Edited by: Rich Norris
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today’s themed answers are common phrase with the suffix -CHING inserted:
- 23A…Job for the philharmonic’s publicist?..ORCHESTRA PITCHING (from “orchestra pit”)
- 41A…Sign over a woodcarver’s shop?..NOTCHING FOR SALE (from “nothing for sale”)
- 83A…Country club mentors?..TEACHING CADDIES (from “tea caddies”)
- 106A…Crowding on the barbecue grill?..HAMBURGER BUNCHING (from “hamburger bun”)
- 16D…Marriage of theater performers?..BROADWAY HITCHING (from “Broadway hit”)
- 36D…Late-shift laundry job?..EVENING STARCHING (from “evening star”)
NB: The “I Ching” is an ancient Chinese text dating back to the 2nd millennium BC. The text deals with aspects of cosmology and divination, and perhaps served as a guide for making predictions of the future. The statements in the “I Ching” consist of 64 hexagrams, sets of six lines composed in horizontal stacks.
Bill’s errors: 0
Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
1…H.S. equivalency tests..GEDS
The General Educational Development (GED) tests are a battery of five tests designed to demonstrate that a student has the academic skills of someone who has graduated from an American or Canadian high school.
9…Mollusk named for its earlike extensions..SEA HARE
“Sea hare” is the common name of the marine gastropod molluscs known as Aplysiomorpha. The common name comes from the two long “rhinophores” that project upwards from the head, resembling the ears of a hare.
16…Tool used at home..BAT
That would be in baseball.
21…One responsible to an officer..PAROLEE
The term “parole” is a French word that we use in English, with the French “parole” meaning “word, speech”. Of particular interest is the French phrase “parole d’honneur” which translates as “word of honor”. In the early 1600s we started using “parole” to mean a promise by a prisoner of war not to escape, as in the prisoner giving his “word of honor” not to run off. Over time, parole has come to mean conditional release of a prisoner before he or she has served the full term of a sentence.
A drowned valley might be called a ria or a fjord, both formed as sea level rises. A ria is a drowned valley created by river erosion, and a fjord is a drowned valley created by glaciation.
23…Job for the philharmonic’s publicist?..ORCHESTRA PITCHING (from “orchestra pit”)
Many symphony orchestras use the name “philharmonic”, e.g. the London Philharmonic and the New York Philharmonic. The original Philharmonic Society was founded in 1813 in London for the promotion of instrumental music, and orchestras subsequently adopted the society’s name.
Bobby Orr is regarded as one of the greatest hockey players of all time. By the time he retired in 1978 he had undergone over a dozen knee surgeries. At 31 years of age, he concluded that he just couldn’t skate anymore. Reportedly, he was even having trouble walking.
28…Essen-to-Leipzig direction, locally..OST
“Ost” is German for “east”.
Essen is a large industrial city located on the River Ruhr in western Germany.
Leipzig is a city in Germany located just under 100 miles south of Berlin. The name “Leipzig” comes from the Slavic word ”Lipsk” which means “settlement where the linden trees stand”. Linden trees are also called lime trees and basswood trees.
29…Chief justice before Hughes..TAFT
William Howard Taft may have been the 27th President of the United States, but his lifelong ambition was to be Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. President Taft was able to realize that dream in 1921, eight years after losing his bid for re-election as president. As Chief Justice, this former US President swore in two new presidents: Calvin Coolidge (in 1925) and Herbert Hoover (in 1929). William Howard Taft is also remembered as the most obese president. In the last year of his presidency, he weighed about 340 pounds (he was 5 feet 11 inches tall). Twelve months after leaving the White House, President Taft had dropped 80 pounds and substantially lowered his blood pressure.
Charles Evans Hughes Hughes was an associate justice of the Supreme Court from 1910 until he resigned his position in order to run as the Republican candidate for US president in 1916. He was narrowly defeated by incumbent President Woodrow Wilson, after which Hughes did not assume another public office until he was made Secretary of State in 1921 by President Warren G. Harding. Hughes was returned to the US Supreme Court in 1930 when he was nominated as Chief Justice by President Herbert Hoover. It was Chief Justice Hughes who swore in President Franklin D. Roosevelt for his three terms in office.
