1220-10: New York Times Crossword Answers 20 Dec 10, Monday

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: Animals’ Stuff … each of the theme answer has two word’s, the first being the possessive from of various animals i.e. CAT’S CRADLE, MONKEY’S UNCLE, DOG’S AGE, ELEPHANT’S EAR & LION’S SHARE.
COMPLETION TIME: 7m 36s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies

Across
Many Faces of Love5. 1960s-’70s R&B singer Marilyn : MCCOO
Marilyn McCoo is best known as the lead female singer with the 5th Dimension, a group that was very successful in the sixties and seventies. McCoo married another member of the 5th Dimension, Billy Davis, Jr. and the couple are still performing, only nowadays it’s as a duo.

14. Norway’s capital : OSLO
Oslo is an ancient city, founded around 1048. The medieval city was destroyed by fire in 1624, and was rebuilt by the Danish-Norwegian king Christian IV and renamed Christiana. In 1877, there was an official change of the name to Kristiana, and then more recently in 1925, the name was restored to the original Oslo. Things have gone full circle, for now the center of Oslo, the area that would have been contained by the original medieval walls, it has apparently been renamed Christiana.

Beetle Bailey: The Daily & Sunday Strips, 196516. “Beetle Bailey” bulldog : OTTO
Sgt. Snorkel is Beetle Bailey’s nemesis in the cartoon strip. Snorkel has a dog called Otto 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.

Finger Strings: A Book of Cat's-Cradles and String Figures17. Game played with strings looped over the fingers : CAT’S CRADLE
Cat’s Cradle is likely to be one of the oldest games played by man, one that sprung up independently in all parts of the world.

21. Feather pen : QUILL
Quills have been used as writing implements since the 6th century. Historically, goose, swan and turkey feathers have been the quills of choice. A bird’s feather is well suited for writing, as the hollow shaft acts as a reservoir for ink which then flows to the tip due to capillary action. Choice of feather is important. Right-handed writers are best served by feathers from the left wing, as the feather curves away from the palm of the hand when writing. The tip of the quill is sharpened using a “quill knife”. This quill knife is the ancestor of what we know today as a “penknife”.

22. Self-description of someone who’s surprised : MONKEY’S UNCLE
When Charles Darwin published his theory of evolution in his book “Descent of Man”, the general reception could at best be described as “skeptical”. The phrase “I’ll be a monkey’s uncle” came out of this reaction, an expression that was designed to ridicule Darwin’s theory.

Signed Buttram, Pat 8x10 B&W (P) Photo25. Farmer-turned-con man in a 1960s sitcom : MR HANEY
Mr. Haney was one of the neighboring farmers, and a con man, in the fun sitcom from the sixties called “Green Acres”. Haney was played by actor Pat Buttram, someone you might have seen in a few westerns as well, in which he invariably played the “sidekick”. It was Haney that sold the Douglases (Eddie Albert and Eva Gabor) their dilapidated farm in the first place.

28. Not much : A TAD
Back in the 1800s a “tad” was used to describe a young child, and this morphed into our usage meaning a small amount in the early 1900s. The original use of tad to mean a child is very likely a shorted version of “tadpole”.

29. Designer Geoffrey : BEENE
Geoffrey Beene was an American fashion designer. He had an impressive list of clients that included First Ladies Lady Bird Johnson, Pat Nixon and Nancy Reagan.

30. Oklahoma city named for the daughter of its first 4-Down : ADA
Back in 1889, Jeff Reed was hired to carry the mail between the two communities of Stonewall and Center in what was then called the Indian Territory. Reed had moved to the area from Texas, and he bought some land in between the two limits of his mail route and built himself a log cabin. Pretty soon other settlers built homes nearby, and in 1891 the settlement got its own post office. As postman, Reed got to name the new post office and he called it Ada, after his oldest daughter. Ada is now a county seat and has over 17,000 residents. One of the sons of the city of Ada was the televangelist Oral Roberts.

35. Docs’ org. : AMA
The American Medical Association was founded in 1847, at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia. The first female member was allowed to join in 1868, but the first African American members weren’t let in until 1968.

Pet Photography 101: Tips for taking better photos of your dog or cat36. Long time : DOG’S AGE
The phrase “a dog’s age” meaning “a long time” was a reference to the typical lifetime of a dog, 10-15 years.

