Edited by: Rich Norris
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Today’s themed answers all might be associated with WINGS:
- 70A. What 20-, 38- and 58-Across have in common : WINGS
- 20A. Gathering for February’s big game : SUPER BOWL PARTY
- 38A. George Washington never slept there : THE WHITE HOUSE
- 58A. Heavenly protectors : GUARDIAN ANGELS
Bill’s errors: 0
Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
1. “Scrubs” nurse married to Dr. Turk : CARLA
“Scrubs” is a comedy-drama TV show set in a fictional hospital. The show’s main character is Doctor J. D. Dorian, played by Zach Braff. “Scrubs” originally ran from 2001 to 2010.
11. Letter addition letters : PPS
One adds a PS (post scriptum, or simply “postscript”) at the end of a letter (ltr.). A second postscript is a post post scriptum, a PPS.
16. __ polloi : HOI
“Hoi polloi” is a Greek term, literally meaning “the majority, the many”. In English, “hoi polloi” has come to mean “the masses” and is often used in a derogatory sense.
20. Gathering for February’s big game : SUPER BOWL PARTY
Super Bowl I was played in January 1967 between the Green Bay Packers and the Kansas City Chiefs. The Packers emerged victorious in a game with a score of 35-10. That game was officially known as the AFL-NFL Championship Game, as the name “Super Bowl” wasn’t applied until two seasons later. That “first” Super Bowl is now known as Super Bowl III and was played between the New York Jets and the Baltimore Colts. The Jets came out on top.
24. Irish lullaby syllables : LOO RA
The song from Ireland called “Too-Ra-Loo-Ra-Loo-Ral” was written in 1914 by one James Royce Shannon. The song became quite a hit after it was sung by Bing Crosby in the 1944 movie “Going My Way”.
Too ra loo ra loo ral
Too ra loo ra li
Too ra loo ra loo ral
That’s an Irish lullaby
26. Colombia neighbor : PERU
Peru’s name comes from the word “Biru”. Back in the early 1500s, Biru was a ruler living near the Bay of San Miguel in Panama. The territory over which Biru ruled was the furthest land south in the Americas known to Europeans at that time. The Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro was the first European to move south of Biru’s empire and the land that he found was designated “Peru”, a derivative of “Biru”.
28. Lead-in for jet or prop : TURBO-
Turbofans and turbojets are types of aircraft engine. Turbofan engines are quite common on large passenger aircraft. Turbojet engines are more efficient at speeds higher than Mach 2, so are more likely to be found on something like a cruise missile.
In a turbojet engine, it’s the expanding exhaust gases expelled from the rear of the engine that provide thrust. In a turboprop engine, on the other hand, the energy from the turbine energy is used to drive a propeller via a gearbox.
32. Gritty genre : NOIR
The expression “film noir” has French origins, but only in that it was coined by a French critic in describing a style of Hollywood film. The term, meaning “black film” in French, was first used by Nino Frank in 1946. Film noir often applies to a movie with a melodramatic plot and a private eye or detective at its center. Good examples would be “The Big Sleep” and “D.O.A”.
33. Second of three O’s : TAC
When I was growing up in Ireland we played “noughts and crosses” … our name for the game tic-tac-toe.
35. Job rights agcy. : EEOC
Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) is a term that has been around since 1964 when the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) was set up by the Civil Rights Act. Title VII of the Act prohibits employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of sex, race, color, national origin or religion.
37. Adobe file format : PDF
Portable Document Format (PDF) is a file format introduced by Adobe Systems in 1993. PDF documents can be shared between users and read using many different applications, making them more universally accessible than documents saved by one particular program.
38. George Washington never slept there : THE WHITE HOUSE
The White House was designed by an Irishman, I am proud to say. James Hoban from County Kilkenny emigrated to the US in his twenties, and won the design competition for the White House in 1792.
After George Washington was inaugurated as president in 1789, he lived in the Samuel Osgood House and then the Alexander Macomb House in New York City. When the capital moved to Philadelphia, President Washington occupied the Market Street Mansion, as did his successor John Adams. President Adams moved to the White House in the nation’s new capital in 1800.
42. Singer Carly __ Jepsen : RAE
Carly Rae Jepsen is a singer/songwriter from Mission, British Columbia. Jepsen got her start on TV’s “Canadian Idol” when she placed third in the show’s fifth season.
