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0708-13 New York Times Crossword Answers 8 Jul 13, 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: Randy Sowell
THEME: Turning Things … today’s themed answers are all things that rotate:
20A. Job position in which no one lasts long : REVOLVING DOOR
37A. Seemingly mad Muslim monk : WHIRLING DERVISH
49A. Yarn-making device : SPINNING WHEEL
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 5m 41s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. "House" actor Omar : EPPS
Omar Epps is the actor who played Eric Foreman on the excellent television series "House". Prior to playing Dr. Foreman, Epps had a recurring role playing Dr. Dennis Grant on "ER". And, in another link to the world of medicine, Epps was born in Savannah, Georgia to single mom, Dr. Bonnie Epps.

5. Remove the husk from, as corn : SHUCK
“To shuck” is to remove the husk from (say an ear of corn) or to remove the shell from (say an oyster).

10. Galifianakis of "The Hangover" : ZACH
Zach Galifianakis is a stand-up comedian who is making a name for himself on the big screen. Galifianakis garnered a lot of attention for his role in 2009's "The Hangover", and also starred opposite Robert Downey Jr. in the 2010 release "Due Date".

14. Stead : LIEU
As you might imagine, "in lieu" comes into English from the Old French word "lieu" meaning "place", which in turn is derived from the Latin "locum", also meaning "place". So, "in lieu" means "in place of".

15. Nearsighted Mr. ___ : MAGOO
Mr. Quincy Magoo is a wonderful cartoon character voiced by Jim Backus. Backus is probably equally well-known for playing Mr. Magoo as well as Thurston Howell, III on "Gilligan's Island". Mr. Magoo first appeared on the screen in a short called "The Ragtime Bear" in 1949. His persona was at least in part based on the antics of W. C. Fields. Backus originally used a fake rubber nose that pinched his nostrils in order to create the distinctive voice, although in time he learned to do the voice without the prop. My absolute favorite appearance by Mr. Magoo is in "Mr Magoo's Christmas Carol", a true classic from the sixties. There was a movie adaptation of "Mr Magoo" released in 1997, with Leslie Nielsen playing the title role.

16. 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. Deborah of "The King and I" : KERR
The lovely Deborah Kerr was a Scottish actress who made a real name for herself on the American stage and in Hollywood movies. Despite all her success, and six nominations for a Best Actress Oscar, Kerr never actually won an Academy Award. In 1967 she appeared in the James Bond film "Casino Royale" at the age of 46, making her oldest Bond Girl of all time.

“The King and I” is a Rodgers and Hammerstein musical based on a book by Margaret Landon called “Anna and the King of Siam” first published in 1944. Landon’s book is based on a true story, told in the memoirs of Anna Leonowens. Leonowens was the governess of the children of King Mongkut of Siam in the 1860s, and she also taught the king’s wives. The Rodgers and Hammerstein musical was adapted for the big screen in 1956 in a celebrated movie of the same name starring Deborah Kerr and Yul Brynner.

18. Funny DeGeneres : ELLEN
Ellen DeGeneres is a very, very successful TV personality, having parlayed her career in stand-up comedy into lucrative gigs as an actress and talk show host. Back in 1997 DeGeneres chose the “Oprah Winfrey Show” to announce that she was a lesbian. Her character on “The Ellen Show” also came out as a lesbian, in a scene with her therapist, played by Oprah Winfrey. Nice twist!

20. Job position in which no one lasts long : REVOLVING DOOR
“Revolving door” is the informal term given to a job that one person holds only for a very short time before moving on.

25. The "D" of PRNDL : DRIVE
PRNDL … that would be Park, Reverse, Neutral, Drive and Low.

28. Alan of "Argo" : ARKIN
The actor Alan Arkin won his only Oscar (Best Supporting Actor) for his role in "Little Miss Sunshine" from 2006, a movie that I just did not understand ...

“Argo” is a 2012 movie that is based on the true story of the rescue of six diplomats hiding out during the 1979 Iran hostage crisis. The film was directed by and stars Ben Affleck and is produced by Grant Heslov and George Clooney, the same pair who produced the excellent “Good Night, and Good Luck”. I saw “Argo” recently and recommend it highly, although I found the scenes of religious fervor pretty frightening …

31. Replacement for the franc and mark : EURO
The European Union (EU) today stands at a membership of 27 states. The Euro is the official currency of only 16 of the 27. The list of states in the EU that don't use the Euro includes the UK, Denmark and Sweden.

32. Dog or dogtooth : CANINE
The canine teeth of a mammal are also called the eye teeth. The name “canine” is used because these particular teeth are very prominent in dogs. The name “eye” is used because in humans the eye teeth are located in the upper jaw, directly below the eyes.

