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1018-13 New York Times Crossword Answers 18 Oct 13, Friday





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CROSSWORD SETTER: David Steinberg
THEME: None
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 28m 46s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. 1999 rap hit featuring Snoop Dogg : STILL DRE
“Still D.R.E.” is a 1999 song released by rapper Dr. Dre. The recording also features Snoop Dog. If you ever play the video game Grand Theft Auto V, you’ll hear the song. I guess I won’t be hearing it, then …

9. "Sin City" actress : ALBA
Actress Jessica Alba got her big break when she was cast in the Fox science fiction show “Dark Angel”. Alba had a tough life growing up as she spent a lot of time in hospital and so found it difficult to develop friendships. As a youngster she twice had a collapsed lung, frequently caught pneumonia, suffered from asthma, had a ruptured appendix and a tonsillar cyst. On top of all that she acknowledges that she suffered from obsessive-compulsive disorder as a child. It seems that she has really turned her life around ...

“Sin City” is a 2005 thriller movie that is based on a series of graphic novels by Frank Miller. Miller also co-directs the film. “Sin City” has a large ensemble cast that includes Bruce Willis, Jessica Alba, Benicio del Toro, Clive Owen and Mickey Rourke. Frank Miller even plays a role himself.

13. Classic TV family : CONEHEADS
“The Coneheads” first appeared in a “Saturday Night Live” sketch in 1977. The three family members back then were played by Dan Ackroyd (father), Jane Curtin (mother) and Laraine Newman (daughter). The characters became so popular they were featured in a “Coneheads” movie in 1993.

16. 45 degrees, for 1 : ARCTANGENT
The most familiar trigonometric functions are sine, cosine and tangent. Each of these is a ratio, a ratio of two sides of a right-angled triangle. The “reciprocal” of these three functions are secant, cosecant and cotangent. The reciprocal functions are simply the inverted ratios, the inverted sine, cosine and tangent. These inverted ratios should not be confused with the “inverse” trigonometric functions e.g. arcsine, arccosine and arctangent. These inverse functions are the reverse of the sine, cosine and tangent. For example, the arctangent can be read as “What angle is equivalent to the following ration of opposite over adjacent?”

18. Wild things? : OATS
Traditionally, wild oats was a crop that one would regret sowing instead of “good grain”. Young and tempestuous people were rash enough to sow their wild oats, and had yet to comprehend their folly. Over time, to “feel one’s oats” came to mean “be lively and confident”.

19. Puts on eBay again : RELISTS
eBay was founded in 1995 as AuctionWeb as part of a computer programmer’s personal website. One of the first items purchased was a broken laser pointer, for $14.83. The buyer collected broken laser pointers …

20. Cuban province where Castro was born : ORIENTE
Oriente was one of six provinces of Cuba, up until 1976 when it was split up into five new provinces. The name “Oriente” is now used for the eastern part of the country. “Oriente” is the Spanish for “east”.

22. Zoological groups : FAUNAS
The fauna is the animal life of a particular region, and the flora is that region’s plant life. The term “fauna” comes from the Roman goddess of earth and fertility who was called Fauna. Flora was the Roman goddess of plants, flowers and fertility.

23. Diamond deal : TWIN BILL
A "twin bill" is a double-feature in the world of movies, and a double-header in the world of baseball.

25. Mode of transportation in a 1969 #1 hit : JET PLANE
"Leaving on a Jet Plane" was written by John Denver in 1966, but the most famous recording of the song was by Peter, Paul and Mary in 1969. The lyrics of the song are meant to portray a travelling musician saying goodbye to his beloved as he heads off on the road yet again. Because the song was released at the height of the Vietnam War, it was widely assumed that the words actually referred to a soldier heading off on a plane to fight overseas.

26. Filmdom family name : 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.

27. Israel's Sea of ___ : GALILEE
The Sea of Galilee is actually a lake, the largest freshwater lake in Israel and the lowest elevation freshwater lake in the world. The main source of the water in the Sea of Galilee is the Jordan River which flows through it.

29. Informal name of the 45th state : DESERET
When Mormon pioneers were settling what is today the state of Utah, they referred to the area as Deseret, a word that means “beehive” according to the Book of Mormon. Today Utah is known as the Beehive State and there is a beehive symbol on the Utah state flag.

34. Songbird Mitchell : JONI
Joni Mitchell is a Canadian singer and songwriter from Fort Macleod in Alberta. Mitchell is perhaps best known for her recordings “Big Yellow Taxi” and “Woodstock”.

35. Turkey ___, baseball Hall-of-Famer from the Negro leagues : STEARNES
Norman “Turkey” Stearnes was an outfielder who played baseball in the Negro Leagues. Stearnes earned his nickname as a boy, because he had a funny gait when running. Stearnes was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2000, 21 years after he passed away.

39. ___ system, part of the brain that regulates emotion, behavior and long-term memory : LIMBIC
The limbic system is the name given to a collection of structures in the brain located under the cerebrum and on either side of the thalamus. Apparently the limbic system is responsible for our emotional lives and the formation of memories.

