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0824-16 New York Times Crossword Answers 24 Aug 16, Wednesday





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CROSSWORD SETTER: Matthew Sewell
THEME: Fantasy Sports
Today’s themed answers are sports featured in works of fiction, FANTASY SPORTS so to speak:
36A. Field of DraftKings and FanDuel ... or 18-, 23-, 52- and 58-Across? : FANTASY SPORTS

18A. Activity for Hobbes : CALVINBALL
23A. Activity for Anakin Skywalker : PODRACING
52A. Activity for Harry Potter : QUIDDITCH
58A. Activity for Tigger and Eeyore : POOHSTICKS
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 8m 47s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

10. Something in a KFC bucket : WING
The famous "Colonel" of Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) fame was Harland Sanders, an entrepreneur from Henryville, Indiana. Although not really a "Colonel", Sanders did indeed serve in the military. He enlisted in the Army as a private in 1906 at the age of 16, lying about his age. He spent the whole of his time in the Army as a soldier in Cuba. It was much later, in the 1930s, that Sanders went into the restaurant business making his specialty deep-fried chicken. By 1935 his reputation as a "character" had grown, so much so that Governor Ruby Laffoon of Kentucky gave Sanders the honorary title of "Kentucky Colonel". Later in the fifties, Sanders developed his trademark look with the white suit, string tie, mustache and goatee. When Sanders was 65 however, his business failed and in stepped Dave Thomas, the founder of Wendy's. Thomas simplified the Sanders menu, cutting it back from over a hundred items to just fried chicken and salads. That was enough to launch KFC into the fast food business. Sanders sold the US franchise in 1964 for just $2 million and moved to Canada to grow KFC north of the border. He died in 1980 and is buried in Louisville, Kentucky. The Colonel's secret recipe of 11 herbs and spices is indeed a trade secret. Apparently there is only one copy of the recipe, a handwritten piece of paper, written in pencil and signed by Colonel Sanders. Since 2009, the piece of paper has been locked in a computerized vault surrounded with motion detectors and security cameras.

14. YouTube journal : VLOG
A video blog is perhaps what one might expect, a blog that is essentially a series of video posts. The term “video logging” is often shortened to “vlogging”.

15. Main ingredient in soubise sauce : ONION
The onion sauce known as soubise sauce is basically a Béchamel sauce with the addition of onion purée.

16. Lake ___, home of Presque Isle : ERIE
Presque Isle State Park is off the coast of Erie, Pennsylvania and sits on a peninsula that juts out into Lake Erie. The name “Presque Isle” translates from French as “peninsula”, or more literally “almost an island”.

17. T-shaped crosses : TAUS
Tau is the 19th letter of the Greek alphabet, the letter which gave rise to our Roman “T”. Both the letters tau (T) and chi (X) have long been symbolically associated with the cross.

18. Activity for Hobbes : CALVINBALL
Calvinball is a game played by the title characters in the “Calvin and Hobbes” comic strip. The game is touted as the antithesis of organized sports. Hobbes claims, “No sport is less organized than Calvinball!”.

20. One of the Wilson sisters of rock's Heart : ANN
Heart is a rock band from Seattle, Washington, founded in the seventies and still going strong. The band has had a changing lineup, except for sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson.

21. Cash crop in Colombia : COCA
The coca plant is native to South America and is similar in appearance to a blackthorn bush. Coca leaves have been chewed by humans for centuries, perhaps even as far back as 3,000 years ago. Chewing the leaves apparently produces a pleasurable numb sensation in the mouth and a pleasant taste. The most famous alkaloid in the leaf is cocaine, but this wasn't extracted in its pure form until the mid-1800s. The extracted cocaine was used in a medicines and tonics and other beverages.

22. Election-influencing org. : PAC
A Political Action Committee (PAC) is a private group that works to influence the outcome of a particular election or group of elections. Any group becomes a PAC by law when it receives or spends more than $1,000 for the purpose of influencing the outcome of an election. In 2010 the Supreme Court ruled that PACS that did not make direct contributions to candidates or parties could accept unlimited contributions. These “independent-expenditure only committees” are commonly referred to as “super PACs”.

23. Activity for Anakin Skywalker : PODRACING
Podracers are one-man racing craft in the “Star Wars” universe. Young Ani Skywalker is an expert podracer, showing off his skills in “The Phantom Menace”.

