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0512-14 New York Times Crossword Answers 12 May 14, Monday





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CROSSWORD SETTER: Gary Cee
THEME: Clever at the Beginning … each of today’s themed answers starts with a synonym of “clever”.
17A. Samsung Galaxy or BlackBerry : SMARTPHONE
41A. Devious trick : FAST ONE
65A. What an optimist always looks on : BRIGHT SIDE
11D. Easily made profit : QUICK BUCK
36D. Abrupt left or right : SHARP TURN
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 6m 03s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Secret stash : CACHE
A “cache” is a secret supply. We imported the term into English from French Canadian trappers in the 17th century. Back then, “cache” was as slang term for a “hiding place for stores”, derived from the French verb “cacher” meaning “to hide”.

6. Doorframe's vertical part : JAMB
A door or window jamb is the vertical portion of the frame. The term "jamb" comes from the French word "jambe" meaning "leg".

14. Buenos ___ : AIRES
Buenos Aires is the capital of Argentina, located on the estuary of the Ria de la Plata. As a port city, the people of Buenos Aires are known as porteños ("people of the port").

15. Dial button sharing the "0" : OPER
Dial “0” for operator assistance.

17. Samsung Galaxy or BlackBerry : SMARTPHONE
The Galaxy is a series of mobile computing devices made by Samsung that was introduced in 2009.

The PDA known as a BlackBerry was given its name because the keyboard on the original device resembled the surface on the fruit of a blackberry.

19. 1953 Leslie Caron musical : LILI
“Lili” is 1953 musical film starring Leslie Caron in the title role, a naive French orphan girl. A famous song from the movie is “Hi-Lili, Hi-Lo”.

The beautiful and talented French actress and dancer Leslie Caron is best known for her appearances in the classic Hollywood musical films “An American in Paris”, “Lili” and “Gigi”. Although I love the movie “Gigi”, my favorite of her performances is in the comedy war drama “Father Goose” in which she played opposite Cary Grant. Caron has danced with the best, including Gene Kelly, Fred Astaire, Mikhail Baryshnikov and Rudolf Nureyev.

20. Number after Big or top : TEN
The Big Ten is the nation's oldest Division I college athletic conference and today is comprised of not ten, but twelve colleges mainly located in the Midwest. The conference was founded in 1896 and earned the name "Big Nine" in 1899 when Iowa and Indiana joined to bring the number of teams in the conference to nine. The conference name was changed to the Big Ten after Michigan rejoined in 1917. Right after WWII, the University of Chicago dropped out so the conference became known as the Big Nine again until 1949. The official designation of "Big Ten" was adopted in 1987 when the conference (once again with with a complement of ten teams) registered as a not-for-profit corporation. It was decided to keep the official name of Big Ten when Penn State joined in 1990 bringing the number of schools to the level of eleven, and even when the University of Nebraska-Lincoln joined in 2011 as the twelfth team.

22. CBS police drama that debuted in 2003 : 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.

26. Green ogre of film : SHREK
Before "Shrek" was a successful movie franchise and Broadway musical, it was a children's picture book called "Shrek!" authored and illustrated by William Steig. The title "Shrek!" came from the German/Yiddish word Schreck, meaning "fear" or "terror".

43. When repeated, a Latin dance : CHA
The cha-cha-cha is a Latin dance with origins in Cuba, where it was introduced by composer Enrique Jorrin in 1953.

44. Turkish official : AGA
"Aga" (also "agha") is a title that was used by both civil and military officials in the Ottoman Empire.

45. Jimmy who works with Lois Lane : OLSEN
In the Superman stories, Jimmy Olsen is a cub photographer who works on the "Daily Planet" newspaper with Clark Kent and Lois Lane.

Lois Lane has been the love interest of Superman/Clark Kent since the comic series was first published in 1938. Lois and Clark both work for the big newspaper in the city of Metropolis called "The Daily Planet". The couple finally got hitched in the comics (and on television's "Lois and Clark") in 1996. But never mind all that ... one has to wonder how good the crossword is in "The Daily Planet" ...

54. "Sic 'em!" : ATTACK!
“Sic 'em” is an attack order given to a dog, instructing the animal to growl, bark or even bite. The term dates back to the 1830s, with "sic" being a variation of "seek".

68. ___ of Sandwich : EARL
Meats placed between slices of bread was first called a sandwich in the 18th century, named after the Fourth Earl of Sandwich. The Earl was fond of eating "sandwiches" while playing cards at his club.

70. Witty Oscar : WILDE
If you didn't know Oscar Wilde was Irish, you will when you see the name he was given at birth: Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde!

