0903-21 NY Times Crossword 3 Sep 21, Friday

Constructed by: Brendan Emmett Quigley & Paolo Pasco
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme None

Bill’s time: 16m 56s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

13 Home to Waianuenue Falls : HILO

Hilo is the largest settlement on the Big Island of Hawaii, and has a population of over 43,000 (that’s not very many!). I love the Big Island …

14 0, for 0° : SINE

The most familiar trigonometric functions are sine, cosine and tangent (abbreviated to “sin, cos and tan”). Each of these is a ratio: a ratio of two sides of a right-angled triangle. The “reciprocal” of these three functions are cosecant, secant and cotangent. The reciprocal functions are simply the inverted ratios, the inverted sine, cosine and tangent. These inverted ratios should not be confused with the “inverse” trigonometric functions e.g. arcsine, arccosine and arctangent. These inverse functions are the reverse of the sine, cosine and tangent.

16 One-___ punch (kung fu technique) : INCH

In the West, we sometimes use the term “kung fu” to describe a Chinese martial art. We’ve gotten the wrong idea though, as the term “kung fu” really describes any skill that can be learned through dedication and hard work. So, “kung fu” can indeed describe a martial art, but by no means exclusively.

23 Amusement, online : LOLS

Apparently, the text-speak “LOLZ” is the plural form of LOL (laugh out loud).

25 ___ theory : SET

Georg Cantor was the mathematician who invented set theory in the 1870s, along with Richard Dedekind.

28 Filter feeder’s fodder : KRILL

Krill are small, shrimp-like crustaceans that live in the oceans. Krill feed on plankton, and in turn, krill are the main part of the diet of larger animals such as whales, seals and penguins. There’s an awful lot of krill in the world, an estimated 500,000,000 tonnes of it. That’s about twice the biomass of humans on the planet!

33 Table salt is made of them : IONS

An ionic bond is formed between two oppositely-charged ions. A common example is the bond between positively-charged sodium atoms and negatively-charged chlorine atoms to form table salt (NaCl). A covalent bond, on the other hand, is formed when two atoms share electrons. Atoms sharing electrons tend to be stable, so they prefer to stay together rather than apart.

34 Some natural history museum exhibits, for short : DINOS

The largest and best-preserved dinosaur fossil ever found can be seen on display at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago. The fossil is a Tyrannosaurus rex that is thought to have weighed over 7 tons when alive. It was discovered in South Dakota in 1990 by paleontologist Sue Hendrickson. The specimen is nicknamed “Sue” after Hendrickson.

38 Podcaster Marc : MARON

Stand-up comedian Marc Maron has been hosting the podcast “WTF with Marc Maron” since 2009. The online show features interviews with comedians and celebrities. The list of interviewees is pretty impressive, and includes Conan O’Brien, Robin Williams and even President Barack Obama.

39 Names : IDS

Identity document (ID)

40 Senegal-to-Togo dir. : ESE

The Republic of Senegal is a country on the far western coast of Africa. For many years Senegal was a French colony, gaining independence in 1960. The capital of Senegal is Dakar. Dakar is located on the Cap-Vert Peninsula that juts out into the Atlantic Ocean, thus making it the westernmost capital on the African mainland.

Togo is a country on the West African coast, and one of the smallest nations on the continent. It is located between Ghana to the west, Benin to the east and Burkina Faso to the north.

41 Actress Chaplin : OONA

Oona Chaplin is an actress from Madrid in Spain. Chaplin is getting a lot of airtime these days as she plays Talisa Maegyr on HBO’s hit fantasy series “Game of Thrones”. Oona is the granddaughter of Charlie Chaplin, and is named for her maternal grandmother Oona O’Neill, the daughter of playwright Eugene O’Neill.

47 Collection of 10 directives written by Vladimir Lenin : APRIL THESES

The “April Theses” were a set of directives issued in 1917 by Vladimir Lenin as the leader of the Bolsheviks. The directives were basically a call for the Bolsheviks to take power after the abdication of Tsar Nicholas II and the end of the Imperial Empire with the February Revolution. The directives are often cited as an impetus for the October Revolution that followed a few months later, which brought the Bolsheviks to power.

