Edited by: Rich Norris
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Today’s themed answers are the names of celebrities. The family name of each celebrity starts with a body part:
- 20A. Record-setting aviator of the 1930s : AMELIA EARHART (hiding “ear”)
- 29A. 2007-’14 E! comedy talk show host : CHELSEA HANDLER (hiding “hand”)
- 46A. Looney Tunes rooster with a Southern accent : FOGHORN LEGHORN (hiding “leg”)
- 56A. First to walk on the moon : NEIL ARMSTRONG (hiding “arm”)
Bill’s errors: 0
Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
5. __ Romeo: sports car : ALFA
The “Alfa” in Alfa Romeo is actually an acronym, standing for Anonima Lombarda Fabbrica Automobili (“Lombard Automobile Factory, Public Company”). ALFA was an enterprise founded in 1909 and which was taken over by Nicola Romeo in 1915. In 1920 the company name was changed to Alfa Romeo.
9. Go Fish request : TWOS
Go Fish a very simple card game, usually played by children:
Q. Do you have any queens?
Q. Go fish!
16. Shabbat service site : SHUL
Shabbat is the day of rest in the Jewish tradition, and is observed weekly from Friday evening through Saturday evening. Shabbat is welcomed a few minutes before Friday’s sunset, according to Jewish law, and bid farewell on Sunday night after the appearance of three stars in the sky.
17. Hercules types : HE-MEN
“The Twelve Labors of Hercules” is actually a Greek myth, although Hercules is the Roman name for the hero that the Greeks called Heracles.
18. Jazz trumpeter Al : HIRT
Al Hirt was a trumpeter and bandleader. Hirt’s most famous recordings were the song “Java” and the album “Honey in the Horn”, as well the theme song used “The Green Hornet” TV series in the sixties.
20. Record-setting aviator of the 1930s : AMELIA EARHART (hiding “ear”)
Amelia Earhart is as famous today as she was during her lifetime. When she became the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic she was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross by Congress, and the Cross of Knight of the Legion of Honor by the French government. She made two attempts to circumnavigate the globe by air (not solo). Her first attempt in March 1937 had to be abandoned when her aircraft was damaged during takeoff. The second attempt in June/July of the same year ended when Earhart and her navigator disappeared flying from Lae, New Guinea to Howland Island in the Central Pacific.
24. Apr. is in it : SPR
April (Apr.) is in the season of spring (spr.).
25. Old nuclear agcy. : AEC
The Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) was set up right after WWII in 1946, with the aim of promoting the peaceful use of atomic energy. Establishing the AEC was a significant move made by President Truman, as it passed control of atomic energy from the military to the civilian sector. The AEC continued to operate until 1974 when its functions were divided up into two new agencies: the Energy Research and Development Administration and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).
26. Sixth sense, for short : ESP
Extrasensory perception (ESP)
29. 2007-’14 E! comedy talk show host : CHELSEA HANDLER (hiding “hand”)
Chelsea Handler is a comedian who made a name for herself as a late-night talk show host on the E! Network, hosting her show “Chelsea Lately”. Handler started presenting a Netflix original comedy talk show called “Chelsea” in 2015.
33. Hammerhead parts : PEENS
The peen of a hammer is on the head, and is the side of the head that is opposite the striking surface. Often the peen is in the shape of a hemisphere (as in a ball-peen hammer), but usually it is shaped like a claw (mainly for removing nails).
34. “All My Children” vixen : ERICA
“All My Children” was the first daytime soap opera to debut in the seventies. Star of the show was Susan Lucci who played Erica Kane. The show was cancelled in 2011 after having being on the air for 41 years.
38. RBI and ERA : STATS
Those would be baseball statistics (stats.)
Run batted in (RBI)
Earned run average (ERA)
44. Separate by percolation : LEACH
Percolation leaching is a process used to remove a mineral from a mass of material containing that mineral. A suitable solvent is chosen, and it is allowed to seep (percolate) through the mass, dissolving (leaching) the mineral as it goes. The mineral is then extracted from the collected solvent.
46. Looney Tunes rooster with a Southern accent : FOGHORN LEGHORN (hiding “leg”)
Foghorn Leghorn is a lovable rooster who appears in “Looney Tunes” and “Merrie Melodies” cartoons from the forties through the sixties. Foghorn’s marvelous voice was provided by the great Mel Blanc. The rooster’s demeanor was drawn directly from a character called Senator Beauregard Claghorn, a blustery Southern politician who appeared regularly on radio’s “The Fred Allen Show”.
52. Word before a birth name : NEE
“Née” is the French word for “born” when referring to a female. The male equivalent is “né”.