44. Former name for Congo : ZAIRE
The African nation once called Zaire is a neighbor of Rwanda. The genocide and war in Rwanda spilled over into Zaire in 1996, with the conflict escalating into what is now called the First Congo War. As part of the war’s fallout, there was a regime change, and in 1997 Zaire changed its name to the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Diamond Head Elephants Ear - Colocasia - 4" Pot50. Taro : ELEPHANT’S EAR
The corm of some taro plants is used to make poi, the traditional Hawaiian dish (that I think tastes horrible). When a taro plant is grown as an ornamental, it is often called “elephant’s ear” due to the shape of its large leaves.

54. Bosc and Bartlett : PEARS
Bosc is a cultivar of the European Pear, grown here in the northwest of the United States. The Bosc is that pear with a skin the color of a potato, with a long neck. I always seem to use the potato as my point of reference. How Irish am I …?

The Bartlett is the most commonly grown pear outside of Asia, a cultivar of the European pear. Back in the UK, where the Bartlett originated, it is called a Williams Pear, or more completely a Williams’ Bon Chretien (Williams’ good Christian). Several Williams trees were imported to the US in 1799 and planted in Massachusetts. The land on which the trees were planted was eventually bought by one Enoch Bartlett, and he started to distribute the pears and basically introduced the variety to the US. He didn’t know that the pears were called Williams, so he named them after himself!

Lion (Close Up) Art Poster Print - 24x3660. What a greedy person may grab : LION’S SHARE
People have been taking “the lion’s share”, the biggest portion, at least since the late 1700s.

62. The “O” in CD-ROM : ONLY
CD-ROM stands for “compact disc read only memory”. That means you can read information from the disc (like a regular music CD for example), but you can’t write to it. You can buy a CD-RW, which stands for “compact disc – rewritable”, with which you can read data and also write over it multiple times if you have the right type of CD drive.

Little Mermaid (Disney), The Ariel & Statue of Eric #39 Single Trading Card63. Disney mermaid : ARIEL
In the 1989 Disney animated film “The Little Mermaid”, the title character is given the name Ariel. In the original fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen, which dates back to 1836, the Little Mermaid is given no name at all, so “Ariel” is a creation by Disney. There is of course a famous statue of the unnamed Little Mermaid sitting in Copenhagen Harbor in Andersen’s native Denmark, although the statue is currently “on tour”. It is visiting Shanghai on the occasion of Expo 2010, the first time it has left Copenhagen since its installation in 1913.

65. Meal on a military base : MESS
“Mess” first came into English about 1300 and described the list of food needed for a meal, from the Old French word “mes” which was a portion of food, or a course at a meal. This usage in English evolved into “mess” meaning a jumbled mass from the concept of “mixed food”. At the same time, the original usage in the sense of a food for a meal surfaced again in the military in the 1500s where a “mess” was a communal eating place.

Down
Nessie the Loch Ness Monster1. ___ Ness monster : LOCH
The Loch Ness monster has been talked about for centuries, but modern interest started in 1933 when a spate of sightings that year were reported. They don’t seem to have stopped since, with photographs really sparking the imagination.

2. Biblical twin who sold his birthright : ESAU
Esau was the twin brother of Jacob, the founder of the Israelites. When their mother, Rebekah, gave birth to the twins “the first emerged red and hairy all over (Esau), with his heel grasped by the hand of the second to come out (Jacob)”. As Esau was the first born, he was entitled to inherit his father’s wealth (it was his “birthright”). Instead, Esau sold his birthright to Jacob for the price of a “mess of pottage” (a meal of lentils).

THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE LANA TURNER 24X36 B&W POSTER PRINT4. One who “always rings twice,” in an old movie : POSTMAN
“The Postman Always Rings Twice” is a crime novel by James M. Cain, first published in 1934. The title is puzzling to say the least, because in the story there is no postman, and no one ringing any doorbells. The novel has been adapted for the big screen four times, has been adapted as a play, and there is even an opera! The most famous film version is from 1946 and stars Lana Turner and John Garfield. I haven’t read the book, but that 1946 movie is fabulous …

5. Jarhead : MARINE
Marine’s are called jarheads because of their high and tight regulation haircuts, at least that’s the story I read …

8. OPEC supply : OIL
The OPEC cartel (the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) was formally established in 1960, and has been headquartered in Vienna since 1965. The US is actually the third largest oil producer in the world (after Russia and Saudi Arabia). One reason we aren’t in OPEC is that we may be a big producer, but we import a lot more than we export, but you probably heard that already …

9. Cheer for a toreador : OLE
“Toreador” is indeed an old Spanish word for a bullfighter, but it’s not used any more in Spain or Latin America. In English we use the term “toreador”, but in Spanish a bullfighter is a “torero”.

