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0604-14 New York Times Crossword Answers 4 Jun 14, Wednesday





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CROSSWORD SETTER: Jim Hilger
THEME: Word Game … today’s themed answers are all word games, and we are pointed to this by the circled letters in the grid, which spell out WORD GAME:
20A. See circled letters : SCRABBLE
29A. See circled letters : TABOO
37A. See circled letters : HANGMAN
46A. See circled letters : PROBE
55A. See circled letters : ANAGRAMS
9D. See circled letters : JOTTO
51D. See circled letters : GHOST
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 12m 57s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Pronoun repeated in "America" : THEE
The patriotic song “America” is also known by its first line, “My Country, ‘Tis of Thee”. The song was written by Samuel Francis Smith in 1831, and was the de facto national anthem of the country until “The Star-Spangled Banner” was declared the official anthem.

5. Weapon with a warhead, in brief : ICBM
An Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) is a ballistic missile with the range necessary to cross between continents. Being ballistic (as opposed to a cruise missile) an ICBM is guided during the initial launch phase, but later in flight just relies on thrust and gravity to arrive at its target. It is defined as intercontinental as it has a range greater than 3,500 miles. ICBMs are really only used for delivering nuclear warheads. Scary stuff ...

9. "Thriller" singer, in tabloids : JACKO
Michael Jackson was such a sad figure I always think. Jackson's apparently unconstrained lifestyle made him an easy target for the tabloids. The less than charitable representatives of the media gave him the nickname "Wacko Jacko".

Michael Jackson’s 1982 album “Thriller” is the best-selling album of all time. It also won eight Grammy Awards in 1984, more than any other album in history.

14. "Let sleeping dogs lie" and others : SAWS
A “saw” is an old adage, a saying.

20. See circled letters : SCRABBLE
The highest score recorded in an official game of Scrabble is 830, by Michael Cresta of Massachusetts in an 830-490 win in 2006.

22. Crucifixion symbol : ROOD
A rood is a crucifix that specifically symbolizes the cross on which Jesus was crucified.

29. See circled letters : TABOO
Taboo is a word game that was introduced by Hasbro in 1989. The game is played by teams of two, with one partner trying to guess a given word on a card, without using that word nor a short list of similar words listed on the card. It’s fun …

34. How knights roam : ERRANTLY
Someone described as “errant” is roving around, especially in search of adventure like “knights errant”.

37. See circled letters : HANGMAN
The word guessing game called Hangman seems to have first been played in Victorian England. At one time it was known as “Birds. Beasts and Fishes” as the words to be guessed had to be types of animal.

40. "... in excelsis ___" : DEO
"Gloria in excelsis Deo" is a Latin hymn, the title of which translates as "Glory to God in the highest".

41. What to do when dealt a flush : STAND PAT
In the game of poker, a “flush” is a hand with all cards in the same suit.

43. Fast-food utensil : SPORK
“Spork” is the more common name for the utensil that is a hybrid between a spoon and a fork. It is less commonly referred to as a "foon".

45. Prefix with zone and skeptic : EURO-
The “eurozone” or “euro area” is a monetary and economic union within the European Union of 18 states (as of today) that use the euro as a shared legal tender and their sole currency.

“Euroscepticism” is a criticism of the European Union, usually based on the belief that integration weakens the nation state.

46. See circled letters : PROBE
Probe is a word game that Parker Brothers introduced in the sixties that is like a slightly more complex version of Hangman.

49. Adams of "Junebug" : AMY
Amy Adams is an American actress. although she was actually born in Vicenza, Italy while her father was a US serviceman stationed on an Italian base. My favorite Amy Adams film so far is the outstanding "Julie & Julia" in which she acted alongside Meryl Streep. I highly recommend this truly delightful movie.

“Junebug” is a 2005 comedy-drama movie with Amy Adams in a supporting role as a young pregnant woman. The young woman states her intention to call her new baby “Junebug”.

50. Decked out in sequins : SPANGLY
“Sequins” are ornamental discs that glisten and are often used to decorate clothing. The term was first recorded in the early 1800s. Prior to that date, “sequin” was the French name for a former Italian and Turkish coin. The ornamental discs were so called as they were deemed to resemble gold coins.

