0307-15 New York Times Crossword Answers 7 Mar 15, Saturday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: David C. Duncan Dekker
THEME: None
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 41m 38s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 2 … JED (Jeb!!!), LLD (LLB)

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

9. Southern river to Winyah Bay : PEE DEE
The Pee Dee River takes its name from the Pee Dee tribe of Native Americans from the southeast of the United States.

16. Speaking part : LARYNX
The voice box or larynx is where pitch and volume of sound are manipulated when we talk. The structure called the Adam’s apple that protrudes from the human neck is formed by the thyroid cartilage that surrounds the larynx. The Adam’s apple of males tends to increase in size during puberty, so the feature tended to be associated more with males in days gone by, perhaps leading to the name “Adam’s” apple.

18. Minnesota county whose seat is Grand Rapids : ITASCA
Itasca County is located in northern Minnesota, and is named after Lake Itasca. Lake Itasca is the main source of the Mississippi River. The name “Itasca” is formed from the Latin words for truth (ver-ITAS) and head (CA-put).

19. A lot of bucks … or the Bucks, briefly : MIL
“A mil” is slang for “a million dollars”.

The Bucks are an NBA basketball team based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The team was formed in 1968 as an NBA expansion team.

22. Herbert of Hollywood : LOM
Herbert Lom is a Czech film actor, best known for playing Chief Inspector Charles Dreyfus in the series of “Pink Panther” movies. He was born in Prague in 1917, and had his first film role in a Czech film. He moved to England in 1939, and made many appearances in British movies. He also worked for many years in Hollywood, and played the King of Siam in the original London production of “The King and I”.

25. Their pH’s are often measured : SOILS
As we all recall from chemistry class, a pH of 7 is considered neutral. Anything less than 7 is an acid, and anything above 7 is a base.

26. Force user : JEDI
The Jedi are the “good guys” in the “Star Wars” series of movies. The most famous Jedi knights from the films are Obi-Wan Kenobi (played by Alec Guinness, and later Ewan McGregor) and Yoda (voiced by Frank Oz). Well, they’re my favorites anyway …

27. Elusive giants : YETIS
A yeti is a beast of legend, also called an abominable snowman. “Yeti” is a Tibetan term, and the beast is fabled to live in the Himalayan regions of Nepal and Tibet. Our equivalent legend in North America is that of Bigfoot, also known as Sasquatch. The study of animals whose existence have not yet been substantiated is called cryptozoology.

29. C. J.’s boss on “The West Wing” : JED
In the excellent television show “The West Wing”, President Jed Bartlet is played by Martin Sheen.

Dee Dee Myers was a very capable White House Press Secretary in the first two years of the Clinton administration, the first woman to hold that post. After leaving the White House, Myers acted as a consultant on the TV show “The West Wing”, and I am sure helped add that touch of authenticity to a great television program. I’ll bet that the character C. J. Cregg, the fictional White House Press Secretary, was based on Ms. Myers.

33. “See the difference a little drop can make” sloganeer : VISINE
Visine is a brand of eye drops made by Johnson & Johnson, advertised to “get the red out”. The red in the eye is reduced because Visine contains tetrahydrozoline hydrochloride, a vasoconstrictor. The blood vessels creating the redness constrict when Visine is applied, and you “get the red out” as the blood is “squeezed” away from the surface of the eye.

34. A in typing class, e.g. : HOME KEY
The home keys on a typewriter keyboard are in the “home row”. On a QWERTY keyboard, the home row keys are ASDFJKL;. They are known as the home keys because typists are trained to return their fingers to these keys after pressing other keys.

37. Hodgepodges : RAGBAGS
“Hochepot” is an Old French word for stew or soup, and this gave rise to an Anglo-French legal term for a collection of property that was gathered prior to being divided up. This became our “hodgepodge” in the early 1400s.

42. Unlikely to stress out : TYPE B
The Type A and Type B personality theory originated in the fifties. Back then, individuals were labelled as Type A in order to emphasize a perceived increased risk of heart disease. Type A personality types are so called “stress junkies”, whereas Type B types are relaxed and laid back. But there doesn’t seem to be much scientific evidence to support the linkage between the Type A personality and heart problems.

