0802-19 NY Times Crossword 2 Aug 19, Friday

Constructed by: Andrew J. Ries
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: None

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

Bill’s time: 12m 01s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

7 Reproductive part : PISTIL

The stamen is the male reproductive organ of a flower. The part of the stamen known as the anther sits on a stalk called the filament that carries the pollen. The pollen is picked up by insects, especially bees, who then transfer pollen from flower to flower. The pistil is the female reproductive organ, and it accepts the pollen.

15 Cause of wheezing : ASTHMA

In the human body, the windpipe (trachea) divides into the left and right bronchi, which enter the lungs. Inflammation of the bronchi can cause the airways to contract and narrow, leading to the condition known as asthma.

24 Big biceps, in slang : GUNS

The biceps muscle is made up of two bundles of muscle, both of which terminate at the same point near the elbow. The heads of the bundles terminate at different points on the scapula or shoulder blade. “Biceps” is Latin for “two-headed”.

28 Some works by poets laureate : ODES

A poet laureate is a poet who is officially pointed by some institution to compose works for special occasions. The US Poet Laureate is more correctly known as the Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress.

29 Crime for which Al Capone went to prison : TAX EVASION

The Chicago gangster Al Capone was eventually jailed for tax evasion. He was given a record 11-year sentence in federal prison, of which he served 8 years. He left prison suffering from dementia caused by late-stage syphilis. Capone suffered through 7-8 sickly years before passing away in 1947.

35 PC “brain” : CPU

The central processing unit (CPU) is the main component on the motherboard of a computer. The CPU is the part of the computer that carries out most of the functions required by a program. Nowadays you can get CPUs in everything from cars to telephones.

36 Character raised in “Rosemary’s Baby” : APOSTROPHE

There’s an apostrophe in the word “Rosemary’s”.

“Rosemary’s Baby” is a novel by Ira Levin. It is a horror story, and was made into a very creepy 1968 film of the same name starring Mia Farrow. Levin published a sequel in 1997 titled “Son of Rosemary”. He dedicated the sequel to Farrow.

39 One relatively close either way? : SIS

The word “sis” is palindromic, reads the same in either direction.

40 Female role in “Pulp Fiction” : MIA

Uma Thurman started her working career as a fashion model, at the age of 15. She appeared in her first movies at 17, with her most acclaimed early role being Cécile de Volanges in 1988’s “Dangerous Liaisons”. Thurman’s career really took off when she played the gangster’s moll Mia in Quentin Tarantino’s “Pulp Fiction” in 1994. My favorite of all Thurman’s movies is “The Truth About Cats & Dogs”, a less acclaimed romcom released in 1996. She took a few years off from acting from 1998 until 2002 following the birth of her first child. It was Tarantino who relaunched her career, giving her the lead in the “Kill Bill” films.

I’m not a big fan of director Quentin Tarantino. His movies are too violent for me, and the size of his ego just turns me right off. Having said that, I think “Pulp Fiction” is a remarkable film. If you can look past the violence, it’s really well written. And what a legacy it has. John Travolta’s career was on the rocks and he did the film for practically no money, and it turned out to be a re-launch for him. Uma Thurman became a top celebrity overnight from her role. Even Bruce Willis got some good out of it, putting an end to a string of poorly-received performances.

44 Theater ticket option : MEZZANINE

A mezzanine in a building is a low story between two taller ones. The term came to be used for the lowest balcony in a theater in the 1920s.

46 Debtor’s letters : IOU

I owe you (IOU)

47 Ones flying in circles : BUZZARDS

The turkey vulture is also known simply as the buzzard. It is found anywhere from southern Canada right down to the southern tip of South America. The turkey vulture feeds on carrion, using its sharp eyesight and very keen sense of smell. In fact when seeking out nourishment, it flies low enough so that it can pick up the gasses given off as the body of a dead animal begins to decay.

54 Noted library opened in 2001 : ITUNES

iTunes is a very, very successful software application from Apple. It’s basically a media player that works on platforms like the iPad, iPhone and iPod. It connects seamlessly to the iTunes store, where you can spend all kinds of money. Plans are afoot to break up iTunes into separate applications focused on music, podcasts and TV.

55 Traveler who picks up three companions in a classic film : DOROTHY

Dorothy Gale is the protagonist in L. Frank Baum’s book “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”, and indeed a major character in almost all of the “Oz” series of novels. There is a suggestion that the young heroine was named for Baum’s own niece Dorothy Gage, who died as an infant.

Down

2 Affected response to an allegation : MOI?

“Moi” is the French word for “me”. One might say “Moi?” when feigning innocence.

