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Greetings from the 38th annual American Crossword Puzzle Tournament (ACPT) in Stamford!

This is my first time to participate in a crossword competition, so I'll be beaming if I can avoid last place. Good luck to all the folks competing this year!

0329-15 New York Times Crossword Answers 29 Mar 15, Sunday





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CROSSWORD SETTER: Alan Arbesfeld
THEME: California, Here I Come … each of today’s themed answers is a common phrase, but with the letters CA inserted:
23A. Ancient Peruvian using Netflix? : STREAMING INCA (from “streaming in”)
33A. "No fishing here!"? : CAST ELSEWHERE (from “St. Elsewhere”)
51A. Dog whose rocket went off course? : DEEP-SPACE CANINE (from “Deep Space Nine”)
65A. Comment to an annoying blackjack dealer? : YOU MAKE ME WANNA CASH OUT (from “you make me wanna shout”)
82A. Part of a jumbo trail mix? : REALLY BIG CASHEW (from “really big ‘shew’”)
97A. Agent for Bogart's partner? : BACALL HANDLER (from “ball handler”)
111A. "12-Point Type: A History"? : THE LIFE OF PICA (from “The Life of Pi”)
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 39m 58s!!!
ANSWERS I MISSED: 2 … LENI (Lene), NITTI (Netti)

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Small drums : TABORS
A tabor is a portable snare drum that is played with one hand. The tabor is usually suspended by a strap from one arm, with the other hand free to beat the drum. It is often played as an accompaniment for a fife or other small flutes. The word "tabor" comes from "tabwrdd", the Welsh word for “drum”.

13. Folded like a fan : PLICATE
Something that is “plicate” is pleated, folded like a fan. The term comes from the Latin “plicare” meaning “to fold, weave”. If we add the prefix “com-”, meaning “together”, we derive our word “complicated”, literally something that is “folded or woven together”. Interesting ...

20. East Coast national park : ACADIA
Acadia National Park in Maine was created in 1919, although back then it was called Lafayette National Park in honor of the Marquis de Lafayette who famously supported the American Revolution. The park was renamed to Acadia in 1929.

21. Early stone tool : EOLITH
Eoliths are chipped flint nodules. They were once thought to be the first stone tools, but the general opinion today is that eoliths are produced by natural processes such as glaciation.

23. Ancient Peruvian using Netflix? : STREAMING INCA (from “streaming in”)
The Inca people emerged as a tribe around the 12th century, in what today is southern Peru. The Incas developed a vast empire over the next 300 years, extending along most of the western side of South America. The Empire of course fell to the Spanish, finally dissolving in 1572 with the execution of Tupac Amaru, the last Incan Emperor.

Netflix was founded in Los Gatos, California in 1997. Although now focused on video streaming, the company delivered it's billionth DVD in 2007. I presume the renter wasn't charged for that movie ...

26. Newbie: Var. : TIRO
A tyro (also “tiro”) is a beginner or a novice. “Tyro” comes into English from Latin, in which "tiro" means "a recruit".

27. Senator Mike from Wyoming : ENZI
Mike Enzi is the senior US Senator from Wyoming, and has been in office since 1997. Enzi succeeded Senator Ted Kennedy as the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions.

28. 1965 hitmakers Dino, ___ & Billy : DESI
Dino, Desi and Billy were a singing group in the late sixties. Two of the trio were sons of famous parents. “Dino” was Dean Paul Martin, son of singer, actor and comedian Dean Martin. “Desi” was Desi Arnaz, Jr., the son of Desi Arnaz and Lucille Ball. Rounding out the group was a friend called Billy Hinsche.

31. Exactly 72, maybe : EVEN PAR
That would be par on a golf course, often 72 strokes.

33. "No fishing here!"? : CAST ELSEWHERE (from “St. Elsewhere”)
“St. Elsewhere” is a comedy-drama TV series that originally ran from 1982 to 1988. Set in an old hospital in Boston called St. Eligius, the show starred Ed Flanders, Norman Lloyd and William Daniels. This was in fact the first TV show that I started to watch regularly when I moved the US in the early eighties. That actors I remember most are Ed Begley, Jr. and Howie Mandel …

40. Vietnam ___ : WAR
By some definitions, the official involvement of Americans in the Vietnam War started in 1955. At that time, President Eisenhower deployed a Military Assistance Advisory Group to assist in the training of the South Vietnamese Army. American involvement in the conflict officially ended in 1973 with the signing of an agreement that came out of the Paris Peace Accords.

