1127-19 NY Times Crossword 27 Nov 19, Wednesday

Constructed by: Matthew Sewell & Jeff Chen
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answers: Growth Potential & Pot

Note that I solved the puzzle online, and so the numbering in my grid goes awry towards the bottom. Black squares define four POTS at the bottom of the grid. Inside those POTS are the letters SEED. That SEED GROWS into DILL, CHIVES, MINT and SAGE, in circled letters above the pots:

  • 55A Ability of a company to expand … or a hint to this puzzle’s theme : GROWTH POTENTIAL
  • 65A Herb garden vessel … as depicted four times by black squares in this puzzle : POT

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

Bill’s time: 8m 28s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Rejuvenating resorts : SPAS

The word “spa” migrated into English from Belgium, as “Spa” is the name of a municipality in the east of the country that is famous for its healing hot springs. The name “Spa” comes from the Walloon word “espa” meaning “spring, fountain”.

5 Energy source for plants : SUN

Photosynthesis is the process used by plants (mainly) in which light energy is harnessed to convert carbon dioxide and water into carbohydrate molecules. Fortunately for those of us who enjoy breathing, oxygen is released as a waste product of photosynthesis.

16 Zenith : ACME

The acme is the highest point. The term “acme” comes from the Greek word “akme” that has the same meaning.

The nadir is the direction pointing immediately below a particular location (through to the other side of the Earth for example). The opposite direction, that pointing immediately above, is called the zenith. We use the terms “nadir” and “zenith” figuratively to mean the low and high points in a person’s fortunes.

17 Singer/actress Lenya : LOTTE

Lotte Lenya was an Austrian singer and actress. She was married to composer Kurt Weill, and was noted for her performances of his works. Late in her career she played Rosa Klebb, one of the main villains in the 1963 Bond movie “From Russia With Love”. Klebb was the character who had the knife that popped out from the toe of her shoe.

18 “___-daisy!” : UPSY

“Upsy-daisy” is an interjection sometimes used when lifting up a child. It’s “baby talk”, words of reassurance.

19 Ungainly boat : SCOW

A scow is a flat-bottomed boat with squared-off ends that’s often used for transportation, usually pushed or pulled by a barge. Often a scow can be seen carrying junk or garbage.

20 Central courtyards : ATRIA

In modern architecture, an atrium (plural “atria” or “atriums”) is a large open space usually in the center of a building and extending upwards to the roof. The original atrium was an open court in the center of an Ancient Roman house. One could access most of the enclosed rooms of the house from the atrium.

22 Former M&M’s color : TAN

Forrest Mars, Sr. was the founder of the Mars Company. Forrest invented the Mars Bar while living over in England and then developed M&M’s when he returned to the US. Mars came up with the idea for M&M’s when he saw soldiers in the Spanish Civil War eating chocolate pellets. Those pellets had a hard shell of tempered chocolate on the outside to prevent them from melting. Mars got some of the funding to develop the M&M from William Murrie, the son of the president of Hershey’s Chocolate. It is the “M” and “M” from “Mars” and “Murrie” that gives the name to the candy.

23 R&B singer with the 2002 hit “Foolish” : ASHANTI

Ashanti Douglas is an American R&B singer who uses just “Ashanti” as her stage name.

25 Tandoori bread : NAN

Naan (also “nan”) bread is very popular in Indian restaurants, as well as in other West, Central and South Asian cuisines. Indian Naan is traditionally baked in a clay oven known as a tandoor.

28 Delicate surface for Aboriginal art : EMU EGG

Emu eggs are very large, with a thick shell that is dark-green in color. One emu egg weighs about the same as a dozen chicken eggs. It is the male emu that incubates the eggs. The incubation period lasts about 8 weeks, during which time the male neither eats nor drinks, just lapping up any morning dew that is nearby. While incubating a clutch of eggs, male emus lose about a third of their weight.

