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0614-17 New York Times Crossword Answers 14 Jun 17, Wednesday





QuickLinks:
Solution to today's crossword in the New York Times
Solution to today's SYNDICATED New York Times crossword in all other publications
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: Andrew Zhou
THEME: By George
Each of today’s themed answers is a work created BY a GEORGE:
61A. Exclamation that describes 13-, 20-, 30-, 39- and 51-Across : BY GEORGE!

13A. 1977 Lucas film : STAR WARS (by George Lucas)
20A. 1871 Eliot novel : MIDDLEMARCH (by George Eliot)
30A. 1924 Gershwin composition : RHAPSODY IN BLUE (by George Gershwin)
39A. 2010 Bush autobiography : DECISION POINTS (by George W. Bush)
51A. 1970 Harrison song : MY SWEET LORD (by George Harrison)
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 10m 07s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 2

  • CHABAD (Shabad)
  • ACHESON (Asheson!)

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

5. Symbol for torque : TAU
Torque can be thought of as a turning force, say the force needed to tighten a bolt or a nut. In physics, torque is represented by the Greek letter tau.

13. 1977 Lucas film : STAR WARS (by George Lucas)
The producer and director George Lucas has amassed an incredibly large fortune, primarily due to the phenomenal success of his movie franchises “Star Wars” and “Indiana Jones”. Worth about $3 billion, Lucas has gone the way of Bill Gates and Warren Buffett, agreeing to give half of his fortune to charity as part of "The Giving Pledge".

17. Dish featuring corn chips as a main ingredient : FRITO PIE
The Frito Corporation was started in 1932 by Elmer Doolin, basically in his mother’s kitchen. Doolin paid $100 for a corn chip recipe from a local restaurant and started producing Fritos at the rate of 10 pounds per day.

20. 1871 Eliot novel : MIDDLEMARCH (by George Eliot)
George Eliot was the pen name of English novelist Mary Anne Evans. As one might think, Evans chose a male pen name in order that her work might be best appreciated in the Victorian era. Eliot wrote seven novels including “Adam Bede” (1859), “The Mill on the Floss” (1860), “Silas Marner” (1861) and “Middlemarch” (1871-72).

George Eliot’s novel “Middlemarch” was first published in installments in 1871-72. The storyline is set some fifty years earlier, in the fictional English Midlands town of Middlemarch.

23. Immigrant's course, for short : ESL
English as a Second Language (ESL) is sometimes referred to as English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) and English as a Foreign Language (EFL).

28. Dial, e.g. : SOAP
Dial was the first antibacterial soap introduced in the US. It was given the name “Dial” as it was touted as offering “round-the-clock” protection against any odors caused by perspiration.

30. 1924 Gershwin composition : RHAPSODY IN BLUE (by George Gershwin)
“Rhapsody in Blue” is one of the most popular works by the great George Gershwin. The piece has a famous clarinet glissando at its opening, but is a work for solo piano and orchestra. Gershwin himself played the piano at its premiere in 1924. We can’t be certain how that original “Rhapsody” sounded as Gershwin improvised some of what he was playing, and didn’t write out the piano part until after the first performance.

George Gershwin was a remarkable composer in so many ways, not least in that he was respected for both his popular and classical compositions. Gershwin’s best known works for orchestra are the magnificent “Rhapsody in Blue” from 1924 and “An American in Paris” from 1928. Another noted work is the opera “Porgy and Bess” that was first performed in 1935. Surprisingly, Porgy and Bess was a commercial failure, and so Gershwin moved to Hollywood and started composing very successful film scores. He was only 38 years old when he died in 1937 from a brain tumor.

35. Self-referential : META
In recent decades the prefix “meta-” has started to be used as a standalone adjective. In this sense “meta” means “self-referential”, describing something that refers to itself. For example, “This sentence starts with the word ‘this’ and ends with the word ‘this’” might be called a meta sentence. A movie that is about the making of the very same movie could also be described as meta.

36. Bush denizen, for short : ROO
The word “kangaroo” comes from the Australian Aborigine term for the animal. There’s an oft-quoted story that the explorer James Cook (later Captain Cook) asked a local native what was the name of this remarkable-looking animal, and the native responded with “Kangaroo”. The story is that the native was actually saying “I don’t understand you”, but as cute as that tale is, it’s just an urban myth.

