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0310-11: New York Times Crossword Answers 10 Mar 11, Thursday





Quicklinks:
Solution to today's crossword in the New York Times
Solution to today's SYNDICATED New York Times crossword in all other publications

CROSSWORD SETTER: Matt Ginsberg
THEME: WORDS PRONOUNCED DIFFERENTLY WHEN CAPITALIZED:
1A. *Poet's performance : READING
65A. *Like Seattle vis-à-vis Phoenix : RAINIER
22D. *Not fixed : MOBILE
31D. *Shine : POLISH
COMPLETION TIME: 17m 19s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0


Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across
STACY KEACH 20X24 COLOR PHOTO1. *Poet's performance : READING
There are a few locations with the name Reading, but my guess is that the most famous is Reading, the county town of Berkshire in England. Reading is a major railroad junction, and the site of a renowned monastery and a prison. Reading Prison was where American actor Stacy Keach spent 6 months in 1984, convicted of smuggling cocaine into the UK.

George Herbert Walker Bush: A Photographic Profile14. Country with which the U.S. goes to war in "Wag the Dog" : ALBANIA
The 1997 movie "Wag the Dog" is a black comedy starring Dustin Hoffman and Robert De Niro. It tells the story of a fake war that is manufactured by a Washington spin doctor in order to distract the American electorate. It is based on the novel "American Hero" by Larry Beinhart. In the movie the war is fictitious and the president goes unnamed. In the novel, Beinhart uses Desert Storm as the war in his storyline, and George H. W. Bush as the President.

15. Who "saved my life tonight" in a 1975 Elton John hit : SOMEONE
"Someone Saved My Life Tonight" is a 1975 song by Elton John. The song is autobiographical and tells of a time when John was contemplating marriage in the late sixties to his girlfriend Linda Woodrow. The doubts about marriage led John to consider suicide, but he confided in his friend, fellow singer Long John Baldry, and Baldry convinced John to abandon his marriage plans to focus on his musical career. So Baldry was the "someone" who saved John's life that night.

18. Jacket material, for short? : BIO
You can usually read an author's bio on a book's dust jacket.

Sybil (Two-Disc Special Edition)19. 1973 nonfiction best seller about a woman with multiple personalities : SYBIL
"Sybil" is a 1973 book by journalist Flora Rheta Schreiber about a woman who suffers from dissociative identity disorder. Sybil (a pseudonym to protect the identity of the patient) at various times manifests sixteen different, very specific personalities, each with very specific characteristics. The book was made into a well-received television mini-series in 1976, starring Sally Field in the title role.

20. Lady of the knight? : DAME
The title of Dame in the British system of honors is the female equivalent to "Sir", as used to address a knight. In days of old, the wife of a knight was given the title of Dame, but since the 17th century the wife of a knight has been called "Lady". So now anyone with the title of Dame has earned the honor in her own right and not through marriage.

MYRNA LOY 8x10 B&W PHOTO26. "The Thin Man" actress : LOY
High on my list of favorite movies of all time is "The Thin Man" series starring William Powell and the beautiful Myrna Loy. Also on that list are the films in which Loy stars opposite Cary Grant, namely "Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House" and the wonderful "The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer".

Sibling Revelry: The Best of the Smothers Brothers27. ___ Beach, Calif. : REDONDO
Redondo Beach is one of the three so-called Beach Cities in L.A. County, California (along with Manhattan Beach and Hermosa Beach). Among Redondo Beach's famous residents were the Smothers Brothers who grew up there and graduated from the local high school.

30. Plunder : RAPINE
The noun "rapine" is another word for plunder. It comes from the Latin word for plunder, "rapina".

32. Big name in circuses : BAILEY
James Anthony Bailey collaborated with P. T. Barnum to establish Barnum and Bailey's Circus. It was Bailey who negotiated the deal to buy a famous elephant from London Zoo in 1882, the one called "Jumbo". It was the exposure that Jumbo got in the circus that brought into common usage our term "jumbo" meaning "huge".

40. Figures on the ceiling of la Cappella Sistina : ANGELI
In Italian, La Capella Sistina (The Sistine Chapel) has many angels (angeli) painted on the ceiling.

47. Nutritional amt. : RDA
Recommended Daily Allowances were introduced during WWII, and were replaced by Recommended Daily Intakes in 1997.

48. Doughnuts, but not danishes : TORI
A torus is a doughnut shape.

52. Gillette offering : ATRA
Fortunately for crossword setters, the Atra razor was introduced by Gillette in 1977. It was sold as the Contour in some markets, and its derivative products are still around today.

Bette Midler - The Divine Bette Midler54. Bette's "Divine" stage persona : MISS M
One of my favorite singers, and indeed all-round entertainers, is Bette Midler. If you've ever seen her live show you'll know that "camp" is a good word to describe it, as her humor is definitely "out there" and quite bawdy. Early in her career, Midler spent years singing in the Continental Baths, a gay bathhouse in New York City. There she became very close friends with her piano accompanist, Barry Manilow. While singing in the bathhouse Bette only wore a white towel, just like the members of her audience. It was there she created her famous character "the Divine Miss M", and earned herself the nickname "Bathhouse Betty".

