1126-21 NY Times Crossword 26 Nov 21, Friday

Constructed by: Kate Hawkins
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme None

Bill’s time: 11m 03s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

5 Onetime chain that offered Free Battery Club memberships : RADIOSHACK

The store that came to be known as RadioShack was founded as “Radio Shack” in 1921 and focused on serving the amateur radio market. The name was chosen as a “radio shack” was the wooden structure that housed the radio equipment on a ship, and a ham radio station was also known as a “radio shack”. Radio Shack was losing money in the sixties and was bought for a song by Charles Tandy who merged it with his leather goods stores under the name Tandy Radio Shack & Leather (can you believe it?). Tandy eventually dropped all lines bar the electronic items and changed the name “back” to the trendy “RadioShack” in 2000.

16 Best-selling heavy metal band named for a torture device : IRON MAIDEN

Iron Maiden is a heavy metal band from London that has been around since 1975. Heavy metal – not really my cup of tea …

19 TV character who said “I am so smart! I am so smart! S-M-R-T!” : HOMER

“The Simpsons” is one of the most successful programs produced by the Fox Broadcasting Company. Homer Simpson’s catchphrase is “D’oh!”, which became such a famous exclamation that it has been included in the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) since 2001. “D’oh!” can be translated as “I should have thought of that!”

21 Old worker with pads : STENO

Stenography is the process of writing in shorthand. The term comes from the Greek “steno” (narrow) and “graphe” (writing).

23 Pine product : RESIN

There are many species of pine tree (well over 100). The smallest is probably the Siberian dwarf pine, which usually grows to less than 10-feet tall. The tallest is the ponderosa pine, which regularly grows to over 200-feet tall.

25 It’s flat on a snapback : BRIM

A snapback is a baseball hat with a flat brim and a snap closure at the back. The snap allows for the hat to be adjusted in size.

27 8 vis-à-vis 2 : CUBE

We can use the French phrase “vis-à-vis” as a preposition meaning “compared with”. When used as an adverb or adjective, it means “face-to-face”, which is a more literal translation from French.

29 Aimee ___ McPherson, evangelist behind America’s first megachurch : SEMPLE

Aimee Semple McPherson was a pioneer in the arena of evangelism, being one of the first to use radio to get across her message. In 1926, McPherson disappeared under mysterious circumstances at Venice Beach, California. About a month later, Aimee’s mother received a ransom note, which she says that she tossed away thinking that her daughter had drowned. A few days later, McPherson was found wandering around in a Mexican town across the border from Douglas, Arizona, claiming that she had been kidnapped and had escaped. There were many discrepancies in her story though, and five witnesses claimed to have seen her in a seaside cottage in Carmel, California while she was “gone”. No one seems to know for sure what exactly happened during that month.

38 Duo in an ellipse : FOCI

One way to envision the two foci of an ellipse is to imagine two nails sticking up out of a board, placed a small distance apart. A loop of string is placed on the board, with the nails in the middle. A pen is placed inside the loop, and moved as far away from the nails as possible, confined by the string. The pen is then run around the nails, stretching out the string so that it is taut. The pen will draw an ellipse, and the point where the nails are, they are the ellipse’s two foci.

49 Banned Books Week org. : ALA

The American Library Association promotes libraries not only in the US, but internationally. The organization was founded in 1876, making it the oldest library association in the world.

54 Its structure was evidenced by Photo 51, an X-ray captured in 1952 : DNA

Francis Crick and James Watson discovered that DNA had a double-helix, chain-like structure, and published their results in Cambridge in 1953. To this day the discovery is mired in controversy, as some crucial results collected by fellow researcher Rosalind Franklin were used without her permission or even knowledge. In 1962, along with molecular biologist Maurice Wilkins, Watson and Crick were awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine.

57 Several Russian czars : IVANS

The Grand Prince of Moscow, and first Tsar of Russia, Ivan IV became known as “Ivan the Terrible”. The name “terrible” is a translation from Russian, and perhaps creates the wrong impression about the man. The Russian word is “Grozny”, which is more akin to “strict” and “powerful” rather than “cruel” or “abominable”.

