0902-20 NY Times Crossword 2 Sep 20, Wednesday

Constructed by: Margaret Seikel
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answer: Catchphrase

Themed answers each end with the opposite of the word “CATCH”:

  • 60A Popular expression … or what the opposite of the answer to each starred clue is? : CATCHPHRASE
  • 16A *Something reminisced about in the movie “Grease” : SUMMER FLING
  • 10D *Some hamburger meat : GROUND CHUCK
  • 14D *Sales spiel in 60 seconds or less, say : ELEVATOR PITCH
  • 24D *Alpine crossing over the Austrian/Italian border : BRENNER PASS

Bill’s time: 6m 55s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

7 German grandparent, affectionately : OPA

The German for “grandpa” is “Opa”, and for “grandma” is “Oma”.

10 Docs who don’t specialize : GPS

General practitioner (GP)

15 Brazil’s Amazonas, e.g. : RIO

In Spanish, “el Amazonas” (the Amazon) is a “río” (river).

16 *Something reminisced about in the movie “Grease” : SUMMER FLING

“Grease” was, and still is, a very successful stage musical. In the story, the leader of “The Pink Ladies” is Betty Rizzo, who is played by Stockard Channing in the blockbuster film version of the play.

19 Annual June celebration : PRIDE

The police raided a gay bar called the Stonewall Inn on June 29th, 1969. That raid triggered a spate of violent demonstrations led by the LGBT community. Now known as the Stonewall riots, those demonstrations are viewed by many as a significant event leading to the modern-day fight for LGBT rights in the US. Since then, June has been chosen as LGBT Pride Month in recognition of the Stonewall riots.

20 ___ Awards (annual prizes for science fiction and fantasy) : NEBULA

The best works of science fiction and fantasy published each year are recognized annually by the Nebula Awards. The first Nebulas were awarded in 1966.

27 Space force, informally : ZERO G

The force of gravity (g-force) that we all feel is referred to as “one G”. As gravity is an accelerating force, acceleration is measured relative to that force of gravity. So, if we are sitting in a vehicle that accelerates at 3G, then we are experiencing a force that is three times that which we feel from the gravitational pull of the earth. Zero G is weightlessness that is experienced when in space, and outside the influence of the earth’s gravity.

29 “Safe!” or “You’re out!” : CALL

That would be baseball.

32 Egyptian sun god : AMEN-RA

Amun-Ra (also “Amon, Amen”) was a god in Egyptian mythology. Amun lends his name to our word “ammonia”. This is because the Romans called the ammonium chloride that they collected near the Temple of Jupiter Amun, “sal ammoniacus” (salt of Amun).

36 PC core : CPU

The central processing unit (CPU) is the main component on the motherboard of a computer. The CPU is the part of the computer that carries out most of the functions required by a program. Nowadays you can get CPUs in everything from cars to telephones.

43 Christian who said “Happiness is the secret to all beauty” : DIOR

Christian Dior was a French fashion designer. As WWII approached, Dior was called up by the French military, drawing a temporary halt to his career in fashion. He left the army in 1942 and for the duration of the war designed clothes for wives of Nazi officers and French collaborators. After the war his designs became so popular that he helped to re-establish Paris as the fashion center of the world.

46 Start of four U.S. state names : NEW …

The four US states starting with the word “New” are:

  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • New York

48 “Roger that” : COPY

The term “roger”, meaning “yes” or “acknowledged”, comes from the world of radiotelephony. The British military used a phonetic alphabet in the fifties that included “Roger” to represent the letter “R”. As such, it became customary to say “Roger” when acknowledging a message, with R (Roger) standing for “received”.

55 It might have an apple on it : LAPTOP

The logo of Apple, the computer company, is a silhouette of an apple with a bite taken out of it. The company’s original logo featured a picture of Sir Isaac Newton sitting under an apple tree.

65 “___ the season …” : ‘TIS

The music for the Christmas song “Deck the Halls” is a traditional Welsh tune that dates back to the 16th century. The same tune was used by Mozart for a violin and piano duet. The lyrics with which we are familiar (other than the “f-la-la”) are American in origin, and were recorded in the 19th century.

“’Tis the season to be jolly, Fa la la la la la la la la!”

67 Submarine : HOAGIE

“Hoagy” (sometimes “hoagie”) is another name for a submarine sandwich. The term “hoagy” originated in Philadelphia, and was apparently introduced by Italians working in the shipyards during WWI. The shipyards were located on Hog Island, and the sandwich was first called “the Hog Island”, which morphed into “hoagy”.

68 Some pepperoni orders, informally : ZAS

Pepperoni originated in the US and is reminiscent of a spicy salami sausage from southern Italy. The name “pepperoni” is a corruption of the Italian “peperone”, the name for the red or green pepper plant.

