0904-22 NY Times Crossword 4 Sep 22, Sunday

Constructed by: Tracy Gray
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: Ups and Downs

Circled letters in the grid slant UP AND DOWN and spell out synonyms of “gradient”. Themed answers each start on the left side of a gradient, travel UP or DOWN that gradient, and finish at its right side:

  • 35A *Mount Everest scaler : EDMUND HILLARY
  • 39A *Went out of control : RAN RAMPANT
  • 60A *”Cinderella” meanie : EVIL STEPSISTER
  • 73A *Lateral-breaking pitches : BACKDOOR SLIDERS
  • 80A *Glide down from above : PARACHUTE IN
  • 114A *Portrayer of Scrooge in 1951’s “A Christmas Carol” : ALASTAIR SIM

Bill’s time: 18m 35s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

7 Foofaraw : ADO

Foofaraw is excessive or flashy ornamentation, or a fuss over something that is unimportant.

14 Thickener used in desserts : AGAR

Agar (also “agar-agar”) is a jelly extracted from seaweed that has many uses. Agar is found in Japanese desserts, and can also be used as a food thickener or even as a laxative. In the world of science, it is the most common medium used for growing bacteria in Petri dishes.

19 Calico calls : MEWS

Domestic cats with a white coat and patches of brown and black are called calico cats in this country. Back in Ireland, and the rest of the world I think, such cats are called tortoiseshell-and-white. “Calico” is not a breed of cat, but rather a coloring.

22 N.F.L. Hall-of-Famer Yale ___ : LARY

Yale Lary is a former NFL player from Fort Worth, Texas. He played college football at Texas A&M and spent the whole of his professional career with the Detroit Lions.

23 Backpacker’s snack : OAT BAR

“Rucksack” is a word used for a backpack, mainly in the UK but also in the US Army, I believe. It derives from the German “Rücken” meaning “back, and “Sack” meaning “bag”.

27 “I didn’t need to know that!” : TMI!

Too much information (TMI)

28 What a net might attach to : RIM

Basketball is truly a North American sport. It was created in 1891 by Canadian James Naismith at the YMCA in Springfield, Massachusetts. His goal was to create something active and interesting for his students in the gym. The first “hoops” were actually peach baskets, with the bottoms of the baskets intact. When a player got the ball into the “net”, someone had to clamber up and get the ball back out again in order to continue the game!

30 Flying Cloud of old autodom : REO

The REO Motor Company was founded by Ransom Eli Olds (hence the name REO). The company made cars, trucks and buses, and was in business from 1905 to 1975 in Lansing, Michigan. Among the company’s most famous models were the REO Royale 8 and the REO Flying Cloud.

31 Jazz clarinetist Shaw : ARTIE

Artie Shaw was a composer, bandleader and jazz clarinetist. Shaw’s real name was Arthur Jacob Arshawsky, born in New York City in 1910. One of his many claims to fame is that he (a white bandleader) hired Billie Holiday (a black vocalist) and toured the segregated South in the late thirties. Holiday chose to leave the band though, due to hostility from Southern audiences back then. Artie Shaw was married eight times in all. The list of his wives includes the actresses Lana Turner and Ava Gardner, as well as Betty Kern, daughter of songwriter Jerome Kern.

33 Some Six Nations members : SENECAS

The Seneca Native-American nation was a member of the Six Nations or Iroquois League, along with the Iroquois, Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga and Tuscarora peoples. Historically, the Seneca lived south of Lake Ontario. The name “Seneca” translates as “Great Hill People”.

35 *Mount Everest scaler : EDMUND HILLARY

Edmund Hillary was a mountaineer and explorer from New Zealand. Famously, Hillary and Tenzing Norgay were the first climbers to summit Mount Everest, doing so in 1953. Edmund’s son Peter Hillary also became a climber, and he reached the summit of Everest in 1990. Peter repeated the feat in 2002, climbing alongside Tenzing Norgay’s son Jamling.