59 Cocktail tidbit : PRAWN

The terms “prawn” and “shrimp” are often used interchangeably on menus. Over in the UK, the term “prawn” is most common, while “shrimp” is seen more often here in North America. Sometimes there is a differentiation from a food standpoint, with “prawn” being used for larger species and “shrimp” for smaller species. As a result, “jumbo prawns” seems to be an acceptable descriptor for a dish, whereas “jumbo shrimp” seems to be an oxymoron.

64 Archer of note : ANNE

Anne Archer is an American actress, a native of Los Angeles and the daughter of actors Marjorie Lord (co-star in “The Danny Thomas Show”) and John Archer. Anne’s most famous role was in 1987’s “Fatal Attraction” in which she played the wronged wife. She also played the wife of Jack Ryan’s character in “Patriot Games” and “Clear and Present Danger”.

67 Experts in English? : POOL SHARKS

A pool shark is a player who hustles others in a pool hall with the goal of making money unfairly in competition. The term “pool shark” used to be “pool sharp”.

Down

3 Bucky in the comic strip “Get Fuzzy,” e.g. : SIAMESE CAT

The exact origins of the Siamese cat aren’t very clear, but it is believed to be from Southeast Asia. The Siamese takes its name from the sacred temple cats of Thailand (a nation once called “Siam”).

“Get Fuzzy” is a cartoon strip by Darby Conley that has been running since 1999. The strip’s main characters are an advertising executive called Rob Wilco and his pets Satchel Pooch and Bucky Katt.

6 Foe of Wonder Woman : ARES

Superhero Wonder Woman first appeared in print in 1941, in a publication from DC Comics. As she was created during WWII, Wonder Woman’s first foes were the axis powers. In the less realistic world her biggest foe was and still is Ares, a “baddie” named after the Greek mythological figure. Wonder Woman had several signature expressions, including “Merciful Minerva!”, “Suffering Sappho!” and “Great Hera!”. She also has several devices that she uses in her quest for justice, e.g. the Lasso of Truth, a pair of indestructible bracelets and a tiara that can be used as a deadly projectile. Wonder Woman uses the name “Diana Prince” when “out of uniform”.

9 Subjects of a certain sultanate : OMANIS

Qaboos bin Said al Said is the current Sultan of Oman, who came to power in a coup in 1970 by deposing his own father. Qaboos has no children, and no agreed heir. His current instructions are for the royal family to agree on a successor after his death. Qaboos has also specified that should the royal not be able to agree on a successor, then the country’s Defense Council will make the decision, choosing between two names that the Sultan placed in a sealed envelope to be opened after his passing.

10 Strauss work with the “Dance of the Seven Veils” : SALOME

Richard Strauss’s opera “Salome” was based on the play of the same name by Oscar Wilde. The opera created quite a fuss in its early performances due to its erotic “Dance of the Seven Veils”.

In the New Testament, Salome was a dancer and a seductress. She was the stepdaughter of Herod and when she danced for him on his birthday, her mother demanded as a reward the execution of John the Baptist. Salome is not actually named in the account in the gospels, and historians rely on other sources to determine that she was indeed “Salome”. Famously, the seductive dance that she performed is said to be the Dance of the Seven Veils. The dance isn’t named in the Biblical account, and is an elaboration that developed in later Christian mythology.

11 Flashin’ Fruit Punch brand : HI-C

Hi-C orange drink was created in 1946 and introduced to the market in 1948, initially in the south of the country. The name “Hi-C” was chosen to emphasize the high vitamin C content in the drink, as it contained added ascorbic acid (vitamin C).

12 #1 dad? : ADAM

According to the Bible, God created Adam from “the dust of the ground”. Eve was created as Adam’s companion, from Adam’s rib.

13 Michael who played George Michael Bluth on TV : CERA

Michael Cera is a Canadian actor who played great characters on the TV show “Arrested Development”, and in the 2007 comedy-drama “Juno”. Cera is also quite the musician. He released an indie folk album titled “True That” in 2014.

“Arrested Development” is a sitcom that originally aired on Fox from 2003 to 2006. Ron Howard was heavily involved in the show behind the camera, serving as executive producer and also as the show’s narrator. Fifteen new episodes of “Arrested Development” were filmed specifically for release on Netflix in 2013, and there may even be a movie on the way.

