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0805-11: New York Times Crossword Answers 5 Aug 11, Friday

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. Historic U.S. place in the shape of a five-pointed star : FORT MCHENRY
Fort McHenry sits on a peninsula in the opening to Baltimore Harbor in Maryland. The fort saw action in the War of 1812 as US forces were successful there in defending an attack by the British Navy. Francis Scott Key was watching the bombardment of Fort McHenry when he was inspired to write the words to “The Star Spangled Banner”.

The Santa Clause: 3 Movie Collection12. Present time?: Abbr. : DEC
December, and Christmas in particular, is the time for presents.

15. Russet Burbank, e.g. : IDAHO POTATO
Potatoes were planted in Idaho as early as 1838. Thank goodness! What we do without potatoes ...?

16. Leader of leaders? : ELL
L (ell) is the first letter in the word “leaders”.

23. Newbery Medal-winning author Lowry : LOIS
Lois Lowry is a writer of children’s fiction. Lowry doesn’t stick to “safe” material in her books, and has dealt with difficult subjects such as racism, murder and the Holocaust. Two of her books won the Newbery Medal: “Number the Stars” (1990) and “The Giver” (1993).

33. Cicero's servant and secretary : TIRO
Marcus Tullius Tiro was a slave in the Cicero household in Rome. In Cicero’s writings he refers to Tiro quite often, as he performed the services of a personal assistant. Perhaps as a reward for the quality of his work, Cicero freed Tiro, but the former slave chose to continue working with his master. It is thought that Tiro gathered together and published Cicero’s work after he died. Tiro himself apparently died a free man in 4 BCE, at the ripe old age of 99 years.

Non-Tobacco Chews Wintergreen Green Label - 1.2 oz,(Golden Eagle Herbal Chew)34. Red Man rival : SKOAL
Skoal is the most popular brand of dipping tobacco in the country. Red Man also produces a dipping tobacco, but mainly sells the chewing variety.

I Am Woman (2006 Digital Remaster)36. First #1 Billboard hit by an Australian artist (1972) : I AM WOMAN
The successful singer Helen Reddy was born in Melbourne, Australia. In 1966, Reddy won a talent contest, and earned herself a trip to New York City for an audition. The 25-year-old single mother decided to stay in the US, and a few years later was able to launch a successful singing career. Her hit song “I Am Woman”, released in 1972, was the first recording by an Australian artist to reach #1 in the US charts.

43. Occurrences between springs : NEAPS
Tides of course are caused by the gravitational pull of the moon on the oceans. At neap tide, the smaller gravitational effect of the sun cancels out some of the moon's effect. At spring tides, the sun and the moon's gravitational forces act in concert causing more extreme movement of the oceans.

47. Strike authorizer : NATO
NATO is the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (or OTAN in French, "l'Organisation du Traité de l'Atlantique Nord"). NATO was founded not long after WWII, in 1949, and is headquartered in Brussels, Belgium. The first NATO Secretary General was Lord Ismay, Winston Churchill's chief military assistant during WWII. Famously he said the goal of NATO was "to keep the Russians out, the Americans in, and the Germans down."

1993-97 Covertible or T-Top Camaro, RS & Z28 Kit (non-SS) (30th Anniversary) - BLACK49. Camaro options : T-TOPS
A T-top is a car roof that has removable panels on either side of a rigid bar that runs down the center of the car above the driver.

Logitech M305 Wireless Mouse (Silver)51. Campus home for mice : PC LAB
The first computer mouse was invented at the Stanford Research Institute in 1963, by one Douglas Englebert. Sadly for him, his patent ran out before mice became standard equipment on computers, so he never made any money out of his amazing invention.

53. Area near Manhattan's Union Square : NOHO
NoHo is short for North of Houston (street), and is the equivalent area to SoHo, South of Houston. Both NoHo and SoHo are neighborhoods in New York City.

Historic Print (L): Erle Stanley Gardner, 1889-197055. First name in mysteries : ERLE
I must have read all of the Perry Mason books when I was in college. I think they kept me sane when I was facing the pressure of finals. Author Erle Stanley Gardner was himself a lawyer, although he didn't get into the profession the easy way. He went to law school, but got himself suspended after a month. So, he became a self-taught attorney and opened his own law office in Merced, California. Understandably, he gave up the law once his novels became successful.

56. Eponymous Greek island : LESBOS
Lesbos is an island in the northeastern Aegean Sea just off the coast of Turkey. It is the third largest of all the Greek islands.

