0426-21 NY Times Crossword 26 Apr 21, Monday

Constructed by: Eric and Lori Bornstein
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answer: Food Court

Themed answers are COURTLY features associated with FOOD:

  • 35D Feature of many a mall … or a place for 20-Across and 26- and 30-Down? : FOOD COURT
  • 20A Figurative site of a 35-Down : WHITE CASTLE
  • 26D Figurative ruler of a 35-Down : DAIRY QUEEN
  • 30D Figurative ruler of a 35-Down : BURGER KING

Bill’s time: 7m 25s!

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Document for foreign travel : VISA

A visa is usually a stamp in one’s passport, an indication that one is authorized to enter (and less often, to exit) a particular country. The word “visa” comes into English, via French, from the Latin expression “charta visa” meaning “paper that has been seen”, or “verified paper”.

10 “Omnia vincit ___” (“Love conquers all”: Lat.) : AMOR

“Omnia vincit amor” is a line from Eclogue X, one of the major works of the Latin poet Virgil. We know the phrase in English as “love conquers all”.

14 “SportsCenter” channel : ESPN

“SportsCenter” is the flagship program of the ESPN television network, and has been on the air since 1979. Original versions of “SportsCenter” appear on multiple times during the day, so that there have been over 50,000 episodes broadcast to date, more than any other show on US television.

15 Rapper Kendrick : LAMAR

Kendrick Lamar is a hip-hop singer from Compton, California. Lamar’s full name is Kendrick Lamar Duckworth, with the singer’s given name honoring Motown artist Eddie Kendricks. Notably, his 2017 album “Damn” won a Pulitzer Prize for Music, becoming the first non-classical or non-jazz album to do so.

20 Figurative site of a 35-Down : WHITE CASTLE
(35 Feature of many a mall … or a place for 20-Across and 26- and 30-Down? : FOOD COURT )

Sliders are small hamburgers. One suggestion is that the “slider” originated in the US Navy, with the name being a reference to greasy hamburgers sliding back and forth across the grill as a ship pitches and rolls. More recently, the slider became associated with the White Castle fast food chain of restaurants. White Castle introduced the “Slyder” in 1985.

23 Elevator brake inventor Elisha : OTIS

Elevators (simple hoists) have been around for a long time. What Elisha Otis did was come up with the “safety elevator”, a design that he showcased at the 1853 World’s Fair in New York. At the Fair, Otis would stand on an elevated platform in front of onlookers and order his assistant to cut the single rope holding up the platform. His safety system kicked in when the platform had only fallen a few inches, amazing the crowd. After this demonstration, the orders came rolling in.

38 Alternative to Google : BING

Bing is the search engine from Microsoft. Bing is the latest name for an engine that Microsoft used to call Live Search, Windows Live Search and MSN Search.

40 Michael who directed “Fahrenheit 9/11” : MOORE

Michael Moore is a documentary filmmaker, famously from Flint, Michigan. Moore is known for several documentaries that have performed well at the box office, especially “Fahrenheit 9/11” (2004), “Bowling for Columbine” (2002) and “Sicko” (2007).

41 Starting point for a car sale negotiation: Abbr. : MSRP

Manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP)

45 Feudal superior : LIEGE

A liege was a feudal lord, one to whom service or allegiance was owed under feudal law. “Liege” was also the term used for one who owed allegiance or service to a lord. Apparently the term is influenced by the Latin verb “ligare” meaning “to tie, bind”. So, I guess both lord and servant were “bound” to each other.

46 Alma mater of five U.S. presidents : YALE

Five US presidents attended Yale University:

  • William Howard Taft
  • Gerald Ford
  • George H. W. Bush
  • Bill Clinton
  • George W. Bush

47 Singers Ames and Sheeran : EDS

The Ames Brothers were a singing quartet who were active in the 1950s. The “Ames” brothers were actually the “Urick” brothers, and used “Ames” as a stage name. They had started out as an act called the Amory Brothers. After the quartet disbanded in 1961, Ed Ames went on to have a successful solo singing career, and became a familiar television actor. Ed played Mingo, the sidekick to the title character on the TV show “Daniel Boone” that ran in the sixties.

English singer Ed Sheeran has appeared as an actor quite a few times. After several cameos in various films, Sheeran had a substantial role playing himself in the excellent 2019 film “Yesterday”.

