1019-19 NY Times Crossword 19 Oct 19, Saturday

Constructed by: Byron Walden
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: None

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

Bill’s time: 14m 27s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

10 Big name in dining guides : ZAGAT

The Zagat Survey is best known for rating restaurants across the major cities of the US, but it also rates things like hotels, nightlife, shopping, airlines and even zoos. The survey was started by Tim and Nina Zagat in 1979, and back then the survey was simply a collection of New York City restaurant ratings provided by friends of the couple.

15 Port city built on a crater of an ancient volcano : ADEN, YEMEN

Aden is a seaport in Yemen that is located on the Gulf of Aden by the eastern approach to the Red Sea. Aden has a long history of British rule, from 1838 until a very messy withdrawal in 1967. A native of Aden is known as an Adeni. Some believe that Cain and Abel are buried in the city.

17 O.K. : TOLERABLE

Back in the late 1830s, there were some slang abbreviations coined mainly in Boston. The craze called for two-letter abbreviations of deliberately misspelled phrases. For example “no use” became “KY” from “know yuse”, and “enough said” became “NC” from “nuff ced”. Fortunately (I say!), the practice was short-lived. But, one of those abbreviations persists to this day. “All correct” was misspelled to give “oll korrect”, abbreviated to “OK”.

18 Common treatment for anxiety and panic disorders : XANAX

Xanax is a brand name of anti-anxiety drug alprazolam. Xanax is one of the most commonly misused prescription drugs in the US, with wide acceptance in the illegal recreational drug market.

20 Elaboration phrase : ID EST

“Id est” is Latin for “that is”, and is often abbreviated to “i.e.” when used in English.

26 First name of two of the 12 astronauts who have walked on the moon : ALAN

Alan Bean is a former astronaut. Bean was the fourth man to walk on the moon, roaming the moon’s surface with Pete Conrad as part of the Apollo 12 mission. Bean resigned from NASA in 1981 and turned to painting. He is the only artist in the world to have incorporated real moon dust into his works.

Alan Shepard was the first American in space. Shepard’s flight was originally scheduled for October 1960 but a series of delays pushed it out till May 5, 1961. Yuri Gagarin made his celebrated flight on April 12, 1961, just one one month earlier, winning that part of the Space Race for the Soviets. A decade later, Shepard went into space again at the age of 47, as commander of Apollo 14. He was the fifth man to walk on the moon, and indeed the oldest. Shepard was also the only one of the Mercury Seven team to make it to the moon. Famously, he drove two golf balls while on the lunar surface.

32 Commercial suffix akin to -apalooza : -ORAMA

The “-orama” is used in advertising and journalism to create words meaning a space or spectacle related to the root word. Examples are “Scoutorama” and “smellorama”. The suffix is derived from words like “panorama” and “diorama”.

33 Bottled spirits? : GENII

“Genii” is an accepted plural of two related words: “genius” and “genie”.

The “genie” in the bottle takes his or her name from “djinn”. “Djinns” were various spirits considered lesser than angels, with people exhibiting unsavory characteristics said to be possessed by djinn. When the book “The Thousand and One Nights” was translated into French, the word “djinn” was transformed into the existing word “génie”, because of the similarity in sound and the related spiritual meaning. This “génie” from the Arabian tale became confused with the Latin-derived “genius”, a guardian spirit thought to be assigned to each person at birth. Purely as a result of that mistranslation the word genie has come to mean the “djinn” that pops out of the bottle. A little hard to follow, I know, but still quite interesting …

34 Dance prop for Fred Astaire : CANE

Fred Astaire’s real name was Frederick Austerlitz. Fred was from Omaha, Nebraska and before he made it big in the movies, he was one half of a celebrated music hall act with his sister Adele. The pair were particularly successful in the UK, and Adele ended up marrying into nobility in England, taking the name Lady Charles Cavendish.

35 Indian state of 90+ million bordering Bhutan : WEST BENGAL

Bengal is a region in the northeast of the Indian subcontinent that lies at the northern end of the Bay of Bengal. Bengal is divided between the People’s Republic of Bangladesh and the Indian state of West Bengal.

