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0815-13 New York Times Crossword Answers 15 Aug 13, 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: Jeff Chen
THEME: Letter Homophones … each of today’s themed answers contains a circled letter or letters. That letter(s) is a homophone of the starting word(s) of the same answer:
19A. What the circled letter in this answer represents, homophonically : SEA OF CORTEZ (C of “Cortez”)
22A. What the circled letter in this answer represents, homophonically : EYE OF THE TIGER (I of “the tiger”)
42A. What the circled letter in this answer represents, homophonically : BEE IN ONE’S BONNET (B in one’s “bonnet”)
47A. What the circled letters in this answer represent, homophonically : SEE YOU IN COURT (C U in “court”)
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 17m 33s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

5. Licensing grp. : DMV
In most states, the government agency responsible for vehicle registration and the issuing of drivers licenses is called the DMV. This acronym usually stands for the Department of Motor Vehicles, but there are "variations on the theme". For example, in Arizona the responsible agency is called the Motor Vehicle Division (MVD), and in Colorado the familiar acronym DMV stands for "Division" of Motor Vehicles.

8. Like Goodwill goods : USED
Goodwill Industries is a non-profit organization focused on providing aid to people in the community. Goodwill is funded by thrift stores located right across North America. The organization has its roots in an urban outreach program of the Morgan methodist Chapel in Boston, Massachusetts that started operations in 1902. That program involved the collection of discarded household goods and clothing, and the repair of the items so that they could be distributed to the needy.

12. Figure on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel : ADAM
The Sistine Chapel, in the Pope's residence in Rome, takes its name from Pope Sixtus IV who was responsible for restoring the old Capella Magna in the 15th century. It was about a century later (1508-1512) that Michelangelo painted the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel under the patronage of Pope Julius II.

13. Oil vessel : CRUET
A cruet is a small glass bottle for holding a condiment or perhaps a dressing. The word "cruet" comes from the Old French word for an earthen pot.

16. Provider of two- and four-yr. scholarships : ROTC
The Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) is a training program for officers based in colleges all around the US. The ROTC program was established in 1862 when as a condition of receiving a land-grant to create colleges, the federal government required that military tactics be part of a new school's curriculum.

19. What the circled letter in this answer represents, homophonically : SEA OF CORTEZ
The Gulf of California is also known as the Sea of Cortez, and is the body of water that separates the peninsula of Baja, California from the Mexican mainland.

22. What the circled letter in this answer represents, homophonically : EYE OF THE TIGER
“Eye of the Tiger” is 1982 song released by the rock band Survivor.

I am no fan of boxing, or boxing films, but I do like some of the music that has come out of the “Rocky” franchise. In 1982, Sylvester Stallone specifically asked American rock band Survivor to write a song for his upcoming movie “Rocky III”. Stallone was impressed with a previous composition from the band called “Poor Man’s Son”, and wanted something in a similar style. Survivor came up with the theme song “Eye of the Tiger”, which jumped straight to the top of the charts worldwide, including in Ireland (the true barometer of a great song!).

24. Refrigerant inits. : CFC
Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) are the propellants that were once used in aerosols. CFCs make their way up into the ozone layer and trigger a chain reaction that converts ozone (O3) into regular oxygen (O2). That conversion creates “holes” in the ozone layer. Regular O2 is good stuff, but we need O3 to absorb harmful UV radiation raining down on us. CFC is not good stuff ...

25. Some football linemen: Abbr. : RTS
In American football, linemen specialize in playing in the line of scrimmage. RT stands for Right Tackle. That's about all I know, and even that I am unsure about ...

26. Cotillion V.I.P. : DEB
“Cotillion” is an American term that we’ve been using since about 1900 for a formal ball. In France a cotillion was a type of dance, with the term deriving from an Old French word for a petticoat. I guess the cotillion dance was one in which the lady would flash her petticoats as she did a twirl!

Deb is short for "debutante", which translates from French as "female beginner".

27. Traffic control org. : DEA
The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) was set up in 1973 while President Nixon was in office.

29. Final dramatic notes of the "1812 Overture" : E-FLATS
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s famous “1812 Overture” is more correctly called “The Year 1812 (festival overture in E-flat major). Tchaikovsky wrote the piece in 1880 as a commemoration of Russia’s successful defence in face of an 1812 invasion by Napoleon’s French Army and allies. The “1812” is renowned for its use of cannon fire, ringing bells and a robust brass fanfare at its climax.

