0514-14 New York Times Crossword Answers 14 May 14, Wednesday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: Victor Barocas
THEME: Turning a Prophet … each of today’s themed answers contains the name of a PROPHET, TURNED around (written backwards), with that name highlighted by the circled letters in the grid:

17A. Words of resignation : WIN SOME, LOSE SOME (hiding “Moses” turned)
27A. Barista-operated gadgets : ESPRESSO MAKERS (hiding “Amos” turned)
48A. Governor elected in a 2003 recall vote : SCHWARZENEGGER (hiding “Ezra” turned)

64A. Punny description of the circled letters in 17-, 27- and 48-Across : TURNING A PROPHET

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 7m 03s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

10. Put the whammy on : JINX
A jinx is a charm or a spell, and the word “jinx” comes from an older word “jyng” from the 17th-century. A “jyng” was another word for the wryneck, a type of bird much used in witchcraft.

14. Alternative to U.S.P.S. : EMAIL
The US Postal Service (USPS) is a remarkable agency in many ways. For starters, the government’s right and responsibility to establish the Post Office is specifically called out in Article One of the US constitution. Also, the first postmaster general was none other than Benjamin Franklin. And the USPS operates over 200,000 vehicles, which is the largest vehicle fleet in the world.

16. Fig leaf wearer, in some art : ADAM
In the Christian tradition, the “fall of man” took place in the Garden of Eden when Adam and Eve succumbed to the temptation of eating from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, against the bidding of God. As a result, Adam and Eve were banished from Eden to prevent them becoming immortal by eating from the tree of life. The first humans had transitioned from a state of innocent obedience to a state of guilty disobedience.

17. Words of resignation : WIN SOME, LOSE SOME (hiding “Moses” turned)
Moses is an important prophet in Christianity and Islam, and the most important prophet in Judaism. It fell to Moses to lead the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt across the Red Sea. He was given the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai, and then wandered the desert with his people for forty years. Moses then died within sight of the Promised Land.

20. Son of 16-Across : SETH
(16A. Fig leaf wearer, in some art : ADAM)
According to the Bible, Seth was the third son of Adam and Eve, coming after Cain and Abel. Seth is the only other child of Adam and Eve who is mentioned by name. According to the Book of Genesis, Seth was born after Cain had slain his brother Abel.

22. Actor Cariou : LEN
Len Cariou is a Canadian actor, famous for his Broadway portrayal of “Sweeney Todd”. I most recognize him from supporting roles in “Flags of Our Fathers” and “Thirteen Days”, two great movies.

23. “Dragnet” broadcast, for short : APB
An All Points Bulletin (APB) is a broadcast from one US law enforcement agency to another.

“Dragnet” was a very successful police drama that developed into quite a franchise. The show started out on radio in 1949, and then also ran on television from 1952. There were even a couple of movies. Star of the show, and the producer, was Jack Webb who played Sgt. Joe Friday.

25. Dick Tracy’s girl : TESS
In the “Dick Tracy” comic strip, Tess Trueheart was Dick’s love interest, and later his wife (and still his love interest, I am sure!).

The “Dick Tracy” comic strip was created way back in 1931 by Chester Gould. Dick Tracy was always up to date with the latest crime fighting techniques and gadgets, and even had a few that weren’t in use in real life. Tracy’s most famous gadget was his two-way wrist radio, something he started using in 1946. The radio got an upgrade in 1964 when it became a two-way wrist TV!

27. Barista-operated gadgets : ESPRESSO MAKERS (hiding “Amos” turned)
Espresso is made by forcing extremely hot water, under pressure, through finely ground coffee beans. The result is a thick and concentrated coffee drink, which contains quite a lot of solids and a lot of foam. An espresso machine was first patented in 1884 in Italy, although it was a machine to make the beverage in bulk. The first patent for a machine that made individual measures was applied for in 1901, also in Italy.

The person who serves coffee in a coffee shop is often called a “barista”. “Barista” is the Italian for “bartender”.

Amos is one of the twelve minor prophets in the Hebrew Bible. Before becoming a prophet, Amos was sheep herder and a fig farmer.

34. Old televangelism org. : PTL
“The PTL Club” was a daily television show hosted by TV evangelists Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker. PTL is short for both “Praise the Lord” and “People that Love”. The show ended its run of over ten years in 1987 when it was revealed that Jim Bakker was involvement in financial and sexual scandals. Bakker served 5 years in jail, part of an 18-year sentence.

39. Gives kudos : LAUDS
Our word “kudos” means acclaim given for an exceptional achievement. “Kudos” is not a plural, despite a common misapprehension. It is a singular noun derived from the Greek “kyddos” meaning “glory, fame”.