40 Lab assistant in “Young Frankenstein” : INGA

I am not really a big fan of movies by Mel Brooks, but “Young Frankenstein” is the exception. I think the cast has a lot to do with me liking the film, as it includes Gene Wilder (Dr. Frankenstein), Teri Garr (Inga), Marty Feldman (Igor) and Gene Hackman (Harold, the blind man).

41 Royal flush in draw poker, say : PAT HAND

The poker hand called a royal flush is the highest-ranking hand possible. It consists of a run of 10, jack, queen, king and ace, with all in the same suit.

44 Something to chew on : CUD

Animals that chew the cud are called ruminants. Ruminants eat vegetable matter but cannot extract any nutritional value from cellulose without the help of microbes in the gut. Ruminants collect roughage in the first part of the alimentary canal, allowing microbes to work on it. The partially digested material (the cud) is regurgitated into the mouth so that the ruminant can chew the food more completely exposing more surface area for microbes to do their work.

47 “If ___ Street Could Talk” (2018 film) : BEALE

Beale Street in downtown Memphis, Tennessee is a major tourist attraction. In 1977, by act of Congress, the street was officially declared the “Home of the Blues” due to its long association with the musical genre. Apparently “Beale” is the name of some forgotten military hero.

48 Bacchanal : WILD PARTY

A bacchanalia is a drunken spree. The term “bacchanalia” derives from the ancient Roman festival held in honor of Bacchus, the god of winemaking.

51 “Beavis and Butt-head” spinoff : DARIA

“Daria” is an animated television show on MTV. It is a spin-off from the hit series “Beavis and Butthead”.

56 Onetime Quaker offering based on a 1980s TV icon : MR T CEREAL

The Quaker Oats Company was founded in 1901 when four oat mills merged, including the Quaker Mill Company of Ravenna, Ohio. Quaker Mill’s owner Henry Parsons Crowell played the key role in creating the new company and remained at the helm until 1943.

Down

1 Language whose alphabet went from Arabic to Latin to Cyrillic : TATAR

Tatars (sometimes “Tartars”) are an ethnic group of people who mainly reside in Russia (a population of about 5 1/2 million). One of the more famous people with a Tatar heritage was Hollywood actor Charles Bronson. Bronson’s real name was Charles Buchinsky.

3 Worshipers of the goddess Rhiannon : CELTS

The Celts are a very broad group of people across Europe who are linked by common languages. The original Celts were largely absorbed by other cultures, although a relatively modern revival of the “Celtic identity” is alive and well in Britain and Ireland. Such Celtic peoples today are mainly found in Ireland, Scotland, Wales and Brittany in France.

4 Linear : ONE-D

The dimension of an object is defined as the minimum number of coordinates needed to specify each point in the object. Therefore, a line is one-dimensional, as you only need an x-coordinate to specify a particular point on the line. A surface is two-dimensional, as you need both an x-coordinate and a y-coordinate to locate a point on the surface. The inside of a solid object is then three-dimensional, needing an x-, y- and z-coordinate to specify a point, say within a cube.

5 Lebanese city on the Mediterranean : TYRE

Tyre is an ancient Phoenician city, and today is the fourth largest city in Lebanon. The city’s name “Tyre” means “rock”, a reference to the rocky outcrop on which the original city was built.

7 Darkest moon of Uranus, whose name is related to the Latin for “shadow” : UMBRIEL

All of the twenty-seven moons of the planet Uranus are named for characters from literature, with each being characters created by William Shakespeare and Alexander Pope. The five major moons are so large that they would be considered planets in their own right if they were orbiting the sun directly. The names of these five moons are:

  • Miranda (from Shakespeare’s “The Tempest”)
  • Ariel (from Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” and Pope’s “The Rape of the Lock”)
  • Umbriel (from Pope’s “The Rape of the Lock”)
  • Titania (from Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”)
  • Oberon (from Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”)

8 Keyboard instrument heard in “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” : CELESTA

A celesta (also “celeste”) is a keyboard instrument in which the keys operate hammers that strike a set of metal plates. The resulting sound is similar to that from a glockenspiel, although it is much softer in tone as the celesta’s plates are suspended over wooden resonators. I’d say that the most famous musical work featuring a celesta is Tchaikovsky’s “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” from his ballet “The Nutcracker”.