43. Sainted fifth-century pope : LEO I
The first pope named Leo is now known as Pope Saint Leo the Great. Leo I is famous for meeting with the feared Attila the Hun and persuading him to turn back his invading force that was threatening to overrun Western Europe.
44. Novelist Deighton : LEN
I used to walk my dog right past author Len Deighton’s house years ago, as we lived in the same village in Ireland (probably my only claim to fame!). Deighton wrote the excellent espionage thriller “The IPCRESS File”, made into a 1965 movie starring Michael Caine.
45. Publication sales fig. : CIRC
47. 1983 60-Down winner Tom : SNEVA
Tom Sneva is a retired race car driver from Spokane, Washington who won the 1983 Indy 500. Before taking up racing as a career, Sneva was a math teacher. He also drove the school bus for a while.
49. Siouan tribe : OTOE
The Otoe (also Oto) Native American tribe originated in the Great Lakes region as part of the Winnebago or Siouan tribes. The group that would become the Otoe broke away from the Winnebago and migrated southwestwards ending up in the Great Plains. In the plains the Otoe adopted a semi-nomadic lifestyle dependent on the horse, with the American bison becoming central to their diet.
53. Big aluminum producer : ALCOA
The Aluminum Corporation of America (ALCOA) is the largest producer of aluminum in the United States. The company was founded in 1888 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where its headquarters are to this day.
55. Yale Blue wearer : ELI
The dark azure color known as “Yale Blue” was adopted by the university in 1894. Prior to that year, Yale had been associated with a green color.
64. “The Maltese Falcon” actor Peter : LORRE
The marvelous actor Peter Lorre was born in what is now modern-day Slovakia. Lorre’s real name was Laszlo Lowenstein. He started acting in Vienna when he was quite young, only 17 years old. When Hitler came to power, the Jewish Lowenstein headed to Paris and then London, eventually ending up in Hollywood. Lorre found himself typecast as the wicked foreigner in American movies, but I think he sneered and snarled his way to the bank.
The classic detective novel “The Maltese Falcon” was written by Dashiell Hammett and first published in 1930. The main character is private detective Sam Spade, famously played by Humphrey Bogart in the third movie adaptation of the book, released in 1941.
65. French season : ETE
In French, “été” (summer) is “la saison chaude” (the warm season).
66. Pianist Watts : ANDRE
André Watts is a classical pianist who was born in Germany to a Hungarian mother and an American father who was serving with the US military. Watts is a professor at the Jacobs School of Music in Indiana University.
68. Director Anderson : WES
Film director Wes Anderson’s most famous movie is probably “The Royal Tenenbaums”, released in 2001, not my favorite film by any stretch. However, his 2007 release “The Darjeeling Limited”, that I enjoyed.
1. Takeout packet : CATSUP
“Catsup” is an American spelling of “ketchup” that is sometimes used, especially in the south of the country.
4. Operate using a beam : LASE
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!
5. Houston pro : ASTRO
The Houston baseball team changed its name to the Astros (sometimes “’Stros”) from the Colt .45s in 1965 when they started playing in the Astrodome. The Astrodome was so called in recognition of the city’s long association with the US space program. The Astros moved from the National League to the American League starting in the 2013 season.
6. Daily paper logic puzzle : SUDOKU
Number puzzles similar to our modern-day Sudoku first appeared in French newspapers in the late 1800s. The format that we use today was created by Howard Garns, a 74-year-old freelance puzzle constructor from Connersville, Indiana and first published in 1979. The format was introduced in Japan in 1984 and given the title of “Sūji wa dokushin ni kagiru”, which translates to “the digits are limited to one occurrence”. The rather elaborate Japanese title was eventually shortened to Sudoku. No doubt many of you are fans of Sudoku puzzles. I know I am …
8. Dough drawer : TILL
Lettuce, cabbage, kale, dough, scratch, simoleons, clams and moola(h) are all slang terms for money.
9. Sch. near the Rio Grande : UTEP
The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) was founded in 1914, originally as the Texas State School of Mines and Metallurgy. To this day there is a mine shaft on the campus, and the mascot of the school’s sports teams is Paydirt Pete, a prospector from the mining industry. The teams are also known as the UTEP Miners and Lady Miners.
The Rio Grande (Spanish for “big river”) is a river forming part of the border between Mexico and the United States. Although we call the river the Rio Grande on this side of the border, in Mexico it is called the Río Bravo or Río Bravo del Norte (Spanish for “furious river of the north”).
