0815-16 New York Times Crossword Answers 15 Aug 16, Monday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: Sam Trabucco
THEME: Heads Will Roll
The start (HEAD) of each of today’s themed answers is something that WILL ROLL:

37A. “Someone’s gonna pay” … or a statement about 17-, 24-, 51- and 60-Across? : HEADS WILL ROLL

17A. Easter Day activities : EGG HUNTS (giving “egg roll”)
24A. Competition in a rodeo ring : BARREL RACE (giving “barrel roll”)
51A. Legs at KFC : DRUMSTICKS (giving “drumroll”)
60A. Early home for Lincoln : LOG CABIN (giving “logroll”)

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 4m 59s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

8. What to get an “E” for : EFFORT
Apparently the phrase “E for effort” originated as a WWII campaign in the US to help boost productivity in factories.

17. Easter Day activities : EGG HUNTS (giving “egg roll”)
Tradition states that the first Easter Egg Roll in the nation’s capitol was staged by Dolley Madison, wife of President James Madison. The inaugural event was held in 1814, but not at the White House, where it is held today. That first Egg Roll was held on the grounds of the US Capitol. After a new lawn was planted in 1877, Congress passed a law making it illegal to use the lawn as a children’s playground (boo! hiss!), and so President Rutherford and his wife Lucy brought the Egg Roll to the White House (hurrah!).

20. Detachable toy blocks : LEGOS
Lego is manufactured by Lego Group, a privately held company headquartered in Billund, Denmark. The company was founded by a carpenter called Ole Kirk Christiansen in 1934 and the now-famous plastic interlocking blocks were introduced in 1949. The blocks were originally sold under the name “Automatic Binding Bricks” but I think “Lego” is easier to remember! The name “Lego” comes from the Danish term “leg godt” meaning “play well”.

21. “___, meenie …” : EENIE

Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
Catch the tiger/monkey/baby by the toe.
If it hollers/screams let him go,
Eeny, meeny, miny, moe, you are it!

23. Grain used in making beer : MALT
Malt is germinated cereal grains that have been dried. The cereal is germinated by soaking it in water, and then germination is halted by drying the grains with hot air.

24. Competition in a rodeo ring : BARREL RACE (giving “barrel roll”)
A barrel roll is an aerial stunt in which a plane makes a complete rotation around the longitudinal axis. The manoeuvre is so called as the corkscrew path that the aircraft executes makes it appear as though it is rotating through the inside of an enormous barrel.

31. “Trainwreck” star Schumer : AMY
Amy Schumer is a stand-up comedian, and an alumna of the reality TV show “Last Comic Standing”, in which she placed fourth. Schumer now has her own comedy series “Inside Amy Schumer”, which airs on Comedy Central. Amy is a first cousin once removed of Chuck Schumer, the senior US Senator from New York.

“Trainwreck” is a romantic comedy released in 2015 that brings together the talents of Judd Apatow as director and Amy Schumer as writer. Schumer also stars.

35. Alternative to “trick” on Halloween : TREAT
All Saints’ Day is November 1st each year. The day before All Saints’ Day is All Hallows Eve, better known by the Scottish term, “Halloween”.

41. “In God We Trust,” for the United States : MOTTO
“In God we trust” was adopted as the official motto of the US in 1956. The phrase apparently originated in the national anthem “The Star-Spangled Banner”, the words of which were written during the War of 1812. The actual wording in the anthem is “And this be our motto: ‘In God is our trust’”. Over time, this lyric evolved to “In God we trust”.

43. Openly gay : OUT
Back in the 1950s, to come “out of the closet” was to admit to being an alcoholic. By the seventies, the phrase mainly referred to gay people shrugging off secrecy about their orientation.

44. Groovy : FAB
The term “groovy” meaning “neat, cool” comes from the jazz slang phrase “in the groove”.

51. Legs at KFC : DRUMSTICKS (giving “drumroll”)
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.

56. Garlicky mayo : AIOLI
To the purist, especially in Provence in the South of France, the “home” of aioli, aioli is prepared just by grinding garlic with olive oil. However, other ingredients are often added to the mix, particularly egg yolks.

