Edited by: Rich Norris
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Today’s themed answers are all SPOONERISMS:
- 66A…Oxford don associated with slips similar to 17-, 28-, 45-, and 59-Across..SPOONER
Bill’s errors: 3
- BEAUT (beast!)
- RATITE (ratine)
- AUTO (asno!)
Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
1…Books in which each sheet of paper is folded into eight leaves..OCTAVOS
Some common book formats/sizes are folio, octavo and quarto. For an octavo book, sixteen pages of text are printed, eight pages on each side of a “full-size” piece of paper. The pages are formed by folding the sheet of paper three times in half, giving a group of sixteen pages printed on eight leaves (after separation). The size of the resulting pages of course depends on the size of the original sheet, but each page is one eighth the size of that original (hence the name octavo). Nowadays the octavo size refers to books that are between eight and ten inches tall.
17…Politically active fowl?..TRUMP DUCK (spoonerism of “dump truck”)
When Donald Trump won the nomination as presidential candidate in 2016, he wasn’t the first candidate to become the Republican nominee without any political experience. The most famous such candidate in recent decades was Dwight D. Eisenhower, who was put on the top of the ticket in 1952.
“Cilia” is Latin for “eyelashes”.
19…”A Chorus Line” number..ONE
“One” is “one” of the big numbers in the hit musical “A Chorus Line”.
One singular sensation
Every little step she takes
One thrilling combination
Every move that she makes
One smile and suddenly nobody else will do
You know you’ll never be lonely with you know who
“A Chorus Line” is a phenomenal hit musical first staged in 1975, with music by Marvin Hamlisch and lyrics by Edward Kleban. The original Broadway production ran for well over 6,000 performances, making it the longest running production in Broadway history up to that time, a record held for over 20 years (until “Cats” came along).
20…Goddess with a throne headdress..ISIS
Isis was the ancient Egyptian goddess of fertility, as well as the protector of the dead and the goddess of children. She was the personification of the pharaoh’s power. The name “Isis” translates as “throne”, and she is usually depicted with a headdress shaped like a throne.
“Jell” means to congeal, to set. The word has been used since the early 1800s, and comes from the earlier word “jelly”. Nowadays, we tend to use the alternate spelling “gel”.
Our word “élan” was imported from French, in which language the word has a similar meaning to ours, i.e “style” or “flair”.
28…Clever insect?..CUNNING ROACH (spoonerism of “running coach”)
The insect known as a cockroach is closely related to the termite. Although generally considered a pest, the lowly cockroach has at least one claim to fame. A cockroach named Nadezhda was sent into space in 2007 by Russian scientists, where it became the first terrestrial creature to give birth in space. Nadezhda bore 33 cockroaches.
The River Elbe rises in the Czech Republic and travels over a thousand kilometers before emptying into the North Sea near the port of Hamburg in Germany.
The German city of Dresden was almost completely destroyed during WWII, especially as a result of the famous firebombing of the city in 1945. Restoration work in the inner city in recent decades led to it being designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. However, in 2006 when the city built a highway bridge close to the city center, UNESCO took Dresden off the list. This marked the only time a European location has lost World Heritage status.
A “doozy” is something extraordinary or bizarre. The word’s exact origins aren’t clear, but it might be a derivative of the name Eleanora Duse, an Italian actress popular early in the 20th century.
42…”The Little Mermaid” prince..ERIC
“The Little Mermaid” is a 1989 animated feature from Disney that is based on the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale of the same name. It tells the story of a mermaid princess named Ariel who falls in love with the human Prince Eric. Ariel’s father is chief merman King Triton.
44…The kiwi is the smallest one..RATITE
Ratites are species of birds that cannot fly. Ratites are different physiologically than other birds in that they have nowhere on their sternum to attach the muscles needed for flight.
The kiwi is an unusual bird in that it has a highly developed sense of smell and is the only one of our feathered friends with nostrils located at the tip of its long beak.
The city of Sandy is a suburb of Salt Lake City.
54…Achievement of many a CEO..MBA
The world’s first Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree was offered by Harvard’s Graduate School of Business Administration, in 1908.
Chief executive officer (CEO)
63…Birch of “American Beauty”..THORA
Thora Birch is an actress from Los Angeles. Birch is probably best known for her breakthrough role in the 1999 movie “American Beauty” in which she was the insecure daughter of a married couple played by Kevin Spacey and Annette Bening.
While I found the film “American Beauty” to be an enjoyable and interesting film (loved Annette Bening in it), I also found it very depressing. If you haven’t seen it, the main story is about a man having a midlife crisis (played by Kevin Spacey) and developing an infatuation for his teenage daughter’s flirtatious friend (played by Mena Suvari, and whom I guess is the “American Beauty”). It’s definitely worth watching, and received got huge accolades when released in 1999.
A sylph (also “sylphid”) is a mythological creature, an invisible and wispy being of the air. We also use the term “sylph” to describe a slender and graceful woman.
