0106-22 NY Times Crossword 6 Jan 22, Thursday

Constructed by: Andrew Linzer
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answer: Groupthink

We have a rebus today, with a twist. Three down-answers use CROW in one square, three use LION, and three use ANT. The corresponding across-answers use MURDER (of CROWS), PRIDE (of LIONS), and COLONY (of ANTS). Very, very clever …

  • 60A Intellectual conformity … or a hint to interpreting 17-, 22- and 51-Across : GROUPTHINK
  • 17A Genre for Agatha Christie or Arthur Conan Doyle : MURDER MYSTERY (MURDER of CROWS)
  • 5D Little bit of power : MICROWATT
  • 6D Funds might be held in this : ESCROW
  • 17D Cheers, boos and such : CROWD NOISE
  • 22A June : PRIDE MONTH (PRIDE of LIONS)
  • 1D Garden item frequently added to cream cheese : SCALLION
  • 2D World’s fair sight : PAVILION
  • 3D Great thing to feel like : A MILLION BUCKS
  • 51A Early 19th-century Australia, for one : PENAL COLONY (COLONY of ANTS)
  • 29D Cup holder, usually : DOMINANT HAND
  • 52D Tums, for one : ANTACID
  • 53D Country songs? : ANTHEMS

Bill’s time: 14m 21s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

5 Like the eventual inheritors of the earth, in Matthew : MEEK

The Sermon on the Mount is a collection of teachings of Jesus recorded in the Gospel of Matthew. One famous section of the discourse is known as the Beatitudes. The eight Beatitudes are:

  • … Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven
  • … Blessed are those who mourn: for they will be comforted
  • … Blessed are the meek: for they will inherit the earth
  • … Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness: for they will be filled
  • … Blessed are the merciful: for they will be shown mercy
  • … Blessed are the pure in heart: for they will see God
  • … Blessed are the peacemakers: for they will be called children of God
  • … Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

9 Mark of divinity : HALO

The Greek word “halos” is the name given to the ring of light around the sun or moon, which gives us our word “halo” that is used for a radiant light depicted above the head of a saintly person.

13 A G.I. may be seen in it : CAMO

Our word “camouflage” (often abbreviated to “camo”) evolved directly from a Parisian slang term “camoufler” meaning “to disguise”. The term was first used in WWI, although the British navy at that time preferred the expression “dazzle-painting” as it applied to the pattern painted on the hulls of ships.

14 Actress Fisher of “Wedding Crashers” : ISLA

Not only does the 2005 romantic comedy “Wedding Crashers” star Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughan, but if you rent it you’ll see cameos from Democratic pundit James Carville, and Republican Senator John McCain.

15 Brain connection : AXON

A nerve cell is more correctly called a neuron. The branched projections that receive electrochemical signals from other neurons are known as dendrites. The long nerve fiber that conducts signals away from the neuron is known as the axon. A neuron that has no definite axon is referred to as “apolar” or “nonpolar”. In apolar neurons the nerve impulses radiate in all directions.

17 Genre for Agatha Christie or Arthur Conan Doyle : MURDER MYSTERY (MURDER of CROWS)

Agatha Christie is the best-selling novelist of all time, having sold about 4 billion copies worldwide in total. The only books to have sold in higher volume are the works of William Shakespeare and the Bible.

Scottish writer Sir Arthur Conan Doyle is most closely associated with his wonderful character Sherlock Holmes. Doyle also wrote a series of science fiction stories featuring the character Professor Challenger. The first book in which Challenger appears is the famous “The Lost World”, a story about prehistoric creatures that are found living in the modern age on an isolated plateau in South America.

There doesn’t seem to be a definitive etymology for “murder” as the collective noun for crows. One suggestion is that it comes from the scavenging behavior of crows, sometimes feeding on rotting bodies of dead animals.

