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0223-17 New York Times Crossword Answers 23 Feb 17, Thursday





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Solution to today's crossword in the New York Times
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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: Jeff Chen
THEME: Answer Numbers
Today’s themed answers are each common two-word phrases that start with a number. In order to make sense of the corresponding clue, one has to replace the leading number in the themed answer with another answer from the grid. For example, in the answer THIRTY ROCK, we replace THIRTY with the answer to THIRTY-down to get PET ROCK, which fits the clue “1970s fad item”. Very devious!
28A. *Bulletin board fasteners* : TEN PINS (TEN-down gives PUSH PINS)
62A. *"Which weighs more - a pound of feathers or a pound of lead?" and others* : TWENTY QUESTIONS (TWENTY-across gives TRICK QUESTIONS)
3D. *1970s fad item* : THIRTY ROCK (THIRTY-down gives PET ROCK)
9D. *Pulls a fast one on* : FORTY WINKS (FORTY-across gives HOODWINKS)
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 13m 21s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Joan nicknamed "The Godmother of Punk" : JETT
Joan Jett is the stage name of rock guitarist and singer Joan Marie Larkin. She is best known as a member of the band Joan Jett & the Blackhearts, which formed in 1979.

5. Many a W.S.J. subscriber : MBA
“The Wall Street Journal” (WSJ) is a daily newspaper with a business bent that is published in New York City by Dow Jones & Company. The WSJ has a larger US circulation than any other newspaper, with “USA Today” coming in a close second place.

8. Org. that started during the California gold rush : SFPD
The San Francisco Police Department (SFPD) is the 11th largest police department in the country. The SFPD dates back to the days of the Gold Rush, being founded in 1849 as a force of 35 officers. SFPD has featured a lot in movies and on television. The most famous films are probably “Bullitt”, the “Dirty Harry” series and “48 Hrs.” On television there was “Ironside”, “The Streets of San Francisco” and “Monk”.

12. Home of the all-vowel-named town Aiea : OAHU
Aiea is a town located in the city of Honolulu, Hawaii. Aiea is located on Aiea Bay, which is part of Pearl Harbor.

17. Wayne Gretzky, for 10 seasons : OILER
The National Hockey League’s Edmonton Oilers are so called because they are located in Alberta, Canada … oil country.

Wayne Gretzky is regarded by many as the greatest ever player of ice hockey, and indeed has the nickname “The Great One”.

18. Highland tongue : ERSE
There are actually three Erse languages: Irish, Manx (spoken on the Isle of Man) and Scots Gaelic. In their own tongues, these would be Gaeilge (in Ireland), Gaelg (on the Isle of Man) and Gaidhlig (in Scotland).

19. Maven : PRO
I’ve always loved the word “maven”, another word for an expert. Maven comes into English from the Yiddish “meyvn” meaning someone who appreciates and is a connoisseur.

24. Midwest capital, to locals : INDY
Indianapolis is the largest city in Indiana, and is the state capital. The state of Indiana was formed in 1816, with the state capitol being named as Corydon. The capital was changed to Indianapolis in 1825. Indianapolis is the closest of all capitals to the center of its state.

26. Domain of Horus, in Egyptian myth : SKY
Horus was one of the oldest gods in Ancient Egyptian religion. Most often, Horus was depicted as a falcon or a man with a falcon head. The Eye of Horus was a common symbol used in Ancient Egypt, a symbol of protection and royal power.

32. Joker : WAG
A “card”, “wag” or “riot” is a very amusing person.

35. Toiletry brand whose TV ads once featured the Supremes : ARRID
Arrid is an antiperspirant deodorant brand introduced in the thirties. Slogans associated with Arrid have been “Don’t be half-safe – use Arrid to be sure”, “Stress stinks! Arrid works!” and “Get a little closer”.

