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0112-11: New York Times Crossword Answers 12 Jan 12, Thursday





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: Gareth Bain,
THEME: CANADIAN PROVINCES … this is a rebus puzzle with ten of the squares occupied by the accepted abbreviation for the ten Canadian provinces, namely:
AB - Alberta
BC - British Columbia
MB - Manitoba
NB - New Brunswick
NL - Newfoundland and Labrador
NS - Nova Scotia
ON - Ontario
PE - Prince Edward Island
QC - Quebec
SK - Saskatchewan
COMPLETION TIME: 21m 28s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0


Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
1. La ___ (Argentine city) : PLATA
The city of La Plata is the capital of the Province of Buenos Aires, Argentina. La Plata was founded in 1882, a planned city designed to become the capital of the Province after the city of Buenos Aires became an autonomous district within Brazil. The name “La Plata” is Spanish for “The Silver”, and was given the name as it sits on the Río de la Plata.

15. Name of counties in three states, all crossed by I-90 : ERIE
That would be Erie Counties in New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania.

I-90 is the longest Interstate in the whole country (and one that I used to live right beside, in Liverpool, NY) and runs from Seattle to Boston.

21. Windhoek-to-Pretoria dir. : ESE
Windhoek is the capital city of the Republic of Namibia, in Southern Africa.

Pretoria is the executive capital of South Africa, one of three capital cities in the country. Cape Town is the legislative capital, and Bloemfontein is the judicial capital.

22. "Beloved," in operas : CARO
"Caro" is the Italian word for "dear".

24. Player of Mark Antony in 1953's "Julius Caesar" : MARLON BRANDO
Marlon Brando won the Oscar for Best Actor for his portrayal of Vito Corleone in the 1972 blockbuster "The Godfather". He turned down the award and didn't attend the ceremony. Instead he sent a Native American rights activist called Sacheen Littlefeather who made a speech protesting the depiction of Native Americans in Hollywood movies. Brando wasn't the first person to refuse an Oscar. George C. Scott did the same thing when he won for playing the title role in 1970's "Patton". Scott just didn't like the whole idea of "competing" with other actors.

The 1953 movie adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar” was directed and written by Joseph L, Mankiewicz. There was a star-studded cast including:
- Marlon Brand as Mark Antony
- James Mason as Brutus
- John Gielgud as Cassius
- Greer Garson as Clapurnia
- Deborah Kerr as Portia

30. Epithet for France's Louis VI, with "the" : FAT
Louis le Gros (the fat) ruled France until his death in 1137. Apparently he died of dysentery brought on by a gluttonous lifestyle that had made him grossly overweight.

31. Singer Alan or Anita : O’DAY
The singer-songwriter Alan O’Day had his most success as a singer with his own composition called “Undercover Angel” that topped the charts in 1977. I am more familiar with another song he wrote,and that was a hit for Helen Reddy in 1974, namely “Angie Baby”. Great song ...

Anita O’Day was the stage name of the jazz singer Anita Colton. O’Day had problems with heroin and alcohol addiction leading to erratic behavior and earning her the nickname “The Jezebel of Jazz”.

32. Weather line : ISOBAR
An isobar is a line on a weather map connecting points of equal barometric pressure.

34. Abbr. in classifieds : EOE
An Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE).

35. Andries Pretorius, e.g., who gave his name to a national capital : BOER
Boer is the Dutch and Afrikaans word for "farmer", a word that was used to describe the Dutch-speaking people who settled parts of South Africa during the 1700s.

Andries Pretorius was a leader of the Dutch settlers in southern Africa known as the Boers. He participated in the Great Trek, the migration during the 1830s and 1840s away from the British-controlled Cape Colony. He ended up in Natal and there became the Boers’ commandant-general in 1838, a position he held until 1852. He died in 1853, and two years later his son founded a new district and town that he named Pretoria after his father.

39. What each of the 10 abbreviations in this puzzle's answer stands for : CANADIAN PROVINCE
Canada is made up of ten provinces and three territories. The three territories lie to the north of the country, and are Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut. Territories differ from Provinces in that they only have governmental powers that are delegated to them by the federal government, whereas the provinces have constitutional powers in their own right.

44. Jimmy : PRY
“Jimmy” is a variant of the word “jemmy” that is used for a type of crowbar, one associated with burglars back in the 1800s.

46. Gas brand north of the border : ESSO
The brand name Esso has its roots in the old Standard Oil company, as it uses the initial letters of "Standard" and "Oil" (ESS-O). The Esso brand was replaced by Exxon in the US but it is still used in many other countries.

