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0405-16 New York Times Crossword Answers 5 Apr 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: Dan Schoenholz
THEME: Pair of Jokers … each of today's themed answers is a PAIR OF JOKERS, a phrase comprising the family names of two famous comedians:
54A. Cards #53 and #54 in a deck ... or a hint to the answers to 19-, 26-, 35- and 47-Across : PAIR OF JOKERS

19A. Climate features of equatorial countries : SHORT WINTERS (Martin SHORT & Jonathan WINTERS)
26A. Savior, in popular parlance : WHITE HOPE (Betty WHITE & Bob HOPE)
35A. Prognostication tool : CRYSTAL BALL (Billy CRYSTAL & Lucille BALL)
47A. Clumps of sugar on a stick : ROCK CANDY (Chris ROCK and John CANDY)
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 8m 16s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

8. Olympian's achievement : MEDAL
In the Ancient Olympic Games, the winner of an event was awarded an olive wreath. When the games were revived in 1896, the winners were originally given a silver medal and an olive branch, with runners-up receiving a bronze medal and a laurel branch. The tradition of giving gold, silver and bronze medals began at the 1904 Summer Olympic Games held in St. Louis, Missouri.

13. First James Bond film : DR NO
"Dr. No" may have been the first film in the wildly successful James Bond franchise, but it was the sixth novel in the series of books penned by Ian Fleming. Fleming was inspired to write the story after reading the Fu Manchu tales by Sax Rohmer. If you've read the Rohmer books or seen the films, you'll recognize the similarities between the characters Dr. No and Fu Manchu.

14. Crew chief : COX
The coxswain of a boat is one in charge, particularly of its steering and navigation. The name is shortened to "cox" particularly when used for the person steering and calling out the stroke in a competition rowing boat.

16. Pagoda placement consideration, often : FENG SHUI
Feng shui is the ancient Chinese tradition of arranging objects, buildings and other structures in a manner that is said to improve the lives of the individuals living in or using the space. "Feng shui" translates as "wind-water", a reference to the belief that positive and negative life forces ride the wind and scatter, but are retained when they encounter water.

Pagodas are tiered (“storied”) towers found in various parts of Asia, usually built for religious purposes.

18. Reddish-brown : RUSSET
Russet is a color made from an equal mixture of pure orange and pure purple. The term comes from the French adjective “rousset” meaning “reddish”.

19. Climate features of equatorial countries : SHORT WINTERS (Martin SHORT & Jonathan WINTERS)
Martin Short's father emigrated to Canada as a refugee from Ireland during the 1919-1921 Irish War of Independence. In fact, I worked closely with one of Martin's cousins back in Ireland. Martin Short started out his career as a comedian with "SCTV" before moving to "Saturday Night Live" where he became one of the show's most celebrated stars. Back in 1972 Short appeared in a production of "Godspell" alongside Gilda Radner. Short and Radner dated for a while, then Short started going out with Radner's understudy, Nancy Dolman. Dolman and Short married in 1980. Any of you that follow British politics will know of Clare Short, a minister in the cabinet of former Prime Minister Tony Blair. Clare and Martin are first cousins.

Jonathan Winters was a comedian and comic actor from Bellbrook, Ohio. Winters played many, many off-the-wall characters on TV, but I most remember him as one of the actors in the marvelous 1963 comedy classic film “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World”.

24. Radon regulators, in brief : EPA
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Radon is a radioactive gas, a byproduct produced when uranium decays naturally in the earth. Radon gas can collect and accumulate in buildings and rooms that are particularly well insulated with very little air exchange. The danger is very real, as radon is listed as the second most frequent cause of lung cancer after cigarette smoke.

25. ___ Tin Tin : RIN
The original Rin Tin Tin was a real-life dog, a puppy discovered by a GI in a bombed-out kennel in France during WWI. The soldier named the pup Rin Tin Tin, the same name as a puppet given to American soldiers for luck. On returning to the US, "Rinty" was trained by his owner and was spotted doing tricks by a film producer. Rinty featured in some films, eventually getting his first starring role in 1923 in the silent movie "Where the North Begins". Legend has it that this first Rin Tin Tin died in the arms of actress Jean Harlow. Not a bad way to go ...