47. Key of Debussy’s “Claire de Lune” : D-FLAT
I think there’s a typo in the clue, and the spelling of Debussy’s masterpiece is “Clair de Lune”.

“Clair de lune” is the beautiful third movement from Claude Debussy’s piano work called the “Suite bergamasque”. “Clair de lune” is French for “moonlight”.

49. What often produces passing thoughts? : SEMI
A “semi” is a “semi-trailer truck”. The vehicle is so called because it consists of a tractor and a half-trailer. The half-trailer is so called because it only has wheels on the back end, with the front supported by the tractor.

50. Where the Saguenay R. flows : QUE
The Saguenay River in Quebec is a major tributary of the Saint Lawrence River.

51. Boston area known for its brownstones : BACK BAY
Back Bay is an expensive residential neighborhood in Boston that is home to rows of Victorian brownstones as well as the Boston Public Library. Before the area was reclaimed in the 19th century, Back Bay was indeed a tidal bay.

53. Execute a motion on the fly? : ZIP
The term “fly” is used to describe the flap covering the buttons or zipper in the front of a pair of pants. Before “fly” was used for pants, it was the name given to a tent flap.

56. Pink application to red areas : CALAMINE
Calamine is mainly zinc oxide, with a small percentage of iron oxide. Calamine is incorporated into a lotion that is used for many things, including treatment of sunburn and itching.

61. They use every letter 1-Across : PANGRAMS
(1A. Completely : FROM A TO Z)
A pangram is a phrase that includes all the letters of the alphabet. The most famous example in English is “the quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog”.

Down
7. European Union anthem : ODE TO JOY
Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 has to be one of the most recognizable pieces of music in the classical repertoire. “Ode to Joy”, based on the final movement of the work, is now the anthem of the European Union. If you’d like to see a fictional tale that explores Beethoven’s life at the time he was writing the Ninth Symphony, I highly recommend you take a look at the 2006 movie “Copying Beethoven”. Ed Harris plays Beethoven, and the soundtrack is, of course, superb.

11. Follower of Johnson or Kennedy : ERA
President Lyndon Johnson (LBJ) is one of only four people to have held all four elected federal offices, namely US Representative, US Senator, US Vice-President and US President. As President he is perhaps best remembered for escalating involvement in the Vietnam War, and for his “Great Society” legislation.

Only four people have held all four elected federal offices, namely US Representative, US Senator, US Vice-President and US President. They are:

– John Tyler
– Andrew Johnson
– Richard Nixon
– Lyndon Johnson

President John F. Kennedy was often referred to by his initials JFK, the F standing for Fitzgerald, his mother’s maiden name. The president’s brother Robert F. Kennedy was also referred to using his initials, RFK, with the F standing for his middle name Francis.

12. Source of a character flaw? : DYSLEXIA
The term “dyslexia” comes from the Greek “dys-” meaning “bad” and “lexis” meaning “word”.

21. One of several awarded to Pres. Clinton : LLD
The honorary degree of Legum Doctor (LL.D.) translates from the Latin as Doctor of Laws, a plural. This practice of using the plural originated in Cambridge University in England, as one was awarded an LL.D. after having been taught both Canon Law and Civil Law.

26. Sequel to Alcott’s “Little Women” and “Little Men” : JO’S BOYS
Louisa May Alcott’s “Jo’s Boys” is a sequel to her novel “Little Men”, which in turn is a sequel to “Little Women”. “Jo’s Boys” is the final book in the trilogy.

28. “Land ___!” (quaint cry) : SAKES
“Land sakes!” is a euphemism for “or the Lord’s sake!”

32. ___ deck (gym machine) : PEC
The “Pec Deck” is a nickname for the butterfly or chest fly machine at the gym, the machine that works the chest muscles.

36. “Science as a Vocation” sociologist : MAX WEBER
The sociologist Max Weber is often listed with Émile Durkheim and Karl Marx as the founders of sociology.

37. It’s sometimes called a yellow turnip : RUTABAGA
The rutabaga is a root vegetable that we call a “swede” over in Ireland. It is actually a cross between a cabbage and a turnip. The name “rutabaga” comes from an old Swedish word “rotabagge” meaning “ram root”. Very tasty …

39. Toadstool that exudes latex when cut : MILK-CAP
Some mushroom-forming fungi are known as “milk-cap”, a reference to the latex, or “milk”, that is exuded when the fruit bodies are cut or bruised.