71. Unit of force : DYNE
An erg is a unit of energy or mechanical work. "Erg" comes from the Greek word "ergon" meaning "work". A dyne is a unit of force. The name "dyne" comes from the Greek "dynamis" meaning "power, force". Ergs and dynes are related to each other in that one erg is the amount of energy needed to move a force of one dyne over a distance of one centimeter.

72. "___ the night before Christmas ..." : ‘TWAS
The poem "A Visit from St. Nicholas" was published anonymously in 1823, and is better known today by its first line "'Twas the night before Christmas". Most scholars believe that the poem was written by Clement Clarke Moore, a theologian from New York City. Others say that it was written by Henry Livingston, Jr. a poet from Upstate New York.
'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;
And mamma in her ’kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap,
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash ...

Down
2. 'Til Tuesday singer Mann : AIMEE
Aimee Mann is an American rock singer and guitarist.

4. "Tell Laura I Love ___" (1960 hit) : HER
"Tell Laura I Love Her" is a teenage tragedy song that was a hit for Ray Peterson in 1960, and also for Ricky Valence later the same year. The song tells the sad tale of young Tommy who is in love with Laura. Tommy enters a car race in the hope of winning money to buy Laura an engagement ring. Tommy’s car overturns and bursts into flames during the race. His last words are "Tell Laura I love her... My love for her will never die."

6. Chief Justice Roberts : JOHN
John Roberts is the 17th Chief Justice of the United States. Roberts was a nominee of President George W. Bush and assumed office in 2005. President Bush first proposed Roberts as an Associate Justice to replace the retiring Sandra Day O’Connor. However, Chief Justice Rehnquist died before Roberts could be confirmed, so President Bush instead nominated Roberts for the vacant Chief Justice seat.

12. Hybrid citrus fruit : UGLI
The ugli fruit is a hybrid of an orange and a tangerine, first discovered growing wild in Jamaica where most ugli fruit comes from today.

27. Melted cheese on toast : RAREBIT
Welsh rarebit is a delicious dish made using a cheese-flavored sauce served over toast. It may be that the name Welsh rarebit was originally a bit of an insult to the folks in Wales. The dish was called Welsh "rabbit" back in the 1700s. In those day's rabbit was the poor man's meat, and the implication of the dish's name is that in Wales cheese was the poor man's rabbit.

29. Figure (out) : SUSS
The verb “to suss” means “to figure out”. The term originated in the 1950s as police slang, a shortening of “to suspect”.

32. Tennis legend Arthur : ASHE
Arthur Ashe was a professional tennis player from Richmond, Virginia. In his youth, Ashe found himself having to travel great distances to play against Caucasian opponents due to the segregation that still existed in his home state. He was rewarded for his dedication by being selected for the 1963 US Davis Cup team, the first African American player to be so honored. Ashe continued to run into trouble because of his ethnicity though, and in 1968 was denied entry into South Africa to play in the South African Open. In 1979 Ashe suffered a heart attack and had bypass surgery, with follow-up surgery four years later during which he contracted HIV from blood transfusions. Ashe passed away in 1993 due to complications from AIDS. Shortly afterwards, Ashe was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Bill Clinton.

34. Vengeful captain : AHAB
Captain Ahab is the obsessed and far from friendly Captain of the Pequod in Herman Melville's "Moby Dick".

42. Kindergarten learning : ALPHABET
"Kindergarten" is of course a German term, literally meaning “children’s garden”. The term was coined by the German education authority Friedrich Fröbel in 1837, when he used it as the name for his play and activity institute that he created for young children to use before they headed off to school. His thought was that children should be nourished educationally, like plants in a garden.

51. Mascara target : LASH
“Mascara” is a Spanish word meaning “stain, mask”.

56. G.M. luxury car, informally : CADDY
The Cadillac Automobile Company was founded in 1902, as an independent company. The company was named for the French explorer Antoine Laumet de la Mothe, sieur de Cadillac. Cadillac founded the city of Detroit in 1701. The company was taken over by GM in 1909, and over the next thirty years GM did a great job establishing Cadillac as the luxury car one just had to own.

57. Some German/Swiss artworks in MoMA : KLEES
The artist Paul Klee was born in Switzerland, but studied art in Munich in Germany. You can see many of Klee's works in the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and if you get to Bern in Switzerland, even more of them can be seen at the Zentrum Paul Klee that was opened in 2005.

The founding of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City was very much driven by Abby Aldrich Rockefeller, the wife of John D. Rockefeller, son of the oil magnate. Working with two friends, Abby managed to get the museum opened in 1929, just nine days after the Wall Street Crash. The MoMA's sculpture garden bears the name of Abby Aldrich Rockefeller, and has done so since 1949.