40. 2000s CBS sitcom : YES, DEAR
“Yes Dear” is a TV sitcom that originally aired from 2000 to 2006. The show is about two couples living together in the same house, as the two wives are sisters. One couple owns the house, the other is “lodging”.

41. Sextet at Woodstock : SANTANA
Carlos Santana is a Mexican American rock guitar player, famous for heading the band called Santana that melded rock music with Latin and African themes.

42. "El Condor ___" (1970 Simon & Garfunkel hit) : PASA
“El Cóndor Pasa” is a song from Peru, the best-known Peruvian song in the world, almost certainly. It was written in 1913, and famously covered by Simon & Garfunkel on their “Bridge Over Troubled Water” album in 1970. “El Cóndor Pasa” translates from Spanish as “The Condor Flies By”.

43. Golda Meir and Yitzhak Rabin led it : LABOR PARTY
The Israeli Labor Party is also known locally as HaAvoda. The party was founded in 1968.

45. Division d'une carte : ETAT
In French, a division of a map (division of a map) might be a state (état).

46. Place of outdoor meditation : ZEN GARDEN
Japanese Zen gardens are inspired by the meditation gardens of Zen Buddhist temples. Zen gardens have no water in them, but often there is gravel and sand that is raked in patterns designed to create the impression of water in waves and ripples.

47. Mock words of understanding : AHSO
The slang term “ahso” is used in American English to mean “I see”. The term derives from the Japanese expression “Ah so desu ka” meaning “Oh, that’s how it is”.

48. Price of an opera? : LEONTYNE
Leontyne Price is a soprano from Laurel, Mississippi. Before retiring from the opera stage, Price was a leading artist at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, one of the first African-American singers to be so honored.

Down
1. Gangster nickname : SCARFACE
When Al Capone was a young man, he worked as a bouncer in nightclubs and saloons. He was working the door of a Brooklyn night spot one evening when he apparently insulted a woman, sparking off a fight with her brother. In the tussle, Capone's face was slashed three times. Capone wasn't too proud of the incident, nor the "Scarface" moniker. He always hid the scars as best he could when being photographed, and was also fond of telling people that the scars were from old war wounds.

2. "Carmen" figure : TOREADOR
"Toreador" is an old Spanish word for a bullfighter, but it's a term not used any more in Spain nor in Latin America. In English we use the term "toreador", but in Spanish a bullfighter is a "torero".

Georg Bizet was a French composer active in the Romantic era. Bizet's most famous work has to be his opera "Carmen". "Carmen" initially received a lukewarm reception from the public, even though his fellow composers had nothing but praise for it. Sadly Bizet died at only 36 years of age, before he could see "Carmen's" tremendous success. I saw my first ever live performance of “Carmen” not too long ago.

5. From the Forbidden City : LHASAN
Lhasa is the capital city of Tibet, and the name "Lhasa" translates as "place of the gods". However, Lhasa used to be called Rasa, a name that translates into the less auspicious "goat's place". Lhasa was also once called the “Forbidden City” due to its inaccessible location high in the Himalayas and a traditional hostility exhibited by residents to outsiders. The “forbidden” nature of the city has been reinforced since the Chinese took over Tibet in the early 1950s as it has been difficult for foreigners to get permission to visit Lhasa.

8. Dutch city ESE of Amsterdam : EDE
Ede is a small town in the Netherlands located between the cities of Arnhem and Utrecht.

9. Shape shifters? : AMOEBAE
An ameba (or "amoeba" as we spell it back in Ireland) is a single-celled microorganism. The name comes from the Greek "amoibe", meaning change. The name is quite apt, as the cell changes shape readily as the ameba moves, eats and reproduces.

12. First name in shooting : ANSEL
As an amateur photographer, I have been a big fan of the work of Ansel Adams for many years and must have read all of his books. Adams was famous for clarity and depth in his black and white images. Central to his technique was the use of the zone system, his own invention. The zone system is a way of controlling exposure in an image, particularly when there is a high contrast in the subject. Although the technique was developed primarily for black & white film, it can even apply to digital color images. In the digital world, the main technique is to expose an image for the highlights, and one or more images for the shadows. These images can then be combined digitally giving a final photograph with a full and satisfying range of exposures.

17. Didn't make it home, say : TRIPLED
A baseball player who hits a triple doesn’t quite make it to home.

23. E-mail ancestors : TELEXES
Telex grew out of the world of the telegraph. What Telex brought to telegraphy was the ability to route messages. Instead of having to talk to an operator to route a particular message to the intended party, the user of a telex could route the message directly to another telex machine by way of a rotary dial, very similar to that on a telephone.

25. "Wordplay" vocalist, 2005 : JASON MRAZ
Jason Mraz is a singer-songwriter from Mechanicsville, Virginia. Jason is of Czech descent, and his name “Mraz” translates as “frost”.

