1119-22 NY Times Crossword 19 Nov 22, Saturday

Constructed by: Benji Goldsmith
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: None

Bill’s time: 17m 58s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

19 Venue with highlights and replays : ESPNEWS

ESPNews is a 24-hour sports news channel that started broadcasting in 1996.

21 Chicken (out) : WIMP

Our term “wimp”, describing a “timid person”, is probably an alteration of “whimper”, the sound that such an individual might make.

24 Fed on the sly? : NARC

“Narc” and “narco” are slang terms describing a law enforcement officer who tracks down criminals associated with illegal drugs. Both words are short for “narcotics officer”. Narcs might work for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

26 “If u ask me …” : IMO …

In my opinion (IMO)

29 Half of a Polynesian locale : BORA

Bora Bora is one of the Society Islands of French Polynesia. The name “Bora Bora” is imitative of the Tahitian name for the island and should really be pronounced “pora pora”. “Bora bora” translates as “first born”.

34 Early role for Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake : MOUSEKETEER

The Mickey Mouse Club was created by Walt Disney in 1955, and it’s still going strong today. Over the years the show has given some famous names their start in “the business” as “mouseketeers”, especially in recent times. Included in the list are Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera and Justin Timberlake.

Britney Spears was the best-selling female artist in the first decade of the 21st century. In recent years, Spears has attracted public attention for more than just her performances as a musician. Against her will, she was placed under the conservatorship of her father and an attorney in 2008, due to concerns about her mental wellbeing. Originally meant to last days, the conservatorship was extended to months, and was then made permanent. A social movement to “free” Britney from the conservatorship took off in 2019, and a court granted a termination of the arrangement in 2021.

Justin Timberlake got his break by appearing on TV’s “Star Search” from which he was given a starring role in “The New Mickey Mouse Club”. It was on “The New Mickey Mouse Club” that he met his future girlfriend Britney Spears, as well JC Chasez who would join Timberlake in the lineup of the boy band NSYNC.

37 Neighbor of Turk. : SYR

The Syrian national flag is a red, white and black tricolor with two green stars in the middle. The design was adopted in 1958 when Syria joined the United Arab Republic, along with Egypt. The two green stars represent Syria and Egypt, the two members of that short-lived political union.

40 Tupperware stock : LIDS

Back in the 1930s, Earl Tupper was working at the DuPont Chemical Company, and from DuPont obtained inflexible pieces of polyethylene slag. Tupper purified the slag and shaped it into unbreakable containers. He added airtight lids with a “burping seal” that provided tight seals similar to that provided by the lids on paint cans. He called his new product Tupperware.

41 French 101 verb : ETRE

The verb “to be” is “ser” in Spanish and “être” in French.

44 Paleo, e.g. : DIET FAD

The paleolithic (or “paleo, caveman”) diet is a fad diet that became popular in the 2000s. The idea is to eat wild plants and animals that would have been available to humans during the Paleolithic era (roughly the Stone Age). This period precedes the introduction of agriculture and the domestication of animals. As a result, someone on the diet avoids consuming grains, legumes, dairy and processed foods. The diet consists mainly of lean meat (about 45-65% of the total calorie intake), non-starchy vegetables, fruits, berries and nuts.

51 Actress Tyler : LIV

Actress and model Liv Tyler is the daughter of Steven Tyler, lead singer with Aerosmith, and Bebe Buell, a celebrated model and singer. Liv Tyler plays the Elf maiden Arwen Undómiel in Peter Jackson’s “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy.

52 Tofu, for instance : MEAT ALTERNATIVE

“Tofu” is a name for bean curd, and is a Japanese word meaning just that … bean that has curdled. Tofu is produced by coagulating soy milk, using either salt or something acidic. Once the protein has coagulated, the curds are pressed into the familiar blocks. Personally I love tofu, but my wife absolutely hates it …

57 Quirky old fellas : GEEZERS

“Geezer”, “codger” and “coot” are all not-so-nice terms meaning “old man”.

Down

1 Popular companion bird : MACAW

Macaws are beautifully colored birds native to Central and South America that are actually a type of parrot. Most species of macaws are now endangered, with several having become extinct in recent decades. The main threats are deforestation and illegal trapping and trafficking of exotic birds.

2 Transportation in a Duke Ellington classic : A TRAIN

The A Train in the New York City Subway system runs from 207th Street, through Manhattan and over to Far Rockaway in Queens. The service lends its name to a jazz standard “Take the ‘A’ Train”, the signature tune of Duke Ellington and a song much sung by Ella Fitzgerald. One version of the lyrics are:

You must take the A Train
To go to Sugar Hill way up in Harlem
If you miss the A Train
You’ll find you’ve missed the quickest way to Harlem
Hurry, get on, now, it’s coming
Listen to those rails a-thrumming (All Aboard!)
Get on the A Train
Soon you will be on Sugar Hill in Harlem.