Some people listen to a sermon (ser.) on a Sunday (Sun.).
31…Where narcs may be found..ON A BUST
“Narc” is a slang term for a law enforcement officer who tracks down criminals associated with illegal drugs. “Narc” is short for “narcotics officer”.
When cloth is woven, yarn is drawn back and forth horizontally through vertical yarns called warps. The horizontal yarn is known as the weft or woof.
Arthur Nielsen founded his Nielsen Media Research company to track brand advertising. He quickly moved into market analysis of radio audiences in the thirties, and today the company is famous for tracking television audiences. I remember watching the last episode of the TV series “Becker”, in which Ted Danson played a doctor. Given that the show had been ordered off the air due to declining viewership, there’s a great line in the last episode when Becker asks for the chart of a patient called “Nielsen”. He looks at the lab results and announces “I don’t know what everyone is talking about … these numbers aren’t so bad!” Great stuff …
When Michelangelo’s famous statue of David was unveiled in 1504, it was at a time when the city-state of the Florentine Republic was threatened by rival states (including Rome). The statue depicts David after he has decided to fight Goliath, and the subject is sporting what is described as a “warning glare”. David was originally placed outside the Palazzo della Signoria, the seat of government in Florence, and that warning glare was directed very deliberately in the direction of its enemy, Rome. The original statue of David can be seen in the Accademia Gallery in Florence, where it has resided since 1873. There is a replica of the statue in its original location in the public square outside of the Palazzo della Signoria.
44…Cell users’ concerns..OVERAGES
A cell phone user might be worried about overage charges for using more than his or her allotted number of minutes.
46…Chaplin of “Game of Thrones”..OONA
Oona Chaplin is an actress from Madrid in Spain. Chaplin is getting a lot of airtime these days as she plays Talisa Maegyr on HBO’s hit fantasy series “Game of Thrones”. Oona is the granddaughter of Charlie Chaplin, and is named for her maternal grandmother Oona O’Neill, the daughter of playwright Eugene O’Neill.
In football, a goal of the quarterback (QB) is to gain yards (yds.).
48…Reliever Robb with 314 career saves..NEN
Robb Nen is a former relief pitcher, best known as a player with the San Francisco Giants. When Nen entered a game in the ninth inning, fans referred to it as the “Nenth” inning.
50…Devon demolition work..RASING
To “raze” (“rase”, in UK English) is to level to the ground. How odd is it that “raise”, a homophone of “raze”, means to build up!
Devon is a county in the southwest of England. The county town of Devon is Exeter, and the largest city in the county is Plymouth, the port from which the Mayflower Pilgrims departed.
54…Med. research agency..NIH
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is made up of 27 different institutes that coordinate their research and services. Examples of member institutes are the National Cancer Institute, the National Institute of Mental Health and the National Institute on Aging.
56…Much Arctic Ocean coastline..ASIA
The Arctic Ocean is in the north polar region, and is almost completely covered by sea ice in the winter. As we all know, the amount of sea ice covering the Arctic Ocean during the summer has been dropping in recent times as a consequence of climate change.
64…Heartless role for Jack Haley?..TIN MAN
Actor Jack Haley played the Tin Man in “The Wizard of Oz”. Haley was the second choice for the role, as it was originally given to Buddy Ebsen (who later played Jed Clampett in “The Beverly Hillbillies”). Ebsen was being “painted up” as the Tin Man when he had an extreme, near-fatal reaction from inhaling the aluminum dust makeup that was being used. When Haley took over, the makeup was changed to a paste, but it was still uncomfortable and caused him to miss the first four days of shooting due to a reaction in his eyes. During filming, Haley must have made good friends with the movie’s star, Judy Garland, as years later Jack’s son married Judy’s daughter, Liza Minnelli.
67…”We’ve Got Tonight” duettist with Rogers..EASTON
“We’ve Got Tonite” is a 1978 song written and performed by Bob Seger. Although Seger’s version was quite successful, a 1983 duet cover version by Kenny Rogers and Sheena Easton did even better. Note that the title of the 1983 release had a more conventional spelling “We’ve Got Tonight”.
