1101-20 NY Times Crossword 1 Nov 20, Sunday

Constructed by: Julian Lim
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: West-Southwest

Themed answers are common phrases in which a “W” at the start of a word has been changed to “SW”:

  • 23A What an unsteady tightrope walker may do? : SWAY UP HIGH (from “way up high”)
  • 29A “It’s just too $%#@ hot!,” e.g.? : SUMMER-SWEAR (from “summer wear”)
  • 40A What a beekeeper receives at work? : SWARM RECEPTION (from “warm reception”)
  • 67A Why the knight went shopping? : FOR WANT OF A BETTER SWORD (from “for want of a better word”)
  • 94A Hogs, after being scrubbed clean? : SPARKLING SWINE (from “sparkling wine”)
  • 111A What the ecstatic janitor did? : SWEPT FOR JOY (from “wept for joy”)
  • 117A “Michael Jordan’s Top 10 Free Throws” and others? : SWISH LISTS (from “wish lists”)

Bill’s time: 22m 45s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Amenity in G.M. vehicles : ONSTAR

The OnStar system was developed as a joint venture between GM, EDS and Hughes. The product itself was launched in 1996. Today, OnStar is only available on GM cars, although it used to be offered on other makes of car through a licensing agreement. OnStar is a subscription service that packages vehicle security, telephone, satellite navigation and remote diagnostics.

7 R.N.’s workplace : ICU

A registered nurse (RN) might work in an intensive care unit (ICU).

10 “Awake in the Dark” author : EBERT

“Awake in the Dark” is a collection of essays by film critic Roger Ebert that was published in 2006. Subtitled “The Best of Roger Ebert”, the essays were selected from his writings over his 40-year career.

22 Spanish Steps city : ROME

Rome’s Spanish Steps are known locally as the “Scalinata” and are a set of 135 steps that sit above the Piazza di Spagna. The Spanish Steps actually form the widest staircase in Europe. They always remind me of the movie “Roman Holiday”, as that is where Audrey Hepburn enjoyed her gelato.

25 Number cruncher, in Wall Street lingo : QUANT

In financial jargon, a “quant” is a “quantitative analyst”, someone who uses mathematical methodology to assess risk.

27 CPR experts : EMTS

An emergency medical technician (EMT) might administer cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).

28 “___ to My Family” (song by the Cranberries) : ODE

“Ode to My Family” was a 1994 hit for the Cranberries, an Irish rock band from Limerick.

34 Dish cooked in an underground oven : POI

I am a big fan of starch (being an Irishman I love potatoes). That said, I think that poi tastes horrible! Poi is made from the bulbous tubers (corm) of the taro plant by cooking the corm in water and mashing it until the desired consistency is achieved.

35 Bolshoi debut of 1877 : SWAN LAKE

“Swan Lake” is such a delightfully light and enjoyable ballet by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. “Swan Lake” tells the story of Odette, a princess turned into a swan by a sorcerer. The ballet also features Odile, Odette’s “evil twin”. Odile is disguised to look like Odette with the goal of tricking the prince to fall in love with her. In the ballet, the roles of Odette and Odile are played by the same ballerina. Odette’s love interest is Prince Siegfried, the only character in the ballet to appear in all four acts.

The Bolshoi Ballet company is based in Moscow, Russia. The Bolshoi company has over 200 dancers, making it by far the biggest ballet company in the world. I have very fond memories of attending a performance in the beautiful Bolshoi Theater in Moscow, Russia in the late nineties …

52 “___: Ragnarok” (2017 blockbuster) : THOR

“Thor: Ragnarok” is a 2017 superhero film in the “Thor” series. Not my cup of tea …

54 Catty comments : SNARK

“Snark” is a term that was coined by Lewis Carroll in his fabulous 1876 nonsense poem “The Hunting of the Snark”. Somehow, the term “snarky” came to mean “irritable, short-tempered” in the early 1900s, and from there “snark” became “sarcastic rhetoric” at the beginning of the 21st century.

