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0731-17 New York Times Crossword Answers 31 Jul 17, Monday





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Solution to today's crossword in the New York Times
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CROSSWORD CONSTRUCTOR: David Steinberg
THEME: Seattle
There’s a note with today’s puzzle:
When this puzzle is finished, read the circled letters roughly clockwise, starting with the first letter of 68-Across, to spell the name of an appropriate landmark.
The circled letter in today’s grid spell out SPACE NEEDLE. When we join those letters together, the result is the outline of SEATTLE’S SPACE NEEDLE. The puzzle also includes several references to the city of SEATTLE:
68A. City that's the subject of this puzzle : SEATTLE

17A. Downtown 68-Across attraction : PIKE PLACE MARKET
42A. 68-Across baseball player : MARINER
12D. Waterfront 68-Across location : PIER
27D. Business on every block in 68-Across, so it's said : COFFEE SHOP
31D. Body of water that 68-Across is on : PUGET SOUND
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 5m 18s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

16. "Night" author Wiesel : ELIE
Elie Wiesel was a holocaust survivor, and is best known for his book "Night" that tells of his experiences in Auschwitz and Buchenwald. Wiesel was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986.

17. Downtown 68-Across attraction : PIKE PLACE MARKET
The famous Pike Place Market on the Seattle waterfront opened back in 1907. By and large, vendors in the market are all small businesses or people who sell their own wares. The Market’s mission is to allow shippers to “Meet the Producer”.

21. Big brand of glue : ELMER’S
Elsie the Cow is the mascot of the Borden Company. Elsie first appeared at the New York World's Fair in 1939, introduced to symbolize the perfect dairy product. She is so famous and respected that she has been awarded the degrees of Doctor of Bovinity, Doctor fo Human Kindness and Doctor of Ecownomics. Elsie was also given a husband named Elmer the Bull. Elmer eventually moved over to the chemical division of Borden where he gave his name to Elmer's Glue.

22. Vientiane's country : LAOS
Vientiane is the capital city of Laos, situated on the famous Mekong River. The city was originally called the "city of sandalwood" by Buddhist monks, naming after the valued trees that grew in the area. The French took the Pali words for "city of sandalwood" and rewrote it as the French-sounding "Vientiane".

24. ___ B'rith : B’NAI
B'nai B'rith is a Jewish service organization founded in New York City in 1843. “B'nai B'rith” is Hebrew for “Sons of the Covenant”.

25. Spiked medieval clubs : MACES
A mace is a relatively simple weapon in essence. It is a heavy weight on the end of a handle that is used to deliver powerful blows on an opponent's body.

28. Mai ___ (cocktail) : TAI
The mai tai cocktail is strongly associated with the Polynesian islands, but the drink was supposedly invented in 1944 in Trader Vic's restaurant in Oakland, California. One recipe is 6 parts white rum, 3 parts orange curaçao, 3 parts Orgeat syrup, 1 part rock candy syrup, 2 parts fresh lime juice, all mixed with ice and then a float added of 6 parts dark rum. “Maita'i” is the Tahitian word for “good”.

30. March 17 honoree, for short : ST PAT
There is a fair amount known about Saint Patrick, some of which comes from two letters written in his own hand. St. Patrick lived in the fifth century, but was not born in Ireland. He was first brought to Ireland at about 16 years of age from his native Britain, by Irish raiders who made him a slave for six years. Patrick managed to escape and returned to his homeland where he studied and entered the Church. He went back to Ireland as a bishop and a missionary and there lived out the rest of his life. There seems to be good evidence that he died on March 17th (now celebrated annually as Saint Patrick’s Day), although the year is less clear. The stories about shamrock and snakes, I am afraid they are the stuff of legend.

35. Bamboo-eating bear : PANDA
The giant panda is a bear, and so has the digestive system of a carnivore. However, the panda lives exclusively on bamboo, even though its gut is relatively poorly adapted to extract nutrients from plants per se. The panda relies on microbes in its gut to digest cellulose, and consumes 20-30 pounds of bamboo each day to gain enough nourishment.