34. Command to a dog : SIC
Sic 'em is an attack order given to a dog, instructing the animal to growl, bark or even bite. The term dates back to the 1830s, with "sic" being a variation of "seek".

37. Seemingly mad Muslim monk : WHIRLING DERVISH
Dervishes are members of a several ascetic orders in the Muslim tradition. Most famous are the so called “whirling Dervishes” of the Mevlevi order in Turkey. These whirling Dervishes engage in a physically active form of meditation called Sufi spinning.

41. British P.M. after Churchill : ATTLEE
Clement Attlee served as leader of Britain's Labour Party and as Deputy Prime Minister in the coalition government during the war years under the leadership of Winston Churchill, a Conservative. Attlee swept into power right after WWII in a landslide victory over Churchill and was responsible for major changes not only in Britain but around the waning British Empire. It was under Attlee that former British colonies like India, Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka and Jordan became independent. Also, the Palestine Mandate was terminated in 1948, while he was in office, with the state of Israel being declared the very next day.

45. Theda of the silents : BARA
Theda Bara was a silent film star from Cincinnati, Ohio. Many cite Bara as the first movie sex symbol. She wore very revealing costumes in many of her films and she often played the femme fatale character. As such, Bara’s nickname was “the Vamp”.

47. The "A" of N.B.A.: Abbr. : ASSN
National Basketball Association (NBA)

Basketball truly is an American sport. It was created in 1891 by a James Naismith at the YMCA in Springfield, Massachusetts. His goal was to create something active and interesting for his students in the gym. The first "hoops" were actually peach baskets, with the bottoms of the baskets intact. When a player got the ball into the "net", someone had to clamber up and get the ball back out again in order to continue the game!

55. Abstract artist Joan : MIRO
Joan Miro was a Spanish artist. Miro immersed himself in Surrealism, so much so that Andre Breton, the founder of the movement, said that Miro was "the most Surrealist of us all". Miro painted "The Tilled Field" in 1923-24, a work that is regarded as Miro's first Surrealist masterpiece.

56. Muscat native : OMANI
Oman lies on the southeast coast of the Arabian Peninsula and is neighbored by the OAE, Saudi Arabia and Yemen. The capital city of Muscat has a strategic location on the Gulf of Oman and has a history of invasion and unrest. Centuries of occupation by the Persians ended in 1507 when the Portuguese took the city in a bloody attack. The Portuguese held Muscat for much of the next one hundred years until finally being ousted by local Omani forces in 1648. A Yemeni tribe invaded the area in 1741 and set up a monarchy that has been in place in Oman ever since.

57. Part of a buzzing swarm : GNAT
Gnats are attracted to the smell of rotting food, and to vinegar. Simple homemade traps that use vinegar are often constructed to attract and kill gnats.

60. Writer Joyce Carol ___ : OATES
Joyce Carol Oates is a remarkable writer, not just for the quality of her work (her 1969 novel "them" won a National Book Award, for example) but also for how prolific is her output. She published her first book in 1963 and since then has published over fifty novels as well as many other written works.

61. Submachine guns : UZIS
The first Uzi submachine gun was designed in the late 1940s by Major Uziel Gal of the Israel Defense Forces who gave his name to the gun.

62. Chromosome component : GENE
A gene is a section of a chromosome that is responsible for a particular characteristic in an organism. For example, one gene may determine eye color and another balding pattern. We have two copies of each gene, one from each of our parents, with each copy known as an allele.

63. "Who ___ what evil lurks ..." : KNOWS
“The Shadow” is a radio drama serial from the 1930s that started out life as a series of pulp novels. The title character is a heroic crime-fighting vigilante who uses psychic powers. Each radio broadcast started with the words:
“Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows!”

Down
1. Antlered animal : ELK
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 familiar with the smaller red deer back in their homelands, so when they saw the "huge" wapiti they assumed it was a moose, and incorrectly gave it the European name for a moose, namely "elk". The more correct name for the beast is "wapiti", which means "white rump" in Shawnee. It's all very confusing ...

3. Father, in France : PERE
In French, a father (père) has an important role in a family (famille).

4. Reality show in which contestants get "voted off the island" : SURVIVOR
The reality show "Survivor" is based on a Swedish television series created in 1997 called "Expedition Robinson".

7. Citrus hybrid : UGLI
The ugli fruit is a hybrid of an orange and a tangerine, first discovered growing wild in Jamaica where most ugli fruit comes from today.

8. Filmmaking brother Joel or Ethan : COEN
I think it's great to see two brothers working together and being so successful. Joel and Ethan Coen are two movie producers and directors who both live in New York City. The Coen brothers do love the movie-making business and they even married industry "insiders". Ethan's wife is film editor Tricia Cooke, and Joel is married to one of my favorite actresses, the lovely Frances McDormand.

