0418-21 NY Times Crossword 18 Apr 21, Sunday

Constructed by: Johan Vass
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: A Rare Find

We have a STACK of HAYs in circled letters in the grid. Hidden in that HAYSTACK we can find a NEEDLE. Clever …

  • 73A Onetime name for China : CATHAY (hiding “HAY”)
  • 78A Two-wheeled carriage : SHAY (hiding “HAY”)
  • 82A Walking with flair : SASHAYING (hiding “HAY”)
  • 87A Man’s name that anagrams to HYENAS : SHAYNE (hiding “HAY”)
  • 94A Actress Atwell of the “Avengers” movies : HAYLEY (hiding “HAY”)
  • 99A “As you can imagine …” : NEEDLESS TO SAY (hiding “NEEDLE”)
  • 103A Item hidden somewhere in this puzzle (where is it?) : NEEDLE IN A HAYSTACK (hiding “HAY”)
  • 25A Popular action film franchise … or what trying to find the item in this puzzle can be described as : MISSION IMPOSSIBLE
  • 29A “There’s no use” … like trying to find the item in this puzzle? : IT’S A LOST CAUSE
  • 50D With 44-Down, making futile attempts … and an extra hint to this puzzle’s theme : GRASPING …
  • 44D See 50-Down : … AT STRAWS

Bill’s time: 18m 00s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Not express, in a way : LOCAL

That would be a train.

10 One of the Blues Brothers : JAKE

The Blues Brothers blues band was created in 1978 for a “Saturday Night Live” sketch. The original Blues Brothers were Dan Aykroyd (Elwood Blues) and John Belushi (“Joliet” Jake Blues). The band eventually made it to the big screen in a 1980 musical comedy called “The Blues Brothers”.

14 “History of the World, ___” (Mel Brooks film that doesn’t actually have a sequel) : PART I

“History of the World, Part I” is a 1981 Mel Brooks film. Mel Brooks is all over this movie, having written, produced and directed it, as well as playing five acting parts. There never was a “History of the World, Part II”, and the original title is a play on Sir Walter Raleigh’s work “The Historie of the World”, for which the author only managed to finish one volume.

15 Grp. with Bills and Chargers : AFC

American Football Conference (AFC)

The Buffalo Bills, founded in 1959, were named after an earlier team with the same name that had merged with the Cleveland Browns back in 1950. The Bills name was obviously popular with fans, as the name was chosen in a public contest. The older team had been named for “Buffalo Bill” Cody. The team mascot is Billy Buffalo, and the cheerleaders are known as the Buffalo Jills.

The Chargers were an AFL charter team, and so the franchise was founded in 1959. The Chargers played one season in Los Angeles, before moving to San Diego in 1961, and then returning to Los Angeles in 2017.

18 Bridal adornment at Indian weddings : HENNA

Henna has been used for centuries as a dye, for leather and wool as well as hair and skin. In modern days, henna is often used for temporary tattoos.

22 Bird that went the way of the dodo (before the dodo) : MOA

Moas were flightless birds native to New Zealand that are now extinct. The fate of the Moa is a great example of the detrimental effect that humans can have on animal populations. The Maoris arrived in New Zealand about 1300 AD, upsetting the balance of the ecosystem. The Moa were hunted to extinction within 200 years, which had the knock-on effect of killing off the Haast’s Eagle, the Moa’s only predator prior to the arrival of man. Moa were huge creatures, measuring up to 12 feet tall with their necks stretched upwards.

The dodo was a direct relative of the pigeon and dove, although the fully-grown dodo was usually three feet tall. One of the reasons the dodo comes to mind when we think of extinction of a species, is that it disappeared not too long ago (last recorded alive in 1681) and humans were the reason for its demise. The dodo lived exclusively on the island of Mauritius and when man arrived, we cut back the forests that were its home. We also introduced domestic animals, such as dogs and pigs, that ransacked the dodo’s nests. The dodo was deemed to be an awkward flightless bird and so the term “dodo” has come to mean a dull-witted person.

