Wednesday, January 11, 2023 Tom Pepper and C. C. Burnikel

 Theme: Bad Beginnings.  Two-word in-the-language phrases are given new meanings by adding the prefix MAL- to the first word.  This prefix ordinarily indicates a bad or evil version of the root word, but here it results in a totally new, unrelated word.  Very clever, and I don't know how Tom and C. C. were able to find them.

17 A. Soft feathers on a croquet implement?: MALLET DOWN.   This is a silly image, so - right up my ally.  Maybe wielded by an iron fist in a velvet glove?  A LET DOWN is a disappointment.  None here, though.

30 A. Negotiations over the ingredients of a milkshake?: MALTED TALKS.  The silliness continues.  Here is a recipe to TALK about.  I got a 100 point glucose spike just looking at the nutrition facts. "TALKS" often refers to serious negotiation over treaties or arms limitation  A TED TALK is a recorded public-speaking presentation that was originally given at the main TED (technology, entertainment and design) annual event or one of its many satellite events around the world. TED is a nonprofit devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks, often called "TED talks."

47. Place to park one's spiteful feelings?: MALICE SHELF.  Are you on silliness overload yet?  I'm enjoying it.  Malice is ill will or the intention or desire to do evil.  A bit abstract to be stored anywhere other than the depth of your psyche.  An ICE SHELF is a floating sheet of ice permanently attached to a landmass.  Until it collapses, that is.  This is not good.   You can learn more here.

64. Karl's years with the Utah Jazz?: MALONE TIME.  Karl Anthony Malone [b. 1963] is an American former professional basketball player in the National Basketball Association (NBA). Nicknamed "the Mailman", he is considered one of the greatest power forwards in NBA history.  He spent his first 18 seasons (1985–2003) in the NBA with the Utah Jazz.  He was a two-time NBA Most Valuable Player, a 14-time NBA All-Star, and an 11-time member of the All-NBA first team.  Malone Time was a good time. ONE TIME can refer to some one or some thing from the past, or it can relate to a single, unique occurrence or event.

Hi, Gang - JazzBumpa here to assure we don't have a bad beginning, middle or end.  Let's dive into today's puzzle and see what we can find.


1. Bit of pond growth: ALGA.   A simple, nonflowering, and typically aquatic plant of a large group that includes the seaweeds and many single-celled forms. Algae contain chlorophyll but lack true stems, roots, leaves, and vascular tissue.

5. Snatches: GRABS.   Grasps or seizes suddenly and roughly.

10. Map out: PLAN.   As indicated, plan out the details of program or course of action.

14. Earsplitting: LOUD.  Extremely loud.

15. Anti-harassment movement: ME TOO.   A global social movement that seeks to expose and prevent sexual harassment and assault, especially against women, by raising awareness and holding perpetrators to account publicly.

16. Perfect gradually: HONE.   By analogy to sharpening a knife.

19. Billions of years: EONS.  Indefinite and very long periods of time.

20. Stick on: AFFIX.  Stick, attach, or fasten (something) to something else.

21. Bow (out): OPT.   Make a choice from a range of possibilities.   One could also opt in.

22. Judi Dench and Helen Mirren, for two: DAMES.   DAME is an honorific title and the feminine form of address.  Originally this was the female equivalent of knighthood, but now is extended to recognize accomplishment in other endeavors.  The two mentioned DAMES are film actresses.

23. Emeril catchword: BAM.   

25. "No thanks": I PASS.  I'll opt out of whatever this is.

27. Proverb: SAW.   An old saying, often repeated; maxim; proverb.

35. CBS forensic franchise: CSI.   Crime Scene Investigation.

36. Animated film about a bird from Brazil: RIO.  

37. Some unauthorized creations: FAN ART.   Artwork created unofficially by fans of a book, film, etc., and based on that work.

38. All the __: RAGE.    Very popular at a particular place and time.

40. Font flourish: SERIF.   A slight projection finishing off a stroke of a letter in certain typefaces.

42. Rascal Flatts, e.g.: TRIO.   Rascal Flatts was an American country music band founded in 1999. The band members were Gary LeVox, Jay DeMarcus, and Joe Don Rooney. DeMarcus is LeVox's second cousin, a brother-in-law of country music singer James Otto, and a former member of the contemporary Christian music duo East to West. 

