0901-20 NY Times Crossword 1 Sep 20, Tuesday

Constructed by: David Steinberg
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme (according to Bill): Slash in the Middle

There is a forward-slash in the middle of the grid (in black squares) that completes gender identifiers defined by the circled letters:

  • 18A Like the 52-Across featured in this puzzle : PERSONAL
  • 52A Gender identifiers often separated by slashes : PRONOUNS
  • 22A Eponym of a certain tennis stadium in Queens : ARTHUR ASHE
  • 26A Group of bison : HERD (giving “SHE/HE”)
  • 33A “Nevertheless …,” informally : BUT HEY
  • 35A N.Y.C. opera house : THE MET (giving “THEY/THEM”)
  • 46A Post-workout feeling : ACHE
  • 47A Cats with long hair and blue eyes : HIMALAYANS (giving “HE/HIM”)

Bill’s time: 5m 25s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Cocktail with a rhyming name : MAI TAI

The mai tai cocktail is strongly associated with the Polynesian islands, but the drink was supposedly invented in 1944 in Trader Vic’s restaurant in Oakland, California. One recipe is 6 parts white rum, 3 parts orange curaçao, 3 parts Orgeat syrup, 1 part rock candy syrup, 2 parts fresh lime juice, all mixed with ice and then a float added of 6 parts dark rum. “Maita’i” is the Tahitian word for “good”.

7 Saturated ___ : FAT

Saturated fats (“bad” fats) differ from unsaturated fats (“good” fats) chemically in that saturated fats have chains of fatty acids that are relatively straight, allowing individual molecules to pack closely together. This close packing largely explains why saturated fats are solid at room temperature. Unsaturated fatty acids on the other hand have “kinks” in the chains of their fatty acids, so that they cannot pack together closely. Unsaturated fats are generally liquid at room temperature. Food manufacturers have learned that humans get sick by consuming saturated fats (i.e. fats from animal sources). So, they market “healthy” vegetable fats (naturally unsaturated and liquid at room temperature) that they have magically transformed into solid fats (like vegetable spreads). All they did was saturate the healthy fats, so that now it solidifies at room temperature, and in your arteries. There should be a law …

10 Enemies of hobbits : ORCS

According to Tolkien, Orcs are small humanoids that live in his fantasy world of Middle-earth (also called “Mordor”). They are very ugly and dirty, and are fond of eating human flesh.

15 Hubbub : BROUHAHA

“Brouhaha”, meaning “ado, stir”, was a French word that back in the 1550s meant “the cry of the devil disguised as clergy” . Wow!

20 Prussia’s ___ von Bismarck : OTTO

Germany first became a country of her own in 1871 when the Princes of the various independent German states met at Versailles outside Paris to proclaim Wilhelm of Prussia as the Emperor of the German Empire. The man behind this historic development was Wilhelm’s Ministerpräsident, Otto von Bismarck. Von Bismarck was a powerful figure in Prussia and indeed on the world stage, earning him the nickname “Iron Chancellor”.

21 Maker of the Telluride S.U.V. : KIA

The Kia Telluride is a mid-size SUV that was launched in 2019. It is named for the Colorado town of Telluride, and is the largest vehicle that Kia ever made for the US market.

22 Eponym of a certain tennis stadium in Queens : ARTHUR ASHE

Arthur Ashe Stadium in Queens, New York opened in 1997 and for years was the largest outdoor, tennis-only venue in the world. The stadium was often criticized for not having a retractable dome to protect the playing surface from inclement weather. Well, that changed in 2016 when the stadium debuted its new retractable roof, a $150 million investment in the facility.

26 Group of bison : HERD

There are two species of bison left (four species are extinct). We are most familiar with the American bison (commonly called the American buffalo), but there is also a European bison, which is sometimes called a “wisent”.

27 Snack cake with a swirly filling : HO HO

Ho Hos snack cakes were first produced in San Francisco in 1967. The “Happy Ho Ho” mascot was created for the brand in the 1970s, and was a cartoon character in a Robin Hood outfit. Ho Hos weren’t the best thing to come out of the sixties I’d say …

31 Round Table figures : SIRS

King Arthur (and his Round Table) probably never really existed, but his legend is very persistent. Arthur was supposedly a leader of the Romano-British as they tried to resist the invasion of the Anglo-Saxons in the late 5th and early 6th centuries.

