0523-19 NY Times Crossword 23 May 19, Thursday

Constructed by: Alex Vratsanos
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answer(s): Fourteen Points

The FOURTEEN themed answers need the word POINT added to the end to make sense:

  • 59A With 61-Across, what President Wilson proposed for a lasting peace … or what’s missing from the answers to the starred clues : FOURTEEN …
  • 61A See 59-Across : … POINTS
  • 10A *The outcome of a story might hinge on one : PLOT (POINT)
  • 17A *One might say “Home Sweet Home” : NEEDLE(POINT)
  • 18A *Important spot on the body for acupuncture : PRESSURE (POINT)
  • 30A *Viewing angle : STAND(POINT)
  • 48A *Kind of average : GRADE (POINT)
  • 67A *School overlooking the Hudson : WEST (POINT)
  • 1D *Locate precisely : PIN(POINT)
  • 7D *Malcolm Gladwell best seller, with “The” : TIPPING (POINT)
  • 23D *Kind of pen : BALL(POINT)
  • 28D *Touchdown follower : EXTRA (POINT)
  • 33D *Aid in a speaker’s presentation : POWER(POINT)
  • 41D *Part of a scatter diagram : DATA(POINT)
  • 43D *Sycophant’s reward : BROWNIE (POINT)
  • 63D *Big moment in a tennis match : SET (POINT)

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

Bill’s time: 10m 17s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Game with a maximum score of 3,333,360 : PAC-MAN

The Pac-Man arcade game was first released in Japan in 1980, and is as popular today as it ever was. The game features characters that are maneuvered around the screen to eat up dots and earn points. The name comes from the Japanese folk hero “Paku”, known for his voracious appetite. The spin-off game called Ms. Pac-Man was released in 1981.

7 Host Allen of TV’s “Chopped” : TED

Ted Allen is a TV personality who found fame as the food and wine expert on the Bravo show “Queer Eye”. He started as host of the cooking competition show “Chopped” in 2009.

17 *One might say “Home Sweet Home” : NEEDLE(POINT)

“Home! Sweet Home!” is a song that has been around at least since 1827. The melody was composed by Englishman Sir Henry Bishop, using lyrics written by American John Howard Payne.

Mid pleasures and palaces though we may roam,
Be it ever so humble, there’s no place like home;
A charm from the skies seems to hallow us there,
Which seek thro’ the world, is ne’er met elsewhere.
Home! Home!
Sweet, sweet home!
There’s no place like home
There’s no place like home!

18 *Important spot on the body for acupuncture : PRESSURE (POINT)

Acupressure and acupuncture are related alternative medical techniques. Both aim to clear blockages in the flow of life energy through the body’s meridians. The treatment is given by stimulating “acupoints’ in the body, by applying pressure in the case of acupressure, and by applying needles in the case of acupuncture.

34 ___ boots : UGG

Uggs are sheepskin boots that were first produced in Australia and New Zealand. The original Uggs have sheepskin fleece on the inside for comfort and insulation, with a tanned leather surface on the outside for durability. “Ugg” is a generic term Down Under, although it’s a brand name here in the US.

35 Who said “When I’m ready to fight, my opponent has a better chance for surviving a forest fire wearing gasoline drawers” : MR T

Mr. T’s real name is Laurence Tero Tureaud. Mr. T is famous for many things, including the wearing of excessive amounts of jewelry. He started this habit when he was working as a bouncer, wearing jewelry items that had been left behind by customers at a nightclub so that the items might be recognized and claimed. It was also as a bouncer that he adopted the name Mr. T. His catch phrase comes from the movie “Rocky III”. In the film, before he goes up against Rocky Balboa, Mr. T says, “No, I don’t hate Balboa, but I pity the fool”. He parlayed that line into quite a bit of success. He had a reality TV show called “I Pity the Fool”, and produced a motivational video called “Be Somebody … or Be Somebody’s Fool!”.

42 With 23-Across, modicum : WEE …
(23A See 42-Across : … BIT)

A modicum is a small portion, with “modicum” coming into English from Latin, via Scottish. “Modicum” is Latin for “a little”.

45 Prominent 1990s Washington duo : GORES

Al Gore was born in Washington DC, and is the son of Al Gore, Sr., then a US Representative for the state of Tennessee. After deferring his military service in order to attend Harvard, the younger Gore became eligible for the draft on graduation. Many of his classmates found ways of avoiding the draft, but Gore decided to serve and even took the “tougher” option of joining the army as an enlisted man. Actor Tommy Lee Jones shared a house with Gore in college and says that his buddy told him that even if he could find a way around the draft, someone with less options than him would have to go in his place and that was just wrong.

