The full solution to today’s crossword that appears in the New York Times
The full solution to today’s SYNDICATED New York Times crossword that appears in all other publications
THEME:CATCHING SOME ZZ … all the theme answers contain at least one square with a ZZ in tit e.g. RA(ZZ)MATA(ZZ), JACU(ZZ)I, (ZZ)TOP
COMPLETION TIME: 9m 52s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 2 … REE (ROE), STUPE (STUPO)
5. iPhone user’s purchase : APP
When you buy your iPhone, you’ll probably find yourself downloading loads of apps (applications).
Apple started selling the iPhone at 6 pm local time on June 29, 2007, with hundreds of customers lined up outside stores all over the world.
8. Wings it : ADLIBS
“Ad libitum” is a Latin phrase meaning “at one’s pleasure”. In common usage, the phrase is usually shortened to “ad lib”. On the stage, the concept of an “ad lib” is very familiar. For example, an actor who substitutes his own words for forgotten lines uses an ad lib. Or, a director may instruct an actor to use his or her own words at a particular point in a performance, to promote a feeling of spontaneity.
15. Pot-au-___ (French stew) : FEU
Pot-au-feu is a French stew made with beef, similar to many stews made around the world, containing cheap cuts of beef with mainly root vegetables and spices. The name “pot-au-feu” means “pot on the fire”, and used to describe how a pot was always kept on the fire during cold weather, with ingredients being added when they became available, and stew doled out when needed.
17. Flashy display : RAZZMATAZZ
Razzmatazz is a flashy maneuver designed to perhaps deceive or just bedazzle. “Razzmatazz” perhaps came from the similar term “razzle-dazzle”, and has been around since the end of the 19th century.
19. “Water that moves you” sloganeer : JACUZZI
Jacuzzi is one of those brand names that has become so associated with the product, that it is often assumed to be a generic term. The Jacuzzi company was founded in 1915 by the seven (!) Jacuzzi brothers from Italy, in Berkley, California. They pronounced their name “ja-coot-si”, as one might suspect when one realizes the name is of Italian origin. The company started off making aircraft propellers, and then small aircraft, but suspended aircraft production in 1925 when one the brothers was killed in one of their planes. The family then moved onto making hydraulic pumps, and then in 1948 developed a submersible bathtub pump so that one of the brothers’ sons could enjoy hydrotherapy for his rheumatoid arthritis. The product took off in the fifties with some astute marketing towards “worn-out housewives” and the use of celebrity spokesman, Jack Benny.
20. Org. in “Burn After Reading” : CIA
“Burn After Reading” is a 2008 black comedy from the Coen Brothers that really disappointed, I thought. It had a great cast, headed by George Clooney, Brad Pitt, John Malkovich and the lovely Frances McDormand, but it just did not deliver. Die-hard Coen Brothers fans might want to take a look though.
21. Brand with an iconic cowboy : MARLBORO
Marlboro cigarettes were launched by Philip Morris in 1924 as a cigarette for women. To that end there was a red band around the filter designed to hide lipstick stains. In the fifties the brand was repositioned as a men’s cigarette, offering men a “manly” filtered cigarette as the world was becoming aware of the link between cigarettes and lung cancer. With the introduction of the Marlboro Man, the rugged cowboy riding across the west, sales rocketed from a 1% market share to become the 4th biggest seller in the country. The original Marlboro Man was model and actor named Darrell Winfield. He received loads of free cigarettes during his reign, I am sure. He died of lung cancer …
23. Where pastrami may be put : ON RYE
In the US, pastrami was originally called “pastrama”, a dish brought to America by Jewish immigrants from Romania in the second half of the the nineteenth century. The original name may have evolved from the Turkish word “pastirma” meaning “pressed”. “Pastrama” likely morphed into “pastrami” influenced by the name of Italian meat, salami.
25. Golf’s ___ Pak : SE RI
Se Ri Pak is a South Korean golfer playing on the LPGA tour. Being a Korean name, we really should be calling her Pak Se Ri as she is known in her homeland. Korean names always start with the family name.
