1021-19 NY Times Crossword 21 Oct 19, Monday

Constructed by: Joe Deeney
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answer: Three On

Themed answers each include THREE instances of the letter-pairing “ON”:

  • 36A Bases loaded … or a hint to the contents of 17-, 26-, 44- and 56-Across : THREE ON
  • 17A Is highly versed about something : KNOWS ONE’S ONIONS
  • 26A Major athletic event along the Thames : LONDON MARATHON
  • 44A Bob Dylan album that he called “the closest I ever got to the sound I hear in my mind” : BLONDE ON BLONDE
  • 56A Romantic getaway for a married couple : SECOND HONEYMOON

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

Bill’s time: 4m 58s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 “Monday Night Football” airer : ESPN

“Monday Night Football” aired on ABC from 1970 until 2005, before moving to ESPN in 2006.

5 Letters on a rush order : ASAP

As soon as possible (ASAP)

9 “The west wind whispered, / And touched the eyelids of spring: / Her eyes, Primroses,” for a classic example : HAIKU

A haiku is a very elegant form of Japanese verse. When writing a haiku in English we tend to impose the rule that the verse must contain 17 syllables. This restriction comes from the rule in Japanese that the verse must contain 17 sound units called “moras”, but moras and syllables aren’t the same thing. What the difference is, is not so clear to me. Here’s an example of a Haiku:

Haikus are easy
But sometimes they don’t make sense
Refrigerator

15 Scantily dressed nightclub entertainer : GO-GO DANCER

Go-go dancing started in the early sixties. Apparently, the first go-go dancers were women at the Peppermint Lounge in New York City who would spontaneously jump up onto tables and dance the twist. It wasn’t long before clubs everywhere started hiring women to dance on tables for the entertainment of their patrons. Out in Los Angeles, the “Whisky a Go Go” club on Sunset Strip added a twist (pun intended!), as they had their dancers perform in cages suspended from the ceiling, creating the profession of “cage dancing”. The name “go-go” actually comes from two expressions. The expression in English “go-go-go” describes someone who is high energy, and the French expression “à gogo” describes something in abundance.

19 Chow chows and chihuahuas : DOGS

The chow chow is a breed of dog that originated in China. The Chinese name for the breed is “Songshi Quan”, which translates as “puffy-lion dog”, a rather apt name given its appearance …

Chihuahua is a state in northern Mexico that shares a border with Texas and New Mexico. Chihuahua is the largest state in the country, so has the nickname “El Estado Grande”. The state takes its name from the Chihuahuan Desert which lies largely within its borders. The Chihuahua breed of dog takes its name from the state.

20 The “E” of E.S.L.: Abbr. : ENG

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).

21 Org. for which Edward Snowden once worked : NSA

National Security Agency (NSA)

Edward Snowden is a former NSA contractor who leaked several top secret NSA documents to the media beginning in June 2013. After disclosing his name as the source of the leaks, Snowden tried to seek asylum in Ecuador. While travelling to Ecuador he had a layover in Moscow. While in Moscow, the US government revoked his passport, which effectively left him stranded in the transit area of Moscow Airport. The Russian government eventually granted him annually-renewable temporary asylum.

22 Trevor of “The Daily Show” : NOAH

Trevor Noah is a comedian from Johannesburg, South Africa. Noah took over as host of the Comedy Channel’s “The Daily Show” after Jon Stewart retired. Noah can speak several languages, including English, Xhosa, Zulu, Sotho, Afrikaans, and German.

24 Kirsten of “Spider-Man” : DUNST

Kirsten Dunst is a Hollywood actress from Point Pleasant, New Jersey. Dunst is perhaps best known for playing the love interest and female lead in the “Spider-Man” series of movies opposite Tobey Maguire. Personally, my favorite Dunst films are “Wimbledon” and “Marie Antoinette”. Dunst is a dual citizen of the US and Germany, as her father is from Hamburg.

26 Major athletic event along the Thames : LONDON MARATHON

The London Marathon has been run annually since 1981. It is one of the so-called “Top Six” marathons run worldwide, along with the events in Tokyo, Boston, Berlin, Chicago and New York City.

32 Besmirch, as a reputation : TAR

“Besmirch” is a derivative of “smirch”, with both words meaning to “make dirty”. In particular, to besmirch is to sully someone’s reputation.

