0307-20 NY Times Crossword 7 Mar 20, Saturday

Constructed by: Robyn Weintraub
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: None

… a complete list of answers

Bill’s time: 20m 21s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Gray with the 3x platinum album “On How Life Is” : MACY

Macy Gray is an R&B singer noted for her raspy voice, and a singing style that resembles that of Billie Holliday.

14 Fit for a sweater : AGUE

An ague is a fever, one usually associated with malaria.

16 Golfer Aoki : ISAO

Isao Aoki is one of Japan’s greatest golfers. Aoki’s best finish in a major tournament was runner-up to Jack Nicklaus in the 1980 US Open.

22 Shakespearean production : ADO

“Much Ado About Nothing” is a play by William Shakespeare, and a favorite of mine. It is a comedic tale of two pairs of lovers with lots of mistaken identities and double meanings. I once saw it performed in the fabulous Globe Theatre in London … by an all-female cast. Such a performance was somewhat ironic, given that in Shakespeare’s day the practice was to use an all-male cast.

26 One of four on Pluto : PAW

Pluto is Mickey Mouse’s pet dog, as well as a star in his own right. Pluto is an unusual Disney character in that he is portrayed basically as a dog as opposed to a “humanized” version of a dog, as are the other Disney characters.

27 Small cardinal : TWO

Cardinal numbers are the whole numbers starting with zero, i.e. 0, 1, 2, 3, etc.

28 Himalayan native : YAK

The English word “yak” is an Anglicized version of the Tibetan name for the male of the species. Yak milk is much prized in the Tibetan culture. It is made into cheese and butter, and the butter is used to make a tea that is consumed in great volume by Tibetans. The butter is also used as a fuel in lamps, and during festivals the butter is even sculpted into religious icons.

The magnificent Himalaya range of mountains in Asia takes its name from the Sanskrit for “abode of snow”. Geographically, the Himalaya separates the Indian subcontinent from the Tibetan Plateau to the north.

29 Declaration upon walking in the door : HOME, SWEET HOME

“Home! Sweet Home!” is a song that has been around at least since 1827. The melody was composed by Englishman Sir Henry Bishop, using lyrics written by American John Howard Payne.

Mid pleasures and palaces though we may roam,
Be it ever so humble, there’s no place like home;
A charm from the skies seems to hallow us there,
Which seek thro’ the world, is ne’er met elsewhere.
Home! Home!
Sweet, sweet home!
There’s no place like home
There’s no place like home!

35 Individual, for one: Abbr. : SYN

“Individual” is a synonym of “one”.

36 Source of Roquefort cheese : EWE

Roquefort cheese comes from the commune of Roquefort-sur-Soulzon in the South of France.

38 Highest point : APOGEE

In the celestial world, an apsis is a point in an orbit when the orbiting body is at its greatest, or least, distance from it’s center of orbit. The farthest and closest points of orbit are known as the apogee and perigee, when talking about bodies orbiting the Earth. The farthest and closest points for bodies orbiting the sun are known as the aphelion and perihelion.

42 Chemical suffix : -ENE

An alkene is an organic compound made up of carbon and hydrogen atoms. It differs from an alkane in that it has at least one C=C double bond. The simplest alkene is the gas ethylene, a major raw material used in the manufacture of plastics (like polyethylene).

48 End notes : CODA

In music, a coda is primarily a passage that brings a movement to a conclusion. “Coda” is Italian for “tail”.

49 Ones set for a wild party? : JELL-O SHOTS

If you like Jell-O, then you might want to stop by LeRoy, New York where you can visit the only Jell-O museum in the world. While at the museum, you can walk along the Jell-O Brick Road …

50 Tech-focused website : C|NET

c|net is an excellent technology website. c|net started out in 1994 as a television network specializing in technology news. The host of “American Idol”, Ryan Seacrest, started off his career as host of a c|net show.

51 Support structure : REBAR

A steel bar or mesh used to reinforce concrete is called “rebar”, which is short for “reinforcing bar”.

52 Nobelist Wiesel : ELIE

Elie Wiesel was a holocaust survivor, and is best known for his book “Night” that tells of his experiences in Auschwitz and Buchenwald. Wiesel was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986. He was also the first recipient of the US Holocaust Memorial Museum Award, which was later renamed the Elie Wiesel Award in his honor.

55 Vixen : MINX

A minx is a flirtatious woman. The term “minx” comes from the 16th-century word “mynx” that was used for a pet dog.

Down

1 Source of igneous rock : MAGMA

Magma is the molten material below the Earth’s surface. When magma cools, it forms igneous rock. “Magma” is a Greek term used for a thick ointment.

6 Company that makes Valium : ROCHE

The generic name for Valium is diazepam. The drug was developed by Dr. Leo Sternbach of Hoffman-La Roche, and approved for use in 1963. This was the second of Dr. Sternbach’s major developments, as he was responsible for the diazepam’s sister drug Librium, that went to market in 1960.