Sappho was an Ancient Greek poet born on the Greek island of Lesbos, She was much admired for her work, although very little of it survives today. Sappho was renowned for writing erotic and romantic verse that dealt with the love of women as well as men. It was because of this poetry that the word “lesbian” (someone from Lesbos) is used to describe a gay woman.

The Travels of Vasco Da Gama (Explorers and Exploration)62. Natal setting : SOUTH AFRICA
Natal was a province of South Africa up to 1994. The name “Natal” means Christmas in Portuguese, a name given to the region by the explorer Vasco da Gama as he sailed by on Christmas Day in 1497.

3. Canary : RATFINK
Ratfink is a slang term used in North America for a really obnoxious person, especially someone who has "squealed, spilled the beans".

4. With 5-Down, what iconoclasts break : THE
5. See 4-Down : MOLD
Iconoclasm is the deliberate destruction of society's icons, either religious or cultural. The term applies more to a rebellious action from within a society, as opposed to an act by external forces invading another culture. As such, the term "iconoclast" has come to have a broader meaning, describing anyone who stands up against established convention.

8. The Lorraine Campaign was part of it: Abbr. : ETO
The Lorraine Campaign is an unofficial designation for operations carried out by the US Third Army in northern France and Rhineland at the end of 1944.

Washington Nationals Auto Car Wall Decal Sticker Vinyl9. Red rival, briefly : NAT
The Washington Nationals baseball team started out life as the Montreal Expos in 1969. The Expos moved to Washington in 2005, becoming the Nats. There are only two Major Leagues teams that have never played in a World Series. One is the Mariners, and the other the Nats.

Ronald Reagan : Biography10. GPS choices: Abbr. : RTES
GPS stands for Global Positioning System. The modern GPS system that we use today was built by the military who received the massive funding needed because of fears during the Cold War of the use of Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles. We civilians, all round the world, owe a lot to President Ronald Reagan because he directed the military to make GPS available to the public for the common good. He was moved to do so after the Soviet Union shot down KAL flight 007 carrying 269 people, when it accidentally strayed into Soviet airspace.

12. Give a passionate recital : DECLAIM
To declaim is to speak forcefully and passionately, often in a formal setting.

13. The Doors' record label : ELEKTRA
The Doors formed in 1965 in Los Angeles. The band chose their name from a book by Aldous Huxley called "The Doors of Perception".

Deadliest Catch: Season Six24. Frequent catch on TV's "Deadliest Catch" : SNOW CRAB
“Deadliest Catch” is yet another reality show, although this one is perhaps worth a look. It is produced for the Discovery Channel and deals with the exciting life on board fishing boats in the Bering Sea.

27. "Move your mind" sloganeer : SAAB
SAAB stands for Svenska Aeroplan AB, which translates into English as Swedish Aeroplane Limited. So yes SAAB was, and still is, mainly an aircraft manufacturer. If you take small hops in Europe you might find yourself on a SAAB passenger plane. The SAAB automobile division was acquired by General Motors in the year 2000.

32. Old pulp fiction hero : G-MAN
The nickname “G-men” is short for "Government Men", and refers to agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Ethiopia Lion Flag Polyester 3 ft. x 5 ft.35. ___ of Judah : LION
The Lion of Judah is mentioned in the Book of Genesis, and was the symbol of the Israelite tribe of Judah. In the Christian tradition the Lion of Judah represents Jesus, whereas in the Rastafarian tradition, it represents Emperor Haile Selassie I of Ethiopia. The Lion of Judah can be seen at the center of the Ethiopian flag.

37. N.Y.C.'s PBS station : WNET
WNET is a television station located in Newark, New Jersey. It is PBS's station that covers New York City, as well as the rest of the tri-state area.

39. Persian for "place of" : STAN
The suffix “-stan” in many place names is Persian for “place of”. One example is “Pakistan”, the Place of the Pure. “Pakistan” is a relatively recent name, first coined in 1933. It comes from the acronym PAKSTAN, standing for Punjab - Afghan Province - Kashmir - Sind - BaluchisTAN, all regions in the north of India. The “I” was added to Pakistan to make it easier to pronounce, and to fit the translation “Land of the Pure”.

44. Classical Greek temple feature : PORTICO
“Portico” is an Italian word, and describes a porch or roofed walkway leading to the entrance of a building.

