0201-21 NY Times Crossword 1 Feb 21, Monday

Constructed by: Soleil Saint-Cyr
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answer(s): Hive Mind

Themed answers each end with a bee found in a HIVE:

  • 57A With 58-Across, collective consciousness … or a hint to the ends of 19-, 35- and 52-Across : HIVE …
  • 58A See 57-Across : … MIND
  • 19A One on the front lines during a crisis : ESSENTIAL WORKER (giving “worker bee”)
  • 35A Crown wearer at a fall football game : HOMECOMING QUEEN (giving “queen bee”)
  • 52A Unmanned Dept. of Defense aircraft : US MILITARY DRONE (giving “drone bee”)

Bill’s time: 5m 03s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

5 Thanksgiving vegetable : YAM

Although in the US we sometimes refer to sweet potatoes as “yams”, the yam is actually a completely different family of plants. True yams are more common in other parts of the world than they are in this country, and are especially common in Africa.

14 “Early in life, I had learned that if you want something, you had better ___ some noise”: Malcolm X : MAKE

Malcolm X was born Malcolm Little in Omaha, Nebraska in 1925. He told his own life story in the incredibly successful book “The Autobiography of Malcolm X”, on which he collaborated with author Alex Haley. Malcolm Little changed his name when he joined the Nation of Islam, choosing “X” to represent the African family name that he could never know.

17 Jessica of “Fantastic Four” : ALBA

Actress Jessica Alba got her big break when she was cast in the Fox science fiction show “Dark Angel”. Alba had a tough life growing up as she spent a lot of time in hospital and so found it difficult to develop friendships. As a youngster she twice had a collapsed lung, frequently caught pneumonia, suffered from asthma, had a ruptured appendix and a tonsillar cyst. On top of all that, Alba acknowledges that she suffered from obsessive-compulsive disorder as a child.

“Fantastic Four” is a 2005 movie about the band of comic heroes made famous in Marvel Comics. The Fantastic Four are:

  • Mr. Fantastic (played by Ioan Gruffudd)
  • The Invisible Woman (played by Jessica Alba)
  • The Human Torch (played by Chris Evans)
  • Thing (played by Michael Chiklis)

18 Reeves of “The Matrix” : KEANU

Keanu Reeves is a Canadian actor whose most celebrated roles were a metalhead in “Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure” (1989), a cop in “Speed” (1994) and the protagonist Neo in “The Matrix” series of films. Although Reeves is a Canadian national, he was born in Beirut, Lebanon. Reeves has some Hawaiian descent, and the name “Keanu” is Hawaiian for “the coolness” or “cool breeze”.

The 1999 movie sensation “The Matrix” was meant to be set in a nondescript urban environment. It was actually shot in Australia, as one of the co-producers of the film was the Australian company, Village Roadshow Pictures. You can pick up all sorts of clues about the location when watching the film, including a view of Sydney Harbour Bridge in a background shot. Also, traffic drives along on the left and there are signs for the “lift” instead of an “elevator”.

34 Factory-inspecting org. : OSHA

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) was created in 1970 during the Nixon administration. OSHA regulates workplaces in the private sector and regulates just one government agency, namely the US Postal Service.

35 Crown wearer at a fall football game : HOMECOMING QUEEN (giving “queen bee”)

A queen bee has a stinger, just like worker bees. When a worker bee stings, it leaves its stinger in its victim. The worker bee dies after losing its stinger as the loss rips out part of its insides. However, a queen bee can sting with impunity as her stinger’s anatomy is different.

39 Bullets and such : AMMO

The word “munitions” describes materials and equipment used in war. The term derives from the Latin “munitionem” meaning “fortification, defensive wall”. Back in the 17th century, French soldiers referred to such materials as “la munition”, a Middle French term. This was misheard as “l’ammunition”, and as a result we ended up importing the word “ammunition” (often shortened to “ammo”), a term that we now use mainly to describe the material fired from a weapon.

44 Advanced deg. for a writer or musician : MFA

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)

47 ___ Trench (deepest point on earth) : MARIANAS

I’m not sure that “Marianas” is an acceptable name for the trench, and rather “Mariana” …

“The Marianas” is a familiar name for the Mariana Islands that lie in the Pacific Ocean south of Japan and north of New Guinea. The Mariana Trench (note there is no letter “S” at the end of “Mariana”, the trench) is the lowest elevation on the surface of the Earth’s crust. The Mariana Trench takes its name from the Islands, as it lies just to the east of the Marianas.