42. Like decalcified water : SOFT
Water is described as “hard” or “soft” depending on its mineral content. Hard water has picked up a lot of calcium and magnesium, usually by percolating through deposits of limestone, chalk or dolomite.

43. Instrument on the Beatles’ “Norwegian Wood” : SITAR
The sitar has been around since the Middle Ages. The sitar is a stringed instrument that is played by plucking, and is used most often in Hindustani classical music. In the West we have been exposed to the instrument largely through the performances of Ravi Shankar and some music by George Harrison of the Beatles, a onetime student of Shankar.

“Norwegian Wood” is a Beatles song from 1965. “Norwegian Wood” is somewhat groundbreaking in that George Harrison is playing a sitar, the first time the sitar was used by a rock band on a record. And, if you like to waltz around the dance floor, this is one of the few Beatles records that is in triple time.

45. Sushi bar quaff : SAKE
We refer to the Japanese alcoholic beverage made from rice as “sake”. We’ve gotten things a bit mixed up in the West. “Sake” is actually the word that the Japanese use for all alcoholic drinks. What we know as sake, we sometimes refer to as “rice wine”. It is indeed made from rice, but it is a brewed rather than fermented and so is more like a beer than a wine.

“Quaff” is both a verb and a noun. One quaffs (takes a hearty drink) of a quaff (a hearty drink).

47. Part of many French surnames : DES
The French word “des” translates as “of the”.

48. Governor elected in a 2003 recall vote : SCHWARZENEGGER (hiding “Ezra” turned)
A “recall election” is one in which an attempt is made by the voters to remove an incumbent before his or her term has ended. The most famous recall election here in California was the one that removed Governor Gray Davis in 2003. Davis was replaced by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Ezra the Scribe, also called Ezra the Priest, is the central character in the Book of Ezra in the Hebrew Bible.

52. Chicken-sized flightless bird : KIWI
The kiwi is an unusual bird in that it has a highly developed sense of smell and is the only one of our feathered friends with nostrils located at the tip of its long beak.

54. Proof-ending letters : QED
QED is used at the end of a mathematical proof or a philosophical argument. The QED acronym stands for the Latin “quod erat demonstrandum” meaning “that which was to be demonstrated”.

67. “Pumping ___” (1977 docudrama featuring 48-Across) : IRON
The Mr. Olympia bodybuilding competition was featured in the 1977 movie “Pumping Iron”. It was this film that gave Arnold Schwarzenegger and Lou Ferrigno a start to their acting careers.

68. “Whip It” band : DEVO
Devo is a band from Akron, Ohio formed back in 1973. The band’s biggest hit is “Whip It” released in 1980.

69. What a metronome regulates : TEMPO
A metronome is any device that produces a regular beat. The metronome was invented in 1815 by Johann Maelzel, who intended it to be an instrument for the use of musicians.

70. Historic resignee of 2013 : POPE
Did you know that the former Pope, Benedict XVI, released a music CD while in office? His Holiness is featured singing on an album released not too long ago by the Vatican. “Alma Mater: Featuring The Voice of Pope Benedict XVI Deluxe Edition” is a collection of sacred music. All proceeds go to help underprivileged children around the world.

72. “Come on down!” announcer Johnny : OLSON
Johnny Olson was the announcer on “The Price is Right” from day one in 1972, until he passed away in 1985.

Down
2. Friend en français : AMIE
“Amie” is the word for a female friend in French (en français ).

3. Long broadside : RANT
A “broadside” is a harshly spoken or written attack. The term comes from a naval attack in which all guns on one side of a warship are fired at the same time.

8. “Chop-chop!” : PRONTO!
The Spanish, Italian (and now English) word “pronto” is derived from the Latin “promptus” meaning “ready, quick”.

“Chop chop” is Chinese Pidgin English, and is just a reiteration of the word “chop” used in the sense of moving quickly.

10. Pres. Madison or Monroe : JAS
James Madison, the fourth President of the United States, was one of the Founding Fathers. Back during the founding of the nation, Madison was principal contributor to the Constitution and so today he is often called the Father of the Constitution. While he was serving in the 1st US Congress, Madison wrote the first ten amendments to the constitution, the Bill of Rights. So, he is also known as the Father of the Bill of Rights. With such a contribution it is perhaps fitting that when President Madison passed away in 1836 at 85 years of age, he was the last of the Founding Fathers to die.

13. Comics foes of Magneto : X-MEN
X-Men is a team of superheroes created by Stan Lee for Marvel Comics. Nowadays the X-Men are perhaps best known as the subject of a series of movies, with Hugh Jackman playing Wolverine, and Patrick Stewart playing Professor Xavier (or simply “Professor X”). Some very respected actors have also played the villains that X-Men have to battle. For example, the enemy called Magneto is portrayed by veteran Shakespearean actor Sir Ian McKellan.

