1208-19 NY Times Crossword 8 Dec 19, Sunday

Constructed by: Emily Carroll
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: Lookin’ Good

Themed answers each feature two letters I, side by side in the grid. The letters EZ appear in the grid, directly above those letters I:

  • 110A Good-looking … or a phonetic hint to a feature found five times in this puzzle : EASY ON THE EYES or “easy on the Is
  • 27A Popular Asian honeymoon destination : BALI, INDONESIA
  • 41A Top musical group of the 1990s, per Billboard : BOYZ II MEN
  • 62A “S.N.L.” alum who co-starred in 2016’s “Ghostbusters” : KRISTEN WIIG
  • 77A Game console introduced in 2006 : NINTENDO WII
  • 96A New York social reformer whose name is on a Manhattan housing project : JACOB RIIS

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

Bill’s time: 24m 39s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

4 Music-licensing org. : ASCAP

ASCAP (the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers) collects licence fees for musicians and distributes royalties to composers whose works have been performed. BMI (Broadcast Music Incorporated) provides the same service.

14 Some Pac-12 athletes : UTES

The Utah Utes are the athletic teams of the University of Utah.

20 Ashton Kutcher’s role on “That ’70s Show” : KELSO

Ashton Kutcher played Michael Kelso on Fox’s “That ‘70s Show”. Kelso was Kutcher’s breakthrough acting role. Kutcher then starred in the sitcom “Two and a Half Men”, replacing the “disgraced” Charlie Sheen. In 2009, Kutcher became the first user on Twitter to get over 1 million followers. I wasn’t one of them …

22 Ingredient in spanakopita : FETA

Spanakopita is a savory pastry from Greece. The term “spanakopita” translates from Greek as “spinach pie”. The pie’s filling includes feta cheese, onions and egg, along with the spinach.

26 Saudi king before Abdullah : FAHD

King Fahd bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud was the head of the kingdom of Saudi Arabia until he passed away in 2005. King Fahd was somewhat of a titular head of state since 1995 when he suffered a stroke. In his heyday, the king was fond of a luxurious lifestyle, especially when outside of the kingdom. His 482 ft yacht sported two swimming pools, a garden, a hospital with two operating rooms, and four Stinger missiles. His personal Boeing 747 aircraft even had its own fountain.

27 Popular Asian honeymoon destination : BALI, INDONESIA

Bali is both an island and a province in Indonesia. It is a popular tourist spot, although the number of visitors dropped for a few years as a result of terrorist bombings in 2002 and 2005 that killed mainly tourists. Bali became more popular starting in 2008 due to a significant and favorable change in the exchange rate between the US dollar and the Indonesian rupiah.

36 Funny Foxx : REDD

“Redd Foxx” was the stage name of John Elroy Sanford, best known for starring in “Sanford and Son”. “Sanford and Son” was an American version of a celebrated hit BBC sitcom that I grew up with in Ireland, called “Steptoe and Son”.

37 Rant : TIRADE

The term “tirade” describes a long and vehement speech, and is a word that came into English from French. “Tirade” can have the same meaning in French, but is also the word for “volley”. So, a tirade is a “volley” of words.

41 Top musical group of the 1990s, per Billboard : BOYZ II MEN

BOYZ II Men are an R&B vocal trio from Philadelphia who started out in 1988. The original BOYZ II Men lineup included a fourth member, Michael McCary. McCary left the group in 2003 due to chronic back pain. The BOYZ II Men 1992 hit “End of the Road” stayed at number-one in the Billboard charts for an amazing thirteen weeks, shattering the 11-week record that had been held by Elvis Presley’s “Hound Dog” since 1956.

45 Slow start? : ESS

The word “slow” starts with a letter S (ess).

52 “I messed up,” in slang : MYB

My bad (myb)

54 Comaneci of gymnastics : NADIA

Nadia Comaneci won three golds in the 1976 Summer Olympics and was the first gymnast to be awarded a perfect score of ten in the gymnastics competition. Comaneci published a book called “Letters to a Young Gymnast” in 2003, and now lives in the United States.

55 One shouting “Get off my lawn!” : GEEZER

“Geezer”, “codger” and “coot” are all not-so-nice terms meaning “old man”.