52 “Bearing gifts we traverse ___” (“We Three Kings” lyric) : AFAR

The Christmas carol “We Three Kings” is a favorite of mine. The carol was written in 1857 by the rector of an Episcopal church in Williamsport, Pennsylvania called John Henry Hopkins, Jr. Hopkins composed “We Three Kings” for a Christmas pageant in New York City.

53 Mohawk Valley city : UTICA

Utica in New York is known as “Second Chance City” these days, due to the recent influx of refugees from war-torn parts of the world and from Bosnia in particular. These immigrants have helped revitalize the area and reverse a trend of population loss.

The Mohawk Valley is a region in New York state located between the Adirondack and Catskill Mountains. Centered on the Mohawk river, the area includes the cities of Schenectady, Utica and Rome.

56 2020 Christopher Nolan sci-fi thriller : TENET

British director Christopher Nolan is best known for “rescuing” the floundering Batman movie franchise. In that series, Nolan directed “Batman Begins” and “The Dark Knight”. He was also at the helm of a couple of sci-fi movies that I really enjoyed, namely “Inception” (2010) and “Interstellar” (2014).

Down

1 Pants material : CHINO

Chino is a twill cloth that is most often used to make hard-wearing pants. The pants have come to be referred to as chinos. Chino cloth was originally developed for use by the military, but quickly became popular with civilians.

2 Pants material : LINEN

The term “pants”, meaning “trousers”, is an abbreviated form of “pantaloons” and first appeared in the 1840s. Pantaloons were a kind of tights named for a silly old male character in Italian comedy named “Pantaloun” who always wore tight trousers over skinny legs.

3 Role for Malcolm-Jamal Warner on “The People v. O. J. Simpson” : AL COWLINGS

Al Cowlings is a retired NFL footballer who is perhaps most famous for an incident that took place off the field. It was Cowling who drove the white Ford Bronco in the low-speed chase through Los Angeles that preceded O.J Simpson’s arrest for the murder of Nicole Brown and Ronald Goldman.

Malcolm-Jamal Warner was the child actor who played Theo Huxtable on “The Cosby Show”. You can see the grown-up Warner today, playing Dr. Alex Reed on the BET sitcom “Reed Between the Lines”.

7 Site for a movie poster? : MEDIA BLOG

Many folks who visit this website regard it as just that, a website. That is true, but more specifically it is referred to as a blog, as I make regular posts (actually daily posts) that then occupy the “front page” of the site. The blog entries are in reverse chronological order, and one can just look back day-by-day, reading older and older posts. “Blog” is a contraction of the term “web log”.

9 Actor John of Broadway’s “Carousel” : RAITT

John Raitt was an actor and singer best known for his roles in Broadway musicals such as “Carousel”, “Oklahoma!” and “The Pajama Game”.

14 Casino game that’s 100% luck : SLOTS

Slot machines earned the nickname “one-armed bandits” simply because they had “one arm”, the handle pulled to operate the machine. Well, they also rob your money!

18 Beings made from smokeless fire, in the Quran : GENIES

The “genie” in the bottle takes his or her name from “djinn”. “Djinns” were various spirits considered lesser than angels, with people exhibiting unsavory characteristics said to be possessed by djinn. When the book “The Thousand and One Nights” was translated into French, the word “djinn” was transformed into the existing word “génie”, because of the similarity in sound and the related spiritual meaning. This “génie” from the Arabian tale became confused with the Latin-derived “genius”, a guardian spirit thought to be assigned to each person at birth. Purely as a result of that mistranslation the word genie has come to mean the “djinn” that pops out of the bottle. A little hard to follow, I know, but still quite interesting …

22 British composer Gustav : HOLST

Despite the Scandinavian-sounding name, Gustav Holst was born in Britain and was the most English of classical composers. His most famous work is the orchestral suite known as ‘The Planets”. The suite has seven movements, one for each of the planets known at the time (1914-1916) except Earth. Pluto was discovered during Holst’s lifetime, but decades after he had completed his masterpiece. Anyway, Pluto was relegated from the league of planets …

26 Brand whose last letter is in the shape of its product : EGGO

Eggo is a line of frozen waffles and related products made by Kellogg’s. When they were introduced in the 1930s, the name “Eggo” was chosen to promote the “egginess” of the batter. “Eggo” replaced “Froffles”, the original name chosen by melding “frozen” and “waffles”.

