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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

0830-13 New York Times Crossword Answers 30 Aug 13, Friday





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: David Steinberg
THEME: None
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 20m 05s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. First female candidate to win the Ames Straw Poll : MICHELE BACHMANN
Michele Bachmann has been a member of the US House of Representatives since 2007, representing a district that includes suburbs of the Twin Cities in Minnesota. Bachmann is a vocal supporter of the Tea Party movement and founded the House Tea Party Caucus in 2010. She ran for the Republican nomination for president in the 2012 race, winning the Ames Straw Poll along the way.

The city of Ames, Iowa is famous for holding the Ames Straw Poll in advance of most presidential elections. The poll in question is used to gauge the level of support for two or more Republican candidates, although non-Republicans are allowed to cast a vote. To vote one has to be an Iowa resident and one must buy a ticket to the fundraising dinner at which the vote is taken. The event gets a lot of coverage, so it boosts the local economy as journalists hit the town. It is a very successful fundraiser for the Republican Party in Iowa as well, but the usefulness of the straw poll in predicting the eventual winner of the nomination is less clear. There have been five straw polls since 1979, and just 2 out of 5 times the poll winner went on to capture the party's nomination.

17. It airs in the morning, ironically : THE LATE LATE SHOW
“The Late Late Show” is a late-night (actually “early morning”) talk show aired by CBS. The show is produced by Worldwide Pants Incorporated, the production company owned by David Letterman. “The Late Late Show” debuted in 1995 with Tom Snyder hosting. The current host is the very funny Scottish comedian Craig Ferguson. Ferguson came to the attention of the American viewing audience playing the office boss, Nigel Wick, on “The Drew Carey Show”.

18. Case builders: Abbr. : ATTS
Attorney (att.)

19. Copy from a CD : RIP
“Ripping” is the process of copying audio or video onto a hard disk. Ripping isn’t the same as direct copying as the process involves changing the format of the audio or video content.

21. Show featuring special agents : NCIS
NCIS is the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, which investigates crimes in the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps. The service gives its name to the CBS TV show "NCIS", a spin-off drama from "JAG" in which the main "NCIS" characters were first introduced. The big star in "NCIS" is the actor Mark Harmon.

22. Red Cloud, e.g. : SIOUX
Red Cloud was a chief of the Oglala Lakota Native American people. Red Cloud led his tribe in battles with the US Army in the Wyoming and Montana territories between 1866 and 1868, a conflict that the Army came to call Red Cloud’s War.

24. Player of the bad teacher in "Bad Teacher" : DIAZ
The Hollywood actress Cameron Diaz started out her professional life as a model. Diaz’s first acting role was in the 1994 film “The Mask”, starring alongside Jim Carrey.

“Bad Teacher” is a 2011 comedy starring Cameron Diaz as a middle school teacher trying to skate by in her teaching job while she earns enough money for breast enlargement surgery.

27. Possible rank indicator : EPAULET
Epaulet (or epaulette) comes from the French, and literally means "little shoulder".

29. Overseas relig. title : STE
Sainte (ste.)

30. Big name in car monitors : ONSTAR
The OnStar system started back in 1995, a joint venture between GM, EDS and Hughes. The product itself was launched in 1996. Today, OnStar is only available on GM cars, although it used to be offered on other makes of car through a licensing agreement. OnStar is a subscription service that packages vehicle security, telephone, satellite navigation and remote diagnostics. You've seen the ads, I am sure.

46. Colorful cover-ups : SERAPES
"Serape" is the English pronunciation and spelling of the Spanish word "zarape". A zarape is like a Mexican poncho, a soft woolen blanket with a hole in the middle for the head. Most serapes have colorful designs that use traditional Mayan motifs.

48. Brandy letters : VSO
Cognac is a most famous variety of brandy named after the town of Cognac in the very west of France. To be called cognac, the brandy must be distilled twice in copper pot stills and aged at least two years in very specific French oak barrels. It is the length of this aging that defines the various grades of cognac (and other brandies):
- VS: Very Special ... at least 2 years storage
- VSOP: Very Special (or Superior) Old Pale ... at least 4 years storage
- XO: Extra Old ... at least 6 years
- VSO: Very Superior Old ... 12-17 years

51. Misses abroad: Abbr. : SRTAS
Señorita (Srta.) is Spanish and mademoiselle (Mlle.) is French for “Miss”.

52. Newborn abroad : BEBE
In French speaking countries a “bébé” (baby) is cared for by its “mère” (mother).

53. ___ Hedin, discoverer of the Trans-Himalaya : SVEN
Sven Hedin was an explorer from Sweden who made four separate expeditions to Central Asia. He discovered a mountain range running parallel to the main Himalayas that were originally named the Hedin Range in his honor. Those mountains today are known as the Trans Himalaya.