23 Mr. ___, scheming socialite in “Emma” : ELTON

Jane Austen’s novel “Emma” is the tale of Emma Woodhouse and the wonderful George Knightley. At the end of the story, Emma marries Knightley and her young friend Harriet marries Robert Martin, who had been trying to get Harriet’s attention practically from page one of the novel. Emma interfered in that troubled courtship.

25 Popular action film franchise … or what trying to find the item in this puzzle can be described as : MISSION IMPOSSIBLE

It was Tom Cruise’s idea to adapt the “Mission Impossible” television series for the big screen, and it became the first project for Cruise’s own production company. Tom Cruise took on the starring role of Ethan Hunt in the movies, the point man for the Impossible Missions Force (IMF).

32 Hosp. procedure : MRI

An MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) machine uses powerful magnetic fields to generate its images so there is no exposure to ionizing radiation (such as X-rays). We used MRI equipment in our chemistry labs at school, way back in the days when the technology was still called Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Imaging (NMRI). Apparently the marketing folks didn’t like the term “nuclear” because of its association with atomic bombs, so now it’s just called MRI.

33 Keys : ISLETS

A key (also “cay”) is a low offshore island, as in the Florida “Keys”. Our term in English comes from the Spanish “cayo” meaning “shoal, reef”.

34 Architect Maya : LIN

Maya Lin is a Chinese-American artist and architect from Athens, Ohio. Her most famous work is the moving Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. Lin was only 21-years-old when she won a public design competition in 1981 to create the memorial. Although her design is very fitting, sadly Lin was not a popular choice for the work given her Asian heritage. As she said herself, she probably would not have been picked had the competition been judged with the knowledge of who was behind each submission.

38 1976 greatest hits album with a palindromic title : OLE ELO

“ELO” stands for the Electric Light Orchestra, a symphonic rock group from the north of England. ELO’s manager was Don Arden, father of Sharon Osbourne (wife of Ozzy). The band released a compilation album with the rather nifty palindromic name “Olé ELO” in 1976.

41 Site of Hercules’ first labor : NEMEA

“The Twelve Labors of Hercules” is actually a Greek myth, although Hercules is the Roman name for the hero that the Greeks called “Heracles”. The first of these labors was to slay the Nemean lion, a monster that lived in a cave near Nemea. Hercules had a tough job as the lion’s golden fur was impenetrable to normal weapons. One version of the story is that Hercules killed the lion by shooting an arrow into its mouth. Another version says that Hercules stunned the monster with a club and then strangled him with his bare hands.

49 Echidna’s prey : ANT

The echidna is also called the spiny anteater. Just like the platypus, the echidna is a mammal that lays eggs.

50 Service with nearly two billion users : GMAIL

Gmail is a free webmail service provided by Google, and my favorite of the free email services. Gmail made a big splash when it was introduced because it offered a whopping 1GB of storage whereas other services offered a measly 2-4MB on average.

55 Liquor store requests : IDS

Identity document (ID)

62 City of Angels : ANAHEIM

The Anaheim Angels baseball team is today more correctly called the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (LAA). The “Angels” name dates back to 1961 when the team was founded in the “City of Angels”, Los Angeles. When the franchise moved to Anaheim in 1965 they were known as the California Angels, then the Anaheim Angels, and most recently the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The Angels are also known as “the Halos”.

66 Certain customizable computer game character : SIM

SimCity is a very clever computer game. Players build and grow cities and societies by creating the conditions necessary for people (the Sims) to move in and thrive. SimCity was launched in 1989, and to this day it is consistently ranked as one of the greatest computer games of all time.

70 America of “Ugly Betty” : FERRERA

“Ugly Betty” is a drama-comedy show that originally aired on television from 2006 to 2010. The show is based on a telenovela soap opera from Colombia called “Yo soy Betty, la fea”. The title role of Betty Suarez is played by America Ferrera.

72 [Batman punches a bad guy] : [POW!]