28 Christchurch resident : KIWI

Unlike many nicknames for people of a particular country, the name “Kiwi” for a New Zealander isn’t offensive at all. The term comes from the flightless bird called the kiwi, which is endemic to New Zealand and is the country’s national symbol. “Kiwi” is a Maori word, and the plural (when referring to the bird) is simply “kiwi”. However, when you have two or more New Zealanders with you, they are Kiwis (note the “s”, and indeed the capital “K”!).

Christchurch is the third most-populous city in New Zealand (after Auckland and Wellington, the capital). Christchurch is also the largest city on New Zealand’s South Island. The city is named for Christ Church, the Oxford college attended by Irishman John Robert Godley who founded the Canterbury region of New Zealand.

31 Artist in the avant-garde Fluxus movement : ONO

Yoko Ono is an avant-garde artist. Ono actually met her future husband John Lennon for the first time while she was preparing her conceptual art exhibit called “Hammer a Nail”. Visitors were encouraged to hammer in a nail into a wooden board, creating the artwork. Lennon wanted to hammer in the first nail, but Ono stopped him as the exhibition had not yet opened. Apparently Ono relented when Lennon paid her an imaginary five shillings to hammer an imaginary nail into the wood.

Someone or something described as avant-garde is especially innovative. “Avant-garde” is French for “advance guard”.

32 Actress Glazer : ILANA

Ilana Glazer is a comedian from Long Island, New York. Glazer is the co-creator of the Comedy Central sitcom “Broad City” along with comedian Abbi Jacobson.

34 Old automaker with the models Firedome, Fireflite and Firesweep : DESOTO

The DeSoto brand of car was built by Chrysler from 1928 to 1961. The line was named after the Spanish explorer and conquistador, Hernando de Soto, widely reported as the first European to have crossed the Mississippi River (although Cabeza de Vaca had at least discovered one of the mouths of the Mississippi twenty years earlier).

37 W.W. II aircraft carrier : HELLCAT

I’m not sure this clue is correct. As far as I know, the Hellcat was a carrier-launched aircraft, and not an aircraft carrier.

The F6F Hellcat was the mainstay carrier-borne aircraft for the US Navy during WWII. The Hellcat also saw service with the British Fleet Air Arm under the Lend-Lease Act.

38 May celebrants : MOMS

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.

42 Enchantress in Greek myth : CIRCE

Circe was a minor goddess in Greek mythology. The goddess of magic, she was fond of transforming those who did not please her into animals by using magical potions. In Homer’s “Odyssey”, Odysseus was given the herb called “moly” to protect him from the magical powers of Circe.

44 FAQ checkers : USERS

Most websites have a page listing answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). Even this blog has one!

46 Longtime mint brand that doesn’t contain any mint : CERTS

Certs were the first breath mints to be marketed nationally in the US, hitting the shelves in 1956. A Cert is called a mint, but it isn’t really as it contains no mint oil and instead has its famous ingredient named “Retsyn”. Retsyn is a mixture of copper gluconate (giving the green flecks), partially hydrogenated cottonseed oil (not healthy!) and flavoring (maybe mint?).

