0115-19 NY Times Crossword 15 Jan 19, Tuesday

Constructed by: Samuel A. Donaldson
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme (according to Bill): Welcome Comments at Bars

Themed answers are all comments that one might welcome at a bar:

  • 17A. Welcome comment at a bar #1 : IT’S MY TREAT
  • 23A. Welcome comment at a bar #2 : DRINKS ON ME
  • 35A. Welcome comment at a bar #3 : I’LL GET THE BILL
  • 49A. With 57-Across, welcome comment at a bar #4 : YOUR MONEY’S …
  • 57A. See 49-Across : … NO GOOD HERE

Bill’s time: 8m 09s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

6. Acid’s opposite : BASE

The “opposite” of an acid is a base. Acids turn litmus paper red, and bases turn it blue. Acids and bases react with each other to form salts. An important subset of the chemicals called bases are the alkalis, the hydroxides of the alkali metals and of ammonium. The term “alkali” is sometimes used interchangeably with “base”, especially if that base is readily soluble in water.

10. Eponymous scale inventor : MOHS

The Mohs scale of mineral hardness was developed in 1812 by Friedrich Mohs. Basically Mohs took minerals and scratched them with other minerals. In this way he was able to determine which minerals were hardest (most scratch resistant) and which softest.

14. Skating gold medalist Sonja : HENIE

Sonja Henie was a World and Olympic Champion figure skater from Norway from the days when “amateur” sports stars were not paid. Henie made up for her lack of income from competing by developing a career in Hollywood. She was one of highest-paid film stars at the height of her movie career.

16. Country whose name can also be a full sentence : IRAN (and “I ran”)

Before 1935, the country we know today as Iran was referred to as Persia by the Western world. The official name of the country since the Iranian Revolution of 1979 is the “Islamic Republic of Iran”.

19. Lead-in to bank : CITI-

During the global financial crisis of 2008-2009, the US government rescued Citibank by providing loan guarantees and two payments of $25 billion each. It turns out that the government made a tidy profit on that deal, as Citibank has since repaid the loans in full, along with interest.

22. Milky birthstone : OPAL

An opal is often described as having a milky iridescence known as opalescence.

27. Actor George of TV’s “The Goldbergs” : SEGAL

The actor George Segal was one of my favorite Hollywood stars when I was growing up. I most remember him from the dramatic role he played in 1966’s “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” alongside Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor, and the comedic role he played in 1973’s “A Touch of Class” opposite Glenda Jackson. Segal has made a successful transition to television in recent years, playing lead roles on the sitcoms “Just Shoot Me!” and “The Goldbergs”.

“The Goldbergs” is a very entertaining sitcom that started airing in 2013. The show was created by Adam F. Goldberg and is based on Goldberg’s own childhood and family. My favorite part of the show comes at the end of each episode, when a clip from Goldberg’s real home movies is shown, which clip relates back to that episode’s storyline.

30. Some univ. instructors : TAS

Teaching assistant (TA)

31. Friend of Harry in the Harry Potter books : RON

Harry Potter, Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger are the principal characters in the “Harry Potter” series of fantasy novels by J. K. Rowling. The three are the best of friends.

33. The Cardinals, on scoreboards : STL

The St. Louis Cardinals were originally called the “Brown Stockings”, changing their name to the “Perfectos” in 1899. That obviously didn’t go down well with the locals, as the owners changed it one year later to the Cardinals.

41. Tina Fey’s “30 Rock” role : LIZ

“30 Rock” is a sitcom on NBC that was created by the show’s star Tina Fey. Fey plays an ex-performer and writer from “Saturday Night Live” and uses her experiences on that show as a basis for the “30 Rock” storyline. Fey plays Liz Lemon, the head writer for the fictional sketch comedy series “TGS with Tracy Jordan”.

42. ___-1701 (U.S.S. Enterprise registry) : NCC

The USS Enterprise is a starship in the “Star Trek” universe (pun!). There have been several generations of starship with the name Enterprise, starting with the vessel numbered NCC-1701, which appeared in the original TV series. My favorite “Star Trek” series is “Next Generation”, which features USS Enterprise NCC-1701-D.

45. Caesar’s first stabber : CASCA

Julius Caesar was assassinated on the 15th (the ides) of March, 44 BC. He was attacked by a group of sixty people in the Roman Senate, and was stabbed 23 times. The first to strike a blow was Servilius Casca, who attacked Caesar from behind and stabbed him in the neck. In Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar”, Casca utters the words “Speak, hands, for me!” just before making the fatal blow. The following line, uttered by Caesar, is more famous though: “Et tu, Brute?”

53. Cousins of mandolins : LUTES

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”.

54. Pestering people : NOODGES

“Noodge” is a slang term meaning “to nag”, or as a noun meaning “a nag”. It comes into English from the Yiddish word “nudyen” meaning “to bore, be tedious”.