32 End of many an email address : COM

The .com domain was one of the six original generic top-level domains specified. The complete original list is:

  • .com (commercial enterprise)
  • .net (entity involved in network infrastructure e.g. an ISP)
  • .mil (US military)
  • .org (not-for-profit organization)
  • .gov (US federal government entity)
  • .edu (college-level educational institution)

35 N.Y.C. opera house : THE MET

The Metropolitan Opera (often simply “the Met”) of New York City is the largest classical music organization in the country, presenting about 220 performances each and every year. Founded in 1880, the Met is renowned for using technology to expand its audiences. Performances have been broadcast live on radio since 1931, and on television since 1977. And since 2006 you can go see a live performance from New York in high definition on the big screen, at a movie theater near you …

38 How oysters are often served : RAW

A group of oysters is commonly referred to as a “bed”, and oysters can be farmed in man-made beds. The largest body of water producing oysters in the US today is Chesapeake Bay, although the number of beds continues to dwindle due to pollution and overfishing. Back in the 1800s, most of the world’s oysters came from New York Harbor.

40 Part of Lincoln’s cabin : LOG

Abraham Lincoln was born in a one-room log cabin in Hardin County, Kentucky making him the first president born in the West. His formal education was limited to a year and a half of schooling, but fortunately for us, Lincoln was an avid reader and educated himself over the years. Even though he was from a rural area, he avoided hunting and fishing because he did not like to kill animals even for food.

44 One always getting asked questions : SIRI

Siri is a software application that works with Apple’s iOS operating system. “Siri” is an acronym standing for Speech Interpretation and Recognition Interface. Voice-over artist Susan Bennett revealed herself as the female American voice of Siri a few years ago. The British version of Siri is called Daniel, and the Australian version is called Karen. Also, “Siri” is a Norwegian name meaning “beautiful woman who leads you to victory”, and was the name the developer had chosen for his first child.

45 Car sticker abbr. : MSRP

Manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP)

47 Cats with long hair and blue eyes : HIMALAYANS

The Himalayan breed of cat has long hair and is identical to the Persian, but with blue eyes and different colors at the extreme points of its coat.

50 Emilia’s husband in “Othello” : IAGO

Emilia and Iago are characters in William Shakespeare’s play “Othello”. Emilia and Iago are a married couple, although Iago kills Emilia late in the play.

54 Capital of Kansas : TOPEKA

Topeka is the capital of Kansas, and is located on the Kansas River in the northeast of the state. The name “Topeka” was chosen in 1855 and translates from the Kansa and the Ioway languages as “to dig good potatoes”. The reference isn’t to the common potato but rather to the herb known as the prairie potato (also “prairie turnip”), which was an important food for many Native Americans.

59 Roughly three-sided beef cut : TRI-TIP

A tri-tip is a cut of meat that might also be called tip roast, round tip roast and sirloin tip roast. Tri-tip is a cut of beef from the rear of the animal. It is a triangular muscle, hence the name.

60 Setting for a scene in the Sistine Chapel : EDEN

“The Creation of Adam” is a fresco by Michelangelo that is part of the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in Rome. Famously, “The Creation of Adam” features Adam and God reaching towards each other, with hands very nearly touching.

The Sistine Chapel is located in the Pope’s residence in Rome. The chapel takes its name from Pope Sixtus IV, who was responsible for restoring the old Capella Magna in the 15th century. It was about a century later (1508-1512) that Michelangelo painted the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel under the patronage of Pope Julius II.

61 Listing on mastheads: Abbr. : EDS

The masthead is a list often found on the editorial page of a newspaper that gives the members of a newspaper’s editorial board.

Down

2 Letters on a “Wanted” poster : AKA

Also known as (aka)

4 Roger Daltrey’s band : THE WHO

Roger Daltrey founded the Who in 1964, and still performs today as the band’s lead singer.

The English rock band The Who was formed in 1964, bringing together famed musicians Roger Daltrey, Pete Townshend, John Entwistle and Keith Moon. According to “Rolling Stone” magazine, the Who were the third arm of the holy trinity of British rock, alongside the Beatles and the Rolling Stones.

7 Social media things that can be liked, informally : FB POSTS

Facebook (FB)

8 “Respect” singer Franklin : ARETHA

“Respect” is a song by Otis Redding, and one that he recorded himself in 1965. It became a hit when Aretha Franklin made her famous cover version in 1967. The Redding and Franklin versions have different storylines though, and different musical “feels”.

9 Rich cake : TORTE

A torte is a type of cake made primarily with eggs, sugar and ground nuts (but no flour).

16 Grp. with airport lounges for troops : USO

The United Service Organization (USO) was founded in 1941 at the request of President Franklin D. Roosevelt “to handle the on-leave recreation of the men in the armed forces”. A USO tour is undertaken by a troupe of entertainers, many of whom are big-name celebrities. A USO tour usually includes troop locations in combat zones.