31. Scopolamine and sodium pentothal, e.g. : SERUMS
A “truth serum” is a common name given to any medication used to obtain information from subjects who are unwilling to give the information willingly. Examples of drugs used as a truth serum are scopolamine, Sodium Pentathol and ethanol (aka “alcohol” that is served in a bar).

The drug known as scopolamine is named for the plant genus Scopolia. Some of the plants that yield the alkaloid belong to the genus Scopolia. The many uses of scopolamine include the treatment of nausea and seasickness, as a preanesthetic, and to dilute the pupil of the eye.

Sodium Pentothal is a brand name for the drug sodium thiopental. Sodium thiopental is mainly used as a general anesthetic. It is usually the first drug of three given in a lethal injection administered to carry out capital punishment in the US.

33. Classic camera : LEICA
Leica is a German optics company, famous for production of lenses and cameras. The 1913 Leica was the first practical camera that could use 35mm film, a size chosen because it was already the standard for film used in motion pictures.

34. Joe : MUD
It seems that no one really knows why we refer to coffee as "joe", but we've been doing so since early in WWII.

38. Typhon was trapped under it, in Greek myth : ETNA
Typhon was known as the “father of all monsters” in Greek mythology, and he was married to the “mother of all monster”, Echidna. Typhon had a huge human torso with a hundred dragon heads. His lower body was made up of gigantic viper coils. Although all the gods feared Typhon, Zeus finally defeated him and trapped him underneath Mount Etna.

39. Something a picker picks : BANJO
The instrument that we know today as the banjo is a derivative of instruments that were used in Africa.

41. Table d'___ : HOTE
On a restaurant menu, items that are "à la carte" are priced and ordered separately. A menu marked "table d'hôte" (also called "prix fixe") is a fixed-price menu with limited choice.

45. Relief might follow it : BAS
In bas-relief an image projects just a little above the background, as in perhaps a head depicted on a coin.

46. Et ___ (footnote abbr.) : SEQ
The Latin phrase “et sequens” or “et sequentia” is used in English to mean “and following”, and is abbreviated to “et seq”.

54. Bryn ___ : MAWR
I used to live not far from Bryn-mawr (also "Brynmwar") in Wales, the town with the highest elevation in the country. Appropriately enough, "bryn mawr" is Welsh for "big hill". There is also a Bryn Mawr in Pennsylvania (note the different capitalization) that is named after its Welsh counterpart. At the Pennsylvania location there's a Bryn Mawr college, a private women's school that was the first American university to offer graduate degrees to women.

55. Bobby in a 1971 #1 hit : MCGEE
Janis Joplin recorded the song “Me and Bobby McGee” just a few days before she died in 1970. The song was released anyway, and it became Joplin’s only number one single. There have been just two posthumous number one singles, Joplin's “Me and Bobby McGee”, and Otis Redding’s “(Sittin’ on) the Dock of the Bay”.

56. Chits : IOUS
A chit is a note or a short letter. The term tends to be used these days in the sense of an amount owed (as in a poker game). The word used to be "chitty", which is now obsolete but closer to the original Hindi term. I feel a tad obsolete myself because when we are at school we would be excused class if we had a "chitty".

58. One with a pretty strong hunch? : IGOR
Igor has been the assistant to Dracula, Frankenstein and Young Frankenstein among others. Igor is almost invariably portrayed as a hunchback.

59. Hoops great Baylor : ELGIN
Elgin Baylor is a retired NBA player and a former NBA general manager. Baylor spent 22 years as GM for the LA Clippers.

62. Taylor who sang "Tell It to My Heart" : DAYNE
Taylor Dayne is the stage name of singer-songwriter Leslie Wunderman. Her best known record is probably “Tell It to My Heart”, released in 1988.

63. Prehistoric terror, informally : T REX
The Tyrannosaurus rex (usually written T. rex) was a spectacular looking dinosaur. "Tyrannosaurus" comes from the Greek words "tyrannos" (tyrant) and "sauros" (lizard), and the "rex" is of course Latin for "king". They were big boys, measuring 42 feet long and 13 feet tall at the hips, and weighing 7.5 tons.

