1122-21 NY Times Crossword 22 Nov 21, Monday

Constructed by: Stella Zawistowski
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answer Genre

Themed answers each start with a GENRE found in a bookstore:

  • 67A What the start of 17-, 29-, 45- or 61-Across is, in a bookstore : GENRE
  • 17A Pastime for armchair sports enthusiasts : FANTASY BASEBALL
  • 29A Unidentifiable protein : MYSTERY MEAT
  • 45A Holy site in Jerusalem : WESTERN WALL
  • 61A Spanish or French, but not German : ROMANCE LANGUAGE

Bill’s time: 5m 43s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

14 Work by a composer : OPUS

The Latin for “work” is “opus”, with the plural being “opera”. We sometimes use the plural “opuses” in English, but that just annoys me …

15 Skating leap : AXEL

An axel is a forward take-off jump in figure skating. The maneuver was first performed by Norwegian Axel Paulsen at the 1882 World Figure Skating championships.

20 Corrosive substance : ALKALI

The “opposite” of an acid is a base. Acids turn litmus paper red, and bases turn it blue. Acids and bases react with each other to form salts. An important subset of the chemicals called bases are alkalis, hydroxides of the alkali metals and of ammonium. The term “alkali” is sometimes used interchangeably with “base”, especially if that base is readily soluble in water.

21 ExxonMobil’s business : OIL

The Exxon Corporation was a descendant of John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil Company. Exxon merged with Mobil (yet another descendant of Standard Oil) in 1999 to form ExxonMobil.

26 What a grocery scanner scans, for short : UPC

The initialism “UPC” stands for Universal Price Code or Universal Product Code. The first ever UPC-marked item to get scanned in a store was on June 26, 1974 at 08:01 a.m. at Marsh’s supermarket in Troy, Ohio. It was a 10-pack of Wrigley’s Juicy Fruit chewing gum.

36 Grp. that extends from Canada to Chile : OAS

The Organization of American States (OAS) was founded in 1948, and has its headquarters in Washington, D.C. Not all of the independent states in the Americas are members. Cuba was barred from participation in the organization after a vote in 1962. Honduras had her membership suspended after the country’s 2009 coup.

43 “Baby Cobra” comic Wong : ALI

Ali Wong is a stand-up comedian from San Francisco who is a protégé of Chris Rock. She made two very successful Netflix stand-up specials “Baby Cobra” and “Hard Knock Wife”. She also worked as a writer for the hit sitcom “Fresh Off the Boat”.

44 Christmas season : YULE

Yule celebrations coincide with Christmas, and the words “Christmas” and “Yule” (often “Yuletide”) have become synonymous in much of the world. However, Yule was originally a pagan festival celebrated by Germanic peoples. The name “Yule” comes from the Old Norse word “jol” that was used to describe the festival.

45 Holy site in Jerusalem : WESTERN WALL

The Western Wall (also called “the Wailing Wall”) is a remnant of an ancient wall that surrounded the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem. The wall is a sacred site for the faithful, and has been a place for prayer and pilgrimage for centuries. The term “Wailing” was assigned in English as many Jewish people came to the site to mourn the destruction of the Temple.

50 Hair stylist, fancily : COIFFEUR

“Coiffure” is a French word that we’ve imported into English meaning “hairstyle”. The term comes from the Old French word “coife”, which was used for the inner part of a helmet.

52 Old Glory, for one : FLAG

The person who coined the phrase “Old Glory” with reference to the American flag was Captain William Driver, a shipmaster from Salem, Massachusetts. As Driver was leaving on an 1831 voyage aboard the brig Charles Doggett, he unfurled the American flag that he had just been given by a group of friends. As the flag caught the breeze, he uttered the words, “Old Glory!”. That’s the story anyway. On that same voyage, Charles Doggett rescued the famous mutineers of the HMS Bounty, after he encountered them on Pitcairn Island.

56 Sch. in Fort Worth : TCU

Texas Christian University (TCU) is a private school in Fort Worth, Texas. TCU used to be called AddRan Male & Female, named after AddRan Clark, the son of Addison Clark who died at the age of 3-years-old from diphtheria. Poor young AddRan was named after his father and his brother, Addison and Randolph.

64 “Tosca” or “Turandot” : OPERA

Unlike so many operas, Giacomo Puccini’s “Tosca” was a big hit right from day one, when it was first performed in 1900 at the Teatro Costanzi in Rome. Currently, “Tosca” is the eighth-most performed opera in America.

68 Tickle Me Elmo maker, once : TYCO

The Tyco brand of toys was founded in 1926 as Mantua Metal Products by John Tyler. The first products made were scale model trains using die-cast metal. The company introduced the Tyco brand in the fifties, with “Tyco” standing for “Tyler Company”.

