0801-21 NY Times Crossword 1 Aug 21, Sunday

Constructed by: Matthew Stock
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme Off Brand

Themed clues are reminiscent of retail BRANDS:

  • 21A Five guys? : OFFENSIVE LINE
  • 26A Green giant? : WIND TURBINE
  • 48A Jolly rancher? : OLD MACDONALD
  • 65A General mills? : MILITARY ACADEMIES
  • 84A Texas instruments? : STEEL GUITARS
  • 103A Band aid? : SOUND SYSTEM
  • 114A Old navy? : SPANISH ARMADA

Bill’s time: 27m 33s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

8 Ozone-harming compounds, for short : CFCS

Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) used to be widely used as propellants in aerosols, and as refrigerants in cooling systems. CFCs make their way up into the ozone layer and trigger a chain reaction that converts ozone (O3) into regular oxygen (O2). That conversion creates “holes” in the ozone layer. Regular O2 is good stuff, but we need O3 to absorb harmful UV radiation raining down on us. CFC is not good stuff …

12 Actor Guy : PEARCE

Guy Pearce is an Australian actor (actually born in England) who got his break playing in the Aussie soap opera “Neighbours”. I remember him playing drag queen Felicia Jollygoodfellow in the entertaining Australian film “The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert” (1994). He also appeared in several hit American movies, such as “L.A. Confidential”, “The Count of Monte Cristo” and “The Time Machine”.

21 Five guys? : OFFENSIVE LINE

Five Guys is a chain of hamburger joints that started out in Arlington, Virginia and now operates worldwide. Even though the chain was founded by Janie and Jerry Murrell, the “five guys” were Jerry and the couple’s four sons.

26 Green giant? : WIND TURBINE

The Jolly Green Giant was introduced by Minnesota Valley Canning in 1925 to help sell the company’s peas. He was named after one of the varieties of pea that the company sold, the “Green Giant”. The Jolly Green Giant first appeared in a television commercial in 1953, walking through a valley with young boys running around at his feet. That first commercial proved to be so scary for younger viewers that it was immediately pulled off the air. In 1972, the Jolly Green Giant was given an apprentice called the Little Green Sprout.

28 Ambulance driver, for short : EMT

Emergency medical technician (EMT)

Our word “ambulance” originated from the French term “hôpital ambulant” meaning “field hospital” (literally “walking hospital”). In the 1850s, the term started to be used for a vehicle transporting the wounded from the battlefield, leading to our “ambulance”.

34 Like basalt and obsidian : IGNEOUS

Magma is the molten material below the Earth’s surface. When magma cools, it forms igneous rock. “Magma” is a Greek term that describes a thick ointment.

Basalt is a volcanic rock that is created when lava cools rapidly at the earth’s surface.

Obsidian is a volcanic glass, an igneous rock. Obsidian has many functional and decorative uses. I find the use of obsidian to make glass knives to be of particular interest. Well-made obsidian knives can have a cutting edge that is many times sharper than even the highest quality of steel.

40 Police broadcast, for short : APB

An All Points Bulletin (APB) is a broadcast from one US law enforcement agency to another.

42 Main character in Larry McMurtry’s “Lonesome Dove” : GUS

“Lonesome Dove” is a Pulitzer-winning western novel by Larry McMurtry, first published in 1985. The novel was originally written as a screenplay for a feature film that never made it to the screen called “The Streets of Laredo”. The movie fell through because John Wayne pulled out of the project, whereas co-stars James Stewart and Henry Fonda were all set to go.

Author Larry McMurtry’s most famous novels are 1961’s “Horseman, Pass By” (adapted to film as “Hud”), 1966’s “The Last Picture Show”, 1975’s “Terms of Endearment” and 1985’s “Lonesome Dove” (for which McMurtry won a Pulitzer). He also co-wrote the adapted screenplay for 2005’s “Brokeback Mountain”, which is based on a short story by Annie Proulx.

43 Apt name for a Christmas caroler? : EWELL

“Ewell” sounds like “Yule”.

48 Jolly rancher? : OLD MACDONALD

There was an old American version of the English children’s song “Old MacDonald Had a Farm” (E-I-E-I-O) that was around in the days of WWI. The first line of the older US version goes “Old MacDougal had a farm, in Ohio-i-o”.

