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Vacation Alert

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

1002-11: New York Times Crossword Answers 2 Oct 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: Eric Berlin
THEME: Masquerade … there is a note that comes with today’s puzzle that reads:
“Ten famous people are attending a costume party in this crossword. After the grid is filled, change the two circled letters in each theme answer to "unmask" a celebrity.”
Those celebrities are “unmasked” and found to be:
23A. Rods on a cowboy's truck : RANCH AXLES (RAY CHARLES)
25A. Environmentally sound keyboard : GREEN ORGAN (GREG NORMAN)
42A. 007 strategy : BOND PLAN (BOB DYLAN)
44A. High card up one's sleeve : INNER ACE (ANNE RICE)
66A. Narrow overhang : SLIM AWNING (ELI MANNING)
68A. Government resister standing ready : ALERT REBEL (ALEX TREBEK)
85A. Shock a fairy-tale monster : JOLT OGRE (JOE TORRE)
89A. Nocturnal birds liable to keep people awake : LOU DOWLS (LOU RAWLS)
109A. Soup spoon designed for shellfish : CONCH LADLE (DON CHEADLE)
111A. Last costume at a costume party : FINAL GUISE (TINA LOUISE)
COMPLETION TIME: 29m 12s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0


Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across
1. Tierra en el agua : ISLA
In Spanish, land in the water is an island.

5. Horror movie locale, in brief : ELM ST
“A Nightmare on Elm Street” is a Wes Craven slasher-horror film, released in 1984. As I don’t do “slasher” nor “horror” I only learned recently that Johnny Depp was in the movie, making his feature film debut.

20. Words on a Spanish valentine : TE AMO
“Te amo” is the Spanish for “I love you”.

22. Choir part : ALTO
In choral music, an alto is the second-highest voice in a four-part chorus made up of soprano, contr(alto), tenor and bass. The word "alto" describes the vocal range, that of the deepest, female singing-voice, whereas the term "contralto" describes more than just the alto range, but also its quality and timbre. An adult male's voice (not a boy's) with the same range as an alto is called a "countertenor".

23. Rods on a cowboy's truck : RANCH AXLES (RAY CHARLES)
Ray Charles came up his stage name by dropping his family name from his real moniker, Ray Charles Robinson. Ray’s life was a wild ride, well represented in the excellent biopic called “Ray” released in 2004 and starring Jamie Foxx in the title role. Ray was married twice and fathered 12 children, with nine different women. As I said, a wild ride …

25. Environmentally sound keyboard : GREEN ORGAN (GREG NORMAN)
Greg Norman is from Australia, a golfer who spent a long time ranked as the world’s number one in the eighties and nineties. Off the golf course, Norman is a very, very successful businessman. One of his more visible ventures is his winery called Greg Norman Estates.

27. Prepare the soil for planting, perhaps : ROTOTILL
Rototill is a brand name of a small rotary hoe used in domestic gardens.

30. Lily type : CALLA
The Calla Lily is a common name for a lily of the genus Zantedeschia. There is a lily genus called Calla, but the Calla Lily isn't in it. Now that, that is confusing …

33. Only nonsentient zodiac symbol : LIBRA
The constellation of Libra is named for the scales held by the goddess of justice, and is the only sign of the zodiac that isn't named for a living creature.

36. In style : CHIC
"Chic" is a French word, meaning "stylish".

41. Example, for instance: Abbr. : SYN
“Example” is a synonym for “instance”.

42. 007 strategy : BOND PLAN (BOB DYLAN)
As we all know, the real name of singer Bob Dylan is Robert Zimmerman. Zimmerman chose that particular stage name because he was greatly influenced by the poetry of the Welsh poet, Dylan Thomas.

44. High card up one's sleeve : INNER ACE (ANNE RICE)
Anne Rice is an American author of erotic and Gothic novels. She was born Howard Allen O'Brien (no wonder she changed her name!). Her famous series of novels, "The Vampire Chronicles", centers on her character Lestat de Lioncourt, a French nobleman who was turned into a vampire in the 18th century. One of the stories, "Interview with the Vampire", was adapted for the big screen in 1994 and features Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt and others in a star-studded cast. Not my kind of movie though, as I don't do vampires …

47. ___ voce : SOTTO
Sotto voce literally means "under the voice" in Italian, and describes the deliberate lowering of one’s voice for emphasis.