30. Passover meals : SEDERS
The Passover Seder is a ritual feast that marks the beginning of the Jewish passover holiday.
32. Dutch-based financial giant : ING
ING is a huge, Dutch banking institution, created via a merger in 1991. The company headquarters is in a spectacular building in Amsterdam called simply ING House. ING stands for Internationale Nederlanden Groep.
34. Test for Ph.D. wannabes : GRE
Passing the Graduate Record Examination is usually a requirement for entry into graduate school here in the US.
38. Like Rod Serling tales : EERIE
Rod Serling is of course the man behind, and in front of, the iconic science-fiction TV series “The Twilight Zone“. Serling used a lot of the shows he created to advance his strongly held views against war (he was a soldier in WWII), and against racism.
40. Asleep … or a hint to this puzzle’s theme : CATCHING SOME ZZ
43. La ___ (San Diego area) : JOLLA
The name of the city of La Jolla is often said to be a corruption of the Spanish “La Joya” meaning “the jewel”, giving rise to the city’s nickname “Jewel City”. However, the scholars dispute this etymology, but it makes for good marketing.
44. Patron of sailors : ST ELMO
St. Elmo is the patron saint of sailors. He lends his name to the electrostatic weather phenomenon (often seen at sea) known as St. Elmo’s fire. The “fire” is actually a plasma discharge caused by the air ionizing at the end of a pointed object (like the mast of a ship), often observed during electrical storms.
45. Nile slitherer : ASP
The asp is a venomous snake found in the Nile region of Africa. It was so venomous that it was used in ancient Egypt and Greece as a means of execution. Cleopatra observed such executions noting that the venom brought on sleepiness without any painful spasms. When she opted to commit suicide, the asp was therefore her chosen method.
46. Matchsticks game : NIM
Nim is an ancient game, a simple mathematical game of strategy. The game involves removing items from distinct piles (say matchsticks). Each player must remove at least one item each turn, and the last person to remove an item is the loser.
52. Rock trio known for its bearded members : ZZ TOP
In the blues rock band ZZ Top, the hairy guitar players are Billy F. Gibbons and Dusty Hill. The relatively clean-shaven drummer is … wait for it … Frank Beard …
57. Earth, in sci-fi : TERRA
“Terra” is the Latin word for “earth”.
62. Tested, as on “The $64,000 Question” : QUIZZED
“The $64,000 Question” was around in the days of the great quiz show scandals, like the cheating that went on in the game show “Twenty One” (all revealed in the 1994 movie “Quiz Show“). The cheating in “Twenty One” involved showing a contestant the questions ahead of time. The cheating in “The $64,000 Question” involved seeding the deck of questions with subjects that suited popular contestants.
65. 1892 Kipling poem : FUZZY-WUZZY
“Fuzzy-Wuzzy” was a not so nice term used by British soldiers in the Sudan in the late 1800s. The East African nomadic warriors called the Hadendoa wore their hair long and matted with butter giving them a “fuzzy” look. Having said that, the Kipling poem, “Fuzzy-Wuzzy”, lauds the Hadendao for their bravery and fighting ability. If you’ve seen the film “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” you’ll have heard a reference to the Fuzzy-Wuzzies by the old soldier character. Fans of PBS’s “Dad’s Army” will have also heard old Corporal Jones referring to the Fuzzy-Wuzzies when telling of his service in the Sudan.
67. “Key Largo” actress : BACALL
What a bombshell Lauren Bacall was, with that husky voice and her quiet, suggestive manner. Bacall was born in New York City to Jewish immigrant parents from Europe. She is actually a first cousin of Shimon Peres, the President of Israel and former Prime Minister.
69. He sang about Alice’s restaurant : ARLO
“Alice’s Restaurant Masacree” is the name of the Arlo Guthrie song, all 18m 48s of it, that takes up one whole side of the album “Alice’s Restaurant“.