Jolly Ranchers are a brand of hard candies that has been produced since 1949. Founded in 1949 in Golden, Colorado, the Jolly Rancher name was chosen to present a friendly, western image.

52 Diagnosis characterized by repetitive behavior, in brief : OCD

Apparently, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is the fourth most commonly diagnosed mental disorder, making it about as prevalent as asthma.

53 Focus of a marathon runner’s training : PACE

The marathon commemorates the legendary messenger-run by Pheidippides from the site of the Battle of Marathon back to Athens, and is run over 26 miles and 385 yards. The first modern Olympic marathon races were run over a distance that approximated the length of the modern-day Marathon-Athens highway, although the actual length of the race varied from games to games. For the 1908 Olympics in London, a course starting at Windsor Castle and ending in front of the Royal Box at White City Stadium was defined. That course was 26 miles and 385 yards, the standard length now used at all Olympic Games. Organizers of subsequent games continued to vary the length of the race, until a decision was made in 1921 to adopt the distance used in London in 1908.

54 Grand opening? : HARD G

The opening letter of the word “grand” is a hard letter G (gee).

59 Dessert with some assembly required : S’MORE

S’mores are treats peculiar to North America that are usually eaten around a campfire. A s’more consists of a roasted marshmallow and a layer of chocolate sandwiched between two graham crackers. The earliest written reference to the recipe is in a 1927 publication called “Tramping and Trailing with the Girl Scouts”. Girl Scouts always did corner the market on cookies and the like!

61 Grammy recipient Lisa : LOEB

Singer Lisa Loeb was discovered by actor Ethan Hawke, who lived just across the street from her in New York City. Hawke took a demo of her song “Stay (I Missed You)” and gave it to director Ben Stiller, who in turn used it over the ending credits of his 1994 movie “Reality Bites”. The movie was a hit, the song went to number one, and Loeb became the first artist ever to hit that number one spot without having signed up with a record label. Good for her!

63 What pro bono lawyers waive : LEGAL FEES

The Latin term “pro bono publico” means “for the public good”, and is usually shortened to “pro bono”. The term applies to professional work that is done for free or at a reduced fee as a service to the public.

65 General mills? : MILITARY ACADEMIES

General Mills was founded in 1928 in Minneapolis with the merger of four mills, most notably one owned by the Washburn-Crosby Company. The newly formed General Mills paid a dividend in the year of its founding, and has paid a dividend every year since then. There are only a few companies that have consistently paid out dividends to their investments for such a long period.

69 The British 20-pence and 50-pence coins, geometrically : HEPTAGONS

The prefixes “hept-” and “sept-” both mean “seven”. The difference is that the former is Greek and the later Latin. “Hept-” is added to roots of Greek origin, and “sept-” to roots of Latin origin e.g. heptagon and September.

71 Member of a South Asian diaspora : DESI

People from the Indian subcontinent might refer to themselves as “desi”.

“Diaspora” is a Greek word meaning “a scattering of seeds”. I guess I’m one of the Irish seeds …

78 Exams offered four times a year, for short : LSATS

Law School Admission Test (LSAT)

81 Grown-up pup : SEAL

Male seals are called bulls, females are cows, and babies are pups.

83 Certain guiding principle : TAO

The name of the Chinese character “tao” translates as “path”, but the concept of Taoism signifies the true nature of the world.

90 Fermented Baltic drink : KVASS

Kvass is an alcoholic beverage made from rye bread that typically has a low-alcohol content (relative to beer, say). Kvass is popular in Eastern and Central European countries.

The Baltic is a sea in northern Europe that is much less saline than the oceans. The lower amount of salt in the Baltic partially explains why almost half of the sea freezes over during the winter. In fact, the Baltic has been known to completely freeze over several times over the past few centuries.

92 Stag’s date? : DOE

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 the females called 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 …

93 Doc treating sinus infections : ENT

The branch of medicine known as “ear, nose and throat” (ENT) is more correctly called “otolaryngology”.

95 Dolphins’ div. : AFC EAST

The Miami Dolphins football team was founded in 1966 by politician Joe Robbie and comedian Danny Thomas.

100 Subj. devoting extra time to idioms : ESL

English as a Second Language (ESL) is sometimes referred to as English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) and English as a Foreign Language (EFL).

