0602-16 New York Times Crossword Answers 2 Jun 16, Thursday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: Susan Gelfand
THEME: Jack-in-the-Box
We have a rebus puzzle today, with the word JACK in several squares/BOXES (“JA..” in my grid).

8D. With 48-Down, children’s toy … or a hint to this puzzle’s theme : JACK-IN
48D. See 8-Down : -THE-BOX

1A. Fool : JACKASS
9A. Top prizes : JACKPOTS
69A. Pancake : FLAPJACK
71A. Hold up in traffic? : CARJACK
1D. Nose nipper : JACK FROST
9D. Common quesadilla filler : JACK CHEESE
44D. Strong feller? : LUMBERJACK
52D. Communication connection : PHONE JACK

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME:10m 15s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Fool : JACKASS
A female donkey is known as a jenny, and a male is known as a jack, or sometimes a “jackass”. We started using the term “jackass” to mean “fool” in the 1820s.

5. Key of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7: Abbr. : A MAJ
If I had to name which of Beethoven’s symphonies I listen to most often, at the top of the list comes the 7th followed closely by the 9th, and then the 5th a little further down. But that four-note opening of the 5th … that is superb …

9. Top prizes : JACKPOTS
The term “jackpot” dates back to the 1800s and is from the game of poker. In some variants there are progressive antes, meaning that players have to “ante up” when no player has a pair of “jacks” or better … building a “jackpot”.

14. Brother’s place, informally : FRAT
Fraternity (frat.)

15. Fictional home that was won in an all-night poker game : TARA
Scarlett O’Hara’s home is the Tara plantation, in Margaret Mitchell’s “Gone with the Wind”. Tara was founded not far from the Georgia city of Jonesboro by Scarlett’s father, Irish immigrant Gerald O’Hara. Gerald won the square mile of land on which Tara was built in an all-night poker. He named his new abode after the Hill of Tara back in his home country, the ancient seat of the High King of Ireland.

17. Electro house or dubstep : RAVE MUSIC
As you might imagine, I’ve never been to a rave, and don’t have one upcoming in my diary. And as raves often start at 2 a.m. then I’m unlikely ever to experience one. A rave is generally an all-night party featuring loud, electronically-synthesized music usually played by a DJ as opposed to a live band.

19. Navajo dwelling : HOGAN
Hogan is the anglicization of a Navajo word meaning “the home place”.

20. Luke’s mentor : OBI-WAN
Obi-Wan Kenobi is one of the more beloved of the “Star Wars” characters. Kenobi was portrayed by two fabulous actors in the series of films. As a young man he is played by Scottish actor Ewan McGregor, and as an older man he is played by Alec Guinness.

24. Strong and majestic : LEONINE
Something described as “leonine” has the characteristics of a lion, is strong and regal. “Leo” is Latin for “lion”.

27. Something that may be loaded : DIE
The numbers on dice are arranged so that the opposite faces add up to seven. Given this arrangement, the numbers 1, 2 and 3 all meet at a common vertex. There are two ways of arranging the 1, 2 and 3 around the common vertex, a so called right-handed die (clockwise 1-2-3) or a left-handed die (counterclockwise 1-2-3). Traditionally, dice used in Western cultures are right-handed, whereas Chinese dice are left-handed. Quite interesting …

36. Play the siren to : LEAD ON
In Greek mythology, the Sirens were seductive bird-women who lured men to their deaths with their song. When Odysseus sailed closed to the island home of the Sirens he wanted to hear their voices, but in safety. He had his men plug their ears with beeswax and then ordered them to tie him to the mast and not to free him until they were safe. On hearing their song Odysseus begged to be let loose, but the sailors just tightened his bonds and and the whole crew sailed away unharmed.

40. Academy newbie : PLEBE
Plebe is a slang term for a freshman in the US military and naval academies. Plebe is probably short for “plebeian”, the name given to someone of the common class in Ancient Rome (as opposed to a Patrician). “Pleb” is a shortened version of plebeian, and is a term used outside of the military schools.