30 Syrup of ___ : IPECAC

Syrup of ipecac is a preparation made from the dried roots and rhizomes of the ipecacuanha plant. The syrup is used as an emetic, a substance that induces vomiting. Ipecac accomplishes this by irritating the lining of the stomach.

36 Inexperienced gamers, in slang : NOOBS

“Noob” is a not-so-nice slang term for a “newbie”, and often refers to someone who is new to an online community.

38 Ice Bucket Challenge cause, for short : ALS

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge is a viral phenomenon in which participants are challenged to be filmed having a bucket of ice water poured over their heads. Each participant then gets to nominate up to three other people to do the same. Usually the nominees are given a day or two to comply, but can make a charitable donation is they want to avoid the icy shower. Happily, many participants opt to take the challenge, and also make a donation.

39 “Eureka!” : I HAVE IT!

“Eureka” translates from Greek as “I have found it”. The word is usually associated with Archimedes, uttered as he stepped into his bath one day. His discovery was that the volume of water that was displaced was equal to that of the object (presumably his foot) that had been submerged. He used this fact to determine the volume of a crown, something he needed in order to determine if it was made of pure gold or was a forgery.

42 Forest female : 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 …

46 One of the Wayans brothers : KEENEN

Keenen Ivory Wayans is a member of the Wayans family that is so very successful in the world of entertainment. Keenen is perhaps best known for sketch comedy show “In Living Color” that ran from 1990 to 1994. Keenen created wrote and starred in the show with his brother Damon Wayans. Keenen also directed the horror comedy film “Scary Movie”, which was co-written by two other brothers, Shawn and Marlon Wayans.

50 Payroll dept. IDs : SSNS

Social Security number (SSN)

52 Catch 40 winks : DOZE

Back in the early 1800s, folks took “nine winks” when getting a few minutes of sleep during the day. Dr. William Kitchiner extended this concept in his 1821 self-help book “The Art of Invigorating and Prolonging Life”. He suggested “A Forty Winks Nap”, which we seem to have been taking ever since. Mind you, I’m up to about eighty winks most days …

53 Diktat : FIAT

A fiat is an arbitrary rule that is imposed, and is the Latin for “let it be done”.

54 Son of Aphrodite and Ares : EROS

The name of Eros, the Greek god of love, gives rise to our word “erotic” meaning “arousing sexual desire”. Eros was referred to in Latin as both “Amor” (meaning “love”) and “Cupid” (meaning “desire”).

64 Entrepreneur’s deg. : MBA

The world’s first Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree was offered by Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration, in 1908.

An entrepreneur is someone takes on most aspects of a business venture, from the original idea to the execution. The term is imported from French, with “entreprendre” meaning “to undertake”. The original usage in English dates back to the early 1800s, when it applied to a manager and promoter of a theatrical production.

67 Place of worship : PEW

A pew is a bench in a church, one usually with a high back. The original pews were raised and sometimes enclosed seats in the church used by women and important men or families. “Pew” comes from the Old French “puie” meaning “balcony, elevation”.

Down

1 Peak that’s the home of California’s longest glacier : SHASTA

Mount Shasta is in northern California. The origin of the name “Shasta” seems to be unclear. It may have come from the Russian “tchastal” meaning “white, clean, pure”, a name given to the volcanic peak by early Russian immigrants.

5 Truth, to Shakespeare : SOOTH

A soothsayer is someone who claims to have the ability to predict the future. The term comes from “sooth”, an archaic word for “truth”. So a soothsayer was supposedly one who told the “truth” (about the future).

8 Apple cores, for short : CPUS

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.

9 Après-ski quarters : ALPINE LODGE

“Après-ski” is a French term meaning “after skiing”. It refers to the good times to be had after coming off the slopes.

