0424-20 NY Times Crossword 24 Apr 20, Friday

Constructed by: John Guzzetta
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: None

… a complete list of answers

Bill’s time: 18m 57s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Haberdashery accessory : TIE TACK

I used to wear a tie pin (or “tie tack, tie tac”) in place of a tie clip many moons ago, but it just left little holes in my expensive silk ties!

Back in the 14th century, a haberdasher was a dealer in small wares. By the late 1800s, the term had evolved to mean a purveyor of menswear, and in particular was associated with the sale of hats.

16 Certain spuds : IDAHOS

Idaho has the nickname “Gem State”, mainly because almost every known type of gemstone has been found there. Idaho is also sometimes called the Potato State as potatoes are such a popular crop in the state. I’d go for the potatoes over the gems, but that’s probably just me …

22 Demesne : ESTATE

All of the land owned and managed by a lord of the manor under the feudal system was called “the demesne”. The demesne did not include land owned by the lord that was managed by tenants.

28 Whom basilicas are often named after: Abbr. : STS

In its modern usage, the term “basilica” applies to a Roman Catholic church that has been given special ceremonial rights by the Pope.

38 Reuters competitor : UPI

Founded in 1958, United Press International (UPI) used to be one of the biggest news agencies in the world, sending out news by wire to the major newspapers. UPI ran into trouble with the change in media formats at the end of the twentieth century and lost many of its clients as the afternoon newspapers shut down due to the advent of television news. UPI, which once employed thousands, still exists today but with just a fraction of that workforce.

41 Boll weevil, for one : PEST

A weevil is a small beetle known for the damage that it can do to crops. The boll weevil damages cotton plants by laying eggs inside cotton bolls. The young weevils then eat their way out. Some weevils have snouts that are as long as their body.

53 Island governed by three different countries : BORNEO

Borneo is the third largest island on the planet (after Greenland and New Guinea), and is located north of Australia in Maritime Southeast Asia. Most of the island is part of Indonesia (taking up 73% of the island) with almost all of the remainder being part of Malaysia (26%). The final 1% is home to the sovereign state of Brunei.

54 Center of a maze : MINOTAUR

Daedalus was a master craftsman of Greek mythology who was tasked with creating the Labyrinth on the island of Crete that was to house the Minotaur. After the Labyrinth was completed, King Minos imprisoned Daedalus and his son Icarus in a tower, so that he could not spread word of his work. Daedalus fabricated wings so that he and Icarus could escape by flying off the island. Despite being warned by his father, Icarus flew too close to the sun so that the wax holding the wings’ feathers in place melted. Icarus drowned in the sea, and Daedalus escaped.

60 Pippi Longstocking types : TOMBOYS

Back in the 1550s “tomboy” was used to describe a male, a boy that was rude or boisterous. A few years later the term was being used for a bold or perhaps immodest girl. By 1600 a tomboy was being used to describe a girl who acts like a spirited boy, just as we’d say today.

Pippi Longstocking appears as the heroine in a series of books written by Swedish author Astrid Lindgren. Lindgren was quite the activist, very well known in the circles working for children’s and animal rights, In particular, Lindgren campaigned heavily against corporal punishment.

Down

1 Crimean War leader : TSAR

The Crimean War of 1855-1856 was fought between Russia and an alliance comprising France, Britain, the Ottoman Empire and Sardinia. One of the most famous engagements of the Crimean War was the 1854 Battle of Balaclava, which involved the disastrous Charge of the Light Brigade.

2 Joe Hardy’s girlfriend in the Hardy Boys books : IOLA

In the famous “The Hardy Boys” series of books, Joe Hardy’s girlfriend is Iola Morton. Iola’s best friend is Callie Shaw, the girlfriend of Frank Hardy. Iola was killed off in a car bomb in one of the stories.

