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, 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: 48m 43s
THEME: PUBLISHING TRADE … the theme answers are all famous book titles with the letters on one word rearranged (letters TRADE places) e.g. JOHNNY GOT HIS GNU (GUN), CLOD (COLD) MOUNTAIN
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0
TODAY’S WIKI-EST, AMAZONIAN GOOGLIES
1. Out of fashion : PASSE
Passe is a French word, meaning “past, faded”.
6. Trailer org.? : MPAA
The Motion Picture Association of America is a not for profit organization that advances the business interests of the movie industry. The MPAA has been around in some from since 1922, and operated the Hays code of film censorship from 1930 to 1968, replacing it with the voluntary MPAA film rating system (G, PG, PG-13 etc).
10. C.I.A. director Panetta : LEON
Leon Panetta was Chief of Staff under President Clinton, and took over as CIA Director in 2009. Panetta has long been interested in protecting the world’s oceans. As an example, he wrote the legislation that created the Monterrey Bay National Marine Sanctuary.
20. “Ale” for the underaged : CANADA DRY
The Canada Dry brand is most closely associated with its ginger all, but the name also appears on a number of other beverages. “Canada Dry Pale Ginger Ale” was first formulated in 1904 by a Canadian chemist called John McLoughlin from Ontario, Canada. Prohibition helped sales of the drink as it was particularly effective in masking the taste of illegally produced homemade liquor.
23. “Carson’s Successful Safari”? [Dalton Trumbo] : JOHNNY GOT HIS GNU (Gun)
Dalton Trumbo was an American novelist and screenwriter, and one of the famous “Hollywood Ten” film professionals who testified in front of the House Un-American Activities Committee in 1947. Trumbo refused to give information to the committee and was found in contempt, and served 11 months in prison. Trumbo had his anti-war novel “Johnny Got His Gun” published in 1938. He also directed a film adaption that was released in 1971 that starred Timothy Bottoms.
25. New Hampshire’s ___ State College : KEENE
Keene State College is located in Keene, New Hampshire. It was founded in 1909, originally as a teacher’s college.
26. Spanish liqueur : ANIS
Anis is the Spanish liqueur equivalent to anisette from other countries, in particular France. It has a licorice taste as it is produced by distilling the seeds of the anis plant. Like all anis-type drinks, it is usually mixed with water and turns a milky, white color.
27. Knoxville team, to fans : VOLS
The Tennessee Volunteers (the Vols) is the name given to the men’s sports teams at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. The women’s teams are called the Lady Volunteers.
28. Ralph Vaughan Williams’s “___ Symphony” : A SEA
Ralph Vaughan Williams was one of England’s great composers, who wrote everything from symphonies to film scores. He was a direct descendant of the famed potter, Josiah Wedgewood, and was also the great-nephew of Charles Darwin.
“A Sea Symphony” is Ralph Vaughan Williams’s first and longest symphony, written when he was in his thirties. It is a choral symphony, with a choir participating throughout the work in all the movements.
31. Lacto-___ : OVO
A lacto-ovo vegetarian is someone who does not consume meat or fish, but does eat eggs (ove) and dairy (lacto) products.
32. “Big Pile of Dirt”? [Charles Frazier] : CLOD (Cold) MOUNTAIN
The novel “Cold Mountain” was written in 1997 by Charles Frazier. It’s the tale of a deserter in the Civil War and his trek home to his beloved Ada Monroe, who is living the rural community of Cold Mountain in North Carolina. The plot has been compared with Homer’s “The Odyssey”, which tells of the long journey home of Odysseus to Ithaca after the Trojan War. In the 2003 film adaptation of the same name, Ada Monroe is played by Nicole Kidman.
36. Writer who wrote “A bear, however hard he tries, / Grows tubby without exercise” : A. A. MILNE
Alan Alexander Milne was an English author, best known for his delightful “Winnie-the-Pooh” series of books. He had only one son, Christopher Robin Milne, born in 1920, and who was of course the inspiration for the Christopher Robin character in the Winnie-the-Pooh stories.
