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0709-14 New York Times Crossword Answers 9 Jul 14, Wednesday





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CROSSWORD SETTER: Bruce Haight
THEME: Star-Studded … each of today’s themed answers has the word STAR hidden inside, each is STAR-STUDDED:
17A. *Words on a birth announcement : JUST ARRIVED
26A. *Quota for a rep to achieve : SALES TARGET
37A. *Oldest continuous democracy in Central America : COSTA RICA
51A. *Where to find money exchange shops : TOURIST AREA
13D. *Cigarette ad claim : LESS TAR
27D. *Prefight psych job : STARE
40D. *Ancient fertility goddess : ASTARTE

60A. Like the Oscars ... or the answers to this puzzle's seven asterisked clues? : STAR-STUDDED
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 8m 52s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

11. ___ Harbour, Fla. : BAL
Bal Harbour is a village in Florida that is located on the northern tip of the barrier island usually known as Miami Beach.

14. Big Indian : RAJAH
“Raja” (also “rajah”) is word derived from Sanskrit that is used particularly in India for a monarch or princely ruler. The female form is “rani” (also “ranee”) and is used for a raja’s wife.

16. When août occurs : ETE
In French, August (août) is a month in summer (l'été).

19. Aurora's Greek counterpart : EOS
In Greek mythology, Eos is the goddess of the dawn who lived at the edge of the ocean. Eos would wake each morning to welcome her brother Helios the sun. The Roman equivalent of Eos is Aurora.

23. Magazine with a back-cover fold-in : MAD
"Mad" magazine has been around since 1952, although back them it was more of a comic book than a magazine. The original founder and editor was Harvey Kurtzman, and in order to convince him to stay, the publisher changed the format to a magazine in 1955, when the publication really took off in terms of popularity.

29. 2009 Peace Nobelist : OBAMA
President Barack Obama won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize, the fourth US president to be so honored. He is the only one of the four to have been awarded the prize during his first year of office. The Nobel committee gave the award citing President Obama’s work towards a new climate in international relations, particularly in reaching out to the Muslim world.

31. Island setting for "Pirates of the Caribbean" : TORTUGA
“Tortuga” is Spanish for “turtle”.

The "Pirates of the Caribbean" series of films is of course based on the wonderful ride at the Disney theme parks. The first title in the series is "The Curse of the Black Pearl", released in 2003. The film is remarkable in many ways, including the fact that it was the first Disney movie to be given a PG-13 rating.

32. Title island of a 2005 DreamWorks animated film : MADAGASCAR
“Madagascar” is an animated film released in 2005. It’s a story about zoo animals who are used to “the easy life” in captivity, getting shipwrecked on the island of Madagascar off the African coast.

36. Only non-U.S. M.L.B. team, on scoreboards : TOR
The Toronto Blue Jays baseball franchise was founded in 1977. The Blue Jays are the only team based outside the US to have won a World Series, doing so in 1992 and 1993. And since the Montreal Expos relocated to Washington, the Blue Jays are the only Major League Baseball team now headquartered outside of the US.

37. *Oldest continuous democracy in Central America : COSTA RICA
Costa Rica is in Central America, bordered by Nicaragua in the north, and Panama to the South. Costa Rica is remarkable in my opinion, a leader on the world stage in many areas. It has been referred to as the "greenest" country in the world, the "happiest" country in the world, and has a highly educated populace. In 1949, the country unilaterally abolished its own army, permanently ...

47. Sisterly : SORORAL
“Sororal” means “sisterly”, coming from the Latin word “soror” meaning “sister”.

50. Landscapist's prop : EASEL
The word "easel" comes from an old Dutch word meaning "donkey" would you believe? The idea is that an easel carries its load (an oil painting, say) just as a donkey would carry its load.

57. Title for a French nobleman : COMTE
"Comte" is the French word for "count", as in "The Count of Monte-Cristo", the novel by Alexandre Dumas.

59. "Kidnapped" monogram : RLS
Robert Louis Stevenson was a Scottish author, famous for his novels “Treasure Island”, “Kidnapped” and “The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde”.

