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0308-17 New York Times Crossword Answers 8 Mar 17, Wednesday





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CROSSWORD SETTER: Paula Gamache
THEME: Missing Vowels
Today’s themed answers end are well-known phrases ending in a three-letter word, but the middle vowel is missing from that word:
17A. "How's it goin', Washington?" : WHATS UP, DC? (from “What’s up, Doc?)
26A. E.R. worker who sprained an ankle? : HOPPING MD (from “hopping mad”)
37A. Prescription for a prehistoric carnivore? : TYRANNOSAURUS RX (from “Tyrannosaurus rex”)
48A. "Keep that record in its case!"? : ZIP YOUR LP (from “zip your lip!”)
57A. Mistake a shiny disc for a cookie? : CHEW THE CD (from “chew the cud”)
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 10m 52s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Condé ___ (magazine publisher) : NAST
Condé Nast has a very large portfolio of publications, including "Vogue", "GQ", "House and Garden", "Golf Digest", "Wired", "Vanity Fair" and "The New Yorker".

5. Ending with Lenin or Stalin : -GRAD
St. Petersburg in Russia is an absolutely beautiful city to visit. The city was renamed to Petrograd in 1914, Leningrad in 1924 and back to St. Petersburg in 1991.

Volgograd is a Russian city on the Volga River. Known as Stalingrad from 1925 until 1961, the city is famous for the Battle of Stalingrad against the German Army in WWII. The Soviets emerged victorious after just over five months of fierce and brutal fighting in what is believed to be the bloodiest battle in the history of warfare.

14. Wedge or pump : SHOE
A pump is a woman's shoe that doesn't have a strap. Such shoes are probably called "pumps" because of the sound they make while walking in them.

15. Princess of Alderaan : LEIA
The full name of the character played by Carrie Fisher in the “Star Wars” series of films is Princess Leia Organa of Alderaan, and later Leia Organa Solo. Leia is the twin sister of Luke Skywalker, and the daughter of Anakin Skywalker (aka Darth Vader) and Padmé Amidala. Leia is raised by her adoptive parents Bail and Breha Organa. She eventually marries Han Solo.

17. "How's it goin', Washington?" : WHATS UP, DC? (from “What’s up, Doc?)
Bugs Bunny first said “What’s up, Doc?” in the 1940 cartoon short “A Wild Hare”, addressing the hunter Elmer Fudd.

20. Event presided over by a king and queen : PROM
A prom is a formal dance held upon graduation from high school (we call them "formals" over in Ireland). The term "prom" is short for "promenade", the name given to a type of dance or ball.

23. Museum-funding org. : NEA
The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) is an agency funded by the federal government that offers support and financing for artistic projects. The NEA was created by an Act of Congress in 1965. Between 1965 and 2008, the NEA awarded over $4 billion to the arts, with Congress authorizing around $170 million annually through the eighties and much of the nineties. That funding was cut to less than $100 million in the late nineties due to pressure from conservatives concerned about the use of funds, but it is now back over the $150 million mark. I wonder how long that will last though …

24. "To your health!" : SKOAL!
“Skoal” is a Swedish toast, with roots in the old Norse word “skaal” meaning “cup”.

29. Sgt. Friday's org. : LAPD
The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) is the third largest local law enforcement agency in the country, after New York PD and Chicago PD. Among other things, LAPD is famous for creating the first Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team in the US, in 1965.

The TV detective show “Dragnet” opened up each episode with lines spoken by the character Sergeant Joe Friday:
This is the city, Los Angeles, California, I work here. I’m a cop.
In later series, the phrase “I’m a cop” was replaced with “I carry a badge”.

30. Sri Lanka's capital : COLOMBO
Colombo is the largest city in Sri Lanka. It is also the commercial capital of the island nation, whereas the administrative capital is Kotte (or more formally “Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte). Kotte is in fact a suburb of Colombo.

37. Prescription for a prehistoric carnivore? : TYRANNOSAURUS RX (from “Tyrannosaurus rex”)
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.

