0208-19 NY Times Crossword 8 Feb 19, Friday

Constructed by: John Guzzetta & Michael Hawkins
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: None

Bill’s time: 11m 01s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Lifelong pals, slangily : BFFS

Best friend forever (BFF)

5. Japanese P.M. Shinzo ___ : ABE

Shinzo Abe first became Prime Minister of Japan in 2006, at which time he was the youngest person to hold the post since WWII and was the first PM born after the war. Abe was in office for less than a year, but was voted in again in 2012. Abe is usually characterized as a right-wing nationalist.

16. 1997-2006 U.N. chief : ANNAN

Kofi Annan was a diplomat from Ghana who served as General Secretary of the UN for ten years until the beginning of 2007. Annan was born into an aristocratic family, and had a twin sister named Efua Atta. Efua and Kofi shared the middle name “Atta”, which means “twin” in the Akan language of Ghana. Annan attended the MIT Sloan School of Management from 1971-72, and graduated with a Master of Science degree.

20. Metric unit : IAMB

An iamb is a metrical foot containing an unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable. The lines in Robert Frost’s “Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening” use four sequential iambs, e.g. “Whose woods / these are / I think / I know”. With that sequence of four iambs, the poem’s structure is described as iambic tetrameter.

22. Shakers and Quakers : SECTS

“Shakers” is the common name for the religious sect more properly called the United Society of Believer in Christ’s Second Appearing. The sect’s doctrine was based on the teachings of Ann Lee.

Members of the Religious Society of Friends are known as Friends or Quakers. The Christian sect started in England in the 1640s, led by George Fox. The principal tenet at that point was that Christians could have direct experience of Jesus Christ without the mediation of clergy, a reflection of the increasing dissatisfaction with the established church at that time. The term “Quaker” is thought to have been used earlier in reference to foreign religious sects whose followers were given to fits of shaking during religious fervor. Somehow that term became used for members of the Religious Society of Friends.

29. Largely monosyllabic language : LAO

Lao is the official language of Laos. Lao is also spoken in the northeast of Thailand, but there the language is known as Isan.

30. Prospectors’ prospects : LODES

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.

34. Camel purchaser, e.g. : SMOKER

The advertising mascot for Camel cigarettes was officially known as “Old Joe”, but was popularly known as “Joe Camel”. Joe originated in the seventies, in an advertising campaign that ran only in Europe where sometimes he was depicted wearing a French Foreign Legion cap. He was imported to the US in 1988 on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the Camel brand. The big controversy surrounding the use of the camel character was that a 1991 study found that 5-6 year old children could recognize Joe Camel more readily than either Mickey Mouse or Fred Flintstone. Also, soon after Old Joe was introduced in the US, the Camel brand’s share of the illegal market to underage smokers went up from 1% to just under 33%.

39. Unit on a utility bill : THERM

A therm is a unit of heat energy. One therm is equivalent to 100,000 British thermal units (BTUs).

40. Liverpool-to-Nottingham dir. : ESE

Liverpool is a large port city in the northwest of England located on the estuary of the River Mersey. With a sense of humor that is typical of the area, people from Liverpool are often called “Liverpudlians”. The term comes from the jocular “Liver-puddle”, a diminutive of “Liver-pool”.

Nottingham is a city in the East Midlands of England. To us on this side of the Atlantic, perhaps Nottingham is most famous as a setting for the legend of Robin Hood.

45. Desert gullies : WADIS

“Wadi” is an Arabic term referring to a valley, or perhaps a (mostly) dry riverbed. In English we might call this a wash, or in Spanish an “arroyo”.

50. Big name in yo-yos : DUNCAN

Would you believe that the first yo-yos date back to 500 BC? There is even an ancient Greek vase painting that shows a young man playing with a yo-yo. Centuries later Filipinos were using yo-yos as hunting tools in the 1500s. “Yo-yo” is a Tagalog (Filipino) word meaning “come-come” or simply “return”.