Down
3. "Walkin' After Midnight" singer, 1957 : PATSY CLINE
Patsy Cline was a country music singer who managed to cross over into the world of pop music where she enjoyed great success. Cline is one of a long list of musical legends who died in plane crashes. Cline was 30 years old when she was killed in 1963 in a Piper Comanche plane piloted by her manager, Randy Hughes. Hughes and Cline decided to make that last flight despite warnings of inclement weather, and it was a severe storm that brought down the plane in a forest outside Camden, Tennessee.

4. Act opener : EMCEE
"Emcee" come from "MC", an abbreviation for the Master or Mistress of Ceremonies.

7. Nixed : VETOED
"Veto" comes directly from Latin and means "I forbid". The word was used by tribunes of Ancient Rome to indicate that they opposed measures passed by the Senate.

The use of "nix" as a verb, meaning "to shoot down", dates back to the early 1900s. Before that "nix" was just a noun meaning "nothing". "Nix" comes from the German "nichts", which also means "nothing".

8. Let float from the dollar, say : UNPEG
A price of a commodity or a currency can be “pegged” to the price of another commodity or currency, usually in an attempt to stabilize it. For example, a currency pegged to the US dollar fluctuates up or down to the same extent as the US currency.

13. Seals's partner in 1970s music : CROFTS
Seals and Crofts was a soft rock duo made up of Jim Seals and Dash Crofts, two musicians from Texas. Seals and Crofts were most active in the 1970s.

14. Dense desserts : TORTES
A torte is a type of cake made primarily with eggs, sugar and ground nuts (but no flour).

20. Main line : AORTA
The blood vessel called the aorta originates in the heart and extends down into the abdomen. The aorta is the largest artery in the body.

21. View from Vatican City : TIBER
The Tiber is the principal river in Italy in that it runs through the capital of Rome. It is also the third longest river in the country.

Vatican City is a sovereign city-state that is walled off within the city of Rome. Vatican City is about 110 acres in area, and so is the smallest independent state in the world. With about 800 residents, it is also the smallest state in terms of population. Although the Holy See dates back to early Christianity, Vatican City only came into being in 1929. At that time, Prime Minister Benito Mussolini signed a treaty with the Holy See on behalf of the Kingdom of Italy that established the city-state.

22. Washed up : EFFETE
Something “effete” is degenerate, infertile, no longer productive. “Effete” comes from the Latin “ex-fetus”, literally “out of offspring”.

23. Like Timbuktu : REMOTE
The Republic of Mali is a landlocked country in western Africa, south of Algeria. The country's most famous city is ... Timbuktu. And the remoteness of Timbuktu is behind it becoming a metaphor for any distant and outlandish location.

30. Trendy "superfood" : ACAI BERRY
Açaí is a palm tree native to Central and South America. The fruit has become very popular in recent years and its juice is a very fashionable addition to juice mixes and smoothies.

32. Burger's successor : REHNQUIST
William Rehnquist served as an Associate Justice of the US Supreme Court from 1972 when he was appointed by President Nixon. When Chief Justice Warren Burger retired in 1986, President Reagan nominated Rehnquist to fill the vacant position. Rehnquist died in office in 2005 and was replaced as Chief Justice by John Roberts, who was in the process of being confirmed as an Associate Justice at the time.

Warren E. Burger served as Chief Justice of the US Supreme Court from 1969, after being nominated by President Nixon. Burger served until retiring 1986, making him the longest serving Chief Justice of the 20th century.

35. French article : UNE
The indefinite article in French is “un” or “une”, depending on gender of the associated noun.

36. Dance club figs. : DJS
The world's first radio disk jockey was one Ray Newby of Stockton, California who made his debut broadcast in 1909, would you believe? When he was 16 years old and a student, Newby started to play his records on a primitive radio located in the Herrold College of Engineering and Wireless in San Jose. The records played back then were mostly recordings of Enrico Caruso.

44. Antipoverty agcy. created under L.B.J. : OEO
The Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) was created during the Johnson administration. The agency was responsible for administering the War on Poverty programs that were part of the President Johnson's Great Society agenda. The OEO was shut down by President Nixon, although some of the office's programs were transferred to other agencies. A few of the OEO's programs are still around today, like Head Start for example.

