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0409-12: New York Times Crossword Answers 9 Apr 12, Monday





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: Nancy Kavanaugh
THEME: Tasty Types … all of the theme answers start with a different taste:
17A. Negative reaction to failure : SOUR GRAPES
23A. Sort of words that sailors are famous for : SALTY LANGUAGE
47A. Feuding families, e.g. : BITTER ENEMIES
57A. Sugar craving : SWEET TOOTH
COMPLETION TIME: 6m 59s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0


Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
10. "Porgy and ___" : BESS
“Porgy and Bess” is an opera with music by George Gershwin, lyrics by his brother, Ira Gershwin, and libretto by DuBose Heyward. The storyline of the opera is based on the novel “Porgy” written by DuBose Heyward and and wife Dorothy Heyward. “Porgy and Bess” was first performed in 1935, in New York City, but really wasn’t accepted as legitimate opera until 1976 after a landmark production by the Houston Grand Opera. The most famous song from the piece is of course the wonderful “Summertime”.

14. Words after "here," "there" and "everywhere" in "Old MacDonald Had a Farm" : A MOO
There was an American version of the English children's song "Old MacDonald Had a Farm" (E-I-E-I-O), that was around in the days of WWI. The first line of the US version goes "Old Macdougal had a farm, in Ohio-i-o".

16. For grades 1-12 : ELHI
"Elhi" is an informal word used to describe anything related to schooling from grades 1 through 12, i.e. elementary through high school.

17. Negative reaction to failure : SOUR GRAPES
The term “sour grapes” is used to describe a reaction that someone has to something that is unobtainable, a sort of rationalization by stating that one didn’t want the thing anyway. “Sour grapes” is an allusion to one of Aesop’s fables, the story of “The Fox and the Grapes”. In the fable, a squirrel could climb up to grapes high in a tree that a fox was unsuccessful in getting to. On seeing this the fox said, “It’s okay, the grapes were sour anyway”.

20. Snake along the Nile : ASP
The asp is a venomous snake found in the Nile region of Africa. The asp is so venomous that it was used in ancient Egypt and ancient Greece as a means of execution. Cleopatra observed such executions noting that the venom brought on sleepiness without any painful spasms. Therefore, when the great queen opted to commit suicide, the asp was her chosen method.

21. Dublin's land : EIRE
"Éire", is the Irish word for "Ireland". Erin is an anglicized version of "Éire", actually corresponding to "Éirinn", the dative case of "Éire".

The city of Dublin, the capital of Ireland, is known as Baile Átha Cliath in Irish (“town of the hurdled ford”). However, the name “Dublin” is an anglicized form of the older Irish name for the city, “Dubh Linn” meaning “black pool”.

22. Former congresswoman Bella : ABZUG
Bella Abzug was one of the leader's of the Women's Movement that founded the National Women's Political Caucus in 1971. She was elected to the US Congress the same year, helped by a famous campaign slogan "This woman's place is in the House - the House of Representatives".

29. Synthesizer designer Robert : MOOG
Robert Moog invented the Moog Synthesizer in the sixties, an electronic device that he used to produce music. I used to own a few of his albums, including a Moog version of Mussorgsky's "Pictures at an Exhibition". What a great performance that was ...

31. It's about six feet for a turkey vulture : WINGSPAN
The turkey vulture is also known simply as the buzzard. It is found anywhere from southern Canada right down to the southern tip of South America. The turkey vulture feeds on carrion, using its sharp eyesight and very keen sense of smell. In fact when seeking out nourishment, it flies low enough so that it can pick up the gasses given off as the body of a dead animal begins to decay.

35. ___ de Janeiro : RIO
“Rio de Janeiro” translates as "January River". The name reflects the discovery of the bay on which Rio sits, on New Years Day in 1502.

39. Source of the word "karma" : SANSKRIT
Sanskrit is a historical language from the Indian subcontinent. Sanskrit can be regarded as similar to Greek and Latin in Europe in terms of influence that it had on modern languages in the Indian region. Although there are attempts to revive spoken Sanskrit, its use is mainly confined to ceremonial applications in the Hindu and Buddhist traditions.