The television show “Batman” aired from 1966-1968. Burt Ward played Robin opposite Adam West’s Batman. Supposedly, Burt Ward was offered the part taken by Dustin Hoffman in “The Graduate”, but Ward couldn’t get out of his contract for the “Batman” television series. Holy xxxx, Batman!

73 Onetime name for China : CATHAY

Cathay is an alternative English name for China, the anglicized version of “Catai”. Cathay is the name that Marco Polo used in his writings, and so it became an oft-used term in Europe.

78 Two-wheeled carriage : SHAY

A chaise is a light carriage with a folding hood that transports one or two people. “Chaise” is the French for “chair”, and takes its name from the “sedan chair” means of transportation. In the US, the name “chaise” evolved into “shay”.

79 “Anchorman” anchorman : RON

The title character in the “Anchorman” series of films is Ron Burgundy. Burgundy is a news anchor played by comedian Will Ferrell. Apparently Burgundy loves a glass of scotch, poetry, and his dog Baxter.

82 Walking with flair : SASHAYING

To sashay is to strut along in a showy manner. “Sashay” is an Anglicized form of the French word “chassé”, a sliding step used in square dancing.

84 Odd article of clothing to wear with a tank top : TIE

“Tank top” is another one of those terms that always catches me out, as it has a different meaning on each side of the Atlantic. In the US, a tank top is a sleeveless shirt, something we would call a “vest” back in Ireland (and the US “vest” is what we call a “waistcoat”). A tank top in Ireland is a sleeveless sweater, which further adds to the confusion. The name “tank top” is derived from “tank suit”, an old name for a woman’s one-piece bathing suit. The use of “tank” for the bathing suit came from “swimming tank”, an obsolete term used in the 1920s for a swimming pool.

87 Man’s name that anagrams to HYENAS : SHAYNE

Hyenas have the reputation of being cowardly scavengers. That said, the spotted hyena that lives in Sub-Saharan Africa actually kills about 95% of its food and a pack of spotted hyenas are capable of driving off leopards or lionesses before they can consume their kill.

88 Did a Don Corleone impression, maybe : RASPED

Mario Puzo created the Corleone Mafia family in his 1969 novel “The Godfather”. The head of the family is Vito Corleone (whose birth name was Vito Andolini), a native of Corleone in Sicily. He was given the name Corleone by immigration officers at Ellis Island. Don Corleone was played so very memorably, with a distinctive rasping voice, by Marlon Brando in the 1972 movie adaptation directed by Francis Ford Coppola.

92 Consonantless “yes” : OUI

In French, a response on “un questionnaire” (a questionnaire) might be “oui” (yes) or “non” (no).

94 Actress Atwell of the “Avengers” movies : HAYLEY

“The Avengers” is a 2012 movie that features a whole load of superheroes battling a supervillain called Loki. Loki is the brother of Thor, one of the team of superheroes.

96 Product whose sizes have letters : BRA

The word “brassière” is French in origin, but it isn’t the word that the French use for a “bra”. In France, what we call a bra is known as a “soutien-gorge”, translating to “held under the neck”. The word “brassière” is indeed used in France but there it describes a baby’s undershirt, a lifebelt or a harness. “Brassière” comes from the Old French word for an “arm protector” in a military uniform (“bras” is the French for “arm”). Later “brassière” came to mean “breastplate” and from there the word was used for a type of woman’s corset. The word jumped into English around 1900.

105 With 24-Across, Emmy winner for “Once and Again” : SELA …
(24A See 105-Across : … WARD)

Actress Sela Ward turns up in crosswords a lot. Ward played Teddy Reed in the TV show “Sisters” in the nineties, and was in “Once and Again” from 1999-2002. I don’t know either show, but I do know Ward from the medical drama “House” in which she played the hospital’s lawyer and Greg House’s ex-partner. That was a fun role, I thought. More recently, Ward played a lead role on “CSI: NY” and was a very welcome and much-needed addition to the cast. And, Ward played Dr. Richard Kimble’s murdered wife in the 1993 film version of “The Fugitive”.