48. Pet rat in a 1972 #1 song : BEN
The song "Ben" was recorded by Michael Jackson in 1972. "Ben" was originally written for Donny Osmond, but as he wasn't available to record it was offered to Michael Jackson. The song was written as the theme song for the 1972 horror film "Ben", the sequel to the icky but successful "Willard", a killer-rat movie.

50. Old name of the San Jose Sharks' arena : COMPAQ CENTER
The Compaq Center at San Jose is now part of the HP Pavilion. As the San Jose Sharks play there, the HP Pavilion also goes by the familiar name of “the Shark Tank”.

56. Muckraker Jacob : RIIS
Jacob Riis is famous for his photographs and newspaper articles that highlighted the plight of the impoverished in New York City. He wrote "How the Other Half Lives", originally an extensive article that appeared in "Scribner's Magazine" at Christmas 1889. The article had such an impact that Riis was commissioned to expand it into a book, which was published the following year.

58. Clinton's veep and his father : ALS
Al Gore was born in Washington DC, the son of Al Gore, Sr., then a US Representative for the state of Tennessee. After deferring his military service in order to attend Harvard, Gore became eligible for the draft on graduation. Many of his classmates found ways of avoiding the draft, but he decided to serve and even took the "tougher" option of joining the army as an enlisted man. Actor Tommy Lee Jones shared a house with Gore in college and says that his buddy told him that even if he could find a way around the draft, someone with less options than him would have to go in his place and that was just wrong.

65. American Shakers founder : ANN LEE
Mother Ann Lee was the leader of the Shakers, the familiar name for the United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing. Lee was born and raised in Manchester, England. It was there that she became prominent as a speaker declaring faith in the second coming of Christ. She took a band of her followers to America in 1774 and eventually settled just outside Albany, New York.

66. Language that's written from right to left : URDU
Urdu is one of the two official languages of Pakistan (the other being English). Urdu partly developed from Persian and, as such, it is written from right to left.

67. Popular Italian scooter : VESPA
Vespa is a brand of motor scooter originally made in Italy (and now all over the world) by Paiggio. “Vespa” is Italian for “wasp”.

70. Kindle file : EBOOK
The Kindle is Amazon's famous reader, a handheld device used for reading books in electronic form. When the Kindle was launched on November 19, 2007 it sold out in five and a half hours! I don't have one myself (my librarian wife won't let me buy one) but I have friends that swear by them, especially for travel.

Down
3. Veld flower : 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.

Also known as Veld, Veldt is the name given to large rural spaces in southern Africa. We might use the term "boondocks" for the same thing. The word comes from the German for "field".

5. Hybrid, in a way : AC/DC
If you have a laptop with an external power supply, then that big “block” is an AC/DC converter. It converts the AC current you get from a wall socket into the DC current that is used by the laptop.

10. Author Beverly : CLEARY
Beverly Cleary is an American author of children’s books.

11. "Broom-___" : HILDA
"Broom-Hilda" is a comic strip created by Russell Myers that has been running since 1970. The idea for Broom-Hilda came from Myers's business manager, Elliott Caplin (brother of Al Capp, the creator of "Li'l Abner").

12. Much-advertised sleep aid : AMBIEN
Ambien is a brand name for the prescription drug Zolpidem. I have a friend who used to swear by it for helping cope with jet lag. I once had to deal with jet lag almost monthly and swear by the diet supplement melatonin, which you can buy over the counter here in the US. But, I am no doctor so don’t listen to anything I say …

17. Where Harrah's started : RENO
Like me, some of you may have visited the William F. Harrah Automobile Museum in Reno, Nevada. When Harrah was just a lad, his father bought him his first car, but it was stolen and stripped down for parts. When that happened he apparently swore to his sister that he would earn enough money to own a duplicate of every car his family ever earned. I think he came through with that one ...

19. Sushi bar sauce : TAMARI
Tamari is a variety of soy sauce that is made without wheat.

23. The L.A. Sparks play in it : WNBA
The Los Angeles Sparks women's basketball team was founded just before the WNBA opened its doors for business in 1997.

26. Frankfurt an der ___ : ODER
Frankfurt an der Oder is a town in Brandenburg, Germany that is right on the border with Poland. The suffix “an der Oder” shows that it lies on the Oder River and also serves to differentiate the town from the larger city of Frankfurt am Main.

27. They're flicked : BICS
Société Bic is a French company, based in Clichy in France. The first product the company produced, more than fifty years ago, was the Bic Cristal ballpoint pen that is still produced today. Bic also makes other disposable products such as lighters and razors.