70 Fructose and glucose : SUGARS

Fructose is also known as “fruit sugar”. It is commonly found in plants, and is the most water-soluble of all sugars. Many of us consume a lot of “high-fructose corn syrup”. This is a sweetener made from corn starch that is a mixture of glucose and fructose. The natural ratio of fructose to glucose is altered to produce a sweeter syrup by chemically converting much of the naturally occurring glucose into fructose.

Glucose is a simple sugar that is also known as dextrose or grape sugar. It is widely found in nature as glucose is made by plants from carbon dioxide and water during photosynthesis.

Down

1 Humanities degs. : BAS

The academic studies of human culture are collectively called the humanities. Subjects included in the humanities are languages, literature, philosophy, religion and music.

2 Place that may have lots of monitors, for short : ICU

Intensive care unit (ICU)

3 Convenience store convenience, in brief : ATM

Automatic Teller Machine (ATM)

4 Animated sitcom family name : SIMPSON

“The Simpsons” is one of the most successful programs produced by the Fox Broadcasting Company. Homer Simpson’s catchphrase is “D’oh!”, which became such a famous exclamation that it has been included in the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) since 2001. “D’oh!” can be translated as “I should have thought of that!”

6 Font flourish : SERIF

Serifs are details on the ends of characters in some typefaces. Typefaces without serifs are known as sans-serif, using the French word “sans” meaning “without” and “serif” from the Dutch “schreef” meaning “line”. Some people say that serif fonts are easier to read on paper, whereas sans-serif fonts work better on a computer screen. I’m not so sure though …

11 Sort who’s hard to tolerate : PILL

The term “pill” can be used to describe a boring and disagreeable person, a “bitter pill to swallow”.

12 Part of a McDonald’s meal : SODA

The original McDonald’s restaurant was opened in 1940 by Richard and Maurice McDonald as a barbecue restaurant. The brothers then moved into fast food hamburgers, eventually selling out to one of their franchise agents, Ray Kroc. It was Ray Kroc who really led the company to its worldwide success. He was played by Michael Keaton in the movie about Ray Kroc’s business life called “The Founder”.

14 *Sales spiel in 60 seconds or less, say : ELEVATOR PITCH

A spiel is a lengthy speech or argument designed to persuade, like a sales pitch. “Spiel” comes to us from German, either directly (“spiel” is the German for “play”) or via the Yiddish “shpil”.

17 Bank backer, for short : FDIC

During the Great Depression, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed into law the Banking Act of 1933. The legislation established the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), intended to be a temporary government corporation that provided insurance on deposits made by customers of qualified financial institutions. The first accounts to be covered, in 1934, had an insurance limit of $2,500. Since the financial crisis of 2008, that limit is $250,000.

21 Bit of drag show wear : BOA

The etymology of the term “drag”, as used in the transvestite world, seems to be unclear. It perhaps relates to the tendency of a transvestite’s skirts to drag along the ground in days of old (although why they just didn’t hitch up their skirts is beyond me!).

22 Netflix show starring Jason Bateman and Laura Linney : OZARK

“Ozark” is an excellent TV crime show starring Jason Bateman and Laura Linney as a married couple who relocate from Chicago to the Missouri Ozarks. The couple fall foul of Mexican drug lord after a money laundering scheme goes awry. The show is set at a lake resort in the Ozarks, although filming actually takes place at lakes in the Atlanta area in order to take advantage of tax breaks offered by the State of Georgia.

Jason Bateman is an actor from Rye, New York who is most associated with the role of Michael Bluth on TV’s “Arrested Development”. Jason’s older sister is Justine Bateman, who played Mallory Keaton on the show “Family Ties”.

The wonderfully talented actress Laura Linney is a native New Yorker from Manhattan. The performances of hers that I most admire are in “The Truman Show” and “Love Actually” on the big screen, and in “John Adams” and “Ozark” on the small screen.

23 Losing Brexit option : REMAIN

The UK held a referendum in June 2016 in which 52% of voters chose to leave the European Union (EU). The term “Brexit” was used for the vote, a portmanteau of “Britain” and “exit”. The vote led to some debate about the future of the UK. The Scottish electorate voted for the UK to stay in the EU, and so that revived speculation about Scotland leaving the UK. There is also some discussion about Northern Ireland’s future in the UK, as the Northern Irish electorate also voted to stay in the EU.