38. Rad : BOSS
“Rad” and “boss” are two slang terms, both meaning “first-rate, top-notch”.
39. Vet : EX-GI
The initials G.I. stand for “Government Issue” and not “General Infantry” as is often believed. G.I. was first used in the military to denote equipment made from Galvanized Iron. During WWII, incoming German shells were nicknamed “GI cans”. Soon after, the term GI came to be associated with “Government Issue” and became an adjective to describe anything associated with the Army.
40. Brandy letters : VSO
Cognac is the most famous type of brandy made, named after the town of Cognac in the very west of France. To be called cognac, the brandy must be distilled twice in copper pot stills, and aged at least two years in very specific French oak barrels. It is the length of this aging that defines the various grades of cognac:
– VS: Very Special … at least 2 years storage
– VSOP: Very Special (or Superior) Old Pale … at least 4 years storage
– XO: Extra Old … at least 6 years
– VSO: Very Superior Old … 12-17 years
44. Govt. instrument : T-BILL
A Treasury Bill (T-Bill) is a US government debt that matures in one year or less. The bill is purchased at a discount to the face value, and at the date of maturity can be redeemed for that face value. For comparison, a T-Note matures in 1-10 years, and a T-Bond matures in 20-30 years.
46. British coin discontinued in 1984 : HALF PENNY
The half penny was a coin first issued when the UK moved to the new decimal currency in 1971. It was withdrawn in 1984. The half penny should not be confused with the halfpenny (all one word, and pronounced “hay-penny”, and illustrated here) which was a pre-decimal coin worth 1/480th of a pound sterling. I remember those little gems, which were withdrawn in 1969 in the run up to the introduction of decimal currency.
52. Pupil cover : CORNEA
The cornea is the transparent part of the eye, in the front, covering the iris and pupil. Even though the cornea is not part of the lens, it acts as a lens, and in fact does most of the work focusing light coming in through the eye. The cornea is in effect a fixed-focus lens that passes light to the lens inside the eye which is variable-focus.
53. 2006 million-selling Andrea Bocelli album : AMORE
Andrea Bocelli is a tenor who sings popular music, a so-called cross-over artist. He was born with poor eyesight, and then became totally blind at the age of 12 when he had an accident playing soccer.
“Amore” is 2006 studio album by Andrea Bocelli. Tracks include his version of the Elvis Presley hit “Can’t Help Falling in Love” and a duet with Christina Aguilera.
54. Presidential middle name : DELANO
FDR was the only child of Sara Delano and James Roosevelt Sr. The Delano family history goes back to the pilgrim Phillippe de Lannoy, an immigrant of Flemish descent who arrived at Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1621. The family name “de Lannoy” was anglicized here in America, to “Delano”.
57. French rail station : GARE
Gare: the French word for a railway station.
58. “Battle Backstabber”? [Sun Tzu] : THE RAT (Art) OF WAR
“The Art of War” is the famous military treatise written by Sun Tzu, a Chinese general from the 6th century BC. I’ve even seen the principles from this book applied to modern business!
61. German quaff : BIER
Bier: the German word for “beer”.
64. Some receivers : ENDS
From American Football …
65. Scandinavian rug : RYA
A rya is a traditional Scandinavian rug, originally used as heavy covers by mariners as an alternative to furs. The name “rya” comes from a village in southwest Sweden.
66. Deli order : BLT
The BLT (bacon, lettuce and tomato) is the second most popular sandwich in the US, after the plain ham sandwich.
68. Port in the eastern Mediterranean : ACRE
Acre is a port city in northern Israel on Haifa Bay.
69. Caustic soda, to a chemist : NAOH
Caustic soda is sometimes called lye. Chemically is sodium hydroxide (NaOH). It’s nasty stuff, a white solid in its pure form. When you add it to water it generates an awful lot of heat, a property that is used when incorporating NaOH into drain cleaner.