55 Upstanding person : MENSCH

“Mensch” is a word that comes to us via Yiddish, and is ultimately derived from the German “mensch” meaning “human being”. We use the term to describe someone of integrity and honor.

57 Flood protector : DIKE

A dike is an embankment that is used to prevent floods. It is usually made of earth and rock.

59 Bird that carries Sinbad to safety : ROC

The mythical roc is a huge bird of prey, one reputedly able to carry off and eat elephants. The roc was said to come from the Indian subcontinent. The supposed existence of the roc was promulgated by Marco Polo in the accounts that he published about his travels through Asia.

Sinbad is the hero of a set of fictional tales from the Middle East. Sinbad comes from the port city of Basra and had fantastic adventures on voyages throughout the sea east of Africa and south of Asia.

61 “Little Fockers” actress Polo : TERI

Teri Polo’s most prominent role on the big screen was Pam Focker in “Meet the Fockers” and its sequels. Pam is the wife of the character played by Ben Stiller. Polo also played the wife of Presidential candidate Matt Santos in “The West Wing”.

65 Japanese audio brand : AIWA

Aiwa was a Japanese company that produced consumer electronics, mainly audio and video equipment. Sony bought Aiwa in 2002 and eventually discontinued the brand in 2006. The Aiwa trademark was acquired by a Chicago-based consumer electronics company in 2015.

74 Ingredient in une quiche : OEUF

The classic dish called quiche is made with eggs (“oeufs” in French). Even though the quiche is inextricably linked to French cuisine, the name “quiche” comes from “Kuchen”, the German word for “cake”. The variant called “quiche lorraine” includes bits of smoked bacon as an ingredient.

75 Source of the words “O, beware, my lord, of jealousy; / It is the green-ey’d monster …” : OTHELLO

William Shakespeare was one of the first to associate the color green with envy. He called jealousy the “green-eyed monster” in his play “Othello”.

76 Bohemian : ARTY

The region known as Bohemia covers most of the Czech Republic. Centuries ago, it was wrongly believed that gypsies came from Bohemia, giving rise to the term “Bohemian” meaning a “gypsy of society”.

77 “Hate Me Now” rapper, 1999 : NAS

Rapper Nas used to go by an earlier stage name “Nasty Nas”, and before that by his real name “Nasir bin Olu Dara Jones”. Nas released his first album “Illmatic” in 1994, and inventively titled his fifth studio album “Stillmatic”, released in 2001.

84 Fully grown fillies : MARES

There are lots of terms to describe horses of different ages and sexes, it seems:

  • Foal: horse of either sex that is less than one year old
  • Yearling: horse of either sex that is one to two years old
  • Filly: female horse under the age of four
  • Colt: male horse under the age of four
  • Gelding: castrated male horse of any age
  • Stallion: non-castrated male horse four years or older
  • Mare: female horse four years or older

86 Statistician’s calculation : MEAN

In a set of numbers, the mean is the average value of those numbers. The median is the numeric value at which half the numbers have a lower value, and half the numbers a higher value. The mode is the value that appears most often in the whole set of numbers.

88 Cruz known as the Queen of Salsa : CELIA

Celia Cruz was born and bred in Cuba, but spent most of her working life in the United States, playing out her salsa singing career in New Jersey. Around the world, Cruz was known as the “Queen of Salsa”.

91 Regenerist skin-care brand : OLAY

Oil of Olay was developed in South Africa in 1949. When Oil of Olay was introduced internationally, it was given slightly different brand names designed to appeal in the different geographies. In Ireland we know it as Oil of Ulay, for example, and in France it is Oil of Olaz.

92 Upfront? : SHORT U

There is a short letter U at the front of the word “up”.

101 Resident of the lowest circle of hell, in Dante’s “Inferno” : ISCARIOT

Judas Iscariot was one of the twelve original apostles who studied with Jesus. Notably, it was Judas who betrayed Jesus for thirty pieces of silver, a transaction that led to the Crucifixion and Resurrection.

