Edited by: Rich Norris
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Each of today’s themed answers includes a string of circled letters. Those letters are the word SPARE with the letters CHANGED around:
- 58A. Pocket coins, or what can literally be seen in each set of puzzle circles : SPARE CHANGE
- 17A. Microsoft Excel tool : SPREADSHEET
- 24A. Like lutes and mandolins : PEAR-SHAPED
- 36A. Gentle hose setting : FINE SPRAY
- 49A. Stain remover for wrinkle-resistant fabric : PERMA PRESS
Bill’s errors: 0
Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
6. Pesto herb : BASIL
The term “pesto” applies to anything made by pounding. What we tend to know as pesto sauce is more properly called “pesto alla genovese”, pesto from Genoa in northern Italy. I love, love pesto sauce …
11. NYC financial newspaper : WSJ
“The Wall Street Journal” (WSJ) is a daily newspaper with a business bent that is published in New York City by Dow Jones & Company. The WSJ has a larger US circulation than any other newspaper, with “USA Today” coming in a close second place.
14. Dodgers and Giants : TEAMS
The Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team were known as the Brooklyn Dodgers before the franchise moved to California. Before being called as the Dodgers, the team was known in Brooklyn as the Robins, the Superbas, the Trolley Dodgers, the Bridegrooms/Grooms, the Grays and the Atlantics.
Today’s San Francisco Giants baseball team was founded in 1883 as the New York Gothams. The team’s name was changed to the Giants in 1885, and the franchise moved to San Francisco in 1958.
15. Spanish girl : CHICA
In Spanish, a “niña” is a young girl, a child. The term “chica” applies to an older girl or perhaps a young woman.. The term “muchacha” applies to girls in general, I think …
17. Microsoft Excel tool : SPREADSHEET
Microsoft Excel is the spreadsheet program included in the Microsoft Office suite of applications. Microsoft’s first spreadsheet program was introduced back in 1982 and called Multiplan. Multiplan’s popularity waned due to the success of the competing product Lotus 1-2-3. Microsoft then introduced Excel, initially just for the Macintosh. When Excel was extended to Windows, Lotus was slow to respond and Microsoft took over the market.
19. It’s found in lodes : ORE
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.
23. Mount sacred to Judaism : ZION
Mount Zion is a hill in Jerusalem that his home to a number of important sites including King David’s Tomb, the Room of the Last Supper and the Chamber of the Holocaust. The Catholic cemetery on Mount Zion is also where Oskar Schindler was buried, the German national who saved over 1,000 Jews during the Holocaust.
24. Like lutes and mandolins : PEAR-SHAPED
The lute is a stringed instrument with a long neck and usually a pear-shaped body. It is held and played like a guitar, and was popular from the Middle Ages right through to the late Baroque era. A person who plays the lute can be referred to as a “lutenist”.
A mandolin is a stringed instrument in the lute family. There is also a mandola, a similar instrument that is a little larger. In fact, “mandolin” comes from the Italian for “little mandola”.
29. Beer drinker’s option, briefly : IPA
India pale ale (IPA) is a style of beer that originated in England. The beer was originally intended for transportation from England to India, hence the name.
30. River from Lake Victoria : NILE
Lake Victoria is the largest lake by surface area on the continent of Africa. It was named by English explorer John Hanning Speke in honor of Queen Victoria of the UK. Speke was the first European to set eyes on the lake.
31. First animal rescue vessel? : ARK
The term “ark”, when used with reference to Noah, is a translation of the Hebrew word “tebah”. The word “tebah” is also used in the Bible for the basket in which Moses was placed by his mother when she floated him down the Nile. It seems that the word “tebah” doesn’t mean “boat” and nor does it mean “basket”. Rather, a more appropriate translation is “life-preserver” or “life-saver”. So, Noah’s ark was Noah’s life-preserver during the flood.
32. Ex-Yankee Martinez : TINO
First baseman Tino Martinez has retired from Major League Baseball. Martinez played for a number of teams including the Mariners, Yankees, Cardinals and Devil Rays. Martinez was born and raised in Tampa, Florida and as a boy he worked in his father’s cigar factory.
34. John of Monty Python : CLEESE
The magnificent actor and comedian John Cleese came to the public’s attention as a cast member in the BBC’s comedy sketch show “Monty Python’s Flying Circus”. Cleese then co-wrote and starred in the outstanding comedy “Fawlty Towers”. He even had a role in two “James Bond” films.
