0907-21 NY Times Crossword 7 Sep 21, Tuesday

Constructed by: Zhouqin Burnikel
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answer Currencies

Themed answers each end with a CURRENCY:

  • 60A What the ends of 17-, 21-, 37-, 39- and 55-Across are : CURRENCIES
  • 17A Last step in telephone instructions, often : PRESS POUND (giving “pound”)
  • 21A “Can this be happening?” : IS IT REAL? (giving “real”)
  • 37A Not easily achieved : HARD WON (giving “won”)
  • 39A “The Fountainhead” author : AYN RAND (giving “rand”)
  • 55A Founder of Zoom : ERIC YUAN (giving “yuan”)

Bill’s time: 8m 07s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

5 Christina of 2003’s “Monster” : RICCI

Christina Ricci is an American actress who found fame on the big screen at an early age, playing the very young Wednesday Addams in the 1991 movie version of “The Addams Family”.

“Monster” is a pretty disturbing crime drama released in 2003. The film’s storyline is based on the real-life story of Aileen Wuornos (played by Charlize Theron), a serial killer who was eventually caught and executed in 2002.

14 Spread on a banh mi : MAYO

Mayonnaise originated in the town of Mahon in Menorca, a Mediterranean island belonging to Spain. The Spanish called the sauce “salsa mahonesa” after the town, and this morphed into the French word “mayonnaise” that we use in English today.

The French introduced the baguette into Vietnam in the days the country was a French colony. Today, a single-serving baguette is known in Vietnam as “bánh mì” (meaning “wheat bread”). The term has been extended, particularly here in the US, to describe a Vietnamese sandwich.

15 Protective wear for a grillmaster : APRON

In Old French, a “naperon” was a “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”.

16 Corn maze measure : ACRE

A corn maze is simply a maze cut into a cornfield. On the other side of the pond, the same attraction is known as a maize maze … cute!

17 Last step in telephone instructions, often : PRESS POUND (giving “pound”)

The # symbol is usually referred to as the “number sign”, but here in the US the name “pound sign” is very common as well, as is “hash mark”.

The official name of the currency of the UK is the pound sterling (plural “pounds sterling”). The most plausible suggestion for the etymology of the term “sterling” is that it derives from the Old English “steorra” meaning “star”, with the diminutive “-ling”. The resulting “little star” or “sterling” referred to a silver penny used by the English Normans. The pound sterling is the world’s oldest currency still in use.

19 Jessica of “Valentine’s Day” : BIEL

Jessica Biel is an actress who was known by television audiences for portraying Mary Camden on “7th Heaven”. Biel’s first film role was playing Peter Fonda’s granddaughter in “Ulee’s Gold”. Biel married singer and actor Justin Timberlake in 2012.

“Valentine’s Day”, as one might imagine, is a romantic comedy, one released in 2010. One of the stars in the film is Jessica Alba.

20 Bend at the barre : PLIE

The French word for “bent” is “plié”. In the ballet move known as a plié, the knees are bent. A “demi-plié” is a similar move, but with less bending of the knees.

A barre is a handrail used by ballet dancers for warm-up exercises and to provide support when practicing certain moves.

23 Registration table items : ID TAGS

ID tags might be collected at a registration table, at a conference maybe.

27 Prefix with technology : NANO-

Nanotechnology is the study of the manipulation of matter at the atomic and molecular level. Nanotechnology is essential to the electronic and biomaterials industries.

30 Actor Beatty : NED

Actor Ned Beatty is possibly best remembered for the rather disturbing “squeal like a pig” scene in the movie “Deliverance”. Beatty also earned an Academy Award nomination as Best Supporting Actor for his performance in the 1976 movie “Network”.

31 Versatile blackjack card : ACE

In the card game blackjack, an ace has the point value of one or eleven. When one of the two cards dealt to a player is an ace, the hand is called “soft”. This means that the player cannot go bust by taking another card, as the ace can be revalued at “one” if necessary in order to stay under 21.

32 Quintet on a Chinese flag : STARS

The Chinese flag has a red background with five gold stars in the upper left corner. The stars are arranged with four small stars in an arc beside a larger star. The design was adopted in 1949 and was first flown in October of that year at a ceremony in Tiananmen Square announcing the foundation of the People’s Republic of China.

37 Not easily achieved : HARD WON (giving “won”)
(55A Founder of Zoom : ERIC YUAN (giving “yuan”) )

The Korean won, Chinese yuan, and Japanese yen (all of which are Asian currencies) take their names from the Chinese written character that represents “round shape”.