NIA VARDALOS 8x10 COLOUR PHOTO57. Actress Vardalos : NIA
Not only was the delightful Nia Vardalos the star of the 2002 hit movie "My Big Fat Greek Wedding", she also wrote the screenplay. The film never made it to number one at the box office, but it still pulled in more money than any other movie in history not to make it to number one. That record I think reflects that the film wasn't a blockbuster but rather a so-called "sleeper hit", a movie that people went to see based on referrals from friends. The big fat mistake came when a spin-off TV show was launched, "My Big Fat Greek Life". It only ran for 7 episodes.

65. *Like Seattle vis-à-vis Phoenix : RAINIER
Mount Rainier is an active volcano in the state of Washington in the Cascade Mountain Range. Native Americans first called the peak "Tacoma" meaning "mother of waters". When Captain George Vancouver discovered Puget Sound in 1792, he named the peak in honor of his friend Rear Admiral Peter Rainier. There have been movements to change the name back to Tacoma, but these seem to have petered out (pun intended!).

Down
2. Nancy Drew's aunt : ELOISE
I loved the Nancy Drew mysteries as a kid (I know, as a boy I "shouldn't" have been reading them!). They were written by a number of ghost writers after the character was introduced by Edward Stratemeyer in 1930. Nancy's Aunt Eloise was often the source of the mysteries that were to be solved, as Nancy was often summoned to Eloise's New York City apartment to help unravel some case or other.

Cheese Nips Spongebob Squarepants, 10.5-Ounce (Pack of 6)6. Cheese ___ : NIPS
Cheese Nips are small crackers made by Kraft under the Nabisco brand name. Cheese Nips have been around since 1955 and you can even buy them in the shape of Spongebob Squarepants (just in case you're into that kind of thing).

Don't Choke: A Champion's Guide to Winning Under Pressure7. Player of golf : GARY
Gary Player is a professional golfer from South Africa. To me, Player has always come across as a real gentleman, with a great personality. Living in South Africa, and playing mainly in the US, he has logged over 15 million air miles, believed to be a record for an athlete.

8. Clink : COOLER
The Clink (also "the Clynke") was a celebrated prison in Southwark, England owned by the Bishop of Winchester. The prison was given the name "the clink" probably from the sound made by metal keys in metal locks and metal chains around ankles. The prison was closed down in 1780 and around the same time "clink" entered the English language as a slang term for "jail".

9. Prey of wild dogs and crocodiles : EMU
The emu has had a tough time in Australia since man settled there. The aborigines used them for food and are very adept at hunting them using a variety of traditional techniques. There was even an "Emu War" in Western Australia in 1932 when migrating emus competed with livestock for water and food. Soldiers were sent in using machine guns in an unsuccessful attempt to drive off the emus. The emus were clever , and broke their usual formation and adopted guerrilla tactics, operating as small units. After 50 days of "war", the military withdrew. Subsequent requests for military help for the farmers was refused.

Anemone Pink Saucer - 100 Seeds12. Flower that shares its name with a tentacled sea creature : ANEMONE
The name "anemone" means "daughter of the wind" in Greek, and at one time it was believed that the wind was what actually caused the flower to bloom.

17. Japanese band : OBI
An obi is a sash worn in some forms of dress in Japan both by men and women, although the styles for women tend to be more ornate.

22. *Not fixed : MOBILE
Mobile, Alabama was the first capital of French Colonial Louisiana, founded in 1702. The city takes its name from the Mobilian tribe of Native Americans that lived in that area.

Edward Elgar and His World (The Bard Music Festival)23. Like Elgar's Symphony No. 1 : IN A-FLAT
Sir Edward Elgar was the quintessential English composer, inextricably associated with his compositions the "Pomp and Circumstance" marches (which includes "Land of Hope and Glory") and the "Enigma Variations".

28. "What's the ___?" : DIF
What's the difference?

29. Pharmaceutical oils : OLEA
Oleum (plural: olea) is the Latin word for "oil". The term oleum is used for a whole host of pharmaceutical oils, extracted from both plant and animal sources.

31. *Shine : POLISH
The country of Poland takes her name from the West Slavic tribe of "the Polans".

33. Old World eagle : ERN
The ern (also erne) is also called the while-tailed eagle, and the sea-eagle.

34. Burglar in detective stories : YEGG
Yegg is a slang word for a burglar, and in particular a safe-cracker. The origin of the term appears to be unknown.

36. William who played Uncle Charley on "My Three Sons" : DEMAREST
Uncle Charley on the TV sitcom "My Three Sons" was played by two actors over the life of the show. The role was originated by William Frawley, but he had to drop out due to failing health. William Demarest took over in 1965 and played Uncle Charlie right through the end of the show's run in 1972.