37. Stubborn animal : MULE
A hinny is the offspring of a male horse (the “h-” from h-orse) and a female donkey/ass (the “-nny” from je-nny). A mule is more common, and is the offspring of a female horse and male donkey/ass.

38. Gold, frankincense or myrrh, for baby Jesus : GIFT
Frankincense and myrrh are both tree resins that are exuded when certain species of tree are damaged. The harvested resins are used to make essentials oils for perfumes, and are also burned to give off a pleasant fragrance.

40. Grade A items in the dairy aisle : EGGS
Chicken eggs are graded according to the size of the air cell within the shell at the large end of the egg. The size of the air cell is measured by viewing the egg in front of a bright light in a process known as candling. The smallest air cell receives a grade of AA. A slightly larger air cell is grade A, and the largest is grade B.

42. 68-Across baseball player : MARINER
The Seattle Mariners are one of only two Major League teams never to have appeared in a World Series. The other is the Washington Nationals. The Mariners are owned by the Nintendo Corporation of America, making them one of three Major League teams owned by businesses. The other two are the Atlanta Braves (owned by Liberty Media) and the Toronto Blue Jays (owned by Rogers Communications).

45. 2,000 pounds : ONE TON
Here in the US, a ton is equivalent to 2,000 pounds. Over in the UK, a ton is 2,240 pounds. The UK unit is sometimes referred to as an Imperial ton or sometimes a “long ton”. Folks over there refer to the US ton then as a “short ton”. To further complicate matters, there is also a “metric ton” or “tonne”, which is equivalent to 2,204 pounds. Personally, I wish we’d just stick to kilograms …

47. French edict city : NANTES
Nantes is a beautiful city located on the delta of the Loire, Erdre and Sèvre rivers. It has the well deserved nickname of “The Venice of the West”. I had the privilege of visiting Nantes a couple of times on business, and I can attest that it really is a charming city …

The Edict of Nantes was issued by King Henry IV of France in 1598. The edict granted specific rights to Protestants, a major concession in Catholic France, and was intended to end religious strife in the country.

49. Mathematician whose name sounds like a fuel ship : EULER
Leonhard Euler was a brilliant Swiss mathematician and physicist, a pioneer in the fields of logarithms and graph theory.

An oiler is an oil tanker, an ocean-going vessel used to transport crude oil.

51. Fills to capacity : SATES
“Sate” is a variant of the older word “satiate”. Both terms can mean either to satisfy an appetite fully, or to eat to excess.

60. Pancake-flipping implement : SPATULA
A spatula is a tool or implement used for mixing, lifting or spreading. “Spatula” is the Latin name for the tool, and is a diminutive of the word “spatha” meaning “broad, flat blade”. “Spatha” gives rise to our related term “spade”.

65. Ship featured in a 1997 megafilm : TITANIC
When James Cameron made his epic movie “Titanic”, released in 1997, it was the most expensive film ever made and cost about $200 million. It was a good investment for the studio as it became the highest-grossing film of all time, bringing in over $1.8 billion. “Titanic” remained the highest-grossing film until 2010, when Cameron eclipsed the prior record with “Avatar”.

66. Actress Vardalos : NIA
Not only is the delightful Nia Vardalos the star of the 2002 hit movie “My Big Fat Greek Wedding”, she also wrote the screenplay. The film never made it to number one at the box office, but it still pulled in more money than any other movie in history that didn’t make it to number one. That record I think reflects the fact that the film wasn’t a blockbuster but rather a so-called “sleeper hit”, a movie that people went to see based on referrals from friends. The big fat mistake came when a spin-off TV show was launched, “My Big Fat Greek Life”. It ran for only 7 episodes. “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2” will hit movie theaters in 2016.