In Dante’s “Inferno”, Hell is represented as nine circles of suffering. The nine circles of Hell are:

  1. Limbo
  2. Lust
  3. Gluttony
  4. Greed
  5. Anger
  6. Heresy
  7. Violence
  8. Fraud
  9. Treachery

106 Spring setting in San Antonio: Abbr. : CDT

The city of San Antonio, Texas was named by Spanish explorers. They came upon a Native American settlement in the area on 13 June 1631, the feast day of St. Anthony of Padua.

107 Border of a lagoon, say : SAND REEF

A lagoon is a shallow body of water, usually separated from the sea by sandbar or reef. The term comes from the Italian “laguna”, the word for a pond or lake. The original “laguna” is the “Laguna Veneta”, the enclosed bay in the Adriatic Sea on which Venice is located. In 1769, Captain Cook was the first to apply the word “lagoon” to the body of water inside a South Seas atoll.

111 What the ecstatic janitor did? : SWEPT FOR JOY (from “wept for joy”)

A janitor is someone who takes care of the maintenance or cleaning of a building. An older definition of the term is “doorman”. Our word comes from the Latin “ianitor” meaning “doorkeeper”.

114 Paul of “There Will Be Blood” : DANO

Paul Dano is an actor and musician from New York City. I best know him for playing Brian Wilson in “Love & Mercy”, a fascinating film about the Beach Boys.

“There Will Be Blood” is a 2007 film starring Daniel Day Lewis. The movie is based (loosely) on the 1927 novel by Upton Sinclair called “Oil!”

115 Actress Taylor : LILI

Actress Lili Taylor had supporting roles in films like “Mystic Pizza”, “The Haunting” and “Rudy”. She also had a recurring role in the HBO series “Six Feet Under”.

117 “Michael Jordan’s Top 10 Free Throws” and others? : SWISH LISTS (from “wish lists”)

A swish shot is a basketball shot that goes through the hoop without touching the rim or the backboard, and you can hear that “swish” as it just passes through the net, so they tell me …

Michael Jordan is considered by some to be the greatest basketball player of all time. Not only is he a talented sportsman, but he is also very successful in the business world. He became the majority owner of the Charlotte Hornets NBA team in 2010. Fans refer to Jordan as “His Airness”.

121 Ballet shoe application : ROSIN

Rosin is a solid form of resin derived from plant sources. Rosin is formed into cakes that players of stringed instruments use to rub along the hairs of their bows to help improve sound quality. The rosin increases the degree of friction between the strings and the bow. That same friction-increasing property comes into play when baseball pitchers use rosin to get a better grip on the ball, or when dancers apply rosin to the soles of their shoes.

122 Shakespearean prince : HAL

“Prince Hal” is a term used for Prince Henry, the son of the title character in Shakespeare’s plays “Henry IV, Part 1” and “Henry IV, Part 2”. Prince Hal then becomes king in Shakespeare’s “Henry V”.

125 Choral composition : MOTET

A motet is a simple musical composition based on a sacred text that is usually sung without accompaniment. The term “motet” is a diminutive form of “mot”, the French for “word”.

126 N.F.C. South city: Abbr. : ATL

The Atlanta Falcons joined the NFL in 1965. The team name was suggested by a schoolteacher called Miss Julia Elliott. Elliot suggested that “the Falcon is proud and dignified, with great courage and fight. It never drops its prey. It is deadly and has a great sporting tradition.”

Down

1 Figure skating champ Brian : ORSER

Brian Orser is a retired Canadian figure skater. Orser was one of the “combatants” in the Battle of the Brians, the name given to the rivalry between Brian Orser and US skater Brian Boitano. Orser moved onto coaching after retiring from competition. He coached two Olympic champions: Kim Yuna (2010) and yuzuru Hanyu (2014).

5 The Sun Devils’ sch. : ASU

Arizona State University (ASU) has a long history, and was founded as the Tempe Normal School for the Arizona Territory in 1885. The athletic teams of ASU used to be known as the Normals, then the Bulldogs, and since 1946 they’ve been called the Sun Devils.