52. Vet school subj. : ANAT
“Vet” is an abbreviation for “veterinarian”, a professional who treat animals for disease and injury. The word “veterinary” comes from the Latin “veterinae” meaning “working animals, beasts of burden”.

54. Still owing : SHY
To be “shy” is to be short, lacking. The term originated as gambling slang, meaning to owe money to the pot.

55. See circled letters : ANAGRAMS
Anagrams is a word game that isn’t produced and sold as such. Instead, word tiles are used from other games such as Scrabble.

59. Speed skater ___ Anton Ohno : APOLO
Speed-skater Apolo Ohno has won more Winter Olympics medals than any other American. Ohno also did a great job winning the 2007 season of television's "Dancing with the Stars".

63. "Quo ___?" : VADIS
“Quo vadis?” is Latin for “Where are you going?”

“Quo Vadis” is an epic drama made in 1951, an adaptation of the 1896 novel of the same name written by Henryk Sienkiewicz. At the top of the bill were Robert Taylor and Deborah Kerr, with Peter Ustinov playing the Emperor Nero. There was also an uncredited extra making her first appearance on the screen, a young lady by the name of Sophia Loren.

64. Place to place your bets : RENO
The city of Reno’s economy took off when open gambling was legalized in Nevada in 1931. Within a short time, a syndicate had built the Bank Club in Reno, which was the largest casino in the whole world at the time.

65. St. Petersburg's river : NEVA
The Neva is a very large river that spills into the Gulf of Finland at the beautiful city of St. Petersburg. The river forms an expansive delta as it reaches the Baltic Sea and the delta gives rise to numerous islands, with the number of islands further increased by a network of canals. The historic part of the city is built on these islands giving St. Petersburg a very Venetian feel. I had the privilege of visiting the city some years ago, and I can attest that it is indeed spectacular ...

67. Stickup man on "The Wire" : OMAR
The character Omar Little is played by Michael K. Williams on the HBO series called "The Wire". I didn't watch "The Wire" when it first aired but we ending up buying all five series on DVD and we watched the whole thing a couple of years ago. It's is a great drama series, and I thoroughly recommend it. Personally, I think that HBO produces some of the best dramas on American television.

68. Triathlon start : SWIM
An Ironman Triathlon is a race involving a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike ride, and a marathon run of just over 26 miles. The idea for the race came out of a debate between some runners in the 1977 Oahu Perimeter Relay. They were questioning whether runners, swimmers or bikers were the most fit athletes. The debaters decided to combine three local events to determine the answer, inviting athletes from all three disciplines. The events that were mimicked to come up with the first triathlon were the Waikiki Roughwater swim (2.4 miles), the Around-Oahu Bike Race (115 miles) and the Honolulu Marathon (26.2 miles). The idea was that whoever finished first would be called "the Iron Man". The first triathlon was run in 1978, with fifteen starters and only twelve finishers. The race format is used all over the world now, but the Hawaiian Ironman is the event that everyone wants to win.

Down
2. Hic, ___, hoc : HAEC
The Latin word for "this" is either “hic” (masculine, plural “hi”), “haec” (feminine, plural “hae”) or “hoc” (neuter, plural “haec”).

4. Grass for cordage : ESPARTO
Esparto grass is grown in parts of Africa and Europe mainly for use in cord and basket making, although some esparto is used to make a fine quality paper for books. We don’t see it very much here in North America.

5. Asimov classic : I, ROBOT
Isaac Asimov was a wonderful science fiction writer, and a professor of biochemistry. He was a favorite author as I was growing up and I must admit that some hero worship on my part led me to study and work as a biochemist for a short while early in my career. My favorite of his works is the collection of short stories called “I, Robot”, although Asimov’s most famous work is probably his “Foundation” trilogy of novels.

7. Big name in audio equipment : BOSE
Bose Corporation was founded in 1964 by Amar G. Bose, and is a company that specializes in manufacture of audio equipment.

8. Marie Curie, e.g.: Abbr. : MME
The equivalent of “Mrs.” in French is “Mme.” (Madame) and in Spanish is “Sra.” (Señora).

