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0514-17 New York Times Crossword Answers 14 May 17, Sunday





QuickLinks:
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 CONSTRUCTOR: Will Nediger
THEME: Places, Everyone!
EVERY ONE of today’s themed answers uses the PLACEMENT of that answer within the grid:
22A. Dropped out : LEFT SCHOOL
23A. U.S. heartland : MIDDLE AMERICA
24A. Dexterous one : RIGHTHANDER
66A. Abandoned : LEFT BEHIND
67A. Person pretty far up the corporate ladder : MIDDLE MANAGER
69A. Having correct opinions : RIGHT-MINDED
113A. Blind side protector, usually, in an offensive line : LEFT TACKLE
114A. Chaucer's tongue : MIDDLE ENGLISH
4D. News highlights : TOP STORIES
10D. Boneless cut : TOP SIRLOIN
15D. Grand pooh-bahs : TOP BANANAS
56D. Neglected one, stereotypically : MIDDLE CHILD
58D. Bourgeoisie : MIDDLE CLASS
60D. Mezzo-soprano, for female voices : MIDDLE RANGE
87D. Where teams that have little-to-no chance of winning are found : BOTTOM BRACKET
89D. Inhabitant of the ocean's benthic zone : BOTTOM DWELLER
91D. Profiting from the misfortunes of others : BOTTOM FEEDING
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 21m 08s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

14. Peter out : ABATE
The verb phrase “to peter out”, meaning “to fizzle out”, originated in the 1840s in the American mining industry. While the exact etymology isn’t clear, it probably derives from the term “saltpetre”, a constituent of gunpowder.

19. Relative of a brasserie : BISTRO
“Bistro” was originally a Parisian slang term for a "little wine shop or restaurant".

A brasserie is a kind of French restaurant that’s usually a step up from a bistro. “Brasserie” is the French word for “brewery”, and the original brasseries in France served beer that was brewed on the premises.

20. Phoenix event : REBIRTH
A phoenix is a fabulous bird of Greek mythology, which can also be found in the mythologies of Persia, Egypt and China. The phoenix is a fire spirit, which lives from 500 to 1000 years. At the end of its lifespan is builds a nest for itself (a pyre) and self-ignites, burning itself and the nest, creating a pile of ashes. A young phoenix arises from the ashes and the cycle starts all over again.

24. Dexterous one : RIGHTHANDER
“Dexter” is Latin for “right-handed”.

25. Where you might stop before going home : THIRD
That would be baseball.

26. Prince Buster's genre : SKA
Prince Buster was the stage name of Jamaican singer-songwriter Cecil Campbell.

27. Heathrow facilities : LOOS
It has been suggested that the British term "loo" comes from Waterloo (water-closet ... water-loo), but no one seems to know for sure. Another suggestion is that the term comes from the card game of "lanterloo", in which the pot was called the loo!

London’s Heathrow handles handles more international passengers than any other airport in the world, and is the third busiest airport around the globe in terms of passenger traffic (after Atlanta and Beijing).

29. Start of a boast : VENI
The oft-quoted statement "Veni, vidi, vici" ("I came, I saw, I conquered") is believed by many to have been written by Julius Caesar. The words date back to 47 BC and refer to the short war between Rome and Pharnaces II of Pontus.

30. Battle-torn Syrian city : ALEPPO
Aleppo is the largest city in Syria and is located not far from Damascus, the nation’s capital. Aleppo owes it size and history of prosperity to its location at the end of the Silk Road, the trade route that linked Asia to Europe (and other locations). The Suez Canal was opened up in 1869 bringing a new route for transport of goods, and so Aleppo’s prosperity declined over the past one hundred years or so. The city’s population has suffered terribly since the start of the Syrian Civil War, with the Battle of Aleppo raging since 2012.

32. Org. that delivers : USPS
The US Postal Service (USPS) is a remarkable agency in many ways. For starters, the government’s right and responsibility to establish the Post Office is specifically called out in Article One of the US constitution. Also, the first postmaster general was none other than Benjamin Franklin. And, the USPS operates over 200,000 vehicles, which is the largest vehicle fleet in the world.

43. Sinus suffix : -ITIS
The suffix “-itis” is used to denote inflammation, as in laryngitis (inflammation of the larynx), otitis (inflammation of the ear) and sinusitis (inflammation of the sinuses).

