Edited by: Rich Norris
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Bill’s errors: 0
Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
1. One who may start a rally : LEADOFF MAN
That would be baseball.
11. Borg’s land: Abbr. : SWE
Björn Borg is a retired tennis player from Sweden, and a former World No. 1. Borg won 41% of the 27 Grand Slam singles tournaments that he entered, which is a record that stands to the day. He was known for reacting very calmly under pressure on the tennis court and hence earned the nicknames “Ice Man” and “Ice Borg”, which is my personal favorite.
14. Crunchy chocolate-covered candy brand : ALMOND ROCA
Almond Roca is a brand of chocolate-covered toffee that has a coating of ground almonds, and was invented in 1923.
19. AutoZone brand : STP
STP is a brand name for automotive lubricants and additives. The name STP comes from “Scientifically Treated Petroleum”.
AutoZone is the second-largest retailer of aftermarket automotive parts in the US (after Advance Auto Parts).
20. “Hannibal” co-screenwriter David : MAMET
David Mamet is best known as a playwright. He won a Pulitzer for his 1984 play “Glengarry Glen Ross”. Mamet is also a successful screenwriter and received Oscar nominations for the films “The Verdict” (1982) and “Wag the Dog” (1997).
Hannibal Lecter is a character created by author Thomas Harris, first appearing in his novel “Red Dragon”. Lecter also features prominently in “Red Dragon’s” famous sequel “The Silence of the Lambs”, and even more so in the third book, “Hannibal Rising”. The latter title is a “prequel” exploring Lecter’s childhood and development into a serial killer. Famously, Lecter was portrayed in the 1991 film version of “The Silence of the Lambs” by Welsh actor Anthony Hopkins. Hopkins also played Lecter in 2001’s “Hannibal” and in 2002’s “Red Dragon”. Lector was also played by Brian Cox (“Manhunter” – 1986), by Gaspard Ulliel (“Hannibal Rising” – 2007), and by Mad Mikkelsen (“Hannibal” – a TV series).
21. Chateau __ Michelle winery : STE
Chateau Ste. Michelle is a winery in Woodinville, Washington in the Columbia Valley. Chateau Ste. Michelle produces so much Riesling wine that it is the number-one Riesling producer in the world in terms of number of bottles.
22. Luge medium : ICE
A luge is a small sled used by one or two people, on which one lies face up and feet first. The luge can be compared to the skeleton, a sled for only one person and on which the rider lies face down and goes down the hill head-first. Yikes!
24. Gmail lifesaver : UNDO SEND
Gmail users (like me) have the advantage of a 10-send grace period in which one can decide to undo the send command for a specific email. I like that “undo send” feature …
27. Network debut of 1970 : PBS
The Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) was founded in 1970, and is my favorite of the broadcast networks. I love PBS’s drama and science shows in particular, and always watch the election results coming in with the NewsHour team.
30. Expedia shopper’s plan : TRIP
Expedia is one of the largest Internet-based travel companies, and has a site where you can book airline tickets and reserve hotel rooms and rental cars. I use Expedia a lot because I am an AARP member, and the AARP Travel website is powered by the Expedia search engine. In my travels I’ve found by comparison shopping that the AARP Travel site often has the best prices for hotel rooms.
34. Online game figures : AVATARS
The Sanskrit word “avatar” describes the concept of a deity descending into earthly life and taking on a persona. It’s easy to see how in the world of “online presences” one might use the word avatar to describe one’s online identity.
36. Miss identification? : NEE
“Née” is the French word for “born” when referring to a female. The male equivalent is “né”.
37. Fivers : ABES
The US five-dollar bill is often called an “Abe”, as President Lincoln’s portrait is on the front. An Abe is also referred to as a “fin”, a term that has been used for a five-pound note in Britain since 1868.
39. Jacquie Lawson online offering : E-CARD
Jacquie Lawson is a British illustrator who created an animated Christmas card in 2000 that she e-mailed to some friends. The Internet being what it is, over the subsequent weeks Lawson received requests from hundreds of people all over the world for more e-cards. Two years later, she launched her own e-card service at jacquielawson.com.
41. Addresses capped at 18 minutes : TED TALKS
The acronym “TED” stands for Technology Entertainment and Design. TED is a set of conferences held around the world by a non-profit group called the Sapling Foundation. The conference subjects are varied, and the meetings are often led by big names such as Bill Clinton, Al Gore, Bill Gates and Jane Goodall. The Sapling Foundation then makes recordings of the conferences available for free online with the intent of disseminating the ideas globally. These conferences are known as “TED Talks”.
43. Fashion house founder Marant : ISABEL
Isabel Marant is a French fashion house that is best-known today for its line of shoes, although the house was founded in 1994 to offer knitwear items.
45. Golf’s “Big Easy” : ELS
Ernie Els is a South African golfer. Els a big guy but he has an easy fluid golf swing that has earned him the nickname “The Big Easy”. He is a former World No. 1 and has won four majors: the US Open (1994 & 1997) and the British Open (2002 & 2012).
46. Parisian pronoun : SES
“Ses” is the French word for “his”, “her” or “its”, when referring to a group of items.
49. __ Circus: ancient Roman arena : NERO’S
The Circus of Nero was also called the Circus of Caligula, as its construction was started by Caligula and finished by Nero. This particular Roman circus was the site of the first state-sponsored martyrdoms of Christians, in 65 AD. The martyrs were mainly executed by crucifixion, and some believe that St. Peter met his fate at the site.