The Columbia Years: 1922-194048. "What a girl" lead-in, in an Eddie Cantor hit : OH! OH! OH!
“If You Knew Susie” was a song first published in the twenties. It was a number one hit for Eddie Cantor for five weeks in 1925.

50. Based on the number six : SENARY
Something that is “senary” is related to the number six.

Bosco Chocolate Syrup, 22-oz. squeeze bottle (Pack of 3)52. Hershey's alternative : BOSCO
Bosco Chocolate Syrup is produced in New Jersey, and first hit store shelves in 1928.

54. King surnamed Tryggvason : OLAF I
It is believed that the Norwegian King Olaf I led the conversion of the Vikings to Christianity and built the first church in the country (in 995 CE). Olaf was actually married to an Irishwoman, albeit a woman from a Viking family. Queen Gyda was the sister of the King of Dublin, Olaf Cuaran.

59. Pair of buffalo? : EFFS
There are two letters F (effs) in the word “buffalo”.

65. Slowing, in mus. : RIT
Rit. (or sometimes ritard.) is the abbreviation for ritardando, the musical direction to slow down the tempo.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
1. Historic U.S. place in the shape of a five-pointed star : FORT MCHENRY
12. Present time?: Abbr. : DEC
15. Russet Burbank, e.g. : IDAHO POTATO
16. Leader of leaders? : ELL
17. Tryst spot : NO TELL MOTEL
18. Outfit's biggest suit : CEO
19. What might send Rover right over? : ARF
20. Directly : DUE
21. Is catlike : SKULKS
23. Newbery Medal-winning author Lowry : LOIS
25. Has a seamy job? : SEWS
28. Rush : SPATE
29. Bright : SUNNY
31. Scaling challenge : CRAG
33. Cicero's servant and secretary : TIRO
34. Red Man rival : SKOAL
36. First #1 Billboard hit by an Australian artist (1972) : I AM WOMAN
38. Hospital gown go-with : WRISTBAND
40. Small yarn? : ANECDOTE
43. Occurrences between springs : NEAPS
46. Fishing spot : PIER
47. Strike authorizer : NATO
49. Camaro options : T-TOPS
51. Campus home for mice : PC LAB
53. Area near Manhattan's Union Square : NOHO
55. First name in mysteries : ERLE
56. Eponymous Greek island : LESBOS
58. Festive cry : OLE
60. Tobacco holder : TIN
61. NASA fine? : A-OK
62. Natal setting : SOUTH AFRICA
66. Single opening? : UNI-
67. Handler of intelligence agents : CASE OFFICER
68. Kickback site? : DEN
69. Researcher's audiotapes and such : ORAL HISTORY

1. Campus stress source : FINALS
2. Nose-noticeable : ODOROUS
3. Canary : RATFINK
4. With 5-Down, what iconoclasts break : THE
5. See 4-Down : MOLD
6. 79, say : C-PLUS
7. Students might clean up in it : HOME EC
8. The Lorraine Campaign was part of it: Abbr. : ETO
9. Red rival, briefly : NAT
10. GPS choices: Abbr. : RTES
11. Whites' counterparts : YOLKS
12. Give a passionate recital : DECLAIM
13. The Doors' record label : ELEKTRA
14. Seal, as a deal : CLOSE ON
22. Current : UP TO DATE
24. Frequent catch on TV's "Deadliest Catch" : SNOW CRAB
26. E-mail, say : WRITE TO
27. "Move your mind" sloganeer : SAAB
30. Half a fathom : YARD
32. Old pulp fiction hero : G-MAN
35. ___ of Judah : LION
37. N.Y.C.'s PBS station : WNET
39. Persian for "place of" : STAN
40. Express approval : APPLAUD
41. Expression of approval : NICE ONE
42. Wallet material : EEL SKIN
44. Classical Greek temple feature : PORTICO
45. Old-fashioned film editor : SPLICER
48. "What a girl" lead-in, in an Eddie Cantor hit : OH! OH! OH!
50. Based on the number six : SENARY
52. Hershey's alternative : BOSCO
54. King surnamed Tryggvason : OLAF I
57. Rocket : SOAR
59. Pair of buffalo? : EFFS
63. Stars represent its constituents : USA
64. Letterhead abbr. : TEL
65. Slowing, in mus. : RIT

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Anonymous said...

The Mariners are in the American League.

Bill Butler said...


I got too carried away with the word "National" by mistake. Thanks fr pointing out the error. All fixed now!

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 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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