53. Modern: Ger. : NEU
“Neu” is the German word for “new”.
54. Move it, old-style : HIE
“To hie” is to move quickly, to bolt.
56. First to walk on the moon : NEIL ARMSTRONG (hiding “arm”)
Neil Armstrong was the most private of individuals. You didn’t often see him giving interviews, unlike so many of the more approachable astronauts of the Apollo space program. His famous, “That’s one small step for (a) man, one giant leap for mankind” statement; that was something that he came up with himself while Apollo 11 was making its way to the moon.
60. Letter after epsilon : ZETA
Zeta is the sixth letter of the Greek alphabet, and is a precursor of our Roman letter Z. The word “zeta” is also the ancestor of the name “zed”, which became “zee”, the pronunciation that we use here in the US.
62. Et __: and others : ALIA
Et alii (et al.) is the equivalent of et cetera (etc.), with et cetera being used in place of a list of objects, and et alii used for a list of names. In fact “et al.” can stand for et alii (for a group of males, or males and females), aliae (for a group of women) and et alia (for a group of neuter nouns, or for a group of people where the intent is to retain gender-neutrality).
63. Down-yielding duck : EIDER
Eiders are large sea ducks. Their down feathers are used to fill pillows and quilts, giving the name to the quilt called an “eiderdown”.
64. Showy perennial : IRIS
Iris is a genus of flowering plants that come in a wide variety of flower colors. The term “iris” is a Greek word meaning “rainbow”. Many species of irises are called “flags”. One suggestion is that the alternate name comes from the Middle English “flagge” meaning “reed”. This term was used because iris leaves look like reeds.
65. Half a picking-up tool : TONG
A pair of tongs is a tool with a scissor-like hinge used to pick up things, like meat cooking on a barbecue grill or ice from an ice bucket. The verb “to tong” means “to handle with tongs”.
66. Cubic meter : STERE
“Stere” is a metric measure, although it is not part of the modern metric system. Nowadays the stere is used as a measure for firewood, and is equal to one cubic meter.
2. Feeble : ANEMIC
The term “anemia” (or “anaemia” as we write it back in Ireland) comes from a Greek word meaning “lack of blood”. Anemia is a lack of iron in the blood, or a low red blood cell count. Tiredness is a symptom of the condition, and so we use the term “anemic” figuratively to mean “lacking in vitality or substance”.
3. O’Neill’s “The Iceman __” : COMETH
“The Iceman Cometh” is a play written by American playwright Eugene O’Neill and first performed in 1946 on Broadway. The play centers on some down-and-out men in a shabby saloon in Manhattan. The title is a reference to the “iceman”, the man who would have delivered ice to homes back in the time of the play. The reference is to a bawdy joke in which the “iceman” was having an affair with someone’s wife.
4. “As seen on TV” record co. : K-TEL
K-Tel was founded in 1962 in Winnipeg, Manitoba by one Philip Kives. K-Tel’s recipe for success was the sale of inexpensive goods with a simple sales pitch and mail-order distribution.
6. Sci-fi princess : LEIA
Princess Leia is Luke Skywalker’s twin sister in the original “Star Wars” trilogy and was played by Carrie Fisher. Carrie Fisher has stated that she hated the famous “cinnamon bun hairstyle” that she had to wear in the films, as she felt it made her face look too round. She also had to to sit for two hours every day just to get her hair styled. Two hours to get your hair done? It takes me just two seconds …
7. Fawcett who played one of Charlie’s Angels : FARRAH
In the fun TV show from the late seventies and early eighties, “Charlie’s Angels”, Farrah Fawcett-Majors played Jill Munroe. When Fawcett-Majors decided to move on from the show, a new character was introduced to fill her spot, her younger sister, Kris Munroe, played by Cheryl Ladd.
8. Tennis Hall of Famer Gibson : ALTHEA
Althea Gibson was known as “the Jackie Robinson of tennis” as she broke the “color barrier” and became the first African-American woman to win a Grand Slam title, in France in 1956. She was quite the athlete and was a great golfer as well as tennis player. She was the first African-American woman to play in the Ladies PGA tour, although she never had a win. Outside of sport, she sang a little and recorded an album, and even appeared in a movie (“The Horse Soldiers”) with John Wayne and William Holden. Sadly, towards the end of her life she ended up destitute and on welfare. When her plight was made known in a tennis magazine, well-wishers from all over the world sent her gifts of money, a total of nearly one million dollars. Quite a story …
9. Russian ruler until 1917 : TSAR
The year 1917 saw two revolutions in Russia, with the pair collectively called “the Russian Revolution”. As a result of the February Revolution that centered on Petrograd, the last Emperor of Russia (Tsar Nicholas II) abdicated and members of the Imperial parliament took control of the country, forming the Russian Provisional Government. The Provisional Government was itself overthrown in the October Revolution, by Vladimir Lenin and the Bolshevik party.
