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0519-15 New York Times Crossword Answers 19 May 15, Tuesday





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CROSSWORD SETTER: Allan E. Parrish
THEME: Glean Anagrams at Last … each of today’s themed answers ends with an anagram of GLEAN:
17A. Lucifer, notably : FALLEN ANGEL
27A. It's not right : OBLIQUE ANGLE
48A. Oscar-winning actress for "Blue Sky" : JESSICA LANGE
63A. Greta Garbo's "The Mysterious Lady" co-star : CONRAD NAGEL
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 8m 15s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

11. HIV-treating drug : AZT
AZT is the abbreviated name for the drug azidothymidine, much used in the treatment of HIV/AIDS. AZT was originally developed in the seventies as a potential treatment for retroviruses (cancer-causing viruses), although it was never approved for use in treatment. In 1984, it was confirmed that AIDS was caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), so scientists turned to known antiviral drugs in the search for a viable treatment. Burroughs-Wellcome came up with a treatment regime using AZT, and filed a patent in 1985. The patent was challenged in court but the patent expired anyway in 2005 without any decision being made. There are now at least four generic forms of AZT approved for sale in the US.

14. Group that ends "... and sometimes Y" : A, E, I, O, U
The vowels are A, E, I, O, U and sometimes Y.

15. Gaucho's rope : RIATA
“Reata” is the Spanish word for “lasso”. We tend to use the spelling “riata” in English, but sometimes can use the original Spanish word.

A “gaucho” is someone who lives in the South American pampas, the fertile lowlands in the southeast of South America. The term “gaucho” is also used as the equivalent of our “cowboy”.

16. 1990s G.M. make : GEO
Geos were small vehicles manufactured by General Motors mainly in the nineties. Geos were designed to compete head-to-head with the small imports that were gaining market share at the time in the US. Some Geo models that you might remember are the Metro, the Prizm and the Storm. The cars were actually built as joint-ventures with Japanese manufacturers. The Prizm was a GM/Toyota project, the Metro was GM/Suzuki, and the Storm was GM/Isuzu.

17. Lucifer, notably : FALLEN ANGEL
According to some Christian traditions, Lucifer was an angel who rebelled against God and so was condemned to the Lake of Fire. Lucifer is also known as Satan or the Devil.

24. Conan O'Brien or Chuck Norris, e.g. : REDHEAD
Before Conan O'Brien came to fame as a late night talk show host, he was a writer. O'Brien wrote for both "Saturday Night Live" and "The Simpsons".

Chuck Norris is a martial artist and an actor from Ryan, Oklahoma. Norris’s first real exposure to martial arts was in the US Air Force when he was serving in South Korea. When he left the service Norris opened up a chain of karate schools, and among his clients were Steve McQueen and his son, as well as Donny and Marie Osmond.

26. Popular gin flavoring : SLOE
The sloe is the fruit of the blackthorn bush, and the main flavoring ingredient in sloe gin.

27. It's not right : OBLIQUE ANGLE
In geometry, there are several classes of angles:
- acute (< 90 degrees)
- right (= 90 degrees)
- obtuse (> 90 degrees and < 180 degrees)
- straight (180 degrees)
- reflex (> 180 degrees)

32. What the Marx Brothers often do in their films : AD LIB
"Ad libitum" is a Latin phrase meaning "at one's pleasure". In common usage the phrase is usually shortened to "ad lib". On the stage the concept of an "ad lib" is very familiar. For example, an actor may substitute his or her own words for forgotten lines using an ad lib, or a director may instruct an actor to use his or her own words at a particular point in a performance to promote a sense of spontaneity.

The five Marx Brothers were born to "Minnie" and "Frenchy" Marx in New York City. The more famous older boys were Chico, Harpo and Groucho. Zeppo was the youngest brother, and he appeared in the early Marx Brothers movies. The fifth son was called Gummo, and he decided to pursue a different career off the stage.

35. Big name in boots : UGG
Uggs are sheepskin boots that originated in Australia and New Zealand. Uggs have sheepskin fleece on the inside for comfort and insulation, with a tanned leather surface on the outside for durability. Ugg is a generic term down under, although it’s a brand name here in the US.

36. 1961 #1 R&B hit for Lee Dorsey : YA YA
Lee Dorsey was an R&B singer from New Orleans who had two big hits: “Ya Ya” (1961), and “Working in the Coal Mine” (1966).

