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I am currently on vacation in Ireland, returning on October 9th. I am hoping to complete a blog post each evening, even if it is only the basics (solved grid and clues, plus explanation of theme). I apologize in advance if I am late in posting.

Bill

0313-11: New York Times Crossword Answers 13 Mar 11, Sunday





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: Patrick Berry
THEME: Reverend Spooner, U.S.P.S ... all the theme clues are related to the Postal Service, and the answers are given as if stated by Reverend Spooner, i.e. with the sound of starting syllables swapped:
23A. MARRYING THE KALE (carrying the mail)
31A. MOST PASTORS (postmasters)
35A. STAIR RAMP (rare stamp)
48A. CRACK YOUR PATE (pack your crate)
60A. CANDLE WITH HAIR (handle with care)
68A. RAKING MY MOUNDS (making my rounds)
80A. GROUND HOWLING (hound growling)
96A. TRAIL MUCK (mail truck)
99A. BETTER LOCKS (letterbox)
109A: CHILLED WITH FEAR (filled with cheer)

Spoonerisms are errors in speech in which letters or sounds are switched from one word to another. Famous examples are "Three cheers for our queer old dean" (dear old Queen ... Victoria) and "Is it kisstomary to cuss the bride?" (customary to kiss). Spoonerisms are named after an Oxford don, William Archibald Spooner, who was notorious for his tendency to pepper his speech with "spoonerisms".

COMPLETION TIME: 30m 17s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0


Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across
Vanilla Star Junior's 5 Pocket Flare Jean,Blue,114. Overall composition? : DENIM
Denim fabric originated in Nimes in France (the words "de Nimes", "from Nimes", gives the fabric its name). The French phrase "bleu de Genes" meaning "blue of Genoa", gives us the word "jeans". Jeans was the name given to denim pants, but it is now used to describe "jean" material in general.

Brass Cavalry Bugle9. Military funeral concluder : TAPS
"Taps" is played nightly by the US military, indicating "lights out". It's also known as "Butterfield's Lullaby" as it is a variation of an older bugle call named the "Scott Tattoo", arranged during the Civil War by the Union Army's Brigadier General Daniel Butterfield. The tune is called "taps", from the notion of drum taps, as it was originally played on a drum, and only later on a bugle.

13. Cars with floor-mounted ignitions : SAABS
In 1969, in a measure designed to reduced serious knee injuries in collisions, Saab moved the ignition switch from behind the steering wheel onto the floor near the gearstick.

18. Density symbol, in physics : RHO
Rho is the Greek letter that looks just like our Roman letter "p".

Kaaba in Mecca 11x14 Silver Halide Photo Print20. Kaaba visitor's faith : ISLAM
The Kaaba is a large, cube-shaped structure that resides in a mosque in Mecca, in Saudi Arabia. According to the Qur'an, the Kaaba was constructed by Abraham and his son, Ishmael. When Muslims turn to face Mecca during prayers, they are actually turning to the Kaaba.

27. "Dirt cake" ingredients : OREOS
Dirt cake is a dessert usually made by breaking up Oreo cookies and scattering the pieces over chocolate pudding, and then adding gummy worms on top. Sounds delicious ...

Signed Marvin, Lee 8x10 B&W Photo39. Marvin of "Cat Ballou" : LEE
I've always thought that Lee Marvin was a very talented actor. He had an amazing voice, and the appearance of a man who was hard and villainous. Yet he was able to break free from the roles in which he was typecast and played some characters with more depth. He won his academy award for his dual-role performance in 1965's "Cat Ballou". His totally unique rendition of the song "Wand'rin Star" from the 1969 musical film "Paint Your Wagon" made it to number one in the UK charts, keeping the Beatles hit "Let it Be" in the number two spot. I'll bet that surprised even Marvin himself!

JACK WEBB 16X20 COLOR PHOTO40. Friday's rank: Abbr. : SGT
Jack Webb played Sergeant Joe Friday on "Dragnet" on both TV and radio ... and what a voice he had! Off the screen Webb was a lover of jazz, and he played the cornet. It was within the world of jazz that he met and fell in love with Julie London, the famous singer with "the smoky voice". The couple married and had two kids together.

