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’m retired now, from technology businesses that took our family all over the world. I answer all emails, so please feel free to email me at email@example.com
If you are working on the New York Times crossword in any other publication, you are working on the syndicated puzzle. Here is a link to my answers to today’s SYNDICATED New York Times crossword. To find any solution other than today’s, enter the crossword number (e.g. 1225, 0107) in the “Search the Blog” box above.
This is my solution to the crossword published in the New York Times today …
Completion Time: 6m 22s
Theme: HOT stuff … e.g. SEXY BODY, STOLEN CAR
Answers I missed: 0
TODAY’S WIKI-EST, AMAZONIAN GOOGLIES
1 MBAS: Harvard Business School is located in Allston, Massachusetts, on the other side of the Charles River to Harvard University. Wharton is the business school of the University of Pennsylvania, in Philadelphia.
5 MEGA: The Mega Millions lottery game is available in most states of the union, as is its major rival, Powerball.
15 SACRO: The sacrum and the two ilia are three bones in the human pelvis. The sacroiliac joints are found between the sacrum and each of the two ilia.
22 LYE: Historically, lye was hydrated potash (potassium hydroxide). Nowadays when we purchase lye it caustic soda (sodium hydroxide).
37 GROG: Edward Vernon was a naval officer with the nickname “Old Grog”. In 1740, he ordered that the daily ration of run for his sailors should be watered down, in order to reduce discipline problems caused by drunkenness. The diluted rum was sweetened with sugar, and lemon or lime added to help preserve it on long voyages. This recipe, found to reduce scurvy among sailors (because of the citrus) spread throughout the Royal Navy, and “grog” was born.
47 TABASCO SAUCE: Edward McIlhenny created the first Tabasco Sauce in 1868. He recycled old cologne bottles to give it to friends, and when he went into business he order new cologne bottles for the commercial product. To this day, the Tabasco Sauce bottle bears a striking resemblance to the bottle used to distribute 4711 cologne.
49 PALOMAR: The Palomar Observatory is home to the giant Hale Telescope, completed in 1948.
52 SNL: The Blues Brothers is a blues band originally fronted by Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi in 1978, especially for a Saturday Night Live sketch.
61 ADVIL: Advil, Wyeth’s brand of ibuprofen, and anti-inflammatory.
63 THIRD RAIL: The first commercial uses of a third rail to power trains were actually in Ireland, with the Giant’s Causeway Tramway in 1883, and the Bessbrook and Newry Tramway in 1885.
5 MANKIND: Neil Armstrong came up with his famous words not long before landing on the moon, during the space flight. Famously, he dropped an “a” rendering the phrase somewhat redundant. I think we can forgive him, considering the circumstances! “That’s one small step for (a) man, one giant leap for mankind”.
9 SAL: “My Gal Sal” is a song written by composer Paul Dresser, and is the name of the movie recounting Dresser’s life made in 1942. It stars Victor Mature as Dresser, and Rita Hayworth as Sally Elliott.
10 ECOLE: French for school (ecole) and French for pupil (eleve).
12 YOKES: A yoke is that wooden beam used between a pair of oxen so that they are forced to work together. A yoke is then the name for a pair of oxen, and the verb meaning to pit a pair of oxen together.
17 ERNIE: Remember the police officer and the taxi-driver in “It’s a Wonderful Life“? They were called Bert and Ernie, and despite what the whole world thinks, the Muppet Bert and Ernie are not named after them!
21 COTY: Francois Coty, from Corsica, founded Coty Inc, the largest fragrance manufacturer in the world. Supposedly, the company made Francois the richest man in France at one time.
26 FRESCA: Fresca is a Coca Cola product introduced in 1966, unusual in that it has no Pepsi Cola equivalent. It has always been marketed as a 0-calorie grapefruit drink, so is artificially sweetened.
31 WOODS: When I was a school-kid back in Ireland, Robert Frost’s “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” was our first introduction to American poetry, and what a lovely introduction.
43 EBAY: Meg Whitman was CEO of eBay from 1998 (30 employees) to 2008 (+15,000 employees). She is now running as a Republican candidate for Governor of California.
48 ARETHA: I think Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul, had a tough life. She had her first son when she was 13-years-old, and her second at 15. Rolling Stone magazine ranked her in 2008 as number one in their list of the great singers of all time.
57 ARNO: The River Arno flooded in 1966, causing over a hundred people to lose their lives, and destroying countless antiquities.