0527-20 NY Times Crossword 27 May 20, Wednesday

Constructed by: Chris A. McGlothlin
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answer: Forgone

Themed answers are common phrases, but in each the word FOR is GONE:

  • 40A Relinquished … or a hint to 17-, 23-, 51- and 62-Across : FORGONE … FOR GONE
  • 17A “Your fins are nice” and “You’re a graceful swimmer”? : FISH COMPLIMENTS (from “fish for compliments”)
  • 23A Done some lassoing? : THROWN A LOOP (from “thrown for a loop”)
  • 51A Is unable to pronounce the name of a deodorant brand? : CAN’T SAY SURE (from “can’t say for sure”)
  • 62A Actress Sandra emoting? : OH CRYING OUT LOUD (from “oh, for crying out loud”)

… a complete list of answers

Bill’s time: 8m 53s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Frasier’s producer on “Frasier” : ROZ

Peri Gilpin is an actress best known for playing Roz Doyle on the hit sitcom “Frasier”. “Frasier” was a spinoff of “Cheers”. Gilpin actually made an appearance on “Cheers”, albeit playing a completely different character.

13 Nondairy spread : OLEO

Emperor Louis Napoleon III of France announced a competition to develop a substitute for butter, a substitute that would be more accessible to the lower classes and more practical for the armed forces. A French chemist called Hippolyte Mege-Mouries came up with something he called oleomargarine in 1869, which was eventually manufactured under the trade name “margarine”. The name “oleomargarine” also gives us our generic term “oleo”.

15 Yellow Teletubby : LAA-LAA

“Teletubbies” is a children’s television show produced by the BBC in the UK and shown over here on PBS. The show attracted a lot of attention in 1999 when Jerry Falwell suggested that one of the Teletubbies characters (Tinky Winky) was a homosexual role model for children.

16 Power group : INS

Those in power might be termed “ins”.

21 It can get you out of a place it rhymes with : BAIL

Someone posting bail might get you out of jail.

23 Done some lassoing? : THROWN A LOOP (from “thrown for a loop”)

Our English word “lasso” comes from the Spanish “lazo”, and ultimately from the Latin “laqueum” meaning “noose, snare”.

29 ___ Mahal : TAJ

The most famous mausoleum in the world has to be the Taj Mahal in Agra, India. The Taj Mahal was built after the death of the fourth wife of Shah Jahan, Mumtaz Mahal (hence the name of the mausoleum). The poor woman died in childbirth delivering the couple’s 14th child. When Shah Jahan himself passed away 35 years later, he was buried beside his wife Mumtaz, in the Taj Mahal.

35 Sporty Mazda : MIATA

The Mazda MX-5 is sold as the Miata in North America, and as the Roadster in Japan. I’ve always liked the looks of the Mazda Miata, probably because it reminds me so much of old British sports cars. The Miata is built in Hiroshima, Japan. The name “Miata” comes from an Old High German word meaning “reward”.

39 One might end with .com : URL

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

45 Early 2000s sitcom set near Houston : REBA

Reba McEntire is a country music singer and television actress. McEntire starred in her own sitcom called “Reba” that aired on the WB and the CW cable channels from 2001 to 2007. She is sometimes referred to as “The Queen of Country”.

The city of Houston, Texas was named for General Sam Houston, who served as President of the Republic of Texas and then as Governor after Texas was annexed as a US state in 1845.

47 Suffix with pay : -OLA

Payola is the illegal practice of paying radio stations or disk jockeys to repeatedly play a particular piece of music. The impetus behind the crime is that the more often a song is played, the more likely it is to sell. The term “payola” comes from the words “pay” and “Victrola”, an RCA brand name for an early phonograph.

49 Bikini blasts, informally : N-TESTS

The testing of US nuclear weapons by the US at Bikini Atoll in the middle of 1946 went by the codename “Operation Crossroads”. The tests used A-bombs and were designed to measure the effect of blasts on navy vessels. There were three tests planned, but the third had to be cancelled as the Navy couldn’t decontaminate the ships used in the second test.

51 Is unable to pronounce the name of a deodorant brand? : CAN’T SAY SURE (from “can’t say for sure”)

Sure is a brand of deodorant sold in Britain and Ireland. The same product is marketed in North America as Degree.