Tipper Gore is the former wife of Vice President Al Gore, although the couple have been separated since 2010. Ms. Gore was born Mary Elizabeth Aitcheson. The “Tipper” nickname comes from one of her favorite nursery rhymes, called “Tippy, Tippy, Tin”.

50 C7H5N3O6 : TNT

“TNT” is an abbreviation for “trinitrotoluene”. Trinitrotoluene was first produced in 1863 by the German chemist Joseph Wilbrand, who developed it for use as a yellow dye. TNT is relatively difficult to detonate so it was on the market as a dye for some years before its more explosive properties were discovered.

51 Development centers? : UTERI

“Uterus” (plural “uteri”) is the Latin word for “womb”.

52 Comic actor Seth : ROGEN

Seth Rogen is a Canadian comedian who got a lot of credit for his supporting role in “The 40-Year-Old Virgin”. That led to him being cast as the lead in the 1970 film “Knocked Up”. Rogen also co-directed and and co-starred in the movie “The Interview”, which created a huge ruckus in North Korea.

57 Gulager of old TV and film : CLU

Clu Gulager is a television and film actor. He is best known for playing Billy the Kid in the TV show “The Tall Man” in the early sixties, and then for playing Emmett Ryker in “The Virginian” in the late sixties.

59 With 61-Across, what President Wilson proposed for a lasting peace … or what’s missing from the answers to the starred clues : FOURTEEN …

61 See 59-Across : … POINTS

President Woodrow Wilson proposed fourteen principles to be used for peace negotiations towards the end of WWI. The president presented his fourteen points in a speech to the US Congress in January of 1918. The Treaty of Versailles that marked the end of the war did have significant differences with the US proposals, but President Wilson was awarded the 1919 Nobel Peace Prize for his peacemaking efforts.

64 Fictional schnauzer : ASTA

Asta is the wonderful little dog in the superb “The Thin Man” series of films starring William Powell and Myrna Loy (as Nick and Nora Charles). In the original story by Dashiell Hammett, Asta was a female Schnauzer, but on screen Asta was played by a wire-haired fox terrier called “Skippy”. Skippy was also the dog in “Bringing up Baby” with Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn, the one who kept stealing the dinosaur bone. Skippy retired in 1939, so Asta was played by other dogs in the remainder of “The Thin Man” films.

The schnauzer breed of dog originated in Germany in the 1600s. The name “schnauzer” is a colloquial term meaning “moustache”, derived from the German for “snout”. The name is apt, given the breed’s distinctive snout.

66 Nativity scene : CRECHE

In the Christian tradition, a nativity scene (also “crèche”) is a display of representing the the scene of the birth of Jesus. Nativity scenes might be subjects for paintings, for example, although the term is usually used for seasonal displays associated with the Christmas season.

67 *School overlooking the Hudson : WEST (POINT)

West Point is a military reservation in New York State, located north of New York City. West Point was first occupied by the Continental Army way back in 1778, making it the longest, continually-occupied military post in the country. Cadet training has taken place at the garrison since 1794, although Congress funding for a US Military Academy (USMA) didn’t start until 1802. The first female cadets were admitted to West Point in 1976, and as of 2018, about 15% of all new cadets were women.

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.

69 Drill command : TEN-HUT

“Ten-hut!” is a term used in the US military that means “Come to attention!”.

Down

2 Good “Wheel of Fortune” buy for CHEESE WHEEL : AN E

Contestants have been spinning the “Wheel of Fortune” since the game show first aired in 1975.

4 Grp. that trademarked the phrase “Helping Survivors Survive” : MADD

Candace Lightner lost her 13-year-old child to a drink driver in 1980. Soon after, Lightner formed the group Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD).

6 By birth : NEE

“Née” is the French word for “born” when referring to a female. The male equivalent is “né”. The term “née” is mainly used in English when referring to a married woman’s birth name, assuming that she has adopted her husbands name, e.g. Michelle Obama née Robinson, and Melania Trump née Knavs.

9 Notarized paper : DEED

A notary public is a public officer licensed to perform specific legal actions in non-contentious legal matters. The main duties are to administer oaths, take affidavits and witness the execution of documents.

10 Attire not usually worn outdoors, informally : PJS

Our word “pajamas” (sometimes “PJs” or “jammies”) comes to us from the Indian subcontinent, where “pai jamahs” were loose fitting pants tied at the waist and worn at night by locals and ultimately by the Europeans living there. And “pajamas” is another of those words that I had to learn to spell differently when I came to America. On the other side of the Atlantic, the spelling is “pyjamas”.