The Tyrannosaurus rex (usually written T. rex) was a spectacular looking dinosaur. “Tyrannosaurus” comes from the Greek words “tyrannos” (tyrant) and “sauros” (lizard), and the “rex” is of course Latin for “king”. They were big boys, measuring 42 feet long and 13 feet tall at the hips, and weighing 7.5 tons.

44. The Geneva Conventions prohibit it : TORTURE
The First Geneva Convention is one of four treaties aimed at protecting the victims of armed conflict. The first of these treaties was signed in 1864 by the major European powers at the urging of relief activist Henri Dunant. Dunant also established the Red Cross in 1863, an organization that is specifically called out in the First Geneva Convention as an agency that is allowed to provide protection and relief for wounded and sick soldiers. The first treaty was significantly updated and expanded in 1906, 1929 and 1949.

47. Empire State Building style, informally : DECO
New York City’s Empire State Building was the world’s tallest building from 1931, the date of its completion, until 1970 when the North Tower of the World Trade Center surpassed it in height in 1970. The Empire State Building was constructed in less than 15 months, handily beating the planned 18-month schedule.

48. "Keep that record in its case!"? : ZIP YOUR LP (from “zip your lip!”)
The first vinyl records designed to play at 33⅓ rpm were introduced by RCA Victor in 1931, but were discontinued due to quality problems. The first long play (LP) 33⅓ rpm disc was introduced by Columbia Records many years later in 1948, with RCA Victor following up with a 45 rpm “single” the following year, in 1949.

52. Sean ___ Lennon : ONO
Sean Lennon is the only child of John Lennon and Yoko Ono. Sean’s godfather is Elton John. Sean is a musician and composer, and has a band called the Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger.

53. Slugger's stat : RBI
Run batted in (RBI)

55. "Hamlet" courtier : OSRIC
In William Shakespeare's play "Hamlet", Osric is the courtier that Claudius dispatches to invite Hamlet to participate in a duel.

57. Mistake a shiny disc for a cookie? : CHEW THE CD (from “chew the cud”)
Ruminants are animals that “chew the cud”. Ruminants eat vegetable matter but cannot extract any nutritional value from cellulose without the help of microbes in the gut. Ruminants collect roughage in the first part of the alimentary canal, allowing microbes to work on it. The partially digested material (the cud) is regurgitated into the mouth so that the ruminant can chew the food more completely exposing more surface area for microbes to do their work. We also use the verb “to ruminate” in a figurative sense, to mean “to muse, ponder, chew over”.

62. Mental bloc? : MENSA
If you ever learned Latin, “mensa” was probably taught to you in lesson one as it’s the word commonly used as an example of a first declension noun. Mensa means “table”. The Mensa organization, for folks with high IQs, was set up in Oxford, England back in 1946. To become a member, you have to have an IQ that is in the top 2% of the population.

65. Pub selection : STOUT
The term “stout” was first used for a type of beer in the 1600s when was used to describe a “strong, stout” brew, and not necessarily a dark beer as it is today.

Down
1. Sydney's state: Abbr. : NSW
New South Wales (NSW) is the most populous state in Australia and is home to Sydney, the most populous city in the country. New South Wales was founded in 1788. When the British took over New Zealand in 1840, for a while New Zealand was actually governed as part of New South Wales.

Sydney is the most populous city in Australia. People from Sydney are known as “Sydneysiders”.

3. Endless melodrama : SOAP OPERA
The original soap operas were radio dramas back in the fifties. Given the structure of society back then, the daytime broadcasts were aimed at women working in the home as housewives. For some reason the sponsors of those radio shows, and the television shows that followed, were soap manufacturers like Procter & Gamble, Colgate-Palmolive and Lever Brothers. And that's how the "soap" opera got its name …

5. Down in the dumps : GLUM
Both “glum” and “gloom” have the same root, each coming from the Middle English verb “gloumen” meaning “to become dark”.

8. From the beginning, in music : DA CAPO
The musical term “da capo” is an instruction to repeat from the beginning. The term translates literally from Italian as “from the head”.