58. Newspaper think piece : OP-ED
“Op-ed” is an abbreviation for "opposite the editorial page". Op-eds started in "The New York Evening World" in 1921 when the page opposite the editorials was used for articles written by a named guest writer, someone independent of the editorial board.

61. Bart's intelligent sister : LISA
Lisa Simpson is Bart's brainy younger sister on TV's "The Simpsons". Lisa is voiced by actress Yeardley Smith.

66. Number of points scored by a safety : TWO
A “safety” is a play in American football, resulting in two points scored.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Secret stash : CACHE
6. Doorframe's vertical part : JAMB
10. Water, in Latin : AQUA
14. Buenos ___ : AIRES
15. Dial button sharing the "0" : OPER
16. Big oafs : LUGS
17. Samsung Galaxy or BlackBerry : SMARTPHONE
19. 1953 Leslie Caron musical : LILI
20. Number after Big or top : TEN
21. Two cents' worth : INPUT
22. CBS police drama that debuted in 2003 : NCIS
23. Be hot under the collar : SEETHE
26. Green ogre of film : SHREK
28. Carriage puller : HORSE
31. Where oysters and clams are served : RAW BAR
34. It's beneficial : ASSET
37. Beneath : UNDER
39. "___ your head!" : USE
40. "That's rich!" : HAH!
41. Devious trick : FAST ONE
43. When repeated, a Latin dance : CHA
44. Turkish official : AGA
45. Jimmy who works with Lois Lane : OLSEN
46. Worker with an apron and a white hat : BAKER
48. Go carousing with a drinker, say : BAR HOP
50. Archaeologist's find : RELIC
52. Trails : PATHS
54. "Sic 'em!" : ATTACK!
58. Makes a pick : OPTS
60. Book of the world : ATLAS
63. Guy's date : GAL
64. It's beneficial : PLUS
65. What an optimist always looks on : BRIGHT SIDE
68. ___ of Sandwich : EARL
69. Comfort : EASE
70. Witty Oscar : WILDE
71. Unit of force : DYNE
72. "___ the night before Christmas ..." : ‘TWAS
73. Does as told : OBEYS

Down
1. Selects for a role : CASTS
2. 'Til Tuesday singer Mann : AIMEE
3. Machine at a construction site : CRANE
4. "Tell Laura I Love ___" (1960 hit) : HER
5. Suffix with winning : -EST
6. Chief Justice Roberts : JOHN
7. Individually : A POP
8. Hostess's handouts : MENUS
9. Fellow members of a congregation : BRETHREN
10. Never-before-seen : ALL NEW
11. Easily made profit : QUICK BUCK
12. Hybrid citrus fruit : UGLI
13. In its existing state : AS IS
18. Dockside platform : PIER
24. Start of many band names : THE
25. Hurry, with "it" : HOT FOOT
27. Melted cheese on toast : RAREBIT
29. Figure (out) : SUSS
30. Go in : ENTER
32. Tennis legend Arthur : ASHE
33. Backside : REAR
34. Vengeful captain : AHAB
35. Long, involved story : SAGA
36. Abrupt left or right : SHARP TURN
38. All over : DONE
42. Kindergarten learning : ALPHABET
47. Statute : ACT
49. Give a hard time : HASSLE
51. Mascara target : LASH
53. Something to stick in a milk shake : STRAW
55. Able to move well : AGILE
56. G.M. luxury car, informally : CADDY
57. Some German/Swiss artworks in MoMA : KLEES
58. Newspaper think piece : OP-ED
59. ___ on words : PLAY
61. Bart's intelligent sister : LISA
62. Years on end : AGES
66. Number of points scored by a safety : TWO
67. Bro or sis : SIB


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5 comments :

Anonymous said...

Re: Monday's puzzle.

29 Down: Figure (out).

SUSS

Really!? I know it's Monday and the puzzle was easy, but SUSS.

Bill Butler said...

Yes, I think "suss" was a tough enough answer. As far as I know, the term originated in Britain and is more common in that part of the world. We used it all the time as kids, but it is probably less common on this side of the pond.

Unknown said...

I have never heard that word before (suss). How would it be used in a sentence?

Ben F. said...

"If you've been doing crosswords long enough, you should be able to suss out the answer to 29 down."

Sorry, "unknown",I could not resist the obvious.

WEB is right about this being uncommon here in the colonies. It's just one of the puzzle setter staples you have to encounter to know.

Bill Butler said...

Thanks for jumping in on the "suss" question. I usually think of it as part of the phrasal verb "to suss out", which I think morphs into "to figure out".

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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 try to answer all emails, so please feel free to email me at bill@paxient.com.

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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