0514-24 NY Times Crossword 14 May 24, Tuesday

Constructed by: Alex Eaton-Salners
Edited by: Joel Fagliano

Today’s Reveal Answer: Treetops

Themed answers are all in the down-direction. The TOP of each is part of a TREE:

  • 38D Common spots for eagles’ nests … or a hint to 2-, 9-, 21- and 24-Down : TREETOPS or TREE TOPS
  • 2D Supports from the stands : ROOTS FOR
  • 9D Lets be : LEAVES ALONE
  • 21D Traveling fashion sale featuring the work of a specific designer : TRUNK SHOW
  • 24D Neckwear for noisy dogs : BARK COLLARS

Bill’s time: 7m 02s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

17 Appliance with buttons like “Bagel” and “Frozen” : TOASTER

The electric toaster is a Scottish invention, one created by Alan McMasters in Edinburgh in 1893.

18 Cat breed with blue eyes : SIAMESE

The exact origins of the Siamese cat aren’t very clear, but it is believed to be from Southeast Asia. The Siamese takes its name from the sacred temple cats of Thailand (a nation once called “Siam”).

19 Okay boomer? : TNT

“TNT” is an abbreviation for “trinitrotoluene”. It was first produced in 1863 by the German chemist Joseph Wilbrand, who developed it for use as a yellow dye. TNT is relatively difficult to detonate so it was on the market as a dye for some years before its more explosive properties were discovered.

20 Butterfly relative : MOTH

Owlet moths are a large family of moths known more formally the Noctuidae. Most owlet moths fly at night and are attracted to light. Many species are preyed upon by bats. Some of these species have a defense mechanism, organs in the ears that pick up the sonar signals emitted by bats and cause the moth wings to spasm. The erratic flying helps the moth evade its hunter.

23 Additive that imparts umami, in brief : MSG

Monosodium glutamate (MSG) is the sodium salt of a naturally-occurring,non-essential amino acid called glutamic acid. It is used widely as a flavor enhancer, particularly in many Asian cuisines. Whether or not it is harmful seems to be still under debate. I say that something produced in a test tube shouldn’t be in our food …

31 Military technology that’s a source of stress for whales : SONAR

The British developed the first underwater detection system that used sound waves. Research was driven by defense demands during WWI, leading to production of working units in 1922. This new sound detection system was described as using “supersonics”, but for the purpose of secrecy the term was dropped in favor of an acronym. The work was done under the auspices of the Royal Navy’s Anti-Submarine Division, so ASD was combined with the “IC” from “superson-ic-s” to create the name ASDIC. The navy even went as far as renaming the quartz material at the heart of the technology “ASDivite”. By the time WWII came along, the Americans were producing their own systems and coined the term SONAR (Sound Navigation and Ranging), playing off the related application, RADAR. And so, the name ASDIC was deep-sixed …

32 Looking to mate, as a cat : IN HEAT

The estrous cycle of mammals can be divided into four phases:

  1. Proestrus is the phase when the body prepares for a potential fertilized egg. In particular, the lining to the uterus starts to develop.
  2. Estrus is the phase when the female is said to be “in heat”, when she is sexuallay receptive.
  3. Metestrus is the phase when levels of progesterone increase. The levels continue to increase if pregnancy has occurred, but fall off if there has been no fertilization.
  4. Anestrus is the phase when the sexual cycle rests, before starting all over again.

36 Led Zeppelin’s “Whole ___ Love” : LOTTA

“Whole Lotta Love” was a 1969 song that became Led Zeppelin’s first hit in the US. Some of the song’s lyrics were adapted from the Muddy Waters 1962 hit “You Need Love”, which was written by blues musician Willie Dixon. Led Zeppelin didn’t credit Dixon on their recording. A lawsuit ensued, which was settled in 1985.

46 “Fiddlesticks!” is a mild one : OATH

We’ve been using “fiddlesticks” to mean “nonsense” since the early 17th century. Prior to that time, “fiddlestick” just referred to the bow of a fiddle.

52 “___ Misérables” : LES

Victor Hugo’s famous 1862 novel “Les Misérables” has been translated into English several times. However, the title is usually left in the original French as a successful translation of “les misérables” seems to be elusive. Some suggestions for an English title are “The Wretched”, “The Victims” and “The Dispossessed”. The novel follows the lives of several characters including an ex-convict Jean Valjean, a fanatic police inspector Javert, a beautiful prostitute Fantine, and Fantine’s illegitimate daughter Cosette.