19 Rapper ___ Nas X : LIL

20 Kissing on the subway, e.g., for short : PDA

Public display of affection (PDA)

22 June : PRIDE MONTH (PRIDE of LIONS)

The police raided a gay bar called the Stonewall Inn on June 29th, 1969. That raid triggered a spate of violent demonstrations led by the LGBT community. Now known as the Stonewall riots, those demonstrations are viewed by many as a significant event leading to the modern-day fight for LGBT rights in the US. Since then, June has been chosen as LGBT Pride Month in recognition of the Stonewall riots.

Here are some colorful collective nouns:

  • A pride of lions
  • A shrewdness of apes
  • A cloud of bats
  • A bench of bishops
  • A parliament of owls
  • A clowder of cats
  • A waddling of ducks
  • An army of frogs
  • A knot of toads

25 Baby fox : KIT

Kits are the young of several mammalian species, including the ferret and fox. “Kit” is probably a shortened form of “kitten”.

26 Bit of Western neckwear : BOLO TIE

I’ve never worn a bolo tie, and was surprised to discover that it is a relatively recent invention. The first bolo tie was apparently produced in Wickenburg, Arizona in the late 1940s by a silversmith. The bolo takes its name from the boleadora, an Argentine lariat.

32 One of two sultanates in the United Nations : BRUNEI

The official name of Brunei is the Nation of Brunei, the Abode of Peace. Brunei is situated on the island of Borneo, almost completely surrounded by Malaysia. Brunei’s government is dictated by the constitution adopted in 1959, and is ruled by a sultan with full executive authority. The main language spoken in the country is “Melayu Brunei” (Brunei Malay), with the official language being Malay. Apparently Malay and Brunei Malay are quite different from each other, with native speakers finding it difficult to understand each other.

34 N.B.A. legend nicknamed “Black Mamba” : KOBE

Kobe Bryant played basketball for the LA Lakers. Bryant got his given name from a menu, would you believe? His parents were in a Japanese restaurant and liked the name of “Kobe” beef, the beef from around the city of Kobe on the island of Honshu in Japan.

36 Egg cells : OVA

“Ovum” (plural “ova”) is Latin for “egg”.

42 Word with high or seven : … SEAS

The phrase “international waters” is generally understood to mean the “high seas”, parts of oceans and seas that fall outside of national jurisdiction. There are also semi-enclosed bodies of water that have been declared international waterways. One example is the Danube River, which is deemed to be an international waterway so that it gives secure access to the Baltic Sea for the landlocked nations Austria, Hungary, Moldova, Serbia and Slovakia.

The phrase “the seven seas” has been used for centuries by many different peoples. The actual definition of what constitutes the collection of seven has varied depending on the period and the culture. Nowadays we consider the seven largest bodies of water as the seven seas, namely:

  • The North Pacific Ocean
  • The South Pacific Ocean
  • The North Atlantic Ocean
  • The South Atlantic Ocean
  • The Indian Ocean
  • The Southern Ocean
  • The Arctic Ocean

49 ___ jeans : MOM

“Mom jeans” and “dad jeans” are not-so-nice names for high-waisted jeans, jeans usually worn by older women and men.

65 Lively, in music: Abbr. : ANIM

As one might expect, the Italian word “animato” is used in a musical score to indicate that one should play “spiritedly”.

66 “Wabbit” hunter Elmer : FUDD

Elmer Fudd is one of the most famous Looney Tunes cartoon characters, and is the hapless nemesis of Bugs Bunny. If you have never seen it, check out Elmer and Bugs in the marvelous “Rabbit of Seville”, a short cartoon that parodies Rossini’s “Barber of Seville”. Wonderful stuff …

67 One of two sultanates in the United Nations : OMAN

Oman lies on the southeast coast of the Arabian Peninsula and is neighbored by the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Yemen. Oman is a monarchy, and the official name of the state is the Sultanate of Oman. All of the country’s legislative, executive and judiciary power resides with the hereditary sultan.

