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0531-17 New York Times Crossword Answers 31 May 17, Wednesday





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Jump to a complete list of today's clues and answers

CROSSWORD CONSTRUCTOR: Jacob Stulberg
THEME: Don’t Take the Bait
Each of today’s themed answers is a fish. And, we have a hook on a fishing line (made from letters I and a J) running down the right side of the grid:
3D. Warning for easily provoked types ... or for the answers to the six starred clues? : DON'T TAKE THE BAIT

4A. *Complain : CARP
24A. *Extract with heat, in a way : SMELT
32A. *Weapon with a point : PIKE
44A. *The Mikado in "The Mikado," e.g. : BASS
53A. *Birdcage feature : PERCH
69A. *Shoe part : SOLE

9D. What might tempt the answers to the six starred clues? : IIIIIIIIIIIIIIJ
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 7m 55s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Ice Bucket Challenge, in 2014 : FAD
The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge is a viral phenomenon in which participants are challenged to be filmed having a bucket of ice water poured over their heads. Each participant then gets to nominate up to three other people to do the same. Usually the nominees are given a day or two to comply, but can make a charitable donation is they want to avoid the icy shower. Happily, many participants opt to take the challenge, and also make a donation.

4. *Complain : CARP
The word "carp" used to mean simply "talk" back in the 13th century, with its roots in the Old Norwegian "karpa" meaning "to brag". A century later the Latin word "carpere" meaning "to slander" influenced the use of "carp" so that it came to mean "find fault with".

Carp are freshwater fish that are used as food around the world, although they aren’t very popular in North American kitchens. The ornamental fish that we know as goldfish and koi are all types of carp.

8. "The King and I" setting : SIAM
“Anna and the King of Siam” is a semi-biographical novel written by Margaret Landon and first published in 1944. The book tells the largely true story of Anna Leonowens who spent five years in Siam teaching English to the children and wives of King Mongkut. The novel was adapted as a 1946 movie of the same name starring Irene Dunne and Rex Harrison. Then followed a 1951 stage musical titled “The King and I”. The musical was written as a vehicle for Gertrude Lawrence, who played Anna. Rex Harrison was asked to play the King, but he turned it down and Yul Brynner was cast instead. A movie version of the stage musical was released in 1956, famously starring Yul Brynner and Deborah Kerr.

12. Corp. milestones : IPOS
An initial public offering (IPO) is the very first offer of stock for sale by a company on the open market. In other words, an IPO marks the first time that a company is traded on a public exchange. Companies have an IPO to raise capital to expand (usually).

14. In ___ of : LIEU
As one might perhaps imagine, "in lieu" comes into English from the Old French word "lieu" meaning "place", which in turn is derived from the Latin "locum", also meaning "place". So, "in lieu" means "in place of".

17. W.W. II general Bradley : OMAR
Omar Bradley graduated from West Point in the class of 1915, along with Dwight Eisenhower who also attained the rank of General of the Army. Bradley was the last person to hold the rank of a five-star commissioned officer, and he was the first general to serve as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. I was struck by a quotation from Bradley from later in his life:
Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants. We know more about war than about peace, more about killing than we know about living.

18. Katherine of "27 Dresses" : HEIGL
Katherine Heigl is best associated with the television show “Grey’s Anatomy” on which she plays Dr. Izzie Stevens. That’s not a show I ever watched, but I did enjoy the espionage show “State of Affairs” in which Heigl played the lead. I guess I was in the minority though, as NBC cancelled “State of Affairs” after only one season …

24. *Extract with heat, in a way : SMELT
Metals are found in ore in the form of oxides. In order to get pure metal from the ore, the ore is heated and the metal oxides within are reduced (i.e. the oxygen is removed) in the chemical process known as smelting. The oxygen is extracted by adding a source of carbon or carbon monoxide which uses up the excess oxygen atoms to make carbon dioxide, a waste product of smelting (and, a greenhouse gas).

Smelt is the name given to several types of small silvery fish, examples being Great Lake smelts and whitebait smelts.