In anatomical terms a sinus is a cavity in tissue. Sinuses are found all over the body, in the kidney and heart for example, but we most commonly think of the paranasal sinuses that surround the nose.

52. Angel dust : PCP
Phencyclidine is a recreational drug usually referred to on the street as “PCP” or “angel dust”.

57. Colossal head sculptors : OLMECS
The Olmec were an ancient civilization that lived in the lowlands of south-central Mexico from about 1500 BC to about 400 BC.

59. Setting for John Ford's "My Darling Clementine" : OK CORRAL
“My Darling Clementine” is a 1946 Western about the Gunfight at the OK Corral. The film was directed by John ford and stars Henry Fonda as Wyatt Earp. The title of the movie is taken from its theme song, “Oh My Darling, Clementine”.

61. Sarah Palin, by birth : IDAHOAN
Famously, Sarah Palin was the Governor of Alaska from 2006 until 2009, and had been the Mayor of Wasilla, Alaska from 1996 until 2002. However, Palin is not a native Alaskan. She was born Sarah Heath in 1964 in Sandpoint, Idaho. Her father was a science teacher and took a position in Skagway, Alaska when Palin was just a few months old.

63. ___ Gunderson, sad sack on "The Simpsons" : GIL
The character Gil Gunderson is a real estate agent on the Fox animated show “The Simpsons”. Gunderson is also known as “Ol’ Gil” and is voiced by Dan Castellaneta.

71. No longer in the company, say : AWOL
The Military Police (MPs) often track down personnel who go AWOL (absent without leave).

72. Singer/reality TV personality Aubrey : O’DAY
The singer Aubrey O’Day is member of the duo band Dumblonde, and a former member of the girl group Danity Kane.

80. Theft preventer ... or theft encourager : FENCE
To fence something is to deal in stolen goods, and is a slang term. The use of “fence” in this sense dates back to about 1700, the idea being that such transactions take place under “defense of secrecy”.

82. Mushroom makers : A-TESTS
Atomic test (A-test)

84. R&R by oneself : ME TIME
Rest and relaxation/recuperation/recreation (R&R)

86. H.S.-level exam : GED
The General Educational Development (GED) tests are a battery of five tests designed to demonstrate that a student has the academic skills of someone who has graduated from an American or Canadian high school.

87. Smooch : BUSS
“To buss” is “to kiss”.

88. Vinick's portrayer on "The West Wing" : ALDA
Alan Alda has had a great television career, especially of course on “M*A*S*H”. Alda won his first Emmy in 1972, for playing Hawkeye Pierce on “M*A*S*H”. He won his most recent Emmy in 2006 for his portrayal of Presidential candidate Arnold Vinick in “The West Wing”. When it comes to the big screen, my favorite of Alda’s movies is the 1978 romantic comedy “Same Time, Next Year” in which he starred opposite Ellen Burstyn.

90. Searcher for "the lost village," in film : SMURF
The Smurfs are little blue people created in 1958 by the Belgian cartoonist who went by the pen name Peyo. The Smurfs became famous in the US when Hanna-Barbera used them in a children's cartoon series. The characters are largely a group of males. The original lineup included just one "Smurfette", who is wooed by almost all of the boy Smurfs. Later, another female was introduced into the mix called Sassette, and still later along came Granny Smurf.

101. Creature also called a catamount : PUMA
The mountain lion is found in much of the Americas from the Yukon in Canada right down to the southern Andes in South America. Because the mountain lion is found over such a vast area, it has many different names applied by local peoples, such as cougar and puma. In fact, the mountain lion holds the Guinness record for the animal with the most number of different names, with over 40 in English alone.

105. Apple of Discord thrower : ERIS
According to Greek mythology, the goddess Eris tossed the Golden Apple of Discord into the middle of the table during the feast of the gods at the wedding of Peleus and Thetis. The Golden Apple bore the words “to the fairest”, and the goddesses Hera, Athena and Aphrodite succumbed to their vanity and fought for the title of most fair. This dispute eventually led to the Trojan War.

