0801-20 NY Times Crossword 1 Aug 20, Saturday

Constructed by: Adam Aaronson & Paolo Pasco
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: None

Bill’s time: 12m 35s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 “Coach K” of N.C.A.A. men’s basketball fame : KRZYZEWSKI

Mike Krzyzewski is a coach and former basketball player from Chicago, Illinois. As a young man, Krzyzewski captained the Army Cadets basketball team, before serving in the Army for five years. After resigning from active duty, Coach K (as he is called) eventually took the head coaching job with the Army Cadets followed by the head coach’s position with Duke, where he has been since 1980. Today, Coach K also coaches the US International team.

14 Immaculate : NEAT AS A PIN

Apparently, the idiom “neat as a pin” arose in the early 1800s, with the advent of mass production. Up until that time, pins were handmade and so were irregular and relatively flawed. Mass-produced pins were uniform and of consistent quality. So, something that was uniform and of consistent quality came to be described as “neat as a pin”.

18 Stole something? : FUR

A stole is a narrow shawl. It can be made of quite light decorative material, but also can be heavier if made of fur.

19 Traditional source of material for a sherpa’s coat : 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.

In the Tibetan language, “Sherpa” means “eastern people” (sher = east, pa = people). Sherpas are an ethnic group from Nepal, but the name is also used for the local guides who assist mountaineers in the Himalayas, and particularly on Mount Everest.

20 Noted couple on the Titanic : ASTORS

John Jacob Astor IV was a member of the famous and wealthy Astor family of New York. Astor and his second wife Madeleine were passengers on the RMS Titanic when it made its fateful journey in 1912. John did not survive the tragedy, and was the wealthiest person to go down with the ship. Madeleine was picked up in a lifeboat, along with her nurse and maid.

The RMS Titanic set off on her tragic maiden voyage in 1912, sailing from Southampton, England bound for New York City. Regulations only required that the ship have lifeboat capacity for 1,178 people, even though a full complement of passengers and crew was 3,547. When the order was given to abandon ship, the captain adhered to the traditional protocol of “women and children first”. As a result, only 20% of male passengers survived the disaster, compared to 75% of the female passengers. Perhaps more telling is that 61% of those in first class survived, and only 25% of those in third class. The crew fared even worse though, with only 24% making it.

23 Tough-to-sculpt part of some Roman statues : TOGA

In ancient Rome, the classical attire known as a toga (plural “togae” or “togas”) was usually worn over a tunic. The tunic was made from linen, and the toga itself was a piece of cloth about twenty feet long made from wool. The toga could only be worn by men, and only if those men were Roman citizens. The female equivalent of the toga was called a “stola”.

26 Like the last complete symphony of Gustav Mahler : NINTH

When Gustav Mahler died in 1911, he left his final work unfinished. The “Symphony No. 10” was relatively complete, in the form of a draft, but was not orchestrated. Several composers have “completed” the work, most notably British musician Deryck Cooke in the sixties.

I’m still trying to keep an open mind when it comes to the music of Gustav Mahler, but I find it hard to appreciate. Mahler was an Austrian composer who was active in the late-Romantic period. During his own lifetime, he was most notable as a conductor, and his compositions gained in popularity only after his death in 1911. Mahler’s music was banned as “degenerate” during the Nazi Era, as Mahler was Jewish.

30 Sockeye relative : COHO

The Coho salmon is dark blue with silver along the side of its body, but only during the phase of its life while it is in the ocean. When spawning and heading up into a freshwater river, the Coho has bright red sides.

The sockeye salmon is also known as the red or blueback salmon. The name “sockeye” comes from “suk-kegh”, a word from the native language of an indigenous people in British Columbia. “Suk-kegh” means “red fish”.

34 Series of posts on social media : FEED

Many websites and blogs publish content in a format known as Rich Site Summary (RSS). The “feed” can be read using an RSS reader. The advantage of using an RSS reader, is that the user doesn’t have to check the website for new content. That new material is fed to the RSS reader as soon as it is published.