102 ___ milk : OAT

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

103 Band aid? : SOUND SYSTEM

“Band-Aid” is a brand name owned by Johnson & Johnson, although like many popular brands “band-aid” has become the generic term for an adhesive bandage, at least here in North America. The generic term we use in Britain and Ireland for the same product is “plaster” …

114 Old navy? : SPANISH ARMADA

The Spanish Armada sailed from Spain with an invasion force intent on overthrowing Queen Elizabeth I of England. The fleet was repulsed by the English, who launched an effective fireship attack on the Spanish. After smaller engagements with the English, the Spanish Armada suffered its greatest losses in severe storms in the North Atlantic that left many vessels wrecked on the coasts of Scotland and Ireland. Of the 130 vessels in the original invading force, only two thirds returned to Spain. The storms that help save Queen Elizabeth I’s throne are often referred to collectively as “the Protestant Wind”.

Old Navy is a store brand founded and owned by The Gap. The name Old Navy was taken from the Old Navy Cafe in Paris.

117 Like many a grillmaster : APRONED

In Old French, a “naperon” was “small table-cloth”. The term was absorbed into English as “napron”, describing a cloth used to cover the front of a person at work. Over time, “a napron” was heard as “an apron”, giving us our contemporary noun “apron”.

118 Supermodel Kate : UPTON

Kate Upton is a fashion model from St. Joseph, Michigan. Kate is a niece of US Representative Fred Upton of Michigan. Kate married professional baseball pitcher Justin Verlander in 2014.

119 Headache helper : ASPIRIN

“Aspirin” used to be a brand name for the drug acetylsalicylic acid. Aspirin was introduced by the German drug company Bayer AG in the late 1800s. As part of the war reparations paid by Germany after WWI, Bayer AG lost the use of the trademark “Aspirin” (as well as the trademark Heroin!) and it became a generic term.

Down

2 Texter’s “Hilarious!” : ROFL!

Rolling on floor laughing (ROFL)

3 Soy something : TOFU

“Tofu” is a name for bean curd, and is a Japanese word meaning just that … bean that has curdled. Tofu is produced by coagulating soy milk, using either salt or something acidic. Once the protein has coagulated, the curds are pressed into the familiar blocks. Personally I love tofu, but my wife, she absolutely hates it …

4 Ones working block by block? : ICEMEN

An iceman is someone who delivers ice to homes. As one might imagine, the occupation was more popular back in the day. Way back when, the ice was harvested from frozen lakes and ponds.

5 Hoodwink : CON

“To hoodwink” has had the meaning “to deceive” since about 1600. Prior to that it meant simply “to blindfold”, and is simply a combination of the words “hood” and “wink”.

7 Certain Ivy Leaguers : ELIS

“Eli” is the nickname for a graduate of Yale University, and a term used in honor of the Yale benefactor Elihu Yale.

8 Pac-12 school, informally : CAL

The University of California, Berkeley (Cal) is the most difficult public university to get into in the world. It opened in 1869, and is named for Anglo-Irish philosopher George Berkeley.

9 Qualification shorthand : FWIW

For what it’s worth (FWIW)

11 Help when writing a letter : STENCIL

A stencil is a sheet of impervious material with perforations in the shape of letters or a design. The stencil is placed over a surface to be printed and then the printing medium is applied, so that the medium only attaches to the surface beneath the perforations.

12 Its national drink is the pisco sour : PERU

Peru’s name comes from the word “Biru”. Back in the early 1500s, Biru was a ruler living near the Bay of San Miguel in Panama. The territory over which Biru ruled was the furthest land south in the Americas known to Europeans at that time. The Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro was the first European to move south of Biru’s empire and the land that he found was designated “Peru”, a derivative of “Biru”.

13 State of disorder : ENTROPY

In the world of thermodynamics, entropy is a measure of disorder in a system. According to the second law of thermodynamics, the entropy of a closed system always increases, the system always tends toward disorder.

14 Some vacation rentals : AIRBNBS

Airbnb is a website-based service that matches people wanting to rent out short-term living quarters to people seeking accommodation. The company was founded in 2008 as AirBed & Breakfast. The original concept was renting out an “air bed” and providing “breakfast” to someone looking for cheap, temporary accommodation.