49 Posse : SQUAD

Our word “posse” comes from an Anglo-Latin term from the early 15th century “posse comitatus” meaning “the force of the county”.

51 Wolf Blitzer facial feature : BEARD

Wolf Blitzer is the son of Jewish refugees from Poland. He was born in Augsburg in Germany and was given the name “Wolf” in honor of his maternal grandfather. Wolf came with his family to live in the US, and he was raised in Buffalo, New York.

53 Vienna’s home: Abbr. : AUS

Vienna is the capital of Austria. The city has a long musical tradition and was home to Franz Schubert, Johann Strauss (I and II), Josef Haydn, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Ludwig van Beethoven, Franz Liszt, Johannes Brahms and Gustav Mahler. As such, Vienna is sometimes called the “City of Music”. It is also called the “City of Dreams” as it was home to the psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud.

54 Nitpick, literally : DELOUSE

A nit is an egg of a louse.

Lice (singular “louse”) are small wingless insects, of which there are thousands of species. There are three species of lice affecting humans, i.e. head lice, body lice and pubic lice. Most lice feed on dead skin found on the body of the host animal, although some feed on blood. Ick …

57 Old rival of MGM : RKO

The RKO Pictures studio was formed when RCA (RADIO Corporation of America) bought the KEITH-Albee-ORPHEUM theaters (and Joe Kennedy’s Film Booking Offices of America). The RKO initialism then comes from the words “Radio”, “Keith” and “Orpheum”.

The Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) film studio was founded in 1924 by Marcus Loew. Loew was already a successful movie theater owner when he purchased Metro Pictures Corporation in 1919, and then Goldwyn Pictures in 1924. Later in 1924, Loew also purchased Louis B. Mayer Pictures, mainly so that Louis B. Mayer could merge all three studios and run them himself as Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.

60 Summa cum ___ : LAUDE

When an academic degree is awarded, a level of distinction can be noted depending on the degree of success achieved by the student. There are three types of honor, each with a Latin name:

  • cum laude: meaning “with honor” (literally “with praise”)
  • magna cum laude: meaning “with great honor”
  • summa cum laude: meaning “with highest honor”

61 Tennis score after deuce : AD IN

In tennis, if the score reaches deuce (i.e. when both players have scored three points), then the first player to win two points in a row wins the game. The player who wins the point immediately after deuce is said to have the advantage. If the player with the advantage wins the next point then that’s two in a row and that player wins the game. If the person with the advantage loses the next point, then advantage is lost and the players return to deuce and try again. The player calling out the score announces “ad in”, or more formally “advantage in”, if he/she has the advantage. If the score announcer’s opponent has the advantage, then the announcement is “ad out” or “advantage out”. Follow all of that …?

63 Damascus’s home : SYRIA

Damascus is the second largest city in Syria (after Aleppo), and is the country’s capital. Damascus has the distinction of being the oldest, continuously-inhabited city in the world, having been settled in the 2nd millennium BC. Also, it has the nickname “City of Jasmine”.

64 Nashville’s home: Abbr. : TENN

The Tennessee city of Nashville was founded in 1779 near a stockade in the Cumberland River valley called Fort Nashborough. Both the settlement and the fort were named for General Francis Nash, a war hero who died in combat during the American Revolution.

65 Only daughter of Elizabeth II : ANNE

Anne, Princess Royal was born in 1950 and is the only daughter of British Queen Elizabeth II. Princess Anne has been in the public spotlight for many things, including her success as an equestrian. Princess Anne was the first member of the British Royal Family to have competed in an Olympic Games. Her daughter Zara Phillips continued the tradition and competed as a member of the British equestrian team in the 2012 Olympic Games. Zara’s medal was presented to her by her own mother, Princess Anne.

66 Lady ___, first female member of Parliament : ASTOR

Nancy Astor (nee Langhorne) was born in the US, in Virginia. When Nancy was 26 years old she moved to England with her younger sister. In England she married an American living there, Waldorf Astor, and the couple lived a very comfortable life. Nancy Astor became very active in English politics, and eventually became the first woman elected to the British Parliament.

67 French celestial being : ANGE

In French, an “ange” (angel) is a messenger “de Dieu” (from God).