40 A.M.A. members: Abbr. : DRS

American Medical Association (AMA)

45 Big lugs : GALOOTS

“Galoot” is an insulting term describing an awkward or boorish man, an ape. “Galoot” comes from the nautical world, where it was originally what a sailor might call a soldier or marine.

49 Alice who wrote “The Color Purple” : WALKER

Alice Walker is an author and poet. Walker’s best known work is the novel “The Color Purple”, which earned her the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize. “The Color Purple” was adapted into a very successful film of the same name, directed by Steven Spielberg.

51 Org. with a sizable registry : AKC

The American Kennel Club (AKC) is the organization that handles registration of purebred dogs The AKC also promotes dog shows around the country, including the famous Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.

54 Yellow jacket, for one : WASP

“Yellowjacket” is a name commonly used in North America for what are often referred to simply as “wasps” in other English-speaking parts of the world. Both terms describe several different species.

55 Syrup brand since 1902 : KARO

Karo is a brand of corn syrup, an industrially manufactured sweetener derived from corn. The brand was introduced in 1902 by the Corn Products Refining Company.

57 Word before Roger or Rancher : JOLLY …

The Jolly Roger is a flag that was flown by pirates to identify their vessels, basically to strike fear in the hearts of the crews they were attacking. We usually think of the Jolly Roger’s design as a white skull and crossbones on a black background. There is a theory that pirates originally flew a red flag, and this was known colloquially as the “pretty red”, or “joli rouge” in French. “Joli Rouge” then evolved into “Jolly Roger”.

Jolly Ranchers are a brand of hard candies that has been produced since 1949. Founded in 1949 in Golden, Colorado, the Jolly Rancher name was chosen to present a friendly, western image.

60 *”Cinderella” meanie : EVIL STEPSISTER

The folktale usually known as “Cinderella” was first published by French author Charles Perrault in 1697, although it was later included by the Brothers Grimm in their famous 1812 collection. The storyline of the tale may date back as far as the days of ancient Greece. A common alternative title to the story is “The Little Glass Slipper”.

63 Middle van Pelt child in “Peanuts” : LINUS

In Charles Schulz’s fabulous comic strip “Peanuts”, Charlie Brown is friends with at least three members of the van Pelt family. Most famously there is Lucy van Pelt, who bosses everyone around, and who operates a psychiatric booth that looks like a lemonade stand. Then there is Linus, Lucy’s younger brother, the character who always has his security blanket at hand. Lastly there is an even younger brother, Rerun van Pelt. Rerun is constantly hiding under his bed, trying to avoid going to school.

64 Use Tinder, say : SWIPE

Tinder is a matchmaking app that uses Facebook profiles. Users “swipe” photos of potential matches, either to the right (“like”) or to the left (“not interested”). Users who “match” each other can then chat within the app.

69 Big exporter of pistachios : IRAN

The pistachio is a small tree that produces some very tasty seeds. We see the seeds in grocery stores labeled as “nuts”, but botanically they are termed “drupes”. Drupe or nut, they’re delicious …

70 Features of some bygone muscle cars : T-TOPS

A T-top is a car roof that has removable panels on either side of a rigid bar that runs down the center of the vehicle above the driver.

73 *Lateral-breaking pitches : BACKDOOR SLIDERS

That would be baseball.

76 Maker of the world’s first quartz watch : SEIKO

Watch manufacturer Seiko was founded as a watch and jewelry shop in Tokyo in 1881. The store was opened by one Kintaro Hattori, who started to produce clocks under the name Seikosha, which can be translated as “House of Exquisite Workmanship”. The first Seiko watches went on sale in 1924, and today the company suggests that the name “Seiko” is Japanese for “exquisite” and “success”.

77 Javanese dyeing technique : BATIK

Genuine batik cloth is produced by applying wax to the parts of the cloth that are not to be dyed. After the cloth has been dyed, it is dried and then dipped in a solvent that dissolves the wax. Although wax-resist dyeing of fabric has existed in various parts of the world for centuries, it is most closely associated historically with the island of Java in Indonesia.

