0928-19 NY Times Crossword 28 Sep 19, Saturday

Constructed by: Alex Eaton-Salners
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: None

That said, we have some grid art representing a SWISS ROLL.

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

Bill’s time: 19m 49s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Hit FX police drama of 2002-08 : THE SHIELD

The television drama called “The Shield” tells the story of an LAPD strike team that stops at nothing to beat crime and bring justice. The show is famous for attracting high profile actors to various episodes, including Glenn Close and Forest Whitaker.

10 Songs sailors sing : SEA SHANTIES

A sea shanty (also “chantey”) is a song sung by sailors, often when they are working away on some repetitive task.

12 Children’s classic with the line “It is not often that someone comes along who is a true friend and a good writer” : CHARLOTTE’S WEB

“Charlotte’s Web” is a children’s novel by author E. B. White. Charlotte is a barn spider, who manages to save the life of a pig named Wilbur. Wilbur is a pet pig, owned by the farmer’s daughter, Fern Arable. The story also includes a gluttonous rat named Templeton who provides some light and comical moments.

15 Big exports of Sri Lanka : SPICES

The island nation of Sri Lanka lies off the southeast coast of India. The name “Sri Lanka” translates from Sanskrit into English as “venerable island”. Before 1970, Sri Lanka was known as Ceylon, a name given to the country during British rule.

24 Niña accompanier : PINTA

Famously, Christopher Columbus used three ships in his first voyage across the Atlantic: the Santa Maria, the Niña and the Pinta. The Pinta was the fastest of the three, and it was from the Pinta that the New World was first spotted by a sailor named Rodrigo de Triana who was a lookout on the fateful day. Pinta was a nickname for the ship that translated as “the painted one”. The Pinta’s real name has been lost in the mists of time.

26 Hatcher of plots? : TERI

Teri Hatcher’s most famous role is the Susan Mayer character on the TV comedy-drama “Desperate Housewives”. I’ve never seen more than a few minutes of “Housewives” but I do know Teri Hatcher as a Bond girl, as she appeared in “Tomorrow Never Dies”. More recently, she portrayed Lois Lane on the show “Lois & Clark”.

27 On the topic of : IN RE

The term “in re” is Latin, and is derived from “in” (in) and “res” (thing, matter). “In re” literally means “in the matter”, and is used to mean “in regard to” or “in the matter of”.

30 Final Four airer in even years : TBS

The tbs cable television station started out in 1967 as local broadcast TV station in Atlanta. The station’s first call letters were WJRJ-TV, and this was changed to WTCG in 1970 when it was acquired by Ted Turner (the TCG stood for Turner Communications Group). In 1976, Turner started distributing WTCG via satellite making its programming available in other parts of the country. WTCG was only the second channel to transmit via satellite, following HBO. The difference was that WTCG was broadcast without requiring a premium subscription. The station’s call sign was changed again in 1979 to WTBS, with “TBS” standing for Turner Broadcasting System. In 1981, the channel adopted the moniker “Superstation WTBS”.

In the NCAA Division I Basketball Championship, the teams remaining at various stages of the tournament are known as:

  • The “Sweet Sixteen” (the regional semi-finalists)
  • The “Elite Eight” (the regional finalists)
  • The “Final Four” (the national semi-finalists)

31 Unit of light : LUMEN

The lumen is a measure of the amount of visible light emitted by a source.

34 Word seen 11 times in the opening line of “A Tale of Two Cities” : WAS

“A Tale of Two Cities” by Charles Dickens is the most printed book that was originally written in English. The two cities in the title are of course London and Paris. The novel’s famous opening words are:

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness …

The novel’s closing words are almost as famous:

It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known.

35 Place to buy a 16-Down : PATISSERIE
(16D Sweet treat depicted in this puzzle’s grid : SWISS ROLL)

A patisserie is a French bakery that sells pastries, or “tartes”.

38 Ones in funny shorts : STOOGES

If you’ve seen a few of the films starring “The Three Stooges” you might have noticed that the line up changed over the years. The original trio was made up of Moe and Shemp Howard (two brothers) and Larry Fine (a good friend of the Howards). This line up was usually known as “Moe, Larry and Shemp”. Then Curly Howard replaced his brother when Shemp quit the act, creating the most famous trio, “Moe, Larry And Curly”. Shemp returned when Curly had a debilitating stroke in 1946, and Shemp stayed with the troupe until he died in 1955. Shemp was replaced by Joe Besser, and then “Curly-Joe” DeRita. When Larry Fine had a stroke in 1970, it effectively marked the end of the act.

40 Chap : LAD

“Chap” is an informal term meaning “lad, fellow” that is used especially in England. The term derives from “chapman”, an obsolete word meaning “purchaser” or “trader”.