45. Indo-Europeans : ARYANS
The term Aryan can be used to describe the Indo-European languages or the peoples who speak them. The underlying assumption in this grouping is that Indian languages (based on Sanskrit) and the major European languages have the same root.

52. Domino's order : PIE
Domino's Pizza started out as DomiNick's, a pizza store on Ypsilanti, Michigan. The store was purchased by Dominic's founder Tom Monaghan in 1960, along with his brother. Tom bought out his brother a few months later, for the price of a used VW! The store was renamed Domino's Pizza in 1965, and two years later the first franchise store was opened. There are now over 8,000 stores worldwide, including one in Tallaght, in Ireland, the town where I lived for many years in my youth. That Tallaght store became the first Domino's outlet in the world to hit a a turnover of $3 million a year. We Irish obviously have terrible taste when it comes to pizza ...

Nia Peeples Original 8x10 The Party Machine Photo #025354. Actress Peeples : NIA
Actress Nia Peeples played the character Nicole Chapman in the TV series "Fame".

55. Big name in rum : BACARDI
The Bacardi company is still family owned and operated, based in Hamilton, Bermuda. The company was founded in Santiago de Cuba, and became successful by selling a refined form of rum, something new to a market that was used to a crude, dark rum. The Bacardi family opposed the Castro regime as it came to power, so the company had to relocate to Bermuda.

64. Cambridgeshire's ___ Cathedral : ELY
Ely Cathedral is a famous and beautiful church in the city of Ely in the county of Cambridgeshire. There is a Gothic door on the north face of the cathedral that was designed by Sir Christopher Wren, the man famous as the architect of St. Paul's Cathedral in London. Christopher Wren had a personal link to the church, as his uncle was the Bishop of Ely.

Surface of Mars from Viking 2, with Part of Spacecraft Visible Photographic Poster Print, 30x4065. Viking's destination : MARS
NASA's Viking program was made up of two missions that sent probes to Mars. Both the Viking 1 and Viking 2 spacecraft were made up of two modules, an orbiter and a lander. The two Viking missions were launched in 1975, with the landers making soft landings on the planet's surface the following year.

66. Don Juan's mother : INEZ
Lord Byron wrote the poem "Don Juan" based on the legend of Don Juan the libertine. In the poem, he created the character Donna Inez, Don Juan's mother. Supposedly Inez was based on Byron's own wife, Annabella Milbanke.

The Essential Bob Dylan (Rm) (2CD)76. Mesabi Range export : IRON ORE
The Mesabi Range is the largest deposit of iron ore in the country, and is located in Minnesota. Robert Allen Zimmerman was raised in the area (we know him better as Bob Dylan, of course) and he wrote a song called "North Country Blues" which tells of the decline of the mining industry in the Mesabi Range.

87. Lover of light : MOTH
It isn't really understood why moths are attracted to artificial lights. There is one theory that sounds plausible to me though. It is suggested that moths navigate at night by maintaining the moon (the brightest celestial object) at a fixed angle. When a moth finds a brighter light source, like an artificial light, it gets confused.

89. Old inits. in telecommunication : GTE
GTE was a rival to AT&T, the largest of the independent competitors to the Bell System. GTE merged with Bell Atlantic in 2000, forming the company that we know today as Verizon.

90. Vegas casino hotel, with "the" : RIO
The Rio casino in Las Vegas was opened in 1990, originally targeting the local population as it is located off the famous Strip where most of the tourists hang out. Famously, the Rio opened up the adults-only Sapphire Pool in 2008, a pay-to-enter (only men paid) topless pool club that featured music and dancers. A year later the Sapphire Pool was closed down after there were eleven arrests for drugs and prostitution offences during an undercover police operation.

91. The Bahamas' Great ___ Island : ABACO
The Abaco Islands lie in the northern Bahamas. The first Europeans to arrive in the Abaco Islands actually came from America in 1783, as they were loyalists fleeing the American Revolution.