9 Use, as a prie-dieu : KNEEL ON

“Prie-dieu” literally means “pray (to) God” in French. A prie-dieu is basically a padded kneeler, with an armrest in front and a shelf on which one placed books of prayer.

13 Evil stepsister of Cinderella, in Disney : ANASTASIA

The folktale usually known as “Cinderella” was first published by French author Charles Perrault in 1697, although it was later included by the Brothers Grimm in their famous 1812 collection. The storyline of the tale may date back as far as the days of ancient Greece. A common alternative title to the story is “The Little Glass Slipper”.

23 Nondiscriminatory hiring abbr. : EOE

Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE)

24 Victim of Hercules’ first labor : NEMEAN LION

“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.

27 First name of the first man to walk on the moon : NEIL

Neil Armstrong was the most private of individuals. You didn’t often see him giving interviews, unlike so many of the more approachable astronauts of the Apollo space program. His famous, “That’s one small step for (a) man, one giant leap for mankind” statement; that was something that he came up with himself, while Apollo 11 was making its way to the moon.

28 Sets of points on graphs : LOCI

In mathematics, a locus (plural “loci”) is the set of all points that satisfy a given requirement. For example, the locus called a circle is the set of all points equidistant from a single point.

30 Leaders of movements : VANGUARDS

The word “vanguard” comes to us from French, and describes the foremost position in an advancing army or navy. The term derives from “avant-garde” meaning “advance guard”. “Vanguard” is sometimes shortened to “van”, as in “in the van” meaning “in the lead”.

33 Lead-in to X or Y : GEN-

The term “Generation X” originated in the UK where it was the name of a book by Jane Deverson. Her book detailed the results of a study of British youths in 1964, contrasting their lifestyle to those of previous generations. It was Canadian author Douglas Coupland who was responsible for popularizing the term, with his more successful publication “Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture”. By one definition, Gen-Xers were born between 1961 and 1981.

The Millennial Generation are sometimes referred to as “Generation Y” (Gen-Y). Millennials were born after the “Gen-Xers”, from the early 1980s to the early 2000s.

35 New Deal agcy. that helped build La Guardia Airport : WPA

I think that there’s an error in this clue, albeit a small one. Unless I’m mistaken, the airport’s name is “LaGuardia” (without a space). The mayor after whom the airport is named was “La Guardia” (with a space).

Fiorello La Guardia was the Mayor of New York from 1934 to 1945, racking up three full terms in office. The famous airport that bears La Guardia’s name was built at his urging, stemming from an incident that took place while he was in office. He was taking a TWA flight to “New York” and was outraged when the plane landed at Newark Airport, in the state of New Jersey. The Mayor demanded that the flight take off again and land at a small airport in Brooklyn. A gaggle of press reporters joined him on the short hop and he gave them a story, urging New Yorkers to support the construction of a new commercial airport within the city’s limits. The new airport, in Queens, opened in 1939 as New York Municipal, often called “LaGuardia” as a nickname. The airport was officially relabeled as “LaGuardia” (LGA) in 1947.

36 The 1975 hit “Can’t Get It Out of My Head” would be an appropriate one : EARWORM

“Earworm” is a colloquial term used for a catchy tune that is also somewhat irritating, one that you can’t get out of your head.

38 Progressives : THE LEFT

The concept of left-right politics started in France during the French Revolution. When members of France’s National Assembly convened in 1789, supporters of the King sat to the President’s right, and supporters of the revolution to the President’s left. The political terms “left” and “right” were then coined in the local media and have been used ever since.

39 Sword-bearing shoulder belt : BALDRIC

A baldric is a belt worn over one shoulder that is used to carry a sword or perhaps a musical instrument. Traditionally, baldrics are part of military dress. The British Redcoats typically wore a pair of white baldrics, one over each shoulder. One baldric usually carried a canteen, and the other a bayonet sheath.

43 Aid to digestion : BEANO

Beano is a dietary supplement that is used to reduce gas in the digestive tract. It contains an enzyme that breaks down complex sugars found in many vegetables. This makes the food more digestible and apparently cuts down on gas.

44 Origami creation : CRANE

Origami is the traditional Japanese art form of paper folding. The best-known example of the craft is the paper crane. The word “origami” is derived from “ori“ (folding) and “kami” (paper).

