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Greetings from Dundalk, County Louth in Ireland

I am on vacation in Ireland, and have extended my stay until October 24th. I am focused on getting the puzzle solved and at least a basic post up each day. It's proving to be difficult to do much more than that due to pressure of time, which I am sure you can understand. Happy puzzling, and slainte!

Bill

0227-11: New York Times Crossword Answers 27 Feb 11, Sunday




Quicklinks:
The full solution to today's crossword that appears in the New York Times
The full solution to today's SYNDICATED New York Times crossword that appears in all other publications


CROSSWORD SETTER: Peter A. Collins
THEME: V-2 ... all the theme answers have two words, each starting a V; and the grid design features two large "Vs", each with a V at its apex:
- VIETNAM VETS
- VINCE VAUGHN
- VESTAL VIRGINS
- VICE VERSA
- VINCA VINE
- VILLAGE VOICE
- VARICOSE VEIN
COMPLETION TIME: 26m 29s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across
1:27th Special Edition - Humvee1. Desert Storm transports : HUMVEES
"Humvee" is a nickname for the military vehicle developed by AM General. The full name is High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle i.e. HMMWV, or simply "Humvee".

Many of us tend to use "Operation Desert Storm" as the overall name for the conflict more correctly called the Persian Gulf War. Operation Desert Storm was in fact just the air and land battle that took place between January 17th and April 11th 1991. The buildup of forces was called Operation Desert Shield, and the withdrawal of forces after the liberation of Kuwait was known as Operation Desert Farewell.

Signed Chase, Chevy 8x10 Photo13. Annoyed with persistent petty attacks : CHIVIED
There's an old song called the "Ballad of Chevy Chase" from the 15th century which tells of a hunting party that turned into a battle between the English and the Scots. This ballad gave rise to the term "chevy chase" meaning a running pursuit. The word "chevy" then meant to chase, and from this came "chivy", to harass with petty attacks. And yes, the actor Chevy Chase got his nickname from the very same ballad, from his grandmother.

26. March ___ : HARE
The March Hare is a character in Lewis Carroll's "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland". It was the March Hare who hosted the tea party near the start of the story, in which we are introduced to another famous character, the Mad Hatter.

John McCain: A Biography27. John McCain and John Kerry : VIETNAM VETS
John McCain went into the US Naval Academy in 1958, following a family tradition, as his father and grandfather were both four-star admirals. The younger McCain did not achieve the same rank, retiring from the Navy as a captain in 1981, but his career development was interrupted by six years spent as a prisoner of war in North Vietnam.

The Candidate: Behind John Kerry's Remarkable Run for the White HouseJohn Kerry enlisted in the Naval Reserve in 1966 and went straight into Officer Candidate School. His first post was as an ensign on a frigate in the Vietnam theater, mainly working on rescue missions picking up downed pilots. He requested a transfer to Swift boat duty. While serving on Swift boats he was awarded the Silver Star, Bronze Star and three Purple Hearts.

31. Gig for a deejay : RAVE
As you might imagine, I've never been to a rave, and don't have one upcoming in my diary. And as they often start in the early hours of the morning, I'm unlikely ever to experience one. A rave is generally an all-night party featuring loud, electronically synthesized music usually played by a DJ, as opposed to a live band.

35. Steeplechase, e.g. : RACE
Back in the 1700s there was a race called a "steeplehunt", a horse race from a fixed location to some church in the distance which had a steeple visible. This evolved into the race that we know as a "steeplechase".

Jumbo Dice in Dice40. Common rolls : SEVENS
When you roll two dice, 7 is the most common outcome, with 2 & 12 the least probable. That's because there is only one way to throw a 2 or a 12 (i.e. 1+1 and 6+6) whereas there are a number of ways to throw a 7 (i.e. 1+6, 2+5, 3+4, 4+3, 5+2, 6+1).

42. River crossed by the Longfellow Bridge : CHARLES
The Cambridge Bridge over Charles River was opened in 1907, and was renamed as the Longfellow Bridge in 1927 in honor of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. Many locals call it the "Salt-and-Pepper Bridge" as the central towers are said to resemble salt and pepper shakers.