78 Potala Palace city : LHASA

Lhasa is the capital city of Tibet, with the name “Lhasa” translating as “place of the gods”. However, Lhasa used to be called Rasa, a name that translates into the less auspicious “goat’s place”. Lhasa was also once called the “Forbidden City” due to its inaccessible location high in the Himalayas and a traditional hostility exhibited by residents to outsiders. The “forbidden” nature of the city has been reinforced since the Chinese took over Tibet in the early 1950s as it has been difficult for foreigners to get permission to visit Lhasa.

The Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet was the residence of the Dalai Lama until he fled the former country in 1959 during the Tibetan Uprising. The building is divided into the White Palace and the Red Palace. The White Palace made up the Dalai Lama’s private living quarters. The larger Red Palace comprised halls, chapels and libraries devoted to religious study.

79 One of seven represented in the Pleiades : SISTER

The Seven Sisters of Greek mythology are also known as the Pleiades. The Seven Sisters were the daughters of the titan Atlas, who had been forced to carry the heavens on his shoulders. In an act of kindness, Zeus transformed the sisters first into doves, and then into stars so that they could provide comfort for their father. There is indeed a cluster of seven stars in the night sky named for the myth and known as the Pleiades.

80 *Glide down from above : PARACHUTE IN

The term “parachute” was coined by Frenchman François Blanchard, from “para-” meaning “defense against” and “chute” meaning “a fall”.

84 ___ card : SIM

Most cell phones have SIM cards these days. SIM cards hold the personal information of the subscriber, with the acronym being short for “Subscriber Identity Module”.

85 Fashion house whose logo is two interlocking C’s : CHANEL

The House of Chanel has its origin in a millinery shop in Paris that Gabrielle “CoCo” Chanel opened in 1909. The shop was on the ground floor of the home of socialite Étienne Balsan, of whom Chanel was his mistress. Using her connection to Balsan, Chanel met many women who lived extravagant lifestyles in Paris in those pre-war years, and hence was able to establish her reputation as a hatmaker. Chanel built on that reputation, and within a few years opened her first dress shop in Paris.

91 Title for Baltimore : LORD

Cecilius Calvert was the 2nd Baron of Baltimore, an English peer and member of the Irish House of Lords who became Proprietary Governor of the Province of Maryland. Calvert managed the Maryland colony from his home in England, for 42 years. As Calvert was a Roman Catholic, the colony of Maryland became a haven for Catholics from England who were suffering religious persecution. The city of Baltimore is named after Calvert, who was also known as Lord Baltimore. The Baltimore title comes from the Manor of Baltimore, a large estate in County Longford in Ireland.

96 da-DUM : IAMB

An iamb is a metrical foot containing an unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable. The lines in Robert Frost’s “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” use four sequential iambs, e.g. “Whose woods / these are / I think / I know”. With that sequence of four iambs, the poem’s structure is described as iambic tetrameter.

99 On pins and needles : ANTSY

The word “antsy” embodies the concept of “having ants in one’s pants”, meaning being nervous and fidgety. However, “antsy” has been used in English since the 1830s, whereas “ants in the pants” originated a century later.

101 Homebrewer’s sugar : MALTOSE

Maltose, also known as malt sugar, is a disaccharide made up of two glucose units.

106 “Little ol’ me?” : MOI?

“Moi” is the French word for “me”. One might say “Moi?” when feigning innocence.

107 Woodard of “Clemency” : ALFRE

Alfre Woodard is an actress from Tulsa, Oklahoma. Woodard was nominated for an Oscar for her performance in the 1983 film “Cross Creek”. Off the stage and screen, she is very active in the Democratic Party.

109 Article in Aachen : EIN

Aachen is a city in the very west of Germany, right on the border with Belgium and the Netherlands. In English, we quite often refer to this city by its French name, Aix-la-Chapelle.

