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0817-16 New York Times Crossword Answers 17 Aug 16, Wednesday





QuickLinks:
Solution to today's crossword in the New York Times
Solution to today's SYNDICATED New York Times crossword in all other publications
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Jump to a complete list of today's clues and answers

CROSSWORD SETTER: Mark McClain
THEME: Dark Arts
Today’s themed clues are words ending in -ARTS, with those letters written DARKLY, blackened over:
38D. What sorcerers practice ... or a hint to interpreting five clues in this puzzle : DARK ARTS

20A. M # # # # : EXCHANGES (Marts)
51A. W # # # # : BLEMISHES (Warts)
10D. T # # # # : PASTRIES (Tarts)
11D. P # # # # : MOVIE ROLES (Parts)
28D. D # # # # : PUB PASTIME (Darts)
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 8m 25s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

5. Gulf Coast catch : SHRIMP
The terms “prawn” and “shrimp” are often used interchangeable on menus. Over in the UK, the term “prawn” is most common, while “shrimp” is seen more often here in North America. Sometimes there is a differentiation from a food standpoint, with “prawn” being used for larger species and “shrimp” for smaller species. As a result, “jumbo prawns” seems to be an acceptable descriptor for a dish, whereas “jumbo shrimp” seems to be an oxymoron.

14. Part of A.D. : ANNO
The designations Anno Domini (AD, “year of Our Lord”) and Before Christ (BC) are found in the Julian and Gregorian calendars. The dividing point between AD and BC is the year of the conception of Jesus, with AD 1 following 1 BC without a year “0” in between. The AD/BC scheme dates back to AD 525, and gained wide acceptance soon after AD 800. Nowadays a modified version has become popular, with CE (Common/Christian Era) used to replace AD, and BCE (Before the Common/Christian Era) used to replace BC.

15. Where Caterpillar is headquartered : PEORIA
Peoria is the oldest European settlement in the state of Illinois, having been settled by the French in 1680. The city is famous for being cited as “the average American city”.

Back in the early 1900s, Benjamin Holt invented a steam tractor that was able to move over soggy land. The new vehicle crawled over the ground using wheels that drove tracks. Someone apparently noted that the tractor moved along like a caterpillar, and so the enterprise that was to be known as the Caterpillar Tractor Company was born.

18. Cars introduced with much fanfare on "E Day" : EDSELS
The Edsel brand of automobile was named for Edsel, son of Henry Ford. Sadly, the name "Edsel" has become synonymous with "failure", which was no fault of Edsel himself who had died several years before the Edsel line was introduced. When the Ford Motor Company introduced the Edsel on 4 September 1957, Ford proclaimed the day to be “E Day”.

22. It has a 50% chance : TAILS
The two sides of a coin are known as the “obverse” and the “reverse”. The obverse is commonly referred to as “heads”, as it often depicts someone’s head. The reverse is commonly called “tails”, as it is the opposite of “heads”.

24. Shoppe descriptor : OLDE
The word “olde” wasn’t actually used much earlier than the 1920s. “Olde” was introduced to give a quaint antique feel to brand names, shop names etc. as in “Ye Olde Shoppe”.

25. Composer Thomas : ARNE
Thomas Arne was an English composer from London. Arne wrote some iconic compositions including “Rule, Britannia!” He also wrote a version of “God Save the King” that became the British national anthem.

34. ___-l'oeil (illusion) : TROMPE
“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”.

38. Dining table decorations : DOILIES
There was a draper in London in the seventeenth century called Doiley, and he gave his name to the lace fabric that he sold, which in turn gave its name to the ornamental mats we call doilies. I can’t stand doilies …

41. Traitor in the Revolutionary War : ARNOLD
Benedict Arnold was a general in the Continental Army during the American War of Independence, who defected to the British Army. While serving with the Continental Army, Arnold was given command of the fort at West Point. He planned on surrendering the fort to the British, but his plot was discovered before he could do so and he made a narrow escape. Arnold was made a brigadier general in the British Army and he led British forces in several raids against American troops. After the war ended, Arnold moved to London and worked in the merchant business. He died there in 1791.