59. “I’m with you, girl!” : AMEN, SISTER!
The word “amen” translates as “so be it”. “Amen” is said to be of Hebrew origin, but it is also likely to be influenced by Aramaic and Arabic.
1. Monastery figures : LAMAS
“Lama” is a Tibetan word meaning “chief” or “high priest”.
6. Coin profile since 1946 : FDR
President Roosevelt was a major driver in the founding of the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis. The Foundation’s most successful fund raising campaign was to encourage the public to just send a dime to support the charity, so that even before the Foundation officially changed its name, the public were already calling it March of Dimes. After President Roosevelt passed away in office, Congress passed legislation calling for a new design for the dime, one featuring the image of FDR. The Roosevelt dime was introduced in 1946, on the day that would have been the President’s 64th birthday.
7. Work on a ceiling : FRESCO
A “fresco” is a painting created on a moist plaster, usually on a wall or ceiling. The plaster is “freshly” laid when the image is created, and “fresco” is the Italian for “fresh”.
12. Crane, e.g. : WATER BIRD
The magnificent birds known as cranes have long legs and long necks. The species called the Sarus Crane is the world’s tallest flying bird.
22. Avery product : ID LABEL
Avery Dennison Corporation was founded as Kum Kleen Products in 1935, by R. Stanton Avery. Kum Kleen Products were the first manufacturers of self-adhesive labels.
24. Article in Vogue Paris : UNE
“Un” and “une” are French for “one”.
“Vogue” magazine has been published an awfully long time, with the first issue appearing in 1892. Over the decades the magazine has picked up a lot of criticism as well as its many fans. Famously, an assistant to the editor wrote a novel based on her experiences working with the magazine’s editor, and called it “The Devil Wears Prada”.
26. Stalin __ : ERA
Joseph Stalin was Soviet Premier from 1941 to 1953. Stalin’s real name was Ioseb Besarionis dze Jughashvili. Not long after the Bolshevik Revolution of 1903 he adopted the name “Stalin”, which is the Russian word for “steel”.
28. Start of a Dickensian request : PLEASE, SIR …
“Please, sir. I want some more” are words spoken by the title character in the novel “Oliver Twist” by Charles Dickens. . Oliver is addressing Mr. Bumble, asking for an extra helping of gruel in the workhouse.
29. Comparative Web traffic statistic : ALEXA RANK
Alexa Internet is a company providing web traffic data and analytics. Alexa was founded in 1996, and acquired by Amazon.com in 1999. The company gets its tracking data from users who have downloaded the Alexa toolbar and installed it in their web browsers. As well as providing the usual toolbar features (a search box, popup blocker, etc.), the Alexa toolbar provides the Alexa ranking for sites that the user visits, which I guess is a measure of a site’s popularity.
32. Q50, e.g. : INFINITI
Infiniti is a division of the Nissan Motor Company, its luxury brand. As an aside, Acura is the equivalent luxury brand for the Honda Motor Company, and Lexus is the more luxurious version of Toyota’s models.
35. UCLA aides : TAS
Teaching Assistants (TAs)
42. 12-step offshoot : AL-ANON
Al-Anon and Alateen are fellowships of relatives and friends of alcoholics. Alateen specifically supports teens who are affected by another’s drinking, whereas Al-Anon focuses on people of all ages.
44. Blue-clad youngsters? : BOYS
The association of the colors pink with girls and blue with boys is a relatively new concept, one that started to be established in the 1940s. One reason for the “fixing” of color associations with genders at that time was the invention of chemical dyes that could survive hot washes. Prior to this, baby clothes were made in white so that they could be washed frequently without fading.
46. Babe feature : SNOUT
The hit 1995 film “Babe” was produced and filmed in Australia. The movie is an adaptation of a 1983 novel called “The Sheep-Pig” written by Dick King-Smith. “Babe” was a smash hit at the box office and was extremely well received by the critics. The film was nominated for the Best Picture Oscar, but lost out to “Braveheart”. However, it did win the Oscar for Best Visual Effects by beating out “Apollo 13”, which was an amazing feat, I’d say…
47. Practice piece : ETUDE
An étude is a short instrumental composition that is usually quite hard to play and is intended to help the performer master a particular technique. “Étude” is the French word for “study”. Études are commonly performed on the piano.
48. Pan pal : SATYR
The satyrs of Greek mythology came with a very high sex drive. They are the “rude” male subjects drawn on the side of old Greek vases. The nubile maidens known as nymphs were often an object of attention for the satyrs.
In Greek mythology, Pan was a lecherous god, one who fell in love with Echo the mountain nymph. Echo refused Pan’s advances so that he became very angry. Pan’s anger created a “panic” (a word derived from the name “Pan”) and a group of shepherds were driven to kill Echo.
50. Panama border? : BRIM
Panama hats are also known as Jipijapas, named for a town in Ecuador (and not Panama, surprisingly) that was a major player in the hat trade.
52. “The Good Wife” figs. : ATTS
“The Good Wife” is a legal drama showing on CBS starring Julianna Margulies as Alicia Florrick, a litigator who returns to practicing the law after spending 13 years as a stay-at-home mom. I binge-watched the show some time back and found it to be well-written, with a great cast and great acting …
54. Coll. admissions criterion : GPA
Grade point average (GPA)
55. Rehab woe : DTS
The episodes of delirium that can accompany withdrawal from alcohol are called Delirium Tremens (the DTs). The literal translation of this Latin phrase is “trembling madness”.