26. Colorful parrot : MACAW
Macaws are beautifully colored birds of native to Central and South America, and are actually a type of parrot. Most species of macaw are now endangered, with several having become extinct in recent decades. The main threats are deforestation and illegal trapping and trafficking of exotic birds.

33. Coastal inlet : RIA
A drowned valley might be called a ria or a fjord, both formed as sea level rises. A ria is a drowned valley created by river erosion, and a fjord is a drowned valley created by glaciation.

34. Pro org. with Christmas Day games : NBA
The National Basketball Association (NBA) was founded in 1946 as the Basketball Association of America. The NBA name was adopted in 1949. Of the four major sports leagues in North America, the NBA has the highest average annual salary per player.

35. ___ neutrality : NET
The principle of Net neutrality holds that those entities managing the Internet should treat all data passing through equally. The term “Net neutrality” was coined in 2003 by Tim Wu, a media law professor at Columbia University. Net neutrality is regulated by the Federal Trade Commission (FCC) in the US.

36. Field of DraftKings and FanDuel ... or 18-, 23-, 52- and 58-Across? : FANTASY SPORTS
DraftKings and FanDuel are companies offering fantasy sports games and leagues.

41. "Return to Amish" channel : TLC
The cable channel known today as TLC started out life as The Learning Channel. Programming on TLC was originally focused on educational content, but today there is an emphasis on reality television.

42. Commandments possessive : THY
According to the Book of Exodus, God inscribed the Ten Commandments on two stone tablets and gave them to Moses on Mount Sinai.

43. Duffer's delight : PAR
A “duffer” is a golfer, and not a very good one.

44. Flaky Greek pastry : BAKLAVA
Baklava is a very sweet and rich (and delicious) dessert pastry made from layers of filo dough filled with nuts and sweetened with honey or syrup. The name “baklava” comes from the Ottoman Turkish name for the pastry.

51. Adams who photographed Yosemite : ANSEL
As an avid amateur photographer, I have been a big fan of the work of Ansel Adams for many years and must have read all of his books. Adams was famous for clarity and depth in his black and white images. Central to his technique was the use of the zone system, his own invention. The zone system is a way of controlling exposure in an image, particularly when there is a high contrast in the subject. Although the technique was developed primarily for black & white film, it can even apply to digital color images. In the digital world, the main technique is to expose an image for the highlights, and one or more images for the shadows. These images can then be combined digitally giving a final photograph with a full and satisfying range of exposures.

52. Activity for Harry Potter : QUIDDITCH
Quidditch is a game that is famously played in the “Harry Potter” series of books and films. The game is contended by two teams of seven wizards or witches flying on broomsticks. The are four animated balls and six ring-shaped goals floating in mid-air. One of the balls is the Golden Snitch, and one of the players is the Seeker. It is the Seeker’s sole purpose to capture the Golden Snitch and thereby end the game.

54. Some univ. instructors : TAS
Teaching Assistants (TAs)

56. Mark Harmon police series : NCIS
NCIS is the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, which investigates crimes in the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps. The service gives its name to the CBS TV show "NCIS", a spin-off drama from "JAG" in which the main "NCIS" characters were first introduced. The big star in "NCIS" is the actor Mark Harmon. “NCIS” is now a franchise, with spinoff shows “NCIS: Los Angeles” and “NCIS: New Orleans”.

57. Baseball's steroid ___ : ERA
Steroids are found commonly in nature, with familiar examples being cholesterol and testosterone. The controversial class of drugs called anabolic steroids (known informally as “roids” or simply "steroids") are artificially produced chemicals designed to mimic the effect of the male sex hormone, testosterone. They are termed "anabolic" as they build up cellular tissue (particularly muscle) in a process called anabolism. Taking anabolic steroids can be termed “juicing”, and the aggressive behavior that can be a side-effect is known as “roid rage”.

58. Activity for Tigger and Eeyore : POOHSTICKS
Poohsticks is a game first mentioned in “The House at Pooh Corner”, that I’ve bet we’ve all played at some time or other. The game is played on a bridge over running water. Each player drops a stick in the water on the upstream side of the bridge, and then runs to the other side of the bridge to see whose stick is first to emerge. There is a World Poohsticks Championships held on the River Thames in England every year.

