Edited by: Rich Norris
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By taking the first word from each of today’s themed answers, we come up the meaning of the acronym YOLO:
- 56A…Modern-day carpe diem spelled out at the starts of 18-, 30-, 45- and 57-Across..YOLO
- 18A…”We’re done here. Please leave”..YOU MAY GO NOW
- 30A…Lone source of local entertainment..ONLY GAME IN TOWN
- 45A…Eschew modern conveniences..LIVE OFF THE GRID
- 57A…Like the child of your first cousin, to you..ONCE REMOVED
Bill’s errors: 0
Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
14…Winner of the most 2016 Olympic medals..USA
The US topped the medal table at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio, winning 46 gold medals:
- United States – 46 gold medals (121 medals total)
- Great Britain – 27 gold medals (67 medals total)
- China – 26 gold medals (70 medals total)
Alfred Nobel was a Swedish chemist and businessman. Nobel is famous for the invention of dynamite during his lifetime, as well as for instituting the Nobel Prizes by providing the necessary funds in his will.
17…__ Tin Tin..RIN
The original Rin Tin Tin was a real-life dog, a puppy discovered by a GI in a bombed-out kennel in France during WWI. The soldier named the pup Rin Tin Tin, the same name as a puppet given to American soldiers for luck. On returning to the US, “Rinty” was trained by his owner and was spotted doing tricks by a film producer. Rinty featured in some films, eventually getting his first starring role in 1923 in the silent movie “Where the North Begins”. Legend has it that this first Rin Tin Tin died in the arms of actress Jean Harlow. Not a bad way to go …
20…For mature viewers..RATED-R
The Motion Picture Association of America’s (MPAA) film-rating system (PG-13, R, etc.) is purely voluntary and is not backed by any law. Movie theaters agree to abide by the rules that come with the MPAA ratings in exchange for access to new movies.
22…Foot prettifier, briefly..PEDI
Alabama is known as the Yellowhammer State, in honor of the state bird. Alabama is also called the “Heart of Dixie”.
24…Grape-Nuts cereal brand..POST
C. W. Post decided to get into the cereal business after visiting the Battle Creek Sanitarium operated by John Harvey Kellogg. Post was interested in the chemistry of digestion and was inspired by the dietary products offered by Kellogg at his sanitarium. The first breakfast cereal Post introduced was Grape-Nuts, way back in 1897.
26…Big Board letters..NYSE
The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) is nicknamed the “Big Board”.
35…Longtime name in Syrian leadership..ASSAD
Dr. Bashar al-Assad is the current President of the Syrian Arab Republic and the son of the former President Hafez al-Assad whom he replaced in 2001. President Assad is a medical doctor, speaks fluent English and conversational French. Assad was studying ophthalmology in London when he met his wife, who is an Englishwoman.
36…Prereq for a lifeguard..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.
37…Fred Flintstone’s boss..MR SLATE
In “The Flintstone” animated TV show, Fred Flintstone operates a bronto-crane at the Slate Rock and Gravel Company, which is owned by Fred’s boss Mr. Slate.
CBS is the second-largest broadcaster in the world, second only to the BBC in the UK. CBS introduced its “eye” logo in 1951.
Asana is a Sanskrit word literally meaning “sitting down”. The asanas are the poses that a practitioner of yoga assumes. The most famous is the lotus position, the cross-legged pose called “padmasana”.
44…Part of 14-Across: Abbr…AMER
United States of America (USA)
45…Eschew modern conveniences..LIVE OFF THE GRID
“To eschew”, meaning “to avoid, shun” comes from the Old French word “eschiver” that means the same thing.
57…Like the child of your first cousin, to you..ONCE REMOVED
In the most general terms, a cousin is anyone with whom one shares a common ancestor. Cousins in one’s immediate family are called by a more direct term (father, brother, uncle etc.). Two cousins are pinpointed in a family tree by using “degree” and “removal” to describe the relationship. For example, first cousins (first-degree cousins) share a common grandparent, and second cousins share a common great-grandparent, and so on up the tree. If the two cousins share the same common ancestor but there is a generational difference, then the “removal” term is used. So, if you share as a common ancestor your great-grandparent with one of your cousins, that person is your second cousin, unless that cousin is of a different generation in which case the number of generations “removed” is also specified. If that person regards your great-grandfather as his/her great-great grandfather, then you are still second cousins but more specifically are second cousins once removed (i.e. one generation removed). I explained this very badly …
62…Great Lakes’ __ Canals..SOO
In the summer of 2010 I spent a very interesting afternoon watching ships make their way through the Soo Locks and Soo Canals between Lake Superior and the lower Great lakes. The name “Soo” comes from the US and Canadian cities on either side of the locks, both called Sault Ste. Marie.