44. Lines from Homer and Erasmus : ADAGES
Homer was a famous poet of Ancient Greece, believed to be the author of the two classic epic poems, the "Iliad" and the "Odyssey". However, some scholars believe that Homer did not actually exist, but rather he is the personification of oral tradition that was passed down through the ages. One nice bit of advice attributed to Homer is:
How Prone to doubt, how cautious are the wise.

Desiderius Erasmus was a Dutch priest and theologian. Erasmus was a very prolific and successful writer and in the 1530s his written works accounted for 10-20% of all book sales in the world. A famous quotation accredited to Erasmus is:
In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king.

51. Dog whose rocket went off course? : DEEP-SPACE CANINE (from “Deep Space Nine”)
“Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” is TV series belonging to the “Star Trek” franchise that originally ran from 1993 to 1999. This show was set on a space station, so there wasn’t much trekking going on. The stations name is “Deep Space Nine”. Never cared for this one …

55. Make the podium : MEDAL
“Podium” is the Latin word for “raised platform”.

56. Some black-tie events : SOIREES
"Soir" is the French word for "evening" and a "soirée" is an "evening party". The French word "soirée" has an acute accent over the first "e", but we tend to drop this when using the word in English.

58. "Network," for one : SATIRE
The movie "Network" was released in 1976. It was directed by Sidney Lumet and stars Peter Finch in his final role, for which he won a posthumous Academy Award. That Oscar for Peter Finch was remarkable in that it was the first time the Best Actor award had been won after the actor passed away, and it was also the first time it had been won by an Australian.

64. A minimus is a little one : TOE
A “minimus” is a little toe or a little finger.

65. Comment to an annoying blackjack dealer? : YOU MAKE ME WANNA CASH OUT (from “you make me wanna shout”)
“Shout” is a huge hit released in 1959 by the Isley Brothers. A huge hit it was indeed, but not at first. In fact, it was destined to become the first record to “go gold” based on its longevity rather than its initial sales. “Shout” has been covered many times. My personal favorite cover versions are by Otis Day and the Knights in the film “Animal House” in 1978, and by Scottish singer Lulu in 1964.
You know you make me wanna (Shout!)
Kick my heels up and (Shout!)
Throw my hands up and (Shout!)
Throw my head back and (Shout!)
Come on now (Shout!)

71. TV ET : ALF
“ALF” is a sitcom that aired in the late eighties. ALF is a hand-puppet, supposedly an alien from the planet Melmac that crash-landed in a suburban neighborhood. “ALF” stands for “alien life form”.

77. Letters after Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand's name : D-NY
Kirsten Gillibrand is a US Senator from New York, and a member of the Democratic Party. Gillibrand was serving as a member of the US House of Representatives when she was appointed to the Senate by Governor David Paterson in 2009 after Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton left office to serve as Secretary of State.

81. Sealer, maybe : ALEUT
The Aleuts live on the Aleutian Islands of the North Pacific, and on the Commander Islands at the western end of the same island chain. The Aleutian Islands are part of the United States, and the Commander Islands are in Russia.

A “sealer” hunts seals.

82. Part of a jumbo trail mix? : REALLY BIG CASHEW (from “really big ‘shew’”)
Ed Sullivan regularly uttered the phrase “a really big show”, when describing his late night TV show that ran from 1955 to 1971. Famously, Sullivan pronounced the phrase a little oddly as “a really big shew”.

89. Lit : SAUCED
“Lit” and “sauced” are terms meaning “drunk”.

90. Marie Antoinette, par exemple : REINE
“La reine” (the queen) is the wife of “le roi” (the king), in French.

Marie Antoinette was the wife of Louis XVI, the last king of France. Marie Antoinette was the fifteenth of sixteen children born to the Empress Maria Theresa of Austria. The marriage to Louis, her second cousin once removed, was arranged while the two were very young. The prospective bride was "handed over" to the French at a border crossing in 1770 and two weeks later she was married to the future king. Marie Antoinette was just 14 years of age at the time, and Louis only a year her senior. Both Louis and Marie Antoinette were doomed to lose their heads courtesy of the guillotine during the French Revolution.