37 Ad ___ : NAUSEAM

To do something “ad nauseam” is to do so to a ridiculous degree, to the point of nausea. “Ad nauseam” is the Latin for “to sickness”.

45 Sound heard in a delivery room : SNIP

Let’s assume we’re referring to the umbilical cord …

47 Sushi with unagi : EEL ROLL

“Unagi” is the Japanese term for” freshwater eel”, and “anago” is the term for “saltwater eel”.

49 Glitz up : ADORN

Our word “glitz”, meaning “showiness”, is the Yiddish word for “glitter”.

56 Streaker : METEOR

A meteoroid is a small rocky or metallic body travelling through space. Once in the atmosphere, the meteoroid is referred to as a “meteor” or “shooting star”. Almost all meteoroids burn up, but if one is large enough to survive and reach the ground then we call it a meteorite. The word “meteor” comes from the Greek “meteōros” meaning “high in the air”.

58 Certain red … or, in another context, something associated with the color yellow : CAB

The cabernet sauvignon (often just “cab”) grape has been around since the 17th century, and is the result of a chance crossing in southwestern France of the cabernet franc and sauvignon blanc grapes.

60 Org. in Showtime’s “Homeland” : CIA

The original Yellow Cab Company is located in Chicago, and was founded back in 1914.

61 Shakespeare’s “The Murder of Gonzago” is one : PLAY WITHIN A PLAY

In “Hamlet”, William Shakespeare employs the “play-within-a-play” device. Hamlet engages some professional actors to stage “The Murder of Gonzago”. After watching the Player King deliver a moving soliloquy, Hamlet himself makes a speech, including the lines:

What’s Hecuba to him, or he to Hecuba,
That he should weep for her?

65 200 in a 500 : LAPS

The Indianapolis 500 race is held annually at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Speedway, Indiana. The race is run around a 2.5 mile oval, hence requiring 200 laps for completion. The first Indy 500 race was held on Memorial Day in 1911. The winner that day was one Ray Harroun. Harroun had seen someone using a rear view mirror on a horse-drawn vehicle, and decided to fit one on his Marmon “Wasp” motor car. Supposedly, that was the first ever use of a rear-view mirror on a motor vehicle.

66 It might say “Pay poor tax of $15” : CHANCE CARD

Players of the board game Monopoly are familiar with the accompanying sets of Chance and Community Chest cards. The original version of the game came with just the Chance cards, and those cards came with quotes attributed to Thomas Jefferson, John Ruskin and Andrew Carnegie.

68 Landlocked land along the Silk Road : KYRGYZSTAN

Kyrgyzstan is a landlocked country in Central Asia that is a former Soviet Socialist Republic (SSR). The country name’s root “Kyrgyz” translates as “We are forty”. This is a reference to the forty united clans in the region that united under a legendary hero named Manas. The Kyrgyzstan flag also features a sun with forty rays, a further reference to the clans.

The Silk Road was a network of trading routes that crossed North Africa and Asia, connecting Europe to West Asia. The routes get the name from the lucrative trade in silk from China.

Down

2 Brought back : REDUX

The adjective “redux” means “returned, brought back”, and is derived from the Latin “reducere” meaning “to lead back, to bring back”.

3 Former name of sub-Saharan Africa’s largest country : ZAIRE

The African nation once called Zaire is a neighbor of Rwanda. The genocide and war in Rwanda spilled over into Zaire in 1996, with the conflict escalating into what is now called the First Congo War. As part of the war’s fallout there was a regime change, and in 1997 Zaire became the Democratic Republic of Congo.

4 Since January 1: Abbr. : YTD

Year-to-date (YTD)

5 Eccentric : ZANY

Something described as zany is clownish and bizarre. “Zany” can also be a noun, a term used for a clown or buffoon. The original noun was “Zanni”, a Venetian dialect variant of Gianni, short for Giovanni (John). Zanni was a character who appeared in comedy plays of the day, and was someone who aped the principal actors.