63…Baseball legend Satchel..PAIGE
Satchel Paige pitched baseball in the Negro leagues and then the majors, retiring in 1966. When he moved to the Major League, he was 42 as he pitched his first game, making him the oldest ever “rookie” to play Major League Baseball. And when he was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1971, he was the first person to be so honored from the Negro leagues.
64…Dior skirt style..A-LINE
Christian Dior was a French fashion designer. As WWII approached, Dior was called up by the French military, drawing a temporary halt to his career in fashion. He left the army in 1942 and for the duration of the war designed clothes for wives of Nazi officers and French collaborators. After the war his designs became so popular that he helped reestablish Paris as the fashion center of the world.
65…”__ the President’s Men”..ALL
“All the President’s Men” is a marvelous book by “The Washington Post” journalists Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward. The book tells the remarkable tale of the investigation undertaken by Woodward and Bernstein into the Watergate scandal. The pair followed “All the President’s Men” with a sequel called “The Final Days” which told of President Nixon’s final months in office. One of my favorite movies of all time is the 1976 film adaption of “All the President’s Men” that stars Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman.
68…Sound on Old MacDonald’s farm..MOO
There was an American version of the English children’s song “Old MacDonald Had a Farm” (E-I-E-I-O), that was around in the days of WWI. The first line of the US version goes “Old MacDougal had a farm, in Ohio-i-o”.
2…Great Wall setting..ASIA
The Great Wall of China is a series of fortifications that was built and rebuilt over the centuries to protect the northern borders of the Chinese Empire. Most of the existing wall was reconstructed during the Ming Dynasty. This Ming wall is about 5,000 miles long. There is an urban myth that the Great Wall is visible from the Moon, or from space. NASA has shown that the Great Wall can only be discerned from low Earth orbit (about 100 miles), and that is no more or less visible than any other man-made structure.
3…Deliver a tirade..RANT AND RAVE
A “tirade” is a long and vehement speech, and is a word that came into English from French. “Tirade” can have the same meaning in French, but is also the word for “volley”. So, a tirade is a “volley of words”.
5…”Let’s Make a Deal” selection..DOOR
The game show “Let’s Make a Deal” first aired way back in 1963. For many years the show was hosted by Monty Hall, from 1963 until 1986, and again briefly in 1991. In more recent years, Wayne Brady took over as host in 2009.
Abu Dhabi is one of the seven Emirates that make up the federation known as the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The two largest members of the UAE (geographically) are Dubai and Abu Dhabi, the only two of the seven members that have veto power over UAE policy. Before 1971, the UAE was a British Protectorate, a collection of sheikdoms. The sheikdoms entered into a maritime truce with Britain in 1835, after which they became known as the Trucial States, derived from the word “truce”.
The mineral beryl is a source of a number of different, semi-precious stones, depending on the nature of the impurities present. Pure beryl is colorless; blue beryl is called aquamarine, and green beryl is emerald. The source of the green color is mainly chromium.
9…Texas city of 1.3 million, familiarly..BIG D
“Big D” is a nickname for the city of Dallas, Texas.
11…It may be unearned..RUN
An error may lead to an unearned run, in baseball.
“Compadre” is Spanish for “godfather”.
The yeti is a beast of legend, also called the 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.
Ella Fitzgerald, the “First Lady of Song”, had a hard and tough upbringing. She was raised by her mother alone in Yonkers, New York. Her mother died while Ella was still a schoolgirl, and around that time the young girl became less interested in her education. She fell in with a bad crowd, even working as a lookout for a bordello and as a Mafia numbers runner. She ended up in reform school, from which she escaped, and found herself homeless and living on the streets for a while. Somehow Fitzgerald managed to get herself a spot singing in the Apollo Theater in Harlem. From there her career took off and as they say, the rest is history.