39 “The Fountainhead” author : AYN RAND (giving “rand”)

“The Fountainhead” by Ayn Rand was first published in 1943, and was her first novel to achieve public success. The story focuses on an idealistic architect named Howard Roark. Roark is uncompromising in his designs, refusing to give the public what it wants, staying doggedly loyal to his own vision.

The rand is the currency of South Africa. Much of South Africa’s famed gold comes from mines around Johannesburg in the Witwatersrand (Afrikaans for “the ridge of white waters”). The rand currency takes its name from this ridge.

43 Greek god after whom an ocean is named : ATLAS

The earliest known mention of the name “Atlantic”, for the world’s second-largest ocean, was in ancient Greece. The Greeks called said ocean “the Sea of Atlas” or “Atlantis thalassa”.

45 Fish in an ornamental pond : KOI

Koi are fish that are also known as Japanese carp. Koi have been bred for decorative purposes and there are now some very brightly colored examples found in Japanese water gardens.

48 Official with a protective vest : UMP

Back in the 15th century, “an umpire” was referred to as “a noumpere”, which was misheard and hence causing the dropping of the initial letter N. The term “noumpere” came from Old French “nonper” meaning “not even, odd number”. The idea was that the original umpire was a third person called on to arbitrate between two, providing that “odd number” needed to decide the dispute.

49 November parade participants, informally : VETS

Veterans Day used to be known as Armistice Day, and is observed on November 11th each year. This particular date was chosen as the Armistice that ended WWI was signed on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918.

50 Danny of “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” : DEVITO

Danny DeVito’s big break as an actor came with the role of Louie De Palma on the sitcom “Taxi”. After parlaying his success on television into some major comic roles on the big screen, DeVito turned to producing. He co-founded the production company Jersey Films which made hit movies such as “Pulp Fiction” and “Garden State”. DeVito has been married to actress Rhea Perlman for well over 30 years.

“It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” is a long-running sitcom that premiered in 2005 and that is set in an Irish bar in South Philly. The show has a talented lineup of actors, but the big name in the cast is Danny DeVito.

53 Spoke hoarsely, like a blacksmith? : RASPED

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.

55 Founder of Zoom : ERIC YUAN (giving “yuan”)

Zoom is a videoconferencing app that became remarkably popular in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic. The market deemed Zoom to be the easiest to use of the free videoconferencing apps. I’ve been using it, but really prefer Google’s Meet offering …

59 What “V” may stand for in electronics : VOLT

Alessandro Volta was the physicist who invented the first battery, way back in 1800. One of Volta’s first applications of his new invention was to use a battery (and a very long run of wire between the Italian cities of Como and Milan) to shoot off a pistol from 30 miles away! The electric potential unit “volt” is named for Volta.

69 Hazmat regulator : OSHA

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) was created in 1970 during the Nixon administration. It is a direct successor to the Bureau of Labor Standards that dealt with some work safety issues since its founding in 1934. OSHA regulates workplaces in the private sector and regulates just one government agency, namely the US Postal Service.

Dangerous goods are commonly referred to as hazardous materials, or Hazmat. People working with dangerous goods might wear a Hazmat suit.

Down

1 Sound system component : AMP

In a home audio system, one might have a preamplifier (preamp) and a power amplifier. In such an arrangement, the preamp isn’t really an amplifier at all as it does not amplify a signal or sound. The amplification task is left to the power amplifier, and the preamp serves as a switch between signal sources (cable box, CD player, DVD player etc.).

4 Square dance maneuver : DO-SI-DO

The term “do-si-do” is a corruption of a French phrase “dos-à-dos”, meaning back-to-back. And parenthetically, this is just the opposite to the familiar French term “vis-à-vis”, meaning face-to-face. In the do-si-do dance move, the partners start facing each other and then advance past each other’s right shoulder, and then move to the right without turning so that they are now facing away from each other (back-to-back). They complete the move facing in the same direction, passing each other’s left shoulder by moving backwards until they return to the starting position. Did you get that …?

6 2019 event for Zoom, in brief : IPO

An initial public offering (IPO) is the very first offer of stock for sale by a company on the open market. In other words, an IPO marks the first time that a company is traded on a public exchange. Companies have an IPO to raise capital to expand (usually).

7 Police car : CRUISER

A police car is often referred to by the slang term “black-and-white”, a reference to the vehicle’s common paint scheme.

