1230-21 NY Times Crossword 30 Dec 21, Thursday

Constructed by: John Ewbank
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answer: XXX

Themed answers each start with a word represented by “XXX”:

  • 38A Symbol for the starts of 18-, 27-, 46- and 58-Across : XXX
  • 18A They stay and bite : ADULT TEETH
  • 27A Emmy-winning comedy series of 2007, 2008 and 2009 : THIRTY ROCK
  • 46A Gains favor using abject flattery, informally : KISSES BUTT
  • 58A Souse : BOOZEHOUND

Bill’s time: 9m 51s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Flatbread from India : ROTI

In an Indian restaurant, naan bread is very popular. Roti is an unleavened cousin of naan.

11 “J to ___ L-O!” (Jennifer Lopez album) : THA

“Tha” is slang for “the” in the world of rap music.

“J.Lo” is the nickname of singer and actress Jennifer Lopez. “J.Lo” is also the title of her second studio album, which was released in 2001.

14 Captain who cries “From hell’s heart I stab at thee” : AHAB

Captain Ahab is the obsessed and far from friendly captain of the Pequod in Herman Melville’s “Moby-Dick”. The role of Captain Ahab was played by Gregory Peck in the 1956 John Huston film adaptation. Patrick Stewart played Ahab in a 1998 miniseries in which Peck made another appearance, as Father Mapple.

15 What the 21st Amendment achieved : REPEAL

The 18th Amendment to the US Constitution was a great victory for the temperance movement (the “dry” movement), and in 1919 ushered in the Prohibition era. Highly unpopular (with the “wet” movement), Prohibition was repealed in 1933 by the 21st Amendment.

17 Tiny bit of information : BYTE

In the world of computing, a bit is the basic unit of information. It has a value of 0 or 1. A “byte” is a small collection of “bits” (usually 8), the number of bits needed to uniquely identify a character of text. The prefix mega- stands for 10 to the power of 6, so a megabyte (meg) is 1,000,000 bytes. The prefix giga- means 10 to the power of 9, and so a gigabyte (gig) is 1,000,000,000 bytes. Well, those are the SI definitions of megabyte and gigabyte. The purists still use 2 to the power of 20 for a megabyte (i.e. 1,048,576), and 2 to the power of 30 for a gigabyte.

22 Propelled from a bench : OARED

That would be a “bench” (also a “thwart”) in a rowboat, I guess.

23 Words declared before and after “what” : I AM

I am what I am …

24 Product whose first commercial was notably narrated by Jeff Goldblum : IMAC

When Apple chose the letter “I” prefix for the iMac in 1998, that letter “I” stood for “Internet”. Steve Jobs and his marketing team followed up with the message that I also stood for “individual, instruct, inform and inspire”.

26 ___-worthy : OSCAR

Legend has it that actor Emilio Fernández was the model for the Oscar statuette. Cedric Gibbons, art director at MGM, created the design and supposedly convinced a reluctant Fernández to pose nude for “Oscar”.

27 Emmy-winning comedy series of 2007, 2008 and 2009 : THIRTY ROCK

“30 Rock” is a sitcom on NBC that was created by the show’s star Tina Fey. Fey plays an ex-performer and writer from “Saturday Night Live” (SNL) and uses her experiences on that show as a basis for the “30 Rock” storyline. Fey plays Liz Lemon, the head writer for the fictional sketch comedy series “TGS with Tracy Jordan”.

30 Climate control system, in brief : HVAC

In the world of heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), the power of a heating or cooling unit can be measured using the British Thermal Unit (BTU). This dated unit is the amount of energy required to heat a pound of water so that the water’s temperature increases by one degree Fahrenheit.

33 Goddess often depicted with wings : EOS

In Greek mythology, Eos is the mother of the four winds:

  • Boreas … north wind
  • Eurus … east wind
  • Notus … south wind
  • Zephyrus … west wind

34 URL ending : EDU

The .edu domain was one of the six original generic top-level domains specified. The complete original list is:

  • .com (commercial enterprise)
  • .net (entity involved in network infrastructure e.g. an ISP)
  • .mil (US military)
  • .org (not-for-profit organization)
  • .gov (US federal government entity)
  • .edu (college-level educational institution)

35 Places people speak in whispers : APSES

The apse of a church or cathedral is a semicircular recess in an outer wall, usually with a half-dome as a roof and often where there resides an altar. Originally, apses were used as burial places for the clergy and also for storage of important relics.

42 Nintendo console : WII

Introduced in 2006, Nintendo’s Wii quickly became the biggest-selling game console in the world.

51 Fire starters, for short : PYROS

“Pyro-” is the combining form of the Greek word for “fire”. “Pyrotechnics” is the art of making and using fireworks. “Pyromania” is a strong desire to light fires.

53 Idiosyncrasies : TICS

The prefix “idio-” indicates something peculiar, as in “idiosyncrasy”, a peculiarity exhibited by an individual or a group.

