0501-19 NY Times Crossword 1 May 19, Wednesday

Constructed by: Joel Fagliano
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answer: State Capitals

Themed answers are anagrams of US state capitals:

  • 36A What the answers to the starred clues are each anagrams of : STATE CAPITALS
  • 20A *Not formally worded : IN SLANG (anagram of “Lansing”)
  • 21A *Like the pitcher in a batting order, often : UP LAST (anagram of “St. Paul”)
  • 26A *Peacocks, but not peahens : MALES (anagram of “Salem”)
  • 44A *Wandered : ROVED (anagram of “Dover”)
  • 54A *Like some foreign protests : ANTI-US (anagram of “Austin”)
  • 55A *What keeps a part apart : HAIR GEL (anagram of “Raleigh”)
  • 24D *Internet addresses : DOMAINS (anagram of “Madison”)

Read on, or jump to …
… a complete list of answers

Bill’s time: 9m 08s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

5 Unit for a YouTube video : VIEW

YouTube is a video-sharing website that was launched in 2005 by three ex-PayPal employees. Google bought YouTube in 2006 for $1.65 billion. Yep, $1.65 billion, less than two years after it was founded …

15 Novel on which the film “Clueless” is based : EMMA

Jane Austen’s novel “Emma” is the tale of Emma Woodhouse and the wonderful George Knightley. At the end of the story, Emma marries Knightley and her young friend Harriet marries Robert Martin, who had been trying to get Harriet’s attention practically from page one of the novel. Emma interfered in that troubled courtship.

The 1995 movie “Clueless” is apparently based on Jane Austen’s “Emma”, which is a favorite novel of mine. As a result, I am going to have to check out the film. That said, “Clueless” is set in a Beverly Hills high school, so I probably should prepare myself to be disappointed …

20 *Not formally worded : IN SLANG (anagram of “Lansing”)

Lansing, Michigan is unique among US state capitals in that it is not a county seat, even though it is located in Ingham County. The county seat is Mason, Michigan.

21 *Like the pitcher in a batting order, often : UP LAST (anagram of “St. Paul”)

Saint Paul that is the state capital of Minnesota, and is one half of the “Twin Cities” , also known as Minneapolis-Saint Paul. Saint Paul used to be called Pig’s Eye, named after a popular tavern in the original settlement in the area. In 1841, Father Lucien Galtier established a log chapel nearby that he dedicated to St. Paul the Apostle, giving the city its current name. The magnificent Cathedral of St. Paul now sits on the site where the log chapel was built.

25 Part of a Snickers bar : NOUGAT

“Nougat” is an Occitan word (Occitania being a region of Southern Europe) that translates as “nut bread”.

Snickers is a candy bar made by Mars. When I was growing up in Ireland, the same candy bar was sold as a Marathon. The name was changed in Europe to Snickers in 1990. 75% of the world’s Snickers bars are made in the Mars factory in Waco, Texas.

26 *Peacocks, but not peahens : MALES (anagram of “Salem”)

The male peafowl is known as a peacock, and the female a peahen. The peafowl’s young are sometimes called peachicks.

Salem is the state capital of Oregon. It is thought that the city takes its name from the older city of Salem, Massachusetts.

28 Mork’s birthplace on “Mork & Mindy” : ORK

“Mork & Mindy” is a sitcom that originally aired from 1978 to 1982. The title characters were played by Robin Williams and Pam Dawber. Mork is an alien from the planet Ork who reports back to his superior called Orson. Orson is played by voice actor Ralph James. Ralph James was also known for providing the voice of Mr. Turtle in famous Tootsie Pop commercials in the seventies. Nanu nanu!

35 Stop signal : RED

The first traffic lights date back to 1868 when they were installed outside the Houses of Parliament in London. They resembled the signals already in use for trains, with semaphore arms and red and green gas lamps for nighttime use. That first system was operated manually, by a policeman at the base. Sadly, one police officer was killed just one year after the light’s installation, when the gas system exploded.