Bonar Law47. British P.M. after Lloyd George : LAW
British Prime Minister Bonar Law is perhaps most notable for two peculiarities of his holding the office, rather than for his achievements as a leader. Law was born in New Brunswick in Canada, so he is the only British PM to have been born outside of the British Isles. In addition, he became PM in October of 1922 and served for only 211 days, making him the shortest-serving Prime Minister in British history.

Hugh Beaumont Photo Leave It To Beaver Hollywood Photos 8x1049. Ward, to the Beaver : DAD
Ward Cleaver and his wife, June, were the parents of Wally Cleaver and his younger brother, "The Beaver", for whom the fifties sitcom was named, "Leave It to Beaver". Ward Cleaver was played by Hugh Beaumont.

51. Crash-investigating org. : NTSB
The National Transportation Safety Board is responsible for the investigation of major accidents. The organization is independent in that it has no ties to other government agencies or departments so that its investigations can be viewed as "impartial". The NTSB also earns a little money for the US as it hires out its investigation teams to countries who don't have the necessary resources available on their own soil.

57. "The Real World" airer : MTV
"The Real World" is a reality television show that airs on MTV. It's all about a group of strangers that agree to live in a house together and get filmed as relationships develop. Many view "The Real World" as the original reality television show, as it debuted way back in 1992. It is MTV's longest running program.

Avatar (Original Theatrical Edition)60. 2009 hit film with subtitled scenes : AVATAR
I went to the 3D version of "Avatar" when I saw it for the first time ... it really is the only way to see that movie!

63. Word on either side of "à" : VIS
We use the French phrase "vis-a-vis" to mean "with regard to" or "in relation to". The literal translation from the French is "face to face", and when we imported the phrase into English, in the mid-1700s, it had two other meanings that were more faithful to the original. Firstly, it could be a "face to face" meeting (not so today), and secondly, it was a type of carriage, in which the occupants face each other.

Charge of the Light Brigade, Balaclava, 25 October in 1854 Giclee Poster Print by Richard Caton Woodville II, 24x3270. "The Charge of the Light Brigade" figure : COSSACK
The disastrous "Charge of the Light Brigade" took place in Balaclava in the Crimea on October 25th 1854, during the Crimean War. Commander of the British Army that day was Lord Raglan, and in overall command of the Calvary unit was the Earl of Lucan. Under Lucan, in charge of the Light Brigade was the Earl of Cardigan. Raglan sent a Captain Nolan to Lucan with orders to attack "the guns". When Lucan asked Nolan which guns, it appears that Nolan indicated the wrong ones. Lucan then instructed Cardigan to lead the Light Cavalry in a charge on the designated gun, which he dutifully did. As the charge started, Nolan noted the error and rode onto the field to intercept the Light Brigade, but was killed by an artillery shell. The charge continued into an overwhelming artillery battery ("into the Valley of Death" to use Tennyson's famous words), causing the loss of over 2/3 of the mounted brigade, a loss of 400 horses and 250 men killed or wounded, for no military purpose at all. Cardigan survived, left the field of battle immediately and boarded his yacht in Balaclava Harbor and had a champagne lunch. Lucan was made a member of the Order of the Bath the following year, and Raglan was promoted to Field Marshal ...

Vince Vaughn Close Up 8x10 Photo73. "Wedding Crashers" co-star, 2005 : VINCE VAUGHN
Just like me and my brothers, Vince Vaughan was born to parents that had a thing about giving names to their kids all starting with the same letter. Vince has two siblings, older sisters called Victoria and Valeri.

77. Key of Chopin's "Polonaise-Fantaisie" : A-FLAT
Frederic Chopin was a Polish composer, who spent most of his life in France. He was most famous for his piano works in the Romantic style. Chopin was a sickly man and died quite young, at 39. For many of his final years he had a celebrated and tempestuous relationship with the French author George Sand (the nom de plume of the Baroness Dudevant). Those years with Sand may have been turbulent, but they were very productive in terms of musical composition.

TINA FEY 8X10 COLOR PHOTO79. Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, once, on "S.N.L." : CO-ANCHORS
Tina Fey has a scar on her face, a few inches long on her left cheek. I was shocked to read that the scar is the result of a childhood "slashing" incident. When she was only five years old, playing in the front yard of her house, someone just came up to her and slashed her with a knife. Despicable ...