Karma is religious concept with its basis in Indian faiths. Karma embraces the notion of cause and effect. Good deeds have good consequences at some later point in one's life, future life or afterlife and vice versa.

42. Ken and Barbie : DOLLS
The famous Barbie doll was created by businesswoman Ruth Handler and first appeared on store shelves in 1959. Barbie was based on a German fashion doll called Bild Lilli that was introduced in 1955. Lilli had been a German cartoon character before taking on a three-dimensional form. Prior to the introduction of Bild Lilli and Barbie, children’s dolls were primarily representations of infants.

Barbie's male counterpart doll is Ken, and Ken's family name is Carson. Barbie's full name is Barbie Millicent Roberts. When Ken was introduced in 1959, it was as Barbie's boyfriend. In 2004 it was announced that Ken and Barbie were splitting up, and needed to spend quality time apart. Both dolls are still available for purchase though.

44. Deadly 1966 hurricane with a Spanish-derived name : INEZ
Hurricane Inez in 1966 was one of the deadliest storms on record. About 1,000 people died from Inez-related deaths across the Caribbean. In the US most of the dead were sailors lost in shipwrecks in the Straits of Florida.

45. "Cats" poet : TS ELIOT
T. S. Eliot was born in New England but grew up in St. Louis, Missouri. Much of his college education was at Oxford, and clearly he became comfortable with life in England. In 1927 he became a British citizen, and lived the rest of life in the UK.

Andrew Lloyd Weber's source material for his hit musical "Cats" was T. S. Eliot's "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats". Eliot's collection of whimsical poems was published in 1939, and was a personal favorite of Weber as he was growing up. "Cats" is the second longest running show in Broadway history ("Phantom of the Opera" is the longest and is still running; deservedly so in my humble opinion). We’ve seen “Cats” a couple of times and really enjoyed it ...

61. Like names starting "Ff-" : WELSH
Welsh is a Celtic language, spoken mainly in Wales. After decades of decline, the number of Welsh speakers is actually growing, with just over 20% of the population of Wales able to speak the language. Welsh has been used in warfare by the British Army for secure communications, in a similar way that US forces used Navajo code talkers during WWII.

63. Sea eagles : ERNS
The ern (also erne) is also called the white-tailed eagle, and the sea-eagle.

65. River of Hades : STYX
The River Styx in Greek mythology was the river that formed the boundary between the Earth and the Underworld (or Hades). The souls of the newly dead had to cross the River Styx in a ferryboat piloted by Charon. Traditionally, a coin would be placed in the mouths of the dead "to pay the ferryman".

Down
2. "Famous" cookie man : AMOS
Wally Amos was a talent agent, one who was in the habit of taking home-baked cookies with him as an enticement to get celebrities to see him. He was urged by friends to open a cookie store (the cookies were that good, I guess) and this he did in Los Angeles in 1975 using the name "Famous Amos". The store was a smash hit and he was able build on the success by introducing his cookies into supermarkets. The brand was eventually bought up making Wally a rich man, and Famous Amos cookies are still flying off the shelf.

3. Chowder eater's utensil : SOUP SPOON
The type of soup known as “chowder” may be named for the pot in which it used to be cooked called a “chaudière”, a French term.

4. Seoul's home: Abbr. : KOR
Seoul is the captial city of South Korea. The Seoul National Capital Area is home to over 25 million people and is the second largest metropolitan area in the world, after Tokyo, Japan.

9. ___ Moines Register : DES
The city of Des Moines, the capital of Iowa, takes its name from the Des Moines River. The river in turn takes its name from the French "Rivière des Moines", meaning "River of the Monks". It looks like there isn't any "monkish" connection to the city's name per se. "Des Moines" was just the name given to the river by French traders who corrupted "Moingona", the name of a group of Illinois who lived by the river. However, others do contend that French Trappist monks, who lived fully 200 miles away from the river, somehow influenced the name.

10. Mattress invaders : BED BUGS
Bed bugs are parasites that feed on human blood, and their preferred habitat is the mattresses on which people sleep. Bed bugs have been around for thousands of years and were almost eradicated in the 1940s. However, infestations have been increasing since then. Dogs have been trained to detect bed bugs and are used by some pest control specialists.

