and I wanted Nora Ephron’s sister for the longest time, completely misspelling the last name—so this took a satisfyingly long time, far more than one-cup of coffee. In fact, I going for my next cup in a second, to enjoy while reading everyone else’s commentary.

Maybe I’ll be back; I know you’re holding your breath . . .

Newboy 11:17 AM  

Gotta agree that Rex's sensitivities are showing today, but GOD NO for changing that persona that we all expect ( and some love while others abhor ). I look forward to OFL’s rants as comparable to Steve Martin sketches, just another level of appreciation for the puzzle. Like @Lewis & @LMS or the efforts of all the constructors brilliant or less so, they provide a lift to the morning—and especially now do I appreciate them. So thanks toCaitlin, Rex and commentariat.

Puzzle was fun. I think @Pabloinnh nailed my reaction: “Thanks for all the fun, CR. A Thursday that knows how to Thursday, if I may.”

Ethan Taliesin 11:18 AM  

Would have liked to see more rebuses, or at least "SHOES" in the center rather than ARM. It was much easier for me than my usual Thursday time. CLOG, THONG, FLIP, SLIPPER, SNEAKER, and SANDAL would have worked for additional rebuses.

Anonymous 11:20 AM  


I've spent more time SARDINEd into a Green Line car, esp. the old PCC cars from the 40s, than I care to remember. Do you remember the Boeing car fiasco in Boston? NYC got more than its fair share of Covid, certainly, from rush hour SARDINEs in the MTA.

rextorturer 11:22 AM  

Rex wrote, "I winced at ESKIMO KISS, which just has this feel of "white people cutesily describing and appropriating a meaningful Inuit greeting"
Your bashing of white people is getting old. Makes you look like a tool, not some clever all transcendent being.

CDilly52 11:24 AM  

@Nancy. How I could have gone on about the poems!!! And yes, Milne preceded Seuss. Both are dear to me but Milne is way up there in the literature category of children’s literature, while Seuss has landed more in my “philosophy and life lessons” category.

And on her 6th birthday, daughter, Kate proclaimed at bedtime that “Now we are not very young, we are six and I get to read!” I was one of those mothers who kept the diary of clever child things. Alas, mine are on legal pads that I always intended to type up. Maybe in retirement?

Pamela 11:26 AM  

Okay, my face is red. Very. Red. It never occurred to me to look at who the constructor was. Once I saw the revealer clue I thought, Oh no- another super male-centric puzzle! And, as is so often the case with the negative power of false assumptions- my brain froze. Dumb! I thought I knew better. And I should have done much better with the puzzle. Apologies all around, and especially to Caitlin Reid. Diabolical!

Saorise 11:27 AM  

From Livin’ in America by Black 47

Now the day is done, take the subway home
Squashed up like some sardine in a a can
In the Blarney Stone, drink a gallon of foam
'Til I'm feelin' half meself again

Crimson Devil 11:31 AM  

Sir Hillary:
Certainly share your sympathy for Heels.
Quarantine will now provide excuse for their breaking string (if 10’s a string) of NCAA appearances, or heck, of any postseason tourney appearances: doncha need winning record? Ten yrs ago took runner-up NIT. Next year NCAA adopted UNCCH-let’s-expand-the-field rule so maybe they’ll get back in.
Crazies employed brooms again this year.
Go Devils.

Pablo/corner kicker:
I sure learned somethin today from you re “over the end line” corner kicks. Does same rule apply to sideline kicks hooking/slicing over the line before landing fair??

CDilly52 11:32 AM  

@TS. Yep, here in the oils and gas region a Gas head or wellhead is most certainly a “thing,” and one that I nearly decided to use because head FAKES was all I could think of. Thankfully, her use of “refilling” in the clue rather than fuel origin site or something made me reconsider.

CDilly52 11:33 AM  

@egsforbreakfast. If one were to carry through with the suggestion from our dear @LMS, you might even have said you “just love “slaps stick” humor!!

KnittyContessa 11:35 AM  

This was fun. I knew this was a rebus puzzle but couldn't figure it out until I found the revealer. Shoes! Looking for them, thinking of them made me smile more than it should have. Probably because I haven't worn any in close to 2 months.

An IRS clue that wasn't SSN was a nice change - even if I had no idea what EIN was.

Nancy 11:40 AM  

I SPY...another MILNE-ite. We seem to be everywhere. I cracked up at your last line, @egs for breakfast.

Yes, @CDilly, write them down and turn them into a book someday. Art Linkletter had much success with a book in that vein.

Carola 11:40 AM  

DNFDTNUT (did not finish due to not understanding theme): I'm with the few here who had no idea that KICKS referred to shoes. Otherwise, easy fun.

Masked and Anonymous 11:43 AM  

Nice, feisty rebus ThursPuz, especially since I didn't know that KICKS meant shoes.

