0412-20 NY Times Crossword 12 Apr 20, Sunday

Constructed by: Joel Fagliano
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: Barista Training Day

Themed answers are well-known phrases interpreted as part of a story set in a coffee shop:

  • 24A Things got off to a bad start when one trainee tripped and … : … SPILLED THE BEANS
  • 40A The carton leaked milk everywhere when another trainee accidentally … : … SPLIT HALF AND HALF
  • 53A The drip coffee tasted grainy because they … : … LACKED A FILTER
  • 68A In fact, every cup they served was … : … FAR FROM YOUR AVERAGE JOE
  • 85A To make matters worse, the espresso machine … : … RAN OUT OF STEAM
  • 95A They worried about their jobs — these mistakes were … : … GROUNDS FOR FIRING
  • 115A Sure enough, when the boss showed up, everyone … : … GOT INTO HOT WATER

… a complete list of answers

Bill’s time: 17m 46s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Book that’s out of this world? : ATLAS

The famous Flemish geographer Gerardus Mercator published his first collection of maps in 1578. Mercator’s collection contained a frontispiece with an image of Atlas the Titan from Greek mythology holding up the world on his shoulders. That image gave us our term “atlas” that is used for a book of maps.

6 Illuminating point : APERCU

An apercu is a first view, a glance. By extension, the term “apercu” can also be used for a detached view, an overview or a short synopsis. “Aperçu” is French for “perceived”.

12 Gilda Radner character on “S.N.L.” : BABA WAWA

Barbara Walters was originally quite upset at the caricature of her performed by Saturday Night Live star, Gilda Radner. She took offense at Radner exaggerating her speech impediment, which of course led to the name “Baba Wawa” being used for “Barbara Walters”. However, when she saw that her own daughter found the skit to be hilarious, Barbara decided that she needed to lighten up.

22 April 22 : EARTH DAY

Earth Day was founded in the US, where it was introduced by Senator Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin. Earth Day was designed to increase awareness and appreciation of our planet’s natural environment. The original Earth Day was on April 22nd, 1970. Decades later, the day is observed in over 175 countries.

23 Gray with a tinge of brown : TAUPE

Taupe is a dark, gray-brown color. The word “taupe” comes from the Latin name of the European Mole, which has skin with the same color.

24 Things got off to a bad start when one trainee tripped and … : … SPILLED THE BEANS

To spill the beans is to divulge a secret. The expression first appeared in American English, in the early 1900s. The phrase arose as an alternative to “spoil the beans” or “upset the applecart”. The similarly meaning phrase “spill the tea” is more prevalent on the other side of the Atlantic.

29 Doctor Zhivago, in “Doctor Zhivago” : YURI

“Doctor Zhivago” is an epic novel by Boris Pasternak that was first published in 1957. I haven’t tried to read the book, but the 1965 film version is a must-see, directed by David Lean and starring Omar Sharif in the title role. The story centers on Yuri Zhivago, a doctor and poet, and how he is affected by the Russian Revolution and the Russian Civil War.

31 Part of a Parisian address : RUE

In France, one might drive along a “rue” (road) through “une ville” (a town).

32 Roofed patio : LANAI

A lanai is a type of veranda, and a design that originated in Hawaii. A kind blog reader tells me that the etymology of “lanai” seems unclear, but that the island name of “Lana’i” is not related.

35 1099-___ (I.R.S. form) : MISC

There is a series of IRS 1099 forms used to report various types of income, other than wages, salaries and tips that are reported on Form W-2. Examples are Form 1099-INT used to report interest income, 1099-DIV used to report dividend income, and 1099-MISC used to report miscellaneous income.

37 Company with a Gigafactory : TESLA

Tesla Motors shortened its name to just “Tesla” in early 2017.

40 The carton leaked milk everywhere when another trainee accidentally … : … SPLIT HALF AND HALF

Half and half is a dairy product consisting of half milk and half light cream.