41. New Mexico art hub : TAOS
The town of Taos, New Mexico is named for the Native American village nearby called Taos Pueblo. Taos is famous for its art colony. Artists began to settle in Taos in 1899, and the Taos Society of Artists was founded in 1915.
42. Chicken __: itchy malady : POX
Chicken pox is a viral infection, a classic disease of childhood most commonly caught by 4-10 year olds. There is a complication that can arise later in life as the virus sometimes reactivates to cause shingles.
47. Yankee manager Joe with four World Series wins : TORRE
As a manager, Joe Torre was part of four World Series wins, all of them with the New York Yankees baseball team. Torre is an Italian American who was born in Brooklyn, New York. During the run up (pun intended!) to the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin, Torre carried the Olympic flame part of the way through Florence in Italy, handing it over to the next runner at the famous Ponte Vecchio. I’d guess that was quite a thrill for him …
49. Stain remover for wrinkle-resistant fabric : PERMA PRESS
Perma Press is a laundry product, a stain-removing spray designed to work effectively on permanent-press and wrinkle-free fabrics in particular.
62. Animation frame : CEL
In the world of animation, a cel is a transparent sheet on which objects and characters are drawn. In the first half of the 20th century the sheet was actually made of celluloid, giving the “cel” its name.
63. Prohibit, legally : ESTOP
The term “estop” means to block or stop by using some legal device. The word “estop” comes from Old French, in which “estopper” means “to stop up” or “to impede”.
65. Masthead VIPs : EDS
The masthead is a list often found on the editorial page of a newspaper that gives the members of a newspaper’s editorial board.
67. Actress Streep : MERYL
Meryl Streep has had more nominations for an Academy Award than any other actor, a tribute to her talent and the respect she has earned in the industry. I am not a huge fan of her earlier works but some of her recent movies are now on my list of all-time favorites. I recommend “Mamma Mia!” (you’ll either love it or hate it!), “Julie & Julia”, “It’s Complicated” and ”Hope Springs”.
1. 42nd and Wall: Abbr. : STS
42nd Street is a major thoroughfare in Manhattan that is home to many of New York’s theaters, particularly around Times Square, where 42nd Street intersects with Broadway. It’s the association with the theater district that led to the naming of 1932 novel and 1933 film “42nd Street”, which follows the staging of a Broadway musical. That same intersection of 42nd Street with Broadway was the eastern terminus for the famed Lincoln Highway that crossed the continent, terminating on the West Coast at Lincoln Park in San Francisco.
3. Dinghy attachment : OARLOCK
Oarlocks are swivelling braces on the sides of a rowing boat that hold the oars as the boat is being propelled. Back in Ireland, we call them “rowlocks” (pronounced “rollox”).
Our word “dinghy” comes from the Hindi “dingi”, the word for a small boat.
5. J.D.-to-be’s exam : LSAT
Law School Admission Test (LSAT)
The law degree abbreviated to “J.D.” is more fully known as “Juris Doctor”.
6. Former NCAA football ranking sys. : BCS
The Bowl Championship Series (BCS) was the ranking system used to match up the top ten ranked NCAA football teams for five bowl games. The BCS was abandoned in 2014 with the introduction of the College Football Playoff tournament.
8. Mountain chain : SIERRA
“Sierra” is Spanish for “mountain range”. The term also translates as “saw”, and so can particularly describe a jagged mountain range.
9. Fruity frozen drinks : ICEES
Slush Puppie and ICEE are brands of frozen, slushy drinks. Ostensibly competing brands, ICEE company now owns the Slush Puppie brand.
11. __ pie: cream-filled chocolate cake : WHOOPIE
A whoopie pie is sometimes referred to as a “BFO”, standing for Big Fat Oreo. The latter term is quite descriptive as a whoopie pie is made from two mound-shaped pieces of chocolate cake placed above and below a white creamy filling. There is some evidence that the confection originated in the with the Pennsylvania Amish. Apparently, when farmers found the pie in their lunch bags they shouted “whoopie!”, hence the name.
12. Reddish-brown horses : SORRELS
The sorrel color of horse is a copper-red, although the term is often used these days to describe any horse with chestnut coloring.
13. “Peppermint Twist” lead singer : JOEY DEE
Joey Dee and the Starliters (sometimes “starlighters”) are a pop music group best known for the 1961 hit “Peppermint Twist”.
