0802-21 NY Times Crossword 2 Aug 21, Monday

Constructed by: Kyra Wilson
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answer Weather Front

Themed answers each feature a WEATHER phenomenon at the FRONT, start:

  • 52A What precedes a storm … or a hint to 20-, 29- or 43-Across : WEATHER FRONT
  • 20A Service offered by Dropbox : CLOUD STORAGE
  • 29A Firefly : LIGHTNING BUG
  • 43A Classic Corvette alternatives : THUNDERBIRDS

Bill’s time: 4m 54s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

13 Where Honolulu is : OAHU

Honolulu is the largest city in Hawaii, and the state capital. Located on the island of Oahu, the name “Honolulu” translates from Hawaiian as “place of shelter, calm port, sheltered bay”.

16 New York’s ___ City Music Hall : RADIO

New York City’s Radio City Music Hall in Rockefeller Center opened for business in 1932. Originally to be named International Music Hall, the current name was chosen in honor of the Radio Corporation of America, which was one of Rockefeller Center’s first tenants.

18 Roman emperor who said before dying “What an artist the world is losing in me!” : NERO

Nero was Emperor of Rome from 54 to 68 CE, and towards the end of his reign participated in the Olympic Games in the year 67. The Roman leader raced in a ten-horse chariot, of which he lost control and nearly perished after being thrown from the vehicle. Acting and singing were Olympic events back then, and Nero also took part in those competitions. By all accounts, Nero performed badly in every event in which he vied, and yet somehow still managed to win Olympic crowns that he paraded around Rome on his return from Greece. Just before he died, Nero reportedly declared, “What an artist the world is losing in me!”

20 Service offered by Dropbox : CLOUD STORAGE

Dropbox is a big name in the world of cloud data storage.

23 F.D.R.’s successor : HST

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

24 Computer for Apple pickers? : MAC

Macintosh (also “Mac”, since 1998) is a line of computers from Apple Inc. The first Macintosh was introduced in 1984, and I remember someone showing me one at work in those early days of personal computing. There was a piece of white plastic connected to the main computer by a cord, and I was amazed when the guy showed me that it controlled where the cursor was on the screen. My colleague told me that this lump of plastic was called “a mouse” …

25 Kitchenware brand : OXO

The OXO line of kitchen utensils and housewares is designed to be ergonomically superior to the average household tools. The intended user of OXO products is someone who doesn’t have the normal range of motion or strength in the hands e.g. someone suffering from arthritis.

29 Firefly : LIGHTNING BUG

Some living organisms are able to produce light, a phenomenon known as “bioluminescence”. A famous example on land is the firefly, with its glowing tail. There are many marine animals, such as jellyfish, that emit light. The frequently observed bioluminescence on the surface of the sea is usually caused by plankton. This phenomenon may be referred to as “sea fire”.

32 Place to play roulette : CASINO

The term “roulette” means “little wheel” in French, and the game as we know it today did in fact originate in Paris, in 1796. A roulette wheel bears the numbers 1-36. A French entrepreneur called François Blanc introduced the number “0” on the wheel, to give the house an extra advantage. Legend has it that Blanc made a deal with the devil in order to unearth the secrets of roulette. The legend is supported by the fact that the numbers 1 through 36 add up to a total of “666”, which is the “Number of the Beast”. Spooky …

38 Jean-___ Picard, Starfleet commander : LUC

When Gene Roddenberry was creating the “Star Trek” spin-off series “Star Trek: The Next Generation”, I think he chose a quite magnificent name for the new starship captain. “Jean-Luc Picard” is imitative of one or both of the twin-brother Swiss scientists Auguste and Jean Felix Piccard. The role of Picard was played by the wonderful Shakespearean actor Patrick Stewart.

39 Get the shampoo out : RINSE

Back in the 1760s, the verb “to shampoo” was an Anglo-Indian word meaning “to massage”. A century later we started to shampoo our hair.

40 What’s pulled through a pulley : ROPE

Even though the word “sheave” is used interchangeably with “pulley”, the sheave is actually the pulley’s grooved wheel, over which runs a rope or belt.

