0315-19 NY Times Crossword 15 Mar 19, Friday

Constructed by: Jamey Smith
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: None

Bill’s time: 14m 44s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

15 Green land : EMERALD ISLE

Ireland is often referred to as “the Emerald Isle” (and described as “green”) because of all that green grass that grows due to the seemingly non-stop rain.

16 Quick turnaround : UIE

Hang a “uey” or “uie”, make a u-turn, make a 180.

17 Youngest French president before Macron : NAPOLEON III

When Emmanuel Macron became President of France in 2017, he was 39 years of age, and so became the youngest person to ever hold that office.

18 Onetime sister channel of CMT : TNN

The Nashville Network (TNN) was a country music cable channel that operated from 1983 to 2003. When TNN closed down it was relaunched with a completely different format as Spike, which was marketed as “the first television channel for men”.

20 Cooper’s output : CASKS

A cooper is a craftsman who makes wooden vessels, such as barrels. The term “cooper” ultimately derives from the Latin “cupa” meaning “barrel”.

27 Perrier and Évian : EAUX

“Eau” (plural “eaux”) is the French for “water”.

Perrier is bottled from spring water that is naturally carbonated. The natural carbonation is lost during the purification process, and so has to be restored artificially before bottling. The spring used by Perrier is in the South of France, and has been used since Roman times as a spa.

Évian-les-Bains (or simply Évian) is in the very east of France, on the shores of Lake Geneva directly across the lake from Lausanne, Switzerland. As one might imagine, Évian is the home of Évian mineral water, the most successful business in town. Personally, I can’t stand the distinctive taste of Évian water …

28 Source of a motel discount, in brief : AAA

The American Automobile Association (AAA) is a not-for-profit organization focused on lobbying, provision of automobile servicing, and selling of automobile insurance. The AAA was founded in 1902 in Chicago and published the first of its celebrated hotel guides back in 1917.

30 Some prosecutors, for short : ADAS

Assistant District Attorney (Asst. DA, ADA)

32 Many a Jules Verne protagonist : ADVENTURER

Jules Verne really was a groundbreaking author. Verne pioneered the science fiction genre, writing about space, air and underwater travel, long before they were practical and proved feasible. Verne is the second-most translated author of all time, with only Agatha Christie beating him out.

40 Regatta host : ROWING CLUB

The word “regatta” is Venetian dialect and was originally used to describe boat races among the gondoliers of Venice on the Grand Canal back in the mid-1600s.

43 Article in Die Welt : EINE

The definite article in German is der, die or das, for masculine, feminine and neuter nouns. The indefinite article is ein, eine or ein, again depending on the gender of the noun. A further complication, relative to English, is that the masculine form (and only the masculine form) of the article changes when used in the accusative case, when used with the object of a sentence. The accusative forms are “den” and “einen”.

44 Leader of ancient Troy? : TAU

Tau is the 19th letter of the Greek alphabet, and the letter which gave rise to our Roman “T”. Both the letters tau (T) and chi (X) have long been symbolically associated with the cross.

The leading letter in the word “Troy” is a letter (tee), which is equivalent to a Greek letter tau.

The ancient city of Troy was located on the west coast of modern-day Turkey. The Trojan War of Greek mythology was precipitated by the elopement of Helen, the wife of the king of Sparta, with Paris of Troy. The war itself largely consisted of a nine-year siege of Troy by the Greeks. We know most about the final year of that siege, as it is described extensively in Homer’s “Iliad”. The city eventually fell when the Greeks hid soldiers inside the Trojan Horse, which the Trojans brought inside the city’s walls. Beware of Greeks bearing gifts …

45 ___ fide : BONA

“Bona fide(s)” translates from the Latin as “in good faith”, and is used to indicate honest intentions. It can also mean that something is authentic, like a piece of art that is represented in good faith as being genuine.

48 EBay ashtray, e.g. : PIG LATIN

Pig Latin is in effect a game. One takes the first consonant or consonant cluster of an English word and moves it to the end of the word, and then adds the letters “ay”. So, the Pig Latin for the word “nix” is “ixnay” (ix-n-ay), and for “scram” is “amscray” (am-scr-ay).

In Pig Latin, “be” becomes “EBay” and “trash” becomes “ashtray”.