56 San ___, Calif. : JOSE

San Jose is the third-largest city in California and is located at the heart of Silicon Valley. The city was founded by the Spanish in 1777 and named El Pueblo de San José de Guadalupe. Under Spanish and Mexican rule, the territory of Alta California had its capital in Monterey. When California was made a US state, San Jose was named as the first capital, in 1850. Subsequently, the state legislature met in Vallejo in 1852, Benicia in 1853, and finally settled in Sacramento.

62 Actress Sandra emoting? : OH CRYING OUT LOUD (from “oh, for crying out loud”)

Canadian actress Sandra Oh is very much associated with the role of Dr. Cristina Yang on “Grey’s Anatomy”, and more recently with the role of Eve Polastri on “Killing Eve” . However, my favorite of Oh’s performances are in the movies “Under the Tuscan Sun” and “Sideways”.

65 ___ Paulo, Brazil : SAO

São Paulo is the largest city in Brazil. It is also the city with the highest number of helicopters in the world. This is partly driven by the horrendous traffic jams in São Paulo, but also by the wealthy having a very real fear of being kidnapped on the city’s streets.

67 Lady in Arthurian romance : ENID

Enid is a Welsh name, from “einit” an old Welsh word meaning “purity”. Enid was the wife of Geraint, one of King Arthur’s knights. Enid is described as “the personification of spotless purity”.

68 Sister channel of HBO and Cinemax : TNT

“TNT” stands for Turner Network Television. The TNT cable channel made a big splash in the eighties when it started to broadcast old MGM movies that had been “colorized”, not something that was a big hit with the public. In recent years, the TNT programming lineup is touted with the tagline “We Know Drama”, and includes shows like “Judging Amy”, “ER” and “Cold Case”.

Down

1 “That’s hilarious!,” in a text : ROFL!

Rolling on floor laughing (ROFL)

2 A little of this, a little of that : OLIO

“Olio” is a term meaning “hodgepodge, mixture” that comes from the mixed stew of the same name. The stew in turn takes its name from the Spanish “olla”, the clay pot used for cooking.

4 U.N. workers’ grp. : ILO

The International Labour Organization (ILO) is an agency, now administered by the UN, that was established by the League of Nations after WWI. The ILO deals with important issues such as health and safety, discrimination, child labor and forced labor. The organization was recognized for its work in 1969 when it was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

5 Title dance in a 1999 #3 hit : MAMBO

“Mambo No. 5” was originally recorded by the song’s composer Pérez Prado, back in 1949. German musician Lou Bega released an insanely successful cover version of “Mambo No. 5” in 1999.

The form of music and dance known as “mambo” developed in Cuba. “Mambo” means “conversation with the gods” in Kikongo, a language spoken by slaves taken to Cuba from Central Africa.

6 Tree of the custard apple family : PAPAW

The papaw (also “pawpaw”) tree is native to North America and has a fruit that looks similar to a papaya. Papaw probably gets its name from the word papaya, but papaw and papaya are two distinct species.

9 Bit of Highlands headgear : TAM

A tam o’shanter is a man’s cap traditionally worn by Scotsmen. “Tams” were originally all blue (and called “blue bonnets”) but as more dyes became readily available they became more colorful. The name of the cap comes from the title character of the Robert Burns poem “Tam O’Shanter”.

10 Actor Sal of “Rebel Without a Cause” : MINEO

Actor Sal Mineo’s most famous role was John “Plato” Crawford, the kid who was in awe of the James Dean character in “Rebel Without a Cause”. Sadly, Mineo was murdered in 1976 when he was just 37 years old. He was attacked in the alley behind his Los Angeles apartment and stabbed through the heart. When an arrest was made it was discovered that the murderer had no idea that his victim was a celebrity, and that his plan was just to rob anyone who came along.

18 Lyricist Sammy : CAHN

Sammy Cahn wrote for them all, including Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Doris Day. Cahn’s most famous song was probably “Three Coins in the Fountain”. He also wrote “All the Way”, made famous by Frank Sinatra.

19 Smiling Face With Heart-Eyes, e.g. : EMOJI

An emoji is a character found on many cell phones that is much like an emoticon, but is more elaborate.

24 Seized vehicle, for short : REPO

Repossession (repo)

26 Here, in Honduras : AQUI

Honduras is a country in Central America that used to be known as Spanish Honduras, in order to differentiate it from British Honduras that is now called Belize. “Honduras” is the Spanish word for “the depths”, which is probably a reference to deep coastal waters.

27 What a bobby pin might help make : CURL

A bobby pin is an unobtrusive hair clip. The clip became popular starting in 1899 with the introduction of the “bob cut”, hence the name “bobby pin”.

