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0401-11: New York Times Crossword Answers 1 Apr 11, Friday





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: Elizabeth A. Long
THEME: NORTHBOUND LANES … the grid is divided into two sections vertically, with everything left of the MIDDLE OF THE ROAD representing ONCOMING TRAFFIC. Everything right of the MIDDLE OF THE ROAD is in NORTHBOUND LANES, and all the “down” answers in this section are written “northbound” i.e. upside down
COMPLETION TIME: I gave up after 40 minutes!
ANSWERS I MISSED: Almost everything on the right side of the grid … and given today's date, I guess that makes me an April Fool!


Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across
Elvis Presley: A Biography14. Elvis follower : ARON
Elvis Aron Presley was the younger of two identical twins. His brother was stillborn, delivered 35 minutes before Elvis. The brother was named Jesse Garon Presley. So, though born a twin, Elvis was raised as an only child.

15. Article of the Constitution that defines treason : III
Treason is a serious crime committed against the nation (or the sovereign). One who commits treason is called a traitor. In the past, the term treason also applied to lesser crimes (like a woman killing her husband) so there was a differentiation between high treason against the king, and "petit treason", against a more common citizen.

17. Major Peruvian export : ZINC
Most of the world’s zinc comes from China, with Peru being the second largest producer.

18. Mail letters, in the past : RFD
Rural Free Delivery (RFD) was started in the US in 1891. Prior to RFD, rural Americans had to travel to the nearest post office to pick up their mail.

Eggo Cereal, Maple Syrup Waffles Shapes, 9.4-Ounce Boxes (Pack of 4)20. Brand in the frozen food section : EGGO
Eggo is the brand name of a line of frozen waffles made by Kellogs. When they were introduced in the 1930s, the name "Eggo" was chosen to promote the "egginess" of the batter. "Eggo" replaced the original choice for a name, "Froffles", created by melding "frozen" and "waffles".

22. Range grp. : NRA
The NRA is the National Rifle Association, an organization that has been around since 1871. The group has had some celebrity presidents, including US President Ulysses S. Grant. It's often said that the NRA is the most powerful lobbying group in Washington.

Arular23. Hip-hop singer with the 2008 hit "Paper Planes" : MIA
M.I.A. is a British singer whose music is a melding of hip-hop, electronica, alternative and world music.

34. Utility cart : DRAY
A dray is a side-less, 4-wheeled cart used for hauling goods.

In My Own Time: Almost an Autobiography37. English novelist Bawden : NINA
Nina Bawden is an English novelist, noted for her children’s stories. In 2002, Bawden and her husband were in a train crash just north of London. Bawden was badly injured, and sadly her husband (and six others) was killed.

40. Praise : KUDOS
Our word "kudos" means acclaim given for an exceptional achievement. "Kudos" is not a plural, despite a common misapprehension. It is a singular noun derived from the Greek "kyddos" meaning "glory, fame".

Mel Ott San Francisco Giants Framed Unsigned 8x10 Photograph42. Giant #4 : OTT
At 5' 9", Mel Ott weighed just 170 lb (I don't think he took steroids!) and yet he was the first National League player to hit over 500 home runs. Sadly, Ott died in a car accident in New Orleans in 1958, when he was only 49 years old.

43. Serving in John Betjeman's poem "How to Get on in Society" : SCONES
The last verse of John Betjeman’s poem “How to Get on in Society” is:
Milk and then just as it comes dear?
I'm afraid the preserve's full of stones;
Beg pardon, I'm soiling the doileys
With afternoon tea-cakes and scones.

44. Baltic feeder : ODER
The Oder rises in the Czech Republic, and forms just over a hundred miles of the border between Germany and Poland, before eventually emptying into the Baltic Sea.

Simpsons Homer "D'Oh!" Air Freshener45. Head-slapper's cry : D’OH
"The Simpsons" is one of the most successful programs produced by the Fox Broadcasting Company. Homer Simpson's catchphrase is "D'oh", now such a famous exclamation that it has been included in the OED since 2001.

46. Available, in a way : NUBILE
The word "nubile" can mean of a marrying age, or sexually attractive. The word generally applies to young women, and comes from the Latin "nubere" meaning "to take a husband".

50. Scale notes : FAS
The solfa syllables are: do, re, mi, fa, sol, la & ti. The solfa scale was developed from a six-note ascending scale created by Guido of Arezzo in the 11th century. He used the first verse of a Latin hymn to name the syllables of the scale:
Ut queant laxis resonāre fibris
Mira gestorum famuli tuorum,
Solve polluti labii reatum,
Sancte Iohannes.
The "ut" in this scale was changed to "do", as it was a more "open ended" sound, and "si" was added (the initials of "Sancte Iohannes") to complete the seven-note scale. Later again, "si" was changed to "ti" so that each syllable began with a unique letter.