7 Some decorative plants : ALOES

Aloe vera has a number of alternate names that are descriptive of its efficacy as a medicine. ancient Egyptians knew it as the plant of immortality, and Native Americans called it the wand of heaven.

8 Brown alternative : PENN

The University of Pennsylvania (also “Penn” and “UPenn”) was founded in 1740 by Benjamin Franklin. Penn was the first school in the country to offer both graduate and undergraduate courses. Penn’s sports teams are known as the Quakers, and sometimes the Red & Blue.

9 Cartoonist Hoff : SYD

Syd Hoff wrote the children’s readers “Danny and the Dinosaur” and “Sammy the Seal”. Hoff also drew two syndicated comic strips, “Tuffy” (1939-1949) and “Laugh It Off” (1958-1978).

10 What the Copacabana becomes at the end of “Copacabana” : DISCO

The Copacabana of the 1978 Barry Manilow song is the Copacabana nightclub in New York City (which is also the subject of the Frank Sinatra song “Meet Me at the Copa”). The Copa opened in 1940 and is still going today, although it is struggling. The club had to move due to impending construction and is now “sharing” a location with the Columbus 72 nightclub.

Her name was Lola, she was a showgirl
With yellow feathers in her hair and a dress cut down to there
She would merengue and do the cha-cha
And while she tried to be a star
Tony always tended bar
Across the crowded floor, they worked from 8 ’til 4
They were young and they had each other
Who could ask for more?

24 Like some flotsam : SWEPT ASHORE

“Flotsam” and “jetsam” are both terms used to describe garbage in the ocean. Flotsam is floating wreckage from a ship or its cargo. Jetsam is similar to flotsam, except that it is part of a ship or cargo that is deliberately cast overboard, perhaps to lighten a vessel.

26 One of seven in 14th-century Avignon : POPE

Avignon is a city in the southeast of France on the Rhône river. Avignon is sometimes called the “City of Popes” as it was home to seven popes during the Catholic schism from 1309 to 1423.

27 Actress Polo : TERI

Teri Polo’s most prominent role on the big screen was Pam Focker in “Meet the Fockers” and its sequel. Pam is the wife of the character played by Ben Stiller. Polo also played the wife of Presidential candidate Matt Santos in “The West Wing”.

31 Neighbor of Ill. : WIS

The state of Wisconsin is a leading producer of dairy products, and is particularly known for its cheese. Wisconsin is sometimes referred to as the Dairy State, and the state’s licence plates have borne the motto “America’s Dairyland” since 1940.

34 Civil War inits. : CSA

The Confederate States of America (CSA) set up government in 1861 just before Abraham Lincoln took office. Jefferson Davis was selected as President of the CSA at its formation, and retained the post for the life of the government.

39 Summer annoyances : GNATS

Gnats are attracted to the smell of rotting food, and vinegar. Simple homemade traps that use vinegar are often constructed to attract and kill gnats.

40 Character who steals from the dragon Smaug : BILBO

In J. R. R. Tolkien’s fantasy novel “The Hobbit”, the title character is Bilbo Baggins. He is a hobbit who stumbles across a magical ring and then embarks on a series of adventures.

The dragon named Smaug is the principal antagonist in J. R. R. Tolkien’s “The Hobbit”.

41 Literary lion : ASLAN

In the C. S. Lewis series of books known as “The Chronicles of Narnia”, Aslan is the name of the lion character (as in the title “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”). “Aslan” is actually the Turkish word for lion. Anyone who has read the books will recognize the remarkable similarity between the story of Aslan and the story of Christ, including a sacrifice and resurrection.

42 Recurrent health scare : E COLI

Escherichia coli (E. coli) are usually harmless bacteria found in the human gut, working away quite happily. However, there are some strains that can produce lethal toxins. These strains can make their way into the food chain from animal fecal matter that comes into contact with food designated for human consumption.

43 Passé, say : NOT IN

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

44 New Jersey county whose seat is Newark : ESSEX

Essex County, New Jersey is actually in the New York Metropolitan Area. The county seat is Newark.

What is now the city of Newark, New Jersey was settled in 1666 by puritans from the New Haven Colony. It is thought that the settlement was named for one of the towns named Newark in England, either Newark-on-Trent in Yorkshire or Newark in Nottinghamshire.

48 Hospital amts. : CCS

Cubic centimeter (cc)

49 What Joe Biden and Al Gore are: Abbr. : JRS

Vice President Joe Biden was a US Senator representing the state of Delaware from 1973 until he joined the Obama administration. While he was a senator, Vice President Biden commuted to Washington from Wilmington, Delaware almost every working day. He was such an active customer and supporter of Amtrak that the Wilmington Station was renamed as the Joseph R. Biden Railroad Station in 2011. Biden has made over 7,000 trips from that station, and the Amtrak crews were known to even hold the last train for a few minutes so that he could catch it. Biden earned himself the nickname “Amtrak Joe”.