91. First name on the "America's Got Talent" panel : HEIDI
German-born Heidi Klum was married to the successful English singer, Seal. Klum is a talented lady and has built a multi-faceted career based on her early success as a model. She is the force behind the Bravo reality show called "Project Runway" that has been on the air since 2004. Klum has been nominated 4-5 times for an Emmy for her association with the show. Klum was also signed up as the official ambassador for Barbie in 2009, the 50th anniversary of the Barbie Doll, and for her service that year a Heidi Klum Barbie was produced. She has a added a touch of class to the judging panel on the show “America’s Got Talent” since 2013.

93. State on the Miss. : ILL
The Mississippi River runs right through the Midwest. It originates in Lake Itasca, Minnesota and flows into the Gulf of Mexico about a hundred miles below New Orleans. The name Mississippi is a corruption of a Native American name "misi-ziibi", meaning "Great River".

96. AAA offering: Abbr. : RTE
The American Automobile Association (AAA) is a not-for-profit organization focused on lobbying, provision of automobile servicing, and selling of automobile insurance. The AAA was founded in 1902 in Chicago and published the first of its celebrated hotel guides back in 1917.

97. Agent for Bogart's partner? : BACALL HANDLER (from “ball handler”)
What a bombshell Lauren Bacall was, with that husky voice and her quiet, suggestive manner. Bacall was born in New York City to Jewish immigrant parents from Europe. She was actually a first cousin of Shimon Peres, the President of Israel and former Prime Minister.

102. Wild : BERSERK
Our word “berserk” meaning “deranged” comes from the "Berserkers", Norse warriors described in Old Norse literature. Berserkers were renowned for going into battle in a fury, and some believe that they consumed drugged food to get themselves worked up for the fighting ahead.

105. Filmmaker Riefenstahl : LENI
Leni Riefenstahl was a German film director, actress and dancer. She was a noted figure moving in Adolf Hitler's circle, and her most famous film was a propaganda piece called "Triumph of Will". "Triumph of the Will" documents the 1934 Nazi Party Congress in Nuremberg. We've all probably seen many excerpts, shots of huge crowds, Nazis marching with flags, and frenzied speeches from Hitler. Riefenstahl was arrested after the war and detained for a number of years but never found guilty of any crime. She lived a long life, a very long life. She was married for the second time in 2003, at the age of 101 years. She died just a few weeks later, as she had been suffering from cancer.

106. Hold it! : HILT
The “hilt” of a weapon is its handle. One might push in the blade of a knife say “to the hilt”, to the maximum degree.

109. President John Tyler's wife : LETITIA
John Tyler was married to Letitia Christian when he became President of the United States in 1841 after the untimely death of President William Henry Harrison. Letitia was to become the first wife of a US president to die in the White House, passing away in 1842 after suffering a stroke. She was also the youngest First Lady to die, at 51 years of age.

111. "12-Point Type: A History"? : THE LIFE OF PICA (from “The Life of Pi”)
The answer is just off a tad, I think, as the novel and movie are actually called “Life of Pi”, without a definite article.

A pica is a unit of measure used in typography. One pica is equivalent to 1/6 of an inch. Each pica unit contains 12 "points".

The 2012 movie “Life of Pi” is based on a 2001 novel of the same name by Yann Martel. The “Pi” in the title is an Indian boy called Pi Patel who finds himself adrift for 227 days in small boat with a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker.

117. They might grab some food before a flight : TALONS
A “talon” is a claw of a bird of prey. The term ultimately derives from “talus”, the Latin word for “ankle”.

119. Bar order that's not drunk : OYSTERS
There is a traditional warning that one shouldn’t eat shellfish in a month without an R i.e. May through August. That’s because these are the warmer months here in the northern hemisphere when algae blooms can spread toxins that are soaked up by clams, mussels and oysters. Personally, I only eat shellfish in months containing a Q … that would be never …

Down
1. It may be on the tip of your tongue : TASTE BUD
There are 2,000 to 8,000 taste buds on the human tongue, and together they detect five different tastes: salty, sour, bitter, sweet and umami. Taste buds have a short lifetime, and are replaced about every ten days.