107. Poison victim's remedy : IPECAC
Syrup of ipecac is a preparation made from the dried roots and rhizomes of the ipecacuanha plant. The syrup is used as an emetic, a substance that induces vomiting. Ipecac accomplishes this by irritating the lining of the stomach.

109. Fidel's brother : RAUL
Raul Castro is the younger brother of Fidel Castro. Raul has been President of Cuba since 2008, when Fidel stepped aside.

111. Whack : ICE
“To ice” or “to off” is to murder.

112. Suburb of Minneapolis : EDINA
Edina, Minnesota lies just southwest of Minneapolis. The town takes its name from Edinburgh, the capital city of Scotland. The name was suggested by a Scottish mill owner at the time the new village was founded in 1888.

113. Blind side protector, usually, in an offensive line : LEFT TACKLE
That would be football.

114. Chaucer's tongue : MIDDLE ENGLISH
Geoffrey Chaucer was an English author. He is often referred to as the father of English literature because he established vernacular English as a legitimate language for artistic works, as up to that point authors used French or Latin. Chaucer's most famous work is actually unfinished, a collection of stories called "The Canterbury Tales" that were all written at the end of the 14th century.

117. Waters and Kennedy : ETHELS
Ethel Waters was a singer and actress. Waters was the second African American to be nominated for an Academy Award (after Hattie McDaniel, for “Gone With the Wind”). Waters received the nomination as Best Supporting Actress in 1949 for her performance in the film “Pinky”, in which she played the title character’s grandmother.

Ethel Kennedy is the widow of Robert F. Kennedy. Ethel was a roommate with Jean Kennedy, and through Jean met her brother Robert. Robert and Ethel had ten children together, with an eleventh child sadly arriving after Robert’s assassination in 1968.

118. Aisle's head? : SILENT A
The first (head) letter of the word “aisle” is a silent letter A.

120. Juicy bits, in slang : DEETS
“Deets” is slang for “details”.

Down
1. "The Late Show" airer : CBS TV
The “Late Show” with David Letterman ran on CBS from 1993 until Letterman’s retirement in 2015. Letterman had produced a similar show called “Late Night with David Letterman” on NBC from 1982 to 1993. The current iteration of the show is the “Late Show” with Stephen Colbert, which first aired in September 2015.

2. Reindeer moss, e.g. : LICHEN
Lichens are interesting organisms, as they are made up of a partnership of a fungus and either an alga or a bacterium existing in a symbiotic relationship. The algae or bacteria are capable of photosynthesis, and so manufacture simple sugars using light and carbon dioxide from the air. The fungus uses the manufactured sugars, and in return provides a stable environment for the algae or bacteria to thrive.

6. La preceder : SOL
The solfa syllables are: do, re, mi, fa, sol, la & ti.

7. Rapper with the 4x platinum album "Views" : DRAKE
Drake is the stage name of rapper Aubrey Graham from Toronto.

9. Fin : ABE
The US five-dollar bill is often called an "Abe", as President Lincoln’s portrait is on the front. An Abe is also referred to as a “fin”, a term that has been used for a five-pound note in Britain since 1868.

11. Huey, Dewey and Louie, e.g. : TRIO
Donald Duck’s nephews are identical triplets called Huey, Dewey and Louie, and they first appeared on the screen in 1938. Once in awhile due to errors in production, a fourth duck can be seen in the background. This little “mistake” is affectionately called “Phooey Duck” by folks in the industry.

12. Brangelina was one : IT COUPLE
“Brangelina ” is a portmanteau used for the super-couple pairing of actors Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. Other supercouples are/were:
  • Tomkat - Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes
  • Grant ‘n’ Hurley - Hugh Grant and Elizabeth Hurley
  • Posh and Becks - Victoria and David Beckham
  • Bennifer - Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez

14. Wings, to zoologists : ALAE
In Latin, an “avis” (bird) has “alae” (wings).

15. Grand pooh-bahs : TOP BANANAS
The expression “top banana” is used to mean “the main guy” or “Mr. Big”. The first person to use “top banana” was supposedly Vaudeville performer Harry Steppe in 1927, who applied it to the top comic on the bill. The phrase comes from a comedy routine in which three comics struggle to share two bananas.

