Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Wednesday's New York Times puzzle solved: January 17, 2018

My time: 15:12, longer than the average Wednesday.

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Today, Jules P. Markey gives us themed Downs.  "Warm winter coat contents" is DOWN FEATHERS, which is a clue that the themed answers have birds in them.  WAYNE GRETZKY, for example, hides "egret."  Other themed answers include BRAVE NEW WORLD and TELL ME ANOTHER ONE.

The ACELA Express is a high-speed Amtrak train from Boston to Washington DC, with stops in New York and Philadelphia.  It's the fastest train in the Americas, reaching 150 mph and completing the trip in under seven hours.

Remember Zeno of Elea, from January 7?  "Site of Zeno's teaching" doesn't refer to him.  It refers to Zeno of Citium, a Stoic philosopher.  Being a stoic and acetic, he taught from doorways, or STOA.

What is NOVA lox, anyway?  It's cold-smoked salmon from Nova Scotia.  Cf. lox and gravlax.

For "____ Mae (bond)" I put *FANNIE but it's GINNIE.  That's GNMA, or Government National Mortgage Association.  Ginnie Mae, part of HUD, exists to help finance affordable housing.  Ginnie is part of the government; Fannie Mae is not.

The website EHOW appeared yesterday.

I didn't know ORZO is used in soups and salads.

One of the themed answers describes baseball.  A GAME OF INCHES.  It contains the word "finch." Why is it called that?   And who called it that first?

A word I've never heard in my life: ARIOSE.  It doesn't look like it means what it means.  It means melodic, as opposed to recitative.  To me, it looks like it describes a physique.

ORD is the symbol for Chicago's O'HARE International Airport.  We recently learned that Atlanta has the world's busiest airport, but O'Hare has taken the title for a few years.

Director AVA DuVernay appeared November 29, 2017.

Clever clues: "Maker's mark?" is APOSTROPHE. "Unlikeliest to be bought" is LAMEST; I like the way it plays with the word bought to mean "believed." 

This was slow going.  I will TRI to do better next time.

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