110 “Where ignorance is bliss, ___ folly to be wise”: Thomas Gray : ‘TIS

Thomas Gray was an 18th-century poet from England. Gray’s most famous work is his “Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard”, which is the source of many oft-quoted phrases, including:

  • Celestial fire
  • Far from the Madding Crowd
  • Kindred spirit

112 It’s a banger in Germany : BRATWURST

A bratwurst (sometimes simply “brat” in the US) is a German sausage. The name comes from “brät-” meaning “finely chopped meat”, and “Wurst” meaning “sausage”.

Sausages are often referred to as bangers on the other side of the pond. The term “banger” is a reference to the tendency of the sausage to burst open with a bang while cooking. The rather tasty dish called bangers and mash is traditional British fare and comprises sausages with mashed potatoes, and smothered in brown gravy. Yum …

114 *Portrayer of Scrooge in 1951’s “A Christmas Carol” : ALASTAIR SIM

As far as I am concerned, the definitive screen adaptation of the Charles Dickens novella “A Christmas Carol”, is the 1951 film of the same name starring the wonderful actor Alastair Sim as Ebenezer Scrooge. If you don’t own it, you have got to buy it for next Christmas!

116 Surgical seam : SUTURE

A suture is used to close an open wound. The term “suture” comes from the Latin word “suere” meaning “to sew”, the past participle of which is “sutus”.

118 Unagi and anago, for two : EELS

“Unagi” is the Japanese term for” freshwater eel”, and “anago” is the term for “saltwater eel”.

120 It beats scissors : ROCK

Rock-paper-scissors is a hand game played by two people, at least here in North America. Back in Ireland we called the game “scissors-paper-stone”, and another name encountered around the English-speaking world is “roshambo”. The game is often used as a way to choose between two options or two individuals.

123 ___ Noël : PERE

A central figure on Christmas Day is Santa Claus, aka “Father Christmas”, and “Père Noël” in French.

125 Butterfly garden bloomers : ASTERS

Apparently, most aster species and cultivars bloom relatively late in the year, usually in the fall. The name “aster” comes into English via Latin from the Greek word “astéri” meaning “star”, a reference to the arrangement of the petals of the flower.

Down

2 “Mad Money” host Jim : CRAMER

The television show “Mad Money” started airing in 2005, and is hosted by the ebullient Jim Cramer. Cramer recommends that essential funds, such as those reserved for retirement, be safely locked away in conservative investment vehicles. Any money left over (still looking for that here!) is classed as “mad money” and can be invested in more risky stocks.

3 Eye part with rods and cones : RETINA

The retina is the tissue that lines the inside of the eye, and is the tissue that is light-sensitive. There are (mainly) two types of cells in the retina that are sensitive to light, namely rods and cones. Rods are cells that best function in very dim light and only provide black-and-white vision. Cones on the other hand function in brighter light and can perceive color.

4 Kind of port : USB

In the world of computing, serial and parallel ports have essentially been replaced with newer technology that allows for faster data transfer (such as USB ports). One of the main differences between serial and parallel ports is that a parallel port can only transfer information in one direction, from the hard drive. A serial port transfers information both to and from the hard drive.

6 Narrow groove : STRIA

A stria (plural “striae”) is a linear mark or groove on a surface, often one of a series of parallel lines.

7 One for the roadie : AMP

A “roadie” is someone who loads, unloads and sets up equipment for musicians on tour, on the “road”.

10 Pico de gallo herb : CILANTRO

What we know here in North America as cilantro is called coriander in the UK and other parts of the world. “Cilantro” is the Spanish name for the herb.

Pico de gallo is a Mexican condiment made from tomato, onion and chili peppers. “Pico de gallo” is Spanish for “beak of rooster”. Apparently this name was given as eating of the condiment with the thumb and forefinger resembled the pecking of a rooster. An alternative name for pico de gallo is “salsa fresca”, which translates literally as “fresh sauce”.

13 Highway heavyweight : SEMI

A “semi” is a “semi-trailer truck”. The vehicle is so called because it consists of a tractor and a half-trailer. The half-trailer is so called because it only has wheels on the back end, with the front supported by the tractor.

