0630-14 New York Times Crossword Answers 30 Jun 14, Monday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: Ed Sessa
THEME: Vowel-Sound Progression … today’s themed answers end with a FL- vowel sound progression:

17A. Celebrity chef and host of the Food Network’s “Boy Meets Grill” : BOBBY FLAY
25A. Theme music for TV’s “The Dating Game” : SPANISH FLEA
39A. Insect that causes sleeping sickness : TSETSE FLY
55A. It’s typically slow during rush hour : TRAFFIC FLOW
66A. Dismissive term for chronic fatigue syndrome : YUPPIE FLU

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 4m 56s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Airline to the Holy Land : EL AL
El Al Israel Airlines is the flag carrier of Israel. The term “el al” translates from Hebrew as “to the skies”.

14. N.Y.C. institution with works of Warhol and Dalí : MOMA
The founding of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City was very much driven by Abby Aldrich Rockefeller, the wife of John D. Rockefeller, son of the oil magnate. Working with two friends, Abby managed to get the museum opened in 1929, just nine days after the Wall Street Crash. The MoMA’s sculpture garden bears the name of Abby Aldrich Rockefeller, and has done so since 1949.

Andy Warhol went through a period of painting iconic American products, including Coca-Cola bottles and Campbell’s tomato soup cans. In 1964 he participated in a gallery show called “The American Supermarket”. Along with other pop artists he contributed works including a painting of a can of Campbell’s tomato soup. He priced the painting at $1,500, and sold autographed cans of soup for $6 a piece.

The famous surrealist painter Salvador Dalí was born in Figueres, Spain. I 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” as it really is a quite magnificent building with a fascinating collection.

15. Italian currency before the euro : LIRA
The word “lira” is used in a number of countries for currency. “Lira” comes from the Latin for “pound” and is derived from a British pound sterling, the value of a Troy pound of silver. For example, the lira (plural “lire”) was the official currency of Italy before the country changed over to the euro in 2002.

17. Celebrity chef and host of the Food Network’s “Boy Meets Grill” : BOBBY FLAY
Bobby Flay is a celebrity chef who has hosted several shows on the Food Network. Flay is also an Iron Chef on the show “Iron Chef America”, which also airs on the Food Network.

19. Crooks, to cops : PERPS
Perpetrator (perp.)

20. Licorice flavoring : ANISE
Liquorice (also licorice) and aniseed have similar flavors, but they come from unrelated plants. The liquorice plant is a legume like a bean, and the sweet flavor is an extract from the roots. The flavor mainly comes from an ether compound called anethole, the same substance that gives the distinctive flavor to anise. The seedpods of the anise plant are what we know as “aniseed”. The anise seeds themselves are usually ground to release the flavor.

23. AOL or EarthLink: Abbr. : ISP
An Internet Service Provider (ISP) is just what the name indicates, a company that provides its customers with access to the Internet. One way that ISPs differentiate themselves from each other is in the way in which end users are connected to the ISP’s network. So, there are cable ISPs, DSL ISPs, dial-up ISPs and satellite ISPs. I’d go with cable if I were you, if it’s available in your area …

The iconic phrase “You’ve got mail” was first used by AOL in 1989. The greeting was recorded by voice actor Elwood Edwards. Edwards has parlayed his gig with AOL into some other work. He appears in an episode of “The Simpsons” as a doctor who says the line “You’ve got leprosy”. Edwards also worked as a weatherman for a while and got to use the line “You’ve got hail” …

EarthLink is an IT services company. One service offered by EarthLink is internet access, which it provides to about a million consumers.

25. Theme music for TV’s “The Dating Game” : SPANISH FLEA
“Spanish Flea” is a song from the sixties that was composed by Julius Wechter with lyrics by his wife Cissy Wechter. The song is best-known as an instrumental, a number one hit for Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass in 1965. “Spanish Flea” was also used as the theme tune for “The Dating Game” TV show that aired from the sixties through the nineties.

