0910-19 NY Times Crossword 10 Sep 19, Tuesday

Constructed by: Ethan Cooper
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answer: BLT

Themed answers each comprise three words, starting with the letters BLT, but in varying order:

  • 56A Sandwich whose initials have been rearranged in five other ways in this puzzle : BLT
  • 18A Absolutely adored : LOVED TO BITS
  • 23A The police, metaphorically : THIN BLUE LINE
  • 37A Body art that might be revealed by hip-hugger jeans : LOWER-BACK TATTOO
  • 49A “Uh-oh” : THIS LOOKS BAD
  • 56A Like a millennial who’s a huge fan of 1960s-’70s music, it’s said : BORN TOO LATE

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

Bill’s time: 6m 57s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 “Ask ___” (newspaper advice column) : AMY

Amy Dickinson is the author and journalist behind the syndicated advice column “Ask Amy”. I listen to Dickinson quite often on the great PBS radio game show called “Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me!”

4 Bounce, as off a pool table cushion : CAROM

A carom is a ricochet, the bouncing of some projectile off a surface. Carom has come to mean the banking of a billiard ball, the bouncing of the ball off the side of the table.

9 Actress Hayek : SALMA

Salma Hayek is a Mexican actress. Hayek was the first Mexican national to be nominated for a Best Actress Oscar, for her portrayal of artist Frida Kahlo in the 2002 movie “Frida”.

14 Deer with no antlers : DOE

A male deer is usually called a buck, and a female is a doe. However, the male red deer is usually referred to as a stag. The males of even larger species of deer are often called bulls, and females cows. In older English, male deer of over 5 years were called harts, and females of over 3 years were called hinds. The young of small species are known as fawns, and of larger species are called calves. All very confusing …

15 Singer with the best-selling albums “19,” “21” and “25” : ADELE

“Adele” is the stage name of English singer Adele Adkins. Adele’s debut album is “19”, named after the age she was during the album’s production. Her second album was even more successful than the first. Called “21”, the second album was released three years after the first, when Adele was three years older. Her third studio album “25”, released in 2015, broke the first-week sales records in both the UK and the US.

17 Jan., Feb., Mar., etc. : MOS

The original Roman calendar had only ten months, starting with “Mars” (March). The months of “Ianuarius” and “Februarius” were added to the end of the year, supposedly by Numa Pompilius, the second king of Rome. Julius Caesar decided in 46 BC that the year should start at the beginning of “Ianuarius” instead of “Mars”, which moved our January and February to the beginning of the year.

27 Daughter of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes : SURI

Tom Cruise’s third wife was actress Katie Holmes The high-profile couple were dubbed “TomKat” by the entertainment media. Cruise and Holmes had one child together, a daughter Suri, who was born in 2006. TomKat divorced in 2012.

28 Destination for European hikers : ALPS

There are eight Alpine countries:

  • Austria
  • Slovenia
  • France
  • Switzerland
  • Liechtenstein
  • Germany
  • Monaco
  • Italy

29 Versatile blackjack card : ACE

In the card game blackjack, an ace has the point value of one or eleven. When one of the two cards dealt to a player is an ace, the hand is called “soft”. This means that the player cannot go bust by taking another card, as the ace can be revalued at “one” if necessary in order to stay under 21.

34 Rocket-building company since 2002 : SPACEX

SpaceX (Space Exploration Technologies Corporation) is a space transportation company that was founded in 2002 by Elon Musk, veteran of PayPal and Tesla Motors. In 2012, SpaceX became the first private concern to send a spacecraft to the International Space Station. Apparently, SpaceX is the lowest-price player in the game.

41 ___ de Tocqueville, author of “Democracy in America” : ALEXIS

Alexis de Tocqueville was a French politician and historian who is famous in the US for his two-volume text “On Democracy in America” (“De La Démocratie en Amérique”), which was published in 1935 and 1849.

42 Oscar-winning Berry : HALLE

Actress Halle Berry was the first African-American woman to win a Best Actress Oscar, which she received for her performance in the 2001 movie “Monster’s Ball”. Berry also won a Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actress in 2005 for playing the title role in “Catwoman”, and she very graciously accepted that award in person. Good for her!