The Supremes were the most successful vocal group in US history, based on number-one hits. The group started out in 1959 as a four-member lineup called the Primettes. The name was changed to the Supremes in 1961. One member dropped out in 1962, leaving the Supremes as a trio. Lead singer Diana Ross began to garner much of the attention, which eventually led to a further name change, to Diana Ross & the Supremes.

38. Michael who played Bruce Wayne's butler : CAINE
Alfred J. Pennyworth is the loyal butler to Bruce Wayne, aka Batman. Alfred is sometimes referred to as “Batman’s batman”. Sir Michael Caine played Alfred in three movies: “Batman Begins”, “The Dark Knight” and “The Dark Knight Rises”.

41. Purplish bloom : ASTER
Apparently, most aster species and cultivars bloom relatively late in the year, usually in the fall. The name “aster” comes into English via Latin from the Greek word “astéri” meaning “star”, a reference to the arrangement of the petals of the flower.

43. Establishments that often have porte cochères : INNS
“Porte-cochère” is French for “coach gate”, and is a term that we’ve imported into English. A porte-cochère is like a portico standing in front of a major entrance to a building. In days past, it provided cover for passengers alighting from a coach as they entered the building.

46. Burrowing animal of southern Africa : MEERKAT
The meerkat (also called a “suricate”) is a mongoose-like mammal that is native to parts of Africa.

53. Where Herbert Hoover was born : IOWA
President Herbert Hoover was born in West Branch, Iowa, the only president to have been born in that state. His birthplace is now a National Landmark, and President Hoover and his wife are buried there, in the grounds of the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum. President Hoover died at the age of 90 years old in 1964 outliving his nemesis, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, by almost 20 years.

56. Actor Turner of "The Hobbit" : AIDAN
Irish actor Aidan Turner is best known for playing Kíli in “The Hobbit” series of films, and the title character in the recent BBC adaptation of the “Poldark” series of novels by Winston Graham. Turner grew up in the same suburb of Dublin where I was raised. There’s quite an age gap between me and Turner, and I don’t think I’m “Poldark” material …

58. A tater can produce up to four of these : RBIS
Run batted in (RBI)

Apparently, a baseball has long been referred to as a potato, or a "tater". In the seventies, a long ball started to be called a "long tater", and from this a home run became a "tater".

62. *"Which weighs more - a pound of feathers or a pound of lead?" and others* : TWENTY QUESTIONS (TWENTY-across gives TRICK QUESTIONS)
The parlor game called "twenty questions" originated in the US and really took off in the late forties as it became a weekly quiz show on the radio. Am I the only one who thinks that there aren’t enough quiz shows on the radio these days? I have to resort to listening to the BBC game shows over the Internet …

65. Novelist Fitzgerald : ZELDA
Zelda Fitzgerald, the wife of F. Scott Fitzgerald, was a novelist in her own right. Zelda’s one and only novel is "Save Me the Waltz", a semi-autobiographical account of her life and marriage.

66. Letters preceding a pseudonym : AKA
Also known as (aka)

67. City where LeBron James was born : AKRON
For part of the 1800s, the Ohio city of Akron was the fasting growing city in the country, feeding off the industrial boom of that era. The city was founded in 1825 and its location, along the Ohio and Erie canal connecting Lake Erie with the Ohio River, helped to fuel Akron’s growth. Akron sits at the highest point of the canal and the name “Akron” comes from the Greek word meaning “summit”. Indeed, Akron is the county seat of Summit County. The city earned the moniker “Rubber Capital of the World” for most of the 20th century, as it was home to four major tire companies: Goodrich, Goodyear, Firestone and General Tire.

Basketball player LeBron James (nicknamed “King James”) seems to be in demand for the covers of magazines. James became the first African American man to adorn the front cover of "Vogue" in March 2008. That made him only the third male to make the "Vogue" cover, following Richard Gere and George Clooney.