CORNER-themed puzs are often pretty challengin to construct, but maybe easier here, since U can pump a whole rebus-word into each corner square. Figured out the rebus/corner thing at PUMP, which immediately helped with the somewhat resistant NW corner region, at our house.

staff weeject pick: EIN. Wanted SSN, but also wanted NESSIE, so was mighty confused. Had no idea what EIN was, in taxtual terms.

fave fillins: HOGWASH. ANIMAL + MINERAL subtheme. ESKIMOKISS.
Feisty clues abounded. Mostly just feisty, rather than question-mark-style cryptic-like. The only two ?-clues I noticed were for KEN and ARM. The KEN = {Burns up in film?} one sure had a pretty day-um weird use of "up", in there. Lost valuable nanoseconds.

Thanx for the workout, Ms. Reid darlin. KICKed M&A's butt.

Masked & AnonymoUUs


p.s. Wow … The Jaws of Themelessness take a bite out of another themed puz. Weird times.

Lorelei Lee 11:47 AM  

Writing from Furloughland, I would like to assure you all that athleisure ain't active wear. It's inactive wear. Basically, it's pants without zippers or buttons and tops with built-in bras, or bras with no hooks in the back that I wear everyday while thinking, "As soon as I'm done with this puzz, I'm gonna weed the garden." Then I finish the puzzle, go to NYT archives and work puzzles from 2005 while my girth comfortably rests atop the elastic waist band.

2005 seems to have been a banner year. The puzzles are all great (probably because I know the pop culture).

BTW, there actually were a lot more female constructors that year. So I'm retiring my sarcasm to the blogger on his woman constructors thing.

Nonoldnonwhitenonmale 11:48 AM  

Pump fakes? Corner kicks? Sand wedges? Hey! I thought women constructors were supposed to save us from obscure sports stuff and give us "stereotypically feminine" stuff (I quote Natan Last) instead, like nail polish. I read all about it in the Atlantic, and Vice. OTT (or was it ORR?--I never can keep them straight) was supposed to disappear, and OPI take its place. Aimee Lucido said so! And now this!

xyz 11:50 AM  

@rextorturer said - """"Rex wrote, "I winced at ESKIMO KISS, which just has this feel of "white people cutesily describing and appropriating a meaningful Inuit greeting" ""

@bauskern said - """I winced at ESKIMO KISS, which just has this feel of 'white people cutesily describing and appropriating a meaningful Inuit greeting.'" -- And that folks, is the perfect example of virtue signalling. Rex seems to do a lot of wincing. ""

To be fair, it's not just Rex. The CrosswordWORLD is all PC-obsessed and try to out do each other on the virtue signaling and indignancy since the speed solve isn't enough any more.

Wine is the answer whatever the question
it's always Gin:30 somewhere.

CDilly52 11:52 AM  

@Joaquin. And there is a women’s equivalent: “pull-up your big girl panties,” so I guess it’s all good . . . or not, depending on one’s desire to try to completely gender neutralize everything.

Bax'N'Nex 11:57 AM  

I have GOT to stop reading Mike. I tell myself everyday “just skip to the comments” but no, like being in some twisted, abusive relationship, I come back to his hate and negativity. I so love doing crosswords. I have the NY Xword app which has every puzzle since, like 1996. Waiting at the car wash...doing a puzzle; waiting during warm-ups at my daughter’s soccer game...doing a puzzle; having a little sit-down every morning...doing a puzzle (TMI? Sorry). And when I finish a puzzle, I feel so happy and accomplished. But then I read Mike and I have this black cloud over my head.

Why do I do it? Why?

Someone posted the other day “ (Mike), do you even LIKE crosswords? I am in that camp now. He HAS to do them everyday, not looks forward to it. So it becomes a slog and a burden. Hence his vitriol. It makes me sad for him, but just a little.

I got censored the other day. Let’s see if Mike allows this one.

pabloinnh 11:59 AM  

ACrimsondevil-Yep, the same rule applies to the sidelines, also the goal line. Once the whole ball is over the line that's it. Out of bounds, or with the goal line, a goal, of course. Technology can now determine if the whole ball was over the goal line, which determines if the goal counts or not. This used to be a big problem when the ball was kicked or thrown out of the net and it was unclear if it had crossed the line or not. Sidelines and end lines are called by the referee's assistants.

@Milne lovers-Well, we used to have an original copy of Now We Are Six, but it became a birthday present we our granddaughter turned, yes, six.

Anonymous 12:00 PM  

Hey Nonoldnonwhitenonmale--I know what must've happened! The original puzzle had a nail-polish rebus theme, and the older white male editor changed it! Well, there's a petition out that's gonna change all that.

CDilly52 12:11 PM  

@Nancy. And Linkletter’s tot show of the same title: Kids Say the Darndest Things. It was perhaps the first “reality” show, and I believe that for the most part it was unscripted, unlike today where producers require contestants to emote, argue its whatever sells advertising.