56 PC port : USB

Universal Serial Bus (USB) is an industry standard dealing with how computers and electronic devices connect and communicate, and deal with electrical power through those connections.

58 Clothing designer Marc : ECKO

Marc Ecko is a fashion designer from New Jersey. Marc was born Marc Milecofsky. In college, he became a fan of graffiti and used the name “Ecko” to tag his drawings.

62 “S.N.L.” alum who co-starred in 2016’s “Ghostbusters” : KRISTEN WIIG

Kristen Wiig is a comic actress who appears on “Saturday Night Live”. She also made an appearance on the first season of Spike TV’s quirky “The Joe Schmo Show”, playing “Dr. Pat”. More recently, she co-wrote and starred in the 2011 hit film “Bridesmaids”, and co-starred in the 2016 reboot of “Ghostbusters”.

64 Classic soft drink : NEHI

The Nehi cola brand has a name that sounds like “knee-high”, a measure of a small stature. Back in the mid-1900’s the Chero-Cola company, which owned the brand, went for a slightly different twist on “knee-high” in advertising. The logo for Nehi was an image of a seated woman’s stockinged legs, with her skirt pulled up to her knees to hint at “knee-high”.

65 Response to a funny meme : LOLZ

A meme (from “mineme”) is a cultural practice or idea that is passed on verbally or by repetition from one person to another. The term lends itself very well to the online world where links, emails, files etc. are so easily propagated.

67 Lead-in to meter : ODO-

An odometer measures distance traveled. “Odometer comes from the Greek “hodos” meaning “path” and “metron” meaning “measure”.

70 Follower of Sam or will. : I AM

Dr. Seuss’s famous children’s book “Green Eggs and Ham” was first published in 1960. “Green Eggs and Ham” now ranks twelfth in the list of top selling children’s books. By the way, “Harry Potter” books hold the top four slots in that list. The text of “Green Eggs and Ham” has a lot of “I am” going on. It starts with:

I am Sam
I am Sam
Sam I am

and ends with:

I do so like
green eggs and ham!
Thank you!
Thank you,
Sam-I-am

“Will.i.am” is the stage name of rap artist and singer William Adams Jr. who is famous as the lead member of the Black Eyed Peas.

72 Pince-___ glasses : NEZ

Pince-nez are eyeglasses clipped to the bridge of the nose. “Pince-nez” is French, and translates as “pinch the nose”.

73 Iranian currency with a 75-Across on its bills : RIAL

75 See 73-Across : IMAM

The rial is the currency of Iran (as well as Yemen, Oman, Cambodia and Tunisia). Generally, there are 1,000 baisa in a rial.

77 Game console introduced in 2006 : NINTENDO WII

Introduced in 2006, Nintendo’s Wii quickly became the biggest-selling game console in the world.

80 It’s often included with an R.S.V.P. card : SASE

An SAE is a “stamped, addressed envelope”. An SASE is a “self-addressed, stamped envelope”.

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

83 United way? : PLANE

United Airlines (UAL) has a complicated history, but can trace its roots back to Aviation Enterprises, founded in 1944 and later called Texas International. The first use of the “United” name in the company’s history was when airplane pioneer William Boeing merged his Boeing Air Transport with Pratt & Whitney to form the United Aircraft and Transport Corporation (UATC) in 1929. The Air Mail Act of 1934 required that UATC be broken up into United Aircraft (which became United Technologies), the Boeing Aircraft Company and United Air Lines.

84 The most recent Pope Benedict : XVI

Did you know that former Pope Benedict XVI released a music CD while in office? His Holiness is featured singing on an album released by the Vatican called “Alma Mater: Featuring The Voice of Pope Benedict XVI Deluxe Edition”, a collection of sacred music. All proceeds go to help underprivileged children around the world. Benedict XVI was also the first pope to have a Twitter account. His first tweet went out on 12 December 2012:

Dear friends, I am pleased to get in touch with you through Twitter. Thank you for your generous response. I bless all of you from my heart.

92 “Buddy Holly” band, 1994 : WEEZER

Weezer is an alternative rock band formed in LA in 1992. Apparently, Weezer’s music might be described as “emo”.