Down

1 Ex-G.I. : VET

The initialism “GI” stands for “Government Issue”, and not “General Infantry” as is widely believed. “GI” was first used in the military to denote equipment made from Galvanized Iron and during WWI, incoming German shells were nicknamed “GI cans”. Soon after, the term GI came to be associated with “Government Issue” and eventually became an adjective to describe anything associated with the Army.

3 What a volcano might do : SPEW

Our word “volcano” comes from “Vulcano”, the name of a volcanic island off the coast of Italy. The island’s name comes from Vulcan, the Roman god of fire. The Romans believed that the island of Vulcano was the chimney of the forge belonging to the god Vulcan. The Romans also believed that the eruptions on Mount Etna in Sicily were caused by Vulcan getting angry and working his forge so hard that sparks and smoke flew out of the top of the volcano.

4 Informal segue : ANYHOO

A segue is a transition from one topic to the next. “Segue” is an Italian word that literally means “now follows”. It was first used in musical scores directing the performer to play into the next movement without a break. The oft-used term “segway” is given the same meaning, although the word “segway” doesn’t really exist. It is a misspelling of “segue” that has been popularized by its use as the name of the personal transporter known as a Segway.

7 Certain Apple : IMAC

When Apple chose the letter “I” prefix for the iMac in 1998, that letter “I” stood for “Internet”. Steve Jobs and his marketing team followed up with the message that I also stood for “individual, instruct, inform and inspire”.

8 Half of a 1960s folk-rock group : MAMAS

The folk group called the Magic Circle renamed itself to the Mamas and the Papas in the early sixties. Sadly, the Mamas and the Papas weren’t a happy bunch, always fighting over who was getting credit for songs and whose voice was getting mixed out of recordings, so they split up, twice. While they were together though, they wrote and recorded some great songs, songs which really do epitomize the sound of the sixties. “Monday, Monday” was written by John Phillips, one of “the Papas”, and it was to become the only number one hit for the group. Here’s a shocker … when it hit number one in 1966, it was the first time that a group made up of both sexes topped the American charts!

9 Something that might be felt at a séance : PRESENCE

“Séance” is a French word meaning “sitting”. We use the term in English for a sitting in which a spiritualist tries to communicate with the spirits of the dead.

10 Spring bloomer : AZALEA

Azaleas are very toxic to most animals. If you go to Korea, you might come across “Tug Yonju”, which is azalea wine made from the plant’s blossoms. Azaleas are usually grown as shrubs, but are also seen as small trees, and often indoors.

13 Former secretary of state Tillerson : REX

The US Department of State is the equivalent of the Foreign Ministry in many other countries, and is responsible for international relations. Ceremonially, the Secretary of State is the highest ranking of all Cabinet officials, and is the highest ranking in the presidential line of succession (fourth, after the Vice President, the Speaker of the House and the President pro tem of the Senate). The department was created in 1789 by President Washington, and was the first of all executive departments created. The first Secretary of State was future-president Thomas Jefferson.

25 Alphabetically first group in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame : ABBA

I am an unapologetic fan of ABBA’s music. ABBA was the Swedish group who topped the charts in the seventies and eighties. The name ABBA is an acronym formed from the first letters of the given names of each of the band members: Agnetha, Benny, Bjorn and Anni-Frid. Early in their careers, the four fell in love and formed two married couples: Agnetha and Bjorn, and Benny and Anni-Frid. However, at the height of their success, the relationships became strained and both couples divorced.

26 Figurative ruler of a 35-Down : DAIRY QUEEN
(35D Feature of many a mall … or a place for 20-Across and 26- and 30-Down? : FOOD COURT)

Soft serve ice cream was developed by John McCullough in 1938. McCullough was able to get his new dessert carried by a local ice cream store in Illinois. He and the store owner became so swamped with sales that they opened a store specifically built around the product in Joliet, Illinois, hence creating the first Dairy Queen outlet. There are now over 5,700 Dairy Queen franchises in 19 countries. We’ve even got one in Ireland …

27 “Pride and Prejudice” novelist : JANE AUSTEN

My favorite screen version of Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice” is the 1995 miniseries starring Jennifer Ehle and Colin Firth. The wonderful chemistry that Ehle and Firth exhibited on screen extended off the screen and the pair were “an item” for a while. Jennifer Ehle was recently again cast with Colin Firth, in the excellent film “The King’s Speech” from 2010.