Marie Curie lived a life of firsts. She was the first female professor at the University of Paris, the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, and indeed was the first person to win two Nobel prizes (in 1903 and 1911). Most of Curie’s work was in the field of radioactivity, and was carried out in the days when the impact of excessive radiation on the human body was not understood. She died from aplastic anemia, caused by high exposure to radiation. To this day, Curie's personal papers are kept preserved in lead-lined boxes as they are highly radioactive, even her personal cookbook.

9. See circled letters : JOTTO
Jotto is a word guessing game for two players. I used to play a game with colored pegs as a kid that works on the same principle, but for the life of me I cannot remember the name ...

10. Bring up on charges : ARRAIGN
In the law, to arraign someone is to call a person before a court to answer charges that have been brought.

11. Special FX technology : CGI
Computer-generated imagery (CGI)

“Effects” as in “special effects”, or “FX”.

12. Kit ___ Club ("Cabaret" setting) : KAT
The musical "Cabaret" is based on "I Am a Camera", a 1951 play written by John Van Druten. In turn, the play was adapted from a novel "Goodbye to Berlin" written by Christopher Isherwood. "Cabaret" is a great musical, although the 1972 film of the musical isn't one of my favorites.

18. "Veep" channel : HBO
“Veep” is a political satire sitcom on HBO that is a remake of the British show “The Thick of It”. “Veep” is set in the office of a fictional Vice President of the United States played by Julia Louis-Dreyfus.

21. Now, in Nogales : AHORA
Nogales (properly called “Heroica Nogales”) is a city in the Mexican State of Sonora. Nogales lies right on the Mexico-US border, opposite the city of Nogales, Arizona.

23. Bulblike plant part : CORM
Some plants have swollen underground plant stems called “corms”. The corm is a storage organ that is analogous to tubers and bulbs in other plants.

24. Realm of Garfield : CATDOM
“Garfield” is a comic strip drawn by Jim Davis since 1978. Garfield is an orange tabby cat. Davis named his hero Garfield after his own grandfather.

25. Queen of fiction : ELLERY
The Ellery Queen series of detective novels was somewhat unique in that Ellery Queen was the hero of the tales, and was also the pen name of the author. Actually, the “author” was a pair of writers; two cousins from Brooklyn, New York.

28. Mark who won the 1998 Masters : O’MEARA
Mark O'Meara is an American golfer from Goldsboro, North Carolina. He is known as one of the American players who competes in international tournaments more than most, and has a reputation as a real gentleman all around the world.

33. Deg. held by Woodrow Wilson : PHD
Woodrow Wilson was a professor at Princeton from 1890 to 1902 at which time he was promoted to president of the university. Professor Wilson had earned his PhD. at John Hopkins University in 1886, so that when he was elected 28th President of the United States in 1912, he became the only US President to hold a PhD.

39. ___ a soul : NARY
The adjective "nary" means "not one", as in “nary a soul”.

47. Daiquiri flavor : BANANA
Daiquirí is a small village on the coast near Santiago, Cuba that was a key location in the American invasion of Cuba in the Spanish-American War. Supposedly, the cocktail called a Daiquiri was invented by American mining engineers in a bar in nearby Santiago.

51. See circled letters : GHOST
Ghost is a word game in which players “grow” a word fragment by successively adding a letter. The goal is to add a letter to form part of a valid word, but not to be the person who has to complete a real word.

53. What liver spots may be a sign of : AGE
“Liver spots” are blemishes on the skin caused by exposure to the sun, and which are most commonly seen in an older person. The spots were once (incorrectly) believed to be caused by problems with the liver, hence the name.

57. Year of Super Bowl XL : MMVI
Super Bowl XL was contested at the end of the 2005 football season and was contested by the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Seattle Seahawks at Ford Field in Detroit. The Steelers beat the Seahawks, who were making their first ever Super Bowl appearance.

58. Line of jeans? : SEAM
Denim fabric originated in Nimes in France. The French phrase "de Nimes" (from Nimes) gives us the word "denim". Also, the French phrase "bleu de Genes" (blue of Genoa) gives us our word "jeans".

59. "___: My Story" (Tinseltown autobiography) : AVA
The actress Ava Gardner is noted for her association with some big movies, but also for her association with some big names when it came to the men in her life. In the world of film, she appeared in the likes of "Mogambo" (1953), "On the Beach" (1959), "The Night of the Iguana" (1964) and "Earthquake" (1974). The men in her life included husbands Mickey Rooney, Artie Shaw and Frank Sinatra. After her marriages had failed (and perhaps before!) she had long term relationships with Howard Hughes and bullfighter Luis Miguel Dominguin whom she met through her friend Ernest Hemingway.