46 Kitchen bulb : SHALLOT

The shallot is a type of onion that is closely related to the garlic, leek and chive. I’m a big fan …

57 Company whose Nasdaq symbol is its name : EBAY

The Nasdaq has some descriptive symbols to represent companies. Here are some examples:

  • HOG – Harley Davidson
  • HEINY – Heineken
  • ROCK – Gibraltar Industries
  • GRR – The Asian Tigers Fund
  • BEN – Franklin Resources
  • TWNK – Hostess Brands

61 Steinbrenner who took over the Yankees in 2010 : HAL

Hal Steinbrenner is the principal owner of the New York Yankees baseball team. Hal and his brother Hank inherited the team after their father George Hal Steinbrenner passed away in 2010.

62 Moves like Jagger : STRUTS

The Rolling Stones lead singer’s full name is Sir Michael Philip Jagger. “Mick” was knighted for his services to popular music in 2003.

63 Box score stat : RBI

Runs batted in (RBIs)

65 Draft choice : LAGER

Lager is so called because of the tradition of cold-storing the beer during fermentation. “Lager” is the German word for “storage”.

67 Nonkosher meat : HAM

According to Jewish dietary laws, kosher food is fit to eat, and food that is not fit to eat is referred to as treif (or “tref”). The usage of “kosher” has extended to include anything considered legitimate.

68 In fact, every cup they served was … : … FAR FROM YOUR AVERAGE JOE

It seems that no one really knows why we refer to coffee as “joe”, but we’ve been doing so since early in WWII.

75 Writer Rand : AYN

Ayn Rand was a Russian-American novelist born Alisa Rosenbaum. Her two best known works are her novels “The Fountainhead” published in 1943 and “Atlas Shrugged” from 1957. Back in 1951, Rand moved from Los Angeles to New York City. Soon after, she gathered a group of admirers around her with whom she discussed philosophy and shared drafts of her magnum opus, “Atlas Shrugged”. This group called itself “The Collective”, and one of the founding members was none other than future Federal Reserve chairman, Alan Greenspan. Rand described herself as “right-wing” politically, and both she and her novel “Atlas Shrugged” have become inspirations for the American conservatives, and the Tea Party in particular.

78 Internet address, in brief : URL

An Internet address (like NYXCrossword.com and LAXCrossword.com) is more correctly called a Uniform Resource Locator (URL).

85 To make matters worse, the espresso machine … : … RAN OUT OF STEAM

Espresso is made by forcing extremely hot water, under pressure, through finely ground coffee beans. The result is a thick and concentrated coffee drink, which contains quite a lot of solids and a lot of foam. An espresso machine was first patented in 1884 in Italy, although it was a machine to make the beverage in bulk. The first patent for a machine that made individual measures was applied for in 1901, also in Italy.

88 Some TVs and cameras : SONYS

Sony was founded by Akio Morita and Masaru Ibuka as Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo (Tokyo Telecommunications Engineering Corporation). The two partners met in the Japanese Navy during WWII.

90 Home to many Berbers : MOROCCO

The Berber peoples live in North Africa, west of the Nile. Most of the Berbers can now be found in Morocco.

106 Stereotypical dogs : FIDOS

“Fido”, the name for many a dog, is Latin for “I trust”.

113 Either weekend day, symbolically : ESS

The days of the week are named for celestial bodies and gods

  • Sunday — Sun’s Day
  • Monday — Moon’s Day
  • Tuesday — Tiu’s day
  • Wednesday — Woden’s day
  • Thursday — Thor’s day
  • Friday — Freya’s day
  • Saturday — Saturn’s day

123 Pal of Pooh : EEYORE

Eeyore is the donkey character in A. A. Milne’s “Winnie-the-Pooh”. Eeyore is very lovable, but has a gloomy and pessimistic outlook on life.

124 Soap Box Derby entrant : RACER

The Soap Box Derby is a soapbox car racing competition. The first All-American race was held in Dayton, Ohio in 1934. The annual race was moved to Akron, Ohio the following year. Soon after, a purpose built track was built called Derby Downs, as part of the Works Progress Administration (WPA) program of the late thirties.

Down

3 Source of bay leaves : LAUREL

The seasoning known as bay leaf is the aromatic leaf of the bay laurel tree or shrub. Fresh bay leaves aren’t very flavorful and need to be dried and aged a few weeks before use in the kitchen.

