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Greetings from Louisburgh, County Mayo 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

0206-14 New York Times Crossword Answers 6 Feb 14, Thursday





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CROSSWORD SETTER: Joe Krozel
THEME: Sounds Like Japanese … each of today’s themed answers sounds like a Japanese word with which we are familiar:
18A. *Blubbered? : WAS SOBBY (sounds like “wasabi”)
25A. *What happened after Mr. Onassis contacted A.A.A.? : ARI GOT TOW (sounds like “arigato”)
35A. *Imaginary overthrow of the government? : PSEUDO-COUP (sounds like “Sudoku”)
47A. *Give a Dust Bowl migrant a ride? : CARRY OKIE (sounds like “karaoke”)

57A. Language that gave us the words heard phonetically in the answers to the starred clues : JAPANESE
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 15m 24s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

14. Home of ancient Greek scholars : ELEA
The Ancient Greek city of Ele became known as Elea, before getting the Latin name of Velia. Velia was known as home to the celebrated philosophers Parmenides and Zeno of Elea, who belonged to the Eleatic school.

15. Google result : HIT
The search engine "Google" was originally called "BackRub" would you believe? The name was eventually changed to Google, an intentional misspelling of the word "googol". A googol is a pretty big number, 10 to the power of 100. That would be the digit 1 followed by 100 zeros.

16. Civic alternatives : SENTRAS
The Nissan Sentra is sold as the Nissan Sunny back in Japan.

Introduced in 1972, the Honda Civic is the second-oldest brand of Japanese car made for the US today (only the Toyota Corolla has been around longer). Today's Civic is a compact car, but the original was smaller, and classed as a sub-compact. The first design had a transverse-mounted engine and front-wheel drive to save on space, copying the configuration introduced with the British Mini.

18. *Blubbered? : WAS SOBBY (sounds like “wasabi”)
Sometimes called Japanese horseradish, wasabi is a root used as a condiment in Japanese cooking. The taste of wasabi is more like mustard than a hot pepper in that the vapors that create the “hotness” stimulate the nasal passages rather than the tongue. Personally, I love the stuff …

24. Home of El Greco : TOLEDO
"El Greco" ("the Greek", in Spanish) was the nickname of the artist whose real name was Domenikos Theotokopoulos. El Greco was born in Crete in 1541, and moved to Venice to study art when he was in his early twenties. A few years later he moved to the city of Toledo in central Spain, where he lived and worked for the rest of his life.

25. *What happened after Mr. Onassis contacted A.A.A.? : ARI GOT TOW (sounds like “arigato”)
“Arigato” is a Japanese word meaning “thank you”.

Aristotle Onassis was born to a successful Greek shipping entrepreneur in Smyrna in modern-day Turkey. However, his family lost its fortune during WWI and so Aristotle worked with his father to build up a new business empire centered on the importation of tobacco. In 1957, Aristotle founded the Greek national airline, what is today called Olympic Air, and he also got into the business of shipping oil around the world. He married Athina Livanos in 1946, the daughter of a wealthy shipping magnate. They had two children, including the famous Christina Onassis. Livanos divorced Onassis on discovering him in bed with the opera singer Maria Callas. Onassis ended his affair with Callas in order to marry Jackie Kennedy in 1968.

27. Reputation, on the street : CRED
“Street cred” is slang for “street credibility”, of which I have none …

30. Aero- completer : DROME
Aerodrome is a general term for a facility where aircraft take off and land. An aerodrome could be a small airstrip, a large commercial airport or even a military airbase. The term “aerodrome” is used quite often in the UK, but rarely here in the US.

31. Washington ___ (N.Y.C. neighborhood) : HTS
During the American Revolutionary War, the Continental Army built a fortification at the northern end of Manhattan that the troops named Fort Washington. The fort fell to the British in 1776 after a bloody battle, and was held by British forces until the end of the war. The surrounding area subsequently adopted the name of the fort, and has been called Washington Heights ever since.