48. French river or department : AUBE
The French department of Aube is named for the Aube River, and is found in the northeast of the country. Aube is part of the historic Champagne region of France, and so the production of bubbly is an important money earner in the area.

49. Web programs : APPLETS
“Applet” is the name given to a small application that runs within another, larger computer program.

53. Property claims : LIENS
A lien is the right that one has to retain/secure someone's property until a debt is paid.

55. Some sexy nightwear : TEDDIES
The item of lingerie known as a teddy can also be called “camiknickers”. The alternative name was used when the one-piece garment was introduced in the twenties, a combination of a camisole and panties (aka knickers).

60. Clingy wrap : SARAN
What's known as plastic wrap in America, we call cling-film in Ireland. Plastic wrap was one of those unintended inventions, a byproduct of a development program to create a hard plastic cover for cars.

65. "To Live and Die ___" : IN LA
"To Live and Die in L.A." is novel written by Gerald Petievich, a former Secret Service agent. It was made into a pretty successful film starring William L. Petersen, the former lead from TV's "CSI". Petersen plays the good guy, and Willem Dafoe the bad guy. The plot is all about a pair of Secret Service agents tracking down a counterfeiter. I haven't seen the film, but it's on my list ...

66. Narrow overhang : SLIM AWNING (ELI MANNING)
Even I know that Eli Manning and his older brother Peyton are both quarterbacks!

68. Government resister standing ready : ALERT REBEL (ALEX TREBEK)
Canadian-born Alex Trebek has been the host of the game show "Jeopardy" since 1984, a run of about 26 years.

72. Immature egg : OVULE
As we all remember from botany class, an "ovule" is a small structure in many plants that develops into the seed after fertilization. We do remember, don't we?

73. East Coast rte. : US ONE
US Route 1 runs from Fort Kent in Maine right down to Key West in Florida.

78. It often involves a Snellen chart : EYE EXAM
That eye chart with the letters on it that get smaller and smaller as you move down line-by-line, it’s called a Snellen chart. It is named after its developer, the Dutch opthamologist Hermann Snellen.

82. All, in old-time stage directions : OMNES
“Exeunt omnes” is a stage direction instructing everyone on stage to exit. The term translates from Latin as “they all go out”.

84. Modern address : URL
Internet addresses (like NYTCrossword.com) are Uniform Resource Locators (URLs).

85. Shock a fairy-tale monster : JOLT OGRE (JOE TORRE)
As manager, Joe Torre was part of four World Series wins, all of them with the New York Yankees baseball team. Torre is an Italian American, born in Brooklyn, New York. During the run up (pun intended!) to the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin, Torre carried the Olympic flame part of the way through Florence, handing it over to the next runner at the famous Ponte Vecchio. I'd guess that was quite a thrill for him ...

89. Nocturnal birds liable to keep people awake : LOU DOWLS (LOU RAWLS)
Lou Rawls was an American soul and blues singer, known for his smooth vocal style. With his singing career well on the way, he was asked to sing "The Star Spangled Banner" in 1977 at a Muhammad Ali fight in Madison Square Garden. This led to him being asked to sing the anthem many, many times in the coming years with his last performance being at a World Series game in 2005. Rawls passed away in January of the following year.

95. Billiards shot : MASSE
In billiards, a massé shot is one in which the cue ball makes an extreme curve due to the player imparting heavy spin on the ball with his or her cue.

97. Fannie ___ : MAE
The Federal National Mortgage Association is commonly called Fannie Mae, a play on the acronym FNMA.

98. "Pastorals" poet : POPE
Alexander Pope was an English poet, famous for his own compositions as well as for a translation of Homer. One of his most notable poems is "Ode on Solitude" that opens with:
"Happy the man, whose wish and care
A few paternal acres bound,
Content to breathe his native air,
In his own ground."
Pope wrote that when he was just twelve years old!

99. Former Portuguese colony in China : MACAU
Macau (also Macao) was a Portuguese colony, the first European colony in China, established in the 16th century. Macau was handed back to the Chinese in 1999, two years after Hong Kong was returned by the British. That made Macau the last European colony in China.

100. Certain game-ending cry : GIN
Gin rummy is a variant of the slower game of standard rummy, and was introduced in 1909 by Elwood Baker and his son.