A Moderator 12:14 PM  


Love your posts, but try to remember the (around) 3 a day rule.

Bax'N'Nex 12:25 PM  

I have ANOTHER format related question... why on my iPhone is there a “reply” icon under posts, but on my iPad, there is no such thing?


Ernonymous 12:30 PM  

I forgot to mention my other fabulous mistake. I thought the subway riders was STRAPHANGERS but since hangers didn't fit, this was the rebus, because Strap fit. Then it crossed HANGNAIL! Hanger/Hangnail I was on to something!

CaryinBoulder 12:37 PM  

First off, thanks to @Giovanni for the golf vs. bikes comment. I would love to see CHAIN SUCK or WHEEL SUCK or even DURA ACE (why not? we get all other kinds of stupid brand names) in a puzzle.

Also @The Redanman’s “Gin:30.” One of our local distilleries is offering quarantini specials, including a Pink Gin & Tonic Kit. I picked one up the other day for my G&T-loving spouse and it was lovely, any time of day.

I got CORNERKICKS early on and assumed that’s where the rebuses would be. But in my household we don’t call them “kicks,” we call them ... shoes, making me assume that the trick had something to do with fútbol. So at the top I found symmetry with BOOT and HEAD (OK, maybe a header is not really a kick). And at the bottom there was FLAT and (LEMON) SLICE. That worked for me, until it didn’t.

The “athleisure” clue had me thinking, “Damn, what’s that French-sounding word I learned from crossword clues that means smashing two words together”? Porte-cochere? Pret-a-porte? No, no, it’s — PORTMANTEAU. Anyway, I remembered it too late and well after ______WEAR blew it out of the water.

Arden 12:38 PM  

Got it all except wedge. Had no idea that bunker was a golf term, and even if I had known the term, I still wouldn’t have known that the word wedge was associated with it. Perhaps a wedge is a type of golf club?

GHarris 12:39 PM  

This is not sour grapes because I got the theme from the kick off and flew down the field for my fastest Thursday ever but I would argue that a pump fake is a deceptive football move far more than a basketball term. Then the football theme could have continued by clueing 1 across exactly the same way.. Continuing in the same vein,44 down could have been flyin wedge and 39 down pass to flat.(yeh, I know that’s too many letters).

Anonymous 12:39 PM  

Slapped down PEGLEG, then thought, no, the constructor wouldn’t be so cruelly insensitive to the disabled. Ultimately got the happy little perfect job song, so rewarded myself with an Inuit Pie.

Clay 12:47 PM  

I don't know that Rex is "anti-business," but these days LOTS of people form corporations for a variety of reasons. A Subchapter-S corporation for professionals like attorneys. Or a non-profit for your neighborhood association, or your own home business where you sell stuff on Etsy. And what is the first thing you have to do after you get incorporated? Ask the IRS for an EIN!

webwinger 12:54 PM  

A A MILNE fans will probably enjoy the little-seen 2017 film Goodbye Christopher Robin, about the lives of Pooh’s creator and his family. English countryside captured in gorgeous cinematography.

@Nancy, @CDilly, and others: My first exposure to Milne was actually through his two books of verse, both much loved by my mother. (When Were Very Young was published before Pooh, when she was 5 years old.) Had two pet parakeets (one in my childhood, one in my daughter’s) named Binker, after the invisible friend in the poem of that name. @Suzy and @Barbara S—I think of that one almost every time I decide to go downtown

In college (closer to the year of Pooh’s publication than it is to now!) some friends and I organized a group to read aloud from the Pooh stories and other classics of kiddie lit. Best way to meet girls ever…

Have to agree that NIHILISM and its clue were inspired. @Sir Hillary (courtesy of @LMS): Bingo on why it’s become so hard to disagree respectfully!

jberg 12:56 PM  

Almost DNF, due to 1) thinking it must be a hip or head fake, and not quite making it work with the GAS; 2) thinking of my personal plight these days (shared with many others) I immediately assumed the clippers would be used for loNG hAIr, which kept me from seeing either THINS, AVE, or CORNER KICKS; 3) not remembering whether the phrase was LALALA, dAdAdA, or nAnAnA; and 4) just going with oyEz for the thing heard in court (I hesitated between oyez and oyer, but those were the only choices I saw.)

Not so much of a problem, but I've been doing a lot of cryptics lately, where "Burns up in film" would have meant the answer was NEK. But EIN was fairly clear (I've actually seen the alternative, TIN, more often).

So the first rebus I got was FLAT; and at some point, commited to loNG at 22D, I decided it was really a long toenail, with the toe rebused (didn't quite work, but I went with it). Finally WEDGE made me see that it was women's shoes, where upon I revisited the fakes and got PUMP, and only then saw that the other corner would work with BOOT. So it all came together.