44 *Wandered : ROVED (anagram of “Dover”)

The city of Dover is the capital of Delaware, and is the state’s second biggest city (after Wilmington). Dover is named after the town of Dover on the south coast of England, and was given that name by William Penn. The English Dover lies in the county of Kent, and the American Dover resides in Kent County.

50 Building by a barn : SILO

“Silo” is a Spanish word that we absorbed into English. The term ultimately derives from the Greek “siros”, which described a pit in which one kept corn.

54 *Like some foreign protests : ANTI-US (anagram of “Austin”)

Austin is the capital of the state of Texas. When the area was chosen to be the capital of the Republic of Texas, it was known as Waterloo. The name was changed in honor of Stephen F. Austin, a native of Virginia who was raised in Missouri and led the first successful colonization of Texas.

55 *What keeps a part apart : HAIR GEL (anagram of “Raleigh”)

Raleigh is North Carolina’s second largest city (behind Charlotte), but it is the state’s capital. Chartered in 1792, the city is named for Sir Walter Raleigh, the Elizabethan explorer who founded the Lost Colony of Roanoke.

57 Engraved stone marker : STELE

Stelae (singular “stele” or “stela”) were used all over the world, sometimes as territorial markers and sometimes to commemorate military victories. In later times stelae were commonly erected as commemorative markers in graveyards or other religious sites.

60 What Britain voted to Brexit from, for short : THE EU

The UK held a referendum in June 2016 in which 52% of voters chose to leave the European Union (EU). The term “Brexit” was used for the vote, a portmanteau of “Britain” and “exit”. The vote has led to some debate about the future of the UK. The Scottish electorate voted for the UK to stay in the EU, and so that revived speculation about Scotland leaving the UK. There has also some discussion about Northern Ireland’s future in the UK, as the Northern Irish electorate also voted to stay in the EU.

63 Wall St. “500” : S AND P

Standard & Poor’s (S&P) is a financial services company, famous for its stock market indices, especially the S&P 500. The company also publishes credit ratings for sovereign governments, and in 2011 famously lowered the rating of the US federal government from AAA to to AA+.

64 Gets a Venmo request, say : OWES

Venmo is a smartphone payment app that is now owned by PayPal. The first version of the product was introduced in 2009 by two entrepreneurs who had met as freshman students at the University of Pennsylvania. They sold the company in 2012 for over $26 million, and then PayPal acquired it the following year for a whopping $800 million. I wonder do PayPal ever buy blogs …

65 Article’s start, in journalism jargon : LEDE

The opening paragraph in any work of literature is often just called “the lead”. In the world of journalism, this is usually referred to as “the lede”.

Down

1 Who asked “Would you eat them in a box? Would you eat them with a fox?” : SAM-I-AM

Dr. Seuss’s famous children’s book “Green Eggs and Ham” was first published in 1960. “Green Eggs and Ham” now ranks twelfth in the list of top selling children’s books. By the way, “Harry Potter” books hold the top four slots in that list. The text of “Green Eggs and Ham” has a lot of “I am” going on. It starts with:

I am Sam
I am Sam
Sam I am

and ends with:

I do so like
green eggs and ham!
Thank you!
Thank you,
Sam-I-am

2 Lake Victoria lies on its southern border : UGANDA

Uganda is a landlocked county in East Africa lying just to the west of Kenya. Uganda was ruled by the British as a protectorate from 1894 and gained independence in 1962. Uganda is very much associated with the tyrannical rule of Idi Amin in the 1970s.

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.

5 “Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea” author : VERNE

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.

The Jules Verne sci-fi novel “Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea” was first published in 1869-1870 as a serial in a French magazine. Star of the novel (to me) is Captain Nemo’s magnificent submarine called the Nautilus. The “20,000 leagues” in the title is the distance travelled by the Nautilus underwater, and not a depth. 20,000 leagues is about three times the circumference of the Earth.