28 Much change may come from this : TILL

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 …

36 Commercial name that becomes another commercial name if you move its first letter to the end : AVIS

Avis has been around since 1946, and is the second largest car rental agency after Hertz. Avis has the distinction of being the first car rental company to locate a branch at an airport.

VISA doesn’t actually issue any credit or debit cards. VISA just sells the electronic systems and infrastructure to banks who then put the VISA logo on their own cards. Seeing the logo, both customer and merchant know to use the VISA system when making a transaction.

41 When repeated, Mork’s farewell : NANU

“Mork & Mindy” is a sitcom that originally aired from 1978 to 1982. The title characters were played by Robin Williams and Pam Dawber. Mork is an alien from the planet Ork who reports back to his superior called Orson. Orson is played by voice actor Ralph James. Ralph James was also known for providing the voice of Mr. Turtle in famous Tootsie Pop commercials in the seventies. Nanu nanu!

44 Slip-up : BONER

Boner is one of those terms that I just don’t like because it can be used offensively. “Boner” can be used to mean “faux pas, error”.

48 St. Francis of ___ : ASSISI

St. Francis founded the Franciscan religious order in Assisi in 1208. He died in 1226, and was declared a saint just two years later in 1228. Construction of the Basilica of San Francesco d’Assisi started immediately after the canonization, and finished 25 years later. The Basilica is now a United Nations World Heritage Site.

51 “Give My Regards to Broadway” composer : COHAN

I suppose much of what many of us know about American entertainer George M. Cohan comes from the 1942 film about his life called “Yankee Doodle Dandy”, which stars Jimmy Cagney as Cohan. There is an 8-foot bronze statue of Cohan on Broadway in New York City that was erected in 1959 at the behest of the lyricist Oscar Hammerstein.

52 Natty neckwear : ASCOT

An ascot is a horrible-looking (I think!), wide tie that narrows at the neck, which these days is only really worn at weddings. The tie takes its name from the Royal Ascot horse race at which punters still turn up in formal wear at Ascot Racecourse in England.

54 Hatha and Bikram, for two : YOGAS

Hatha yoga is a yoga system developed in 15th century India. Traditional Hatha yoga is a more “complete” practice than often encountered in the west, involving not just exercise but also meditation and relaxation. “Hatha” is a Sanskrit word meaning “force”.

55 Bulging with muscles, in modern lingo : SWOLE

I know, I know. “Swole” means nothing to me either …

56 Che’s “Weekend Update” co-host on “S.N.L.” : JOST

“Weekend Update” is the longest-running of any recurring sketch on “Saturday Night Live” (SNL). In fact, the segment made its debut on the very first show, back in 1975. The first “anchor” at the “Weekend Update” desk was Chevy Chase.

64 ___ Constitution : USS

“Old Ironsides” is a nickname given to the USS Constitution even though she is actually a wooden-hulled ship. The Constitution was launched in 1797 and can still be seen at sea today. She is the oldest commissioned naval vessel in the world. You can visit Old Ironsides at the Boston Navy Yard, where I had the privilege of touring her in 2011. As an old sailor, I’d say she is the best-maintained ship I’ve ever been on, and paradoxically, she is also the oldest. Really, really beautiful …

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Frasier’s producer on “Frasier” : ROZ
4 Pass on, as knowledge : IMPART
10 Unruly hair : MOP
13 Nondairy spread : OLEO
15 Yellow Teletubby : LAA-LAA
16 Power group : INS
17 “Your fins are nice” and “You’re a graceful swimmer”? : FISH COMPLIMENTS (from “fish for compliments”)
20 “___ luck!” : LOTSA
21 It can get you out of a place it rhymes with : BAIL
22 Butcher’s stock : MEAT
23 Done some lassoing? : THROWN A LOOP (from “thrown for a loop”)
26 Theater opening : ACT ONE
29 ___ Mahal : TAJ
30 Witty remark : QUIP
31 Big-bottomed fruit : PEAR
35 Sporty Mazda : MIATA
39 One might end with .com : URL
40 Relinquished … or a hint to 17-, 23-, 51- and 62-Across : FORGONE … FOR GONE
42 Really bother : VEX
43 “Wouldja look at that!” : I’LL BE!
45 Early 2000s sitcom set near Houston : REBA
46 “OK, have it your way!” : FINE!
47 Suffix with pay : -OLA
49 Bikini blasts, informally : N-TESTS
51 Is unable to pronounce the name of a deodorant brand? : CAN’T SAY SURE (from “can’t say for sure”)
56 San ___, Calif. : JOSE
57 Convince with smooth talk : SNOW
58 Very big : OBESE
62 Actress Sandra emoting? : OH CRYING OUT LOUD (from “oh, for crying out loud”)
65 ___ Paulo, Brazil : SAO
66 Standard things : USUALS
67 Lady in Arthurian romance : ENID
68 Sister channel of HBO and Cinemax : TNT
69 Department store department : MISSES
70 Where you might find a slop bucket : STY