I finally had to look it up. ZAC Efron is not related to the EPHRONs. I guess that's why he's spelled differently.

@Suzy Q, @cdilly, @nancy "I can get right down to the end of the town and be back [again by three? in time for tea?]"

Greg 1:00 PM  

EIN is not a "figure". It is the Employer Identification Number. It is not the result of a calculation. EIC would work (Earned Income Credit).

jberg 1:00 PM  

@Loren, maybe it's a menswear/womenswear difference, but in men's clothing ACTIVE WEAR is for actually being active, while sportswear (sport shirt, sport jacket, etc.) just means less formal than a white shirt, tie, and what we call a business suit in the US (I was totally stunned when I learned that our English cousins call it a "lounge suit," or at least did so in the early 20th century--I must have run across that term in 20 or so novels before I realized what they meant.)

Birchbark 1:01 PM  

@three of clubs (9:34) -- The philosopher who confronts his problems "head on." That is something to CHOO on.

Smith 1:04 PM  

@ Suzy 9:27

"Took great care of his mother, although he was only three."

Rug Crazy 1:07 PM  

Filled in HEAD in NE corner. It worked for me.

Nonoldnonwhitenonmale 1:12 PM  

I think that's it, Anonymous. A woman submitted some "stereotypical feminine" stuff, and an older white male changed it to sports. It's just like that time that Billy Dee Williams got put in a puzzle that was supposed to be just women. Natan Last talks about how it all happens in the Atlantic. It's pretty scary.

Joaquin 1:14 PM  

@ CDilly52 (12:11) - Re: Art Linkletter's House Party tv show. I was on that show in 1953 with three other 6th graders from my school. We were all asked what books we had read recently and I'm sure I embarrassed everyone involved as I couldn't come up with a single one.

For our appearances, our school was presented with a small, table-top AM radio and the boys were given shoe-shine kits as departing gifts. Worst *gift* ever as I wound up shining my father's shoes for years. After the show, we were all taken to lunch at The Brown Derby Restaurant, a very big deal.

Anonymous 1:16 PM  

is ESKIMOKISS more or less derogatory than CHOPCHOP?

Smith 1:16 PM  

@Nancy @CDilly @Suzy from earlier

Changed my avatar because I haven't figured out how to embed a pic. We downsized two years ago and donated thousands of books...but I saved the important ones, including A.A. Milne's.


Wearin' my slaps to the grocery store! Thanks!

Teedmn 1:27 PM  

KICKS = shoes is not a thing for me. I'm not really a shoe person anyway. I had Rex's problem with the NE rebus. In the margin, I have written station, tank, cap, but no PUMP. I was blank on that one even though I always pay at the PUMP when I do get GAS. Sheesh. So DNF today.

WEDGE was another one I cudgeled my brain for. In the margin are rake and trap but I finally remembered the SAND WEDGE. I should have also had twist, peel and zest written down but I knew none of those worked for a bunker (as if rake and trap worked for lemon? Consistency, thou art a jewel.)

I briefly had bORdER KICKS (which kind of works with the rebus idea but not the crosses). Did I mention that I hate basketball, know next to nothing about soccer, and little about golf?

These problems don't mean that I didn't take a SHINE to this puzzle. I liked the concept and rebuses are always fun. I had fun splatzing in LALALA as my first entry and getting AEROSOLS rather than adders going SSSS. Thanks, Caitlin Reid, nice job.

Swagomatic 1:38 PM  

I feel kinda like a dum-dum, because I never put together the fact that "kicks" is a slang term for shoes. I was thinking way to literally. In fact, at the end, I asked myself, "what the hell is a WEDGE kick?

I liked the puzzle, though.

kitshef 1:39 PM  

@Lorelei Lee - enjoyed your athleisure take!

Anonymous 1:44 PM  

EIN is very common these days. You need to know it when you fill out an unemployment application. So at least 30 million of us have had to use it in the last few weeks.

TJS 2:17 PM  

Hey @ROO, how about Ghandi, to friends ??

tea73 2:22 PM  

"Now we are six" is the first thing I remember reading all by myself. I was six and in the back of our Rambler station wagon. My parents made a big deal of it. I also had a 5th grade teacher (Mrs. Barber) who used to read Winnie-th-Pooh to us. She had different voices for all the characters. (This was long before Disney had made us think only babies could like Pooh.) She also read Silent Spring to us. We were living in Mogadishu at the time, and she used to spend her weekends floating on her back in the Indian Ocean just beyond the breakers. All the kids in her class would paddle out to talk to her, but none of us were as buoyant as she was!

Took forever to cotton on the the theme as I thought it was nLErS or aLErS for 1 across and finally decided it was baseball-ErS and baseball CAMP. FLAT and WEDGE were gimmies, but never heard of PUMP fakes. Eventually cottoned on to the theme and realized rRE for 4 down made no sense and that the pirates weren't necessarily capitalized.