42. Spanish for "table" : MESA
“Mesa” is the Spanish for “table” and is how we get the term “mesa” that describes the geographic feature. A mesa is similar to a butte. Both are hills with flat tops, but a mesa has a top that is wider than it is tall. A butte is a much narrower formation, taller than it is wide.

43. Party clothes : GLAD RAGS
“Glad rags” is a slang term for one’s best clothes.

46. Punjabi for "disciple" : SIKH
Sikhism is a religion that was founded in the Punjab region, which straddles the India-Pakistan border. Even though Sikhism was established relatively recently, it is now the fifth-largest organized religion in the world. Sikhism was founded in the 15th century by Guru Nanak.

47. "Chocolate" dogs : LABS
The Labrador (Lab) breed of dog has been around at least since 1814. The breed comes in three registered colors: black, yellow and chocolate.

49. Hartford-based insurance giant : AETNA
When the healthcare management and insurance company known as Aetna was founded, the name was chosen to evoke images of Mt. Etna, the European volcano.

51. W # # # # : BLEMISHES (Warts)
A wart is a small eruption on the skin caused by a localized viral infection. The most successful treatment is topical use of salicylic acid, with a cure rate of 75%. I think it’s best to try to avoid getting them …

56. Part of STEM: Abbr. : SCI
The acronym STEM stands for the disciplines of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. An alternative acronym with a similar meaning is MINT, standing for mathematics, information sciences, natural sciences and technology.

60. Resistance unit : OHM
The unit of electrical resistance is the ohm (with the symbol omega) named after German physicist Georg Simon Ohm. Ohm was the guy who established experimentally that the amount of current flowing through a circuit is directly proportional to the voltage applied, (V=IR) a relationship that every schoolkid knows as Ohm's Law.

61. Bird on a Froot Loops box : TOUCAN
Froot Loops (ugh!) is a breakfast cereal from Kellogg’s that has been around since 1963. The little loops come in different colors, originally red, orange and yellow, but now there are green, purple and blue loops as well. Notice I said “different colors” not “different flavors”. Each loop tastes the same, so I wonder where the color comes from …?

Toucan Sam is the mascot of Kellogg’s Froot Loops breakfast cereal, and he can be seen on the front of every box. Froot Loops have been manufactured by Kellogg’s since 1963. The little loops come in different colors, originally red, orange and yellow, but now there are green, purple and blue loops as well. Notice I said “different colors” not “different flavors”. Each loop tastes the same, so I wonder where the color comes from …?

62. ___ Taft Benson (1980s-'90s Mormon leader) : EZRA
Ezra Taft Benson was the thirteenth president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, serving from 1985 until 1994. Benson was also the US Secretary of Agriculture in the Eisenhower administration.

65. Common laborer : PEON
A peon is a lowly worker with no real control over his/her working conditions. The word comes into English from Spanish, in which language it has the same meaning.

Down
1. "Affirmative, ___, I read you" (line in "2001: A Space Odyssey") : DAVE
In the movie “2001: A Space Odyssey”, Dr. David Bowman (“Dave”) goes up against the spacecraft computer known as “HAL”.

2. Pioneering computer operating system : UNIX
Unix is a computer operating system that was developed at Bell Labs in 1969.

3. Stock watcher's network : 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. Wine variety : ROSE
Rosé wines get their color from the skins of the grapes, although the intensity of the color is not sufficient to make them red wines. Of the varying type of rosé wines available, we are most familiar with sweet White Zinfandels. Personally I am fond of the really dry Provençal rosé wines.

8. States of pique : IRES
Our term "pique" meaning a "fit of ill feeling" is a French word meaning a "prick, sting, irritation".

12. Runaway G.I. : AWOL
The Military Police (MPs) often track down personnel who go AWOL (absent without leave).

13. Seder celebrants : JEWS
The Passover Seder is a ritual feast that marks the beginning of the Jewish Passover holiday, celebrating the liberation of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt. One of the traditions at the meal is that the youngest child at the table asks "The Four Questions", all relating to why this night is different from all other nights in the year:
Why is it that on all other nights during the year we eat either bread or matzoh, but on this night we eat only matzoh?
Why is it that on all other nights we eat all kinds of herbs, but on this night we eat only bitter herbs?
Why is it that on all other nights we do not dip our herbs even once, but on this night we dip them twice?
Why is it that on all other nights we eat either sitting or reclining, but on this night we eat in a reclining position?