9. Atmospheric pressure units : MILLIBARS
A bar is a unit of atmospheric pressure that is almost equal to the atmospheric pressure at sea level.

10. Competitor of Tide : ERA
Era was the first liquid laundry detergent produced by Procter & Gamble.

Tide is a laundry detergent that has been made by Procter & Gamble since 1946. Back then, Tide was marketed as “America’s Washday Favorite”.

12. Against a thing, legally : IN REM
“In rem” translates from Latin as “in a thing”. In a lawsuit, an action is described as “in rem” if it is directed against some property. This would be the case if someone disputes ownership of a piece of land, for example. An action “in personam” on the other hand, is directed against a specific individual.

13. Syrian strongman : ASSAD
Dr. Bashar al-Assad is the current President of the Syrian Arab Republic and the son of the former President Hafez al-Assad whom he replaced in 2001. President Assad is a medical doctor, speaks fluent English and conversational French. Assad was studying ophthalmology in London when he met his wife, who is an Englishwoman.

18. Roman counterpart of the Greek Helios : SOL
Helios was the god of the Sun in Greek mythology. Helios was the brother of Selene, the goddess of the moon, and Eos, the goddess of the dawn. Helios drove his chariot of the sun across the sky during the day, returning to the East at night be travelling through the ocean. The Roman equivalent to Helios was Sol.

22. Typist's stat : WPM
Words per minute (WPM)

24. A deadly sin : SLOTH
The cardinal sins of Christian ethics are also known as the seven deadly sins. The seven deadly sins are:
  • Wrath
  • Greed
  • Sloth
  • Pride
  • Lust
  • Envy
  • Gluttony

25. West with Roc-A-Fella records : KANYE
Kanye West is a rap singer who was born in Atlanta and raised in Chicago. He also spent some time in Nanjing, China as a child, where his mother was teaching as part of an exchange program. West is married to reality star Kim Kardashian.

28. Celebrity chef Matsuhisa : NOBU
Nobu Matsuhisa is celebrity chef from Japan. Nobu was invited to open a Japanese restaurant in Lima, Peru in 1973, and while in South America developed his own Peruvian-Japanese fusion cuisine. He moved to the US a few years later, and now there are “Nobu” and “Matsuhisa” restaurants all over the world.

30. Anderson Cooper's TV home : CNN
Anderson Cooper is a respected news personality on CNN and on various shows around the dial. My favorite appearances of his, although he would call them trivial I am sure, was as host of a great reality game show called "The Mole" that aired in 2001.

32. Animal that might be found curled up on a windowsill : INDOOR CAT
“Sill plate” or simply “sill” is an architectural term for a bottom horizontal member to which vertical members are attached. A windowsill is a specific sill plate that is found at the bottom of a window opening.

36. Competitor of BP : EXXON
The Exxon Corporation was a descendant of John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil Company. Exxon merged with Mobil (yet another descendant of Standard Oil) in 1999 to form ExxonMobil.

BP is an oil and gas company headquartered in London, UK. BP started out as the Anglo-Persian Oil Company in 1909 with the remit of exploiting oil discovered in Iran. The company name was changed to British Petroleum in 1954, and today the name used is simply “BP”.

39. Advocate for seniors : AARP
AARP is now the official name for the interest group that used to be called the American Association of Retired Persons. The name change reflects the current focus of the group on all Americans aged 50 or over, as opposed to just people who have retired.

40. Maui music maker, informally : UKE
The ukulele (uke) originated in the 1800s and mimicked a small guitar brought to the Hawaiian Islands by Portuguese immigrants.

Maui is the second largest of the Hawaiian islands. Maui is sometimes called the “Valley Isle” as it is composed of two volcanoes to the northwest and southeast of the island, each with numerous beautiful valleys carved into them.

46. Bridge units : TRICKS
That would be bridge, the card game.

47. Gossips : DISHES
“To dish the dirt” is talk about someone or something without regard to veracity. The phrase comes from “dish” (in the sense of dishing out food) and “dirt” (in the sense of negative information).

