0813-22 NY Times Crossword 13 Aug 22, Saturday

Constructed by: John Westwig
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: None

Bill’s time: 27m 28s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 Buff, and then some : MEGAFAN

A buff or nut is someone who is extremely enthusiastic and knowledgeable about a subject. For example, one might be a movie buff, or perhaps a baseball nut.

15 Classic 1983 song that begins “Hate New York City …” : I LOVE LA

“I Love L.A.” is a song written and recorded by Randy Newman in 1983. The song is played at major sporting events in the city, usually after the home team scores or wins.

16 Gaming device with a sensor : WIIMOTE

“Wiimote” is an alternative name for the Wii Remote, the controller for the Nintendo Wii gaming console.

20 Carrey or Croce : JIM

Jim Carrey is a comedian and actor from Newmarket, Ontario. Carrey’s big break in films came with the title role in the first “Ace Ventura” film, in 1994. My favorite of his big screen performances is in the fascinating film “The Truman Show”, released in 1998.

Jim Croce’s most successful songs were “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown” and “Time in a Bottle”. Like so many great singers it seems, Croce died in a plane crash. He was killed along with five others just after takeoff when the small commercial plane in which he was traveling hit a tree, possibly because the pilot had a heart attack. Croce died just a few days before the release of his album “I Got a Name”.

22 Widely awarded Ward : SELA

Actress Sela Ward turns up in crosswords a lot. Ward played Teddy Reed in the TV show “Sisters” in the nineties, and was in “Once and Again” from 1999-2002. I don’t know either show, but I do know Ward from the medical drama “House” in which she played the hospital’s lawyer and Greg House’s ex-partner. That was a fun role, I thought. More recently, Ward played a lead role on “CSI: NY” and was a very welcome and much-needed addition to the cast. And, Ward played Dr. Richard Kimble’s murdered wife in the 1993 film version of “The Fugitive”.

26 Lead-in to ware : SPY-

Spyware is software that is installed on a computer to gather information without the owner’s knowledge. Nasty stuff …

29 Hawaii’s ___ Palace : ‘IOLANI

The ‘Iolani Palace in downtown Honolulu is unique within this country. It is the only royal palace in the US that was used as an official residence by a reigning monarch. The Kingdom of Hawaii was overthrown in 1893 so the palace was used by successive governments even after Hawaii was awarded statehood in 1959. The palace has been a public museum since 1978.

31 H.S. class with ein Lehrer : AP GERMAN

In German, one learns from “ein Lehrer” (a teacher).

33 “Brave New World” drug : SOMA

In Aldous Huxley’s 1931 masterpiece, “Brave New World”, the members of his future society are encouraged to partake of the drug called soma. The soma provides hangover-free escapes referred to as “holidays”.

36 Pieces of some pies : PECANS

The pecan is the state nut of Alabama, Arkansas and California. Also, the pecan is the state tree of Texas.

38 Bottom of a pit? : TUBA

The tuba is the lowest-pitched of all brass instruments, and one of the most recent additions to the modern symphony orchestra (usually there is just one tuba included in an orchestral line-up). “Tuba” is the Latin word for “trumpet, horn”. Oom-pah-pah …

39 Leaves totally drained of energy? : DECAF TEA

Caffeine is a naturally occurring stimulant that is found in several plants. The chemical serves as a natural pesticide by paralyzing and killing certain insects that would otherwise feed on the plant. Caffeine is the most widely consumed psychoactive drug that is consumed by humans across the world.

44 “Antiques Roadshow” airer : PBS

“Antiques Roadshow” is a very popular PBS TV show in which professional auctioneers appraise antiques brought to them by the general public. The American show is based on a long-running BBC production of the same name. In one episode of the American version of the show, four pieces of carved jade were presented for appraisal, and were given an estimated value of one million dollars!

49 Field of divination : AURA

An aura (plural “aurae”) is an intangible quality that surrounds a person or thing, a “je ne sais quoi”. “Je ne sais quoi” is French for “I don’t know what”.

55 What runs about a meter? : TAXICAB

We call cabs “taxis”, a word derived from “taximeter cabs” that were introduced in London in 1907. A taximeter was an automated meter designed to record distance traveled and fare to be charged. The term “taximeter” evolved from “taxameter”, with “taxa” being Latin for “tax, charge”.

59 Stephen King novella on which “Stand by Me” is based : THE BODY

“Stand by Me” is a 1986 film directed by Rob Reiner that is based on a Stephen King novella called “The Body”. The title of the movie comes from the wonderful Ben E. King song of the same name.

“Stand By Me” is a marvelous song co-written and first recorded in 1961 by Ben E. King. King and his partners actually wrote “Stand by Me” for the Drifters, but they passed on it. Over 400 cover versions have been recorded, including one by Muhammad Ali (when he was using the name Cassius Clay) and even one by Stephen King!