7 Down Under bird : EMU

The emu has had a tough time in Australia since man settled there. There was even an “Emu War” in Western Australia in 1932 when migrating emus competed with livestock for water and food. Soldiers were sent in and used machine guns in an unsuccessful attempt to drive off the “invading force”. The emus were clever, breaking their usual formations and adopting guerrilla tactics, operating as smaller units. After 50 days of “war”, the military withdrew. Subsequent requests for military help for the farmers were ignored. The emus had emerged victorious …

18 MuggleNet or The Leaky Cauldron, for “Harry Potter” readers : FANSITE

MuggleNet is a fansite devoted to the “Harry Potter” series of books and films. In the word of “Harry Potter”, a “muggle” is someone born without any magical ability, and who wasn’t born into the magical world. There is also a “Squib”, who is someone born to magical parents but who has no magical abilities.

24 *Internet addresses : DOMAINS (anagram of “Madison”)

Madison is the second-largest city in Wisconsin (after Milwaukee), and is the state capital. The city was named for President James Madison, who was one of the signers of the US Constitution. Many of Madison’s first streets were named for the 39 other signatories.

27 Compassionate “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” girl : EVA

Little Eva is a character in the novel “Uncle Tom’s Cabin”. Eva’s full name is Evangeline St. Clare.

33 Free speech org. : ACLU

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has its roots in the First World War when it was founded to provide legal advice and support to conscientious objectors. The ACLU’s motto is “Because Freedom Can’t Protect Itself”. The ACLU also hosts a blog on the ACLU.org website called “Speak Freely”.

34 Substance for a juicer : STEROID

Steroids are found commonly in nature, with familiar examples being cholesterol and testosterone. The controversial class of drugs called anabolic steroids (known informally as “roids” or simply “steroids”) are artificially produced chemicals designed to mimic the effect of the male sex hormone, testosterone. They are termed “anabolic” as they build up cellular tissue (particularly muscle) in a process called anabolism. Taking anabolic steroids can be termed “juicing”, and the aggressive behavior that can be a side-effect is known as “roid rage”.

36 Killer Bee? : SAMANTHA

Samantha Bee is a comedian from Toronto who found fame as a correspondent on “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” starting way back in 2003. Bee left “The Daily Show” in 2015 to host her own late-night talk show “Full Frontal with Samantha Bee” on TBS.

37 Missing button in many an elevator : THIRTEEN

Here are some phobias that I find quite interesting:

  • Somniphobia – fear of falling asleep
  • Coulrophobia – fear of clowns
  • Omphalophobia- fear of the navel
  • Nomophobia- fear of being without mobile phone coverage
  • Triskaidekaphobia- fear of the number 13

39 Meals : REPASTS

Our word “repast”, meaning “meal”. came to us via French (in which language “repas” is “meal”). Ultimately the term comes from the Latin “repascere” meaning “to repeatedly graze”.

45 Something that requires a special headset to play, informally : VR GAME

Virtual reality (VR)