11 World’s most-visited museum : LOUVRE

The Musée du Louvre has the distinction of being the most visited art museum in the whole world. The collection is housed in the magnificent Louvre Palace that was the seat of power in France until 1682, when Louis XIV moved to Versailles.

12 Sweet Rosie of old song : O’GRADY

“Sweet Rosie O’Grady” is a 1943 musical film starring Betty Grable as an American singer intent on marrying an English duke to better her situation.

13 ___ fly : TSETSE

The tsetse fly is responsible for the transmission of sleeping sickness, a disease that is more correctly called African trypanosomiasis. The disease is only observed in humans who have been bitten by a tsetse fly that is infected with the trypanosome parasitic protozoan.

19 Title usually abbreviated to its first, fifth and sixth letters : SENORA

The equivalent of “Mrs.” in French is “Mme.” (Madame), in Spanish is “Sra.” (Señora) and in Portuguese is also “Sra.” (Senhora).

23 *Kind of pen : BALL(POINT)

The ballpoint pen was invented by László Bíró in the late thirties, a Hungarian newspaper editor. Over in Ireland we use the term “biro” as a generic word for “ballpoint pen”.

26 Conservatory piece : ETUDE

An étude is a short instrumental composition that is usually quite hard to play and is intended to help the performer master a particular technique. “Étude” is the French word for “study”. Études are commonly performed on the piano.

28 *Touchdown follower : EXTRA (POINT)

That would be football.

33 *Aid in a speaker’s presentation : POWER(POINT)

Given that PowerPoint is a Microsoft product, it is perhaps a bit of a paradox that the original application that became PowerPoint was designed for the Macintosh computer. This first release was called “Presenter”. The company that designed Presenter was purchased by Microsoft in 1987.

35 Fort ___, Md. : MEADE

Fort George G. Meade is located near Odenton, Maryland and is most famous these days as the location of the headquarters of the National Security Agency (NSA).

40 Author Sarah ___ Jewett : ORNE

Sarah Orne Jewett was a novelist who wrote stories about life in and around where she lived in South Berwick, Maine.

43 *Sycophant’s reward : BROWNIE (POINT)

A sycophant is a selfish person, one who flatters. The term comes from the Greek “sykophantes” which originally meant “one who shows the fig”. This phrase described a vulgar gesture made with the thumb and two fingers.

45 Hearty laugh : GUFFAW

“Guffaw”, meaning “boisterous laugh”, is an imitative word that is Scottish in origin.

46 Useless : OTIOSE

“Otiose” means “lazy, indolent”, and comes from the Latin word “otium” meaning “leisure”. Use of the term has extended to mean “without profit, futile”.

48 Homer’s home : GREECE

Homer was a famous poet of ancient Greece who is believed to be the author of the two classic epic poems “Iliad” and “Odyssey”. However, some scholars believe that Homer did not actually exist, but rather he is the personification of oral tradition that was passed down through the ages.

49 Rerun : ENCORE

“Encore!” is French for “again, one more time!”, and is a shout that an audience member will make here in North America to request another song, say. But, the term is not used this way in France. Rather, the audience will shout “Bis!”, which is the Italian for “twice!”

56 Certain cricket match : TEST

Test matches are played between international teams in the sport of cricket, although the teams have to be ranked as “first-class” in order to play. A test match can take five days to produce a result.

58 It might be attached to a car : LIEN

A lien is the right that one has to retain or secure someone’s property until a debt is paid. When an individual takes out a car loan, for example, the lending bank is usually a lien holder. The bank releases the lien on the car when the loan is paid in full.

60 Animal feared by Winston in “1984” : RAT

The protagonist in George Orwell’s novel “Nineteen Eighty-Four” is Winston Smith, just an ordinary individual. Winston is tormented by O’Brien, a member of the Inner Party who poses as someone open to counter-revolutionary resistance.

61 Survey fig. : PCT

Percent (pct.)

62 July 4, 1776, for one: Abbr. : THU

On 11 June 1776, the Continental Congress appointed a committee of five people to draft a declaration of independence. Included in the five were John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. Adams persuaded the other committee members to give Jefferson the task of writing the first draft. A resolution of independence was passed by the Congress on 2 July 1776. The final draft of the declaration was approved by the Congress two days later, on July 4th. John Adams wrote a letter to his wife that included an assertion that July 2nd (the date of the resolution of independence) would become a great American holiday. Of course Adams was wrong, and it was actually the date the Declaration of Independence was finalized that came to be celebrated annually.

