0310-12: New York Times Crossword Answers 10 Mar 12, Saturday

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: Patrick Berry
THEME: None
COMPLETION TIME: 14m 21s!!
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0


Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
16. Stop shooting : WRAP
When shooting of a film is concluded the movie is said to “wrap”, and everyone heads to the wrap party. There is one story that “wrap” is actually an acronym for “wind, reel and print”, a reference to the transition of the filming process into post-production. But, this explanation is disputed.

18. “But men are men; the best sometimes forget” speaker : 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. He hatches a plot designed to discredit his rival Cassio by insinuating 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 …

21. “Jelly Roll, Bix and ___” (1994 history of early jazz) : HOAGY
“Jelly Roll, Bix and Hoagy” is a book that recounts the history of Gennett Studios in New York City. The studio became a mecca in the early 1900s for jazz musicians looking to record their performances. Included in the list of jazz greats who recorded sessions are Jelly Roll Morton, Bix Beiderbecke and Hoagy Carmichael.

Jelly Roll Morton was the stage name of Ferdinand LaMothe, a ragtime and early jazz musician. Morton apparently had quite the ego and claimed to have “invented” the genre called jazz in 1902. He did indeed record the first ever published jazz composition, his own “Jelly Roll Blues”, in 1915. Early in his career, Morton worked as piano player in a brothel, and there took the nickname “Jelly Roll”, a suggestive slang term related to female anatomy.

Bix Beiderbecke was jazz cornet player and composer. He was very influential in the world of jazz in the 1920s in particular and is said to have invented the jazz ballad style.

Hoagy Carmichael was born Hoagland Howard Carmichael. Carmichael’s remarkable first name was given to him in honor of a circus troupe called “The Hoaglands” who stayed at the Carmichael house during his mother’s pregnancy. Now that, that’s a story …

22. Lamb’s “___ From Shakespeare” : TALES
“Tales from Shakespeare” is a children’s book written by Charles Lamb and his sister Mary Lamb in 1807. The book consists of adaptations of twenty-one of Shakespeare’s plays, all retold in language that was intended to make the stories more approachable for children.

24. ___ of Denmark (James I’s queen consort) : ANNE
Anne of Denmark was the queen consort of James VI of Scotland, James I of England and Ireland. Anne was the daughter of King Frederick II of Denmark and was married to James when she was just 14 years old. The couple had a troubled marriage and spent much of it living apart. However, Anne did give birth to three children, including the future King Charles I.

King James VI of Scotland came to power when he was just 13 months old as his mother, Mary Queen of Scots, was forced to abdicate after an uprising. Almost 40 years later he became King James I of England and Ireland when Queen Elizabeth I passed away without issue. The Queen’s passing marked the end of the Tudor era and the beginning of the Stuart reign in England.

26. Madrigal syllables : TRA-LA
A madrigal is a piece of vocal music, but notably a piece that is secular in content rather than religious. The madrigal originated in Italy in the early 16th century and it dominated secular music for the next one hundred years until it was gradually displaced by the aria, a product of operatic works.

28. Crumbled ingredient in “dirt pudding” : OREO
Dirt cake is a dessert usually made by breaking up Oreo cookies and scattering the pieces over chocolate pudding, and then adding gummy worms on top. Sounds delicious …

34. Superior facility : PROWESS
“Prowess” is a superior ability, and is particularly used as a reference to ability on the battlefield. The term “prowess” comes from an old French word meaning “brave, valiant”.

37. She bests Sherlock in “A Scandal in Bohemia” : IRENE
The character Irene Adler only appeared in one of the Sherlock Holmes stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. In that story, “A Scandal in Bohemia”, Holmes expresses remarkable admiration for Adler as a woman and as a foe. As a result, derivative works in the Holmes genre often feature Irene as something of a romantic interest for Sherlock.

44. TV golf analyst who won three Masters : FALDO
Nick Faldo is an English golfer, a winner of six major tournaments and a former World No. 1. For some years now Faldo has been the lead golf analyst for CBS Sports. In 2009 he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II, so if you’re chatting with him, don’t forget to address him as Sir Nick …

52. Film genre : NOIR
The expression “film noir” has French origins, but only in that it was “created” by a French critic in describing a style of Hollywood film. The term, meaning “black film” in French, was first used by Nino Frank in 1946. Film noir often applies to a movie with a melodramatic plot and a private eye or detective at its center. Good examples would be “The Big Sleep” and “D.O.A”.

54. One attracted to vinegar : GNAT
Gnats are attracted to the smell of rotting food, and to vinegar. Simple homemade traps that use vinegar are often constructed to attract and kill gnats.

Down
1. “24” actress Cuthbert : ELISHA
Elisha Cuthbert is a Canadian actor who came to world attention playing Kim Bauer, Jack Bauer’s daughter on TV’s “24”. You can see her now on the sitcom “Happy Endings”.

