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0729-11: New York Times Crossword Answers 29 Jul 11, Friday

I am away on vacation from Sunday, July 17 to Tuesday, August 2. I fully intend to sneak away to do the crossword each day, but probably won’t find time to do many look-ups. Some days I may be a little late posting the solution, and if that should happen, please let me apologize in advance. Email subscribers should check the blog directly at as the solution may be posted by the time they read check their email. Things will be back to normal very shortly! … Bill

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


Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
1. Lethally poisoned ruler, familiarly : CLEO
The asp is a venomous snake found in the Nile region of Africa. It is so venomous that the asp was used in ancient Egypt and Greece as a means of execution. Cleopatra observed such executions noting that the venom brought on sleepiness without any painful spasms. When the great queen opted to commit suicide, the asp was therefore her chosen method.

10. Pipeline accident investigator: Abbr. : NTSB
The National Transportation Safety Board is responsible for the investigation of major accidents involving transportation. Included in this broad definition is the transportation of fluids in pipelines. 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.

The Audi name has an interesting history. The Horch company was founded by August Horch in 1909, but soon after, Horch was forced out of his own business. He set up a new company and continued to use his own name as a brand. The old company sued him for using the Horch name so a meeting was held to choose something new. Horch's young son was studying Latin in the room where the meeting was taking place. He pointed out that "Horch" was German for "hear", and he suggested "Audi" instead, the Latin for "listen". Don't hear ... just listen ...

Oreo Double Stuff Oreo Cookie, 16.6-Ounce Packages (Pack of 4)16. Item in a "lick race" : OREO
The Oreo was the biggest selling cookie in the 20th century, and almost 500 billion of them have been produced since they were introduced in 1912 by Nabisco. In those early days the creme filling was made with pork fat, but today vegetable oils are used instead. If you take a bite out of an Oreo sold outside of America you might notice a difference from the homegrown cookie, as coconut oil is added to give a different taste.

Martin Luther King, Jr.: A Life25. Jan. honoree : MLK
I remember listening to the full text of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr's "I have a dream ..." speech not long after I moved to this country. I think I am man enough to admit that my eyes misted up as I listened to the words. I also recall thinking how lucky I was to have been invited to live in this great country, which was facing up to some of the sins of its past.
I say to you today, my friends, so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal."

I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification; one day right there in Alabama, little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.
26. Like many salts : ASEA
“Salt” is a slang word for a sailor.

Sterling Replacement Billiard Balls - 6 Ball28. Introduction : DEBUT
“Début” is a French word meaning “first appearance”. It was originally used to describe the first stroke in a game of billiards, before entering the language in a more general sense.

30. Princess ___ (Disney duck) : OONA
Princess Oona is one of the ducks appearing in stories about “Donald Duck”. Created in 1994, Oona lives in a cave and is usually proclaiming her interest in Donald, romantically that is …

Toulouse-Lautrec and the Fin-de-siecle33. Capturer of fin-de-siècle Paris : TOULOUSE-LAUTREC
The celebrated French painter Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec came from an aristocratic family. This breeding may have made life comfortable for him, but it was the source of his famous disabilities. He had congenital conditions that resulted from the inbreeding that was a tradition in his family (Henri's parents were first cousins).

Len Barker Autographed Cleveland Indians 8x10 Photo Inscribed "PG 5-15-81"36. Barker who pitched a perfect game in 1981 : LEN
Len Barker is a former Major League Baseball pitcher. He pitched a perfect game in 1981 while playing for the Cleveland Indians, the tenth official perfect game in major league history. It was apparently the most pristine of performances, with Barker never getting to ball three against any of the opposing hitters (who played for the Blue Jays, by the way).

39. ___ poco (soon, in Sorrento) : TRA
Sorrento is a small town on the Italian coast, overlooking the Bay of Naples. It is an extremely popular tourist destination.

45. Wags : CARDS
A “wag” or a “card” is a very amusing person, often quite eccentric.

Chapstick Classic Lip Balm Spf 4 Cherry, 0.15 oz (Pack of 3)58. It can make for fruity kisses : CHERRY CHAPSTICK
ChapStick is a brand name of lip balm owned by Pfizer, although it is so popular that the term tends to be used generically. ChapStick was invented way back in the 1880s by a Dr. Charles Browne Fleet in Lynchburg, Virginia.

