1031-12 New York Times Crossword Answers 31 Oct 12, Wednesday

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Solution to today’s crossword in the New York Times
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CROSSWORD SETTER: Stu Ockman
THEME: Concoction from Macbeth … four of the theme answers are ingredients in the BREW concocted by the three WITCHES in Shakespeare’s “Macbeth”. Maybe they boiled up their evil elixir for Halloween?

17A. 64-Across ingredient : TOOTH OF WOLF
21A. 64-Across ingredient : SLIPS OF YEW
40A. 64-Across ingredient : BLIND-WORM’S STING
57A. 64-Across ingredient : LIZARD’S LEG
64A. “Macbeth” recipe : WITCHES BREW

COMPLETION TIME: 23m 50s!
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

7. Billy of “Titanic” : ZANE
Billy Zane is an actor from Chicago, Illinois. One of Zane’s most prominent roles was the title character in the 1996 superhero film called “The Phantom”. He also played the somewhat creepy bad guy in the 1989 thriller movie called “Dead Calm”.

11. “Eternally nameless” Chinese principle : TAO
The Chinese character “tao” translates as “path”, but the concept of Tao signifies the true nature of the world.

15. Ruler of Asgard : ODIN
In Norse mythology, Odin was the chief of the gods. Odin’s wife Frigg was the queen of Asgard whose name gave us our English term “Friday” (via Anglo-Saxon). Odin’s son was Thor, and his name gave us the term “Thursday”.

16. Tool with a curved head : ADZ
An adze (also adz) is similar to an axe, but different in that the blade of an adze is set at right angles to the tool’s shaft. An axe’s blade is set in line with the shaft.

19. “From my cold, dead hands!” sloganeer : NRA
The National Rifle Association (NRA) used the slogan “I’ll give you my gun when you pry it from my cold, dead hands”. These words became quite famous when they were used at an NRA convention in 2000 by Charlton Heston, who was then president of the NRA. Heston ended a speech he made with the words “From my cold, dead hands!” while holding up into the air a replica of a Sharps rifle.

20. “Elephant Boy” boy : SABU
The 1937 British film “Elephant Boy” starred a young Indian elephant driver called Sabu Dastagir. Sabu (he was often known just by the one name) made more British films over the next few years, including “The Thief of Baghdad” in 1940 and the 1942 version of “The Jungle book”. Sabu moved to Hollywood and became a US citizen in 1944. He joined the US Army Air Forces and served as a tail gunner in the Pacific, eventually winning the Distinguished Flying Cross for valor and bravery. Sadly, in 1963 Sabu died of a heart attack at only 39 years of age.

23. Bireme or trireme tool : OAR
Triremes were galleys used in the Mediterranean by a number of cultures, including the Ancient Greeks and Romans. The trireme was so called because there were three rows of oars on each side of the vessel. The term “trireme” comes from the Latin “tres remi” meaning “three-oar”. There was also a less ambitious version of the trireme that had only two banks of oars, and that was known as a bireme.

27. Eve who wrote “The Vagina Monologues” : ENSLER
Eve Ensler is a playwright whose most famous work is “The Vagina Monologues”. When Ensler was only 23 years of age she adopted a 15 year old boy. We are familiar with that boy on the big screen these days … actor Dylan McDermott.

31. Capt. Jean-___ Picard : LUC
When Gene Roddenberry was creating the “Star Trek” spin-off series “Star Trek: The Next Generation”, I think he chose a quite magnificent name for the new starship captain. The name “Jean-Luc Picard” is imitative of one or both of the twin-brother Swiss scientists Auguste and Jean Felix Piccard. The role of Picard was of course played by the wonderful Shakespearean actor Patrick Stewart.

36. “___ Ben Adhem” : ABOU
Abou Ben Adhem, also known as Ibrahim Bin Adham, was an Arab Muslim saint. He was made famous in the western world with the publication in 1838 of the poem “Abou Ben Adhem” that was composed by James Henry Leigh Hunt, the English poet.

45. French seasoning : SEL
“Sel” is the French word for “salt”.

46. GPS display features: Abbr. : RDS
GPS stands for Global Positioning System. The modern GPS system that we use today was built by the US military who received the massive funding needed because of fears during the Cold War of the use of Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles. We civilians, all round the world, owe a lot to President Ronald Reagan because he directed the military to make GPS technology available to the public for the common good. President Reagan was moved to do so after the Soviet Union shot down KAL flight 007 carrying 269 people, just because the plane strayed accidentally into Soviet airspace.