52. Southpaw : LEFTY

A southpaw is a left-handed person. The term “southpaw” arose as baseball slang in the mid-1880s to describe a left-handed pitcher. Back then, baseball diamonds were often laid out with home plate to the west. So, a pitcher’s left hand would be on his “south” side as he faced the batter.

57. Something to shuck : EAR OF CORN

To shuck is to remove the husk from (say an ear of corn) or to remove the shell from (say an oyster).

58. Natural coats : RIMES

Rime is the beautiful coating of ice that forms on surfaces like roofs, trees and grass, when cold water freezes instantly under the right conditions.

60. Muscle strengthened in rowing, briefly : LAT

The muscles known as the “lats” are the latissimi dorsi, and are the broadest muscles in the back. “Latissimus” is the Latin for “broadest” and “dorsum” is Latin for “back”.

Down

1. Drummer John of Led Zeppelin : BONHAM

Led Zeppelin was an English rock band founded in 1968. The band’s most famous release has to be the classic “Stairway to Heaven”. Led Zeppelin broke up right after drummer John Bonham was found dead in 1988.

4. Joint acct. info : SSNS

Social Security number (SSN)

5. Naval forces : ARMADAS

The most famous armada was the Spanish fleet that sailed against England in order to overthrow Queen Elizabeth I in 1588. It failed in its mission, partly due to bad weather encountered en route. Ironically, the English mounted a similar naval attack against Spain the following year, and it failed as well.

8. Standish of Plymouth Colony : MYLES

Myles Standish was one of the passengers on the Mayflower He had been hired by the Pilgrims as military advisor for their planned colony in the New World. Standish served as commander of the Plymouth Colony from its founding until his passing in 1656, at the age of 72.

The early settlers of the Plymouth Colony were known as English Dissenters and belonged to congregations that separated from the Church of England. Many English Dissenters headed for Holland in the Netherlands, but the Mayflower Pilgrims opted to set up a new colony in North America in an effort to maintain their English cultural identity.

9. 1935 Nobelist Joliot-Curie : IRENE

Along with her husband Frederick, Irene Joliot-Curie was awarded the Nobel Prize for chemistry in 1935 for their discovery of artificial radioactivity. Irene was the daughter of Marie and Pierre Curie, who also won Nobel Prizes. Irene died when she was 58 years old, suffering from leukemia brought on her exposure to high doses of radiation. Her mother, Marie, died from aplastic anemia, also caused by high exposure to radiation. To this day, Marie’s personal papers are kept preserved in lead-lined boxes as they are highly radioactive, even her personal cookbook.

10. Bushwa : ROT

“Bushwa” is “rubbish, nonsense, rot”. The term originated in the early 1900s and may be a derivative of “bourgeois”.

11. One of four for an ostrich : TOE

The ostrich is a flightless bird that is native to Africa. It is extensively farmed, mainly for its feathers but also for its skin/leather and meat. Famously, the ostrich is the fastest moving of any flightless bird, capable of achieving speeds of over 40 mph. It is also the largest living species of bird, and lays the largest eggs.

12. Naval inits. : HMS

The ship prefix “HMS” is used by the warships of the Royal Navy, and stands for “Her/His Majesty’s Ship/Submarine”. The prefix “RMS” is used by ships of the merchant navy, and stands for “Royal Mail Ship/Steamer”.

13. Horror film sequel of 2005 : SAW II

The “Saw” franchise of movies is gruesome in the extreme. I’ve only seen a few minutes of “Saw” footage (accidentally). The storylines center on imprisoned victims who are faced with having to mutilate themselves in order to escape. Ugh …

15. A.L. lineup fixtures : DHS

Baseball’s American League (AL) allows a designated hitter (DH) in each team’s lineup, whereas the National League (NL) does not.

21. Former “Top Chef” judge : EMERIL

Emeril Lagasse is an American chef who was born in Massachusetts. Lagasse first achieved celebrity as executive chef in Commander’s Palace in New Orleans. Now famous for his television shows, his cuisine still showcases New Orleans ingredients and influences. Lagasse started using his famous “Bam!” catchphrase in order to keep his crew awake during repeated tapings of his show.