62. X-rated stuff : SMUT
“Smut” means “dirt, smudge” and more recently “pornographic material”. The term comes from the Yiddish “schmutz”, which is a slang word used in English for dirt, as in “dirt on one's face”.

63. Andrea Bocelli delivery : ARIA
Andrea Bocelli is a classically-trained tenor who sings popular music, a so-called cross-over artist. Bocelli was born with poor eyesight and then became totally blind at the age of 12 when he had an accident playing soccer.

64. Texas landmark that shares its name with a tree : ALAMO
The San Antonio mission known as the Alamo may have been named for a grove of nearby cottonwood trees. “Álamo” is the Spanish name for the cottonwood.

65. "Be on the lookout" alerts, for short : APBS
An All Points Bulletin (APB) is a broadcast from one US law enforcement agency to another.

67. Al who was A.L. M.V.P. in 1953 : ROSEN
Al Rosen is a former Major League baseball player who played his whole career with the Cleveland Indians. As one of the best all-time players of the game with a Jewish heritage, his fans gave him the nickname “the Hebrew Hammer”.

68. ___ buco : OSSO
“Osso” is the Italian word for bone as in the name of the dish Osso Buco: braised veal shanks.

Down
1. VCR insert : TV TAPE
Video Cassette Recorder (VCR)

2. Families-and-friends support group : AL-ANON
Al-Anon and Alateen are fellowships of relatives and friends of alcoholics. Alateen specifically supports teens who are affected by another’s drinking, whereas Al-Anon focuses on people of all ages.

3. The albums "Godspell" and "Jesus Christ Superstar," for two : SOUNDTRACKS
“Godspell” is stage musical by Stephen Schwartz and John-Michael Tebelak that opened off Broadway in 1971. The show started life as a college project at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh and simply took off. The show’s song “Day by Day” became a big hit in the popular charts.

“Jesus Christ Superstar” is a rock opera that was first released in album form in 1970, before being adapted for the stage in 1971. The music was composed by Andrew Lloyd Weber and the lyrics by Tim Rice.

5. Ornate style : ROCOCO
The Rococo style is also known as “Late Baroque”. Rococo is a very floral and playful style, very ornate.

6. Pain relief brand with early "hammers in the head" ads : ANACIN
Anacin is a pain reliever, with aspirin and caffeine as active ingredients.

7. La Scala's home : MILAN
La Scala Opera House opened in 1778. It was built on the site of the church of Santa Maria della Scala, which gave the theater its name: “Teatro alla Scala” in Italian.

8. PBS documentary series since 1988 : POV
“POV” is a PBS television series that showcases independent documentary films. “POV” has been on the air since 1988.

9. Do a mohel's job : SNIP
Ouch!

A mohel is a man who has been trained in the practice of brit milah (circumcision). Brit milah is known as "bris" in Yiddish. The brit milah ceremony is performed on male infants when they are 8-days old.

11. T. Rowe Price offering, in brief : IRA
T. Rowe Price is an investment company based in Baltimore that was founded in 1937 by Thomas Rowe Price, Jr.

21. Jeweler's measure : CARAT
The carat is a unit of mass used in measuring gemstones that is equal to 200 mg.

28. Mars, to the Greeks : ARES
The Greek god Ares is often referred to as the Olympian god of warfare, but originally he was regarded as the god of bloodlust and slaughter. Ares united with Aphrodite to create several gods, including Phobos, Deimos and Eros. The Roman equivalent to Ares was Mars. Ares was the son of Zeus and Hera.

34. Bronx nine, on scoreboards : NYY
The New York Yankees baseball team has the nickname “the Bronx Bombers”. The nickname reflects where the team plays (the Bronx) and the team’s reputation for hitting (bombers). The New York Yankees were the first team to retire a uniform number, doing so on July 4, 1939. That day they retired the number 4 in honor of Lou Gehrig.

37. Transport with mud tires, for short : ATV
An all-terrain vehicle (ATV)

38. Hoops great O'Neal : SHAQ
Retired basketball player Shaquille O’Neal now appears regularly as an analyst on the NBA TV show “Inside the NBA”. Shaq has quite a career in the entertainment world. His first rap album, called “Shaq Diesel”, went platinum. He also starred in two of his own reality show: “Shaq’s Big Challenge” and “Shaq Vs.”