Ultimately a satisfying puzzle and I'd say the shoe fetish gave it a feminine vibe.

QuasiMojo 2:24 PM  

@Giovanni, glad I wasn't the only one who wanted sandbags! I stand by it. :)

@Cdilly52, PEG legs was clever. I agree about kicks. I never heard shoes called that except for "shitkickers".

@Nancy, let's not forget the artist E.H. Shepard who illustrated the Milne books. They are timeless. We used to see Eeyore a lot in the Maleska era. Now it's more likely to be some anime figure I've never heard of or a Simpson character, none of which I know since I've never seen the show and have no desire to. Not Seinfeld for that matter. I'm more apt to know the name of Calvin Coolidge's pet pygmy hippo.

Frantic Sloth 2:28 PM  

@CDilly52 Good question. Some quick research on the origin of LALALA brought me to this on the
urban dictionary site
. As for Seinfeld, I have to claim ignorance - unless you are confusing LALALA with YADA YADA YADA? Or The Voice Episode perhaps?
Oh, and for SARDINE, think "packed in like a can of" instead of the actual people.
"Slaps sticks humor" - brill!

@Giovanni - Looks like the Anonywar (imagined or not) petered out. Thanking God for small miracles.

@Roo - no luck here with alternate MAH clues. Could only put it in the middle of things: YA---A or O---A or YO---MA, but that's just silly.

EIN should also be familiar to anyone who's had to deal with probate. And on that happy note... I'll take my shoots and leave (à la grammar panda).

Whatsername 2:32 PM  

Happy Thursday afternoon. I’m late today after taking the morning to be a good citizen by spending a big chunk of my stimulus money on a new set of tires and flowers to beautify the neighborhood. But what the heck, I’m always happy to do my part to boost the local economy by shopping. If the shoe stores were open, I probably would’ve spent it all.

Speaking of shoes, I love the way they were used in this puzzle, and I’m a fan of the rebus in any form or placement, so this one was a hit with me. I know very little about soccer and one KICK is pretty much the same as another to me but I do know a lot about shoes. Even so, I still didn’t grasp the shoe thing until I saw the explanation. In the SE I had a bunker made of sand bags and bags of lemon on my fish. Also had a HEAD fake and thought OK, they hit the ball with their head so that must be another soccer term I don’t know. BOOT and FLAT just weren’t enough to trigger the whole shoe connection for me, but anyway I still liked the puzzle a lot. Maybe next week I’ll get one with football terms and nail it.

@GILL: Check your email. I am sending you a message as soon as I post this. Got a deal for you on some yeast.

Z 2:56 PM  

@anon9:57 - have you ever been to Schenectady NY?*

@JBT and others - When I want a pair of BOOTs I look it the BOOT section of the shoe store.

@TJS - "other side of the coin" - I don't think so. That is, "MAN UP" as a phrase excludes women from being considered "tough," so his saying that the toughest people he knows happen to be women is just a way to subvert the notion that manly=tough. That being said, Rex gets close to reversing the stereotyping because I can see how the way he wrote it could be understood to exclude men from being "tough."
@Joaquin 10:56 - I've definitely heard MAN UP used that way. Not sure that makes it any better.
@CDilly52 - Also "Put on your big boy pants." The difference being that there's no "Woman Up" equivalent to MAN UP.

@Joe DiPinto 10:45 - I had the same "up" thought. I still don't quite see how the clue works.

@Bax'N'Nex - Bashing Rex is not generally a censorable offense. As to your "Reply" question - because Google put that function in for the mobile version but has never added it to the web version. That is why you will see seemingly meaningless comments - somebody on their phone "replied" and they can see the answer under the original comment. On the web version it just a random non sequitur.

@A Moderator - 3??? I thought it was 63! So sorry.*

@Anon sometime much earlier - EIN is not an abbreviation, you are correct. It is also not an acronym. It is an "initialism." Please strive to be absolutely accurate when correcting someone.

*Some things might be funnier if you read the comments everyday, including the late night anon hate-posts I get.

Anonymous 3:01 PM  

a word formed from the initial letters or groups of letters of words in a set phrase or series of words and pronounced as a separate word, as Wac from Women's Army Corps, OPEC from Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, or loran from long-range navigation.

on-line dictionary

Z 3:06 PM  

Oops - Had a niggle and realized I should have looked it up. Acronyms and initialisms are both abbreviations. Any shortening of a word is an abbreviation (makes sense - a word or words have been made shorter - "abbreviated"). Sorry @anon sometime much earlier - you were wrong on both counts - EIN is an abbreviation and it is not an acronym.

Also - an "in" became an "it" in my last post. Oopsie.