39. Noodle dish : PAD THAI
The delicious dish called Pad Thai is a meld of stir-fried rice noodles with tamarind juice, red chili pepper plus a mix of vegetables and possibly tofu, meat or fish. It is usually topped with crushed peanuts, coriander and lime. The name "Pad Thai" translates as "fried Thai style".

44. Battle cry : BANZAI
During WWII the Japanese infantry when making mass assaults would often yell out "Banzai!", a shout of encouragement as they ran into enemy fire. These mass assaults became known by the Allied soldiers as "banzai attacks". The term "banzai" is not limited to times of war, and is used like a toast wishing long life, as "banzai" translates into "ten thousand years".

Gabriel Faure (20th Century Composers)45. French department in the Pyrenees : ARIEGE
Ariège is a department in the very southwest of France bordering Spain in the Pyrenees. It takes its name from the Ariège River. One of Ariège's most famous sons was the wonderful composer Gabriel Fauré.

53. Drones, maybe : ANTS
Drone bees and ants are fertile males of the species, whose sole role in life seems to be to mate with a queen.

Goldilocks and the Three Bears56. ___ Bear : MAMA
The story of "Goldilocks and the Three Bears" was first recorded in 1837 in England, although the narrative was around before it was actually written down. The original fairy tale was rather gruesome, but successive versions became more family oriented. The character that eventually became Goldilocks was an elderly woman in the early days, and the three "nameless" bears became Papa Bear, Mama Bear and Baby Bear.

59. Inner ear? : COB
A cob is part of an ear of corn.

60. Medieval French love poem : LAI
In the mid-13th century a lay was a short song, a word that evolved from the Old French word "lai" meaning "song, lyric".

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. *Poet's performance : READING
8. Frequent flooding site : CELLAR
14. Country with which the U.S. goes to war in "Wag the Dog" : ALBANIA
15. Who "saved my life tonight" in a 1975 Elton John hit : SOMEONE
16. With 36- and 58-Across, what the answers to the starred clues are : WORDS PRONOUNCED
18. Jacket material, for short? : BIO
19. 1973 nonfiction best seller about a woman with multiple personalities : SYBIL
20. Lady of the knight? : DAME
21. "Me, too" : AS AM I
24. Line ___ : ITEM
26. "The Thin Man" actress : LOY
27. ___ Beach, Calif. : REDONDO
30. Plunder : RAPINE
32. Big name in circuses : BAILEY
35. B, A, D, G and E, e.g. : NOTES
36. See 16-Across : DIFFERENTLY
38. Say "B-A-D-G-E," e.g. : SPELL
40. Figures on the ceiling of la Cappella Sistina : ANGELI
41. Impersonated at a costume party : CAME AS
43. Spoils : GOES BAD
47. Nutritional amt. : RDA
48. Doughnuts, but not danishes : TORI
51. Piece of the action : SHARE
52. Gillette offering : ATRA
54. Bette's "Divine" stage persona : MISS M
57. Actress Vardalos : NIA
58. See 16-Across : WHEN CAPITALIZED
62. "I'm done after this" : LAST ONE
63. "Somehow everything gets done" : I MANAGE
64. Does nothing : SITS BY
65. *Like Seattle vis-à-vis Phoenix : RAINIER

Down
1. Seafood lover's hangout : RAW BAR
2. Nancy Drew's aunt : ELOISE
3. One way to travel or study : ABROAD
4. Pop : DAD
5. Connections : INS
6. Cheese ___ : NIPS
7. Player of golf : GARY
8. Clink : COOLER
9. Prey of wild dogs and crocodiles : EMU
10. Furnish : LEND
11. Neighborhood : LOCALITY
12. Flower that shares its name with a tentacled sea creature : ANEMONE
13. They might depart at midnight : RED-EYES
15. Huff : SNIT
17. Japanese band : OBI
22. *Not fixed : MOBILE
23. Like Elgar's Symphony No. 1 : IN A-FLAT
25. Cloaks : MANTLES
28. "What's the ___?" : DIF
29. Pharmaceutical oils : OLEA
31. *Shine : POLISH
33. Old World eagle : ERN
34. Burglar in detective stories : YEGG
36. William who played Uncle Charley on "My Three Sons" : DEMAREST
37. Prefix with paganism : NEO-
38. Many signatures : SCRAWLS
39. Noodle dish : PAD THAI
42. Lots and lots of : SO MANY
44. Battle cry : BANZAI
45. French department in the Pyrenees : ARIEGE
46. Less lively : DEADER
49. Opportune : RIPE
50. "Whatever it ___ don't care!" : IS I
53. Drones, maybe : ANTS
55. Excitement : STIR
56. ___ Bear : MAMA
59. Inner ear? : COB
60. Medieval French love poem : LAI
61. What a keeper may keep : INN


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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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