Saturday Night Live: The Best of Amy PoehlerAmy Poehler was a cast member on Saturday Night Live from 2001 to 2008, notable for appearing in many great sketches, including those where she played Hillary Clinton opposite Tina Fey's Sarah Palin. Poehler also starred with Fey in the 2008 movie "Baby Mama", and now has her own show on NBC called "Parks and Recreation".

80. "Spider-Man" director : RAIMI
Sam Raimi is a very successful director and producer, responsible for the "Spiderman" series of films among others, and TV series such as "Xena: Warrior Princess".

85. Toy company behind yo-yos : DUNCAN
Would you believe that the first yo-yos date back to 500 BC? There is even an ancient Greek vase painting that shows a young man playing with a yo-yo. Centuries later Filipinos were using yo-yos as hunting tools in the 1500s. The word yo-yo is a Tagalog (Filipino) word meaning "come-come" or simply "return".

88. Canyonlands National Park features : MESAS
"What's the difference between a butte and a mesa?" I hear you cry! Both are hills with flat tops, but a mesa has a top that is wider than it is tall. A butte is a much narrower formation, taller than it is wide. Now we know ...

91. Aircraft control surface : ELEVON
In traditional aircraft designs, pitch is controlled by the elevator, and roll is controlled by the aileron. On some newer aircraft these two functions are combined into single control surfaces called "elevons".

The Ultimate Peter & Gordon101. "___ Pieces" (Peter and Gordon hit) : I GO TO
Peter and Gordon's biggest hit is a favorite of mine, "A World Without Love", written by Paul McCartney. Peter Asher (the "Peter" of Peter and Gordon) had a sister, Jane, who dated Paul McCartney and so they got to sing a lot of his compositions.

102. Congolese river : UELE
The Uele River is a tributary to the Ubangi River, and is found in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The Uele is the 5th longest river in Africa.

104. Nondemocratic rule : FIAT
A "fiat" is an arbitrary rule that is imposed, and is the Latin for "let it be done".

MRI in Practice (3rd Edition)106. Kind of scan, for short : MRI
A CT (or "CAT") scan produces (via computer manipulation) a three dimensional image of the inside of an object, usually the human body. It does so by taking a series of two dimensional x-ray images while rotating the camera around the patient. The issue with CT Scans is that they use x-rays, and high doses of radiation can be harmful and that damage is cumulative over time. An MRI on the other hand (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) uses powerful magnetic fields to generate its images so there is no exposure to ionizing radiation (like X-rays). We used MRI technology in our chemistry labs at school, way back in the days when the technology was still called Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Imaging (NMRI). Apparently the marketing folks didn't like the term "nuclear" because of its association with ionizing radiation and bombs, so it's now just called MRI.

107. Keepers of the flame? : VESTAL VIRGINS
In Ancient Rome the priestesses of the the goddess Vesta were known as the Vestals. They were also called the Vestal Virgins as they took a vow of chastity, although they weren't required to be celibate for life. Each priestess entered the order before puberty and promised to live a celibate life for thirty years. The first decade was spent as a student, the second in service, and the final ten years as a teacher. Upon completion of the thirty years the Vestal was free to marry, but few did. Life was a lot better for a woman in the priesthood than it was subject to Roman Law.

111. E.R. readout : EEG
An electroencephalogram is a record of electrical activity caused by the firing of neurons within the brain. The EEG might be used to diagnose epilepsy, or perhaps to determine if a patient is "brain dead".

Pinback button celebrating the inauguration of President Harry Truman, 1949.112. Old nuclear watchdog: Abbr. : AEC
The Atomic Energy Commission was set up right after WWII in 1946, with the aim of promoting the peaceful use of atomic energy. It was a significant move made by President Truman, as it passed control of atomic energy from the military to the civilian sector. The AEC continued to operate until 1974 when its functions were divided up into two new agencies, the Energy Research and Development Administration and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

113. Dutch city ESE of Utrecht : EDE
Ede is a small town in the Netherlands located between the cities of Arnhem and Utrecht.