39. 2010 Bush autobiography : DECISION POINTS (by George W. Bush)
“Decision Points” is a memoir released in 2010 by former President George W. Bush. According to President Bush, he started writing the memoir the day after he left office.

44. Coupling device : YOKE
A yoke is a wooden beam used between a pair of oxen so that they are forced to work together.

46. Actor Robert of 1970s-'80s TV's "Quincy, M.E." : ITO
“Quincy, M.E.” is a medical mystery series that originally aired in the seventies and eighties starring Jack Klugman in the title role. The show was loosely based on a book by former FBI agent Marshall Houts called “Where Death Delights”.

49. Early platform for The Legend of Zelda, for short : NES
The Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) was sold in North America from 1985 to to 1995. The NES was the biggest selling gaming console of the era. Nintendo replaced the NES with Wii, which is also the biggest-selling game console in the world.

51. 1970 Harrison song : MY SWEET LORD (by George Harrison)
George Harrison is often referred to as the “quiet Beatle”, although he did have a profound influence on the direction taken by the Fab Four. It was Harrison who first became an admirer of Indian culture and led the rest of the group into the Indian way of life. Harrison went as far as embracing the Hindu religion.

54. Wifey, with "the" : MRS
Mr. is an abbreviation for "master", and Mrs. is an abbreviation for "mistress".

58. Easy way to get information on something nowadays : GOOGLE IT
The search engine "Google" was originally called "BackRub" would you believe? The name was eventually changed to Google, an intentional misspelling of the word "googol". A googol is a pretty big number, 10 to the power of 100. That would be the digit 1 followed by 100 zeros.

60. Raising of spirits? : SEANCE
“Séance” is a French word meaning “a sitting”. We use the term in English for a sitting in which a spiritualist tries to communicate with the spirits of the dead.

63. ___ chi ch'uan : TAI
More correctly called tai chi chuan, tai chi is a martial art that is mostly practiced to improve overall health and increase longevity.

Down
1. [Warning: explicit content] : NSFW
The abbreviation “NSFW” stands for “not safe/suitable for work”. It’s Internet slang used to describe online content that is best not viewed at work.

2. Other, in Oaxaca : OTRO
Oaxaca (officially “Oaxaca de Juárez”) is the capital city of the Mexican state of Oaxaca, located in the south of the country.

4. "___ does not surpass nature, but only brings it to perfection": Cervantes : ART
The full name of the author of "Don Quixote" was Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra. As a young man in 1570, Cervantes was a soldier fighting for the Spanish Navy, stationed in Naples, at that time a possession of Spain. He was injured in battle, receiving three gunshot wounds including two to the chest. His injuries left him without the use of his left arm. After recuperating, he returned to active service, and in 1575 he was captured by Algerian corsairs, and spent the next five years in slavery in North Africa. His parents found him and bought his freedom, and brought him home to his native Madrid.

8. Secretary of state during the Korean War : ACHESON
Dean Acheson was the Secretary of State in President Truman’s administration. Many historians say that Acheson's most significant contribution was convincing the president to get the US involved in the Korean War in 1950.

10. Plantation of book and film : TARA
Scarlett O'Hara’s home is the Tara plantation, in Margaret Mitchell's "Gone with the Wind". Tara was founded not far from the Georgia city of Jonesboro by Scarlett's father, Irish immigrant Gerald O'Hara. Gerald won the square mile of land on which Tara was built in an all-night poker game. He named his new abode after the Hill of Tara back in his home country, the ancient seat of the High King of Ireland.

16. Capital of Qatar : DOHA
Doha is the capital city of the state of Qatar located on the Persian Gulf. The name "Doha" translates from Arabic as "the big tree".

21. Scrape or cut : LESION
A lesion is a wound or any abnormal tissue found in an organism. The word “lesion” comes from the Latin word “laesio” meaning “injury”.

22. Office of the Vatican : PAPACY
Vatican City is a sovereign city-state that is walled off within the city of Rome. Vatican City is about 110 acres in area, and so is the smallest independent state in the world. With about 800 residents, it is also the smallest state in terms of population. Although the Holy See dates back to early Christianity, Vatican City only came into being in 1929. At that time, Prime Minister Benito Mussolini signed a treaty with the Holy See on behalf of the Kingdom of Italy that established the city-state.