52 Unmanned Dept. of Defense aircraft : US MILITARY DRONE (giving “drone bee”)

Drone bees (and ants) are fertile males of the species, whose sole role in life seems to be to mate with a queen. Given that drone bees make no honey, we sometimes use the term “drone” figuratively, to describe a lazy worker, or someone who lives on the labors of others.

57 With 58-Across, collective consciousness … or a hint to the ends of 19-, 35- and 52-Across : HIVE …
58 See 57-Across : … MIND

“Hive mind”, “group mind” and “social mind” are all alternative terms for “collective consciousness”. Collective consciousness is a set of shared ideas that act as a unifying force in a society.

60 Qatari leader : EMIR

Qatar is a sovereign state in the Middle East occupying the Qatar Peninsula, itself located in the Arabian Peninsula. Qatar lies on the Persian Gulf and shares one land border, with Saudi Arabia to the south. Qatar has more oil and gas reserves per capita of population than any other country in the world. In 2010, Qatar had the fastest growing economy in the world, driven by the petrochemical industry. Qatar is scheduled to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup, although the nation’s eligibility to do so is under question after a far-reaching bribery scandal was uncovered at the sport’s governing body.

61 Lake bordering Cleveland : ERIE

Cleveland, Ohio was named after the man who led the team that surveyed the area prior to the founding of the city. General Moses Cleaveland did his work in 1796 and then left Ohio, never to return again.

63 Web portal with a butterfly logo : MSN

The Microsoft Network (MSN) used to be an Internet service provider (ISP). These days, MSN is mainly a web portal.

64 Bucks and does : DEER

A male deer is usually called a buck, and a female is a doe. However, the male red deer is usually referred to as a stag. The males of even larger species of deer are often called bulls, and females cows. In older English, male deer of over 5 years were called harts, and females of over 3 years were called hinds. The young of small species are known as fawns, and of larger species are called calves. All very confusing …

Down

1 “… happily ever ___” : AFTER

The stock phrase “Once upon a time …” has been used in various forms as the start of a narrative at least since 1380. The stock phrase at the end of stories such as folktales is often “and they all lived happily ever after”. The earlier version of this ending was “happily until their deaths”.

3 Light beam splitter : PRISM

When light passes through a prism, it splits up (disperses) into differing wavelengths. It then becomes clear that white light is actually a mixture of different colors, which show up as a beautiful spectrum.

4 Like a go-go-go personality : TYPE A

The Type-A and Type-B personality theory originated in the fifties. Back then, individuals were labelled as Type A in order to emphasize a perceived increased risk of heart disease. Type-A personality types are so-called “stress junkies”, whereas Type Bs are relaxed and laid back. But there doesn’t seem to be much scientific evidence to support the linkage between the Type-A personality and heart problems.

5 Certain New Haven collegians : YALIES

The city of New Haven, Connecticut was founded in 1638 by Puritan immigrants from England. New Haven is home to Yale University. The city also initiated the first public tree planting program in the country. The large elms included in the program led to New Haven being called “the Elm City”.

6 “Allahu ___!” (Muslim cry) : AKBAR

The Arabic phrase “Allahu akbar” is usually translated as “God is greatest”. The phrase can be seen written in Arabic letters at the center of the flag of Iraq, and written 22 times across the flag of Iran.

10 Faucet problem : LEAK

The common “faucet” in an American house is almost always referred to as a “tap” on the other side of the pond.

11 ___ Reader (magazine with the slogan “Cure ignorance”) : UTNE

The “Utne Reader” is known for aggregation and republishing of articles on politics, culture and the environment from other sources in the media. It was founded in 1984 by Eric Utne, with management taken over by Eric’s wife Nina Rothschild Utne in 1990.

20 “Bye Bye Bye” boy band : NSYNC

“Bye Bye Bye” is a 2000 hit song recorded by the boy band NSYNC. It was originally written for another boy band, the English group 5ive, but they passed on it.

