0113-18 NY Times Crossword Answers 13 Jan 2018, Saturday

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Constructed by: Alan Derkazarian
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: None

Bill’s time: 38m 58s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

6. Palma’s island : MAJORCA

Palma is the main city and port on the island of Majorca in the Mediterranean Sea off the east coast of Spain.

The Island of Majorca (“Isla Mallorca” in Spanish) is Spain’s largest island, and is located in the Mediterranean Sea. The population of the island ballooned over the past few decades as Majorca became a mecca for tourists from all over Europe.

13. Christopher Paolini best seller : ERAGON

Christopher Paolini began writing his best-selling fantasy story “Eragon” at the age of 15. Christopher’s parents, when they read the final version two years later, they decided to self-publish it and support Christopher as he toured the US promoting the novel. It was eventually republished by Alfred A. Knopf in 2003, and became the second-best-selling children’s paperback of 2005. The book was adapted for the big screen in 2006. I’d call that a success story …

15. Hope was once its driving force : USO TOUR

The United Service Organization (USO) was founded in 1941 at the request of FDR “to handle the on-leave recreation of the men in the armed forces”. A USO tour is undertaken by a troupe of entertainers, many of whom are big-name celebrities. A USO tour usually includes troop locations in combat zones.

I remember my first non-business visit to Los Angeles. I was a typical tourist and bought a map showing the homes of the stars and drove around Beverly Hills absorbing all the glitz. At one point I drove past a Rolls Royce that was stopped in oncoming traffic, waiting to make a left turn. The window was down, and the driver was puffing away on a big cigar. It was none other than Bob Hope. Seeing him there right beside me, that was a big thrill …

16. Sluggishness : LANGUOR

Languor, lassitude, lethargy and listlessness are such lovely words. All are L-words meaning a lack of physical energy.

21. Something with “three deuces and a four-speed” in a 1964 hit : GTO

“Three deuces and a four-speed” are words appearing the song “G.T.O”, the debut recording for the surf rock group of the sixties known as Ronny & the Daytonas.

22. 30, on a table : ZINC

Zinc is the chemical element with the atomic number 30 and the element symbol “Zn”. Zinc is a metal that can form pointed crystals after smelting. It is probably these crystals that gave the element its name, which comes from the Old High German “zint” meaning “point”.

24. Golfer Mickelson : PHIL

Phil Mickelson is one of the most famous left-handed golfers currently playing on the PGA Tour. Less well know is the fact that outside of golf, he is right-handed. Despite his great success as a golfer, the US Open championship has always eluded him. He has finished runner-up six times, more times than any other player.

27. ___ facie (legal phrase) : PRIMA

“Prima facie” is Latin for “first encounter” or “at first sight”. In the world of the law, a prima facie case is one in which the evidence is deemed to be sufficient for a judgment to be made unless the evidence is contested.

29. London or Manchester : WRITER

The author Jack London is a bit of a local hero in the Bay Area where I live. London was born in San Francisco, and there is a famous Jack London Square in Oakland, California that was named in his honor. London’s most famous works are “The Call of the Wild” and “White Fang”, both of which are set in the Klondike Gold Rush.

William Manchester was an American author and historian. Perhaps his best-known work is his best-seller “The Death of a President” first published in 1967. It is a comprehensive account of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

31. Charles of “Hill Street Blues” : HAID

Actor Charles Haid is best known for playing Officer Andy Renko on the cop show “Hill Street Blues”. Haid is a cousin of Merv Griffin, the talk show host and creator of game shows “Jeopardy!” and “Wheel of Fortune”.

32. ___ stick : SELFIE

Selfie sticks, oh, how I hate selfie sticks. A walk down the Strip in Vegas is an enlightening exercise in what’s wrong with contemporary photography …

40. Successor to Churchill : EDEN

Sir Anthony Eden served as Britain’s Foreign Secretary during WWII, and then as Prime Minister from 1955-57. I think it’s fair to say that Eden doesn’t have a great reputation as a statesman. He was proud of his stance in favor of peace over war, so his critics characterized him as an appeaser. His major stumble on the world stage occurred with the Suez Crisis in 1956. Egypt’s President Nasser unilaterally nationalized the Suez Canal causing war to be declared on Egypt by Britain, France and Israel. Within a few months political pressure from the US and the USSR caused the allies to withdraw, bolstering Egypt’s national reputation. Eden never recovered from the loss of face at home, and it is felt that the stress even affected his health. Eden resigned in January 1957.