Anonymous 3:13 PM  

A very nice puzzle indeed!
Rex, if the toughest people you know are women, it's time you venture out of the Ivory Tower more often.

Frantic Sloth 3:13 PM  

Apologies to @egsforbreakfast 1039am for completely missing your brill joke. I praised @CDilly52 for her clever play on words and we both (I think) had it backward.

It didn't help that using the google to learn more about "glove stick humor" provided actual results - sketchy at best, but results nonetheless - thus cementing my ignorance.

Time to skulk back to the village...

Frantic Sloth 3:27 PM  

@Z and @Anon - I'm no expert, but I play one on blog comments.
I believe the basic difference between an acronym and an abbreviation is whether the thing itself can be used as a spoken word.
E.g., you ,could say WAC, OPEC, and LORAN; however, for this use of EIN (unless you're speaking German), you would not.

Karl Grouch 3:45 PM  

Started solving this morning.
Got rudely interrupted.
Finished just now.

Had a corner kick out of it.

@Z, tutorials on how to embed a link welcome.

Nancy 3:45 PM  

@Quasi -- I didn't remember the name of the wonderful MILNE illustrator, but that hilarious "Rice Pudding" illustration has stayed with me for the last [don't fill in the blank, please] years. I'll share it with all of you, along with the poem it illustrates.

(I love rice pudding, btw.)

The Joker 3:50 PM  

I was looking at ACTIVEWEAR at the store but it just sat there.

Anonymous 3:53 PM  


Love your posts, but try to remember the (around) 3 a day rule.

Gadzooks!!! I guess that means we can't engage in the playful repartee, a la ACRONYM, that has gone on today??? I mean, I mean, that's my only reason to live.

JC66 3:54 PM  

@Karl Grouch

Email me, and Ill send you an Embedding Cheat Sheet.

GILL I. 4:04 PM  

@Whatsername 2:32....I've been having trouble with my e-mail...Sweet son-in-law is coming over to see what I've done...again....! He'll be wearing one of those masks that don't give you germs!
Anyway....I'm on Facebook and I post pictures of the things I've baked - some of them sans yeast! If you Google"Facebook" you can find me under Jill McMahon. I'm the one holding my little black pup and it will show attendance to University of Madrid.
There are several of us from this blog who post. Cyber Rex friends are the best.
AND....thanks for any yeast info.
Sorry mods....I'm probably breaking the law here but @Z does it every day. :-)

Frantic Sloth 4:10 PM  

@Nancy 345pm Thank you for that link. I'm wondering who's reciting... sounds a bit like Anne Reid (Celia from LTIH) to me.

Ditto on the rice pudding!

Z 4:28 PM  

@Gill I 4:10 - Moi?!?

@Frantic Sloth - I learned it here some years ago and @Anon3:01 is correct. An Acronym is said like a stand alone word like OPEC. An initialism has the letters enunciated like IBM. Both are specialized forms of abbreviations. None are pronounced like Schenectady. Why do we need specialized terms for different types of abbreviations? I don’t know but I blame pornography.*

Barbara S. 4:34 PM  

@Joe DiPinto 10:45 and @Z 2:56
I liked that clue and interpreted "up" as "at the top of his field/profession."

@JC66 11:13
Thanks very much for the "James James Morrison Morrison" link. I sang along at the top of my lungs and I. Feel. Fine.

Milne's poem is actually called "Disobedience," which I'd forgotten. I think the Chad Mitchells do a great musical version, including their interpretation of the last stanza which is written:

W.G. Du P.
Took great
C/o his M*****
Though he was only 3...

The Shepard illustraton is hilarious with an extremely beautiful and fashionably dressed woman essentially on a wrist-leash behind a tiny child on a tricycle. (I guess only in such an innocent context would this be as delightful as it is.)

Another of my favorite poets as a child was Robert Louis Stevenson.
"Whenever the moon and stars are set,
Whenever the wind is high,
All night long in the dark and wet,
A man goes riding by."
It gave me delicious shivers then and still does.

Karl Grouch 4:35 PM  


Thx, I will

oisk17 4:39 PM  

@ Nancy I must have had a terribly deprived childhood. I know "eeyore" only from crossword references. Never read anything by Milne, nor by Dr. Seuss (not having children). I read a LOT from the time I was 7 or so, but always wanted to "man up." Sports, Hardy Boys, "Classic Comics", adventure stories from my Dad's collection of Sabatini stories....but my Dad must have pooh-pooh ed the pooh.

Krytykal 4:55 PM  

Man up, Parker.

Whatsername 4:59 PM  

@GILL (4:04) No worries. I’ll message you on FB.

QuasiMojo 5:04 PM  

@Nancy, thanks for the link. I couldn't agree more with Mary. To misquote Will Rogers, I never met a rice pudding that I didn't like.

johnk 5:08 PM  

Next thing you know Shortz is going to allow Indian Giver through, or Redskin -- or why stop there, Will? Time for the N or C word?
And at age 77, I've never heard of shoes being called kicks. Never.