Jean-Paul Sartre: Hated Conscience of His Century, Volume 1: Protestant or Protester?93. Novel for which Sartre declined the Nobel Prize : NAUSEA
John-Paul Sartre was a leading French philosopher, as well as a writer and political activist. He is one of the few people to have been awarded a Nobel Prize who refused to accept it. He was named winner of the prize for Literature in 1964, for his first novel "Nausea". Before his win, Sartre knew that his name was on the list of nominees so he wrote to the Nobel Institute and asked to be withdrawn from consideration. The letter somehow went unread, so he found himself having to refuse the award after he had been selected.

Steinberg THE GRAND 3 Retail105. Eighty-eight : PIANO
"Eighty-eight" is a slang word for a piano, coming from the fact that a modern piano usually has 88 keys, 36 black and 52 white.

108. "The Hot Zone" topic : EBOLA
"The Hot Zone" is a 1994 book written by Richard Preston, a non-fiction work describing the history of hemorrhagic fevers (and Ebola in particular).

The Ebola virus causes a very nasty form of hemorrhagic fever. The name comes from the site of the first known outbreak of the disease, in a mission hospital in the Ebola River Valley in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

HALLE BERRY 8x10 COLOUR PHOTO115. Berry of "Frankie and Alice" : HALLE
"Frankie and Alice" is a 2010 drama starring Halle Berry in the title "role(s)". Berry plays a seventies stripper who suffers from dissociative identity disorder, a black woman struggling with two other identities within her, including that of a Southern white racist.

121. Acid : LSD
LSD is short for LySergic acid Diethylamide. A Swiss chemist called Albert Hofmann first synthesized LSD in 1938 in a research project looking for medically efficacious ergot alkaloids. But it wasn't until some five years later when Hofmann ingested some of the drug accidentally that its psychedelic properties were discovered. Trippy, man ...

Down
MICHAEL KEATON 8x10 COLOUR PHOTO1. 1983 Michael Keaton comedy : MR MOM
"Mr. Mom" is a 1983 comedy written by John Hughes, starring Michael Keaton and the great Teri Garr. It's all about an engineer in the auto industry in Detroit who loses his job and then takes over the running of the household while his wife heads back to work. Funny stuff ...

CHARO 8x10 COLOUR PHOTO2. Single-named "Hollywood Squares" regular : CHARO
Charo's real name is ... wait for it ... María del Rosario Pilar Martínez Molina Gutiérrez de los Perales Santa Ana Romanguera y de la Hinojosa Rasten.

5. Film director Roth : ELI
Eli Roth is one of a group of directors of horror movies known quite graphically as "The Splat Pack". I can't stand "splat" movies and avoid them as best I can. Roth is also famous for playing Donny Donowitz in the Quentin Tarantino movie "Inglourious Basterds", a good film I thought, if you close your eyes during the gruesome bits.

6. Tours turndown : NON
Tours is the largest city in the Centre region of France. It is said that the people of Tours speak the "purest" form of French in the whole country, and when spoken by a local it is also said to be free of any accent.

7. Having one sharp : IN G
The key of G major has just one sharp, and that would be F-sharp.

9. Ziggurat features : TIERS
Ziggurats were massive, terraced, step pyramids built in the ancient Mesopotamian valley. The ziggurat-style of architecture has been used in modern buildings, with notable examples being the US Bullion Depository in Fort Knox, and the MI6 Building in London.

12. ___ ammoniac : SAL
Sal ammoniac is a mineral made up of ammonium chloride. It is fairly rare as it is very soluble in water and is quite soft. It is most often found around volcanic vents. Sal ammoniac used to be an ingredient in cookies, making them very crispy.

The Drive for Self: Alfred Adler and the Founding of Individual Psychology14. Onetime Freud collaborator : ADLER
Alfred Adler was one of the group of medical professionals that founded the psychoanalytical movement. Today Adler is less famous than his colleague, Sigmund Freud.

