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0919-14 New York Times Crossword Answers 19 Sep 14, Friday





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CROSSWORD SETTER: Finn Vigeland
THEME: None
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 11m 31s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0


Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Self-praise couched in self-deprecation, in modern lingo HUMBLEBRAG
The term “humblebrag”, meaning “self-deprecating boast”, was coined by Harris Wittels, a writer for the sitcom “Parks and Recreation”.

11. Story lines ARCS
A story arc is a continuing storyline in say a television show that has a number of episodes. Story arcs are also found in comics, books, video games, and other forms of media.

17. 2013 Golden Globe winner for "Girls" LENA DUNHAM
Lena Dunham is a co-star in the HBO series “Girls”, and is also the show’s creator. Dunham garnered a lot of attention for herself during the 2012 US Presidential election cycle as she starred in ad focused on getting out the youth vote. In the spot she compared voting for the first time with having sex for the first time.

18. Colony in ancient Magna Graecia 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.

19. "Downton Abbey" title LADY
Fans of the wonderful TV drama “Downton Abbey” will be very familiar with the exterior appearance of Highclere Castle in Hampshire. Highclere is used as the location for exterior and many interior shots of the fictitious Grantham residence called Downton Abbey. The exterior of Highclere is very reminiscent of the Houses of Parliament building in London. That similarity exists because the house was largely rebuilt from 1839 to 1842 by architect Sir Charles Barry soon after he finished work on the refurbished Houses of Parliament.

20. Four-star figs. ADMS
There are commonly four ranks of admiral in a navy. These are, in descending order:
- Admiral of the fleet
- Admiral
- Vice admiral
- Rear admiral

21. Risotto relative PILAF
“Pilaf” is a Persian word, and we use it to describe rice that is browned in oil and then cooked in a seasoned broth.

Risotto is an Italian rice dish that is usually served as a first course in Italy, but as a main course here in North America.

24. South American cowboy LLANERO
A llanero is a herdsman from Venezuela or Colombia. “Llanero” comes from “Llanos”, the South American grasslands. "Llano" is the Spanish word for "plain".

26. Animal that may swim on its back OTTER
The fur of the sea otter is exceptionally thick. It is in fact the densest fur in the whole animal kingdom.

30. ___-soul (style of Erykah Badu and Lauryn Hill) NEO
Erykah Badu is the stage name of Erica Wright, an American "neo-soul" singer. Badu gained some notoriety in March of 2010 when she shot a scene for a music video in Dallas. In the scene, she walks to the spot where President Kennedy was assassinated, removing her clothes until she is nude, and then falls to the ground as if she has been shot in the head. For that stunt she was charged with disorderly conduct.

Lauryn Hill is a ars she spent as singer-songwriter from South Orange, New Jersey who is best known as a member of the band called the Fugees (from 1994 to 1996). Off stage, Hill is known for having five children with Rohan Marley, the son of reggae icon Bob Marley. She was also in the public eye in 2010 when she served 3 months in jail for tax evasion.

35. Beginning of a process of elimination ONE POTATO
"One Potato" is a counting out game designed to select a person who is "it" in a kid's game. The selection depends on the rhyme:
One potato, two potato,
Three potato, four,
Five potato, six potato,
Seven potato, more,
One big bad spud.

44. Coach Parseghian ARA
Ara Parseghian coached the Notre Dame football team from 1964 to 1974, a period known as "The Era of Ara".

45. 44-Across's "Fighting" team IRISH
The athletic teams of the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana are known as the Fighting Irish. There are several debated etymologies for the moniker “Fighting Irish”, with the most generally accepted being that it was applied by the press in the 1920s, reflecting the teams’ fighting spirit and grit, determination and tenacity. I guess “grit, determination and tenacity” are characteristics often associated with the Irish.

47. Between, to Balzac ENTRE
Honoré de Balzac was a French novelist and playwright from the 19th century. Balzac wrote a huge collection of related novels called “La Comédie humaine”.

50. Baby docs OBS
Obstetrician (Ob.)

52. ___ pop VOX
The Latin phrase “vox populi” translates as “voice of the people”. The expression is used in the world of broadcasting to describe interviews with members of the public.

53. Contemporary and compatriot of Debussy SATIE
Erik Satie was a French composer most famous for his beautiful composition, the three "Gymnopédies". I have tried so hard to appreciate other works by Satie but I find them so very different from the minimalist simplicity of the lyrical "Gymnopédies".

Claude Debussy is one of my favorite composers, one who epitomises the Romantic Era and Impressionist Movement in music. One of my favorite CDs is a collection of some "lighter" Debussy pieces called "Debussy for Daydreaming", and what an evocative collection it is. Included are "Syrinx", "Maid with the Flaxen Hair", "Rêverie" and everyone's favorite, "Clair de Lune".