43 In which you might see an exchange of bishops : SYNOD

The word “synod” comes from the Greek word for assembly, or meeting. A synod is a church council, usually one in the Christian faith.

44 Something a Mao suit lacks : LAPEL

What we call the Mao suit in the west is known as the Zhongshan suit in China. The style was introduced by Sun Yat-sen (also known as Sun Zhongshan) as the form of national dress after the founding of the Republic of China in 1912.

48 Winner of the 1955 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry : WALLACE STEVENS

Wallace Stevens was a Pulitzer-winning poet who spent most of his life working for an insurance company in Hartford, Connecticut. After Stevens won his Pulitzer, he was offered a faculty position at Harvard, but he declined so that he could keep his job with the Hartford insurance company.

55 Ones on a diet : LEGISLATORS

A diet was a general assembly of the estates of the former Holy Roman Empire. The most famous of these assemblies was the Diet of Worms, a 16th-century meeting that took place in the small town of Worms on the Rhine River in Germany. The main item on the agenda was discussion of the 95 theses of Martin Luther. Luther was summoned to the meeting, and there found to be guilty of heresy and so was subsequently excommunicated by the Pope.

Down

2 Title creature in an Aesop fable : HARE

“The Tortoise and the Hare” is perhaps the most famous fable attributed to Aesop. The cocky hare takes a nap during a race against the tortoise, and the tortoise sneaks past the finish line for the win while his speedier friend is sleeping.

3 Subj. of many an after-school class : ESL

English as a Second Language (ESL) is sometimes referred to as English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) and English as a Foreign Language (EFL).

5 It may be measured in gallons : HAT

The term “ten-gallon hat” describing a cowboy hat only appeared in 1925, and nobody seems to be exactly sure of the term’s origin. Some suggest that the relatively waterproof nature of the hat due to the tight weave might explain it, with images of cowboys giving drinks of water from their upturned hats. However, there’s no way any cowboy hat will hold ten gallons, more like three quarts.

6 Defensive football stat: Abbr. : INT

Interception (int.)

7 Verb after vous : … ETES

“Vous êtes” is the French for “you are”.

9 Clinton of politics : DEWITT

DeWitt Clinton served as Mayor of New York City on three separate occasions, starting in 1803 and ending in 1815. Prior to his mayoral jobs, Clinton served as a US Senator for New York from 1802 until 1803. He also served twice as Governor of New York, from 1817 to 1822, and from 1825 to 1828. As Governor, Clinton was the driving force behind the construction of the Erie Canal. Despite the success of the project, for some time the canal was referred to by many as “Clinton’s Folly”.

14 Service launched on April Fool’s Day in 2004 : GMAIL

Gmail is a free webmail service provided by Google, and my favorite of the free email services. Gmail made a big splash when it was introduced because it offered a whopping 1GB of storage whereas other services offered a measly 2-4MB on average.

18 Reuters competitor : UPI

Founded in 1958, United Press International (UPI) used to be one of the biggest news agencies in the world, sending out news by wire to the major newspapers. UPI ran into trouble with the change in media formats at the end of the twentieth century and lost many of its clients as the afternoon newspapers shut down due to the advent of television news. UPI, which once employed thousands, still exists today but with just a fraction of that workforce.

The Reuters news agency was formed way back in 1851 by German-born, British entrepreneur Paul Julius Reuter. Reuter had checked the feasibility of a news service for a couple of years prior to launching the agency, and the technologies he used for his study were the telegraph and carrier pigeons!

19 Wallis ___, Time magazine’s first Woman of the Year (1936) : SIMPSON

“Time” magazine started naming a “Man of the Year” in 1927, only changing the concept to “Person of the Year” in 1999. Prior to 1999, the magazine did recognize four females as “Woman of the Year”: Wallis Simpson (1936), Soong May-ling a.k.a. Madame Chiang Kai-shek (1937), Queen Elizabeth II (1952) and Corazon Aquino (1986). “Time” named Albert Einstein as Person of the Century in 1999, with Franklin D. Roosevelt and Mahatma Gandhi as runners-up.

20 Really hot, in slang : EN FUEGO

A sports player who is doing really well might be said to be “on fire”. Sometimes “on fire” is translated into Spanish and the person is said to be “en fuego”.

29 Center of the symbol of the Illuminati : EYE

Although there were several groups known as the Illuminati, the reference is usually to the Bavarian Illuminati that was founded in 1776. It was a secret society, and as such was the subject of many rumors and conspiracy theories, which eventually led to the Illuminati being banned by local government and the Roman Catholic Church. Famously, Dan Brown featured the Illuminati in his best-selling 2003 novel “Angels & Demons”.

40 NSFW : LEWD

The abbreviation “NSFW” stands for “not safe/suitable for work”. It’s Internet slang used to describe online content that is best not viewed at work.

