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0406-15 New York Times Crossword Answers 6 Apr 15, Monday





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CROSSWORD SETTER: Finn Vigeland
THEME: Day Break … the grid contains seven sets of three-letter “words”, each BROKEN by a black square. Those three-letter words are circled in the grid, and each is a DAY in the week, starting from Mon. at the top, and ending with Sun. at the bottom.

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 5m 19s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Ang Lee film about a shipwrecked boy and a tiger : LIFE OF PI
The 2012 movie “Life of Pi” is based on a 2001 novel of the same name by Yann Martel. The “Pi” in the title is an Indian boy called Pi Patel who finds himself adrift for 227 days in small boat with a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker.

Taiwanese director Ang Lee sure has directed a mixed bag of films, mixed in terms of genre but not in terms of quality. He was at the helm for such classics as "Sense & Sensibility" (my personal favorite), "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon", "Hulk", "Brokeback Mountain" and "Life of Pi".

16. New York lake named for an Indian tribe : ONEIDA
Oneida Lake is the largest lake lying entirely within the state of New York. Oneida is situated close to New York’s Finger Lakes, but it isn’t one of them. Having said that, some regard Oneida Lake as the “thumb” that goes along with the "fingers".

17. Drinks for 007 : MARTINIS
Why have a vodka martini shaken and not stirred (as does James Bond, 007)? Well, for one thing the shaken drink tends to be colder. And with more melted ice in the drink, it isn't as strong. These are my personal observations. No need to write in ...

18. McCartney's songwriting partner : LENNON
John Lennon and Paul McCartney made an agreement before they became famous that they would always give joint credit for their songs. In the early days, the duo wrote their songs together, working alongside each other. Soon they would write songs individually, with one giving the other limited input. Regardless, the Lennon-McCartney attribution was used for all the songs they wrote either individually or together right up to 1974. The partnership was officially dissolved in December 1974, in the Polynesian Resort in Walt Disney World, Florida. There, John Lennon put his signature to official documents couriered to him by Apple’s lawyers (Apple being the Beatles record label).

19. "A Nightmare on ___ Street" : ELM
“A Nightmare on Elm Street” is a Wes Craven slasher-horror film, released in 1984. As I don’t do “slasher” nor “horror” I learned from crosswords that Johnny Depp was in the movie, making his feature film debut. The Elm Street in the title is located in the fictional Springwood, Ohio.

20. Disco ___ of "The Simpsons" : STU
On "The Simpsons" the character of Disco Stu is voiced by Hank Azaria, although he was voiced for a while by Phil Hartman. Disco Stu is described as "a black, wrinkly John Travolta".

21. Hoity-toity type : ELITIST
Believe it or not, the term "hoity-toity" has been in the English language since the 1660s, but back then it meant "riotous behavior". It began to mean "haughty" in the late 1800s, simply because the “haughty” sounds similar to “hoity”.

24. The "S" of WASP : SAXON
The not-so-nice acronym "WASP", stands for White Anglo-Saxon Protestant. The term is used for Americans with a relatively high position in society, and who are usually of British descent.

30. Icelandic literary saga : EDDA
The Poetic Edda and Prose Edda are two ancient works that are the source for much of Norse mythology. Both Eddas were written in the 13th century, in Iceland.

38. Hymn of praise : PAEAN
A paean is a poem or song that expresses triumph or thanksgiving. “Paean” comes from the ancient Greek “paian” meaning "song of triumph”.

39. Stone Age tool : NEOLITH
A neolith is a stone tool that was produced during the Neolithic Era, the last part of the Stone Age.

40. Garment for a gymnast or superhero : UNITARD
A unitard is like a leotard, except that it has long legs and sometime long sleeves. It wouldn’t be a good look for me ...

The garment known as a leotard was named for French trapeze artist Jules Léotard. Léotard wore such a garment when he was performing.

42. Yellowstone Park grazer : BISON
There two species of bison left (four species are extinct). We are most familiar with the American bison (commonly called the American buffalo), but there is also a European bison, sometimes called a "wisent". The American bison is the largest land animal roaming wild in the Americas today.

Yellowstone was the first National Park to be established in the world, when it was designated as such by President Grant in 1872. What a great tradition it started! The American National Parks truly are a treasure.

45. Figure at the left side of a musical staff : CLEF
Clef is the French word for "key". In music, a clef is used to indicate the pitch of the notes written on the stave. The bass clef is also known as the F-clef, and the treble clef is the G-clef.