37. One of the Three Stooges : MOE
If you've seen a few of the films starring "The Three Stooges" you'll have noticed that the line up changed over the years. The original trio was made up of Moe and Shemp Howard (two brothers) and Larry Fine (a good friend of the Howards). This line up was usually known as "Moe, Larry and Shemp". Then Curly Howard replaced his brother when Shemp quit the act, creating the most famous trio, "Moe, Larry And Curly". Shemp returned when Curly had a debilitating stroke in 1946, and Shemp stayed with the troupe until he died in 1955. Shemp was replaced by Joe Besser, and then "Curly-Joe" DeRita. When Larry Fine had a stroke in 1970, it effectively marked the end of the act.

42. What can make molehills out of a mountain? : TNT
TNT is an abbreviation for trinitrotoluene. Trinitrotoluene was first produced in 1863 by the German chemist Joseph Wilbrand, who developed it for use as a yellow dye. TNT is relatively difficult to detonate so it was on the market as a dye for some years before its more explosive properties were discovered.

43. ___ Spumante : ASTI
Asti is in the Piedmont region of northwest Italy. The region is perhaps most famous for its Asti Spumante sparkling white wine.

48. Oscar-winning actress for "Blue Sky" : JESSICA LANGE
The actress Jessica Lange is also an accomplished and published photographer. She was married for ten years to Spanish photographer Paco Grande. After separating from Grande, Lange had three children with the great Russian dancer Mikhail Baryshnikov. Those must be some good-looking kids ...

“Blue Sky” is a film that was released in 1994, starring Jessica Lange and Tommy Lee Jones and a couple having marital difficulties. The film was actually completed three years earlier but sat on the shelf distribution company, Orion Pictures, went bankrupt. Despite the delay, Lange won a Best Actress Oscar for her performance.

52. Small freshwater fish : DACE
Dace are small freshwater fish, such as minnow and carp.

57. Alternative to denim : KHAKI
“Khaki” is an Urdu word, translating literally as “dusty”. The word was adopted for its current use as the name of a fabric by the British cavalry in India in the mid-1800s.

62. Tandoori bread : NAN
Naan (also “nan”) bread is very popular in Indian restaurants, as well as in other West, Central and South Asian cuisines. Indian Naan is traditionally baked in a clay oven known as a tandoor.

63. Greta Garbo's "The Mysterious Lady" co-star : CONRAD NAGEL
Conrad Nagel was a heartthrob on the silver screen in the silent film era. Nagel starred in a renowned movie from 1927 called “London After Midnight”, alongside Lon Chaney. The last known copy of the film was lost in a fire at MGM in 1967, and it has become the most famous and sought-after lost film in the world.

Famously, Greta Garbo lived a life of seclusion in New York City after she retired from the entertainment business. Commentators often associated her need for privacy with a line she uttered in the great 1932 movie "Grand Hotel". Her character, Grusinskaya the Russian ballerina, said, "I want to be alone (...) I just want to be alone".

66. Not Rx : OTC
Over the counter drugs don't need a prescription.

There seems to some uncertainty about the origin of the symbol "Rx" that's used for a medical prescription. One explanation is that it comes from the astrological sign for Jupiter, a symbol put on prescriptions in days of old to invoke Jupiter's blessing to help a patient recover.

68. 7'1" Shaquille : O’NEAL
Shaquille O'Neal is one of the heaviest players ever to have played in the NBA (weighing in at around 325 pounds). Yep, he's a big guy ... 7 foot 1 inch tall.

70. Semester enders, usually : EXAMS
"Semester" is a German word from the Latin "semestris", an adjective meaning "of six months". We use the term in a system that divides an academic year into two roughly equal parts. A trimester system has three parts, and a quarter system has four.

Down
4. Moscow-based ballet company : BOLSHOI
The Bolshoi Ballet company is based in Moscow, Russia. The Bolshoi company has over 200 dancers, making it by far the biggest ballet company in the world. I am very proud to say that I have had the privilege to attend a performance of the Bolshoi in the beautiful Bolshoi Theater in Moscow, Russia about a decade ago …

6. Soccer's Chastain : BRANDI
Brandi Chastain is professional soccer player and former member of the US national team. Famously, Chastain scored the game-winning kick in a penalty shootout in the 1999 Women’s World Cup final. Male soccer players regularly whip off their jerseys in celebration of a goal, and Chastain did the same thing. The sports bra seen around the world, as it were …

7. Cantaloupe cover : RIND
The cantaloupe is the most popular type of melon consumed in the US. Apparently the cantaloupe was first cultivated in Cantalupo in Sabina, a town near Rome in Italy.