68 Right-hand page numbers, typically : ODDS

The left and right pages of a book or magazine are known in publishing circles as verso and recto. “Recto” comes from the Latin for “right”, and “verso” comes from the Latin word for “turned”. The idea is that the left side of the page is turned and is the reverse of the recto/right side.

Down

1 Garden item frequently added to cream cheese : SCALLION

Scallions are edible plants with a mild onion flavor. They are also called green onions or spring onions.

2 World’s fair sight : PAVILION

The first World’s Fair was held in 1851, known back then as the Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations. The fair was the idea of Prince Albert, consort of Queen Victoria. It was held in a magnificent glass and cast-iron structure called the Crystal Palace that was purpose-built for the occasion. The Great Exhibition spawned a tradition of what became known as World’s Fairs, expositions that feature national pavilions created by participating countries. The term “Expo” was coined for Expo 67, a 1967 World’s Fair held in Montreal. Since then, we’ve been using “expo” to describe any large exposition or trade show.

3 Great thing to feel like : A MILLION BUCKS

“Buck” is a slang word meaning “dollar”. The term has been around at least since 1856, and is thought to derive from the tradition of using buckskin as a unit of trade with Native Americans during the frontier days.

5 Little bit of power : MICROWATT

James Watt was a Scottish inventor. He figured prominently in the Industrial Revolution in Britain, largely due to the improvements he made to the fledgling steam engine. The SI unit of power is called the watt, and was named in his honor.

6 Funds might be held in this : ESCROW

One type of escrow account is held by a trusted third party for two parties who have some contractual arrangement, an arrangement that is often in dispute. The third party only releases the funds when both parties have fulfilled their contractual obligations.

8 Boat going back and forth? : KAYAK

There is a type of boat used by Inuit people called a “kayak”. The term “kayak” means “man’s boat”, whereas “umiak” means “woman’s boat”.

11 Romulus, Remus and the founding of Rome, e.g. : LORE

According to tradition, Rome was founded by the twin brothers Romulus and Remus. The pair had a heated argument about who should be allowed to name the city and Romulus hit Remus with a shovel, killing him. And so, “Rome” was born, perhaps instead of “Reme”!

12 Jet-black gem : ONYX

Onyx is a form of quartz that comes in many different shades, but most often it’s the black version that’s used for jewelry. The name “onyx” comes from the Greek word for “fingernail”, as onyx in the flesh color is said to resemble a fingernail.

18 Strike down : SMITE

To smite is to strike with a firm blow. The term “smite” can also mean “strike down and slay”.

31 Compos mentis : SANE

“Compos mentis” is a Latin phrase that translates as “in command of one’s mind”. It is a term used in contemporary law.

32 Spill the beans : BLAB

To spill the beans is to divulge a secret. The expression first appeared in American English, in the early 1900s. The phrase arose as an alternative to “spoil the beans” or “upset the applecart”. The similarly meaning phrase “spill the tea” is more prevalent on the other side of the Atlantic.

33 Detective Diaz on “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” : ROSA

“Brooklyn Nine-Nine” is a sitcom set in the 99th precinct of the NYPD in Brooklyn. Star of the show is “Saturday Night Live” alum Andy Samberg, who plays Detective Jake Peralta.

Argentine-American actress Stephanie Beatriz is best known for her role on the comedy show “Brookly Nine-Nine”, playing Detective Rosa Diaz.

35 One reading Kerouac or Ginsberg, say : BEATNIK

The term “beatnik” was coined by journalist Herb Caen in 1958 when he used it to describe the stereotypical young person of the “beat generation”, which is oft associated with the writer Jack Kerouac. That stereotypical beatnik would be playing the bongos, rolling his or her own cigarettes. Male beatniks tended to sport goatees and wear berets.

39 Sleazeball : CAD

Our word “cad”, meaning “person lacking in finer feelings”, is a shortening of the word “cadet”. “Cad” was first used for a servant, and then students at British universities used “cad” as a term for a boy from the local town. “Cad” took on its current meaning in the 1830s.

