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Greetings from Dundalk, County Louth in Ireland

I am on vacation in Ireland, and have extended my stay until October 24th. I am focused on getting the puzzle solved and at least a basic post up each day. It's proving to be difficult to do much more than that due to pressure of time, which I am sure you can understand. Happy puzzling, and slainte!

Bill

0512-12: New York Times Crossword Answers 12 May 12, Saturday





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: Caleb Madison
THEME: None
COMPLETION TIME: 64m 54s (after a wedding rehearsal dinner, if you know what I mean)
ANSWERS I MISSED: 2 … STENTORS (stentars), ATTO- (atta-)


Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
16. André and Mia adopted her : SOON-YI
Soon-Yi Previn is the adopted daughter of actress Mia Farrow and pianist/conductor André Previn. After Farrow and Previn divorced, Farrow started seeing famed movie director Woody Allen. That relationship ended when Farrow discovered that Allen was having an affair with her daughter Soon-Yi. Woody Allen and Soon-Yi Previn were married in 1997 and are still together.

19. Big dogs : MASTIFFS
There are a number of Mastiff breeds of dog, all of which are noted for their large size. Even though modern Mastiffs generally have an easy temperament, over the centuries the Mastiff breeds have been used as guard dogs and war dogs, even back to Ancient Roman times.

20. 1969 Tony winner for "Promises, Promises" : ORBACH
Jerry Orbach was an American actor, noted for playing one of the lead detectives in “Law & Order” on television. Orbach also provided the voice for the character Lumière in the Disney feature “Beauty and the Beast”.

22. When to see der Mond : NACHT
“Der Mond” is German for the moon, and the moon is seen at night (“nacht”).

23. Big name in gourmet chocolate : LINDT
The delicious Swiss chocolate sold under the Lindt brand name has its origins in a small confectionery store in Zurich in the 1840s. Lindt purchased our local chocolate company here in San Francisco, Ghirardelli, back in 1998.

26. More likely to be bowdlerized : RACIER
To bowdlerize is to expurgate or censor, to remove material from a work that is deemed to be offensive. The term comes from Thomas Bowdler, an English editor who published works of William Shakespeare in 1818 that had “offensive” words and expressions removed, so that they would be appropriate for “women and children”.

30. Chiwere speaker : OTOE
The Otoe (also Oto) Native American tribe originated in the Great Lakes region as part of the Winnebago or Siouan tribes. The group that would become the Otoe broke away from the Winnebago and migrated southwestwards ending up in the Great Plains. In the plains the Otoe adopted a semi-nomadic lifestyle dependent on the horse, with the American bison becoming central to their diet.

Chiwere is a Siouan language spoken by the Otoe people, as well as the Missouria and Iowa peoples.

31. Emmy-winning show of 2007, '08 and '09 : THIRTY ROCK
“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.

35. Rom. tongue : LAT
The Romance languages are those that grew out of nonstandard, Vulgar Latin. Included in the list of Romance languages are Spanish, Portuguese, French and Italian.

37. Face-topping figure : XII
There is often a Roman numeral 12 (XII) at the top of a clock face.

38. 1955 Dior debut : A-LINE DRESS
Christian Dior was a French fashion designer. As WWII approached, Dior was called up by the French military, drawing a temporary halt to his career in fashion. He left the army in 1942 and for the duration of the war designed clothes for wives of Nazi officers and French collaborators. After the war his designs became so popular that he helped reestablish Paris as the fashion center of the world.

40. Tiropita ingredient : FETA
Feta is a Greek cheese made from sheep's milk, or a mixture of sheep's and goat's milk. The cheese is salted and cured in a brine solution for several months before it is eaten.

Tiropita is a Greek pastry, a savory filled with a mixture of cheese and egg.

42. Nearly flawless bodies? : NINES
I guess the idea is that some folks call an exceptionally attractive person a “ten”, so a “nine” has a flaw or two. To me though, beauty is in the eye of the beholder ...

46. 1989 E.P.A. target : ALAR
The chemical name for Alar, a plant growth regulator and color enhancer, is daminozide. It was primarily used on apples but was withdrawn from the market when it was linked to cancer.

54. Smallish printing format : OCTAVO
Some common book formats/sizes are folio, octavo and quarto. For an octavo book sixteen pages of text are printed, eight pages on each side of a "full-size" piece of paper. The pages are formed by folding the sheet of paper three times in half, giving a group of sixteen pages printed on eight leaves (after separation). The size of the resulting pages of course depends on the size of the original sheet, but each page is one eight the size of that original (hence the name octavo). Nowadays the octavo size refers to books that are between eight and ten inches tall.