60. Like the Oscars ... or the answers to this puzzle's seven asterisked clues? : STAR-STUDDED
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) is the organization that gives the annual Academy Awards also known as the "Oscars". The root of the name "Oscar" is hotly debated, but what is agreed is that the award was officially named "Oscar" in 1939. The first Academy Awards were presented at a brunch in 1929 with an audience of just 29 people. The Awards ceremony is a slightly bigger event these days ...

67. First name in cosmetics : ESTEE
Estée Lauder was quite the successful businesswoman, with a reputation as a great salesperson. Lauder introduced her own line of fragrances in 1953, a bath oil called "Youth Dew". "Youth Dew" was marketed as a perfume, but it was added to bathwater. All of a sudden women were pouring whole bottles of Ms. Lauder's "perfume" into their baths while using only a drop or two of French perfumes behind their ears. That's quite a difference in sales volume ...

Down
1. N.B.A.'s Erving, to fans : DR J
Julius Erving is a retired professional basketball player who was known as “Dr. J”, a nickname he picked up in high school. Dr. J was a trailblazer in many ways, being the first player associated with slam dunking and other moves above the rim.

2. Agua, across the Pyrenees : EAU
“Water” in Spanish is “agua”, and in French is “eau”.

The Pyrénées are a mountain range running along the border between Spain and France. Nestled between the two countries, high in the mountains, is the lovely country of Andorra, an old haunt of my family during skiing season …

3. Slumber party attire, informally : PJS
Our word "pajamas" comes to us from the Indian subcontinent, where "pai jamahs" were loose fitting pants tied at the waist and worn at night by locals and ultimately by the Europeans living there. And "pajamas" is another of those words that I had to learn to spell differently when I came to America. In the British Isles the spelling is "pyjamas".

6. Like most of Wyoming : RURAL
Wyoming is the least populous state, and the tenth largest state in terms of area.

8. Harry Reid's state: Abbr. : NEV
The official nickname of Nevada is the "Silver State", a reference to importance of silver ore in the state’s growth and economy. The unofficial nickname is the "Battle Born State". "Battle Born" is a reference to Nevada being awarded statehood during the American Civil War.

Democrat Harry Reid became the Senate Majority leader in 2007. Reid had a big day in the Senate from a Democratic perspective with the successful passage of the so-called ObamaCare Bill. Paradoxically, Harry Reid's wife was in hospital at the time, having broken her back in a car accident. Reid took over as Senate Majority leader from Bill Frist who retired from politics in 2007.

9. Bestow on, to Burns : GIE
Gie is a variant of "give" used sometimes by Scots, and maybe even by Robert Burns.

Robert Burns is a cultural icon in Scotland and for Scots around the world. As a poet, Burns was a pioneer in the Romantic movement in the second half of the 18th century. One of his most famous works is the poem “Auld Lang Syne”, which has been set to the tune of a traditional Scottish folk song and is used to celebrate the New Year in the English-speaking world.

13. *Cigarette ad claim : LESS TAR
The partially combusted particulate matter, produced as a cigarette burns, forms a resinous material called “tar”. Cigarette tar is different than the tar used on roads, but is very toxic. Marijuana smoke produces a very similar tar to cigarette smoke, and is just as dangerous.

18. Stephen of "The Crying Game" : REA
Stephen Rea is an Irish actor from Belfast. Rea’s most successful role was Fergus in 1992’s “The Crying Game”, for which performance he was nominated for the Best Actor Oscar. In “The Crying Game”, Fergus was a member of the IRA. In real life, Rea was married to IRA bomber and hunger striker Dolours Price at the time he made the movie.

"The Crying Game" is a fascinating film that made quite a splash when it was released in 1992. Although it was set in Ireland and the UK, it didn't do well in cinemas in either country yet made a lot of money over here in the US. I think the politics of the movie were a bit raw for Irish and UK audiences back then. It's an unusual plot, blending Irish political issues with some raw sexuality questions. I won't tell you about the "surprise scene", just in case you haven't seen it and want to do so.