115. The Beavers of the N.C.A.A. : OSU
The athletic teams of Oregon State University are known as the Beavers. The big rivals to the Beavers are the Ducks of the University of Oregon, a rivalry that has been dubbed "the Civil War". The two schools' football teams play a game every year for the Platypus Trophy.

WowWee Tribot Talking Companion118. Play that introduced the word "robot" : RUR
R.U.R. is a play written in Czech by Karel Capek, first produced in 1921. It is a science fiction work and is remembered in part for introducing the world to the word "robot". The words "automaton" and "android" were already in use, but Capek used the term "robot" from the original Czech "robota" meaning "forced labor".

Bill Gates (Biography (a & E))121. Some Windows systems : NTS
Windows XP, Windows Vista and now Windows 7; they're all based on the Windows NT operating system. There is a common perception that Windows NT (WNT) takes its name from VMS, an earlier operating system developed by Digital Equipment Corporation. "WNT" is what's called a "Caesar cypher" of "VMS", as you just augment the the letters of VMS alphabetically by one to arrive at WNT. Bill Gates disputes this derivation of the name, and in a 1998 interview stated that the NT originally stood for N-Ten, and the marketing folks at Microsoft revised history changing it to "New Technology".

Down
3. Post-flood locale : MT ARARAT
Mount Ararat is in Turkey. Ararat is a snow-capped dormant volcano, with two peaks. The higher of the two, Greater Ararat, is the tallest peak in Turkey. Ararat takes its name from a legendary Armenian hero called Ara the Beautiful (or Ara the Handsome).

4. The other way around : VICE VERSA
"Vice versa" is a Latin phrase meaning "with position turned". We always pronounce this term "incorrectly". In Latin, a "c" is always a hard sound, and a "v" is pronounced like a "w". The pronunciation should be something like "wee-kay wehr-sa".

7. Letter's end? : SERIF
Serifs are details on the ends of characters in some typefaces. Typefaces without serifs are known as sans-serif (using the French word "sans" meaning "without"). Some people say that serif fonts are easier to read on paper, whereas sans-serif fonts work better on a computer screen. I'm not so sure though ...

Xena Warrior Princess - Season Two10. TV title character who said "I'm not an Amazon" : XENA
Lucy Lawless is a New Zealand actress (and singer), famous for playing the title role in TV's "Xena: Warrior Princess". Lawless first played the Xena character in a made-for-TV movie called "Hercules and the Amazon Women", and later played the character again in a series called "Hercules: The Legendary Journeys". Xena became so popular that a series was built around the character, with Lawless retained for the role.

16. Plant with purple flowers : VINCA VINE
Vinca is a plant genus with six species all native to Europe, Africa and Asia. They are vine-like in their growing behavior, and the name "vinca" comes from the Latin "vincire" meaning "to bind".

17. Name of 13 popes : INNOCENT
There have been 13 popes with the name Innocent. Pope Innocent I took his name from his "supposed" father, a man called Innocens of Albano, which started the naming tradition. However, it is also believed that Innocent I was the son of the preceding pope, Anastasius I. The celibacy rules came later, I guess ...

32. Course for new U.S. arrivals : ESL
English as Second Language (ESL) is sometimes referred to as English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) and English as a Foreign Language (EFL).

35. King on un trono : REY
In Spanish, a king (rey) sits on a throne (un trono).

37. Setting for part of 2005's "Munich" : TEL AVIV
"Munich" is a 2005 film that tells the fictional tale of retaliations carried out by the Israeli government following the killing of Israeli athletes during the 1972 Summer Olympic Games. I saw this movie, and found it to be disappointing, to be honest ...

39. Royal name in Norway : OLAV
Olav is an alternative spelling to Olaf.

Of the many kings of Norway named Olaf (and there have been five), Olaf II is perhaps the most remembered as he was canonized and made patron saint of the country. Olaf was king from 1015 to 1028, and was known as "Olaf the Big" during his reign. Today he is more commonly referred to as "Olaf the Holy".

French's Classic Yellow Mustard, 14-Ounce Squeeze Bottles (Pack of 8)45. Big name in mustard : FRENCH'S
French's mustard was created by Robert Timothy French, and was introduced to the world at the St. Louis World's Fair in 1904.