16 Old pal : CRONY

A crony is a friend or companion. The term originated as slang in Cambridge University in England in the 1600s. “Crony” is probably derived from the Greek “khronios” meaning “long-lasting”.

19 South American capital : PESO

The peso is used in many Spanish-speaking countries around the world. The coin originated in Spain where the word “peso” means “weight”. The original peso was what we know in English as a “piece of eight”, a silver coin of a specific weight that had a nominal value of eight “reales”.

20 Figures : DATA

Our word “data” (singular “datum”) comes from the Latin “datum” meaning “given”. The idea is that data are “things given”.

27 “The power of global trade” sloganeer : DHL

Back in the sixties, Larry Hillblom was making pocket money as a Berkeley law student by doing courier runs between San Francisco and Los Angeles. After law school, Hillblom decided to parlay his experience into his own business and set up a courier service flying bills of lading ahead of freight from San Francisco to Honolulu. He brought in two buddies, Adrian Dalsey and Robert Lynn, as partners and the three were soon hopping on and off commercial flights and gradually making more and more money. And DHL was born … D (for Dalsey) H (for Hillblom) L (for Lynn). DHL was acquired by Germany’s Deutsche Post in 2002.

29 ___ Millions : MEGA

The Mega Millions lottery game is available in most states of the US, as is its major rival called Powerball.

34 Its calendar began in A.D. 622 : ISLAM

What is known as the Muslim era started in with Muhammad’s emigration from Mecca to Medina, defined as year 1 in the Muslim calendar, and AD 622 in the Gregorian calendar.

36 Letters on a stamp : USDA

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) classifies meat into eight different grades:

  • Prime
  • Choice
  • Select
  • Standard
  • Commercial
  • Utility
  • Cutter
  • Canner

38 ___ B or ___ C of the Spice Girls : MEL

“Mel B” is the stage name of Melanie Brown, who came to fame as a member of the Spice Girls musical group. She took the name Mel B to distinguish herself from fellow band member Melanie Chisholm (Melanie C). Mel B was also known as “Scary Spice”, a nickname given to her by the media. American viewers saw Mel B on the TV show “America’s Got Talent” from 2013 through 2019, on which show she served as a judge.

Melanie C is a member of the English girl band the Spice Girls, with whom she has the nickname “Sporty Spice”. “Mel C” got the gig with the Spice Girls by replying to an ad in “The Stage” magazine, and auditioning alongside about 40 women who responded to the same ad. Sporty Spice really is quite sporty, and has completed the London Triathlon … twice.

39 Actor Alan of “Crimes and Misdemeanors” : ALDA

Alan Alda has had a great television career, most notably as a lead actor in “M*A*S*H”. He was born Alphonso D’Abruzzo in the Bronx, New York City. Alda won his first Emmy in 1972, for playing surgeon Hawkeye Pierce on “M*A*S*H”. He also won an Emmy in 2006 for his portrayal of Presidential candidate Senator Arnold Vinick in “The West Wing”. When it comes to the big screen, my favorite of Alda’s movies is the 1978 romantic comedy “Same Time, Next Year” in which he starred opposite Ellen Burstyn.

“Crimes and Misdemeanors” is a 1989 black comedy written and directed by Woody Allen. I’m afraid I am not a fan of Woody Allen’s work, so I have never seen the movie. Alan Alda plays a pompous brother-in-law of the main character, who is played by Woody Allen himself.

44 Feudal lord : 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.

Feudalism was a legal and military system that flourished in medieval Europe. Central to the system were the concepts of lords, vassals and fiefs. Lords would grant fiefs (land or rights) to vassals in exchange for allegiance and service.

46 Brain freeze cause, maybe : ICEE

Icee and Slurpee are brand names of slushy drinks. Ugh …

50 Magic can be seen here : ORLANDO

The Orlando Magic were formed in 1989 as an NBA expansion team. A local paper was asked to run a competition to suggest names for the new team and the community came up with its four top picks of “Heat”, “Tropics”, “Juice” and “Magic”. A committee then opted for “Orlando Magic”. A good choice I think …

60 Airline based near Tel Aviv : EL AL

El Al Israel Airlines is the flag carrier of Israel. The term “el al” translates from Hebrew as “to the skies”. The company started operations in 1948, with a flight from Geneva to Tel Aviv. Famously, El Al only operates six days a week, not flying on the Sabbath.