6 Castro comrade : CHE

Ernesto “Che” Guevara was born in Argentina, and in 1948 he started to study medicine at the University of Buenos Aires. While at school he satisfied his need to “see the world” by taking two long journeys around South America, the story of which are told in Guevara’s memoir later published as “The Motorcycle Diaries”. While travelling, Guevara was moved by the plight of the people he saw and their working conditions and what he viewed as capitalistic exploitation. In Mexico City he met brothers Raul and Fidel Castro and was persuaded to join their cause, the overthrow of the US-backed government in Cuba. He rose to second-in-command among the Cuban insurgents, and when Castro came to power Guevara was influential in repelling the Bay of Pigs Invasion and bringing Soviet nuclear missiles to the island. Guevara left Cuba in 1965 to continue his work as a revolutionary. He was captured by Bolivian forces in 1967, and was executed. Fidel Castro led the public mourning of Guevara’s death, and soon the revolutionary was an icon for many left-wing movements around the world.

9 Pointed out, in a way : ID’ED

Identity document (ID)

10 Sides of Pac-Man’s mouth, essentially : RADII

The Pac-Man arcade game was first released in Japan in 1980, and is as popular today as it ever was. The game features characters that are maneuvered around the screen to eat up dots and earn points. The name comes from the Japanese folk hero “Paku”, known for his voracious appetite. The spin-off game called Ms. Pac-Man was released in 1981.

12 Things of interest to house buyers? : HOME LOANS

Our word “mortgage” comes from the Old French “mort gaige” which translated as “dead pledge”. Such an arrangement was so called because the “pledge” to repay “dies” when the debt is cleared.

13 1040 fig. : SSN

Here in the US we can choose one of three main forms to file our tax returns. Form 1040 is known as the “long form”. Form 1040A is called the “short form”, and can be used by taxpayers with taxable income below $100,000 who don’t itemize deductions. Form 1040EZ is an even simpler version of the 1040, and can be used by those with taxable income less than $100,000 who take the standard deduction and who also have no dependents. Form 1040 was originally created just for tax returns from 1913, 1914 and 1915, but it’s a form that just keeps on giving, or should I say “taking” …?

21 Some trattoria preparations : PESTOS

The Italian term “pesto” applies to anything made by pounding. What we tend to know as pesto sauce is more properly called “pesto alla genovese”, i.e. pesto from Genoa in northern Italy. I love, love pesto sauce …

24 Historic destination in County Kerry, Ireland : TRALEE

Tralee is the county town of Kerry in Ireland. Tralee is home to the famed “Rose of Tralee” Festival that is so well attended by representatives from North America.

26 Relative of a blind, in poker : ANTE

In some variants of poker, a forced bet is made by one or two players sitting to the left of the dealer. These bets are known as “blinds”, and are used instead of antes to ensure that there is some money in the pot. The player to the immediate left of the dealer posts the “small blind” (usually half the minimum bet), and the next player to the left posts the “big blind” (usually the minimum bet).

27 Colonial rule in India : BRITISH RAJ

The period of colonial rule by the British in South Asia from 1858 to 1947 is referred to as the British Raj. Prior to 1858, the area was ruled by a private enterprise, the British East India Company. “Raj” is the Hindi word for “reign”.

30 Inscribed pillars : STELAE

Stelae (singular “stele” or “stela”) were used all over the world, sometimes as territorial markers and sometimes to commemorate military victories. In later times stelae were commonly erected as commemorative markers in graveyards or other religious sites.

32 Fanta product : GRAPE SODA

The soft drink called “Fanta” has quite an interesting history. As WWII approached, the Coca-Cola plant in Germany had trouble obtaining the ingredients it needed to continue production of the cola beverage, so the plant manager decided to create a new drink from what was available. The new beverage was built around whey (leftover from cheese production) and pomace (left over after juice has been extracted from fruit). The inventor asked his colleagues to use their “imagination” (“Fantasie” in German) and come up with a name for the drink, so they piped up “Fanta!”