58. 2009-11 Republican National Committee chairman : STEELE
Michael Steele served as chairman of the Republican National Convention from 2009 to 2011, the first African American to fill the post.

59. Their voices really carry : STENTORS
Stentor was a figure in Greek mythology, a Greek herald during the Trojan War. He was noted for having a powerful voice, so today we describe someone with such a characteristic as “stentorian”. The original Stentor supposedly died after being defeated by Hermes in a shouting contest.

Down
1. Fast shuffle : SHAM
Fast shuffle is another name for stacking a deck of cards, placing cards in such a way that the dealer is favored.

2. ___ Debevoise, Marilyn Monroe's "How to Marry a Millionaire" role : POLA
The 1953 romantic comedy “How to Marry a Millionaire” is a story about three “gold-diggers”, three women out to marry into money. The three female leads are played by Marilyn Monroe, Betty Grable and Lauren Bacall, an impressive line-up. “How to Marry a Millionaire” was the first film to be shot in CinemaScope, the wide-screen format.

3. Some turnovers: Abbr. : INTS
Interceptions.

4. It goes whichever way the wind blows : LEE TIDE
A leeward tide (sometime lee tide) is one that runs in the same direction that the wind is blowing. A windward tide, on the other hand, runs in the opposite direction to the wind. I think that the main danger with a lee tide is when a boat is at anchor. If the tide and wind are acting in concert then the anchor is more likely to slip.

5. Apollo, for one : LYRIST
A lyre is a stringed instrument, most closely associated with Ancient Greece.

6. Sailor's behind : ABAFT
On a boat the term “abaft” means “towards the stern”.

8. Forest race of fantasy : ENTS
Ents are those tree-like creatures that live in J. R. R. Tolkien's Middle-earth, in his series of books "The Lord of the Rings". “Ent” is an Old English word for “giant”.

11. 2008 Libertarian presidential candidate : BOB BARR
Before Bob Barr joined the Libertarian party, he served as one of Georgia's Republican Representatives in the US House. Barr came to prominence during the Clinton administration when he was one of the leaders of the movement to impeach the President, and the first representative to call for the President's resignation after the Monica Lewinsky scandal broke.

12. Computing behemoth : ENIAC
The acronym ENIAC stands for Electronic Numerical Integrator and Calculator (although many folks insist that the C was for "Computer"). ENIAC was the first general-purpose electronic computer. It was designed to calculate artillery firing tables, but it ended up being used early on to make calculations necessary for the development of the hydrogen bomb. Given its uses, it's not surprising to hear that development of ENIAC was funded by the US Army during WWII.

23. Woman who "drank Champagne and danced all night," in song : LOLA
"Lola" is a fabulous song, written by Ray Davies and released by the Kinks back in 1970. Inspired by a real life incident, the lyrics tell of young man who met a young "lady" in a club, danced with her, and then discovered "she" was actually a transvestite. The storyline isn't very traditional, but the music is superb.

28. Early radio receiver : CRYSTAL SET
A crystal radio is a passive receiver, meaning that it uses the power in the radio signal to produce sound and does not amplify that signal (it has not battery). The crystal in the radio acts as a primitive form of diode. The sound coming out of a crystal set is so low that you can only hear it with headphones.

32. Draft team : OXEN
A draft is a team of animals used to pull a load.

34. Rondos, e.g. : KIAS
Kia Motors is the second largest manufacturer of cars in South Korea, behind Hyundai (and Hyundai is a part owner in Kia now). In recent years, Kia has focused on sales into Europe, and has been remarkably successful.

36. Big ray : SEA DEVIL
“Sea devil” is another name for the manta ray.

The manta ray is the biggest species of ray, with the largest one recorded at over 25 feet across and weighing 5,100 pounds.

39. Magic show? : NBA GAME
The Orlando Magic were formed in 1989 as an NBA expansion team. A local paper was asked to run a competition to suggest names for the new team and the community came up with its four top picks of "Heat", "Tropics", "Juice" and "Magic". A committee then opted for the "Orlando Magic". The best choice I think ...

40. Producer of the venom solenopsin : FIRE ANT
Fire ants are stinging ants. Most stinging ants bite their prey and then spray acid on the wound. The fire ant, however, bites to hold on, and then injects an alkaloid venom from its abdomen, creating a burning sensation in humans that have been nipped.

42. Annual George Jean ___ Award for Dramatic Criticism : NATHAN
George Jean Nathan was a drama critic and editor. The George Jean Nathan Award, an honor in dramatic criticism, is named after him.

43. Bazaar makeup : SHOPS
Our word “bazaar” comes from the Persian “bazar” meaning “market”.

45. ___ Rios de Minas, Brazil : ENTRE
Entre Rios de Minas is a municipality in Minas Gerais, one of 26 states of Brazil.