Friedrich Engels was a German political theorist who worked closely with Karl Marx to develop what became known as Marxist Theory. Along with Marx, he also co-authored “The Communist Manifesto” in 1848, and later he supported Marx as he worked to publish “Das Kapital”.
72…Long-running NBC comedy..SNL
NBC first aired a form of “Saturday Night Live” (SNL) in 1975 under the title “NBC’s Saturday Night”. The show was actually created to give Johnny Carson some time off from “The Tonight Show”. Back then “The Tonight Show” had a weekend episode, and Carson convinced NBC to pull the Saturday or Sunday recordings off the air and hold them for subsequent weeknights in which Carson needed a break. NBC turned to Lorne Michaels and asked him to put together a variety show to fill the vacant slot, and he came up with what we now call “Saturday Night Live”.
73…Self-described toon “dust magnet”..PIG-PEN
“Pig-Pen” is the kid in the “Peanuts” cartoon strip who is always dirty. Charles Schulz, the strip’s author, said that he was one of Schulz’s least-favorite characters, and so Pig-Pen practically disappeared from the later years of “Peanuts” comic strips.
77…”I pity the fool” speaker..MR T
Mr. T’s real name is Laurence Tero Tureaud. Mr. T is famous for many things, including the wearing of excessive amounts of jewelry. He started this habit when he was working as a bouncer, wearing jewelry items that had been left behind by customers at a nightclub so that the items might be recognized and claimed. It was also as a bouncer that he adopted the name Mr. T. His catch phrase comes from the movie “Rocky III”. In the film, before he goes up against Rocky Balboa, Mr. T says, “No, I don’t hate Balboa, but I pity the fool”. He parlayed that line into quite a bit of success. He had a reality TV show called “I Pity the Fool”, and produced a motivational video called “Be Somebody … or Be Somebody’s Fool!”.
79…Target Field player..TWIN
Target Field is a baseball park in Minneapolis, Minnesota, home to the Minnesota Twins since the stadium opening in 2010. Target Corporation paid an undisclosed sum to get the naming rights of the park. The Target Corporation is headquartered in Minneapolis.
81…”A kind of library,” to Borges..PARADISE
Jorge Luis Borges was an Argentine writer and poet from Buenos Aires. By the time Borges was in his early thirties, he was published many times. However, he had not achieved sufficient success to support himself as a writer, and so started a career as a public lecturer. Around this time, Borges garnered more attention through his speaking, but also started to lose his sight. He was to become completely blind in his late fifties. It has been suggested that this progressive blindness gave him a particularly unique writing style, one that was to bring him a lot of celebrity and respect. One of Borges’ more famous quotations is, “I have always imagined that paradise will be a kind of library”.
83…Country club mentors?..TEACHING CADDIES (from “tea caddies”)
“Caddie” is a Scottish word, as one might expect given the history of the game of golf. “Caddie” is a local word derived from the French “cadet”, meaning a younger son or brother, and also a student officer in the military.
A “caddy” is a container used for tea. “Caddy” comes from the Malay word “kati”, a unit of weight used as a standard by British tea companies in the East Indies.
In Ancient Greece a “drinking party” was called a “symposium” (just like today, based on my experiences!). Often the drink was a mixture of water and wine that was placed in a large vase, called a krater, in the center of the room. Participants in the symposium would dip a smaller vessel into the krater to refill their drinking cups. And yes, “krater” is the root for our word “crater”.
93…North Atlantic perils..BERGS
An iceberg is a large piece of freshwater ice that is floating freely after having broken off from a glacier or ice shelf. Out use of “iceberg” comes from the Dutch word for the same phenomenon “ijsberg”, which translates literally as “ice mountain”.
95…To whom Alice said, “Why, they’re only a pack of cards”..HERSELF
At one point in Lewis Carroll’s novel “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”, the heroine meets up with the King and Queen of Hearts and their “cardly” entourage. When addressed by the Queen, she replies, “My name is Alice, so please your Majesty”, and adds to herself “Why, they’re only a pack of cards, after all. I needn’t be afraid of them!”