55. Folman who directed the 2013 film "The Congress" : ARI
Ari Folman is a movie director and screenwriter from Israel. The multi-talented Folman also composes film scores.

56. Comcast Center hoopster : TERP
The sports teams of the University of Maryland are called the Maryland Terrapins, or "the Terps" for short. The name dates back to 1932 when it was coined by the the university's president at the time, Curly Byrd. He took the name from the diamondback terrapins that are native to the Chesapeake Bay.

57. Alternative to a breakfast burrito : HUEVOS RANCHEROS
Huevos rancheros is a classic Mexican dish of eggs prepared in as they might be in rural Mexico. “Huevos rancheros” translates as “rancher’s eggs”. The eggs are fried and served on corn tortillas and topped with tomato-chili sauce.

Down
1. Yellowstone setting: Abbr. : MST
Mountain Standard Time (MST)

Yellowstone National Park was the first National Park to be established in the world, when it was designated as such by President Grant in 1872. What a great tradition it started! The American National Parks truly are a treasure.

2. Odysseus, e.g. : ITHACAN
Ithaca is a Greek island in the Ionian Sea. Ithaca featured in Homer’s “Odyssey” as it was the home of the mythological hero Odysseus.

“The Odyssey” is one of two epic poems from ancient Greece that is attributed to Homer. “The Odyssey” is largely a sequel to Homer’s other epic, “The Iliad”. “The Odyssey” centers on the heroic figure, Odysseus, and his adventures on his journey home to Greece following the fall of Troy.

3. Dopes : CRETINS
“Cretin” is a slang term meaning “idiot”, and not a term that I like at all. “Cretin” was a medical term in the 1900s that derived from Alpine French dialect. Congenital hypothyroidism was particularly associated with an area in the French Alps and manifested itself as impaired physical and mental development, a condition known as "cretinism".

6. Re-serve judgment? : LET
In tennis, a let service is one in which the balls lands fairly but after hitting the top of the net. A let service is retaken.

7. Female adviser : EGERIA
In Roman mythology, Egeria was a water nymph, and counselor to the second king of Rome, Numa Pompilius. Egeria's name has come to be used as a general term for a female advisor.

8. Ill-humored : BILIOUS
The term “bilious” means “relating to bile”. It has come to mean ”ill-humored”.

9. Norwegian Star port of call : ACAPULCO
The Mexican city of Acapulco is on the southwest coast of the country, in the state of Guerrero. The name “Acapulco” translates from the local language into “at the big reeds”.

The Norwegian Star is a huge cruise ship operated by Norwegian Cruise Line. If she was much bigger, it wouldn’t be able to use the Panama Canal. The Norwegian Star went into service in 2001.

10. Old oscilloscope part, briefly : CRT
Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) ... there aren't many of them available in stores these days!

An oscilloscope is an electronic instrument that visually shows the variation in voltage of an electrical signal.

13. Its adherents are in disbelief : ATHEISM
The term “atheism”, meaning “disbelief in the existence of a god or gods”, comes from the Greek “atheos” meaning “without god”.

14. Formula one? : NEONATE
A neonate is newborn infant.

15. Neighbor of Victoria: Abbr. : NSW
New South Wales (NSW) is the most populous state in Australia and is home to Sydney, the most populous city in the country. New South Wales was founded in 1788. When the British took over New Zealand in 1840, for a while New Zealand was actually governed as part of New South Wales.

Victoria is the most densely populated state in Australia, with most inhabitants living in the state capital of Melbourne. Just like the Australian state of Queensland, Victoria was named for Queen Victoria, the British monarch at the time the state was founded.

21. Top kick, for one: Abbr. : NCO
“Top kick” is a slang term for a “first sergeant”.

An NCO is a non-commissioned officer in the armed forces. Usually such an officer is one who has earned his or her rank by promotion through the enlisted ranks. A good example would be a sergeant.

22. Puck and others : SPRITES
Puck is a mischievous sprite in old English folklore. Puck is also a character in William Shakespeare’s play “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”.

23. Some exact likenesses : XEROXES
Xerox was founded in 1906 in Rochester, New York and originally made photographic paper and equipment. Real success came for the company in 1959 when it introduced the first plain-paper photocopier. Xerox named Ursula Burns as CEO in 2009, the first African American woman to head up a S&P 100 company. Burn was also the first woman to succeed another female CEO (replacing Anne Mulcahy).