26. Savior, in popular parlance : WHITE HOPE (Betty WHITE & Bob HOPE)
The comic actress Betty White has been at the top of her game for decades. White started her television career with an appearance with high school classmates on a local Los Angeles show back in 1939. Her most famous TV run was co-hosting the Tournament of Roses Parade, a gig she had for nineteen years in the sixties and seventies. Given her long career, White holds a number of records in the world of entertainment. For example, she is the oldest person to host “Saturday Night Live” (at 88) and she is the oldest woman to win a Grammy (at 90).

I remember my first non-business visit to Los Angeles. I was a typical tourist and bought a map showing the homes of the stars and drove around Beverly Hills absorbing all the glitz. At one point I drove past a Rolls Royce that was stopped in oncoming traffic, waiting to make a left turn. The window was down, and the driver was puffing away on a big cigar. It was none other than Bob Hope. Seeing him there right beside me, that was a big thrill ...

32. Fluffy trio? : EFS
There are three letters F (efs) in the word “fluffy”.

34. Baked or stoned : ON POT
“Potiguaya” is the Mexican-Spanish word for “marijuana leaves”. The slang name “pot” comes from “potiguaya”.

35. Prognostication tool : CRYSTAL BALL (Billy CRYSTAL & Lucille BALL)
Billy Crystal is an actor and comedian who first gained fame as the character Jodie Dallas on the seventies sitcom “Soap”. Crystal is also famous for hosting the Academy Awards, and has done so nine times. Only Bob Hope has hosted the event more times, and he did so on 18 occasions.

Lucille Ball was at the height of her success while she was married to Desi Arnaz. The couple met in 1940 and not long afterwards eloped. Lucy had several miscarriages before she gave birth to her first child in 1951, just one month before her fortieth birthday. A year and a half later, while "I Love Lucy" was garnering large audiences, she became pregnant with her second child, a pregnancy that was written into the television show's script. In fact, the day that Lucy gave birth on the show, was the same day that she gave birth in real life.

40. First female Nobelist, 1903 : CURIE
Marie Curie lived a life of firsts. She was the first female professor at the University of Paris, the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, and indeed was the first person to win two Nobel prizes (in 1903 and 1911). Most of Curie’s work was in the field of radioactivity, and was carried out in the days when the impact of excessive radiation on the human body was not understood. She died from aplastic anemia, caused by high exposure to radiation. To this day, Curie's personal papers are kept preserved in lead-lined boxes as they are highly radioactive, even her personal cookbook.

42. LinkedIn profile, e.g. : BIO
LinkedIn is a website used by professionals wishing to network with other professionals. From what I’ve heard, LinkedIn is mainly used by folks looking for a job, and other folks looking for suitable candidates to hire.

43. Band-___ : AID
“Band-Aid” is a brand name owned by Johnson & Johnson, although like many popular brands “band-aid” has become the generic term for an adhesive bandage, at least here in North America. The generic term we use in the British Isles for the same product is “plaster” …

46. Onetime center of Los Angeles : 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.

47. Clumps of sugar on a stick : ROCK CANDY (Chris ROCK and John CANDY)
Rock candy is made up of extra large crystals of sugar. It is made by growing sugar crystals in a supersaturated solution of sugar and water, just like we all did in science class at school, remember?

Chris Rock is a great stand-up comedian. Interestingly, Rock cites his paternal grandfather as an influence on his performing style. Grandfather Allen Rock was a preacher.

John Candy was a Canadian comedian and actor. He was an alum of Canada’s famed comedy troupe called the Second City (later “SCTV”). In the world of movies I have to say my favorite of Candy’s performances were in supporting roles, as in “Stripes” and “Home Alone”. Sadly, Candy died of a heart attack in 1994, when he was only 43 years old.