8 Bamboozles : CONS

It’s thought that the lovely word “bamboozle” came into English from the Scottish “bombaze” meaning “perplex”. We’ve been using “bamboozle” since the very early 1700s.

9 Third-largest of the world’s oceans : INDIAN

The Indian Ocean is the third largest of the world’s oceans, and accounts for almost 20% of the Earth’s surface. It was named for the country of India, which forms much of the ocean’s northern boundary.

10 Many a guide dog : LABRADOR

The Labrador (Lab) breed of dog has been around at least since 1814, and the chocolate Labrador appeared over a century later in the 1930s. The name “Labrador Retriever” is simply a reference to the breed’s origin and behavior. Labs originally “retrieved” from the “Labrador Sea”.

11 Less cordial : ICIER

Back in the 14th century, we used the word “cordial” to mean “from the heart”. The most common meaning today is “courteous and gracious”. The original usage also evolved into the name for a drink that “stimulated the heart”. Today’s cordial beverages are strong, sweetened liqueurs.

12 Anticipate with trepidation : DREAD

Our word “trepidation”, meaning “fear”. comes from the Latin verb “tridare” meaning “to tremble”.

22 Some TikTok users : TWEENS

The term “tween” is used to describe preadolescence, the years “between” 8 and 12 years of age.

TikTok is a video-sharing service that is based in China, and is very popular with the younger set. The TikTok mobile app provides tools that facilitate production of sophisticated selfie videos that use special effects.

25 Country separating Togo from Ivory Coast : GHANA

The country name “Ghana” translates as “warrior king” in the local language. The British established a colony they named the Gold Coast in 1874, later to become Ghana, as part of the scramble by Europeans to settle as much of Africa as they could. One of Ghana’s most famous sons was Kofi Annan, the diplomat who served as General Secretary of the UN for ten years until the beginning of 2007.

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.

The Republic of Côte d’Ivoire is located in West Africa on the Gulf of Guinea. The country is often referred to in English as “the Ivory Coast”, the direct translation from the French. The official language of the country is French, as for many years it was a French colony.

28 Kind of palm tree in Central and South America : ACAI

Açaí (pronounced “ass-aye-ee”) is a palm tree native to Central and South America. The fruit has become very popular in recent years and its juice is a very fashionable addition to juice mixes and smoothies.

32 Like a post-workout CrossFitter : SWEATY

CrossFit is a trademarked fitness, strength and conditioning program that was introduced in 2000.

33 Hayek of 2002’s “Frida” : SALMA

Salma Hayek is a Mexican actress. Hayek was the first Mexican national to be nominated for a Best Actress Oscar, earning that nomination with her portrayal of artist Frida Kahlo in the 2002 movie “Frida”.

41 Say something not nice about : DIS

“Dis” (also “diss”) is a slang term meaning “insult” that originated in the eighties. It is a shortened form of “disrespect” or “dismiss”.

47 You might see a big bill from this at a pet shop : TOUCAN

The toucan is a brightly-marked bird with a large, colorful bill. The name “toucan” comes into English via Portuguese from the Tupi name “tukana”. The Tupi were an indigenous people of Brazil.

49 Alternative to shoelaces : VELCRO

The hook-and-loop fastener that we now call “Velcro” was invented in 1941 by Georges de Mestral, a Swiss engineer. Mestral noticed that the seeds of the burdock plant (burrs or burs) stuck to his clothes. Under the microscope he found hooks on the burrs that grabbed hold of loops in his clothing. After years of development, he came up with a way of simulating the natural hook using man-made materials, and Velcro was born.

62 Short albums, for short : EPS

An extended-play (EP) record, CD or download contains more music than a single, but less than an LP.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Truly amazed : AWED
5 Christina of 2003’s “Monster” : RICCI
10 Pot covers : LIDS
14 Spread on a banh mi : MAYO
15 Protective wear for a grillmaster : APRON
16 Corn maze measure : ACRE
17 Last step in telephone instructions, often : PRESS POUND (giving “pound”)
19 Jessica of “Valentine’s Day” : BIEL
20 Bend at the barre : PLIE
21 “Can this be happening?” : IS IT REAL? (giving “real”)
23 Registration table items : ID TAGS
26 Most Valuable Player and others : AWARDS
27 Prefix with technology : NANO-
29 “Steady as ___ goes” : SHE
30 Actor Beatty : NED
31 Versatile blackjack card : ACE
32 Quintet on a Chinese flag : STARS
34 Seemingly forever : EONS
37 Not easily achieved : HARD WON (giving “won”)
39 “The Fountainhead” author : AYN RAND (giving “rand”)
42 “Ah, gotcha” : I SEE
43 Greek god after whom an ocean is named : ATLAS
45 Fish in an ornamental pond : KOI
46 Butter serving : PAT
48 Official with a protective vest : UMP
49 November parade participants, informally : VETS
50 Danny of “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” : DEVITO
53 Spoke hoarsely, like a blacksmith? : RASPED
55 Founder of Zoom : ERIC YUAN (giving “yuan”)
57 Partner in battle : ALLY
59 What “V” may stand for in electronics : VOLT
60 What the ends of 17-, 21-, 37-, 39- and 55-Across are : CURRENCIES
64 Just sitting around : IDLE
65 Absolutely loved : ATE UP
66 Bring in from the field : REAP
67 One getting top billing : LEAD
68 Junction points : NODES
69 Hazmat regulator : OSHA