The term "pooh-bah" (also “poobah”), meaning an ostentatious official, comes from the world of opera. Pooh-Bah is a character in the wonderful Gilbert & Sullivan comic opera "The Mikado". Famously, Pooh-Bah holds many, many offices, including that of "Lord High Everything Else".

21. Many profs : PHDS
PhD is an abbreviation for "philosophiae doctor", Latin for "teacher of philosophy". Often, candidates for an earned PhD already hold a bachelor’s and a master’s degree, so a PhD might be considered a “third degree”.

38. They provide backing for churchgoers : PEWS
A pew is a bench in a church, usually with a high back. The original pews were raised and sometimes enclosed seats in the church used by women and important men or families. “Pew” comes from the Old French “puie” meaning “balcony, elevation”.

39. Sight at a red-carpet event : LIMO
The word "limousine" derives from the French city of Limoges. The area around Limoges is called the Limousin, and it gave its name to a cloak hood worn by local shepherds. In early motor cars, a driver would sit outside in the weather while the passengers would sit in the covered compartment. The driver would often wear a limousin-style protective hood, giving rise to that type of transportation being called a "limousine". Well, that's how the story goes anyway …

41. Director Guillermo ___ Toro : DEL
Guillermo del Toro is a film director from Guadalajara in Mexico who has had a of success directing and producing American films. His best-known works are probably action movies like “Blade II” (2002) and “Hellboy” (2004).

44. City SSW of Seattle : TACOMA
Tacoma is a city on Puget Sound in the state of Washington. The city took its name from Mount Rainier that is nearby, as the peak used to be known as Mount Tahoma.

45. Fictional woodcutter : ALI BABA
In the folk tale “Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves”, the title character is a poor woodcutter who discovers the magic words “open sesame”, which open the thieves’ den.

49. Coming-out words : I'M GAY
Back in the 1950s, to come “out of the closet” was to admit to being an alcoholic. By the seventies, the phrase mainly referred to gay people shrugging off secrecy about their orientation.

60. Mezzo-soprano, for female voices : MIDDLE RANGE
A mezzo-soprano is a female singing voice below a soprano but above a contralto. “Mezzo” is Italian for “half”.

64. Smooth transition : SEGUE
A “segue” is a transition from one topic to the next. “Segue” is an Italian word that literally means “now follows”. It was first used in musical scores directing the performer to play into the next movement without a break.

68. Line to a pilot? : GAS MAIN
A pilot light is a small gas flame, one using a relatively small amount of fuel, that remains lit as an ignition source for larger gas burners.

77. Fox neighbor : SAUK
The Sac (also “Sauk”) are a group of Native Americans who probably originated in the northeast along the St. Lawrence River. Over time, they migrated south and west, and after a turbulent journey ended up on reservations in Oklahoma. The Meskwaki tribe is also known as the Fox, and had similar origins as the Sacs, and similar migrations. The two tribes eventually merged into the Sac and Fox Nation.

79. Many "Star Trek" characters, for short : ETS
Extraterrestrial (ET)

When Gene Roddenberry first proposed the science fiction series that became “Star Trek”, he marketed it as “Wagon Train to the Stars”, a pioneer-style Western in outer space. In fact his idea was to produce something more like “Gulliver’s Travels”, as he intended to write episodes that were adventure stories on one level, but morality tales on another. Personally I think that he best achieved this model with the spin-off series “Star Trek: The Next Generation” (TNG). If you watch individual episodes you will see thinly disguised treatments of moral issues such as racism, homosexuality, genocide etc. For my money, “The Next Generation” is the best of the whole franchise …

83. Home of the highest point in Africa : TANZANIA
Kilimanjaro is a dormant volcano in Tanzania, and is the highest mountain in the whole of Africa.

85. Cry to a sled dog : MUSH
“Mushing” is the use of one or more dogs to pull a sled. “Mush” is thought to come from the French “marche” meaning “go, run”.

87. Where teams that have little-to-no chance of winning are found : BOTTOM BRACKET
“Bracketology” is a term used to describe the process of predicting which college basketball teams will advance in a bracket in the annual NCAA Basketball Tournament. President Barack Obama famously participated in an ESPN segment called “Baracketology” in which he predicted the outcome of the tournament, game by game.