62. “The Burning Giraffe” and “The Persistence of Memory” : DALIS

Salvador Dali’s 1937 painting called “The Burning Giraffe” features two blue female figures in the foreground, figures that Dali described as “tailbone women”. The “burning giraffe” is actually a figure in the background.

“The Persistence of Memory” is probably Salvador Dalí’s most famous work. It features the celebrated “melting clocks”, and you can see them in the painting in the MoMA in New York City.

63. Boy dolls : KENS

Barbie’s male counterpart doll is Ken, and Ken’s family name is Carson. Barbie’s full name is Barbie Millicent Roberts. When Ken was introduced in 1959, it was as Barbie’s boyfriend. In 2004 it was announced that Ken and Barbie were splitting up, and needed to spend quality time apart. Soon after the split, Barbie “met” Blaine, a boogie boarder from Australia.

65. They might make lids difficult to close : STYES

A stye is a bacterial infection of the sebaceous glands at the base of the eyelashes, and is also known as a hordeolum.

Down

1. Women’s clothing chain since 1983 : CHICO’S

Chico’s is a chain of retail stores selling women’s clothing that was founded in 1983. The founders were Marvin and Helene Gralnick, and they named their stores after a friend’s pet parrot, Chico.

6. Termites and drills : BORERS

Termites are insects that are somewhat unique in that they can digest cellulose (as can ruminants such as cattle). Because of this diet, they cause a lot of trouble for human populations by feeding on wood in man-made structures.

7. Pink-slip : AXE

The term “pink-slip” can be used as a verb meaning “to terminate an employee”. No one really seems to know for sure where the phrase originated, but there are lots of stories.

8. Maritime milieu : SEA

We use the French term “milieu” (plural “milieux”) to mean “environment, surroundings”. In French, “milieu” is the word for “middle”.

9. Tolkien tree being : ENT

Ents are those tree-like creatures that live in J. R. R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth in his series of books “The Lord of the Rings”. “Ent” is an Old English word for “giant”.

11. Avenue between Reading Railroad and Chance : ORIENTAL

Oriental Avenue, Connecticut Avenue and Vermont Avenue are examples of properties in the US version of the game of Monopoly. The street names in the US version of Monopoly are locations in or around Atlantic City, New Jersey.

18. ___ Talks : TED

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”.

25. Home of The Hague: Abbr. : NETH

“Den Haag” is the Dutch name for the city in the Netherlands that we know in English as “The Hague”. Even though The Hague is the seat of the Dutch parliament and is where Queen Beatrix resides, it is not the country’s capital city. That honor goes to Amsterdam.

26. Superman’s birth name : KAL-EL

Jor-El was a scientist on the planet Krypton who was married to Lara. Jor-El and Lara had an infant son named Kal-El who they were able to launch into space towards Earth just before Krypton was destroyed. Kal-El became Superman. In the 1978 movie “Superman”, Jor-El was played by Marlon Brando, Lara was played by Susannah York, and Kal-El/Superman was played by Christopher Reeve.

35. Tabloid twosome : IT COUPLE

An it couple is generally a celebrity couple, and a glamorous one at that.

37. 1982 film inspired by Pong : TRON

Released in 1982, Disney’s “Tron” was one of the first mainstream films to make extensive use of computer graphics. The main role in the movie is played by Jeff Bridges. The original spawned a 2010 sequel called “Tron: Legacy”, as well as a 2012 TV show called “Tron: Uprising”.

Do you remember the arcade video game that was like a game of tennis, with paddles moving up and down to hit what looked like a ball, over what looked like a net? Well, that was Pong. The arcade version of Pong was introduced in 1972, with Atari selling a home version through Sears for the Christmas market in 1975.

38. Big lighter brand : BIC

Société Bic is a French company, based in Clichy in France. The first product the company produced, more than fifty years ago, was the Bic Cristal ballpoint pen that is still produced today. Bic also makes other disposable products such as lighters and razors.

43. Some digital chats, informally : IMS

Even though instant messaging (sending and receiving IMs) has been around since the 1960s, it was AOL who popularized the term “instant message” in the eighties and nineties. The “AOL Instant Message” service was known as AIM.

44. Holy councils : SYNODS

The word “synod” comes from the Greek word for assembly, or meeting. A synod is a church council, usually one in the Christian faith.

46. How Solomon spoke : SAGELY

According to the Bible, Solomon was the son of David and a king of Israel. Notably, Solomon is described as being very wise. In the story known as “the Judgment of Solomon”, Solomon was asked to decide who of two quarreling women was the mother of a baby. He suggested that they cut the baby in two with a sword, forcing one of the women to surrender the child rather than see it die. Solomon gave the child to the woman who showed compassion.

47. French sweetheart : CHERIE

“Chéri” is a form of familiar address in French, meaning “dear”. “Chéri” is the form used when talking to a male, and “chérie” when addressing a female.