23 Eldest Stark son on “Game of Thrones” : ROBB

Robb Stark is a prominent character in the George R. R. Martin’s “A Song of Ice and Fire” novels, and in the TV adaption of the books “Game of Thrones”. He is portrayed by Scotticsh actor Richard Madden in the show.

26 Soccer great Mia : HAMM

Mia Hamm is a retired American soccer player. She played as a forward on the US national team that won the FIFA Women’s World Cup in 1991. Hamm scored 158 international goals, which was more than any other player in the world, male or female, until the record was broken in 2013. Amazingly, Hamm was born with a clubfoot, and so had to wear corrective shoes when she was growing up.

29 Haiku, for one : POEM

A haiku is a very elegant form of Japanese verse. When writing a haiku in English we tend to impose the rule that the verse must contain 17 syllables. This restriction comes from the rule in Japanese that the verse must contain 17 sound units called “moras”, but moras and syllables aren’t the same thing. Sadly, the difference is not so clear to me. Here’s an example of a Haiku:

Haikus are easy
But sometimes they don’t make sense
Refrigerator

31 Pillow cover : SHAM

A sham is something that is imitation, fake. In the world of bed linens, a sham is also an imitation or fake, in the sense that it is a decorative cover designed to cover up a regular pillow used for sleeping.

32 Hot hybrid drink : CHAI LATTE

Chai is a drink made from spiced black tea, honey and milk, with “chai” being the Hindi word for “tea”. We often called tea “a cup of char” growing up in Ireland, with “char” being our slang word for tea, derived from “chai”.

The term “latte” is an abbreviation of the Italian “caffelatte” meaning “coffee (and) milk”. Note that in the correct spelling of “latte”, the Italian word for milk, there is no accent over the “e”. An accent is often added by mistake when we use the word in English, perhaps meaning to suggest that the word is French.

35 Actress Reid of “Sharknado” : TARA

Tara Reid is an actress known for roles she played on television and the big screen. My guess is her most-remembered performances were in the “American Pie” series of movies in which she played Vicky. Sadly, Reid succumbed to the pressure to alter her looks with plastic surgery. In interviews, she has shared that her first experience under the knife “went wrong” leading to more surgeries in attempts to rectify the resulting deformity.

“Sharknado” is a 2013 tongue-in-cheek disaster movie that was made for the Syfy television channel. The basis of the plot is a freak hurricane that hits Los Angeles, resulting in a flood that leaves man-eating sharks roaming the city. I don’t think so …

39 Brunch cocktails : MIMOSAS

Where I come from, the cocktail known in North America as a mimosa is called a buck’s fizz, with the latter named for Buck’s Club in London where it was introduced in 1921. The mimosa came along a few years later, apparently first being served in the Paris Ritz. If you want to make a mimosa, it’s a 50-50 mix of champagne and orange juice, and it is very tasty …

Our word “brunch” is a portmanteau of “breakfast” and “lunch”. The term “brunch” was coined as student slang in Oxford, England in the late 1890s. However, “brunch” described a combined meal closer to the breakfast hour, and the term “blunch” was used for a meal closer to lunchtime.

41 It might tell you where to get off : GPS

So might I …

45 Shortsighted : MYOPIC

A myope is someone suffering from myopia, short-sightedness. Far-sightedness or long-sightedness is known as hypermetropia or hyperopia .

46 iPhone maker : APPLE

Apple started development of the iPhone in 2004 in collaboration with Cingular Wireless (now AT&T Mobility). The confidential program was given the name “Project Purple”, and took thirty months to complete at a cost of about $150 million. The iPhone was introduced in 2007 at the Macworld convention in San Francisco.

47 ___ couture : HAUTE

“Haute couture”, literally “high dressmaking” in French, is a name given to the creation of exclusive fashions. A couturier is someone who creates or sells such fashions.

50 Particle such as Au+ : ION

Gold is a metallic chemical element with the symbol Au. Gold is extremely unreactive. Silver and other base metals dissolve in nitric acid, and so testing an unknown sample with nitric acid can confirm the presence of gold. This assaying practise gave rise to the figurative use of the term “acid test” to describe any definitive test.

53 Refusal in Rouen : NON

Rouen is the major city in Normandy in northern France. During the days of Norman Britain, Rouen was one of the capitals of the Anglo-Norman dynasties. Rouen was also where Joan of Arc was burned at the stake in 1431.

55 Late guest’s guess, for short : ETA

Estimated time of arrival (ETA)

56 A Kardashian : KIM

Kim Kardashian is a socialite and television personality. She was introduced into society by her friend, Paris Hilton. Kardashian’s name first hit the headlines when a homemade sex tape, made by her and singer Ray J, was leaked.

