0406-11: New York Times Crossword Answers 6 Apr 11, Wednesday

QuickLinks:
Solution to today’s crossword in the New York Times
Solution to today’s SYNDICATED New York Times crossword in all other publications

CROSSWORD SETTER: Gareth Bain
THEME: DOUBLEHEADERS … the themed answers are composed of two words (i.e. DOUBLE), both of which can be paired with the word HEAD:

16A. Thor, for one : THUNDER GOD
THUNDERHEAD (a cloud) & GODHEAD (aka “godhood”)
24A. Ones often marrying in a hurry : WAR BRIDES
WARHEAD & BRIDESHEAD (as in “Brideshead Revisited”)
46A. Calypso instrument : STEEL DRUM
STEELHEAD (a type of trout) & DRUMHEAD (the membrane of a drum)
57A. It’s undeliverable : DEAD LETTER
DEADHEAD (a Grateful Dead fan) & LETTERHEAD

COMPLETION TIME: 10m 09s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0


Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across
Apple iPhone 4 Black Smartphone 32GB (AT&T)5. Droids, iPhones, etc. : PDAS
A device like perhaps an iPhone or Treo, can be termed a Personal Digital Assistant (PDA).

Apple iMac MC508LL/A 21.5-Inch Desktop9. Non-PC computer : IMAC
The iMac is a desktop computer platform from Apple, introduced in 1998. One of the main features of the iMac is that it is an “all-in-one” design, with the computer console and monitor integrated.

13. ___ amandine : SOLE
A dish prepared in the “amandine”style is usually cooked in butter and seasonings, and then sprinkled with toasted almonds. Note the spelling “amandine”. You might notice the misspelling “almondine” on a menu, but don’t say anything. Just sit there smugly …

14. Language that gave us “kiwi” : MAORI
Unlike many nicknames for people of a particular country, the name “Kiwi” for a New Zealander isn’t offensive at all. The term comes from the flightless bird the kiwi, that is endemic to New Zealand and is the country’s national symbol. Kiwi is a Maori word, and the plural (when referring to the bird) is simply “kiwi”. However, when you have two or more New Zealanders with you, they are Kiwis (note the “s”, and indeed the capital “K”!).

16. Thor, for one : THUNDER GOD
Thor is the Norse god of thunder, wielding his mighty hammer. One day of the week recognized by pagans during the time of the Roman Empire was Thor’s Day, named for the Norse god. We now know it as Thursday. Thor’s mother was Frigg, and she was honored on Frigg’s Day, which we now call Friday.

18. Michigan college town : ALMA
Alma College, in Alma, Michigan was founded by Michigan Presbyterians in 1886. The school has a Scottish heritage of which it is very proud. Alma has its own Scottish marching band, a Scottish dance troupe and even its own design of tartan.

19. Porcupine, e.g. : RODENT
By definition, a rodent is a mammal which has front teeth that are continuously growing, and they have to continuously gnaw away on things to keep those teeth short. There are a lot of rodents in the world, as they make up forty percent of all mammalian species.

She Always Knew How: Mae West, a Personal Biography20. Actresses West and Clarke : MAES
Mae West was always pushing the envelope when it came to the “sexy” side of show business, even in her early days in Vaudeville. One of the first plays in which she starred on Broadway was called “Sex”, something she penned herself. The show was a sell-out, but city officials had it raided and West found herself spending ten days in jail after being convicted of “corrupting the morals of youth”. She started in movies in 1932, already 38 years old. West used her experience writing plays to rewrite much of the material she was given, and so really she was totally responsible for her own success and on-screen appeal.

Clarke, Mae Autographed/Hand Signed 8x10 Photo B&W (P)Mae Clarke was a Hollywood actress who was at the height of her career in the early days of “talkies”. She starred in the 1931 version of “The Front Page” and that same year starred opposite Boris Karloff in “Frankenstein”.

23. Creature on a slide : AMEBA
An ameba (or “amoeba” as we spell it back in Ireland) is a single-celled microorganism. The name comes from the Greek “amoibe”, meaning change. The name is quite apt, as the cell changes shape readily as the ameba moves, eats or reproduces.

Time Magazine December 5, 1969 "Lieut. William Calley Jr."27. My ___, Vietnam : LAI
The My Lai Massacre took place in the Vietnamese village of that name 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 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. Calley was released after serving three years in total.

34. Once-common baseball events … and a hint to 16-, 24-, 46- and 57-Across : DOUBLEHEADERS
In baseball a doubleheader is two games played by the same two teams on the same day. Doubleheaders are usually the result of a game earlier in the season being rained out, so the second game of the doubleheader is a catchup. There have been three instances of tripleheaders in Major League Baseball, with a set of three games played one day in 1920 between the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Cincinnati Reds, the last time this occurred.

38. Chicago exchange, for short : MERC
The Chicago Mercantile Exchange started its life as the Chicago Butter and Egg Board in 1898. The Merc is the site for exchange of commodities, among other things.