46. Brazilian city, familiarly : RIO
Rio de Janeiro is the second largest city in Brazil (after São Paulo). “Rio de Janeiro” translates as "January River". The name reflects the discovery of the bay on which Rio sits, on New Years Day in 1502.

47. Computer's "brain," for short : CPU
The Central Processing Unit (CPU) is the main component on the "motherboard" of a computer. The CPU is the part of the computer that carries out most of the functions required by a program. Nowadays you can get CPUs in everything from cars to telephones.

48. Relatives of violas : CELLI
The plural of “cello” is “cellos” or “celli”.

The word “cello” is an abbreviation for “violoncello”, an Italian word for “little violone”, referring to a group of stringed instruments that were popular up to the end of the 17th century. The name violoncello persisted for the instrument that we know today, although the abbreviation ‘cello was often used. Nowadays we just drop the apostrophe.

54. Second-largest city in Kenya : MOMBASA
Mombasa is the second-largest city in Kenya (after the capital, Nairobi). Mombasa is located on the east coast of the country, on the Indian Ocean.

58. Football six-pointers, for short : TDS
Touchdowns (TDs)

63. Coke Zero or Pepsi One : DIET SODA
Even though Coca-Cola Zero is in the category of "diet soda", the marketing folks at Coca-Cola don't like its association with the word "diet". The target market for the beverage is young, adult males, so it is described as "calorie-free" rather than "diet", the assumption being that males associate "diet" with women. Not in this house ...

Pepsi ONE is so called as it has one calorie per eight-ounce serving. The artificial sweetener known as Ace-K was approved by the FDA for use in our food in 1998, and one hour after the approval was given, PepsiCo announced the introduction of Pepsi ONE ...

65. Boeing rival : AIRBUS
Airbus is an aircraft manufacturer based in Blagnac, France just outside Toulouse. Airbus produces about half of the world’s jetliners. The company built the first fly-by-wire aircraft (the A320) and also builds the world’s largest airliner (the A380).

The Boeing Company was founded in Seattle in 1916 by aviation pioneer William Boeing, with the enterprise’s first name being “Pacific Aero Products Co.” Boeing had worked in the timber industry and set up his aircraft company in the Pacific Northwest to take advantage of the local supply of spruce wood.

Down
3. Physicist Enrico : FERMI
The physicist Enrico Fermi was born in Rome, Italy. Fermi moved to the US just before WWII, largely to escape the anti-Semitic feelings that were developing in Italy under Mussolini. It was Fermi's work at the University of Chicago that led to the construction of the world's first nuclear reactor. Fermi died at 53 years of age from stomach cancer. Cancer was a prevalent cause of death among the team working on that first nuclear pile. The synthetic element Fermium was discovered in 1952 and is named in his honor.

4. Approximate no. : EST
Estimate (est.)

5. Inventor whose success went up and down? : OTIS
Elevators (simple hoists) have been around for a long time. What Elisha Otis did was come up with the "safety elevator", a design that he showcased at the 1853 World's Fair in New York. At the Fair, Otis would stand on an elevated platform in front of onlookers and order his assistant to cut the single rope holding up the platform. His safety system kicked in when the platform had only fallen a few inches, amazing the crowd. After this demonstration, the orders came rolling in.

6. Comic Sans, e.g. : FONT
Comic Sans MS is a font that looks a bit like that used in old comic books. Comic Sans was released by Microsoft in 1994. If you live in the Netherlands, you are lucky enough to enjoy Comic Sans Day on the first Friday of July each year.

7. Green car that comes in many colors : PRIUS
The Toyota Prius is still the most fuel-efficient, gasoline-powered car sold in the US, according to the EPA. The name "Prius" is a Latin word meaning "ahead, leading". In the US we pronounce the name "pree-us", but across the Atlantic it's pronounced "pry-us". Oh, and I love my Prius ...

8. Chats online, for short : IMS
Even though instant messaging (sending IMs) has been around since the 1960s, it was AOL who popularized the term “instant message” in the eighties and nineties.

9. Like jack-o'-lanterns or meaningless victories : HOLLOW
The terms “jack-o'-lantern” and "will-o'-the-wisp" are colloquial names for "ignis fatuus". Ignis fatuus is an eerie light seen at night over bogs and marshes, caused by the spontaneous oxidation (burning) of phosphine and/or methane that emanates from the bog. How the term “jack-o'-lantern” came to describe a lamp made from a carved pumpkin seems to be unclear.