5 Pride : lions :: ___ : badgers : CETE

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

7 Sigmatism : LISP

A sigmatism is a lisp, a difficulty in pronouncing the letter S. The term comes from “sigma” (S) and “ism”.

10 Missing : SANS

“Sans” is the French word for “without”, and is a word that we’ve absorbed into English with the same meaning.

11 Bklyn. ___ (part of N.Y.C.) : HTS

The part of the borough of Brooklyn known as Brooklyn Heights was the first commuter town for New York, blossoming when the steam ferry service started to run between the Heights and Wall Street in the early 19th-century.

13 Frozen food brand : ORE-IDA

Ore-Ida frozen foods are all made using potatoes. The company is located in Oregon, just across the border from Idaho. “Ore-Ida” is a melding of the two state names.

14 Birds that rarely swim, despite having webbed feet : TERNS

Terns are a family of seabirds. They are similar to gulls, but are more slender and more lightly built. Many species of tern are known for their long-distance migrations, with the Arctic tern migrating so far that it is believed to see more daylight in a year than any other animal.

16 Khaki : TAN

“Khaki” is an Urdu word that translates literally as “dusty”. The word was adopted for its current use as the name of a fabric by the British cavalry in India in the mid-1800s.

22 The Bastille and the Tower of London, historically : PRISONS

The Bastille is a former fortress in Paris that was used as a prison by the kings of France. On 14 July 1789, an angry mob stormed the Bastille during the French Revolution. The mob was actually after the stores of gunpowder in the fortress, but while inside the building freed seven prisoners and killed the Bastille’s governor. The storming of the Bastille became a symbol of the French Revolution and has been celebrated in France every July 14th since 1790. That celebration is referred to as “la fête nationale” (the national day) in France, but in English-speaking countries it is usually known as “Bastille Day”.

The spectacular Tower of London sits right on the north bank of the River Thames in the center of London. The castle dates back to the years just following the Norman Conquest of England in 1066. The victorious William the Conqueror built the Tower’s central keep (called the White Tower) in 1078. The Tower of London has been used for many purposes over the centuries, as a residence, a prison, and was even home to the Royal Mint. Famously it houses the Crown Jewels of the United Kingdom, and has done so since 1303.

23 Salmon variety : SOCKEYE

The sockeye salmon is also known as the red or blueback salmon. The name “sockeye” comes from “suk-kegh”, a word from the native language of an indigenous people in British Columbia. “Suk-kegh” means “red fish”.

25 Albert with a Nobel Prize : CAMUS

Albert Camus was a French author, and winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1957. Sadly, Camus died in a car accident just two years after he received the prize, at only 46 years of age.

26 British ___ : ISLES

The “British Isles” comprise over six thousand islands off the northwest coast of Europe, the two largest being the islands of Great Britain and Ireland. Back in my homeland of Ireland, we’re not too fond of the term “British Isles”, as it tends to awaken memories of the Norman invasion and the Tudor conquest. We tend to go instead with the term “Britain and Ireland”.

31 Much of “Deck the Halls” : LAS

The music for the Christmas song “Deck the Halls” is a traditional Welsh tune that dates back to the 16th century. The same tune was used by Mozart for a violin and piano duet. The lyrics with which we are familiar (other than the “fa-la-la”) are American in origin, and were recorded in the 19th century.

“’Tis the season to be jolly, Fa la la la la la la la la!”

44 Place of honor : DAIS

A dais is a raised platform for a speaker. The term “dais” comes from the Latin “discus” meaning a “disk-shaped object”. I guess that the original daises had such a shape.

45 “Casablanca” role : ILSA

Rick Blaine and Ilsa Lund were played by Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman in the 1942 movie “Casablanca”. I love the words of one critic describing the chemistry between Bogart and Bergman in this film: “She paints his face with her eyes”. Wow …

46 Website with a Craft Supplies section : ETSY

Etsy.com is an e-commerce website where you can buy and sell the kind of items that you might find at a craft fair.

47 It provides more coverage than a tank : TEE

“Tank top” is another one of those terms that always catches me out, as it has a different meaning on each side of the Atlantic. In the US, a tank top is a sleeveless shirt, something we would call a “vest” back in Ireland (and the US “vest” is what we call a “waistcoat”). A tank top in Ireland is a sleeveless sweater, which further adds to the confusion. The name “tank top” is derived from “tank suit”, an old name for a woman’s one-piece bathing suit. The use of “tank” for the bathing suit came from “swimming tank”, an obsolete term used in the 1920s for a swimming pool.

48 Grenade, in gaming lingo : FRAG

Fragmentation grenade (frag).