Open: An Autobiography (Vintage)40. Agassi of tennis : ANDRE
“Open” is the autobiography of tennis professional Andre Agassi, published in 2009. An amazing revelation in the book is that Agassi’s famous head of hair was actually a wig for much of his playing career. Can you imagine how hard it must have been to play tennis at his level, with a rug stuck on?

42. Beat it : LAM
To be “on the lam” is to be in flight, to have escaped from prison. It is American slang that originated at the end of the 19th century. The word “lam” also means to “beat” or “thrash”, as in “lambaste”. So “on the lam” might derive from the phrase “to beat it”, to scram.

43. It borders two Great Lakes: Abbr. : WIS
Wisconsin is named for the Wisconsin River, the longest river in the state. The famous missionary, Father Jacques Marquette, recorded the Algonquian name for the river as “Meskousing”. This was modified by French explorers to “Ouisconsin”, with the first syllable pronounced just like the French word for “yes” … “oui’. In the early 1800s this was anglicized to “Wisconsin”.

Jumbie Jam Steel Drum Musical Instrument, Steel Finish46. Calypso instrument : STEEL DRUM
The musical style of calypso originated in Trinidad and Tobago, but there seems to be some debate about which influences were most important as the genre developed. 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. Calypso reached the masses 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.

54. Like Mrs. Bumstead : BLONDE
Dagwood Bumstead’s wife is the famous “Blondie”.


“Blondie” was created as a comic strip by Chic Young. It was first published in 1930, and is still being created today (although the strip is now controlled by Chic’s son, Dean). Its success spawned a series of radio programs (1939-1950) and a series of “Blondie” films (1938-1950).

Alex Rodriguez: A Biography55. Yankee nickname starting in 2004 : A-ROD
Poor old Alex Rodriguez earned more nicknames than just A-Rod. He has been called “the Cooler” by some players as there is a perception that teams go cold when he joins them, and hot when he leaves. He has also been called “A-Fraud” by teammates because of another perception, that he is over-demanding.

57. It’s undeliverable : DEAD LETTER
A dead letter is one which is deemed undeliverable and also cannot be returned to the sender. Once a letter or parcel is classified as “dead”, a post office employee is allowed to open it in order to search for clues to find the origin or destination of the correspondence. Once a stolen painting by Marc Chagall was found in a parcel that couldn’t be delivered and was stuck in a sorting office in Topeka, Kansas.

T.S. Eliot: An Imperfect Life60. “The Waste Land” poet : ELIOT
T. S. Eliot was born in New England but grew up in St. Louis, Missouri. Much of his college education was at Oxford, and clearly he became comfortable with life in England. In 1927 he became a British citizen, and lived the rest of life in the UK.

Eliot wrote “The Waste Land” in 1922. It opens with the famous line, “April is the cruelest month …”.

62. Piedmont city : ASTI
Asti is in the Piedmont region of northwestern Italy. It is perhaps most famous for its Asti Spumante sparkling white wine.

63. Cold war-era lands: Abbr. : SSRS
The former Soviet Union was created in 1922, not long after the Russian Revolution of 1917 that overthrew the Tsar. Geographically, the new Soviet Union was roughly equivalent to the old Russian Empire, and was made up of fifteen Soviet Socialist Republics.

Down
1. Kind of projection : ASTRAL
An astral projection is an out-of-body experience. It is often associated with incidents of near-death and describes the phenomenon of the astral body leaving the physical body and travelling around the astral plane.

4. Summer Triangle star : DENEB
The Summer Triangle is the name given to a pattern of stars seen in the northern hemisphere. It is so named as it sits almost directly overhead at midnight in most northern latitudes. The points of the triangle are the bright stars Altair, Deneb and Vega.

Deneb is the brightest star in the constellation Cygnus, the Swan. The name “Deneb” comes from the Arabic word “dhaneb” meaning tail, as it lies at “the tail” of the swan.

6. Set of beliefs : DOGMA
A dogma is a set of beliefs, with the plural being “dogmata”.

9. “___ tree falls …” : IF A
If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? Answers on a postcard please …

Mule Deer (In Snow) Art Poster Print - 13x1910. Yellowstone forager : MULE DEER
The mule deer is so called because it has large ears, similar to those of a mule.

21. B.O. sign : SRO
The term “box office” may date back to Shakespearean times. In those days long past patrons would deposit fees for seeing theater performances in boxes. The full boxes would be collected and placed in an office called, imaginatively enough, the “box office”.

25. “Peer Gynt” playwright : IBSEN
Henrik Ibsen’s play “Peer Gynt” is based on a Scandinavian fairy tale “Per Gynt”. The incidental music to the play, written by Edvard Grieg, is some of the most approachable classical music every written, at least in my humble opinion …

30. A capital of Bolivia : SUCRE
Sucre is the constitutional capital of Bolivia, although the La Paz is the seat of government.

Callaway HX Hot Recycled Golf Balls (36 Pack)37. Part of a golf ball : DIMPLE
The first golf balls had smooth surfaces The idea of adding dimples grew out of the empirical observation that used balls flew further. These older balls were beaten up and had nicks in the surface. The nicks, and the dimples in a modern ball, create a turbulent layer of air that “sticks” to the surface of the ball, and this sticky layer of turbulent air has less drag as it slices though the rest of the air between the golfer and the ball’s destination.