34 Place with drips, for short : ICU

One might see an intravenous drip (IV) in an intensive care unit (ICU), operating room (OR) or emergency room (ER).

35 Prepares for the bar? : OPENS A TAB

When we run a “tab” at a bar, we are running a “tabulation”, a listing of what we owe. Such a use of “tab” is American slang that originated in the 1880s.

36 Certain bra spec : B-CUP

The word “brassière” is French in origin, but it isn’t the word that the French use for a “bra”. In France, what we call a bra is known as a “soutien-gorge”, translating to “held under the neck”. The word “brassière” is indeed used in France but there it describes a baby’s undershirt, a lifebelt or a harness. “Brassière” comes from the Old French word for an “arm protector” in a military uniform (“bras” is the French for “arm”). Later “brassière” came to mean “breastplate” and from there the word was used for a type of woman’s corset. The word jumped into English around 1900.

42 One of the letters of NATO, in the NATO alphabet : TANGO

The NATO phonetic alphabet is also called the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) phonetic alphabet. It goes Alfa, Bravo, Charlie … X-ray, Yankee, Zulu.

44 Destructive 2017 hurricane : IRMA

Hurricane Irma was a devastating category-5 hurricane that led to over 100 deaths in the contiguous US in 2017, and half as many in the Caribbean islands. Irma was the most intense hurricane to make landfall in the continental US since Katrina in 2005.

47 Actor Will of “The Waltons” : GEER

Actor Will Geer died in 1978 just after filming the sixth season of “The Waltons”, in which he played Grandpa Zeb Walton. Geer was a noted social activist and was blacklisted in the fifties for refusing to appear before the all-powerful House Committee on Un-American Activities.

48 Head honcho : BOSS

“Honcho” is a slang term meaning “leader”. The word comes to us from Japanese military, in which language a “hancho” is a “squad” (han) “leader” (cho).

50 Actor Scott of “Happy Days” : BAIO

Scott Baio is the actor who played Chachi Arcola in the great sitcom “Happy Days” and in the not-so-great spin-off “Joanie Loves Chachi”. Baio also played the title role in a later sitcom called “Charles in Charge”. Earlier in his career, he played another title role, in the 1976 movie “Bugsy Malone”, appearing opposite a young Jodie Foster.

52 Assets for QBs : ARMS

Quarterback (QB)

55 Sarge, for one : NCO

A non-commissioned officer (NCO) might be a sergeant (sgt.) or a corporal (cpl.).

56 Unit in a calculation of power : OHM

The unit of electrical resistance is the ohm (with the symbol omega) named after German physicist Georg Simon Ohm. Ohm was the guy who established experimentally that the amount of current flowing through a circuit is directly proportional to the voltage applied, (V=IR) a relationship that every school kid knows as Ohm’s Law.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Haberdashery accessory : TIE TACK
8 Round measures : GIRTHS
14 Homer with one R.B.I., in baseball lingo : SOLO SHOT
16 Certain spuds : IDAHOS
17 Clearheaded : ALL THERE
18 Swear at : BEDAMN
19 That’s so irritating! : RASH
20 Speed up : EXPEDITE
22 Demesne : ESTATE
25 Actress Fisher : ISLA
27 The night before on the day after, maybe : BLUR
28 Whom basilicas are often named after: Abbr. : STS
31 Carried the day : WON
32 Dine quickly : GRAB A BITE TO EAT
36 Tree that’s among the oldest known life forms on earth (4,800+ years) : BRISTLECONE PINE
37 They have little respect for brand names : CATTLE RUSTLERS
38 Reuters competitor : UPI
39 “Better ___ …” : YET
40 What a person in trouble — or performing on stage — wants : HAND
41 Boll weevil, for one : PEST
43 Unwanted crowd sounds : HISSES
46 Kind of hickory : SHAGBARK
49 Hebrew for “father” : ABBA
53 Island governed by three different countries : BORNEO
54 Center of a maze : MINOTAUR
57 Apothegms : ADAGES
58 Thou, for one : ARCHAISM
59 Things that are declared : MAJORS
60 Pippi Longstocking types : TOMBOYS