51. Anaheim nine, on scoreboards : LAA
The Anaheim Angels are today more correctly called the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (LAA). The “Angels” name dates back to 1961 when the team was founded in the “City of Angels”, Los Angeles. When the franchise moved to Anaheim in 1965 they were known as the California Angels, then the Anaheim Angels, and most recently the Los Angeles Angels at Anaheim.

59. Home of the National Gallery of Canada : OTTAWA
The National Gallery of Canada was first formed way back in 1880, although its current home in Ottawa was opened in 1988.

64. Pete who co-wrote "If I Had a Hammer" : SEEGER
“If I Had a Hammer” is a song written in 1949 by Pete Seeger and Lee Hays. The song has been released by many artists, but my guess would be that the most famous recording was by Peter, Paul and Mary in 1962.

The American folk singer Pete Seeger wrote and co-wrote a lot of classic songs. The list includes “Where Have All the Flowers Gone?”, “If I had a Hammer”, and “Turn, Turn, Turn!”

65. Home of the Burning Man festival: Abbr. : NEV
The annual “Burning Man” is an annual festival held today in the Black Rock Desert of Nevada, although the first such gathering was held in 1986 on Baker Beach near the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. The name of the festival comes from the burning of a wooden effigy of “the man”.

68. James Bond, e.g. : SPY
James Bond is the creation of the writer Ian Fleming. Fleming “stole” the James Bond name from an American ornithologist. The number 007 was “stolen” from the real-life, 16th century English spy called John Dee. Dee would sign his reports to Queen Elizabeth I with a stylized "007" to indicate that the reports were for “her eyes only”.

69. Speckled steed : ROAN
A roan horse has an even mixture of white and colored hairs on the body with the head, lower legs, mane and tail having a more solid color.

Down
1. JPEG alternative : PDF
Portable Document Format (PDF) is a file format introduced by Adobe Systems in 1993. PDF documents can be shared between users and read using many different applications, making them more universally accessible than documents saved by one particular program.

The JPEG file format was created by the Joint Photographic Experts Group (JPEG), hence the name.

4. Doesn't give one's full effort : DOGS IT
“To dog it” is a slang term (unknown to me outside of crosswords) meaning to not expend the effort necessary to accomplish a task.

6. B.Y.O.B. part : YOUR
Bring Your Own Beer/Bottle/Booze (BYOB)

8. It last erupted in 1984 : MAUNA LOA
Mauna Loa on the "big island" of Hawaii is the largest volcano on the planet (in terms of volume). The name "Mauna Loa" is Hawaiian for "Long Mountain".

9. Once, once : ERST
Erstwhile means "in the past" or "once upon a time".

11. Explorer Vespucci : AMERIGO
Amerigo Vespucci was an Italian explorer. Vespucci was the man who established that the landmass discovered by Christopher Columbus was not the eastern coast of Asia, but rather was a “New World”. The newly-discovered supercontinent was named “America”, coming from the Latin version of Vespucci’s first name “Amerigo”.

17. Loafer, e.g. : SHOE
The type of slip-on shoe called a "loafer" dates back to 1939. "Loafer" was originally a brand name introduced by the Fortnum and Mason's store in London.

22. TV band above channel 13, in brief : UHF
The radio spectrum is divided into bands based on frequency. "High band" is composed of relatively high frequency values, and "low band" is composed of frequencies that are relatively low. FM radio falls into the band called Very High Frequency, or VHF. Television signals use frequencies even higher than VHF, frequencies in the Ultra High Frequency band (UHF). AM radio uses lower frequencies that fall into the relatively low bands of Low, Medium and High Frequency (LF, MF, and HF).

29. Two-time Grammy winner Bryson : PEABO
Peabo Bryson is a singer from Greenville, South Carolina. Bryson is noted for singing hits on Disney film soundtracks, often duets. Examples are “Beauty and the Beast” with Céline Dion, and “A Whole New World (Aladdin’s Theme) with Regina Bella.