Anonymous 5:12 PM  

@ A Moderator -

you call out dear CDilly while Anonymous has twenty posts today?

A Moderator 5:14 PM  

@Anon 5:12


I had the same thought an hour ago.

Meat is Murder 5:20 PM  

Triggered by Eskimo kiss ? LOL. Man up.

kitshef 5:21 PM  

@RooMonster 10:05. In the olden days, MAH was often clued as some variant of Persian angel or lunar angel. Could also be an abbreviation (but not an acronym) for milliamp-hour, or the airport code for Menorca.

Anonymous 5:52 PM  


ahhhh... remember, Anonomice is a gaggle. could be 1 or could be 10 on any given day. I, for 1 know it's more than 1 today, since I'm not the author of most of said comments. :)

I suspect that Blogger allows the cite owner to track comments by IP, so OFL, and his minions, could, in theory, slap individual mice on the wrist. and, btw, why does Z get a pass? (that latter is not the first time the question has been raised.)

Nancy 6:08 PM  

@Oisk (4:39)-- Oh, you poor deprived man, you. But it's never too late. Maybe today's blog will inspire you to read Milne at an advanced age. Just remember: the same British educational system that produced W.S Gilbert also produced A.A Milne. (Who knows -- maybe it produced the initials thing too.)

@Barbara S. (4:34) -- The Stevenson poem that has always deeply affected me is "Requiem":

Under the wide and starry sky
Dig the grave and let me lie.
Glad did I live and gladly die,
And I laid me down with a will.

This be the verse you grave for me:
Here he lies where he longed to be;
Home is the sailor, home from sea,
And the hunter home from the hill.

I will now go look up the illustration of James James's mother being led around by the wrist. I think I may have a slight memory of it, but it's really hazy.

@Quasi (5:04)-- If we ever do end up meeting, let's go out together for rice pudding.

A Different Moderator 6:58 PM  

@Anon5:52 - Google can so I’m sure Rex could if he cared, but the minions have no such tracking ability as far as I know.

As for the 3 comment limit - That isn’t in our mandate. It is a guideline that goes back a long way, but is a self-regulatory thing. Here’s what the mods got originally, “Delete stuff that is clearly ad hominem and cruel and / or profane. Criticism of people / places / things is fine. It’s viciousness that we’re looking to eliminate.
Also, be much harder on comments about others than comments about me. Allow criticism of me, even mean stupid stuff, though profane stuff should go (doesn’t bother me, but it does others).“

Also, we were given guidance to be much quicker to delete anonymous comments because those tended to be the posts that were mean. We have had a few other conversations since originally agreeing to be the moderators, but that is still basically it.

The Other Moderator 7:20 PM  

I checked.and @A Different Moderator is right.

Post your hearts out.

jae 7:56 PM  

Easy-medium. I looked over the grid after I finished and thought Jeff better give this one POW, and he did.

Fun with a lot of sparkle. Liked it a bunch!

BobL 7:57 PM  

I liked the Moderators stance - tho, Z is given carte blanche.

Barbara S. 8:37 PM  

My husband just reminded me that Winnie the Pooh is banned in China because bloggers and memers were having such fun comparing his image with that of President Xi. Humor clearly lacking at the highest levels.

@Nancy 6:08
"Requiem" is beautiful and very moving: it was used on Stevenson's monument, as he wished. Sad that he was plagued by ill-health and gone so young. But he was a trooper, writing as much as he did and leaving it for us.

Anonymous 8:52 PM  

so bummed we were robbed of seeing mouselike coach K get eliminated in the first round. thats what my brackets show evry year... go heels

webwinger 8:54 PM  

@Mod Squad: Thank you for your comments today—helpful clarification.

In these days of people lining up to cheer first responders, I think you guys/women deserve a shout out too. Surely can’t be easy herding this bunch of cats. Mostly there seems to be pretty close to the right amount of chaos and hissing, and delays never really a problem.

A Moderator 9:05 PM  


Thanks for your kind words. However, I must point out the obvious. There's a hell of a difference between moderating this blog and being a first responder. First responders don't have to deal with all the @Anon attacks on @Z. ;-)

Richardf8 9:24 PM  

I just assumed that rhe SAND WEDGE was the partbof your bumker that the artillery rolls down so as not to block your exit hatch.

Richardf8 9:33 PM  

One shoots AT clays for the sake of playing skeet.

Nancy 9:39 PM  

Love the highly amusing comments tonight from Mod 7:20 and Mod 9:05. And of course you're witty and amusing. You're each One of Us, after all:) But which One(s) of Us?

It's so frustrating not knowing. I tried to figure it out from your writing styles, but your posts aren't long enough.