61. "___ to Joy" : ODE
"Ode to Joy" is a poem written in 1785 by German poet Friedrich Schiller. Ludwig van Beethoven gave the poem great notoriety when he used it in his Ninth "Choral" Symphony that was first performed in 1824.

62. Full house indicator : SRO
Standing room only (SRO)

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Pronoun repeated in "America" : THEE
5. Weapon with a warhead, in brief : ICBM
9. "Thriller" singer, in tabloids : JACKO
14. "Let sleeping dogs lie" and others : SAWS
15. Board's partner : ROOM
16. Subject of a donor card : ORGAN
17. Dust, vacuum, do windows, etc. : KEEP HOUSE
19. Done to death : TRITE
20. See circled letters : SCRABBLE
21. Come ___ price : AT A
22. Crucifixion symbol : ROOD
23. One from column A, one from column B, etc. : CHOICES
27. Go to the dogs : ROT
29. See circled letters : TABOO
31. Big do : GALA
32. Tend to another spill : REMOP
34. How knights roam : ERRANTLY
36. Take habitually : USE
37. See circled letters : HANGMAN
40. "... in excelsis ___" : DEO
41. What to do when dealt a flush : STAND PAT
43. Fast-food utensil : SPORK
45. Prefix with zone and skeptic : EURO-
46. See circled letters : PROBE
49. Adams of "Junebug" : AMY
50. Decked out in sequins : SPANGLY
52. Vet school subj. : ANAT
54. Still owing : SHY
55. See circled letters : ANAGRAMS
59. Speed skater ___ Anton Ohno : APOLO
62. "I did bad!" : SHAME ON ME!
63. "Quo ___?" : VADIS
64. Place to place your bets : RENO
65. St. Petersburg's river : NEVA
66. Showing mastery : ADEPT
67. Stickup man on "The Wire" : OMAR
68. Triathlon start : SWIM

Down
1. Relatives of tuts : TSKS
2. Hic, ___, hoc : HAEC
3. Still-life pitcher : EWER
4. Grass for cordage : ESPARTO
5. Asimov classic : I, ROBOT
6. Part of an "if only ..." lament : COULDA
7. Big name in audio equipment : BOSE
8. Marie Curie, e.g.: Abbr. : MME
9. See circled letters : JOTTO
10. Bring up on charges : ARRAIGN
11. Special FX technology : CGI
12. Kit ___ Club ("Cabaret" setting) : KAT
13. ___-hit wonder : ONE
18. "Veep" channel : HBO
21. Now, in Nogales : AHORA
23. Bulblike plant part : CORM
24. Realm of Garfield : CATDOM
25. Queen of fiction : ELLERY
26. Voice one's approval : SAY OK
27. Recharge one's batteries : REST UP
28. Mark who won the 1998 Masters : O’MEARA
30. ___ differ (object) : BEG TO
32. Artful dodges : RUSES
33. Deg. held by Woodrow Wilson : PHD
35. Quiz response: Abbr. : ANS
38. Fill out the necessary forms, say : APPLY
39. ___ a soul : NARY
42. Like a shower mat, ideally : NONSLIP
44. Clientele : PATRONS
47. Daiquiri flavor : BANANA
48. Win the heart of : ENAMOR
51. See circled letters : GHOST
53. What liver spots may be a sign of : AGE
55. "Um, excuse me" : AHEM
56. From the start : ANEW
57. Year of Super Bowl XL : MMVI
58. Line of jeans? : SEAM
59. "___: My Story" (Tinseltown autobiography) : AVA
60. Inflate, as a bill : PAD
61. "___ to Joy" : ODE
62. Full house indicator : SRO


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2 comments :

Anonymous said...

Are you confusing "America" with "America the Beautiful"? The word Thee is in both but I don't think it is repeated in ATB as it is in America. I could be wrong. I often am.

Bill Butler said...

Thank you! That was an embarrassing error (all fixed now). I appreciate the much-needed assistance.

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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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