12. iPod or iPad variety : MINI
The iPod Mini was an extremely popular music player manufactured by Apple from 2004 to 2005. The Mini was replaced by the iPod Nano.

The iPad mini is line of smaller iPads that was introduced by Apple in 2012. The iPad mini has a screen size of 7.9 inches, whereas the regular iPad’s screen is 9.7 inches.

14. "Why ___ we be friends?" : CAN’T
I dunno …

21. Book after Genesis : EXODUS
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".

The Book of Genesis is the first book in the Hebrew and Christian Bibles. Some of the main figures in the book are Adam and Eve, Moses, Abraham and Jacob/Israel. “Genesis” is a Greek word meaning “origin, creation”.

33. Samberg formerly of "S.N.L." : ANDY
Andy Samberg is an actor and comedian who was a “Saturday Night Live” cast member from 2005 until 2012. Samberg also plays the lead on the police sitcom “Brooklyn Nine-Nine”.

34. Network for business news : CNBC
CNBC is a business news channel owned by NBC. Launched in 1989, up until 1991 CNBC was known as the Consumer News and Business Channel.

35. Trompe l'___ : OEIL
Trompe-l’oeil is a technique in art that creates the optical illusion that a drawn object exists in three dimensions. “Trompe-l’oeil” is French for “deceive the eye”.

37. "The Last of ___" (1973 murder mystery) : SHEILA
“The Last of Sheila” is a 1973 mystery movie that was co-written by Stephen Sondheim (of musical fame) and Anthony Perkins (of “Psycho” fame). The story unfolds as a parlor game called “The Sheila Greene Memorial Gossip Game”, played on successive nights on a yacht that is cruising the Mediterranean. Sheila Green was a gossip columnist who had been killed in a hit-and-run accident one year earlier. I haven’t seen this one, but it sounds intriguing. The film also has a great cast including Richard Benjamin, Dyan Cannon, James Coburn, James Mason, Ian McShane and Raquel Welch.

38. "___ My Ride" (old MTV series) : PIMP
“Pimp My Ride” is a reality show that used to air on MTV, that was hosted by rap star Xzibit. The show covers the restoration of cars in poor condition.

41. The Big Apple, for short : NYC
Apparently the first published use of the term "Big Apple" to describe New York City dates back to 1909. Edward Martin wrote the following in his book "The Wayfarer in New York":
"Kansas is apt to see in New York a greedy city. . . . It inclines to think that the big apple gets a disproportionate share of the national sap."
Over ten years later, the term “big apple” was used as a nickname for racetracks in and around New York City. However, the concerted effort to “brand” the city as the Big Apple had to wait until the seventies and was the work of the New York Convention and Visitors Bureau.

44. "You've got mail" co. : AOL
The iconic phrase “You’ve got mail” was first used by AOL in 1989. The greeting was recorded by voice actor Elwood Edwards. Edwards has parlayed his gig with AOL into some other work. He appears in an episode of “The Simpsons” as a doctor who says the line “You’ve got leprosy”. Edwards also worked as a weatherman for a while and got to use the line “You’ve got hail” …

48. French author Albert : CAMUS
Albert Camus was a French author, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1957. Sadly, Camus died in a car accident just two years after he received the prize, at only 46 years of age.

49. Singer Turner's autobiography : I, TINA
"I, Tina" is the 1986 autobiography of Tina Turner. The book was so successful it was adapted into a movie called "What's Love Got to Do With It?" The film version was released in 1993 and starring Angela Bassett as Tina Turner.

52. Title character of Tyler Perry films : MADEA
Tyler Perry is an actor best known for playing “Madea”, a character that Perry plays in drag.

53. April fool, e.g. : PRANK
April Fool's Day is celebrated on April 1st in the western world. In the US (and Ireland) one can make practical jokes all day long if one wants. But in the UK there is a noon deadline. Anyone pranking after midday is called an "April Fool".

55. Closely watched state on election night : OHIO
The state of Ohio takes its name from the Ohio River, and in turn river takes its name from the Iroquois “ohi-yo”, which translates as “large creek”.

56. A.M. hours, in poetry : MORN
The 12-hour clock has been around a long time, and was even used in sundial format in Ancient Egypt. Our use of AM and PM dates back to Roman times, with AM standing for Ante Meridiem (before noon) and PM standing for Post Meridiem (after noon). However, the Romans originally used the AM concept a little differently, by counting backwards from noon. So, 2AM to the Romans would be two hours before noon, or 10AM as we would call it today.