60. Early home for Lincoln : LOG CABIN (giving “logroll”)
Abraham Lincoln was born in a one-room log cabin in Hardin County, Kentucky making him the first president born in the West. His formal education was limited to a year and a half of schooling, but fortunately for us, Lincoln was an avid reader and educated himself over the years. Even though he was from a rural area, he avoided hunting and fishing because he did not like to kill animals even for food.

The log-rolling competition traditionally engaged in by lumberjacks is referred to as “Roleo”.

64. Bangkok native : THAI
Bangkok is the capital city of Thailand. The exact etymology of the name “Bangkok” seems unclear, although “bang” is a Thai word meaning “a village situated on a stream”.

65. Alex and ___ (jewelry retailer) : ANI
The jewelry retailer Alex and Ani was founded in 2004 and is headquartered in Cranston, Rhode Island. The founder Carolyn Rafaelian named her business for her two daughters: Alex and Ani.

67. Red-lettered announcement added to a real estate sign : SOLD
The terms “realty” and “real estate” date back to the later 1600s, and are derived from the earlier meaning “real possession”, something one owns that is tangible and real.

Down
1. Patron of mariners : ST ELMO
St. Elmo is the patron saint of sailors. He lends his name to the electrostatic weather phenomenon (often seen at sea) known as St. Elmo’s fire. The “fire” is actually a plasma discharge caused by air ionizing at the end of a pointed object (like the mast of a ship), something often observed during electrical storms.

2. Sea crossed by the Argonauts : AEGEAN
The Aegean Sea is that part of the Mediterranean that lies between Greece and Turkey. Within the Aegean Sea are found the Aegean Islands, a group that includes Crete and Rhodes.

In Greek mythology, Jason and the Argonauts sailed on the Argo in search of the Golden Fleece. The vessel was called the “Argo” in honor of the ship’s builder, a man named Argus.

3. Group of geese : GAGGLE
A collection of geese is referred to as a “gaggle” when on the ground. When geese are in v-formation in flight, they are referred to collectively as a “skein”.

4. Numbered musical work : OPUS
The Latin for “work” is “opus”, with the plural being “opera”.

5. What may help you make your move? : VAN
The vehicle we call a “van” takes its name from “caravan”, a shortening of the older term. Back in the 1600s, a caravan was a covered cart. We still used the term “caravan” in Ireland to mean what we call a mobile home or recreational vehicle here in the US.

7. Intense beam : LASER
The term “laser” comes is an acronym, “Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation” (LASER). It has been pointed out that a more precise name for laser technology is “Light Oscillation by Stimulated Emission of Radiation”, but the resulting acronym isn’t quite so appealing, namely LOSER …

8. “8 Mile” rapper : EMINEM
The movie “8 Mile” stars Eminem as a young rap artist in Detroit, and feature the song “Lose Yourself” that was performed and written by Eminem. The song won Eminem the 2002 Oscar for Best Original Song, making him the first rap artist to be so honored.

10. Like sand vis-à-vis gravel : FINER
We can use the French phrase “vis-à-vis” as a preposition meaning “compared with”. When used as an adverb or adjective, it means “face to face”, which is a more literal translation from French.

11. “___ on a Grecian Urn” : ODE
Here’s the first verse of the poem “Ode on a Grecian Urn” by John Keats:

THOU still unravish’d bride of quietness,
Thou foster-child of Silence and slow Time,
Sylvan historian, who canst thus express
A flowery tale more sweetly than our rhyme:
What leaf-fringed legend haunts about thy shape
Of deities or mortals, or of both,
In Tempe or the dales of Arcady?
What men or gods are these? What maidens loth?
What mad pursuit? What struggle to escape?
What pipes and timbrels? What wild ecstasy?

13. Detonation material : TNT
“TNT” is an abbreviation for trinitrotoluene. Trinitrotoluene was first produced in 1863 by the German chemist Joseph Wilbrand, who developed it for use as a yellow dye. TNT is relatively difficult to detonate so it was on the market as a dye for some years before its more explosive properties were discovered.