9 Word after press or mess : … KIT

“Mess” first came into English about 1300, when it described the list of food needed for a meal. The term comes from the Old French word “mes” meaning a portion of food or a course at a meal. This usage in English evolved into “mess” meaning a jumbled mass of anything, from the concept of “mixed food”. The original usage, in the sense of a food for a meal, surfaced again in the military in the 1500s when a “mess” was a communal eating place.

10 Worshiper of the goddess Mama Quilla (“mother moon”) : INCA

The Inca people emerged as a tribe around the 12th century, in what today is southern Peru. The Incas developed a vast empire over the next 300 years, extending along most of the western side of South America. The Empire fell to the Spanish, finally dissolving in 1572 with the execution of Túpac Amaru, the last Incan Emperor.

15 Top story : ATTIC

An attic or loft is a room or space located below the roof of a building. The term “attic” is a shortened form of “attic story”, the uppermost story or level of a house. This term “attic story” originally applied to a low, decorative level built on top of the uppermost story behind a building’s decorative facade. This use of decoration at the top of buildings was common in ancient Greece, and was particularly important in the Attica style. That Attica style was so called because it originated in the historical region of Attica that encompassed the city of Athens. And that’s how our attics are linked to ancient Greece.

17 TV inits. hidden backward in “television shopping” : HSN

The Home Shopping Network (HSN) was the first national shopping network, and was launched locally as the Home Shopping Club in Florida in 1982.

24 Often-animated picture file : GIF

A bitmap is an image file format used to store digital images. Basically, each pixel in a bitmap file is stored as a “bit” of information, hence the name “bitmap”. In 1987, CompuServe introduced a new type of image file called the Graphics Interchange Format (GIF). A GIF image takes the same information as a bitmap and then compresses it, resulting in a smaller file size. However, during compression the image may lose some resolution. The GIF format also handles short video clips, usually animations.

28 Natural feature near Queensland : REEF

The Great Barrier Reef is located in the Coral Sea, off the coast of Queensland, Australia. It is a system of almost three thousand individual reefs, and is the largest such system on the planet. The Great Barrier Reef is also the only living thing on Earth that can be seen from outer space.

Queensland is a large state located on the northeast of Australia. The state capital of Brisbane is the third largest city in the country, after Sydney and Melbourne. Queensland was originally part of the state of New South Wales, but was separated in 1859, with the new name chosen in honor of Queen Victoria.

32 Apt occurrence during the game that ended the Cubs’ 108-year World Series drought : RAIN DELAY

The Chicago Cubs won the 2016 World Series four games to three over the Cleveland Indians. That marked the first World Series win for the Cubs since 1908. The Indians would have liked a win too, as their last World Series title was in 1948.

33 Smoking gun of Watergate : AUDIOTAPE

Famously, there is a gap of 18½ minutes in the Nixon White House tapes. Rose Mary Woods, President Nixon’s secretary, reported that she was reviewing one of the tapes when she accidentally hit record instead of the stop button, causing about 5 minutes of erasure. There is an additional 13 minutes of “buzzing” that she could not explain. There has been much speculation about what actually happened, as a review of notes made in the meeting covered by the tape show that the arrests made at the Watergate were discussed.

The Watergate scandal is so named because it involved a break-in at the Democratic National Committee (DNC) headquarters in the Watergate office complex in Washington, D.C. The Watergate complex is made up of five units, three of which are apartment buildings, one an office building, and one a hotel-office building (which housed the DNC headquarters). Watergate led to the “-gate” suffix being used for many subsequent scandals, such as “Irangate”, “Bridgegate” and “Deflategate”.

40 Put (away) : SALT

To salt away is to put aside safely for the future, and usually refers to something of value like money. The use of “salt” here is a figurative usage of the verb in the sense of preserving, as in salting meat for a future meal.