47 Kind of card, familiarly : B’DAY

Birthday (b’day)

49 Part of a French door : PANE

French doors usually come in pairs, and have glass panels throughout the body of the door.

50 Ice cream thickener : AGAR

Agar (also “agar-agar”) is a jelly extracted from seaweed that has many uses. Agar is found in Japanese desserts, and can also be used as a food thickener or even as a laxative. In the world of science, it is the most common medium used for growing bacteria in Petri dishes.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Common street food purveyor : TACO TRUCK
10 Big name in dining guides : ZAGAT
15 Port city built on a crater of an ancient volcano : ADEN, YEMEN
16 Make a slight correction? : ATONE
17 O.K. : TOLERABLE
18 Common treatment for anxiety and panic disorders : XANAX
19 Design credential : ART DEGREE
20 Elaboration phrase : ID EST
21 Lo-___ : RES
22 C, as in coach? : AISLE SEAT
24 Very far from : NONE TOO
26 First name of two of the 12 astronauts who have walked on the moon : ALAN
28 Sex drive? : LOVERS’ LANE
31 10 milliliters, perhaps : DOSE
32 Commercial suffix akin to -apalooza : -ORAMA
33 Bottled spirits? : GENII
34 Dance prop for Fred Astaire : CANE
35 Indian state of 90+ million bordering Bhutan : WEST BENGAL
40 Lab assistant in “Young Frankenstein” : INGA
41 Royal flush in draw poker, say : PAT HAND
42 Long part of a longarm : GUN BARREL
44 Something to chew on : CUD
47 “If ___ Street Could Talk” (2018 film) : BEALE
48 Bacchanal : WILD PARTY
51 “Beavis and Butt-head” spinoff : DARIA
52 Once more : OVER AGAIN
53 Extra : ADD-ON
54 Go from variable to fixed-rate, say : REFINANCE
55 Binary response option : YES/NO
56 Onetime Quaker offering based on a 1980s TV icon : MR T CEREAL

Down

1 Language whose alphabet went from Arabic to Latin to Cyrillic : TATAR
2 Can’t get enough of : ADORE
3 Worshipers of the goddess Rhiannon : CELTS
4 Linear : ONE-D
5 Lebanese city on the Mediterranean : TYRE
6 First family with the dogs Lucky and Rex : REAGANS
7 Darkest moon of Uranus, whose name is related to the Latin for “shadow” : UMBRIEL
8 Keyboard instrument heard in “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” : CELESTA
9 Use, as a prie-dieu : KNEEL ON
10 Line of depth : Z-AXIS
11 Hopelessly stuck : AT A DEAD END
12 Cooperated (with) : GONE ALONG
13 Evil stepsister of Cinderella, in Disney : ANASTASIA
14 Word with book or box : TEXT-
23 Nondiscriminatory hiring abbr. : EOE
24 Victim of Hercules’ first labor : NEMEAN LION
25 Mouths: Lat. : ORA
27 First name of the first man to walk on the moon : NEIL
28 Sets of points on graphs : LOCI
29 Fruity refreshment : ORANGEADE
30 Leaders of movements : VANGUARDS
33 Lead-in to X or Y : GEN-
35 New Deal agcy. that helped build La Guardia Airport : WPA
36 The 1975 hit “Can’t Get It Out of My Head” would be an appropriate one : EARWORM
37 One really trying : STRIVER
38 Progressives : THE LEFT
39 Sword-bearing shoulder belt : BALDRIC
43 Aid to digestion : BEANO
44 Origami creation : CRANE
45 Upstate New York college : UTICA
46 Synthetic fiber once used in wigmaking : DYNEL
47 Kind of card, familiarly : B’DAY
49 Part of a French door : PANE
50 Ice cream thickener : AGAR

8 thoughts on “1019-19 NY Times Crossword 19 Oct 19, Saturday”

  1. Nearly gave up several times but hung in there but still ended up a few squares/answers short of completion. One of the more difficult Saturdays IMO.

  2. 1:14:07 with 4 errors and a host of “never heard ofs”. I guess this type of puzzle appeals to some but not yours truly

  3. 25:57, no errors. Surprised to get a clean fill, so…many…unknowns. Entries weren’t based on certain knowledge of the answers, rather vague suspicions that words like CELESTA and UMBRIEL actually existed.

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