41. Sister of Pizza Hut : KFC
Yum! Brands is a fast food company based in Louisville, Kentucky that owns Taco Bell, KFC and Pizza Hut.

The famous “Colonel” of Kentucky Fried Chicken fame was Harland Sanders, an entrepreneur from Henryville, Indiana. Although not really a “Colonel”, Sanders did indeed serve in the military. He enlisted in the Army as a private in 1906 at the age of 16, lying about his age. He spent the whole of his time in the Army as a soldier in Cuba. It was much later, in the 1930s, that Sanders went into the restaurant business making his specialty deep-fried chicken. By 1935 his reputation as a “character” had grown, so much so that Governor Ruby Laffoon of Kentucky gave Sanders the honorary title of “Kentucky Colonel”. Later in the fifties, Sanders developed his trademark look with the white suit, string tie, mustache and goatee. When Sanders was 65 however, his business failed and in stepped Dave Thomas, the founder of Wendy’s. Thomas simplified the Sanders menu, cutting it back from over a hundred items to just fried chicken and salads. That was enough to launch KFC into the fast food business. Sanders sold the US franchise in 1964 for just $2 million and moved to Canada to grow KFC north of the border. He died in 1980 and is buried in Louisville, Kentucky. The Colonel’s secret recipe of 11 herbs and spices is indeed a trade secret. Apparently there is only one copy of the recipe, a handwritten piece of paper, written in pencil and signed by Colonel Sanders. Since 2009, the piece of paper has been locked in a computerized vault surrounded with motion detectors and security cameras.

Pizza Hut started out as a single location in Wichita, Kansas in 1958 and is now the world’s largest pizza franchise. Pizza Hut claims to be the world’s largest user of cheese, consuming 300 million pounds every year. The chain buys 3% of the cheese produced in the US, which means that 170,000 American cows are producing milk for Pizza Hut alone.

43. Cup-shaped forest fungus : PEZIZA
Peziza are cup fungi that grow in rotting wood or dung. The name “peziza” might be a reference to the fungi’s lack of a stalk, coming from the word “foot” in Romance languages.

44. Shady Records co-founder : EMINEM
Rap star Eminem’s real name is Marshall Mathers, a native of Saint Joseph, Missouri. Mathers grew up poor, raised by a single-mom as the family was abandoned by his father when he was 18 months old. Marshall and his mother moved around the country before settling in a suburb of Detroit. He didn’t do well at school, and dropped out at the age of 17. But in the end he made it pretty big …

47. Writer about a hellish journey : DANTE
Dante Alighieri’s “Divine Comedy” is an epic poem dating back to the 14th century. The first part of that epic is “Inferno”, which is the Italian word for “Hell”. In the poem, Dante is led on a journey by the poet Virgil, starting at the gates of Hell on which are written the famous words “Abandon all hope, ye who enter here”.

48. Hook on a kite : TALON
A “talon” is a claw of a bird of prey. The term ultimately derives from “talus”, the Latin word for “ankle”.

Kites are birds of prey that feed mainly on carrion.

52. Light principle : YANG
The yin and the yang can be explained using many different metaphors. In one, as the sun shines on a mountain, the side in the shade is the yin and the side in the light is the yang. The yin is also regarded as the feminine side, and the yang the masculine. The yin can also be associated with the moon, while the yang is associated with the sun.

55. Concubine’s chamber : ODA
“Oda” is the Turkish word for “room”, and is the name used for a room within a harem in the days of the Ottoman Empire. We use the derivative word “odalisque” for “a concubine” or “a chamber girl”.

A “concubine” is a mistress or second wife. The term comes from the Latin “com” meaning “with” and “cubare” meaning “to lie down”.

57. Follower of Salyut 7 : MIR
The Russian Mir Space Station was a remarkably successful project, with the station still holding the record for the longest continuous manned presence in space, at just under ten years. Towards the end of the space station’s life however, the years began to take their toll. There was a dangerous fire, multiple system failures, and a collision with a resupply ship. The Russian commitment to the International Space Station drained funds for repairs, so Mir was allowed to reenter the Earth’s atmosphere and burn up in 2001.