33 Alternative to Google Sheets : EXCEL

Microsoft Excel is the spreadsheet program included in the Microsoft Office suite of applications. Microsoft’s first spreadsheet program was introduced back in 1982 and called Multiplan. Multiplan’s popularity waned due to the success of the competing product Lotus 1-2-3. Microsoft then introduced Excel, initially just for the Macintosh. When Excel was extended to Windows, Lotus was slow to respond and Microsoft took over the market.

Google Sheets is the spreadsheet that is included in the “office” suite that comes free with Google Drive. I’m a big fan …

36 Bases loaded … or a hint to the contents of 17-, 26-, 44- and 56-Across : THREE ON

That would be baseball.

40 Jong who wrote “Fear of Flying” : ERICA

Author Erica Jong’s most famous work is her first: “Fear of Flying”, a novel published in 1973. Over twenty years later, Jong wrote “Fear of Fifty: a midlife memoir”, published in 1994.

43 Revolutionary Revere : PAUL

Paul Revere is famous for having alerted the Colonial militia when the British military arrived in the build up to the battles of Lexington and Concord. Revere earned his living as a silversmith. After the war, Revere returned to his trade and diversified into other metalwork. Revere was the first American to develop a process to roll copper into sheets so that the metal could be used to sheathe the hulls of naval vessels.

44 Bob Dylan album that he called “the closest I ever got to the sound I hear in my mind” : BLONDE ON BLONDE

“Blonde on Blonde” is a 1966 album by Bob Dylan. One interesting fact about the release is that “Blonde on Blonde” was the first double album in the history of rock music.

48 The “P” of R.S.V.P. : PLAIT

“RSVP” stands for “répondez s’il vous plaît”, which is French for “answer, please”.

49 Furniture giant with a blue-and-yellow logo : IKEA

The IKEA furniture stores use the colors blue and yellow for brand recognition. Blue and yellow are the national colors of Sweden, where IKEA was founded and is headquartered.

50 401(k) alternative : IRA

A 401(k) account resembles an IRA in that contributions can be made from a paycheck prior to the deduction of income taxes. A 401(k) differs from an IRA in that it is an employer-sponsored plan, with payments taken by the employer directly from an employee’s paycheck. Additionally, contributions can be fully or partially matched by an employer.

53 Financial services corp. with an orange lion logo : ING

ING is a huge Dutch banking institution created via a merger in 1991. The company headquarters is in a spectacular building in Amsterdam called simply ING House. ING stands for Internationale Nederlanden Groep.

56 Romantic getaway for a married couple : SECOND HONEYMOON

The concept of a honeymoon vacation only started in the early 1800s. In Britain, wealthy couples would take a “bridal tour” together after the wedding, visiting those friends and relatives who could not attend the ceremony. The etymology of “honeymoon” isn’t very clear, and may even have a negative derivation as it might suggest that the sweetness (honey) of love is doomed to wane like a passing phase of the moon. The equivalent terms in other languages are “moon of honey” (French), “honey month” (Welsh) and “tinsel week” (German).

62 Thanksgiving-related race : TURKEY TROT

Turkey trots are long-distance fun-runs held around Thanksgiving here in the US, and around Christmas over the UK. The “turkey” reference is to the traditional dish served at both holidays.

64 Newspaper opinion pieces : OP-EDS

“Op-ed” is an abbreviation for “opposite the editorial page”. Op-eds started in “The New York Evening World” in 1921 when the page opposite the editorials was used for articles written by a named guest writer, someone independent of the editorial board.

65 Cravings : YENS

The word “yen”, meaning “urge”, has been around in English since the very early 1900s. It comes from the earlier word “yin” imported from Chinese, which was used in English to describe an intense craving for opium.

Down

1 Antlered animal : ELK

The elk (also “wapiti”) is one of the largest species of deer in the world, with only the moose being bigger. Early European settlers were familiar with the smaller red deer back in their homelands, so when they saw the “huge” wapiti they assumed it was a moose, and incorrectly gave it the European name for a moose, namely “elk”. The more correct name for the beast is “wapiti”, which means “white rump” in Shawnee. It’s all very confusing …

4 Ones taking paternity leave for the first time : NEW DADS

Parental leave is a benefit offered to employees in which paid or unpaid leave is provided to parents after the birth or adoption of a child. Almost every country in the United Nations requires employers to provide paid time off for new parents, except Suriname, Papua New Guinea, a few island countries in the Pacific … and the United States.