14 ___ mode : A LA

In French, “à la mode” simply means “fashionable”. In America, the term has also come to describe a way of serving pie. Pie served à la mode includes a dollop of cream or ice cream, or as I recall from my time living in Upstate New York, with a wedge of cheddar cheese.

15 Like toum or agliata sauce : GARLICKY

Our word “garlic” evolved via Old English from “gar” (spear) and “leac” (leek). The use of “spear” is apparently a reference to the shape of a clove.

16 Forest between Champagne and Lorraine : ARGONNE

The Forest of Argonne is a strip of rocky woodland in the northeast of France. It was the site of intense fighting between German and Allied forces during WWI.

17 Cousin of kvass : RYE BEER

Kvass is an alcoholic beverage made from rye bread that typically has a low-alcohol content (relative to beer, say). Kvass is popular in Eastern and Central European countries.

20 Plant pore : STOMA

Stomata (the usual plural of “stoma”, and not “stomas”) are pores found under almost every leaf, clearly visible under a simple microscope. The stomata take in air rich in carbon dioxide. Through the process of photosynthesis, the plants generate oxygen, which is released back into the air though the same stomata.

26 “___ Miz” : LES

The 1980 musical “Les Misérables” is an adaptation of the 1862 novel of the same name by Victor Hugo. The show opened in London in 1985, and is the longest running musical in the history of London’s West End. My wife and I saw “Les Miz” in the Queen’s Theatre in London many years ago, but were only able to get tickets in the very back row. The theater seating is very steep, so the back row of the balcony is extremely high over the stage. One of the big events in the storyline is the building of a street barricade over which the rebels fight. At the height we were seated we could see the stagehands behind the barricade, sitting drinking Coke, even smoking cigarettes. On cue, the stagehands would get up and catch a dropped rifle, or an actor who had been shot. It was pretty comical. I didn’t really enjoy the show that much, to be honest. Some great songs, but the musical version of the storyline just didn’t seem to hang together for me.

29 Early computer acronym : MS-DOS

MS-DOS (short for “Microsoft Disk Operating System”) was the main operating system used by IBM-compatible PCs in the eighties and for much of the nineties.

34 O.E.D. part: Abbr. : ENG

Work started on what was to become the first “Oxford English Dictionary” (OED) in 1857. Several interim versions of the dictionary were published in the coming years with the first full version appearing, in ten bound volumes, in 1928. The second edition of the OED appeared in 1989 and is made up of twenty volumes. The OED was first published in electronic form in 1988 and went online in 2000. Given the modern use of computers, the publishing house responsible feels that there will never be a third print version of the famous dictionary.

36 Some rideshares : UBERS

The rideshare service Uber takes its name from the English colloquial word “uber” meaning “super, topmost”, which in turn comes from the German “über” meaning “above”.

50 Actor Guinness : ALEC

Sir Alec Guinness played many great roles over a long and distinguished career, but nowadays is best remembered (sadly, I think) for playing the original Obi-Wan Kenobi in “Star Wars”. He won his only Best Actor Oscar for playing Colonel Nicholson in the marvelous 1957 WWII movie “The Bridge on the River Kwai”. Guinness did himself serve during the Second World War, in the Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve. He commanded a landing craft during the Allied invasion of Sicily in 1943.

51 Improvised comment : AD LIB

“Ad libitum” is a Latin phrase meaning “at one’s pleasure”. In common usage, the phrase is usually shortened to “ad lib”. On the stage, the concept of an ad lib is very familiar.

52 “Colette” actress Knightley : KEIRA

English actress Keira Knightley had her big break in the movies when she co-starred in 2002’s “Bend It Like Beckham”. Knightley played one of my favorite movie roles, Elizabeth Bennett in 2005’s “Pride and Prejudice”. Knightley won a Golden Globe for that performance, although that 2005 film isn’t the best adaptation of Austen’s novel in my humble opinion …

The 2018 biographical film “Colette” stars Keira Knightley as the title character, the French author Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette (known simply as “Colette”). Dominic West has a supporting role playing Henry Gauthier-Villars, Colette’s first husband and fellow author “Willy”.