52 Awards presentation first hosted by Shelley Winters : OBIES

The Obies are the “Off-Broadway Theater Awards”. The Obies have been presented annually since 1956. The recipients used to be chosen by “The Village Voice” newspaper, but now are jointly administered with the American Theatre Wing.

53 Artist colony in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains : 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.

54 Personal take, for short : POV

Point of view (POV)

55 The world’s largest one straddles the border of France and Switzerland : ATOM SMASHER

Nowadays, we call an “atom smasher” a “particle accelerator”. An accelerator creates highly focused beams of fast-moving ions that can be “smashed” into various atoms. Those collisions can produce new particles. Important work, I hear …

The Large Hadron Collider is the world’s largest particle accelerator. It is located on the French-Swiss border near Geneva, in a circular tunnel that is a whopping 17 miles in circumference.

64 Inexpensive beer, informally : PBR

Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) is the most recognizable brand of beer from the Pabst Brewing Company. There appears to be some dispute over whether or not Pabst beer ever won a “blue ribbon” prize, but the company claims that it did so at the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893. The beer was originally called Pabst Best Select, and then just Pabst Select. With the renaming to Blue Ribbon, the beer was sold with an actual blue ribbon tied around the neck of the bottle until it was dropped in 1916 and incorporated into the label.

65 Social hierarchy that rejects individualism : CASTE SYSTEM

Although caste systems exist in several societies around the world, we tend to associate the concept with the social stratification that is still found in many parts of India. The term “caste” comes from the Portuguese word “casta” meaning “race, breed”. The Portuguese used the term to describe the hereditary social groups that they found in India when they arrived in the subcontinent in 1498.

Down

2 “I ___ Camera” (1950s play and film) : AM A

“I Am a Camera” is a 1951 play written by John Van Druten. The play is an adaptation of the novel “Goodbye to Berlin” by Christopher Isherwood. In turn, “I Am a Camera” was adapted into the musical “Cabaret”.

6 Western actor Lee Van ___ : CLEEF

Actor Lee Van Cleef played a great “baddie”. Van Cleef was born in Somerville, New Jersey and was of Dutch ancestry.He played a movie villain from day one of his film career, starting out with a small role in the classic western “High Noon”. His career went on hiatus after a car accident in the late fifties, but took off again with the arrival of the spaghetti Western. Lee Van Cleef vs. Clint Eastwood … what could be better?

9 Penultimate letter : PSI

Psi is the 23rd and penultimate letter of the Greek alphabet, and the one that looks a bit like a trident or a pitchfork.

14 Will might change them : TENSES

No, not “Will” Shortz. Adding the word “will” can change the present tense to the simple future tense, e.g. “you solve the puzzle now” but “you will solve the puzzle in the future”.

21 Success story out of Sunnyvale, Calif. : ATARI

At one point, the electronics and video game manufacturer Atari was the fastest growing company in US history. However, Atari never really recovered from the video game industry crash of 1983.

24 One end of the Erie Canal : HUDSON RIVER

The Hudson River flows through eastern New York State from Henderson Lake in the Adirondacks to the Port of New York and New Jersey. The river is named for the English explorer Henry Hudson, who navigated the waterway in 1609.

The Erie Canal runs from Albany to Buffalo in the state of New York. What the canal does is allow shipping to proceed from New York Harbor right up the Hudson River, through the canal and into the Great Lakes. When it was opened in 1825, the Erie Canal had immediate impact on the economy of New York City and locations along its route. It was the first means of “cheap” transportation from a port on the Atlantic seaboard into the interior of the United States. Arguably it was the most important factor contributing to the growth of New York City over competing ports such as Baltimore and Philadelphia. It was largely because of the Erie Canal that New York became such an economic powerhouse, earning it the nickname of “the Empire State”. Paradoxically, one of the project’s main proponents was severely criticized. New York Governor DeWitt Clinton received so much ridicule that the canal was nicknamed “Clinton’s Folly” and “Clinton’s Ditch”.

25 Issa of HBO’s “Insecure” : RAE

Issa Rae is a Stanford University graduate who created a YouTube web series called “Awkward Black Girl”. Rae also plays the title role in the series, a young lady named “J”. “Awkward Black Girl” was adapted into an HBO comedy-drama called “Insecure”, in which Issa Rae stars.