2. Robert who won Oscars for both writing and directing “Kramer vs. Kramer” : BENTON
Robert Benton is a screenwriter and film director from Texas. His directorial credits include “Kramer vs. Kramer”, “Still of the Night” and “Twilight”. His screenwriting credits are more recognizable and include “Bonnie and Clyde”, “Kramer vs. Kramer”, “What’s Up, Doc?”, and “Superman”.

3. 1942 invasion site : BATAAN
Bataan is a peninsula in the Philippines, located on the side of Manila Bay opposite to the capital city. In WWII, Bataan was where American and Filipino forces made their last stand before the Japanese took control of the country. The Battle of Bataan lasted three months, at the end of which 75,000 captured prisoners were forced to march from Bataan to various prison camps. It is thought that between 6,000 and 11,000 men died on the march, many from the physical abuse above and beyond the rigors of the 5-6 day march without food or water. For obvious reasons, the 5-6 day trek is referred to as the Bataan Death March.

6. “Burning Giraffes in Yellow” painter : DALI
I’ve had the privilege of visiting the Dalí Museum in Figueres some years ago, just north of Barcelona. If you ever get the chance, it’s a “must see”.

7. More obdurate : FLINTIER
Something that is “flintier” is more stern, more unyielding. The term “flinty” literally means “resembling flint” and is used figuratively to mean “hard-hearted”.

“Obdurate” means unbending, but usually in a bad way i.e. persistently wicked or stubborn. The word comes from the Latin “obduratus” meaning “hardened”.

9. Two stars of “Paper Moon” : O’NEALS
“Paper Moon” is a 1973 comedy film that tells the story of a father and daughter during the Great Depression. The onscreen father and daughter are played by real-life father and daughter Ryan and Tatum O’Neal. The original choices for the lead roles were Paul Newman and his daughter Nell Potts, but they left the project after director John Huston also dropped out.

10. One held in a trap : WEDGE
One might use the loft on a sand wedge to get out of a sand trap on a golf course.

11. When the O.S.S. was formed : WWII
The Office of Strategic Services (OSS) was formed during WWII in order to carry out espionage behind enemy lines. A few years after the end of the war the OSS functions were taken up by a new group, the Central Intelligence Agency, that was chartered by the National Security Act of 1947.

12. Reagan-era scandal : IRANGATE
The Iran-Contra affair (also called “Irangate”) came to light in 1986. The “Iran” part of the scandal was the sale of arms to Iran by the Reagan administration, initially to facilitate the release of US hostages. This was done in secret largely because there was ostensibly a US arms embargo in place against Iran. The “Contra” part of the scandal arose when the man in charge of the operation, Oliver North, took funds from the arms sales and funneled the cash to the Contra militants who were fighting to topple the government in Honduras.

13. Subjects of many notices stapled to telephone poles : TAG SALES
A tag sale is a sale of household belongings, so called because the prices are usually marked on tags attached to the items for sale.

14. Part of a timing pattern on a football field : SPOT PASS
In football, a spot pass is a pass to a particular spot agreed on the field. The pass is timed so that a receiving player arrives at the location just when the ball does. That’s the idea anyway …

20. Winners of the longest postseason game in major-league history (18 innings, 2005) : ASTROS
The Houston baseball team changed its name to the Astros from the Colt .45s in 1965 when they started playing in the Astrodome. The Astrodome was so called in recognition of the city’s long association with the US space program.

25. Lead role in “Miracle on 34th Street” : FRED
Frederick M. Gailey is the male lead character in the movie “Miracle on 34th Street”, played by John Payne in the 1947 version of the Christmas classic.

“Miracle on 34th Street” is a classic Christmas film from 1947 starring Maureen O’Hara, John Payne and a very young Natalie Wood. If I might ruin the end of the story for you, Santa Claus does exist ‘cause the US Post Office says so …

28. 1940s-’50s tough-guy portrayer Dennis : O’KEEFE
Dennis O’Keefe was the stage name of actor Edward Flanagan. O’Keefe played a lot of tough guy roles in low budget movies in the forties and fifties. He switched genres completely in 1959-1960 when he starred in a sitcom called “The Dennis O’Keefe Show” on CBS.

29. Gandalf the ___ : GREY
Gandalf is an important character in the J. R. R. Tolkien novels “The Hobbit” and “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy. He is a wizard known as Gandalf the Grey during his lifetime, and as Gandalf the White after he returns from the dead.

32. Aeschylus trilogy : ORESTEIA
The “Oresteia” is a trilogy of Greek tragedies written by playwright Aeschylus. We know the Oresteia today as a trilogy, but there was actually a fourth play in the series called “Proteus”, but it did not survive the ravages of time.

33. “This Week at War” airer : CNN
“This Week at War” is a news and talk show on CNN that first aired in 2006. Originally the show focused on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the terrorism risk in the US. The show changed its focus and its name in 2008 during that year’s presidential election campaign. Since then the show has been called “This Week in Politics”.