101. Industrial hub of Germany : ESSEN
I knew a man back in Ireland, a German national from the city of Essen. He had very sad tales to tell from the days of WWII. As a young boy he lost his (socialist) parents during the Nazi purges early in the war. In 1943, he was living with his grandmother and still attending school when he was drafted into the army along with the rest of his class (at 14 years of age). His platoon leader was his school teacher who made a point of tutoring the boys in place of military drilling. One day, he was on guard duty with his class/platoon at the dam above the city, and along come the Dam Busters with their bouncing bombs. The raid was successful (from the perspective of the Allies), but he described terrible famine faced by the people below the dam due to flooding of the farmland that surrounded the factories.

103. 1983 domestic 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. It's funny stuff ...

109. Soup spoon designed for shellfish : CONCH LADLE (DON CHEADLE)
Don Cheadle is an actor from Kansas City, Missouri. He is famous for playing a cockney character in “Ocean’s Eleven” and its spin-offs. Perhaps his most moving role was the lead in the very disturbing film “Hotel Rwanda” which tells the story of genocide in that country. Off screen Cheadle is actively involved in the campaign to end genocide in Darfur, Sudan.

111. Last costume at a costume party : FINAL GUISE (TINA LOUISE)
The actress Tina Louise is best known for having played the character Ginger Grant on the iconic TV show "Gilligan's Island". Louise had been a celebrated pinup girl in the late fifties, but her goal was to be an actress. She took the role of Ginger on "Gilligan's Island" in 1964, after it was turned down by none other than Hollywood legend Jayne Mansfield.

113. Requiem hymn word : IRAE
"Dies Irae" is Latin for "Day of Wrath". It is the name of a famous melody in Gregorian Chant, one that is often used as part of the Roman Catholic Requiem Mass.

115. Michael and Sonny's brother in "The Godfather" : FREDO
Fredo Corleone is a middle son in the Corleone family that features in Mario Puzo's "The Godfather". He was considered the weak son, and was reduced to the role of "gopher". Fredo was with his father when Don Corleone was shot, and although he tried to retaliate as the shooting took place, he dropped his gun. On the screen, Fredo was played by Italian-American actor John Cazale.

117. Five-spots : ABES
"Abe" is slang for a five-dollar bill.

119. 1999 Broadway revue : FOSSE
“Fosse” is a musical revue that opened on Broadway in 1999 and ran for over a thousand performances. It showcases the choreography of Bob Fosse.

Bob Fosse won more Tony Awards for choreography than anyone else, a grand total of eight. He also won an Oscar for Best Director for his 1972 movie "Cabaret", beating out the formidable Francis Ford Coppola who was nominated that same year for his epic, "The Godfather".

Down
3. Ointment base : LANOLIN
Lanolin is a greasy substance secreted from the skin of woolly animals. It usually extracted from wool sheared from sheep for use in textiles. Medical grade lanolin is used to soothe skin in ointments. It is relatively hypoallergenic and has antibacterial properties.

5. Californie, e.g. : ETAT
In French, California (Califonie) is a state (état).

6. Collection of specialized words : LEXICON
A lexicon was originally just a dictionary, but we tend nowadays to use the term more to mean a vocabulary that relates to some specific area of activity.

7. Green-headed water birds : MALLARDS
The mallard is the most recognizable of all ducks and is also known as the Wild Duck. The name "mallard" has the same Latin root as our word "male", probably reflecting how flamboyant the coloring is of the male of the species relative to the female.

10. Celestial being, in France : ANGE
“Ange” is French for “angel”.

11. Actor José : FERRER
The wonderful José Ferrer was a Hollywood actor from Puerto Rico. He won the Best Actor Oscar for his magnificent performance in the title role of 1950’s “Cyrano de Bergerac”. That made him the first Hispanic person to win an Academy Award.

12. Trilogy that includes "Agamemnon" : ORESTEIA
The "Oresteia" is a trilogy of Greek tragedies written by playwright Aeschylus. We know the Oresteia today as a trilogy, but there was actually a fourth play in the series called "Proteus", but it did not survive the ravages of time.

13. Eye layers : UVEAS
The uvea is the middle of the three layers that make up the eyeball.

14. Carnival follower : LENT
In Latin, the Christian season we now call Lent was termed "quadragesima" (meaning "fortieth"), a reference to the forty days that Jesus spent in the desert before beginning his public ministry. When the church began its move in the Middle Ages towards using the vernacular, the term "Lent" was introduced. "Lent" comes from "lenz", the German word for "spring".