26 ___ Islands, archipelago in the East China Sea : MATSU

The Matsu Islands lie in the Taiwan Strait just off the coast of mainland China. The archipelago is named for Mazu, a goddess who is said to protect seafarers.

29 Highly persnickety : ANAL

The use of the word “anal” to mean “stiffly conventional” is an abbreviated form of “anal-retentive”, a term derived from Freudian psychology. Regardless, I’m not a big fan of the term …

32 MSNBC host Melber : ARI

Ari Melber is a television journalist and chief legal correspondent for MSNBC. He has hosted his own daily show called “The Beat with Ari Melber” since 2017.

33 Al ___ : DENTE

The Italian expression “al dente” literally means “to the tooth” or “to the bite” and is used to describe not only pasta, but also vegetables that are cooked so that they are tender and yet still crisp.

34 Star in the Summer Triangle : VEGA

Vega is the brightest star in the constellation Lyra. Vega (along with Altair and Deneb from other constellations) is also part of the group of three stars that is called the Summer Triangle. Vega is the star at the right-angle of this triangle.

The Summer Triangle is the name given to a pattern of stars seen in the northern hemisphere. It is so named as it sits almost directly overhead at midnight in most northern latitudes. The points of the triangle are the bright stars Altair, Deneb and Vega.

35 Kind of charger : USB

Universal Serial Bus (USB) is an industry standard dealing with how computers and electronic devices connect and communicate, and deal with electrical power through those connections.

45 Players of Fiorello and Dr. Bartolo in “The Barber of Seville” : BASSOS

“The Barber of Seville” is an extremely popular comic opera by Gioachino Rossini that is based on a play of the same name by Pierre Beaumarchais. Beaumarchais wrote a sequel called “The Marriage of Figaro”, on which Mozart based his comic opera of the same name.

47 Singer of sewing machine fame : ISAAC

Isaac Singer was not only an inventor, but also an actor. For much of his life, profits made from his inventions supported him while he pursued his acting career. Singer didn’t actually invent the sewing machine, and never claimed to have done so. What he did do though, was invent a version of the machine that was practical and easily used in the home.

51 Like a fertile plot of land : LOAMY

Loam is soil made up of sand, silt and clay in the ratio of about 40-40-20. Relative to other soil types, loam is is usually rich in nutrients and moisture, drains well and is easy to till.

56 Su padre’s hermana : TIA

In Spanish, the “hermana” (sister) of your “padre” (father) is your “tia” (aunt).

57 Some E.R. cases : ODS

Overdose (OD)

60 “___, little darlin’, don’t shed no tears” (lyric in Bob Marley’s “No Woman, No Cry”) : ERE

Bob Marley is the most widely-known reggae performer, with big hits such as “I Shot the Sheriff”, “No Woman, No Cry” and “One Love”. A little sadly perhaps, Marley’s best selling album was released three years after he died. That album would be the “legendary” album called “Legend”.

61 Kind of sleep : REM

“REM” is an acronym standing for rapid eye movement sleep. REM sleep takes up 20-25% of the sleeping hours and is the period associated with one’s most vivid dreams.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Contented sort : HAPPY CAMPER
12 Check a box (for) : OPT
15 Green land : EMERALD ISLE
16 Quick turnaround : UIE
17 Youngest French president before Macron : NAPOLEON III
18 Onetime sister channel of CMT : TNN
19 Stadium ticket price factor : TIER
20 Cooper’s output : CASKS
22 “Finest beer I ever tasted!” in old ads : SCHAEFER
26 Period for self-indulgence : ME TIME
27 Perrier and Évian : EAUX
28 Source of a motel discount, in brief : AAA
30 Some prosecutors, for short : ADAS
31 Bygone days, in days gone by : ELD
32 Many a Jules Verne protagonist : ADVENTURER
36 “Absolutely not” : NO SIREE
38 N.B.A. stat : ASSISTS
40 Regatta host : ROWING CLUB
42 Cool : HIP
43 Article in Die Welt : EINE
44 Leader of ancient Troy? : TAU
45 ___ fide : BONA
46 ___ Olde England : MERRIE
48 EBay ashtray, e.g. : PIG LATIN
52 Awards presentation first hosted by Shelley Winters : OBIES
53 Artist colony in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains : TAOS
54 Personal take, for short : POV
55 The world’s largest one straddles the border of France and Switzerland : ATOM SMASHER
62 Suffix in biology : -OME
63 Mnemonic device : AIDE MEMOIRE
64 Inexpensive beer, informally : PBR
65 Social hierarchy that rejects individualism : CASTE SYSTEM