70. “Secretive Student Monitor”? [John le Carré] : A PREFECT (Perfect) SPY
John Le Carre is the pen name of David Cornwell, an English author famous for his spy novels. Cornwell worked for British Intelligence during the fifties and sixties, even as he was writing his spy thrillers. He left MI6 soon after his most famous 1963 novel, “The Spy Who Came in from the Cold”, became such a great success.
“A Perfect Spy” is a 1986 novel by John Le Carre, considered my many to be his greatest work. There was a TV adaptation made by the BBC in 1987. I’ve got to check that out …
77. Soul singer Adams : OLETA
Oleta Adams is an American soul singer from Seattle, Washington. She has had most of her success over in the UK, rather than here in the US.
78. Verdi opera : ATTILA
Giuseppe Verdi’s opera “Attila” is based on a play :Attilla, King of the Huns” written by Friedrich Werner. It was premiered in 1846 in Venice.
84. “Toward Freedom” autobiographer : NEHRU
Jawaharlal Nehru was the very first prime minister of India, serving from 1947-64. Nehru was basically the heir to his mentor, Mahatma Gandhi. He was also the father of his only child, Indira, herself a prime minister (known as Indira Gandhi, no relation to Mahatma).
85. Not 85-Down : DIS
Dis, not dat.
86. Hot ___ : TAMALE
Hot Tamales are a cinnamon candy made by Just Born. They look like red versions of the other Just Born candy, Mike and Ike. That’s no coincidence, as Hot Tamales were developed as a way to make use of rejected Mike and Ike candy. The dark red color and intense cinnamon flavor was added to the Mike and Ike rejects, masking the original flavor and color.
90. Main rat in “Ratatouille” : REMY
“Ratatouille” is a 2007 animated film produced by Pixar. The hero of the piece is Remy, a rat that wants to become a chef. Remy was voiced by stand-up comedian Patton Oswalt.
92. Letter of indictment? : SILENT C
That C in “indictment”, it’s silent.
97. “Endless Streams”? [David Foster Wallace] : INFINITE JETS (Jest)
American author David Foster Wallace’s most famous work was his 1996 novel “Infinite Jest“. Wallace struggled with depression from about twenty years. Sadly, he ended up committing suicide in 2008 by hanging himself, when he was only 46 years old.
104. End of a boast : VICI
The oft-quoted “Veni, vidi, vici” (I came, I saw, I conquered) was apparently written by Julius Caesar. The words date back to 47 BC and refer to the short war between Rome and Pharnaces II of Pontus.
105. Central Sicily city : ENNA
Enna sits very high up in the hills of Sicily, overlooking the the whole island below. Enna is the capital of the province that bears its name, and is the highest province in the whole country of Italy.
108. “Football Team Leaves L.A.”? [Ernest Hemingway] : A FAREWELL TO RAMS (Arms)
“A Farewell to Arms” is a somewhat auto-biographical novel written by Ernest Hemingway, telling the story of an American ambulance driver serving with the Italian army during WWI. The most famous screen adaptation is probably the 1957 version starring Rock Hudson and Jennifer Jones.
111. Brother of Malcolm on “Malcolm in the Middle” : REESE
I’ve never actually sat down and watched the TV comedy “Malcolm in the Middle”. It ran on Fox from 2000 to 2006. Malcolm was played by Frankie Muniz, who gave up acting to pursue a career in motor racing. Malcolm’s brother, Reese, was played by Justin Berfield.
112. White House nickname : HONEST ABE
Abraham Lincoln was born in a one-room log cabin in Hardin County, Kentucky, destining him to be the first president born in the west. His formal education was limited to a year and a half of schooling, but fortunately for us, Lincoln was an avid reader and educated himself over the years. Even though he was from a rural area, he avoided hunting and fishing because he did not like to kill animals even for food.
116. Former Swedish P.M. Palme : OLOF
Olof Palme was prime minister of Sweden when he was walking home from a movie theater with his wife one night in 1986. Security for a man of his position was not an issue back then, so he had no bodyguard with him. Palme was shot by an unknown attacker, who killed the prime minister and wounded his wife. The crime remains unsolved to this day.