5 Like ninjas : STEALTHY

The ninjas were around in Japan at the time of the samurai, but were a very different type of warrior. The ninjas were covert operatives, specializing in the use of stealth to accomplish their missions. As they were a secretive cadre they took on a mystical reputation with the public, who believed they had the ability to become invisible or perhaps walk on water. We now use the term “ninja” figuratively, to describe anyone highly-skilled in a specific field.

6 Premier League rival of Tottenham Hotspur : ARSENAL

Arsenal Football Club (nicknamed “the Gunners”) is an English soccer team based in the Holloway district of London. The club was founded in 1886 as Dial Square by workers at the Royal Arsenal munitions factory. Dial Square was the name given to the workshops at the center of the Royal Arsenal complex. After just a few weeks in existence, the club changed its name to Royal Arsenal, which was eventually shortened to just Arsenal.

Tottenham is an area in north London in England. It is home to a famous football (soccer) club called Tottenham Hotspur, the team that I used to follow as a kid many moons ago …

8 Onetime label for Radiohead : EMI

Radiohead is an alternative rock band from England that formed in 1985. When the band self-released their 2007 studio album “In Rainbows”, it was a big deal for the music industry. Radiohead offered a digital version of the album using a pay-what-you-want pricing model. Reportedly, most fans paid what would be a normal retail price for the download version of the album. That’s not bad, considering the relatively low cost to produce a download compared to the cost of producing a CD.

17 Player of Ben Wyatt on “Parks and Recreation” : ADAM SCOTT

Adam Scott is an actor from Santa Cruz, California who is best known for playing Ben Wyatt on the hit sitcom “Parks and Recreation”.

“Parks and Recreation” is a sitcom that started airing on NBC in 2009, and is a show that has grown on me. It stars the “Saturday Night Live” alum Amy Poehler. The creators of “Parks and Recreation” are part of the team responsible for the American version of “The Office”, so you’ll notice some similarities in the style of the two shows, and some actors that have appeared in both.

25 Trade gossip : DISH

To dish the dirt is to talk about someone or something without regard to veracity. The phrase comes from “dish” (in the sense of dishing out food) and “dirt” (in the sense of negative information). To be dishy is to be given to gossip.

28 ___ Men (“Who Let the Dogs Out” group) : BAHA

The Baha Men are so called because they hail from the Bahamas. Their big hit was “Who Let the Dogs Out?” That song once ranked third in a list of the world’s most annoying songs!

36 Valentine’s Day purchase : CARD

Saint Valentine’s Day was introduced by Pope Gelasius I in 496 AD to honor various martyrs with the name Valentine. However, the saint’s day was dropped by the Roman Catholic church in 1969, by Pope Paul VI. Try telling that to Hallmark though …

44 N.Y.C. shopping mecca : FIFTH AVE

Fifth Avenue in New York is sometimes referred to as the “most expensive street in the world” as the section that runs through Midtown Manhattan is home to upscale stores such as Saks Fifth Avenue.

48 Optical illusion : MIRAGE

A mirage occurs when light rays are bent by passing say from cold air to warmer air. The most often cited mirage is a “lake” seen in a desert, which is actually the blue of the sky and not water at all. The word “mirage” comes to us via French from the Latin “mirare” meaning “to look at in wonder”. “Mirage” has the same root as our words “admire” and “mirror”.

50 Drudge : SERF

A serf was a member of the lowest feudal class, someone attached to land owned by a lord. “Serf” comes from the Latin “servus”, meaning “slave”.

52 It beats nothing : PAIR

That would be the card game poker.

55 Justice nominated by Obama : KAGAN

Elena Kagan was the Solicitor General of the United States from 2009 until 2010, when she replaced Justice John Paul Stevens on the US Supreme Court. That made Justice Kagan the first female US Solicitor General and the fourth female US Supreme Court justice. Kagan also served as the first female dean of Harvard Law School from 2003 to 2009.

56 Your highness?: Abbr. : ELEV

Elevation (elev.)