43 Many a microbrew : ALE

Originally, the term “microbrewery” applied to smaller breweries. In contemporary usage, a microbrewery really describes a brewery that competes in the market on the basis of quality and diversity, rather than on the basis of price and advertising. The really small brewing operations are now referred to as “nanobreweries”.

53 Sparkle : ECLAT

54 One-named singer with the 2004 #1 hit “Goodies” : CIARA

Ciara is a singer-songwriter from Austin, Texas (never heard of her). Ciara used to date rapper Bow Wow (never heard of him), but married Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson in 2016.

55 So-called “Father of the String Quartet” : HAYDN

Josef Haydn was an Austrian composer, often called the “Father of the Symphony” due to his prolific output of symphonies that helped define the form. This is one of the reasons that he was known, even in his own lifetime, as “Papa Haydn”. Haydn was also the father figure among “the big three” composers of the Classical Period: Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven. Haydn was a good friend to Mozart, and a teacher of Beethoven.

A standard string quartet is made up of two violins, a viola and a cello. A string quintet consists of a standard string quartet with the addition of a fifth instrument, usually a second viola or cello.

59 She performed while six months pregnant at Woodstock : BAEZ

Joan Baez is an American folk singer and a prominent activist in the fields of non-violence, civil rights, human rights and environmental protection. Baez has dated some high-profile figures in her life including Bob Dylan, Steve Jobs (of Apple) and Mickey Hart of the Grateful Dead.

1969’s Woodstock Music & Art Fair was held on a dairy farm located 43 miles southwest of the town of Woodstock, New York. 400,000 young people attended, and saw 32 bands and singers perform over three days.

62 Psalm possessive : THY

The Greek word “psalmoi” originally meant “songs sung to a harp”, and gave us the word “psalms”. In the Jewish and Western Christian traditions, the Book of Psalms contains 150 individual psalms, divided into five sections.

64 Windows might be on them : PCS

The original IBM Personal Computer is model number 5150, which was introduced to the world on August 12, 1981. The term “personal computer” was already in use, but the success of the IBM 5150 led to the term “PC” being used for all computer products compatible with the IBM platform.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 “Coach K” of N.C.A.A. men’s basketball fame : KRZYZEWSKI
11 “Somewhat” : ISH
14 Immaculate : NEAT AS A PIN
15 Info compiled for a debate, metaphorically : AMMO
16 “Say again, please” : I DIDN’T CATCH THAT
18 Stole something? : FUR
19 Traditional source of material for a sherpa’s coat : YAK
20 Noted couple on the Titanic : ASTORS
21 People whom you might try to forget : EXES
23 Tough-to-sculpt part of some Roman statues : TOGA
26 Like the last complete symphony of Gustav Mahler : NINTH
27 Words from a quitter : I RESIGN
30 Sockeye relative : COHO
31 Hangs loose? : DRAPES
34 Series of posts on social media : FEED
36 Knock-down-drag-out : ROW
37 Ad ___ : NAUSEAM
39 “Comin’ through!” : ‘SCUSE ME!
41 Grant, for example : AID
42 Target of products from Bio-Groom and Wondercide : FLEA
44 Page turner : READER
45 Sound heard in a delivery room : SNIP
47 Sushi with unagi : EEL ROLL
49 Glitz up : ADORN
51 Crew : TEAM
52 Modern corporate dept. : TECH
56 Streaker : METEOR
58 Certain red … or, in another context, something associated with the color yellow : CAB
60 Org. in Showtime’s “Homeland” : CIA
61 Shakespeare’s “The Murder of Gonzago” is one : PLAY WITHIN A PLAY
65 200 in a 500 : LAPS
66 It might say “Pay poor tax of $15” : CHANCE CARD
67 Designer’s asset : EYE
68 Landlocked land along the Silk Road : KYRGYZSTAN