51. The Great Lakes’ ___ Locks : SOO

In the summer of 2010, I spent a very interesting afternoon watching ships make their way through the Soo Locks and Soo Canals between Lake Superior and the lower Great lakes. The name “Soo” comes from the US and Canadian cities on either side of the locks, both called Sault Ste. Marie.

57. Independent charity, for short : NGO

Non-governmental organization (NGO)

59. Clothing chain since 1969 : GAP

The Gap is a San Francisco-based clothing retailer that was founded in 1969. The name “the Gap” was a homage to the popular sixties term “the generation gap”.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. Object of puppy love : CRUSH
6. Acid’s opposite : BASE
10. Eponymous scale inventor : MOHS
14. Skating gold medalist Sonja : HENIE
15. Big farm workers : OXEN
16. Country whose name can also be a full sentence : IRAN (and “I ran”)
17. Welcome comment at a bar #1 : IT’S MY TREAT
19. Lead-in to bank : CITI-
20. “Ooh, ooh, let me look!” : CAN I SEE?!
21. Cornered, as during a fox hunt : TREED
22. Milky birthstone : OPAL
23. Welcome comment at a bar #2 : DRINKS ON ME
27. Actor George of TV’s “The Goldbergs” : SEGAL
29. Underhanded sort : SNEAK
30. Some univ. instructors : TAS
31. Friend of Harry in the Harry Potter books : RON
33. The Cardinals, on scoreboards : STL
34. “Hang on!” : WAIT!
35. Welcome comment at a bar #3 : I’LL GET THE BILL
39. “This is not ___” (warning to kids) : A TOY
40. Cleverly and ironically humorous : WRY
41. Tina Fey’s “30 Rock” role : LIZ
42. ___-1701 (U.S.S. Enterprise registry) : NCC
43. Often-forbidden things to worship : IDOLS
45. Caesar’s first stabber : CASCA
49. With 57-Across, welcome comment at a bar #4 : YOUR MONEY’S …
52. Sounds of support : RAHS
53. Cousins of mandolins : LUTES
54. Pestering people : NOODGES
56. Words before “smoke” or “the air” : UP IN …
57. See 49-Across : … NO GOOD HERE
60. Dirt ball : CLOD
61. One coming to homecoming, maybe : GRAD
62. “The Burning Giraffe” and “The Persistence of Memory” : DALIS
63. Boy dolls : KENS
64. “Beg pardon!” : OOPS!
65. They might make lids difficult to close : STYES
Down
1. Women’s clothing chain since 1983 : CHICO’S
2. Do again, as a radio bit : RETAPE
3. Let off the hook? : UNSNAG
4. Likewise : SIMILARLY
5. Casual greetings : HEYS
6. Termites and drills : BORERS
7. Pink-slip : AXE
8. Maritime milieu : SEA
9. Tolkien tree being : ENT
10. Tiny opening? : MICRO-
11. Avenue between Reading Railroad and Chance : ORIENTAL
12. Poison-pen letters : HATE MAIL
13. Most sarcastic : SNIDEST
18. ___ Talks : TED
21. “Shame!” : TSK!
24. Fashionable : IN STYLE
25. Home of The Hague: Abbr. : NETH
26. Superman’s birth name : KAL-EL
28. Wood in a fireplace : LOG
32. Change of locks? : NEW DO
34. Pointed headgear often pictured with stars and moons : WIZARD HAT
35. Tabloid twosome : IT COUPLE
36. Manner of speaking : LOCUTION
37. 1982 film inspired by Pong : TRON
38. Big lighter brand : BIC
39. “Were you successful at all?” : ANY LUCK?
43. Some digital chats, informally : IMS
44. Holy councils : SYNODS
46. How Solomon spoke : SAGELY
47. French sweetheart : CHERIE
48. Make a judgment of : ASSESS
50. Rips to pieces : RENDS
51. The Great Lakes’ ___ Locks : SOO
55. 3:2 or 10:1, e.g. : ODDS
57. Independent charity, for short : NGO
58. Spanish gold : ORO
59. Clothing chain since 1969 : GAP

8 thoughts on “0115-19 NY Times Crossword 15 Jan 19, Tuesday”

  1. 9:41, no errors. I don’t understand why this one took me as long as it did since, after the fact, it looks pretty easy, but I’m comforted by the fact that Bill also spent a little more time on it than he usually would. (I’m sure he did that just to make us all feel better: the man’s a prince, I tell ya! 😜)

  2. Thank you, Bill, for all the work you have done during this time of making the alterations to the blog. No need to apologize. I am sure that we were all just rooting for you while you were having to solve all the problems!

    I had one letter wrong at the UNSNAG/SEGAL cross. I had a P for the G. UNSNAP was simply the first thing that came to me and I had no familiarity with the actor. Overall I thought this was much harder than the typical Tuesday.

  3. Glad to see you’re back in business, Bill–restarting with a Tuesday challenge requiring more time and patience than the usual. (I like ’em that way.)

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