41. Noted blind mathematician : EULER

Leonhard Euler was a brilliant Swiss mathematician and physicist, and a pioneer in the fields of logarithms and graph theory. Euler’s eyesight deteriorated during his working life, and eventually became almost totally blind.

42. Noted boxing family : ALIS

The boxer Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr. was born in 1942 in Louisville, Kentucky. Clay changed his name to Muhammad Ali when he converted to Islam in 1964. Who can forget Muhammad Ali lighting the Olympic flame for the 1996 games in Atlanta?

Laila Ali is the daughter of the great Muhammad Ali and is a very capable boxer in her own right. Laila’s professional record is an impressive 24 wins, including 21 knockouts. Now retired, she never lost a fight, and nor did she ever draw. One of those victories was against Jackie Frazier-Lyde, daughter of her father’s nemesis Joe Frazier. Laila is not a bad dancer either, coming in third place in the fourth season of “Dancing with the Stars”.

44. Blackguard : CUR

Back in the early 1500s, a “blackguard” was someone who worked in the scullery or kitchen. The term was probably of mock-military origin, referring to shoeblacks or perhaps lower-level servants dressed in black. Nowadays, a blackguard is a lowlife, a cur.

47. Measures of sharpness : IQ TESTS

The first usable intelligence test was invented by a French psychologist named Alfred Binet. Binet collaborated with Théodore Simon and together they produced the Binet-Simon Intelligence Scale that is still in use today for IQ tests.

49. One-named singer with the 2016 #1 album “A Seat at the Table” : SOLANGE

Solange Knowles is a singer/songwriter, and the younger sister of the incredibly successful singer Beyoncé. Solange was in the news not that long ago when security camera footage was released showing her punching and kicking Beyoncé’s husband Jay-Z in an elevator.

51. Throw a bomb : GO DEEP

A bomb is a long pass in American football, for which a receiver would have to “go deep”.

53. Like an eisteddfod festival : WELSH

In Wales, an “eisteddfod” is a festival celebrating the arts, and in particular literature, music and the performing arts. Eisteddfods have been held since at least the early 12th century.

Down

2. A Musketeer : ARAMIS

Alexandre Dumas’ “Three Musketeers” are Athos, Porthos and Aramis, although the hero of the novel is the trio’s young protégé D’Artagnan. A musketeer was an infantry soldier who was equipped with a musket. Funnily enough, the three “musketeers” really don’t use their muskets, and are better known for prowess with their swords.

4. Croissan’wich alternative : EGG MCMUFFIN

The McMuffin breakfast sandwich was introduced, without the knowledge of the corporate office, by the operator of a Santa Barbara, California franchise in 1972. Back then, McDonald’s only offered food for lunch and dinner. The initial reaction of the corporate office on hearing about the McMuffin was to reprimand the Santa Barbara franchise operator, before embracing the concept.

7. Bloom that’s often white or lavender : ASTER

Apparently, most aster species and cultivars bloom relatively late in the year, usually in the fall. The name “aster” comes into English via Latin from the Greek word “astéri” meaning “star”, a reference to the arrangement of the petals of the flower.

8. 1940 Fonda role : JOAD

Tom Joad is the protagonist the John Steinbeck’s novel “The Grapes of Wrath”. The role of Joad was played by Henry Fonda in the 1940 film adaptation directed by John Ford. Ford’s movie has a place in history, as it was one of the first 25 movies selected for preservation in the US National Film Registry by the Library of Congress.

9. N.H.L. Eastern Conference team, on scoreboards : OTT

The Senators are the NHL hockey team in Ottawa, Canada. The current team, founded in the 1992-93 season, is the second NHL team in the city to use the name “Senators”. The original team was founded in 1917, and had a very successful run until the league expanded into the US in the late twenties. The cost of operating in what became the smallest NHL city eventually drove the Senators to St. Louis where they played for a year as the Eagles before finally folding.

11. 2/2, in music : CUT TIME

The musical term “alla breve”, meaning “at the breve (i.e. the note)”, denotes a meter equivalent to 2/2. This implies quite a fast tempo, often found in military marches. 2/2 is also known as “cut time”.