3. It holds a lock in place : BARRETTE
A barrette is a hair clip, a clasp for holding the hair in place. The word is French in origin, with a literal translation of “little bar”.

4. Classic theater : ODEON
In Ancient Greece an odeon (also odeum) was like a small theater, with "odeon" literally meaning a "building for musical competition". Odea were used in both Greece and Rome for entertainments such as musical shows and poetry readings.

5. Marshy place, perhaps : 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.

7. Auto pioneer Karl : BENZ
It is generally accepted that Karl Benz invented the internal combustion engine, although others were doing similar work around the same time. He certainly was awarded the first patent for an automobile, in 1886. His first automobile, the Patent-Motorwagen, couldn't get up hills unaided so his wife Bertha Benz suggested the introduction of gears. Sure enough, the next model had two gears. Behind every successful man ...

8. "When dealing with people, let us remember we are not dealing with creatures of ___": Dale Carnegie : LOGIC
Dale Carnegie wrote and lectured on self-improvement. His most famous book is “How to Win Friends and influence People”, which was first published in 1936. Carnegie made the clever move of changing the spelling of his family name from “Carnagey”. In so doing, he used the goodwill associated with the name of industrialist Andrew Carnegie who was much revered at the time, even though there was no relation. Dale even rented Carnegie Hall and delivered a lecture to a full house.

9. Will Smith biopic : ALI
“Ali” is a 2001 biographical movie about Muhammad Ali, with Will Smith in the title role. Among other things, the film is noted for its realistic fight scenes. The scenes were realistic because Smith was really being hit, as hard as his opponents could manage.

10. When repeated, a child's meal : DIN
It’s din-din time, dinner time for the young ones.

11. Yadda, yadda, yadda : ETC
"The Yada Yada Yada" is actually the name of the 153rd episode of "Seinfeld". Before "Seinfeld" made "yada yada yada" famous, we were more likely to hear the phrase "yadda yadda", often used by comedian Lenny Bruce, for example.

14. ___ brothers, inventors of the motion picture (1895) : LUMIERE
The very first filmmakers were French brothers Auguste and Louis Lumière. The first true film ever made was shot by the Lumière brothers in 1894, and was called “La Sortie de l'Usine Lumière à Lyon” (Workers Leaving the Lumière Factory in Lyon).

19. Classic British Jaguar : E-TYPE
In my part of the world growing up, we knew them as E-type Jags, but they were marketed over in the US as the Jaguar XK-E line, manufactured from 1961 to 1974.

34. High-tech surveillance acronym : AWACS
When the British developed radar in WWII, they also came up with an airborne system that they actually deployed during the war. In 1944 the US Navy commissioned a similar system, and so launched the first American Airborne Early Warning (AEW) system, also before the war was over. The more modern term for the technology is Airborne Warning and Control System, or AWACS for short.

36. Site of a 1776 George Washington victory in the Revolutionary War : TRENTON
The city of Trenton, New Jersey was first settled in 1679 by Quakers. The settlement was named Trent-towne in 1719 in honor of William Trent, who was one of the biggest landowners in the area. The name “Trent-towne” was later shortened to Trenton. The city was the site of George Washington’s first military victory in the Revolutionary War, in 1776. Because of the Battle of Trenton, the New Jersey capital is sometimes called the “Turning Point of the Revolution”.

37. ___ Rudolph, U.S. sprinter who won three golds in the 1960 Olympics : WILMA
Wilma Rudolph was a track and field athlete from Saint Bethlehem, Tennessee. Winning three gold medals in the 1960 Olympics in Rome, she was labelled “the Tornado, the fastest woman on earth”. Rudolph suffered from infantile paralysis when she was four years old, and had to wear a brace on her left leg for five years. She had to wear an orthopedic shoe for a further two years. Amazing …

43. British racetrack site : EPSOM
The Surrey town of Epsom in England is most famous for its racecourse (Epsom Downs), at which is run the Epsom Derby every year, one of the three races that make up the English Triple Crown. We also come across Epsom salt from time to time. Epsom salt is magnesium sulfate, originally prepared by boiling down mineral waters. Epsom was indeed a spa town at one time.

44. ___ Hardware : ACE
The Ace Hardware chain of stores was founded in 1924 in Chicago, Illinois. The name “Ace” was chosen after “ace” fighter pilots from World War I.