40 Birthstone after sapphire : OPAL

Here is the “official” list of birthstones, by month, that we tend to use today:

  • January: Garnet
  • February: Amethyst
  • March: Bloodstone or Aquamarine
  • April: Diamond
  • May: Emerald
  • June: Pearl or Moonstone
  • July: Ruby
  • August: Sardonyx or Peridot
  • September: Sapphire or Lapis Lazuli
  • October: Opal or Pink Tourmaline
  • November: Topaz or Citrine
  • December: Turquoise or Zircon (also now, Tanzanite)

46 Filled (with) : IMBUED

To imbue is to pervade, to soak in. “Imbue” has the same etymological roots as our word “imbibe”.

50 ___ ball : MATZO

Matzo is an unleavened bread that is very brittle. The bread is crushed, creating a Matzo meal that is then formed into balls using eggs and oil as a binder. The balls are usually served in a chicken stock.

52 Tums, for one : ANTACID

The main ingredient in Tums antacid, made by GlaxoSmithKline, is calcium carbonate. Tums have been on the market since 1930. If you want to save a few pennies, Target brand antacid is identical to Tums, or so I hear …

53 Country songs? : ANTHEMS

The word “anthem” used to describe a sacred song, especially one with words taken from the Scriptures. The British national anthem (“God Save the Queen/King”) technically is a hymn, and so it came to be described as “the national hymn” and later “the national anthem”. The use of the word “anthem” extended from there to describe any patriotic song.

54 End-of-week exclamation : TGIF!

“Thank God It’s Friday” (TGIF)

55 Language of Pakistan’s Daily Khabrain : URDU

Urdu is one of the two official languages of Pakistan (the other being English), and is one of the 22 scheduled languages in India. Urdu partly developed from Persian and is written from right to left.

56 Top prize : GOLD

In the Ancient Olympic Games, the winner of an event was awarded an olive wreath. When the games were revived in 1896, the winners were originally given a silver medal and an olive branch, with runners-up receiving a bronze medal and a laurel branch. The tradition of giving gold, silver and bronze medals began at the 1904 Summer Olympic Games held in St. Louis, Missouri.

61 Glass who shared the first-ever Pulitzer in Audio Journalism : IRA

Ira Glass is a well-respected presenter on American Public Radio who is perhaps best known for his show “This American Life”. I was interested to learn that one of my favorite composers, Philip Glass, is Ira’s first cousin.

62 Language in which most words are monosyllabic : LAO

Lao, the language of Laos, does not use spaces between words (or periods!), although this is apparently changing. Spaces are used between sentences and clauses.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Go over : SPAN
5 Like the eventual inheritors of the earth, in Matthew : MEEK
9 Mark of divinity : HALO
13 A G.I. may be seen in it : CAMO
14 Actress Fisher of “Wedding Crashers” : ISLA
15 Brain connection : AXON
16 Like fans who hold season tickets, typically : AVID
17 Genre for Agatha Christie or Arthur Conan Doyle : MURDER MYSTERY (MURDER of CROWS)
19 Rapper ___ Nas X : LIL
20 Kissing on the subway, e.g., for short : PDA
21 Like some relationships : SAME-SEX
22 June : PRIDE MONTH (PRIDE of LIONS)
25 Baby fox : KIT
26 Bit of Western neckwear : BOLO TIE
28 Items on a checklist : TO-DOS
32 One of two sultanates in the United Nations : BRUNEI
34 N.B.A. legend nicknamed “Black Mamba” : KOBE
36 Egg cells : OVA
37 U-shaped bike accessory : LOCK
38 Last word in an improv show : SCENE
40 A rainbow is said to be a good one : OMEN
41 Beseech : ASK
42 Word with high or seven : … SEAS
43 Reach for the stars : ASPIRE
45 No-frills : BASIC
47 Things might get swept up in it : DUSTPAN
49 ___ jeans : MOM
51 Early 19th-century Australia, for one : PENAL COLONY (COLONY of ANTS)
54 Water tower? : TUGBOAT
58 Funny one : WIT
59 “Funny one!” : HAH!
60 Intellectual conformity … or a hint to interpreting 17-, 22- and 51-Across : GROUPTHINK
62 Some frills : LACE
63 Lay off : IDLE
64 Net emissions target : ZERO
65 Lively, in music: Abbr. : ANIM
66 “Wabbit” hunter Elmer : FUDD
67 One of two sultanates in the United Nations : OMAN
68 Right-hand page numbers, typically : ODDS