117. ___-Dale (1902 Kentucky Derby winner) : ALAN A
Alan-a-Dale was the racehorse that won the 1902 Kentucky Derby. The horse went lame going down the final stretch, but he was able to finish the race in front as he had a six length lead before sustaining the injury. Alan-a-Dale is a fictional outlaw associated the the legend of Robin Hood.
2. Tone deafness : ASONIA
Asonia is just that, a word for tone deafness, a medical term that I believe is pretty much obsolete these days. I managed to find a reference to it in the “Dictionary of Philosophy and Psychology” published in 1901!
3. Division : SCHISM
A schism is a split or a division, usually in a religion.
4. Grandchild of Japanese immigrants : SANSEI
There are some very specific terms used to describe the children born to Japanese immigrants in their new country. The Nisei are second generation Japanese, the Sansei third generation (grandchildren of the immigrant), and the Yonsei are fourth generation.
5. Coastal flier : ERN
An ern (also erne) is also called the while-tailed eagle, and the sea-eagle.
6. Candidate with the slogan “Come home, America” : MCGOVERN
George McGovern ran as the Democratic candidate in the 1972 presidential election, losing to Richard Nixon in a landslide.
7. Film director Pier ___ Pasolini : PAOLO
Film director Pier Paolo Pasolini was another celebrity who met with a violent death. He was found dead on a beach near Rome in 1975, after heaving been run over several times by his own car. The crime was never solved.
13. Sch. where Ross teaches on “Friends” : NYU
Ross Geller is the character on “Friends” played by David Schwimmer. The role of Ross Geller was actually written with Schwimmer in mind, so the role was the first of the “Friends” to be cast.
16. “Renaissance College Girl”? [Dan Brown] : THE DA VINCI COED (Code)
“The Da Vinci Code” is an excellent story, written by Dan Brown. However, Brown’s first book to feature the character Robert Langdon was even better in my opinion, “Angels & Demons”.
17. Yangtze tributary : HAN
The Han River used to be known as the Hanshui, a name that is sometimes still used today.
18. Somme summer : ETE
Ete: the French word for Summer.
24. Batgirl player Craig : YVONNE
Yvonne Craig played Batgirl in the television series “Batman” from the sixties. Batgirl’s alter ego was Barbara Gordon, the librarian daughter of Commissioner Gordon.
29. Puss : MUG
“Puss” and “mug” are both slang terms for “face”.
32. Spreadsheet feature: Abbr. : COL
Spreadsheets are divided into columns.
33. ___-10 (acne medication) : OXY
Oxy-10 is a brand name for a medication with the active ingredient benzoyl peroxide. Benzoyl peroxide is used as an ace treatment, dyeing hair, whitening teeth, and is used in the preparation of flour.
35. The Big Easy, briefly : NOLA
The city of New Orleans, Louisiana has the nickname “The Big Easy”. This name might come from the early 1900s when musicians found it relatively “easy” to find work there.
37. Rapper Fiasco : LUPE
Lupe Fiasco’s real name is Wasalu Jaco, an American rapper.
38. Company whose logo contains its name crossing itself : BAYER
Bayer AG is a German pharmaceutical company founded in 1863. The company’s most famous product is its original brand of aspirin. he company logo, the Bayer cross, was introduced in 1904. That same logo can be seen on an illuminated sign in Leverkusen, where the company is headquartered. It is the largest illuminated sign in the world.
46. Tom ___, Vito’s adopted son and consigliere in “The Godfather” : HAGEN
Tom Hagen was portrayed by Robert Duvall in “The Godfather” movies. Hagen wasn’t an Italian-American, but rather of German-Irish descent. Duvall was slated to appear in the role in “The Godfather, Part III” but the character was written out of the script when Duvall was deemed to have asked for too much money.
47. Appliance appellation : AMANA
The Amana Corporation takes its name from the location of its original headquarters, in Middle Amana, Iowa.
48. “Head Secretary”? [William Golding] : LORD OF THE FILES (Files)
What a story “Lord of the Flies” is! William Golding wrote the novel as an allegory of society. The most famous screen adaptation was made in 1963, directed by Peter Brook.