24 *Alpine crossing over the Austrian/Italian border : BRENNER PASS

The Brenner Pass is one of the main mountain passes through the Alps, and is located along the border between Austria and Italy. The name “Brenner” comes from “Prenner”, the name of a nearby farm and its owner. There is a motorway that goes through the pass today, but it is renowned for the long traffic jams that build up especially when northern Europeans are heading to the Mediterranean for summer vacation.

26 Entrepreneur Musk : ELON

Elon Musk is a successful businessman who has founded or led some very high-profile companies, namely PayPal, Tesla Motors and SpaceX. Musk received a lot of publicity in early 2018 during a test launch by SpaceX of the Falcon Heavy launch vehicle. A Tesla Roadster belonging to Musk was carried into space as a dummy payload.

33 Suffragist and longtime leader in the National Woman’s Party : ALICE PAUL

The Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) was written by the American suffragist leader, Alice Paul. Although Paul was successful in her campaign to get passage of the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution (guaranteeing voting rights regardless of sex), her 1923 Equal Rights Amendment didn’t make it to the Senate floor until 1972. The amendment was passed by the Senate, and then headed to the state legislatures for the required ratification. 38 states had to approve the legislation for the amendment to be adopted, but only 35 states voted in favor before the deadline. The amendment is still pending, although about half of the fifty states have adopted the ERA into their state constitutions.

40 Word with pyramid or court : FOOD …

The first food guide pyramid was issued in 1974, in Sweden. The food pyramid that we’re most familiar with in this country is the one published by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) in 1992, which was replaced in 2011. Instead of a pyramid, we now have a guide called MyPlate (available on the website ChooseMyPlate.gov). MyPlate urges us to eat about 30% grains, 30% vegetables, 20% fruits, 20% proteins on our plates, accompanied by a small serving of dairy.

49 Michelle of “Star Trek: Discovery” : YEOH

Michelle Yeoh is an actress from Malaysia who appeared in several Hong Kong action films in which she did her own stunts and martial arts scenes. Her most famous action performance was in the 2000 movie “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon”, although I best know her for playing opposite Pierce Brosnan in the Bond film “Tomorrow Never Dies”.

52 Shade of brown : MOCHA

Mocha is a port city in Yemen on the Red Sea and was once the principal port for the capital city of Sana’a. Mocha was the major marketplace in the world for coffee until the 1600s, and gave its name to the Mocha coffee bean, which in turn gave its name to the mocha brown color, and the flavor of coffee infused with chocolate.

53 Former frosh : SOPHS

The term “sophomore” has been used for a student in the second year of university since the 1680’s. The original meaning of the word was “arguer”. The term has Greek roots, from two Greek words that have been artificially combined in English. The Greek “sophos” means “wise”, and “moros” means “foolish”.

“Frosh” is a slang term for a college freshman. We call such a person a fresher back in Ireland …

55 Difficult skating jump with a backward takeoff : LUTZ

In figure skating, a Lutz is a toe-pick-assisted jump that one starts skating backwards and ends skating backwards (there’s more to it that I don’t really understand!). The maneuver is named after Alois Lutz, an Austrian skater who first performed it in competition way back in 1913. Lutz wowed the crowd with a single jump, and today both men and women are landing triple Lutz jumps. No one has landed a clean quadruple Lutz in competition.

56 Home of 60% of the world’s people : ASIA

Most of the world’s population lives in Asia (60%), and Asia is the largest continent in terms of landmass (30% of the world). Asia also has the highest population density (246 people per square mile), and the most populous city on the continent is Shanghai, China.

58 10 benjamins : THOU

Benjamin Franklin’s portrait is featured on one side of the hundred-dollar bill (also called a “C-spot, C-note, benjamin”), and Philadelphia’s Independence Hall on the other side. There is a famous error in the image of Independence Hall. If you look closely at the clock face at the top of the building you can see that the “four” is written in Roman numerals as “IV”. However, on the actual clock on Independence Hall, the “four” is denoted by “IIII”, which has been the convention for clock faces for centuries.

61 Org. that has to deal with a lot of baggage : TSA

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is the agency that employs the good folks who check passengers and baggage at airports.

62 Turkish title : AGA

“Aga” (also “agha”) is a title that was used by both civil and military officials in the Ottoman Empire.

63 Elton John, e.g. : SIR

Elton John’s real name is Reginald Dwight. Sir Elton was knighted in 1998, not for his music per se, but for his charitable work. He founded his own Elton John AIDS Foundation back in 1992.