96 New York social reformer whose name is on a Manhattan housing project : JACOB RIIS

Journalist Jacob Riis is famous for his photographs and newspaper articles that highlighted the plight of the impoverished in New York City. He wrote “How the Other Half Lives”, originally an extensive article that appeared in “Scribner’s Magazine” at Christmas 1889. The article had such an impact that Riis was commissioned to expand it into a book, which was published the following year.

99 Pet lovers’ org. : SPCA

Unlike most developed countries, the US has no umbrella organization with the goal of preventing cruelty to animals. Instead there are independent organizations set up all over the nation using the name SPCA. Having said that, there is an organization called the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) that was originally intended to operate across the country, but really it now focuses its efforts in New York City.

103 Phrase on a candy heart : I LUV U

The forerunner to Sweethearts candy was introduced in 1866, with the famous sayings written on the candy tailored for use at weddings. One of the original expressions was, “Married in pink, he will take a drink”. The original candy was a lot bigger, to fit all those words! The smaller, heart-shaped candy hit the shelves in 1901. We’ve been able to buy Sweethearts with the words “Text me” since 2010.

108 Caviar source : BELUGA

Caviar is the roe of a large fish that has been salted and seasoned, and especially the roe of a sturgeon. Beluga caviar comes from the beluga sturgeon, which is found primarily in the Caspian Sea. It is the most expensive type of caviar in the world. 8 ounces of US-farmed beluga caviar can be purchased through Amazon.com for just over $850, in case you’re feeling peckish …

119 One way to turn a ship : ALEE

“Alee” is the direction away from the wind. If a sailor points into the wind, he or she is pointing “aweather”.

121 National currency which, if you drop its second letter and read the result backward, spells another national currency : DINAR

The dinar is the official currency in many countries, such as Iraq, Tunisia and Serbia. The gold dinar dates back to the early days of Islam, with the name deriving from the Roman currency called “denarius” meaning “ten times” (as it was originally a coin worth ten asses).

The rand is the currency of South Africa. Much of South Africa’s famed gold comes from mines around Johannesburg in the Witwatersrand (Afrikaans for “the ridge of white waters”). The rand currency takes its name from this ridge.

123 Knights’ titles in “A Game of Thrones” : SERS

“A Game of Thrones” is the first novel in the series of fantasy novels by George R. R. Martin titled “A Song of Ice and Fire”. That first novel’s title gives its name to “Game of Thrones”, the incredibly popular HBO television series that uses the storyline from the whole series of books.

125 “Someone Like You” hitmaker, 2011 : 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.

Down

2 Triangular construction : A-FRAME

An A-frame house is one that has a steeply-angled roof, one forming the shape of the letter “A”. The A-frame design is popular in snowy regions, as the roof is so steeply pitched that it does not collect snow.

6 Former TV psychic Miss ___ : CLEO

Miss Cleo was the stage name of psychic Youree Dell Harris. She was a spokesperson for the Psychic Readers Network, a pay-per-call service, for many years.

7 The “A” of W.N.B.A.: Abbr. : ASSN

The Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) was founded in 1996. The WNBA had to compete with the American Basketball League (ABL), a professional women’s basketball league that started playing games the same year the WNBA was founded. The ABL folded in its third season.

9 Parts of hearts : ATRIA

The heart has four chambers. The two upper chambers (the atria) accept deoxygenated blood from the body and oxygenated blood from the lungs. The atria squeeze those blood supplies into the two lower chambers of the heart (the ventricles), “priming” the pump, as it were. One ventricle pumps deoxygenated blood to the lungs, and the other pumps oxygenated blood to the rest of the body.

11 Tampa Bay N.F.L.er : BUC

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers joined the NFL in 1976, along with the Seattle Seahawks, as an expansion team. The Bucs had a tough start in the NFL, losing their first 26 games. Things went better in the early eighties, but then the team went through 14 consecutive losing seasons. Their luck changed again though, and they won the Super Bowl at the end of the 2002 season.

12 Rock-___ (jukebox brand) : OLA

“Rock-Ola” was a brand of ukebox. Rock-Ola basically shared the market with Wurlitzer in the heyday of the jukebox. Rock-Ola is still making jukeboxes, and now caters to the “nostalgia market”, producing authentic looking players but using digital recordings and touch-screens for better sound and ease of use.