42. Literary Jaffe : RONA
Rona Jaffe was an American novelist perhaps most famous for two of her books, “The Best of Everything” and “Mazes and Monsters”. “The Best of Everything” was published in 1958 and has been compared with the HBO television series “Sex and the City” as it depicts women in the working world. “Mazes and Monsters” was published in 1981 and explores a role-playing game similar to Dungeons & Dragons and the impact it has on players.

43. Any element in the first column of the periodic table, except hydrogen : ALKALI
The alkali metals form the first column of the periodic table of the elements, consisting lithium, sodium, potassium and others. All are soft metals that are very reactive. Alkali metals are so reactive in air that they must be stored under oil.

45. Turkish moolah : LIRAS
The currency of Turkey is the Turkish lira, which is divided into 100 kuruş.

47. Creature that comes ashore to lay eggs : SEA TURTLE
Sea turtles don’t reach sexual maturity until they are decades old. Turtles mate at sea and then the females head to the shore to lay their eggs. Often times, the female turtle returns to the very same beach where she herself hatched.

54. First name in gospel : MAHALIA
Mahalia Jackson was an African-American gospel singer, known as the first Queen of Gospel Music. She recorded many records, including 12 that went “gold”, sold more than a million copies each.

67. Court call : OYEZ!
Town criers make public announcements on the streets, usually shouting “Oyez! Oyez! Oyez!” to attract attention. The term “oyez” derives from the Anglo-Norman word for “listen” and is used in this instance to me “Hear ye!”

68. Jabber? : EPEE
The sword known as an épée has a three-sided blade. The épée is similar to a foil and sabre, both of which are also thrusting weapons. However, the foil and saber have rectangular cross-sections.

70. “Hercules” spinoff, informally : XENA
The Xena character, played by New Zealander Lucy Lawless, was introduced in a made-for-TV movie called “Hercules and the Amazon Women”. Lawless reprised the role in a series called “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys”. Xena became so popular that a series was built around her character, with Lawless retained for the title role. The fictional Xena supposedly came from the “non-fictional” Greek city of Amphipolis.

Down
1. Nose nipper : JACK FROST
Our Jack Frost is based on a character in Viking lore called Jokul Frosti, meaning “icicle frost”.

2. Suitable for farming : ARABLE
Arable land is land suitable for farming. The term came into English from the Latin “arare” meaning “to plow”.

7. Radio journalist Shapiro : ARI
Ari Shapiro is the very able White House correspondent for National Public Radio (NPR).

8. With 48-Down, children’s toy … or a hint to this puzzle’s theme : JACK-IN
48. See 8-Down : -THE-BOX
A Jack-in-the-box is child’s toy. It’s a box with a crank handle at the side. Turning the crank causes a tune to play (usually “Pop Goes the Weasel”), and at the right moment the lid pops open and a spring loaded clown character jumps up out of the box.

9. Common quesadilla filler : JACK CHEESE
What we now call Monterey Jack cheese was originally made by Franciscan friars in Monterey, California in the 19th century. In the 1800s, a powerful landowner called David Jack started to make the same cheese as the friars in his own dairy, and marketed it as “Jack’s Cheese” and later “Monterey Jack”.

11. Texter’s “Holy cow!” : OMG
OMG is text-speak for Oh My Gosh! Oh My Goodness! or any other G words you might think of …

12. Sched. uncertainty : TBA
Something not yet on the schedule (sked) is to be advised (TBA)

22. Playwright Eve : 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.

25. Cy Young winner Hershiser : OREL
Orel Hershiser is big into poker now that he has retired from Major League Baseball. Hershiser lives in Las Vegas and when he isn’t working for ESPN, apparently he is at the poker tables, playing professionally. When Hershiser is eliminated in a poker tournament, he is in the habit of presenting the person who ousts him with an autographed baseball.

