1208-10: New York Times Crossword Answers 8 Dec 10, Wednesday

Quicklinks:
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: SECRET AGENTS … each of the theme answers includes the word “SPY” secretly hidden away, written backwards (YPS) i.e. YPSILANTI, CALYPSO MUSIC, “APOCALYPSE NOW”, GYPSY MOTH
COMPLETION TIME: 17m 30s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies

Across
5. Workplace watchdog, for short : OSHA
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration was created in 1970 during the Nixon administration. OSHA regulates workplaces, but only in the private sector, the one exception being the US Postal Service.

The Secret of NIMH (2-Disc Family Fun Edition)15. Mrs. Frisby’s charges in “The Secret of NIMH” : RATS
“The Secret of NIMH” is the 1982 screen adaptation of a book written by Robert C. O’Brien. The novel’s title is “Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH”. “Mrs. Frisby” doesn’t actually appear in the movie version, at least not under the same name. In the film her character is called Mrs. “Brisby”, with the name change being made due to concerns about a potential trademark dispute with “Frisbee” discs.

16. See 26-Across : ALTAR
26. One may be lit on a 16-Across : VOTIVE

17. Home of Eastern Michigan University : YPSILANTI
The city of Ypsilanti, Michigan is named for a hero in the Greek War of Independence, Demetrius Ypsilanti. Among its claims to fame, Ypsilanti was the home to the original Dominic’s pizza store.

Eastern Michigan University was founded in 1849 in Ypsilanti, Michigan. It’s original name was Michigan State Normal School, and it was the first normal school founded outside of the original 13 colonies (a normal school was a teacher-training school i.e. a school that established teaching standards or “norms”).

19. Rodeo rope : REATA
“Reata” is the Spanish word for a “lasso”.

Very Best of20. Harry Belafonte’s specialty : CALYPSO MUSIC
The musical style of calypso originated in Trinidad and Tobago, but there seems to be some debate about which influences were most important in developing the genre. It is generally agreed that the music was imported by African slaves from their homeland, but others emphasize influences of the medieval French troubadours. To me it sounds more African in nature. The popularity of calypso  took off when it was first recorded in 1912, and it spread around the world in the thirties and forties. It reached its pinnacle with the release of the famous “Banana Boat Song” by Harry Belafonte.

22. “___ natural” : ACT
This one took me a while, as I still have trouble using adjectives as adverbs. I’d say “act naturally“.

25. U.N. workers’ grp. : ILO
The ILO (International Labour Organization) is now an agency administered by the UN, but it was established by the League of Nations after WWI. The ILO deals with important issues such as health and safety, discrimination, child labor and forced labor. The organization was recognized for its work in 1969 when it was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

10 Hour White Unscented Votive Candles Set of 7226. One may be lit on a 16-Across : VOTIVE
16. See 26-Across : ALTAR

29. Pole, for one : SLAV
The Slavic peoples are found in the majority in communities that cover over half of Europe. This large ethnic group is traditionally broken down into three smaller groups:

– the West Slavic (including Czechs and Poles)
– the East Slavic (including Russians and Ukrainians)
– the South Slavic (including Bulgarian and Serbs)

31. It might precede a collection: Abbr. : SER
In church, there might be a sermon followed by a collection.

Cool Magnifico33. Rapper parodied by Weird Al Yankovic in “Amish Paradise” : COOLIO
Coolio is the stage name of rapper Artis Leon Ivey, Jr. In 2009, Coolio joined fellow-American Le Toya Jackson as one of the house guests in “Celebrity Big Brother” (UK version) and apparently he created quite a stir on the show with some outrageous comments. But he also showed a softer side with a spontaneous, emotional reaction to the election of Barack Obama to the office of US President, as he watched the election results coming in live in the Big Brother house.

Apocalypse Now (Two-Disc Special Edition) [Blu-ray]35. 1979 film with Capt. Willard and Col. Kurtz : APOCALYPSE NOW
The epic war drama “Apocalypse Now” was released in 1979 and starred Martin Sheen as Captain Willard and Marlon Brando as Colonel Kurtz. The premise of the film is that both Willard and Kurtz are special ops officers, with Willard sent into the jungle to assassinate Kurtz who has “gone rogue”. The film is notorious for the trouble that director Francis Ford Coppola had completing the shoot. Brando turned up on set grossly overweight (as a special ops guy!), and Martin Sheen had a heart attack during filming.