39. Pieces of punditry : OP-EDS
Op-Ed is an abbreviation for "opposite the editorial page". Op-Eds started in "The New York Evening World" in 1921 when the page opposite the editorials was used for articles written by a named guest writer, someone independent of the editorial board.

A pundit is a learned person who one might turn to for an opinion. “Pundit” is derived from the Hindi word “payndit” meaning “learned man”.

40. Indian princess : RANI
A ranee (also spelled “rani”) is a queen or a princess, the female equivalent of a raja in India.

41. Unknown, on a sched. : TBA
Something not yet on the schedule (sched.) is to be advised (TBA).

45. Like arsenic in large amounts : LETHAL
Arsenic is element #33 in the periodic table, and has the chemical symbol “As”. Because of arsenic’s toxicity, it was very commonly used in pesticides. These compounds are getting banned over time, but it seems there is a long way to go. Arsenic in aquifers continues to be a problem around the world, including here in the US. China has introduced limits to the amounts of arsenic permitted in food as well as water, mainly as the Chinese staple rice is particularly good at accumulating arsenic from groundwater.

48. Holder of 1,000+ patents : EDISON
Thomas Edison was a very successful inventor. He held over a thousand US patents in his name. Included in the list of Edison’s inventions is the phonograph, the movie camera and the long-lasting light bulb. He passed away in 1931. There is a test tube at the Henry Ford Museum that supposedly holds Edison’s last breath. Ford convinced Thomas’s son Charles to seal up a tube of air in the room just after the inventor died, as a memento.

49. Benchwarmers : SCRUBS
Scrubs and benchwarmers are players of a sport who aren’t on the first team.

53. The last of the Mohicans, in Cooper's novel : UNCAS
“The Last of the Mohicans" is an 1826 novel by James Fenimore Cooper. It is the second in a series of five novels that comprise the “Leatherstocking Tales”. All five titles are:
“The Deerslayer” (1841)
“The Last of the Mohicans" (1826)
“The Pathfinder” (1840)
“The Pioneers” (1823)
“The Prairie” (1827)

55. Magi's guide : STAR
“Magi” is the plural of the Latin word “magus”, a term applied to someone who was able to read the stars. Hence, magi is commonly used with reference to the “wise men from the East” who followed the star and visited Jesus soon after he was born.

58. "Androcles and the Lion" thorn site : PAW
In the story of Androcles and the lion, a runaway slave named Androcles takes shelter in a cave. Inside he finds a wounded lion. Androcles removes a thorn from the pad of the lion’s foot, and bandages the injured limb. Years later, Androcles is captured and is condemned to be devoured by wild animals in the Circus Maximus of Rome. The lion that he faces turns out to be the lion that he befriended, and so he is able to demonstrate to the crown in the Circus that he can tame the beast. As a result, the Roman Emperor pardons Androcles.

59. 1/100 of a Norwegian krone : ORE
“Krone” translates into English as “crown”, and was the name given to coins that bore the image of the monarch in several countries. Today, the krone is the name given to the currency of Norway and of Denmark. Some of the Norwegian and Danish kroner have holes in the middle, giving them a “doughnut” or “torus” shape.

61. Grp. that's an anagram of 60-Down : ILO
The ILO (International Labour Organization) is an agency now administered by the UN which was established by the League of Nations after WWI. The ILO deals with important issues such as health and safety, discrimination, child labor and forced labor. The organization was recognized for its work in 1969 when it was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