23. Santa ___ winds : ANA
The Santa Ana winds are the very dry air currents that sweep offshore late in the year in Southern California. Because these air currents are so dry, they are noted for their influence over forest fires in the area, especially in the heat of the fall. The winds arise from a buildup of air pressure in the Great Basin that lies between the Rocky Mountains and the Sierra Nevada. Under the right conditions, that air spills over the peaks of the Sierra Nevada and basically “falls” down the side of the Sierra range, heading for the ocean. As the air falls it becomes drier and heats up so that relative humidity can fall to below 10% by the time it hits the coast.

28. D # # # # : PUB PASTIME (Darts)
Darts is a wonderful game often played in English and Irish pubs, even over here in America. The scoring in a traditional game of darts is difficult to describe in a sentence or two, but the game of darts called “Round the Clock” is simply hitting the numbers 1 through 20 in sequence.

30. Pianist Gilels : EMIL
Emil Gilels was a pianist from the old Soviet Union, born in Odessa (now part of Ukraine). Gilels was one of the first musicians allowed to perform concerts outside of the Eastern Bloc. His debut appearance in Philadelphia with Eugene Ormandy was a resounding success.

31. Occupied, as a lav : IN USE
Our word “lavatory” originally referred to a washbasin, and comes from the Latin “lavatorium”, a place for washing. In the 1600s a "lavatory" came to mean a washroom, and in the 1920s a toilet.

32. "At the Milliner's" painter : DEGAS
Edgar Degas was a French artist, famous for his paintings and sculptures. Some of Degas’ most beautiful works feature female ballet dancers, and others depict women bathing.

A milliner is someone who makes, designs or sells hats. Back in the 1500s, the term described someone who sold hats made in Milan, Italy, hence the name “milliner”.

34. Holy text : TORAH
The word "Torah" best translates as "teaching", I am told.

35. Part of the Olympics logo : RING
The symbol of the Olympic Games consists of five interlocking rings, with each ring representing one of the five continents involved in the Olympics. The five continents are Europe, Asia, Africa, Oceania and America (North and South combined). The symbol was designed in 1912, adopted in 1914, and introduced at the 1920 Games.

44. Cacophony : DIN
“Cacophony” is such a lovely word, one used to describe a harsh or jarring sound. The term arises from the Greek “kakos” (bad) and “phone” (voice).

45. One of 2,297 for Hank Aaron, in brief : RBI
Run batted in (RBI)

The great Hank Aaron (“Hammerin' Hank” or “the Hammer”) has many claims to fame. One notable fact is that he is the last major league baseball player to have also played in the Negro League.

47. Actor Burton : LEVAR
The actor LeVar Burton is very much associated with two iconic roles on television: young Kunta Kinte in “Roots”, and Geordi La Forge in “Star Trek: The Next Generation”. Burton also hosted the children’s PBS show “Reading Rainbow” for many years. His portrayal of Kunta Kinte in 1977 was Burton’s first acting job. Indeed, Burton’s audition for the part was the first in his professional career!

48. Church chorus? : AMENS
The word “amen” is translated as “so be it”. “Amen” is said to be of Hebrew origin, but it is likely to be also influenced by Aramaic and Arabic.

52. Big nits : LICE
Lice (singular “louse”) are small wingless insects of which there are thousands of species, three of which are human disease agents. The three kinds of lice affecting humans are head lice, body lice and pubic lice. Most lice feed on dead skin found on the body of the host animal, although some feed on blood. Ick …

53. Hangover feeling : HAZE
The main cause of hangover symptoms seems to be dehydration. Ethanol causes increased urine production, leaving the body short of water and resulting in headaches, dry mouth and a lack of energy. The symptoms can be alleviated by drinking a lot of water.

54. Lead-in to zone : EURO-
The “eurozone” or “euro area” is a monetary and economic union within the European Union that uses the euro as a shared legal tender and sole currency.