60 Pilot with a nonhuman co-pilot : HAN SOLO

Wookiees are a biped race featured in “Star Wars”. The most notable Wookiee is Chewbacca (aka “Chewie”), the loyal friend and associate of Han Solo who serves as co-pilot on the Millennium Falcon spaceship.

62 Person’s name that’s amusingly appropriate, like Usain Bolt or William Wordsworth : APTONYM

Usain Bolt is a Jamaican sprinter who won the 100m and 200m race gold medals in the 2008, 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games. Back in Jamaica, Bolt was really into cricket, and probably would have been a very successful fast bowler had he not hit the track instead.

The great English poet William Wordsworth is intrinsically linked with the Lake District in the north of England, where he lived from much of his life. The Lake District is a beautiful part of the country, and I’ve been fortunate enough to visit Dove Cottage in Grasmere a couple of times, where Wordsworth lived with his sister Dorothy …

Down

1 Battle stat : MIA

Missing in action (MIA)

4 Mean dude? : AVERAGE GUY

In a set of numbers, the mean is the average value of those numbers. The median is the numeric value at which half the numbers have a lower value, and half the numbers a higher value. The mode is the value that appears most often in the whole set of numbers.

5 Some “Narcos” characters, in brief : FEDS

“Narcos” is a Netflix show that deals with the Drug Enforcement Agency’s (DEA’s) battles against drug cartels. The first two seasons focus on the rise and fall of drug lord Pablo Escobar of the Medellín Cartel, and is set and filmed in Colombia.

6 Hawaii’s ___ Stadium : ALOHA

Aloha Stadium is located in Honolulu and is home to the University of Hawaii’s Warriors football team. It is a multi-use facility, used for anything from high school football games to Bowl tournaments.

14 Lilliputian : TEENY

The word “lilliputian” meaning “wee” or “very small”, comes from Jonathan Swift’s “Gulliver’s Travels”. In Swift’s tale, Lilliput and Blefuscu are two island nations that are inhabited by tiny people who are under six inches tall.

20 Bong ___-ho, Oscar winner for “Parasite” : JOON

“Parasite” is a 2019 comedy thriller movie from South Korea that became the nation’s highest-grossing film of all time. It was also the first movie not filmed in English to win the Oscar for Best Picture. I haven’t seen “Paradise” yet, but I hear great things from friends and family who have …

24 Cameron of Hollywood : DIAZ

Hollywood actress Cameron Diaz started out her professional life as a model. Diaz’s first acting role was in the 1994 film “The Mask”, starring alongside Jim Carrey.

25 Certain resort transport : SNO-CAT

The brand name “Sno-Cat” is owned by the Tucker company. All snowcats are tracked vehicles built to work in snow, and are famously used in expeditions to the polar regions. The modern Sno-Cat from Tucker differs from its competitors in that it has four independently-mounted tracks.

28 Volcano named after a god of darkness : EREBUS

Mount Erebus is a volcano that is located on Ross Island in Antarctica. It is the second-highest volcano on the continent, after Mount Sidley. It was discovered in 1841 by Sir James Clark Ross, along with the companion volcano Mount Terror. Ross named the peaks for the ships used on his voyage: HMS Erebus and HMS Terror.

Erebus was one of the Primordial deities of Greek mythology, meaning he was one of first beings to come into existence. “Erebus” is also used in ancient Greek literature as a region in the underworld where the dead pass to immediately after dying.

40 Going by, in brief : AKA

Also known as (aka)

45 16th-century pioneer in astronomy : BRAHE

Tycho Brahe was a Danish astronomer, and a contemporary of Galileo. Brahe lost his nose in a duel, and wore a replacement made from either silver or gold that was pasted onto his face!

46 Some winds, informally : SAXES

The saxophone was invented by Belgian musician Adolphe Sax, hence the name. Sax developed lip cancer at one point in his life, and one has to wonder if his affliction was related to his saxophone playing (I am sure not!). I had the privilege of visiting Sax’s grave in the Cemetery of Montmartre in Paris a few years ago.