62. ___ Tomé and Príncipe : SAO
The Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Príncipe is an island nation off the west coast of Africa comprising mainly two islands: São Tomé and Príncipe. São Tomé and Príncipe is located in the Gulf of Guinea, off the coast of Gabon. It was colonized by Portugal after POrtuguese explorers discovered the islands in the 15th century. After gaining independence in 1975, São Tomé and Príncipe is now the smallest Portuguese-speaking country in the world.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. To-do list item : TASK
5. Skatepark features : RAMPS
10. Something in a KFC bucket : WING
14. YouTube journal : VLOG
15. Main ingredient in soubise sauce : ONION
16. Lake ___, home of Presque Isle : ERIE
17. T-shaped crosses : TAUS
18. Activity for Hobbes : CALVINBALL
20. One of the Wilson sisters of rock's Heart : ANN
21. Cash crop in Colombia : COCA
22. Election-influencing org. : PAC
23. Activity for Anakin Skywalker : PODRACING
26. Colorful parrot : MACAW
30. Start, as an adventure : ENTER ON
31. "I'll have another" : ONE MORE
33. Coastal inlet : RIA
34. Pro org. with Christmas Day games : NBA
35. ___ neutrality : NET
36. Field of DraftKings and FanDuel ... or 18-, 23-, 52- and 58-Across? : FANTASY SPORTS
41. "Return to Amish" channel : TLC
42. Commandments possessive : THY
43. Duffer's delight : PAR
44. Flaky Greek pastry : BAKLAVA
47. Most perceptive : KEENEST
51. Adams who photographed Yosemite : ANSEL
52. Activity for Harry Potter : QUIDDITCH
54. Some univ. instructors : TAS
56. Mark Harmon police series : NCIS
57. Baseball's steroid ___ : ERA
58. Activity for Tigger and Eeyore : POOHSTICKS
62. X-rated stuff : SMUT
63. Andrea Bocelli delivery : ARIA
64. Texas landmark that shares its name with a tree : ALAMO
65. "Be on the lookout" alerts, for short : APBS
66. Wisher's place : WELL
67. Al who was A.L. M.V.P. in 1953 : ROSEN
68. ___ buco : OSSO

Down
1. VCR insert : TV TAPE
2. Families-and-friends support group : AL-ANON
3. The albums "Godspell" and "Jesus Christ Superstar," for two : SOUNDTRACKS
4. Metric weights: Abbr. : KGS
5. Ornate style : ROCOCO
6. Pain relief brand with early "hammers in the head" ads : ANACIN
7. La Scala's home : MILAN
8. PBS documentary series since 1988 : POV
9. Do a mohel's job : SNIP
10. Part of a modern baby monitor : WEBCAM
11. T. Rowe Price offering, in brief : IRA
12. Nothing, in soccer : NIL
13. Insole material : GEL
19. Identify : NAME
21. Jeweler's measure : CARAT
24. Jockey's strap : REIN
25. Oodles : GOBS
27. Minor argument : CONTRETEMPS
28. Mars, to the Greeks : ARES
29. Like a dog's kiss : WET
32. Power ___ : NAP
34. Bronx nine, on scoreboards : NYY
36. Custardy dessert : FLAN
37. Transport with mud tires, for short : ATV
38. Hoops great O'Neal : SHAQ
39. Pieces of punditry : OP-EDS
40. Indian princess : RANI
41. Unknown, on a sched. : TBA
45. Like arsenic in large amounts : LETHAL
46. [sigh] : ALAS
47. Sign on a prank victim's back : KICK ME!
48. Holder of 1,000+ patents : EDISON
49. Benchwarmers : SCRUBS
50. "Honest?" : THAT SO?
53. The last of the Mohicans, in Cooper's novel : UNCAS
55. Magi's guide : STAR
58. "Androcles and the Lion" thorn site : PAW
59. 1/100 of a Norwegian krone : ORE
60. Gallery hanging : OIL
61. Grp. that's an anagram of 60-Down : ILO
62. ___ Tomé and Príncipe : SAO


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About This Blog

This is the simplest of blogs.

I do the New York Times puzzle online every evening, the night before it is published in the paper. Then, I "Google & Wiki" the references that puzzle me, or that I find of interest. I post my findings, along with the solution, as soon as I am done, usually well before the newsprint version becomes available.

About Me

The name's William Ernest Butler, but please call me Bill. I grew up in Ireland, but now live out here in the San Francisco Bay Area. I am retired, from technology businesses that took our family all over the world.

I try to answer all emails, so please feel free to email me at bill@paxient.com.

Crosswords and My Dad

I worked on my first crossword puzzle when I was about 6-years-old, sitting on my Dad's knee. He let me "help" him with his puzzle almost every day as I was growing up. Over the years, Dad passed on to me his addiction to crosswords. Now in my early 50s, I work on my Irish Times and New York Times puzzles every day. I'm no longer sitting on my Dad's knee, but I feel that he is there with me, looking over my shoulder.

This blog is dedicated to my Dad, who passed away at the beginning of this month.

Bill
January 29, 2009

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