50. Sword: Fr. : FER
"Fer" is the French word for iron, and also for a blade.

53. ___-X : GAS
Gas-X is a trade name for the anti-foaming agent called simethicone. It causes small gas bubbles in the stomach to combine into larger bubbles that can then be "burped" more easily.

McCabe and Mrs. Miller Poster Movie E 11x17 Warren Beatty Julie Christie William Devane56. ___ Miller (Julie Christie title role with 57-Down) : MRS
57. Warren Beatty title role with 56-Down : MCCABE
"McCabe and Mrs. Miller" is a 1971 western movie starring Warren Beatty and Julie Christie in the title roles. The film was directed by Robert Altman, the project that he took on right after his success with "M*A*S*H". I haven't seen this movie, not being one for westerns, but I might check it out as Roger Ebert described it as "perfect".

58. Group with a board of governors : THE FED
The Federal Reserve System is more usually known simply as "the Fed", and is the central banking system of the US. It was introduced in 1913 in response to a number of financial panics at the beginning of the 20th century. The original role for the Fed was to act as a lender of last resort, in case there was a run on a bank. This can happen as most of the money that is deposited by customers in a bank is reinvested by that bank, so it has very little liquid cash available. If too many customers look for their money at one time, then the bank can be short of cash and this can start a "run". The Fed's responsibilities have broadened since those early days.

59. Weekly since 1955, with "The" : VILLAGE VOICE
"The Village Voice" is a free newspaper distributed in New York City. It had a great advertising slogan in the eighties: "Some people swear by us ... other people swear AT us".

63. Vessel seen just below the surface? : VARICOSE VEIN
Varicose veins are veins that have become enlarged. Veins have little valves in them that are designed to stop blood flowing "downward" due to gravity, while muscles external to the veins(say the leg muscles) squeeze them to pump the blood "upwards" back to the heart. If these valves fail then the blood can pool, especially in the legs, causing the veins to swell and become very painful. One traditional treatment is to remove the varicose veins completely, leaving the deep veins inside the leg muscles to take over their work.

67. Clotting agent : PLATELET
Platelets are cell-like structures in the blood, although they have no nucleus nor any DNA. When bleeding occurs, the damaged blood vessel wall is covered with a clot made up of platelets enmeshed in a protein called fibrin.

MARCEL MARCEAU 20X24 COLOR PHOTO74. Marcel Marceau, e.g. : NOM
"Nom" is the French word for "name".

Marcel Marceau was the most famous mime of all time, a native of Strasbourg in France. Marceau made a cameo appearance in Mel Brooks's "Silent Movie", playing himself. In the scene, Mel Brooks asks Marceau to appear in his movie (a question asked silently of course, in subtitles), and Marceau turns to the camera and speaks the only word in the whole film, "Non!" (French for "No!"). Brilliant ...

82. Home recorder : TIVO
TiVo was introduced in 1999, the world's first commercially successful DVR (Digital Video Recorder). If you don't have one, you might want to consider getting one. If you like television, it's very liberating.

89. U.S.S.R. part: Abbr. : SOV
The former Soviet Union was created in 1922, not long after the Russian Revolution of 1917 that overthrew the Tsar. The new Soviet Union was roughly equivalent geographically to the old Russian Empire, and was comprised of fifteen Soviet Socialist Republics.

Veet Hair Removal Gel Cream, Sensitive Skin Formula 13.5 fl oz (400 ml)92. Classic hair removal brand : NEET
The hair removal product "Neet" was launched in Canada in 1901, and was also sold as "Immac". Today it is sold under the name "Veet".

94. Catch some flies : SHAG
To shag (I am reliably informed, never having played a game of baseball in my life!) is to chase and catch a fly ball.

100. Some NCOs : SSGTS
Staff Sergeant is a rank of Non-Commissioned Officer in the army.

Ella Enchanted (Widescreen Edition)103. "___ Enchanted" (2004 film) : ELLA
"Ella Enchanted" is the title of a fantasy novel written by Gail Carson Levine, and published in 1997. It is a retelling of the story of Cinderella, with lots of mythical creatures added. A film adaptation was released in 2004, starring Anne Hathaway in the title role.