64. Estonia, once: Abbr. : SSR
Estonia is one of the former Soviet Socialist Republics (SSRs) and is located in Northern Europe on the Baltic Sea, due south of Finland. Estonia has been overrun and ruled by various empires over the centuries. The country did enjoy a few years of freedom at the beginning of the 20th century after a war of independence against the Russian Empire. However, Estonia was occupied again during WWII, first by the Russians and then by the Germans, and then reoccupied by the Soviets in 1944. Estonia has flourished as an independent country again since the collapse of the USSR in 1991.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Ang Lee film about a shipwrecked boy and a tiger : LIFE OF PI
9. Press conference danger for an unguarded comment : HOT MIC
15. Weather phenomenon with freezing rain : ICE STORM
16. New York lake named for an Indian tribe : ONEIDA
17. Drinks for 007 : MARTINIS
18. McCartney's songwriting partner : LENNON
19. "A Nightmare on ___ Street" : ELM
20. Disco ___ of "The Simpsons" : STU
21. Hoity-toity type : ELITIST
22. Narrow opening : SLIT
24. The "S" of WASP : SAXON
26. "It's all about me" trait : EGO
29. "That's amazing!" : WOW!
30. Icelandic literary saga : EDDA
34. Fell apart : COLLAPSED
38. Hymn of praise : PAEAN
39. Stone Age tool : NEOLITH
40. Garment for a gymnast or superhero : UNITARD
42. Yellowstone Park grazer : BISON
43. Profit one hardly has to work for : EASY MONEY
45. Figure at the left side of a musical staff : CLEF
46. Brazilian city, familiarly : RIO
47. Computer's "brain," for short : CPU
48. Relatives of violas : CELLI
50. Short-term office worker : TEMP
54. Second-largest city in Kenya : MOMBASA
58. Football six-pointers, for short : TDS
61. Damage : MAR
62. Question at the end of a riddle : WHO AM I?
63. Coke Zero or Pepsi One : DIET SODA
65. Boeing rival : AIRBUS
66. Release, as a seatbelt : UNFASTEN
67. "It's true!" : HONEST!
68. First light ... or a phenomenon suggested by this puzzle's seven sets of circled letters? : DAYBREAK

Down
1. Fruit slices at a bar : LIMES
2. Challenge to a bluff in poker : I CALL
3. Physicist Enrico : FERMI
4. Approximate no. : EST
5. Inventor whose success went up and down? : OTIS
6. Comic Sans, e.g. : FONT
7. Green car that comes in many colors : PRIUS
8. Chats online, for short : IMS
9. Like jack-o'-lanterns or meaningless victories : HOLLOW
10. ___ a million (slim odds) : ONE IN
11. Something a camper pitches : TENT
12. iPod or iPad variety : MINI
13. Wedding vows : I DOS
14. "Why ___ we be friends?" : CAN’T
21. Book after Genesis : EXODUS
23. Relate, as in a story : TELL OF
25. Astonishment : AWE
27. Put on, as weight : GAIN
28. Select, with "for" : OPT
30. Dine at a restaurant : EAT OUT
31. College bigwig : DEAN
32. "Truth or ___?" : DARE
33. Samberg formerly of "S.N.L." : ANDY
34. Network for business news : CNBC
35. Trompe l'___ : OEIL
36. Take off, as weight : LOSE
37. "The Last of ___" (1973 murder mystery) : SHEILA
38. "___ My Ride" (old MTV series) : PIMP
41. The Big Apple, for short : NYC
44. "You've got mail" co. : AOL
46. Not succumb to : RESIST
48. French author Albert : CAMUS
49. Singer Turner's autobiography : I, TINA
51. Be melodramatic : EMOTE
52. Title character of Tyler Perry films : MADEA
53. April fool, e.g. : PRANK
54. "Love ya!" : MWAH!
55. Closely watched state on election night : OHIO
56. A.M. hours, in poetry : MORN
57. ___ in the woods : BABE
59. Openly challenge : DEFY
60. Attack with a knife : STAB
63. Defective firecracker : DUD
64. Estonia, once: Abbr. : SSR


1 comment :

Willie D said...

Decent grid for a Monday, I didn't detect the broken days of the week. Once I'm done with the thing I move on. So apologies to Finn.

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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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