48 Sneaky ___ : PETE

“Sneaky Pete” is a slang term for cheap fortified wine that is often associated with down-and-outs sleeping rough on skid row.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Covered up : CLAD
5 Robinson of TV’s “I Think You Should Leave” : TIM
8 Charity bowling event, e.g. : PRO-AM
13 Home to Waianuenue Falls : HILO
14 0, for 0° : SINE
15 Conspicuously unfamiliar party guest, informally : RANDO
16 One-___ punch (kung fu technique) : INCH
17 Frequent rock soloist : LEAD GUITAR
19 Liberal leader? : NEO-
20 Words before “Yes, I cried, yes I cried” in “Return of the Mack” : YOU LIED TO ME
21 “When has that ever been true?” : ON WHAT PLANET?
23 Amusement, online : LOLS
24 Trash collector : BIN
25 ___ theory : SET
28 Filter feeder’s fodder : KRILL
30 “In that case, move on!” : SO, LET IT GO!
33 Table salt is made of them : IONS
34 Some natural history museum exhibits, for short : DINOS
35 Brand image : LOGO
36 Create a diversion from a damaging issue, in politics : WAG THE DOG
38 Podcaster Marc : MARON
39 Names : IDS
40 Senegal-to-Togo dir. : ESE
41 Actress Chaplin : OONA
42 Show of hands? : CLOSE-UP MAGIC
47 Collection of 10 directives written by Vladimir Lenin : APRIL THESES
50 Animal whose name sounds like you? : EWE
51 Place to get a cold brew : BEER COOLER
52 “Bearing gifts we traverse ___” (“We Three Kings” lyric) : AFAR
53 Mohawk Valley city : UTICA
54 “Now ___ even” : WE’RE
55 Took off : WENT
56 2020 Christopher Nolan sci-fi thriller : TENET
57 Yearbook grp. : SRS
58 Licks, say : WETS

Down

1 Pants material : CHINO
2 Pants material : LINEN
3 Role for Malcolm-Jamal Warner on “The People v. O. J. Simpson” : AL COWLINGS
4 “Gah!” : D’OH!
5 Keep busy : TIE UP
6 On the whole : IN ALL
7 Site for a movie poster? : MEDIA BLOG
8 Commonsensical : PRUDENT
9 Actor John of Broadway’s “Carousel” : RAITT
10 Unfooled by : ONTO
11 Congressman Kinzinger : ADAM
12 “Gimme, gimme, gimme!” : MORE!
14 Casino game that’s 100% luck : SLOTS
18 Beings made from smokeless fire, in the Quran : GENIES
20 Elided pronoun : Y’ALL
22 British composer Gustav : HOLST
25 Warehouse cost : STORAGE FEE
26 Brand whose last letter is in the shape of its product : EGGO
27 Saturday morning character : TOON
28 Christchurch resident : KIWI
29 Spot for a hairpin : ROAD
30 They’re not the main event : SIDESHOWS
31 Artist in the avant-garde Fluxus movement : ONO
32 Actress Glazer : ILANA
34 Old automaker with the models Firedome, Fireflite and Firesweep : DESOTO
37 W.W. II aircraft carrier : HELLCAT
38 May celebrants : MOMS
41 ___ citato (in the work quoted: Lat.) : OPERE
42 Enchantress in Greek myth : CIRCE
43 Fisher with a stownet : EELER
44 FAQ checkers : USERS
45 “Gimme, gimme, gimme!” : I WANT!
46 Longtime mint brand that doesn’t contain any mint : CERTS
47 Appear alongside : ABUT
48 Sneaky ___ : PETE
49 Line from a bit? : REIN
52 [So adorable!] : [AWW!]

6 thoughts on “0903-21 NY Times Crossword 3 Sep 21, Friday”

  1. 23:30! The upper right took me forever. I had LOLZ for 23A, so the casino game threw me. And I had MINE for 12D, so LEAD GUITAR didn’t come to me. And I’d never heard of “Return of the Mack”, so I was lost at sea on that one. I finally figured out RANDO, and that revealed my 12D to be wrong, and that finally broke it for me. Some days…

  2. 18:35, no errors. I must admit, when I saw the names of the setters, I gulped a bit, and I found the solve pretty thoughtful, but it all worked out in the end: one of those where all the clues and answers make perfect sense … eventually … 😜.

  3. 20:51 There were about a half dozen proper names I was unfamiliar with. I also struggled with the NE corner. Considering that my time was faster than @Tom R, I know he struggled!!.

    I had also MINE for 12D for a long time. A Mon-Weds clue for RAITT would probably be “Singer Bonnie”, making that a lot more familiar I suppose and a lot easier. Also took a long time to come up with Holst. The only composer Gustav in my memory bank is “Mahler”. Guess I have to make an addition.

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