30 Figurative ruler of a 35-Down : BURGER KING
(35D Feature of many a mall … or a place for 20-Across and 26- and 30-Down? : FOOD COURT)

The Burger King chain of fast food restaurants was established as Insta-Burger King in Jacksonville, Florida in 1953. The chain operates all around the world under the Burger King name except in Australia, where you have to visit Hungry Jack’s.

35 Feature of many a mall … or a place for 20-Across and 26- and 30-Down? : FOOD COURT

Surprisingly (to me!), our word “mall”, meaning “shady walk” or “enclosed shopping space”, comes from the Italian for “mallet”. All of our shopping-style malls are named for “The Mall” in St. James’s Park in London. This tree-lined promenade was so called as it used to be a famous spot to play the croquet-like game called “pall-mall”. The game derived its name from the Italian for ball (palla) and mallet “maglio”. The London thoroughfare called the Mall still exists, at one end of which is Buckingham Palace. Indeed, parallel to the Mall is a street called Pall Mall.

39 Soiree, say : GALA

“Soir” is the French word for “evening” and a soirée is an evening party. The French word “soirée” has an acute accent over the first “e”, but we tend to drop this when using the word in English.

43 Chris of “S.N.L.” : REDD

Actor and stand-up comedian Chris Redd joined the cast of “Saturday Night Live” in 2017, after a stint with the Second City Touring Company based in Chicago.

49 Brazilian ballroom dance : SAMBA

The samba is a Brazilian dance that is very much symbolic of the festival of Carnival. Like so much culture around the world, the samba has its roots in Africa, as the dance is derived from dances performed by former slaves who migrated into urban Rio de Janeiro in the late 1800s. The exact roots of the name “samba” seem to have been lost in the mists of time. However, my favorite explanation is that it comes from an African Kikongo word “semba” which means “a blow struck with the belly button”. We don’t seem to have a need for such a word in English …

52 John who wrote “No man is an island” : DONNE

John Donne wrote a piece of prose called “Devotions upon Emergent Occasions”. One passage contains two phrases that are oft-quoted: “No man is an island”, and “for whom the bell tolls”.

No man is an Iland, intire of it selfe; every man is a peece of the Continent, a part of the maine; if a Clod bee washed away by the Sea, Europe is the lesse, as well as if a Promontorie were, as well as if a Mannor of thy friends or of thine owne were; any mans death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankinde; And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; It tolls for thee.

55 Disney’s ___ of Arendelle : ELSA

“Frozen” is a 2013 animated feature from Walt Disney Studios that is based on the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale “The Snow Queen”. The film is all about the exploits of Princess Anna, the younger sister of Elsa, Snow Queen of Arendelle. Spoiler alert: Prince Hans of the Southern Isles seems to be a good guy for most of the film, but turns out to be a baddie in the end. And, a snowman named Olaf provides some comic relief.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Document for foreign travel : VISA
5 Spend much time in front of the mirror : PRIMP
10 “Omnia vincit ___” (“Love conquers all”: Lat.) : AMOR
14 “SportsCenter” channel : ESPN
15 Rapper Kendrick : LAMAR
16 Designate as “commercial” or “residential,” e.g. : ZONE
17 Nonbinary pronoun : THEY
18 Best possible athletic performance : A-GAME
19 Very top : APEX
20 Figurative site of a 35-Down : WHITE CASTLE
23 Elevator brake inventor Elisha : OTIS
24 Parched, as a desert : SERE
25 Abut : ADJOIN
28 Close : NEARBY
32 Neigh : horse :: ___ : sheep : BAA
33 Emerge from the ocean, say : SURFACE
37 French “yes” : OUI
38 Alternative to Google : BING
40 Michael who directed “Fahrenheit 9/11” : MOORE
41 Starting point for a car sale negotiation: Abbr. : MSRP
42 To the back : AREAR
44 Auction unit : LOT
45 Feudal superior : LIEGE
46 Alma mater of five U.S. presidents : YALE
47 Singers Ames and Sheeran : EDS
48 Push to do something : URGE
49 Posse : SQUAD
50 %: Abbr. : PCT
51 Wolf Blitzer facial feature : BEARD
53 Vienna’s home: Abbr. : AUS
54 Nitpick, literally : DELOUSE
57 Old rival of MGM : RKO
58 Prefix with stasis or tarsus : META-
60 Summa cum ___ : LAUDE
61 Tennis score after deuce : AD IN
62 Sound much heard in traffic : BEEP!
63 Damascus’s home : SYRIA
64 Nashville’s home: Abbr. : TENN
65 Only daughter of Elizabeth II : ANNE
66 Lady ___, first female member of Parliament : ASTOR
67 French celestial being : ANGE