“Once and Again” is a TV series that originally aired from 1999 to 2002 about the romantic relationship between a single mother and a single father, played by Seal Ward and Billy Campbell. The show had a somewhat unique structure in that characters were “interviewed” in asides throughout each episode, revealing otherwise unaired thoughts and memories.

106 Writer Horatio : ALGER

Horatio Alger was an American writer of the late nineteenth century. He was a prolific writer of novels for young people and created tales of poor children making it in the world, achieving the American dream.

108 Boxer Ali : LAILA

Laila Ali is the daughter of the great Muhammad Ali, and a very capable boxer in her own right. Laila’s professional record is an impressive 24 wins, including 21 knockouts. Now retired, she never lost a fight, and nor did she ever draw. One of those victories was against Jackie Frazier-Lyde, daughter of her father’s nemesis Joe Frazier. Laila is not a bad dancer either, coming in third place in the fourth season of “Dancing with the Stars”.

111 Bookmarked things : URLS

An Internet address (like NYXCrossword.com and LAXCrossword.com) is more correctly called a Uniform Resource Locator (URL).

113 Personal datum: Abbr. : SSN

Social Security number (SSN)

115 Site that competes with Amazon Handmade : ETSY

Etsy.com is an e-commerce website where you can buy and sell the kind of items that you might find at a craft fair.

116 Affliction also known as a hordeolum : STYE

A stye is a bacterial infection of the sebaceous glands at the base of the eyelashes, and is also known as a hordeolum.

Down

1 Collectible records : LPS

The first vinyl records designed to play at 33⅓ rpm were introduced by RCA Victor in 1931, but were discontinued due to quality problems. The first long play (LP) 33⅓ rpm disc was introduced by Columbia Records many years later in 1948, with RCA Victor following up with a 45 rpm “single” the following year, in 1949.

2 ___ milk : OAT

Oat milk is one of the alternatives to cow’s milk, and is lactose free. I’m a big fan …

4 Areas in many malls : ATRIA

In modern architecture, an atrium (plural “atria” or “atriums”) is a large open space usually in the center of a building and extending upwards to the roof. The original atrium was an open court in the center of an Ancient Roman house. One could access most of the enclosed rooms of the house from the atrium.

5 Eldest of the von Trapp children : LIESL

The von Trapps portrayed in the musical “The Sound of Music” were a real family, as is well known. In the musical and film, the eldest daughter is Liesl, although in real life her name was Agathe. Agathe came with her family to the US in 1938, and operated a private kindergarten in Baltimore, Maryland for 35 years. Agathe passed away in 2010.

6 Mnemosyne’s daughters : THE MUSES

In Greek mythology, the muses are the goddesses who inspire the creation of literature and the arts. The number of muses is a subject of debate at times, but the most popular view is that there are nine:

  • Calliope (epic poetry)
  • Clio (history)
  • Erato (lyric poetry)
  • Euterpe (music)
  • Melpomene (tragedy)
  • Polyhymnia (choral poetry)
  • Terpsichore (dance)
  • Thalia (comedy)
  • Urania (astronomy)

Before the adoption of the nine muses of Greek mythology, there were originally three muses, the three Boeotian Muses. These were:

  • Mneme (memory)
  • Melete (meditation)
  • Aoede (song)

8 En pointe, in ballet : ON TOE

“En pointe” is ballet dancing on the tips of the toes, and is a French term. A ballerina wears pointe shoes (sometimes “toe shoes”) to perform this delightful-looking, albeit unhealthy, feat (pun!).

9 Pizza chain since 1943, familiarly : UNO’S

The chain of pizza parlors known today as Uno Chicago Grill used to be called Pizzeria Uno, or just “Uno’s”. Apparently, Uno’s created the world’s first deep-dish pizza.