10. Capitol feature : ROTUNDA
In architecture, a rotunda is name given to building with a circular ground plan. Often the building has a dome, but that isn’t a strict requirement for a “rotunda”.

P/kaufmann Toile Central Park Black/white Fabric By the Yard13. French fabric : TOILE
Toile fabric can be used as upholstery, or as a wallpaper, or even us a fabric for clothing. “Toile” is the French word for “linen cloth” or “canvas”.

DOLLY PARTON 8X10 PHOTO18. Like Dolly the sheep : CLONED
Dolly is the most famous sheep in the world. She was born in 1996 near Edinburgh in Scotland, grown from a cell taken from the mammary gland of a healthy donor. When asked why the sheep was called Dolly, the scientist responsible said, and I quote:

“Dolly is derived from a mammary gland cell and we couldn’t think of a more impressive pair of glands than Dolly Parton’s”.

Like I said, I am simply quoting …

21. Sine ___ non : QUA
“Sine qua non” is a Latin phrase that we use to mean “the essential element or condition”. The literal translation is “without which not”. One might say, for example, “a challenging crossword is the sine qua non of a good newspaper”. Well, crossword fans might say that anyway …

26. San ___, Italian resort on the Mediterranean : REMO
The Italian city of San Remo sits on the Mediterranean, right on the border with France. In Italian the city is named Sanremo, just one word, although the spelling of San Remo dates back to ancient times.

27. “Physician, ___ thyself” : HEAL
The phrase “Physician, heal thyself” is a quotation from Jesus that appears in Luke’s Gospel.

30. Nile snake : ASP
The asp is a venomous snake found in the Nile region of Africa. It was so venomous that the asp 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 the great queen opted to commit suicide, the asp was therefore her chosen method.

32. Place to buy cotton candy : FAIR
What we call cotton candy here in the US has some interesting names in the rest of the world. Back in Ireland it’s candyfloss, and in France it “barbe à papa” (Dad’s beard). In Australia it is called fairy floss, which is actually the original name for cotton candy, first used when it was introduced at the St. Louis World’s Fair in 1904.

Ozma of Oz (Wizard of Oz Series - Book 3)37. Princess in L. Frank Baum books : OZMA
L. Frank Baum wrote a whole series of books about the Land of Oz, and Princess Ozma appears in all of them except the one that’s most famous, “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”.

39. Modern toll-paying convenience : E-ZPASS
E-ZPASS was a technology development driven (pun intended!) by the tolling agencies of New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. The first E-ZPASS toll booth was built on the New York Thruway, and opened at the Spring Valley toll plaza in 1993.

48. Early computer forum : USENET
Remember the good old days, when you read messages online in “newsgroups”? Well, that system of aggregating public messages is known as Usenet, and it’s still around today. Usenet started operating in 1980, some ten years before the World Wide Web was introduced (which system has displaced Usenet in terms of popularity). Usenet definitely played a significant part in the history of the Internet. For instance, the terms “FAQ” and “spam” were both born on Usenet.

50. ___ salts : EPSOM
Epsom is most famous for its racecourse, at which is run the Epsom Derby every year, one of the three races that make up the English Triple Crown. You might also have heard of Epsom salts. Epsom salts are magnesium sulfate, originally prepared by boiling down mineral waters (Epsom was indeed a spa town at one time).

51. Africa’s Sierra ___ : LEONE
The Republic of Sierra Leone is a country in West Africa, lying on the Atlantic Coast. The capital city of Freetown was originally set up as a colony to house the “Black Poor” of London, England. These people were mainly freed British slaves of Caribbean descent, who were living a miserable life in the run-down parts of London. Perhaps to help the impoverished souls, perhaps to rid the streets of “a problem”, three ships were chartered in 1787 to transport a groups of blacks, with some whites, to a piece of land purchased in Sierra Leone. Those who made the voyage were guaranteed British citizenship and protection. The descendants of these immigrants, and others who made the journey over the next 60 years, make up the ethnic group that’s today called the Sierra Leone Creole.

52. Some English nobles : EARLS
The rank of earl has meant many different things over the centuries. In Britain today an earl ranks above a viscount but below a marquess. There is no female form for earl, so a woman with the equivalent female title is called a countess.