56. Camping supply : TARP
A tarpaulin is a good thing to have on a camping trip. The word “tarpaulin” is a compound of “tar” and “palling”. Tarred canvas palls were used to cover things on the decks of ships. Some say that the word “tar” for a sailor comes from the same source.
62. Verdi aria : ERI TU
The lovely aria “Eri tu” is from Verdi’s opera “Un ballo in maschera” (A Masked Ball). It tells the story of the assassination of King Gustav III of Sweden, during a masked ball.
75. Holier-than-thou types : BLUENOSES
A bluenose is a person who is excessively puritanical.
77. ESPN’s Hershiser : OREL
Orel Hershiser is big into poker now that he has retired from Major League Baseball. He now lies in Las Vegas, and when he isn’t working for ESPN, he is apparently at the poker tables at least five times a week.
78. Start to freeze? : ANTI
The antifreeze that we put into our cars has ethylene glycol as the active ingredient. It is dangerous stuff, and is very poisonous. It can be detected in the body as calcium oxalate crystals form in the kidneys. It sounds like a horrible way to go …
82. Low pitch indicator : BASS CLEF
Clef is the French word for “key”. In music, a clef is used to indicate the pitch of the notes written on the stave. The bass clef is also known as the F-clef.
85. Not 85-Across : DAT
86. Corp. logos, e.g. : TMS
Corporate logos are often trademarked.
89. Start of many a rap moniker : LIL’
Lil’ is a short form of the word “little”. There are a whole slew of rappers named Lil’ something, like Lil’ Wayne, Lil’ J, and Lil’ Kim.
91. Ending with Rock : ETTES
The famous Rockettes can be seen at teh Radio City Music Hall. They have an amazing schedule during the Christmas season when they perform five, high-kicking shows every day, seven days a week. The troupe has been doing this every Christmas for 77 years.
93. “Bam!” blurter : EMERIL
Emeril Lagasse is an American chef, born in Massachusetts. he first achieved notoriety as executive chef in Commander’s Palace in New Orleans. Now famous for his television shows, his cuisine still showcases New Orleans ingredients and influences.
94. “Hey Jude” sounds : NA NA NA
“Hey Jude” was originally a song called “Hey Jules”, written by Paul McCartney. He wrote the original song for John Lennon’s song Julian, as a way of comforting during his parents divorce.
96. Minor-league category : CLASS A
Baseball’s minor leagues are divided into four classes: Triple-A (AAA), Double-A (AA), Class A (Single-A or A), and Rookie.
98. To wit : ID EST
Id est, the Latin for “that is”, abbreviated to i.e.
99. Astrologer Dixon : JEANE
Jeane Dixon was a famous American astrologer who wrote a best-selling autobiography.
100. Fictional hero in search of stolen treasure : BILBO
Bilbo Baggins is the main character in Tolkien’s “The Hobbit”, and makes an appearances in “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy.
104. Osso buco, basically : VEAL
Osso is the Italian word for bone, as in the name of the dish “Osso Bucco”, braised veal shanks.
106. Record exec Gotti : IRV
Irv Gotti is a record producer, the founder of the The Inc record label. Gotti was born Iring Lorenzo, and took the name Gotti after the Boss of the Gambino crime family.
108. ___ tuna : AHI
Yellowfin tuna is marketed as “ahi”, thereby using its Hawaiian name. It’s one big fish, often weighing over 300 pounds.
109. GATT successor : WTO
The General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) was laid down in 1949, and was a compromise solution reached by participating governments after failing to establish the International Trade Organization. Finally, in 1995, such an organization was formed, and the World Trade Organization effectively succeeded GATT.
110. Ending with Rock : OLA
Rock-Ola was a brand name of jukebox. Rock-Ola basically shared the market with Wurlitzer. Rock-Ola is still making jukeboxes to this day, catering to the “nostalgia” market, producing authentic looking players but using CDs and touch-screens for better sound and ease of use.