A Moderator 9:54 PM  


High praise from a valued (and discerning) member of Rexland. Thank you.

Barbara S. 10:12 PM  

Thanks a lot for your input. I do so like knowing how things work. I'm not sure if you can answer this, but is it known approx. how many people read this blog daily?

Anonymous 10:21 PM  

@CDilly52 - Also "Put on your big boy pants." The difference being that there's no "Woman Up" equivalent to MAN UP.

Where I come from there is: "Cowgirl up!"

A Moderator 10:27 PM  


Good question. I never thought to check before. Here's what I found:

Pageviews today 8,458

Pageviews yesterday 105,321

Pageviews last month 2,772,712

Pageviews all time history. 261,862,239

Lion 10:32 PM  

I agree, I never heard of calling any shoes other than basketball shoes "kicks."

Barbara S. 10:42 PM  

Fascinating, thanks. But Whoa Nellie! What a bizarre discrepancy between today and yesterday!

Lion 10:44 PM  


A Moderator 10:46 PM  

@Barbara S

Just guessing, bu that may be due to the CHIN CHIN effect. ;-)

oisk17 10:50 PM  

@Nancy...We were in Apia, Samoa, and went to visit the grave where RLS lies, to see the monument with the Requiem. (Bobby Kennedy's grave has the last two lines, IIRC). But it is a climb, and it was hot, and we never got there. Next time we're in Samoa...

"Mr. Cohen, when is your birthday." And I would say "A famous epitaph reads 'Home is the sailor, home from sea, and the hunter home from the hill.' Find out who wrote that, and look up his birthday. Mine is the same." The kids would ask their English teachers, who generally didn't know, but eventually, one or two would get it. Today, with Google, no challenge at all...

jae 10:56 PM  

@Mod - are you sure it wasn’t the SLOP ITCH pandemic?

A Moderator 11:08 PM  


Nope. You're probably right.

Or maybe, both.

PB(r) Movie Reviews 8:36 PM  

I wonder if anyone else was thrown off by Sssss because of the horror film "SSSSSSSS" from the '70s?
It's not well known, even by me since I couldn't remember the exact number of letters. I was looking for a proper noun since I thought it was a writer, producer, or director.

sfirongirl 1:33 PM  

@LMS re ACTIVEWEAR. One of my favorite videos of all time is about ACTIVEWEAR and I think you'd enjoy it, too:

Hussain Al-Saidely 5:08 PM  

Borrow money here today at 3% interest rate. My company offer all kind of financial services at 3% interest rate and our services is 100% guarantee and risk free. to Apply, contact my company via email:

spacecraft 11:24 AM  

More evidence of The Age Of Taking Offense. @OFC: MANUP! Grow a skin!

I rate this puzzle challenging, mainly because of a clue set that really tries to obfuscate. A simple example: Breed = SORT. Hardly synonymous, but I get it. Like several others, the clue plays at the edges of fairness. In the corners, you might say.

Helped hugely by the twin gimmes ANIMAL and MINERAL, I still worked at it for longer than average. Since I was stalled at the corners, I worked the center, soon getting the revealer; then finally saw the NE PUMP. It got a little better after that.

Big triumph points leaked away with some really desperate fill: I'm looking at you, IOR. Better clue: "second semester of jun and sen." DOD is Rita ORA, ORA reasonable facsimile. This ISNOT one of the week's best; par.

Anonymous 1:49 PM  

@Giovanni 9:57
I have never golfed, but I know what a sand wedge is. In fact, I've eaten many.

Diana, LIW 2:49 PM  


Diana, Lady-in-Waiting for Crosswords that have a POINT!!!!

Burma Shave 2:54 PM  


GODNO, MAH, please don’t ASKME much,
this ISNOT ASIF I FAKE or beg,
just a PLEA FIR help to HOGWASH,
‘cuz it KICKS me in the LEGS.


rondo 3:07 PM  

Doesn't like golf, spouting cultural appropriation over that? and now gender stereotyping? HOGWASH. MANUP indeed. Got the PUMP first and the game was afoot. Har.

Rita ORA will do if you ASKME, or even if you don't ASKME.

Took a while to KICK into gear, but still kinda FALLSFLAT.

leftcoaster 4:37 PM  

Gotta KICK outta SORTing this one OUT, AIDEd by the very revealing CORNER KICKS, and starting with the PUMP FAKES.

Wanted SiRe before SORT, and had some trouble with unknown Rita ORA crossing the GREEN ski slope. Resulted in a one square error. So feed me a LEMON WEDGE.

Anonymous 11:42 PM  

@ anon 1:49 PM - Giovanni probably won't hear you as he did the puzzle on April 30 and you did it on June 4. Question: Are sand wedges as tasty as sand dabs ??

Lady Di - Soccer has a point or points, (or maybe not if goals are not points), unless the match is a tie.

Unknown 9:08 AM  
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
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