64 Some wiring experts: Abbr. : EES

Electrical engineer (EE)

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Sometimes-unconscious leanings : BIASES
7 German grandparent, affectionately : OPA
10 Docs who don’t specialize : GPS
13 Not retired : ACTIVE
14 “I can’t ___” : EVEN
15 Brazil’s Amazonas, e.g. : RIO
16 *Something reminisced about in the movie “Grease” : SUMMER FLING
18 Stale : OLD
19 Annual June celebration : PRIDE
20 ___ Awards (annual prizes for science fiction and fantasy) : NEBULA
22 Globes : ORBS
25 Middle-distance golf club : FIVE IRON
27 Space force, informally : ZERO G
29 “Safe!” or “You’re out!” : CALL
30 Nowadays many of them are targeted : ADS
32 Egyptian sun god : AMEN-RA
34 Open-___ sandals : TOED
36 PC core : CPU
38 Made a getaway : RAN
39 ___ Ribeiro, host of “America’s Funniest Home Videos” : ALFONSO
41 Units of laughter? : HAS
42 Many wedding guests : KIN
43 Christian who said “Happiness is the secret to all beauty” : DIOR
44 Charm, in a way : SEDUCE
46 Start of four U.S. state names : NEW …
48 “Roger that” : COPY
50 Kitchen gadget for making mashed potatoes : RICER
51 Chamomile tea and yogurt, for sunburn : REMEDIES
54 “The ___ the limit” : SKY’S
55 It might have an apple on it : LAPTOP
57 Chomper : TOOTH
59 Winner of the most Women’s World Cups : USA
60 Popular expression … or what the opposite of the answer to each starred clue is? : CATCHPHRASE
65 “___ the season …” : ‘TIS
66 “Quiet!” : HUSH!
67 Submarine : HOAGIE
68 Some pepperoni orders, informally : ZAS
69 Like : A LA
70 Fructose and glucose : SUGARS

Down

1 Humanities degs. : BAS
2 Place that may have lots of monitors, for short : ICU
3 Convenience store convenience, in brief : ATM
4 Animated sitcom family name : SIMPSON
5 “Do I ___!” : EVER
6 Font flourish : SERIF
7 Egg: Prefix : OVI-
8 Flat broke : PENNILESS
9 Kind of management : ANGER
10 *Some hamburger meat : GROUND CHUCK
11 Sort who’s hard to tolerate : PILL
12 Part of a McDonald’s meal : SODA
14 *Sales spiel in 60 seconds or less, say : ELEVATOR PITCH
17 Bank backer, for short : FDIC
21 Bit of drag show wear : BOA
22 Netflix show starring Jason Bateman and Laura Linney : OZARK
23 Losing Brexit option : REMAIN
24 *Alpine crossing over the Austrian/Italian border : BRENNER PASS
26 Entrepreneur Musk : ELON
28 ___ school : GRAD
31 Absent-minded : SPACEY
33 Suffragist and longtime leader in the National Woman’s Party : ALICE PAUL
35 Action figure? : DOER
37 ___ manual : USER’S
40 Word with pyramid or court : FOOD …
45 See 47-Down : … DISHRAG
47 With 45-Down, epitome of limpness : WET …
49 Michelle of “Star Trek: Discovery” : YEOH
52 Shade of brown : MOCHA
53 Former frosh : SOPHS
55 Difficult skating jump with a backward takeoff : LUTZ
56 Home of 60% of the world’s people : ASIA
58 10 benjamins : THOU
61 Org. that has to deal with a lot of baggage : TSA
62 Turkish title : AGA
63 Elton John, e.g. : SIR
64 Some wiring experts: Abbr. : EES

6 thoughts on “0902-20 NY Times Crossword 2 Sep 20, Wednesday”

  1. 13:10, no errors, but I seemed determined to make every possible misstep in the process. (OMA before OPA, FOUR iron before FIVE iron, and ALFREDO before ALFONSO are the ones I remember, but I think there were plenty of others.) No real complaints, though … 🙂.

  2. 16.17. Would have been less if I had spelled Amen Ra correctly. Just looked it up…cheaters! It’s Amon Ra. AKA Amun Ra and Amen Ra. I had the preferred (although incorrect for this setter) spelling first.

  3. 10:13 Seems like Nonny made my usual missteps, tho I did go with OMA first. I’ve never actually seen GREASE – figured I had enough of it in my hear as a teen. After finishing I did review the puzzle and grokked the theme for a change.

  4. 15:02. Late to the party today. Completely whiffed on the theme. one square wrong BRUNNER PASS and ALMUNRA. I thought BRUNNER sounded more German that BRENNER. Oh well.

    Took me a second to get ZERO G. I was thinking a space force like out of Star Wars that I wouldn’t have known. Today’s fighter pilots have to be able to endure up to 9 g’s. Ouch. Most people pass out at about 5 g’s. A g-suit can add 1 or 2 g’s to that. Pilots that can endure 9 g’s (and supposedly even higher) are called g-monsters.

    Best –

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