48. Strut one’s stuff, say : SASHAY
To “sashay” is to strut along in a showy manner. “Sashay” is an Anglicized form of the French word “chassé”, a sliding step used in square dancing.

50. Illinois senator who became president : OBAMA
President Obama served three terms in the Illinois State Senate, from 1997 to 2004. The future President ran unsuccessfully for the US House of Representatives in 2000, and then successfully for the US Senate in 2004. Famously, State Senator Obama delivered the keynote address to the Democratic National Convention in 2004, just a few months before winning that US Senate seat.

53. Jacuzzi sigh : AAH
Jacuzzi is one of those brand names that has become so much associated with the product that it is often assumed to be a generic term. The Jacuzzi company was founded in 1915 by the seven (!) Jacuzzi brothers in Berkeley  California. The brothers, who were Italian immigrants, pronounced their name “ja-coot-si”, as one might suspect when one realizes the name is of Italian origin. The company started off by making aircraft propellers and then small aircraft, but suspended aircraft production in 1925 when one the brothers was killed in one of their planes. The family then started making hydraulic pumps, and in 1948 developed a submersible bathtub pump so that a son of one of the brothers could enjoy hydrotherapy for his rheumatoid arthritis. The “hydrotherapy product” took off in the fifties with some astute marketing towards “worn-out housewives” and the use of celebrity spokesman Jack Benny.

56. Muscle car in a 1964 song : GTO
GTO stands for Gran Turismo Omologato.

60. Some calls to smokeys : APBS
An All Points Bulletin (APB) is a broadcast from one US law enforcement agency to another.

In CB slang a “smokey” is a police officer. The term is used because Smokey Bear, the US Forest Service’s mascot, wears a hat that is similar to that worn by many highway patrol officers.

63. Cousin ___ of ’60s TV : ITT
In the television sitcom “The Addams Family”, the family had a frequent visitor called Cousin Itt. Itt is a short man with long hair that runs from his head to the floor. Cousin Itt was played by Italian actor Felix Silla.

64. “Macbeth” recipe : WITCHES BREW
As the three witches in Shakespeare’s “Macbeth” are boiling up their evil brew, they call out all the exotic ingredients. Stirring away they also repeat several times the famous lines:

Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.

66. Flock formation : VEE
Apparently geese fly in that V-formation for a couple of reasons. One is that it makes for efficient flight and conserves energy. The leading bird gets no advantage, but every following bird gets to “slipstream” a little. It has been noted that the lead bird drops to the back of the formation when he/she gets fatigued. It’s also thought that the flock can stick together more easily when in formation, so it is more difficult to lose someone along the way.

68. Banned book of 1955 : LOLITA
Vladimir Nabokov’s novel “Lolita” has a famously controversial storyline, dealing with a middle-aged man’s obsession and sexual relationship with a 12-year-old girl. Although “Lolita” is considered a classic today, after Nabokov finished it in 1953 the edgy subject matter made it impossible for him to find a publisher in the US (where Nabokov lived). In 1955, he resorted to publishing it in English at a printing house in Paris. Publication was followed by bans and seizures all over Europe. A US printing house finally took on the project in 1958, by which time the title had such a reputation that it sold exceptionally quickly. “Lolita” became the first book since “Gone with the Wind” to sell over 100,000 copies in its first three weeks in stores.

70. “A Doll’s House” wife : NORA
“A Doll’s House” is probably the most famous play by Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen. The play deals with the feminist awakening of the lead character, Nora Helmer, and is sometimes referred to as the “first true feminist play”.

71. Playwright Bertolt : BRECHT
Bertolt Brecht was a poet and playwright from Augsburg in Germany. Brecht’s most famous work here in North America is probably “The Threepenny Opera”, which was a collaboration with Kurt Weill.

Down
2. Greek colonnade : STOA
A stoa was a covered walkway in Ancient Greece. A stoa usually consisted of columns lining the side of a building or buildings, with another row of columns defining the other side of the walkway. The columns supported a roof. Often stoae would surround marketplaces in large cities.

3. Notable nose : PROBOSCIS
A proboscis is a long appendage attached to the head of an animal, sometimes referred to as an elongated “nose”. Many an insect has a proboscis, as does the elephant.