54 New Deal inits. : NRA

The National Recovery Administration (NRA) was one of the first agencies set up under President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal program. On the one hand, the NRA helped set minimum wages and maximum working hours for workers in industry, and on the other hand it helped set minimum prices for goods produced by companies. The NRA was very popular with the public, and businesses that didn’t opt to participate in the program found themselves boycotted. The NRA didn’t survive for long though, as after two years of operation it was deemed to be unconstitutional by the US Supreme Court and so it ceased operations in 1935.

56 Lady Gaga or Kylie Minogue : GAY ICON

“Lady Gaga” is the stage name of Stefani Germanotta. Germanotta is a big fan of the band Queen, and she took her stage name from the marvelous Queen song titled “Radio Ga Ga”.

Singer Kylie Minogue got her start as a performer with a starring role in the hit Australian soap opera “Neighbors”. As a singer, she earned the nickname “Princess of Pop”.

58 Souse : BOOZEHOUND

The verb “to souse” dates back to the 14th century and means “to pickle, steep in vinegar”. In the early 1600s, the usage was applied to someone pickled in booze, a drunkard.

66 Aid for driving : TEE

A tee is a small device on which, say, a golf ball is placed before striking it. The term “tee” comes from the Scottish “teaz”, which described little heaps of sand used to elevate a golf ball for the purpose of getting a clean hit with a club.

67 Evansville baseball team or Erie ice hockey team : OTTERS

Evansville, Indiana is the largest city in the southern part of the state. It sits on a bend of the Ohio River, and is sometimes known as “River City”.

Erie is a port city in the very north of Pennsylvania, sitting on the southern shore of Lake Erie. The city takes its name from the Erie Native American tribe that resided in the area. Erie is nicknamed the Gem City, a reference to the “sparkling” water of Lake Erie.

Down

3 Japanese mat : TATAMI

A tatami is a traditional mat used on floors in Japan. The term “tatami” comes from the Japanese word “tatamu” meaning “to fold”, reflecting the fact that the mat is designed to be folded up for storage.

6 Sunfish with colorful gill covers : REDEAR

A fish’s gills are the organs equivalent to the lungs of many land animals. The gills can extract oxygen dissolved in water and excrete carbon dioxide.

7 Shopkeeper on “The Simpsons” : APU

“The Problem with Apu” is a 2017 documentary that explores the use of racial stereotypes by focusing on the character Apu Nahasapeemapetilon from the animated sitcom “The Simpsons”. The film was written by and stars American stand-up comedian Hari Kondabolu.

8 Joe Biden’s home: Abbr. : DEL

The state of Delaware takes its name from Virginia’s first colonial governor, Englishman Thomas West, 3rd Baron De La Warr. Delaware is known as “the First State” as it was the first to ratify the US Constitution, in 1787.

11 Classic poem set in “bleak December” : THE RAVEN

Here are some lines from Edgar Allan Poe’s poem “The Raven”.

Ah, distinctly I remember, it was in the bleak December,
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor.

12 Virulent negativity, in modern parlance : HATERADE

An extremely negative person might be described as having drunk the “haterade”, a play on the beverage “Gatorade”.

13 Ritalin target, for short : ADHD

Ritalin is a trade name for the drug methylphenidate that is used for treatment of ADHD and narcolepsy. Methylphenidate has a similar structure and similar properties to the drug cocaine, although it is less potent.

28 Ingredient in an old-fashioned : RYE

The cocktail called an old fashioned is usually made from whiskey or brandy that is muddled with sugar and bitters, and then a twist of citrus rind added.

29 One facing the crew, informally : COX

The coxswain of a boat is one in charge of steering and navigation. The word “coxswain” is shortened to “cox”, particularly when used for the person steering and calling out the stroke in a competition rowing boat.

37 Social justice catchphrase : STAY WOKE

The term “woke” can be used as a slang term, an adjective meaning “aware of issues of racial and social justice”.

39 Actress Spacek : SISSY

Actress Sissy Spacek got her big break in the movies when she played the title role in the 1976 horror movie “Carrie”, which is based on a Stephen King novel. Her most acclaimed role is the lead in the 1980 biopic about Loretta Lynn called “Coal MIner’s Daughter”, for which she won a Best Actress Oscar. Spacek’s first cousin was the actor Rip Torn.

40 Police dispatch, for short : APB

An All Points Bulletin (APB) is a broadcast from one US law enforcement agency to another.

45 “The ___ Show” (daytime TV staple beginning in 2009) : DR OZ

Mehmet Oz is a cardiothoracic surgeon, and a TV personality known simply as “Dr. Oz”. Oz appeared as a health expert for several seasons on “The Oprah Winfrey Show”. Now he has his own “The Dr. Oz Show” on radio and television that is backed by Winfrey’s Harpo Productions.