57 Tinder or Instagram : APP

Tinder is a matchmaking app that uses Facebook profiles. Users “swipe” photos of potential matches, either to the right (“like”) or to the left (“not interested”). Users who “match” each other can then chat within the app.

Instagram (often abbreviated to “Insta”) is a photo-sharing application, one that is extremely popular. Instagram started in San Francisco in 2010. Facebook purchased Instagram two years later, paying $1 billion. The billion-dollar Instagram company had just 13 employees at the time of the sale …

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Cocktail with a rhyming name : MAI TAI
7 Saturated ___ : FAT
10 Enemies of hobbits : ORCS
14 “Whatever you say” : OK THEN
15 Hubbub : BROUHAHA
17 Finally arrived : MADE IT
18 Like the 52-Across featured in this puzzle : PERSONAL
19 Sorrow : WOE
20 Prussia’s ___ von Bismarck : OTTO
21 Maker of the Telluride S.U.V. : KIA
22 Eponym of a certain tennis stadium in Queens : ARTHUR ASHE
26 Group of bison : HERD
27 Snack cake with a swirly filling : HO HO
28 Life, in Rome : VITA
29 Bottoms of dogs’ feet : PADS
30 ___ Max (subscription service) : HBO
31 Round Table figures : SIRS
32 End of many an email address : COM
33 “Nevertheless …,” informally : BUT HEY …
35 N.Y.C. opera house : THE MET
38 How oysters are often served : RAW
39 “Yes, ___!” : MA’AM
40 Part of Lincoln’s cabin : LOG
42 Buildup in a fish tank : SCUM
44 One always getting asked questions : SIRI
45 Car sticker abbr. : MSRP
46 Post-workout feeling : ACHE
47 Cats with long hair and blue eyes : HIMALAYANS
49 ___ for the course : PAR
50 Emilia’s husband in “Othello” : IAGO
51 Hubbub : ADO
52 Gender identifiers often separated by slashes : PRONOUNS
54 Capital of Kansas : TOPEKA
58 Something good for a sore throat : LEMON TEA
59 Roughly three-sided beef cut : TRI-TIP
60 Setting for a scene in the Sistine Chapel : EDEN
61 Listing on mastheads: Abbr. : EDS
62 Set up tents : ENCAMP

Down

1 Tattoo subject who might disapprove of tattoos : MOM
2 Letters on a “Wanted” poster : AKA
3 “___ be an honor” : IT’D
4 Roger Daltrey’s band : THE WHO
5 Language quintet : A-E-I-O-U
6 Part of a late-night talk show : INTERVIEW
7 Social media things that can be liked, informally : FB POSTS
8 “Respect” singer Franklin : ARETHA
9 Rich cake : TORTE
10 “Looky here!” : OHO!
11 In order of preference, perhaps : RANKED
12 Musical ___ : CHAIRS
13 Introductory course? : SALAD
16 Grp. with airport lounges for troops : USO
22 Utterance from a hot bath : AHH!
23 Eldest Stark son on “Game of Thrones” : ROBB
24 You, a long time ago : THOU
25 Letting in a breeze, say : AIRY
26 Soccer great Mia : HAMM
29 Haiku, for one : POEM
31 Pillow cover : SHAM
32 Hot hybrid drink : CHAI LATTE
34 50-50 guess on a test : TRUE
35 Actress Reid of “Sharknado” : TARA
36 Singer of “Into the Unknown” in “Frozen II” : ELSA
37 Unable to decide : TORN
39 Brunch cocktails : MIMOSAS
41 It might tell you where to get off : GPS
42 Yellow, so to speak : SCARED
43 Shiny bumper material : CHROME
44 Like some memorabilia that usually costs extra : SIGNED
45 Shortsighted : MYOPIC
46 iPhone maker : APPLE
47 ___ couture : HAUTE
48 Embellish : ADORN
50 Particle such as Au+ : ION
53 Refusal in Rouen : NON
55 Late guest’s guess, for short : ETA
56 A Kardashian : KIM
57 Tinder or Instagram : APP

5 thoughts on “0901-20 NY Times Crossword 1 Sep 20, Tuesday”

  1. 9:19 I had GMC before KIA (thinking that S.U.V. was leaning toward a mfgr abbrev.) and that made the NE corner the last to be sorted out.

  2. I haven’t seen a David Steinberg grid in a long time. Did he finally finish the project? Did he turn 18 yet? 😉

    Pretty average Tuesday. I can’t believe I froze on HOHO. I love those things.

    Bill, I hope you guys get some cleaner air out there in the Bay. Been a rough few weeks with the LNU, SCU, CZU, ad nauseam.

  3. 10:41 This one fanned the flames of debate in our household as my lovely wife likes Hohos and I say Little Debbie Swiss Rolls are far superior 🙂

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