50. XXX stuff : PORNO
The word "pornography" comes from the Greek "pornographos" meaning "writing of prostitutes".

54. Rocker Stefani : GWEN
Gwen Stefani is the lead singer for the rock band No Doubt. She joined the band in 1986, focused on a solo career from 2004-2008, but is now back singing and working with No Doubt.

56. The Cyclones of the N.C.A.A., for short : ISU
Iowa State University of Science and Technology (ISU) is located in Ames, Iowa. Among many other notable events, ISU created the country’s first school of veterinary medicine, in 1879. The sports teams of ISU are known as the Cyclones.

59. QB Manning : ELI
Eli Manning plays as quarterback for the New York Giants. Eli’s brother Peyton Manning retired from football as the quarterback for the Denver Broncos. Eli and Peyton’s father is Archie Manning, who was also a successful NFL quarterback.

60. Sin City forensic drama : CSI
The “CSI” franchise of TV shows has been tremendously successful, but has finally wound down. “CSI: Miami” (the “worst” of the franchise, I think) was cancelled in 2012 after ten seasons. “CSI: NY” (the “best” of the franchise) was cancelled in 2013 after nine seasons. The original “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation”, set in Las Vegas, hung in there until 2015 when it ended with a two-hour TV movie. The youngest show in the series was “CSI: Cyber”. It lasted for two season before being canceled in 2016.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Condé ___ (magazine publisher) : NAST
5. Ending with Lenin or Stalin : -GRAD
9. Mixed ___ : MEDIA
14. Wedge or pump : SHOE
15. Princess of Alderaan : LEIA
16. Shackles : IRONS
17. "How's it goin', Washington?" : WHATS UP, DC? (from “What’s up, Doc?)
19. Retreats : LAIRS
20. Event presided over by a king and queen : PROM
21. Cobbler's tool : AWL
23. Museum-funding org. : NEA
24. "To your health!" : SKOAL!
26. E.R. worker who sprained an ankle? : HOPPING MD (from “hopping mad”)
29. Sgt. Friday's org. : LAPD
30. Sri Lanka's capital : COLOMBO
31. Inseparable : ONE
32. How many TV movies can be seen : IN HD
33. Diminish : ABATE
37. Prescription for a prehistoric carnivore? : TYRANNOSAURUS RX (from “Tyrannosaurus rex”)
41. Got wind of : HEARD
42. Many wine barrels come from them : OAKS
43. Car wash option : WAX
44. The Geneva Conventions prohibit it : TORTURE
47. Empire State Building style, informally : DECO
48. "Keep that record in its case!"? : ZIP YOUR LP (from “zip your lip!”)
51. Out of bed : RISEN
52. Sean ___ Lennon : ONO
53. Slugger's stat : RBI
54. [Shocking!] : GASP!
55. "Hamlet" courtier : OSRIC
57. Mistake a shiny disc for a cookie? : CHEW THE CD (from “chew the cud”)
62. Mental bloc? : MENSA
63. Vegetable with curly leaves : KALE
64. Loosen : EASE
65. Pub selection : STOUT
66. A knee sock covers it : SHIN
67. Scrape, as the knee : SKIN