3 Prickly husk : BUR

“Bur” is a variant spelling of the word “burr”. Both terms apply to a seed vessel that has hooks or prickles on the outside.

5 First podcast to win a Peabody Award (2015) : SERIAL

“Serial” is an investigative journalism podcast that is a spinoff from the radio show “This American Life”.

The Peabody Awards have been presented annually since 1941 to individuals and organizations for excellence in broadcasting. They are named for businessman and philanthropist George Foster Peabody, who provided the funds to establish the awards program.

7 Fruit in the custard apple family : PAPAW

The papaw (also “pawpaw”) tree is native to North America and has a fruit that looks similar to a papaya. Papaw probably gets its name from the word papaya, but papaw and papaya are two distinct species.

The custard apple or sugar apple is the fruit of a small deciduous tree native to the New World. It is also called a “sweetsop” in some parts of the world. The soursop, the fruit of an evergreen tree that’s related to the paw-paw, has a more sour taste.

8 “Here’s my two cents …” : I SAY …

To put in one’s two cents is to add one’s opinion. The American expression derives from the older English version, which is “to put in one’s two pennies’ worth”.

10 Tony winner set in River City, Iowa : THE MUSIC MAN

“The Music Man” is a musical by Meredith Willson. The show was a big hit on Broadway in 1957. “The Music Man” won the first ever Grammy Award for the “Best Original Cast Album”. The show is set in the fictional River City, Iowa.

14 Singer with the #1 albums “Stars Dance” (2013) and “Revival” (2015) : SELENA GOMEZ

Selena Gomez is a young actress and singer from Grand Prairie, Texas. Gomez’s first television role was in the children’s show “Barney & Friends”. She then played the lead in the TV series “Wizards of Waverly Place”. Offscreen, Gomez made a splash as the girlfriend of Canadian singer Justin Bieber for a couple of years.

20 Green protector : WATER HAZARD

That would be golf.

25 Tiny bit : IOTA

Iota is the ninth letter in the Greek alphabet, and one that gave rise to our letters I and J. We use the word “iota” to portray something very small, as it is the smallest of all Greek letters.

27 Roll of bread : WAD

The use of the word “bread” as a slang term for money dates back to the 1940s, and is derived from the term “breadwinner”, meaning the person in the house who puts bread on the table, brings in the money.

29 Road goo : TAR

The terms “tarmac” and “macadam” are short for “tarmacadam”. In the 1800s, Scotsman John Loudon McAdam developed a style of road known as “macadam”. Macadam had a top-layer of crushed stone and gravel laid over larger stones. The macadam also had a convex cross-section so that water tended to drain to the sides. In 1901, a significant improvement was made by English engineer Edgar Purnell Hooley who introduced tar into the macadam, improving the resistance to water damage and practically eliminating dust. The “tar-penetration macadam” is the basis of what we now call tarmac.

30 Peace sign : VEE

One has to be careful making that V-sign depending where you are in the world. Where I came from, the V-for-victory (or peace) sign has to be made with the palm facing outwards. If the sign is made with the palm facing inwards, it can be interpreted as a very obscene gesture.

31 Pontificate : OPINE

To pontificate is to issue dogmatic decrees with a pompous air. Back in 1818, the word had the more literal meaning, “to act as a pontiff, pope”.

32 Titian’s “Venus Anadyomene,” e.g. : NUDE

Giovanni Bellini was a painter from Venice who was active during the Italian Renaissance. One of Bellini’s students was Tiziano Vecelli, who is better known in English as “Titian”.

34 Lbs. and ozs. : WTS

Our term “ounce” comes from the Latin “uncia”, which was 1/12 of a “libra”, the Roman “pound”. “Uncia” is also the derivation of our word “inch”, 1/12 of a foot.

38 “Friends” co-star : ANISTON

Jennifer Aniston won a 2002 Emmy for playing Rachel on the great sitcom “Friends”. Jennifer’s parents are both actors, and her godfather was the actor Telly Savalas.

41 One of the Gandhis : INDIRA

Indira Gandhi’s father was Jawaharlal Nehru, Prime Minister of India. Indira herself became prime minister in 1966. She was assassinated in 1984 by two of her own bodyguards as she was walking to meet Peter Ustinov, who was about to interview her for Irish television.

42 Shankbone : TIBIA

The tibia is the shin bone, and is the larger of the two bones right below the knee. It is the strongest weight-bearing bone in the human body. “Tibia” is the Roman name for a Greek flute and it is thought that the shin bone was given the same name because flutes were often fashioned out of the shin bones of animals.

44 Modern handbag portmanteau : MURSE

A “murse” is a “man purse”. What’s wrong with pockets …?

47 Zymurgist’s interest : BEER

Zymology (also called “zymurgy”) is the scientific term for fermentation, and is a subject much-studied and understood by brewers.