66…Oxford don associated with slips similar to 17-, 28-, 45-, and 59-Across..SPOONER
Spoonerisms are errors in speech in which letters or sounds are switched from one word to another. Famous examples are “Three cheers for our queer old dean” (dear old Queen … Victoria) and “Is it kisstomary to cuss the bride?” (customary to kiss …). Spoonerisms are named after an Oxford don William Archibald Spooner, who was notorious for his tendency to pepper his speech with “spoonerisms”.
1…Anne Frank’s father..OTTO
Anne Frank has to be one of the most famous victims of the Holocaust. This is largely because the story of this young girl lives on in her widely published diary, and in adaptations of the diary for stage and screen. Anne Frank was a German until she lost her nationality in 1941 when the Nazis came to power. By this time she was living with her family in Amsterdam, as the Franks chose to flee Germany in 1933. When the Germans occupied the Netherlands, the family went into hiding in the attic of Otto Frank’s office building (Otto was Anne’s father). There the family hid for two whole years until they were betrayed. The family was split up, and Anne and her sister died from typhus in a concentration camp in 1945.
2…With 13-Across, Mexican restaurant choices..CORN
“Tortilla” translates from Spanish literally as “little cake”.
ATM (Automatic Teller Machine)
A “bigwig” is someone important. The use of the term harks back to the days when men of authority and rank wore big wigs.
“To slue” (also “slew) is to turn sharply, or to rotate on an axis.
8…__ fly: productive MLB out..SAC
That would be a sac(rifice) fly, in baseball.
Elijah was a prophet in the northern kingdom of Israel according to the Books of Kings in the Hebrew Bible and the Qur’an. The name “Elijah” translates from Hebrew as “My God is Yahweh”. Elijah is also known Elias.
11…Operatic vocal effect..TRILL
In music a “trill” is the rapid alternation of two tones that are very close to each other to make a vibrato sound.
Room coolers are air conditioning units (ACs).
25…Mayo is in it..ANO
In Spanish, “mayo” (May) is one of the months of the “año” (year).
29…Letters at N.C.’s Camp Lejeune..USMC
Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune is located in Jacksonville, North Carolina. The 246-square mile facility includes 14 miles of beaches, making Camp Lejeune important for amphibious assault training. Built in 1941, the base was named for the 13th Commandant of the Marine Corps John A. Lejeune, who served in the USMC for nearly forty years, and who is often referred to as the “greatest of Leathernecks”.
The adjective “neat” has been used to describe “straight liquor” since about 1800. Before then, the term applied to wine, when it meant “unadulterated wine”. The term comes from Old French “net” meaning “clear, pure”.
31…Clinton’s first Labor secretary..REICH
Robert Reich is a political economist who served in three administrations, with Presidents Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter and with Bill Clinton, for whom he was Secretary of Labor.
35…Aries or Taurus..AUTO
The Dodge Aries (and the Plymouth Reliant) were Chrysler’s first “K-cars”, introduced in 1981. The K-cars were designed to carry 6 passengers, on two bench seats. Remember taking a corner a little too fast on those seats, in the days when no one wore seat belts?
The Taurus is an incredibly successful car that was introduced by Ford in 1985. The Taurus was the successor to the Ford LTD, and is still in production today. The Taurus was the best-selling automobile in the US between 1992 and 1996, before being knocked off its pedestal by Japanese imports.
A “snag” is a pull or a tear in a fabric. A snag, particularly in stockings, might lead to a run. And on the other side of the Atlantic, a “run” is called a “ladder”.
Ribonucleic Acid (RNA) is an essential catalyst in the manufacture of proteins in the body. The genetic code in DNA determines the sequence of amino acids that make up each protein. That sequence is read in DNA by messenger RNA, and amino acids are delivered for protein manufacture in the correct sequence by what is called transfer RNA. The amino acids are then formed into proteins by ribosomal RNA.
That would be in music.
“Time” magazine has a readership of about 25 million, making it the largest circulation weekly news magazine in the world.
49…Given orally, as evidence..PAROL
In the law, a statement described as “parol” is given orally as opposed to in written form.
55…Thorn in one’s side..BANE
Today we tend to use the word “bane” to mean anathema, a source of persistent annoyance. A few centuries ago, a bane was a cause of harm or death, perhaps a deadly poison.
An address (addr.) is usually required for a delivery (dely.).
58…Half a tuba sound..PAH
The tuba is the lowest-pitched of all the brass instruments, and one of the most recent additions to the modern symphony orchestra (usually there is just one tuba included in an orchestral line-up). “Tuba” is the Latin word for “trumpet, horn”. Oom-pah-pah …
A country’s Gross National Product (GNP) is the value of all services and products produced by its residents in a particular year. GNP includes all production wherever it is in the world, as long as the business is owned by residents of the country concerned. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is different, although related, and is the value of all services and goods produced within the borders of the country for that year.
61…One-tenth of a Vietnamese dong, formerly..HAO
The currency of Vietnam is known as the dong. One dong is divided into ten hao, and one hao is divided into ten xu.