68. City that's the subject of this puzzle : SEATTLE
The Washington city of Seattle was founded on a site that had been occupied by Native Americans for over 4,000 years before the first Europeans arrived in the area. The name “Seattle” was chosen in honor of Duwamish Chief Seattle who had a reputation for welcoming white settlers.

69. Pomeranian, e.g. : DOG
The Pomeranian is a small breed of dog named for the Pomerania region of Europe (part of eastern Germany and northern Poland). The breed was much loved by the royalty of Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries. In the 19th century, Queen Victoria owned a particularly small Pomeranian. Due to the notoriety of the monarch’s pet, the Pomeranian was bred for small size, so that during the Queen’s admittedly long reign, the size of the average “pom” was reduced by 50% …

Down
3. Antlered animals : ELKS
The elk (also known as “wapiti”) is the one of the largest species of deer in the world, with only the moose being bigger. Early European settlers were familiar with the smaller red deer back in their homelands, so when they saw the “huge” wapiti they assumed it was a moose, and incorrectly gave it the European name for a moose, namely “elk”. The more correct name for the beast is “wapiti”, which means “white rump” in Shawnee. It’s all very confusing …

4. Liberal's favorite road sign? : KEEP LEFT
The concept of left-right politics started in France during the French Revolution. When members of France’s National Assembly convened in 1789, supporters of the King sat to the President’s right, and supporters of the revolution to the President’s left. The political terms “left” and “right” were then coined in the local media and have been used ever since.

5. Radioer's word after "Roger" : WILCO
In the world of radio telephony, “wilco” is short for “I understand and will comply”.

The term “roger”, meaning “yes” or “acknowledged”, comes from the world of radiotelephony. The British military used a phonetic alphabet in the fifties that included "Roger" to represent the letter “R”. As such, it became customary to say “Roger” when acknowledging a message, with R (Roger) standing for “received”.

6. Santa ___ winds : ANA
The Santa Ana winds are the very dry air currents that sweep offshore late in the year in Southern California. Because these air currents are so dry, they are noted for their influence over forest fires in the area, especially in the heat of the fall. The winds arise from a buildup of air pressure in the Great Basin that lies between the Rocky Mountains and the Sierra Nevada. Under the right conditions, that air spills over the peaks of the Sierra Nevada and basically “falls” down the side of the Sierra range, heading for the ocean. As the air falls it becomes drier and heats up so that relative humidity can fall to below 10% by the time it hits the coast.

7. "The Voice" airer : NBC
“The Voice” is yet another reality television show. It is a singing competition in which the judges hear the contestants without seeing them in the first round. The judges then take on chosen contestants as coaches for the remaining rounds. “The Voice” is a highly successful worldwide franchise that originated in the Netherlands as “The Voice of Holland”.

8. Hillary Clinton ___ Rodham : NEE
Hillary Rodham was born in Chicago, Illinois to Hugh Rodham (a businessman in the textile industry) and Dorothy Howell (a homemaker). Hillary was raised in a conservative home, and she campaigned for Republican candidate Barry Goldwater in the 1964 US presidential election. The following year, she served as president of the Young Republicans at Wellesley College. Our former First Lady left the Republican Party expressing disappointment at what she witnessed at the 1968 Republican National Convention in Miami, citing “veiled” racist messages prevalent at that time.

11. Sommer of 1960s-'70s films : ELKE
Elke Sommer is a German-born actress who was at the height of her success on the silver screen in the sixties. Sommer won a Golden Globe as Most Promising Newcomer Actress for her role opposite Paul Newman in 1964’s “The Prize”. She also sings and has released several albums. Now Sommer focuses on painting, producing artwork that is strongly influenced by the work of Marc Chagall.