97…Stylish ’60s Londoner..MOD
“Mod” is short for “modernist”, and describes a subculture that originated in London in the late fifties. Young men who called themselves mods tended to wear tailored suits, listen to pop music and drive around on Italian motor scooters. Mods came into conflict with another subculture that emerged at the same time in the UK called the rockers. Rockers were into rock and roll music, and drove motorcycles I remember as a young kid in school having to declare myself as either a mod or a rocker. I don’t think our “gangs” back then were quite the same as they are today though …
99…Half a drum..TOM
The tom-tom is a drum with no snares. The name “tom-tom” came from the Hindi name “tam-tam”, which in turn was likely imitative of the sound made by the instrument.
100…Half of MXII..DVI
In Roman numerals, half of MXII (1012) is DVI (506).
That would be a one-two punch.
112…”The poetry of reality”: Dawkins..SCIENCE
Richard Dawkins is an evolutionary biologist and Oxford professor, and a very articulate and outspoken atheist. Dawkins is also a vocal critic of creationism.
Argentina is the second largest country in South America (after Brazil), and geographically is the world’s largest Spanish-speaking nation. The name “Argentina” of course comes from the Latin “argentum”, the word for “silver”. It is thought that the name was given by the early Spanish and Portuguese conquerors who also named the Rio de la Plata (the “Silver River”). Those early explorers got hold of lots of silver objects that they found among the native population.
The official name of Uruguay is the Oriental Republic of Uruguay, reflecting the nation’s location on the eastern coast of South America. It is a relatively small country, the second-smallest on the continent, after Suriname. In 2009, Uruguay became the first country in the world to provide a free laptop and Internet access to every child. Now there’s a thought …
115…”Dylan & __”: 1989 rock album collaboration..THE DEAD
Bob Dylan made a 1987 summer tour with the Grateful Dead that was billed as “Dylan and the Dead”. A live recording made during the tour was released a couple of years later in 1989, with tracks featuring songs written and sung by Bob Dylan with the Grateful Dead accompanying.
117…”Nice” Laurel and Hardy predicament..MESS
Laurel and Hardy’s catchphrase is “Well, here’s another nice mess you’ve gotten me into”. It is often misquoted as “Well, here’s another fine mess you’ve gotten us into”. The confusion might have arisen because Laurel and Hardy did in fact appear in the 1930 film “Another Fine Mess”, although they never actually spoke the words “fine mess”.
1…Car in a ’60s hit..GTO
The 1964 song “G.T.O” was the debut recording for the surf rock group from the sixties known as Ronny & the Daytonas.
4…Very, in Mannheim..SEHR
Mannheim is a city in southwestern Germany. The city is a little unusual in that it has streets and avenues laid out in a grid pattern, rather like an American city. For this reason, Mannheim has the nickname “die Quadratestadt” (city of the squares).
7…Lod’s land: Abbr…ISR
The Israeli city of Lod lies just a few miles southeast of Tel Aviv, and is the home of Ben Gurion International, Israel’s main airport.
9…Strength-building food of comics..SPINACH
The cartoon character Popeye the Sailorman is very fond of spinach, eating cans of the vegetable through his pipe and garnering great strength from it.
12…Snack cake brand..HO HOS
Ho Hos snack cakes were first produced in San Francisco in 1967; not the best thing to come out of the sixties I’d say …
“Flat” is a word more commonly used in the British Isles than here. A flat is basically an apartment or condominium. The word “flat” is Scottish in origin, in which language it meant a “floor in a house”.
An electroencephalogram (EEG) is a record of electrical activity caused by the firing of neurons within the brain. The EEG might be used to diagnose epilepsy, or perhaps to determine if a patient is “brain dead”.
18…Raw beef dishes..TARTARES
What we now call steak tartare was first served in French restaurants in the early 1900s, and back then was called steak à l’Americaine, would you believe? It was basically raw, seasoned beef mixed with egg yolk. A later version of l’Americaine, without the egg yolk and with tartar sauce served on the side, was called steak tartare. Over time the two versions became one, and the steak tartare moniker won out. By the way, if you order steak tartare in Switzerland, I believe you are served horse meat. There are now similar “tartare” dishes made with raw salmon, or raw tuna.