67 Like the Hmong language : TONAL

The Hmong people are an ethnic group from the mountains of China, Vietnam, Laos and Thailand.

73 Means of divination : TAROT

Tarot cards have been around since the mid-1400s, and for centuries were simply used for entertainment as a game. It has only been since the late 1800s that the cards have been used by fortune tellers to predict the future. The list of tarot cards includes the Wheel of Fortune, the Hanged Man and the Lovers.

77 Indicate availability, in a way : RSVP

“RSVP” stands for “répondez s’il vous plaît”, which is French for “answer, please”.

79 “Weekend, here I come!” : TGIF!

“Thank God It’s Friday” (TGIF) is a relatively new expression that apparently originated in Akron, Ohio. It was a catchphrase used first by disk jockey Jerry Healy of WAKR in the early seventies. That said, one blog reader wrote to me to say that he had been using the phrase in the fifties.

80 Side dish at a barbecue : SUCCOTASH

The main ingredients in succotash are corn and lima beans, although in parts of the South, succotash can be made with any collection of vegetables prepared with lima beans and topped with butter.

85 Upsilon preceder : TAU

Tau is the 19th letter of the Greek alphabet, and the letter that gave rise to our Roman “T”. Both the letters tau (T) and chi (X) have long been symbolically associated with the cross.

Upsilon is the 20th letter in the Greek alphabet, and the character that gives rise to the letter Y that we use in English.

86 Producer of the world’s most widely read consumer catalog : IKEA

The IKEA furniture chain was founded by Ingvar Kamprad in 1943, when he was just 17-years-old. IKEA is an acronym standing for Ingvar Kamprad Elmtaryd Agunnaryd (don’t forget now!). Elmtaryd was the name of the farm where Ingvar Kamprad grew up, and Agunnaryd is his home parish in Sweden.

88 Genre for One Direction : TEEN POP

One Direction is a UK-based boy band. Each member of the band competed in the reality show “The X Factor”, and didn’t do very well. The five were then combined in a boy band at a later stage of the competition. They only finished in third place, but I don’t think they care. They’re doing very, very well for “losers” …

94 Android alternative : IOS

iOS is what Apple now calls its mobile operating system. Previously, it was known as iPhone OS.

97 Sporty wheels : COUPE

The type of car known as a “coupe” or “coupé” is a closed automobile with two doors. The name comes from the French word “couper” meaning “to cut”. In most parts of the English-speaking world the pronunciation adheres to the original French, but here in most of North America we go with “coop”. The original coupé was a horse-drawn carriage that was cut (coupé) to eliminate the rear-facing passenger seats. That left just a driver and two front-facing passengers. If the driver was left without a roof and out in the open, then the carriage was known as a “coupé de-ville”.

98 Eccentric : OUTRE

The word “outré”, meaning “unconventional, bizarre”, comes to us from French, as one might imagine. It is derived from the verb “outrer” meaning “to overdo, exaggerate”. “Outrer” is also the ultimate root of our word “outrage”.

99 Explorer Richard who made the first flight over the South Pole : BYRD

Rear Admiral Richard Byrd was an officer in the US Navy, famous as an aviator and explorer of the polar regions. Byrd was the first person to cross the South Pole by air, in 1929. Three years earlier, Byrd claimed he had flown over the North Pole, and would have been the first person to have done so if this was true. But whether or not Byrd actually made it over the North Pole continues to be the subject of much debate.

103 Lava, e.g. : SOAP

Lava is a brand of soap that was introduced as a heavy-duty cleanser in 1893. Unlike soaps that are marketed using a “soft” image, Lava touts the inclusion of ground pumice that is intended to abrade grime off the skin. Pumice is found in certain types of lava ejected from a volcano, hence the name of the soap.

105 Omar of “Love & Basketball” : EPPS

Omar Epps is the actor who played Eric Foreman on the excellent television series “House”. Prior to playing Dr. Foreman, Epps had a recurring role playing Dr. Dennis Gant on “ER”. And, in another link to the world of medicine, Epps was born in Savannah, Georgia to single mom, Dr. Bonnie Epps.

110 What nyctophobia is the fear of : DARK

Nyctophobia is a fear of the dark or of the night. The term “nyctophobia” ultimately derives from “nyx”, the Greek word for “night”.