69. Cohen who co-founded an ice cream company : BEN
Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield did a correspondence course on ice-cream making in 1977 given by Pennsylvania State University's Creamery. The following year they opened an ice cream parlor in an old gas station in Burlington, Vermont. Today Ben & Jerry's has locations in over 20 countries around the world, and theirs was the first brand ice-cream to go into space.

Down
2. Lawman played by James Garner and Kevin Costner : EARP
The legendary Western gunfighter and lawman Wyatt Earp has been portrayed on the big and small screen many, many times. Kevin Costner played the title role in 1994’s “Wyatt Earp”, and Val Kilmer played Earp in 2012’s “The First Ride of Wyatt Earp”. Joel McCrea had the part in 1955’s “Wichita”, and Kurt Russell was Earp in 1993’s “Tombstone”. James Garner played Earp twice, in 1967’s “Hour of the Gun” and 1988’s “Sunset”.

3. *1970s fad item* : THIRTY ROCK (THIRTY-down gives PET ROCK)
What is now called the GE Building in New York City, was originally known as the RCA Building, with the name changing in 1988 after the 1986 takeover of RCA by GE. The building was completed in 1933 as part of the Rockefeller Center and was named for its main tenant RCA. Famously, the skyscraper's address of 30 Rockefeller Center is routinely shortened to “30 Rock”.

The Pet Rock lives on in history even though the fad really only lasted about 6 months, in 1975. It was enough to make Gary Dahl a millionaire though. His next idea, a "sand farm", didn't fly at all.

4. ___ rose (English heraldic emblem) : TUDOR
The Wars of the Roses was a series of civil wars fought for the throne of England between the rival Houses of Lancaster (with a symbol of a red rose) and York (with a symbol of a white rose). Ultimately the Lancastrians emerged victorious after Henry Tudor defeated King Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth Field. Henry was crowned King Henry VII, and so began the Tudor dynasty. Henry Tudor united the rival houses by marrying his cousin Elizabeth of York. Henry VII had a relatively long reign of 23 years that lasted until his death, after which his son succeeded to the throne as Henry VIII, continuing the relatively short-lived Tudor dynasty. Henry VIII ruled from 1509 until his death in 1547. Henry VIII was the last male to lead the the House of Tudor, as his daughter Queen Elizabeth I died without issue. When Elizabeth died, the Scottish King James VI succeeded to the throne as James I of England and Ireland. James I was the first English monarch of the House of Stuart.

5. California's ___ Woods : MUIR
Muir Woods is a National Monument located not too far from here, just north of San Francisco. It is home to enormous old growth Coast Redwood trees. The land was declared a National Monument in 1908 by President Theodore Roosevelt. The name “Muir Woods” was chosen in honor of the naturalist John Muir.

6. Island in the Coral Triangle : BALI
Bali is both an island and a province in Indonesia. It is a popular tourist spot, although the number of visitors dropped for a few years as a result of terrorist bombings in 2002 and 2005 that killed mainly tourists. Bali became more popular starting in 2008 due to a significant and favorable change in the exchange rate between the US dollar and the Indonesian rupiah.

The geographic term “Coral Triangle” refers to a large marine area in the western Pacific Ocean. Included in the region are the waters of Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Timor Leste and the Solomon Islands.

7. "___ plaisir!" : AVEC
“Avec plaisir” is French for “with pleasure”.

9. *Pulls a fast one on* : FORTY WINKS (FORTY-across gives HOODWINKS)
Back in the early 1800s, folks took “nine winks” when getting a few minutes of sleep during the day. Dr. William Kitchiner extended this concept in his 1821 self-help book “The Art of Invigorating and Prolonging Life”. He suggested “A Forty Winks Nap”, which we seem to have been taking ever since. Mind you, I’m up to about eighty winks most days …

"Hoodwink" has had the meaning "to deceive" since about 1600. Prior to that it meant simply "to blindfold", and is simply a combining of the words "hood" and "wink".