59 Part of PRNDL : LOW

PRNDL … that would be Park, Reverse, Neutral, Drive and Low. The gear shift for an automatic transmission is sometimes known familiarly as the “prindle” stick, from the abbreviation PRNDL.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Word found before and after “and,” in a phrase : SUCH
5 Unit for a YouTube video : VIEW
9 Object : THING
14 Mr. : English :: ___ : Persian : AGHA
15 Novel on which the film “Clueless” is based : EMMA
16 Picky ___ : EATER
17 Matter for the Postal Inspection Service : MAIL FRAUD
19 “Is this really necessary?” : MUST I?
20 *Not formally worded : IN SLANG (anagram of “Lansing”)
21 *Like the pitcher in a batting order, often : UP LAST (anagram of “St. Paul”)
22 Ending with orange or lemon : -ADE
23 Basis of some scholarships : NEED
25 Part of a Snickers bar : NOUGAT
26 *Peacocks, but not peahens : MALES (anagram of “Salem”)
28 Mork’s birthplace on “Mork & Mindy” : ORK
30 Stack : PILE
31 A, B, C, D and E, to nutritionists : VITAMINS
35 Stop signal : RED
36 What the answers to the starred clues are each anagrams of : STATE CAPITALS
39 When doubled, uncritically enthusiastic : RAH
40 Joined the Army, say : ENLISTED
41 Sheik’s peer : EMIR
43 Bask on the beach : SUN
44 *Wandered : ROVED (anagram of “Dover”)
48 Post-championship celebration : PARADE
50 Building by a barn : SILO
53 Dark loaf : RYE
54 *Like some foreign protests : ANTI-US (anagram of “Austin”)
55 *What keeps a part apart : HAIR GEL (anagram of “Raleigh”)
57 Engraved stone marker : STELE
58 Pale-colored beer : BLONDE ALE
60 What Britain voted to Brexit from, for short : THE EU
61 Cordon (off) : ROPE
62 Give off : EMIT
63 Wall St. “500” : S AND P
64 Gets a Venmo request, say : OWES
65 Article’s start, in journalism jargon : LEDE

Down

1 Who asked “Would you eat them in a box? Would you eat them with a fox?” : SAM-I-AM
2 Lake Victoria lies on its southern border : UGANDA
3 A little chipper : CHISEL
4 Campus building : HALL
5 “Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea” author : VERNE
6 Public perception : IMAGE
7 Down Under bird : EMU
8 Spitball, e.g. : WAD
9 Conductor’s beat : TEMPO
10 Bring before a superior for reprimand : HAUL UP
11 Birth announcement : IT’S A GIRL!
12 Bottom line figure : NET SALES
13 Clenched, as teeth : GRITTED
18 MuggleNet or The Leaky Cauldron, for “Harry Potter” readers : FANSITE
21 Separate, as stitches : UNKNIT
24 *Internet addresses : DOMAINS (anagram of “Madison”)
27 Compassionate “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” girl : EVA
29 Tears : RIPS
32 What verb endings indicate : TENSES
33 Free speech org. : ACLU
34 Substance for a juicer : STEROID
36 Killer Bee? : SAMANTHA
37 Missing button in many an elevator : THIRTEEN
38 Fuss : ADO
39 Meals : REPASTS
42 Argued vehemently (against) : RAILED
45 Something that requires a special headset to play, informally : VR GAME
46 Lash holder : EYELID
47 Upper-right keyboard button : DELETE
49 Next in line : DUE UP
51 “Wouldn’t that be nice!” : I HOPE!
52 Olympic pool divisions : LANES
56 Walk dizzily : REEL
58 “My man!” : BRO!
59 Part of PRNDL : LOW

6 thoughts on “0501-19 NY Times Crossword 1 May 19, Wednesday”

  1. 20:41. I am absolutely terrible with anagram related themes so this was essentially a themeless for me. Fun anyway. I didn’t understand LOW or VRGAME until the blog (“duh” on both of them…). Never heard of SAMANTHA Bee either.

    Best –

  2. 12:54, no errors. Time does not include solving all the theme word jumbles. Only unscrambled four of them, not worth the effort to do the rest.

  3. No errors but this was slow going for me. The northwest corner was particularly difficult. I even managed to unscramble all of the state capitals. I could be a little picky about the St. Paul versus Saint Paul. As Bill indicates in his comments above, the formal name of the city is not abbreviated. I did not, however, find the anagrams to be useless. In two cases (DOVER and SALEM) they helped at least to hasten the solving process.

  4. Hats off to Mr. Fagliano for a challenging and fun puzzle with an absolute minimum of “shenanigans”. Proof that it is possible to devise a grid that tests the reasoning skills and vocabulary, but doesn’t require ESP to read the setter’s mind.

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