10. Iris part : PETAL
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.
19. Waffle maker : IRON
You can’t get a Belgian waffle in Belgium, and the nearest thing is probably a Brussels waffle. Brussels waffles were introduced to the world in 1958, and arrived in the US in 1962 at the Century 21 Exposition in Seattle. The name “Brussels” was changed to “Bel-Gem” for the US market, which evolved into “Belgian”.
27. 4 x 4, briefly : UTE
A utility vehicle is often called a “ute” for short. Nowadays one mainly hears about sports utes and crossover utes.
36. Miler Sebastian : COE
Sebastian Coe is a retired middle distance runner from the UK who won four Olympic medals including golds in the 1500m in 1980 and 1984. After retiring from athletics, Coe went into politics and served as a Member of Parliament from 1992 to 1997. In the year 2000, he was made a Life Peer, and so Coe now sits in the House of Lords. Lord Coe headed up London’s successful bid to host the 2012 Summer Olympic Games.
39. Mythical hero with a labor force? : HERCULES
“The Twelve Labors of Hercules” is actually a Greek myth, although Hercules is the Roman name for the hero that the Greeks called Heracles. The first of these labors was to slay the Nemean Lion, a monster that lived in a cave near Nemea. Hercules had a tough job as the lion’s golden fur was impenetrable to normal weapons. One version of the story is that Hercules killed the lion by shooting an arrow into its mouth. Another version says that Hercules stunned the monster with a club and then strangled him with his bare hands.
41. Colorful card game : UNO
In my youth I remember being taught a great card game, by a German acquaintance of mine, called Mau Mau. Years later I discovered that Uno is basically the same game, but played with a purpose-printed deck instead of the regular deck of playing cards that’s used for Mau Mau. I hear that Mau Mau is derived from the game called Crazy Eights.
42. LG rival : RCA
During WWI, the US government actively discouraged the loss of certain technologies to other countries, including allies. The developing wireless technologies were considered to be particularly important by the army and navy. The government prevented the General Electric Company from selling equipment to the British Marconi Company, and instead facilitated the purchase by GE of the American Marconi subsidiary. This purchase led to GE forming the Radio Corporation of America that we know today as RCA.
LG is a very large, South Korean manufacturer of electronics, chemicals and telecom products. LG used to be known as Lucky-Goldstar.
50. Charlize of “Monster” : THERON
Charlize Theron is an actress from South Africa who has played leading roles in Hollywood films such as “The Devil’s Advocate”, “The Cider House Rules” and my personal favorite “The Italian Job”.
52. 1950s disasters : EDSELS
The Edsel brand of automobile was named for Edsel, son of Henry Ford. Sadly, the name “Edsel” has become synonymous with “failure”, which was no fault of Edsel himself who had died several years before the Edsel line was introduced. When the Ford Motor Company introduced the Edsel on 4 September 1957, Ford proclaimed the day to be “E Day”.
59. Perfumery that created Tabu : DANA
Tabu is a whole line of cosmetics and perfumes produced by the House of Dana. The company’s brand names were purchased by a Florida company called Dana Classic Fragrances in 1999.
60. 200-lap race, briefly : INDY
The Indianapolis 500 race is held annually at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Speedway, Indiana. The race is run around a 2.5 mile oval, hence requiring 200 laps for completion. The first Indy 500 race was held on Memorial Day in 1911. The winner that day was one Ray Harroun. Harroun had seen someone using a rear view mirror on a horse-drawn vehicle, and decided to fit one on his Marmon “Wasp” motor car. Supposedly that was the first ever use of a rear view mirror on a motor vehicle.
61. 43,560 square feet : ACRE
At one time, an acre was defined as the amount of land a yoke of oxen could plow in a day. This was more precisely defined as a strip of land “one furrow long” (i.e. one furlong) and one furlong wide. The length of one furlong was equal to 10 chains, or 40 rods. A area of one furlong times 10 rods was one rood.
62. Asian desert : GOBI
The large desert in Asia called the Gobi lies in northern China and southern Mongolia. The Gobi desert is growing at an alarming rate, particularly towards the south. This “desertification” is caused by increased human activity. The Chinese government is trying to halt the desert’s progress by planting great swaths of new forest, the so called “Green Wall of China”. The name “Gobi” is Mongolian for “waterless place, semidesert”.