0518-19 NY Times Crossword 18 May 19, Saturday

Constructed by: Andy Kravis and Erik Agard
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: None

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

Bill’s time: 17m 19s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Jets are found in it, for short : AFC

American Football Conference (AFC)

Just like the New York Giants, the New York Jets are based in New Jersey, headquartered in Florham Park. The Jets and the Giants have a unique arrangement in the NFL in that the two teams share Metlife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Jets were an AFL charter team, formed in 1959 as the Titans of New York. The Titans changed their name to the Jets in 1963.

15 Porter of note : COLE

Cole Porter was a little unusual amongst his peers in that he was one of the few successful songwriters who wrote both lyrics and musics for his compositions. Porter was seriously injured in a riding accident when in his forties and was left disabled and in pain. Despite this, he continued to work and produced his most successful work after the accident.

16 Acclaimed 1942 film banned in Germany until after W.W. II : CASABLANCA

The movie “Casablanca” was released in January of 1943, timed to coincide with the Casablanca Conference, the high-level meeting between Roosevelt and Churchill. The film wasn’t a box-office hit, but gained critical acclaim, winning three Oscars including Best Picture. The signature song “As Time Goes By” was written many years earlier for a 1931 Broadway musical called “Everybody’s Welcome”, and was a hit in 1931 for Rudy Vallee. But today we all remember the Casablanca version, sung by Dooley Wilson (who played “Sam” in the film). Poor Dooley didn’t get to record it as a single, due to a musician’s strike in 1943. The 1931 Rudy Vallee version was re-released that year and became an even bigger hit second time round.

18 Alma mater of N.B.A. M.V.P. Russell Westbrook : UCLA

Russell Westbrook is an NBA basketball player who was drafted by the Seattle Supersonics just 6 days before the team relocated and became the Oklahoma City Thunder.

19 It’s found just south of the White House’s South Lawn : E STREET

The White House was designed by an Irishman, I am proud to say. James Hoban from County Kilkenny emigrated to the US in his twenties, and won the design competition for the White House in 1792.

20 Stadium divertissement : KISS CAM

The kiss cam is a diversion during some sporting events in which a video camera picks out random couples in the crowd, projecting their image onto the giant screen at the venue. The couples are encouraged to kiss, for the entertainment of the fans. Famously, President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama kissed for the kiss cam at a basketball game a few years ago, as did former President Jimmy Carter and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter.

24 Language of South Asia : NEPALI

Nepal lies to the northeast of India. Today, the state is known as the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal. In 2008, the Communist Party of Nepal won the country’s general election. Soon after, the Assembly voted to change the form of government, moving away from a monarchy and creating a secular republic.

25 Home of the Unesco World Heritage Site of Palmyra : SYRIA

Palmyra is an ancient city in Syria that became very wealthy as a center of trade during the days of the Roman Empire. Palmyra was attacked and destroyed twice, by the Romans in 273 and by the Timurids in 1400, although it still is home to spectacular ruins of magnificent structures erected during the city’s heyday. This is despite acts of sabotage by Islamic State soldiers who took control of Palmyra several times during the recent conflict in Syria.

28 Ending of eight U.S. presidents’ names : SON

The US presidents whose names end with “-son” are:

  1. Thomas Jefferson
  2. James Madison
  3. Andrew Jackson
  4. William Henry Harrison
  5. Andrew Johnson
  6. Benjamin Harrison
  7. Woodrow Wilson
  8. Lyndon B. Johnson

29 Quad bike, e.g. : ATV

All-terrain vehicle (ATV)

33 Measures taken to make golf courses tougher in the early 2000s : TIGER-PROOFING

After Tiger Woods, and other big hitters in the game of golf, started to have an impact on the game, yardage was added to some courses. This was intended to reduce the advantage of those big hitters, and became known as “Tiger-Proofing”.

38 Sports star who once declared “I am America” : ALI

The boxer Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr. was born in 1942 in Louisville, Kentucky. Clay changed his name to Muhammad Ali when he converted to Islam in 1964. Who can forget Muhammad Ali lighting the Olympic flame for the 1996 games in Atlanta?

39 Like some barbecue : TEXAN

It is believed that our word “barbecue” (BBQ) comes from the Taíno people of the Caribbean in whose language “barbacoa” means “sacred fire pit”.

41 Guitar accessories : CAPOS

A capo is a clamp-like device that is placed around the neck of a guitar or other stringed instrument to shorten the strings, and hence raise the pitch. The full name, rarely used these days, is “capo tasto”, which is Italian for “head tie”.

45 Arizona rival : NESTEA

Nestea is a brand of iced tea made by Nestlé. The name is a portmanteau of “Nestlé” and “tea”.

52 Bryophytic growth : MOSS

Bryophytes are the collection of terrestrial plants that do not have vascular systems. Bryophytes are mainly the mosses, hornworts and liverworts.

55 NASA’s ___ Research Center : AMES

The Ames Research Center is just down the road here, located at Moffett Field at the southern tip of San Francisco Bay. Joseph Ames was a member of the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics when it was formed in 1915, and chaired the committee from 1919-1939.