24. Obama's veep : BIDEN
Vice President Joe Biden was a US Senator representing the state of Delaware from 1973 until he joined the Obama administration. While he was a senator, Vice President Biden commuted to Washington from Wilmington, Delaware almost every working day. He was such an active customer and supporter of Amtrak that the Wilmington Station was renamed as the Joseph R. Biden Railroad Station in 2011. Biden has made over 7,000 trips from that station, and the Amtrak crews were known to even hold the last train for a few minutes so that he could catch it. Biden earned himself the nickname “Amtrak Joe”.

25. Mr. ___ (nearsighted toon) : MAGOO
Mr. Quincy Magoo is a wonderful cartoon character voiced by Jim Backus. Backus is probably equally well-known for playing Mr. Magoo as well as Thurston Howell, III on “Gilligan’s Island”. Mr. Magoo first appeared on the screen in a short called “The Ragtime Bear” in 1949. His persona was at least in part based on the antics of W. C. Fields. Backus originally used a fake rubber nose that pinched his nostrils in order to create the distinctive voice, although in time he learned to do the voice without the prop. My absolute favorite appearance by Mr. Magoo is in “Mr Magoo’s Christmas Carol”, a true classic from the sixties. There was a movie adaptation of “Mr Magoo” released in 1997, with Leslie Nielsen playing the title role.

26. From east of the Urals : ASIAN
The eastern side of the Ural Mountains in Russia is generally regarded as the natural divide between the continents of Europe and Asia.

31. Body of water that 68-Across is on : PUGET SOUND
George Vancouver was a British explorer, and an officer in the Royal Navy. As well as exploring the coast of Australia, he is best known for his travels along the northwest coast of North America. The city of Vancouver was named in his honor. Travelling with him on his American voyage was a lieutenant Peter Puget, and in his honor, Vancouver named the waters south of the Tacoma Narrows “Puget’s Sound”. Nowadays, the name “Puget Sound” describes an area much greater than Vancouver had envisioned.

32. Fish tank buildup : ALGAE
Algae are similar to terrestrial plants in that they use photosynthesis to create sugars from light and carbon dioxide, but they differ in that they have simpler anatomies, and for example lack roots.

36. Gladiator fight site : ARENA
The term “gladiator” means “swordsman”, coming from “gladius”, the Latin word for “sword”.

43. Hurry of modern life : RAT RACE
We use “rat race” figuratively to describe an endless, pointless pursuit. The term comes from the laboratory, where one might imagine rats racing around a maze in search of some cheese.

46. King who died in his late teens : TUT
“King Tut” is a name commonly used for the Egyptian pharaoh Tutankhamun. Tutankhamun may not have been the most significant of the pharaohs historically, but he is the most famous today largely because of the discovery of his nearly intact tomb in 1922 by Howard Carter. Prior to this find, any Egyptian tombs uncovered by archaeologists had been ravaged by grave robbers. Tutankhamun’s magnificent burial mask is one of the most recognizable of all Egyptian artifacts.

48. "The Matrix" hero : NEO
Neo is the character played by Keanu Reeves in “The Matrix” series of films.

The 1999 movie sensation "The Matrix" was meant to be set in a nondescript urban environment. It was actually shot in Australia, as one of the co-producers of the film was the Australian company, Village Roadshow Pictures. You can pick up all sorts of clues about the location when watching the film, including a view of Sydney Harbour Bridge in a background shot. Also, traffic drives along on the left and there are signs for the "lift" instead of an "elevator".

50. Cowboy's rope : RIATA
A riata is a lariat or a lasso. “Riata” comes from “reata”, the Spanish word for lasso.

53. Automaker with a four-ring logo : AUDI
The predecessor to today’s Audi company was called Auto Union. Auto Union was formed with the merger of four individual entities: Audi, Horch, DKW and Wanderer. The Audi logo comprises four intersecting rings, each representing one of the four companies that merged.

55. On-base percentage, e.g. : STAT
That would be baseball.

58. Stocking problem : SNAG
A snag is a pull or a tear in a fabric. A snag, particularly in stockings, might lead to a run. And on the other side of the Atlantic, a “run” is called a “ladder”.