60 Singer born Eithne Ní Bhraonáin : ENYA

Enya’s real name is Eithne Ní Bhraonáin, which can translate from Irish into Enya Brennan. Her Donegal family (in the northwest of Ireland) formed a band called Clannad, which included Enya. In 1980 Enya launched her very successful solo career, eventually becoming Ireland’s best-selling solo musician. And, she sure does turn up a lot in crosswords!

65 “The Wiz” director Sidney : LUMET

As a movie director, Sidney Lumet had a great string of celebrated films to his name including “12 Angry Men”, “Dog Day Afternoon”, “Network” and “The Verdict”. Although nominated for an Academy Award for Best Director for each of these films, he never won an individual Oscar. However, the Academy gave Lumet the recognition he deserved in 2004 by presenting him with an Honorary Award.

“The Wiz”, the 1975 musical, was written by Charlie Smalls and is an African-American adaptation of Baum’s “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”. The film version of the stage show was released in 1978, starring Diana Ross as Dorothy and Michael Jackson as the Scarecrow. I haven’t seen it, though. “The Wizard of Oz” scares me, as the flying monkeys creep me out. There, I’ve admitted it in public …

66 N.L. Central team : REDS

The Red Scare (i.e. anti-communist sentiment) following WWII had such an effect on the populace that it even caused the Cincinnati baseball team to change its name from the Reds. The team was called the Cincinnati Redlegs from 1953-1958, as the management was fearful of losing money due to public distrust of any association with “Reds”.

69 ___ Islands, archipelago between Iceland and Norway : FAROE

The Faroe Islands (also “Faeroe Islands”) are a group of islands lying halfway between Scotland and Iceland. The Faroe Islands are part of the Kingdom of Denmark and were granted the power of self-governance in 1948.

70 They give a hoot : OWLS

Much of an owl’s diet consists of small mammals. As a result, humans have used owls for centuries to control rodent populations, usually by placing a nest box for owls on a property. Despite the fact that owls and humans live together in relative harmony, owls have been known to attack humans from time to time. Celebrated English bird photographer Eric Hosking lost an eye when attacked by a tawny owl that he was trying to photograph. Hosking wrote a 1970 autobiography with the wry title “An Eye for a Bird”.

71 Kind of deer : ROE

Roe deer are found mainly in Europe. They would be the deer shown on television and in movies when Robin Hood was out hunting in Sherwood Forest.

72 Explorer Ponce de León : JUAN

Juan Ponce de León was a famous Spanish explorer and conquistador. Ponce de León led the Europeans to Florida, and it was he who gave the state its name (Spanish for “Flowery Land”). He was injured on his last voyage to Florida, supposedly by a poisoned arrow, and died from his wound in Havana, Cuba.

74 Trees that line the National Mall : ELMS

The National Mall is a park in downtown Washington, D.C. The National Mall is home to several museums that are part of the Smithsonian, as well as the National Gallery of Art.

79 Asian city with a monument to John McCain : HANOI

The infamous Hỏa Lò Prison in Vietnam was was known by Americans as the Hanoi Hilton. Sadly, it was home to many US prisoners of war during the Vietnam War. The prison itself was demolished in the 1990s, but the prison’s gatehouse persists to this day as a museum. Included as exhibits in the museum are John McCain’s parachute and flight suit.

81 Matin’s opposite : SOIR

In French, “soir” (evening) follows “après-midi” (afternoon), which in turn follows “matin” (morning).

86 Excessively promote : FLOG

“To flog” is a slang term meaning “to sell, to promote vigorously”.

91 French chess piece : ROI

In French, the “roi” (king) is the most important piece in the game of “échecs” (chess).

93 Ones concerned with cash flow, for short : CFOS

Chief financial officer (CFO)

98 Part of a cash register : DRAWER

What we usually call a cash register here in North America, we mostly call a “till” in Ireland and the UK. I haven’t heard the word “till” used much here in that sense …

99 Destination in the “Odyssey” : ITHACA

Ithaca is a Greek island in the Ionian Sea. The island features in Homer’s “Odyssey” as it was the home of the mythological hero Odysseus, who was Ithaca’s king.

110 Escapee from Miss Gulch’s bicycle basket : TOTO

Miss Almira Gulch is the woman who gets bitten by Dorothy’s dog Toto right at the start of “The Wizard of Oz”. In Oz, Miss Gulch manifests herself as the Wicked Witch of the West.