25 ___ and tonic : GIN

The original tonic water was a fairly strong solution of the drug quinine dissolved in carbonated water. It was used in tropical areas in South Asia and Africa where malaria is rampant. The quinine has a prophylactic effect against the disease, and was formulated as “tonic water” so that it could be easily distributed. In British colonial India, the colonial types got into the habit of mixing in gin with the tonic water to make it more palatable by hiding the bitter taste of quinine. Nowadays, the level of quinine in tonic water has been dropped, and sugar has been added.

29 “Moby-Dick” captain : AHAB

Captain Ahab is the obsessed and far from friendly captain of the Pequod in Herman Melville’s “Moby-Dick”. The role of Captain Ahab was played by Gregory Peck in the 1956 John Huston film adaptation. Patrick Stewart played Ahab in a 1998 miniseries in which Peck made another appearance, as Father Mapple.

The full title of Herman Melville’s novel is “Moby-Dick; or, The Whale”. Note that the convention is to hyphenate “Moby-Dick” in the title, as that was how the book was first published, in 1851. However, there is no hyphen in the name of the whale “Moby Dick” as reproduced throughout the text.

31 “___ Be” (2010 #1 hit by the Black Eyed Peas) : IMMA

The hip-hop group known as the Black Eyed Peas comprises three rap artists (will.i.am, apl.de.ap and Taboo) as well as the singer Fergie.

33 Rapper ___ Khalifa : WIZ

“Wiz Khalifa” is the stage name of rapper Cameron Jibril Thomaz.

36 Circular windows : OCULI

“Oculus” (plural “oculi”) is the Latin word for “eye”, and is a term used in architecture for a circular window.

38 Actor Dennis : QUAID

Actor Dennis Quaid is the younger brother of fellow actor Randy Quaid. Dennis dropped out of college when he saw how successful his brother was and moved to LA to pursue his own career in acting. He has had some noted performances, including a portrayal of Jerry Lee Lewis in 1989’s “Great Balls of Fire”. And, Dennis is one of Hollywood’s best golfers, playing off scratch.

44 Singer Gaye : MARVIN

Marvin Gaye was a singer-songwriter from Washington, D.C. who came to be known as “Prince of Soul” and “Prince of Motown”. Some of Gaye’s biggest hits are “I Heard It Through the Grapevine” (1968), “What’s Going On?” (1971), “Let’s Get It On” (1973) and “Sexual Healing” (1982). Famously, Gaye was shot dead by his father while Marvin was sitting on his mother’s bed just talking to her. Marvin had given the gun to his father as a Christmas gift.

49 Bête ___ : NOIRE

“Bête noire” translates from French as “black beast”, and is used in English to describe something or someone that is disliked.

50 “Little Orphan ___” : ANNIE

“Little Orphan Annie” is a comic strip created in 1924 by Harold Gray. The title was taken from a poem written in 1885 by James Whitcomb Riley called “Little Orphant Annie” (and yes, that spelling “orphant” is correct). Strangely enough, the original name of the poem was “Little Orphant Allie”, changed forever at its third printing, purely because of a typesetter’s error!

51 Passover observance : SEDER

The Passover Seder is a ritual feast that marks the beginning of the Jewish Passover holiday, celebrating the liberation of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt.

52 ___-certified organic : USDA

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) dates back to 1862, when it was established by then-president Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln referred to the USDA as the “people’s department” as our economy had such a vast agrarian base back then.