17. RR stop : STA
A station is a stop on a railroad line.

18. "___ knight doth sit too melancholy": "Pericles" : YON
“Pericles, Prince of Tyre” is a play that was written in the Jacobean era. Many experts believe that at least half of the play was written by William Shakespeare, and half by some collaborator.

24. Part of "the many," in Greek : HOI
"Hoi polloi" is a Greek term, literally meaning "the majority, the many". In English it has come to mean "the masses" and is often used in a derogatory sense.

26. Canola, for one : OIL SEED
Canola is a type of rapeseed, and Canola oil is made from the seeds. The particular cultivar used in oil production was developed in Canada, and the name Canola in fact comes from "CANadian Oil, Low Acid".

34. Singer Ocasek : RIC
Ric Ocasek is an American musician of Czech heritage, and was the lead vocalist of the rock band known as the Cars.

37. It might have serifs : FONT
Serifs are details on the ends of characters in some typefaces. Typefaces without serifs are known as sans-serif (using the French word "sans" meaning "without"). Some people say that serif fonts are easier to read on paper, whereas sans-serif fonts work better on a computer screen. I'm not so sure though ...

39. Before long : ANON
“Anon” originally meant “at once” and evolved into today’s meaning of “soon”, apparently just because the word was misused over time.

42. ___ Vista (Disney video distributor) : BUENA
Buena Vista is a brand name used a lot in the past by The Walt Disney Company. The name was chosen as the main Walt Disney offices are located on Buena Vista Street in Burbank, California.

49. Northeastern Indian state : ASSAM
Assam is a state in the very northeast of India, just south of the Himalayas. Assam is noted for its tea, as well as its silk.

50. ___ d'Or (film award) : PALME
The “Palme d’Or” (or “Golden Palm” in English) is the highest award given at the Cannes Film Festival. The Palme d'Or goes to the director of the film selected as the best shown at the festival that year. The palm was selected as an emblem for the award as there is a palm featured on the coat of arms of the Commune of Cannes.

52. Many a "Damn Yankees" role : SENATOR
"Damn Yankees" is yet another version of the classic German legend of Faust, this time set in Washington, D.C. in the fifties. The show was written by Richard Adler and Jerry Ross, a production that turned out to be a very successful follow-up to their prior hit, "The Pajama Game". The future was looking really rosy for Adler and Ross but, sadly, Jerry Ross died of an obstructive lung disease only a few weeks after "Damn Yankees" opened on Broadway in 1955. He was just 29 years old.

58. Kagan of the Supreme Court : ELENA
Elena Kagan was the Solicitor General of the United States, and not too long ago replaced Justice John Paul Stevens on the US Supreme Court. That made Justice Kagan the fourth female US Supreme Court justice (there have been 108 men!). I hear she is a fan of Jane Austen, and used to reread "Pride and Prejudice" once a year. Not a bad thing to do, I'd say ...

59. "The Crucible" locale : SALEM
“The Crucible” is a 1952 play by Arthur Miller that tells the story of the Salem witch trials. Miller wrote it as an allegory for the House Committee of Un-American Activities hearings that were being chaired by Senator Joe McCarthy around that time. Miller was called before the Committee himself, and was convicted of contempt of Congress for refusing to “name names”.

62. Pooh-bah : VIP
The term "pooh-bah", meaning an ostentatious official, comes from the world of opera. Pooh-Bah is a character in the wonderful Gilbert & Sullivan comic opera "The Mikado". Famously, Pooh-Bah holds many, many offices, including that of "Lord High Everything Else".

68. Many Monopoly spaces : AVENUES
The commercial game of Monopoly is supposedly a remake of "The Landlord's Game" created in 1903 by a Quaker woman called Lizzie Phillips. She used it as a tool to explain the single tax theory of American economist Henry George. The Landlord's Game was first produced commercially in 1924. The incredibly successful derivative game called Monopoly was introduced in 1933 by Charles Darrow, who became a very rich man when Parker Brothers bought the rights to the game just two years later in 1935.

72. Moved like water into plant roots : OSMOSED
Osmosis is the movement of a solvent (often just water) across a semi-permeable membrane. The solvent tends to flow from an area of less concentration to an area of higher concentration.

77. Short answers? : SOLS
Solutions.

79. Festive time : YULE
"Yule" celebrations coincide with Christmas, and the words "Christmas" and "Yule" have become synonymous in much of the world. However, Yule was originally a pagan festival celebrated by Germanic peoples. The name "Yule" comes from the Old Norse word "jol" that was used to describe the festival.