53 Comedian Wyatt of “Problem Areas” : CENAC

Wyatt Cenac is a comedian and writer from New York City who was raised in Dallas. Cenac worked for three years as a writer for the TV show “KIng of the Hill” before joining “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” as writer and correspondent.

56 Porter, for one : ALE

Porter is a dark beer that originated in London in the 1700s. It is named for the street and river porters with whom it was very popular. Porter is a well-hopped beer made using brown malt, which gives it the dark color.

57 Derby cocktail : JULEP

A mint julep is a bourbon-based cocktail that is associated with the American South, and with the Kentucky Derby in particular. If you’d like to make yourself a mint julep, one recipe is:

  • 3 oz of Bourbon
  • 4-6 sprigs of mint
  • granulated sugar to taste

The first Kentucky Derby took place in 1875, and was a race modeled on the Epsom Derby in England and the Grand Prix de Paris (now called the “Prix de l‘Arc de Triomphe”). As such, the Kentucky Derby was run over 1½ miles, although in 1896 this was shortened to 1¼ miles. The winning horse is presented with a very elaborate blanket made of red roses, and so the Derby is nicknamed “Run for the Roses”. The race is held on the first Saturday in May each year, and is limited to 3-year-old horses.

62 Colorful bird named for its diet : BEE-EATER

Bee-eaters are small colorful birds that feed on flying insects, especially bees and wasps. The bee-eater catches its prey in its bill and then hits and rubs the bee or wasp on a hard surface until the stinger is dislodged, then it partakes of its meal.

64 Not easily moved : STOIC

Zeno of Citium was a Greek philosopher famous for teaching at the Stoa Poikile, the “Painted Porch”, located on the north side of the Ancient Agora of Athens. Because of the location of his classes, his philosophy became known as stoicism (from “stoa”, the word for “porch”). We get our adjective “stoic”, meaning “indifferent to pleasure or pain”, from the same root.

65 Ocho menos cinco : TRES

In Spanish, “ocho” (eight) is the difference between “cinco” (five) and “tres” (three).

67 Actor/activist George : TAKEI

Mr. Hikaru Sulu was played by George Takei in the original “Star Trek” series. Takei has played lots of roles over the years, and is still very active in television. Did you know that he appeared in the 1963 film, “Pt-109”? He played the helmsman steering the Japanese destroyer that ran down John F. Kennedy’s motor torpedo boat. From destroyer helmsman to starship helmsman …

68 Seattle’s W.N.B.A. team : STORM

The Seattle Storm started competing in the WNBA at the beginning of the 2000 season. The team name “Storm” is a reference to the reputation that Seattle has as a rain-soaked city.

71 K : GRAND

One K, one grand, one thousand dollars.

75 X : CHI

The letter chi is the 22nd letter in the Greek alphabet, and the one that looks like our Roman letter X.

81 Ball game that all players might lose : ROULETTE

The term “roulette” means “little wheel” in French, and the game as we know it today did in fact originate in Paris, in 1796. A roulette wheel bears the numbers 1-36. A French entrepreneur called François Blanc introduced the number “0” on the wheel, to give the house an extra advantage. Legend has it that Blanc made a deal with the devil in order to unearth the secrets of roulette. The legend is supported by the fact that the numbers 1 through 36 add up to a total of “666”, which is the “Number of the Beast”. Spooky …

86 One roasted or toasted : HONOREE

The tradition of toasting someone probably dates back to the reign of Charles II, when the practice was to drink a glass of wine to the health of a beautiful or favored woman. In those days, spiced toast was added to beverages to add flavor, so the use of the word “toast” was an indicator that the lady’s beauty would enhance the wine. Very charming, I must say …

100 Side-to-side movement : YAW

The word “yaw” means to deviate from the line of a course and is used mainly at sea and in the air. “Yaw” is derived from the Old Norse word “jaege” which means “to drive, chase”. As such, “yaw” is etymologically related to our word “yacht”.

102 Pastoral skyline features : SILOS

“Silo” is a Spanish word that we absorbed into English. The term ultimately derives from the Greek “siros”, which described a pit in which one kept corn.