45 Senior’s org. : AARP

“AARP” is now the official name for the interest group that used to be called the American Association of Retired Persons. The name change reflects the current focus of the group on all Americans aged 50 or over, as opposed to just people who have retired.

55 “Aida” composer : VERDI

Giuseppe Verdi was an Italian composer, mainly of operas, who was active during the Romantic era. Equally as famous as Verdi’s operas, are arias from those operas such as “La donna è mobile” from “Rigoletto”, “The Drinking Song” from “La Traviata” and “The Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves” from “Nabucco”. Verdi was a big fan of William Shakespeare and wrote three operas based on the Bard’s plays: “Macbeth”, “Otello” and “Falstaff”.

“Aida” is a celebrated opera by Giuseppe Verdi that is based on a scenario written by French Egyptologist Auguste Mariette. Mariette also designed the costumes and stages for the opening performance. The opera was first staged in 1871 in an opera house in Cairo. In the storyline, Aida is an Ethiopian princess brought into Egypt as a slave. Radames is an Egyptian commander who falls in love with her, and then complications arise!

61 Source of revenue for many states : LOTTO

Lotto America was a lottery game offered by the Multi-State Lottery Association (MUSL) from 1988 until 1992. The MUSL is a consortium of US states that band together to maximize the prizes that can be offered. Lotto America was replaced by Powerball in 1992, although a version of Lotto America was reintroduced by 13 states in 2017.

62 Dot on a computer screen : PIXEL

A pixel is a dot, and the base element that goes to make up a digital image.

65 Daring base runner’s goal : STEAL

That would be baseball.

Down

2 Kind of pork at a Chinese restaurant : MOO SHU

Moo shu pork (also “mu shu pork”) is a traditional dish from northern China, with the main ingredients being shredded pork and scrambled egg. In North America, the dish is served with tortilla-like wrappers that are sometimes referred to as “moo shu pancakes”.

4 ___ Carr, best-selling author of historical thrillers : CALEB

One of Caleb Carr’s novels is a latter-day Sherlock Holmes mystery called “The Italian Secretary”. The novel was written as a homage to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (using the Holmes character with the permission of the Doyle estate). I am a big fan of Sherlock Holmes stories, so I must put this one on my reading list …

7 Part of a World Cup chant : OLE!

The FIFA World Cup is the most prestigious tournament in the sport of soccer. The competition has been held every four years (excluding the WWII years) since the inaugural event held in Uruguay in 1930. The men’s World Cup is the most widely viewed sporting event in the world, even outranking the Olympic Games.

8 Finishes in the top three, say : MEDALS

In the Ancient Olympic Games, the winner of an event was awarded an olive wreath. When the games were revived in 1896, the winners were originally given a silver medal and an olive branch, with runners-up receiving a bronze medal and a laurel branch. The tradition of giving gold, silver and bronze medals began at the 1904 Summer Olympic Games held in St. Louis, Missouri.

10 “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” playwright : ALBEE

“Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” is an Edward Albee play that premiered on Broadway in 1962. The play won a Tony in 1963, and was adapted into a successful film in 1966 starring Richard Burton, Elizabeth Taylor, George Segal and Sandy Dennis. The stage version is a lengthy production lasting over three hours.

11 Clark’s crush at the Daily Planet : LOIS

Lois Lane has been the love interest of Superman/Clark Kent since the comic series was first published in 1938. Lois and Clark both work for the big newspaper in the city of Metropolis called “The Daily Planet”. The couple finally got hitched in the comics (and on television’s “Lois and Clark”) in 1996. One has to wonder how challenging the crossword is in “The Daily Planet” …

12 Mixed-breed dog : MUTT

The original use of the term “mutt” was for a foolish person, and was probably short for “muttonhead”. The usage evolved into today’s “mongrel dog”.

25 Beauty products chain : ULTA

Ulta Beauty is an American chain of beauty stores that was founded in 1990 and headquartered in Bolingbrook, Illinois. I am not part of the company’s target demographic …

30 Elon Musk, for 34-Across : CEO

(34A Rocket-building company since 2002 : SPACEX)
Elon Musk is a successful businessman who has founded or led some very high-profile companies, namely PayPal, Tesla Motors and SpaceX. Musk received a lot of publicity in early 2018 during a test launch by SpaceX of the Falcon Heavy launch vehicle. A Tesla Roadster belonging to Musk was carried into space as a dummy payload.