56 Walt Disney’s middle name : ELIAS

Walt Elias Disney was one of five children, the son of Elias and Flora Disney. Elias was an Irish Canadian, and Flora was from Ohio.

57 Singer of the song “Shadowland” in “The Lion King” : NALA

In “The Lion King”, Nala is a lioness and the childhood friend of Simba. By the end of the story, Nala and Simba become wedded. “The Lion King” is inspired by William Shakespeare’s “Hamlet”, with Simba representing the title character, and Nala representing Hamlet’s love interest Ophelia.

58 Subj. of the 2017 memoir “Working on the Dark Side of the Moon” : NSA

National Security Agency (NSA)

59 British weight : TONNE

The tonne, also known as a metric ton, is equivalent to 1,000 kg (or 2,205 lb). The tonne isn’t an official unit of mass in the metric system, but it is used a lot.

Down

3 ___ oil : CASTOR

The castor bean is the seed of the castor oil plant, although it isn’t actually a true “bean”. The castor seed is the source of castor oil, which has several medicinal uses.

4 Richard who composed the music for “Damn Yankees” and “The Pajama Game” : ADLER

In the musical show “Damn Yankees”, the title refers to the New York Yankees baseball team that dominated the sport in the fifties. That said, the show tells the story of the a man who sells his soul to help his beloved Washington Senators team beat the Yankees and win the pennant. So, “Damn Yankees” is yet another version of the classic German legend of “Faust”. The show was written by Richard Adler and Jerry Ross, a production that turned out to be a very successful follow-up to their prior hit, “The Pajama Game”. The future was looking really rosy for Adler and Ross but, sadly, Jerry Ross died of an obstructive lung disease only a few weeks after “Damn Yankees” opened on Broadway in 1955. He was just 29 years old.

5 Cheesy crust : GRATIN

To cook “au gratin” is to prepare something in a shallow dish with a crust of bread or cheese on top. In America we tend to think mainly of potatoes prepared this way, but the technique can be used for many different dishes. What we call French onion soup, a soup with some bread and cheese baked on top, is called “gratinée” in France.

6 “___ feste Burg ist unser Gott” (Bach cantata) : EIN

A cantata is a piece of music that is sung, as opposed to a sonata, which is a piece that is played on some instrument, often a piano. A sonatina is in effect a sonata that has been labelled as something lighter and shorter.

9 Venomous snake : MOCCASIN

“Cottonmouth” is one of the common names of a venomous pit viper that is native to the southeastern US. The cottonmouth is a strong swimmer and is usually found in or near water. Another common name for the species is “water moccasin”.

13 Subject of the Supreme Court cases Loving v. Virginia and Obergefell v. Hodges : MARRIAGE

Obergefell v. Hodges is the 2015 case in which the US Supreme Court ruled that same-sex couples have the fundamental right to marry. Famously, President Obama had the White House illuminated in rainbow colors on the night of the ruling.

17 One looking for bugs : BETA TESTER

Back in 1947, famed computer programmer Grace Hopper noticed some colleagues fixing a piece of equipment by removing a dead moth from a relay. She remarked that they were “debugging” the system, and so Hopper has been given credit for popularizing the term “bug” in the context of computing.

30 Modern game equipment : VR HEADSET

Virtual reality (VR)

33 Sprint and such : TELECOMS

The company that we know today as Sprint has a history that is linked with the Southern Pacific railroad company. Southern Pacific developed a microwave communication system for its internal use across its network using rights-of-way associated with the company’s extensive railway lines. In the early seventies, the company laid huge lengths of fiber optic cable in those rights-of-way, alongside the tracks, primarily for internal use. The railroad sold excess fiber capacity to private companies, allowing those companies to operate long distance telephone service outside of AT&T, which at that time had a long-distance monopoly. Southern Pacific took advantage of changing FCC regulations and started offering voice service directly to consumers. That service was offered under the name SPRINT, an acronym that stood for Southern Pacific Railroad Internal Networking Telephony. Very interesting …

34 Home of the Isle of Man : IRISH SEA

The Irish Sea is the stretch of water separating the island of Ireland from the island of Great Britain. More than 12 million ferry passengers cross the Irish Sea annually between Ireland and Great Britain. I’ve been one such passenger on more occasions than I can remember …

The Isle of Man is a large island located in the middle of the Irish Sea between Great Britain and Ireland. I used to spend a lot of time there in my youth, and a very interesting place it is indeed. The Isle of Man is classed as a British Crown Dependency and isn’t part of the United Kingdom at all. It is self-governing and has its own parliament called the Tynwald. The Tynwald was created in AD 979 and is arguably the oldest continuously-running parliament in the world. The inhabitants of the island speak English, although they do have their own language called Manx, which is very similar to Irish Gaeilge and Scottish Gaelic. And then there are those Manx cats, the ones without any tails. I’ve seen lots of them, and can attest that they are indeed found all over the island.