10 Where trolls may lurk : MESSAGE BOARD

In Internet terms, a troll is someone who attempts to disrupt online group activities. The fishing term “troll” is used to describe such a person as he or she throws out off-topic remarks in an attempt to “lure” others into some emotional response. I must admit to feeling sorry for people who have such sad lives …

27 Many Caltech grads, for short : EES

Electrical engineer (EE)

Caltech is more properly known as the California Institute of Technology, and is a private research-oriented school in Pasadena. One of Caltech’s responsibilities is the management and operation of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. If you watch “The Big Bang Theory” on television like me, you might know that the four lead characters all work at Caltech.

29 Sci-fi sighting : UFO

Unidentified flying object (UFO)

31 Jackie of “Shanghai Noon” : CHAN

Jackie Chan is an actor from Hong Kong who is noted for his action and martial arts films. When Chan was 17-years-old he featured as a stunt actor in Bruce Lee movies. He also starred in the 1982 Hong Kong action film “Dragon Lord” which includes a fight scene that required an amazing 2900 takes, a record in the movie industry.

“Shanghai Noon” is a comedy released in 2000 that is a melding of the movie genres western, kung-fu and comedy. The stars are Owen Wilson and Jackie Chan. The film’s title is a pun on the classic western film “High Noon”.

32 With 44-Across, Dutch art dealer who supported his artist brother : THEO …
(44A See 32-Down : … VAN GOGH)

Theo van Gogh was the younger brother of painter Vincent van Gogh, and a successful art dealer. Theo provided financial support for his brother throughout his life, allowing Vincent to pursue his passion for creating art. Vincent and Theo died about six months apart. The former committed suicide and the later died from the effects of syphilis.

35 Stock market fig. : AVG

Average (avg.)

37 Dreamcast maker of old : SEGA

The Dreamcast is a video game console released by Sega in the late nineties. It was to become the company’s last game console. Since then, Sega has focused on producing video games as opposed to hardware.

40 Palindromic woman’s name : HANNAH

The three most famous palindromes in English have to be:

  • Able was I ere I saw Elba
  • A man, a plan, a canal, Panama!
  • Madam, I’m Adam

One of my favorite terms is “Aibohphobia”, although it doesn’t appear in the dictionary and is a joke term. “Aibohphobia” is a great way to describe a fear of palindromes, by creating a palindrome out of the suffix “-phobia”.

47 [Warning: explicit content] : [NSFW]

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.

51 Annual parade honoree, familiarly : ST PAT

The first Saint Patrick’s Day celebration in the US was held in 1600, in St. Augustine, Florida. There is some evidence that the first St. Paddy’s Day parade was held the following year, in the same locale. The annual parade in Boston dates back to 1737, in New York City dates back to 1762, and in Chicago dates back to 1843.

56 Fraternity letter that’s a homophone of where fraternities might be found : RHO

“Rho” is a homophone of “Row”.

Homophones are words that are pronounced in the same way (e.g., ere, air, err and heir). Homonyms are a subset of homophones, and are words that have the same spelling and the same pronunciation but different meanings, for example, skate (a fish) and skate (worn on the foot).

58 Salute in stanzas : ODE

“Stanza” is an Italian word meaning “verse of a poem”.

59 Little hellion : IMP

A hellion is a mischievous and wild person. “Hellion” is a North American term, one probably derived for the word that we use for the same thing on the other side of the Atlantic, namely “hallion”.

60 Prez in a stovepipe hat : ABE

Abraham Lincoln was the 16th President of the US, elected in 1860 as the first president from the Republican Party. Lincoln’s electoral support came almost exclusively from the north and west of the country, winning only 2 out of 996 counties in the Southern slave states. Lincoln led the country through the Civil War, and then was assassinated in 1865 just a few days after Robert E. Lee surrendered his army of Northern Virginia. President Lincoln was succeeded in office by Vice President Andrew Johnson.