NATALIE PORTMAN 24X36 COLOUR POSTER PRINT15. Queen in the "Star Wars" saga : AMIDALA
In the "Star Wars" universe, Padmé Amidala is the Queen of the planet Naboo. Played very ably by Natalie Portman, Padmé becomes the secret wife of Anakin Skywalker, later revealed to be Darth Vader. As such, Padmé is also the mother of Luke Skywalker and his sister, Princess Leia Organa.

17. Open terrain : STEPPES
A steppe is a grassland, devoid of trees apart from those growing near rivers and lakes. In this country we would likely call such a geographic feature a prairie.

21. Desert landforms : MESAS
"Mesa" is the Spanish for "table" and is of course is how we get the name "mesa", a geographic feature.

"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 ...

24. Flummery : ROT
Flummery, meaning "empty talk", has been used in English since the mid-1700s. Prior to that, flummery was the name given to a sour oatmeal jelly, known as "llymru" in Welsh.

25. ___ de combat : HORS
"Hors de combat" is a French term, translating as "outside the fight". We use it in English to describe soldiers who are incapable of fighting. Examples are those who are sick or wounded, and those who are captured. Military personnel designated as hors de combat are accorded specific rights according to the various laws of war, including the Geneva Convention.

33. Forest flutist : SATYR
The satyrs of Greek mythology came with a very high sex drive. They are the "rude" male subjects drawn on the side of old Greek vases. The nubile maidens known as nymphs were often an object of attention for the satyrs.

34. Palm phone : TREO
The Treo is a smartphone that was originally developed by a company called Handspring. Handspring was bought by Palm Inc, and Palm continues to develop and sell the Treo line, although the 2009 Palm Pre seems to be pushing aside the Treo brand name.

New C2 Taser with LED Light, Red Hot Red36. Hit with a charge : TASE
Victor Appleton wrote a novel for young adults called "Tom Swift and His Electric Rifle". The company that developed the TASER electroshock weapon, named their product as a homage to the novel, as TASER stands for Thomas A. Swift's Electric Rifle. Interesting, eh?

Fuchsia, Women Small (5-7) - Roaring 20s High Fashion Flapper (Boa, Stockings & Cigarette Holder not included)38. Flapper's wrap : BOA
Flappers were the so-called new breed of young women of the twenties. The flappers wore their hair short (with ringlets), wore short skirts, and generally rebelled against the accepted norms of the time. The term "flapper" comes from the 1920 movie "The Flapper" starring Olive Thomas as a young woman who lived the more liberal lifestyle that was emerging.

41. Soviet foreign affairs minister during the Cuban missile crisis : GROMYKO
Andrei Gromyko was a very visible politician and diplomat for the decades of the Cold War, holding almost all the key positions in the Soviet Union. He was ambassador to the US from 1943-46, and then the Soviet Union's Permanent Representative to the UN. He later served as Ambassador to the UK. During the Cuban Missile Crisis he was front and center, serving as the Soviet Foreign Minister. He stayed at that post right through the negotiations for arms limitations and nuclear test bans. He supported the candidacy of Michael Gorbachev for General Secretary, yet despite Gromyko's support, Gorbachev kicked Gromyko upstairs by giving him the largely ceremonial post of Head of State.

Otterbox APL2-iPAD1-20-C4OTR iPad Defender Series Case44. 2010 Apple release : IPAD
The very exciting iPad isn't Apple's first foray into the world of tablet computing by any means. Apple created great buzz by introducing the Newton MessagePad way back in 1993. This innovative machine was fraught with problems and really died a very slow death, finally being withdrawn from the market in 1998.

49. Revivalism? : CPR
Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) has for decades involved the simultaneous compression of the chest to pump blood using the heart, and artificial respiration by blowing air into the lungs. Nowadays emergency services are placing more emphasis on heart compressions, and less on artificial respiration.