31. Hunky-dory : A-OK
Our term “A-OK” is supposedly an abbreviation for “A(ll systems are) OK”, and arose in the sixties during the Space Program.

Surprisingly (to me), the term "hunky-dory" has been around a long time, and is documented back in the mid-1800s. Nobody's really sure of its origin, but some say it is an Anglicization of Honcho dori, that back in the day was a street of ill repute in Yokohama, Japan.

39. Swing successor : BEBOP
The jazz term "bebop" probably came from "Arriba! Arriba!", words of encouragement from Latin American bandleaders to their musicians.

44. *The Mikado in "The Mikado," e.g. : BASS
"The Mikado" is a wonderful comic opera by Gilbert and Sullivan, set in the exotic location of Japan. "Mikado" is a former term for the "Emperor of Japan". In the opera, Ko-Ko is the name of the Lord High Executioner of Titipu.

The freshwater and marine species of fish called bass resemble perch. The word “bass” comes from the Middle English “bars” meaning “perch”.

46. Savings option, for short : IRA
Individual retirement account (IRA)

47. Big name in games : HOYLE
Edmond Hoyle was a writer, most famous for documenting the rules and play of card games. In particular, Hoyle first wrote a book on the game of whist that was very popular. Such was the success of Hoyle’s treatises that we use the phrase “according to Hoyle” to mean “according to some respected authority”. When the Poker Hall of Fame was founded in 1979, Edmund Hoyle was one of the first inductees, even though the game of power was invented after he died.

53. *Birdcage feature : PERCH
Perch are carnivorous freshwater fish that are found all over the world. However, perch are particularly common in the Great Lakes and in Lake Erie in particular.

58. Fancy cracker topping : CAVIAR
Caviar is the roe of a large fish that has been salted and seasoned, and especially the roe of a sturgeon. Beluga caviar comes from the beluga sturgeon, found primarily in the Caspian Sea. It is the most expensive type of caviar in the world. 8 ounces of US-farmed beluga caviar can be purchased through Amazon.com for just over $850, in case you’re feeling peckish …

64. Yeats's land : EIRE
Irish poet and dramatist William Butler Yeats won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1923 for “inspired poetry” that gave “expression to a whole nation”. Yeats was Ireland’s first Nobel laureate.

65. Many rural Pennsylvanians : AMISH
The Amish are a group of Christian churches, a subgroup of the Mennonite churches. The Amish church originated in Switzerland and Alsace in 1693 when it was founded by Jakob Ammann. It was Ammann who gave the name to the Amish people. Many Amish people came to Pennsylvania in the 18th century.

66. Site of a famous eviction : EDEN
In the Christian tradition, the “fall of man” took place in the Garden of Eden when Adam and Eve succumbed to the temptation of eating from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. This went against the bidding of God, and was at the urging of the serpent. As a result, Adam and Eve were banished from Eden to prevent them becoming immortal by eating from the tree of life. The first humans had transitioned from a state of innocent obedience to a state of guilty disobedience.

69. *Shoe part : SOLE
The group of flatfish known as soles take their name from “solea”, the Latin word for “sandal”. And, they kind of have that shape.

Down
1. Solid orange ball : FIVE
That would the game of pool.

5. Fire starter? : AIM
Aim … fire!

7. Like baby food, often : PUREED
A “purée” is a food that has been made smooth by straining or blending. “Purée” is a French term, which I believe is now used to mean “pea soup” (more completely written as “purée de pois”). The French verb “purer” means “to strain, clean”, from the Latin “purare” meaning “to purify, clean”.

8. Poet Silverstein : SHEL
Author Shel Silverstein had a varied career and did a lot more than write books. Silverstein was a poet, composer, cartoonist and screenwriter among other things. One of his successful children’s books is “The Giving Tree”, which was first published in 1964. “The Giving Tree” tells of a young boy who has a special relationship with a tree in a forest. The message of the book seems to be that the tree provides the little boy with everything he needs.