53. Un + deux : TROIS
In French, one (un) plus two (deux) equals three (trois).

56. Othello’s betrayer : IAGO
Iago is the schemer in Shakespeare’s “Othello”. Iago is a soldier who fought alongside Othello and feels hard done by, missing out on promotion. His rival is Cassio, and Iago hatches a plot designed to discredit him. Iago insinuates that Cassio is having an affair with Desdomona, Othello’s wife. By the end of the play, it’s Iago himself who is discredited, and Othello (before committing suicide) apologizes to Cassio for having believed Iago’s lies. Heavy stuff …

The Hidden Staircase (Nancy Drew Mystery Stories #2)58. Nancy Drew’s beau and others : NEDS
I loved the Nancy Drew mysteries as a kid (I know, as a boy I “shouldn’t” have been reading them!). They were written by a number of ghost writers, but the character was introduced by Edward Stratemeyer in 1930. Nancy Drew’s boyfriend was Ned Nickerson, a college student from Emerson.

61. Savings for one’s later years, for short : IRA
I have to tell you, when I first came to the US from Ireland, it was pretty confusing seeing big signs along the freeway touting contributions to your IRA. Back in Ireland, that was pretty illegal (where IRA means the Irish Republican Army!).

For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Jump : LEAP
5. 1960s-’70s R&B singer Marilyn : MCCOO
10. Observe the Sabbath : REST
14. Norway’s capital : OSLO
15. Thin as ___ : A RAIL
16. “Beetle Bailey” bulldog : OTTO
17. Game played with strings looped over the fingers : CAT’S CRADLE
19. Spicy Asian cuisine : THAI
20. Shaking a leg : HUSTLING
21. Feather pen : QUILL
22. Self-description of someone who’s surprised : MONKEY’S UNCLE
25. Farmer-turned-con man in a 1960s sitcom : MR HANEY
28. Not much : A TAD
29. Designer Geoffrey : BEENE
30. Oklahoma city named for the daughter of its first 4-Down : ADA
31. Many miles off : AFAR
35. Docs’ org. : AMA
36. Long time : DOG’S AGE
40. Hole in one : ACE
41. Song for one : SOLO
43. Electrocute, in slang : ZAP
44. Former name for Congo : ZAIRE
46. Big hauler : SEMI
48. Called balls and strikes : UMPIRED
50. Taro : ELEPHANT’S EAR
54. Bosc and Bartlett : PEARS
55. Move to another job, say : REASSIGN
59. Smarting : SORE
60. What a greedy person may grab : LION’S SHARE
62. The “O” in CD-ROM : ONLY
63. Disney mermaid : ARIEL
64. Prayer starter : O GOD
65. Meal on a military base : MESS
66. Ashen, as a complexion : PASTY
67. Blows away : WOWS

Down
1. ___ Ness monster : LOCH
2. Biblical twin who sold his birthright : ESAU
3. Cockpit readings: Abbr. : ALTS
4. One who “always rings twice,” in an old movie : POSTMAN
5. Jarhead : MARINE
6. Ill-tempered : CRANKY
7. Bum, as a cigarette : CADGE
8. OPEC supply : OIL
9. Cheer for a toreador : OLE
10. Capitol feature : ROTUNDA
11. Body of values : ETHIC
12. Suddenly stop, as an engine : STALL
13. French fabric : TOILE
18. Like Dolly the sheep : CLONED
21. Sine ___ non : QUA
23. When said three times, “and so on” : YADA
24. Fawn’s father : STAG
25. Many corp. hirees : MBAS
26. San ___, Italian resort on the Mediterranean : REMO
27. “Physician, ___ thyself” : HEAL
30. Nile snake : ASP
32. Place to buy cotton candy : FAIR
33. Farming unit : ACRE
34. Wetlands plant : REED
37. Princess in L. Frank Baum books : OZMA
38. Loss’s opposite : GAIN
39. Modern toll-paying convenience : E-ZPASS
42. Fish-eating birds : OSPREYS
45. Event for stunt pilots : AIRSHOW
47. Quizzical utterances : EHS
48. Early computer forum : USENET
49. Pathetically small : MEASLY
50. ___ salts : EPSOM
51. Africa’s Sierra ___ : LEONE
52. Some English nobles : EARLS
53. Un + deux : TROIS
56. Othello’s betrayer : IAGO
57. “Oh, ___ up!” : GROW
58. Nancy Drew’s beau and others : NEDS
60. Napkin’s place : LAP
61. Savings for one’s later years, for short : IRA

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