11 Toto’s creator : BAUM

L. Frank Baum (the “L” is for Lyman) is famous for writing “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”. Writing early in the 20th century, Baum actually described in his books things that had yet to be invented, like television, laptop computers and wireless telephones.

Toto is Dorothy’s dog in the film “The Wizard of Oz”, and in the original book “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” by L. Frank Baum. Toto was played in the movie by a dog called Terry, but Terry’s name was soon changed to Toto in real life due to the success of the film.

13 Holds on to one’s Essence, say? : RENEWS

“Essence” is a women’s magazine aimed at the African-American female, covering fashion and beauty. First published in 1970, the magazine’s slogan is “Fierce, Fun and Fabulous”.

14 Fasteners of some heels : T-STRAPS

A t-strap is a t-shaped strap that is part of many women’s shoes. The strap is in two parts, with one part going across the ankle, and the other lying along the length of the foot on top.

16 Book before Joel : HOSEA

Hosea was one of the Twelve Prophets of the Hebrew Bible. The Twelve Prophets are also known as the Minor Prophets of the Old Testament in the Christian Bible.

17 Boat sometimes built around a whalebone frame : UMIAK

There is a type of boat used by Inuit people called an “umiak”. . The term “umiak” means “woman’s boat”, whereas “kayak” means “man’s boat”.

33 Original site of the Elgin Marbles : PARTHENON

The Parthenon is the ruined temple that sits on the Athenian Acropolis. Although the Parthenon was dedicated to the goddess Athena as a sacred building in the days of the Athenian Empire, it was actually used primarily as a treasury. In later centuries, the Parthenon was repurposed as a Christian Church dedicated to the Virgin Mary, and was also used as a mosque after Ottoman conquest.

A frieze is an architectural feature found in many Roman and Greek buildings. Inside a room, frieze is the name given to the upper part of the wall, between the picture rail and the crown molding. Outside of a room, the term frieze is the name given to any extended decoration that is positioned above eye level. Perhaps the most famous frieze comes from the Parthenon in Athens. Over a third of this highly decorated feature was removed from Athens and taken to London in the early 1800s by the Earl of Elgin, where they remain on display in the British Museum. These famous “Elgin Marbles” are subject of much controversy as the legality of the removal is in dispute.

34 Beyoncé, for one : POP DIVA

Beyoncé Knowles established herself in the entertainment industry as the lead singer with the R&B group Destiny’s Child. She launched her solo singing career in 2003, two years after making her first appearance as an actor. In 2006 she played the lead in the very successful movie adaptation of the Broadway musical “Dreamgirls”. Beyoncé is married to rap star Jay-Z. She is also referred to affectionately as “Queen Bey”, a play on the phrase “the queen bee”. Her fan base goes by the name “Beyhive”.

40 Uncle ___ : SAM

The Uncle Sam personification of the United States was first used during the War of 1812. The “Uncle Sam” term was so widely accepted that even the Germans used it during WWII, choosing the code word “Samland” for “America” in intelligence communiques.

47 Martial arts-based workout : TAE BO

Tae Bo isn’t an ancient martial art, even though it perhaps sounds like one. The discipline was developed as a form of aerobic exercise in the 1990s by taekwondo expert Billy Blanks who gave it the name Tae Bo, a melding of “taekwondo” and “boxing”.

53 Spiked wheel on a boot spur : ROWEL

That pointed wheel on a spur, which digs into the side of the poor horse, that’s called a rowel.

58 Shish ___ : KEBOB

The term “kebab” (also “kabob”) covers a wide variety of meat dishes that originated in Persia. In the West, we usually use “kebab” when talking about shish kebab, which is meat (often lamb) served on a skewer. “Shish” comes from the Turkish word for “skewer”.

60 Scientist who said “The cosmos is also within us. We’re made of star-stuff” : CARL SAGAN

Carl Sagan was a brilliant astrophysicist, and a great communicator. Sagan was famous for presenting obscure concepts about the cosmos in such a way that we mere mortals could appreciate. He also wrote the novel “Contact” that was adapted into a fascinating 1997 film of the same name starring Jodie Foster.