38. It might run in the rain : MASCARA
Variations of mascara have been around a long time, and certainly there was a similar substance in use in Ancient Egypt.

Ernie Els Autographed / Signed Golf 8x10 Photo41. Golf’s Big Easy : ELS
Ernie Els is a South African golfer. He’s a big guy, but he has an easy, fluid golf swing that has earned him the nickname “The Big Easy”. Els has a child who suffers from autism, and he has been very effective in raising money for charities that focus on the condition.

45. Word on many LPs : STEREO
Monophonic sound (“mono”) is sound reproduced using just one audio channel which is usually played out of just one speaker. Stereophonic sound is reproduced using two audio channels, with the sound from those channels usually played out of two speakers. The pair of stereo are usually positioned apart from each other so that sound appears to come from between the two. Quadraphonic sound (4.0 surround sound) uses four audio channels with the sound played back through four speakers often positioned at the corners of the room in which one is listening.

48. Walks like a tosspot : REELS
Drunks have been referred to as tosspots since the mid-1500s.

49. Carrier renamed in 1997 : USAIR
From 1953, what today is US Airways was called Allegheny Airlines. In the seventies customers became very dissatisfied with the company’s service levels as it struggled to expand and manage a high growth rate. These problems earned the airline the nickname “Agony Air”. Allegheny tried to leave the “agony” behind in 1979 and changed its name to USAir. More recently, in 1997, the name was again changed, to US Airways.

51. Pick 6, e.g. : LOTTO
Originally “Lotto” was a type of card game, with “lotto” being the Italian for “a lot”. We’ve used “lotto” to mean a gambling game since the late 1700s.

54. Short-order lunch : BLT
The BLT (bacon, lettuce and tomato) is the second most popular sandwich in the US, after the plain old ham sandwich.

56. Print resolution meas. : DPI
The resolution of a printed image can be measured in dots per inch.

Return to top of page

For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Kept in a cellar, perhaps : AGED
5. Droids, iPhones, etc. : PDAS
9. Non-PC computer : IMAC
13. ___ amandine : SOLE
14. Language that gave us “kiwi” : MAORI
15. Roll up, as a sail : FURL
16. Thor, for one : THUNDER GOD
18. Michigan college town : ALMA
19. Porcupine, e.g. : RODENT
20. Actresses West and Clarke : MAES
22. Hosp. areas : ERS
23. Creature on a slide : AMEBA
24. Ones often marrying in a hurry : WAR BRIDES
26. Took by the hand : LED
27. My ___, Vietnam : LAI
29. Needing a seat belt extender, say : OBESE
30. Shore leave taker : SAILOR
33. Collectors’ completions : SETS
34. Once-common baseball events … and a hint to 16-, 24-, 46- and 57-Across : DOUBLEHEADERS
38. Chicago exchange, for short : MERC
39. Absorb thoroughly : SOAK IN
40. Agassi of tennis : ANDRE
42. Beat it : LAM
43. It borders two Great Lakes: Abbr. : WIS
46. Calypso instrument : STEEL DRUM
50. Place secretly : PLANT
52. Mangy mutt : CUR
53. Seeks redress : SUES
54. Like Mrs. Bumstead : BLONDE
55. Yankee nickname starting in 2004 : A-ROD
57. It’s undeliverable : DEAD LETTER
59. Extend one’s tour : RE-UP
60. “The Waste Land” poet : ELIOT
61. Shape (up) : TONE
62. Piedmont city : ASTI
63. Cold war-era lands: Abbr. : SSRS
64. Not taken in by : ONTO

Down
1. Kind of projection : ASTRAL
2. “Beat it!” : GO HOME
3. Got away from : ELUDED
4. Summer Triangle star : DENEB
5. Links figure : PAR
6. Set of beliefs : DOGMA
7. Like crowds in the heat of a match : AROAR
8. 45 half : SIDE-B
9. “___ tree falls …” : IF A
10. Yellowstone forager : MULE DEER
11. Pair on a couch : ARMRESTS
12. Business and tourist : CLASSES
14. Shook hands, say : MET
17. Paternity testing locale : DNA LAB
21. B.O. sign : SRO
24. Bits of cunning : WILES
25. “Peer Gynt” playwright : IBSEN
28. Have a bug : AIL
30. A capital of Bolivia : SUCRE
31. “Caught you!” : OHO
32. Queendom, e.g. : REALM
34. Stereotypical glass fillers : DENTURES
35. Not have a home-cooked meal, maybe : ORDER OUT
36. Wanted-poster abbr. : AKA
37. Part of a golf ball : DIMPLE
38. It might run in the rain : MASCARA
41. Golf’s Big Easy : ELS
43. Far from demure : WANTON
44. Set right : INDENT
45. Word on many LPs : STEREO
47. Fancy dressers : DUDES
48. Walks like a tosspot : REELS
49. Carrier renamed in 1997 : USAIR
51. Pick 6, e.g. : LOTTO
54. Short-order lunch : BLT
56. Print resolution meas. : DPI
58. Galas : DOS

Return to top of page

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.