Cy Young was a pitcher in the major leagues from 1890-1911. Young is remembered for pitching the first perfect game of baseball’s modern era. Soon after he died in 1955, the Cy Young Award was created and is presented to the best pitcher in each baseball season.

26. Chocolaty spread : NUTELLA
Nutella is a delicious hazelnut chocolate spread made by Ferrero, a company based in Italy. Sadly, 70% of the Nutella recipe is saturated fat and processed sugar.

29. European erupter : ETNA
Mt. Etna is the largest of three active volcanoes in Italy. Mt Etna is about 2 1/2 times the height of its equally famous sister, Mt. Vesuvius. Etna is home to a 110-km long narrow-guage railway, and two ski resorts.

35. Rotini shape : SPIRAL
Rotini is the corkscrew-shaped pasta that is often used in pasta salads. Even though “rotini” sounds like it comes from a word meaning “twist, rotate”, the word “rotini” doesn’t exist in Italian, other than as the name for the pasta.

41. Jessica of “7th Heaven” : BIEL
Jessica Biel is an actress who was known by television audiences Mary Camden on “7th Heaven”. Biel’s first film role was playing Peter Fonda’s granddaughter in “Ulee’s Gold”. Biel’s husband is singer and actor Justin Timberlake.

50. Home of Gannon Univ. : ERIE, PA
Gannon University in Erie, PA is a private Catholic school founded in 1925. It is named after the then Bishop of Erie, John Mark Gannon, the man most influential in the establishment of the university.

51. N.B.A. Hall-of-Famer Bob : LANIER
Bob Lanier is a retired NBA player who turned out for the Detroit Pistons and the Milwaukee Bucks.

55. Neighbor of Majorca : IBIZA
Ibiza is a Mediterranean island almost 100 miles off the Spanish coast. It is a very popular tourist destination, largely for its legendary nightlife.

The Island of Majorca (“Isla Mallorca” in Spanish) is Spain’s largest island, and is located in the Mediterranean Sea. The population of the island ballooned over the past few decades as Majorca became a mecca for tourists from all over Europe.

59. Opposite of sans : AVEC
In French, “avec” (with) is the opposite of “sans” (without).

61. ___ d’Or, Quebec : VAL
Val-d’Or is a city in Quebec. “Val-d’Or” is French for “Valley of Gold”, a reference to the gold deposits discovered in the area in 1923.

62. Sinatra’s wife between Nancy and Mia : AVA
Ava Gardner is noted for her association with some big movies, but also for her association with some big names when it came to the men in her life. In the world of film, she appeared in the likes of “Mogambo” (1953), “On the Beach” (1959), “The Night of the Iguana” (1964) and “Earthquake” (1974). The men in her life included husbands Mickey Rooney, Artie Shaw and Frank Sinatra. After her marriages had failed (and perhaps before!) she had long-term relationships with Howard Hughes and bullfighter Luis Miguel Dominguin whom she met through her friend Ernest Hemingway.

Frank Sinatra had four wives:

1. Nancy Barbato (m. 1939-1951) with whom he had his only children: Nancy, Frank Jr. and Tina.
2. Ava Gardner (m. 1951-1957), the actress.
3. Mia Farrow (m. 1966-1968), the actress.
4. Barbara Marx nee Blakely (m. 1976-1998), former wife of Zeppo Marx.