The Tickle Me Elmo toy was a sensational fad in the late nineties, with stores raising prices dramatically above the recommended retail price to take advantage of demand. Reportedly, prices as high as $1500 were paid at the height of the craze. The toy’s manufacturer, Tyco, originally planned to market the “tickle” toy as Tickle Me Tasmanian Devil (after the “Looney Tunes” character), but then went with “Elmo” after they bought the rights to use “Sesame Street” names.

Down

1 Living room seat : SOFA

“Sofa” is a Turkish word meaning “bench”.

2 Iridescent gem : OPAL

An opal is often described as having a milky iridescence known as opalescence.

6 Popular acne medication : OXY

The OXY Skin Care products were developed by GlaxoSmithKline, but the brand name has been owned by Mentholatum since 2005.

7 Starts up again, as a computer : REBOOTS

The verb “to boot”, as used in the world of computers, comes from the phrase “pull oneself up by one’s bootstraps”. The idea is that the software that has to be loaded before a computer can do anything useful is called a “bootstrap load”.

8 Pal of Jerry on “Seinfeld” : ELAINE

The character Elaine Benes, unlike the other lead characters (Jerry, Kramer and George), did not appear in the pilot episode of “Seinfeld”. NBC executives specified the addition of a female lead when they picked up the show citing that the situation was too “male-centric”.

9 Primate with no tail : APE

Primates are mammals, many of whom are omnivorous and make good use of their hands. They also have larger brains relative to their body size, compared to other animals. The order Primates includes apes, lemurs, baboons and humans.

12 River on which Cleopatra cruised : NILE

Depending on definition, the Nile is regarded generally as the longest river on the planet. The Nile forms from two major tributaries, the White Nile and the Blue Nile, which join together near Khartoum, the capital of Sudan. From Khartoum the Nile flows north, traveling almost entirely through desert making it central to life for those living along its length.

“Queen of the Nile” is a common description used for Cleopatra VII of Egypt. Cleopatra was the last pharaoh to rule the country. After she died, Egypt became a province in the Roman Empire.

18 Grad : ALUM

An alumnus (plural “alumni”) is a graduate or former student of a school or college. The female form is “alumna” (plural “alumnae”). The term comes into English from Latin, in which an alumnus is a foster-son or pupil. “Alum” is an informal term used for either an alumna or alumnus.

27 Dehydrated plum : PRUNE

A prune is a dried plum. The name “prune” comes from the Latin “prunum”, the word for “plum”.

33 Like an impatient and competitive personality : TYPE-A

The Type-A and Type-B personality theory originated in the fifties. Back then, individuals were labelled as Type A in order to emphasize a perceived increased risk of heart disease. Type-A personality types are so-called “stress junkies”, whereas Type Bs are relaxed and laid back. But there doesn’t seem to be much scientific evidence to support the linkage between the Type-A personality and heart problems.

35 “Now!” in the operating room : STAT!

The exact etymology of “stat”, a term meaning “immediately” in the medical profession, seems to have been lost in the mists of time. It probably comes from the Latin “statim” meaning “to a standstill, immediately”. A blog reader has helpfully suggested that the term may also come from the world of laboratory analysis, where the acronym STAT stands for “short turn-around time”.

39 Intl. group that has no members in Europe or North America : OPEC

The OPEC cartel was formally established in 1960 and has been headquartered in Vienna since 1965. The US is actually the third largest oil producer in the world (after Russia and Saudi Arabia). One reason America isn’t in OPEC, even though we are a big producer, is that we import a lot more than we export. But we all probably knew that already …

40 Minnesota’s St. ___ College : OLAF

St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota was named for the former king and patron saint of Norway, Olaf II.

41 Enter en masse, as a car : PILE INTO

“En masse” is a French term, one that best translates as “as a group”

46 Coll. military program : ROTC

The Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) is a training program for officers based in colleges all around the US. The ROTC program was established in 1862 when as a condition of receiving a land-grant to create colleges, the federal government required that military tactics be part of a new school’s curriculum.

48 Where inhaled air goes : LUNG

The lungs are the two main organs in the human respiratory system. It is in the lungs that oxygen is extracted from the air and transferred into the bloodstream. At the same time, carbon dioxide is removed from the bloodstream and released into the atmosphere.

55 Actress Teri : GARR

Actress Teri Garr had a whole host of minor roles in her youth, including appearances in nine Elvis movies. Garr’s big break came with the role of Inga in “Young Frankenstein”, and her supporting role in “Tootsie” earned Garr an Academy Award nomination. Sadly, Teri Garr suffers from multiple sclerosis. She is a National Ambassador for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

58 Colorado skiing mecca : VAIL

The Vail Ski Resort in Colorado is the largest single-mountain ski resort in the whole country. The resort was opened in 1962, basically in the middle of nowhere. It was given the name Vail after Vail Pass which runs by the mountain (now also called Vail Mountain). The town of Vail, Colorado was established four years later in 1966, and now has a population of about 5,000.