REPUBLICAN LEADER: A Political Biography of Senator Mitch McConnell60. Elaine ___, first female Asian-American cabinet member : CHAO
When President George W. Bush appointed Elaine Chao as Secretary of Labor, he made a bit of history as Chao then became the first Chinese American in history to hold a cabinet post. It turned out that Chao became the only cabinet member to hold her post for President Bush's full eight years in office. In 1993, Chao married Mitch McConnell, the Republican Leader of the US Senate.

63. Line from Penn Sta. : LIRR
The Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) is the commuter rail service that runs all over Long Island, New York, with 124 stations and 700 miles of track. More people use the LIRR than any other commuter railroad in the US. It is also the only commuter railroad in the country that operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

64. Some columns : OP-EDS
Op-ed is an abbreviation of "opposite the editorial page". Op-eds started in "The New York Evening World" in 1921 when the page opposite the editorials was used for articles written by a named guest writer, someone independent from the editorial board.

2. Occasion to use a cooking pit : LUAU
Nowadays the word "luau" denotes almost any kind of party on the Hawaiian Islands, but to the purist a luau is a feast that always includes a serving of "poi", the bulbous underground stems of taro baked with coconut milk.

3. Tasteful bedclothes? : EDIBLE UNDERWEAR
When the inventors of edible underwear applied for a patent in the mid-seventies for “candy pants”. their application was denied. The Patent Office deemed that “candy” and “pants” were mutually exclusive ideas. The inventors persisted, won a patent and then made a lot of money by selling edible underwear from their food manufacturing plant in Chicago. Ugh ...!

7. Field fare, briefly : MRE
The Meal, Ready-to-Eat (MRE) comes in a lightweight package, easier to tote around. It replaced the more cumbersome Meal, Combat, Individual (MCI) in 1981, a meal-in-a-can. In turn, the MCI had replaced the C-ration in 1958, a less sophisticated meal-in-a-can with a more limited choice.

Color Photo Justin Timberlake Star N'sync9. Parker who was one of the original faces at Facebook : SEAN
Sean Parker came to national attention in 1998 as co-founder of Napster, the file-sharing service for music that created such a fuss in the recording industry. He started to advise the founders of Facebook in 2004, and became the company's first president later that year. If you watch the very entertaining movie about Facebook called "The Social Network" you'll see Parker played by Justin Timberlake. Parker comes across as a real ass in the film.

11. Activity of some ghosts : TRICK OR TREATING
The practice of trick or treating originated in Ireland and Britain back in the Middle Ages, when it was known as “souling”. Poor people would wander from door-to-door on November 1st (All Souls Day) seeking food in return for prayers for the dead.

13. Giant in audio equipment : BOSE
Bose Corporation was founded in 1964 by Amar G. Bose, and is a company that specializes in manufacture of audio equipment.

19. Dreamer's activity : REM
REM is an acronym standing for Rapid Eye Movement sleep. REM sleep takes up 20-25% of the sleeping hours and is the period associated with one's most vivid dreams.

Old Abe, Eagle Hero: The Civil War's Most Famous Mascot24. Old ___ (Civil War eagle mascot) : ABE
Old Abe was a bald eagle, the mascot of the 8th Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry Regiment during the Civil War. The regiment named their mascot for President Abraham Lincoln, even though Old Abe was actually a “she” eagle. She was carried into battle and was famous for flapping her wings and screaming during the fighting. Even though Old Abe died in a fire in the Wisconsin State Capitol after the war, her memory lives on. Old Abe appears on the insignia of the US Army’s 101st Airborne Division, and gives the unit the nickname the “Screaming Eagles”.

26. Counselor-___ : AT-LAW
I find the terms used for professionals in the world of law very confusing! I think that an “attorney” is someone who is legally empowered to represent another person or entity. A “lawyer” is someone who has been trained in the law and can give legal advise. “Counselor-at-law” is an older term that was used in some states where there was a distinction between the attorney who prepared a case, and a counselor who argued that same case in court.

28. Hardy red hog : DUROC
A Duroc is a breed of domestic pig, red in color and with a large frame, and a tendency to be quite aggressive. The breed originated in New England and supposedly takes its name from a thoroughbred stallion that was famous around 1800.