63 First string : A-TEAM

We’ve been using the phrases “first string” and “second string” in athletics since the mid-19th century. The expressions come from archery, in which a competitor would carry a second bowstring in case the first broke.

68 Host of an Apple TV+ book club : OPRAH

“Oprah’s Book Club” was a segment that started in 1996 on “The Oprah Winfrey Show”. Each book reviewed was a personal recommendation by Winfrey herself. The first book reviewed was “The Deep End of the Ocean” by Jacquelyn Mitchard. The original book club ended in 2011, but there’s now a reboot known as “Oprah’s Book Club 2.0” that focuses on digital media now that “The Oprah Winfrey Show” is no more.

72 Trifling amount : SOU

A sou is an old French coin. We use the term “sou” to mean “an almost worthless amount”.

81 Whitney of cotton gin fame : ELI

Inventor Eli Whitney is best known for inventing the cotton gin. Whitney also came up with the important concept of “interchangeable parts”. Parts that are interchangeable can be swapped out of equipment or perhaps used in related designs.

87 Org. that publishes the journal Emotion : APA

American Psychiatric Association (APA)

90 Cavity fillers : INLAYS

“Inlay” is another word for “filling” in dentistry. An onlay is similar to an inlay. An onlay not only fills a hole in the tooth but it is also built up to replace a missing cusp. It’s sort of halfway between a filling and a crown, I suppose.

96 Benchmark: Abbr. : STD

A benchmark is something that serves as a standard used to measure others. The original benchmark was a point of reference used by surveyors. Literally, a benchmark was an angle-iron driven into the ground as a support (or “bench”) for a levelling instrument.

101 Religion symbolized by a moon and star : ISLAM

Although the star and crescent emblem has been around for some centuries, it was only adopted as a symbol of Islam and the Muslim community starting in the 1950s.

102 Make a choice on Tinder : SWIPE

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.

103 Isle of Man men, e.g. : CELTS

The Celts are a very broad group of people across Europe who are linked by common languages. The original Celts were largely absorbed by other cultures, although a relatively modern revival of the “Celtic identity” is alive and well in Britain and Ireland. Such Celtic peoples today are mainly found in Ireland, Scotland, Wales and Brittany in France.

The Isle of Man is a large island located in the middle of the Irish Sea between Great Britain and Ireland. I used to spend a lot of time there in my youth, and a very interesting place it is indeed. The Isle of Man is classed as a British Crown Dependency and isn’t part of the United Kingdom at all. It is self-governing and has its own parliament called the Tynwald. The Tynwald was created in AD 979 and is arguably the oldest continuously-running parliament in the world. The inhabitants of the island speak English, although they do have their own language called Manx, which is very similar to Irish Gaeilge and Scottish Gaelic. And then there are those Manx cats, the ones without any tails. I’ve seen lots of them, and can attest that they are indeed found all over the island.

104 Gorillalike : APISH

The tailless primates known as apes (also “hominoids”) are divided into two main branches: gibbons (lesser apes) and hominids (great apes). The hominids are the great apes, and belong to the family of primates called Hominidae. Extant genera that make up the family Hominidae are:

  • chimpanzees
  • gorillas
  • humans
  • orangutans

105 Suite meet? : TRYST

In the most general sense, a tryst is a meeting at an agreed time and place. More usually we consider a tryst to be a pre-arranged meeting between lovers. The term comes from the Old French “triste”, a waiting place designated when hunting. Further, a tryst taking place at lunchtime is sometimes referred to as a nooner.

110 “All That Jazz” director : FOSSE

Bob Fosse won more Tony Awards for choreography than anyone else, a grand total of eight (and another Tony for direction). Fosse also won an Oscar for Best Director for the 1972 movie “Cabaret”, even beating out the formidable Francis Ford Coppola who was nominated that same year for “The Godfather”.

“All That Jazz” is a song from the 1975 musical “Chicago”, which was choreographed by the great Bob Fosse. “All That Jazz” was later used as the title for a 1979 film directed by Fosse that features a main character who is a theater director and choreographer, and who greatly resembles Fosse himself.