ELLEN POMPEO 8x10 Photo Signed In-Person60. "Grey's Anatomy" locales, for short : ORS
The very successful hospital drama "Grey's Anatomy" has been on television since 2005. The title is a reference to the show's central character, Meredith Grey (played by Ellen Pompeo), as well as a reference to the classic human anatomy textbook commonly called "Gray's Anatomy".

Jumbo Dice in Dice62. "Uh-uh!" : NO DICE
One suggestion for the origin of the phrase “no dice”, meaning “nothing doing, no way”, refers back to illegal gambling in the early 1900s. When approached by police, illegal gamblers would hide their dice (some even swallowed them). It was well known that city attorneys wouldn’t prosecute unless the police could produce the dice. Apparently there was an idiom at the time, “no dice, no conviction”.

63. Japan Airlines competitor : ANA
All Nippon Airways (ANA) is a Japanese airline, second in size only to Japan Airlines (JAL).

65. Hunky-dory : PEACHY
Surprisingly, the term "hunky-dory" has been around a long time, and is documented back in the mid-1800s. No one is really sure of its origin, but some say it is an Anglicization of Honcho dori, that back in the day was a street of ill repute in Yokohama, Japan.

Down
1999 Lincoln Town Car Stretch Limousine 1/38 Black8. Lincoln, maybe : RACNWOT = TOWN CAR
The Lincoln “Town Car” is simply the translation of the French term that was already in use by Cadillac, “Sedan de Ville”.

9. Yen for : EVARC = CRAVE
The word "yen", meaning "urge", has been around in English since the very early 1900s. It comes from the earlier word "yin" imported from Chinese, which was used in English to describe an intense craving for opium!

LSU Tigers Team Auto Window Decal (12 x 10 -inch)12. Southeastern Conf. team : USL = LSU
The LSU Tigers are the sports teams of Louisiana State University, officially known as the Fightin' Tigers, with the school mascot of "Mike the Tiger". The name comes from the days of the Civil War, when two Louisiana brigades earned the nickname the "Louisiana Tigers".

Taco Titan: The Glen Bell Story26. ___ Bell : OCAT = TACO
Taco Bell was founded by a former US Marine, 25-year-old Glen Bell. His first restaurant was Bell’s Drive-In, located in Southern California. In coming years he bought up some more restaurants including four named El Taco. He sold off the El Taco restaurants but used the name in part when he opened his first Taco Bell in 1962. Bell sold franchises, with the 100th Taco Bell opening in 1967. The ex-Marine sold off the whole chain to PepsiCo in 1978, and I am guessing made a pretty penny.

Indira: The Life of Indira Nehru Gandhi27. 2002 Katherine Frank political biography : ARIDNI = INDIRA
Indira Gandhi's father was Jawaharlai Nehru, Prime Minister of India (and the Nehru of the Nehru Jacket). Indira herself became Prime Minister in 1966. She was assassinated in 1984 by two of her own bodyguards, as she was walking to meet Peter Ustinov who was about to interview her for Irish television.

28. Helmsley and others : SANOEL = LEONAS
Leona Helmsley was a high-rolling real estate investor and hotel operator in New York City. She was convicted of income tax evasion in 1989 and sentenced to 16 years in jail. At her trial a witness quoted her as saying "We don't pay taxes. Only the little people pay taxes ..."

31. Brand in the frozen food section : ORE-IDA
Ore-Ida frozen foods are all made with potatoes. The company is located in Oregon, just across the border from Idaho. The Ore-Ida name is a melding of the two state names.

ROB REINER signed 8X10 photo W/COA *SPINAL TAP* MISERY32. Rob on a set : REINER
The great director and actor Rob Reiner first came to prominence playing “Meathead”, Archie and Edith Bunker’s son-in-law on “All in the Family”. Since then he has directed a long string of hit movies including, “The Princess Bride”, “Stand by Me”, “This Is Spinal Tap”, “When Harry Met Sally”, “Misery” and “A Few Good Men”.

40. Twain hero, informally : KCUH = HUCK
"The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn", by Mark Twain, was first published in 1884, not here in the US but rather in England. The original launch planned for the US had to be delayed until 1885, because some rascal had defaced the plate for one of the illustrations, making an obscene joke. Once the problem was spotted a new plate had to made, and 30,000 copies already printed had to be reworked to cover up the obscenity.

42. It starts "Tell me, muse, of the man of many resources" : ODYSSEY
“The Odyssey” is one of two epic poems from ancient Greece that is attributed to Homer. “The Odyssey” is largely a sequel to Homer’s other epic, “The Iliad”. “The Odyssey” centers on the heroic figure, Odysseus, and his adventures on his journey home to Greece following the fall of Troy.