30. Majority of the contestants on “The Dating Game” : MEN
Most episodes of TV’s “The Dating Game” featured a bachelorette questioning three bachelors, after which she would select one young man to go out with on a date. A lot of famous people appeared on the show, before they became celebrities. It can be fun to check video clips of their appearances on YouTube. A good list to start with includes Farrah Fawcett, Suzanne Sommers, LIndsay Wagner, Tom Selleck, Lee Majors, the Carpenters, Andy Kaufman, Steve Martin, Burt Reynolds, John Ritter, Phil Hartman, Arnold Schwarzenegger. A more sinister appearance was made by serial killer Rodney Alcala while he was in the middle of his killing spree, but after he had been convicted of rape.

33. Bygone jets, informally : 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.

39. Insect that causes sleeping sickness : TSETSE FLY
Tsetse flies live on the blood of vertebrate mammals. The name “tsetse” comes from Tswana, a language of southern Africa, and translates simply as “fly”. Tsetse flies are famous for being carriers of the disease known as “sleeping sickness”. Sleeping sickness is caused by a parasite which is passed onto humans when the tsetse fly bites into human skin tissue. If one considers all the diseases transmitted by the insect, then the tsetse fly is responsible for a staggering quarter of a million deaths each year.

42. Actor Davis : OSSIE
Ossie Davis was a very successful African-American actor, but also a director, poet, playwright and social activist. One of Davis’s better known performances was in the 1993 movie “Grumpy Old Men”, in which he played the owner of the bait shop by the lake.

45. “The Thin Man” pooch : ASTA
Asta is the wonderful little dog in the superb “The Thin Man” series of films starring William Powell and Myrna Loy (as Nick and Nora Charles). In the original story by Dashiell Hammett, Asta was a female Schnauzer, but on screen Asta was played by a wire-haired fox terrier called “Skippy”. Skippy was also the dog in “Bringing up Baby” with Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn, the one who kept stealing the dinosaur bone. Skippy retired in 1939, so Asta was played by other dogs in the remainder of “The Thin Man” films.

“The Thin Man” is a detective novel written by Dashiell Hammett that was first published in the magazine “Redbook” in 1934. Hammett never wrote a sequel to his story, but it spawned a wonderful, wonderful series of “The Thin Man” films starring William Powell and Myrna Loy. “The Thin Man” was the last novel that Hammett wrote.

46. ___ tape : DUCT
What we tend to call “duct” tape today was originally known as “duck” tape. In its first form, duck tape was rubber-based adhesive applied to a duck cloth backing, hence the name. Cotton duck cloth is a canvas-like material, a plain woven cotton fabric. The name “duck” comes from the Dutch “doek” meaning “linen canvas”. Duck tape started to known as “duct tape” in the fifties, as it was commonly used to wrap air ducts in the construction industry.

50. Proverbial place for bats : BELFRY
The expression “bats in the belfry” meaning “mad, crazy” conjures up images of bats flying around Gothic bell towers, but actually it’s a relatively recent addition to our vernacular. The term is American in origin, and dates back only to the early 1900s. The concept is that someone who is “crazy”, with wild ideas flying around his or her head, can be described as having bats (wild ideas) flying around the belfry (head). The terms “bats” and “batty” originated at the same time, and are clearly derivative.

52. Biblical boat : ARK
The term “ark”, when used with reference to Noah, is a translation of the Hebrew word “tebah”. The word “tebah” is also used in the Bible for the basket in which Moses was placed by his mother when she floated him down the Nile. It seems that the word “tebah” doesn’t mean “boat” and nor does it mean “basket”. Rather, a more appropriate translation is “life-preserver” or “life-saver”. So, Noah’s ark was Noah’s life-preserver during the flood.

58. Hosp. triage areas : ERS
Emergency rooms (ERs)

“Triage” is the process of prioritizing patients for treatment, especially on a battlefield. The term “triage” is French and means “a sorting”.