41 May honoree : MOM

Note the official punctuation in “Mother’s Day”, even though one might think it should be “Mothers’ Day”. President Wilson and Anna Jarvis, who created the tradition, specifically wanted Mother’s Day to honor the mothers within each family and not just “mothers” in general, so they went with the “Mother’s Day” punctuation.

43 Classic Corvette alternatives : THUNDERBIRDS

Ford manufactured the Thunderbird (T-Bird) from 1955 to 2005. Originally a two-seater sporty convertible, the T-Bird was introduced as a competitor to Chevrolet’s new sports car, the Corvette. The “Thunderbird” name is a reference to a legendary creature from the culture of several Native-American peoples. There’s also a story that the name is a direct reference to the Thunderbird Country Club in Rancho Mirage, California of which the then chairman of Ford’s board was a member.

The Chevrolet Corvette was introduced to the world in 1953, and was named after the small maneuverable warship called a corvette. The “Vette” has legs. It is the only American sports car that has been around for over 50 years.

46 Maple product : SAP

About 75% of the world’s maple syrup comes from the province of Quebec. The US’s biggest producer is the state of Vermont, which produces 5-6% of the world’s supply.

47 GPS option: Abbr. : RTE

A global positioning system (GPS) might point out a route (rte.).

52 What precedes a storm … or a hint to 20-, 29- or 43-Across : WEATHER FRONT

A cold front is the leading edge of a relatively cold mass of air, and a warm front is the leading edge of a warm mass of air. Both warm and cold fronts can bring rain to the land below.

60 Glass that refracts light : 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.

62 To ___ a phrase : COIN

To coin a phrase is to invent a new phrase or expression. The greatest “coiner” of them all has to be William Shakespeare. Here are a few everyday expressions that were created by the Bard:

  • The game is afoot (Henry IV, Part I)
  • Brave new world (The Tempest)
  • Break the ice (The Taming of the Shrew)
  • Dead as a doornail (Henry VI, Part II)
  • Eaten me out of house and home (Henry IV, Part II)
  • Forever and a day (As You Like It)
  • For goodness’ sake (Henry VIII)
  • Knock knock! Who’s there? (Macbeth)
  • Set my teeth on edge (Henry IV, Part I)
  • Wild-goose chase (Romeo and Juliet)

63 Sorry! and Trouble, for two : GAMES

Sorry! is a board game that dates back at least to 1934 when it was introduced in the UK market by Waddingtons. The game itself is based on the ancient game of pachisi, and involves players racing against each other to move their playing pieces around the board as quickly as possible. Players can cause opponents to return to the start, hopefully while saying “Sorry!” in the process.

The board game Trouble was introduced in the US in 1965, and is very similar to the competing game Sorry! that was already on the market. Both games are in turn based on the ancient game of Pachisi. The big selling feature of Trouble was the Pop-O-Matic dice container in the center of the board. I remember it well …

Down

4 Ballerina wear : TUTU

The word “tutu”, used for a ballet dancer’s skirt, is actually a somewhat “naughty” term. It came into English from French in the early 20th century. The French “tutu” is an alteration of the word “cucu”, a childish word meaning “bottom, backside”.

6 Gripe : KVETCH

The word “kvetch” comes to us from Yiddish, with “kvetshn” meaning “to complain” or “squeeze”.

7 Deutsche mark replacer : EURO

One of the currencies replaced by the euro was Germany’s Deutsche Mark (known as “deutschmark” in English).

9 Happening once in a blue moon : RARE

As there is a full moon once every four weeks, approximately monthly, there are usually twelve full moons in any given year. However, every 2-3 years, depending on the phase of the moon at the beginning of the calendar year, there may be a thirteenth full moon. The “extra” full moon is called a “blue moon”, although no one seems to really know why the term “blue” is used, as far as I can tell. Which of the thirteen full moons that is designated as the blue moon varies depending on tradition. My favorite definition is from the Farmer’s Almanac. It states that as each of the seasons normally has three full moons (one for each calendar month), then the season with four full moons is designated as “special”, then the third (and not the fourth) full moon in that “special” season is the blue moon. Complicated, huh?