83. "___ in the kitchen with Dinah" (old song lyric) : SOMEONE’S
“Someone’s in the kitchen with Dinah” is a line from the American folk song “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad”. The section with this line is actually “lifted” from an older song published as, “Old Joe, or Somebody in the House with Dinah”.

86. Suffix with Cray- : OLA
In the year 2000 the Crayola company, very cleverly I think, held the “Crayola Color Census 2000” in which people were polled, asked for their favorite Crayola colors. President George W. Bush chose “Blue Bell” and Tiger Woods chose “Wild Strawberry”.

87. Unfilled spaces : LACUNAE
A lacuna is a missing piece of text (or music) in a larger work. Usually the text has been lost due to damage of an older manuscript. Lacunae can be very controversial as experts vie with each other to suggest what words have been lost.

90. Newspaper section that competes with Craigslist : WANT ADS
Craigslist is an online network of communities that features classified advertisements organized geographically. Craigslist was started by Craig Newmark in 1995, originally as an email distribution list for his friends who lived and worked in the San Francisco Bay Area.

96. Elk's weapon : ANTLER
The elk (also known as the wapiti) is the one of the largest species of deer in the world, with only the moose being bigger. Early European settlers were used to seeing the smaller red deer back in their homelands, so when they saw the "huge" wapiti they assumed it was a moose, and gave it the European name for a moose, namely "elk". The more correct term then is "wapiti", the Shawnee name for the animal, which means "white rump". It's all very confusing ...

98. "The Prisoner" author : PROUST
"In Search of Lost Time" is a very, very long novel written by Marcel Proust. The novel is divided into seven volumes and was first published in 1913-1927. The fifth volume is called “The Prisoner”.

100. "A Free Man of Color" playwright : GUARE
“A Free Man of Color” is a play by John Guare that opened on Broadway in 2010. It tells the story of one Jacques Cornet, a Don Juan-type character in New Orleans in 1801. As a “man of color”, his life changes dramatically as racism starts to pervade the city after the Louisiana Purchase.

102. Veep Agnew : SPIRO
Spiro Agnew served as Vice-President under Richard Nixon, before becoming the only VP in American history to resign because of criminal charges (there was a bribery scandal). He was also the first Greek-American to serve as VP, the son of a Greek immigrant who shortened his name from Anagnostopoulos.

105. Count ___ (Lemony Snicket villain) : OLAF
"Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events" is a 2004 black comedy based on the novels by Lemony Snicket (the pen name of American novelist Daniel Handler). I rarely "do" black comedies, so I skipped this one ...

108. Palliative plant : ALOE
Aloe vera has a number of alternate names that are descriptive of its efficacy as a medicine. These include the First Aid plant, Wand of Heaven, Silent Healer and Miracle Plant.

109. Org. in "Burn After Reading" : CIA
"Burn After Reading" is a 2008 black comedy from the Coen Brothers that really disappointed (I thought). It had a great cast, headed by George Clooney, Brad Pitt, John Malkovich and the lovely Frances McDormand, but it just did not deliver. Die-hard Coen Brothers fans might want to take a look though.

111. Opposite of ppp, on scores : FFF
The musical term “pianissimo” is abbreviated to “pp”, and is an instruction to the performer to sing or play very softly. The concept can be extended to “ppp”, short for “pianississimo”, an instruction of play even more softly. The opposite instructions are fortissimo (ff) and fortississimo (fff), instructions to perform very loudly, and even more loudly.

112. Hirohito's title: Abbr. : EMP
Hirohito was the Emperor of Japan from 1926 until he died in 1989. Even though he reigned right through WWII, he was not prosecuted for war crimes, a decision still much debated by historians.