43. Casting director?: ANGLER.   Nice misdirection here.   Casting is the act of the angler throwing the bait and hook (or a lure) out over the water, typically by slinging a fishing line manipulated by a long, elastic fishing rod.   Angling is a fishing technique that uses a fish hook or "angle" attached to a fishing line to tether individual fish in the mouth. 

45. "Shea Butter Baby" singer-songwriter Lennox: ARI.   Courtney Shanade Salter [b. 1991] known professionally as Ari Lennox, is an American R&B singer from Washington, D.C.  She is the first female artist to be signed to J. Cole's record label, Dreamville Records. 

46. Day-__ paint: GLO.   The Day-Glo Color Corp. (also styled as DayGlo) is a privately held American paint and pigments manufacturer based in Cleveland, Ohio. It was founded in 1946 by brothers Joseph and Robert Switzer and is currently owned by RPM International. It specializes in fluorescent paint and pigments, such as those used in safety applications, artwork and signage. It invented black-light fluorescent and daylight fluorescent paints and nondestructive testing methods using fluorescent dyes.

50. Bracket shape: ELL.  Same shape as the letter "L".

51. Drop out of the conversation?: ELIDE.   Omit (a sound or syllable) when speaking.  Misleading clue.

52. Stately tree: ELM.   A tall deciduous tree that typically has rough serrated leaves and propagates from root suckers.

54. Herb piece: SPRIG.   A small stem bearing leaves or flowers, taken from a bush or plant.

56. SoFi Stadium NFL player: RAM.   Member of the L.A. Rams professional football team.  They were the victims of horrendous officiating on Sunday that gave a playoff spot to the Seahawks.  If they had lost or tied, that spot wold have gone to the Lions.  Wait until next year.

59. Psyched: EAGER.  Slang term for being highly enthusiastic about some activity.

63. Landing spot for a cannonball: POOL.   A cannonball is a diving style where the diver hugs their knees and attempts to enter the water with their body shaped as much like a sphere as possible. The goal is to create a large splash.

66. Unflappable: COOL.   Calm and composed, especially in a potentially tense situation.

67. Honeycrisp, for one: APPLE.   The round fruit of a tree of the rose family, which typically has thin red or green skin and crisp flesh. Many varieties have been developed as dessert or cooking fruit or for making cider.

68. Video snippet: CLIP.    Video clips are short sections of video, usually parts of a longer recording. The term is also more loosely used to mean any short video less than the length of a traditional television program.

69. Private employer?: ARMY.  Also a Major employer and a General employer. 

70. Sauce for gnocchi: PESTO.   Pesto is a sauce that traditionally consists of crushed garlic, European pine nuts, coarse salt, basil leaves, and hard cheese such as Parmigiano-Reggiano.

71. Sandogasa, beanie, etc.: HATS.  Various head coverings, some rather obscure..


1. __ mater: ALMA.  Literally, "nourishing mother;" an allegorical Latin phrase used to identify a school, college or university that one formerly attended or/and graduated from.

2. Be a couch potato: LOAF.  Be lazy.

3. View from Florida's west coast: GULF.   A large inlet from the ocean into the landmass, typically with a narrower opening than a bay, but that is not observable in all geographic areas so named. The term gulf was traditionally used for large highly-indented navigable bodies of salt water that are enclosed by the coastline.

4. Embrace spontaneity, in a way: AD LIB.   In music and other performing arts, the phrase ad libitum, often shortened to "ad lib" or "ad-lib", refers to various forms of improvisation. 

5. Clock-setting std.: GMT.   Greenwich Mean Time is the mean solar time at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, London, counted from midnight. 

6. Give the decor a face-lift: RE-DO.   Redecorate.

7. Resting on: ATOP.   On the top of.

8. Neckwear worn by Matt Smith on "Doctor Who": BOW TIE.   The bow tie is a type of necktie. A modern bow tie is tied using a common shoelace knot, which is also called the bow knot for that reason. It consists of a ribbon of fabric tied around the collar of a shirt in a symmetrical manner so that the two opposite ends form loops.

9. Male offspring: SON.   A boy or man in relation to either or both of his parents.

10. Ring-necked state bird of South Dakota: PHEASANT.   Birds of several genera within the family Phasianidae in the order Galliformes. Although they can be found all over the world in introduced (and captive) populations, the pheasant genera native range is restricted to Eurasia. 

