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0417-12: New York Times Crossword Answers 17 Apr 12, Tuesday





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: Milo Beckman
THEME: ARROW … there is a note with today's puzzle that reads:
The circled letters in this puzzle, when read in the correct order, spell the name of a shape. The four unclued answers are common three-word phrases usually accompanied by this shape.
The circled letters spell out the word “ARROW”, and the unclued answers work with the clue “Words accompanying an arrow”:
17A. [See note] : YOU ARE HERE
26A. [See note] : USE OTHER DOOR
48A. [See note] : I’M WITH STUPID
64A. [See note] : THIS SIDE UP
COMPLETION TIME: 8m 27s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0


Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
1. Furniture on which a guest might sleep : SOFA
"Sofa" is a Turkish word meaning "bench".

5. Some 24-hr. breakfast places : IHOPS
The International House of Pancakes (IHOP) was founded back in 1958. IHOP was originally intended to be called IHOE, the International House of Eggs, but that name didn't do too well in marketing tests ...

20. Marsh plant : SEDGE
Sedges are a family of plants that resemble grasses and rushes. Sedges are more properly called Cyperaceae.

21. Founding owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers : ART ROONEY
Art Rooney was the son of Irish immigrants who left the country during the Potato Famine. Rooney founded the football team that was to become the Pittsburgh Steelers.

33. Mount in Exodus : SINAI
In the Book of Deuteronomy, it is stated that Moses was given the Ten Commandments on Mount Horeb. In other parts of the Bible the same event is described as taking place on Mount Sinai. So, many think that Horeb is an alternative name for Sinai.

38. Group of voters : BLOC
“Bloc” is the French word for “block”.

43. Food often eaten with chopsticks : SUSHI
Sushi is a Japanese dish that has as its primary ingredient cooked, vinegared rice. The rice is usually topped with something, most often fish, and can be served in seaweed rolls. If you want raw fish by itself, then you have to order "sashimi".

45. Asian gambling mecca : 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. Today Macau’s economy is driven by tourism and gambling.

54. "For ___ a jolly ..." : HE’S
“For He’s a Jolly Good Fellow” is the second-most popular song in the English language, according to the “Guinness Book of World Records”. Top of the list is “Happy Birthday to You”, and third comes “Auld Lang Syne”.

66. ___ Hari : MATA
Mata Hari was the stage name used by Margaretha Geertuida Zella, born in the Netherlands in 1876. After an unsuccessful and somewhat tragic marriage, Zella moved to Paris in 1903 where she struggled to make a living. By 1905 she was working as an exotic dancer and using the name Mata Hari. She was a successful courtesan, notably moving in various circles of high-ranking military officers. She apparently worked as a double agent, both for the French and the Germans. When she was accused by the French of passing information to the enemy, she was tried, found guilty and executed by firing squad at the height of WW1 in 1917.

67. Peace ___ : CORPS
The Peace Corps is an organization of American volunteers that is run by the US government. The Peace Corps was established by President Kennedy in 1961, and has a three-part mission:
1. Providing technical assistance
2. Helping people outside the US to understand American culture
3. Helping Americans to understand the culture of other countries

68. Poe writing : TALE
Edgar Allan Poe lived a life of many firsts. He is considered to be the inventor of the detective-fiction genre. He was also the first notable American author to make his living through his writing, something that didn't really go too well for him as he was always financially strapped. In 1849 he was found on the streets of Baltimore, delirious from either drugs or alcohol. He died a few days later in hospital at 39 years of age.

70. "Laughing" creature : HYENA
Our word “volcano” comes from “Vulcano”, the name of a volcanic island off the coast of Italy. The island’s name comes from Vulcan, the Roman god of fire. The Romans believed that the island of Vulcano was the chimney of the forge belonging to the god Vulcan. The Romans also believed that the eruptions on Mount Etna in Sicily were caused by Vulcan getting angry and working his forge so hard that sparks and smoke flew out of the top of the volcano.

Down
2. Double-reeded instrument : OBOE
The oboe is perhaps my favorite of the reed instruments. The name "oboe" comes from the French "hautbois" which means "high wood". When you hear an orchestra tuning before a performance you'll note (pun intended!) that the oboe starts off the process by playing an "A". The rest of the musicians in turn tune to that oboe's "A". Oh, and if you want to read a fun book (almost an "exposé") about life playing the oboe, you might try "Mozart in the Jungle" by oboist Blair Tindall. I heard recently that the folks at HBO are working towards a pilot based on the book, and I can’t wait to see it!