111 Slobbery cartoon character : ODIE

Jon Arbuckle is a fictional character, and the owner of Odie from Jim Davis’s comic strip “Garfield”. Garfield is Arbuckle’s orange tabby cat. Odie is his less-than-smart beagle.

116 Tech sch. in Troy, N.Y. : RPI

The Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) is a private school in Troy, New York. The university is named after its founder Stephen Van Rensselaer who set up the school in 1824. The goal of RPI has always been the “application of science to the common purposes of life”, an objective set by the founder. Given that, the name for the school’s sports teams is quite apt: the Engineers.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 A is one : ARTICLE
8 Ozone-harming compounds, for short : CFCS
12 Actor Guy : PEARCE
18 “How awesome!” : TOO COOL!
19 Play with, as a cat might a toy mouse : PAW AT
20 Naysayers : DENIERS
21 Five guys? : OFFENSIVE LINE
23 It might have desks and drawers : ART ROOM
24 Shade of purple : PLUM
25 Those: Sp. : ESOS
26 Green giant? : WIND TURBINE
28 Ambulance driver, for short : EMT
30 Finished first : WON
32 “___-ching!” : CHA
33 Just : ONLY
34 Like basalt and obsidian : IGNEOUS
37 Something sent on a Listserv : EMAIL
40 Police broadcast, for short : APB
41 “Special Agent ___” (animated Disney show about a bear) : OSO
42 Main character in Larry McMurtry’s “Lonesome Dove” : GUS
43 Apt name for a Christmas caroler? : EWELL
44 ___ Clarendon, first openly transgender W.N.B.A. player : LAYSHIA
48 Jolly rancher? : OLD MACDONALD
51 Hole : PIT
52 Diagnosis characterized by repetitive behavior, in brief : OCD
53 Focus of a marathon runner’s training : PACE
54 Grand opening? : HARD G
55 Sides (with) : AGREES
58 ___ school : MED
59 Dessert with some assembly required : S’MORE
61 Grammy recipient Lisa : LOEB
63 What pro bono lawyers waive : LEGAL FEES
65 General mills? : MILITARY ACADEMIES
69 The British 20-pence and 50-pence coins, geometrically : HEPTAGONS
71 Member of a South Asian diaspora : DESI
72 Photo finish : MATTE
75 Every last drop : ALL
76 Bank, often : LENDER
78 Exams offered four times a year, for short : LSATS
81 Grown-up pup : SEAL
82 “I promise I won’t laugh,” often : LIE
83 Certain guiding principle : TAO
84 Texas instruments? : STEEL GUITARS
87 Meadow grass with brushlike spikes : FOXTAIL
90 Fermented Baltic drink : KVASS
91 “Ugh, gross” : ICK
92 Stag’s date? : DOE
93 Doc treating sinus infections : ENT
94 X, in linear functions : INPUT
95 Dolphins’ div. : AFC EAST
97 Like many a company softball game : COED
99 “That stinks!” : BOO!
100 Subj. devoting extra time to idioms : ESL
102 ___ milk : OAT
103 Band aid? : SOUND SYSTEM
107 Truce : PACT
109 Litter box emanation : ODOR
113 Efflux : OUTPOUR
114 Old navy? : SPANISH ARMADA
117 Like many a grillmaster : APRONED
118 Supermodel Kate : UPTON
119 Headache helper : ASPIRIN
120 Took a little look : PEEPED
121 [Hey, over here!] : [PSST!]
122 Rough patch : THICKET