11. Has tremendous influence: LOOMS LARGE.    Becomes or seems highly important and often causes worry.

12. Baby photographer Geddes: ANNE.   Anne Elizabeth Geddes [b 1956] MNZM [New Zealand Order of Merit] is an Australian-born, New York City-based portrait photographer known primarily for her elaborately-staged photographs of infants. Geddes's books have been published in 83 countries. 

13. Loch in tabloid photos: NESS.   Home of the Monster.

18. Final, e.g.: EXAM.   A test given to students at the end of a course of study or training.

22. Spreadsheet contents: DATA.  Facts and statistics collected together for reference or analysis.

24. Color akin to brick: MARS RED.   A Fine Arts red pigment used in painting, artificially made from an iron oxide base and characterized by strong film-forming properties and permanence. 

26. Common email attachment: PDF FILE.   Portable Document Format - a file format that provides an electronic image of text or text and graphics that looks like a printed document and can be viewed, printed, and electronically transmitted.

27. "Buzz off!": SCRAM.   Go away.

28. Yoga position: ASANA.   An asana is a body posture, originally and still a general term for a sitting meditation pose, and later extended in hatha yoga and modern yoga as exercise, to any type of position, adding reclining, standing, inverted, twisting, and balancing poses.

29. Leeway in a negotiation, say: WIGGLE ROOM.   Capacity or scope for negotiation or operation, especially in order to modify a previous statement or decision.

31. Falsehood: LIE.   Dishonest statement intended to mislead.

32. Text at a bat mitzvah: TORAH.   The compilation of the first five books of the Hebrew Bible, namely the books of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy.

33. Whale food: KRILL.   Small crustaceans of the order Euphausiacea, found in all the world's oceans. The name "krill" comes from the Norwegian word krill, meaning "small fry of fish", 

34. Seat at the bar: STOOL.   A seat usually without back or arms supported by three or four legs or by a central pedestal. 

39. Prozac maker: ELI LILLY.   Eli Lilly and Company is an American pharmaceutical company headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, with offices in 18 countries. Its products are sold in approximately 125 countries. The company was founded in 1876 by, and named after, Colonel Eli Lilly, a pharmaceutical chemist and veteran of the American Civil War. 

41. Ring of Kerry's isl.: IRE.   Ireland.  The Ring of Kerry is a scenic drive around the Iveragh Peninsula in southwest Ireland’s County Kerry. Its 179 km-long, circular route takes in rugged and verdant coastal landscapes and rural seaside villages. 

44. Vaping device: E-CIG.   E-cigarettes produce an aerosol by heating a liquid that usually contains nicotine—the addictive drug in regular cigarettes, cigars, and other tobacco products—flavorings, and other chemicals that help to make the aerosol. Users inhale this aerosol into their lungs. Bystanders can also breathe in this aerosol when the user exhales into the air.

48. Brightly colored wrap: SERAPE.   A long blanket-like shawl/cloak, often brightly colored and fringed at the ends, worn in Mexico, especially by men. 

49. Escape in a hurry: FLEE.  Scram.

53. Stick in a book: MATCH.   A short, thin piece of wood or cardboard used to light a fire, being tipped with a composition that ignites when rubbed against a rough surface.

54. Animal rescue org.: SPCA.   Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

55. Not great: POOR.   Worse than is usual, expected, or desirable; of a low or inferior standard or quality.

57. Austrian peaks: ALPS.   The Alps are the highest and most extensive mountain range system that lies entirely in Europe,[b][2] stretching approximately 1,200 km (750 mi) across seven Alpine countries (from west to east): France, Switzerland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Austria, Germany, and Slovenia.

58. Lose feathers: MOLT.   The process of an animal to shed old feathers, hair, or skin, or an old shell, to make way for a new growth.

60. __ monster: GILA.   A species of venomous lizard native to the Southwestern United States and the northwestern Mexican state of Sonora. It is a heavy, typically slow-moving reptile, up to 56 centimetres long, and it is the only venomous lizard native to the United States.

61. Give off: EMIT.   Produce and discharge something, especially gas or radiation.

62. Counts at a gym: REPS.  Repetitions of an exercise or action. 

64. Diagram at a visitor center: MAP.  Floor plan of the building.

65. Opposite of paleo-: NEO.    A new and different form of something that existed in the past, such as a theory, style, language, or philosophy.

There goes another Wednesday.  Hope you enjoyed it from the beginning to the ending.

Cool regards!