104 Tyler of “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” : AISHA

Aisha Tyler is an actor and comedian who was a co-host on “The Talk” for several years starting in 2011. She began hosting the reboot of “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” in 2013.

The American improv comedy TV show “Whose Line Is It Anyway” is a spin-off of a very successful British show of the same name. The British TV show is itself a spin-off of a BBC radio show that I well remember. Lots of fun …

115 Jupiter’s realm, in myth : SKY

Jupiter, also known as Jove, was the king of the gods in the Roman tradition, as well as the god of sky and thunder. Jupiter was the Roman equivalent to the Greek god Zeus.

117 Pic on a pec, say : TAT

“Pecs” is the familiar name for the chest muscle, which is more correctly known as the pectoralis major muscle. “Pectus” is the Latin word for “breast, chest”.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Exfoliants : SCRUBS
7 Foofaraw : ADO
10 Cookout chuckouts : COBS
14 Thickener used in desserts : AGAR
18 Like favorite radio stations, perhaps : PRESET
19 Calico calls : MEWS
21 Memo starter : IN RE …
22 N.F.L. Hall-of-Famer Yale ___ : LARY
23 Backpacker’s snack : OAT BAR
24 Big huff? : PANT
25 Have an outsize presence : LOOM LARGE
27 “I didn’t need to know that!” : TMI!
28 What a net might attach to : RIM
30 Flying Cloud of old autodom : REO
31 Jazz clarinetist Shaw : ARTIE
32 Soaring shot : LOB
33 Some Six Nations members : SENECAS
35 *Mount Everest scaler : EDMUND HILLARY
37 Hogs : SWINE
39 *Went out of control : RAN RAMPANT
40 A.M.A. members: Abbr. : DRS
42 Marketing experiment comparing two variants : A/B TEST
44 Some red marks : ACNE
45 Big lugs : GALOOTS
48 Say “Whomever did this …,” say : ERR
49 Alice who wrote “The Color Purple” : WALKER
51 Org. with a sizable registry : AKC
54 Yellow jacket, for one : WASP
55 Syrup brand since 1902 : KARO
57 Word before Roger or Rancher : JOLLY …
58 To a profound degree : DEEPLY
60 *”Cinderella” meanie : EVIL STEPSISTER
62 Field trip conveyances : BUSES
63 Middle van Pelt child in “Peanuts” : LINUS
64 Use Tinder, say : SWIPE
65 Airs : TELECASTS
69 Big exporter of pistachios : IRAN
70 Features of some bygone muscle cars : T-TOPS
71 Give an elbow bump to, say : GREET
72 Free of fizz : FLAT
73 *Lateral-breaking pitches : BACKDOOR SLIDERS
75 Skulk : CREEP
76 Maker of the world’s first quartz watch : SEIKO
77 Javanese dyeing technique : BATIK
78 Potala Palace city : LHASA
79 One of seven represented in the Pleiades : SISTER
80 *Glide down from above : PARACHUTE IN
81 Sleigh driver’s need : REIN
82 Sound of an ungraceful landing : THUD
84 ___ card : SIM
85 Fashion house whose logo is two interlocking C’s : CHANEL
87 Like the Carolina Reaper pepper : HOT
88 Visionary : DREAMER
91 Title for Baltimore : LORD
92 Crow language family : SIOUAN
95 Sounds of hesitation : ERS
96 da-DUM : IAMB
99 On pins and needles : ANTSY
101 Homebrewer’s sugar : MALTOSE
103 Cartoonish villains : NASTIES
106 “Little ol’ me?” : MOI?
107 Woodard of “Clemency” : ALFRE
109 Article in Aachen : EIN
110 “Where ignorance is bliss, ___ folly to be wise”: Thomas Gray : ‘TIS
111 “Eh … I’ll pass” : NAH
112 It’s a banger in Germany : BRATWURST
114 *Portrayer of Scrooge in 1951’s “A Christmas Carol” : ALASTAIR SIM
116 Surgical seam : SUTURE
118 Unagi and anago, for two : EELS
119 What parallel lines never do : MEET
120 It beats scissors : ROCK
121 Passionate : HEATED
122 Secretary, e.g. : DESK
123 ___ Noël : PERE
124 Place to wallow : STY
125 Butterfly garden bloomers : ASTERS