18. Old phone company nickname : MA BELL
The term “Ma Bell” was used to describe the monopoly led by the American Bell Telephone Company and AT&T, that controlled telephone service right across the country. The name “Bell” is after Alexander Graham Bell, the inventor of the first practical telephone.

19. Piece of Bacon or Lamb : ESSAY
The English philosopher and statesman Francis Bacon wrote a celebrated and respected collection of essays called “The Essayes”, first published in 1597. My favorite of these essays is “Of Simulation and Dissimulation”, which observes:

Dissimulation, in the negative; when a man lets fall signs and arguments, that he is not, that he is… Simulation, in the affirmative; when a man industriously and expressly feigns and pretends to be, that he is not.

Charles Lamb published a famous collection of essays simply entitled “Essays of Elia”. Elia was actually a clerk and co-worker of Charles Lamb, whereas Lamb was the author.

26. Biathlete’s needs : SKIS
A biathlon is an event requiring expertise in two sporting disciplines. The most common biathlon is the winter sport that combines cross-country skiing with rifle shooting. This traditional biathlon was born out of an exercise for soldiers in Norway.

28. Upside-down sleeper : SLOTH
“Sloth”, meaning “indolence, sluggishness”, comes from the Middle English word “slowe”, the same root for our contemporary word “slow”. The animal, the sloth, is named for its slow-moving behavior.

29. SpongeBob’s home : SEA
SpongeBob SquarePants is a cartoon character in a Nickelodeon television series. Spongebob first appeared in 1999, and he lives in a pineapple under the sea.

30. W. C. Fields persona : SOUSE
The word “souse” dates back to the 14th century and means “to pickle, steep in vinegar”. In the early 1600s the usage was applied to someone “pickled” in booze, a drunkard.

W. C. Fields worked hard to develop the on-screen image of a pretty grumpy old man. In his real life he was fairly grumpy too, and fond of protecting his privacy. He was famous for hiding in the shrubs around his house in Los Angeles and firing a BB gun at the legs of tourists who intruded on his property. Also Fields often played the drunk on-screen. In real life, Fields didn’t touch alcohol at all when he was younger, partly because he didn’t want to do anything to impair his skill as a juggler. But later in life he took to heavy drinking, so much so that it affected his health and interfered with his ability to perform.

31. Horatian work : EPODE
An epode is a lyric poem made up of couplets in which the first line is long, and the second line much shorter. The form was invented by the Greek poet Archilochus, and was most famously used by the Roman poet Horace.

33. Old Air France fleet, for short : SSTS
The most famous supersonic transport (SST) is the retired Concorde. Concorde was developed and produced under an Anglo-French treaty by France’s Aérospatiale and the UK’s British Aircraft Corporation (BAC). Concordes were mainly operated by Air France and British Airways, with both companies buying the planes with substantial subsidies from the French and British governments.

34. Face, slangily : PUSS
“Puss” is a slang word meaning “face”, or in particular “mouth”. The term derives from the Irish word “pus”, which translates as “lip, mouth”.

40. Brown who wrote “The Da Vinci Code” : DAN
Dan Brown is a somewhat controversial author, best known for his 2003 novel “The Da Vinci Code”. I’ve read all of Brown’s books and must say that his early ones were awful. Having said that I loved “Angels and Demons”, and found “The Da Vinci Code” to be a great read. Having also read “Inferno”, I must say that to me his stories have become rather formulaic …

44. “Spider-Man” director Sam : RAIMI
Sam Raimi is a very successful director and producer, responsible for the “Spider-Man” series of films among others, and TV series’ such as “Xena: Warrior Princess”.

49. Country with a gorilla on its 5,000-franc note : RWANDA
Rwanda is a sovereign nation in central Africa that is populated by three groups: the Hutu, Tutsi (aka “Watutsi”) and Twa. The Tutsi are the second largest population of people in Rwanda, with the Hutu being the largest group. The bloody conflict that has existed between the Tutsi and Hutu peoples dates back to about 1880 when Catholic missionaries arrived in the region. The missionaries found that they had more success converting the Hutus than the Tutsi, and when the Germans occupied the area during WWI they confiscated Tutsi land and gave it to Hutu tribes in order to reward religious conversion. This injustice fuels fighting to this very day.

50. Did part of a slalom path : ZIGGED
Slalom is an anglicized version of the Norwegian word “slalam” that translates as “skiing race”.

51. Staple Singers genre : GOSPEL
The Staple Singers were a family singing group noted mainly for their gospel recordings. The actual name of the family is “Staples”, but they used the singular “Staple” in the group name.