41. “Idylls of the King” lady : ENID
“Idylls of the King” is a cycle of twelve poems by Alfred, Lord Tennyson, that retell the tale of King Arthur. The sixth of the twelve “idylls” is the story of Geraint and Enid.

Razor Dirt Quad Electric Four-Wheeled Off-Road Vehicle (Red)43. Motocross racer, for short : ATV
A motocross racer might use an all terrain vehicle. Not my cup of tea …

46. Skating maneuver : LUTZ
In figure skating, a Lutz is a toe-pick-assisted jump that one starts skating backwards and ends skating backwards (there’s more to it that I don’t really understand!). The maneuver is named after Alois Lutz, an Austrian skater who first performed it in competition way back in 1913. Lutz wowed the crowd with a single jump, but today both men and women are landing triple Lutz jumps. No one has landed a clean quadruple Lutz in competition.

47. P.F.C.’s punishment : KP DUTY
KP is a US military slang term, and stands for either “kitchen police” or “kitchen patrol”.

My Lai: A Brief History with Documents (Bedford Series in History and Culture)51. My ___, Vietnam : LAI
The My Lai Massacre took place in the Vietnamese village of My Lai in March, 1968. After an investigation it was determined that at least 347 unarmed civilians, mostly women, children and elderly people, were murdered by a unit of US soldiers. It was also revealed that gang rapes and torture took place during the massacre. At least three servicemen tried to halt the killing, but they were outnumbered by those participating. About two years after the massacre, 26 men were charged with crimes, but only one man was convicted, William Calley. Calley was found guilty of murder and sentenced to life imprisonment and hard labor. President Nixon stepped in the day after Calley was sentenced and ordered him transferred from Leavenworth prison and placed under house arrest pending appeal. On appeal the life sentence was reduced to 20 years, and this was further reduced to 10 years as an act of clemency by the Secretary of the Army. He was released after serving three years in total.

53. Undercover operatives … or what are hiding in 17-, 20-, 35- and 58-Across? : SECRET AGENTS

57. Onetime TWA competitor : US AIR
Trans World Airlines was a big carrier in the US, but was perhaps even more recognized for its extensive presence in Europe and the Middle East. For many years, especially after the collapse of Pan-Am, TWA was considered the unofficial flag carrier for the US. The company started in 1930, the product of a forced merger of Transcontinental Air Transport and Western Air Express. The Transcontinental and Western Air (the original TWA) that resulted was what the Postmaster General wanted, a bigger airline to which the Postal Service could award airmail contracts.

58. Leaf-eating insect scourge : GYPSY MOTH
Gypsy moths were brought to the US from Eurasia in 1868 by one Leopold Touvelot, a French scientist who lived in Massachusetts. He was trying to make a hybrid, silk-spinning caterpillar that was resistant to disease. However, some of the moths escaped from his lab, and today the gypsy moth is one of the most prevalent and destructive pests of hardwood trees in the eastern US.

67. Post-baby boomer group, for short : GEN X
The term Generation X originated in the UK, the name of a book by Jane Deverson. Her book detailed the results of her study of British youths in 1964, contrasting their lifestyle to those of previous generations. It was  Canadian author Douglas Coupland who was responsible for popularizing the term, with his more successful publication “Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture”. By the latest accepted definition, Gen Xers were born between 1961 and 1981.

Down
Adults Homer Simpson Mask1. Homer Simpson’s middle name : JAY
“The Simpsons” is one of the most successful programs produced by the Fox Broadcasting Company. Homer Simpson’s catchphrase is “D’oh”, such a famous exclamation nowadays that it has been included in the OED since 2001.

Apple iPad MC496LL/A Tablet (32GB, Wifi + 3G)2. iPad download, in brief : APP
Apple’s iPad is a tablet computer, meaning that the whole computer is contained in a flat, touchscreen device, with input being made by using one’s fingers on the screen or by using a stylus. It looks very cool, but it’s still a bit too pricey for me for what you get ($600 – $900).