11. "My Fair Lady" lady : ELIZA
Eliza Doolittle is Professor Henry Higgins's speech student in George Bernard Shaw's "Pygmalion". Of course "Pygmalion" was adapted by Lerner and Loewe to become the Broadway musical "My Fair Lady". The musical spun off the wonderful 1964 film of the same name, starring Audrey Hepburn and Rex Harrison. To cockney Eliza Doolittle, Professor Henry Higgins was 'Enry 'Iggins.

18. Icy cold : GELID
“Gelid” is such a lovely word, and means “icy cold”. “Gelid” derives from the Latin “gelum” meaning “frost, intense cold”.

28. Athletic shoe brand : AVIA
The Avia brand name for athletic shoes was chosen as "avia" is the Latin word for "to fly", and suggests the concept of aviation.

33. Singer Guthrie : ARLO
Arlo Guthrie is the son of Woody Guthrie. Both father and son are renowned for their singing of protest songs about social injustice. Arlo is most famous for his epic "Alice's Restaurant Massacree", a song that lasts a full 18m 34s. In the song, Guthrie tells how, after being drafted, he was rejected for service in the Vietnam War based on his criminal record. He had only one incident on his public record, a Thanksgiving Day arrest for littering and being a public nuisance when he was 18-years-old.

36. ___ Rabbit : BR’ER
Br'er Rabbit and Br'er Fox are characters in the Uncle Remus stories, written by Joel Chandler Harris. His stories are adaptations of African American folk tales that he collected across the Southern States. "Br'er" of course stands for "brother".

40. "2 Broke Girls" and "30 Rock" : SITCOMS
“2 Broke Girls” is a relatively new sitcom that has been on the air since 2011. It tells the story of two relatively poor roommates trying to start a cupcake business in Brooklyn, New York.

“30 Rock” is a sitcom on NBC that was created by the show’s star Tina Fey. Fey is an ex-performer and writer from “Saturday Night Live” and uses her experiences on that show as a basis for the “30 Rock” storyline.

43. Corrida cheer : OLE
“Olé” is a Spanish word that translates as “bravo”.

Spanish bullfighting is known locally as “corrida de toros”, literally "race of bulls".

45. Mother ___ of Calcutta : TERESA
Mother Teresa was born in 1910 in the city that is now called Skopje, the capital of Macedonia. She was given the names Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu ("Gonxha" means "little flower" in Albanian). She left home at the age of 18 and joined the Sisters of Loreto, and headed to Loreto Abbey in Rathfarnham in Dublin, Ireland in order to learn English. Her goal was to teach in India, and English was the language used there for instruction by the nuns. After Mother Teresa passed away in 1997 she was beatified by Pope John Paul II, a step on the road to canonization. In order for her to be beatified, there had to be documented evidence of a miracle that was performed due to her intercession. The miracle in question was the healing of a tumor in the abdomen of a woman due to the application of a locket containing a picture of Mother Teresa. Documentation of a second miracle is required for her to be declared a saint.

47. Capital of Idaho : BOISE
Boise, Idaho is the largest metropolitan area in the state by far. There are a number of stories pertaining to the etymology of the name “Boise”. One is that French trappers named the tree-lined river that ran through the area “la rivière boisée”, meaning “the wooded river”.

49. Largest moon of Saturn : TITAN
Titan is the largest moon of Saturn. Titan is unusual in many ways, including the fact that it is the only known satellite in the solar system that is known to have its own atmosphere (our own moon does not, for example). Titan is the second largest moon in the solar system, after Ganymede that orbits Jupiter. Titan is so large that it has a greater volume than Mercury, the solar system’s smallest planet.

50. Quantum mechanics pioneer Bohr : NIELS
Niels Bohr was a Danish physicist who won his 1922 Nobel Prize for his work on quantum mechanics and atomic structure. Later in his life he was part of the team working on the Manhattan Project, developing the first atomic bomb.

55. Follower of Corn, Rice and Wheat in cereal names : CHEX
The original Chex cereal was introduced in 1937 by Ralston Purina. Ralston Purina had a logo with a checkerboard square on it, which gave the pattern to the cereal, as well as its name. Chex used characters from the "Peanuts" comic strip in its advertising for many years.