9 Positions one’s toes off the surfboard : HANGS TEN

“To hang ten” is a verb used in surfing. A surfer hangs ten when he or she is able to walk forward and hang ten toes over the nose of the board because the back of the board is covered by the waves being ridden.

10 Singer DiFranco : ANI

Ani DiFranco is a folk-rock singer and songwriter. DiFranco has also been labeled a “feminist icon”, and in 2006 won the “Woman of Courage Award” from National Organization for Women.

11 A blue compass, for the browser Safari : ICON

Safari is Apple’s flagship Internet browser, one that is used on its Mac line of computers. A mobile version of Safari is included with all iPhones.

12 Dolls seen near Barbies : KENS

Barbie’s male counterpart doll is Ken, and Ken’s family name is Carson. Barbie’s full name is Barbie Millicent Roberts. When Ken was introduced in 1959, it was as Barbie’s boyfriend. In 2004 it was announced that Ken and Barbie were splitting up, and needed to spend quality time apart. Soon after the split, Barbie “met” Blaine, a boogie boarder from Australia.

13 ___ Major (constellation) : URSA

The constellation Ursa Major (Latin for “Larger Bear”) is often just called “the Big Dipper” because of its resemblance to a ladle or dipper. Ursa Major also resembles a plow, and that’s what we usually call the same constellation back in Ireland, “the Plough”.

16 Disco singer Summer : DONNA

Donna Summer is known as “The Queen of Disco”, with great hits like “Love to Love You, Baby”, “I Feel Love” and “Hot Stuff”. In the late sixties and early seventies, LaDonna Gaines (her real name) lived and worked in Germany. There she met and married an Austrian actor called Helmuth Sommer. They divorced not long after the marriage, but Donna kept his family name, just changing the “o” to “u” to give her the stage name of “Donna Summer”.

18 Manhattan neighborhood next to TriBeCa : SOHO

The Manhattan neighborhood known today as SoHo was very fashionable in the early 1900s, but as the well-heeled started to move uptown the area became very run down and poorly maintained. Noted for the number of fires that erupted in derelict buildings, SoHo earned the nickname “Hell’s Hundred Acres”. The area was then zoned for manufacturing and became home to many sweatshops. In the mid-1900s artists started to move into open loft spaces and renovating old buildings as the lofts were ideal locations in which an artist could both live and work. In 1968, artists and others organized themselves so that they could legalize their residential use of an area zoned for manufacturing. The group they formed took its name from the name given to the area by the city’s Planning Commission i.e “South of Houston”. This was shortened from So-uth of Ho-uston to SoHo as in the SoHo Artists Association, and the name stuck.

“TriBeCa” is a clever little acronym that expands into “TRI-angle BE-low CA-nal Street”. The name of the New York City neighborhood was developed by local residents who basically copied the naming technique used by residents of the adjacent area of SoHo, with “SoHo” being short for “SO-uth of HO-uston Street”.

22 Like a diet that prohibits bread and pasta : NO-CARB

Only relatively small amounts of carbohydrate can be stored by the human body, but those stores are important. The actual storage molecule is a starch-like polysaccharide called glycogen, which is found mainly in the liver and muscles. Glycogen is a quick source of energy when required by the body. Most of the body’s energy is stored in the form of fat, a more compact substance that is mobilized less rapidly. Endurance athletes often eat meals high in carbohydrates (carbo-loading) a few hours before an event, so that their body’s glycogen is at optimum levels.

23 Low-scoring soccer win : ONE-NIL

Soccer (also known as “association football”) is the most popular sport in the world. The term “association football” was introduced in 1863 in England, with the name chosen to distinguish the sport from rugby football. The term “soccer” started to appear about 20 years later in Oxford, as an abbreviation for “association”.

26 “To ___!” (“L’chaim!”) : LIFE

“L’Chaim!” is a Hebrew toast meaning “To life!”, with “chai” being the Hebrew word for “life”.

28 Mo. before April : MAR

March is the third month in our Gregorian calendar. It takes its name from the Latin “Martius”, which was the first month of the earliest Roman calendar. In turn, Martius was named for Mars, the Roman god of war.

29 Component of gasoline : OCTANE

The difference between a premium and regular gasoline is its octane rating. The octane rating is a measure of the resistance of the gasoline to auto-ignition i.e. its resistance to ignition just by virtue of being compressed in the cylinder. This auto-ignition is undesirable as multiple-cylinder engines are designed so that ignition within each cylinder takes place precisely when the plug sparks, and not before. If ignition occurs before the spark is created, the resulting phenomenon is called “knocking”. We sometimes use the adjective “high-octane” to mean “intense, dynamic, high-powered”

30 Poet Pablo who won a Nobel in Literature : NERUDA

“Pablo Neruda” was the pen name, and eventually the legal name, used by Chilean writer Neftali Ricardo Reyes Basoalto. Basoalto chose the name as an homage to Czech poet Jan Neruda.