Down

1 Ex-G.I. : VET
2 “About” : ISH
3 What a volcano might do : SPEW
4 Informal segue : ANYHOO
5 Shade of blond : PLATINUM
6 Rants and raves : RAGES
7 Certain Apple : IMAC
8 Half of a 1960s folk-rock group : MAMAS
9 Something that might be felt at a séance : PRESENCE
10 Spring bloomer : AZALEA
11 Sulk : MOPE
12 Last number in a countdown : ONE
13 Former secretary of state Tillerson : REX
21 “No lie!” : IT IS!
22 Apple or maple : TREE
25 Alphabetically first group in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame : ABBA
26 Figurative ruler of a 35-Down : DAIRY QUEEN
27 “Pride and Prejudice” novelist : JANE AUSTEN
29 Locale of many White House photo ops : ROSE GARDEN
30 Figurative ruler of a 35-Down : BURGER KING
31 “Eek!” : YIPE!
34 Isn’t oneself? : ROLE-PLAYS
35 Feature of many a mall … or a place for 20-Across and 26- and 30-Down? : FOOD COURT
36 Place to make a scene? : ART STUDIO
39 Soiree, say : GALA
41 Bog down : MIRE
43 Chris of “S.N.L.” : REDD
45 ___ job (bit of garage work) : LUBE
49 Brazilian ballroom dance : SAMBA
52 John who wrote “No man is an island” : DONNE
55 Disney’s ___ of Arendelle : ELSA
56 Singe : SEAR
59 Mimic : APE
61 Keep ___ distance : AT A

12 thoughts on “0426-21 NY Times Crossword 26 Apr 21, Monday”

  1. 7:04. This one seemed a bit tough for a Monday and I’m surprised that I bettered both Bill’s and Nonny’s times.

    What, to me was even stranger than being faster than Bill and Nonny, is that this puzzle was available to me on the NYT web site at 4:34 pm, Pacific Time, on Sunday – so long ago that I don’t remember specific issues other than 67A, re–looking at the grid. Not sure if it was available even earlier. Surely the NYT puzzle folks could be somewhat aware of Time Zones. This happened some time back that I got to a Sunday puzzle around 6:00 pm Pacific, and that broke a continuous streak because the Monday puzzle was already posted.

    When I finished this puzzle, I was also surprised to see that the Wordplay write-up that is available on the web site was also completed, so that person must have had access much earlier in the day.

    1. @Ron F …

      The Monday puzzles always appear on the web site quite early on Sunday afternoon (like, maybe, 4:00 PM Mountain Time … though I’m a little fuzzy about that). The Sunday puzzle also appears early on Saturday afternoon (and, again, I’m unsure of the exact time).

      In October, 2019, I was on a cruise ship in the Eastern Atlantic for a couple of weeks. I managed to keep my streak going, but it required some minor mental gymnastics to keep track of just what puzzle needed to be done on a given day, and when, and how it fit into my schedule. Then, a month or so after I got back, all the puzzles from that time were suddenly marked as having been done late! I was girding up my loins to call the NYT and give them what-for, but, the next day, the problem was corrected – some kind of temporary glitch in their system, I guess. (No doubt they were aware of a major disturbance in the force and put a large team together to forestall the pending explosion … 😜.)

  2. 8:30. Strong for a Monday puzzle with a fun theme. ANYHOO rears its ugly head again, however.

    I probably have more memories of late nights out in high school at WHITE CASTLE than anywhere else. Their sliders might be the best late night snack ever. I remember driving up to the window, ordering 50 White Castles ( I was not alone), and their only response was “Will that be all?”

    Best –

  3. No errors but this is a little much for a Monday…two setters have a tendency to do that👎
    Stay safe😀

  4. DNF and that’s after an hour trying. I’m glad I’m not the only one that felt this was a little difficult for a Monday. I look forward to Monday, because I can usually finish them … and sometimes Tuesday and Wednesday. After that, no so much.

  5. 10:03, no errors. Surprising how often I see the thoughts in my head mirrored by others on this blog. Agree, tough for a Monday puzzle. Changing the W to an O in ANYHOO was my last action.

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