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0209-16 New York Times Crossword Answers 9 Feb 16, Tuesday





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Solution to today's crossword in the New York Times
Solution to today's SYNDICATED New York Times crossword in all other publications
Solution to today's New York Times crossword found online at the Seattle Times website
Jump to a complete list of today's clues and answers

CROSSWORD SETTER: Lynn Lempel
THEME: One-Word, Two-Word … each of today’s themed answers is usually read as one word, but in our puzzle is reinterpreted as two words:
17A. Detonates a weapon in the underworld? : BOMBS HELL (from “bombshell”)
21A. Raises the price of some pastries? : UPS TARTS (from “upstarts”)
34A. Clocks trainees for a fabled race rematch? : TIMES HARES (from “timeshares”)
43A. Cuts up little bloodsuckers? : CHOPS TICKS (from “chopsticks”)
54A. Puts up with one's family? : BEARS KIN (from “bearskin”)
61A. Scrutinizes the underworld? : EYES HADES (from “eyeshades”)
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 6m 42s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Soapy powder mineral : TALC
Talc is a mineral, actually hydrated magnesium silicate. Talcum powder is composed of loose talc, although these days "baby powder" is also made from cornstarch.

9. Ohno on skates : 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".

14. Valhalla's ruling god : ODIN
In Norse mythology, Valhalla ("hall of the slain") is a gigantic hall in the "world" of Asgard. Asgard and Valhalla are ruled by the god Odin, the chief Norse god.

15. Malarial fever : AGUE
An ague is a fever, one usually associated with malaria.

Malaria is a disease passed onto humans by mosquitoes. As a result of the disease, a parasite invades human red blood cells and multiplies causing fever and possibly coma or death. Over 750,000 people died from malaria in 2009, out of 225 million cases reported.

16. Gore who wrote "Lincoln" : VIDAL
Gore Vidal was an author and political activist from West Point, New York. Vidal’s most celebrated novel is probably “Myra Breckinridge”. His most controversial work has to be “The City and the Pillar” from 1948, which is cited as one of the first major novels to feature unambiguous homosexuality.

Gore Vidal’s 1984 historical novel “Lincoln” is about Abraham Lincoln’s time in the White House, as seen through the eyes of several people close to the president, as well as his assassin John Wilkes Booth. The novel was adapted for the small screen as a film in 1988 starring Sam Waterston as Abraham Lincoln and Mary Tyler Moore as Mary Todd Lincoln.

30. Junkyard jalopies : WRECKS
The origins of our word "jalopy" meaning "dilapidated old motor car" seem to have been lost in time, but the word has been around since the 1920s. One credible suggestion is that it comes from Jalapa, Mexico as the Jalapa scrap yards were the destination for many discarded American automobiles.

34. Clocks trainees for a fabled race rematch? : TIMES HARES (from “timeshares”)
"The Tortoise and the Hare" is perhaps the most famous fable attributed to Aesop. The cocky hare takes a nap during a race against the tortoise, and the tortoise sneaks past the finish line for the win while his speedier friend is sleeping.

38. Branch of Islam : SHIA
The Islamic sects of Sunni and Shia Muslims differ in the belief of who should have taken over leadership of the Muslim faithful after the death of the Prophet Muhammad. Followers of the Sunni tradition agree with the decision that the Prophet Muhammad’s confidant Abu Bakr was the right choice to become the first Caliph of the Islamic nation. Followers of the Shia tradition believe that leadership should have stayed within the Prophet Muhammad’s own family, and favoured the Prophet’s son-in-law Ali.

39. They all lead to Rome, it's said : ROADS
The expression “all roads lead to Rome” is used to mean “whatever way we do this, we’ll get the same result”. The phrase has been used since the 1100s and probably even earlier than that. The expression arises because the ancient Roman road system had all major roads radiating from Rome like spokes on a wheel.

40. With 43-Down, Apple C.E.O. beginning in 2011 : TIM
43. See 40-Across : COOK
Tim Cook has been Apple’s CEO since 2011, when he succeeded Steve Jobs. Cook had joined the company back in 1998 as senior vice president in charge of worldwide operations. He came out as gay in October of 2014, making Cook the first openly gay CEO of a company on the Fortune 500 list.