47. It might be a triple : LATTE
The term “latte” is an abbreviation of the Italian "caffelatte" meaning "coffee (and) milk". Note that in the correct spelling of "latte", the Italian word for milk, there is no accent over the "e". An accent is often added by mistake when we use the word in English, perhaps meaning to suggest that the word is French.

51. Quintillionth: Prefix : ATTO-
Numbers were another thing that caused me problems when I moved to the US. Where I come from a thousand million is just that, a thousand million, whereas in the US that’s a billion. All the names for numbers bigger than a US billion are different then in Europe. What’s called a quintillion here (a million x a trillion US) we just call a trillion.

52. Locale in a Beatles title : USSR
By the time the Beatles recorded "Back in the U.S.S.R", they were having a lot of problems working with each other. The song was recorded in 1968, with the band formally dissolving in 1970. Tensions were so great during the recording of "Back in the U.S.S.R" that Ringo Starr actually stormed out saying that he had quit, and the remaining three Beatles made the record without Ringo. Drums were played mainly by Paul McCartney, but there are also drum tracks on the final cut by both George Harrison and John Lennon. Interesting, huh?

53. Kikkoman options : SOYS
Kikoman is a company headquartered in Japan, noted in North America as a producer of soy sauce.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Drinking problem : SPILLAGE
9. If all goes swimmingly : AT BEST
15. Sugar : HONEY BUN
16. André and Mia adopted her : SOON-YI
17. Change-producing agent : ALTERANT
18. Water park recreation : TUBING
19. Big dogs : MASTIFFS
20. 1969 Tony winner for "Promises, Promises" : ORBACH
21. Colon's meaning, at times : IS TO
22. When to see der Mond : NACHT
23. Big name in gourmet chocolate : LINDT
26. More likely to be bowdlerized : RACIER
30. Chiwere speaker : OTOE
31. Emmy-winning show of 2007, '08 and '09 : THIRTY ROCK
35. Rom. tongue : LAT
36. Didn't demur : SAID YES
37. Face-topping figure : XII
38. 1955 Dior debut : A-LINE DRESS
40. Tiropita ingredient : FETA
41. Maximally mean : BASEST
42. Nearly flawless bodies? : NINES
43. Place : STEAD
46. 1989 E.P.A. target : ALAR
48. One in the closet : HANGER
50. Starts to stagnate : PLATEAUS
54. Smallish printing format : OCTAVO
55. Response to a surprising statement : IS THAT SO?
56. One may be required to park : PERMIT
57. Start to squirm : GET ANTSY
58. 2009-11 Republican National Committee chairman : STEELE
59. Their voices really carry : STENTORS

Down
1. Fast shuffle : SHAM
2. ___ Debevoise, Marilyn Monroe's "How to Marry a Millionaire" role : POLA
3. Some turnovers: Abbr. : INTS
4. It goes whichever way the wind blows : LEE TIDE
5. Apollo, for one : LYRIST
6. Sailor's behind : ABAFT
7. Piece offer? : GUN FOR HIRE
8. Forest race of fantasy : ENTS
9. Respecting : AS TO
10. What seeds are often planted in : TOURNEYS
11. 2008 Libertarian presidential candidate : BOB BARR
12. Computing behemoth : ENIAC
13. Coordinate : SYNCH
14. Like best friends : TIGHT
23. Woman who "drank Champagne and danced all night," in song : LOLA
24. Rom. tongue : ITAL
25. Terse demurral : NOT I
27. Posse, e.g. : AIDES
28. Early radio receiver : CRYSTAL SET
29. Kin of -niks : -ITES
31. Bits : TADS
32. Draft team : OXEN
33. Reference : CITE
34. Rondos, e.g. : KIAS
36. Big ray : SEA DEVIL
39. Magic show? : NBA GAME
40. Producer of the venom solenopsin : FIRE ANT
42. Annual George Jean ___ Award for Dramatic Criticism : NATHAN
43. Bazaar makeup : SHOPS
44. Indicator of silence : TACET
45. ___ Rios de Minas, Brazil : ENTRE
47. It might be a triple : LATTE
49. Mechanical : ROTE
50. Pen pals? : PIGS
51. Quintillionth: Prefix : ATTO-
52. Locale in a Beatles title : USSR
53. Kikkoman options : SOYS

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2 comments :

Anonymous said...

Hi, love your website!

For 3 down, I will hazard that "INTS" is short for interceptions in American football, not interferences.

Bill Butler said...

Hi there.

That would qualify as a big "oops!" on my part!

Thanks for watching my back. All fixed now. I appreciate the help!

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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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