93. Transform, as larvae : PUPATE
A pupa is a stage in the life of some insects. All four stages are embryo, larva, pupa and imago. Pupae can look like little dolls, hence the name. "Pupa" is the Latin for "doll".

94. Actor Don : AMECHE
Don Ameche was such a gentleman. He starred in the fun movie “Trading Places” in 1983, and was required to use the “f-word” in the script. According to co-star Jamie Lee Curtis, Ameche went around the set before the scene was shot, and apologized in advance to everyone for having to use bad language.

96. Cult leader killed in the Waco siege : KORESH
In recent years, Waco is perhaps most famous as the site of a siege and shootout between ATF agents and members of the Protestant sect known as the Branch Davidians. Shortly after ATF agents tried to execute a search warrant, shots were fired and at the end of the fight six people inside the Branch Davidian compound were dead, as were four agents. A fifty-day siege ensued at the end of which a final assault resulted in members of the community setting fire to the compound. Only nine people walked away from that fire. 50 adults and 25 children perished.

97. Sibelius's "Valse ___" : TRISTE
“Valse triste” (Sad Waltz) is one of Jean Sibelius’s most famous pieces. It was originally composed as incidental music for a play written by Sibelius’s brother-in-law, but now stands alone as separate concert piece.

99. One of the Nixon daughters : TRICIA
President Richard Nixon and First Lady Pat Nixon had two daughters. The eldest daughter is Tricia. Tricia married Harvard law student Edward Cox in a ceremony in the White House Rose Garden in 1971.

102. Part of a dead man's hand : ACES
In 1876, Wild Bill Hickok was playing poker in a saloon in the town of Deadwood in the Black Hills in the Dakota Territory. For once, the gunfighting lawman was sitting with his back to the door, something he almost always avoided. He had twice tried to change seats to give him a view of the door, but his card-playing comrades weren’t obliging. An enemy of Wild Bill’s named Jack McCall then was able to enter the saloon without being noticed. He walked up to the table and shot Hickok in the back of the head, killing him instantly. The hand that Hickok was holding contained four black cards, two aces and two eights. Since the killing, black aces and eights in a poker hand have been referred to as the “dead man’s hand”.

104. Onetime tool for talking online : ICHAT
iChat was introduced in 2002, and was Apple's "instant messaging" application that integrated with the Mac Operating System. iChat was replaced by Messages.

108. First word in a Shakespeare title : ALL’S
“All's Well That Ends Well” is a play by William Shakespeare, one with elements of both tragedy and comedy. As such, “All’s Well That Ends Well” is classified as one of Shakespeare’s “problem plays”, plays that cannot be neatly classified as either tragedy or comedy.

110. Hybrid citrus : UGLI
The ugli fruit is a hybrid of an orange and a tangerine, first discovered growing wild in Jamaica where most ugli fruit comes from today. “UGLI” is a trademark name that is a variant of “ugly”, a nod to the fruits unsightly wrinkled rind.

112. Home of Zeno and Parmenides : ELEA
Zeno of Elea was a Greek philosopher who lived in Elea, a Greek colony in Southern Italy. Zeno is famous for his “paradoxes”, a set of problems that really make you think! In the problem known as “Achilles and the Tortoise”, Zeno tells us that Achilles races a tortoise, giving the tortoise a head start (of say 100 meters). By the time Achilles reaches the starting point of the tortoise, the tortoise will have moved on, albeit only a small distance. Achilles then sets his sights on the tortoise’s new position and runs to it. Again the tortoise has moved ahead a little. Achilles keeps on moving to the tortoise’s new position but can never actually catch his slower rival. Or can he …?