20 Like angel investors and devil’s food cake : RICH

An angel investor is one who provides capital very early in a business’s life cycle. The term “angel” is borrowed from Broadway, where angels are wealthy people who provide funds to stage theatrical productions.

Angel food cake is an American creation, with the name being a reference to the sponge’s lightness, as if it is “food of angels”. The chocolate butter cake called Devil’s food cake came along later, and is considered to be a counterpart to the more angelic variety.

26 Viscera : OFFAL

The internal organs and entrails of a butchered animal are referred to collectively as “offal”. Examples of dishes that make use of offal would be sausages, foie gras, sweetbreads and haggis. The term is a melding of the words “off” and “fall”, and dates back to the 14th century. The idea is that offal is what “falls off” a butcher’s block.

28 Queen’s subjects : BEES

A queen bee has a stinger, just like worker bees. When a worker bee stings, it leaves its stinger in its victim. The worker bee dies after losing its stinger as the loss rips out part of its insides. However, a queen bee can sting with impunity as her stinger’s anatomy is different.

31 The art of politics? : PROPAGANDA

In 1622, Pope Gregory XV established a committee of cardinals charged with “propagating the faith”, with responsibility for missions aimed at growing the Roman Catholic Church. The committee was called “Congregation de Propaganda Fide”, using the Latin word “propaganda”, the feminine gerund of the verb “propagare” meaning “to propagate”. In the 18th century, the word “propaganda” from the committee’s name came to describe dissemination of a doctrine in general. During WWII, the term developed a negative connotation, which exists to this day.

35 Emperor’s order in “Star Wars” : SITH

The Sith are characters in the “Star Wars” universe who use the “dark side” of “the Force”, and as such are the antithesis of the Jedi Knights. Members of the Sith use the title “Darth” before their name, as in Darth Vader. The last made of the six “Star Wars” movies is called “Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith”.

36 Fatty tuna in Japanese cuisine : TORO

In a sushi restaurant, the dish called “toro” is the fatty tissue from the belly of the bluefin tuna.

40 Register : TILL

What we usually call a cash register here in North America, we mostly call a “till” in Ireland and the UK. I haven’t heard the word “till” used much here in that sense …

51 Where to get money in Milano : BANCA

In a “banca” (bank) in Italy, the currency of favor was the lira, and now it’s the euro.

62 Senators’ org. : NHL

The Senators are the NHL hockey team based in Ottawa, Canada. The current team, founded in the 1992-93 season, is the second NHL team in the city to use the name “Senators”. The original team was founded in 1917, and had a very successful run until the league expanded into the US in the late twenties. The cost of operating in what became the smallest NHL city eventually drove the Senators to St. Louis where they played for a year as the Eagles before finally folding.

63 Three for a trey: Abbr. : PTS

A trey is a three in a deck of cards. The term “trey” can also be used for a domino with three pips, and even for a three-point play in basketball.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Small headache : PEST
5 Onetime chain that offered Free Battery Club memberships : RADIOSHACK
15 10-Down highlight : ARIA
16 Best-selling heavy metal band named for a torture device : IRON MAIDEN
17 Big ol’ mouth : TRAP
18 Brushing, e.g. : DENTAL CARE
19 TV character who said “I am so smart! I am so smart! S-M-R-T!” : HOMER
21 Old worker with pads : STENO
22 Big ol’ mouth : MAW
23 Pine product : RESIN
25 It’s flat on a snapback : BRIM
26 Coin-___ : OPS
27 8 vis-à-vis 2 : CUBE
29 Aimee ___ McPherson, evangelist behind America’s first megachurch : SEMPLE
34 Vulnerable newcomers, in slang : FRESH MEAT
37 Field : AREA
38 Duo in an ellipse : FOCI
39 Intoxicate : BESOT
41 They might be gathered by the pound : DOGS
42 Bio subj. : ANAT
43 Labor union offering, perhaps : STRIKE PAY
45 More than dangerous : LETHAL
48 Part : ROLE
49 Banned Books Week org. : ALA
50 ___ Yaga (folklore villain) : BABA
52 Release : LET GO
54 Its structure was evidenced by Photo 51, an X-ray captured in 1952 : DNA
57 Several Russian czars : IVANS
59 Cocktail tidbit : PRAWN
61 Going from 99 to 100, say : ROUNDING UP
64 Archer of note : ANNE
65 In hot pursuit : ON THE SCENT
66 See 60-Down : IDEA
67 Experts in English? : POOL SHARKS
68 Sharp, in a way : TART