Down

1 “That’s hilarious!,” in a text : ROFL!
2 A little of this, a little of that : OLIO
3 Avidity : ZEST
4 U.N. workers’ grp. : ILO
5 Title dance in a 1999 #3 hit : MAMBO
6 Tree of the custard apple family : PAPAW
7 Gambler’s aggressive bet : ALL IN
8 Berate : RAIL AT
9 Bit of Highlands headgear : TAM
10 Actor Sal of “Rebel Without a Cause” : MINEO
11 Ready as needed : ON TAP
12 “Hey … over here!” : PSST!
14 “Come on now — you flatter me too much!” : OH STOP!
18 Lyricist Sammy : CAHN
19 Smiling Face With Heart-Eyes, e.g. : EMOJI
24 Seized vehicle, for short : REPO
25 Like a horse that can no longer be ridden : LAME
26 Here, in Honduras : AQUI
27 What a bobby pin might help make : CURL
28 Much change may come from this : TILL
32 Slip up : ERR
33 Word with old, new or school : … AGE
34 Stick up : ROB
36 Commercial name that becomes another commercial name if you move its first letter to the end : AVIS
37 Rental for an outdoor reception : TENT
38 Fires : AXES
40 Sensed : FELT
41 When repeated, Mork’s farewell : NANU
44 Slip-up : BONER
46 Weak : FEEBLE
48 St. Francis of ___ : ASSISI
50 Home run pace : TROT
51 “Give My Regards to Broadway” composer : COHAN
52 Natty neckwear : ASCOT
53 Year, in old Rome : ANNUS
54 Hatha and Bikram, for two : YOGAS
55 Bulging with muscles, in modern lingo : SWOLE
56 Che’s “Weekend Update” co-host on “S.N.L.” : JOST
59 Many millennia : EONS
60 Something not worn on casual Friday : SUIT
61 Small whirlpool : EDDY
63 “Dee-lish!” : YUM!
64 ___ Constitution : USS

13 thoughts on “0527-20 NY Times Crossword 27 May 20, Wednesday”

  1. 8:35, no errors. Got hung up for a bit at the end: I had put in “ANNUM” instead of “ANNUS” and saw that “MIMSES” simply wasn’t going to work, but somehow took forever to figure out what I’d done wrong. (Well, maybe not forever, but it seemed like it … duh … 😜.)

  2. 15:49. I was a little pokey today as well. I usually make an excuse when that happens so I’ll do the same today. I did this last night outside while a pool party was going on next door. The noise was distracting, but the normalcy of the din made it actually soothing. Interesting times.

    Same issue as Nonny with ANNUm and ANNUS. My biggest issue was north central – not knowing LAALAA, PAWAW or MAMBO.

    I thought it was tough for a Wednesday.

    Best –

  3. 25:52 no errors.I stopped in the middle of this one to answer the phone …this guy wants to buy my house out of the blue…I gave him a rediculous high price…he asked me what condition it was in…I told him good and raised the price another 20K…at this point I think he got the message and said he would get back to me. Telemarketers you gotta love um.
    Stay safe.

  4. Jack, that was me trying to slow you
    down.😊
    I was going to follow through and buy your house at the lower price. The extra 20K put me off.

  5. I’ve always thought the Voord from the Doctor Who story “The Keys of Marinus” with their strange head gear might have been the inspiration for the teletubbies.

  6. No errors. Pretty easy for a Wednesday. I also had ANNUM before switching to ANNUS. A brief research reveals that they are just different cases of the same Latin word. The Latin “per” would have to be added in front of the word “annum” before it would be deemed correct. Otherwise, ANNUS is indeed the word for “Year, in old Rome”.

  7. Bill — My folks owned a small grocery store in the Midwest in the 1940s-50s. Their cash register had a TILL, located across the bottom of the register, which popped open when the a sale was completed. It had sections for denominations of bills and coins. A lot of change came from it.

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