In Greek mythology, Pan was a lecherous god, one who fell in love with Echo the mountain nymph. Echo refused Pan’s advances so that he became very angry. Pan’s anger created a “panic” (a word derived from the name “Pan”) and a group of shepherds were driven to kill Echo.
32…”Cursed __ that did so!”: “The Tempest”..BE I
William Shakespeare’s play “The Tempest” tells the story of Prospero, who was removed from the throne of Milan and banished to a deserted island along with his daughter Miranda. The island is home to a devilish character called Caliban, who is forced into slavery on the arrival of the exiles. Prospero learns sorcery while cast away, and eventually conjures up a tempest that drives those who usurped his throne onto the island’s shores (in particular his own brother, Antonio). On the island, Prospero is eventually successful in revealing Antonio’s lowly nature.
34…Landmark case name..MIRANDA
The Miranda warning is given by US police officers to suspects in order to ensure that any statements made by the suspect can be used at trial. The warning became part of police procedure after a 1966 Supreme Court decision in the case of Miranda v. Arizona. The crux of the court’s decision was that statements made by a suspect during interrogation were only admissible at trial if the defendant was informed of his or her right to consult an attorney, and right to remain silent. The “Miranda” in the case was Ernesto Miranda, who was arrested by the Phoenix PD on suspicion of kidnapping and rape. The Supreme Court decision set aside Miranda’s conviction as his confession was deemed inadmissible. Miranda was rearrested and retried. At the second trial he was convicted without the use of the contested confession.
35…Signals to try to score..WAVES IN
That would be in baseball.
The custom of decorating trees at Christmas seems to have originated in Renaissance Germany. Those first trees were placed in guildhalls and were decorated with sweets and candy for the apprentices and children. After the Protestant Reformation, the Christmas tree became an alternative in Protestant homes for the Roman Catholic Christmas cribs. The Christmas tree tradition was imported into Britain by the royal family because of its German heritage. That tradition spread from Britain into North America.
38…__ A. Bank Clothiers..JOS
Jos. A. Bank Clothiers is a men’s store that specializes in affordable men’s suits.
Ludwig van Beethoven is one of my favorite composers from the Classical period. There are two excellent films that showcase his music and give fictionalized yet entertaining accounts of different aspects of his life: “Immortal Beloved” (1994) that speculates on the identity of one of Beethoven’s lovers, and “Copying Beethoven” (2006) that explores the events leading up to the triumphant premiere of his 9th Symphony.
Newts wouldn’t be my favorite animals. They are found all over the world living on land or in water depending on the species, but always associated with water even if it is only for breeding. Newts metamorphose through three distinct developmental stages during their lives. They start off as larvae in water, fertilized eggs that often cling to aquatic plants. The eggs hatch into tadpoles, the first developmental form of the newt. After living some months as tadpoles swimming around in the water, they undergo another metamorphosis, sprouting legs and replacing their external gills with lungs. At this juvenile stage they are known as efts, and leave the water to live on land. A more gradual transition takes place then, as the eft takes on the lizard-like appearance of the adult newt.
43…Golden Gate phenomenon..FOG
The Golden Gate is the opening of San Francisco Bay into the Pacific Ocean. The bridge that spans the Golden Gate is called “the Golden Gate Bridge” and was opened in 1937. At that time it was the longest suspension bridge in the world. One of the most eerie things about the Golden Gate Bridge is that is the second most popular place in the whole world to commit suicide (after the Nanjing Yangtze River Bridge). Steps have been taken to reduce the number of suicides, including suicide hotline telephones placed along the walkway, but still there is one suicide every two weeks on average throughout the year. There are plans to place a purpose-built net below the bridge as a deterrent, at a cost of tens of millions of dollars.
50…Refresh one’s knowledge of, to a Brit..RUB UP
The informal verb “to rub up” is used on the other side of the Atlantic to mean “to refresh one’s memory”.
51…Grisham’s “__ to Kill”..A TIME
“A Time to Kill” is an excellent thriller written by John Grisham, adapted for the big screen using the same title, and starring Sandra Bullock and Matthew McConaughy. This was Grisham’s first novel and it was rejected by many publishers. In the end was only given a print run of 5,000 copies by Wynwood Press. Then Grisham made it big with a succession of great novels, namely “The Firm”, “The Pelican Brief” and “The Client”, so Doubleday republished “A Time to Kill” and it became a bestseller.