60 Surrealist Magritte : RENE

Belgian artist René Magritte was a surrealist. His most recognized work may be “The Son of Man”, a painting he created as a self-portrait. It is the work that shows a man in a bowler hat with his face covered by an apple. The image features prominently in a great movie, the 1999 remake of “The Thomas Crown Affair”.

63 Member of a D.C. “Squad” : AOC

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is a politician who is often referred to by her initials “AOC”. A Democrat, she was first elected to the US House of Representatives in 2018, representing part of the Bronx, Queens and Rikers Island in New York City. When she took office in 2019 at the age of 29, AOC became the youngest woman ever to serve in Congress.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Bottom of a shoe : SOLE
5 Had on : WORE
9 Insurance worker : AGENT
14 Work by a composer : OPUS
15 Skating leap : AXEL
16 Outdoor party locale : PATIO
17 Pastime for armchair sports enthusiasts : FANTASY BASEBALL
20 Corrosive substance : ALKALI
21 ExxonMobil’s business : OIL
22 Toy that goes up slow and comes down fast : SLED
23 Close, as a jacket : BUTTON UP
26 What a grocery scanner scans, for short : UPC
29 Unidentifiable protein : MYSTERY MEAT
34 They’re paid to play : PROS
36 Grp. that extends from Canada to Chile : OAS
37 Lustful, informally : RANDY
38 Sightseeing on wheels : BUS TOUR
40 Finally starts talking : OPENS UP
42 Like draft beers : ON TAP
43 “Baby Cobra” comic Wong : ALI
44 Christmas season : YULE
45 Holy site in Jerusalem : WESTERN WALL
49 When a plane is due in, in brief : ETA
50 Hair stylist, fancily : COIFFEUR
52 Old Glory, for one : FLAG
56 Sch. in Fort Worth : TCU
57 “The very idea!” : I NEVER!
61 Spanish or French, but not German : ROMANCE LANGUAGE
64 “Tosca” or “Turandot” : OPERA
65 Opening for a coin : SLOT
66 Speak to a deaf person, in a way : SIGN
67 What the start of 17-, 29-, 45- or 61-Across is, in a bookstore : GENRE
68 Tickle Me Elmo maker, once : TYCO
69 Otherwise : ELSE

Down

1 Living room seat : SOFA
2 Iridescent gem : OPAL
3 Meathead : LUNK
4 Abbr. before a date on a business shingle : ESTAB
5 Question to a suspected culprit : WAS IT YOU?
6 Popular acne medication : OXY
7 Starts up again, as a computer : REBOOTS
8 Pal of Jerry on “Seinfeld” : ELAINE
9 Primate with no tail : APE
10 Talks on and on : GABS
11 And others: Abbr. : ET AL
12 River on which Cleopatra cruised : NILE
13 Couldn’t keep a secret : TOLD
18 Grad : ALUM
19 Shpeak indishtinctly : SLUR
24 Ruler in pre-Communist Russia : TSAR
25 Heap for burning : PYRE
26 Instruction for a violinist : UP-BOW
27 Dehydrated plum : PRUNE
28 Things weighed against benefits : COSTS
30 Not just a few : MANY
31 Come next : ENSUE
32 One who’s 18 or older : ADULT
33 Like an impatient and competitive personality : TYPE-A
35 “Now!” in the operating room : STAT!
39 Intl. group that has no members in Europe or North America : OPEC
40 Minnesota’s St. ___ College : OLAF
41 Enter en masse, as a car : PILE INTO
43 In a terrible way : AWFULLY
46 Coll. military program : ROTC
47 Most pleasant : NICEST
48 Where inhaled air goes : LUNG
51 Find a second function for : REUSE
52 Creature that goes “ribbit!” : FROG
53 Run easily : LOPE
54 “You said it, brother!” : AMEN!
55 Actress Teri : GARR
58 Colorado skiing mecca : VAIL
59 Objects in an Easter hunt : EGGS
60 Surrealist Magritte : RENE
62 Scottish negative : NAE
63 Member of a D.C. “Squad” : AOC

3 thoughts on “1122-21 NY Times Crossword 22 Nov 21, Monday”

  1. 4:49, no errors. Unusually easy for Ms. Zawistowsky. (Either that or a day of rest yesterday allowed me to focus a bit better than usual.)

  2. 8:12. Nice theme for a Monday.

    RANDY means “lustful”? I think I’ll start calling my friends with that name “Randall” instead…..

    Best –

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