10 Weapon for Samson against the Philistines : JAWBONE

In the story of Samson in the Bible, Samson is tied up with ropes and taken to Lehi where he breaks free of his bonds and uses the jawbones of an ass to slay one thousand Philistines. The full name for Lehi is Ramath Lehi which translates as “jawbone hill”.

12 “North” or “South” land : KOREA

Korea was occupied by the Japanese military from 1910 until Japan surrendered at the end of WWII in 1945. While the UN was working towards a trusteeship administration for Korea, the Soviet Union managed the Korean Peninsula north of the 38th parallel and the US managed the south. The UN’s plans came to naught as the Cold War dictated the establishment of the two separate states of North Korea and South Korea. North Korea invaded the South in 1950, leading to the Korean War. After three years of fighting, the border between the two states became the demarcation line between the two military forces on the day the Armistice Agreement was signed. That line runs diagonally across the 38th parallel, and is better known as the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ).

16 Subway fare : FOOTLONGS

The SUBWAY chain of fast food restaurants is the largest single-brand restaurant in the world. I’m a big fan of SUBWAY sandwiches, especially the toasted ones …

19 Actor Elgort of “The Fault in Our Stars” : ANSEL

Ansel Elgort is a relatively young actor, and someone who has had a remarkable string of successful roles. He played Tommy Ross in 2013’s “Carrie”, Caleb Prior in “The Divergent Series” movies, Augustus Waters in 2014’s “The Fault in Our Stars”, and the title character in 2017’s “Bay Driver”.

“The Fault in Our Stars” is a 2014 film based on a novel of the same by John Green. Both film and novel are about two teenage cancer patients who fall in love with each other. The leads are played by Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort.

28 How checks are written : IN INK

Checks and checking accounts caused me some language trouble when I first came to the US. Back in Ireland (and the UK) we write “cheques” using funds from our “current” accounts.

29 Hellion : IMP

A hellion is a mischievous and wild person. “Hellion” is a North American term, one probably derived from the word that we use for the same thing on the other side of the Atlantic, namely “hallion”.

30 “Boyz N the Hood” protagonist : TRE

“Boyz N the Hood” is a 1991 movie about gang culture in South Central LA. Cuba Gooding, Jr. and Ice Cube have starring roles, and the director was John Singleton. Singleton was only 23 years old at the time of filming, and his resulting nomination for a Best Director Oscar made him the youngest ever nominee for that category of Academy Award.

36 Run an online scam : PHISH

Phishing is the online practice of stealing usernames, passwords and credit card details by creating a site that deceptively looks reliable and trustworthy. Phishers often send out safe-looking emails or instant messages that direct someone to an equally safe-looking website where the person might inadvertently enter sensitive information. “Phishing” is a play on the word “fishing”, as in “fishing for passwords, PINs, etc.”

39 Bona fide : LEGIT

“Bona fide(s)” translates from the Latin as “in good faith”, and is used to indicate honest intentions. It can also mean that something is authentic, like a piece of art that is represented in good faith as being genuine.

40 Big brush maker : ORAL-B

The Oral-B toothbrush was introduced to the world in 1950, designed by a California periodontist. The first “model” was the Oral-B 60, a name given to reflect the 60 tufts in the brush. In 1969, the Oral-B was the first toothbrush to get to the moon as it was the toothbrush of choice for the crew of the Apollo 11 spacecraft.

47 Become rigid and inflexible : OSSIFY

To ossify is to become rigid or inflexible in attitude. The original and alternative meaning of the verb is “to cause to harden like bone”, from the Latin “os” meaning “bone”.

51 Small black-and-white treat : MINI OREO

Bite-sized Oreo cookies were introduced in 1991 under the brand name Mini Oreo. Mini Oreos were dropped in the late nineties, but reintroduced in 2000 as part of a promotion for the Dodge Caravan. They’re still around, and you can now even get a mint version.

57 Google Photos precursor : PICASA

Picasa was a photo-sharing website owned by Google that included an image organizer and image viewer. Google has withdrawn support for Picasa, replacing it with a new service called Google Photos.