Rinso, Washing Powder Maids Products Detergent, UK, 1910 Giclee Poster Print, 18x2451. Bygone Tide rival : RINSO
Rinso was a laundry soap first manufactured in England in 1908 by a company called Hudson's Soap. It was introduced into the US in 1918. In America Rinso took to radio advertising and sponsorship in the days of "soap operas". Their most famous program association was with "The Amos 'n' Andy Show" in the forties. One of their slogans was "Solium, the sunlight ingredient". I have no idea what Solium was, but it certainly did sell a lot of soap!

56. Wardrobe items : RAIMENT
Raiment is clothing.

IRENE DUNNE 8x10 B&W PHOTO58. Dunne of "My Favorite Wife" : IRENE
Irene Dunne was a wonderful, and beautiful, Hollywood actress. She played a variety of roles, but I always think of her as the leading lady with Cary Grant in the movies "The Awful Truth", "My Favorite Wife" and "Penny Serenade". Irene Dunne was great friends with fellow actress Loretta Young, and the two often attended church together. She is often described as the best actress never to win an Oscar, even though she was nominated five times for the Best Actress Academy Award.

60. Small island : CAY
A key is a low island offshore (as in the Florida Keys), also known as a cay. Our term in English comes from the Spanish "cayo" meaning "shoal, reef".

62. Put the kibosh on : ENDED
"Kibosh" is something that constrains or checks. It looks like a Yiddish word, but it isn't, and is more likely English slang from the early 1800s.

Signed Craven, Wes 8x10 Photo63. Film director Craven : WES
Wes Craven is a very successful film director and writer, specializing in movies of the horror genre, which means I don't watch them! He is responsible for "A Nightmare on Elm Street" and the "Scream" films.

Portrait of Germaine de Stael, 1812 Giclee Poster Print by Vladimir Lukich Borovikovsky, 18x2465. Title for de Staël: Abbr. : MME
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".

69. On the subject of : IN RE
The term "in re" is Latin, derived from "in" (in) and "res" (thing, matter). It literally means "in the matter", and is used as "in regard to", or "in the matter of".

74. Symbol of Athena : OWL
The Greek goddess Athena is often associated with wisdom (among other attributes). In many representations she is depicted with an owl sitting on her head. It is this linkage of the owl with the goddess of wisdom that led to today's perception of the owl as being "wise".

The Writings of Abraham Lincoln, all seven volumes in a single file, with active table of contents, improved 8/19/201075. Lincoln while in Congress, e.g. : WHIG
The Whig Party (in the US) operated from 1833 to 1856, as the opposition party to the Democrats. One of the tenets of the Whig Party was the supremacy of Congress over the Executive branch. Prominent members of the party included Presidents Zachary Taylor and John Tyler. Abraham Lincoln was a Whig while he served a two-year term as US Representative for the state of Illinois. By the time he became President, Lincoln was a member of the Republican Party.

78. Babel : NOISE
We use the word "babel" now to describe a scene of confusion, lifting the term from the biblical story of the Tower of Babel. The Tower was built in the city of Babylon, and the construction was cursed with a confusion of languages due to the varied origins of all the builders.

80. Car financing inits. : GMAC
GMAC is short for General Motors Acceptance Corporation. GM has a very small stake in GMAC now, and indeed the name has been officially changed to Ally Bank. You and me, we are the biggest shareholders in GMAC/Ally today, since the US government gave the bank $12.5 million to bail it out in 2008-2009.

83. ___ monde : HAUT
Haut monde is a French term for high society that we use in English with the same meaning.

30 Rock: Season 284. Like the GE Building : ART DECO
Art Deco was the name given to the design and architecture of the 1920s, which actually had its roots in Belgium and then spread throughout Europe before arriving in North America. Celebrated examples of the art deco form are the magnificent Chrysler Building in New York City completed in 1930, and the GE Building that sits in the middle of Rockefeller Center also in New York City, with the address of "30 Rock".