35. *Imaginary overthrow of the government? : PSEUDO-COUP (sounds like “Sudoku”)
A coup d'état (often just "coup") is the sudden overthrow of a government, and comes from the French for "stroke of state". The Swiss German word “putsch” is sometimes used instead of “coup”, with “Putsch” translating literally as “sudden blow”.

Number puzzles similar to our modern-day Sudoku first appeared in French newspapers in the late 1800s. The format that we use today was created by Howard Garns, a 74-year-old freelance puzzle constructor from Connersville, Indiana and first published in 1979. The format was introduced in Japan in 1984 and given the title of “Sūji wa dokushin ni kagiru”, which translates to “the digits are limited to one occurrence”. The rather elaborate Japanese title was eventually shortened to Sudoku. No doubt many of you are fans of Sudoku puzzles. I know I am ...

37. Robin Hood and others : ARCHERS
Robin Hood is a figure from English folklore, celebrated in story and song. Some stories suggest that Robin Hood the outlaw was actually a real nobleman, the Earl of Huntington. Robin Hood's famous companion was Maid Marian. Interestingly, the legend of Maid Marian (full name Lady Marian of Leaford) had been around for centuries before she became associated with Robin Hood starting in the 1700s.

40. "Mad Men" star Jon : HAMM
Jon Hamm lived the life of a struggling actor for quite some time before he hit gold with the starring role in the AMC drama "Mad Men". Hamm plays the main character, advertising executive and man about town, Don Draper. I am told by my wife and female friends, that he is quite good looking. I don't see it myself ...

41. Jim Bakker's ___ Club : PTL
"The PTL Club" was a daily television show hosted by TV evangelists Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker. PTL is short for both "Praise the Lord" and "People that Love". The show ended its run of over ten years in 1987 when it was revealed that Jim Bakker was involvement in financial and sexual scandals. Bakker served 5 years in jail, part of an 18-year sentence.

45. Title heroine described in the first lines of her novel as "handsome, clever and rich" : EMMA
"Emma" is just a wonderful novel by Jane Austen, first published in 1815. I had the privilege a few years ago of attending the premiere of "Emma", a delightful musical adaptation for the stage. If you ever get the chance to see it, I highly recommend it ...

47. *Give a Dust Bowl migrant a ride? : CARRY OKIE (sounds like “karaoke”)
“Okies” was a derogatory term used during the Dust Bowl of the 1930s for farming families who migrated from Oklahoma (hence the name), Arkansas, Kansas and Texas in search of agricultural jobs in California. The road used by many of these migrant families was Route 66, which is also called “Mother Road”.

The Dust Bowl was the name given to a period in which severe dust storms ravaged the American and Canadian Prairies in the thirties. A major factor in the storms was the loss of the deep-rooted grasses native to the land that had been displaced by intensive farming. Without the grasses, the topsoil was blown away in a period of drought.

"Karate", means "open hand", and the related word "karaoke" means "open orchestra".

50. Director Christopher and actor Lloyd : NOLANS
Director Christopher Nolan is best known for "rescuing" the floundering Batman movie franchise. He directed "Batman Begins" and "The Dark Knight".

Lloyd Nolan was an American TV and film actor, who played mainly in B-movies, but I must say I've always enjoyed his performances (I saw him not too long ago in "The House on 92nd Street", from 1945).

52. 1998 Sarah McLachlan song : ADIA
Sarah McLachlan is singer/songwriter from Halifax, Nova Scotia who lives in Vancouver. In 1997, McLachlan married Ashwin Sood, the drummer in her band. Apparently the song "Adia", that she co-wrote and recorded, was intended as an apology to her best friend ... for stealing her ex-boyfriend and then marrying him!