116 Dinghy thingy : OAR

Our term “dinghy” comes from the Hindi “dingi”, a word meaning “small boat”.

117 Spell the wrong way? : HEX

“Hexen” is a German word meaning “to practice witchcraft”. The use of the word “hex” in English started with the Pennsylvania Dutch in the early 1800s.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Book that’s out of this world? : ATLAS
6 Illuminating point : APERCU
12 Gilda Radner character on “S.N.L.” : BABA WAWA
20 Took the plunge : LEAPT
21 Ladies’ men : ROMEOS
22 April 22 : EARTH DAY
23 Gray with a tinge of brown : TAUPE
24 Things got off to a bad start when one trainee tripped and … : … SPILLED THE BEANS
26 ___ on the side of : ERR
27 Father on “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” : ABE
29 Doctor Zhivago, in “Doctor Zhivago” : YURI
30 Flock : SWARM
31 Part of a Parisian address : RUE
32 Roofed patio : LANAI
35 1099-___ (I.R.S. form) : MISC
37 Company with a Gigafactory : TESLA
40 The carton leaked milk everywhere when another trainee accidentally … : … SPLIT HALF AND HALF
45 ___ sci, college major related to psych : COG
46 Kitchen bulb : SHALLOT
47 Put back in place, as measures : REIMPOSE
50 Overly sentimental : SAPPY
53 The drip coffee tasted grainy because they … : … LACKED A FILTER
57 Company whose Nasdaq symbol is its name : EBAY
58 Having colors in blotches : PIED
61 Steinbrenner who took over the Yankees in 2010 : HAL
62 Moves like Jagger : STRUTS
63 Box score stat : RBI
64 It follows more or less : … THAN
65 Draft choice : LAGER
67 Nonkosher meat : HAM
68 In fact, every cup they served was … : … FAR FROM YOUR AVERAGE JOE
75 Writer Rand : AYN
76 “This is the worst!” : AW, MAN!
77 Flier for a magic show : DOVE
78 Internet address, in brief : URL
79 Lifesavers : HEROES
82 Headed up : LED
83 “Oh, so that’s how it’s going to be” : I SEE
84 Comfort : BALM
85 To make matters worse, the espresso machine … : … RAN OUT OF STEAM
88 Some TVs and cameras : SONYS
89 Fully : IN DETAIL
90 Home to many Berbers : MOROCCO
94 “Surely you don’t mean me!?” : MOI?!
95 They worried about their jobs — these mistakes were … : … GROUNDS FOR FIRING
102 Snitches : SINGS
105 Attendee : GOER
106 Stereotypical dogs : FIDOS
107 Weak ___ (unconvincing argument) : TEA
108 “Give it ___!” : A REST
111 Polite title : MA’AM
113 Either weekend day, symbolically : ESS
114 Sound from a fan : HUM
115 Sure enough, when the boss showed up, everyone … : … GOT INTO HOT WATER
120 Speak grandly : ORATE
122 Bit of contingency planning : RAIN DATE
123 Pal of Pooh : EEYORE
124 Soap Box Derby entrant : RACER
125 Reporter’s vantage point : PRESS BOX
126 Adult : R-RATED
127 Critics’ awards : STARS