58 Workers in forges : SMITHS

A blacksmith is someone who forges and shapes iron, perhaps to make horseshoes. A farrier is someone who fits horseshoes onto the hooves of horses. The term “blacksmith” is sometimes used for one who shoes horses, especially as many blacksmiths make horseshoes and fit them as well.

59 Murder weapon in “The Talented Mr. Ripley” : OAR

American novelist Patricia Highsmith was noted for her psychological thrillers, some of which were adapted for the big screen. For example, Alfred Hitchcock’s 1951 film “Strangers on a Train” was based on her 1950 novel of the same name. The more recent movie, “The Talented Mr. Ripley” released in 1999, was adapted from her 1955 novel with the same title.

63 Key used to get out, but not in : ESC

The escape key (Esc) was originally used just to control computer peripherals. It was a key that allowed the computer operator to stop what the peripheral was doing (cancel a print job, for example). Nowadays the escape key is used for all sorts of things, especially in gaming programs.

75 The titular bad guy in “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” : ANGEL EYES

Spaghetti Westerns are cowboy movies that were produced and directed by Italians in the 1960s. Pioneer in the field was filmmaker Sergio Leone. Leone directed the best-known and most successful movies in the genre: “A Fistful of Dollars” (1964), “For a Few Dollars More” (1965) and “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” (1966), all of which star Clint Eastwood.

79 Capital of Saudi Arabia : RIYADH

Riyadh is the capital of Saudi Arabia, and is located near the center of the country. The name “Riyadh” translates from Arabic as “the gardens”.

80 Singer with the 2016 platinum album “This Is Acting” : SIA

“Sia” is the stage name of Australian singer Sia Furler from Adelaide. Sia is a cousin of Australian Christian Rock musician Peter Furler.

84 Secret rendezvous : 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.

A rendezvous is a meeting. The noun used in English comes from the French phrase “rendez vous” meaning “present yourselves”.

89 Block where Sesame Street can be found? : PBS KIDS

Children’s programming on the Public Broadcasting Service has gone by the name “PBS Kids” since 1994.

93 “The straight path” : ISLAM

In Arabic, “the straight path” is written as “Sirat al-Mustaqim”. The phrase refers to the path of the Islam faith.

95 German steel city : ESSEN

Essen is a large industrial city located on the River Ruhr in western Germany. The city experienced major population growth in the mid-1800s that was driven by the iron works established by the Krupp family.

97 Like neon : INERT

An inert gas can be different from a noble gas. Both are relatively non-reactive, but a noble gas is an element. An inert gas might be a compound, i.e. made up of more than one element.

Neon was discovered in 1898 by two British chemists Sir William Ramsay and Morris Travers. They chilled a sample of air, turning it into a liquid. They then warmed that liquid and separated out the gases that boiled off. Along with nitrogen, oxygen and argon (already known), the pair of scientists discovered two new gases. The first they called “krypton” and the second “neon”. “Krypton” is Greek for “the hidden one” and “neon” is Greek for “new”.

99 It never occurs above the Arctic Circle during the summer solstice : NIGHT

A solstice occurs twice in every year. The summer solstice is the longest day of the year (has the most daylight), and the winter solstice is the shortest.

101 Claw : TALON

A talon is a claw of a bird of prey. The term “talon” ultimately derives from “talus”, the Latin word for “ankle”.

102 Seat of Florida’s Marion County : OCALA

The city of Ocala, Florida was founded near a historic village with the same name. In the local Timucua language “Ocala” means “Big Hammock”. Back in the 1890s, Ocala was famous for its oranges, with over one third of that fruit shipped from Florida coming from the city. Also, thoroughbred horse farming in Florida started in Ocala, back in 1943. Some folks today call Ocala the “Horse Capital of the World”, but I bet that’s disputed by others …