42. Something calamine lotion alleviates : ITCH
Calamine is mainly zinc oxide, with a small percentage of iron oxide. Calamine is incorporated into a lotion that is used for many things, including treatment of sunburn and itching.

43. Cuts up little bloodsuckers? : CHOPS TICKS (from “chopsticks”)
Ticks are very small arachnids that live off the blood of mammals and birds. They are external parasites, and commonly infect their hosts with bacteria, viruses and protozoa. One of the most-famous tick-borne illnesses is Lyme disease.

60. Parts of hearts : ATRIA
The heart has four chambers. The two upper chambers (the atria) accept deoxygenated blood from the body and oxygenated blood from the lungs. The atria squeeze the blood into the two lower chambers of the heart (the ventricles), “priming” the pump, as it were. One ventricle pumps deoxygenated blood to the lungs, and the other pumps oxygenated blood to the rest of the body.

61. Scrutinizes the underworld? : EYES HADES (from “eyeshades”)
Hades was the god of the underworld to the ancient Greeks. Over time, Hades gave his name to the underworld itself, the place where the dead reside. The term “Hades” was also adopted into the Christian tradition, as an alternative name for hell. But, the concept of hell in Christianity is more akin to the Greek “Tartarus”, which is a dark and gloomy dungeon located in Hades, a place of suffering and torment.

65. Beringer Vineyards' county : NAPA
Beringer Vineyards was founded way back in 1975, making it the oldest continuously-operating vineyard in Napa Valley.

68. W.W. II turning point : D-DAY
The most famous D-Day in history was June 6, 1944, the date of the Normandy landings in WWII. The term "D-Day" is used by the military to designate the day on which a combat operations are to be launched, especially when the actual date has yet to be determined. What D stands for seems to have been lost in the mists of time although the tradition is that D just stands for "Day". In fact, the French have a similar term, "Jour J" (Day J), with a similar meaning. We also use H-Hour to denote the hour the attack is to commence.

69. 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.

Down
1. Maguire of "The Great Gatsby" : TOBEY
The actor Tobey Maguire is most associated with the role of Spider-Man these days. I’m not much into comic book hero films, but I do kind of enjoy the understated way that Maguire takes on “Spidey”. Maguire has appeared in other hit films, like “Pleasantville” (1998), “The Cider House Rules” (1999) and “Seabiscuit” (2003). Off the screen, he is big into poker and it’s said that he has won over $10 million playing poker in Hollywood.

4. Network for market monitors : 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.

7. Bantu speaker of southern Africa : ZULU
There are hundreds of Bantu languages, mainly spoken in central, east and southern Africa. The most commonly spoken Bantu language is Swahili, with Zulu coming in second.

9. James Cameron megahit of 2009 : AVATAR
In the James Cameron epic “Avatar”, the “blue people” are the Na’vi, the indigenous species that lives on the lush moon called Pandora. The main Na’vi character featuring in the film is the female Neytiri. According to Cameron, Neytiri was inspired by the Raquel Welch character in the movie “Fantastic Voyage” and the comic book character Vampirella.

10. Transport for William Kidd or Jack Sparrow : PIRATE SHIP
William Kidd was a Scottish privateer who went by the name “Captain Kidd”. Although Kidd was a privateer, someone authorized by the government to attack foreign shipping, he was eventually arrested and executed for piracy. There is common opinion held today that the charges against Kidd were actually trumped up. Captain Kidd’s story was the basis of a 1945 film called “Captain Kidd” starring Charles Laughton in the title role. Laughton also appeared as Captain Kidd in 1952’s comic movie “Abbott and Costello Meet Captain Kidd”.