12. Pertaining to colored rings : AREOLAR

An areola (sometimes “areole”) in anatomy is a small ring of color, as in the areola surrounding the nipple, and the areola surrounding the pupil of the eye. “Areola” comes from Latin, meaning “small open space”, and is a diminutive of the Latin word “area”, meaning “open space”.

14. Field work : NORMA RAE

“Norma Rae” is a 1979 movie starring Sally Field as Norma Rae Webster in a tale of union activities in a textile factory in Alabama. The film is based on the true story of Crystal Lee Sutton told in a 1975 book called “Crystal Lee, a Woman of Inheritance”.

Actress Sally Field first came to the public’s attention in the sixties with title roles in the TV shows “Gidget” and “The Flying Nun”. She has two Best Actress Oscars: one for “Norma Rae” (1979) and one for “Places in the Heart” (1984).

24. Annual June celebration : PRIDE PARADE

The first gay pride parades were held all on the same weekend in 1970, in New York City, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

29. Newfoundland or golden retriever : WATER DOG

Water dogs are dogs that are specially bred to retrieve game from water. Examples of breeds referred to as water dogs are the golden retriever, the Newfoundland and the standard poodle.

34. Shakespearean fencer : LAERTES

In William Shakespeare’s play “Hamlet”, Laertes is the son of Polonius and brother of Ophelia. It is Laertes who kills Hamlet using a poisoned sword..

36. Fast-food icon, with “the” : COLONEL

The famous “Colonel” of Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) fame was Harland Sanders, an entrepreneur from Henryville, Indiana. Although not really a “Colonel”, Sanders did indeed serve in the military. He enlisted in the Army as a private in 1906 at the age of 16, lying about his age. He spent the whole of his time in the Army as a soldier in Cuba. It was much later, in the 1930s, that Sanders went into the restaurant business making his specialty deep-fried chicken. By 1935 his reputation as a “character” had grown, so much so that Governor Ruby Laffoon of Kentucky gave Sanders the honorary title of “Kentucky Colonel”. Later in the fifties, Sanders developed his trademark look with the white suit, string tie, mustache and goatee. When Sanders was 65 however, his business failed and in stepped Dave Thomas, the founder of Wendy’s. Thomas simplified the Sanders menu, cutting it back from over a hundred items to just fried chicken and salads. That was enough to launch KFC into the fast food business. Sanders sold the US franchise in 1964 for just $2 million and moved to Canada to grow KFC north of the border. He died in 1980 and is buried in Louisville, Kentucky. The Colonel’s secret recipe of 11 herbs and spices is indeed a trade secret. Apparently there is only one copy of the recipe, a handwritten piece of paper, written in pencil and signed by Colonel Sanders. Since 2009, the piece of paper has been locked in a computerized vault surrounded with motion detectors and security cameras.

38. Neighbor of Allemagne : SUISSE

“Suisse” is the French word for “Swiss”, and “la Suisse” is French for “Switzerland”.

“Allemagne” is French for “Germany”.

41. ___-deux : ENTRE

In French, something might perhaps be discussed “entre deux” (between two) or “entre nous” (between us).

43. Curry of the N.B.A. : STEPH

Steph Curry is a professional basketball player who was named the league’s MVP in 2015, the same season that he led the Golden State Warriors to their first NBA championship since 1975. Steph’s father is former NBA player Dell Curry, and the older brother of current NBA player Seth Curry.

48. Country music’s Mike ___ : ELI

The Eli Young Band is a country group from Texas founded by Mike Eli and James Young when they were roommates in the University of North Texas.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. What a physiognomist studies : FACES
6. Palma’s island : MAJORCA
13. Christopher Paolini best seller : ERAGON
15. Hope was once its driving force : USO TOUR
16. Sluggishness : LANGUOR
18. Act : STATUTE
19. “Well done!” : I’M IMPRESSED!
21. Something with “three deuces and a four-speed” in a 1964 hit : GTO
22. 30, on a table : ZINC
23. God : MAKER
24. Golfer Mickelson : PHIL
25. Dryish : SEMI-ARID
27. ___ facie (legal phrase) : PRIMA
28. Former Ecuadorean “dollars” : SUCRES
29. London or Manchester : WRITER
30. Chicken characteristic : FEAR
31. Charles of “Hill Street Blues” : HAID
32. ___ stick : SELFIE
35. Measure of data transfer speed, for short : BIT/SEC
37. With nothing on top : PLAIN
38. Touchy subject : SORE SPOT
40. Successor to Churchill : EDEN
41. Noted blind mathematician : EULER
42. Noted boxing family : ALIS
44. Blackguard : CUR
45. Alliance of groups against a common enemy : UNITED FRONT
47. Measures of sharpness : IQ TESTS
49. One-named singer with the 2016 #1 album “A Seat at the Table” : SOLANGE
50. Parts of pit crews : FUELERS
51. Throw a bomb : GO DEEP
52. “You don’t have to explain” : YES, I SEE
53. Like an eisteddfod festival : WELSH