29. Mary ___ (doomed ship) : DEARE
“The Wreck of the Mary Deare” is a novel by Hammond Innes, as well as a 1959 movie adaptation of the book, starring Gary Cooper.

30. Italian region that's home to Milan : LOMBARDY
There are twenty administrative regions of Italy, on of which is Lombardy, which is in the very north of the country. Lombardy’s capital is the city of Milan.

32. Florida's Key ___ : BISCAYNE
Key Biscayne is the southernmost of the Barrier Islands lying off the Florida coast. President Nixon owned a compound on the island, made up of three houses which he purchased. He visited Key Biscayne at least fifty times while he was in office, so the President's residence there was nicknamed “the Florida White House”, or sometimes “the Winter White House”.

33. Musician who arranged the theme for "2001" : DEODATO
Eumir Deodato is a pianist and composer from Brazil, who is also much in demand as a music producer and arranger.

36. Olympic ice dancing gold medalist Virtue and others : TESSAS
Tessa Virtue is a Canadian ice dancer who won the 2010 Olympic championship along with her partner Scott Moir.

37. ___ Alley : TIN PAN
Tin Pan Alley was originally a specific location, West 28th Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenue in Manhattan. The area was associated with the music publishing business from about 1885 to the start of the Great Depression The name itself is possibly a reference to the tinny sound of cheap pianos that were common at the time.

38. Hypercompetitive : TYPE A
The Type A and Type B personality theory originated in the fifties. Back then, individuals were labelled as Type A in order to emphasize a perceived increased risk of heart disease. Type A personality types are so called "stress junkies", whereas Type B types are relaxed and laid back. But there doesn't seem to be much scientific evidence to support the linkage between the Type A personality and heart problems.

39. About 40-60 beats per minute : LARGO
Largo is a instruction to play a piece of music with a very slow tempo. “Largo” is the Italian word for “broadly”.

41. Volume measure : SONE
In the acoustic world, the "sone" was introduced as a unit of perceived loudness in 1936.

44. Volume measure : BEL
In the world of acoustics, one bel is equal to ten decibels.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. 1999 rap hit featuring Snoop Dogg : STILL DRE
9. "Sin City" actress : ALBA
13. Classic TV family : CONEHEADS
15. Represent : MEAN
16. 45 degrees, for 1 : ARCTANGENT
18. Wild things? : OATS
19. Puts on eBay again : RELISTS
20. Cuban province where Castro was born : ORIENTE
22. Zoological groups : FAUNAS
23. Diamond deal : TWIN BILL
24. Software plug-in : ADD-ON
25. Mode of transportation in a 1969 #1 hit : JET PLANE
26. Filmdom family name : COEN
27. Israel's Sea of ___ : GALILEE
28. Silence fillers : ERS
29. Informal name of the 45th state : DESERET
30. Softball question : LOB
33. Clean, now : DETOXED
34. Songbird Mitchell : JONI
35. Turkey ___, baseball Hall-of-Famer from the Negro leagues : STEARNES
37. Breaks : TAMES
38. They get tested : THEOREMS
39. ___ system, part of the brain that regulates emotion, behavior and long-term memory : LIMBIC
40. 2000s CBS sitcom : YES, DEAR
41. Sextet at Woodstock : SANTANA
42. "El Condor ___" (1970 Simon & Garfunkel hit) : PASA
43. Golda Meir and Yitzhak Rabin led it : LABOR PARTY
45. Division d'une carte : ETAT
46. Place of outdoor meditation : ZEN GARDEN
47. Mock words of understanding : AHSO
48. Price of an opera? : LEONTYNE

Down
1. Gangster nickname : SCARFACE
2. "Carmen" figure : TOREADOR
3. Covers : INCLUDES
4. Share a secret with : LET IN ON
5. From the Forbidden City : LHASAN
6. Bad impressions? : DENTS
7. Poverty, metaphorically : RAGS
8. Dutch city ESE of Amsterdam : EDE
9. Shape shifters? : AMOEBAE
10. Try to hear better, maybe : LEAN IN
11. Knock-down-drag-out : BATTLE
12. First name in shooting : ANSEL
14. Winter set : SNOW TIRES
17. Didn't make it home, say : TRIPLED
21. Arm : INLET
23. E-mail ancestors : TELEXES
25. "Wordplay" vocalist, 2005 : JASON MRAZ
27. "In your dreams!" : GET REAL!
29. Mary ___ (doomed ship) : DEARE
30. Italian region that's home to Milan : LOMBARDY
31. Chances that a year ends with any particular digit : ONE IN TEN
32. Florida's Key ___ : BISCAYNE
33. Musician who arranged the theme for "2001" : DEODATO
34. Fruit-filled pastry : JAM TART
35. Where to bury the hatchet? : SHEATH
36. Olympic ice dancing gold medalist Virtue and others : TESSAS
37. ___ Alley : TIN PAN
38. Hypercompetitive : TYPE A
39. About 40-60 beats per minute : LARGO
41. Volume measure : SONE
44. Volume measure : BEL


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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 everyday 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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