Captain Jack Sparrow is the protagonist in the “Pirates of the Caribbean” series of movies. Sparrow is of course played by Johnny Depp. Depp has said that he based his portrayal of Sparrow partly on the Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards. I could believe that …

13. Exuberant flamenco cries : OLES
Flamenco is a style of Spanish music and dance. The origin of the word "flamenco" isn't clearly understood, but the explanation that seems most credible to me is that it comes from Flanders in Northern Europe. Given that "flamenco" is the Spanish word for "Flemish" and Flanders is home to the Flemish people it makes perfect sense, doesn't it?

22. Takes part in a bee : SEWS
Back in 18th-century America, when neighbors would gather to work for the benefit of one of their group, such a meeting was called a "bee". The name "bee" was an allusion to the social nature of the insect. In modern parlance, a further element of entertainment and pleasure has been introduced, for example in a "quilting bee", or even a “spelling bee”.

25. Mount Etna emission : ASH
Mt. Etna is the largest of three active volcanoes in Italy. Mt Etna is about 2 1/2 times the height of its equally famous sister, Mt. Vesuvius. The third of Italy’s famous volcanoes is Stromboli.

28. Purposeful misdirection : RED HERRING
The exact origin of the term “red herring”, meaning “something that misleads”, isn’t known. The most common explanation for the use of the phrase is that kippers (strong-smelling smoked herrings) were used to by fugitives to distract bloodhounds who were on their trail. Kippers become red-colored during the smoking process, and are no longer “white herrings”.

29. Musketeers and blind mice : TRIOS
Alexandre Dumas’ "Three Musketeers" are Athos, Porthos and Aramis, and their young protégé is D'Artagnan. A musketeer was an infantry soldier who was equipped with a musket. Funnily enough, the three “musketeers" really don't use their muskets, and are better known for their prowess with their swords.

Three blind mice. Three blind mice.
See how they run. See how they run.
They all ran after the farmer's wife,
Who cut off their tails with a carving knife,
Did you ever see such a sight in your life,
As three blind mice?

31. Stylish : CHIC
"Chic" is a French word meaning "stylish".

32. Glitch : KINK
“Glitch” comes into English from German via Yiddish. The original German word is "glitschen" meaning "to slip". It is a relatively new term, generally applied to computer software bugs.

35. Teeny bit : IOTA
Iota is the ninth letter in the Greek alphabet. We use the word "iota" to portray something very small as it is the smallest of all Greek letters.

36. Big name in trucks : MACK
Mack Trucks was founded by John Mack in the early 1900s, after he had spent some years working in companies that made carriages and electric motor cars. Along with his two brothers, Mack started their company to focus on building heavy-duty trucks and engines.

44. Unwelcome sign for latecomers : SRO
Standing room only (SRO)

54. Shindig : BASH
“Shindig” is such a lovely word, I think, describing a party that usually includes some dancing. Although its origin isn’t really clear, the term perhaps comes from “shinty”, a Scottish game similar to field hockey.

57. Long-distance swimmer Diana : NYAD
Diana Nyad is a long-distance swimmer. Nyad holds the distance record for a non-stop swim without a wet-suit, a record that she set in 1979 by swimming from Bimini to Florida. In 1975 she became the fastest person to circle Manhattan in a swim that lasted 7 hours 57 minutes. More recently, in 2013, she became the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida without the protection of a shark cage. She was 64 years old when she made that swim!