21. Vaulted church areas : APSES
The apse of a church or cathedral is a semicircular recess in an outer wall, usually with a half-dome as a roof and often where there resides an altar. Originally, apses were used as burial places for the clergy and also for storage of important relics.
22. Stridex target : ACNE
Stridex is a line of acne treatments owned by Blistex that comes as medicated pads. The active ingredient in most Stridex products is salicylic acid, but others include benzoyl peroxide.
28. Rear end in a fall? : PRAT
“Prat” is a relatively new word for me, a slang term for the buttocks. A “prat-fall” is when someone falls and lands on the buttocks.
30. Pleistocene period : EPOCH
Geological time is divided into a number of units of varying lengths. These are, starting from the largest:
- eon (also “aeon”)
The Pleistocene epoch lasted from about 2,588,000 to 11,700 years ago, and is associated with the most recent period of repeated glaciations. The name “Pleistocene” translates as “newest”. This name was chosen as the name of the preceding Pliocene epoch translates as “newer”. The name of the subsequent Holocene epoch (which extends right up to today) translates as “entirely new”.
32. BBC time traveling hero : DR WHO
“Dr Who” is an iconic sci-fi television series that is made in the UK by the BBC. First broadcast in 1963, the show is still running today, making it the longest running sci-fi television show in the world. Dr. Who is a time traveler,from the planet Gallifrey, who “regenerates” from time to time (pun!) so that a new actor fits seamlessly into the storyline. He travels in his famous TARDIS spacecraft. Outwardly, the TARDIS looks like a police call box from the 1950s, but inside it is an enormous, multi-roomed time machine. TARDIS is an acronym standing for Time And Relative Dimensions In Space.
39. “Popstar!” and “Tiger Beat,” casually : TEEN MAGS
“Popstar! Magazine” is a publication aimed at teenagers from 10 to 16. It features news stories about celebrities, and has been on the shelves since 1998 (and can stay there …).
“Tiger Beat” is a fan magazine published by Laufer Media that is marketed mainly to adolescent girls. I haven’t even heard of it outside of crosswords, amazingly enough …
43. Novelist Morrison : TONI
The writer Toni Morrison won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1993. Amongst other things, Morrison is noted for coining the phrase, “our first black President”, a reference to President Bill Clinton.
45. Ladders partner in a kids’ board game : CHUTES
The game of “Snakes and Ladders” is usually sold as “Chutes and Ladders” in the US. Milton Bradley introduced “chutes” instead of “snakes” in 1943 as children weren’t too fond of snakes back then. Snakes/Chutes and Ladders is based on a an ancient Indian game.
48. “SNL” alum Kevin : NEALON
The actor and comedian Kevin Nealon is probably still best known for his time with the “Saturday Night Live” cast from 1986 until 1995. He’s also a regular on the excellent Showtime comedy drama “Weeds” that ran from 2005 until 2012.
49. Colossus island : RHODES
A colossus (plural “colossi”) is an exceptionally large statue, the most famous of which was the Colossus of Rhodes. This was a statue of the god Helios that stood over 100 feet tall, on the Greek island of Rhodes. New York’s Statue of Liberty was designed to have similar dimensions. The Emma Lazarus poem that is inscribed on the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty is in fact titled “The New Colossus”.
50. Bay Area NFLers : NINERS
The 49ers football team in San Francisco takes its name from the gold prospectors who flooded into Northern California around 1849 during the California Gold Rush. These “1849 prospectors” became known as the “49ers”.
55. Marsh denizen : EGRET
Egrets are a group of several species of white herons. Many egret species were faced with extinction in the 1800s and early 1900s due to plume hunting, a practice driven by the demand for egret plumes that could be incorporated into hats.
59. “Lovely” Beatles ticket writer : RITA
“Lovely Rita” is a Beatles song on the “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” album. When the album was released in 1967, the term “meter maid” wasn’t used in the UK, although it was a slang term used in the US. The song helped spread the usage of “meter maid” all around the English-speaking world. Apparently the inspiration for the song was McCartney getting a parking ticket one day outside the Abbey Road Studios. He accepted the ticket with good grace, from a warden named Meta Davis. McCartney felt that Meta “looked like a Rita”, so that was the name she was given in the song.
61. Victorian __ : ERA
The Victorian era was a period in British history from 1837 to 1901, the reign of Queen Victoria. Generally speaking, the Victorian era was a period of peace and prosperity for the UK.