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Greetings from Mammoth Lakes, California

My wife and I are on vacation until Friday, July 25th; a road trip through the backroads of the states east of California. I anticipate late-night solving and posting, with acknowledgement of comments and emails suffering. Please, don't be offended at my silence as I prioritize the writing of posts! We had probably the last hike of our trip this morning (strenuous, past beautiful alpine lakes), and then opted for vegging out by the pool for a change this afternoon. Almost home ...

Bill

0919-13 New York Times Crossword Answers 19 Sep 13, Thursday





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CROSSWORD SETTER: Michael Blake
THEME: C and Y Coated … today’s themed answers start with C and end with Y:
17A. Ability to survive freezing temperatures? : COLD MASTERY
24A. Selected a certain fabric softener? : CHOSE DOWNY
35A. Sprite who helps you find a shopping vehicle? : CART FAIRY
50A. Super-choosy about timepieces? : CLOCK PICKY
58A. Like M&M's ... or four words to describe 17-, 24-, 35- and 50-Across? : CANDY COATED (or “C and Y coated”)
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 18m 40s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Sports star who lent his name to a clothing line : LACOSTE
René Lacoste was a French tennis player known for being very tenacious on court. This tenacity earned him the nickname “the Crocodile”. When he went into the clothing business, specializing in tennis apparel, his Lacoste brand became famous for its green crocodile logo.

8. Rental car extra, for short : GPS
Global Positioning System (GPS)

14. Culminations : APOGEES
In the celestial world, an apsis is a point in an orbit when the orbiting body is at its greatest, or least, distance from it's center of orbit. The farthest and closest points of orbit are known as the apogee and perigee, when talking about bodies orbiting the Earth. The farthest and closest points for bodies orbiting the sun are known as the aphelion and perihelion.

15. Mauna ___ : LOA
Mauna Loa on the "big island" of Hawaii is the largest volcano on the planet (in terms of volume). The name "Mauna Loa" is Hawaiian for "Long Mountain".

16. Bucolic setting : LEA
The word "bucolic", meaning rustic or rural, comes to us from the Greek word "boukolos" meaning "cowherd".

19. Copier page size: Abbr. : LTR
Like so many things it seems, our paper sizes here in North America don't conform with the standards in the rest of the world. ISO standard sizes used elsewhere have some logic behind them in that the ratio of width to length is usually one to the square root of two. This mathematical relationship means that when you cut a piece of paper in two each half preserves the aspect ratio of the original, which can be useful in making reduced or enlarged copies of documents. Our standard size of "letter" (8.5 x 11 inches) was determined in 1980 by the Reagan administration to be the official paper size for the US government. Prior to this, the "legal" size (8.5 x 14 inches) had been the standard, since 1921.

20. Cette fille, e.g. : ELLE
In French, she (elle) is that girl (cette fille) over there.

23. ___ Bator : ULAN
The name "Ulan Bator" translates from Mongolian as "the Red Hero", and is Mongolia's capital city. The "Red Hero" name was chosen in honor of the country's national hero, Damdin Sükhbaatar. Sükhbaatar fought alongside the Soviet Red Army in the fight for liberation from Chinese occupation.

24. Selected a certain fabric softener? : CHOSE DOWNY
Downy is a brand name of fabric softener produced by Procter & Gamble.

27. 911 maker : PORSCHE
Porsche was founded in 1931 in Stuttgart, Germany by Professor Ferdinand Porsche. The company didn't produce cars at first, but worked on design and development. The first big job awarded to the company was from the German government, to design a car for the people. The result was the Volkswagen Beetle. Yep, the Beetle is a Porsche design.

29. Roof window : DORMER
A “dormer window” is a window in a dormer! A dormer is a roofed structure that protrudes from the slope of the main roof, and not the window itself.

34. Tests that consist of five subjects, for short : GEDS
The General Educational Development (GED) tests are a battery of five tests designed to demonstartate that a student has the academic skills of someone who has graduated from an American or Canadian high school.

41. Posthumous inductee into the Poker Hall of Fame, 1979 : HOYLE
Edmond Hoyle was a writer, most famous for documenting the rules and play of card games. In particular, Hoyle first wrote a book on the game of whist that was very popular. Such was the success of Hoyle’s treatises that we use the phrase “according to Hoyle” to mean “according to some respected authority”. When the Poker Hall of Fame was founded in 1979, Edmund Hoyle was one of the first inductees, even though the game of power was invented after he died.