24. Mineral on the Mohs scale : TALC

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.

25. Fish order : SOLE

The group of flatfish known as soles take their name from “solea”, the Latin word for “sandal”. And, they kind of have that shape.

32. Pronoun in both “America” and “America the Beautiful” : THEE

The patriotic song “America” is also known by its first line, “My Country, ‘Tis of Thee”. The song was written by Samuel Francis Smith in 1831, and was the de facto national anthem of the country until “The Star-Spangled Banner” was declared the official anthem in 1931. The melody of “My Country, ‘Tis of Thee” is identical with the British national anthem, “God Save the Queen”.

My country, ’tis of thee,
Sweet land of liberty,
Of thee I sing;
Land where my fathers died,
Land of the pilgrims’ pride,
From ev’ry mountainside
Let freedom ring!

When she was 33 years old, Katharine Lee Bates took a train ride from Massachusetts to Colorado Springs. She was so inspired by many of the beautiful sights she saw on her journey that she wrote a poem she called “Pikes Peak”. Upon publication the poem became quite a hit, and several musical works were adapted to the words of the poem, the most popular being a hymn tune composed by Samuel Ward. Bates’s poem and Ward’s tune were published together for the first time in 1910, and given the title “America the Beautiful”.

35. Canyonlands National Park feature : MESA

Canyonlands is a magnificent national park in southeast Utah not far from Moab. The canyons in the park, and the associated mesas and buttes, were formed mainly by the Colorado and Green Rivers.

39. “Doctor Who” actor David : TENNANT

The iconic science-fiction television show “Doctor Who” first aired in 1963 on the BBC, and relaunched in 2005. The relaunched series is produced in-house by the BBC in Cardiff in Wales, the location that is the setting of the successful “Doctor Who” spin-off called “Torchwood”. The new show is about the Cardiff branch of the Torchwood Institute which investigates incidents involving extraterrestrials. And, “Torchwood” is an anagram of “Doctor Who”.

42. Pfizer product : VIAGRA

Pfizer is a pharmaceutical company based in New York City that was founded in 1849 by cousins Charles Pfizer and Charles Erhart. Pfizer has an impressive list of successful products that includes Lipitor (to lower cholesterol), Viagra (to help with erectile dysfunction) and Celebrex (an anti-inflammatory).

43. Primary course : ENTREE

“Entrée” means “entry” in French. An entrée can be something that helps one get “a way in”, an interview for example perhaps helped along by a recommendation letter. In Europe, even in English-speaking countries, the entrée is the name for the “entry” to the meal, the first course. I found the ordering of meals to be very confusing when I first came to America!

44. California’s Point ___ : REYES

“Entrée” means “entry” in French. An entrée can be something that helps one get “a way in”, an interview for example perhaps helped along by a recommendation letter. In Europe, even in English-speaking countries, the entrée is the name for the “entry” to the meal, the first course. I found the ordering of meals to be very confusing when I first came to America!

51. Home of 30 Rock : NYC

What is now called the GE Building in New York City, was originally known as the RCA Building, with the name changing in 1988 after the 1986 takeover of RCA by GE. The building was completed in 1933 as part of the Rockefeller Center and was named for its main tenant RCA. Famously, the skyscraper’s address of 30 Rockefeller Center is routinely shortened to “30 Rock”.

52. Bird symbolizing daybreak : LARK

Larks are small songbirds that are found all over the world, although only the horned lark species is found here in North America. Despite their size, larks are sometimes considered game birds, and can be served up as food. It’s not uncommon to find a dish containing lark meat in southern Europe.

54. Derby, e.g. : HAT

I think a bowler hat is usually called a derby here in the US. The bowler was first produced in 1849 in London by hatmakers Thomas and William Bowler, hence the name. The alternative name of “derby” comes from the tradition of wearing bowler hats at the Derby horse race (a major race held annually in England).