The Soviet Union’s Salyut program launched the world’s first crewed space station, Salyut 1, in 1971. There were several space stations launched as part of the program, the last being Salyut 7, which was taken out of orbit in 1991. “Salyut” is Russian for “salute” and also “fireworks”.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Completely : FROM A TO Z
9. Southern river to Winyah Bay : PEE DEE
15. Something you might make a stand for : LEMONADE
16. Speaking part : LARYNX
17. Quaint raid targets : ICEBOXES
18. Minnesota county whose seat is Grand Rapids : ITASCA
19. A lot of bucks … or the Bucks, briefly : MIL
20. Tees off : NETTLES
22. Herbert of Hollywood : LOM
23. Hit 90, e.g. : SPED
25. Their pH’s are often measured : SOILS
26. Force user : JEDI
27. Elusive giants : YETIS
29. C. J.’s boss on “The West Wing” : JED
30. Sickening thing : TOXIN
31. Boiling evidence : VAPOR
33. “See the difference a little drop can make” sloganeer : VISINE
34. A in typing class, e.g. : HOME KEY
37. Hodgepodges : RAGBAGS
38. “Hold your horses!” : IN A SEC
39. Beaucoup : MUCHO
40. Modern back-and-forth : TEXTS
41. Model material : KIT
42. Unlikely to stress out : TYPE B
46. Makes one’s bed? : SOWS
47. Key of Debussy’s “Claire de Lune” : D-FLAT
49. What often produces passing thoughts? : SEMI
50. Where the Saguenay R. flows : QUE
51. Boston area known for its brownstones : BACK BAY
53. Execute a motion on the fly? : ZIP
54. Still in development? : UNBORN
56. Pink application to red areas : CALAMINE
58. Breezed through something : ACED IT
59. Debated, debated, debated : AGONIZED
60. Place less value on : DERATE
61. They use every letter 1-Across : PANGRAMS

Down
1. Very weak : FLIMSY
2. It might tell you to chill : RECIPE
3. Cheese ___ : OMELET
4. Descend upon in droves : MOB
5. Like Mr. X, briefly : ANON
6. Burdens : TAXES
7. European Union anthem : ODE TO JOY
8. Spiced up, say : ZESTIER
9. Carries on steadily : PLIES
10. Works on a course : EATS
11. Follower of Johnson or Kennedy : ERA
12. Source of a character flaw? : DYSLEXIA
13. Some intelligence work : ENCODING
14. Checks : EXAMINES
21. One of several awarded to Pres. Clinton : LLD
24. Strips of land, say : DIVESTS
26. Sequel to Alcott’s “Little Women” and “Little Men” : JO’S BOYS
28. “Land ___!” (quaint cry) : SAKES
30. Like the best of friends : TIGHT
32. ___ deck (gym machine) : PEC
33. Little sucker? : VAC
34. Group of dispatchers : HIT SQUAD
35. Two tablespoons : ONE OUNCE
36. “Science as a Vocation” sociologist : MAX WEBER
37. It’s sometimes called a yellow turnip : RUTABAGA
39. Toadstool that exudes latex when cut : MILK-CAP
41. Sister of Pizza Hut : KFC
43. Cup-shaped forest fungus : PEZIZA
44. Shady Records co-founder : EMINEM
45. Birds, e.g. : BIPEDS
47. Writer about a hellish journey : DANTE
48. Hook on a kite : TALON
51. Musical lead-in to pop : BRIT-
52. Light principle : YANG
55. Concubine’s chamber : ODA
57. Follower of Salyut 7 : MIR

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2 thoughts on “0307-15 New York Times Crossword Answers 7 Mar 15, Saturday”

  1. I guessed at JED/LLD and lucked out, but then stupidly wrote in TANGRAMS and never thought to review the choice or to wonder about MILKCAT, which makes no sense at all. Oh, well: you win some and you lose some, I guess …

  2. Once again, disingenuous clue editing is what makes this unsolveable. Par for the course on a Saturday, I suppose.

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