11. "Dr." of rap : DRE
Dr. Dre is the stage name of rapper Andre Romelle Young. Dr. Dre is known for his own singing career as well as for producing records and starting the careers of others such Snoop Dogg, Eminem and 50 Cent.

14. Alan of "Argo" : ARKIN
The actor Alan Arkin won his only Oscar (Best Supporting Actor) for his role in “Little Miss Sunshine” from 2006, a movie that I just did not understand …

“Argo” is a 2012 movie that is based on the true story of the rescue of six diplomats hiding out during the 1979 Iran hostage crisis. The film was directed by and stars Ben Affleck and is produced by Grant Heslov and George Clooney, the same pair who produced the excellent “Good Night, and Good Luck”. I saw “Argo” recently and recommend it highly, although I found the scenes of religious fervor pretty frightening …

25. Advisory grp. to the president : NSC
The National Security Council (NSC) was created by President Harry S. Truman in 1947. The NSC is chaired by the sitting president and meets in the White House Situation Room.

26. Title meaning "master" : SAHIB
“Sahib” is most recognized as a term of address used in India, where it is used in much the same way as we use "mister" in English. The term was also used to address male Europeans in the days of the British Raj. The correct female form of address is “sahiba”, but in the colonial days the address used was “memsahib”, a melding of “ma’am” and “sahib”

27. Capital of Sweden : KRONA
“Krona” translates in English as "crown", and is the currency of Sweden (plural “kronor”). As a member of the European Union, Sweden is required to adopt the euro as its official currency. Such a move isn’t really popular in Sweden and so the Swedish government has been using a legal loophole to allow the country to retain the krona.

29. Where Harley-Davidson Inc. is HOG : NYSE
The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) can give some quite descriptive ticker symbols to companies, for example:
  • Anheuser-Busch (BUD, for “Budweiser”)
  • Molson Coors Brewing Company (TAP, as in “beer tap”)
  • Steinway Musical Instruments (LVB, for “Ludwig van Beethoven”)
  • Sotheby’s (BID, for the auction house)

The Harley-Davidson motorcycle company was started up in the very early 1900s by two childhood friends, William Harley and Arthur Davidson, . Their first design was in effect an engine hooked up to a pedal bicycle, but the 116 cc cylinder capacity simply couldn't generate enough power to get up the hills of their native city of Milwaukee. The pair came up with a redesigned model that had a cylinder capacity of 405 cc, which the partners built in a shed at the back of Davidson's house. In 1906, the partners built their first factory, located where the company's headquarters is to this day, on Juneau Avenue in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Famously, Harley motorcycles are nicknamed “hogs”.

30. Dog, cat or hamster : PET
The rodents known as hamsters are commonly kept as house pets. Male hamsters are called bucks, females are called does, and baby hamsters are known as pups.

31. Tabloid pair : ITEM
An unmarried couple known to be involved with each other might appear in the gossip columns. This appearance as "an item" in the papers, led to the use of "item" to refer to such a couple, but only since the very early seventies.

Tabloid is the trademarked name (owned by Burroughs, Wellcome and Co,) for a "small tablet of medicine", a name that goes back to 1884. The word "tabloid" had entered into general use to mean a compressed form of anything, and by the early 1900s was used in "tabloid journalism", applied to newspapers that had short, condensed articles and stories printed on smaller sheets of paper.

33. Historical record : ANNAL
“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”.

34. Tale of derring-do : GESTE
Our word "gest" meaning a great deed or an exploit has been around since about 1300, and comes from the Old French word "geste" meaning the same thing. These days "geste" can also mean "gesture".

As one might expect, "derring-do" (plural is “derrings-do”) comes from the phrase "daring to do", which back in the 14th century was written as "dorrying don".

42. TV Land programming : RERUNS
TV Land is a cable television channel that debuted in 1996. “TV Land” is a name that was used by Nick at Nite in the eighties, and is a term originally coined by “The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show”.