14 Where to see Botticelli’s “The Birth of Venus” : UFFIZI

The Uffizi Gallery is one of the oldest art museums in the western world and is housed in the Palazzo degli Uffizi in Florence, Italy. The Palazzo was built in 1560, intended to house the offices of the Florentine magistrates. This original usage gave the gallery its name, as “uffizi” is Italian for “offices”.

Sandro Botticelli was a painter of the Early Renaissance belonging to the Florentine school. Perhaps his best known work is “The Birth of Venus”, painted about 1486, which can be seen in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.

16 Colorless gases : ETHENES

Ethylene (also called “ethene”) has a gazillion uses, including as an anesthetic and an aid to hastening the ripening of fruit. Ethylene’s most common use is as a major raw material in the manufacture of plastics (like polyethylene).

34 “___ Como Va” (Santana hit) : OYE

“Oye Como Va” is a song written by Tito Puente in 1963. The best-known recording is the cover version by Santana released in 1970.

39 State of disbelief : ATHEISM

The term “atheism”, meaning “disbelief in the existence of a god or gods”, comes from the Greek “atheos” meaning “without god”.

40 Humdinger : DOOZIE

A humdinger or a pip is someone or something outstanding. “Humdinger” is American slang dating back to the early 1900s, and was originally used to describe a particularly attractive woman.

42 Lusaka native : ZAMBIAN

The capital city of Zambia is Lusaka, located in the south-central part of the country. Lusaka developed from a village, the headman of which was named Lusaka.

The landlocked nation of Zambia in Southern Africa was ruled by the British for many years as a colony known as Northern Rhodesia. Northern Rhodesia finally gained independence in 1964, adopting the name Zambia. The new name comes from the Zambezi river, which forms much of the border between Zambia and Zimbabwe. The famous Victoria Fall lies on the Zambezi, on that border.

47 Fictional land of books and film : NARNIA

Apparently, it’s not certain how C. S. Lewis came to choose Narnia as the name of the fantasy world featured in his series of children’s books, including “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”. There was an ancient city in Umbria that the Romans called Narnia, but there is no evidence of a link.

48 “Impossible Is Nothing” sloganeer : ADIDAS

The Adidas brand dates back to when Adolf “Adi” Dassler started making his own sports shoes in his mother’s laundry room in Bavaria after returning from WWI. With his brother, Adi founded Dassler shoes. The company’s big break came in 1936 at the Berlin Olympics, when Adi persuaded American sprinter Jesse Owens to use his shoes, and with the success of Jesse Owens came success for the fledgling shoe company. After WWII the brothers split, acrimoniously. Adi’s brother, Ru-dolf Da-ssler, formed “Ruda” shoes (later to become Puma), and Adi Das-sler formed “Adidas”.

51 University officials : REGENTS

A regent is a member of the governing body of a university.

53 ___ canto : BEL

“Bel canto” is a term used in Italian opera, the literal translation of which is “beautiful singing”. The term specifically describes a style of singing that emphasises beauty of tone over dramatic power.

55 Part of a short race : GNOME

In English folklore, the fairy’s anti-hero is the diminutive gnome, an evil ugly character. Over the centuries, the gnome has become more lovable. We now have garden gnomes, and even the Travelocity Gnome.

59 Washington’s Kellyanne or George : CONWAY

Kellyanne Conway is a political pollster and spokesperson. She was appointed to run then-candidate Donald Trump’s campaign in 2016, which resulted in Conway ultimately becoming the first woman to manage a successful US presidential campaign. One of Conway’s less auspicious claims to fame was coining of the phrase “alternative facts”, which she used in a 2017 interview on “Meet the Press”. She later defined “alternative facts” as “additional facts and alternative information”.

63 Teacher : EDIFIER

To edify is to provide instruction in order to improve spiritually, morally or intellectually. The intent is to “build up” someone’s faith or morality, and so “edify” comes from the Latin “aedificare” meaning “to build, construct”. This Latin root also gives us our word “edifice”, meaning “massive building”.

76 New York Mets epithet : AMAZIN’

The New York Mets baseball team was founded in 1962 as a replacement for two teams that the city had lost, namely the Brooklyn Dodgers and the New York Giants. For several years the Mets played very poorly, finishing no better than second-to-last in their division. Then along came the “Miracle Mets” (aka “Amazin’ Mets”) who beat the Baltimore Orioles in 1969 to claim the World Series in a huge upset.