56. Toon toned down for the 1930s Hays Code BOOP
Betty Boop made her first appearance on the screen in 1930, in a cartoon called "Dizzy Dishes". Her character was modeled on the the It-girl, the sexy Clara Bow of movie fame. Back then Betty Boop was a sexy poodle and it wasn't until 1932 that she morphed into completely human form. Betty was quite the risqué figure, but her vampish ways only lasted a few years. When the Production Code of 1934 came into force, Betty started to dress more modestly and toned down her behavior.

62. Christie novel title that, without spaces, is a man's name N OR M?
“N or M?” is a 1941 novel by the Queen of Crime, Agatha Christie. The protagonists in the piece are Christie’s detectives Tommy and Tuppence Beresford.

Agatha Christie is the best-selling novelist of all time, having sold about 4 billion copies worldwide in total. The only books to have sold in higher volume are the works of William Shakespeare and the Bible.

Down
3. Obamacare obligation MANDATE
Under the legislation known as Obamacare, individuals are required to have minimum essential medical insurance coverage, or face a penalty. Employers with more than 50 employees are required to offer medical insurance coverage, or face a fine. These requirements are known as the act’s individual and employer mandates.

4. Fourth of July, for Calvin Coolidge, informally B-DAY
President Calvin Coolidge, the only US President to have been born on July 4th, was known as a man of few words. It was while he was serving as Vice-President to in the administration of Warren G. Harding, that Coolidge earned the nickname “Silent Cal”. There is a famous story told about Coolidge’s reticence that I would love to think is true, attributed to the poet Dorothy Parker. Sitting beside him at dinner, she remarked to him, "Mr. Coolidge, I've made a bet against a fellow who said it was impossible to get more than two words out of you." His famous reply: "You lose."

8. First name in Chicago politics RAHM
The current Mayor of Chicago, Rahm Emanuel, was an Illinois representative in the US House before resigning to take up President Obama's offer to become the White House Chief of Staff.

12. Stuffed chili pepper RELLENO
“Chile relleno” translates as “stuffed chile”.

23. Nickname for Oliver Cromwell IRONSIDE
Oliver Cromwell played a unique role in British history, ruling the nation as Lord Protector from 1653 to 1658. Cromwell basically had the same powers as a monarch, but he had no crown. Known by many as “Old Ironsides”, Cromwell fought in the English Civil War on the side of the Roundheads (the Parliamentarians) against the Cavaliers (the Royalists). The Parliamentarians emerged victorious, King Charles I was executed, and a few years later, Cromwell came to power. The monarchy was restored in 1658 after the Cromwell died, and Charles II was installed on the throne.

25. Turkish dough LIRAS
The word "lira" is used in a number of countries for currency. "Lira" comes from the Latin for "pound" and is derived from a British pound sterling, the value of a Troy pound of silver. For example, the lira (plural “lire”) was the official currency of Italy before the country changed over to the euro in 2002.

27. Unstable compound ENOL
An enol is an alkene with a hydroxyl group, sort of part-alkene and part-alcohol. The term "enol" therefore, is a portmanteau of "alkene" and "alcohol".

34. Either director of "True Grit" COEN
I think it's great to see two brothers working together and being so successful. Joel and Ethan Coen are two movie producers and directors who both live in New York City. The Coen brothers do love the movie-making business and they even married industry "insiders". Ethan's wife is film editor Tricia Cooke, and Joel is married to one of my favorite actresses, the lovely Frances McDormand.

The classic 1969 western movie “True Grit” starring John Wayne is a screen adaptation of a 1968 novel by Henry Hathaway. The Coen brothers made another big screen adaption of the novel in 2010 starring Jeff Bridges in the Rooster Cogburn role previously played by John Wayne.

36. Negligee PEIGNOIR
A peignoir is a loose dressing gown sometimes worn by a woman. The term “peignoir” comes from “peigner”, the French for “to comb the hair”. The idea was that a peignoir was worn by a lady while she was combing her hair before retiring.

38. Sentinel's place ORLANDO
Orlando in Central Florida is the largest inland city in the state. Orlando was the most visited city in the US in 2009, mainly as the city and environs has many theme parks including Walt Disney World, Universal Studios Florida and SeaWorld.

The “Orlando Sentinel” is the main newspaper circulating in Central Florida.

39. Taylor of "Twilight" LAUTNER
Taylor Lautner is the actor who plays Jacob Black in “The Twilight Saga” series of films. Lautner is also a martial arts expert.