42. Lifesaver, briefly : EMT
Emergency medical technician (EMT)

48. Lose face : EAT CROW
The phrase "eat crow", an alternative to "eat humble pie" perhaps refers to the fact that cooked crow may be edible, but is not a great food choice.

53. English composer Thomas : ARNE
Thomas Arne was an English composer from London. Arne wrote some iconic compositions including “Rule, Britannia!” He also wrote a version of “God Save the King” that became the British national anthem.

55. ___ Pince, librarian at Hogwarts : IRMA
In the “Harry Potter” universe, Irma Pince is the librarian at Hogwarts. Ms. Pince is a severe woman, said to look like an “underfed vulture”. Pince is played on the big screen by English actress Sally Mortemore.

57. Anesthesia option, for short : EPI
Epidural (epi)

58. Like M&M's ... or four words to describe 17-, 24-, 35- and 50-Across? : CANDY COATED (or “C and Y coated”)
Forrest Mars, Sr. was the founder of the Mars Company. Forrest invented the Mars Bar while living over in England and then developed M&M's when he returned to the US. Mars came up with the idea for M&M's when he saw soldiers in the Spanish Civil War eating chocolate pellets. Those pellets had a hard shell of tempered chocolate on the outside to prevent them from melting. Mars got some of the funding to develop the M&M from William Murrie, the son of the president of Hershey's Chocolate. It is the "M" and "M" from "Mars" and "Murrie" that give the name to the candy.

62. Grp. advising the president : NSC
The National Security Council (NSC) was created by President Harry S. Truman in 1947. The NSC is chaired by the sitting president and meets in the White House Situation Room.

63. "From ___ Zinc" (vitamin slogan) : A TO
The vitamin brand called Centrum uses the slogan “Complete from A to Zinc”.

64. FedEx form : AIRBILL
FedEx began operations in 1973 as Federal Express, but now operates very successfully under it's more catchy abbreviated name. Headquartered in Memphis with its "SuperHub" at Memphis International Airport, FedEx is the world's largest airline in terms of tons of freight flown. And due to the presence of FedEx, Memphis Airport has the largest-volume cargo operation of any airport worldwide.

65. Narcs' org. : DEA
Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)

66. S.F. hours : PST
San Francisco (SF) is on Pacific Standard Time (PST), except during daylight saving time (DST).

67. Basis of the Hanukkah story : MIRACLE
The term “Hanukkah” derives from the Hebrew for “to dedicate”. Hanukkah is a holiday lasting eight days that commemorates the rededication of the Holy Temple of Jerusalem after successful Jewish revolt against the Seleucids in the 2nd-century BCE. The story of Hanukkah includes the miracle of the one-day supply of oil actually kept the menorah alight for eight days.

Down
2. Ill-fated mission of 1967 : APOLLO I
Apollo 1 was planned to be the first manned mission in NASA’s lunar landing program. Sadly, the three crew members perished in a tragic cabin fire that took place in a launch pad test. The astronauts who died were Gus Grissom (the second American to fly in space), Edward White (the first American to walk in space) and Roger Chaffee (the pilot for the planned Apollo 1 mission).

4. "___ Nut Gone Flake," celebrated 1968 Small Faces album : OGDENS’
“Ogdens’ Nut Gone Flake” is a 1968 album released by the English rock band Small Faces. Ogdens’ Nut-brown Flake was a brand of tobacco produced in England, and the inspiration for the album’s title.

5. You might get credit for this period of work: Abbr. : SEM
"Semester" is a German word from the Latin "semestris", an adjective meaning "of six months". We of course use "semester" in a system that divides an academic year into two roughly equal parts. A trimester system has three parts, and a quarter system has four.

6. ___ rose : TEA
The first tea roses were so called because they had a fragrance reminiscent of Chinese black tea.

7. Series opener? : ESS
The letter S (ess) is the first letter in the word “series”.

9. Modified, as software for a different platform : PORTED
In the software world, “porting” is the process of adapting a computer program designed for one environment so that it works in another.

12. Like pianos, periodically : RETUNED
What was remarkable about the piano when it was invented, compared to other keyboard instruments, was that notes could be played with varying degrees of loudness. This is accomplished by pressing the keys lightly or firmly. Because of this quality, the new instrument was called a “pianoforte”, with “piano” and “forte” meaning “soft” and “loud” in Italian. We tend to shorten the name these days to just “piano”.

18. Way of the East : TAO
The Chinese character "tao" translates as "path", but the concept of Tao signifies the true nature of the world.