28. Exam for future attys. : LSAT
The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) has been around since 1948.

34. Subject of the 2005 book "Conspiracy of Fools" : ENRON
After all the trials following the exposure of fraud at Enron, several of the key players ended up in jail. Andrew Fastow was the Chief Financial Officer. He plea-bargained and received ten years without parole and became the key witness in the trials of others. Even Fastow's wife was involved, and she was sentenced to one year for helping her husband hide money. Jeffrey Skilling (ex-CEO) was sentenced to 24 years and 4 months. Kenneth Lay (CEO) died in 2006 after he had been found guilty and before he could be sentenced. The accounting firm Arthur Andersen was found guilty of obstruction of justice for shredding thousands of pertinent documents and deleting emails and files (a decision that the Supreme Court later overturned on a technicality). But still, Arthur Andersen collapsed under the weight of the scandal and 85,000 people lost their jobs (despite only a handful of employees being directly involved with Enron).

36. Year in the reign of the emperor Augustus : ONE BC
Gaius Octavius Thurinis was the adopted son of Gaius Julius Caesar. After Julius Caesar was assassinated, Octavius came to power in Rome and teamed up with Mark Antony and Marcus Aemilius Lepidus in what was called the Second Triumvirate. When the triumvirate fell apart, especially after Antony’s defeat at Actium, Octavian became more powerful within the Roman Republic. Several years later he wrested sufficient power from the Roman Senate to end the Republic and begin the Roman Empire. As the first Emperor of Rome, Octavius was given the name Caesar Augustus.

37. Napkin shade, maybe : ECRU
The shade called ecru is a grayish, yellowish brown. The word "ecru" comes from French and means "raw, unbleached". It has the same roots as our word "crude".

38. Party in a legal proceeding: Abbr. : RESP
A respondent (resp.) in a legal proceeding is the defendant.

40. Part of St. Paul's : APSE
The apse of a church or cathedral is a semicircular recess in an outer wall, usually with a half-dome as a roof, and often where there resides an altar. Originally, apses were used as burial places for the clergy and also for storage of important relics.

The famous and very beautiful St. Paul’s Cathedral in London was designed by Sir Christopher Wren. St. Paul's was completed in 1708 and was constructed as part of a rebuilding program necessary after the devastation of the Great Fire of London of 1666. St. Paul’s is the second largest church building in the country, after Liverpool Cathedral.

42. Baron ___ Richthofen : VON
Manfred von Richthofen was a famous WWI fighter pilot flying for the Germans and was known as the Red Baron. He was credited with more kills than any other pilot fighting on either side of the conflict, recording over 80 combat victories. He didn't survive the war though, as he was shot down near Amiens in France in 1918.

46. Like some runs : EARNED
The pitching stat, earned run average (ERA), measures how many runs a pitcher tends to give up per nine innings.

48. City once divided by the Green Line : BEIRUT
Beirut is the capital city of Lebanon. After WWI, Lebanon was placed under administrative control of the French and Beirut flourished as a financial center in the Middle East and a major world tourist destination. The city was devastated in the Lebanese Civil War that raged from 1975 to 1990, but reconstruction has restored the city to much of its former glory, making it a major cultural center once again.

The Green Line was a demarcation in Beirut, Lebanon between warring Muslim and Christian factions during the Lebanese Civil War from 1975 to 1990. Because the line was largely uninhabited, trees and bushes took over the buildings giving rise to the “Green” moniker.

53. Gay ___ : PAREE
"Who Said Gay Paree?" is a song from the Cole Porter musical "Can-Can".

The Cole Porter musical "Can-Can" was first produced on Broadway, in 1953, where it ran for two years. There was a very successful film adaptation (which I saw recently ... it's good stuff) released in 1960, starring Shirley McLaine, Frank Sinatra and Maurice Chevalier. During filming, the Soviet leader Nikita Kruschev visited the set as part of a tour of 20th Century Fox studios. He made a big splash in the media at the time describing what he saw as "depraved" and "pornographic".

57. Golf's Ballesteros : SEVE
Seve Ballesteros was a very entertaining golfer from Spain, once ranked as the world’s number one player. Sadly, Ballesteros died from brain cancer in 2011, at the age of 54.

58. Lhasa ___ : APSO
The Lhasa apso breed of dog originated in Tibet and is named after Lhasa (the capital city) and apso (a Tibetan word meaning "bearded"). The Lhasa apso has been around since 800 BC and is one of the oldest breeds in the world, one very closely related to the ancestral wolf.

59. Quick weight loss method, for short : LIPO
Liposuction dates back to the 1920s, and was developed by a surgeon in France. However, the procedure quickly lost favor when a French model developed gangrene after surgery. As a result it wasn't until the mid-seventies that modern liposuction gained favor, after being popularized by two Italian-American surgeons in Rome.