47. "Star Wars," e.g. : SAGA
“Stars Wars” fans will be delighted to hear that George Lucas has announced that he will be making “Star Wars Episode VII”, scheduled for release in 2015.

48. "Star Wars" critter : EWOK
The Ewoks are creatures who live on the moon of Endor, first appearing in "Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi". They're the cute and cuddly little guys that look like teddy bears.

49. Where Troy Aikman was a QB : UCLA
Troy Aikman used to play quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys. Now that he is retired from football, Aikman works as a sportscaster on the Fox network.

50. Pop's ___ Pop : IGGY
Iggy Pop is a punk rock performer from Muskegon, Michigan. When he was in high school, he was a drummer for a local band called the Iguanas, and so was given the nickname “Iggy”.

51. Foreign refusal : NEIN
"Nein" is the German for "no".


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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Napkin, e.g. : WIPE
5. Licensing grp. : DMV
8. Like Goodwill goods : USED
12. Figure on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel : ADAM
13. Oil vessel : CRUET
15. Warm, say : NEAR
16. Provider of two- and four-yr. scholarships : ROTC
17. Equaled altogether : RAN TO
18. It may be "aw"-inspiring : PITY
19. What the circled letter in this answer represents, homophonically : SEA OF CORTEZ
22. What the circled letter in this answer represents, homophonically : EYE OF THE TIGER
24. Refrigerant inits. : CFC
25. Some football linemen: Abbr. : RTS
26. Cotillion V.I.P. : DEB
27. Traffic control org. : DEA
29. Final dramatic notes of the "1812 Overture" : E-FLATS
31. Scopolamine and sodium pentothal, e.g. : SERUMS
33. Classic camera : LEICA
34. Joe : MUD
37. Some seizures, for short : REPOS
38. Typhon was trapped under it, in Greek myth : ETNA
39. Something a picker picks : BANJO
41. Table d'___ : HOTE
42. What the circled letter in this answer represents, homophonically : BEE IN ONE’S BONNET
45. Relief might follow it : BAS
46. Et ___ (footnote abbr.) : SEQ
47. What the circled letters in this answer represent, homophonically : SEE YOU IN COURT
54. Bryn ___ : MAWR
55. Bobby in a 1971 #1 hit : MCGEE
56. Chits : IOUS
58. One with a pretty strong hunch? : IGOR
59. Hoops great Baylor : ELGIN
60. Not loopy : SANE
61. Liable to clump : CAKY
62. Taylor who sang "Tell It to My Heart" : DAYNE
63. Prehistoric terror, informally : T REX

Down
1. Hostilities : WAR
2. Simple vow : I DO
3. "Walkin' After Midnight" singer, 1957 : PATSY CLINE
4. Act opener : EMCEE
5. Bar offerings : DRAFTS
6. Chew (on) : MUNCH
7. Nixed : VETOED
8. Let float from the dollar, say : UNPEG
9. Suddenly took interest in : SEIZED UPON
10. Take in : EAT
11. Like some humor : DRY
13. Seals's partner in 1970s music : CROFTS
14. Dense desserts : TORTES
20. Main line : AORTA
21. View from Vatican City : TIBER
22. Washed up : EFFETE
23. Like Timbuktu : REMOTE
24. Star : CELEB
28. Money in the bank, e.g. : ASSET
30. Trendy "superfood" : ACAI BERRY
32. Burger's successor : REHNQUIST
34. "Whew!" : MAN!
35. French article : UNE
36. Dance club figs. : DJS
39. Big or full follower : BOSOMED
40. Disgustingly large, as an amount of money : OBSCENE
43. Bill blocker : NAY
44. Antipoverty agcy. created under L.B.J. : OEO
47. "Star Wars," e.g. : SAGA
48. "Star Wars" critter : EWOK
49. Where Troy Aikman was a QB : UCLA
50. Pop's ___ Pop : IGGY
51. Foreign refusal : NEIN
52. Big laugh : ROAR
53. Simple number : TUNE
54. 4-Down's item : MIC
57. Driver's license info : SEX


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2 comments :

Stuart Witt said...

Nixon appointed Rehnquist to the Court. Reagan appointed him to Chief Justice. (32-down)

Bill Butler said...

Hi there, Stuart.

Thanks for spotting that slip. I did mean to write "Nixon" ... honestly!

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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