34 Lovett of country music : LYLE

As well as being famous in his own right, country singer Lyle Lovett is known for his 1993 marriage to actress Julia Roberts. The pair had a whirlwind romance lasting just three weeks before they eloped and were wed. The marriage was also relatively whirlwind, lasting less than two years.

43 ___ Go (2016 fad) : POKEMON

“Pokémon GO” is a reality-based video game in which players must locate, capture, battle and train virtual creatures known as Pokémon. The Pokémon are hidden in the real world, in the sense that they have to be located on an electronic device (like a smartphone) in “the real world”, for which a GPS location is needed. Players see the Pokémon overlaid on a view of the real world on their smart device.

45 Hunky-dory : DANDY

Surprisingly (to me), the term “hunky-dory” has been around a long time, and is documented back in the mid-1800s. Nobody’s really sure of its origin, but some say it is an Anglicization of Honcho dori, that back in the day was a street of ill repute in Yokohama, Japan.

46 Number of days it took Phileas Fogg to go around the world : EIGHTY

“Around the World in 80 Days” is a wonderful adventure story written by French author Jules Verne and first published in 1873. There have been some great screen adaptations of the story, including the 1956 movie starring David Niven as the protagonist Phileas Fogg. In almost all adaptations, a balloon is used for part of the journey, and is perhaps the most memorable means of transportation on Fogg’s trip around the world. However, if you read the book, Fogg never uses a balloon at all.

52 Farm measure : ACRE

At one time, an acre was defined as the amount of land a yoke of oxen could plow in a day. Then, an acre was more precisely defined as a strip of land “one furrow long” (i.e. one furlong) and one chain wide. The length of one furlong was equal to 10 chains, or 40 rods. An area of one furlong times 10 rods was one rood.

54 Of uncertain origin: Abbr. : ANON

Something onymous is something bearing a name. The term “onymous” was coined in the 1770s as an antonym to the existing word “anonymous”.

59 Musician Yoko : ONO

Yoko Ono was born in 1933 in Tokyo into a prosperous Japanese family, and is actually a descendant of one of the emperors of Japan. Yoko’s father moved around the world for work, and she lived the first few years of her life in San Francisco. The family returned to Japan, before moving on to New York, Hanoi and back to Japan just before WWII, in time to live through the great firebombing of Tokyo in 1945. Immediately after the war the family was far from prosperous. While Yoko’s father was being held in a prison camp in Vietnam, her mother had to resort to begging and bartering to feed her children. When her father was repatriated, life started to return to normal and Yoko was able to attend university. She was the first woman to be accepted into the philosophy program of Gakushuin University.

61 12/31, briefly : NYE

New Year’s Eve (NYE)

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 “Monday Night Football” airer : ESPN
5 Letters on a rush order : ASAP
9 “The west wind whispered, / And touched the eyelids of spring: / Her eyes, Primroses,” for a classic example : HAIKU
14 Entice : LURE
15 Scantily dressed nightclub entertainer : GO-GO DANCER
17 Is highly versed about something : KNOWS ONE’S ONIONS
19 Chow chows and chihuahuas : DOGS
20 The “E” of E.S.L.: Abbr. : ENG
21 Org. for which Edward Snowden once worked : NSA
22 Trevor of “The Daily Show” : NOAH
24 Kirsten of “Spider-Man” : DUNST
26 Major athletic event along the Thames : LONDON MARATHON
31 Puts frosting on : ICES
32 Besmirch, as a reputation : TAR
33 Alternative to Google Sheets : EXCEL
35 Devotee : FAN
36 Bases loaded … or a hint to the contents of 17-, 26-, 44- and 56-Across : THREE ON
39 Attempt : TRY
40 Jong who wrote “Fear of Flying” : ERICA
42 Neither’s partner : NOR
43 Revolutionary Revere : PAUL
44 Bob Dylan album that he called “the closest I ever got to the sound I hear in my mind” : BLONDE ON BLONDE
48 The “P” of R.S.V.P. : PLAIT
49 Furniture giant with a blue-and-yellow logo : IKEA
50 401(k) alternative : IRA
53 Financial services corp. with an orange lion logo : ING
54 Partner of ready and willing : ABLE
56 Romantic getaway for a married couple : SECOND HONEYMOON
62 Thanksgiving-related race : TURKEY TROT
63 Just : ONLY
64 Newspaper opinion pieces : OP-EDS
65 Cravings : YENS
66 Connection point : NODE