63 *Big moment in a tennis match : SET (POINT)

“Game, set and match” is a phrase used in tennis.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Game with a maximum score of 3,333,360 : PAC-MAN
7 Host Allen of TV’s “Chopped” : TED
10 *The outcome of a story might hinge on one : PLOT (POINT)
14 Get some air : INHALE
15 Hotheadedness : IRE
16 Brief, abrupt changes in direction : JOGS
17 *One might say “Home Sweet Home” : NEEDLE(POINT)
18 *Important spot on the body for acupuncture : PRESSURE (POINT)
20 Tempest in a teapot : ADO
21 Aid for making a sand castle : SPADE
22 Vineyard vessel : VAT
23 See 42-Across : … BIT
25 “Victory is ours!” : WE WIN!
27 Unlikely homecoming court members : NERDS
29 Contribute : ADD
30 *Viewing angle : STAND(POINT)
31 White-petaled daisy : OXEYE
32 Vault : LEAP
34 ___ boots : UGG
35 Who said “When I’m ready to fight, my opponent has a better chance for surviving a forest fire wearing gasoline drawers” : MR T
36 Bet (on) : LAY ODDS
38 “My heavens!” : DEAR GOD!
42 With 23-Across, modicum : WEE …
43 Nursing ___ : BRA
44 Vibe : AURA
45 Prominent 1990s Washington duo : GORES
48 *Kind of average : GRADE (POINT)
50 C7H5N3O6 : TNT
51 Development centers? : UTERI
52 Comic actor Seth : ROGEN
53 Fairly small hail size : PEA
54 Subtract a year or two from one’s age, say : FIB
55 Mentally goes [grumble grumble grumble] : STEWS
57 Gulager of old TV and film : CLU
59 With 61-Across, what President Wilson proposed for a lasting peace … or what’s missing from the answers to the starred clues : FOURTEEN …
61 See 59-Across : … POINTS
64 Fictional schnauzer : ASTA
65 Area of educ. : SCI
66 Nativity scene : CRECHE
67 *School overlooking the Hudson : WEST (POINT)
68 Certain intersection : TEE
69 Drill command : TEN-HUT

Down

1 *Locate precisely : PIN(POINT)
2 Good “Wheel of Fortune” buy for CHEESE WHEEL : AN E
3 Time to indulge : CHEAT DAY
4 Grp. that trademarked the phrase “Helping Survivors Survive” : MADD
5 Provides (for) : ALLOWS
6 By birth : NEE
7 *Malcolm Gladwell best seller, with “The” : TIPPING (POINT)
8 Something to run : ERRAND
9 Notarized paper : DEED
10 Attire not usually worn outdoors, informally : PJS
11 World’s most-visited museum : LOUVRE
12 Sweet Rosie of old song : O’GRADY
13 ___ fly : TSETSE
19 Title usually abbreviated to its first, fifth and sixth letters : SENORA
21 Certain curtains : SWAGS
23 *Kind of pen : BALL(POINT)
24 Flash of genius, say : IDEA
26 Conservatory piece : ETUDE
28 *Touchdown follower : EXTRA (POINT)
33 *Aid in a speaker’s presentation : POWER(POINT)
35 Fort ___, Md. : MEADE
37 Let up : DESIST
38 Goes on and on and on : DRAGS
39 Visceral shock : GUT PUNCH
40 Author Sarah ___ Jewett : ORNE
41 *Part of a scatter diagram : DATA(POINT)
43 *Sycophant’s reward : BROWNIE (POINT)
45 Hearty laugh : GUFFAW
46 Useless : OTIOSE
47 Counters : REBUTS
48 Homer’s home : GREECE
49 Rerun : ENCORE
56 Certain cricket match : TEST
58 It might be attached to a car : LIEN
60 Animal feared by Winston in “1984” : RAT
61 Survey fig. : PCT
62 July 4, 1776, for one: Abbr. : THU
63 *Big moment in a tennis match : SET (POINT)

9 thoughts on “0523-19 NY Times Crossword 23 May 19, Thursday”

  1. Easy enough once the theme was revealed to me. Impressed that Alex worked- in fourteen starred clues and wrapped it up at 59/61 Across. Nice curve ball at 64 Across. Good stuff.

  2. Easy enough once the theme was revealed to me. Impressed that Alex worked- in fourteen starred clues and wrapped it up at 59/61 Across. Nice curve ball at 64 Across. Good stuff.

  3. I missed one word: I had NIP instead of BIT for 23-Across. That caused me to miss two other crossing words. Except for that goof I otherwise had everything correct. This puzzle was *totally* about the theme. Very nice construction by Alex Vratsanos.

  4. There was 1 error for sure., #64 Fictional schnauzer : ASTA. The dog in The Think Man was a Wire Fox Hair Terrier not a Schnauzer.

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