62. ___ Wayne, rapper with the #1 hit "Lollipop" : LIL
Rapper Lil Wayne’s real name is … Dwayne Carter, Jr.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. "Star ___ Beyond" (2016 film) : TREK
5. "Are you interested in doin' this?" : WANNA?
10. Livens (up) : PEPS
14. Harvard's archrival : YALE
15. Taking a nap, say : IN BED
16. "Night" author Wiesel : ELIE
17. Downtown 68-Across attraction : PIKE PLACE MARKET
20. Without guaranteed payment : ON SPEC
21. Big brand of glue : ELMER’S
22. Vientiane's country : LAOS
24. ___ B'rith : B’NAI
25. Spiked medieval clubs : MACES
28. Mai ___ (cocktail) : TAI
30. March 17 honoree, for short : ST PAT
34. Starting from : AS OF
35. Bamboo-eating bear : PANDA
37. Stubborn animal : MULE
38. Gold, frankincense or myrrh, for baby Jesus : GIFT
39. Soda bottle measure : LITER
40. Grade A items in the dairy aisle : EGGS
41. Clumsy person : OAF
42. 68-Across baseball player : MARINER
44. Devour : EAT
45. 2,000 pounds : ONE TON
47. French edict city : NANTES
49. Mathematician whose name sounds like a fuel ship : EULER
51. Fills to capacity : SATES
52. Trash or compost : WASTE
54. Suffix with real or surreal : -IST
56. Tree's support system : ROOTS
59. "What'd you say?" : HUH?
60. Pancake-flipping implement : SPATULA
63. Large tea container : URN
64. Answer at the altar : I DO
65. Ship featured in a 1997 megafilm : TITANIC
66. Actress Vardalos : NIA
67. Move really fast : ZIP
68. City that's the subject of this puzzle : SEATTLE
69. Pomeranian, e.g. : DOG

Down
1. Spell-checker target : TYPO
2. Common 68-Across forecast : RAIN
3. Antlered animals : ELKS
4. Liberal's favorite road sign? : KEEP LEFT
5. Radioer's word after "Roger" : WILCO
6. Santa ___ winds : ANA
7. "The Voice" airer : NBC
8. Hillary Clinton ___ Rodham : NEE
9. Some slogan writers : ADMEN
10. Chivalrous offer : PERMIT ME?
11. Sommer of 1960s-'70s films : ELKE
12. Waterfront 68-Across location : PIER
13. Dips below the horizon : SETS
18. Small, spherical vegetables : PEAS
19. "Woe is me!" : ALAS!
23. It goes from one story to another : STAIR
24. Obama's veep : BIDEN
25. Mr. ___ (nearsighted toon) : MAGOO
26. From east of the Urals : ASIAN
27. Business on every block in 68-Across, so it's said : COFFEE SHOP
29. Opposed to : ANTI
31. Body of water that 68-Across is on : PUGET SOUND
32. Fish tank buildup : ALGAE
33. Exams : TESTS
35. Vehicle with wings and a nose : PLANE
36. Gladiator fight site : ARENA
42. Pesters repeatedly : MOLESTS
43. Hurry of modern life : RAT RACE
46. King who died in his late teens : TUT
48. "The Matrix" hero : NEO
50. Cowboy's rope : RIATA
51. Fire-eating, for one : STUNT
52. Expert, informally : WHIZ
53. Automaker with a four-ring logo : AUDI
55. On-base percentage, e.g. : STAT
57. Half of a sextet : TRIO
58. Stocking problem : SNAG
61. Dessert divided into slices : PIE
62. ___ Wayne, rapper with the #1 hit "Lollipop" : LIL


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2 comments :

Dave Kennison said...

7:27, no errors. Back home in Colorado, after five days on the road, and trying to get caught up ...

Jeff said...

9:47. More fun than your average Monday. Interesting seeing David Steinberg do an early week puzzle. One of my favorite cities to visit, Seattle. Nice homage.

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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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