104. V : FIVE
V is the Roman numeral representing "five".

108. U.R.L. ender : EDU
A domain name is basically the address of a website on the Internet. Some time ago I moved this website to a new address (from www.puzzle.paxient.com to www.NYTCrossword.com). Like in the real world, one pays for an address. I now own (well rent!) both of the addresses I've used for this blog, but choose to "do business" i.e. publish the blog, at the more memorable address NYTCrossword.com. It's sort of like preferring to have a Park Avenue address instead of one on say Elm Street. In the Internet world, the address is intended to indicate what type of activity goes on at a particular address. So an address with ".com" implies a "company" website, a ".org" implies a non-profit website and ".edu" implies an education website. But, in reality anyone can rent whatever address they want, as it just goes to the highest bidder. Most folks remember ".com" addresses, so they are the most popular. ".com" is meant to imply a "business address" as I say, but it can even be used to chat about crosswords!

110. Code-breaking grp. : NSA
The National Security Agency was set up in 1952 by President Truman, a replacement for the Armed Forces Security Agency that had existed in the Department of Defense since 1949. The agency has always been clouded in secrecy and even the 1952 letter from President Truman that set up the agency was kept under wraps from the public for over a generation. I really like the nickname given to the NSA: "No Such Agency" ...

For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Desert Storm transports : HUMVEES
8. Is sociable : MIXES
13. Annoyed with persistent petty attacks : CHIVIED
20. Qualify : ENTITLE
21. Contest site : ARENA
22. 1994 Red Hot Chili Peppers album : OUT IN LA
23. Rabbi or mullah : TEACHER
24. Like most Western music : TONAL
25. Went over completely : SPANNED
26. March ___ : HARE
27. John McCain and John Kerry : VIETNAM VETS
30. Dog command : COME
31. Gig for a deejay : RAVE
33. Sped : FLEW
34. For-EV-er : EONS
35. Steeplechase, e.g. : RACE
36. Idle : AT REST
38. Emulated a hungry wolf : DROOLED
40. Common rolls : SEVENS
42. River crossed by the Longfellow Bridge : CHARLES
44. Clogs at the bottom? : SOLES
45. Arrive at by air : FLY INTO
46. Repair shop figs. : ESTS
47. British P.M. after Lloyd George : LAW
49. Ward, to the Beaver : DAD
50. Payday, often: Abbr. : FRI
51. Crash-investigating org. : NTSB
52. Striped stones : AGATES
55. What "Arf! Arf!" or "Meow!" may mean : FEED ME
57. "The Real World" airer : MTV
60. 2009 hit film with subtitled scenes : AVATAR
62. Earn : GARNER
63. Word on either side of "à" : VIS
66. Contributes : CHIPS IN
68. Transfer, as at a nursery : REPOT
70. "The Charge of the Light Brigade" figure : COSSACK
72. Block component : CELL
73. "Wedding Crashers" co-star, 2005 : VINCE VAUGHN
76. Evolutionary chart : TREE
77. Key of Chopin's "Polonaise-Fantaisie" : A-FLAT
79. Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, once, on "S.N.L." : CO-ANCHORS
80. "Spider-Man" director : RAIMI
81. "Get lost!" : BEAT IT
83. Ft. Collins setting : MST
84. Abbr. on a currency exchange board : EUR
85. Toy company behind yo-yos : DUNCAN
86. Entered carefully : EDGED IN
88. Canyonlands National Park features : MESAS
90. Bands on the run? : TENDONS
91. Aircraft control surface : ELEVON
93. Good name for a surveyor? : ROD
94. Some Muslims : SUNNIS
95. Those near and dear : LOVED ONES
98. Quality of new-fallen snow : WHITENESS
101. "___ Pieces" (Peter and Gordon hit) : I GO TO
102. Congolese river : UELE
104. Nondemocratic rule : FIAT
105. Short answers? : RSVPS
106. Kind of scan, for short : MRI
107. Keepers of the flame? : VESTAL VIRGINS
111. E.R. readout : EEG
112. Old nuclear watchdog: Abbr. : AEC
113. Dutch city ESE of Utrecht : EDE
114. Toil : SLAVE
115. The Beavers of the N.C.A.A. : OSU
116. QB's miscue : INT
117. Newcastle-to-London dir. : SSE
118. Play that introduced the word "robot" : RUR
119. Anathematic : HATED
120. Break, of a sort : NAP
121. Some Windows systems : NTS