Down

1 Chopper : KNIFE
2 Brought back : REDUX
3 Former name of sub-Saharan Africa’s largest country : ZAIRE
4 Since January 1: Abbr. : YTD
5 Eccentric : ZANY
6 Mandate in some wills : ESTATE SALE
7 Eccentrics, in slang : WACKOS
8 Facial joint : SPA
9 Word after press or mess : KIT
10 Worshiper of the goddess Mama Quilla (“mother moon”) : INCA
11 Award show sentiment : I’M HONORED
12 Residence with lots of remotely controlled systems : SMART HOME
13 Way to wind down after a workout : HOT SHOWER
15 Top story : ATTIC
17 TV inits. hidden backward in “television shopping” : HSN
22 Tries, maybe : SIPS
24 Often-animated picture file : GIF
25 So long : AGES
28 Natural feature near Queensland : REEF
29 Dead reckoning? : NECROMANCY
31 Spit take, perhaps? : DNA SAMPLE
32 Apt occurrence during the game that ended the Cubs’ 108-year World Series drought : RAIN DELAY
33 Smoking gun of Watergate : AUDIOTAPE
35 Go one on one : DUEL
38 Intersect : MEET
40 Put (away) : SALT
43 Many a microbrew : ALE
46 Hunts, with “on” : PREYS
48 Very, very fast : RACING
50 Partner of here : NOW
53 Sparkle : ECLAT
54 One-named singer with the 2004 #1 hit “Goodies” : CIARA
55 So-called “Father of the String Quartet” : HAYDN
57 Stack of hay or straw : RICK
59 She performed while six months pregnant at Woodstock : BAEZ
62 Psalm possessive : THY
63 When repeated, “So-o-o funny” : HAR
64 Windows might be on them : PCS

8 thoughts on “0801-20 NY Times Crossword 1 Aug 20, Saturday”

  1. 19:50, no errors. This was the easiest (well … fastest, anyway) of five crossword puzzles that I did before going to bed (with a massive headache … 😳) last night.

    Taking our cue from 1- and 68-Across, might we conclude that the setter intended this to be a wild and K-(ra)-Z-Y outing? 🤪

  2. 21:51, no errors. What a fiendish puzzle beginning! I immediately knew coach K, but could I spell it? I enjoyed piecing it together with periodic crossings plus my own brain power (such as it is). A nice solve for me after yesterday’s fiasco. Today my wavelength was “on” with the setters. @A Nonny Muss…love your “wild and K-(ra)-Z-Y outing” comment! 😂

  3. 28:06 Definitely a spelling challenge today. Needed crosses to fill properly. Agree with @Nonny. Slow start with several errors on first pass. BLOG before FEED; HOMINEM before NAUSEAM; LOOKOUT before SCUSEME; IGIVEUP before IRESIGN. BALE before RICK. So lots to unravel. Finally got the long for 61A and then slowly worked my way up, amending as I went. NE corner last to fall.

    Unfamiliar with a RICK of straw / hay

    @Bill. Update on Ciara – she is married to Russell Wilson (QB of the Seattle Seahawks) for about 4 years now. We in the Puget Sound hear about the pair quite a lot – as you can imagine.

  4. 22:58. Pretty easy for a Saturday except in a few places where it wasn’t. I mostly knew how to spell KRZYZEWSKI, but I need a couple of crosses to verify a letter or two. The long answers in general were kind to us today.

    I thought the same thing as Bill with SNIP, but I also thought maybe it was SNIP as in cutting the string off of a delivered package? Not sure which one of those is the bigger stretch.

    Best –

  5. Good Saturday for me. Did both the KenKen and the Crossword (with no mistakes) in one (breakfast) session. Happens rarely.

  6. A solid last place finish with 32:13 and realizing I had no idea how to spell Coach K’s last name, although I can pronounce it, and knowing the last across was going to be a lot of consonants and ending in “stan”….

  7. I just noticed (belatedly) that Paolo Pasco was a co-creator of this puzzle. As it happens, last week, I downloaded and did the eleven puzzles from his web site that I hadn’t already done and I thoroughly enjoyed all of them. Kudos to a very clever young man!

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