54. Commercial swab : Q-TIP
Cotton swabs were originally marketed under the name “Baby Gays”, but this was changed in 1926 to “Q-Tips”, with the Q standing for “quality”.

55. Two-tone coin : EURO
Euro coins are issued by all the participating European states. The reverse side is a common design used by all countries, whereas the obverse is a design specific to each nation. For example, the one euro coin issued by Malta features the Maltese Cross. That Maltese euro is legal tender right across the eurozone.

59. N.Y.S.E. debuts : IPOS
An Initial Public Offering (IPO) is the very first offer of stock for sale by a company on the open market. In other words, an IPO marks the first time that a company is traded on a public exchange. Companies have an IPO to raise capital to expand (usually).

New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)

61. Resistance units : OHMS
The unit of electrical resistance is the ohm (with the symbol omega) named after German physicist Georg Simon Ohm. Ohm was the guy who established experimentally that the amount of current flowing through a circuit is directly proportional to the voltage applied, (V=IR) a relationship that every school kid knows as Ohm’s Law.

62. Towed-away auto, maybe : REPO
Repossession (repo)

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Does damage to : HARMS
6. Little handfuls, so to speak : IMPS
10. Put the whammy on : JINX
14. Alternative to U.S.P.S. : EMAIL
15. Securely hide : BURY
16. Fig leaf wearer, in some art : ADAM
17. Words of resignation : WIN SOME, LOSE SOME (hiding “Moses” turned)
20. Son of 16-Across : SETH
21. Advisers to players’ associations : AGENTS
22. Actor Cariou : LEN
23. “Dragnet” broadcast, for short : APB
25. Dick Tracy’s girl : TESS
27. Barista-operated gadgets : ESPRESSO MAKERS (hiding “Amos” turned)
34. Old televangelism org. : PTL
35. Food item in quarter-pound sticks : OLEO
36. “This is looking bad!” : YIPES!
37. “This is looking bad!” : UH-OH!
39. Gives kudos : LAUDS
42. Like decalcified water : SOFT
43. Instrument on the Beatles’ “Norwegian Wood” : SITAR
45. Sushi bar quaff : SAKE
47. Part of many French surnames : DES
48. Governor elected in a 2003 recall vote : SCHWARZENEGGER (hiding “Ezra” turned)
52. Chicken-sized flightless bird : KIWI
53. “Yay!” : WOO!
54. Proof-ending letters : QED
57. Bird in the crow family : MAGPIE
60. Like poor losers : SORE
64. Punny description of the circled letters in 17-, 27- and 48-Across : TURNING A PROPHET
67. “Pumping ___” (1977 docudrama featuring 48-Across) : IRON
68. “Whip It” band : DEVO
69. What a metronome regulates : TEMPO
70. Historic resignee of 2013 : POPE
71. Drinks at sidewalk stands : ADES
72. “Come on down!” announcer Johnny : OLSON

Down
1. Takes an ax to : HEWS
2. Friend en français : AMIE
3. Long broadside : RANT
4. Bit of bad luck : MISHAP
5. ___-mo : SLO
6. “___ to differ” : I BEG
7. Drug smuggler’s courier : MULE
8. “Chop-chop!” : PRONTO!
9. Bettor’s strategy : SYSTEM
10. Pres. Madison or Monroe : JAS
11. Golden god, say : IDOL
12. File directory heading : NAME
13. Comics foes of Magneto : X-MEN
18. Old phone company nickname : MA BELL
19. Piece of Bacon or Lamb : ESSAY
24. Tour player : PRO
26. Biathlete’s needs : SKIS
27. Set of principles : ETHIC
28. Upside-down sleeper : SLOTH
29. SpongeBob’s home : SEA
30. W. C. Fields persona : SOUSE
31. Horatian work : EPODE
32. Send, as to a specialist : REFER
33. Old Air France fleet, for short : SSTS
34. Face, slangily : PUSS
38. Sharp-eyed sort : HAWK
40. Brown who wrote “The Da Vinci Code” : DAN
41. Lampoon but good : SKEWER
44. “Spider-Man” director Sam : RAIMI
46. ___-surf (Google oneself) : EGO
49. Country with a gorilla on its 5,000-franc note : RWANDA
50. Did part of a slalom path : ZIGGED
51. Staple Singers genre : GOSPEL
54. Commercial swab : Q-TIP
55. Two-tone coin : EURO
56. Barely enough to wet one’s whistle : DROP
58. ___ the way : PAVE
59. N.Y.S.E. debuts : IPOS
61. Resistance units : OHMS
62. Towed-away auto, maybe : REPO
63. School for Prince Harry : ETON
65. 180 degrees from SSW : NNE
66. Ear-related prefix : OTO-

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