62. On the ___ vive : QUI
“On the qui vive” is a phrase that means “on the alert”. The term “qui vive?” is French for “(long) live who?” and was used as a challenge by a sentry to determine what loyalty a person had.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. La ___ (Argentine city) : PLATA
6. Irksome : PESKY
10. Blacken : CHAR
14. Museum piece : RELIC
15. Name of counties in three states, all crossed by I-90 : ERIE
16. Loosen (up) : LIMBER
18. Amicable : ON GOOD TERMS
20. Abridge : ELIDE
21. Windhoek-to-Pretoria dir. : ESE
22. "Beloved," in operas : CARO
23. Begin energetically : WADE IN
24. Player of Mark Antony in 1953's "Julius Caesar" : MARLON BRANDO
27. Sing : BLAB
30. Epithet for France's Louis VI, with "the" : FAT
31. Singer Alan or Anita : O’DAY
32. Weather line : ISOBAR
34. Abbr. in classifieds : EOE
35. Andries Pretorius, e.g., who gave his name to a national capital : BOER
39. What each of the 10 abbreviations in this puzzle's answer stands for : CANADIAN PROVINCE
43. Bloom support : STEM
44. Jimmy : PRY
45. Electorate : VOTERS
46. Gas brand north of the border : ESSO
48. Pet rat in a 1972 #1 song : BEN
49. Medium bra specification : B-CUP
50. Old name of the San Jose Sharks' arena : COMPAQ CENTER
55. Kind of push-up : ONE-ARM
56. Muckraker Jacob : RIIS
58. Clinton's veep and his father : ALS
61. Gain knowledge : LEARN
62. Skateboarding ramp : QUARTER-PIPE
65. American Shakers founder : ANN LEE
66. Language that's written from right to left : URDU
67. Popular Italian scooter : VESPA
68. Not natural : DYED
69. Map magnification : INSET
70. Kindle file : EBOOK

Down
1. Like many a sniper : PRONE
2. Runners : LEGS
3. Veld flower : ALOE
4. Uncle José, e.g. : TIO
5. Hybrid, in a way : AC/DC
6. Inspect : PEER AT
7. Wrongdoing : ERROR
8. Less than 1% : SKIM
9. "Assuredly" : YES
10. Author Beverly : CLEARY
11. "Broom-___" : HILDA
12. Much-advertised sleep aid : AMBIEN
13. Fixed up : REDID
17. Where Harrah's started : RENO
19. Sushi bar sauce : TAMARI
23. The L.A. Sparks play in it : WNBA
25. Not all there : LOOPY
26. Frankfurt an der ___ : ODER
27. They're flicked : BICS
28. Exam for future attys. : LSAT
29. Have ___ to pick : A BONE
30. It'll pass : FAD
33. "Pow!" : BAM
34. Subject of the 2005 book "Conspiracy of Fools" : ENRON
35. Drill part : BIT
36. Year in the reign of the emperor Augustus : ONE BC
37. Napkin shade, maybe : ECRU
38. Party in a legal proceeding: Abbr. : RESP
40. Part of St. Paul's : APSE
41. No longer bothered by something : OVER IT
42. Baron ___ Richthofen : VON
46. Like some runs : EARNED
47. Small area meas. : SQ CM
48. City once divided by the Green Line : BEIRUT
50. Mixer choice : COLA
51. Seemingly ceaselessly : ON END
52. With cruelty : MEANLY
53. Gay ___ : PAREE
54. Plumbing, e.g. : TRADE
57. Golf's Ballesteros : SEVE
58. Lhasa ___ : APSO
59. Quick weight loss method, for short : LIPO
60. Command eliciting barking : SPEAK
62. On the ___ vive : QUI
63. Mantelpiece pieces : URNS
64. Johnny ___ : REB

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2 comments :

Anonymous said...

Hi, Bill.

Kerry Johnson here, with a 'tiny nit' to look at.

As I was not totally familiar with the Canadian Provinces before working this puzzle, I referred to Wikipedia after I had completed the crossword.

From Wikipedia I gather that "NL" stands for "Newfoundland-Labrador", as the two areas were combined in 2001.

Please keep up the good work, and take good care of yourself -- I much enjoy reading your comments.

Ta.

Bill Butler said...

Hi Kerry,

Well done, you!

Thanks for pointing out my slip, and for giving me the chance to correct (done!).

Thanks also for the kind words about the blog, and for taking time to leave a comment.

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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.

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 everyday 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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