24. Lead role in "Clueless" : CHER
Cher's real name is Cherilyn Sarkisian, born in 1946. In her acting career, Cher was nominated for the Best Supporting Actress Oscar of 1984 for her performance in "Silkwood". She went further in 1998 and won the Best Actress Oscar for playing Loretta Castorini in "Moonstruck".

The 1995 movie “Clueless” is apparently based on Jane Austen’s “Emma”, which is a favorite novel of mine. As a result, I am going to have to check out the film. That said, "Clueless" is set at a Beverly Hills high school, so I probably should prepare myself to be disappointed ...

25. Toffee bar brand : HEATH
The Heath candy bar is the invention of brothers Bayard and Everett Heath in the 1920s.

26. Bacchanalia : ORGY
A bacchanalia is a drunken spree, a term that derives from the ancient Roman festival held in honor of Bacchus, the god of winemaking.

28. One concerned with co. money : CPA
Certified Public Accountant (CPA)

32. One concerned with co. money : CFO
Chief Financial Officer (CFO)

33. Salma of "Frida" : HAYEK
Salma Hayek is a Mexican actress. Hayek was the first Mexican national to be nominated for a Best Actress Oscar, for her portrayal of painter Frida Kahlo in the 2002 movie "Frida".

36. Bedtime prayer words after "Now" : I LAY
One of the prayers that I was taught as a child goes:
Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep,
If I shall die before I wake,
I pray the Lord my soul to take.

37. Abbr. in many a military title : RET
Retired (ret.)

38. Caboose : BACK-END
The word "caboose" originally came from Middle Dutch and was the word for a ship's galley. When the last car in a train in North America was given a stove for the comfort of the crew, it took on the name "caboose".

39. Shadow maker : ECLIPSE
A lunar eclipse occurs when the moon passes into the shadow cast by the earth from the light of the sun, in other words when the earth is positioned directly between the sun and the moon. The more spectacular solar eclipse takes place when moon passes in front of the sun, so that the earth falls into the shadow cast by the moon.

40. "Fifty Shades of Grey" genre : EROTICA
"Fifty Shades of Grey" is an incredibly popular erotic novel by British writer E. L. James. “Fifty Shades of Grey” is the fastest-selling paperback of all time. And there are two other titles to complete the trilogy: “Fifty Shades Darker” and"Fifty Shades Freed".

43. R&B singer Jordan : MONTELL
Montell Jordan is an R&B singer-songwriter from LA. Jordan left the music business in 2010 to become a Worship Minister for the Victory World Church in Norcross, Georgia.

44. Entice with music : TWEEDLE
“To tweedle” is to coax, allure. Originally “to tweedle” meant “to sing, whistle”, so today the term can often mean “to coax with music”.

46. Winter Olympics wear : SKI CAP
The first Winter Olympic Games was held in 1924, in Chamonix, France. The Winter and Summer Games were held in the same year until 1992, after which they were staggered so that we have an Olympic Games every two years.

47. Nursery rhyme couple : SPRATS
Jack Sprat was a nickname given in the 16th century to people of small stature. Jack featured in a proverb of the day:
Jack will eat not fat, and Jull doth love no leane. Yet betwixt them both they lick the dishes cleane.
Over time, this mutated into a nursery rhyme that is still recited in England:
Jack Sprat could eat no fat. His wife could eat no lean. And so between them both, you see, they licked the platter clean.

49. Certain melon : CASABA
A casaba is type of honeydew melon. The casaba takes its name from the Turkish city of Kasaba, from where the fruit was imported into America in the late 1800s.

51. "___ Rappaport" (1986 Tony winner for Best Play) : I'M NOT
“I’m Not Rappaport” is a 1996 movie centered on two aging men played by Walter Matthau and Ossie Davis. The phrase “I’m not Rappaport” comes from an old vaudeville routine that the pair run through during the film.