Down
1. Sydney's state: Abbr. : NSW
2. "___, that feels good!" : AHH!
3. Endless melodrama : SOAP OPERA
4. Group of four : TETRAD
5. Down in the dumps : GLUM
6. Good name, for short : REP
7. A helping hand : AID
8. From the beginning, in music : DA CAPO
9. Atmospheric pressure units : MILLIBARS
10. Competitor of Tide : ERA
11. "Nothing ___!" : DOING
12. Against a thing, legally : IN REM
13. Syrian strongman : ASSAD
18. Roman counterpart of the Greek Helios : SOL
22. Typist's stat : WPM
24. A deadly sin : SLOTH
25. West with Roc-A-Fella records : KANYE
26. Christmas cheer? : HO HO!
27. One who leads a quiet, measured life : OLD SOUL
28. Celebrity chef Matsuhisa : NOBU
30. Anderson Cooper's TV home : CNN
32. Animal that might be found curled up on a windowsill : INDOOR CAT
34. Right now : AS WE SPEAK
35. Tiniest bit : TRACE
36. Competitor of BP : EXXON
38. Pretentious : ARTY
39. Advocate for seniors : AARP
40. Maui music maker, informally : UKE
45. Chafe : RUB
46. Bridge units : TRICKS
47. Gossips : DISHES
48. Some camera lenses : ZOOMS
49. Map feature : INSET
50. XXX stuff : PORNO
51. Maze runner : RAT
54. Rocker Stefani : GWEN
56. The Cyclones of the N.C.A.A., for short : ISU
58. "As if!" : HAH!
59. QB Manning : ELI
60. Sin City forensic drama : CSI
61. Place for a trophy cabinet : DEN


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13 comments :

Dave Kennison said...

12:46, no errors. Enjoyable, with a creative theme. I finished by putting in the "O" at the intersection of DA CAPO and COLOMBO and I did it with some trepidation, since DA CAPO was new to me, but it sounded Italian and I was pretty sure of COLOMBO, so I went with it ... and all was well ... :-)

Glenn said...

@Bill
Please check your syndicated link (you have 01 for a month). Thanks for your blog, as always.

Bill Butler said...

Thanks, Glenn.

Yet another "oops" on my part. All fixed now.

Dale Stewart said...

Two errors at the COLOMBO/NOBU cross. I put down an A instead of an O. I don't get 57-Across. Is CD a brand of cookie? That is, the edible kind. Never heard of it. Help, anyone?

BruceB said...

12:58, 2 errors. COLUMBA/NABU. Two naticks for me. Guessed DACAPO/COLOMBO correctly, and COLOMBO/NOBU incorrectly.

Didn't get the theme until about 90% done.

Tom M. said...

Survived the DACAPO/COLOMBO/NOBU crosses but not the ISU/OSRIC. Wanted Oklahoma State instead of Iowa State. (Pardon my Shakespeare.)

Tom M. said...

@Dale Stewart: CD is for "cud", as a cow chews cud.

Dale Stewart said...

Bill, I could add a little to your comment about why Maui is called "The Valley Isle". There are two volcanic cones that form the island as you say. The molten lava from them ran together and formed a land bridge (an isthmus) between them. This then was the "Valley" formed. This is the origin of the term that I have always heard. There are, of course, hundreds of the small valleys cut by streams that Hawaii is so famous for. But all of the main islands have equally beautiful small valleys so Maui would not be unique in that sense. But if people choose to tweak the term to mean something more general as including the small valleys then so be it.

Dale Stewart said...

Thanks Tom M., I get that part. What I don't get is what CD would mean as relating to a cookie. DC, MD, RX, and LP all have common meanings deduced from the clue. It's just that I can't figure out that common meaning for CD.

Anonymous said...

9:42.... but, on a day when I beat Bill's time by 10 seconds... I have an unfortunate error, where CHEWTHECD meets HAH. Didn't double-check my work and it came back to bit me.

Dale: My only guess for your question is that the elided term is "chew the cud", and the cud is the cookie? I dunno, the whole thing is very inelegant and "forced" if you ask me.

Dave Kennison said...

Each of the theme entries is formed by taking a common phrase ending in a three-letter word, removing the middle letter from that word, and then providing a clue that applies to the modified phrase. So, CHEW THE CUD becomes CHEW THE CD, which is what you might do if you see a certain shiny object (a "CD" or "Compact Disk") lying next to your music collection and mistakenly think that it is an edible item (such as a cookie). Inelegant? Forced? Not to me. I only wish I were clever enough to dream up such themes and create puzzles to contain them ... :-)

Glenn said...

1 error, 21 minutes. Still kind of tired and distracted from yesterday I guess.

Lou Sander said...

Fun. Clever theme. No trouble with COLOMBO. I KNOW my geography. Not so, my Shakespeare, but I'm a decent guesser.

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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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