8. "Otello" baritone : IAGO
Giuseppe Verdi's opera "Otello" was first performed in 1887 at La Scala Theater in Milan. The opera is based on Shakespeare's play "Othello" and is considered by many to be Verdi's greatest work.

Iago is the schemer in Shakespeare's "Othello". Iago is a soldier who fought alongside Othello and feels hard done by, missing out on promotion. He hatches a plot designed to discredit his rival Cassio by insinuating that Cassio is having an affair with Desdemona, Othello's wife. By the end of the play it's Iago himself who is discredited and Othello (before committing suicide) apologizes to Cassio for having believed Iago's lies. Heavy stuff ...

9. Automne preceder : ETE
In France, “Automne” (autumn) follows “été” (summer).

10. Part of the "Deck the Halls" refrain : FA LA LA
The music for “Deck the Halls” is a traditional Welsh tune that dates back to the 16th century. The same tune was used by Mozart for a violin and piano duet. The lyrics with which we are familiar (other than the “tra-la-la”) are American in origin, and were recorded in 19th century.

18. Actress Patricia : NEAL
Patricia Neal won her Best Actress Oscar relatively late in her career, for playing the middle-aged housekeeper in 1963’s “Hud”. A few years’ later she was offered the role of Mrs. Robinson in “The Graduate” but turned it down. Famously, Neal had an affair with Gary Cooper who was married at the time. She became pregnant with his child, but he persuaded her to have an abortion. Not long afterwards Neal married British writer Roald Dahl (of “Willy Wonka” fame) and the couple had five children together before divorcing in 1983.

26. State flower of Utah : SEGO
The Sego Lily is the state flower of Utah, and is a perennial plant found throughout the Western United States.

30. City between Boston and Gloucester : LYNN
Lynn is a Massachusetts city located just ten miles north of downtown Boston. The city was named for the port town of King’s Lynn in Norfolk, on the east coast of England.

31. Vittles : EATS
“Victuals” is a term for food that is fit for consumption. We tend to pronounce “victuals” as “vittles”, and we use the term “vittles” and “victuals” interchangeably.

32. Key of Mozart's "Turkish" Concerto: Abbr. : A MAJ
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s “Violin Concerto No. 5” is sometimes referred to as the “Turkish” concerto. The nickname comes from a loud burst of “Turkish-style” music in the finale of the piece.

34. Hit David Bowie single and album of 1983 : LET'S DANCE
David Bowie's great hit "Let's Dance" was released in 1983, and was his only record to make it to number one on both sides of the Atlantic.

In early 1969, the struggling David Bowie recorded a promotional film in an attempt to reach a wider audience. The film called "Love You Till Tuesday" featured seven of Bowie's songs in what amounted to an extended music video, with one of the tracks being "Space Oddity". Somebody smart put two and two together later in the year and decided that a fresh version of "Space Oddity" should be released, to coincide with the Apollo moon landings. Sure enough, the BBC snagged the track for their coverage of the landings and gave Bowie huge audiences and "launched" his career.

40. Soccer's Hamm : MIA
Mia Hamm is a retired American soccer player, a forward who played on the US national team that won the FIFA women's World Cup in 1991. Hamm has scored 158 international goals, more than other player in the world, male or female. Amazingly, Hamm was born with a clubfoot, and so had to wear corrective shoes when she was growing up.

41. Jokers : WAGS
A “wag” or a “card” is a very amusing person, often quite eccentric.

44. Dinesen who wrote "Out of Africa" : ISAK
Isak Dinesen was the pen name of the Danish author Baroness Karen Blixen. Blixen's most famous title by far is “Out of Africa”, her account of the time she spent living in Kenya.

47. Coal miner's concern : METHANE
Firedamp is the name given to a number of flammable gases encountered in a coal mine. The most common gas to get the name is methane. The more general “damp” is used for any gas other than air found in a mine, with the term deriving from the German “Dampf” meaning “vapor”. In addition to the flammable firedamp, blackdamp is carbon dioxide, afterdamp is the poisonous carbon monoxide, and stinkdamp is hydrogen sulfide, which has a characteristic odor of rotten eggs.

50. Yearly records : ANNALS
“Annal” is a rarely used word, the singular of the more common “annals”. An annal would be the recorded events of one year, with annals being the chronological record of events in successive years. The term “annal” comes from the Latin “annus” meaning “year”.

57. Minneapolis radio station that carries a lot of news, appropriately : KNOW
KNOW-FM is the main Minnesota Public Radio station.

59. Writer Seton : ANYA
Anya Seton was the pen name of Ann Seton, an author of historical romances from New York City. Seton’s 1944 novel “Dragonwyck” was released into theaters in 1946 and starred Gene Tierney and Walter Huston.