53. First name in ice cream : BEN
Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield did a correspondence course on ice-cream making in 1977 given by Pennsylvania State University's Creamery. The following year they opened an ice cream parlor in an old gas station in Burlington, Vermont. Today Ben & Jerry's has locations in over 20 countries around the world, and theirs was the first brand ice-cream to go into space.

54. Bank numbers : CD RATES
A certificate of deposit (CD) is like a less-flexible and higher-paying savings account. Instead of depositing money into a savings account and earning interest periodically, one can open a CD. With a CD one deposits a minimum amount of money but must leave it there for a specified length of time. In return for committing the funds for a fixed period, one is given a higher interest rate than a savings account and can redeem that interest and the initial deposit when the term has expired. CDs are relatively low-risk investments as they are FDIC insured, just like savings accounts.

60. Third person : CAIN
Adam and Eve’s children were Cain and Abel, two estranged brothers.

63. Roman foes : HUNS
The Huns were a nomadic people who originated in Eastern Europe in the 4th century. Under the command of Attila the Hun they developed a unified empire that stretched from modern-day Germany across to the steppes of Central Asia. The whole of the Hunnic Empire collapsed within a year of Attila's death in 453 AD.

Down
2. Gravely ill: Fr. : A LA MORT
The French phrase “à la mort” means “to the death”.

8. PC data format : ASCII
ASCII (American Standard Code for Information Interchange) lists codes for 32 "control" characters, as well as the 95 printable characters (like a, A, b, B, 1, 2, etc). These binary ASCII codes are the way that our computers can understand what we mean when we type say a letter or a number.

10. Old cable inits. : TNN
The Nashville Network (TNN) was a country music cable channel that operated from 1983 to 2003. When TNN closed down it was relaunched with a completely different format as Spike, marketed as “the first television channel for men”.

19. Multivolume set, for short : OED
The "Oxford English Dictionary" (OED) contains over 300,000 "main" entries and 59 million words in total. It is said it would take a single person 120 years to type it out in full. The longest entry for one word in the second edition of the OED is the verb "set". When the third edition was published in 2007, the longest entry for a single word became the verb "put". Perhaps not surprisingly, the most-quoted author in the OED is William Shakespeare, with his most quoted work being “Hamlet”. The most-quoted female author is George Eliot (aka Mary Ann Evans).

25. Condition treated with Adderall, in brief : ADHD
The "official" name for the condition we sometimes still refer to as "attention deficit disorder" (ADD) is "attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder" (ADHD).

26. Theater : ODEUM
In Ancient Greece an odeon (also odeum) was like a small theater, with "odeon" literally meaning a "building for musical competition". Odea were used in both Greece and Rome for entertainments such as musical shows and poetry readings.

35. Exodus figures : PHARAOHS
The Book of Exodus is the second book in the Bible, and deals with Moses leading the Hebrews out of Egypt. The name "exodus" comes from the Greek "exodos" meaning "departure".

37. Business establishment where customers can make a killing? : ARCADE
Our word “arcade” comes from the Latin “arcus” meaning “arc”. The first arcades were passages made from a series of arches. This could be an avenue of trees, and eventually any covered avenue. I remember arcades lined with shops and stores when I was growing up on the other side of the Atlantic. Arcades came to be lined with lots of amusements, resulting in amusement arcades and video game arcades.

39. Teacher/astronaut McAuliffe : CHRISTA
Christa McAuliffe was one of the crew members who perished in the Challenger Space Shuttle disaster of 1986. McAuliffe was a schoolteacher from Concord, New Hampshire who had been selected as a crew member as part of NASA’s Teacher in Space Project.

45. One from Berlin : EIN
Berlin is the capital and largest city in Germany, and is the second most populous city in the European Union (after London).

46. Boil for a short time : BLANCH
In cooking “to blanch” a food substance it is plunged into boiling water for a short time and then plunged into iced water to stop the cooking process. The literal meaning of “blanch” is “whiten” (from French), but the procedure does not necessarily result in a color change. The desired outcome is usually a softening or a reduction in a strong taste.

