Theme: Get Real! 62A. "We're on to you!" (and a hint to how this puzzle's other four longest answers were created): DROP THE ACT. Each of the four central theme answers are in the language phrases with the word ACT removed to reveal a new, and witty phrase.
17A. Free garden supply?: COMP
ACTED SOIL. COMPED meaning given as complimentary item.
24A. Cost at a Walmart competitor?: TARGET PR
ACTICE. Target is catching Walmart.
38A. Become more forgiving?: L
ACTOSE INTOLERANCE. Being milk intolerant, this is my favorite, as the original phrase and the new are both very positive.
50A. Pessimistic brat?: NEGATIVE IMP
ACT. These on the other hand are quite negative.
Hey all, it is I, Lemonade, so it must be Friday, and we have another seemingly easy Friday, that does have some very tricky clues and a very fun letter removal theme, so on with Mr. Peluso's masterpiece.
1. South American plain: CAMPO. Okay, again with a difficult start; my Spanish is not great, but I believe this means field. or country (like Casa de Campo- country house) and not Plain which is a flat field mostly devoid of trees. Ah well, I am probably wrong again.
6. Fifth pillar of Islam: HADJ. Okay, the end of our lesson for the week in the religion, HADJ (or HAJJ) is the pilgrimage; the other four are: (1) the shahada (creed), (2) salat (daily prayers), (3) sawm (fasting during Ramadan ), (4) ( zakat alms giving) ).
10. Back country transports, briefly: ATVS. All Terrain Vehicles. Lots of acronyms.
14. Poppy product: OPIUM. Mini-clecho: 15. Bean product?: IDEA. Not a green one, but your head.
16. Antihero?: GOAT. This meaning comes from the old Hebrew tradition of send out a goat to take on the sins of the people, the SCAPE GOAT.
19. Tahoe bar, say: AXLE. The Chevrolet SUV, not the beautiful city on the lake.
20. Cheese from Veneto: ASIAGO. Cheeses like wines have regions, you can read this LINK .
21. Cognac designation: VSOP. I am not sure if this was intention but Cognac is a region as well, and it is graded as Very Special Old Pale.
23. It may follow sex: ISM. A cigarette? A loud scream, oh, I see....sexism.
27. Main response?: AYE SIR. The main, meaning the sea, the bounding main.
29. Feminine principle: YIN. After Al's explanation, you are supposed to know this.
30. Bass, e.g.: ALE. The beer reference so I do not feel lonely.
31. Boomers are swelling its ranks: AARP. The old reference so I don't get uppity.
34. Vast expanse: OCEAN. Danny?
42. Only brother not in any Marx Brothers films: GUMMO. He was born MILTON .
43. Foreign minister under Meir: EBAN. Abba Eban, a very fascinating and intelligent man that I had the pleasure of meeting when he was here appearing on a locally produced Israeli TV show.
44. Comic Margaret: CHO. The Kontroversial, Korean Komedienne, watch unless you are AFRAID .
45. Petting zoo chorus: AWS. How cute!
47. Metaphorical hiding place: CLOSET. Where we have our skeletons, and our gay people; it must be crowded in theirs.
54. Palme __: Cannes award: D'OR. Of gold, in French.
55. Words of agreement: NOR I. I kept seeing seaweed.
56. Super Bowl party array: SALSAS. The Tijuana place next tome has 23 salsa for your burrito, some will curl your eyebrows.
60. Work: OPUS.
64. Sci-fi shots: ZAPS.
65. Shekels: GELT. More Yiddish, as well as the currency of old Israel. Money honey.
66. Hartford-based insurance giant: AETNA. Hartford is the Insurance Capital .
67. Harper's Bazaar artist: ERTE. Romain de Tirtoff .
68. The same, to Alain: EGAL. French lesson, not only the same as Equal, it is the root word.
69. Discomfiting look: SNEER. I already did my Snidely Whiplash, so use your imagination.
1. First name in soft drinks?: COCA. Coca Cola, first name, get it!!!!!
2. Mil. addresses: APOS. Army Post Office.
3. "La Boh�me" role: MIMI. My grandmother was called that from the French m�m�.
4. Leave the larva stage PUPATE. really, sounds like fun.
5. James Bond and JFK have worn them: OMEGAS. The watch.
6. __ Honor: HIS. Speaking of sexism, why HIS?