Down

1 Sound system component : AMP
2 Bend out of shape : WARP
3 Mascara shelfmates : EYELINERS
4 Square dance maneuver : DO-SI-DO
5 Music genre for 21 Savage and 42 Dugg : RAP
6 2019 event for Zoom, in brief : IPO
7 Police car : CRUISER
8 Bamboozles : CONS
9 Third-largest of the world’s oceans : INDIAN
10 Many a guide dog : LABRADOR
11 Less cordial : ICIER
12 Anticipate with trepidation : DREAD
13 Is a success on the market : SELLS
18 Theatrical backdrop : SET
22 Some TikTok users : TWEENS
24 Regarding : AS TO
25 Country separating Togo from Ivory Coast : GHANA
27 “I’m gonna pass” : NAH
28 Kind of palm tree in Central and South America : ACAI
32 Like a post-workout CrossFitter : SWEATY
33 Hayek of 2002’s “Frida” : SALMA
35 Out-and-out falsehoods : NAKED LIES
36 Obnoxious sort : SNOT
38 Described vividly : DEPICTED
40 Talks one’s mouth off : YAPS
41 Say something not nice about : DIS
44 Ripen, say … or show embarrassment : TURN RED
47 You might see a big bill from this at a pet shop : TOUCAN
49 Alternative to shoelaces : VELCRO
50 Angel’s opposite : DEVIL
51 Wash away gradually : ERODE
52 Fancy Mediterranean estate : VILLA
54 Scathing review : PAN
56 What thoughtless people may be on? : AUTO
58 “That’s right!” : YEAH!
61 Regret : RUE
62 Short albums, for short : EPS
63 Nail ___ : SPA

5 thoughts on “0907-21 NY Times Crossword 7 Sep 21, Tuesday”

  1. 6:40, no errors. Very tired from yesterday’s climb of Mount Bierstadt (one of Colorado’s 14ers); it’s clear that I don’t have a lot of those left in me … 😳. But … I did it! … 🤪.

    1. Congrats!! I lived in CO springs 1982-84 and climbed Bierstadt (literally Beer City in German tho I understand that it was named after a photographer from the late 1800s) on a crappy day in March. There was lightning all around us (unusual for March) and my hair was standing on end. We got to the top during a lull in the lightning and it started up again on our descent. You’re way out in the open so nothing to hide behind. SCARY!!!

      I did 7:13 on the puzzle today. Not much to say about it.

  2. Thanks, Ron. I’ve had my share of hair-raising climbs. Luckily, the weather yesterday was near-perfect, given that I started up the mountain (on a whim) at 1:30 in the afternoon and didn’t get back to the car until almost 7:00. (Stupid, really.)

    I still think of myself as a climber, but yesterday caused me to review some numbers and it’s clear that old age has overtaken me. I last climbed Mount Bierstadt (for the 9th time) 22 years ago and I last climbed a 14er (Longs Peak, 107th time) in 2011. So it’s no wonder that yesterday’s climb was so much harder. (Not a has-been, but getting mighty close … bummer … 😳.)

    1. Well now I think of myself as more of a hiker than a climber. I went up just three 14ers when I lived in CO. The last time I climbed Rainier was in 2009. Now it seems I do more scrambles to the top of peaks than breaking out the ropes and other gear.

  3. 7:25. Doing everything late these days.

    I’ve never seen “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”, but it’s on my to do list.

    I think it was Burt Reynolds who said that scene in “Deliverance” went too far. Apparently it was largely ad libbed by both Beatty and the…ahem..other guy.

    Nonny – what is a 14er?

    Best –

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