56. Clear tables : BUS
A busboy is a person who assists a waiter, mainly by clearing tables. The verb “to bus” arose in the early 1900s and is probably a reference to the wheeled cart that was used to carry dishes.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Report of a shooting : BANG!
5. Brunch offerings, for short : OJS
8. Affected to a greater extent : ARTIER
14. Home of ancient Greek scholars : ELEA
15. Google result : HIT
16. Civic alternatives : SENTRAS
18. *Blubbered? : WAS SOBBY (sounds like “wasabi”)
20. What a nod may mean : CONSENT
21. "Wouldn't miss it!" : I’M THERE!
22. Cone origin : FIR
23. Heartbreak, e.g. : ACHE
24. Home of El Greco : TOLEDO
25. *What happened after Mr. Onassis contacted A.A.A.? : ARI GOT TOW (sounds like “arigato”)
27. Reputation, on the street : CRED
28. Kind of sum : TIDY
30. Aero- completer : DROME
31. Washington ___ (N.Y.C. neighborhood) : HTS
32. "That can't be good!" : UH-OH!
33. Maligned : SMEARED
35. *Imaginary overthrow of the government? : PSEUDO-COUP (sounds like “Sudoku”)
37. Robin Hood and others : ARCHERS
40. "Mad Men" star Jon : HAMM
41. Jim Bakker's ___ Club : PTL
44. Place to get clean : REHAB
45. Title heroine described in the first lines of her novel as "handsome, clever and rich" : EMMA
46. Not at all chipper : BLUE
47. *Give a Dust Bowl migrant a ride? : CARRY OKIE (sounds like “karaoke”)
50. Director Christopher and actor Lloyd : NOLANS
52. 1998 Sarah McLachlan song : ADIA
53. First name in ice cream : BEN
54. Bank numbers : CD RATES
55. Not mind : DISOBEY
57. Language that gave us the words heard phonetically in the answers to the starred clues : JAPANESE
58. Motivate : ENTHUSE
59. Back : AGO
60. Third person : CAIN
61. Prepared for a long drive, with "up" : GASSED
62. Part of a gym set : REP
63. Roman foes : HUNS

Down
1. Enchant : BEWITCH
2. Gravely ill: Fr. : A LA MORT
3. Gets snug : NESTLES
4. Ripped with a knife : GASHED
5. "Here we go again!" : OH BROTHER!
6. Agree : JIBE
7. Messy spot : STY
8. PC data format : ASCII
9. Major alteration of a business structure, for short : REORG
10. Old cable inits. : TNN
11. Warning to the unwary : IT’S A TRAP
12. Kind of set : ERECTOR
13. Quickly sought safety, in a way : RAN HOME
17. Fretted : STEWED
19. Multivolume set, for short : OED
22. Get too much sun, colloquially : FRY
25. Condition treated with Adderall, in brief : ADHD
26. Theater : ODEUM
29. Red state handouts? : IOUS
32. Words always preceding a date : USE BY
33. Source of ill-gotten gains : SCAM
34. Kind of shop : MOM-AND-POP
35. Exodus figures : PHARAOHS
36. "Alas!" : OH ME!
37. Business establishment where customers can make a killing? : ARCADE
38. Something taken from a meter : READING
39. Teacher/astronaut McAuliffe : CHRISTA
41. Level off : PLATEAU
42. Catches on the radio : TUNES IN
43. Eases : LESSENS
45. One from Berlin : EIN
46. Boil for a short time : BLANCH
48. Extra-large : OBESE
49. Typed (in) : KEYED
51. "... ___ close second" : OR A
54. Zoo keeper? : CAGE
56. Clear tables : BUS
57. Shock : JAR


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1 comment :

Anonymous said...

Terrible theme. And the misleadingly-edited clues don't help:

35 Across clue: *Imaginary...

PSEUDO is not "imaginary," it is false, unreal or pretended.

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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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