Top Line

Search by Date

DD MMM YY or MMDD-YY

Search by Puzzle Number

e.g. 1225-09, 0704-10, 1025-10 etc.

Daily Solution by Email

Enter your email address

Greetings from Las Vegas, Nevada (again!)

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 spent the whole morning today hiking and taking photos in Arches NP, a favorite of ours, and then had a long drive across Utah as we start back towards home ...

Bill

1115-13 New York Times Crossword Answers 15 Nov 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

Share today's solution with a friend:
FacebookTwitterGoogleEmail

CROSSWORD SETTER: David Woolf
THEME: None
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 36m 12s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

9. Rough limestone regions with sinkholes and caverns : KARSTS
A “karst” is a geological formation in which limestone has eroded away leaving sinkholes, underground streams and caverns. The term “karst” comes from such a formation in southwestern Slovenia and northeastern Italy called the Karst Plateau.

15. Novel title character with a "brief, wondrous life" : OSCAR WAO
“The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao” is a Pulitzer-winning 2007 novel by Junot Díaz, a Dominican-American writer. Díaz was raised in New Jersey, where he chose to set his popular novel.

16. Hawaii's Forbidden Isle : NIIHAU
The Hawaiian island of Niihau lies about 17 miles southwest of Kauai, with a population of just over 100 people. Niihau is privately owned and so only a few tourists are welcome, and only in the past few decades. The lack of access led to the island earning the nickname “the Forbidden Isle”.

19. One buzzing off? : 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.

20. Three Stooges display : IDIOCY
If you've seen a few of the films starring "The Three Stooges" you'll have noticed that the line up changed over the years. The original trio was made up of Moe and Shemp Howard (two brothers) and Larry Fine (a good friend of the Howards). This line up was usually known as "Moe, Larry and Shemp". Then Curly Howard replaced his brother when Shemp quit the act, creating the most famous trio, "Moe, Larry And Curly". Shemp returned when Curly had a debilitating stroke in 1946, and Shemp stayed with the troupe until he died in 1955. Shemp was replaced by Joe Besser, and then "Curly-Joe" DeRita. When Larry Fine had a stroke in 1970, it effectively marked the end of the act.

21. Some lab leaders, for short : TAS
Teaching Assistants (TAs)

22. Like most hall-of-fame inductees: Abbr. : RET
Retired (ret.)

28. Jet black : ONYX
Onyx is a form of quartz that comes in many different shades, but most often it's the black version that's used for jewelry. The name "onyx" comes from the Greek word for "fingernail", as onyx in the flesh color is said to resemble a fingernail.

32. He cast the Killing Curse on Dumbledore : SNAPE
Severus Snape is a character in the Harry Potter novels, played by the wonderful Alan Rickman on the big screen.

Dumbledore is the headmaster of the school for wizards called Hogwarts, in the Harry Potter universe. The “Harry Potter” books were of course written by J. K. Rowling, and she chose the name Dumbledore as it is an Early English word for a bumblebee. Apparently she pictured him wandering around, humming to himself.

33. What the Flying Wallendas refuse to use : NET
The Flying Wallendas are a circus act noted for highwire routines that are performed without a net. The original Wallenda troupe was from Germany, and first performed in the US in Madison Square Garden in 1928. The safety net that was used by the act was lost in transit and so the Wallendas made their first American performance without a net to the delight of the crowd. Working without a net then became the act’s trademark. Despite many tragic incidents that have resulted in deaths, Wallenda family members are performing without a net to this day.

34. Powerful Hindu deities : DEVAS
In the Hindu transition, the devas are benevolent deities. The female form of “deva” is “devi”.

41. Unlucky accidents, old-style : HAPS
Our word "hap" means chance or fortune. It turns up combined in words like "haphazard" and even "happen". "Happen" originally meant to "occur by hap, by chance".

44. Co. led by Baryshnikov in the 1980s : ABT
The American Ballet Theatre (ABT) is a dance company that was once led by Mikhail Baryshnikov.

45. It broke up in the age of dinosaurs : PANGEA
Pangaea was a supercontinent that existed during the age of the dinosaurs, the late Paleozoic and early Mesozoic eras. Pangaea broke apart due to movement of tectonic plates in the Earth’s crust. All of today’s continents were once part of Pangaea.

50. Olive ___ : OYL
"Thimble Theater" was the precursor comic strip to the famous "Popeye" drawn by E. C. Segar. Before Popeye came into the story, the brother and sister characters Castor Oyl and Olive Oyl were the main protagonists. And then along comes a sailor ...