79 West Coast brew, for short : OLY

The Olympia Brewing Company was founded in the town of Tumwater, Washington in 1896, by a German immigrant. Olympia (familiarly “Oly”) was acquired by Pabst in 1983.

82 France’s Boulogne-___-Mer : SUR

Boulogne-sur-Mer, in the very north of France, is the country’s largest fishing port.

85 Disney’s Herbie, for one : VW BUG

“The Love Bug” is a 1969 film from Walt Disney, the star of which is a 1963 Volkswagen Bug named Herbie. Believe it or not, the movie is based on a book called “Car, Boy, Girl” written by Gordon Buford. “The Love Bug” spawned a series of sequels such as “Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo” (1977) and “Herbie: Fully Loaded” (2005).

87 Under attack : BESIEGED

Our word “siege” comes from a 13th century word for a “seat”. The military usage derives from the concept of a besieging force “sitting down” outside a fortress until it falls.

89 “The Song of Hiawatha” tribe : OJIBWAS

The Ojibwe (also “Ojibwa”) are the second-largest of the First Nations, surpassed only by the Cree. The name “Ojibwa” is more common in Canada, whereas the alternative anglicization “Chippewa” is more common in the US.

“The Song of Hiawatha” is an epic poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow that he penned in 1855. Longfellow based the poem on legends told to him by Native Americans. The main characters in the piece are Hiawatha and his lover Minnehaha.

90 Sierra Nevada, e.g. : PALE ALE

The Sierra Nevada Brewing Company is powered almost exclusively by solar energy, and even has a charging station for electric vehicles at its brewery. The company also uses the cooking oil from its restaurant as biodiesel for its delivery trucks. Discarded yeast is used to make ethanol fuel, and spent grain is used as food for livestock. For its efforts to preserve the environment, Sierra Nevada won the EPA’s “Green Business of the Year” award for 2010.

91 Oar : SCULLER

A scull is a boat used for competitive rowing. The main hull of the boat is often referred to as a shell. Crew members who row the boat can be referred to as “oars”. And, a scull is also an oar mounted on the stern of a small boat. It’s all very confusing …

93 Frozen Wasser : EIS

In German, “Eis” (ice) is frozen “Wasser” (water).

97 Immature eggs : OVULES

As we all remember from botany class (don’t we?), an ovule is a small structure in many plants that develops into the seed after fertilization.

98 Doofus : ASS

“Doofus” (also “dufus”) is student slang that has been around since the sixties. Apparently the word is a variant of the equally unattractive term “doo-doo”.

100 Hallucinogen sometimes called a “divine messenger” : PEYOTE

The peyote is a small, spineless cactus that is native to southwestern Texas and Mexico. When ingested, the peyote is known to have a psychoactive effect. One of the psychoactive alkaloids in peyote is mescaline, a recreational drug of choice for the likes of Aldous Huxley and Pablo Picasso.

102 Give the green light : ASSENT

The first traffic lights date back to 1868 when they were installed outside the Houses of Parliament in London. They resembled the signals already in use for trains, with semaphore arms and red and green gas lamps for nighttime use. That first system was operated manually, by a policeman at the base. Sadly, one police officer was killed just one year after the light’s installation, when the gas system exploded.

105 No longer in style : PASSE

“Passé” is a French word, meaning “past, faded”. We’ve imported the term into English, and use it in the same sense.

111 Jedi guru : YODA

The Jedi are the good guys in the “Star Wars” series of movies. The most famous Jedi knights from the films are Obi-Wan Kenobi (played by Alec Guinness, and later Ewan McGregor) and Yoda (voiced by Frank Oz). Well, they’re my favorites anyway …

112 Poet who wrote “Jupiter from on high laughs at lovers’ perjuries” : OVID

The Roman poet Publius Ovidius Naso is known today simply as Ovid. Ovid is usually listed alongside the two other great Roman poets: Horace and Virgil. Although he was immensely popular during his own lifetime, Ovid spent the last ten years of his life in exile. He fell foul of Emperor Augustus, although what led to this disfavor isn’t truly understood.