27…Ill-tempered Looney Tunes character..YOSEMITE SAM
Yosemite Sam is a cartoon character who frequently goes up against Bugs Bunny.
“Looney Tunes” and “Merrie Melodies” are two series of animated short films produced by Warner Bros. from 1930 until 1969. The list of famous “Looney Tunes” characters includes Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Elmer Fudd, Tweety Bird, and my favorites Wile E. Coyote and the Road Runner.
“Gar” was originally the name given to a species of needlefish found in the North Atlantic. The term “gar” is now used to describe several species of fish with elongated bodies that inhabit North and Central America and the Caribbean. The gar is unusual in that it is often found in very brackish water. What I find interesting is that the gar’s swim bladders are vascularized so that they can actually function as lungs. Many species of gar can actually be seen coming to the surface and taking a gulp of air. This adaptation makes it possible for them to live in conditions highly unsuitable for other fish that rely on their gills to get oxygen out of the water. Indeed, quite interesting …
37…Long March leader in 1930s China..MAO
“The Long March” was a retreat by the Communist Red Army through much of China, falling back from the advances of the army of the Chinese Nationalist Party. Taking place in 1934-1935, the Long March is famous for the ascent to power of Mao Zedong as he led the retreating forces. As a result of the Long March, the Communist Party was able to recover and rebuild in the northern part of the county. The orderly retreat and respect shown for the Chinese peasantry led to the rise of popularity of the Communist Party with the populace.
Tylenol is pain relieving drug, with the active ingredient acetaminophen (which we call paracetamol back in Ireland, and outside of America).
The Greek god Ares is often referred to as the Olympian god of warfare, but originally he was regarded as the god of bloodlust and slaughter. Ares united with Aphrodite to create several gods, including Phobos (Fear), Deimos (Terror) and Eros (Desire). The Roman equivalent to Ares was Mars.
The flue in a chimney is a duct that conveys exhaust gases from a fire to the outdoors. An important feature of a flue is that its opening is adjustable. When starting a fire, the flue should be wide open, maximizing airflow to get help ignition.
53…Lodes and lodes..ORES
A lode is a metal ore deposit that’s found between two layers of rock or in a fissure. The “mother lode” is the principal deposit in a mine, usually of gold or silver. “Mother lode” is probably a translation of “veta madre”, an expression used in mining in Mexico.
55…Hershey’s caramel candy..ROLO
Rolo was a hugely popular chocolate candy in Ireland when I was growing up. Rolo was introduced in the thirties in the UK, and is produced under license in the US by Hershey. I was a little disappointed when I had my first taste of the American version as the center is very hard and chewy. The recipe used on the other side of the Atlantic calls for a soft gooey center.
56…Modern-day carpe diem spelled out at the starts of 18-, 30-, 45- and 57-Across..YOLO
You only live once (YOLO)
“Carpe diem” is a quotation from Horace, one of Ancient Rome’s leading lyric poets. “Carpe diem” translates from Latin as “seize the day” or “enjoy the day”. The satirical motto of a procrastinator is “carpe mañana”, “translating” as “seize tomorrow”.
57…Black __: covert missions..OPS
“Black ops” is the name given to covert operations, activities that are usually outside of standard military protocol and may even be against the law. Funding for black ops is usually provided by a secret “black budget”.
The Washington Nationals (“The Nats”) baseball team started out life as the Montreal Expos in 1969. The Expos moved to Washington in 2005 becoming the Nats. There are only two Major Leagues teams that have never played in a World Series, one being the Mariners and the other the Nats.
59…Spy novel org…CIA
The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is the successor to the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) formed during WWII. The CIA was chartered by the National Security Act of 1947.
60…”¡Viva el matador!”..OLE!
“Matador” is a Spanish word used in English for a bullfighter, although the term isn’t used in the same way in Spanish. The equivalent in Spanish is “torero”. “Matador” translates aptly enough as “killer”.
61…__ Scully, Dodger announcer for 67 seasons..VIN
Vin Scully is a sportscaster who has been calling Dodgers games since 1950, when the team was still located in Brooklyn. When Scully broadcast the 1953 World Series between the Yankees and the Dodgers, he became the youngest person ever to call a World Series game, at only 25 years of age. When the Dodgers moved to Los Angeles in 1958, Scully went with them.