52. Give an underhanded hand? : ABET
“Aid” and “abet” are synonyms. The word "abet" comes into English from the Old French "abeter" meaning "to bait" or "to harass with dogs" (it literally means "to make bite"). This sense of encouraging something bad to happen morphed into our modern usage of "abet" meaning to aid or encourage someone in a crime.

53. Assertion more likely to be correct if 8-Down is given : THE TRUTH WILL OUT
“Truth will out” is a phrase meaning that the truth will eventually emerge. The phrase originated with Shakespeare, in a speech by Launcelot in “The Merchant of Venice” …
Nay, indeed, if you had your eyes, you might fail of the knowing me: it is a wise father that knows his own child. Well, old man, I will tell you news of your son: give me your blessing: truth will come to light; murder cannot be hid long; a man's son may, but at the length truth will out.

57. Axis, e.g. : ALLIANCE
Before WWII, Hungary's prime minister was lobbying for an alliance between Germany, Hungary and Italy and worked towards such a relationship that he called an "axis". The main Axis powers during the war of course were Germany, Italy and Japan. However, also included in the relationship were Romania, Bulgaria and the aforementioned Hungary.

58. "Fingers crossed" : HOPE SO
The crossed-fingers hand gesture is used as a wish for good luck, or sometimes as an excuse for telling a white lie. The gesture originated in the early Christian church when crossing of the fingers invoked the protection of the Christian cross. Crossed fingers were also used by Christians as a secret sign of recognition during the days of persecution by the ancient Romans.

59. Whose eyes Puck squeezes magical juice on : LYSANDER
Lysander is a character in William Shakespeare’s play “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”. He is one of the four young Athenian lovers in the play, who is wished to marry Hermia.

Puck aka Robin Goodfellow is a character in William Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, one of the Fairies in the tale. One of Puck’s tasks in the storyline is to use love juice that is made from a flower that has been hit by cupid’s arrow. The magical juice is applied to the eyelids of someone sleeping, so that the person wakes and falls in love with the first living things he or she sees. Of course, Puck drops the love juice on the wrong character …

Down
3. Common result of a slipped disk : SCIATICA
Sciatica is pain caused by compression and inflammation of one or both of the sciatic nerves that run from the lower back down to the lower legs.

4. Foil feature : HAFT
The “haft” of a weapon is its handle or hilt.

5. Realty ad abbr. : BRS
Bedrooms (brs.)

7. What a vacay provides : R AND R
A vacation (“vacay”) might provide some rest and relaxation/recuperation (R&R).

8. What an interrogator might administer : SODIUM PENTOTHAL
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.

13. Vast historical region controlled by the Mongols : TATARY
Tartary (sometimes “Tatary”) was a name used in Europe for the Great Steppe that stretches across northern and central Asia.

The Mongols are an ethnic group that is found today in modern Mongolia, in China and in Russia.

14. Kingdom next to Kent : SUSSEX
Sussex is a county in the very southeast of England, lying right on the English Channel. The county of Sussex has about the same boundaries as the ancient Kingdom of Sussex, a Saxon colony that existed for about five hundred years until the Battle of Hastings in 1066. Hastings, a town on the Sussex coast was the site of the first battle of the Norman Conquest of England.

Kent is a county in the southeast of England. Kent is a little unusual in that it shares a "land" border with France. That border nominally exists halfway through the Channel Tunnel, one end of which comes to surface in the Kent port of Folkestone.

23. They aid responses, in brief : SASES
A self-addressed stamped envelope (SASE) might be an enclosure (enc.) sent with a letter.

30. Speaking of repeatedly, to a Brit : ON ABOUT
In Britain, “to go on about” something is to talk about it repeatedly.

31. 1984 award for Elmore Leonard : EDGAR
The Edgar Allan Poe Awards (the Edgars) are presented annually by the Mystery Writers of America.

Elmore Leonard used to write a lot of westerns in the fifties and moved onto crime and suspense novels later in his career. A lot of his books have made it to the big screen, including “Get Shorty” and “Mr Majestyk”.

35. Drifting type : VAGABOND
A “vagabond” is a person without a home who moves from place to place. The term derives from the Latin “vagabundus” meaning “wandering, strolling about”.

36. Good hand holding in Omaha Hi-Lo : ACE-DEUCE
Omaha is a poker card game similar to Texas hold ‘em. The two games differ in that there are four initial hole cards per player in Omaha (as opposed to just two in Texas hold 'em). And in Omaha each player’s hand is made up of exactly three cards from the board and exactly two of the player’s own cards.

37. It has the densest fur of any animal : SEA OTTER
The fur of the sea otter is exceptionally thick. It is in fact the densest fur in the whole animal kingdom.