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. Lifelong pals, slangily : BFFS
5. Japanese P.M. Shinzo ___ : ABE
8. Gaiety : MIRTH
13. Subjects for saving : SOULS
14. Military pilot’s waiting area : READY ROOM
16. 1997-2006 U.N. chief : ANNAN
17. Calculating competitors : MATHLETES
18. Piques : WHETS
19. Cropped up : ARISEN
20. Metric unit : IAMB
21. Mark up, perhaps : EDIT
22. Shakers and Quakers : SECTS
26. Official approval : IMPRIMATUR
29. Largely monosyllabic language : LAO
30. Prospectors’ prospects : LODES
31. Trap for the unwary : PITFALL
34. Camel purchaser, e.g. : SMOKER
36. First-rate : CHOICE
37. Recorded, as data : KEYED IN
39. Unit on a utility bill : THERM
40. Liverpool-to-Nottingham dir. : ESE
41. One might be sent with a scent : LOVE LETTER
45. Desert gullies : WADIS
48. Like poppy seeds : TINY
49. Perfect : HONE
50. Big name in yo-yos : DUNCAN
52. Southpaw : LEFTY
53. Way to get fit while you sit : CHAIR YOGA
56. Not out of it : AWARE
57. Something to shuck : EAR OF CORN
58. Natural coats : RIMES
59. Originates (from) : STEMS
60. Muscle strengthened in rowing, briefly : LAT
61. ___ pants : KNEE

Down

1. Drummer John of Led Zeppelin : BONHAM
2. Between jobs and loving it : FUNEMPLOYED
3. Busted : FLAT BROKE
4. Joint acct. info : SSNS
5. Naval forces : ARMADAS
6. Endure, in an expression : BEAR IT
7. Savor the flattery : EAT IT UP
8. Standish of Plymouth Colony : MYLES
9. 1935 Nobelist Joliot-Curie : IRENE
10. Bushwa : ROT
11. One of four for an ostrich : TOE
12. Naval inits. : HMS
13. Horror film sequel of 2005 : SAW II
15. A.L. lineup fixtures : DHS
21. Former “Top Chef” judge : EMERIL
23. Defining accomplishment : CLAIM TO FAME
24. Mineral on the Mohs scale : TALC
25. Fish order : SOLE
27. Chose from the lineup, in brief : ID’ED
28. In full measure : RICHLY
32. Pronoun in both “America” and “America the Beautiful” : THEE
33. Modern cry of success : FOR THE WIN!
34. Twist : SKEW
35. Canyonlands National Park feature : MESA
38. “That was totally out of line” : NOT COOL
39. “Doctor Who” actor David : TENNANT
42. Pfizer product : VIAGRA
43. Primary course : ENTREE
44. California’s Point ___ : REYES
46. In the wings or in full swing : IDIOM
47. Is on board? : SURFS
51. Home of 30 Rock : NYC
52. Bird symbolizing daybreak : LARK
53. These: Fr. : CES
54. Derby, e.g. : HAT
55. Consist of : ARE

9 thoughts on “0208-19 NY Times Crossword 8 Feb 19, Friday”

  1. 21:29. Kind for a Friday puzzle. Coincidentally, I just ate at one of EMERIL’s restaurants last weekend (Delmonico Steakhouse at the Venetian), and it was magnificent. I’m ready to go back now…

    Best –

  2. 1 hr and 1 min. With 1 error…..I had nbc for nyc.
    It took a lot of crosses and some references to ” my notes” to finish this one only to wind up with one dump error.

  3. I stewed for way too long about the “metric unit” trying to find a unit in the metric system that would fit, rather than a poetic meter!

    From yesterday, Judy and Dale, about “what you call it” — I took that to be you call “it” a name, and names are nouns.

  4. @Sandra (proper noun) … and I see what you did there … 😜

    I fully agree with your comment about “what you call it”! The clue made perfect sense.

  5. 15:05, no errors. In the same boat as @Sandra, IAMB was (for me) the last thing to come to mind for “metric unit”.

  6. I failed because I had POTHOLE instead of PITFALL and couldn’t get a bunch of stuff to fit there. And I was so darn sure POTHOLE was right I never even reconsidered it.

    First failure in quite a while.

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