25. Part of Queen Elizabeth's makeup? : ZED
There is a letter Z (“zee” or “zed”) in the name “Elizabeth”.

The letter named "zed" has been around since about 1400, and derives from the Greek letter zeta. The spelling and pronunciation of "zee" used in America today first popped up in the 1670s.

Princess Elizabeth became queen Elizabeth II in 1952 when her father, King George VI died. The Princess was on an official visit to Kenya when her husband broke the news to her, that she had become queen. When she was crowned in 1953 in Westminster Abbey, it was the first coronation to be televised. Queen Elizabeth's reign is currently the second longest in the history of the UK. She is closing in on the record of Queen Victoria who reigned longest, for almost 64 years.

31. Kind of cross : TAU
Tau is the 19th letter of the Greek alphabet, the letter which gave rise to our Roman "T". Both the letters tau (T) and chi (X) have long been symbolically associated with the cross.

33. They may be returned with regrets: Abbr. : MSS
An editor has to wade his or her way through a manuscript (MS) that has been submitted.

35. 458 Spider and F12 Berlinetta : FERRARIS
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.

43. Modern mouse hole? : USB PORT
Universal Serial Bus (USB) is an industry standard dealing with how computers and electronic devices connect and communicate, and deal with electrical power through those connections.

47. Emulates Homer : PAINTS
Winslow Homer was an American landscape painter and illustrator active in the second half of the 19th century. His most famous work is probably the oil painting depicting a man and three boys sailing, which bears the title “Breezing Up (A Fair Wind)”, and which can be seen in the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D. C.

50. Actor Burton : LEVAR
LeVar Burton's has two major television roles on his resume. He played Kunta Kinte in the fabulous miniseries "Roots" shown in 1977. He then had a long run portraying Geordi La Forge on the best of the Star Trek TV shows, "Star Trek: The Next Generation".

52. Competitor of Lauren and Klein : BEENE
Geoffrey Beene was an American fashion designer. He had an impressive list of clients that included First Ladies Lady Bird Johnson, Pat Nixon and Nancy Reagan.

Ralph Lauren is an American fashion designer, born Ralph Liftshitz in the Bronx, New York. Lauren started off working as a salesman for Brooks Brothers after spending two years in the US Army. He then opened a necktie store, featuring his own tie designs. The ties were sold under the name "Polo", which became Lauren's most famous brand. Other Lauren brands are Purple Label and Black Label.

Calvin Klein is an American fashion designer, born in the Bronx in New York City. Klein's biography entitled "Obsession" takes its name from one of the most famous brands in his line of fragrances.

54. Numerical prefix : NONA-
The prefix “nona-” is used to denote the number nine or ninth. An example is “nonagon”, a nine-sided polygon.

56. First name in footwear : THOM
Thom McAn footwear was introduced in 1922 by the Melville Corporation (now CVS Caremark). The brand was named after a Scottish golfer called Thomas McCann. The Thom McAn line is epitomized by the comfortable leather casual and dress shoe, so sales have really been hurt in recent decades by the growing popularity of sneakers.

57. "Two, three, four" lead-in : HUP
A drillmaster can often be heard saying “hup, two, three, four …”

58. Org. with a clenched fist logo : SDS
Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) was an activist group in the sixties. The SDS organized the largest student strike in the history of the United States on 26 April 1968, with about a million students staying away from class that day. The “Students for a Democratic Society” name was revived in 2006 with the foundation of a new US-based student organization with left wing beliefs. Today’s SDS was founded by a pair of high school students from Greenwich Village, New York.

59. Org. created right after the cold war : CIS
The Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) is a loose association of countries that were former soviet republics. The CIS was formed in 1991 by Belarus, Russia and Ukraine, with six other states joining the alliance later.

60. MS-DOS component: Abbr. : SYS
MS-DOS (short for Microsoft Disk Operating System) was the main operating system used by IBM-compatible PCs in the eighties and for much of the nineties.