61. Hockey's Bobby : ORR
Bobby Orr is regarded as one of the greatest hockey players of all time. By the time he retired in 1978 he had undergone over a dozen knee surgeries. At 31 years of age, he concluded that he just couldn't skate anymore. Reportedly, he was even having trouble walking …

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Sports star who lent his name to a clothing line : LACOSTE
8. Rental car extra, for short : GPS
11. Flipper, say : ARM
14. Culminations : APOGEES
15. Mauna ___ : LOA
16. Bucolic setting : LEA
17. Ability to survive freezing temperatures? : COLD MASTERY
19. Copier page size: Abbr. : LTR
20. Cette fille, e.g. : ELLE
21. Con : ANTI
22. "Shoo!" : OUT!
23. ___ Bator : ULAN
24. Selected a certain fabric softener? : CHOSE DOWNY
27. 911 maker : PORSCHE
29. Roof window : DORMER
30. Family pet name : SIS
31. Beauty : PEACH
34. Tests that consist of five subjects, for short : GEDS
35. Sprite who helps you find a shopping vehicle? : CART FAIRY
38. One shouldn't have a big head : BEER
41. Posthumous inductee into the Poker Hall of Fame, 1979 : HOYLE
42. Lifesaver, briefly : EMT
45. Opposite (from) : ACROSS
48. Lose face : EAT CROW
50. Super-choosy about timepieces? : CLOCK PICKY
53. English composer Thomas : ARNE
54. Help for a do-it-yourselfer : KIT
55. ___ Pince, librarian at Hogwarts : IRMA
56. Fill : SATE
57. Anesthesia option, for short : EPI
58. Like M&M's ... or four words to describe 17-, 24-, 35- and 50-Across? : CANDY COATED (or “C and Y coated”)
62. Grp. advising the president : NSC
63. "From ___ Zinc" (vitamin slogan) : A TO
64. FedEx form : AIRBILL
65. Narcs' org. : DEA
66. S.F. hours : PST
67. Basis of the Hanukkah story : MIRACLE

Down
1. Sneakers, typically : LACE-UPS
2. Ill-fated mission of 1967 : APOLLO I
3. Arrests : COLLARS
4. "___ Nut Gone Flake," celebrated 1968 Small Faces album : OGDENS’
5. You might get credit for this period of work: Abbr. : SEM
6. ___ rose : TEA
7. Series opener? : ESS
8. Secluded spots : GLENS
9. Modified, as software for a different platform : PORTED
10. Get hitched : SAY “I DO”
11. "Here, you needn't do that" : ALLOW ME
12. Like pianos, periodically : RETUNED
13. Ones making sacrifices : MARTYRS
18. Way of the East : TAO
24. Lead role in "Clueless" : CHER
25. Toffee bar brand : HEATH
26. Bacchanalia : ORGY
28. One concerned with co. money : CPA
32. One concerned with co. money : CFO
33. Salma of "Frida" : HAYEK
35. Swamp denizen, briefly : CROC
36. Bedtime prayer words after "Now" : I LAY
37. Abbr. in many a military title : RET
38. Caboose : BACK-END
39. Shadow maker : ECLIPSE
40. "Fifty Shades of Grey" genre : EROTICA
42. All over the place : ERRATIC
43. R&B singer Jordan : MONTELL
44. Entice with music : TWEEDLE
46. Winter Olympics wear : SKI CAP
47. Nursery rhyme couple : SPRATS
49. Certain melon : CASABA
51. "___ Rappaport" (1986 Tony winner for Best Play) : I'M NOT
52. Blackguard : CAD
59. Starchy vegetable : YAM
60. Early second-century year : CII
61. Hockey's Bobby : ORR


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5 comments :

Anonymous said...

C and Y coated = CANDY coated???? How *forced* can you GET???? Will and the puzzle creators really must stop thinking they're so clever.

Anonymous said...

General Educational Development (GED)[1] tests are a group of five subject tests which, when passed, certify that the taker has American or Canadian high school-level academic skills. (Wikipedia)

Bill Butler said...

Hi there, Anonymous Visitor.

Thanks for catching my GED error. I appreciate the help (I need it!). All fixed now ...

Bob Boeckmann said...

Thanks Bill; yours is absolutely the best site ever for the NYT puzzle because people can actually LEARN something from it! The explanations are priceless! Normally, after solving (or failing to solve) a puzzle the answers you see are given simply as words, which teaches nothing and slows a person's rate of betterment in deriving future solutions. As I see it, the whole purpose of a tough crossword is not necessarily entertainment, but also as a device for learning. Your site fulfills the true purpose of a crossword, but without the braggadocio or "competitive" nonsense usually associated with such sites. Kudos to you Bill Butler!

Bill Butler said...

Hi there, Bob.

You are too, too kind in your comment, but I do appreciate the sentiment.

I've found the crossword to be of great service for me personally, prompting me to research some unknown terms, items in history etc. I realize that I end up quoting true "trivia" on the blog, but it's also true that I've learned a lot about the history and culture of my adopted homeland through crosswords. For that, I am grateful.

Thanks again, Bob!

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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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