36 Bad choices in it might cost you an arm and a leg : HANGMAN

The word-guessing game called Hangman seems to have been played first in Victorian England. At one time it was known as “Birds, Beasts and Fishes” as the words to be guessed had to be types of animal.

40 Like the lion slain in Hercules’ first labor : NEMEAN

“The Twelve Labors of Hercules” is actually a Greek myth, although Hercules is the Roman name for the hero that the Greeks called Heracles. The first of these labors was to slay the Nemean lion, a monster that lived in a cave near Nemea. Hercules had a tough job as the lion’s golden fur was impenetrable to normal weapons. One version of the story is that Hercules killed the lion by shooting an arrow into its mouth. Another version says that Hercules stunned the monster with a club and then strangled him with his bare hands.

43 Classic opera set in Cyprus : OTELLO

Giuseppe Verdi’s opera “Otello” was first performed in 1887 at La Scala Theater in Milan. The opera is based on Shakespeare’s play “Othello” and is considered by many to be Verdi’s greatest work.

Cyprus is an island nation in the Mediterranean Sea, and a member of the European Union. Cyprus is a divided island, with the Republic of Cyprus controlling about 60% of its area. The remaining 40% calls itself the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, and is occupied by Turkish forces.

54 Calculus calculation, for short : MIN

Minimum (min.)

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Jets are found in it, for short : AFC
4 Rep : AGENT
9 Photo framer’s offering : MAT
12 Tough person to get information from : CLAM
14 Like southern Israel vis-à-vis northern Israel : DRIER
15 Porter of note : COLE
16 Acclaimed 1942 film banned in Germany until after W.W. II : CASABLANCA
18 Alma mater of N.B.A. M.V.P. Russell Westbrook : UCLA
19 It’s found just south of the White House’s South Lawn : E STREET
20 Stadium divertissement : KISS CAM
22 Often-braised cut of beef : SHORT RIB
24 Language of South Asia : NEPALI
25 Home of the Unesco World Heritage Site of Palmyra : SYRIA
26 “It’s futile” : NO USE
28 Ending of eight U.S. presidents’ names : SON
29 Quad bike, e.g. : ATV
31 Drawing : ENTICING
33 Measures taken to make golf courses tougher in the early 2000s : TIGER-PROOFING
36 “Let me demonstrate” : HERE’S HOW
37 Hard core : PIT
38 Sports star who once declared “I am America” : ALI
39 Like some barbecue : TEXAN
41 Guitar accessories : CAPOS
45 Arizona rival : NESTEA
47 Empathize with : RELATE TO
49 Some guitar basics : G CHORDS
51 Salt : MARINER
52 Bryophytic growth : MOSS
53 “What a jerk!” : SOME PEOPLE
55 NASA’s ___ Research Center : AMES
56 Walt Disney’s middle name : ELIAS
57 Singer of the song “Shadowland” in “The Lion King” : NALA
58 Subj. of the 2017 memoir “Working on the Dark Side of the Moon” : NSA
59 British weight : TONNE
60 Something to build on : LOT

Down

1 Reach : ACCESS
2 Ostentatious : FLASHY
3 ___ oil : CASTOR
4 Richard who composed the music for “Damn Yankees” and “The Pajama Game” : ADLER
5 Cheesy crust : GRATIN
6 “___ feste Burg ist unser Gott” (Bach cantata) : EIN
7 Narrow part : NECK
8 Station : TRAIN STOP
9 Venomous snake : MOCCASIN
10 The whole time : ALL ALONG
11 Joining, with “up” : TEAMING …
13 Subject of the Supreme Court cases Loving v. Virginia and Obergefell v. Hodges : MARRIAGE
15 Edge : CUSP
17 One looking for bugs : BETA TESTER
21 “Go right ahead!” : SEE IF I CARE!
23 Conflict that saw the sieges of Ladysmith and Kimberley : BOER WAR
27 One overseas : UNO
30 Modern game equipment : VR HEADSET
32 That’s the ticket! : CITATION
33 Sprint and such : TELECOMS
34 Home of the Isle of Man : IRISH SEA
35 Cow or chicken follower : POX
36 Bad choices in it might cost you an arm and a leg : HANGMAN
40 Like the lion slain in Hercules’ first labor : NEMEAN
42 Foreign correspondent, maybe : PEN PAL
43 Classic opera set in Cyprus : OTELLO
44 Cross with : SORE AT
46 Have trouble sleeping, say : TOSS
48 Run out : LAPSE
50 Daring way to fly : SOLO
54 Calculus calculation, for short : MIN

13 thoughts on “0518-19 NY Times Crossword 18 May 19, Saturday”

  1. Bill,
    I am sure you would not proclaim your pride in an Irishman’s design of the White House if you knew that slaves were abused to execute these plans. I think it would be a modest gesture to revise your remarks about 19 across.

    A fellow anonymous Irishman

  2. 1:05:05…1 error….I spelled Boer as Boar …not bad considering it was two against one and one of the two was Mr Agard

  3. Worked this one late as I had to spend the morning and late afternoon at an amusement park. I was not amused. No errors and happy to atone for a gaffe or two Thurs/Fri.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.