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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. First female candidate to win the Ames Straw Poll : MICHELE BACHMANN
16. War paths : STRATEGIC ROUTES
17. It airs in the morning, ironically : THE LATE LATE SHOW
18. Case builders: Abbr. : ATTS
19. Copy from a CD : RIP
20. Understood : SEEN
21. Show featuring special agents : NCIS
22. Red Cloud, e.g. : SIOUX
24. Player of the bad teacher in "Bad Teacher" : DIAZ
26. Rear : CAN
27. Possible rank indicator : EPAULET
29. Overseas relig. title : STE
30. Big name in car monitors : ONSTAR
32. Beat it : SCRAMMED
34. "Keep dreaming!" : AS IF!
36. Word after a splat : OOPS
37. Like some lovers' hearts : AFLUTTER
41. Strikes : XES OUT
45. She may be fawning : DOE
46. Colorful cover-ups : SERAPES
48. Brandy letters : VSO
49. Grilling test : ORAL
51. Misses abroad: Abbr. : SRTAS
52. Newborn abroad : BEBE
53. ___ Hedin, discoverer of the Trans-Himalaya : SVEN
55. Folman who directed the 2013 film "The Congress" : ARI
56. Comcast Center hoopster : TERP
57. Alternative to a breakfast burrito : HUEVOS RANCHEROS
61. Big source for modern slang : URBAN DICTIONARY
62. Some critical comments from co-workers : PEER ASSESSMENTS

Down
1. Yellowstone setting: Abbr. : MST
2. Odysseus, e.g. : ITHACAN
3. Dopes : CRETINS
4. Knocks off : HALTS
5. Control tower info : ETAS
6. Re-serve judgment? : LET
7. Female adviser : EGERIA
8. Ill-humored : BILIOUS
9. Norwegian Star port of call : ACAPULCO
10. Old oscilloscope part, briefly : CRT
11. Turns over in one's plot? : HOES
12. Was reflective : MUSED
13. Its adherents are in disbelief : ATHEISM
14. Formula one? : NEONATE
15. Neighbor of Victoria: Abbr. : NSW
21. Top kick, for one: Abbr. : NCO
22. Puck and others : SPRITES
23. Some exact likenesses : XEROXES
25. Part of Queen Elizabeth's makeup? : ZED
27. Certain league divisions : EASTS
28. Forerunners of discs : TAPES
31. Kind of cross : TAU
33. They may be returned with regrets: Abbr. : MSS
35. 458 Spider and F12 Berlinetta : FERRARIS
37. Production : ADO
38. Definitely : FOR SURE
39. Give some space, say : LEAVE BE
40. Grind : RAT RACE
42. Stormed : OVERRAN
43. Modern mouse hole? : USB PORT
44. Ring bearer, maybe : TOE
47. Emulates Homer : PAINTS
50. Actor Burton : LEVAR
52. Competitor of Lauren and Klein : BEENE
54. Numerical prefix : NONA-
56. First name in footwear : THOM
57. "Two, three, four" lead-in : HUP
58. Org. with a clenched fist logo : SDS
59. Org. created right after the cold war : CIS
60. MS-DOS component: Abbr. : SYS


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The Best of the New York Times Crossword Collections

3 comments :

Kevin Quinn said...

May I grouse?
The clue for 1D (MST) crosses the line on accuracy IMHO.
"Yellowstone setting: Abbr." (as it appears in my paper) was currently MDT (Mountain Daylight Time) on both the original and syndicated publication dates (Aug 30th & Oct 4th). As NYT puzzles are ID'd by date, I think it's a valid point.
I'm a big fan of tricky clues, and had no trouble coming up with the required answer, but I hate to see accuracy compromised to facilitate diversion. Clearly, the trick was to imply a *geographical* setting, ("WYO", perhaps) and "Yellowstone *winter* setting", or the like, would be a dead-giveaway to late-week solvers. Still, I think it could be easily fixed.
While Wyoming's "setting" is MST *sometimes*, Arizona's "setting", except in the Navajo Nation, is MST at *all* times. (Along with Hawaii, AZ doesn't observe Daylight Saving Time.) So maybe: "Grand Canyon setting: Abbr."
"Hmmm... Is it 'ARI'?... 'N.AZ'???... OH!!, It's 'MST'! ... Of course!!!" [head slap]
Rant over ;)
-Kevin Quinn

Kevin Quinn said...

Striving for technical accuracy with strong attention to detail and consistent clueing protocol is, after all, part of what makes the NYT Crossword Puzzle the gold standard of crosswords.
One can't say enough about how much value Will Shortz has brought to The Times puzzle, and even this nit can be justified by Mr. Shortz's proviso that crosswords should be "timeless", but I think that the clarity that my suggestion or a similar fix would bring to this clue would be an improvement to this puzzle.
Cheers,
-Kevin Quinn

Bill Butler said...

Hi there, Kevin.

Grouse away! It's good to hear from you :)

I'm a big fan of accuracy in clues as well, and I do like some sleight of hand, some deception. I'm not sure that the "Yellowstone setting" clue breaks any rules though. I am happy enough with the implied "sometimes" in the wording.

Maybe I've just become too easy to please in my old age, though :)

Thanks for stopping by, Kevin.

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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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