59. Stimpy’s TV pal : REN
“The Ren and Stimpy Show” is an animated television show that ran on Nickelodeon from 1991 to 1996. The title characters are Marland “Ren” Höek, a scrawny Chihuahua, and Stimpson J. Cat, a rotund Manx cat. Not my cup of tea …

61. Jackson 5 hairstyles : AFROS
The Jackson 5 singing group was originally made up of brothers Tito, Jackie, Jermaine, Marlon and Michael.

66. Dismissive term for chronic fatigue syndrome : YUPPIE FLU
Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is a disorder in which the patient exhibits persistent fatigue over a period of months, and that fatigue is not significantly relieved by rest. One pejorative name for the condition is “yuppie flu”.

The term “yuppie” first appeared in the 1980s and is short for “young urban professional”. Yuppies are generally regarded as upper middle class or upper class men and women in their twenties or thirties.

70. Grand ___ (auto race) : PRIX
Even though the term is used in many competitions, I think that we most associate “Grand Prix” with the series of Formula One motor races. These Formula One Grand Prix races trace their roots back to organized automobile road races from one French town to the next that date back to 1894. “Grand Prix” translates from French as “grand, big prize.”

71. Remove, to an editor : DELE
“Dele” is the editorial instruction to delete something from a document, and is often written in red.

72. Dashing Flynn of old films : ERROL
Errol Flynn was born 1909 in Tasmania, Australia where he was raised. In his twenties, Flynn lived in the UK where he pursued his acting career. Around the same time he starred in an Australian film “In the Wake of the Bounty” and then appeared in a British film “Murder at Monte Carlo”. It was in the latter film that he was noticed by Warner Brothers who brought him to America. Flynn’s non-American heritage shone through even while he was living the American dream in California. He regularly played cricket, along with his friend David Niven, in the Hollywood Cricket Club.

74. Adriatic and others : SEAS
The Adriatic is the sea separating Italy from the Balkans.

Down
1. Mummifies, e.g. : EMBALMS
We use the term “mummy” for a dead body that has been embalmed in preparation for burial, especially if done so by the ancient Egyptians. The term “mummy” comes from the Persian word “mumiyah” meaning “embalmed body”.

11. ___ in Manila (Ali/Frazier fight) : THRILLA
Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier had three memorable fights. The first was billed as the “Fight of the Century” and took place in 1971 in Madison Square Garden. It was a fight between two great boxers, both of whom were undefeated up till that point. Frazier won in a unanimous decision after fifteen rounds. A couple of years later, in 1973, Frazier lost his title to George Foreman. Ali and Frazier had a non-title rematch in 1974, with Ali coming out ahead this time, also in a unanimous decision. Later that year, Ali grabbed back the World Heavyweight Title in “The Rumble in the Jungle”, the famous “rope-a-dope” fight against George Foreman. That set the stage for the third and final fight between Ali and Frazier, “The Thrilla in Manila”. Ali won the early rounds, but Frazier made a comeback in the middle of the fight. Ali took control at the end of the bout, so much so that Frazier wasn’t able to come out of his corner for the 15th and final round. He couldn’t come out of his corner because both of his eyes were swollen shut, giving Ali a victory due to a technical knockout (TKO).

13. Kitchen scourers : SOS PADS
S.O.S is a brand name of scouring pads made from steel wool impregnated with soap. The product was invented as a giveaway by an aluminum pot salesman in San Francisco called Ed Cox. His wife gave it the name “S.O.S” as an acronym for “Save Our Saucepans”. Note the punctuation! There is no period after the last S, and that is deliberate. When Cox went to register the trademark, he found that “S.O.S.” could not be a trademark because it was used as an international distress signal. So he dropped the period after the last S, and I hope made a lot of money for himself and his wife.