27. Like the baby in a 9 1/2-month pregnancy : LATE
The normal gestation period for humans is 280 days, a little over 9 months. The gestation period can be a little shorter, or longer. Back in 1945, a pregnancy was confirmed at 375 days, which is just over 12 months.

31. Like the Atacama Desert among all places on earth : DRIEST
Even deserts get rain at some point in the year, with very few exceptions. One of those exceptions is the Atacama Desert in South America, which receives no rain at all.

33. Magazine founder Eric : UTNE
The “Utne Reader” is known for aggregation and republishing of articles on politics, culture and the environment from other sources in the media. The “Utne Reader” was founded in 1984 by Eric Utne, with management taken over by Eric’s wife Nina Rothschild Utne in 1990.

34. Suffix with major : -ETTE
A drum major is a the leader of a marching band, and is a position that originated in the British Army Corp of Drums in 1650. The drum major’s job is to lead the group and ensure that the whole ensemble keeps time. To help him do so, a drum major often uses a large baton. Over time, it became customary for the baton to be twirled and tossed in an elaborate display. The drum major tradition was embraced by high school marching bands in America. Drum-majorettes became popular in the 1930s, with groups of females taking up baton-twirling and marching with bands. According to an article in “Life” magazine published on October 10th, 1938, “the perfect majorette is a pert, shapely, smiling extrovert, who loves big, noisy crowds and knows how to make those crowds love her.” It was a different time …

38. "Poor venomous fool," in Shakespeare : ASP
In William Shakespeare’s play “Antony and Cleopatra”, the heroine of the piece addresses the asp as she uses the snake to commit suicide:
Come, thou mortal wretch,
With thy sharp teeth this knot intrinsicate
Of life at once untie: poor venomous fool,
Be angry, and dispatch.

40. Playwright Eugène : IONESCO
Eugène Ionesco was a Romanian and French playwright who was very active in the Avant-garde and Theater of the Absurd movements.

41. Flying pest, slangily : SKEETER
“Mosquito” is the Spanish for "little fly". The female mosquito actually has to have a "blood meal" before she is able to lay her eggs.

42. Polish dumpling : PIEROGI
Pierogi are stuffed dumplings made using unleavened dough, and a traditional dish from Poland.

46. Shock jock Don : IMUS
Don Imus’s syndicated radio show “Imus in the Morning” used to broadcast from New York City. Imus has been described as a “shock jock”, a disc jockey who deliberately uses provocative language and humor that many would find offensive . I’m not a big fan of shock jocks …

47. Sort with a high-energy personality : TYPE A
The Type A and Type B personality theory originated in the fifties. Back then, individuals were labelled as Type A in order to emphasize a perceived increased risk of heart disease. Type A personality types are so called “stress junkies”, whereas Type B types are relaxed and laid back. But there doesn’t seem to be much scientific evidence to support the linkage between the Type A personality and heart problems.

48. "And the ___ goes to ..." : OSCAR
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) is the organization that gives the annual Academy Awards also known as the "Oscars". The root of the name "Oscar" is hotly debated, but what is agreed is that the award was officially named "Oscar" in 1939. The first Academy Awards were presented at a brunch in 1929 with an audience of just 29 people. The Awards ceremony is a slightly bigger event these days …

52. T.S.A. tool : WAND
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is the agency that employs the good folks that check passengers and baggage at airports.

53. Letters associated with a rainbow flag : LGBT
Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT)

The best-known rainbow flag is the one representing gay pride. Such usage of the rainbow flag was popularized in 1978 by artist Gilbert Baker. The varying colors of the flag represent the diversity of the gay community.

55. Baltic capital : RIGA
Riga is the capital city of Latvia. The historical center of Riga is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, declared as such because of the city’s magnificent examples of Art Nouveau architecture.

The natives of modern day Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia are sometimes referred to as Balts, a reference to the Baltic Sea on which the three countries lie. The term "Balt" is also used for someone who speaks one of the Baltic languages, a group of languages spoken by people mainly residing within the borders of Latvia and Lithuania, as well as in some immigrant communities around the world.