31. Photo blowup: Abbr. : ENL
Enlargement (enl.)

36. Inlet : RIA
A drowned valley might be called a ria or a fjord, both formed as sea level rises. A ria is a drowned valley created by river erosion, and a fjord is a drowned valley created by glaciation.

38. D.M.V. issuance: Abbr. : LIC
In most states, the government agency responsible for vehicle registration and the issuing of driver's licenses is called the DMV. This initialism usually stands for the Department of Motor Vehicles, but there are "variations on the theme". For example, in Arizona the responsible agency is called the Motor Vehicle Division (MVD), and in Colorado the familiar abbreviation “DMV” stands for Division of Motor Vehicles.

39. ___ choy : BOK
Bok choy is a variety of Chinese cabbage. “Bok choy” translates as “white vegetable”.

44. Dictator Amin : IDI
Idi Amin received most of his military training in the British armed forces, eventually achieving the highest rank possible for a Black African in the British Colonial Army in 1959, that of Warrant Officer. On his return to Uganda Amin joined his country's military and quickly rose to the rank of Deputy Commander of the Army. During that time he was quite the athlete. He was a noted rugby player and swimmer, and for nine years held the Ugandan national light-heavyweight boxing title. By the early seventies, Amin was commander of all the armed forces of Uganda and in 1971 seized power in a military coup, displacing the country's president Milton Obote. There followed seven years of brutal rule by Amin during which it is estimated that between 100,000 and 500,000 people were murdered. Amin was ousted from power in 1979 after a war with Tanzania, and fled to Libya where he stayed for a year. He then moved to Saudi Arabia, where he was financially supported by the Saudi Royal Family for the remainder of his life. Amin died in 2003.

47. Rule Gandhi opposed : RAJ
The period of colonial rule by the British in South Asia from 1858 to 1947 is referred to as the British Raj. Prior to 1858, the area was ruled by a private enterprise, the British East India Company. “Raj” is the Hindi word for “reign”.

49. R.S.V.P. : ANSWER
RSVP stands for "répondez s'il vous plaît", which is French for "please, answer".

58. Go green? : ENVY
William Shakespeare was one of the first to associate the color green with envy. He called jealousy the "green-eyed monster" in his play "Othello".

62. Airport alternative to JFK : LGA
Fiorello La Guardia was the Mayor of New York from 1934 to 1945, racking up three full terms in office. The famous airport that bears La Guardia's name was built at his urging, stemming from an incident that took place while he was in office. He was taking a TWA flight to "New York" and was outraged when the plane landed at Newark Airport, in the state of New Jersey. The Mayor demanded that the flight take off again and land at a small airport in Brooklyn. A gaggle of press reporters joined him on the short hop and he gave them a story, urging New Yorkers to support the construction of a new commercial airport within the city's limits. The new airport, in Queens, opened in 1939 as New York Municipal, often called "LaGuardia" as a nickname. The airport was officially relabeled as "LaGuardia" (LGA) in 1947.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Like the best kind of vacation : PAID
5. Look over : EYE
8. Olympian's achievement : MEDAL
13. First James Bond film : DR NO
14. Crew chief : COX
15. "You think I won't try that?!" : DARE ME!
16. Pagoda placement consideration, often : FENG SHUI
18. Reddish-brown : RUSSET
19. Climate features of equatorial countries : SHORT WINTERS (Martin SHORT & Jonathan WINTERS)
21. What a mute button affects : AUDIO
24. Radon regulators, in brief : EPA
25. ___ Tin Tin : RIN
26. Savior, in popular parlance : WHITE HOPE (Betty WHITE & Bob HOPE)
30. Release : LET GO
32. Fluffy trio? : EFS
33. Big name in bandages and hardware : ACE
34. Baked or stoned : ON POT
35. Prognostication tool : CRYSTAL BALL (Billy CRYSTAL & Lucille BALL)
40. First female Nobelist, 1903 : CURIE
42. LinkedIn profile, e.g. : BIO
43. Band-___ : AID
46. Onetime center of Los Angeles : O’NEAL
47. Clumps of sugar on a stick : ROCK CANDY (Chris ROCK and John CANDY)
50. Kind of school : MED
51. Anaheim nine, on scoreboards : LAA
53. Loosen, as a knot : UNTIE
54. Cards #53 and #54 in a deck ... or a hint to the answers to 19-, 26-, 35- and 47-Across : PAIR OF JOKERS
59. Home of the National Gallery of Canada : OTTAWA
60. Partied like it was 1999 : WENT WILD
64. Pete who co-wrote "If I Had a Hammer" : SEEGER
65. Home of the Burning Man festival: Abbr. : NEV
66. Rim : EDGE
67. Broke off : ENDED
68. James Bond, e.g. : SPY
69. Speckled steed : ROAN