Sir Walter Raleigh: In Life and Legend86. Lost Colony's island : ROANOKE
Roanoke Island is in modern-day North Carolina. It was settled in the late 1500s by an expedition financed by Sir Walter Raleigh. The final group of colonists that were landed in Roanoke were left there for three years without resupply from England (due to the Anglo-Spanish War). When a supply ship finally landed, the settlement was found abandoned with no sign of the colonists. All 100 people had disappeared without any indication of a struggle, and so Roanoke became known as the Lost Colony.

93. Bird that may nest on volcanic ash : NENE
The Nene is a native of Hawaii, and is also known as the Hawaiian goose. The name "nene" is imitative of its call. When Captain cook landed on the islands in 1778, there were 25,000 nene living there. By 1950, the number was reduced by hunting to just 30 birds. Conservation efforts in recent years have been somewhat successful.

Essential Isley Brothers97. R&B's ___ Brothers : ISLEY
The Isley Brothers had the first hit with "Twist and Shout", released in 1962.

Antiqued Fly Fishing Creel101. Fishing accoutrement : CREEL
That small wicker basket used to hold fish that have been caught is called a creel. Traditionally a creel is lined with moss on the inside and the whole basket dipped in water. The water gradually evaporates through the gaps in the wicker keeping the contents cool.

102. 1980s-'90s Chrysler offerings : K-CARS
K-cars were designed to carry 6 passengers, on two bench seats. Remember taking a corner a little too fast in the days when no one wore seat belts?

110. Mugger on stage : HAM
The word "ham", describing a performer who overacts, is apparently a shortened form of "hamfatter" and dates back to the late 1800s. "Hamfatter" comes from a song in old minstrel shows called "The Ham-Fat Man". It seems that a poorly performing actor was deemed to have the "acting" qualities of a minstrel done up in black-face.

112. Novelist McEwan : IAN
Ian McEwan is an English novelist with a long track record of writing well-received novels. His 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.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Roast V.I.P.'s : MCS
4. Overall composition? : DENIM
9. Military funeral concluder : TAPS
13. Cars with floor-mounted ignitions : SAABS
18. Density symbol, in physics : RHO
19. By itself : ALONE
20. Kaaba visitor's faith : ISLAM
22. Say grudgingly : ADMIT
23. "I suppose it might seem odd that a reverend like myself would suddenly begin ___ ..." : MARRYING THE KALE
26. Top-___ (golf ball brand) : FLITE
27. "Dirt cake" ingredients : OREOS
28. Equine-related : HORSY
29. Gun it : SPEED UP
31. "... but I've always thought ___ had a more fun job than I do" : MOST PASTORS
35. "For an avid philatelist like me, sorting envelopes is thrilling - I might spot a ___!" : STAIR RAMP
37. Kind of ceremony : AWARDS
38. Show no modesty : BOAST
39. Marvin of "Cat Ballou" : LEE
40. Friday's rank: Abbr. : SGT
43. Had : ATE
44. Poor writer's scribblings? : IOUS
45. Indo-Europeans : ARYANS
48. "When a man is nervous about shipping breakables, I tell him, '___ carefully, sir' ..." : CRACK YOUR PATE
52. Domino's order : PIE
53. Whirlybird : CHOPPER
54. Actress Peeples : NIA
55. Big name in rum : BACARDI
59. Round-trippers, in sports lingo : HOMERS
60. "... and I write '___' on the box, which seems to reassure him" : CANDLE WITH HAIR
64. Cambridgeshire's ___ Cathedral : ELY
65. Viking's destination : MARS
66. Don Juan's mother : INEZ
67. "___ had enough" : I'VE
68. "The best part of the job, of course, is when I'm out on the street ___" : RAKING MY MOUNDS
73. Drawers of war? : BOWMEN
76. Mesabi Range export : IRON ORE
77. Tee-___ : HEE
78. Remote place : NOWHERE
79. Food label no. : RDA
80. "I'm a bit leery of dogs - it's unsettling to enter a yard and hear some ___ at me ..." : GROUND HOWLING
84. From scratch : AFRESH
87. Lover of light : MOTH
88. Distress : AIL
89. Old inits. in telecommunication : GTE
90. Vegas casino hotel, with "the" : RIO
91. The Bahamas' Great ___ Island : ABACO
93. Novel for which Sartre declined the Nobel Prize : NAUSEA
96. "... but dogs can't spoil how much I enjoy driving around in the ___" : TRAIL MUCK
99. "Homeowners get excited when they see me opening their ___ ..." : BETTER LOCKS
104. Least bright : DENSEST
105. Eighty-eight : PIANO
107. Dry out : PARCH
108. "The Hot Zone" topic : EBOLA
109. "... and when I hand-deliver a package, the recipients are positively ___ - it's very satisfying!" : CHILLED WITH FEAR
114. Fountain drinks : COKES
115. Berry of "Frankie and Alice" : HALLE
116. Histrionics : DRAMA
117. Poetic preposition : ERE
118. Daisy variety : OXEYE
119. Ugly situation : MESS
120. Matches timewise, informally : SYNCS
121. Acid : LSD