57. Neighbor of Nor. : SWE
Sweden is the third largest country in the European Union by area. However, it has a low population density with only 24 inhabitants per square mile, which is very low for Europe and compares with a US population density of 84 inhabitants per square mile (lucky old Canada has 9 inhabitants per square mile!).

58. Craven of horror films : WES
Wes Craven is a very successful film director and writer specializing in movies of the horror genre, which means I don't watch them! He is responsible for "A Nightmare on Elm Street" and the "Scream" films.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Wine barrel : CASK
5. Tear to pieces : SHRED
10. "Porgy and ___" : BESS
14. Words after "here," "there" and "everywhere" in "Old MacDonald Had a Farm" : A MOO
15. "Pet" annoyance : PEEVE
16. For grades 1-12 : ELHI
17. Negative reaction to failure : SOUR GRAPES
19. Emergency-related : DIRE
20. Snake along the Nile : ASP
21. Dublin's land : EIRE
22. Former congresswoman Bella : ABZUG
23. Sort of words that sailors are famous for : SALTY LANGUAGE
27. Flip over : CAPSIZE
29. Synthesizer designer Robert : MOOG
30. Circumvent : AVOID
31. It's about six feet for a turkey vulture : WINGSPAN
35. ___ de Janeiro : RIO
36. Other half of a hit 45 : B-SIDE
38. Refinery material : ORE
39. Source of the word "karma" : SANSKRIT
42. Ken and Barbie : DOLLS
44. Deadly 1966 hurricane with a Spanish-derived name : INEZ
45. "Cats" poet : TS ELIOT
47. Feuding families, e.g. : BITTER ENEMIES
51. Chilling, as Champagne : ON ICE
52. Purple spring bloomer : IRIS
53. Drunk's interjection : HIC
56. Fascinated by : INTO
57. Sugar craving : SWEET TOOTH
60. Sewing line : SEAM
61. Like names starting "Ff-" : WELSH
62. Unadulterated : PURE
63. Sea eagles : ERNS
64. English class assignment : ESSAY
65. River of Hades : STYX

Down
1. Spanish house : CASA
2. "Famous" cookie man : AMOS
3. Chowder eater's utensil : SOUP SPOON
4. Seoul's home: Abbr. : KOR
5. Perfume application : SPRITZ
6. When repeated, a crier's cry : HEAR YE
7. Ward off : REPEL
8. Preceding night : EVE
9. ___ Moines Register : DES
10. Mattress invaders : BED BUGS
11. "My Fair Lady" lady : ELIZA
12. Shoulder gesture : SHRUG
13. Long, drawn-out attack : SIEGE
18. Icy cold : GELID
22. Awestruck : AGOG
24. "___ live and breathe!" : AS I
25. Surrounded by : AMID
26. All's opposite : NONE
27. Autos : CARS
28. Athletic shoe brand : AVIA
31. A lively person may have a sparkling one : WIT
32. Remove, as scratches on an auto : POLISH OUT
33. Singer Guthrie : ARLO
34. Egg holder : NEST
36. ___ Rabbit : BR’ER
37. Evaluate, with "up" : SIZE
40. "2 Broke Girls" and "30 Rock" : SITCOMS
41. Place for a football pad : KNEE
42. Certain believer : DEIST
43. Corrida cheer : OLE
45. Mother ___ of Calcutta : TERESA
46. Horseshoe forger : SMITHY
47. Capital of Idaho : BOISE
48. ___ circle : INNER
49. Largest moon of Saturn : TITAN
50. Quantum mechanics pioneer Bohr : NIELS
54. Modest response to praise : I TRY
55. Follower of Corn, Rice and Wheat in cereal names : CHEX
57. Neighbor of Nor. : SWE
58. Craven of horror films : WES
59. Photo ___ (political events) : OPS

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1 comment :

lylebicycle1 said...

Today I learned a few new things thanks to you. 36D, I never knew that br'er stood for brother, even though I kind of wondered what it meant. 49D, I didn't realize how big Titan is or that it had an atmosphere. Now I'm going to have to look up where our moon rates in size. Enjoyment and educational, such a deal. Thanks again.

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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.

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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 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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