70. Iced rum cocktail that’s stirred with a stick : SWIZZLE
I drank a rum swizzle or two on the island of Bermuda many years ago, and very nice they were too. They are so popular on Bermuda that the swizzle is often called the island’s national drink. The drink also gave the name to the “swizzle stick” introduced in cocktails in 1933.
71. Mr. ___ (old whodunit game) : REE
The full name for the old mystery game is “Mr. Ree! The Fireside Detective”. It was first published in 1937, and frankly, it sounds like a great game even by today’s standards …
72. Orbison and Bean : ROYS
Roy Orbison had to be one the sickliest looking performers I’ve ever seen. He had a very sallow complexion, pock-marked from teenage acne. The yellowy skin tone itself came from a severe bout of jaundice as a child. Perhaps poor nutrition affected him and his siblings, because all of them had very poor eyesight, with Roy almost blind and wearing very thick lenses from a very young age. He was also very ashamed of his head of hair, which was almost a ghostly white, and so he dyed it jet black even when he was young. Despite all this, he was immensely popular in his heyday with teenage girls, particularly in Canada and Ireland for some reason. On a tour of Ireland in 1963, the Irish police had to stop one of his performances in order to pull the Irish girls off poor Mr. Orbison.
Judge Roy Bean was an eccentric saloon-keeper and Justice of the Peace in the Wild West. His full name was Phantly Roy Bean, Jr.
1. Imelda, the shoe lover : MARCOS
Many years back I lived for a couple of very happy years in Manila in the Philippines. I had an apartment there, and living in the apartment building next door was Imelda Marcos, along with all of her shoes I assume …
2. “Seinfeld” gal : ELAINE
The character of Elaine Benes, unlike Jerry, Kramer and George, did not appear in pilot episode of “Seinfeld“. NBC executives specified the addition of a female lead when they picked up the show, citing that that situation was too “male-centric”.
4. 7-Eleven convenience : ATM
At many 7-Eleven convenience stores, one has the convenience of access to an Automated Teller Machine (ATM).
5. Shaving lotion brand : AFTA
Afta Lotion is a brand name belong to Colgate-Palmolive.
6. Compote fruits : PEARS
A compote is a fruit mixture stewed in syrup. The word “compote” comes to us from French, and has the same etymology as our word “compost”! “Composte” is an Old French word for “mixture”.
7. You’re doing one : PUZZLE
And I hope you did well …
9. Snookums : DEAR
The term of endearment “snookums” comes from the family name “Snooks”, a name used in Britain in the 1800s for some hypothetical, unknown individual (as we would use the name “Joe Blow” perhaps).
10. Maj.’s superior : LT COL
The rank of Lieutenant Colonel ranks above a major, and below a colonel, in many armed services around the world.
11. Paper in a poker pot : IOU
If a person is “short” and can’t pay up, he or she might write out an I.O.U. (I Owe You).
13. Eastern honorific : SRI
Sri is a title of respect for a male in India.
18. Like apple pie, in a saying : AMERICAN
The full expression is “As American as motherhood and apple pie”. I think the concept here is not that America is the home of motherhood or apple pie, but rather that America is as wholesome as motherhood and apple pie.
22. Game with a dummy : BRIDGE
Four people are needed to play the card game bridge, and on each round, one person doesn’t participate in the play. He or she goes and gets the drinks, and is called “the dummy”.
24. 1983 Streisand title role : YENTL
“Yentl” is first and foremost a play, that opened in New York City in 1975. The move to adapt the play for the big screen was led by Barbara Streisand, and she wrote the first outline as a musical herself, as far back as 1968. The film was eventually made and released in 1983, starring Streisand as the lead.
31. Coll., e.g. : SCH
A college is a school.
33. Euclid’s subject : GEOMETRY
Euclid of Alexandria was a Greek mathematician who lived in the first millennium, often referred to as the “Father of Geometry”. He wrote a famous book called “Elements” on the subject of mathematics, and the title was so enduring that it was used as the main textbook for the subject right up to the late 19th century.