6. Some referee calls, for short : TKOS
In boxing, a knockout (KO) is when one of the fighters can’t get up from the canvas within a specified time, usually 10 seconds. This can be due to fatigue, injury, or the participant may be truly “knocked out”. A referee, fighter or doctor may also decide to stop a fight without a physical knockout, especially if there is concern about a fighter’s safety. In this case the bout is said to end with a technical knockout (TKO).

11. Tucker who sang “Delta Dawn” : TANYA
Country singer Tanya Tucker’s first hit was “Delta Dawn” in 1972, which she recorded at only 13 years of age.

12. Pertinent, in law : AD REM
The Latin term “ad rem” translates literally as “to the matter”.

13. Conductor Seiji : OZAWA
Seiji Ozawa is most famous for his work as music director of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, although he is also the principal conductor of the Vienna State Opera. Ozawa is renowned for wearing a white turtleneck under his dress suit when he conducts, rather than the traditional starched shirt and white tie.

22. Rose Parade entry : FLOAT
Pasadena, California is famous for hosting the annual Rose Bowl football game, as well as the related Tournament of Roses Parade.

24. Bassoon part in two pieces : REED
Our modern bassoon first appeared in the 1800s and has had a place in the concert orchestra ever since.

27. Isle of exile : ELBA
I had a lovely two-week vacation in Tuscany once, including what was supposed to be a two-night stay on the island of Elba. I had envisioned Elba as a place full of history, and maybe it is, but it is also overrun with tourists who use it as a beach getaway. We left after one day and we won’t be going back again …

29. Singer of 1976’s “You’ll Never Find Another Love Like Mine” : RAWLS
Lou Rawls was an American soul and blues singer known for his smooth vocal style. With his singing career well on the way, Rawls was asked to sing “The Star Spangled Banner” in 1977 at a Muhammad Ali fight in Madison Square Garden. This performance led to him being asked to sing the anthem many, many times in the coming years at sports events, with his last rendition being at a World Series game in 2005. Rawls passed away in January of the following year.

30. Church recesses : APSES
The apse of a church or cathedral is a semicircular recess in an outer wall, usually with a half-dome as a roof and often where there resides an altar. Originally apses were used as burial places for the clergy and also for storage of important relics.

33. The Great Lakes’ ___ Locks : SOO
In the summer of 2010 I spent a very interesting afternoon watching ships make their way through the Soo Locks and Soo Canal between Lake Superior and the lower Great lakes. The name “Soo” comes from the US and Canadian cities on either side of the locks, both called Sault Ste. Marie.

34. Suffix with ranch : -ERO
A ranchero is one employed on a ranch and is a word with Spanish roots.

38. Draft-ready : ONE-A
The US government maintains information on all males who are potentially subject to military conscription, using what is called the Selective Service System. In the event that a draft was held, men registered would be classified into groups to determine eligibility for service. Class 1-A registrants are those available for unrestricted military service. Other classes are 1-A-O (conscientious objector available for noncombatant service), 4-A (registrant who has completed military service) and 4-D (Minister of religion).

41. “Goodbye, ___ Jean …” : NORMA
“Candle in the Wind” is a 1973 song written by Elton John and Bernie Taupin in honor of Marilyn Monroe, hence the lyric “Goodbye, Norma Jean”. Elton John rewrote some of the words in honor of Diana, Princess of Wales and performed it at the princess’s memorial service. The line most descriptive of Diana in the 1997 version is “Goodbye, English rose”.

47. Australian city named after a naturalist : DARWIN
Darwin is the capital and largest city in the Northern Territory of Australia. HMS Beagle landed in the area in 1839. A lieutenant on the ship called the location Port Darwin, in honor of the famed naturalist Charles Darwin. Darwin wasn’t on board the Beagle at the time, but he had been on the vessel’s prior voyage.

50. Antipasto bit : OLIVE
Antipasto is the first course of a meal in Italy. “Antipasto” translates as “before the meal”.

52. Member of an empire ruled by the Mexica : AZTEC
The Aztec people of Central America dominated the region in the 14th-16th centuries. Two traits of the Aztec people are oft cited today. They built some magnificent pyramids, and they also engaged in human sacrifice. The two traits were linked in a way. For the consecration of the Great Pyramid of Tenochtitlan, 84,400 prisoners were sacrificed over a period of four days.