104 Eugene O’Neill’s “Desire Under the ___” : ELMS

“Desire Under the Elms” is a classic American play written by Eugene O’Neill and published in 1924. It is basically a retelling of a Greek tragedy, but set in contemporary New England. Sophia Loren stars in a movie version released in 1958.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Not express, in a way : LOCAL
6 Second person in the Bible : THOU
10 One of the Blues Brothers : JAKE
14 “History of the World, ___” (Mel Brooks film that doesn’t actually have a sequel) : PART I
15 Grp. with Bills and Chargers : AFC
18 Bridal adornment at Indian weddings : HENNA
20 Buckets : A TON
21 Goggle : STARE
22 Bird that went the way of the dodo (before the dodo) : MOA
23 Mr. ___, scheming socialite in “Emma” : ELTON
24 See 105-Across : … WARD
25 Popular action film franchise … or what trying to find the item in this puzzle can be described as : MISSION IMPOSSIBLE
29 “There’s no use” … like trying to find the item in this puzzle? : IT’S A LOST CAUSE
31 “The ___ Holmes Mysteries,” young adult series made into a 2020 film : ENOLA
32 Hosp. procedure : MRI
33 Keys : ISLETS
34 Architect Maya : LIN
35 Foreign correspondent, maybe : PEN PAL
38 1976 greatest hits album with a palindromic title : OLE ELO
41 Site of Hercules’ first labor : NEMEA
45 What’s-___-name : HIS
46 Experimental offshoot of punk : NOISE ROCK
49 Echidna’s prey : ANT
50 Service with nearly two billion users : GMAIL
53 ___ reaction : GUT
54 Deep cut : GASH
55 Liquor store requests : IDS
56 Frees (of) : RIDS
57 Quiet summons : PSST!
59 Greases : OILS UP
61 What’s at the center of some court battles? : NET
62 City of Angels : ANAHEIM
64 Danger for an exterminator : RAT BITE
65 Scratch the surface of : MAR
66 Certain customizable computer game character : SIM
67 Kick starter? : SCISSOR
70 America of “Ugly Betty” : FERRERA
72 [Batman punches a bad guy] : [POW!]
73 Onetime name for China : CATHAY
74 They have big mouths : BAYS
76 Over : ANEW
77 More than umbrage : IRE
78 Two-wheeled carriage : SHAY
79 “Anchorman” anchorman : RON
80 Simple earrings : STUDS
81 Duck Hunt console, for short : NES
82 Walking with flair : SASHAYING
84 Odd article of clothing to wear with a tank top : TIE
85 Reached : GOT TO
87 Man’s name that anagrams to HYENAS : SHAYNE
88 Did a Don Corleone impression, maybe : RASPED
92 Consonantless “yes” : OUI
94 Actress Atwell of the “Avengers” movies : HAYLEY
96 Product whose sizes have letters : BRA
97 Clickable images : ICONS
99 “As you can imagine …” : NEEDLESS TO SAY
103 Item hidden somewhere in this puzzle (where is it?) : NEEDLE IN A HAYSTACK
105 With 24-Across, Emmy winner for “Once and Again” : SELA …
106 Writer Horatio : ALGER
107 Word before an explanation : SEE …
108 Boxer Ali : LAILA
111 Bookmarked things : URLS
112 Vowelless “yes” : MM-HMM
113 Personal datum: Abbr. : SSN
114 Long-gone : OLDEN
115 Site that competes with Amazon Handmade : ETSY
116 Affliction also known as a hordeolum : STYE
117 Mean : NASTY