4. A little faster than largo : ADAGIO
An adagio is a piece of music with a slow tempo. The "adagio" marking on the score is an instruction to play the piece slowly and in a stately manner. The word adagio is Latin for "at ease".

Largo is a instruction to play a piece of music with a very slow tempo. “Largo” is the Italian word for “broadly”.

5. Word repeated before "Baby" in a hip-hop title : ICE
“Ice Ice Baby” is a hip hop song by Vanilla Ice, released in 1990.

7. River separating Germany and Poland : ODER
The Oder rises in the Czech Republic and forms just over a hundred miles of the border between Germany and Poland, before eventually emptying into the Baltic Sea.

9. Dual-track, in a way : STEREO
Monophonic sound ("mono") is sound reproduced using just one audio channel, which is usually played out of just one speaker. Stereophonic sound is reproduced using two audio channels, with the sound from each channel played out of two different speakers. The pair of stereo speakers are usually positioned apart from each other so that sound appears to come from between the two. Quadraphonic sound (4.0 surround sound) uses four audio channels with the sound played back through four speakers often positioned at the corners of the room in which one is listening.

11. ___ acid (protein builder) : AMINO
Amino acids are essential to life in many ways, not least of which is their use as the building blocks of proteins.

22. Some medals for Spanish athletes : OROS
In Spanish, one might win golds (oros) at the Olympic Games (los Juegos Olímpicos).

24. The Titanic, e.g. : SHIP
The RMS Titanic set off on her tragic maiden voyage in 1912, sailing from Southampton, England bound for New York City. Regulations only required that the ship have lifeboat capacity for 1,178 people, even though a full complement of passengers and crew was 3,547. When the order was given to abandon ship, the captain adhered to the traditional protocol of "women and children first". As a result, only 20% of male passengers survived the disaster, compared to 75% of the female passengers. Perhaps more telling is that 61% of those in first class survived, and only 25% of those in third class. The crew fared even worse though, with only 24% making it.

26. City, to Cicero : URBS
“Urbs” is the Latin word for “city”.

Cicero was a very influential senator in Ancient Rome, in part due to his renowned ability to deliver a persuasive speech.

27. Original "Star Trek" helmsman : SULU
Mr. Sulu was of course played by George Takei in the original "Star Trek" series. Takei has played lots of roles over the years and is still very active in television. Did you know that he appeared in the 1963 film, "Pt-109"? Not only did Takei play the helmsman on the Starship Enterprise, he played the helmsman steering the Japanese destroyer that ran down John F. Kennedy's motor torpedo boat.

When Gene Roddenberry first proposed the science fiction series that became "Star Trek", he marketed it as "Wagon Train to the Stars", a pioneer-style Western in outer space. In fact his idea was to produce something more like "Gulliver's Travels", as he intended to write episodes that were adventure stories on one level, but morality tales on another. Personally I think that he best achieved this model with the spin off series "Star Trek: The Next Generation". If you watch individual episodes you will see thinly disguised treatments of moral issues such as racism, homosexuality, genocide etc. For my money, "The Next Generation" is the best of the whole franchise ...

36. New Zealander : KIWI
Unlike many nicknames for people of a particular country, the name "Kiwi" for a New Zealander isn't offensive at all. The term comes from the flightless bird the kiwi, that is endemic to New Zealand and is the country's national symbol. Kiwi is a Maori word, and the plural (when referring to the bird) is simply "kiwi". However, when you have two or more New Zealanders with you, they are Kiwis (note the "s", and indeed the capital "K"!).

44. TV's "How ___ Your Mother" : I MET
“How I Met Your Mother” is a sitcom that CBS has been airing since 2005. The main character is Ted Mosby, played by Josh Radnor. Mosby is also the narrator for the show, looking back from the year 2030 (the live action is set in the present). As narrator, the older Mosby character is voiced by Bob Saget.

46. Wombs : UTERI
The Latin "uterus" translates as both "womb" and "belly". The Latin word was derived from the Greek "hystera" also meaning womb, which gives us the words "hysterectomy", and "hysterical".

51. Summation symbol in math : SIGMA
Sigma is the eighteenth letter of the Greek alphabet, and is the one used for an “ess” sound.

52. They're below elbows : ULNAS
The radius and ulna are bones in the forearm. If you hold the palm of your hand up in front of you, the radius is the bone on the "thumb-side" of the arm, and the ulna is the bone on the "pinkie-side".

53. "The Colossus and Other Poems" poet : PLATH
"The Colossus and Other Poems" is a collection of poetry by Sylvia Plath, first published in 1960.