11 What you have to remember to use an A.T.M. : PIN

One enters a Personal Identification Number (PIN) when using an Automated Teller Machine (ATM). Given that the N in PIN stands for “number”, then “PIN number” is a redundant phrase. And, given that the M in ATM stands for “machine”, then “ATM machine” is a redundant phrase as well. Grr …!

12 Drunkard : SOT

Our word “sot” comes from the Old English “sott”, meaning “fool”. The word “sot” started to be associated with alcohol and not just foolery in the late 1500s. The derivative term “besotted” means “muddled with drunkenness”, or more figuratively “infatuated”.

15 Completely stupid : MORONIC

The unsavory word “moron” was formerly used by the medical community to describe someone with a degree of mental retardation. The term comes from the Greek “moros” meaning “foolish, dull”. Back in the early 1900s, IQ tests were used to classify those suffering from mental retardation into categories:

  • “idiot” … IQ of 0-20
  • “imbecile” … IQ of 21-50
  • “moron” …IQ of 51-70

21 Contacting privately via Twitter or Instagram : DM’ING

Direct message (DM)

22 x, y or z, in geometry : AXIS

The X- and Y-axes are used to define points in a plane. Once the third dimension is added, then in addition to “area” we have “depth”. That third dimension is conventionally called the Z-axis.

33 Greeting in Hawaii : ALOHA

The Hawaiian word “aloha” has many meanings in English: affection, love, peace, compassion and mercy. More recently, “aloha” has come to mean “hello” and “goodbye”, but only since the mid-1800s.

38 Country singer Lynn : LORETTA

Singer Loretta Lynn is sometimes referred to as the First Lady of Country Music. Lynn was born in 1932 in Butcher Hollow, Kentucky to a coal miner and his wife, and so famously is also referred to as “the Coal Miner’s Daughter”. Her much younger sister (by 19 years) is the singer Crystal Gayle.

41 Self-referential : META

In recent decades the prefix “meta-” has been used as a standalone adjective. In this sense “meta” means “self-referential”, describing something that refers to itself. For example, “This sentence starts with the word ‘this’ and ends with the word ‘this’” might be called a meta sentence. A movie that is about the making of the very same movie could also be described as meta.

49 Injection that conceals wrinkles : BOTOX

Botulinum toxin is produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. The toxin is a protein that can cause botulism, an extremely dangerous illness in humans and animals. Botulinum toxin is sold under the trade name “Botox”. Botox is used therapeutically and in cosmetic applications to weaken muscles, perhaps muscles that are in an uncontrollable spasm. The cosmetic application involves the paralyzing of facial muscles in order to eliminate or reduce wrinkles, at least for a few months.

51 Is a huge fan of, in modern slang : STANS

“Stan” is a song by rapper Eminem (featuring Dido) that was recorded in 2000. The title refers to a fictional Eminem fan named “Stan” who becomes obsessed with the rapper, and who grows irate when his letters to his idol go unanswered. Stan’s final act is to make a voice recording as he drives into a river, with his pregnant girlfriend locked in the trunk. One of the legacies of the song is that “stan” is now used as a slang term for an obsessed and maniacal fan.

52 Like an owl, in a simile : WISE

The Greek goddess Athena (sometimes “Athene”) is often associated with wisdom, among other attributes. In many representations. Athena is depicted with an owl sitting on her head. It is this linkage of the owl with the goddess of wisdom that led to today’s perception of the owl as being “wise”. Athena’s Roman counterpart was Minerva.

53 Patriot Nathan : HALE

Nathan Hale fought for the Continental Army during the American Revolution, and was most famous for operating as a spy against the British. It was Nathan Hale who uttered the words, just before he was hanged by his British captors, “I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country”.