Down

1 Collectible records : LPS
2 ___ milk : OAT
3 Packs tightly : CRAMS IN
4 Areas in many malls : ATRIA
5 Eldest of the von Trapp children : LIESL
6 Mnemosyne’s daughters : THE MUSES
7 Benefits : HELPS
8 En pointe, in ballet : ON TOE
9 Pizza chain since 1943, familiarly : UNO’S
10 Weapon for Samson against the Philistines : JAWBONE
11 Whatsoever : AT ALL
12 “North” or “South” land : KOREA
13 Undoing : END
15 Faulty : AMISS
16 Subway fare : FOOTLONGS
17 Impact equally in the opposite direction : CANCEL OUT
19 Actor Elgort of “The Fault in Our Stars” : ANSEL
26 Taints : SOILS
27 Sheepish response to “Where did the last cookie go?” : I ATE IT
28 How checks are written : IN INK
29 Hellion : IMP
30 “Boyz N the Hood” protagonist : TRE
36 Run an online scam : PHISH
37 Feel rotten : AIL
39 Bona fide : LEGIT
40 Big brush maker : ORAL-B
42 Starting point on a computer : MAIN MENU
43 Won over : ENDEARED
44 See 50-Down : … AT STRAWS
47 Become rigid and inflexible : OSSIFY
48 Slides : CHUTES
50 With 44-Down, making futile attempts … and an extra hint to this puzzle’s theme : GRASPING …
51 Small black-and-white treat : MINI OREO
52 Batman portrayer on ’60s TV : ADAM WEST
57 Google Photos precursor : PICASA
58 Workers in forges : SMITHS
59 Murder weapon in “The Talented Mr. Ripley” : OAR
60 What “/” may mean : PER
63 Key used to get out, but not in : ESC
64 Man’s name that means “king” : ROY
68 Palindromic leaders : SHAHS
69 Doctor’s order : SAY “AH”
71 They may be fixed : RATES
74 Highland beauty : BONNY LASS
75 The titular bad guy in “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” : ANGEL EYES
79 Capital of Saudi Arabia : RIYADH
80 Singer with the 2016 platinum album “This Is Acting” : SIA
82 In good shape : SOUND
83 “Know what I’m talkin’ about?” : YA HEAR ME?
84 Secret rendezvous : TRYST
86 Like child’s play : TOO EASY
89 Block where Sesame Street can be found? : PBS KIDS
90 Notable period : ERA
91 It’s constantly breaking around the world : DAY
93 “The straight path” : ISLAM
95 German steel city : ESSEN
97 Like neon : INERT
98 Bar rooms? : CELLS
99 It never occurs above the Arctic Circle during the summer solstice : NIGHT
100 One may be sworn : ENEMY
101 Claw : TALON
102 Seat of Florida’s Marion County : OCALA
104 Eugene O’Neill’s “Desire Under the ___” : ELMS
105 Go after : SUE
109 Word before ride or slide : LET …
110 Which card to pick from a magician? : ANY

10 thoughts on “0418-21 NY Times Crossword 18 Apr 21, Sunday”

  1. DNF. Didn’t know ANSEL or LIN so looked it up. Also didn’t know SIA and so had TEE, not TIE. Anyway, I liked the theme and the cluing (chuckled to myself on “Subway Fare”), so an enjoyable almost-solve anyway.

  2. 22:45, no errors. Enjoyable, clever, easier than I was led to expect, but … somehow … rather odd. Probably just me … 😜.

  3. 37:29. Struggled with the left center of the puzzle. The theme helped me get CATHAY and SHAY. I also started with 82A as STRUTTING. Notable miscues were REX vs ROY; NFL vs. AFC; ONSIDES vs SCISSOR. Took a long time to come up with THEE for 6A. For me the clues were a good bit of misdirection, and I had to search for fat fingers. But finally getting the Jingle, I was not a LOST CAUSE. Also noted that the puzzle is rectangular at 20 x 22.

    Good challenge for a Sunday.

  4. 37:08. Took me forever to get going with this one. After about 25 minutes it seemed like I had almost nothing filled in. Then things just started filling in.

    Interestingly, this is the setter’s first crossword in the NYT. He’s done several crosswords in his native Swedish, but this is his first English puzzle.

    Best –

  5. 1:32:00 no errors…all the “never heard ofs” were crammed into one area …(what’s new?”)
    Stay safe😀

  6. 37:14, 6 errors: 7D HE(A)PS/21A E(A)TON; 50D GRA(B)(B)ING/51D MIN(T) OREO/66A (B)(T)M/72A (B)OW. Muddled through this with no clue what I was doing.

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