Down

1 Places : SPOTS
2 “Mad Money” host Jim : CRAMER
3 Eye part with rods and cones : RETINA
4 Kind of port : USB
5 Boot camp exercises performed on all fours : BEAR CRAWLS
6 Narrow groove : STRIA
7 One for the roadie : AMP
8 Most beloved : DEAREST
9 Dominated, informally : OWNED
10 Pico de gallo herb : CILANTRO
11 Not yet in stock : ON ORDER
12 Soup bases : BROTHS
13 Highway heavyweight : SEMI
14 ___ mode : A LA
15 Like toum or agliata sauce : GARLICKY
16 Forest between Champagne and Lorraine : ARGONNE
17 Cousin of kvass : RYE BEER
20 Plant pore : STOMA
26 “___ Miz” : LES
29 Early computer acronym : MS-DOS
34 O.E.D. part: Abbr. : ENG
36 Some rideshares : UBERS
38 They may be hidden behind paintings : WALL SAFES
41 Knot-tying and lashing, to a sailor : ROPEWORK
43 Like some short tennis matches : TWO-SET
46 Install, as sod : LAY
47 Record player annoyances : SKIPS
50 Actor Guinness : ALEC
51 Improvised comment : AD LIB
52 “Colette” actress Knightley : KEIRA
53 Comedian Wyatt of “Problem Areas” : CENAC
56 Porter, for one : ALE
57 Derby cocktail : JULEP
59 Bad Brains and Bikini Kill, for two : PUNK BANDS
61 Muckety-mucks : VIPS
62 Colorful bird named for its diet : BEE-EATER
64 Not easily moved : STOIC
65 Ocho menos cinco : TRES
66 Buttonholes, basically : SLITS
67 Actor/activist George : TAKEI
68 Seattle’s W.N.B.A. team : STORM
70 Absolutely wrecks : TOTALS
71 K : GRAND
74 Reason to do a “stupid human trick” : DARE
75 X : CHI
76 Tangential topics : SIDE ISSUES
78 Allow to access : LET AT
79 “I am,” in Latin : SUM
80 Incomplete dentures : PARTIALS
81 Ball game that all players might lose : ROULETTE
83 Lacks : HASN’T
85 Place to wear muck boots : CLAM BED
86 One roasted or toasted : HONOREE
87 More raspy : HOARSER
89 Dramatize, as a historical event : REENACT
90 Teller, maybe : RAT
93 “That time is fine for me” : I’M FREE
94 Lack of musicality : NO EAR
97 Teeny-tiny : MINUTE
98 Word after ring or water : … BEARER
100 Side-to-side movement : YAW
102 Pastoral skyline features : SILOS
104 Tyler of “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” : AISHA
105 Places for hoses and hoes : SHEDS
108 Oatmeal glob : LUMP
113 Judgy sound : TSK!
115 Jupiter’s realm, in myth : SKY
117 Pic on a pec, say : TAT

6 thoughts on “0904-22 NY Times Crossword 4 Sep 22, Sunday”

  1. 27:49. Got the theme early and used it often.

    I drank kvass a few times in Russia. It’s very sweet – almost like a Pepsi except it tasted like bread. I didn’t hate it, but I didn’t go out of my way looking for it either.

    I was going to make a joke about White Castle and BACKDOOR SLIDERS, but I decided I’m too classy for that…..

    Best –

  2. 49:40, finished on Tuesday after driving 1,500 miles over 2 days…figured out the theme(for once!)in time to use it to solve, go me!

  3. 1:10:03 with one error…skipe for 64A.
    Computer, rap, and foreign words are not my thing.
    The theme was one of those rare occasions when I got it early and it helped👍👍
    Stay safe😀

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