55. Musial in Cooperstown : STAN
Stan Musial was a retired baseball player who went by the nickname “Stan the Man”, a moniker he was awarded by the Brooklyn Dodgers fans in 1946. Apparently, off the field Stan was quite the harmonica player.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Airway or pipe : DUCT
5. Gulf Coast catch : SHRIMP
11. ___ gen. : MAJ
14. Part of A.D. : ANNO
15. Where Caterpillar is headquartered : PEORIA
16. Carry a balance : OWE
17. Intangible feeling, informally : VIBE
18. Cars introduced with much fanfare on "E Day" : EDSELS
19. "I do," e.g. : VOW
20. M # # # # : EXCHANGES (Marts)
22. It has a 50% chance : TAILS
24. Shoppe descriptor : OLDE
25. Composer Thomas : ARNE
26. Generous : AMPLE
29. Like much of Montana : SEMIARID
33. Forte, on a score : LOUD
34. ___-l'oeil (illusion) : TROMPE
36. Opening number : ONE
37. Sphere : ORB
38. Dining table decorations : DOILIES
39. Big oaf : LUG
40. Fail as a night guard, say : NAP
41. Traitor in the Revolutionary War : ARNOLD
42. Spanish for "table" : MESA
43. Party clothes : GLAD RAGS
45. Gains, as in the stock market : RISES
46. Punjabi for "disciple" : SIKH
47. "Chocolate" dogs : LABS
49. Hartford-based insurance giant : AETNA
51. W # # # # : BLEMISHES (Warts)
56. Part of STEM: Abbr. : SCI
57. Experience anew : RELIVE
59. Lacking slack : TAUT
60. Resistance unit : OHM
61. Bird on a Froot Loops box : TOUCAN
62. ___ Taft Benson (1980s-'90s Mormon leader) : EZRA
63. Adversary : FOE
64. Dismissive looks : SNEERS
65. Common laborer : PEON

Down
1. "Affirmative, ___, I read you" (line in "2001: A Space Odyssey") : DAVE
2. Pioneering computer operating system : UNIX
3. Stock watcher's network : CNBC
4. Starting progress, metaphorically : TOEHOLD
5. Not be a tightwad : SPEND
6. Guard one's bets : HEDGE
7. Wine variety : ROSE
8. States of pique : IRES
9. Thousand G's : MIL
10. T # # # # : PASTRIES (Tarts)
11. P # # # # : MOVIE ROLES (Parts)
12. Runaway G.I. : AWOL
13. Seder celebrants : JEWS
21. What's brewing, maybe : ALE
23. Santa ___ winds : ANA
25. All fired up : AMPED
26. "I knew it all ___" : ALONG
27. Upstanding : MORAL
28. D # # # # : PUB PASTIME (Darts)
29. Recital pieces : SOLOS
30. Pianist Gilels : EMIL
31. Occupied, as a lav : IN USE
32. "At the Milliner's" painter : DEGAS
34. Holy text : TORAH
35. Part of the Olympics logo : RING
38. What sorcerers practice ... or a hint to interpreting five clues in this puzzle : DARK ARTS
42. Blunder : MISSTEP
44. Cacophony : DIN
45. One of 2,297 for Hank Aaron, in brief : RBI
47. Actor Burton : LEVAR
48. Church chorus? : AMENS
49. Since : AS OF
50. Something you might hear in an empty building : ECHO
51. Off-color, paradoxically : BLUE
52. Big nits : LICE
53. Hangover feeling : HAZE
54. Lead-in to zone : EURO-
55. Musial in Cooperstown : STAN
58. Years and years : EON


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6 comments :

Dave Kennison said...

15:23, no errors, iPad. Cute gimmick.

Sfingi said...

@Kennison - Agree. Liked it.

I had MISTake before MISSTEP and kORAn before TORAH.

BruceB said...

13:37, no errors. I, too, liked the theme; actually used it to help solve the puzzle.

Dale Stewart said...

Bill, before I forget, you will need to change your comment about Stan Musial to the past tense. Stan the Man died at the age of 92 in 2013. What a great guy he was.
No errors today. I caught on to the theme by only having one of the theme answers and then knowing to apply it to the other four. This puzzle was pretty tough for me today but perseverance paid off.

Bill Butler said...

Thanks, Dale.

As you well know, I don't keep up with sports news at all. It doesn't surprise me that I am three years behind the times :) I appreciate the help, as always.

Anonymous said...

10:01, no errors.

But the theme? BOO! BOOOOOO!

Stupid in the extreme!

Seriously, Shortz, we can't get better than this????

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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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