27. Spa wear : ROBE
The word “spa” migrated into English from Belgium, as Spa is the name of a municipality in the east of the country that is famous for its healing hot springs. The name “Spa” comes from the Walloon word “espa” meaning “spring, fountain”.

28. Cast aspersions on, in a way : LIBELED
The word "libel", meaning a published or written statement likely to harm a person's reputation, comes into English from the Latin "libellus", the word for a small book. Back in the 1500s "libel" was just a formal written statement, with the more damaging meaning arising in the 1600s.

35. ___ Blaster (toy gun) : NERF
Nerf is soft material used in a whole series of toys designed for “safe” play indoors. The Nerf product is used to make darts, balls and ammunition for toy guns. “NERF” is an acronym, standing for Non-Expanding Recreational Foam.

38. Name on Chinese restaurant menus : TSO
General Tso’s chicken is an American creation, often found on the menu of a Chinese restaurant. The name General Tso may be a reference to General Zuo Zongtang of the Qing Dynasty, but there is no clear link.

45. Mex. miss : SRTA
“Señorita” (Srta.) is Spanish and “Mademoiselle” (Mlle.) is French for “Miss”.

52. Italian city known for its prosciutto and cheese : PARMA
Parma is a city in northern Italy, famous for its ham (prosciutto) and cheese (parmesan).

54. Words to live by : CREDO
A creed or credo is a confession of faith, or a system of belief or principles. “Credo” is Latin for “I believe”.

59. Singer Guthrie : ARLO
Arlo Guthrie is the son of Woody Guthrie. Both father and son are renowned for their singing of protest songs about social injustice. Arlo is most famous for his epic “Alice’s Restaurant Massacree”, a song that lasts a full 18m 34s. In the song Guthrie tells how, after being drafted, he was rejected for service in the Vietnam War based on his criminal record. He had only one incident on his public record, a Thanksgiving Day arrest for littering and being a public nuisance when he was 18-years-old.

63. Former senator and R.N.C. head Martinez : MEL
Mel Martínez served as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development in the cabinet of President George W. Bush. Martínez resigned from that position in 2003 to mount what proved to be a successful campaign to become US Senator for Florida. When he took his seat in 2005, Martínez became the first Cuban-American to serve in the US Senate.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Ice Bucket Challenge, in 2014 : FAD
4. *Complain : CARP
8. "The King and I" setting : SIAM
12. Corp. milestones : IPOS
14. In ___ of : LIEU
15. What used to be yours? : THINE
16. Jacket feature : VENT
17. W.W. II general Bradley : OMAR
18. Katherine of "27 Dresses" : HEIGL
19. Take by force : EXTORT
21. One following statutes to the letter : LEGALIST
23. Hoof, essentially : TOE
24. *Extract with heat, in a way : SMELT
25. "___ All Over Now" (Rolling Stones hit) : IT’S
26. Refrain from singing? : TRA-LA-LA
29. Things hurled at the Olympics : DISCI
31. Hunky-dory : A-OK
32. *Weapon with a point : PIKE
34. Farmyard noise : MOOING
37. "A likely story!" : I BET!
39. Swing successor : BEBOP
41. Level : TIER
42. Doesn't disturb : LETS BE
44. *The Mikado in "The Mikado," e.g. : BASS
46. Savings option, for short : IRA
47. Big name in games : HOYLE
49. Scare the bejeezus out of : TERRIFY
51. Mimic : APE
53. *Birdcage feature : PERCH
55. You, to Yvette : TOI
56. Neighbor of Quebec : LABRADOR
58. Fancy cracker topping : CAVIAR
61. Hazel eyes, e.g. : TRAIT
62. You might prepare one for potential investors : DEMO
64. Yeats's land : EIRE
65. Many rural Pennsylvanians : AMISH
66. Site of a famous eviction : EDEN
67. Pickle flavorer : DILL
68. "Per hour" or "per mile" figure : RATE
69. *Shoe part : SOLE
70. Rapture : JOY