Down

1 Garden item frequently added to cream cheese : SCALLION
2 World’s fair sight : PAVILION
3 Great thing to feel like : A MILLION BUCKS
4 Signal agreement : NOD
5 Little bit of power : MICROWATT
6 Funds might be held in this : ESCROW
7 Classic boulevard liners : ELMS
8 Boat going back and forth? : KAYAK
9 Would really rather not : HATE TO
10 x, y and sometimes z : AXES
11 Romulus, Remus and the founding of Rome, e.g. : LORE
12 Jet-black gem : ONYX
17 Cheers, boos and such : CROWD NOISE
18 Strike down : SMITE
20 + or – thing : POLE
23 Brother : MONK
24 Boosts, redundantly : HIKES UP
27 Time period, or an anagram of one? : EON
29 Cup holder, usually : DOMINANT HAND
30 “Back to you” : OVER
31 Compos mentis : SANE
32 Spill the beans : BLAB
33 Detective Diaz on “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” : ROSA
35 One reading Kerouac or Ginsberg, say : BEATNIK
39 Sleazeball : CAD
40 Birthstone after sapphire : OPAL
42 Inside info : SCOOP
44 Tiff : SPAT
46 Filled (with) : IMBUED
48 Like scouting patches : SEWN ON
50 ___ ball : MATZO
52 Tums, for one : ANTACID
53 Country songs? : ANTHEMS
54 End-of-week exclamation : TGIF
55 Language of Pakistan’s Daily Khabrain : URDU
56 Top prize : GOLD
57 “How do you like ___ apples?” : THEM
61 Glass who shared the first-ever Pulitzer in Audio Journalism : IRA
62 Language in which most words are monosyllabic : LAO

6 thoughts on “0106-22 NY Times Crossword 6 Jan 22, Thursday”

  1. 9:35. “MURDER” for a group of crows and “parliament” for a group of owls are my two favorite animal collective names.

  2. 23:31, no errors. It took me a while to understand the gimmick in this one and then I had a couple of early mistakes to review and fix. (At least, for once, I refrained from filling the last square until after I had everything fixed. Maybe I’ll finally make my peace with online solving after all … 🤪.)

  3. 18:22 I got a couple of the individual rebuses fairly early, but it took me a while to realize there were 3 consecutive. I told myself – nah – tat can’t be right. Also thought that it was a “crime” of crows, but learned here that it’s a MURDER.

  4. 26:11. Agreed – very clever theme. Although I finished the puzzle correctly, I didn’t actually see the theme until I came here.

    Coincidentally, I recently had a discussion on how lethal various snakebites can be. A black mamba (sorry, KOBE) can kill a human being within 20 minutes. I think I’ll avoid them.

    Best –

  5. 25:30 Sure, I could solve this, but yesterday’s? Go figure. Had to come to the blog to see the connection between the three rebuses and the clue…followed by an audible “Duh”. If a solver says “duh” and nobody’s around to hear it, was it really said? 🤣 No back to last Sunday’s puzzle that I haven’t started yet!

  6. Bill: Clue for 9 Across: “Mark of divinity.” I would prefer to say, “Mark of Sanctity” because in traditional theology, there are only three divinities : “Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,” and all the Holy people (Saints) are depicted with the halo.

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