22. Mobiles, stabiles, etc. : ART
In the world of art, a “mobile” is described as a kinetic sculpture as it can move. It can also sit in equilibrium, with heavier elements hanging on the end of rods so that balance is achieved.

Alexander Calder is a sculptor noted for his creation of mobiles. Calder came up with modern sculpture that sat firmly on the ground, and so he called them “stabiles”.

23. Alice, to Dennis the Menace : MOM
25. Henry, to Dennis the Menace : DAD
"Dennis the Menace" is a comic strip that first appeared in 1951, originally drawn by Hank Ketcham. The strip made the jump over the years from the newspaper to television and the silver screen. Dennis's full name is Dennis Mitchell, and his parents are Henry and Alice (Johnson) Mitchell. Dennis's nemesis is his neighbor, Mister George Everett Wilson. Hank Ketcham drew his inspiration for the story from his real life. When he introduced the strip he had a 4-year-old son called Dennis, and a wife named Alice.

24. Litigators' org. : ABA
American Bar Association (ABA)

28. Cheerio-shaped : TORIC
Cheerios breakfast cereal has the distinction of being the first oat-based cereal introduced into the market, hitting the grocery store shelves in 1941. Back then, “Cheerios” were known as CheeriOats.

40. *Ancient fertility goddess : ASTARTE
Astarte was an ancient fertility goddess who was worshiped throughout the Near East and the Eastern Mediterranean. “Astarte” is the name that the Greeks gave to her, although Astarte was absorbed into Greek mythology as the goddesses Aphrodite and Artemis.

44. Rebs' org. : CSA
The Confederate States of America (CSA) set up government in 1861 just before Abraham Lincoln took office. Jefferson Davis was selected as President of the CSA at its formation and retained the post for the life of the government.

45. Bud holder, of sorts : KEG
The American beer called Budweiser is named for the Czech town of Budweis (“České Budějovice” in Czech). The name is the subject of a dispute as here is an original Czech beer with a similar name, Budweiser Budvar. American Budweiser is sold in most European countries as “Bud”.

48. Some Scandinavian coins : ORE
The Swedish Krona is divided into 100 öres, a term derived from the Latin “aureus” meaning “gold”.

The Norwegian and Danish krone are divided into 100 öres.

53. Derby bouquet : ROSES
The first Kentucky Derby was run in 1875, and is a race modelled on the Epsom Derby in England and the Grand Prix de Paris (now called the “Prix de l‘Arc de Triomphe”). As such, The Kentucky Derby was run over 1½ miles, although in 1896 this was shortened to 1¼ miles. The winning horse is presented with a very elaborate blanket made of red roses.

54. CPR pro : EMT
Emergency medical technician (EMT)

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) has for decades involved the simultaneous compression of the chest to pump blood using the heart, and artificial respiration by blowing air into the lungs. Nowadays emergency services are placing more emphasis on heart compressions, and less on artificial respiration.

58. Original sin locale : EDEN
In the Christian tradition, “original sin” is the state of sin that exists in all humanity as a result of Adam’s first disobedience in the Garden of Eden. According to the Roman Catholic faith, three people were born without original sin: the Virgin Mary, Jesus Christ and John the Baptist.

61. "Cats" inspirer's monogram : TSE
The author T. S. Eliot was the son of Henry Ware Eliot and Charlotte Champe Stearns, so his full name was Thomas Stearns Eliot (TSE).

Andrew Lloyd Webber's source material for his hit musical "Cats" was T. S. Eliot's "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats". Eliot's collection of whimsical poems was published in 1939, and was a personal favorite of Webber as he was growing up. "Cats" is the second longest running show in Broadway history ("Phantom of the Opera" is the longest and is still running; deservedly so in my humble opinion). my wife and I have seen “Cats” a couple of times and really enjoyed it ...

62. Scarfed down : ATE
“To scarf down” is teenage slang from the sixties meaning “to wolf down, to eat hastily”. The term is probably imitative of “to scoff”.