Down

1 Trail : PATH
2 Like a butterfingers : ERROR PRONE
3 Bucky in the comic strip “Get Fuzzy,” e.g. : SIAMESE CAT
4 Patches up, in a way : TAPES
5 Clear : RID
6 Foe of Wonder Woman : ARES
7 “Stay in touch!” : DON’T BE A STRANGER!
8 Place underground : INTER
9 Subjects of a certain sultanate : OMANIS
10 Strauss work with the “Dance of the Seven Veils” : SALOME
11 Flashin’ Fruit Punch brand : HI-C
12 #1 dad? : ADAM
13 Michael who played George Michael Bluth on TV : CERA
14 Was aware : KNEW
20 Like angel investors and devil’s food cake : RICH
24 Not sensitive (to) : NUMB
26 Viscera : OFFAL
28 Queen’s subjects : BEES
30 Not natural : MADE
31 The art of politics? : PROPAGANDA
32 Entitled sort : LEGAL OWNER
33 Desire of a quick study? : EASY A
35 Emperor’s order in “Star Wars” : SITH
36 Fatty tuna in Japanese cuisine : TORO
40 Register : TILL
44 Stay good : KEEP
46 Goes along with : ABIDES
47 Extravagant : LAVISH
51 Where to get money in Milano : BANCA
53 Bit of a character : TRAIT
54 Go down : DROP
55 You shouldn’t do this : NO-NO
56 What you might unthinkingly be on : AUTO
58 Gone down : SUNK
60 With 66-Across, “Good thinking!” : NEAT!
62 Senators’ org. : NHL
63 Three for a trey: Abbr. : PTS

13 thoughts on “1126-21 NY Times Crossword 26 Nov 21, Friday”

  1. 16:10. I got stuck in the SE corner for quite a while. Also did this puzzle when I couldn’t sleep at 2 AM, which might have slowed me a bit.

  2. 20:41. Easy puzzle except when it wasn’t. I seem to say that a lot about Friday puzzles.

    MADE for “Not natural” is interesting. If a beaver makes a dam, it’s considered natural. If humans make one, it’s not natural. Aren’t humans part of nature? Isn’t anything we make/MADE part of nature? Just a thought.

    Never heard of Banned Books Week. Kudos to the ALA (American Library Association) for that one. Contrary to what it sounds like, apparently it’s a celebration of the freedom to read and has the purpose of opposing book bans and condemning censorship. We need more of these things these days.

    Best –

  3. 28:30 Also got stuck in the SE corner for about 10 minutes and finally did a lookup. I kept thinking that 30D was FAKE vs. MADE and couldn’t really tap into 31D or 32D. Unlike @Tom R, I was doing it at only 11:30 pm, so I should have been more awake.

  4. 37:07, no errors. Thanks to about 27 minutes of writing random stuff in the lower right until something worked for the non-clue/bad-clues there. Terrible.

  5. Well , no errors.. took a long time.
    Punny of the day “They might be gathered at the pound” ….. DOGS

    So my TORO mower is a fat fish???
    The horror!!!!

  6. Curiosity got the better of me. (Well, that, and I’m trying to keep from thinking about an event yesterday that destroyed ~600 houses in an area very near a former home of mine … 😳.) So I did it on paper this time: 10:34, no errors, and I consciously remembered only a couple of entries from the solve five weeks ago. Curiously, though, I paused (again?) in the lower right and I think the problem I had (again?) was with “PRAWN” as a “Cocktail tidbit” and “ANNE” for “Archer of note”. (I kept thinking “OLIVE” and “EROS”.) The intersecting entries (again?) bailed me out. Clever cluing in that section, but, IMHO, not all that unusual … 🤨.

  7. 1:08:23 but no errors…the SW corner just wouldn’t open up so I fixed a sandwich and came back and bingo…good for the puzzle not so much for the waistline😀
    Stay safe and happy new year😀

  8. 39 minutes. No errors or look up’s. I was almost totally stymied for about 10 to 15 minutes but then began to click.Almost quit because I was tired from walking 18 holes of golf. Happy new year to everybody.

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