53…Martinique et Réunion..ILES
The French would find “une île” (an island) in “la mer” (the sea).
The island of Martinique in the eastern Caribbean is actually a part of France, and is referred to as an “overseas department”. As such, Martinique is part of the European Union, and even uses the euro as its currency. The island is fully represented in the French National Assembly and Senate, just like any department within France. It’s sort of like the status of Hawaii within the US.
Réunion is a French island in the Indian Ocean, located east of Madagascar.
Most frogs have cleft tongues that normally lie coiled in the mouth. The tongue can be shot out of the mouth and retracted very quickly, catching flies.
Cedar is used for the manufacture of some wardrobes and chests as it has long been believed that the fragrant oil in the wood is a moth-repellent. However, whether or not cedar oil is actually effective at keeping moths away seems to be in doubt.
65…What “can be yours … if the price is right!”..ALL THIS
“The Price is Right” is a television game show that first aired way back in 1956.
An etui is an ornamental case used to hold small items, in particular sewing needles. We imported both the case design and the word “etui” from France. The French also have a modern usage of “etui”, using the term to depict a case for carrying CDs.
77…Highest peak in the Calif. Cascades..MT SHASTA
Only two volcanoes in the Cascade Range in the northwest have erupted in the 20th century: Mount St. Helens in 1980 and Mount Lassen in 1915. The last significant eruption of Mount Shasta, a third volcano in the Cascades, was about 200 years ago
81…Guinea pig, for some..PET
The guinea pig species of rodent is also known as a cavy. Guinea pigs aren’t related to pigs, and not are they from Guinea (in West Africa). Guinea pigs actually come from the Andes. They were commonly used for research in the 1800s and 1900s, and as a result we use the term “guinea pig” for a test subject to this day.
In order to be a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), an applicant has to prove that she is a descendant of someone closely associated with, and supportive of, the American Revolution. The DAR maintains an online database of Revolutionary War patriots. The database is searchable, and is known as the Patriot Index.
85…”Kiss of life,” briefly..CPR
Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) has for decades involved the simultaneous compression of the chest to pump blood using the heart, and artificial respiration by blowing air into the lungs. Nowadays emergency services are placing more emphasis on heart compressions, and less on artificial respiration.
“Homie” is short for “homeboy”, someone from one’s home neighborhood.
99…Measurer of rpm..TACH
The tachometer takes its name from the Greek word “tachos” meaning “speed”. A tachometer measures engine revolutions per minute (rpm).
102…Movie about giant ants..THEM!
“Them!” is a 1954 science fiction movie about giant ants attacking humans after receiving a dose of nuclear radiation in the New Mexico desert. “Them!” was the first of a whole host of “giant bug” films, of which I think I’ve seen … none …
The initial “S” in the middle of the name Harry S. Truman (HST) doesn’t stand for anything. The future-president was named “Harry” in honor of his mother’s brother Harrison “Harry” Young. The initial “S” was chosen in honor of young Harry’s two grandfathers: Anderson S-hipp Truman and S-olomon Young.
107…A, in Arles..UNE
Quite a few years ago now, I had the privilege of living just a short car-ride from the beautiful city of Arles in the South of France. Although Arles has a long and colorful history, the Romans had a prevailing influence over the city’s design. Arles has a spectacular Roman amphitheater, arch, circus as well as old walls that surround the center of the city. In more modern times, it was a place Vincent van Gogh often visited, and where he painted his famous “Cafe Terrace at Night”, as well as “Bedroom in Arles”.
108…Red Seal label company..RCA
RCA Red Seal Records is a classical musical label, founded in 1902 in the UK. Famously, Enrico Caruso recorded with Red Label, raising its profile and greatly contributing to its success.
In the world of heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), the power of a heating or cooling unit can be measured in British Thermal Units (BTUs). This dated unit is the amount of energy required to heat a pound of water so that the water’s temperature increases by one degree Fahrenheit.
110…New car feature, for short..GPS
Global Positioning System (GPS)