29. Weight factors : TARES
"Tare" is the weight of a container, deducted from the gross weight to determine the net weight, the weight of the container’s contents.

31. Quaint complaint : NERTS
“Nerts” is a slang term, a corruption of "nuts!" and has the same meaning.

42. What a guru might be called : SRI
“Guru” is a Hindi word meaning “teacher” or “priest”.

Sri is a title of respect for a male in India.

56. Prefix with -morph : ECTO-
Back in the forties, the American psychologist William Herbert postulated that a person’s temperament could be associated with body-type. This theory has largely been debunked, but his classification of the population into three body-types is still used today:
Ectomorphic: a slim person with low levels of fat storage and thin muscles
Mesomorphic: a muscular person with relatively low levels of fat
Endomorphic: a person who has higher levels of stored fat

57. Bygone theaters : RKOS
The RKO Pictures studio was formed when RCA (RADIO Corporation of America) bought the KEITH-Albee-ORPHEUM theaters (and Joe Kennedy's Film Booking Offices of America). The RKO acronym then comes from the words “Radio”, “Keith” and “Orpheum”.

59. Move it : HIE
To hie is to move quickly, to bolt.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
1. Lethally poisoned ruler, familiarly : CLEO
5. 22- and 38-Across : LIMBS
10. Pipeline accident investigator: Abbr. : NTSB
14. Saab competitor : AUDI
15. How deli meat may be served : ON RYE
16. Item in a "lick race" : OREO
17. Pregame rituals, for some : TAILGATE PARTIES
20. Opposite of swell : SUBSIDE
21. What some lawns cover : ONE ACRE
22. Ham's place : LEG
23. Kind of sheet : RAP
25. Jan. honoree : MLK
26. Like many salts : ASEA
28. Introduction : DEBUT
30. Princess ___ (Disney duck) : OONA
33. Capturer of fin-de-siècle Paris : TOULOUSE-LAUTREC
36. Barker who pitched a perfect game in 1981 : LEN
37. Field of 33-Across : ART
38. ___-twist : ARM
39. ___ poco (soon, in Sorrento) : TRA
40. Opinions about books : AUDITOR’S REPORTS
44. Singer with a wide range : WREN
45. Wags : CARDS
46. Tick, e.g. : PEST
47. Maker of calls : REF
49. Twist-___ : TIE
50. "___ man!" : BE A
51. Compose together : CO-WRITE
54. Tire shop employee, at times : MOUNTER
58. It can make for fruity kisses : CHERRY CHAPSTICK
60. Elaine ___, first female Asian-American cabinet member : CHAO
61. Brush up on? : PAINT
62. Lock or luck follower : ONTO
63. Line from Penn Sta. : LIRR
64. Some columns : OP-EDS
65. They're subject to inflation and deflation : EGOS

1. Tigers, e.g. : CATS
2. Occasion to use a cooking pit : LUAU
3. Tasteful bedclothes? : EDIBLE UNDERWEAR
4. Engine leakage preventer : OIL SEAL
5. Washer/dryer unit : LOAD
6. Borrower's protection : INTEREST RATE CAP
7. Field fare, briefly : MRE
8. How some things are brought back : BY POPULAR DEMAND
9. Parker who was one of the original faces at Facebook : SEAN
10. Chicken feed : NOT A LOT
11. Activity of some ghosts : TRICK OR TREATING
12. One reading signs : SEER
13. Giant in audio equipment : BOSE
18. Player's job : GIG
19. Dreamer's activity : REM
24. Old ___ (Civil War eagle mascot) : ABE
26. Counselor-___ : AT-LAW
27. French sister : SOEUR
28. Hardy red hog : DUROC
29. Weight factors : TARES
31. Quaint complaint : NERTS
32. With ___ of thousands : A CAST
34. Straw source : OAT
35. Maker of calls : UMP
41. Off : IN ERROR
42. What a guru might be called : SRI
43. Showing some polish? : OPEN-TOE
48. Provider of material for some wreaths : FIR
50. One going to school? : BUS
51. Mid-century year : CCCL
52. "I wasn't expecting you!" lead-in : OH HI
53. Unlucky strike? : TYPO
55. Doesn't decline, with "in" : OPTS
56. Prefix with -morph : ECTO-
57. Bygone theaters : RKOS
59. Move it : HIE

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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

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.

January 29, 2009

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