18. ATM transaction: Abbr. : DEP
22. Dred Scott decision Chief Justice : TANEY
Roger B. Taney was Chief Justice of the US Supreme Court from 1836 until 1864 (when he passed away). Taney’s most notable decision was in the case of Dred Scott v. Sandford, in which he delivered the majority opinion that African Americans could not be considered citizens of the US. Taney was the second-longest serving Chief Justice (Chief Justice John Marshall served for 34 years, from 1801 to 1835).
The landmark case of Dred Scott vs. Sandford came before the US Supreme Court in 1857. Scott had been born a slave, but lived with his owner in a free state for several years before returning to the slave state of Missouri. Scott’s argument was that living in a free state entitled him to emancipation. A divided US Supreme Court sided with Scott’s owner John Sandford. The decision was that no African American, free or enslaved, was entitled to US citizenship and therefore Scott was unable to petition the court for his freedom. The decision heightened tensions between the North and South, and the American Civil War erupted just three years later.
23. When doubled, a Gabor : ZSA
Zsa Zsa Gabor was a Hungarian American actress, born in Budapest as Sári Gábor (the older sister of the actress Eva). Zsa Zsa Gabor was married a whopping nine times, including a 5-year stint with Conrad Hilton and another 5 years with the actor George Sanders. One of Gabor’s famous quips was that she was always a good housekeeper, as after every divorce she kept the house!
25. German article : EINE
“Eine” is the German indefinite article used with feminine nouns.
33. Suffix with chlor- : -INE
Chlorine is a yellow-green gas that is very poisonous at high concentrations. As such, chlorine gas was used in WWI, earning the shameful title of the world’s first gaseous chemical weapon. Chlorine was mistakenly believed to be an oxide for many years, until English chemist Sir Humphry Davy correctly concluded that the gas was an element. Davy coined the name “chlorine”, from the Greek “chloros” meaning “”green-yellow”.
34. Zagreb’s country, to the IOC : CRO
The Republic of Croatia is a Balkan country. The Croats declared independence from Yugoslavia in 1991. Croatia became a member of NATO in 2009, and a member of the European Union in 2013.
Zagreb is the capital city of the European Republic of Croatia. Zagreb has been around a long, long time, and dates back to the diocese of Zagreb that was founded at the end of 11th century.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) was founded in 1894, and has its headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland.
36. Terra __: solid land : FIRMA
“Terra firma” is Latin for “solid ground”.
40. FedEx deliveries : PARCELS
FedEx began operations in 1973 as Federal Express, but now operates very successfully under it’s more catchy, abbreviated name. Headquartered in Memphis with its “SuperHub” at Memphis International Airport, FedEx is the world’s largest airline in terms of tons of freight flown. And due to the presence of FedEx, Memphis Airport has the largest-volume cargo operation of any airport worldwide.
43. Like a bad fake tan : ORANGEY
The most effective fake tans available today are not dyes or stains. Instead, they are sprays with the tactive ingredient dihydroxyacetone (DHA). DHA reacts chemically with amino acids in the dead layer of skin on the surface of the body. Sounds a little risky to me …
44. Gen-__: millennial preceder : XER
The term Generation X originated in the UK where it was the name of a book by Jane Deverson. Her book detailed the results of a study of British youths in 1964, contrasting their lifestyle to those of previous generations. It was Canadian author Douglas Coupland who was responsible for popularizing the term, with his more successful publication “Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture”. By the latest accepted definition, Gen-Xers were born between 1961 and 1981.
The Millennial Generation are sometimes referred to as “Generation Y” (Gen-Y). Millennials were born after the “Gen-Xers”, from the early 1980s to the early 2000s.
46. Fake : ERSATZ
Something described as ersatz is a copy, and usually not a good one. “Ersatz” comes from the German verb “ersetzen” meaning “to replace”.
50. Church recesses : 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.
51. Cola choice : PEPSI
The Pepsi-Cola formulation was developed by one Caleb Bradham who made the drink at home and sold it as “Brad’s Drink”. Bradham’s aim was to provide a drink that was pleasant to taste, that would aid digestion and boost energy. Included in the formula were pepsin (a digestive enzyme) and kola nuts. These two ingredients inspired the brand name we use today: Pepsi-Cola.
60. Mini-albums, for short : EPS
An extended-play record, CD or download (EP) contains more music than a single, but less than an LP.
61. Subj. for immigrants : ESL
English as a Second Language (ESL) is sometimes referred to as English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) and English as a Foreign Language (EFL).