31 Prefix with skeleton : EXO-

An animal with an endoskeleton has a supporting skeleton inside its body. So, we humans have an endoskeleton. A turtle, on the other hand, has both an endoskeleton and an exoskeleton, its outer shell.

33 Ocean State sch. : URI

The University of Rhode Island (URI) was chartered as an agricultural school back in 1888. Rhody the Ram was chosen as the school’s mascot in 1923, a nod to URI’s agricultural past. As a result, the school’s sports teams are known as the Rams. URI’s main campus is located in the village of Kingston.

Rhode Island is the smallest state in the union, and is the second most densely populated. (after New Jersey). Rhode Island is known as the Ocean State, largely because about 14% of the state’s area is made up of ocean bays and inlets. Exactly how Rhode Island got its name is a little unclear. What is known is that way back in 1524, long before the Pilgrims came to New England, the Italian explorer Giovanni da Verrazzano likened an island in the area to the Island of Rhodes in the Mediterranean. There were subsequent references to “Rhode Island” in English publications, before the colonists arrived.

34 Canonized pope of the fifth century : ST LEO

The first Pope Leo led the church from 440-461 AD and is now known as Pope Saint Leo the Great. Leo I is famous for having met with the feared Attila the Hun, and persuading him to turn back his invading force that was threatening to overrun Western Europe. The last Pope Leo reigned from 1878-1903. Leo XIII died at the age of 93, making him the oldest of all popes.

37 Language related to Thai : LAO

Lao is the official language of Laos. Lao is also spoken in the northeast of Thailand, but there the language is known as Isan.

38 Like 1960s-’70s music : OLD

Old? Not to me …

40 Green Hornet’s sidekick : KATO

In “The Green Hornet” television series, Kato was famously played by Bruce Lee. The Kato role has been cited as a driving force behind the increase in popularity of martial arts in the US during the sixties.

44 Aperture settings : F-STOPS

Varying the f-stop in a lens varies how big the lens opening (the aperture) is when a photograph is taken. Smaller apertures (higher f-stop values) admit less light, but result in a greater depth of field (more of the photograph is in focus).

46 J.J. who directed “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” : ABRAMS

J. J. Abrams is a director and producer of both movies and television shows. He created the TV dramas “Alias” and “Fringe”, and co-created the highly successful show “Lost”. He also directed “Mission: Impossible III” on the big screen, and the 2009 movie “Star Trek”.

47 Kind of tire : RADIAL

Radial (actually “radial-ply”) tires are so called because the cord plies embedded in the rubber are arranged radially from the centre of the tire. This means that the plies are at right angles to the direction of travel. In older tires the plies were criss-crossed over each other, at angles of 60 and -60 degrees from the direction of travel. Such tires are cross-ply or bias tires.

48 2000s stage name for rapper Sean Combs : P DIDDY

When Sean John Combs started his rapping career, he used the stage name “Puff Daddy”. Then he went with “P. Diddy”, and I think that he is now recording simply as “Diddy”. Having said that, he has to stick with “P. Diddy” in some countries as he lost a legal battle over use of the simpler “Diddy” name as there is another artist called Richard “Diddy” Dearlove.

49 Lone Ranger’s sidekick : TONTO

Tonto was played by the actor Jay Silverheels In the television version of “The Lone Ranger”. In the terrible 1981 movie “The Legend of the Lone Ranger”, Tonto was played by Michael Horse. Tonto was played by Johnny Depp In the 2013 movie “The Lone Ranger”. Famously, the Lone Ranger’s horse was called Silver and Tonto’s mount was named Scout. But, in the early TV shows, Tonto rode a horse called White Feller.

53 Othello, for one : MOOR

The most famous Moor in literature has to be Othello, the title character in William Shakespeare’s tragedy “Othello, the Moor of Venice”. The word “Moor” describes various peoples of North Africa, usually of the Muslim faith. At the height of their geographic influence the Moors occupied much of the Iberian peninsula, calling it Al Andalus (from which modern Andalusia gets its name).

54 Bohemian : ARTY

The region known as Bohemia covers most of the Czech Republic. Centuries ago, it was wrongly believed that gypsies came from Bohemia, giving rise to the term “Bohemian” meaning a “gypsy of society”.