Parmenides was a philosopher in Ancient Greece. Parmenides was born in the Greek city of Elea located on the Italian coast and so the school of philosophy that he founded is called the Eleatic School.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Necklace parts : CLASPS
7. Extreme : DRASTIC
14. Peter out : ABATE
19. Relative of a brasserie : BISTRO
20. Phoenix event : REBIRTH
21. Power machine in woodworking : PLANER
22. Dropped out : LEFT SCHOOL
23. U.S. heartland : MIDDLE AMERICA
24. Dexterous one : RIGHTHANDER
25. Where you might stop before going home : THIRD
26. Prince Buster's genre : SKA
27. Heathrow facilities : LOOS
28. Cherished by : DEAR TO
29. Start of a boast : VENI
30. Battle-torn Syrian city : ALEPPO
32. Org. that delivers : USPS
34. Contraction lacking just a "v" : NE’ER
35. You might find one under a Christmas tree : NEEDLE
37. One using 32-Across, e.g. : SHIPPER
39. Hideouts : LAIRS
40. Did a cobbler's job on : SOLED
42. First-year law student : ONE L
43. Sinus suffix : -ITIS
45. "Who ___?" : AM I
48. Enter : TYPE IN
50. Tool for talking online : WEBCAM
52. Angel dust : PCP
55. Knightstick? : LANCE
57. Colossal head sculptors : OLMECS
59. Setting for John Ford's "My Darling Clementine" : OK CORRAL
61. Sarah Palin, by birth : IDAHOAN
63. ___ Gunderson, sad sack on "The Simpsons" : GIL
64. Average : SO-SO
65. White House worker : AIDE
66. Abandoned : LEFT BEHIND
67. Person pretty far up the corporate ladder : MIDDLE MANAGER
69. Having correct opinions : RIGHT-MINDED
71. No longer in the company, say : AWOL
72. Singer/reality TV personality Aubrey : O’DAY
74. What old couches tend to do : SAG
75. ___ up on (conspiring against) : GANGING
76. It lacks locks : BALD SPOT
78. Credit card provider, e.g. : ISSUER
80. Theft preventer ... or theft encourager : FENCE
81. Equal : ARE
82. Mushroom makers : A-TESTS
84. R&R by oneself : ME TIME
86. H.S.-level exam : GED
87. Smooch : BUSS
88. Vinick's portrayer on "The West Wing" : ALDA
90. Searcher for "the lost village," in film : SMURF
92. Catalyst : SPARK
95. "Told you so!" : I KNEW IT!
98. Accountant's list : ASSETS
101. Creature also called a catamount : PUMA
102. All-inclusive : A TO Z
103. Aggrandize : ENRICH
105. Apple of Discord thrower : ERIS
107. Poison victim's remedy : IPECAC
109. Fidel's brother : RAUL
111. Whack : ICE
112. Suburb of Minneapolis : EDINA
113. Blind side protector, usually, in an offensive line : LEFT TACKLE
114. Chaucer's tongue : MIDDLE ENGLISH
116. Brings up a menu with a PC mouse : RIGHT CLICKS
117. Waters and Kennedy : ETHELS
118. Aisle's head? : SILENT A
119. Disavows : DENIES
120. Juicy bits, in slang : DEETS
121. Item for a cafeteria worker : HAIRNET
122. Whim : VAGARY

Down
1. "The Late Show" airer : CBS TV
2. Reindeer moss, e.g. : LICHEN
3. Glowing : ASHINE
4. News highlights : TOP STORIES
5. Nudge : PROD
6. La preceder : SOL
7. Rapper with the 4x platinum album "Views" : DRAKE
8. Charts again : REMAPS
9. Fin : ABE
10. Boneless cut : TOP SIRLOIN
11. Huey, Dewey and Louie, e.g. : TRIO
12. Brangelina was one : IT COUPLE
13. Gliding step, in ballet : CHASSE
14. Wings, to zoologists : ALAE
15. Grand pooh-bahs : TOP BANANAS
16. Russian film director Tarkovsky : ANDREI
17. Threaten to fall : TEETER
18. They may be unforced : ERRORS
21. Many profs : PHDS
26. Think over : SLEEP ON
30. Bedfellow : ALLY
31. Contribute to a radio show : PHONE IN
33. Syringe sensations : PRICKS
36. Lavish with attention : DOTE ON
38. They provide backing for churchgoers : PEWS
39. Sight at a red-carpet event : LIMO
41. Director Guillermo ___ Toro : DEL
44. City SSW of Seattle : TACOMA
45. Fictional woodcutter : ALI BABA
46. Was belligerent : MADE WAR
47. Debt-ridden : IN A HOLE
49. Coming-out words : I'M GAY
51. Vulgar sort : BOOR
52. Indulging (oneself) in self-satisfaction : PRIDING
53. Rhythm : CADENCE
54. Vowed : PLEDGED
56. Neglected one, stereotypically : MIDDLE CHILD
58. Bourgeoisie : MIDDLE CLASS
60. Mezzo-soprano, for female voices : MIDDLE RANGE
62. Rescues a foundling, say : ADOPTS
64. Smooth transition : SEGUE
67. Yoga equipment : MATS
68. Line to a pilot? : GAS MAIN
70. Figures out : INFERS
73. "Is that so?" : DOES IT?
75. [That's painful!] : [GRIMACE!]
77. Fox neighbor : SAUK
78. Part of a chain : ISLE
79. Many "Star Trek" characters, for short : ETS
83. Home of the highest point in Africa : TANZANIA
85. Cry to a sled dog : MUSH
87. Where teams that have little-to-no chance of winning are found : BOTTOM BRACKET
89. Inhabitant of the ocean's benthic zone : BOTTOM DWELLER
91. Profiting from the misfortunes of others : BOTTOM FEEDING
92. Treated with malice : SPITED
93. Transform, as larvae : PUPATE
94. Actor Don : AMECHE
96. Cult leader killed in the Waco siege : KORESH
97. Sibelius's "Valse ___" : TRISTE
99. One of the Nixon daughters : TRICIA
100. Fishing item : SINKER
102. Part of a dead man's hand : ACES
104. Onetime tool for talking online : ICHAT
106. Full of lip : SASSY
108. First word in a Shakespeare title : ALL’S
110. Hybrid citrus : UGLI
112. Home of Zeno and Parmenides : ELEA
115. Roadside stop : INN
116. 405, to Flavius : CDV