44 Jimmy, for one : LEVER

“Jimmy” is a variant of the word “jemmy”. A jemmy is a type of crowbar, one associated with burglars back in the 1800s.

47 It might be taken to the pound : REPO

Repossession (repo)

50 Includes, in a way : CC’S

I wonder do the kids of today know that “cc” stands for carbon copy, and do they have any idea what a carbon copy was? Do you remember how messy carbon paper was to handle? A kind blog reader pointed out to me a while back that the abbreviation has evolved and taken on the meaning “courtesy copy” in our modern world.

51 Base of kabayaki : EEL

“Unadon” is the Japanese word for “eel bowl”. “Unadon” is actually a contraction, of “unagi no kabayaki” (grilled eel) and “donburi” (rice bowl dish).

53 Part of an exchange : TAT

Tit for tat.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Hit FX police drama of 2002-08 : THE SHIELD
10 Songs sailors sing : SEA SHANTIES
12 Children’s classic with the line “It is not often that someone comes along who is a true friend and a good writer” : CHARLOTTE’S WEB
14 Brilliance : GLARE
15 Big exports of Sri Lanka : SPICES
17 Pet sounds : MEWS
18 Exploits : USES
22 Toss about : STREW
23 Sound made while sinking into a hot tub : AAAH!
24 Niña accompanier : PINTA
26 Hatcher of plots? : TERI
27 On the topic of : IN RE
28 “Nothing’s broken” : I’M FINE
30 Final Four airer in even years : TBS
31 Unit of light : LUMEN
33 Attractive, colloquially : PURTY
34 Word seen 11 times in the opening line of “A Tale of Two Cities” : WAS
35 Place to buy a 16-Down : PATISSERIE
37 Goof : ERR
38 Ones in funny shorts : STOOGES
39 Crop grown in paddies : TARO
40 Chap : LAD
43 In which you might see an exchange of bishops : SYNOD
44 Something a Mao suit lacks : LAPEL
45 Big nights : EVES
47 Get a second opinion from : REPOLL
48 Winner of the 1955 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry : WALLACE STEVENS
54 Union busters? : DIVORCE PAPERS
55 Ones on a diet : LEGISLATORS

Down

1 Printing samples : TEAR SHEETS
2 Title creature in an Aesop fable : HARE
3 Subj. of many an after-school class : ESL
4 Japanese instrument with 17 bamboo pipes : SHO
5 It may be measured in gallons : HAT
6 Defensive football stat: Abbr. : INT
7 Verb after vous : … ETES
8 Jobs for speech coaches : LISPS
9 Clinton of politics : DEWITT
10 Street food prepared on a rotisserie : SHAWARMA
11 Aces up one’s sleeve, so to speak : SECRET WEAPONS
12 Tidy : CLEAN UP
13 Stock in a brewery : BEER BARRELS
14 Service launched on April Fool’s Day in 2004 : GMAIL
16 Sweet treat depicted in this puzzle’s grid : SWISS ROLL
18 Reuters competitor : UPI
19 Wallis ___, Time magazine’s first Woman of the Year (1936) : SIMPSON
20 Really hot, in slang : EN FUEGO
21 Didn’t lie completely still, say : STIRRED
25 Non-pros : ANTIS
29 Center of the symbol of the Illuminati : EYE
32 Minor annoying issues : NITS
36 “Yo” follower : .. SOY
39 Gets to the point? : TAPERS
40 NSFW : LEWD
41 Benefit : AVAIL
42 Look (into) : DELVE
44 Jimmy, for one : LEVER
46 Painful proceeding : SLOG
47 It might be taken to the pound : REPO
49 Comedian Shaffir : ARI
50 Includes, in a way : CC’S
51 Base of kabayaki : EEL
52 Pool facility : SPA
53 Part of an exchange : TAT

11 thoughts on “0928-19 NY Times Crossword 28 Sep 19, Saturday”

  1. 35:33. The look of the grid made me dizzy at first, but I stuck with it long enough to finish. Mark me down as a lifelong fan of the Three STOOGES.

    Best –

  2. Finished WNE, but I’m not sure how. Lots of names/things that I was unfamiliar with but solved with crosses and logical guesses. A fun Saturday curve ball.

  3. An hour and 15 minutes to get 90% of this puzzle including a lot of look ups…if I don’t speak 5 languages I most likely will never be a good crossword solver

    1. Yo soy as in the Spanish for I am. Which I got only cause my husband was a Spanish professor. And I only got patisserie cause I recently watched a Rick Steves dvd on Paris. But I found 55 across way beyond me.

      1. sushi –

        DIET can also be used as term referring to an assembly of people for the purposes of managing their affairs – like a legislative body

        Best –

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.