49 Animal that doesn’t have a sound coming out of its head? : GNU

The head letter in the word “gnu” is silent.

52 P : RHO

Rho is the Greek letter that looks just like our Roman letter “p”, although it is equivalent to the Roman letter R.

53 Aleppo’s land: Abbr. : SYR

Aleppo is the largest city in Syria and is located not far from Damascus, the nation’s capital. Aleppo owes it size and history of prosperity to its location at the end of the Silk Road, the trade route that linked Asia to Europe (and other locations). The Suez Canal was opened up in 1869 bringing a new route for transport of goods, and so Aleppo’s prosperity declined over the past one hundred years or so. The city’s population has suffered terribly since the start of the Syrian Civil War, with the Battle of Aleppo raging from 2012 to 2016.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 General plan? : AMBUSH
7 Reproductive part : PISTIL
13 Locks that might not be totally secure? : TOUPEES
15 Cause of wheezing : ASTHMA
16 Put on the line, perhaps : AIR-DRIED
18 Check names : PAYEES
19 It gets cleared for takeoff : AISLEWAY
21 Bit of gymnastics equipment : MAT
22 Important thing to know, if you will : ESTATE LAW
24 Big biceps, in slang : GUNS
25 Photos from drones, e.g. : INTEL
26 Trail mix morsel : NUT
27 “How ___ it?” : WAS
28 Some works by poets laureate : ODES
29 Crime for which Al Capone went to prison : TAX EVASION
33 Yank : TUG
34 Put on the line : WAGERED
35 PC “brain” : CPU
36 Character raised in “Rosemary’s Baby” : APOSTROPHE
38 In the thick of : AMID
39 One relatively close either way? : SIS
40 Female role in “Pulp Fiction” : MIA
41 Silly : INANE
42 Pitfall : TRAP
44 Theater ticket option : MEZZANINE
46 Debtor’s letters : IOU
47 Ones flying in circles : BUZZARDS
48 BBQ offering : BURGER
50 Settlers of disputes : ARBITERS
54 Noted library opened in 2001 : ITUNES
55 Traveler who picks up three companions in a classic film : DOROTHY
56 Pledge to : ASSURE
57 Ill will : RANCOR

Down

1 One-time connection : … AT A …
2 Affected response to an allegation : MOI?
3 Prickly husk : BUR
4 Keeps current : UPDATES
5 First podcast to win a Peabody Award (2015) : SERIAL
6 Job requiring a car, say : HEIST
7 Fruit in the custard apple family : PAPAW
8 “Here’s my two cents …” : I SAY …
9 Dump : STY
10 Tony winner set in River City, Iowa : THE MUSIC MAN
11 “Um … er …” : I MEAN …
12 Doesn’t die : LASTS
14 Singer with the #1 albums “Stars Dance” (2013) and “Revival” (2015) : SELENA GOMEZ
17 Pie that comes “fully loaded” : DELUXE PIZZA
20 Green protector : WATER HAZARD
22 Become, finally : END UP
23 Colorado’s official state dinosaur : STEGOSAURUS
24 Wonderful time : GAS
25 Tiny bit : IOTA
27 Roll of bread : WAD
29 Road goo : TAR
30 Peace sign : VEE
31 Pontificate : OPINE
32 Titian’s “Venus Anadyomene,” e.g. : NUDE
34 Lbs. and ozs. : WTS
37 Tiny bit : SIP
38 “Friends” co-star : ANISTON
41 One of the Gandhis : INDIRA
42 Shankbone : TIBIA
43 Romps : ROUTS
44 Modern handbag portmanteau : MURSE
45 Shady area : ARBOR
47 Zymurgist’s interest : BEER
49 Animal that doesn’t have a sound coming out of its head? : GNU
51 Series end : ETC
52 P : RHO
53 Aleppo’s land: Abbr. : SYR

15 thoughts on “0802-19 NY Times Crossword 2 Aug 19, Friday”

  1. 25:46. Clue for APOSTROPHE was evil. Generally a smooth solve except I had all kinds of issues and mental blocks in the upper left, but I eventually prevailed.

    Best –

    1. That clue for APOSTROPHE definitely got an “Aw, you have got to be kidding!” (and a chuckle) out of me … 😜.

    2. The animal without a sound coming out of its head was pretty clever (and groan-inducing), as well. All in all, a clever set of clues … 😜

  2. No errors but I had to set it down for awhile and come back with a fresh brain and set of eyes. Lots of clever clueing.

  3. 16:14, no errors. Same reaction as others to APOSTROPHE, so vague and yet so obvious. Good puzzle, everything made sense in the end.

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