Return to top of page

For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Tierra en el agua : ISLA
5. Horror movie locale, in brief : ELM ST
10. Run ___ of : AFOUL
15. "Whoa! Calm down!" : EASY
19. Be featured (in) : STAR
20. Words on a Spanish valentine : TE AMO
21. Temerity : NERVE
22. Choir part : ALTO
23. Rods on a cowboy's truck : RANCH AXLES (RAY CHARLES)
25. Environmentally sound keyboard : GREEN ORGAN (GREG NORMAN)
27. Prepare the soil for planting, perhaps : ROTOTILL
28. Multicapable : VERSATILE
29. DLXXVI doubled : MCLII
30. Lily type : CALLA
32. Foreign visitors? : ETS
33. Only nonsentient zodiac symbol : LIBRA
36. In style : CHIC
37. Voting to pass : FOR
38. Empathetic words : I CARE
40. Password preceder, generally : USER ID
41. Example, for instance: Abbr. : SYN
42. 007 strategy : BOND PLAN (BOB DYLAN)
44. High card up one's sleeve : INNER ACE (ANNE RICE)
46. Baltimore daily, with "the" : SUN
47. ___ voce : SOTTO
48. French river or department : AUBE
49. Web programs : APPLETS
53. Property claims : LIENS
55. Some sexy nightwear : TEDDIES
60. Clingy wrap : SARAN
61. Ties up : EVENS
63. Memo abbr. : ATTN
65. "To Live and Die ___" : IN LA
66. Narrow overhang : SLIM AWNING (ELI MANNING)
68. Government resister standing ready : ALERT REBEL (ALEX TREBEK)
70. It might be in a belt : AMMO
71. More than attentive : RAPT
72. Immature egg : OVULE
73. East Coast rte. : US ONE
74. Was sincere : MEANT IT
76. Strong point : ASSET
78. It often involves a Snellen chart : EYE EXAM
80. ___ about : ON OR
82. All, in old-time stage directions : OMNES
84. Modern address : URL
85. Shock a fairy-tale monster : JOLT OGRE (JOE TORRE)
89. Nocturnal birds liable to keep people awake : LOU DOWLS (LOU RAWLS)
91. Take most of : HOG
94. Burglar discouragers : ALARMS
95. Billiards shot : MASSE
97. Fannie ___ : MAE
98. "Pastorals" poet : POPE
99. Former Portuguese colony in China : MACAU
100. Certain game-ending cry : GIN
101. Industrial hub of Germany : ESSEN
103. 1983 domestic comedy : MR MOM
104. Like invalid ballots : UNCOUNTED
107. Fries, e.g. : POTATOES
109. Soup spoon designed for shellfish : CONCH LADLE (DON CHEADLE)
111. Last costume at a costume party : FINAL GUISE (TINA LOUISE)
113. Requiem hymn word : IRAE
114. Visibly stunned : AREEL
115. Michael and Sonny's brother in "The Godfather" : FREDO
116. Cleaner target : SCUM
117. Five-spots : ABES
118. Transport, as across a river : FERRY
119. 1999 Broadway revue : FOSSE
120. Seasonal worker, say : TEMP

Down
1. U.N. member since '49 : ISR
2. Like some newly laundered shirts : STARCHY
3. Ointment base : LANOLIN
4. Bitterly cold : ARCTIC
5. Californie, e.g. : ETAT
6. Collection of specialized words : LEXICON
7. Green-headed water birds : MALLARDS
8. What wavy lines may indicate in a comic strip : SMELL
9. Lean-___ : TOS
10. Celestial being, in France : ANGE
11. Actor José : FERRER
12. Trilogy that includes "Agamemnon" : ORESTEIA
13. Eye layers : UVEAS
14. Carnival follower : LENT
15. When the events in flashbacks took place : EARLIER
16. Field with unknowns : ALGEBRA
17. RR stop : STA
18. "___ knight doth sit too melancholy": "Pericles" : YON
24. Part of "the many," in Greek : HOI
26. Canola, for one : OIL SEED
28. Clears out of, as a hotel room : VACATES
29. Hosts, briefly : MCS
31. Cheerful and spirited, as a voice : LILTING
34. Singer Ocasek : RIC
35. Fruit drink : ADE
37. It might have serifs : FONT
39. Before long : ANON
40. Straight : UNBENT
42. ___ Vista (Disney video distributor) : BUENA
43. Boiled cornmeal : POLENTA
45. Cashew, for one : NUT TREE
46. Hit hard, as brakes : SLAM ON
49. Northeastern Indian state : ASSAM
50. ___ d'Or (film award) : PALME
51. Italian "first" : PRIMA
52. Many a "Damn Yankees" role : SENATOR
54. Mutely showed respect : SALUTED
56. Truck fuel : DIESEL
57. Paper collector : INBOX
58. Kagan of the Supreme Court : ELENA
59. "The Crucible" locale : SALEM
62. Pooh-bah : VIP
64. Business card abbr. : TEL
67. Gets the water out of : WRINGS
68. Many Monopoly spaces : AVENUES
69. They might atone : RUERS
72. Moved like water into plant roots : OSMOSED
75. Very, very funny : TOO MUCH
77. Short answers? : SOLS
79. Festive time : YULE
81. Note to self : REMINDER
83. "___ in the kitchen with Dinah" (old song lyric) : SOMEONE’S
85. Bad situation : JAM
86. Suffix with Cray- : OLA
87. Unfilled spaces : LACUNAE
88. Mesmerized states : TRANCES
90. Newspaper section that competes with Craigslist : WANT ADS
91. Hockey team's advantage : HOME ICE
92. Smallish marsupial : OPOSSUM
93. Prize : GEM
96. Elk's weapon : ANTLER
98. "The Prisoner" author : PROUST
100. "A Free Man of Color" playwright : GUARE
102. Veep Agnew : SPIRO
103. Part of a business sched. : MTG
105. Count ___ (Lemony Snicket villain) : OLAF
106. Snakelike : EELY
108. Palliative plant : ALOE
109. Org. in "Burn After Reading" : CIA
110. Round body : ORB
111. Opposite of ppp, on scores : FFF
112. Hirohito's title: Abbr. : EMP