54. Name in kitchen foil : ALCOA
The Aluminum Corporation of America (ALCOA) is the largest producer of aluminum in the United States. The company was founded in 1888 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where its headquarters are to this day.

58. Lover of Aeneas : DIDO
Dido was the founder of Carthage, and it’s first queen.

Aeneas was a Trojan who traveled to Italy and became the ancestor of all Romans. Aeneas’s story is told in Virgil’s epic poem “The Aeneid”.

59. Peter ___, general manager of the Met : GELB
Peter Gelb is the General Manager of the Metropolitan Opera in New York City. Peter is the son of Arthur Gelb who was once Managing Editor of “The New York Times”.

61. Aleph follower : BETH
Aleph is the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet, and beth the second.

62. Police jacket letters : SWAT
SWAT is an acronym for Special Weapons and Tactics. The first SWAT team was pulled together in the Los Angeles Police Department in 1968.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Quick wit : ESPRIT
7. Billy of “Titanic” : ZANE
11. “Eternally nameless” Chinese principle : TAO
14. In harm’s way : AT RISK
15. Ruler of Asgard : ODIN
16. Tool with a curved head : ADZ
17. 64-Across ingredient : TOOTH OF WOLF
19. “From my cold, dead hands!” sloganeer : NRA
20. “Elephant Boy” boy : SABU
21. 64-Across ingredient : SLIPS OF YEW
23. Bireme or trireme tool : OAR
25. “On the other hand …” : YET
26. Andean wool source : LLAMA
27. Eve who wrote “The Vagina Monologues” : ENSLER
30. Commotion : ADO
31. Capt. Jean-___ Picard : LUC
32. Relax : EASE UP
36. “___ Ben Adhem” : ABOU
40. 64-Across ingredient : BLIND-WORM’S STING
43. “Wait! There’s more …” : ALSO
44. Relax : LOOSEN
45. French seasoning : SEL
46. GPS display features: Abbr. : RDS
48. Strut one’s stuff, say : SASHAY
50. Illinois senator who became president : OBAMA
53. Jacuzzi sigh : AAH
56. Muscle car in a 1964 song : GTO
57. 64-Across ingredient : LIZARD’S LEG
60. Some calls to smokeys : APBS
63. Cousin ___ of ’60s TV : ITT
64. “Macbeth” recipe : WITCHES BREW
66. Flock formation : VEE
67. Prefix with -logical : IDEO-
68. Banned book of 1955 : LOLITA
69. PC key : ESC
70. “A Doll’s House” wife : NORA
71. Playwright Bertolt : BRECHT

Down
1. Snacks on : EATS
2. Greek colonnade : STOA
3. Notable nose : PROBOSCIS
4. Fraternity initiation, e.g. : RITUAL
5. Roughly: Suffix : -ISH
6. Some referee calls, for short : TKOS
7. “Fantabulous!” : ZOWIE
8. Take up, as a cause : ADOPT
9. Zeros, in soccer : NILS
10. Wrap around : ENFOLD
11. Tucker who sang “Delta Dawn” : TANYA
12. Pertinent, in law : AD REM
13. Conductor Seiji : OZAWA
18. It may be embarrassing if it’s open : FLY
22. Rose Parade entry : FLOAT
24. Bassoon part in two pieces : REED
27. Isle of exile : ELBA
28. Lacking value : NULL
29. Singer of 1976’s “You’ll Never Find Another Love Like Mine” : RAWLS
30. Church recesses : APSES
33. The Great Lakes’ ___ Locks : SOO
34. Suffix with ranch : -ERO
35. Stalling-for-time syllables : UMS
37. Seat of a Catholic official : BISHOPRIC
38. Draft-ready : ONE-A
39. Hard on the eyes : UGLY
41. “Goodbye, ___ Jean …” : NORMA
42. Grab onto : SNAG
47. Australian city named after a naturalist : DARWIN
49. Hospital condition : STABLE
50. Antipasto bit : OLIVE
51. What fishermen hope for : BITES
52. Member of an empire ruled by the Mexica : AZTEC
53. Cousin of a daisy : ASTER
54. Name in kitchen foil : ALCOA
55. Villain’s chuckle : HEH
58. Lover of Aeneas : DIDO
59. Peter ___, general manager of the Met : GELB
61. Aleph follower : BETH
62. Police jacket letters : SWAT
65. College women’s grp. : SOR

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