51. Muslim face veil : NIQAB
Some Muslim women wear a hijab in the presence of males outside of their immediate family. A hijab is a veil covering the head and chest. Some also wear a niqab as part of the hijab, which is a cloth that covers the face. Other Muslim women wear a burqa, which covers the whole body from the top of the head to the ground.

52. Song that might have hosannas : PAEAN
A paean is a poem or song that expresses triumph or thanksgiving. “Paean” comes from the ancient Greek “paian” meaning “song of triumph”.

“Hosanna” is derived from Hebrew, probably from the term “hoshi’ah-nna” meaning “save, we pray”.

53. Native people of Guatemala : ITZA
Guatemala in Central America became independent from Spain in 1821, first becoming part of the Mexican Empire, and then completely independent two years later.

54. Wister who was known as the father of western fiction : OWEN
The novelist Owen Wister earned himself the nickname of “father” of western fiction. Wister was a friend of President Theodore Roosevelt and spent a lot time with the president out west. Wister's most famous book is “The Virginian” which was published in 1902. “The Virginian” is regarded as the world’s first cowboy novel, and is dedicated to Theodore Roosevelt.

57. School with five March Madness titles : DUKE
Duke University was founded in 1838 as Brown’s Schoolhouse. The school was renamed to Trinity College in 1859, and to this day the town where the college was located back then is known as Trinity, in honor of the school. The school was moved in 1892 to Durham, North Carolina in part due to generous donations from the wealthy tobacco industrialist Washington Duke. Duke’s donation required that the school open its doors to women, placing them on an equal footing with men. Trinity’s name was changed to Duke in 1924 in recognition of the generosity of the Duke family.

March Madness is the name given to the NCAA Men’s Division 1 Basketball Championship (among others), held in spring each year.

61. Some personnel info: Abbr. : SSNS
Social Security number (SSN)

63. Principle behind yin and yang : TAO
The Chinese character "tao" translates as "path", but the concept of Tao signifies the true nature of the world.

The yin and the yang can be explained using many different metaphors. In one, as the sun shines on a mountain, the side in the shade is the yin and the side in the light is the yang. The yin is also regarded as the feminine side, and the yang the masculine. The yin can also be associated with the moon, while the yang is associated with the sun.

64. Something you might get with a piercing, informally : TAT
The word "tattoo" (often shortened to “tat”) was first used in English in the writings of the famous English explorer Captain Cook. In his descriptions of the indelible marks adorning the skin of Polynesian natives, Cook anglicized the Tahitian word "tatau" into our "tattoo". Tattoos are also sometimes referred to as “ink”.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Joan nicknamed "The Godmother of Punk" : JETT
5. Many a W.S.J. subscriber : MBA
8. Org. that started during the California gold rush : SFPD
12. Home of the all-vowel-named town Aiea : OAHU
13. Tropical fruit : GUAVA
15. Flood (in) : POUR
16. Electrical system : GRID
17. Wayne Gretzky, for 10 seasons : OILER
18. Highland tongue : ERSE
19. Maven : PRO
20. Fool : TRICK
21. Indefinite ordinal : NTH
22. Request at the barber's : TRIM
24. Midwest capital, to locals : INDY
26. Domain of Horus, in Egyptian myth : SKY
28. *Bulletin board fasteners* : TEN PINS (TEN-down gives PUSH PINS)
32. Joker : WAG
35. Toiletry brand whose TV ads once featured the Supremes : ARRID
37. Thus far : YET
38. Michael who played Bruce Wayne's butler : CAINE
40. Engine cover : HOOD
41. Purplish bloom : ASTER
43. Establishments that often have porte cochères : INNS
44. What might get the ball rolling : INCLINE
46. Burrowing animal of southern Africa : MEERKAT
48. Napoleon's place : BAKERY
49. Fight on a mat, in dialect : RASSLE
50. Chopped : HEWN
52. What might get the ball rolling : PUTT
53. Where Herbert Hoover was born : IOWA
56. Actor Turner of "The Hobbit" : AIDAN
58. A tater can produce up to four of these : RBIS
62. *"Which weighs more - a pound of feathers or a pound of lead?" and others* : TWENTY QUESTIONS (TWENTY-across gives TRICK QUESTIONS)
65. Novelist Fitzgerald : ZELDA
66. Letters preceding a pseudonym : AKA
67. City where LeBron James was born : AKRON
68. "As a result ..." : AND SO ...
69. Cohen who co-founded an ice cream company : BEN
70. They come after 12 : TEENS