52. About : ERNI = 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".

54. Love overseas : ROMA = AMOR
"Amor" is the Spanish (and Latin) word for "love".

55. Some bread : ATIP = PITA
Pita is a lovely bread from Middle-Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines. It is usually round, and has a "pocket" in the center. The pocket is created by steam that puffs up the dough during cooking, leaving a void when the bread cools. The pockets were a big hit in the seventies when someone came up with the idea of using them for fillings and creating pita sandwiches or "pita pockets".

57. Econ. figure : GNP
A country’s Gross National Product (GNP) is the value of all services and products produced by its residents in a particular year. GNP includes all production wherever it is in the world, as long as the business is owned by residents of the country concerned. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is different, and is the value of all services and goods produced within the borders of the country for the year.

59. Org. with a Seal of Acceptance : ADA
The American Dental Association is the largest and oldest national dental association in the world. Today it is based in Chicago, but the association was founded in Niagara Falls, New York in 1859. The ADA started out as a group of 26 dentists, and it now has more than 152,000 members.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. "Get out of here! Fast!" : GO GO!
5. Ready : ARM
8. Free : RESCUE
14. Elvis follower : ARON
15. Article of the Constitution that defines treason : III
16. Not at all eager : AVERSE
17. Major Peruvian export : ZINC
18. Mail letters, in the past : RFD
19. Lock holders : CANALS
20. Brand in the frozen food section : EGGO
21. Place for a spring : BED
22. Range grp. : NRA
23. Hip-hop singer with the 2008 hit "Paper Planes" : MIA
25. Hardly blue-blooded : LOW CLASS
30. Dead, so to speak : BORING
33. Green: Prefix : ECO-
34. Utility cart : DRAY
35. Circus sites : ARENAS
36. ___ bread : OAT
37. English novelist Bawden : NINA
38. Rule : REIGN
39. Behind : AFT
40. Praise : KUDOS
41. Spill a little? : HINT
42. Giant #4 : OTT
43. Serving in John Betjeman's poem "How to Get on in Society" : SCONES
44. Baltic feeder : ODER
45. Head-slapper's cry : D’OH
46. Available, in a way : NUBILE
47. Disable : PARALYZE
49. "That's the spot!" : AHH
50. Scale notes : FAS
51. Kind of center : REC
53. Door without a knob, say : TRAP
57. Transplants, surgically : GRAFTS
60. "Grey's Anatomy" locales, for short : ORS
61. Repetition : ROTE
62. "Uh-uh!" : NO DICE
63. Japan Airlines competitor : ANA
64. Drop : OMIT
65. Hunky-dory : PEACHY
66. Go for : DIG
67. Refreshers : NAPS

Down
1. Look (over) : GAZE
2. First: Abbr. : ORIG
3. Hammer accompanier : GONG
4. Passing preventer : ONCOMING TRAFFIC
5. They're subject to rapid inflation : AIRBAGS
6. Plenteous : RIFE
7. Conventional : MIDDLE OF THE ROAD
8. Lincoln, maybe : RACNWOT = TOWN CAR
9. Yen for : EVARC = CRAVE
10. Half of almost any odd-numbered Interstate highway : SENALDNUOBHTRON = NORTHBOUND LANES
11. Bow : CRA = ARC
12. Southeastern Conf. team : USL = LSU
13. Date : EES = SEE
24. ___ instant : IN AN
26. ___ Bell : OCAT = TACO
27. 2002 Katherine Frank political biography : ARIDNI = INDIRA
28. Helmsley and others : SANOEL = LEONAS
29. Some schoolwork : SYASSE = ESSAYS
30. Go around for rounds? : BARHOP
31. Brand in the frozen food section : ORE-IDA
32. Rob on a set : REINER
39. Everything : A TO Z
40. Twain hero, informally : KCUH = HUCK
42. It starts "Tell me, muse, of the man of many resources" : ODYSSEY
43. Spare items in garages : SNACSAG = GAS CANS
48. Trunk part : LATCH
52. About : ERNI = IN RE
54. Love overseas : ROMA = AMOR
55. Some bread : ATIP = PITA
56. Gait : PETS = STEP
57. Econ. figure : GNP
58. Salmon ___ : ROE
59. Org. with a Seal of Acceptance : ADA


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6 comments :

Jan S. said...

I too should have looked at the date! Gave up in less than an hour. I fell for it.

Bill Butler said...

Hi Jan,

Trust me ... a lot of people had trouble with this one :)

Thanks for stopping by!

Anonymous said...

Worst puzzle ever1 total waste of time!

Bill Butler said...

Hi there, anonymous visitor.

I can understand your frustration. It was a little easier to understand when it was first released on April Fool's Day, but it still defeated me admittedly.

Thanks for stopping by!

Anonymous said...

I thought my brain had died after I finished exactly half the puzzle! Lol. I struggled on and off since Friday May 6, when it was published in Chicago. Was hilarious when I finally figured it out!

Bill Butler said...

As I said above, this puzzle is all the more tough if one doesn't realize it was intended for April Fool's Day.

Congrats on persevering!

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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.

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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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