18. Tues. vis-à-vis Wed. : YEST
Yesterday (yest.)

22. Handbag monogram : YSL
Yves Saint-Laurent was a French fashion designer, actually born in Algeria. Saint-Laurent started off working as an assistant to Christian Dior at the age of 17. Dior died just four years later, and as a very young man Saint-Laurent was named head of the House of Dior. However, in 1950 Saint-Laurent was conscripted into the French Army and ended up in a military hospital after suffering a mental breakdown from the hazing inflicted on him by his fellow soldiers. His treatment included electroshock therapy and administration of sedatives and psychoactive drugs. He was released from prison, managed to pull his life back together and started his own fashion house. A remarkable story …

26. Brazilian soccer legend : PELE
Pelé is the nickname of Edson de Nascimento, a soccer player who has used the name Pelé for most of his life. Pelé is now retired, and for my money was the world’s greatest ever player of the game. He is the only person to have been part of three World Cup winning squads, and is a national treasure in his native Brazil.

27. Singer Baker with the 1988 hit “Giving You the Best That I Got” : ANITA
Anita Baker is an R&B and soul singer who was raised in Detroit, Michigan. Baker’s most successful song is the Grammy-winning “Sweet Love” released in 1986.

29. “Pretty Boy” of crime : FLOYD
Charles Arthur Floyd was a bank robber who got a lot of press coverage for his crimes in the 1930s. In one robbery, Floyd was described by one of his victims as “a mere boy – a pretty boy with apple cheeks”, words that supposedly earned him the moniker “Pretty Boy”. Just like his contemporary, Baby Face Nelson, Pretty Boy Floyd hated his nickname.

36. Author’s submissions: Abbr. : MSS
Manuscript (MS)

40. Feudal peasant : SERF
A serf was a member of the lowest feudal class, someone attached to land owned by a lord. “Serf” comes from the Latin “servus”, meaning “slave”.

41. Casino card game : FARO
Faro is a card game somewhat akin to Baccarat that was popular in England and France in the 18th century. Faro made it to the Old West, where it became a favorite of Doc Holliday and Wyatt Earp. The origin of the name “Faro” is unclear. One popular theory is that Faro is a contraction of ‘pharaoh’ given that Egyptian motifs used to be common on playing cards of the period. There’s another theory involving the usual suspects: Irish immigrants and famines …

48. Flower part : COROLLA
The corolla of a flower is its collection of petals viewed as a unit. “Corolla” is Latin for “small garland”.

49. Kleenexes : TISSUES
Even though Kleenex is sometimes used today as a generic term for a tissue, Kleenex is a brand name owned by Kimberley-Clark. Kleenex facial tissues came about after WW1. The material used in the tissue had been developed as a replacement for cotton that was in high demand as surgical tissue during the war. The material developed was called “Cellucotton” and was used in gas mask filters. It was first sold as a facial tissue under the name Kleenex in 1924.

53. “The Bridge on the River ___” : KWAI
The river referred to in the movie (and novel) “The Bridge on the River Kwai” is actually called the Khwae Yai River, and is in western Thailand. The original novel by Pierre Boulle was published in French in 1952, and the wonderful movie released in 1957. Both tell the story of construction of part of the Burma Railway and a bridge over the river, using prisoners of war as laborers. The film stars William Holden, Alec Guinness and Jack Hawkins.

62. G-men : FEDS
The nickname “G-men” is short for “Government Men” and refers to agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

64. “If you ask me,” in chat rooms : IMO
In my opinion (IMO)

65. Internet connection inits. : DSL
The acronym “DSL” originally stood for Digital Subscriber Loop, but is now accepted to mean (Asymmetric) Digital Subscriber Line. DSL is the technology that allows Internet service be delivered down the same telephone line as voice service, by separating the two into different frequency signals.

67. “Great Expectations” boy : PIP
The novel “Great Expectations” by Charles Dickens is written in the first person, through the eyes of the hero of the piece. a young orphan boy called Pip.