9. "King ___" : KONG
“King Kong” really is a classic movie. It stars Fay Wray as the young woman (name Ann Darrow) with whom Kong falls in love. Wray was very interested in the role as she was told that she would be playing opposite the "tallest, darkest leading man in Hollywood". She thought it might be Clark Gable. At least that’s how the story goes ...

11. "March comes in like ___ ..." : A LION
“March comes in like a lion, and goes out like a lamb” is a proverb suggesting that the month of March starts off with cold and unpleasant weather, but finishes mild and quite pleasant.

12. Part of a guitar riff : CHORD
A riff is a short rhythmic phrase in music, especially one improvised on a guitar.

26. Germany's ___ Valley : RUHR
The Ruhr is a large urban area in western Germany. The area is heavily populated, and is the fifth largest urban area in the whole of Europe, after Istanbul, Moscow, London and Paris.

27. Flower in a van Gogh painting : IRIS
Van Gogh painted his "Irises" while he was in an asylum in the south of France the year before he committed suicide. The original owner was a French art critic and supporter of Van Gogh who paid 300 francs to purchase the painting. "Irises" was bought for $53.9 million in 1987 making it the most expensive painting sold up to that point. But, the buyer didn't actually have the necessary funds, so it had to be resold in 1990. It was picked up by the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, where you can see it today.

33. Bugs in "A Bug's Life" : ANTS
“A Bug's Life” is a 1998 animated feature film from Pixar. The storyline is based on the film “The Seven Samurai” and the fable of “The Ant and the Grasshopper”.

35. Capri, e.g. : ISLE
The island of Capri off the coast of Southern Italy has been a tourist resort since the days of ancient Rome. Capri is home to the famous Blue Grotto, a sea cave that is illuminated with sunlight that's colored blue as it passes through the seawater into the cave.

36. ___ Mix (party staple) : 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.

38. Jacob's father-in-law, in the Bible : LABAN
Laban is Rebekah's brother, and is also the father of Leah and Rachel, making him brother-in-law to Isaac, and uncle to Jacob.

39. "Slaughterhouse-Five" novelist : VONNEGUT
Kurt Vonnegut was an writer from Indianapolis whose most famous work is probably the novel “Slaughterhouse-Five” from 1969. Beyond his writing, Vonnegut was noted for his support of the American Civil Liberties Union and American Humanist Association. Kurt had a brother who made a big contribution to society. Bernard Vonnegut was the atmospheric scientist who discovered that silver iodide could be used to seed clouds and artificially create rain.

43. Bird on Cal Ripken's cap : ORIOLE
Cal Ripken played his entire, 20-year professional baseball career for the Baltimore Orioles. Ripken was known as the "Iron Man" because he showed up for work every day, come rain or shine. He played 2,632 straight games, blowing past the previous 2,130-game record held by Lou Gehrig.

45. "I Am the Walrus," for the Beatles' "Hello, Goodbye" : B-SIDE
“I Am the Walrus” is a Beatles song released in 1967. It was written by John Lennon, with the Walrus being a reference to the poem “The Walrus and the Carpenter” from Lewis Carroll’s “Through the Looking-Glass”.

47. Vice president under Nixon : AGNEW
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). Agnew was also the first Greek-American to serve as US Vice-President as he was the son of a Greek immigrant who had shortened the family name from Anagnostopoulos.

48. Holey cheese : SWISS
Swiss cheese is a relatively generic term and a type of cheese produced in various countries and not necessarily in Switzerland. What the cheeses all have in common is a resemblance to the original Swiss Emmental.

50. Kindle competitor : NOOK
The Barnes & Noble electronic-book reader is called the Nook. The Nook accounts for 10-15% of electronic book readers in the world.

51. One-named supermodel : IMAN
Iman Mohamed Abdulmajid is a supermodel from Somalia who goes simply by the name "Iman" these days. Iman is smart cookie. Imam has a degree in Political Science and is fluent in five languages: Somali, Arabic, Italian, French and English. Since 1992 Iman has been married to British rock star David Bowie.

52. Grp. with forces in Afghanistan : NATO
NATO is the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. NATO was founded not long after WWII in 1949 and is headquartered in Brussels, Belgium. The first NATO Secretary General was Lord Ismay, Winston Churchill's chief military assistant during WWII. Famously, Lord Ismay said the goal of NATO was "to keep the Russians out, the Americans in, and the Germans down."

53. ___ Ferrari, Italian automaker : ENZO
Enzo Ferrari was an Italian race car driver, and founder of the Ferrari car manufacturer. Ferrari died in 1988, and in 2003 the company named the Enzo Ferrari model after its founder.