45. It's in the 60s : DEE
An academic grade of D (dee) in the US is equivalent to 60-69%.

46. Rock singer? : SIREN
In Greek mythology, the Sirens were seductive bird-women who lured men to their deaths with their song. When Odysseus sailed closed to the island home of the Sirens he wanted to hear their voices, but in safety. He had his men plug their ears with beeswax and then ordered them to tie him to the mast and not to free him until they were safe. On hearing their song Odysseus begged to be let loose, but the sailors just tightened his bonds and and the whole crew sailed away unharmed.

48. Photoshop user, e.g. : EDITOR
Photoshop is a wonderful piece of software used for editing graphics. When I first bought a copy of Photoshop, it was really expensive (about $300, ten years ago), but now there are cost-effective, stripped-down versions available.

49. Egyptian king overthrown in a 1952 revolution : FAROUK
Farouk I was King of Egypt and Sudan took over the throne when his father passed away in 1936. Farouk was overthrown in the Egyptian Revolution of 1932. He was renowned as a corrupt ruler who amassed great wealth. Famously, Farouk had an enormously valuable coin collection, which included the extremely rare 1933 double eagle, a 20-dollar gold coin. The collection also included two 1913 Liberty Head nickels.

50. Wintry mixes : SLEETS
Apparently "sleet" is a term used to describe two different weather conditions. One is a shower of ice pellets, smaller than hail. The second is a mixture of rain and snow, with the snow melting as it falls. It's the second definition that I have always used ...

53. Visibly stunned : AREEL
I really (pun!) don’t think that “areel” is a real (pun!) word outside of crosswords …

59. Spiral-horned antelopes : NYALAS
A nyala is an antelope from South Africa with spiral horns. “Nyala” is the Swahili name for the beast.

61. Like some titmice : TUFTED
The birds known as chickadees or titmice in North America, are usually called simply “tits” in the rest of the English-speaking world.

62. Fist bump, in slang : DAP
The dap is a form of handshake, nowadays often a complicated and showy routine of fist-bumps, slaps and shakes. Some say that "dap" is an acronym standing for "Dignity And Pride".

66. Ancient Assyrian foe : MEDE
The Medes were an ancient people that lived in what is now northwestern Iran. The Medes held sway in the region only for about 60 years, until Cyrus the Great came along and defeated Astyages, the king of Media (not to be confused with Howard Stern, the self-proclaimed "king of all media"!).

67. Old lab burners : ETNAS
“Etna” (after the volcano) is another name for a Bunsen Burner that is used in a laboratory.

75. Catholic rite : EUCHARIST
In the Roman Catholic Church, the Eucharist is the celebration of Mass.
The principal act of worship in the Roman Catholic tradition is the Mass. The term “Mass” comes from the Late Latin word “missa” meaning “dismissal”. This word is used at the end of the Latin Mass in “Ite, missa est” which translates literally as “Go, it is the dismissal”.

76. "Delphine" author Madame de ___ : STAEL
Germaine de Staël was a French-speaking Swiss author active at the turn of the 19th century. She was commonly referred to as "Madame de Staël". Staël was noted for her outspoken criticism of Napoleon in her native France, for which she suffered exile in Switzerland.

78. Waxing and waning, e.g. : CYCLE
The verbs waxing and waning come from Old English. To wax is to increase gradually in size, strength, intensity or number. And to wane is to decrease gradually.

79. U.K. honour : OBE
The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire is an order of chivalry in the UK that was established in 1917 by King George V. There are five classes within the order, which are in descending seniority:
- Knight Grand Cross (GBE)
- Knight Commander (KBE)
- Commander (CBE)
- Officer (OBE)
- Member (MBE)

82. Thomas Jefferson and Calvin Coolidge, e.g. : REDHEADS
About 2% of the world’s population has red hair. The highest percentage of redheads are Scottish (13%), with the Irish coming in second (10%).

85. Showstopper? : ENTR’ACTE
The term “entr'acte” comes to us from French, and is the interval “between two acts” ("entre deux actes") of a theatrical performance. It often describes some entertainment provided during that interval.

92. Novelist McEwan : IAN
Ian McEwan is an English author with a track record of writing well-received novels. McEwan's most famous work at the moment I would say is "Atonement" which has benefited from the success of the fabulous movie adaptation released in 2007.

