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 firstname.lastname@example.org, or leave a comment below.
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: 10m 21s
THEME: WITHIN CO-ST .. all the theme answers start with CO and end with ST, so to get the answers you place a bunch of letters WITHIN CO-ST
ANSWERS I MISSED: 2 … AVISO (AVITO),
TODAY’S WIKI-EST, AMAZONIAN GOOGLIES
1 IKE: There doesn’t seem to be any good reason why President Eisenhower was called “Ike”. It is known however, that it goes back to his childhood, because that’s what his parents called him.
9 JEB: I always thought that Jeb was an American nickname for James or Joseph, but I must be wrong, because George and Barbara called their son John Ellis Bush “Jeb”. I am not doing well researching nicknames tonight.
14 AREAS: Remember doing calculus at school, and all those derivatives and integrals? Well, you probably also remember that an integral calculates the area under a curve (for example).
15 ULNA: The supinator muscle attaches just below the elbow and wraps around the radius and ulna of the arm. It’s job is to twist the arm so that the palm of the hand faces away from it’s resting position (known as “supination” funnily enough!).
16 ESTE: Este is the Spanish word for east (and sometimes “oriente”), and sur is south.
21 AVISO: A dispatch boat is a military vessel designed to carry dispatches to and from ships. In the French navy, a dispatch boat is called an aviso. Nowadays of course, the need for dispatch bats has disappeared, but avisos still exist, and are a class of combat vessel usually used in the defense of a coast against encroachment.
32 TOP TEN: David Letterman first introduced his Top Ten List in 1985 “The top ten things that almost rhyme with peas!” The segment started off as a parody on “People” magazine’s top ten and worst ten lists.
50 GENII: Genii is the plural of genius. In Roman mythology a genius was something divine to be found in any person, place or thing. In particular, doors and gates each had their own genius, which acted a guardian spirit.
59 OBOE: The oboe d’amore (“oboe of love”) is a particular type of oboe, with a tome that is described as “more tranquil and serene” than a regular oboe. It is also a little larger and lower in pitch. I love the oboe …
62 OMG: Oh My Gosh! Oh My Goodness! Or any other G words you think of …
2: KOSOVO: Kosovo is an adjectival form of the Serbian word “kos” meaning “blackbird”. The name commemorates the “field of the blackbirds” the site of a 1389 battle between Serbia and the Ottoman Empire. The dispute over Kosovo technically dates back to the implosion of Yugoslavia in the 1990s.
6 MERC: The Chicago Mercantile Exchange started its life as the Chicago Butter and Egg Board in 1898. The Merc is the site for exchange of commodities, among other things.
13 GESSO: Gesso is the Italian word for “chalk”, and gives it name to the powdered calcium carbonate that is used as a primer coat under artistic panel paintings. The gesso is mixed with a glue, and when applied to wood is acts as an absorbent surface for paint.
20 TORAHS: The Torah ark is found in a synagogue, and is the ornamental container in which are stored the Torah scrolls.
23 ROTO: The rototiller (or rotary tiller) was invented by Arthur Clifford Howard in 1912, in Australia.
24 ERES: We have a big event across Europe every year called the Eurovision Song Contest. Each nation enters one song in competition with each other, and then voters across the whole continent decide on the winner. That’s how ABBA go their big break, as they were Sweden’s entry with a new song called “Waterloo”. In 1972, Spain’s entry was “Eres tu” sung by the band Mocedades. “Eres tu” is the Spanish for “you are”. And it is a great song that came in second. It should have won, in my humble opinion.
35 OTTO: Otto is Sgt. Snorkel’s dog, that he dresses up to look just like himself. He started off as a regular dog, but artist Mort Walker decide to make him more like his owner, and he became a big hit.
43 NEIL: I saw Neil Diamond in concert about 15 years ago, and he puts on a great show. The voice is cracking a bit though, but still as I said, a great show. Neil Simon is one of my favorite playwrights. My favorite play of his is “Brighton Beach Memoirs“.
44 ANNIE’S: “Annie’s Song” was written by John Denver. He said that he put it together in about ten minutes while writing on a ski lift in Aspen. He had a little help, as the melody is based on the theme from the second movement of Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5. I think the copyright had run out by the time he used it …
49 NUNCA: Nunca is the Spanish word for never.
52 TONI: Toni Morrison won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1993. She is renowned for the richly detailed black characters in her novels (she herself is an African American).
53 ASTA: Asta was the wonderful little dog in the superb movie “The Thin Man” starring William Powell and Myrna Loy. Asta was played by a wire-haired fox terrier called “Skippy”. Skippy was also the dog in “Bringing up Baby” with Cary Grant and Katherine Hepburn, the one who kept stealing the dinosaur bone. Skippy retired in 1939, so Asta was played by other dogs in the remainder of “The Thin Man” series of films.
54 GTOS: GTO stands for Gran Turismo Omologato.
56 IBM: The origin of the nickname “Big Blue” seems to have been lost in the mists of time. But, the IMB logo is blue, almost every mainframe they produced was painted blue.