55. Russian jet : MIG
The Russian fighter jets that we know as “MiGs” are so called because they were designed by the Mikoyan-and-Gurevich Design Bureau, and MiG is an acronym for “Mikoyan-and-Gurevich” in Russian.

58. Mao ___-tung : TSE
Mao Zedong (also “Mao Tse-tung”) was born on December 16, 1893 in the Hunan Province of China. As Mao was the son of a peasant farmer, his prospects for education were limited. Indeed he left school at age 13 to work on the family farm but did eventually get to secondary school in Changsha, the provincial capital. In the years following, Mao continued his education in Beijing and actually turned down an opportunity to study in France.


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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. "House" actor Omar : EPPS
5. Remove the husk from, as corn : SHUCK
10. Galifianakis of "The Hangover" : ZACH
14. Stead : LIEU
15. Nearsighted Mr. ___ : MAGOO
16. Grades 1-12 : ELHI
17. Deborah of "The King and I" : KERR
18. Funny DeGeneres : ELLEN
19. Uprising : RIOT
20. Job position in which no one lasts long : REVOLVING DOOR
23. Not working : IDLE
24. Outside of a watermelon : RIND
25. The "D" of PRNDL : DRIVE
28. Alan of "Argo" : ARKIN
31. Replacement for the franc and mark : EURO
32. Dog or dogtooth : CANINE
34. Command to a dog : SIC
37. Seemingly mad Muslim monk : WHIRLING DERVISH
40. 12-mo. periods : YRS
41. British P.M. after Churchill : ATTLEE
42. Eye amorously : OGLE
43. Extra-fat : OBESE
44. Building add-on : ANNEX
45. Theda of the silents : BARA
47. The "A" of N.B.A.: Abbr. : ASSN
49. Yarn-making device : SPINNING WHEEL
55. Abstract artist Joan : MIRO
56. Muscat native : OMANI
57. Part of a buzzing swarm : GNAT
59. One with millions of followers : IDOL
60. Writer Joyce Carol ___ : OATES
61. Submachine guns : UZIS
62. Chromosome component : GENE
63. "Who ___ what evil lurks ..." : KNOWS
64. Sped : TORE

Down
1. Antlered animal : ELK
2. Boardwalk adjunct : PIER
3. Father, in France : PERE
4. Reality show in which contestants get "voted off the island" : SURVIVOR
5. Odor : SMELL
6. Cut in two : HALVE
7. Citrus hybrid : UGLI
8. Filmmaking brother Joel or Ethan : COEN
9. "King ___" : KONG
10. Take close aim : ZERO IN
11. "March comes in like ___ ..." : A LION
12. Part of a guitar riff : CHORD
13. Any top 10 song, say : HIT
21. Praiseful poem : ODE
22. Not as moist : DRIER
25. Moist, as morning grass : DEWY
26. Germany's ___ Valley : RUHR
27. Flower in a van Gogh painting : IRIS
28. It may be acute or obtuse : ANGLE
29. Car-pooler's need : RIDE
30. Midpoint between a midi and a mini : KNEE
32. Mention in a footnote, say : CITE
33. Bugs in "A Bug's Life" : ANTS
34. Leo or Libra : SIGN
35. Capri, e.g. : ISLE
36. ___ Mix (party staple) : CHEX
38. Jacob's father-in-law, in the Bible : LABAN
39. "Slaughterhouse-Five" novelist : VONNEGUT
43. Bird on Cal Ripken's cap : ORIOLE
44. Volcanic emission : ASH
45. "I Am the Walrus," for the Beatles' "Hello, Goodbye" : B-SIDE
46. Chef's wear : APRON
47. Vice president under Nixon : AGNEW
48. Holey cheese : SWISS
50. Kindle competitor : NOOK
51. One-named supermodel : IMAN
52. Grp. with forces in Afghanistan : NATO
53. ___ Ferrari, Italian automaker : ENZO
54. Den : LAIR
55. Russian jet : MIG
58. Mao ___-tung : TSE


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2 comments :

Anonymous said...

Cheesey puzzle. Quite below the standards of TNYT, I believe. Relies on knowledge of famous names, a la the Daily News ("...man's name...{3 spaces}"} and not much else.

And as to "elhi", it reminds me of the Eddie Murphy line that when James Brown just needed a word, he simply made one up: "boolah". "Elhi" is in that same category, only now it's crossword puzzles. Almost 40 years of doing this puzzle and only came across the word in the last few months. And now with alarming frequency.

Bill Butler said...

It's a pity crosswords require so much "fill", those little words that are needed to make everthing else fit together. I am sick of Oreos, elhi, eek, egad and countless other little words. But, I also accept that they are a necessary evil if we want to get crosswords that are interesting and novel in oher respects.

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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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