A stovepipe hat is also known as a top hat.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Rejuvenating resorts : SPAS
5 Energy source for plants : SUN
8 Word after base or space : … CAMP
12 Pitch in : HELP
13 Subtitle preceder, often : COLON
15 Courtroom claim : PLEA
16 Zenith : ACME
17 Singer/actress Lenya : LOTTE
18 “___-daisy!” : UPSY
19 Ungainly boat : SCOW
20 Central courtyards : ATRIA
21 Enthusiastic Spanish assent : SI SI!
22 Former M&M’s color : TAN
23 R&B singer with the 2002 hit “Foolish” : ASHANTI
25 Tandoori bread : NAN
26 Venomous vipers : ADDERS
28 Delicate surface for Aboriginal art : EMU EGG
30 Syrup of ___ : IPECAC
32 Pittance : TRIFLE
33 Fractional part? : SLASH
34 “You wish!” : HAH!
36 Inexperienced gamers, in slang : NOOBS
38 Ice Bucket Challenge cause, for short : ALS
39 “Eureka!” : I HAVE IT!
42 Forest female : DOE
43 Foldable bed : COT
44 See 32-Down : … VAN GOGH
45 Kind of gift : GAG
46 One of the Wayans brothers : KEENEN
48 Period that’s “ushered in” : NEW ERA
50 Payroll dept. IDs : SSNS
52 Catch 40 winks : DOZE
53 Diktat : FIAT
54 Son of Aphrodite and Ares : EROS
55 Ability of a company to expand … or a hint to this puzzle’s theme : GROWTH POTENTIAL
62 “Eureka!” : AHA!
63 Clamor : ADO
64 Entrepreneur’s deg. : MBA
65 Herb garden vessel … as depicted four times by black squares in this puzzle : POT
66 Classic cowboy nickname : TEX
67 Place of worship : PEW

Down

1 Peak that’s the home of California’s longest glacier : SHASTA
2 Minor indiscretions : PECCADILLOES
3 Bear claw filling : ALMOND PASTE
4 Vent violently : SPEW
5 Truth, to Shakespeare : SOOTH
6 Extremely : ULTRA
7 Away at the moment : NOT IN
8 Apple cores, for short : CPUS
9 Après-ski quarters : ALPINE LODGE
10 Where trolls may lurk : MESSAGE BOARD
11 Remunerative : PAYING
13 Like some shares and baseball teams : CLASS A
14 Comparatively tidy : NEATER
23 Where records of old web pages can be accessed : ARCHIVE SITE
24 Declaration from someone on a hot streak : I’M IN THE ZONE!
27 Many Caltech grads, for short : EES
29 Sci-fi sighting : UFO
31 Jackie of “Shanghai Noon” : CHAN
32 With 44-Across, Dutch art dealer who supported his artist brother : THEO …
33 Fire : SACK
35 Stock market fig. : AVG
37 Dreamcast maker of old : SEGA
40 Palindromic woman’s name : HANNAH
41 Overlook : IGNORE
47 [Warning: explicit content] : [NSFW]
49 Direction that wagon trains headed : WEST
51 Annual parade honoree, familiarly : ST PAT
52 Do a juice cleanse, say : DETOX
55 Disparity : GAP
56 Fraternity letter that’s a homophone of where fraternities might be found : RHO
57 Feedbag tidbit : OAT
58 Salute in stanzas : ODE
59 Little hellion : IMP
60 Prez in a stovepipe hat : ABE
61 Bar code? : LAW

3 thoughts on “1127-19 NY Times Crossword 27 Nov 19, Wednesday”

  1. 13:17 Here I was as all proud because I recognized the pot/seed combination… Never noticed the shaded letters spelled herbs…. *duh* : )

  2. 23:06. I really struggled with this one for some reason. Interesting theme, but I kept looking for something more complicated. I was unfamiliar with the term “diktat”. I assume it comes from “dictate” somehow.

    Maybe a Thanksgiving puzzle tomorrow will get me back on track.

    Best –

  3. Clue numbers are off starting with 50 both Across and Down.

    Thanks for your insight to the puzzles, always helpful!

    Happy Thanksgiving

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