Al Gore was born in Washington DC, and is the son of Al Gore, Sr., then a US Representative for the state of Tennessee. After deferring his military service in order to attend Harvard, the younger Gore became eligible for the draft on graduation. Many of his classmates found ways of avoiding the draft, but Gore decided to serve and even took the “tougher” option of joining the army as an enlisted man. Actor Tommy Lee Jones shared a house with Gore in college and says that his buddy told him that even if he could find a way around the draft, someone with less options than him would have to go in his place and that was just wrong.

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Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Gray with the 3x platinum album “On How Life Is” : MACY
5 Sandwich shop purchases : WRAPS
10 Out to lunch : DAFT
14 Fit for a sweater : AGUE
15 Well-ventilated : HOLEY
16 Golfer Aoki : ISAO
17 “Hey, can I talk to you briefly?” : GOT A SECOND?
19 Pass up : SKIP
20 Overprotective type : MOTHER HEN
21 Mark of a swordsman? : SCAR
22 Shakespearean production : ADO
23 Appreciates : SEES
24 Fast learner : SPONGE
26 One of four on Pluto : PAW
27 Small cardinal : TWO
28 Himalayan native : YAK
29 Declaration upon walking in the door : HOME, SWEET HOME
33 It might go over some students’ heads : PAPER AIRPLANE
34 Like many a password : CASE SENSITIVE
35 Individual, for one: Abbr. : SYN
36 Source of Roquefort cheese : EWE
37 Legal, after “of” : AGE
38 Highest point : APOGEE
40 Blowout : BASH
42 Chemical suffix : -ENE
45 Back : HIND
46 Seafood in shells : FISH TACOS
48 End notes : CODA
49 Ones set for a wild party? : JELL-O SHOTS
50 Tech-focused website : C|NET
51 Support structure : REBAR
52 Nobelist Wiesel : ELIE
53 Lots and lots (of) : SEAS
54 Gem : STONE
55 Vixen : MINX

Down

1 Source of igneous rock : MAGMA
2 Do ___ deed : A GOOD
3 Direction in a film script : CUT TO
4 “Right on!” : YEAH!
5 Query following an interruption : WHERE WERE WE?
6 Company that makes Valium : ROCHE
7 Some decorative plants : ALOES
8 Brown alternative : PENN
9 Cartoonist Hoff : SYD
10 What the Copacabana becomes at the end of “Copacabana” : DISCO
11 “Everybody says so” : ASK ANYONE
12 OK to target : FAIR GAME
13 One-up : TOP
18 Bit on a bun : SESAME SEED
21 Calls attention to : SPOTLIGHTS
24 Like some flotsam : SWEPT ASHORE
25 Squeeze (out) : EKE
26 One of seven in 14th-century Avignon : POPE
27 Actress Polo : TERI
29 Is lost : HAS NO IDEA
30 Sound : SANE
31 Neighbor of Ill. : WIS
32 Give birth to : HAVE
33 Obsolescent means of communication : PAY PHONE
34 Civil War inits. : CSA
39 Summer annoyances : GNATS
40 Character who steals from the dragon Smaug : BILBO
41 Literary lion : ASLAN
42 Recurrent health scare : E COLI
43 Passé, say : NOT IN
44 New Jersey county whose seat is Newark : ESSEX
46 Typical stocking stuffers : FEET
47 “Hello … I’m right here” : AHEM
48 Hospital amts. : CCS
49 What Joe Biden and Al Gore are: Abbr. : JRS

3 thoughts on “0307-20 NY Times Crossword 7 Mar 20, Saturday”

  1. 14:14, no errors. And now … one more time …
    … … … …
    @Michael Cassio/Guy Haines/Big Fellah/et al …

    On Bill’s blog for February 1, I posted the following (in response to your latest accusation concerning my solve times):

    “I have the advantage of being present while I’m doing the puzzle, so that I know exactly what my time is. You, on the other hand, are not in the room with me (thank God!) and therefore have only your own misguided, opinionated, and self-centered notions of what is or is not possible to base a judgment on. The simple fact is that I am a lot better at solving puzzles than you are, and there are a lot of solvers out there who are far better than I am. Wake up! Do a little research!”

    By now, Bill may have deleted our posts on that day. My hope is that he will leave this one for you to read.

    Please consult your better nature and stop posting pointless and mistaken accusations.

  2. 39:52 Threw a wrench into it when I had “got a minute” instead of “got a second”, took a while to sort that out.. oops!

  3. 39:03. Tough one. This felt easier than yesterday’s puzzle, but it took me 10 minutes longer to finish. Go figure. MINX was new to me, and I didn’t know what CUTTO meant until I realized it was CUT TO….duh.

    Best –

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