63. Hip-hop's ___ Racist : DAS
Das Racist was hip hop group from Brooklyn, New York. The group formed in 2008, and broke up in 2012. I really don’t care …

64. Dot follower, on campus : EDU
The .edu domain was one of the six original generic top-level domains specified. The complete original list is:
- .com (commercial enterprise)
- .net (entity involved in network infrastructure e.g. an ISP)
- .mil (US military)
- .org (not-for-profit organization)
- .gov (US federal government entity)
- .edu (college-level educational institution)

65. Food factory supply : DYE
Yep, food factories use lots of dyes. How sad is that?

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Where buses are parked : DEPOT
6. Where buffalo roam : RANGE
11. ___ Harbour, Fla. : BAL
14. Big Indian : RAJAH
15. "___ case of emergency" : USE IN
16. When août occurs : ETE
17. *Words on a birth announcement : JUST ARRIVED
19. Aurora's Greek counterpart : EOS
20. Ending with farm : -STEAD
21. Has coming : EARNS
23. Magazine with a back-cover fold-in : MAD
26. *Quota for a rep to achieve : SALES TARGET
29. 2009 Peace Nobelist : OBAMA
31. Island setting for "Pirates of the Caribbean" : TORTUGA
32. Title island of a 2005 DreamWorks animated film : MADAGASCAR
36. Only non-U.S. M.L.B. team, on scoreboards : TOR
37. *Oldest continuous democracy in Central America : COSTA RICA
40. Say further : ADD
43. Words from class clowns : WISECRACKS
47. Sisterly : SORORAL
50. Landscapist's prop : EASEL
51. *Where to find money exchange shops : TOURIST AREA
55. Before now : AGO
56. Pitchers? : ADMEN
57. Title for a French nobleman : COMTE
59. "Kidnapped" monogram : RLS
60. Like the Oscars ... or the answers to this puzzle's seven asterisked clues? : STAR-STUDDED
66. Driving need : TEE
67. First name in cosmetics : ESTEE
68. Question before takeoff : READY?
69. Suffix for braggarts : -EST
70. Tournament favorites : SEEDS
71. Follow : ENSUE

Down
1. N.B.A.'s Erving, to fans : DR J
2. Agua, across the Pyrenees : EAU
3. Slumber party attire, informally : PJS
4. Bran muffin topping : OATS
5. "Let's roll!" : THAT'S A GO!
6. Like most of Wyoming : RURAL
7. Out of the way : ASIDE
8. Harry Reid's state: Abbr. : NEV
9. Bestow on, to Burns : GIE
10. Win over : ENDEAR
11. Opposite of six-pack abs, ironically : BEER GUT
12. In a single try : AT ONE GO
13. *Cigarette ad claim : LESS TAR
18. Stephen of "The Crying Game" : REA
22. Mobiles, stabiles, etc. : ART
23. Alice, to Dennis the Menace : MOM
24. Litigators' org. : ABA
25. Henry, to Dennis the Menace : DAD
27. *Prefight psych job : STARE
28. Cheerio-shaped : TORIC
30. ___ 'n' cheese : MAC
33. ___ expected (predictably) : AS WAS
34. Circus prop : STILT
35. ___ in cat : C AS
38. Kind of comfort : CREATURE
39. Top-rated : AAA
40. *Ancient fertility goddess : ASTARTE
41. Marginal things? : DOODLES
42. It often shows a band's name : DRUM SET
44. Rebs' org. : CSA
45. Bud holder, of sorts : KEG
46. ___-mo : SLO
48. Some Scandinavian coins : ORE
49. Salon supplies : RINSES
52. Like a land baron : ACRED
53. Derby bouquet : ROSES
54. CPR pro : EMT
58. Original sin locale : EDEN
61. "Cats" inspirer's monogram : TSE
62. Scarfed down : ATE
63. Hip-hop's ___ Racist : DAS
64. Dot follower, on campus : EDU
65. Food factory supply : DYE


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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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