118 V-J Day prez : HST

The letter “S” in the middle of the name Harry S. Truman (HST) doesn’t stand for anything. The future-president was named “Harry” in honor of his mother’s brother Harrison “Harry” Young. The initial “S” was chosen in honor of young Harry’s two grandfathers: Anderson S-hipp Truman and S-olomon Young.

The actual date of V-J Day is not as clear as one might imagine. In the US we celebrate V-J Day on September 2nd each year, commemorating the day the Japanese signed the surrender document which officially ended WWII. In the UK, V-J Day is celebrated on August 15th, commemorating the day the surrender was announced in Europe and North America. To further complicate matters, because of time zone differences, surrender was announced in Japan on the preceding date, August 14th, 1945.

119 Ni’ihau necklace : LEI

The Hawaiian island of Niihau lies about 17 miles southwest of Kauai, with a population of just over 100 people. Niihau is privately owned and so only a few tourists are welcome, and only in the past few decades. The lack of access led to the island earning the nickname the “Forbidden Isle”.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Amenity in G.M. vehicles : ONSTAR
7 R.N.’s workplace : ICU
10 “Awake in the Dark” author : EBERT
15 Down at the bar? : CHUG
19 Peace and quiet : REPOSE
20 Tease constantly, with “on” : RAG …
21 Bottom lines? : X-AXES
22 Spanish Steps city : ROME
23 What an unsteady tightrope walker may do? : SWAY UP HIGH (from “way up high”)
25 Number cruncher, in Wall Street lingo : QUANT
26 Spelling clarification : AS IN
27 CPR experts : EMTS
28 “___ to My Family” (song by the Cranberries) : ODE
29 “It’s just too $%#@ hot!,” e.g.? : SUMMER-SWEAR (from “summer wear”)
31 Fasten again, as documents : RESTAPLE
34 Dish cooked in an underground oven : POI
35 Bolshoi debut of 1877 : SWAN LAKE
36 Thesis defenses, e.g. : ORALS
37 Thereabouts : OR SO
39 Me-day destination : SPA
40 What a beekeeper receives at work? : SWARM RECEPTION (from “warm reception”)
45 Pettily punishes : SPITES
50 Dynamite : A-ONE
51 Explode on Twitter, say : TREND
52 “___: Ragnarok” (2017 blockbuster) : THOR
54 Catty comments : SNARK
55 Upstanding person : MENSCH
57 Flood protector : DIKE
59 Bird that carries Sinbad to safety : ROC
61 “Little Fockers” actress Polo : TERI
62 Little auk, by another name : SEA DOVE
65 Japanese audio brand : AIWA
66 Cousin of a clarinet : OBOE
67 Why the knight went shopping? : FOR WANT OF A BETTER SWORD (from “for want of a better word”)
73 Letters no longer seen on most phones : OPER
74 Ingredient in une quiche : OEUF
75 Source of the words “O, beware, my lord, of jealousy; / It is the green-ey’d monster …” : OTHELLO
76 Bohemian : ARTY
77 “Hate Me Now” rapper, 1999 : NAS
78 2019 award for “What the Constitution Means to Me” : OBIE
79 “Magnifico!” : SUPERB!
84 Fully grown fillies : MARES
86 Statistician’s calculation : MEAN
88 Cruz known as the Queen of Salsa : CELIA
91 Regenerist skin-care brand : OLAY
92 Upfront? : SHORT U
94 Hogs, after being scrubbed clean? : SPARKLING SWINE (from “sparkling wine”)
97 Even a little bit : ANY
99 Take ___ from (follow) : A CUE
100 Thrill : ELATE
101 Resident of the lowest circle of hell, in Dante’s “Inferno” : ISCARIOT
106 Spring setting in San Antonio: Abbr. : CDT
107 Border of a lagoon, say : SAND REEF
111 What the ecstatic janitor did? : SWEPT FOR JOY (from “wept for joy”)
113 Porcine pad : STY
114 Paul of “There Will Be Blood” : DANO
115 Actress Taylor : LILI
116 “Stop it, I’m blushing” : OH, YOU
117 “Michael Jordan’s Top 10 Free Throws” and others? : SWISH LISTS (from “wish lists”)
120 Rental units: Abbr. : APTS
121 Ballet shoe application : ROSIN
122 Shakespearean prince : HAL
123 Cuts off : SEVERS
124 Interlock : MESH
125 Choral composition : MOTET
126 N.F.C. South city: Abbr. : ATL
127 Kids’ camp crafts project : TIE-DYE