41. Chef de cuisine's shout ET VOILA!
“Et voilà” is French for, “and there it is!”

43. Dr. Ruth, for one SEXPERT
Dr. Ruth Westheimer is a German sex therapist who made a name for herself as a media personality. Westheimer is the daughter of Orthodox Jews and was sent away from Germany by her family just before WWII. She ended up in Palestine and participated in the 1948 Palestine War serving as a scout and sniper. Westheimer was seriously wounded, and spent several months unable to walk. She moved to France in 1950, and soon after arrived in the US. It was in the US where she did her training as a sex therapist.

46. Bros HOMIES
“Homie” is short for “homeboy”, someone from one's home neighborhood, or “crib”.

49. "Divine" showbiz persona MISS M
One of my favorite singers, and indeed all-round entertainers, is Bette Midler. If you've ever seen her live show you'll know that "camp" is a good word to describe it, as her humor is definitely "out there" and quite bawdy. Early in her career, Midler spent years singing in the Continental Baths, a gay bathhouse in New York City. There she became very close friends with her piano accompanist, Barry Manilow. While singing in the bathhouse, Bette only wore a white towel, just like the members of her audience. It was in those days that she created her famous character "the Divine Miss M" and also earned herself the nickname "Bathhouse Betty".

58. Match.com abbr. SWF
Single white female (SWF) is an abbreviation commonly used in personal ads.

Match.com is an online dating service. The company was started in 1993 and claims to have over 20 million members worldwide, in the ratio of male to female of 49:51.

59. ___ Lonely Boys (2004 Grammy winners) LOS
Los Lonely Boys is a rock band from San Angelo, Texas. The three band members are three brothers.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Self-praise couched in self-deprecation, in modern lingo HUMBLEBRAG
11. Story lines ARCS
15. Wanting INADEQUATE
16. What marketers might follow TELE-
17. 2013 Golden Globe winner for "Girls" LENA DUNHAM
18. Colony in ancient Magna Graecia ELEA
19. "Downton Abbey" title LADY
20. Four-star figs. ADMS
21. Risotto relative PILAF
22. Refrain syllable TRA
23. Going green? ILL
24. South American cowboy LLANERO
26. Animal that may swim on its back OTTER
28. It's often checked on a cell EMAIL
30. ___-soul (style of Erykah Badu and Lauryn Hill) NEO
31. Talent scout's find, informally PHENOM
33. Public ON RECORD
35. Beginning of a process of elimination ONE POTATO
37. One who gets numbers by calling numbers POLLSTER
40. Bathes STEEPS
44. Coach Parseghian ARA
45. 44-Across's "Fighting" team IRISH
47. Between, to Balzac ENTRE
48. One living in urban poverty, pejoratively SLUMDOG
50. Baby docs OBS
52. ___ pop VOX
53. Contemporary and compatriot of Debussy SATIE
54. You may drop a big one NAME
56. Toon toned down for the 1930s Hays Code BOOP
57. Resort options INNS
58. A nerd may not have one SOCIAL LIFE
60. Some tributes ODES
61. Alcopop relative WINE COOLER
62. Christie novel title that, without spaces, is a man's name N OR M?
63. New lease on life FRESH START

Down
1. There's no place to go but down from here HILLTOP
2. Make public UNEARTH
3. Obamacare obligation MANDATE
4. Fourth of July, for Calvin Coolidge, informally B-DAY
5. Was up LED
6. Level EQUAL
7. Unit of energy? BUNDLE
8. First name in Chicago politics RAHM
9. Not level AT A SLANT
10. Peach GEM
11. Eschewed takeout, say ATE IN
12. Stuffed chili pepper RELLENO
13. How you may feel after taking allergy medication CLEARER
14. Shore dinner SEAFOOD
21. Spots where artists mix? PALETTES
23. Nickname for Oliver Cromwell IRONSIDE
25. Turkish dough LIRAS
27. Unstable compound ENOL
29. Ties up in a slip MOORS
32. ___ desk (newsroom assignment) METRO
34. Either director of "True Grit" COEN
36. Negligee PEIGNOIR
37. Fire PASSION
38. Sentinel's place ORLANDO
39. Taylor of "Twilight" LAUTNER
41. Chef de cuisine's shout ET VOILA!
42. Publishing house employee PROOFER
43. Dr. Ruth, for one SEXPERT
46. Bros HOMIES
49. "Divine" showbiz persona MISS M
51. Bad place for a whale BEACH
55. Spots annoying teens ACNE
56. Stain BLOT
58. Match.com abbr. SWF
59. ___ Lonely Boys (2004 Grammy winners) LOS


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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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