113 World’s rarest goose : NENE

The nene is a bird that is native to Hawaii, and is also known as the Hawaiian goose. The name “nene” is imitative of its call. When Captain Cook landed on the islands in 1778, there were 25,000 nene living there. By 1950, the number was reduced by hunting to just 30 birds. Conservation efforts in recent years have been somewhat successful. The nene was named State Bird of Hawaii in 1957.

116 A count manager : UMP

Back in the 15th century, “an umpire” was referred to as “a noumpere”, which was misheard and hence causing the dropping of the initial letter N. The term “noumpere” came from Old French “nonper” meaning “not even, odd number”. The idea was that the original umpire was a third person called on to arbitrate between two, providing that “odd number” needed to decide the dispute.

117 Vardalos of “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” : NIA

Nia Vardalos is an actress and screenwriter whose biggest break came with the 2002 film “My Big Fat Greek Wedding”, which she wrote and in which she starred. The film tells the story of a Greek-American woman marrying a non-Greek Caucasian American who converts to the Greek Orthodox Church to facilitate the marriage. The storyline reflects the actual experiences of Vardalos and her husband, actor Ian Gomez. Vardalos and Gomez appeared together as hosts for two seasons of the reality competition “The Great American Baking Show”.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Unpleasantly surprise : JAR
4 Music-licensing org. : ASCAP
9 Big brother? : ABBOT
14 Some Pac-12 athletes : UTES
18 Three or four, say : A FEW
20 Ashton Kutcher’s role on “That ’70s Show” : KELSO
21 “Cross my heart” : TRULY
22 Ingredient in spanakopita : FETA
23 Carefree quality : BREEZINESS
25 Synopsis : RECAP
26 Saudi king before Abdullah : FAHD
27 Popular Asian honeymoon destination : BALI, INDONESIA
29 Ready for publication : EDITED
31 Comes into view : EMERGES
32 Was given no other option : HAD TO
35 Online publication : E-ZINE
36 Funny Foxx : REDD
37 Rant : TIRADE
41 Top musical group of the 1990s, per Billboard : BOYZ II MEN
43 51 past : NINE TO
44 Patronize, in a way : DINE AT
45 Slow start? : ESS
46 Momentarily : IN A SEC
50 Supporting, with “up” : SHORING
52 “I messed up,” in slang : MYB
54 Comaneci of gymnastics : NADIA
55 One shouting “Get off my lawn!” : GEEZER
56 PC port : USB
58 Clothing designer Marc : ECKO
62 “S.N.L.” alum who co-starred in 2016’s “Ghostbusters” : KRISTEN WIIG
64 Classic soft drink : NEHI
65 Response to a funny meme : LOLZ
66 Stopping point : END
67 Lead-in to meter : ODO-
68 Manage : SEE TO
70 Follower of Sam or will. : I AM
72 Pince-___ glasses : NEZ
73 Iranian currency with a 75-Across on its bills : RIAL
75 See 73-Across : IMAM
77 Game console introduced in 2006 : NINTENDO WII
80 It’s often included with an R.S.V.P. card : SASE
81 Like most Italian singular nouns finishing in -a: Abbr. : FEM
82 Scatters about : STREWS
83 United way? : PLANE
84 The most recent Pope Benedict : XVI
86 Like some “#@&!” language : ABUSIVE
88 “Actually, I do” : WHY, YES
89 Photo ___ : OPS
92 “Buddy Holly” band, 1994 : WEEZER
94 Braced (oneself) : NERVED
96 New York social reformer whose name is on a Manhattan housing project : JACOB RIIS
98 Amenable sort : AGREER
99 Pet lovers’ org. : SPCA
103 Phrase on a candy heart : I LUV U
104 Impertinent sorts : SNIPS
106 Birds or wasps : NESTERS
108 Caviar source : BELUGA
110 Good-looking … or a phonetic hint to a feature found five times in this puzzle : EASY ON THE EYES or “easy on the Is”
114 What may follow fire or stone : … WALL
115 Pulmonologist’s expertise : LUNGS
118 Give too much light : OVEREXPOSE
119 One way to turn a ship : ALEE
120 Members of une sororité : AMIES
121 National currency which, if you drop its second letter and read the result backward, spells another national currency : DINAR
122 Memo header : ATTN
123 Knights’ titles in “A Game of Thrones” : SERS
124 Heart topper, in bridge : SPADE
125 “Someone Like You” hitmaker, 2011 : ADELE
126 Jokey suffix with most : -EST