53 Double ___ Oreos : STUF

Double Stuf Oreos were introduced in 1975, and have twice the normal amount of white cream filling as the original cookie. Nabisco really went big in 2013, introducing the Mega Stuf Oreo that has even more white cream filling.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Entry in a doctor’s calendar: Abbr. : APPT
5 Thanksgiving vegetable : YAM
8 100, gradewise : A-PLUS
13 Rage : FURY
14 “Early in life, I had learned that if you want something, you had better ___ some noise”: Malcolm X : MAKE
15 Take care of : SEE TO
16 Journey : TRIP
17 Jessica of “Fantastic Four” : ALBA
18 Reeves of “The Matrix” : KEANU
19 One on the front lines during a crisis : ESSENTIAL WORKER (giving “worker bee”)
22 Do a new production of, as a recording : REMASTER
23 Alternative to carpeting : RUG
24 “You bet!” : YES!
25 Became a millionaire, say : GOT RICH
29 “It’s ___ of the times” : A SIGN
33 Finish first in a race : WIN
34 Factory-inspecting org. : OSHA
35 Crown wearer at a fall football game : HOMECOMING QUEEN (giving “queen bee”)
39 Bullets and such : AMMO
40 Since, informally : CUZ
41 Turn topsy-turvy : UPEND
42 Tight embrace : BEAR HUG
44 Advanced deg. for a writer or musician : MFA
46 Hair tamer : GEL
47 ___ Trench (deepest point on earth) : MARIANAS
52 Unmanned Dept. of Defense aircraft : US MILITARY DRONE (giving “drone bee”)
56 Rob : STEAL
57 With 58-Across, collective consciousness … or a hint to the ends of 19-, 35- and 52-Across : HIVE …
58 See 57-Across : … MIND
59 “Beats me!” : DUNNO!
60 Qatari leader : EMIR
61 Lake bordering Cleveland : ERIE
62 Kick up ___ (be unruly) : A FUSS
63 Web portal with a butterfly logo : MSN
64 Bucks and does : DEER

Down

1 “… happily ever ___” : AFTER
2 Prize money : PURSE
3 Light beam splitter : PRISM
4 Like a go-go-go personality : TYPE A
5 Certain New Haven collegians : YALIES
6 “Allahu ___!” (Muslim cry) : AKBAR
7 Brunch, e.g. : MEAL
8 Invite on a date : ASK OUT
9 One’s equals : PEER GROUP
10 Faucet problem : LEAK
11 ___ Reader (magazine with the slogan “Cure ignorance”) : UTNE
12 Like lemons : SOUR
14 Dull photo finish : MATTE
20 “Bye Bye Bye” boy band : NSYNC
21 Incorrect : WRONG
25 ___ and tonic : GIN
26 “Understood” : I SEE
27 Fifth-most-common family name in China : CHEN
28 Round of applause : HAND
29 “Moby-Dick” captain : AHAB
30 A few : SOME
31 “___ Be” (2010 #1 hit by the Black Eyed Peas) : IMMA
32 Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, for two : GEORGIANS
33 Rapper ___ Khalifa : WIZ
36 Circular windows : OCULI
37 Popular gift shop purchase : MUG
38 Actor Dennis : QUAID
43 Greetings : HELLOS
44 Singer Gaye : MARVIN
45 Cooking device in a fast-food restaurant : FRYER
47 Injures : MAIMS
48 Ready for battle : ARMED
49 Bête ___ : NOIRE
50 “Little Orphan ___” : ANNIE
51 Passover observance : SEDER
52 ___-certified organic : USDA
53 Double ___ Oreos : STUF
54 DoorDash list : MENU
55 Not us : THEM

11 thoughts on “0201-21 NY Times Crossword 1 Feb 21, Monday”

  1. 7:10 About my average Monday time. Didn’t fully read the clue for 19A and put in FIRST RESPONDERS, so I had a lot to undo early on. Have not heard the expression HIVE MIND.

  2. 9:15 an average Monday for me as well. Didn’t even notice “hive mind” until Ron pointed it out…this is what happens when you solve the downs first…

  3. 8:35. A little choppy for a Monday puzzle.

    Alaska Steve – is the earworm (shanty) still swimming in your head?

    Best –

  4. 2 errors. Don’t know WIZ or CUZ.

    Author literally painted him/ her into a circle and found 2 nonwords words.

    All that work to do a crossword and end up with a Z exactly in the center of the crossword.. artful.

  5. My comment will be different she did a great job as her first crossword puzzle but just mentioning her as a high school senior is enough why does it have to be African-American contributor that is just promoting the racist divides you don’t say first Chinese first Asian first Latino stop that just leave it as high School that’s all .that needs to be said

  6. 7:04, no errors. I have seen the slang abbreviation CUZ (as in because); and WIZ Khalifa is an actual rap performer. Just Google some of his lyrics and see what wins awards and nominations in todays society. But they are phasing out Dr. Seuss for offensive content.

  7. Bristled when I saw ALLAHU AKBAR as if that’s okay to put in a puzzle. How many innocent people have heard this abomination as the last thing they would ever hear? Victims of terrorists! Makes me sick!

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