Down
1. Eighth Hebrew letter : HETH
2. Discovers : UNEARTHS
3. Post-flood locale : MT ARARAT
4. The other way around : VICE VERSA
5. Old verb ending : -ETH
6. About 16,900 ft., for 3-Down : ELEV
7. Letter's end? : SERIF
8. The situation : MATTERS
9. Tree with very hard timber : IRONWOOD
10. TV title character who said "I'm not an Amazon" : XENA
11. Covered, as cookware : ENAMELED
12. Some gunfire : SALVOES
13. Overhead ___ : COSTS
14. Cadence syllables : HUPS
15. "Let's make ___ true Daily Double" : IT A
16. Plant with purple flowers : VINCA VINE
17. Name of 13 popes : INNOCENT
18. Gold and silver, but not bronze : ELEMENTS
19. ___ City, Fla. : DADE
28. Antiquity, poetically : ELD
29. Demise : END
32. Course for new U.S. arrivals : ESL
35. King on un trono : REY
36. A-one service? : ACE
37. Setting for part of 2005's "Munich" : TEL AVIV
39. Royal name in Norway : OLAV
40. Use for skating : SLIDE ON
41. Break down : SOB
43. Infernal : SATANIC
45. Big name in mustard : FRENCH'S
48. Sloppy, as a kiss : WET
50. Sword: Fr. : FER
53. ___-X : GAS
54. "Oh, joy!," e.g., typically : SARCASM
55. Inane : FATUOUS
56. ___ Miller (Julie Christie title role with 57-Down) : MRS
57. Warren Beatty title role with 56-Down : MCCABE
58. Group with a board of governors : THE FED
59. Weekly since 1955, with "The" : VILLAGE VOICE
61. Type in again, as a password : REENTER
62. "After you" : GO AHEAD
63. Vessel seen just below the surface? : VARICOSE VEIN
64. Hired gun, in gang slang : ICEMAN
65. Coils : SKEINS
67. Clotting agent : PLATELET
69. Plastic used in piping : PVC
71. Subs : STAND-INS
74. Marcel Marceau, e.g. : NOM
75. [This makes me mad!] : GRR
78. Satisfied, for a while at least : TIDED OVER
80. #2's : RUNNERS UP
82. Home recorder : TIVO
85. Repair shop job : DENT
87. Teetotaler : NONUSER
89. U.S.S.R. part: Abbr. : SOV
90. What may help one live and learn? : TUITION
92. Classic hair removal brand : NEET
94. Catch some flies : SHAG
95. Some beans : LIMAS
96. Meanies : OGRES
97. Hack : SLASH
98. Overly caffeinated : WIRED
99. Pooped : SPENT
100. Some NCOs : SSGTS
103. "___ Enchanted" (2004 film) : ELLA
104. V : FIVE
108. U.R.L. ender : EDU
109. Brewhouse fixture : VAT
110. Code-breaking grp. : NSA


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Antonia said...

Silly comment...many more erudite and just plain interesting clues...but why did they change the brand name from Neet to Veet do you suppose??? Neet was so descriptive...Just discovered your site. I have been plodding through puzzles for years and never seem to get more proficient...I never "cheated", but then decided I could learn from it by googling and might actually improve my puzzle skills...You provide a short cut and nice commentary. Of course once you give up and cheat...the puzzle loses all its fun...

Bill Butler said...

Hi Antonia,

Not a silly comment at all. It's the little details that emerge that I find so interesting.

Re: NEET/VEET
Who knows why marketing folks make such changes. Often I think it's just to so they have something to do. My favorite in the world of beauty products is the Oil of Olay that we see on the shelf here, which in Ireland is called Oil of Ulay. It can't be cost effective and efficient to keep two brands running side by side.

Re "cheating"
I am like you, and stick at a puzzle without looking up references. It's only after I've claimed victory or declared defeat that I hit the books. My wife on the other hand, she's a librarian, and regards the whole thing as an exercise in reference :) To each his/her own, I guess.

I'm delighted you found my little blog, Antonia. I hope you drop by again, and it proves to be of some service. Thanks for stopping by!

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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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