51 Salad base choice : BIBB

Bibb is a variety of lettuce in the cultivar known as butterhead. All butterhead varieties have loose-leafed heads and a buttery texture.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Buff, and then some : MEGAFAN
8 Touching : AGAINST
15 Classic 1983 song that begins “Hate New York City …” : I LOVE LA
16 Gaming device with a sensor : WIIMOTE
17 Pursued, as one’s hunch : ACTED ON
18 [strokes chin] : HMM, I SEE
19 Scathing : HARSH
20 Carrey or Croce : JIM
21 Follower of four or six but not three or five : -TEEN
22 Widely awarded Ward : SELA
23 Digs deeply : ADORES
26 Lead-in to ware : SPY-
27 Good name for a librarian? : PAIGE
29 Hawaii’s ___ Palace : ‘IOLANI
31 H.S. class with ein Lehrer : AP GERMAN
33 “Brave New World” drug : SOMA
35 “Man, you gotta be kidding!” : OH, GEEZ!
36 Pieces of some pies : PECANS
38 Bottom of a pit? : TUBA
39 Leaves totally drained of energy? : DECAF TEA
41 Yiddish fools : YUTZES
43 Fool : TRICK
44 “Antiques Roadshow” airer : PBS
47 Parts of arrows : SHAFTS
49 Field of divination : AURA
50 ___ American Heritage Month (April observance) : ARAB
52 No. at the end of a telephone no. : EXT
53 It used to be yours : THINE
55 What runs about a meter? : TAXICAB
57 Desert quality : ARIDITY
59 Stephen King novella on which “Stand by Me” is based : THE BODY
60 Pilot with a nonhuman co-pilot : HAN SOLO
61 Subordinate clause? : YES, BOSS
62 Person’s name that’s amusingly appropriate, like Usain Bolt or William Wordsworth : APTONYM

Down

1 Battle stat : MIA
2 Stingy sort : EL CHEAPO
3 Smoker’s query : GOT A LIGHT?
4 Mean dude? : AVERAGE GUY
5 Some “Narcos” characters, in brief : FEDS
6 Hawaii’s ___ Stadium : ALOHA
7 Mum’s mum : NAN
8 Spinning : AWHIRL
9 “Patience …” : GIMME A SEC …
10 Intent : AIM
11 Words that incite a chase : I’M IT
12 They might be powdered or stuffed : NOSES
13 Up a lot? : STEEP
14 Lilliputian : TEENY
20 Bong ___-ho, Oscar winner for “Parasite” : JOON
22 Where spring might be just around the corner? : SPA
24 Cameron of Hollywood : DIAZ
25 Certain resort transport : SNO-CAT
28 Volcano named after a god of darkness : EREBUS
30 “Sadly, it’s true” : I’M AFRAID SO
32 Fools : MEATHEADS
34 Like those who refuse to be organized : ANTI-UNION
36 ___ control : PEST
37 How couples elope : SECRETLY
39 Like a virtuoso : DEFT
40 Going by, in brief : AKA
42 Southern fast-food chain with “Zalads” and “Zappetizers” : ZAXBY’S
44 Ground round : PATTY
45 16th-century pioneer in astronomy : BRAHE
46 Some winds, informally : SAXES
48 Band : STRAP
51 Salad base choice : BIBB
54 Leave a small tip : HINT
56 Bit of sweet talk : COO
57 “So that’s your game!” : AHA!
58 Hebrew for “day” : YOM

10 thoughts on “0813-22 NY Times Crossword 13 Aug 22, Saturday”

  1. 17:38. Tough one. I had ATWIRL for 8D, which threw me off on the NE. AVERAGE JOE instead of AVERAGE GUY slowed me down too, because OH JEEZ seemed to fit. The whole right side was sort of a tough slog, and when I got everything filled in, I had some mistakes to fix.

  2. 31:46, no errors. My problems were all in the lower left, where I floundered for a very long time. Once I finally conquered it, I still had to contend with “ZAXBY’S”, which I’d never heard of (but the clue made it seem likely that the letter I was missing was a “Z”). At that point, I was missing only the “Y” of “YUTZES” and I spent several minutes convincing myself that there was no way to make “PUTZES” work. (I’m familiar with “KLUTZES”, too, but not “YUTZES”.) So, ultimately, I shrugged, put in the “Y”, and … all was well … 🤪.

    So … for me … a hard one … 😳.

  3. 31:43, no errors. Things looked pretty dismal for a long time. I also had AVERAGE JOE and OH JEEZ, which I couldn’t let go. As well as PUTZES in 41A, a word I didn’t think would fly in a NYT puzzle. But the editors have surprised me in the past. 39A also was a hard spot, difficult to recognize ‘Leaves’ as a noun, rather than a verb. Just happy to finish, and thrilled to be only 4 mins behind Bill on a Saturday.

  4. 37:57. Another hand up for AVERAGE joe and OH jEEZ. Like Tom R, I had ATWIRL before AWHIRL.

    It was largely BRAHE’s work that Kepler’s laws of planetary motion are based.

    I did know YUTZES which got me to AVERAGE GUY. I’ve heard the expression “Every YUTZ with ears knows that…”

    They have ZAXBYS in Houston so I knew it well. Now that I’m saying all this, why was my time so slow??

    Wordplay said ZAXBYS is for the scrabble crowd as well. I guess it would be a lot of points.

    Best –

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