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7 comments :

Anonymous said...

Can somebody please help me? I'm losing my mind! I just did the NYT puzzle from Saturday, Feb 28, 1998. The theme is 'follow the leader' but I don't get it. The three main Down clues are 'surprise attacker' (answer: amclintoner), 'research moneys' (answer: hayessinaid) and 'summer dress features' (answer:tayloradots). Can someone please explain the gimmick, cause I don't get it. I'd be very grateful. Thanks.

Bill Butler said...

You sure picked up an old one :)

I went back and had a look at it, and worked out the theme. FOLLOW THE LEADER tells us that in order to understand the theme answers you have to change the President's name in the answer to the preceding President. Therefore:

16A. Famed San Francisco rock venue : PIERCEWEST (FILLMORE WEST)
36A. Game played in this puzzle? :FOLLOWTHELEADER
55A. 1971-72 Rose Bowl winner : STANCARTER (STANFORD)
5D. Surprise attacker : AMCLINTONER (AMBUSHER)
10D. 70's TV variety show host : FLIPHARDING (FLIP WILSON)
23D. Summer dress features : TAYLORADOTS (POLKA DOTS)
25D. Research moneys : HAYESSINAID (GRANTS-IN-AID)

A clever idea, I thought, but tough to spot for sure :)

I hope that helps,

Bill

JB said...

No note with puzzle in my paper, The Daytona Beach News Journal. Probably wouldn't have done any good as I'm terrible at anagrams and I never heard of some of those people.

JB said...

I was wrong. I know who most of those people are, except Cheadle. Had to add a postscript lest someone think me a moron.

Bill Butler said...

Hi JB,

It's unfortunately common for the crosswords with notes to be published without those all important words being included. I don't know they "notes" are just "outlawed", to be honest.

I'd heard of all the "famous people", but must admit that I knew of some of them only through previous crosswords.

Still, hope you enjoyed solving the crossword, even though the theme was rough to get at for you. Thanks for stopping by, JB.

Ben F said...

Wow - I just found these comment blogs on your excellent site! I must have avoided scrolling past all the answers I was stealing - or verifying, yea that's what I was doing, just checking your work WEB.

I was bothered by this particular puzzle when I solved it - it wasn't unpleasant but it left me with a sense of awkwardness and inelegance - a lot like the first time someone tried to explain quark theory with a straight face. The letter substitutions and clue answers seemed forced and clumsy (slim awning, ranch axles, etc.). Only the Anne Rice answer where the shaded letters were exchanged, not swapped out at random seemed appropriate. If all the theme answers were like that, the puzzle would have been a real winner, in my opinion.

I wonder if you had the same reaction?

Bill Butler said...

@Ben F
I am delighted you found the blog, Ben, and I hope it proves to be of service.

I know what you mean about the "awkwardness" of the theme today, and I'd have to agree that there was a bit of work to be done. I would say in defense of the puzzle though that I appreciated having to work for each theme answer. Sometimes once you get the theme, then working out the theme answers is just a mechanical exercise. But, not every puzzle suits everyone, that I have learned.

Thanks for dropping by, Ben.

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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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