97. Maryland's largest city, informally : BALTO
Cecilius Calvert was the 2nd Baron of Baltimore, an English peer and member of the Irish House of Lords who became Proprietary Governor of the Province of Maryland. Calvert managed the Maryland colony from his home in England, for 42 years. As Calvert was a Roman Catholic, the colony of Maryland became a haven for Catholics from England who were suffering religious persecution. The city of Baltimore is named after Calvert, who was also known as Lord Baltimore. The Baltimore title comes from the Manor of Baltimore, a large estate in County Longford in Ireland.

98. ___ Fisher Hall, longtime venue at Lincoln Center : AVERY
Avery Fisher was an audio engineer who made major contributions in the field of sound reproduction. He donated over $10 million to the New York Philharmonic in 1973, and since then the Lincoln Center facility used by the orchestra has been named Avery Fisher Hall.

99. Whale constellation : CETUS
Cetus is a constellation named after a sea monster from Greek mythology. Today, Cetus is often called “the Whale”.

100. Capone henchman : NITTI
Frank Nitti was one of the top henchmen working for Al Capone. Unlike American-born Capone, Nitti was actually from Italy and was born near the city of Salerno. When Capone was eventually put away for 11 years for tax evasion, Nitti was convicted of the same crime. Nitti was only imprisoned for 18 months, and when released he was labelled as the new head of Capone's Chicago Outfit. However the truth seems to be that he was just a frontman, with others making the decisions.

101. Something you might get a charge out of : RHINO
There are five types of rhinoceros that survive today, and the smaller Javan Rhino is the most rare. The rhinoceros is probably the rarest large mammal on the planet, thanks to poaching. Hunters mainly prize the horn of the rhino as it is used in powdered form in traditional Chinese medicine.

103. Tasty : SAPID
Something that is “sapid” is “tasty, savory”. The opposite to “sapid” is “insipid”, meaning “without taste, bland”.

110. China's Lao-___ : TSE
Lao Tse (also Lao-Tzu) was a central figure in the development of the religion/philosophy of Taoism.

113. Jeff Lynne's band, for short : ELO
Jeff Lynne is a singer-songwriter best known as the leader of the Electric Light Orchestra (ELO). Lynne went on to form the Traveling Wilburys supergroup, along with Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Roy Orbison and Tom Petty.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Small drums : TABORS
7. Leaves of grass : BLADES
13. Folded like a fan : PLICATE
20. East Coast national park : ACADIA
21. Early stone tool : EOLITH
22. Go wild : RUN RIOT
23. Ancient Peruvian using Netflix? : STREAMING INCA (from “streaming in”)
25. Washington post? : EMBASSY
26. Newbie: Var. : TIRO
27. Senator Mike from Wyoming : ENZI
28. 1965 hitmakers Dino, ___ & Billy : DESI
30. Start to lose it : SLIP
31. Exactly 72, maybe : EVEN PAR
33. "No fishing here!"? : CAST ELSEWHERE (from “St. Elsewhere”)
38. Be up : BAT
39. Ending with Vietnam : ESE
40. Vietnam ___ : WAR
41. Like the headline "ELVIS FATHERED MY ALIEN BABY" : LURID
42. Sheer : UTTER
44. Lines from Homer and Erasmus : ADAGES
47. Some art projections : RELIEFS
51. Dog whose rocket went off course? : DEEP-SPACE CANINE (from “Deep Space Nine”)
55. Make the podium : MEDAL
56. Some black-tie events : SOIREES
57. Refrain syllable : TRA
58. "Network," for one : SATIRE
59. Never : NOT ONCE
62. "Is that so?" : DOES IT?
64. A minimus is a little one : TOE
65. Comment to an annoying blackjack dealer? : YOU MAKE ME WANNA CASH OUT (from “you make me wanna shout”)
71. TV ET : ALF
72. Pub fixture : ALE TAP
73. "Ta-da!" : IT WORKS!
74. Up-to-the-minute : LATEST
77. Letters after Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand's name : D-NY
78. Less deserving of a laugh, say : CORNIER
81. Sealer, maybe : ALEUT
82. Part of a jumbo trail mix? : REALLY BIG CASHEW (from “really big ‘shew’”)
87. Sorry sort : SAD CASE
89. Lit : SAUCED
90. Marie Antoinette, par exemple : REINE
91. First name on the "America's Got Talent" panel : HEIDI
93. State on the Miss. : ILL
94. Bouncer's concern : AGE
96. AAA offering: Abbr. : RTE
97. Agent for Bogart's partner? : BACALL HANDLER (from “ball handler”)
102. Wild : BERSERK
104. Declare : AVER
105. Filmmaker Riefenstahl : LENI
106. Hold it! : HILT
108. "When I was ___ ..." : A LAD
109. President John Tyler's wife : LETITIA
111. "12-Point Type: A History"? : THE LIFE OF PICA (from “The Life of Pi”)
116. Tied up : TRUSSED
117. They might grab some food before a flight : TALONS
118. Hard and unyielding : FLINTY
119. Bar order that's not drunk : OYSTERS
120. "Me as well!" : I DO TOO!
121. Isn't completely truthful : FUDGES