Sylvia Plath was a poet from Boston, Massachusetts who lived much of her life in the UK, where she married fellow poet Ted Hughes. The couple had a tumultuous relationship, and Plath had a long battle with depression. She lost that battle in 1963, committing suicide at the age of 30 years.

58. Presenter of many game shows? : ESPN
ESPN is the Entertainment Sports Programming Network, a cable network that broadcasts sports programming 24 hours a day. It was launched back in 1979.

60. Jets or Nets : TEAM
Just like the New York Giants, the New York Jets are based in New Jersey, headquartered in Florham Park. The Jets and the Giants have a unique arrangement in the NFL in that the two teams share the same stadium, the New Meadowlands in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Jets were an AFL charter team, formed in 1959 as the Titans of New York. They changed their name to the Jets in 1963.

The New Jersey Nets NBA team play in the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. The plan is for them to relocate to the Barclays Center that is under construction in Brooklyn, New York. The team's name will then change to the Brooklyn Nets.

65. Govt. insurer of seniors : SSA
The Social Security Administration (SSA) was of course set up as part of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal. The first person to receive a monthly retirement benefit was Ida May Fuller of Vermont who received her first check for the sum of $22.54 after having contributed for three years through payroll taxes. The New Deal turned out to be a good deal for Ms. Fuller, as she lived to the age of 100 years of age and received a total benefit of almost $23,000, whereas her three years of contributions added up to just $24.75.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Furniture on which a guest might sleep : SOFA
5. Some 24-hr. breakfast places : IHOPS
10. Magician's word : TADA
14. Resting at night : ABED
15. Military academy enrollee : CADET
16. Leave out : OMIT
17. [See note] : YOU ARE HERE
19. Toothpaste flavor : MINT
20. Marsh plant : SEDGE
21. Founding owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers : ART ROONEY
23. Powerful connections : INS
25. Goofs : ERRORS
26. [See note] : USE OTHER DOOR
32. Oriental, e.g. : RUG
33. Mount in Exodus : SINAI
34. Pair of ___ : SOCKS
38. Group of voters : BLOC
40. Pair of ___ : PANTS
42. Lash : WHIP
43. Food often eaten with chopsticks : SUSHI
45. Asian gambling mecca : MACAU
47. Have bills : OWE
48. [See note] : I’M WITH STUPID
51. Many a campaign event : SUPPER
54. "For ___ a jolly ..." : HE’S
55. Uncomfortable : ILL AT EASE
59. Back in style : RETRO
63. Chew (on) : GNAW
64. [See note] : THIS SIDE UP
66. ___ Hari : MATA
67. Peace ___ : CORPS
68. Poe writing : TALE
69. Like volcanic fallout : ASHY
70. "Laughing" creature : HYENA
71. Black cat, to some : OMEN

Down
1. "___ who?" : SAYS
2. Double-reeded instrument : OBOE
3. Long-term hostility : FEUD
4. A little faster than largo : ADAGIO
5. Word repeated before "Baby" in a hip-hop title : ICE
6. "Very funny" : HA HA
7. River separating Germany and Poland : ODER
8. Flippantly cocky : PERT
9. Dual-track, in a way : STEREO
10. Day when procrastination ends, supposedly : TOMORROW
11. ___ acid (protein builder) : AMINO
12. Eatery : DINER
13. Lawyers: Abbr. : ATTYS
18. Is a tenant : RENTS
22. Some medals for Spanish athletes : OROS
24. The Titanic, e.g. : SHIP
26. City, to Cicero : URBS
27. Original "Star Trek" helmsman : SULU
28. They may need boosting : EGOS
29. As a friend, to François : EN AMI
30. Assaulted, in a way : RAN AT
31. Leave behind, informally : DITCH
35. Cut of meat : CHOP
36. New Zealander : KIWI
37. Tore : SPED
39. Ruin bit by bit, with "at" : CHIP AWAY
41. Pageant wrap : SASH
44. TV's "How ___ Your Mother" : I MET
46. Wombs : UTERI
49. Sad sort : WRETCH
50. Familiar with : USED TO
51. Summation symbol in math : SIGMA
52. They're below elbows : ULNAS
53. "The Colossus and Other Poems" poet : PLATH
56. Sailor's call : AHOY
57. Beget : SIRE
58. Presenter of many game shows? : ESPN
60. Jets or Nets : TEAM
61. Reign : RULE
62. "Yes, we're ___" : OPEN
65. Govt. insurer of seniors : SSA

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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 bill@paxient.com.

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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