Down

1 Makes fit : ALTERS
2 Get misty : TEAR UP
3 Source of bay leaves : LAUREL
4 Offering in the Google Play store : APP
5 Like ninjas : STEALTHY
6 Premier League rival of Tottenham Hotspur : ARSENAL
7 Really stand out : POP
8 Onetime label for Radiohead : EMI
9 Depend : RELY
10 Spreadsheet part : COLUMN
11 Log-in need : USER ID
12 Make things interesting, so to speak : BET
13 Sounds of satisfaction : AAHS
14 Be in the works : BREW
15 When you might run away from home : AT BAT
16 Info on an invitation : WHERE
17 Player of Ben Wyatt on “Parks and Recreation” : ADAM SCOTT
18 Unnaturally pale : WAN
19 Shakespearean affirmatives : AYS
25 Trade gossip : DISH
28 ___ Men (“Who Let the Dogs Out” group) : BAHA
33 Purely : ALL
34 “You win this hand” : I FOLD
36 Valentine’s Day purchase : CARD
38 Takes an “L” : LOSES
39 Constant stress or heavy drinking : AGER
41 Popular children’s book series with hidden objects : I SPY
42 ___ glance : AT A
43 Grazing spots : LEAS
44 N.Y.C. shopping mecca : FIFTH AVE
48 Optical illusion : MIRAGE
49 Showy feather : PLUME
50 Drudge : SERF
51 So-called “enclosed” rhyme scheme : ABBA
52 It beats nothing : PAIR
54 Absurd pretense : CHARADE
55 Justice nominated by Obama : KAGAN
56 Your highness?: Abbr. : ELEV
58 Series of missed calls : PHONE TAG
59 “Do you know who ___?” : I AM
60 Singer born Eithne Ní Bhraonáin : ENYA
64 Team-building activity? : TRYOUT
65 “The Wiz” director Sidney : LUMET
66 N.L. Central team : REDS
69 ___ Islands, archipelago between Iceland and Norway : FAROE
70 They give a hoot : OWLS
71 Kind of deer : ROE
72 Explorer Ponce de León : JUAN
73 Nail polish brand : ORLY
74 Trees that line the National Mall : ELMS
79 Asian city with a monument to John McCain : HANOI
80 Finish 0-0, say : END IN A TIE
81 Matin’s opposite : SOIR
83 “See you later” : I’M OFF
84 Crass, classless sort : BOOR
85 Custom auto accessories : RIMS
86 Excessively promote : FLOG
87 Pro-___ : AMS
88 They usually make the cut : SCISSORS
91 French chess piece : ROI
92 Got takeout, say : ORDERED
93 Ones concerned with cash flow, for short : CFOS
96 Man, in Italian : UOMO
97 More nifty : NEATER
98 Part of a cash register : DRAWER
99 Destination in the “Odyssey” : ITHACA
100 Render ineffective : NEUTER
101 Many Twitch streamers : GAMERS
103 D and ), in texts : GRINS
104 Ships : SENDS
109 Sharp pain : STAB
110 Escapee from Miss Gulch’s bicycle basket : TOTO
112 Moore whom Sports Illustrated called the “greatest winner in the history of women’s basketball” : MAYA
115 Org. : GRP
116 Dinghy thingy : OAR
117 Spell the wrong way? : HEX
118 Small fry : TOT
119 Lead-in to long : ERE …
121 Snitch : RAT

11 thoughts on “0412-20 NY Times Crossword 12 Apr 20, Sunday”

  1. 49:13. Did this when my brain was functioning at about half speed. Even LAGER took me a long time to get. I probably needed some coffee to do this coffee theme more efficiently. Long puzzle weekend.

    Best –

  2. 50:24 with no errors. I stopped to take a phone call so lost a little time by forgetting to stop the timer. Oh, well. Whizzed through about 3/4 before boggling down. Hiked to a giant ice cave earlier near Castner Glacier.

  3. When I started I got to 75A before getting my first answer but somehow finished in 1:23:10 with one error…I had no idea what 45A was and guessed CAG…I still don’t know what it means as Bill skipped it…to finish a tough puzzle and wind up with one error is deflating but as I have said before when you consider what going on in the world it matters little what I do with a crossword.
    STAY SAFE

    1. 45A was unfamiliar to me as well, but I was able to suss out that COG. Sci. referring to Cognitive Science: “the study of thought, learning, and mental organization, which draws on aspects of psychology, linguistics, philosophy, and computer modeling”.

  4. 37:29, no errors. Liked the theme, didn’t like the heavy reliance on foreign language. Wasn’t even sure AMERCU and UOMO were words, until I came here. Not sure if I am just being contrary today, but I would argue that ‘Makes it’ =/= ALTERS. Someone has to make something, before someone can alter it.

      1. Thanks. ‘AMERCU’ was my typo. Upon re-examining the tiny print in my paper, the ‘f’ is superimposed on the ‘i’; and it looks like a two letter word.

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