Down

1. Hernando’s “happy” : FELIZ
2. A Musketeer : ARAMIS
3. Foxes, e.g. : CANINES
4. Croissan’wich alternative : EGG MCMUFFIN
5. Make more powerful, with “up” : SOUP
6. Rumpled : MUSSED
7. Bloom that’s often white or lavender : ASTER
8. 1940 Fonda role : JOAD
9. N.H.L. Eastern Conference team, on scoreboards : OTT
10. Camp out in the wilderness, say : ROUGH IT
11. 2/2, in music : CUT TIME
12. Pertaining to colored rings : AREOLAR
14. Field work : NORMA RAE
17. Parent, e.g. : REARER
20. Does some runs : SKIS
24. Annual June celebration : PRIDE PARADE
26. Strand during a storm, maybe : ICE IN
27. Stuck-up sort : PRISS
29. Newfoundland or golden retriever : WATER DOG
31. Staff additions : HIREES
32. Spell out : SPECIFY
33. Nickname for baseball’s Orlando Hernández : EL DUQUE
34. Shakespearean fencer : LAERTES
35. Leave in a hurry : BOLT
36. Fast-food icon, with “the” : COLONEL
38. Neighbor of Allemagne : SUISSE
39. Hints : TINGES
41. ___-deux : ENTRE
43. Curry of the N.B.A. : STEPH
45. A smartphone has lots of them : USES
46. Go smoothly : FLOW
48. Country music’s Mike ___ : ELI

12 thoughts on “0113-18 NY Times Crossword Answers 13 Jan 2018, Saturday”

  1. 18:50, no errors. I did not know that Leonhard Euler spent the last 17 years of his life blind, making his contributions to mathematics, which continued during that time, all the more remarkable. Astonishing!

  2. 42:49 and finally finished when I realized FEAR wasn’t pertaining to an actual chicken. Then the rest of that area filled itself in. Good Saturday puzzle….which is what I always say when I finish one unaided.

    I’m off to the Vegas strip in about 2 hours to see the Golden Knights play at TMobile arena. If I see any SELFIE sticks out there, I’ll be sure to give them a dirty look on Bill’s behalf… 🙂

    Best –

  3. 35:35 Didn’t solve until late last night as I went to the Rangers game in NYC then had to drive up to Ithaca, NY (where it is currently 6 degrees) The top part of this was very quick for me. The bottom right took awhile.

  4. I’m really enjoying the theme/design of your site. Do you ever run into any internet browser compatibility problems?
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  5. 40:05, no errors. Rarely comfortable with this one, always seemed to be back on my heels. Happy to finish with no errors.

    Confidently started with 24A PHIL Mickelson and 22A GTO, which gave me 10D ROUGH IT and 11D some kind of TIME. Downhill from there. Hard time seeing AEROLAR (thought it should be areolic). Familiar with Jack London as a WRITER, but not Manchester. Did not like the entry BITSEC for measure of data transfer speed.

    Once again, my pet peeve rears its ugly head with FELIZ, ENTRE and SUISSE.

    Did learn today that the title of the Ronny and the Daytonas song was GTO instead of ‘Little GTO’, which I assumed, incorrectly, for many decades. For any young’uns out there, in case you were wondering, the term ‘three deuces’ refers to an engine configuration with three two barrel carburetors. Obsolete components in todays fuel injected world.

  6. 27:26 before I gave up with scarcely half filled. Clues were way too opaque for me to have a hope of finishing this one. Glad this week is over, because it kicked my ass.

  7. Took a Saturday evening AND a Sunday morning session to finish.
    Nine write-overs and STILL had an error on 1D (FELIs for FELIz).
    Could have used a sundial for a timer. 😉

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