Our word “grenade”, used for a small explosive missile, came via French from the word for the pomegranate fruit. The name reflects the similarity between the seed-filled fruit and the powder-filled, fragmentation bomb. Grenades also resemble pineapples in appearance, and so sometimes are called “pineapples”.

53 Psalm possessive : THY

The Greek word “psalmoi” originally meant “songs sung to a harp”, and gave us the word “psalms”. In the Jewish and Western Christian traditions, the Book of Psalms contains 150 individual psalms, divided into five sections.

54 Whirling toon, familiarly : TAZ

The “Looney Tunes” character known as the Tasmanian Devil, or “Taz”, first appeared in a cartoon short with Bugs Bunny called “Devil May Care” in 1954.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Like a charm : MAGICAL
8 “Ask away!” : OK, SHOOT!
15 Savoring a solitary walk through the woods, say : AT ONE WITH NATURE
17 Isn’t able to control the outcome of one’s actions : CREATES A MONSTER
18 Remote power sources, maybe : AAS
19 Venue with highlights and replays : ESPNEWS
20 Carry the day : WIN
21 Chicken (out) : WIMP
23 Does some yard work : SODS
24 Fed on the sly? : NARC
26 “If u ask me …” : IMO …
29 Half of a Polynesian locale : BORA
30 Moves from 9 to 5, say : DIALS IT BACK
33 It’s sometimes weather-related : SMALL TALK
34 Early role for Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake : MOUSEKETEER
36 Studies : DENS
37 Neighbor of Turk. : SYR
38 Couplet : DYAD
40 Tupperware stock : LIDS
41 French 101 verb : ETRE
43 Ristorante suffix : -INI
44 Paleo, e.g. : DIET FAD
51 Actress Tyler : LIV
52 Tofu, for instance : MEAT ALTERNATIVE
55 Question asked without reservation? : IS THIS SEAT TAKEN?
56 “Rumor has it …” : THEY SAY …
57 Quirky old fellas : GEEZERS

Down

1 Popular companion bird : MACAW
2 Transportation in a Duke Ellington classic : A TRAIN
3 Loses it : GOES MAD
4 Preceder of word or sense : IN A …
5 Pride : lions :: ___ : badgers : CETE
6 Knocks over : AWES
7 Sigmatism : LISP
8 “Alas!” : OH ME!
9 Not just think : KNOW
10 Missing : SANS
11 Bklyn. ___ (part of N.Y.C.) : HTS
12 Show up in labor? : OUTWORK
13 Frozen food brand : ORE-IDA
14 Birds that rarely swim, despite having webbed feet : TERNS
16 Khaki : TAN
22 The Bastille and the Tower of London, historically : PRISONS
23 Salmon variety : SOCKEYE
25 Albert with a Nobel Prize : CAMUS
26 British ___ : ISLES
27 Whitish : MILKY
28 Shade of brown paint : OTTER
29 Made hay? : BALED
31 Much of “Deck the Halls” : LAS
32 Flutter : BAT
34 Help settle : MEDIATE
35 Beady-eyed and sneaky : RATLIKE
36 Kumail Nanjiani’s role on “Silicon Valley” : DINESH
39 Impetus : DRIVER
40 Curb : LIMIT
42 Erroneous answer to “What are the odds?” : EVENS
44 Place of honor : DAIS
45 “Casablanca” role : ILSA
46 Website with a Craft Supplies section : ETSY
47 It provides more coverage than a tank : TEE
48 Grenade, in gaming lingo : FRAG
49 Deal preceder : ANTE
50 11/11 or 12/12, but not 13/13 : DATE
53 Psalm possessive : THY
54 Whirling toon, familiarly : TAZ

5 thoughts on “1119-22 NY Times Crossword 19 Nov 22, Saturday”

  1. 24:33. Thought I was racing through this one, but it had just enough speed bumps to slow me down a bit. NE really gave me fits until OH ME came to me.

    Tried MEAT substitute before ALTERNATIVE, but it didn’t have enough letters. Also had ESPN two before NEWS.

    If BORA BORA translates as “first born”, which BORA means “first” and which means “born”? Hmmmm

    Best –

  2. 31:28 I’ve never seen “Silicon Valley” and there is no “Burger King-ini” or “Chicken Wing-ini” restaurant near me, so that last square was a matter of entering, deleting, entering, deleting until I heard the music of success.

  3. Re: 45D – We had the pleasure of visiting Casablanca last year and ate at Rick’s Cafe, a modern creation to commemorate a 1942 cinematic creation. And I was shocked, shocked I tell you, to find that gambling was NOT going on in there. As an added note in homage to Bill’s legacy of enlightenment, contrary to most of our Hollywood induced impressions, Casablanca is not in the least bit grimy. Actually, quite sleek.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *