Edited by: Rich Norris
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Each of today’s themed answers comprise two words, the first starting with LO- and the second with GO-
- 64A. Word lover who’d especially enjoy the four longest answers in this puzzle? : LOGOPHILE
- 17A. *Ambitious aspiration : LOFTY GOAL
- 25A. *”We’re off to a strong start” : LOOKING GOOD
- 39A. *A city council is part of it : LOCAL GOVERNMENT
- 50A. *Aphrodite or Venus : LOVE GODDESS
Bill’s errors: 2
- WAHOO! (yahoo!)
- OH WOW! (oh yow!)
Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
1. __-pedi : MANI
Manicure & pedicure (mani-pedi)
5. Like many snowbirds: Abbr. : RETD
Snowbirds are people from Canada and the northern US who head south for the winter, to places like Florida and California.
9. Golden Arches pork sandwich : MCRIB
The McDonald’s McRib sandwich is based on a pork patty. There isn’t any pork rib in the patty though. It is primarily made up of pork shoulder meat reconstituted with tripe, heart and stomach tissue. Enjoy …
14. __ jacket : ETON
An Eton jacket is usually black in color, cut square at the hips and has wide lapels. It is named for the design of jacket that is worn by the younger students at Eton College just outside London.
15. Part of a plot : 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.
16. Muse for Millay : ERATO
In Greek mythology, Erato was the Muse of lyric poetry, and is often depicted playing a lyre.
Edna St. Vincent Millay was an American poet and playwright, the third woman to receive the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry (in 1923 for “The Ballad of the Harp-Weaver”). Millay was noted not only for her work, but also for the open arrangement that she and her husband had in their marriage. Millay took many lovers, including the poet George Dillon, for whom she wrote a number of sonnets.
19. Industry bigwig : TITAN
The Titans were a group of twelve older deities in Greek mythology, the twelve children of the primordial Gaia and Uranus, Mother Earth and Father Sky. In the celebrated Battle of the Titans, they were overthrown by the Olympians, who were twelve younger gods. We use the term “titan” figuratively to describe a powerful person, someone with great influence.
A “bigwig” is someone important. The use of the term harks back to the days when men of authority and rank wore big wigs.
20. Hotel breakfast buffet offering : OMELET
Our word “buffet” comes from the French “bufet” meaning “bench, sideboard”. So, a buffet is a meal served from a “bufet”.
21. “Evita” role : CHE
Che is the narrator in the musical “Evita” by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice.
23. River near the Sphinx : NILE
Depending on definition, the Nile is generally regarded as the longest river on the planet. The Nile forms from two major tributaries, the White Nile and the Blue Nile, which join together near Khartoum, the capital of Sudan. From Khartoum the Nile flows north, traveling almost entirely through desert making it central to life for the peoples living along its length.
In Greek mythology, the creature known as the Sphinx has the body of a lion, the wings of a bird and the face of a woman. The Sphinx threatened to strangle and devour any person who could not answer a famous riddle: “Which creature walks on four legs in the morning, two legs in the afternoon, and three legs in the evening?” Oedipus was able to save himself by answering correctly “Man”. The idea is that a man crawls on all fours as a baby, and then walks on two feet as an adult, and walks with a cane in old age. “Sphinx” is actually a Greek word, meaning “the strangler” …
24. *Hush-hush govt. org. : NSA
The National Security Agency (NSA) was set up in 1952 by President Truman, a replacement for the Armed Forces Security Agency that had existed in the Department of Defense since 1949. The NSA has always been clouded in secrecy and even the 1952 letter from President Truman that established the agency was kept under wraps from the public for over a generation. I really like the organization’s nickname … “No Such Agency”.
28. Lauren of fashion : RALPH
Ralph Lauren is an American fashion designer, born Ralph Liftshitz in the Bronx, New York. Lauren started off working as a salesman for Brooks Brothers after spending two years in the US Army. He then opened a necktie store, featuring his own tie designs. The ties were sold under the name “Polo”, which became Lauren’s most famous brand. Other Lauren brands are Purple Label and Black Label.
30. Mystery man John : DOE
Though the English court system does not use the term today, John Doe first appeared as the “name of a person unknown” in England in 1659, along with another unknown, Richard Roe. An unknown female is referred to as Jane Doe. Variants of “John Doe” are “Joe Blow” and “John Q. Public”.
36. Flapper’s accessory : BOA
Flappers were the so-called “new breed” of young women of the twenties. The flappers wore their hair short (with ringlets), dressed in short skirts and generally rebelled against the accepted norms of the time. The term “flapper” comes from the 1920 movie “The Flapper” starring Olive Thomas as a young woman who lived the more liberal lifestyle that was emerging at that time.
43. Typical “Blue’s Clues” watcher : TOT
“Blue’s Clues” is a Nickelodeon children’s show that ran for ten years from 1996. The title character is a blue-spotted dog who leaves clues in a treasure hunt for the host and the viewers.
44. Davenport resident : IOWAN
Davenport, Iowa sits on the Mississippi River. The city was founded in 1836 by landowner and businessman Antoine LeClaire, with the assistance of a group of investors. The investors resisted the use of LeClaire’s name for the new settlement as LeClaire was of mixed race, had a French name and was a Catholic. Instead, it was named for George Davenport, one of the other investors.
45. Gossip column twosome : ITEM
An unmarried couple known to be involved with each other might appear in the gossip columns. This appearance as “an item” in the papers, led to the use of “item” to refer to such a couple, but only since the very early seventies.
Our word “gossip” comes from the Old English “godsibb” meaning “godparent”. The term was then used for women friends who attended a birth, and then for anyone engaging in idle talk.
50. *Aphrodite or Venus : LOVE GODDESS
As always seems to be the case with Greek gods, Eros and Aphrodite have overlapping spheres of influence. Aphrodite was the goddess of love between a man and a woman, and Eros was the god who stirred the passions of the male. The Roman equivalent of Aphrodite was Venus, and the equivalent of Eros was Cupid.
55. __ King Cole : NAT
Nat King Cole’s real name was Nathaniel Adams Coles. Cole made television history in 1956 when his own show debuted on NBC, a first for an African-American. Cole couldn’t pick up a national sponsor, so in order to save money and possibly save the show, many guest artists worked for no fee at all – the likes of Ella Fitzgerald, Harry Belafonte and Peggy Lee. The show survived for a year, but eventually Nat King Cole had to pull the plug on it himself.
59. Road cover : TAR
The terms “Tarmac” and “macadam” are short for “tarmacadam”. In the 1800s, Scotsman John Loudon McAdam developed a style of road known as “macadam”. Macadam had a top-layer of crushed stone and gravel laid over larger stones. The macadam also had a convex cross-section so that water tended to drain to the sides. In 1901, a significant improvement was made by English engineer Edgar Purnell Hooley who introduced tar into the macadam, improving the resistance to water damage and practically eliminating dust. The “tar-penetration macadam” is the basis of what we now call Tarmac.
60. Sole role in the play “Tru” : CAPOTE
“Tru” was written by Jay Presson Allen and is a one-man play about Truman Capote that premiered in 1989. There is a classic anachronism in the piece. It is set in Capote’s New York City apartment at Christmas 1975. At one point the Capote character talks about suicide, saying that he has enough pills to stage his own Jonestown Massacre. The Jonestown Massacre didn’t happen until three years later, in 1978.
68. Persia, today : IRAN
Before 1935, the country we know today as Iran was called Persia by the Western world. The official name of the country since the Iranian Revolution of 1979 is the “Islamic Republic of Iran”.
69. Totally filled : SATED
“Sate” is a variant of the older word “satiate”. Both terms can mean either to satisfy an appetite fully, or to eat to excess.
3. 2002 legislation that protects whistleblowers, familiarly : NO-FEAR ACT
The No-FEAR Act is a law introduced in 2002 designed to prevent unlawful discrimination and retaliation by managers and supervisors working for federal agencies. The law is more properly called the Notification and Federal Employee Antidiscrimination and Retaliation Act of 2002.
4. Like some waters: Abbr. : INTL
The phrase “international waters” is generally understood to mean the “high seas”, parts of oceans and seas that fall outside of national jurisdiction. There are also semi-enclosed bodies of water that have been declared international waterways. One example is the Danube River, which is deemed to be an international waterway so that it gives secure access to the Baltic Sea for the landlocked nations Austria, Hungary, Moldova, Serbia and Slovakia.
5. Convertible, in slang : RAGTOP
“Ragtop” is slang for a convertible automobile.
7. Song on a CD : TRACK
The compact disc was developed jointly by Philips and Sony as a medium for storing and playing sound recordings. When the first commercial CD was introduced back in 1982, a CD’s storage capacity was far greater than the amount of data that could be stored on the hard drive of personal computers available at that time.
8. Indian metropolis : DELHI
New Delhi is the capital city of India. New Delhi resides within the National Capital Territory of Delhi (otherwise known as the metropolis of Delhi). New Delhi and Delhi, therefore, are two different things.
12. Author Calvino : ITALO
As well as being an author, Italo Calvino was a famous Italian journalist. He was a supporter of communism and so wasn’t very popular in the US nor in Britain.
22. Home of the Ewoks : ENDOR
The Ewoks are creatures who live on the moon of Endor, first appearing in “Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi”. They’re the cute and cuddly little guys that look like teddy bears.
27. Hired hood : GOON
The term “goon” was coined by American humorist Frederick J. Allen in a 1921 “Harper’s” piece titled “The Goon and His Style”. The article defines a good as “a person with a heavy touch” someone lacking “a playful mind”. The term was popularized in the “Thimble Theater” comic strips featuring Popeye. The first use of “goon” to describe a hired thug was in 1938, with reference to strikebreakers.
31. Lunchtime fave : BLT
The BLT (bacon, lettuce and tomato) is the second most popular sandwich in the US, after the plain old ham sandwich.
32. John of the U.K. : LOO
It has been suggested that the British term “loo” comes from Waterloo (water-closet … water-loo), but no one seems to know for sure. Another suggestion is that the term comes from the card game of “lanterloo”, in which the pot was called the loo!
Sir John Harington was an author and a member of the court of Queen Elizabeth I of England. However, Harington is perhaps best remembered as the inventor of the flush toilet. Our slang term “john”, meaning “toilet”, is thought to be a reference to John Harington.
34. Gardner of the silver screen : AVA
Ava Gardner is noted for her association with some big movies, but also for her association with some big names when it came to the men in her life. In the world of film, she appeared in the likes of “Mogambo” (1953), “On the Beach” (1959), “The Night of the Iguana” (1964) and “Earthquake” (1974). The men in her life included husbands Mickey Rooney, Artie Shaw and Frank Sinatra. After her marriages had failed (and perhaps before!) she had long-term relationships with Howard Hughes and bullfighter Luis Miguel Dominguin whom she met through her friend Ernest Hemingway.
36. Bane : BETE NOIRE
“Bête noire” translates from French as “black beast” and is used in English to describe something or someone that is disliked.
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.
37. Cardinal Ozzie Smith’s retired uniform number : ONE
Ozzie Smith is a former professional shortstop. Smith played for the San Diego Padres and the St. Louis Cardinals. After retiring in 1996, Smith served as the host of TV’s “This Week in Baseball” for about a year.
40. Lisa who hosts CNN’s “This Is Life” : LING
Lisa Ling is a journalist, best known as a former co-host of the television show “The View”. Lisa’s younger sister is Laura Ling. Laura is one of the pair of journalists who were sentenced to 12 years hard labor in prison for illegal entry to North Korea, but who were released in 2009 after a visit from former President Bill Clinton.
41. Beckett no-show : GODOT
“Waiting for Godot” is a play by novelist and playwright Samuel Beckett that premiered in 1953. Irishman Beckett actually wrote the piece in French, under the title “En attendant Godot”. He then translated the play into English himself.
46. Friend of Pooh and Roo : EEYORE
Eeyore is the donkey character in A. A. Milne’s “Winnie-the-Pooh”. Eeyore is very lovable, but has a gloomy and pessimistic outlook on life.
49. PDQ : ASAP
Pretty darn quick (PDQ)
51. D-Day beach : OMAHA
The Normandy landings on D-Day in 1944 took place along a 50-mile stretch of the Normandy coast divided into five sectors: Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno and Sword. The worst fighting by far took place on Omaha Beach, a sector assigned to the US Army that was transported by elements of the US Navy and the Royal Navy.
52. Lot attendant : VALET
A “varlet” was an attendant or servant, perhaps a knight’s page. The term comes from the Old French “vaslet”, which also gave us our contemporary word “valet”.
56. Book with roads : ATLAS
The famous Flemish geographer Gerardus Mercator published his first collection of maps in 1578. Mercator’s collection contained a frontispiece with an image of Atlas the Titan from Greek mythology holding up the world on his shoulders. That image gave us our term “atlas”.
61. One of the Everly Brothers : PHIL
The Everly Brothers are noted for their steel guitar sound, and their great use of harmony. Their harmony onstage wasn’t reflected off the stage though. In 1973 the brothers decided to pursue separate careers and scheduled a farewell performance attended by many fans, family and stalwarts from the music industry. Don Everly came on stage too drunk to perform, and eventually brother Phil just stormed off into the wings, smashing his guitar as he left. The boys didn’t talk to each other for ten years after that incident. Phil Everly passed away in January 2014.
63. Actor Beatty : NED
Actor Ned Beatty is probably best remembered for the rather disturbing “squeal like a pig” scene in the movie “Deliverance”. Beatty also earned an Academy Award nomination as Best Supporting Actor for his performance in the 1976 movie “Network”.