Down
1. It may be on the tip of your tongue : TASTE BUD
2. Put in play : ACTIVATE
3. It holds a lock in place : BARRETTE
4. Classic theater : ODEON
5. Marshy place, perhaps : RIA
6. Identical to : SAME AS
7. Auto pioneer Karl : BENZ
8. "When dealing with people, let us remember we are not dealing with creatures of ___": Dale Carnegie : LOGIC
9. Will Smith biopic : ALI
10. When repeated, a child's meal : DIN
11. Yadda, yadda, yadda : ETC
12. Tangerine or peach : SHADE
13. Force divided by area, in physics : PRESSURE
14. ___ brothers, inventors of the motion picture (1895) : LUMIERE
15. Having five sharps : IN B
16. Cause of a great loss? : CRASH DIET
17. Option for a quick exit : AISLE
18. Quaint letter opener : TO SIR
19. Classic British Jaguar : E-TYPE
24. Concerning : IN RE
29. Sharp turn : ELL
32. Projected image : PERSONA
34. High-tech surveillance acronym : AWACS
35. Major account : SAGA
36. Site of a 1776 George Washington victory in the Revolutionary War : TRENTON
37. ___ Rudolph, U.S. sprinter who won three golds in the 1960 Olympics : WILMA
43. British racetrack site : EPSOM
44. ___ Hardware : ACE
45. It's in the 60s : DEE
46. Rock singer? : SIREN
48. Photoshop user, e.g. : EDITOR
49. Egyptian king overthrown in a 1952 revolution : FAROUK
50. Wintry mixes : SLEETS
52. Barely touch, as a meal : PICK AT
53. Visibly stunned : AREEL
54. Grp. with a launch party? : NASA
58. Criticism : STATIC
59. Spiral-horned antelopes : NYALAS
60. "C'est magnifique!" : OO LA LA!
61. Like some titmice : TUFTED
62. Fist bump, in slang : DAP
63. It might say "Happy Birthday!" : ICING
66. Ancient Assyrian foe : MEDE
67. Old lab burners : ETNAS
68. Ambushed : WAYLAID
69. One calling foul? : SWEARER
70. Mess (around) : HORSE
75. Catholic rite : EUCHARIST
76. "Delphine" author Madame de ___ : STAEL
78. Waxing and waning, e.g. : CYCLE
79. U.K. honour : OBE
80. Free : RID
82. Thomas Jefferson and Calvin Coolidge, e.g. : REDHEADS
83. Quiet period : LULL
84. Menial : HIRELING
85. Showstopper? : ENTR’ACTE
86. When school's open : WEEKDAYS
88. More slapstick : SILLIER
92. Novelist McEwan : IAN
94. ___-bodied : ABLE
95. Board's opposite : GET OFF
97. Maryland's largest city, informally : BALTO
98. ___ Fisher Hall, longtime venue at Lincoln Center : AVERY
99. Whale constellation : CETUS
100. Capone henchman : NITTI
101. Something you might get a charge out of : RHINO
103. Tasty : SAPID
107. "In that case ..." : IF SO ...
110. China's Lao-___ : TSE
112. Suffered from : HAD
113. Jeff Lynne's band, for short : ELO
114. Patch of land : LOT
115. ___ season : FLU


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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 answer all emails, so please feel free to email me at bill@paxient.com, contact me on Google+ or leave a comment below.

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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