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: n/a (watching “The Time Traveler’s Wife” on DVD … fascinating storyline)
THEME: RAT … all the theme answer are common phrases with RAT inserted i.e. PUMPKIN PI(RAT)E, SUPREME BE(RAT)ING, ER(RAT)IC THE RED
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0
TODAY’S WIKI-EST, AMAZONIAN GOOGLIES
5. Frame side : JAMB
A door jamb is the vertical portion of a door frame. The term “jamb” comes from the French word “jambe” meaning “leg”.
9. Was in the arms of Morpheus : SLEPT
Morpheus was the Greek god of dreams and sleep, and is my favorite of the Greek gods. Morpheus of course gave his name to morphine, the sedative.
14. Ward who played Robin : BURT
The television show “Batman” aired from 1966-1998. Burt Ward played Robin opposite Adam West’s Batman. Supposedly, Burt Ward was offered the part taken by Dustin Hoffman in “The Graduate“. Ward couldn’t get out of his contract for the “Batman” television series.
15. Baseball family name : ALOU
Felipe Alou played major league baseball, as did his brothers, Matty and Jesus, as well as his son, Moises.
19. Hockey no-no : ICING
I know nothing about hockey, but I just read that icing is an illegal play. It occurs when a player shoots the puck across two red lines or more (the red lines drawn across the ice), in effect taking a really long shot at goal. The idea behind the rule is to stop teams just sitting back and taking long shots at goal.
20. One who plunders boatloads of jack-o’-lanterns? : PUMPKIN PIRATE
The term jack-o’-lantern was originally used as the colloquial name for “ignis fatuus”, or “will-o’-the-wisp”. Ignis fatuus is an eerie light seen at night over bogs and marshes, caused by the spontaneous oxidation (burning) of phosphine and/or methane that emanates from the bog.
25. Pet store offering : GERBIL
Most species of gerbil are native to arid regions, and in fact used to be called “desert rats”. They make popular household pets because they are very social and friendly by nature. As desert natives, they also have specially adapted kidneys that produce a very small amount of waste so that bodily fluids are preserved.
41. Destination for a ferry from Livorno : ELBA
I’ve taken that ferry from Livorno to Elba and back. I had envisioned Elba as a place full of history, and maybe it is, but it is overrun with tourists who use it as a beach getaway. I won’t be going back.
44. One may be in waiting : LADY
A lady-in-waiting is usually a noblewoman who attends a woman of a higher rank, and was not considered a servant by any means.
46. “The tongue of the mind”: Cervantes : PEN
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. He returned into service, and in 1575 while at sea 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.
48. Nickname for an unpredictable Communist? : ERRATIC THE RED
Erik the Red was a Norwegian, so called (most likely) because of his red hair. He used to be credited with the discovery of Greenland, but it is perhaps more accurate to remember him as the man who founded the first Nordic settlement on Greenland. Eric the Red’s son was Leif Eiriksson, the famed explorer who is thought to have been the first European to land in North America, five hundred years before Columbus.
61. Egypt’s third-largest city : GIZA
Giza is located on the west bank of the Nile, about 20km southwest of Cairo. The nearby Giza Plateau is home to some of the most amazing ancient monuments on the planet, including the Great Pyramid of Giza, and the Great Sphinx.
62. Arab League member : YEMEN
Yemen sits in a very strategic location in the Middle East, with the Red Sea to its west, and the Arabian Sea and Gulf of Aden to the south. As such, Yemen has been colonized by many of the great powers in history, with most of the attention focused on the coastal town of Aden in the south.
64. What “……..” means to a typesetter : STET
Stet is the Latin word meaning “let it stand”. In editorial work, the typesetter is instructed to disregard any change previously marked by writing the word “stet” beside the change, and then underscoring the change with a line of dots (or dashes).
1. A drop in the ocean? : EBB
2. Will Rogers specialty : QUIP
Will Rogers was so successful as an actor, he was the highest paid Hollywood star in the 1930s. Hi career was cut short, sadly, when he died in a plane crash in 1935. Piloting the doomed plane was famed aviator Wily Post, the first person to fly solo around the world.
3. Official language of Pakistan : URDU
Pakistan actually has two official languages, one being Urdu, and the other English.
25. Krypton and others : GASES
Krypton is one of the noble gases, those elements over on the extreme right of the Periodic Table. Because of their “full” complement of electrons, noble gases are very nonreactive. The noble gases are Helium, Neon, Argon, Krypton and Xenon. Kryptonite, of Superman fame, is a fictitious element, created from the remains of Superman’s native planet, Krypton.
30. Furniture chain : IKEA
Did you know that IKEA was founded by Ingvar Kamprad in 1943 …. when he was just 17-years-old??!!
35. Ironworker’s union? : WELD
Another very clever clue …
39. Banded gemstone : AGATE
Agate is micro-crystalline form of quartz (so is related to sand/silica). Some agate samples have deposited layers giving a striped appearance, and these are called banded agate.
45. Home of the Azadi Tower : TEHRAN
The Azadi Tower is a magnificent gateway that marks the entrance to the city of Tehran. Azadi translates into English as “freedom”. It was completed in 1971, to commemorate the 2,500th anniversary of the Persian Empire and at that time is was called the Shahyad Tower, or “King’s Memorial”. This was changed to Azadi Tower after the Iranian Revolution of 1979.
48. Hamburg’s river : ELBE
The River Elbe rises in the Czech Republic, and travels over a thousand kilometers before emptying into the North Sea where it feeds the port of Hamburg. Hamburg is the second largest city in Germany, and the third largest port in Europe.
58. Chinese calendar animal … or the key to this puzzle’s theme : RAT
The Year of the Rat is one of the twelve animals that cycle through the Chinese calendar. The next Year of the Rat starts in January 2020.