Down
1. Solid orange ball : FIVE
2. Top : APEX
3. Warning for easily provoked types ... or for the answers to the six starred clues? : DON'T TAKE THE BAIT
4. Cardiologist's concern : CLOT
5. Fire starter? : AIM
6. Area : REALM
7. Like baby food, often : PUREED
8. Poet Silverstein : SHEL
9. What might tempt the answers to the six starred clues? : IIIIIIIIIIIIIIJ
10. Unsettling feeling : ANGST
11. Softens : MELTS
13. Bar sight : STOOL
15. "Oh really?" : THAT SO?
20. Take in : REAP
22. Short notice? : GLIMPSE
24. "For heaven's ___!" : SAKE
26. Word before (or synonymous with) end : TAIL
27. Spa wear : ROBE
28. Cast aspersions on, in a way : LIBELED
30. Barracks sight : COT
33. Go down : EBB
35. ___ Blaster (toy gun) : NERF
36. Ash, e.g. : GRAY
38. Name on Chinese restaurant menus : TSO
40. It might be bleeped : OATH
43. Indirect route : BYPATH
45. Mex. miss : SRTA
48. Wears : ERODES
50. Wandered aimlessly : ROVED
51. Where vows may be taken : ALTAR
52. Italian city known for its prosciutto and cheese : PARMA
54. Words to live by : CREDO
57. "All ___" : RISE
58. Part of a rocket : CONE
59. Singer Guthrie : ARLO
60. Bank (on) : RELY
63. Former senator and R.N.C. head Martinez : MEL


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11 comments :

Anonymous said...

A long line of I's
Ending, with JOY
With a hook at the bottom
Like a new, shiny toy.

A puzzle for fishing folks,
That tested word skill
And reeled in some fun.
Thank you, Jacob and Will.

Dave Kennison said...

10:59, no errors. A clever theme and a clever first poster! What more could one ask? ... :-)

Jeff said...

Clever. Very Thursday-ish. Did this late at night when very tired so this took me longer than it otherwise might have. A lot of clever cluing in this one. When I kept seeing all the "I's" at first I thought I was making errors so I erased a lot of what I had. Then I thought "ioy" was some archaic form of JOY and left all "I's" in that comumn. Eventually I figured it out as I remembered a similar use of J in some rebus puzzle a while back.

Sheesh. Talk about making things hard on myself. Eventually I had 2 errors in the same area. I had "read" instead of REAP for "Take in" which makes sense either way and I had LaBELED rather than LIBELED for "Cast aspersions.." which I could also make a case for.

Tough puzzle for a Wednesday that I made tougher on myself.

Best -

Chrissy said...

28 min for a DNF with about 75% completed. I had some real trouble in the middle of the puzzle, and I don't know many fish types which didn't help. Felt like it was a tougher Wednesday (especially compared to last week!) as well, but maybe it was in part because of the fish.

BruceB said...

15:14, no errors. Couple of stumbles, entered 43D BYPASS before BYPATH; 54D CAN DO before CREDO.

Enjoyed the poem, Anon.

Tom M. said...

This was lots of fun. Would like to see more like this. Yes, I liked, liked it.

Anonymous said...

*Evil* little puzzle. Took me 19:54 by the end of it, but I survived with no errors.

Watching those I's pile up on the right side was extremely disconcerting and 1D was also a bit of "dirty pool", wasn't it?

Jeff's right, this was very Thursday-ish... so I fear for tomorrow, when they might decide they need even **dirtier** tricks to live up to their usual level of late week deceit.

Tom M. said...

@anonymous: Typically with your comments (assuming you're just one person), I can't tell whether you're being sardonic, sarcastic, satiric, or ironic---or maybe serious?

Ian McGillivray said...

never heard of the plural of "disc" being "disci"......anything to confuse a cruxiverbalist!





Dale Stewart said...

@Ian McGillivray. The singular word DISCUS would be made into the plural DISCI. Not DISC. But I can easily see why you would not immediately catch the difference.

Glenn said...

37 minutes, no errors. Very tough grid in many respects and had to use other means (besides looking things up) several times in order to get past parts of this grid.

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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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