39. Alpine skier Julia who won Olympic gold in 2006 : MANCUSO
Julia Mancuso is an alpine ski racer from Reno, Nevada. Mancuso won Olympic gold in the giant slalom at the 2006 Winter Olympics. In total, she has won three Olympic medals, more than any other American alpine skier. Mancuso had a tough upbringing as her father was convicted of running a $140 million marijuana smuggling operation when she was just five years old.

41. Still-produced stuff : HOOTCH
In the Klondike gold rush, a favorite tipple of the miners was "Hoochinoo", a liquor made by the native Alaskans. Soon after "hooch" (also "hootch") was adopted as a word for cheap whiskey.

52. Actor Rickman who played 32-Across : ALAN
Alan Rickman is a marvelous English actor, famous for playing bad guy Hans Gruber in the original "Die Hard" film, Severus Snape in the "Harry Potter" series and my personal favorite, Eamon de Valera in "Michael Collins".

54. Low numero : TRE
In Italian, three (tre) is a low number (numero).

55. ___ Fáil (Irish coronation stone) : LIA
The “Lia Fáil” is the coronation stone that is found on the Hill of Tara, the traditional seat of the High Kings of Ireland. “Lia Fáil” translates from Irish as “stone of destiny”.

Share today's solution with a friend:
FacebookTwitterGoogleEmail

Return to top of page

For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Their drinks are not on the house : CASH BARS
9. Rough limestone regions with sinkholes and caverns : KARSTS
15. Novel title character with a "brief, wondrous life" : OSCAR WAO
16. Hawaii's Forbidden Isle : NIIHAU
17. "... period!" : NO IFS ANDS OR BUTS!
19. One buzzing off? : GNAT
20. Three Stooges display : IDIOCY
21. Some lab leaders, for short : TAS
22. Like most hall-of-fame inductees: Abbr. : RET
23. Gave belts or socks : STRUCK
24. Swamp : MIRE
25. Female friends, to Francisco : AMIGAS
27. Early-millennium year : MII
28. Jet black : ONYX
29. Some are soft-shell : TACOS
30. Spread out : OPENED
32. He cast the Killing Curse on Dumbledore : SNAPE
33. What the Flying Wallendas refuse to use : NET
34. Powerful Hindu deities : DEVAS
38. That same number of : AS MANY
40. Diner's words of thanks : GRACE
41. Unlucky accidents, old-style : HAPS
44. Co. led by Baryshnikov in the 1980s : ABT
45. It broke up in the age of dinosaurs : PANGEA
46. Not procrastinating : ON IT
47. Midday assignation, in slang : NOONER
49. Stink : ADO
50. Olive ___ : OYL
51. More pointed : ACUTER
52. Give an underhanded hand? : ABET
53. Assertion more likely to be correct if 8-Down is given : THE TRUTH WILL OUT
56. Decision makers : COURTS
57. Axis, e.g. : ALLIANCE
58. "Fingers crossed" : HOPE SO
59. Whose eyes Puck squeezes magical juice on : LYSANDER

Down
1. "Well done!" : CONGRATS!
2. With no dissenters : AS ONE MAN
3. Common result of a slipped disk : SCIATICA
4. Foil feature : HAFT
5. Realty ad abbr. : BRS
6. Lies ahead : AWAITS
7. What a vacay provides : R AND R
8. What an interrogator might administer : SODIUM PENTOTHAL
9. Bring home, as a run : KNOCK IN
10. Light as a feather : AIRY
11. One in a cage : RIB
12. Confined : SHUT-IN
13. Vast historical region controlled by the Mongols : TATARY
14. Kingdom next to Kent : SUSSEX
18. See 24-Down : SOCIETY
23. They aid responses, in brief : SASES
24. With 18-Down, life today : MODERN
26. Transcend : GO PAST
30. Speaking of repeatedly, to a Brit : ON ABOUT
31. 1984 award for Elmore Leonard : EDGAR
35. Drifting type : VAGABOND
36. Good hand holding in Omaha Hi-Lo : ACE-DEUCE
37. It has the densest fur of any animal : SEA OTTER
39. Alpine skier Julia who won Olympic gold in 2006 : MANCUSO
41. Still-produced stuff : HOOTCH
42. Slangy segue : ANYHOO
43. Awful accident : PILE UP
45. Hazards : PERILS
48. Afresh : NEWLY
51. Film and theater : ARTS
52. Actor Rickman who played 32-Across : ALAN
54. Low numero : TRE
55. ___ Fáil (Irish coronation stone) : LIA


Return to top of page


The Best of the New York Times Crossword Collections

No comments :

Tell a Friend About NYTCrossword.com:

Facebook Twitter Google Email

Adsense Wide Skyscraper

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

Blog Archive