And you can download lots of applications (apps) if you have an iPad …

3. First of a pair of lists : DOS
You might make two lists, “dos” and “don’ts”.

6. Big name in Japanese electronics : SANYO
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, the Pacific and the Indian).

7. U.R.L. start : HTTP
Internet addresses are Uniform Resource Locators.

Just in case you aren’t aware, “http” are the first letters in most Internet links (just look up at the address of this blog in the address bar above). Oh, and it stands for HyperText Transfer Protocol.

9. 35-Across, for one : WAR MOVIE
35. 1979 film with Capt. Willard and Col. Kurtz : APOCALYPSE NOW

10. North Pacific islander : ALEUT
The Aleuts live on the Aleutian Islands of the North Pacific, and on the Commander Islands at the western end of the same island chain. The Aleutians are part of the United States, and the Commander Islands are in Russia.

22. Turkish title : AGA
An aga, or agha, is a title that was used by both civil and military officials in the Ottoman Empire.

23. Result of trauma, maybe : COMA
“Coma” comes from the Greek word “koma” meaning “deep sleep”.

24. Pack (down) : TAMP
“Tamp” means to pack down tightly by tapping. “Tamp” was originally used to specifically describe the action of packing down sand or dirt around an explosive prior to detonation.

Soyuz: A Universal Spacecraft (Springer Praxis Books / Space Exploration)29. Russian space program started in the 1960s : SOYUZ
The Russian Soyuz space program started in the early sixties as part of a plan to land a cosmonaut on the moon. Soyuz was focused on two pieces of hardware, the Soyuz rocket (the expendable launch vehicle), and the Soyuz spacecraft itself . The Soyuz program is alive and well, and derivatives of those early designs from the sixties are regularly visiting the International Space Station. “Soyuz” is a Russian word meaning “union”.

33. Medical condition treated by thrombolysis : CLOT
Thrombolysis is also called “clot busting” for obvious reasons. The technique involves the introduction of an enzyme into the bloodstream that acts on the clot to render it soluble in blood plasma.

34. Lacking width and depth, for short : ONE-D
The dimension of an object is defined as the minimum number of coordinates needed to specify each point in the object. A line, therefore, is one-dimensional as you only need an x-coordinate to specify a particular point on the line. A surface is two-dimensional, as you need both an x-coordinate and a y-coordinate to locate a point on the surface. The inside of a solid object is then three-dimensional, needing an x-, y- and z-coordinate to specify a point, say within a cube.

36. Screening aid : CALLER ID
The basic technology behind caller ID was developed in Athens, Greece by “Ted” Paraskevakos in the late sixties and early seventies. The man should be made a saint …

Hemingway: A Biography44. Title location in a Hemingway novel : THE SEA
If you’ve read Ernest Hemingway’s “The Old Man and the Sea” (probably first at school, like me) you’ll likely remember it as a quick read as it is a novella, although it might be better described as a “long short story”. It was first published in 1952, the last major work that Hemingway had published in his lifetime. That first publication was as a story in “Life Magazine”, and it was such a hit that the magazine sold 5 million copies in the first two days. “The Old Man and the Sea” won a Pulitzer in 1952, and two years later the title was cited when Hemingway was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954.

47. Where Manhattan is : KANSAS
Manhattan, Kansas is the fourth largest city in the state and is known as a college town, home to Kansas State University. The original settlement that grew to be Manhattan was known as Boston back in the mid-1800s when settlers from the Cincinnati-Manhattan Company of Ohio landed (actually, they ran aground!) in the area. The settlers agreed to stay in Boston provided the settlement was renamed to Manhattan, a conditon that was readily agreed to. In 1977 Manhattan was officially given the nickname of “The Little Apple”, for obvious reasons.

The Stink of Love: Pepe Le Pew's Guide to L'Amour51. Cartoon stinker : LE PEW
Pepé Le Pew is a very likable cartoon character from the Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies series. Pepé is a French skunk, first introduced way back in 1945, and he is someone always thinking of “l’amour”.