Down

1 Antlered animal : ELK
2 What planets orbit : SUN
3 In favor of : PRO
4 Ones taking paternity leave for the first time : NEW DADS
5 Wide-eyed with excitement : AGOG
6 Daughters’ counterparts : SONS
7 Add years : AGE
8 Wannabe : POSEUR
9 Positions one’s toes off the surfboard : HANGS TEN
10 Singer DiFranco : ANI
11 A blue compass, for the browser Safari : ICON
12 Dolls seen near Barbies : KENS
13 ___ Major (constellation) : URSA
16 Disco singer Summer : DONNA
18 Manhattan neighborhood next to TriBeCa : SOHO
22 Like a diet that prohibits bread and pasta : NO-CARB
23 Low-scoring soccer win : ONE-NIL
24 Lack the courage to : DARE NOT
25 Counterpart of “pls,” in a text : THX
26 “To ___!” (“L’chaim!”) : LIFE
27 To the ___ degree : NTH
28 Mo. before April : MAR
29 Component of gasoline : OCTANE
30 Poet Pablo who won a Nobel in Literature : NERUDA
34 Lovett of country music : LYLE
36 Marks left by swimsuits : TAN LINES
37 Long, long time : EON
38 Spherical shape : ORB
41 Robber chaser, in a children’s game : COP
43 ___ Go (2016 fad) : POKEMON
45 Hunky-dory : DANDY
46 Number of days it took Phileas Fogg to go around the world : EIGHTY
47 Flower near a pad : LILY
50 What “:” stands for in an analogy : IS TO
51 Continue one’s military service : RE-UP
52 Farm measure : ACRE
54 Of uncertain origin: Abbr. : ANON
55 Wagers : BETS
57 Green-lit : OK’D
58 Valuable rock : ORE
59 Musician Yoko : ONO
60 Longtime : OLD
61 12/31, briefly : NYE

13 thoughts on “1021-19 NY Times Crossword 21 Oct 19, Monday”

  1. 7:32. I was out of the country for a few days. I’m still recovering (apparently) as I initially put “May” for “Month before Apr”. To steal Duncan’s line: Geez I hope no one reads this.

    Best –

    1. To expand on @anon’s post below: there are many components of natural gas/crude oil deposits. As the molecules get larger the components go from gasses to liquids to thick tars which are solid at room temperature. The simplest molecule is methane CH4 (one carbon and four hydrogen atoms); they progress from there: ethane C2H6; propane C3H8; butane C4H10; etc. and include octane C8H18. The larger and heavier the molecules get, the slower they burn. Increasing the compression ratio of a gasoline engine provides more power, but causes the fuel to burn more quickly inside the cylinder; making it necessary to add components which burn more slowly in order to prevent engine knock. In a nutshell, octane provides a ‘sweet spot’ for gasoline burn rate, and the octane rating system was developed to compare burn rates of various fuel mixtures. Bottom line: octane is both a component of gasoline and a basis for the gasoline rating system

  2. No errors. A little slow going but that is fine with me. 61-Down, NYE, puzzled me as to why the constructor would use “12/31, briefly” as the clue. I have just never seen or heard of abbreviating New Year’s Eve like that. Maybe a better use of NYE would have been something about Bill Nye, the Science Guy. At least that is something that is more based in actual usage.

  3. Octanes are a group of hydrocarbons with eight carbons found in gasoline to inhibit engine knocking. Trimethyl pentane, one isomer which has eight carbons, has an octane rating of 100.

    1. Seems you are right about this, @anon. That like group of atoms is definitely a “thing” and therefore would be a “component”. One further question. Would not the amount of these molecules spread throughout the gasoline also be a determining factor? The more of them, the higher the octane rating?

  4. Yes the octane molecules (eight carbon atoms per molecule) are throughout the gasoline and help boost octane. 2,2,4 trimethylpentane was given the octane rating 100.

  5. I made misspoke and misled in my last post. Not all of the eight carbon molecules boost octane. Only branched molecules boost octane. Straight chain molecules actually hurt octane.

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