24. Usually toasted sandwiches, for short : BLTS
The BLT (bacon, lettuce and tomato) is the second most popular sandwich in the US, after the plain old ham sandwich.

26. Brother of Cain : ABEL
According to the Bible, Adam and Eve had several children, although only the first three are mentioned by name: Cain, Abel and Seth.

27. Big product of Kentucky : COAL
The Eastern Coalfield in Kentucky is the most productive coalfield in the whole of the US.

36. Bucharest’s home : ROMANIA
The city of Bucharest has been the capital of Romania since 1862. A native of the city is known as a “Bucharester”.

38. “___, Brute!” : ET TU
It was Shakespeare who popularized the words “Et tu, Brute?” (And you, Brutus?), in his play “Julius Caesar”, although the phrase had been around long before he penned his drama. It’s not known what Julius Caesar actually said in real life just before he was assassinated on the steps of the Senate in Rome.

40. Mail: Abbr. : LTRS
Letter (ltr.)

41. “The ___ Squad” of TV and film : MOD
The 1999 movie “The Mod Squad” was an adaptation of the seventies television show of the same name. The part of Lincoln “Linc” Hayes was played by Omar Epps, Claire Danes played Julie Barnes and Giovanni Ribisi played Peter Cochran.

45. Home to Plato and Aristotle : ATHENS
Aristotle was actually a student of Plato in Ancient Greece (and in turn, Plato was a student of Socrates). Aristotle’s most famous student was Alexander the Great.

49. Connected to Wi-Fi, say : ONLINE
“Wi-Fi” is nothing more than a trademark, a trademark registered by an association of manufacturers of equipment that use wireless LAN (Local Area Network) technology. A device labeled with “Wi-Fi” has to meet certain defined technical standards, basically meaning that the devices can talk to each other. The name “Wi-Fi” suggests “Wireless Fidelity”, although apparently the term was never intended to mean anything at all.

53. Indianapolis footballers : COLTS
The Indianapolis Colts professional football team has been in Indiana since 1984. The team traces its roots back to the Dayton Triangles, one of the founding members of the NFL created in 1913. The Dayton Triangles relocated and became the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1930, and then the Brooklyn Tigers in 1944. The team merged with the Boston Yanks in 1945, so then played in Boston. The Yanks were moved to New York in 1949, and then to Dallas in 1952 as the Dallas Texans. The Texan franchise moved to Baltimore in 1953, forming the Colts. The Colts made their last move in 1984, to Indianapolis. Whew!

56. Boric ___ : ACID
Boric acid is a weak acid that usually comes as a white powder for domestic use. The powder can be dissolved in water and used as an antiseptic.

58. Word after Holiday or Days : INN
The Days Inn hotel chain was founded in 1970 by a real estate developer called Cecil B. Day. One of the features of a Days Inn hotel in those early days was an on-site gas pump, which dispensed gasoline at discount prices.

59. Homemade sandwich, informally : PBJ
Peanut butter and jelly (PB&J or PBJ).

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Droop : SAG
4. Squished circle : OVAL
8. What to get an “E” for : EFFORT
14. Drink that’s steeped : TEA
15. Mama’s mate : PAPA
16. Word before name or voyage : MAIDEN
17. Easter Day activities : EGG HUNTS (giving “egg roll”)
19. “It’s my turn!” : I’M NEXT!
20. Detachable toy blocks : LEGOS
21. “___, meenie …” : EENIE
23. Grain used in making beer : MALT
24. Competition in a rodeo ring : BARREL RACE (giving “barrel roll”)
29. Personal identity : ONESELF
31. “Trainwreck” star Schumer : AMY
32. Trade some punches : BOX
33. “Come onstage” stage direction : ENTER
35. Alternative to “trick” on Halloween : TREAT
37. “Someone’s gonna pay” … or a statement about 17-, 24-, 51- and 60-Across? : HEADS WILL ROLL
41. “In God We Trust,” for the United States : MOTTO
42. “They’re mine now!,” informally : GOT ‘EM!
43. Openly gay : OUT
44. Groovy : FAB
47. God, with “the” : CREATOR
51. Legs at KFC : DRUMSTICKS (giving “drumroll”)
54. ___ of the above : NONE
55. Culture: Prefix : ETHNO-
56. Garlicky mayo : AIOLI
57. Walk very, very quietly : TIPTOE
60. Early home for Lincoln : LOG CABIN (giving “logroll”)
63. Natural : INBORN
64. Bangkok native : THAI
65. Alex and ___ (jewelry retailer) : ANI
66. Takes pleasure in : ENJOYS
67. Red-lettered announcement added to a real estate sign : SOLD
68. Bear’s home : DEN