Down

1 Figure skating champ Brian : ORSER
2 Reinvented self-image : NEW ME
3 Tiffs : SPATS
4 Spots to shop for tots : TOY STORES
5 The Sun Devils’ sch. : ASU
6 One squat, for example : REP
7 What soap bubbles do : IRIDESCE
8 Pet shop purchase : CAGE
9 “Yuck!” : UGH!
10 Sublime : EXQUISITE
11 Toto’s creator : BAUM
12 They’re full of questions : EXAMS
13 Holds on to one’s Essence, say? : RENEWS
14 Fasteners of some heels : T-STRAPS
15 Go at a glacial pace : CRAWL
16 Book before Joel : HOSEA
17 Boat sometimes built around a whalebone frame : UMIAK
18 Soul, e.g. : GENRE
24 Give a shout : HOLLER
29 Nothing of the ___ : SORT
30 Digital sounds? : SNAPS
32 Something up one’s sleeve : ARM
33 Original site of the Elgin Marbles : PARTHENON
34 Beyoncé, for one : POP DIVA
38 “How neat!” : OOH!
40 Uncle ___ : SAM
41 Heartbreak : WOE
42 Martin who wrote the “Baby-Sitters Club” series : ANN
43 Conclude (with) : END OFF
44 Coarse-grained igneous rock : NORITE
46 Tagging along : IN TOW
47 Martial arts-based workout : TAE BO
48 Trial’s partner : ERROR
49 Went cross-countrying, say : SKIED
53 Spiked wheel on a boot spur : ROWEL
56 Farm-to-table program, in brief : CSA
58 Shish ___ : KEBOB
60 Scientist who said “The cosmos is also within us. We’re made of star-stuff” : CARL SAGAN
63 First string : A-TEAM
64 Puts out : DOUSES
65 How obedient dogs walk : AT HEEL
67 Gets a head? : FOAMS
68 Host of an Apple TV+ book club : OPRAH
69 In again : RETRO
70 More sardonic : WRYER
71 Paperless airplane reservation : E-TICKET
72 Trifling amount : SOU
78 Because (of) : ON ACCOUNT
80 Sky fall? : POWER-DIVE
81 Whitney of cotton gin fame : ELI
82 Headed : RAN
83 “Later!” : BYE!
85 Button on an old video game controller : START
87 Org. that publishes the journal Emotion : APA
89 Prepare for a guided meditation, perhaps : LIE STILL
90 Cavity fillers : INLAYS
93 Homogenous : UNIFORM
95 ___ Gobert, 2018 and 2019 N.B.A. Defensive Player of the Year : RUDY
96 Benchmark: Abbr. : STD
98 “Over here!” : YOO-HOO!
101 Religion symbolized by a moon and star : ISLAM
102 Make a choice on Tinder : SWIPE
103 Isle of Man men, e.g. : CELTS
104 Gorillalike : APISH
105 Suite meet? : TRYST
108 Made lighter : EASED
109 One might begin “Dear Diary …” : ENTRY
110 “All That Jazz” director : FOSSE
112 Screenwriter Lee, sister of Spike : JOIE
113 De-bug? : SWAT
117 ___ cha beef (Chinese entree) : SHA
118 V-J Day prez : HST
119 Ni’ihau necklace : LEI

20 thoughts on “1101-20 NY Times Crossword 1 Nov 20, Sunday”

  1. 41:04 with one lookup. I was stymied in the NE corner for 10 minutes and I gave in to a lookup. For 17D I had CANOE for a long time, but nothing else fit. Changed to KAYAK and then about half fit (SWANLAKE, e.g.), but then still could not get the rest. I’ve heard of UMIAK, but it never would have come to mind. For SOUL, I kept thinking of the Kia SOUL rather than a type of music. Just a toughie in that NE corner.