56 Sandwich whose initials have been rearranged in five other ways in this puzzle : BLT

The BLT (bacon, lettuce and tomato) is the second-most popular sandwich in the US, after the plain old ham sandwich.

59 Spill the ___ (reveal sensitive information) : TEA

To spill the beans is to divulge a secret. The expression first appeared in American English, in the early 1900s. The phrase arose as an alternative to “spoil the beans” or “upset the applecart”. The similarly meaning phrase “spill the tea” is more prevalent on the other side of the Atlantic.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 “Ask ___” (newspaper advice column) : AMY
4 Bounce, as off a pool table cushion : CAROM
9 Actress Hayek : SALMA
14 Deer with no antlers : DOE
15 Singer with the best-selling albums “19,” “21” and “25” : ADELE
16 Bringer of rain : CLOUD
17 Jan., Feb., Mar., etc. : MOS
18 Absolutely adored : LOVED TO BITS
20 What a weekly has once a week : ISSUE
22 Police action : ARREST
23 The police, metaphorically : THIN BLUE LINE
27 Daughter of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes : SURI
28 Destination for European hikers : ALPS
29 Versatile blackjack card : ACE
32 Reach by addition : SUM TO
34 Rocket-building company since 2002 : SPACEX
37 Body art that might be revealed by hip-hugger jeans : LOWER-BACK TATTOO
41 ___ de Tocqueville, author of “Democracy in America” : ALEXIS
42 Oscar-winning Berry : HALLE
43 Like 43, e.g. : ODD
44 Destiny : FATE
45 Senior’s org. : AARP
49 “Uh-oh” : THIS LOOKS BAD
53 Hardcore Chinese party adherent : MAOIST
55 “Aida” composer : VERDI
56 Like a millennial who’s a huge fan of 1960s-’70s music, it’s said : BORN TOO LATE
60 Help out : AID
61 Source of revenue for many states : LOTTO
62 Dot on a computer screen : PIXEL
63 Ticked off : MAD
64 Test before buying, as clothes : TRY ON
65 Daring base runner’s goal : STEAL
66 Foxy : SLY

Down

1 Confesses (to) : ADMITS
2 Kind of pork at a Chinese restaurant : MOO SHU
3 Polite assent : YES, SIR
4 ___ Carr, best-selling author of historical thrillers : CALEB
5 Hubbub : ADO
6 Fire (up), as an engine : REV
7 Part of a World Cup chant : OLE!
8 Finishes in the top three, say : MEDALS
9 Treat disdainfully : SCORN
10 “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” playwright : ALBEE
11 Clark’s crush at the Daily Planet : LOIS
12 Mixed-breed dog : MUTT
13 Main source of online revenue : ADS
19 One more than bi- : TRI-
21 Available to all, as a bathroom : UNISEX
24 Petting zoo babies : LAMBS
25 Beauty products chain : ULTA
26 Era-defining : EPOCHAL
29 ___ of Congress : ACT
30 Elon Musk, for 34-Across : CEO
31 Prefix with skeleton : EXO-
33 Ocean State sch. : URI
34 Canonized pope of the fifth century : ST LEO
35 Buddy : PAL
36 Relaxed : AT EASE
37 Language related to Thai : LAO
38 Like 1960s-’70s music : OLD
39 Joined in matrimony : WED
40 Green Hornet’s sidekick : KATO
44 Aperture settings : F-STOPS
46 J.J. who directed “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” : ABRAMS
47 Kind of tire : RADIAL
48 2000s stage name for rapper Sean Combs : P DIDDY
49 Lone Ranger’s sidekick : TONTO
50 Flirt with at a bar, say : HIT ON
51 “Am ___ out of touch?” : I SO
52 Nearly plotz with pride : KVELL
53 Othello, for one : MOOR
54 Bohemian : ARTY
56 Sandwich whose initials have been rearranged in five other ways in this puzzle : BLT
57 Flaming : LIT
58 Lumberjack’s tool : AXE
59 Spill the ___ (reveal sensitive information) : TEA

3 thoughts on “0910-19 NY Times Crossword 10 Sep 19, Tuesday”

  1. 9:56. Completely missed the theme. “Spill the TEA” is a new one on me. ALEXIS de Tocqueville’s “Democracy in America” should be required reading for everyone living in this country.

    Best –

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