68. Stores for G.I.’s : PXS
A PX is a Post Exchange, a retail store operating on a US Army Base. The equivalent store on an Air Force Base is called a Base Exchange (BX). At a Navy installation it’s a Navy Exchange (NEX), at a Marine Corps installation it’s a Marine Corps Exchange (MCX) and at a Coast Guard Installation it’s a CGX.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Airline to the Holy Land : EL AL
5. Finishes : ENDS
9. Baseball gloves : MITTS
14. N.Y.C. institution with works of Warhol and Dalí : MOMA
15. Italian currency before the euro : LIRA
16. Sound muffled by a handkerchief : ACHOO!
17. Celebrity chef and host of the Food Network’s “Boy Meets Grill” : BOBBY FLAY
19. Crooks, to cops : PERPS
20. Licorice flavoring : ANISE
21. For what reason? : WHY?
23. AOL or EarthLink: Abbr. : ISP
24. Tell tall tales : LIE
25. Theme music for TV’s “The Dating Game” : SPANISH FLEA
30. Majority of the contestants on “The Dating Game” : MEN
31. Equivalent of a Roman X : TEN
32. Pacified : LULLED
33. Bygone jets, informally : SSTS
35. Like a wet noodle : LIMP
38. Byways : ROADS
39. Insect that causes sleeping sickness : TSETSE FLY
42. Actor Davis : OSSIE
45. “The Thin Man” pooch : ASTA
46. ___ tape : DUCT
50. Proverbial place for bats : BELFRY
52. Biblical boat : ARK
54. “___ hear” : SO I
55. It’s typically slow during rush hour : TRAFFIC FLOW
58. Hosp. triage areas : ERS
59. Stimpy’s TV pal : REN
60. One who plays for pay : PRO
61. Jackson 5 hairstyles : AFROS
63. Disentangled : UNDID
66. Dismissive term for chronic fatigue syndrome : YUPPIE FLU
69. Judges to be : DEEMS
70. Grand ___ (auto race) : PRIX
71. Remove, to an editor : DELE
72. Dashing Flynn of old films : ERROL
73. Sugar amts. : TSPS
74. Adriatic and others : SEAS

Down
1. Mummifies, e.g. : EMBALMS
2. Fruitcakes : LOONIES
3. Surrounding, as sound : AMBIENT
4. Experiment sites : LABS
5. Santa’s little helper : ELF
6. Nothing : NIL
7. Sketched : DRAWN
8. Give an informal greeting : SAY HI
9. Poster with a “You are here” label : MAP
10. Rink surface : ICE
11. ___ in Manila (Ali/Frazier fight) : THRILLA
12. Favorite entrant in a tournament : TOP SEED
13. Kitchen scourers : SOS PADS
18. Tues. vis-à-vis Wed. : YEST
22. Handbag monogram : YSL
26. Brazilian soccer legend : PELE
27. Singer Baker with the 1988 hit “Giving You the Best That I Got” : ANITA
28. Throw : HURL
29. “Pretty Boy” of crime : FLOYD
34. Completely unlike a wet noodle : STIFF
36. Author’s submissions: Abbr. : MSS
37. Flower part : PETAL
40. Feudal peasant : SERF
41. Casino card game : FARO
42. Stick out : OBTRUDE
43. More calm : SERENER
44. Spoken slur : SLANDER
47. Charge for entering a park, e.g. : USER FEE
48. Flower part : COROLLA
49. Kleenexes : TISSUES
51. Pup’s cry : YIP
53. “The Bridge on the River ___” : KWAI
56. Burial vault : CRYPT
57. On all ___ (crawling, say) : FOURS
62. G-men : FEDS
64. “If you ask me,” in chat rooms : IMO
65. Internet connection inits. : DSL
67. “Great Expectations” boy : PIP
68. Stores for G.I.’s : PXS

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