47 Gentleman from Genoa : SIGNOR

Genoa is a seaport in the very north of Italy, in the region known as Liguria. One of Genoa’s most famous sons was Christopher Columbus. Another was the violinist Niccolò Paganini.

49 Traveling performers : TROUPE

“Troupe” is a French word meaning “company, band”.

55 Life after death? : OBIT

Our word “obituary” comes from the Latin “obituaris”. The Latin term was used for “record of the death of a person”, although the literal meaning is “pertaining to death”.

61 Pac-12 Conference player : UTE

The Utah Utes are the athletic teams of the University of Utah.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Flatbread from India : ROTI
5 Top-notch : GRADE-A
11 “J to ___ L-O!” (Jennifer Lopez album) : THA
14 Captain who cries “From hell’s heart I stab at thee” : AHAB
15 What the 21st Amendment achieved : REPEAL
16 Conned : HAD
17 Tiny bit of information : BYTE
18 They stay and bite : ADULT TEETH
20 “No clue” : BEATS ME
22 Propelled from a bench : OARED
23 Words declared before and after “what” : I AM
24 Product whose first commercial was notably narrated by Jeff Goldblum : IMAC
26 ___-worthy : OSCAR
27 Emmy-winning comedy series of 2007, 2008 and 2009 : THIRTY ROCK
30 Climate control system, in brief : HVAC
32 “Certainly” : YES
33 Goddess often depicted with wings : EOS
34 URL ending : EDU
35 Places people speak in whispers : APSES
38 Symbol for the starts of 18-, 27-, 46- and 58-Across : XXX
39 Sounder : SANER
41 Having everything one needs : SET
42 Nintendo console : WII
43 Part of many a ballroom dance : DIP
44 Beer topper : HEAD
46 Gains favor using abject flattery, informally : KISSES BUTT
51 Fire starters, for short : PYROS
53 Idiosyncrasies : TICS
54 New Deal inits. : NRA
55 “Man, that’s something!” : OH WOW!
56 Lady Gaga or Kylie Minogue : GAY ICON
58 Souse : BOOZEHOUND
62 Animal, vegetable or mineral : NOUN
63 Class : ILK
64 Move stealthily : TIPTOE
65 “Huh-uh” : NOPE
66 Aid for driving : TEE
67 Evansville baseball team or Erie ice hockey team : OTTERS
68 Coaster : SLED

Down

1 Hutch occupant : RABBIT
2 Sarcastic “Is that so?” : OH YEAH?
3 Japanese mat : TATAMI
4 “Um, sure” : I BET
5 Awards won by presidents Carter, Clinton and Obama : GRAMMYS
6 Sunfish with colorful gill covers : REDEAR
7 Shopkeeper on “The Simpsons” : APU
8 Joe Biden’s home: Abbr. : DEL
9 Down : EAT
10 Choir section : ALTOS
11 Classic poem set in “bleak December” : THE RAVEN
12 Virulent negativity, in modern parlance : HATERADE
13 Ritalin target, for short : ADHD
19 Per : EACH
21 Web destinations : SITES
25 Popular bumper sticker of the 2000s : COEXIST
26 Stamps, maybe : OKS
28 Ingredient in an old-fashioned : RYE
29 One facing the crew, informally : COX
31 Scoundrel : CUR
35 Remains to be seen? : ASH
36 Hotel door feature : PEEPHOLE
37 Social justice catchphrase : STAY WOKE
38 Spot on a sundial : XII
39 Actress Spacek : SISSY
40 Police dispatch, for short : APB
42 Calendar units: Abbr. : WKS
43 A long, long time : DECADES
45 “The ___ Show” (daytime TV staple beginning in 2009) : DR OZ
47 Gentleman from Genoa : SIGNOR
48 Square : UNCOOL
49 Traveling performers : TROUPE
50 Showing evidence of a beach holiday : TANNED
52 Have because of : OWE TO
55 Life after death? : OBIT
57 Public houses : INNS
59 Google result : HIT
60 Go (for) : OPT
61 Pac-12 Conference player : UTE

9 thoughts on “1230-21 NY Times Crossword 30 Dec 21, Thursday”

  1. 13:16, no errors. After filling in the answer for 46-Across, I felt a great disturbance in the force: I think it was Margaret Farrar turning over in her grave! … 😜

  2. 17:06, no errors. I was surprised to hear the “jingle” when I filled the last square. No fat fingers today. Nice “x-rated” puzzle. @Nonny, I had to look up Margaret Farrar… interesting lady.

  3. 17:21 I was also a bit surprised at 46A. Didn’t know that XXX was also an indicator for booze. And agree with @Steve re: Ms. Farrar.

  4. 16:55. Interesting theme, but I’m not sure it’s Thursday worthy – or more accurately maybe it’s not Thursday-ish.

    HATERADE?? I can’t believe we actually have a word for that.

    Best –

  5. Too much millennial phrase and cliches in this one to enjoy.

    Did not know AUDIO was a grammy phrase. Had to look those up also.

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