34. Mineral found in igneous rocks : PYROXENE
Pyroxene is the name of a group of minerals found in both igneous and metamorphic rocks. The name “pyroxene” comes from the Greek words for “fire” and “stranger”. This is a reference to the fact that pyroxenes are sometimes found embedded in volcanic (“fire”) glass as an impurity (“stranger”).

36. Took a mulligan on : DID OVER
There doesn’t seem to be a definitive account for the origin of the term “Mulligan”, most often used for a shot do-over in golf. There are lots of stories about golfers named Mulligan though, and I suspect one of them may be true.

38. Typical lab rat, e.g. : ALBINO
“Albino”, meaning an organism lacking normal pigmentation, comes from “albus” which is Latin for “white”.

In the 1700s, rats that were caught by rat-catchers would often be sold for the “sport” of rat-baiting. This cruel activity involved throwing a terrier dog into a pit filled with rats and seeing how long it would take the dog to kill all the rats. Rat-baiting became so popular that rat breeding became a legitimate business. Over time different colored rats evolved, including the white albino rat. It is this albino rat that is commonly used in laboratories today.

40. Yardbird : INMATE
A yardbird is a convict, a word that entered the language in the mid-fifties from the idea that the “birds” took exercise in the prison “yard”.

42. Compounds found in wine : ESTERS
Esters are very common chemicals. The smaller, low-molecular weight esters are usually pleasant smelling and are often found in perfumes. At the other end of the scale, the higher-molecular weight nitroglycerin is a nitrate ester and is very explosive, and polyester is a huge molecule and is a type of plastic.

45. Ancient Mycenaean stronghold : ARGOS
Argos is one of the oldest cities in Greece, and indeed in Europe, having been continuously inhabited for over 7,000 years. In ancient times, Argos was a rival city-state to the powerful Sparta.

The period in Greek history from 1600 BC to 1100 BC is called Mycenaean, a reference to Mycenae, the dominating center of Greek civilization at that time.

Return to top of page

For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Regular fluctuation : EBB AND FLOW
11. Resourcefulness : WITS
15. Choose not to mess with : LEAVE ALONE
16. Stop shooting : WRAP
17. Written between two rows of text : INTERLINED
18. “But men are men; the best sometimes forget” speaker : IAGO
19. Opposing : STANDING AGAINST
21. “Jelly Roll, Bix and ___” (1994 history of early jazz) : HOAGY
22. Lamb’s “___ From Shakespeare” : TALES
23. Empty space : GAP
24. ___ of Denmark (James I’s queen consort) : ANNE
25. Fiber-rich fruits : FIGS
26. Madrigal syllables : TRA-LA
28. Crumbled ingredient in “dirt pudding” : OREO
29. Takes the big cheese down to size? : GRATES
30. Surprising revelation : SHOCKER
34. Superior facility : PROWESS
35. “You have been ___” : WARNED
36. Salon selections : DYES
37. She bests Sherlock in “A Scandal in Bohemia” : IRENE
38. Light : AIRY
39. Snide remark : GIBE
43. Items found in jackets : LPS
44. TV golf analyst who won three Masters : FALDO
46. What tickets may get you : FINES
47. Some movies on TV are shown in it : LETTERBOX FORMAT
50. Possible solution : IDEA
51. Approximately : GIVE OR TAKE
52. Film genre : NOIR
53. Quick affair? : ONE-NIGHTER
54. One attracted to vinegar : GNAT
55. Terrible #2s : SORE LOSERS

Down
1. “24” actress Cuthbert : ELISHA
2. Robert who won Oscars for both writing and directing “Kramer vs. Kramer” : BENTON
3. 1942 invasion site : BATAAN
4. Pay back : AVENGE
5. Square : NERDY
6. “Burning Giraffes in Yellow” painter : DALI
7. More obdurate : FLINTIER
8. Much earlier : LONG AGO
9. Two stars of “Paper Moon” : O’NEALS
10. One held in a trap : WEDGE
11. When the O.S.S. was formed : WWII
12. Reagan-era scandal : IRANGATE
13. Subjects of many notices stapled to telephone poles : TAG SALES
14. Part of a timing pattern on a football field : SPOT PASS
20. Winners of the longest postseason game in major-league history (18 innings, 2005) : ASTROS
25. Lead role in “Miracle on 34th Street” : FRED
27. Way to serve vegetables : RAW
28. 1940s-’50s tough-guy portrayer Dennis : O’KEEFE
29. Gandalf the ___ : GREY
30. Drinking to excess : SWILLING
31. Brought up incessantly : HARPED ON
32. Aeschylus trilogy : ORESTEIA
33. “This Week at War” airer : CNN
34. Mineral found in igneous rocks : PYROXENE
36. Took a mulligan on : DID OVER
38. Typical lab rat, e.g. : ALBINO
39. Circumferences : GIRTHS
40. Yardbird : INMATE
41. Cylindrical vessel with a flat bottom : BEAKER
42. Compounds found in wine : ESTERS
45. Ancient Mycenaean stronghold : ARGOS
46. Do without : FORGO
48. Pointed, in a way : TART
49. Stymie : FOIL

Return to top of page

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.