    Got the theme on the 2nd long entry and it helped a bit.
    Also had SNIPES before SPITES and early I had CHALK for ROSIN (was thinking of what rock climbers put on their hands to keep them dry and help with their grip).

    Must be what happens when the clock reads an hour earlier.

  2. 36:15. I’m a big fan of Julian Lim’s puzzles, but I haven’t seen him lately. Normally his themeless grids are very difficult. One of the first Saturdays I ever attempted was one of his. I went through all the clues twice, filled in nothing and I didn’t even attempt to finish it. Lim is an assistant professor of medicine at the National university of Singapore.

    This grid was a little easier than most of his puzzles, but some of the cluing was indeed very..uhh…Lim-ish.

    The best evidence that ROCs actually existed is their appearance on episodes of The Flintstones.

    Like Bill, I too went to the Bolshoi Ballet one evening. Unfortunately, it was during a record heat wave in Moscow at the time. Daytime temps approached 100 degrees believe it or not. The theater isn’t set up for hot weather. There is no AC and not much ventilation. I took some pix that night, and in most of them my shirt is drenched with sweat. It was a very uncomfortable evening.

    Although setting the clocks back an hour is easier than what we do in March, can’t we just pick a time and stick with it?? This semi-annual jetlag is tiring.

    Best –

  3. Agree with @Ron. Blame it on the time change. 😂 49:01. I’m usually in the 40s on Sunday so…meh. I did like the theme answers. Cute. I dislike clues like 92A. They show up periodically and I get them, but they seem like manufactured entries (if that makes sense). Oh, and KEBAB, KEBOB, KABOB, KABAB…make up yer mind already. 🙄

  4. Did the puzzle during the Seahawks – 49ers game. Had one square incorrect, intersection of 55A and 56D. Never heard of mensch and have no idea what CSA stands for.

    My erroneous entry was mensah and ASA.

    1. @David Calef …

      The clue is “Upfront”. Interpret it as “Up front”. The “front” (first) letter of “up” is a “u” and it is pronounced with a “short” sound (like the sound in “us”), as opposed to a “long” sound (like the sound in “use”). Typical crossword shenanigans … 😜.

  5. What started out to be “a piece of cake” turned out quite different…1:38:45 with one error…I had Pea dove for Sea dove and 56D was a “never heard of” so that was no help.
    Stay safe😀
    Go Ravens

  6. Don’t get why the knight went shopping for want of a better word (sword). Am I missing something? This one turned out tougher than it seemed at first. Never heard of umiak, but hey, life’s about learning.

    1. “FOR WANT OF A BETTER SWORD” is simply an archaic way of saying: “He wanted a better sword”. Each of the theme entries is a play on another common expression. In this case the expression is “For want of a better word”.

  7. 39:28, no errors. The crossing entries CSA/SEA DOVE and SHA/HAL were total guesses. Could have easily guessed PEA DOVE and VAL.
    Once again, I can express my displeasure with the use of foreign words, not in common English usage, in an English language puzzle. The only redeeming value is that I can dust off the old ‘Dad’ joke: “Why do French people have one egg for breakfast?….. In French ‘one egg’ is ‘un oeuf’.”

  8. About 68 minutes. No errors. It would’ve helped if I had figured out the theme before I finished. I wasn’t crazy about 92 across either. But those things do come up occasionally and we have to live with the m

  9. Re 34A — Dish cooked in an underground oven: I’m not sure POI is correct. The traditional Hawaiian food cooked in an underground oven (called an imu) is a pig (kalua pig). Poi, as Bill pointed out, is a mashed starch that is the standard accompaniment to kalua pig. (And I, for one, find it quite delicious!)

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