62. U.S. asbestos regulator : EPA
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Asbestos was very, very popular in so many applications for many years. The world’s largest asbestos mine was in Quebec, Canada in the town of … Asbestos.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Soapy powder mineral : TALC
5. Vague : HAZY
9. Ohno on skates : APOLO
14. Valhalla's ruling god : ODIN
15. Malarial fever : AGUE
16. Gore who wrote "Lincoln" : VIDAL
17. Detonates a weapon in the underworld? : BOMBS HELL (from “bombshell”)
19. Came about : AROSE
20. Construct : ERECT
21. Raises the price of some pastries? : UPS TARTS (from “upstarts”)
23. "By all means!" : YES!
24. Pep rally shout : RAH!
27. Candidate's quest : SEAT
28. Adjust, as a watch : RESET
30. Junkyard jalopies : WRECKS
34. Clocks trainees for a fabled race rematch? : TIMES HARES (from “timeshares”)
38. Branch of Islam : SHIA
39. They all lead to Rome, it's said : ROADS
40. With 43-Down, Apple C.E.O. beginning in 2011 : TIM
41. Where some athletes need guards : SHINS
42. Something calamine lotion alleviates : ITCH
43. Cuts up little bloodsuckers? : CHOPS TICKS (from “chopsticks”)
45. Get along : MAKE DO
47. Camera attachment, often : STRAP
48. Landing spot for Santa : ROOF
50. Over there, quaintly : YON
51. Poke : JAB
54. Puts up with one's family? : BEARS KIN (from “bearskin”)
58. Vulgar : CRUDE
60. Parts of hearts : ATRIA
61. Scrutinizes the underworld? : EYES HADES (from “eyeshades”)
64. Cops' crook-catching hoax : STING
65. Beringer Vineyards' county : NAPA
66. Saved for later : KEPT
67. Equivocate : HEDGE
68. W.W. II turning point : D-DAY
69. Vittles : EATS

Down
1. Maguire of "The Great Gatsby" : TOBEY
2. Be nuts about : ADORE
3. Citrus supply at a bar : LIMES
4. Network for market monitors : CNBC
5. "I told ya!" : HAH!
6. Wine or cheese concern : AGE
7. Bantu speaker of southern Africa : ZULU
8. Sounds from pounds : YELPS
9. James Cameron megahit of 2009 : AVATAR
10. Transport for William Kidd or Jack Sparrow : PIRATE SHIP
11. Skunk's defense : ODOR
12. Hold out : LAST
13. Exuberant flamenco cries : OLES
18. Emphasize : STRESS
22. Takes part in a bee : SEWS
25. Mount Etna emission : ASH
26. Moor : HEATH
28. Purposeful misdirection : RED HERRING
29. Musketeers and blind mice : TRIOS
31. Stylish : CHIC
32. Glitch : KINK
33. Bratty retort : SASS
34. Clip or snip : TRIM
35. Teeny bit : IOTA
36. Big name in trucks : MACK
37. Unoccupied : EMPTY
41. Stop the flow of : STANCH
43. See 40-Across : COOK
44. Unwelcome sign for latecomers : SRO
46. Proper medicine amount : DOSAGE
49. Diabolical sort : FIEND
51. Southern region of ancient Palestine : JUDEA
52. Skilled : ADEPT
53. One-ups : BESTS
54. Shindig : BASH
55. Diminutive suffix : -ETTE
56. Unlikely to get rain : ARID
57. Long-distance swimmer Diana : NYAD
59. Tool with teeth : RAKE
62. U.S. asbestos regulator : EPA
63. "You don't ___!" : SAY


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5 comments :

Sfingi said...

DNF because I had RAsp instead of RAKE. Just don't think of those parts as teeth.

Very clever theme.

Dave Kennison said...

9:35, no errors. This one caused me to read a little about Diana Nyad. It's curious that her last name is a homophone of "naiad", a type of "water nymph" in Greek mythology. She was born Diana Sneed and acquired the last name Nyad from a stepfather whom her mother married after divorcing her biological father. You have to wonder if her interest in swimming was somehow caused by the change of name.

Dale Stewart said...

No errors. One erasure (wrote in THREE for what turned out to be TRIOS). Nice theme that helped me at the latter stages of the solving. I'm beginning to notice the setter, Lynn Lempel, as always having a good puzzle.

BruceB said...

8:40, no errors. Originally had RASP in lieu of RAKE also, used the crossing words to correct it. Clever theme, helped in solving the puzzle, good job.

It also helped that APOLO Ohno is a local Seattle lad, who made good. If I had not heard of him, it would have been difficult justifying spelling Apollo with only one 'L'.

Anonymous said...

@Sfingi: of course you *finished*, if you had a letter in every square. You just had (at least) 2 errors. Not finishing is getting stumped where you can't even complete the grid! Go easy on yourself! :)

11:10 sec, no errors. This one was was a bit tricky. Had some issues with the center top "box" and with BOMBSHELL, prior to understanding the theme.

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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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