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8 comments :

Dave Kennison said...

31:20, no errors. Cool theme. I'm reading the companion book for the movie "Word Play" and just finished the chapter in which Merl Reagle describes the process of constructing a crossword puzzle. I suppose it should have been obvious to me, but it wasn't: first you position a carefully selected set of theme answers and then you fill in the rest. Duh. Sixty years ago, I made my one and only attempt at the process and, to understate the matter, it did not go well. Maybe it's time to try again. ... (Then again, maybe I should just stick with my important role as part of a devoted and admiring audience ... :-)

Lou Sander said...

Dave, we admire you, and are devoted to you in every way. Don't mess it up. :-)

Dave Kennison said...

@Lou ... Yeah, you're probably right ... thanks ... :-)

Glenn said...

@Dave
It definitely helps a little bit in solving and critiquing to know one is constructed. Actually *doing* it isn't easy, I've found out (hard to come up with theme ideas, and haven't been able to successfully filled out a grid yet). But was good to know just to understand a little bit more about how crossword grids work.

Anonymous said...

48:11 and 2 errors, where IPECAC (????) and PUPATE cross. (I thought MUTATE was the proper fill, and although I corrected the P of SPARK to fix that error, the other eluded my eye; I was happy to finish the grid as it was!) I felt there were a few slippery clues/fills in this one, somewhat souring an admittedly clever grid. One of my pet peeves now is ATOZ, wherever it appears.

I also appreciate the difficulty in crossword construction. I was able to build ONE, once, for a company newsletter, but the editor didn't appreciate my effort (which I must say, would have been a difficult one to finish, even with the company-specific fills in it).

Still, I don't know how *anyone* could get through this grid in just 20 minutes...!!

BruceB said...

39:40, no errors. Excellent puzzle, in my opinion. Wide variety of challenging clues, looked very intimidating at the start. Had a lot of difficulty getting started in each of zones, but had just enough clues to allow me to get a fingerhold and then flesh out from there. I think that people who remember Don AMECHE, would be hard pressed to know the DEETS. Once the theme was figured out, it became very helpful in completing the puzzle.

Tom M. said...

Dave K.--
So you've been doing these for a long time, and your mastery shows. I take some consolation in knowing that, despite my own shortcomings at this fascinating game of puzzle-solving. (There are some others here that are pretty good, too, and I'm glad to be in good company.)

My main problem with this one was being baffled by the theme and how it worked. Otherwise, I did correctly fill in about 95 percent of it, but only a bit of a consolation there.

Sylvie said...

Well, I never did figure out the theme, even after I got (almost) everything filled in! And I've been doing puzzles for a long time, but this one stumped me. But it is very clever.
Sylvie

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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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