Down
1. Patron of mariners : ST ELMO
2. Sea crossed by the Argonauts : AEGEAN
3. Group of geese : GAGGLE
4. Numbered musical work : OPUS
5. What may help you make your move? : VAN
6. Likely : APT
7. Intense beam : LASER
8. “8 Mile” rapper : EMINEM
9. Genealogist’s drawing : FAMILY TREE
10. Like sand vis-à-vis gravel : FINER
11. “___ on a Grecian Urn” : ODE
12. Latin for “king” : REX
13. Detonation material : TNT
18. Place where one is under uncomfortable pressure : HOT SEAT
22. Time in history : ERA
24. Usually toasted sandwiches, for short : BLTS
25. Not many : A FEW
26. Brother of Cain : ABEL
27. Big product of Kentucky : COAL
28. Phone no. addition : EXT
30. “And that’s that” : END OF STORY
34. Fix, as an election : RIG
36. Bucharest’s home : ROMANIA
37. Midnight, for one : HOUR
38. “___, Brute!” : ET TU
39. Key’s partner : LOCK
40. Mail: Abbr. : LTRS
41. “The ___ Squad” of TV and film : MOD
45. Home to Plato and Aristotle : ATHENS
46. Trash container : BIN
48. “That’s a shame” : TOO BAD
49. Connected to Wi-Fi, say : ONLINE
50. Bring under control : REIN IN
52. “Same here!” : ME TOO!
53. Indianapolis footballers : COLTS
56. Boric ___ : ACID
57. Score before sudden death : TIE
58. Word after Holiday or Days : INN
59. Homemade sandwich, informally : PBJ
61. “What a surprise!” : OHO!
62. ___ pal (female bestie) : GAL

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6 thoughts on “0815-16 New York Times Crossword Answers 15 Aug 16, Monday”

  1. 6:44, no errors, iPad. Pretty easy one.

    A few years ago, the organization I worked for sent me to a conference in Washington, D. C. While there, I made a return visit to the Lincoln Memorial. It was early morming and I was almost the only person there, which was fortunate because, as I stood there reading the carved inscriptions on the walls (from the Second Inaugural Address and the Gettysburg Address), I had tears rolling down my face. The awesome power of simple English …

  2. Five weeks later, pen and paper (my preferred method, I thought): still no errors, but it took me almost two minures longer, at 8:41! I guess you have your good days and then you have your not-so-good days … 🙂

  3. Handwritten 6:49, no errors. @Dave, we are cut from the same cloth; one of life's simple pleasures is to sit down, in the morning, with a hot cup of coffee and a real newspaper.

  4. No errors. I've always thought that the phrase "E for EFFORT" came from the educational systems grading levels. ABCD and F. There is no "E". I have heard once that there used to be an "E" but somehow it was dropped out long ago. So getting an "E for EFFORT" is a tongue-in-cheek way of saying that someone has sort of gotten a non-existant grade for at least giving something a try even though it all came to naught. I haven't looked this up or anything but that is just what I have always thought the expression meant.

  5. 6:38, no errors, also came together easy and quick. So… how does Bill manage to shave well over a minute off our consensus times of 6:30 – 45?

  6. @Dave Kennison. I too have been greatly moved by reading those profound words at the Lincoln Memorial. But I have to say that my most lasting impression was one of futility at the citizens of this country. What Lincoln saw as the nation's essence has been almost completely destroyed by our politicians and our culture. The Founders meant well but no system is perfect and they could not stop the corruption that has taken over. I'm not saying that there aren't still some good people in our nation but they are a vanishing breed. Would that we had another Lincoln.

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