7. "... and gentle as __": Matthew: A DOVE.
8. Jefferson, notably: DEIST. A practical form of Christianity, devoid of miracles.
9. Heap: JALOPY. They are uncertain where this word comes from, but it means an old, badly maintained car.
10. Turkish title: AGA. And a cooker in England, where are you our limey friend?
11. Destructive, as a relationship: TOXIC. Man, we have all been in those with beautiful but bad for us partners.
12. Sibelius's "__ Triste": VALSE. This was a work written by the most famous Finnish composer, for a play written by his brother; truly awesome MUSIC ; I think the title means Sad Waltz, in French.
13. Keep from flowing: STEM. Stem the tide boys!
18. Gray painted by Basil Hallward DORIAN. The only novel written by Oscar Wilde, ever published, not a color of paint, but the central character. A truly well thought out and frightening book and movie.
22. Conviction, maybe: PRIOR. In TV cop talk, how many priors?
25. Fireplace insert: GRATE. Gitta out the logs someplace.
26. Old empire builder: INCA.
27. Winningest manager in Expos history: ALOU. Felipe, the oldest of the three brothers, who all played in the same outfield for one game with the San Fransisco Giants; because the Montreal Expos do not exist any more, Felipe will keep his record.
28. Polite rural reply: YES'M.
30. Subj. for solvers: ALG. Al Gebra, or old math friend.
32. Steal from: ROB. I won't quibble, but there is a big difference in the law, as robbery requires the use of force in confrontation.
33. Not quite win: PLACE. Horse racing, Win, Place and Show. I like this clue, both for me and my degenerate friends.
35. Confer ending: ENCE. Conference.
36. Vier times zwei: ACHT. Four times two = eight, German lesson.
37. Paleo- opposite: NEO. Neo mean new, Paleo ancient, prehistoric, both from Greek roots.
39. Slate, e.g., for short: E-MAG. I learned from the puzzles, I have never seen this online publication.
40. Hoover, for one: IOWAN. Herbert Hoover the 31st president and the one who presided over the beginning of the depression. Other famous Iowans include Johnny Carson (who moved to Nebraska) Marion Morrison, better known as John Wayne, and sadly a transplanted Chicago boy whose family moved to Waterloo, named John Wayne Gacy, who became known as the Killer Clown. A presidential hopeful recently opened her campaign in Waterloo, Iowa because it was the home of that great American, John Wayne, but she had the wrong one. It may be her Waterloo.
41. Join: ENLIST.
46. Stuffy type: STODGE. I guess one who acts stodgy would be, but eh.
48. Midwestern natives: OMAHAS. This references the Native American Tribe, not Omahans, I think; HG, help.
49. It may be vented: SPLEEN. I have had this also in previous blogging days.
50. Without face value: NO PAR. Corporations determine a basic value for each share of stock, which would be the minimum they would pay to redeem shares.
51. Blow: ERUPT. Like a volcano, or that prom night zit coming up. It surely blows to have a pimple at the prom.
52. Thrift store abbr.: IRREG. Irregular.
53. One of two in Mozart's string quintets: VIOLA. Do any of you Ryders play Viola or Cello?
54. Drop off: DOZE. Hey, WAKE UP, I am doing my best.
57. Bloat, maybe: SATE. When I was little my parents hid the Halloween candy on the sun porch so my brothers and I would not eat it too quickly. On the morning of the 31st when they went to get it, there was a mouse in the bag, his stomach five times bigger than he was; he was dead, but he had a big smile. He was sated and bloated.
58. Promgoer's concern: ACNE.
59. Have the lead: STAR. Not first dog, but the lead in a play or show.
61. Captain's hdg.: SSE. An attempt to make random letters sound good.
63. Scandalous '80s initials: PTL. Praise the Lord, and pass the mascara. The televison ministry of Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker. Did not end so well for them, but my work is ending well, as we have conquered another puzzle, one with deception, wit and I am telling the truth, NO ACT here either. Enjoy your holidays and Happy Birthday USA, and many more.
Note from C.C.:
Here are a few sweet photos from Don "Hard G". He and his beautiful wife Barbara adopted two Havanese (Pansie & Cosmos) from puppy mills earlier this year after their dog Violet passed away.