64. Losing tic-tac-toe row : O-O-X
When I was growing up in Ireland we played "noughts and crosses" ... our name for the game tic-tac-toe.

65. Drink often served with a ladle : NOG
It's not really clear where the term "nog" (as in “eggnog”) comes from although it might derive from the word "noggin", which was originally a small wooden cup that was long associated with alcoholic drinks.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Messy sorts : SLOBS
6. Lawyer's filing : BRIEF
11. HIV-treating drug : AZT
14. Group that ends "... and sometimes Y" : A, E, I, O, U
15. Gaucho's rope : RIATA
16. 1990s G.M. make : GEO
17. Lucifer, notably : FALLEN ANGEL
19. Menacing sound from a hound : GRR!
20. Night times, in classifieds : EVES
21. Inner: Prefix : ENDO-
22. Garment that might say "World's Best Cook" : APRON
24. Conan O'Brien or Chuck Norris, e.g. : REDHEAD
26. Popular gin flavoring : SLOE
27. It's not right : OBLIQUE ANGLE
32. What the Marx Brothers often do in their films : AD LIB
35. Big name in boots : UGG
36. 1961 #1 R&B hit for Lee Dorsey : YA YA
37. One of the Three Stooges : MOE
38. One way or another : SOMEHOW
42. What can make molehills out of a mountain? : TNT
43. ___ Spumante : ASTI
45. It's nothing : NIL
46. Responses to sermons : AMENS
48. Oscar-winning actress for "Blue Sky" : JESSICA LANGE
52. Small freshwater fish : DACE
53. Rainy day protection : NEST EGG
57. Alternative to denim : KHAKI
59. Something no one wants to face? : ACNE
61. Popular first-person shooter video game since 2001 : HALO
62. Tandoori bread : NAN
63. Greta Garbo's "The Mysterious Lady" co-star : CONRAD NAGEL
66. Not Rx : OTC
67. True (to) : LOYAL
68. 7'1" Shaquille : O’NEAL
69. Minute : WEE
70. Semester enders, usually : EXAMS
71. Like bathroom doorknobs : GERMY

Down
1. Less dangerous : SAFER
2. Go away : LEAVE
3. Like a smooth-running machine : OILED
4. Moscow-based ballet company : BOLSHOI
5. File a civil action against : SUE
6. Soccer's Chastain : BRANDI
7. Cantaloupe cover : RIND
8. "Otello" baritone : IAGO
9. Automne preceder : ETE
10. Part of the "Deck the Halls" refrain : FA LA LA
11. Pile up : AGGREGATE
12. It's nothing : ZERO
13. Unable to decide : TORN
18. Actress Patricia : NEAL
23. Ride at a kids' fair : PONY
25. Recedes : EBBS
26. State flower of Utah : SEGO
28. Bring under control : QUELL
29. "Disgusting!" : UGH!
30. City between Boston and Gloucester : LYNN
31. Vittles : EATS
32. Key of Mozart's "Turkish" Concerto: Abbr. : A MAJ
33. 5 milliliters of medicine, say : DOSE
34. Hit David Bowie single and album of 1983 : LET'S DANCE
39. Never before, never again : ONCE
40. Soccer's Hamm : MIA
41. Jokers : WAGS
44. Dinesen who wrote "Out of Africa" : ISAK
47. Coal miner's concern : METHANE
49. Emotionally distant person, metaphorically : ICICLE
50. Yearly records : ANNALS
51. Must have : NEED
54. Not just ready : EAGER
55. Twinkle : GLEAM
56. "Well, jeepers!" : GOLLY
57. Minneapolis radio station that carries a lot of news, appropriately : KNOW
58. ___ speech : HATE
59. Writer Seton : ANYA
60. Overstuff : CRAM
64. Losing tic-tac-toe row : O-O-X
65. Drink often served with a ladle : NOG


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3 comments :

Sfingi said...

Never noticed the theme - second time today. I would have finished quicker if I hadn't had JESSICA tANdy.

Had aNT before TNT. Remember the Oscar winning song, High Hopes?

Interesting that NEAL and ONEAL in same puzzle. This could lead to an Irish name theme.

Mini-theme, "It's nothing."

Willie D said...

I noticed as I finished the SE, pretty good for a Tuesday.

Dave Kennison said...

Never heard of the town of LYNN, guessed LYON, figured TOT was wrong, but wasn't smart and/or patient enough to come up with TNT. You win some and you lose some ... :-)

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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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