Down

1 Standing on : ATOP
2 Texter’s “Hilarious!” : ROFL!
3 Soy something : TOFU
4 Ones working block by block? : ICEMEN
5 Hoodwink : CON
6 Drift apart : LOSE TOUCH
7 Certain Ivy Leaguers : ELIS
8 Pac-12 school, informally : CAL
9 Qualification shorthand : FWIW
10 “Ple-e-e-ease?” : CAN I?
11 Help when writing a letter : STENCIL
12 Its national drink is the pisco sour : PERU
13 State of disorder : ENTROPY
14 Some vacation rentals : AIRBNBS
15 Lube up again : RE-OIL
16 Old pal : CRONY
17 Actress ___ Creed-Miles : ESME
19 South American capital : PESO
20 Figures : DATA
22 Statements of will? : VOWS
27 “The power of global trade” sloganeer : DHL
29 ___ Millions : MEGA
31 Into crystals and auras, say : NEW-AGEY
34 Its calendar began in A.D. 622 : ISLAM
35 Inflated feeling of infallibility : GOD COMPLEX
36 Letters on a stamp : USDA
38 ___ B or ___ C of the Spice Girls : MEL
39 Actor Alan of “Crimes and Misdemeanors” : ALDA
40 Binghamton Rumble Ponies or Birmingham Barons : AA TEAM
41 “My b!” : OOPS!
43 Sign : ENDORSE
44 Feudal lord : LIEGE
45 Plots of western films? : HOMESTEADS
46 Brain freeze cause, maybe : ICEE
47 Does a summer job? : ADDS
49 Warrant : MERIT
50 Magic can be seen here : ORLANDO
51 Relating to land, old-style : PREDIAL
56 They can help you see or taste : GLASSES
57 Like the odds of finding a needle in a haystack : SLIM
60 Airline based near Tel Aviv : EL AL
62 Deserving of a timeout, say : BAD
64 Big spread : FEAST
66 “No need to elaborate” : I GET IT
67 Like the Hmong language : TONAL
68 ___ Ng, author of “Little Fires Everywhere” : CELESTE
69 12/24, e.g. : HALF
70 ___ Perlman, role for Timothée Chalamet in “Call Me by Your Name” : ELIO
73 Means of divination : TAROT
74 “What ___?” : ELSE
77 Indicate availability, in a way : RSVP
79 “Weekend, here I come!” : TGIF!
80 Side dish at a barbecue : SUCCOTASH
85 Upsilon preceder : TAU
86 Producer of the world’s most widely read consumer catalog : IKEA
88 Genre for One Direction : TEEN POP
89 “… finished!” : AND … DONE!
90 Ties : KNOTS UP
94 Android alternative : IOS
95 Exclamation after a sigh : ALAS
96 Teeny-tiny : ATOMIC
97 Sporty wheels : COUPE
98 Eccentric : OUTRE
99 Explorer Richard who made the first flight over the South Pole : BYRD
101 Attempt to control the narrative, in a way : SPIN
103 Lava, e.g. : SOAP
104 Took to court : SUED
105 Omar of “Love & Basketball” : EPPS
106 Rolls around while exercising? : MATS
108 Quick talk : CHAT
110 What nyctophobia is the fear of : DARK
111 Slobbery cartoon character : ODIE
112 “___ over” (words after letting off steam) : RANT
115 Often-contracted word : NOT
116 Tech sch. in Troy, N.Y. : RPI

13 thoughts on “0801-21 NY Times Crossword 1 Aug 21, Sunday”

  1. Hmmm. Maybe I really am finally losing it … 😜. For the second day in a row, I struggled with the NYT crossword: 46:33 after fixing a typo (at which point I was greatly surprised not to have a bunch of other typos, considering how many missteps I had had to correct along the way). Again, though … AWTEW!

  2. 37:32 with an error at FeXTAIL (??). Liked the theme.

    I tried KVASS a few times in Russia. It’s sweet like a soda. I didn’t realize it had any alcohol in it. And it tastes like bread. If you could imagine “bread soda” that’s what it tastes like. They go nuts for it over there. I didn’t hate it, but I didn’t share their enthusiasm either.

    Best –

  3. 40:09 With two lookups. Also struggled with this one. Seemed like there were quite a lot of proper name answers.

  4. This one took 2 hours and I couldn’t come up with 9D which IMO was one of many VERY misleading clues…no errors in the rest of the puzzle FWIW!
    The theme “off brand” should have been “off the wall” IMO.
    Didn’t care for this one at all👎👎
    Stay safe😀

  5. Ok puzzle.. mix of names then boom , odd clues spattered…
    Like @ANON, succotash at a barbecue??
    and what the heck is a NEW AGEY?

  6. “New Agey” is the adjective describing a “New Ager,” which as the clue indicates is stereotypically someone into “crystals and auras” and other woo-woo stuff.

    (And I’d pronounce “Ewell” as “E-Well,” not as something close to “Yule,” but maybe that’s just me. Yes, I know about Mr. Gibbons, but I thought that pronounciation was unusual rather than standard.)

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