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

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Terra ___ (old name for Newfoundland) : NOVA
5. Symbol for torque : TAU
8. Malfunction : ACT UP
13. 1977 Lucas film : STAR WARS (by George Lucas)
15. Jewish organization known for its outreach work : CHABAD
17. Dish featuring corn chips as a main ingredient : FRITO PIE
18. Regarding this matter : HERETO
19. Took top honors : WON
20. 1871 Eliot novel : MIDDLEMARCH (by George Eliot)
22. Stamp collector's unit : PANE
23. Immigrant's course, for short : ESL
24. Syllable in oldies songs : SHA
25. Off-axis : ASLANT
28. Dial, e.g. : SOAP
30. 1924 Gershwin composition : RHAPSODY IN BLUE (by George Gershwin)
35. Self-referential : META
36. Bush denizen, for short : ROO
37. Lead-in to boy : ATTA ...
39. 2010 Bush autobiography : DECISION POINTS (by George W. Bush)
44. Coupling device : YOKE
45. Heavily involved : IN DEEP
46. Actor Robert of 1970s-'80s TV's "Quincy, M.E." : ITO
49. Early platform for The Legend of Zelda, for short : NES
50. Colony members : BEES
51. 1970 Harrison song : MY SWEET LORD (by George Harrison)
54. Wifey, with "the" : MRS
57. Looking skyward : UPCAST
58. Easy way to get information on something nowadays : GOOGLE IT
60. Raising of spirits? : SEANCE
61. Exclamation that describes 13-, 20-, 30-, 39- and 51-Across : BY GEORGE!
62. Fire : ARDOR
63. ___ chi ch'uan : TAI
64. Gymnastics event, informally : BEAM

Down
1. [Warning: explicit content] : NSFW
2. Other, in Oaxaca : OTRO
3. Pointless : VAIN
4. "___ does not surpass nature, but only brings it to perfection": Cervantes : ART
5. Access : TAP INTO
6. Bum ___ : A RIDE
7. Amazon category : USED
8. Secretary of state during the Korean War : ACHESON
9. Place to find solutions in school : CHEM LAB
10. Plantation of book and film : TARA
11. Some paid rides : UBERS
12. Aid in quitting smoking : PATCH
14. Word before Day or World on magazine racks : WOMAN’S
16. Capital of Qatar : DOHA
21. Scrape or cut : LESION
22. Office of the Vatican : PAPACY
25. Place for a 12-Down : ARM
26. Sloughed off : SHED
27. Like the baby in a 9 1/2-month pregnancy : LATE
29. Highland patterns : PLAIDS
31. Like the Atacama Desert among all places on earth : DRIEST
32. "___-hoo!" : YOO
33. Magazine founder Eric : UTNE
34. Suffix with major : -ETTE
38. "Poor venomous fool," in Shakespeare : ASP
40. Playwright Eugène : IONESCO
41. Flying pest, slangily : SKEETER
42. Polish dumpling : PIEROGI
43. Nervous : ON EDGE
46. Shock jock Don : IMUS
47. Sort with a high-energy personality : TYPE A
48. "And the ___ goes to ..." : OSCAR
50. Celebratory cry : BOOYA!
52. T.S.A. tool : WAND
53. Letters associated with a rainbow flag : LGBT
54. Just : MERE
55. Baltic capital : RIGA
56. Modern education acronym : STEM
59. High throw : LOB


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4 comments :

Dave Kennison said...

20:13, no errors. Just not feelin' it with this one ... or with today's LAT crossword ... but tomorrow is another day .... :-)

Jeff said...

28:45 to finish this one. Other than STARWARS I didn't know any other theme answer off the top of my head so I had to get a lot via crosses. Clever theme nonetheless. Had to get IONESCO completely by crosses too. Wednesdays have been a little tougher here lately.

Best -

Dave Kennison said...

One of several problems I had with this puzzle was that I had never heard of FRITO PIE. So I open the "Life & Culture" section of today's Denver Post and what do I find? You guessed it - a recipe for FRITO PIE! Weird ... :-)

Carrie said...

BY GEORGE! A clever puzzle and a nice challenge. I printed it out rather than use the irritating online interface, so I didn't time myself, but I probably took 40 minutes all told. Love the novel "Middlemarch."
Dave, that is really funny -- synergy! I also didn't know FRITO PIE, and I don't think I want to try it any time soon...

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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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