Down

1 Crimean War leader : TSAR
2 Joe Hardy’s girlfriend in the Hardy Boys books : IOLA
3 Wings : ELLS
4 How die-hard defenders may hold out : TO THE LAST
5 Volcanic ___ : ASH
6 Castro comrade : CHE
7 Locale of the 2018 Winter Olympics : KOREA
8 Mock : GIBE
9 Pointed out, in a way : ID’ED
10 Sides of Pac-Man’s mouth, essentially : RADII
11 “Huh!” : THAT’S WEIRD!
12 Things of interest to house buyers? : HOME LOANS
13 1040 fig. : SSN
15 Actual wording : TEXT
21 Some trattoria preparations : PESTOS
23 Without hitting someone over the head, say : SUBTLY
24 Historic destination in County Kerry, Ireland : TRALEE
26 Relative of a blind, in poker : ANTE
27 Colonial rule in India : BRITISH RAJ
29 ___ place (part of a decimal) : TENTHS
30 Inscribed pillars : STELAE
32 Fanta product : GRAPE SODA
33 Name that’s an anagram of THE BAR : BERTHA
34 Place with drips, for short : ICU
35 Prepares for the bar? : OPENS A TAB
36 Certain bra spec : B-CUP
42 One of the letters of NATO, in the NATO alphabet : TANGO
44 Destructive 2017 hurricane : IRMA
45 Go around : SKIRT
47 Actor Will of “The Waltons” : GEER
48 Head honcho : BOSS
50 Actor Scott of “Happy Days” : BAIO
51 Packed : BUSY
52 Assets for QBs : ARMS
53 “Pow!” : BAM!
55 Sarge, for one : NCO
56 Unit in a calculation of power : OHM

10 thoughts on “0424-20 NY Times Crossword 24 Apr 20, Friday”

  1. 28:30 Had “mortgages” for “home loans” and “hat rack” instead of “tie tack”….went relatively quickly once I straightened those out.

  2. 23:46, no errors. At 6 minutes I had almost nothing. A few words fell into place and it was off to the races for me. Some fills were gotten from crosses. Demesme? Tralee? Being a California transplant, brsitlecone pine was an easy fill. That helped a lot. Great Friday puzzle.

  3. 26:39. A few bumps along the way such as BRITISHera. One of those “it was easy except when it wasn’t” kind of puzzles. Fast in some areas, a screeching halt in others. Liked the clue for CATTLE RUSTLERS.

    Shouldn’t the clue have read “Fidel comrade” rather than “Castro comrade”? i.e. the whole first name-first name thing.

    Best –

  4. I was schooled on this puzzle. Several errors, Didn’t know BRISTLECONE PINE, DEMENSE, had NOT for 39A, MACOYS for 59A because I had BRITISH RIC for 27D. What a mess. Now that I look at the answers, what the h e double hockey sticks was I thinking?

  5. 1:06:47 with no errors (somehow)…I thought I had a rebus puzzle for a while because I was sure that 44D was Irene but not so…a lot of new words for me.
    Stay safe y’all

  6. 18:14, no errors. Smooth, almost clean, fill. Entered LONE SHOT before SOLO SHOT; and PASTAS before PESTOS. Learned several new words today, including demesne and apothegm.

    As a mechanical engineer usually think of power in terms of force, distance and time; rather than electrical power. So OHM didn’t come as quickly as it should have. To amplify Bill’s comment, electrical power can be calculated by P = I^2 ⋅ R (current in amperes squared times resistance in ohms)

  7. Slow start, then GRABABITETOEAT popped out. Worked off of that, changed PASTAS to PESTOS, and finished with no errors. Onward.

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