36. Destiny : KISMET
Kismet is a Turkish word, meaning fate or fortune, one’s lot.
37. Otoscope user, for short : ENT
An otoscope is that instrument that an Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) specialist uses to look into the interior of your ears.
40. Part of COLA : COST
COLA is an acronym, for a Cost of Living Adjustment (or Allowance).
41. Bowser’s bowlful : ALPO
The Alpo name is a brand of dog food originally produced by Allen Products founded in 1936. The name “Alpo” is actually an abbreviation for “Allen Products”. Lorne Greene used to push Alpo in television spots, as did Ed McMahon, and Garfield the Cat would you believe?
42. Camera type, briefly : SLR
SLR: Single Lens Reflex. Usually cameras with changeable lenses are the SLR type. The main feature of an SLR is that a mirror reflects the image seen through the lens out through the viewfinder, so that the photographer sees exactly what the lens sees. The mirror moves out of the way as the picture is taken, and the image that comes through the lens falls onto unexposed film, or nowadays onto a digital sensor.
43. Newport festival music : JAZZ
The Newport Jazz Festival is held annually in Newport, Rhode Island.
49. Conductor Toscanini : ARTURO
Arturo Toscanini was an Italian conductor of classical music. Toscanini took up the baton for the first time under sensational circumstances in 1886. He was attending a performance of “Aida” in Rio de Janeiro as the assistant chorus master, on a night when a substitute conductor was leading the orchestra. The substitute was in charge because the lead conductor had been forced to step down by striking performers who would not work with him. The disgruntled lead conductor led the audience in booing the unfortunate substitute, forcing him off the stage. The another substitute attempted to lead the performance, but he could not overcome the hostility of the crowd. The musicians themselves begged Toscanini to take up the baton, for the first time in his life, simply because he knew the score by heart. After over an hour of mayhem, Toscanini led the company in a remarkable performance, to marvelous acclaim. His conducting career was launched.
50. Yellowstone sighting : GRIZZLY
Yellowstone National Park was the first National Park to be established in the world, when it was designated as such by President Grant in 1872. What a great tradition it started! The American National Parks truly are a treasure.
Yellowstone NP takes its name from the Yellowstone River, as the park is located at its headwaters. Yellowstone River was named “Roche Jaune” by French trappers (“Yellow Stone” in French), which was likely a translation of the Minnetaree name for the waterway, which they called Rock Yellow River.
51. Some plasma TVs : SANYOS
Sanyo is a Japanese electronics manufacturer, based near Osaka, founded in 1947. The company name means “three oceans” reflecting the original aim to sell its products all around the world (across the three oceans, the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian).
53. Zest : PIZZAZZ
Pizzazz is showbiz slang, dating back to the 1930s.
55. Nilla cookie : WAFER
As one might expect, Nilla is a shortened from of “vanilla”. However, you won’t find any vanilla in Nilla cookies or wafers. They always been flavored with vanillin, synthetic vanilla. Is nothing sacred?
59. “Momma” cartoonist Lazarus : MELL
Mell Lazarus is known as the creator of two long-running comic strips. “Miss Peach” ran from 1957 to 2002, and “Momma” first appeared in 1970 and is still going strong. Lazarus started his career as an apprentice to famed cartoonist Al Capp.
60. Harriet’s mate : OZZIE
“The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet” ran from 1952 to 1966, and it is has been running continuously in syndication ever since. It is the longest-running, non-animated sitcom in US television history.
62. Eli and Peyton Manning, for two: Abbr. : QBS
Even I know that Eli Manning and his older brother, Peyton, are quarterbacks!
63. Motor City labor org. : UAW
The United Auto Workers was founded to represent workers in the auto plants in the Detroit area in 1935. Nowadays its membership extends into the Aerospace, Agriculture and other industries.
64. Here, to Henri : ICI
“Ici” is the French word for “here”.
66. Collect-all-the-cards game : WAR
The card game “War” is a simple children’s game. But, adults can often find a very similar game to bet money on, called “Casino War”.