65. Writer Deighton : LEN
I used to walk my dog right past author Len Deighton’s house years ago, as we lived in the same village in Ireland (probably my only claim to fame!). Deighton wrote the excellent espionage thriller “The IPCRESS File”, made into a 1965 movie starring Michael Caine.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Fool : JACKASS
5. Key of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7: Abbr. : A MAJ
9. Top prizes : JACKPOTS
14. Brother’s place, informally : FRAT
15. Fictional home that was won in an all-night poker game : TARA
16. Band : COMBO
17. Electro house or dubstep : RAVE MUSIC
19. Navajo dwelling : HOGAN
20. Luke’s mentor : OBI-WAN
21. Something often described as “even” : KEEL
23. Caution to drivers : SLO
24. Strong and majestic : LEONINE
27. Something that may be loaded : DIE
30. To the point : TERSE
32. Doesn’t have enough : RUNS SHORT
34. Plus : ASSET
36. Play the siren to : LEAD ON
37. TV or radio ad : SPOT
40. Academy newbie : PLEBE
42. Literary Jaffe : RONA
43. Any element in the first column of the periodic table, except hydrogen : ALKALI
45. Turkish moolah : LIRAS
47. Creature that comes ashore to lay eggs : SEA TURTLE
49. Whippersnapper : WHELP
53. For instance : SAY
54. First name in gospel : MAHALIA
56. Sound from a fan : RAH!
57. Proficient : ABLE
58. Mental flub : BRAINO
60. Roundish : OVATE
63. Trust : BELIEVE IN
66. Party souvenir : FAVOR
67. Court call : OYEZ!
68. Jabber? : EPEE
69. Pancake : FLAPJACK
70. “Hercules” spinoff, informally : XENA
71. Hold up in traffic? : CARJACK

Down
1. Nose nipper : JACK FROST
2. Suitable for farming : ARABLE
3. Redeemer : SAVIOR
4. Contents of a slow cooker : STEW
5. Carrying ___ : A TUNE
6. More, to Manuel : MAS
7. Radio journalist Shapiro : ARI
8. With 48-Down, children’s toy … or a hint to this puzzle’s theme : JACK-IN-
9. Common quesadilla filler : JACK CHEESE
10. Summer Olympics venue : POOL
11. Texter’s “Holy cow!” : OMG
12. Sched. uncertainty : TBA
13. Delivery outcome, sometimes : SON
18. 13-Downs, e.g. : MALES
22. Playwright Eve : ENSLER
25. Cy Young winner Hershiser : OREL
26. Chocolaty spread : NUTELLA
27. Knucklehead : DODO
28. De-crease : IRON
29. European erupter : ETNA
31. Used, as a desk : SAT AT
33. Like arctic winters : HARSH
35. Rotini shape : SPIRAL
37. Freshness : SASS
38. Court stance : PLEA
39. “Sounds good to me” : OKAY
41. Jessica of “7th Heaven” : BIEL
44. Strong feller? : LUMBERJACK
46. Enlightened : AWARE
48. See 8-Down : -THE-BOX
50. Home of Gannon Univ. : ERIE, PA
51. N.B.A. Hall-of-Famer Bob : LANIER
52. Communication connection : PHONE JACK
55. Neighbor of Majorca : IBIZA
57. On : ATOP
59. Opposite of sans : AVEC
60. Not on : OFF
61. ___ d’Or, Quebec : VAL
62. Sinatra’s wife between Nancy and Mia : AVA
64. Spy satellite, so to speak : EYE
65. Writer Deighton : LEN

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6 thoughts on “0602-16 New York Times Crossword Answers 2 Jun 16, Thursday”

  1. Left most of the southeast corner blank. Had everything else. I'm still pretty satisfied with myself since I don't usually get even this far on a Thursday.

  2. 20:20, no errors. A couple of mis-starts: 21A entered ODDS initially, vice KEEL; and 41D Jessica ALBA instead of BIEL.

    Avoided the corners until I was able to break the rebus, with FLAPJACK/LUMBERJACK.

  3. I first did this puzzle on my iPad five weeks ago and it took me 22:08, with no errors. Just now, I did it again on paper and it still took me 15:06, with no errors, but I had a hard time coming up with IBIZA. The first time, I filled in BRAINO without even noticing it, using the crossing entries; the second time, I did notice and it held me up for a bit, as I'd never heard of it. (I kinda like the concept, though: I get a lot of those … 🙂

  4. We finished it without looking anything up. We dearly despise rebuses, but this one was clever and not too deceptive. We, too, liked Jabber for EPEE. Never heard of BRAINO, but we filled it in from the crosses. This puzzle was a lot of fun.

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