Down
1. JPEG alternative : PDF
2. "___ we done here?" : ARE
3. It might have a bed icon on a highway sign : INN
4. Doesn't give one's full effort : DOGS IT
5. Reverberate : ECHO
6. B.Y.O.B. part : YOUR
7. Freeway sign : EXIT
8. It last erupted in 1984 : MAUNA LOA
9. Once, once : ERST
10. Cactus, for one : DESERT PLANT
11. Explorer Vespucci : AMERIGO
12. Turndown to the suggestion "We should ..." : LET”S NOT
15. Sound that can prevent sleeping at night : DRIP
17. Loafer, e.g. : SHOE
20. Itsy-bitsy : WEE
21. Knock the socks off : AWE
22. TV band above channel 13, in brief : UHF
23. Damaged the reputation of : DISCREDITED
27. Dines on : HAS
28. Mo. when the Supreme Court reconvenes : OCT
29. Two-time Grammy winner Bryson : PEABO
31. Photo blowup: Abbr. : ENL
36. Inlet : RIA
37. Like old newspaper clippings : YELLOWED
38. D.M.V. issuance: Abbr. : LIC
39. ___ choy : BOK
40. Write music : COMPOSE
41. Like leftovers : UNEATEN
44. Dictator Amin : IDI
45. Bottleful at a salon : DYE
47. Rule Gandhi opposed : RAJ
48. Terse : CURT
49. R.S.V.P. : ANSWER
52. Many miles away : AFAR
55. Road hazard? : RAGE
56. Dominates, informally : OWNS
57. Stay good : KEEP
58. Go green? : ENVY
61. Engagement-ending words : I DO
62. Airport alternative to JFK : LGA
63. ___ of iniquity : DEN


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7 comments :

Sfingi said...

Never heard of DOGS IT. Or is it DOG SIT?

Willie D said...

I heard it plenty from my hockey coach, who made us run the infamous "Herb Brooks drill" after a three-hour practice. My legs felt like Jell-O

OK grid. Nice timing with the Big Shaqtus being named for the basketball HoF this year.

Dale Stewart said...

No errors. Slow going most of the way. Already had all of the clue answers before I got PAIR OF JOKERS so that didn't help. The last bit to solve was upper left corner. Was just about ready to admit defeat when DR. NO came to me and then everything came together after that.

BruceB said...

8:31, no errors. A lot of cultural references from my generation helped. Didn't see the theme until I came here, it is a cute theme but irrelevant to solving the puzzle.

I have heard the expression 'dogging it'; from the Urban Dictionary: Working slowly or just pretending to work, when supposed to be working; particularly if others are working their fair share.

Heard the expression DOGS IT less often. Beware, 'dogging it' has a very different definition in British slang than in American slang.

Anonymous said...

One second later than Bill, at 8:17, and no errors. Pretty standard. "Theme" once again just didn't factor into it; I don't even think I looked at the clue. Crossfill suggested it, and I kept on going.

Glenn said...

No errors. Handful of pretty idiotic clue/answers though, chief of which is 1-Down as they are two different kind of files with two entirely different purposes - consequently there is no way that one can be an "alternative" of the other.

Anonymous said...

The word LET appears twice in the puzzle grid (LET go & LET's not). I thought that was a no-no in crossword construction.

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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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