55 Fuel efficiency stat : MPG

Miles per gallon (mpg)

56 Victorian ___ : ERA

The Victorian era was a period in British history from 1837 to 1901 that is defined by the reign of Queen Victoria. Generally speaking, the Victorian era was a period of peace and prosperity for the UK. How times have changed …

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 “Hey, over here!” : PSST!
5 Just manage, with “by” : EKE …
8 Bits of rain or dew : DROPS
13 Where Honolulu is : OAHU
14 Egg to be fertilized : OVUM
16 New York’s ___ City Music Hall : RADIO
17 Laugh ___ (something very funny) : RIOT
18 Roman emperor who said before dying “What an artist the world is losing in me!” : NERO
19 “Well, ___ we all?” : AREN’T
20 Service offered by Dropbox : CLOUD STORAGE
23 F.D.R.’s successor : HST
24 Computer for Apple pickers? : MAC
25 Kitchenware brand : OXO
26 A megalomaniac has a big one : EGO
29 Firefly : LIGHTNING BUG
32 Place to play roulette : CASINO
35 That guy’s : HIS
36 Train travel : RAIL
37 “Can’t we all just get ___?” : ALONG
38 Jean-___ Picard, Starfleet commander : LUC
39 Get the shampoo out : RINSE
40 What’s pulled through a pulley : ROPE
41 May honoree : MOM
42 Less cooked in the center, say : PINKER
43 Classic Corvette alternatives : THUNDERBIRDS
46 Maple product : SAP
47 GPS option: Abbr. : RTE
48 Sticky stuff : GOO
49 Word after school or party : … BUS
52 What precedes a storm … or a hint to 20-, 29- or 43-Across : WEATHER FRONT
55 TV, newspapers, etc. : MEDIA
58 “Goodbye, my friend!” : TA-TA!
59 Lead-in to girl : ATTA …
60 Glass that refracts light : PRISM
61 Came down, as to earth : ALIT
62 To ___ a phrase : COIN
63 Sorry! and Trouble, for two : GAMES
64 Summer: Fr. : ETE
65 Past partners : EXES

Down

1 Place to hang wind chimes : PORCH
2 Goes by ship, say : SAILS
3 “Dang it!” : SHOOT!
4 Ballerina wear : TUTU
5 Wa-a-a-ay in the past : EONS AGO
6 Gripe : KVETCH
7 Deutsche mark replacer : EURO
8 Figure seen during Chinese New Year : DRAGON
9 Happening once in a blue moon : RARE
10 Tribute poem : ODE
11 What you have to remember to use an A.T.M. : PIN
12 Drunkard : SOT
15 Completely stupid : MORONIC
21 Contacting privately via Twitter or Instagram : DM’ING
22 x, y or z, in geometry : AXIS
26 Manage one’s account via the internet : E-BANK
27 Outward appearance : GUISE
28 Gawker : OGLER
29 Napkins, tablecloths, etc. : LINEN
30 A green one is helpful in a garden : THUMB
31 Smiles : GRINS
32 Grocery conveniences : CARTS
33 Greeting in Hawaii : ALOHA
34 Absorb, as gravy : SOP UP
38 Country singer Lynn : LORETTA
39 Free from : RID OF
41 Self-referential : META
42 Apportion, as costs : PRORATE
44 Night visions : DREAMS
45 “You’ve said that already! Jeez!” : I GET IT!
49 Injection that conceals wrinkles : BOTOX
50 Loosen, as laces : UNTIE
51 Is a huge fan of, in modern slang : STANS
52 Like an owl, in a simile : WISE
53 Patriot Nathan : HALE
54 10K or marathon : RACE
55 Fuel efficiency stat : MPG
56 Victorian ___ : ERA
57 Not bright : DIM

7 thoughts on “0802-21 NY Times Crossword 2 Aug 21, Monday”

  1. 5:17, no errors. No struggling with this one. And, as a former employee of the National Center for Atmospheric Research, I appreciated the theme … 😜.

    (Every so often, I find NCAR in a crossword puzzle grid, but it’s always clued with a reference to North Carolina. Sigh … 😳.)

  2. 5:39. I read 52D as “Like an owl, in a smile”….so the answer didn’t make a lot of sense at first. Pays to read more slowly.

    Best –

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