Down
1. 1983 Michael Keaton comedy : MR MOM
2. Single-named "Hollywood Squares" regular : CHARO
3. Results of chafing : SORES
4. Place to get a facial : DAY SPA
5. Film director Roth : ELI
6. Tours turndown : NON
7. Having one sharp : IN G
8. Manner : METHOD
9. Ziggurat features : TIERS
10. Interviews : ASKS
11. Finishes : PLAYS OUT
12. ___ ammoniac : SAL
13. More guarded : SAFER
14. Onetime Freud collaborator : ADLER
15. Queen in the "Star Wars" saga : AMIDALA
16. Asphalt ingredient : BITUMEN
17. Open terrain : STEPPES
21. Desert landforms : MESAS
24. Flummery : ROT
25. ___ de combat : HORS
30. It comes from the heart : PITAPAT
32. Comes to : AWAKES
33. Forest flutist : SATYR
34. Palm phone : TREO
36. Hit with a charge : TASE
38. Flapper's wrap : BOA
40. Bookish type : SCHOLAR
41. Soviet foreign affairs minister during the Cuban missile crisis : GROMYKO
42. Answering machine insert : TAPE
44. 2010 Apple release : IPAD
46. Rolling in green : RICH
47. Triumphant cry : YEAH
49. Revivalism? : CPR
50. Leave weaponless : UNARM
51. Bygone Tide rival : RINSO
53. French sweetie : CHERI
55. Industry, slangily : BIZ
56. Wardrobe items : RAIMENT
57. Fork : DIVERGE
58. Dunne of "My Favorite Wife" : IRENE
60. Small island : CAY
61. It's closeted : LINEN
62. Put the kibosh on : ENDED
63. Film director Craven : WES
65. Title for de Staël: Abbr. : MME
69. On the subject of : IN RE
70. Moves a head? : NODS
71. Golden ___ (General Mills product) : GRAHAMS
72. "Forget it!" : UH-UH
73. Striking player : BOWLER
74. Symbol of Athena : OWL
75. Lincoln while in Congress, e.g. : WHIG
78. Babel : NOISE
80. Car financing inits. : GMAC
81. Where prisoners swing picks : ROCK PILE
82. Ear: Prefix : OTO-
83. ___ monde : HAUT
84. Like the GE Building : ART DECO
85. Locomotive furnace : FIREBOX
86. Lost Colony's island : ROANOKE
92. Companion of Rex and Rover : BUTCH
93. Bird that may nest on volcanic ash : NENE
94. Unable to agree : AT ODDS
95. Pack leaders : ALPHAS
97. R&B's ___ Brothers : ISLEY
98. Car dealer's offering : LEASE
99. Farmland rolls : BALES
100. Bungling fool : OAF
101. Fishing accoutrement : CREEL
102. 1980s-'90s Chrysler offerings : K-CARS
103. Iota : SHRED
106. Woes : ILLS
110. Mugger on stage : HAM
111. Not straight : WRY
112. Novelist McEwan : IAN
113. Station for cinephiles : TMC


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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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