Down

1 Motherly sort : HEN
2 “I ___ Camera” (1950s play and film) : AM A
3 Life : PEP
4 Unlike libertarians, say : PRO-TAX
5 Crimson opponent : YALIE
6 Western actor Lee Van ___ : CLEEF
7 Just love : ADORE
8 Two drinks at a comedy club, e.g.: Abbr. : MIN
9 Penultimate letter : PSI
10 Another name for a 5-Down : ELI
11 Continue to treat, as a sprain : REICE
12 Low-percentage chance to win : OUTSIDE SHOT
13 Cocktail with gin and grapefruit : PINK MARTINI
14 Will might change them : TENSES
21 Success story out of Sunnyvale, Calif. : ATARI
22 Spotted : SEEN
23 Double cheeseburger with extra bacon, e.g. : CALORIE BOMB
24 One end of the Erie Canal : HUDSON RIVER
25 Issa of HBO’s “Insecure” : RAE
26 ___ Islands, archipelago in the East China Sea : MATSU
29 Highly persnickety : ANAL
32 MSNBC host Melber : ARI
33 Al ___ : DENTE
34 Star in the Summer Triangle : VEGA
35 Kind of charger : USB
37 “If ___ you …” : I WERE
39 Reach : SPAN
41 Hold in one’s hands : CUP
43 Hybrid music genre : EMO POP
45 Players of Fiorello and Dr. Bartolo in “The Barber of Seville” : BASSOS
47 Singer of sewing machine fame : ISAAC
49 Caller ID? : IT’S ME
50 Manipulates, in a way : GAMES
51 Like a fertile plot of land : LOAMY
56 Su padre’s hermana : TIA
57 Some E.R. cases : ODS
58 Crossed : MET
59 Chart topper : HIT
60 “___, little darlin’, don’t shed no tears” (lyric in Bob Marley’s “No Woman, No Cry”) : ERE
61 Kind of sleep : REM

13 thoughts on “0315-19 NY Times Crossword 15 Mar 19, Friday”

  1. 33:37. Seemed harder than many recent Friday puzzles. How many spellings of “uey”, “uie” or even “uiy” are there? I guess you use whatever fits. When I got PIG LATIN for “Ebay ashtray”, I about fell over.

    Best –

  2. 14:32, no errors. I understood readily enough that “Ebay ashtray” sounded like “pig Latin”, but I was mildly put off that neither “be trash” nor “bee trash” meant all that much to me, leaving me with that feeling of having missed a joke that everybody else got. Is this an example of that new thing I recently learned from doing crossword puzzles: FOMO (“Feeling Of Missing Out”)? Sort of, maybe, I guess … but not quite. I’m sure I’ll find a better situation in which to use it … 😜.

  3. Prime example of “manufactured difficulty”. Shame on both the setter and the editor for this abomination.

  4. 37:06, no errors. Again, one of those puzzles that are extremely frustrating for those who can’t finish, and satisfying for those who can. I can’t see bashing puzzle setters for setting the bar higher than I can jump. Spent about 10 minutes trying to overcome a blind spot in the upper right corner. Figured 20A would be carts or CASKS, but the 9 boxes in the upper right corner just wouldn’t sort themselves out. Eventually OPT came to mind, and the rest fell quickly. My pet peeve has always been the use of foreign words, not in common English use. Today’s examples: 27A, 43A, 63A and 56D.

    Just curious: who else thought ‘Al Roker’ before ‘Al DENTE’??

  5. Typical Friday toughie. Got hung up so put it away to make biscuits and dye some eggs. Sometimes it’s helpful to step away for a bit so I was able to finish with no errors once I cleaned up the north east.
    Got AIDEMEMOIRE via fills so was lucky there. I assume 14D is a shout out to our editor.

  6. Finally finished with no errors. I feel like I learned a few new words and phrases and I got a chuckle or two. All in all, a very satisfying puzzle/solve .
    What gave me the most difficulty was the center square (which extended out to all four edges.) 😄

  7. 30 minutes exactly no errors. Agree with Bruce’s comments whole heartedly. And yes, I wrote Roker in for 33D for a brief moment!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.