Down
1. Short run? : JOG
2. Lawman played by James Garner and Kevin Costner : EARP
3. *1970s fad item* : THIRTY ROCK (THIRTY-down gives PET ROCK)
4. ___ rose (English heraldic emblem) : TUDOR
5. California's ___ Woods : MUIR
6. Island in the Coral Triangle : BALI
7. "___ plaisir!" : AVEC
8. Help stimulate the economy : SPEND
9. *Pulls a fast one on* : FORTY WINKS (FORTY-across gives HOODWINKS)
10. Promote : PUSH
11. "Dr." of rap : DRE
13. "Hell if I know!" : GOT ME!
14. Alan of "Argo" : ARKIN
23. "___ be my pleasure!" : IT’D
25. Advisory grp. to the president : NSC
26. Title meaning "master" : SAHIB
27. Capital of Sweden : KRONA
29. Where Harley-Davidson Inc. is HOG : NYSE
30. Dog, cat or hamster : PET
31. Tabloid pair : ITEM
33. Historical record : ANNAL
34. Tale of derring-do : GESTE
36. The devil's playthings, they say : IDLE HANDS
39. Drone's mission : AIR STRIKE
41. "Back to my point ..." : ANYWAY …
42. TV Land programming : RERUNS
45. Hot temper : IRE
47. Clear the dishes? : EAT
51. Muslim face veil : NIQAB
52. Song that might have hosannas : PAEAN
53. Native people of Guatemala : ITZA
54. Wister who was known as the father of western fiction : OWEN
55. Join together : WELD
57. School with five March Madness titles : DUKE
59. Snoozer : BORE
60. A party to : IN ON
61. Some personnel info: Abbr. : SSNS
63. Principle behind yin and yang : TAO
64. Something you might get with a piercing, informally : TAT


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7 comments :

Jeff said...

Devious theme indeed. When I first saw the clue for 3D, "1970's fad item", "pet rock" was the first thing I thought of, but it obviously didn't fit. When I got THIRTYROCK by crosses, I got the theme immediately.

Usually Thursday puzzles are all about the theme, but this was tricky even after I got the theme. A few missteps, but I finished it eventually.

Another good one by Jeff Chen.

Best -

Dave Kennison said...

15:09, no errors. Good puzzle. Long answers very puzzling (did it just before going to bed last night and completely missed the theme).

BruceB said...

16:48, no errors. Saw the TEN, TWENTY, THIRTY, FORTY progression, but just went with the flow. Came here to find the connection to the theme; more clever, I think, to the setter and hard core aficionados than to the typical puzzle solver.

Dale Stewart said...

No errors despite not catching on to the theme. I thought this was very easy for a Thursday.

Tom M. said...

Not deciphering the theme was my downfall. Much too clever.

Anonymous said...

14:43, and two errors, where NSC met CAINE. I thought NSA for "Advisory", not the C for Council.

The theme, I never had to deal with, and good thing, too. Pretty **forced**. I filled in Thirty Rock because it "fit"; I never bothered to get misled by the clue. Same with the others: I looked askance at TEN PINS in light of the clue, too. However, I could cross-fill to solve this one, and didn't have to try to read the setter's twisted mind to finish it.

Not a big fan of Jeff Chen...

Glenn said...

zero errors, 42 minutes. Fun enough grid. Nothing confusing about it, but figured out the theme enough to take out one corner that didn't make much sense.

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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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