Down

1 Prattle : JABBER
2 Triangular construction : A-FRAME
3 Was taken aback : REELED
4 Unable to move well : AKINETIC
5 Submits : SENDS IN
6 Former TV psychic Miss ___ : CLEO
7 The “A” of W.N.B.A.: Abbr. : ASSN
8 Ask : POSE
9 Parts of hearts : ATRIA
10 Wonderful receptacle? : BREAD BIN
11 Tampa Bay N.F.L.er : BUC
12 Rock-___ (jukebox brand) : OLA
13 Romantic preference : TYPE
14 Where to see Botticelli’s “The Birth of Venus” : UFFIZI
15 Three or four, say : TEATIME
16 Colorless gases : ETHENES
17 Turns blue? : SADDENS
19 “Well, that’s quite a coincidence …” : WEIRD …
24 Sudden turn : ZIG
28 Ewe or sow : SHE
30 One with superhuman powers : DEITY
33 Spanish or Portuguese : TONGUE
34 “___ Como Va” (Santana hit) : OYE
38 Make alterations to : RESEW
39 State of disbelief : ATHEISM
40 Humdinger : DOOZIE
42 Lusaka native : ZAMBIAN
43 “Swell!” : NEATO!
44 NNE or SSW : DIR
46 Tattoo artists : INKERS
47 Fictional land of books and film : NARNIA
48 “Impossible Is Nothing” sloganeer : ADIDAS
49 Family nickname : SIS
51 University officials : REGENTS
53 ___ canto : BEL
55 Part of a short race : GNOME
57 Draws back : SHIES
59 Washington’s Kellyanne or George : CONWAY
60 Little: Ger. : KLEINE
61 Smith and Nelson : OZZIES
63 Teacher : EDIFIER
64 Emphatic denial : NO, NEVER!
69 Arduous : TIRING
71 Degree for a research scientist : MD-PHD
74 Latin law : LEX
76 New York Mets epithet : AMAZIN’
78 Quaint contraction : ‘TWERE
79 West Coast brew, for short : OLY
82 France’s Boulogne-___-Mer : SUR
85 Disney’s Herbie, for one : VW BUG
87 Under attack : BESIEGED
88 Visitors’ announcement : WE’RE HERE!
89 “The Song of Hiawatha” tribe : OJIBWAS
90 Sierra Nevada, e.g. : PALE ALE
91 Oar : SCULLER
93 Frozen Wasser : EIS
95 Counterpart of dorsal : VENTRAL
97 Immature eggs : OVULES
98 Doofus : ASS
99 First part in an instruction manual : STEP A
100 Hallucinogen sometimes called a “divine messenger” : PEYOTE
101 Parts of waves : CRESTS
102 Give the green light : ASSENT
105 No longer in style : PASSE
107 Reason for a TV-MA rating, perhaps : SEX
109 “Say it ain’t so!” : ALAS!
111 Jedi guru : YODA
112 Poet who wrote “Jupiter from on high laughs at lovers’ perjuries” : OVID
113 World’s rarest goose : NENE
116 A count manager : UMP
117 Vardalos of “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” : NIA

9 thoughts on “1208-19 NY Times Crossword 8 Dec 19, Sunday”

  1. 1:43:40 in what seemed like 4:43:40 with no errors….this puzzle was a drag from the start…..I still don’t know what LOLZ means and got most of the foreign words via crosses and luck….on a happier note GO RAVENS

  2. 38:48, 2 errors: OJIBWA(Y); (Y)ERS. Ojibway is an alternate (also plural) spelling of OJIBWA; I might be one of a handful of people who didn’t watch Game of Thrones. Still don’t care for the heavy reliance on foreign language.

    @Martin Gayle: I suspect that in today’s digital age, when people no longer look at circular clock faces, that the terms ‘past’ and ‘to’ are becoming archaic. Especially terms like ‘half past’ and ‘quarter to’.

  3. Very hard puzzle, but not due to “directors nobody ever heard of”, etc. We didn’t get the theme until it was explained here. Very clever. We missed three letters, OJIBWAY, SERS and DINEAT, the last one due to carelessness. I’d like to know Dr. Carrrol’s specialty. This is one smart doc.

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