54. Food thickener : AGAR
Agar is a jelly extracted from seaweed, with many uses. It is found in Japanese desserts, and can be used as a laxative or as a food thickener, and it is the most common medium used for growing bacteria in Petri dishes.

55. Greek deli specialty : GYRO
A gyro is a traditional Greek dish, a sandwich made with pita bread containing meat, tomato, onion and tzatziki, a yogurt and cucumber sauce. The meat for gyros is usually roasted on a tall vertical spit, and is sliced from the spit as required.

56. Urban woe : SMOG
“Smog” is of course a portmanteau word, formed by melding “smoke” and “fog”. The word was first used to describe the air around London in the early 1900s.

61. Do voodoo on : HEX
“Hexen” is a German word meaning “to practice witchcraft”. The use of the word “hex” in English started with the Pennsylvania Dutch in the early 1800s.

For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Shade of green : JADE
5. Workplace watchdog, for short : OSHA
9. “That ___ my question” : WASN’T
14. Each : A POP
15. Mrs. Frisby’s charges in “The Secret of NIMH” : RATS
16. See 26-Across : ALTAR
17. Home of Eastern Michigan University : YPSILANTI
19. Rodeo rope : REATA
20. Harry Belafonte’s specialty : CALYPSO MUSIC
22. “___ natural” : ACT
25. U.N. workers’ grp. : ILO
26. One may be lit on a 16-Across : VOTIVE
27. Veer off track : GO AWRY
29. Pole, for one : SLAV
31. It might precede a collection: Abbr. : SER
32. Guns’ partner : AMMO
33. Rapper parodied by Weird Al Yankovic in “Amish Paradise” : COOLIO
35. 1979 film with Capt. Willard and Col. Kurtz : APOCALYPSE NOW
40. Universally known : FAMOUS
41. “Idylls of the King” lady : ENID
43. Motocross racer, for short : ATV
46. Skating maneuver : LUTZ
47. P.F.C.’s punishment : KP DUTY
49. Some prayer clothing : SHAWLS
51. My ___, Vietnam : LAI
52. ___-wolf : SHE
53. Undercover operatives … or what are hiding in 17-, 20-, 35- and 58-Across? : SECRET AGENTS
57. Onetime TWA competitor : US AIR
58. Leaf-eating insect scourge : GYPSY MOTH
62. Hundredth: Prefix : CENTI-
63. Gray ___ : AREA
64. Tot’s injury : OWIE
65. Couldn’t stand : HATED
66. Garden divisions : ROWS
67. Post-baby boomer group, for short : GEN X

Down
1. Homer Simpson’s middle name : JAY
2. iPad download, in brief : APP
3. First of a pair of lists : DOS
4. Awesome : EPIC
5. How some medications are taken : ORALLY
6. Big name in Japanese electronics : SANYO
7. U.R.L. start : HTTP
8. Sale condition : AS IS
9. 35-Across, for one : WAR MOVIE
10. North Pacific islander : ALEUT
11. Immobility : STASIS
12. Longtime local : NATIVE
13. Finder of missing persons : TRACER
18. Cubs’ place : LAIR
21. Most toilet seats : OVALS
22. Turkish title : AGA
23. Result of trauma, maybe : COMA
24. Pack (down) : TAMP
28. Bark : WOOF
29. Russian space program started in the 1960s : SOYUZ
30. Takes the top (off) : LOPS
33. Medical condition treated by thrombolysis : CLOT
34. Lacking width and depth, for short : ONE-D
36. Screening aid : CALLER ID
37. Something that can’t be missed : A MUST
38. Burden : ONUS
39. ___ child (pregnant) : WITH
42. Hair salon stock : DYE
43. In and of itself : AS SUCH
44. Title location in a Hemingway novel : THE SEA
45. Like rooms to rent : VACANT
47. Where Manhattan is : KANSAS
48. Unfortunate circumstance : PITY
50. Correspond : WRITE
51. Cartoon stinker : LE PEW
54. Food thickener : AGAR
55. Greek deli specialty : GYRO
56. Urban woe : SMOG
59. Be short : OWE
60. Cookie holder : TIN
61. Do voodoo on : HEX

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