54 “Slaughterhouse-Five” setting, in brief : WWII

Kurt Vonnegut was a writer from Indianapolis whose most famous work is probably the novel “Slaughterhouse-Five” from 1969. Beyond his writing, Vonnegut was noted for his support of the American Civil Liberties Union and American Humanist Association. Kurt had a brother who made a big contribution to society. Bernard Vonnegut was the atmospheric scientist who discovered that silver iodide could be used to seed clouds and artificially create rain.

58 Wharton or Sloan, informally : B-SCHOOL

A B-school is a business school.

Wharton is the business school of the University of Pennsylvania, in Philadelphia. The school was established in 1881 largely due to a donation from industrialist Joseph Wharton, co-founder of Bethlehem Steel.

MIT’s School of Management is named for MIT graduate Alfred P. Sloan, a former chairman of General Motors.

64 Credit ___ (bank headquartered in Zürich) : SUISSE

Credit Suisse is a financial services company that was founded in 1856 by Alfred Escher. The original purpose of Credit Suisse (then known as the “Swiss Credit Institution”) was to fund the buildout of the Swiss rail network.

Down

3 Fizzy citrus drink : ORANGINA

Orangina is a citrus drink that originated in France and is very popular in Europe. Despite the name, Orangina contains a lot more than just orange juice, including juice from lemons, mandarins and grapefruit.

7 Outback terrain : BUSH

In Australia, the land outside of urban areas is referred to as the outback or the bush. That said, I think that the term “outback” is sometimes reserved for the more remote parts of the bush.

8 DiFranco with a Broadway stint as Persephone in “Hadestown” : ANI

Ani DiFranco is a folk-rock singer and songwriter. DiFranco has also been labeled a feminist icon, and in 2006 won the Woman of Courage Award from the National Organization for Women.

Anaïs Mitchell is a Vermont-based singer-songwriter. One of Mitchell’s more famous works is a 2010 concept album titled “Hadestown” that is based on the ancient Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice. She adapted the album into a stage musical that opened Off-Broadway in 2016 as “Hadestown: The Myth. The Musical”.

10 Himalayan holy figures : LAMAS

“Lama” is a Tibetan word meaning “chief, high priest”.

13 “___ no place like home” : THERE’S

In Aesop’s fable “Zeus and the Tortoise”, Zeus invited all the animals on the Earth to his wedding. The tortoise didn’t turn up , using her excuse that she would rather not leave her home. As a result, Zeus condemned the tortoise to carry her house around with her forever. It was this fable that led to our idiomatic phrase “There’s no place like home”.

15 Drop ___ (moon someone) : TROU

The first recorded mooning incident took place in 66 AD during the First Roman-Jewish War. Roman soldiers decided to moon Jewish pilgrims as they traveled to the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem.

27 Apple Store purchases : MACS

If you see a robbery at an Apple Store does that make you an iWitness?

33 Younger Flanders boy on “The Simpsons” : TODD

Ned Flanders lives next door to Homer Simpson on TV’s “The Simpsons”. Ned was married to Maude, with whom he had two children Rod and Todd. Maude died in an accident involving a T-shirt cannon. Ned is voiced by actor Harry Shearer, and has been around since the very first episode aired in 1989.

37 Simple figure skating jumps : TOE LOOPS

A toe loop is a relatively simple jump in figure skating (not that I could do one!). In a toe loop, the skater uses the toe pick on the skate to lift off on a backward outside edge, landing on the same backward outside edge.

39 Egyptian vipers : ASPS

The asp is a small to medium-sized snake, typically growing to between 18 and 30 inches in length. It has a distinctive triangular head and a dark, zigzag pattern along its back.

44 Incisor’s neighbor : CANINE

The canine teeth of a mammal are also called the eyeteeth or cuspids. The name “canine” is used because these particular teeth are very prominent in dogs. The prefix “eye-” is used because in humans the eyeteeth are located in the upper jaw, directly below the eyes.

The incisors are the front teeth, of which humans have eight. The term “incisor” comes from the Latin “incidere” meaning “to cut”.

45 Writer Hemingway : ERNEST

Ernest Hemingway moved around a lot. He was born in Illinois, and after leaving school headed to the Italian front during WWI. There he served as an ambulance driver, an experience he used as inspiration for “A Farewell to Arms”. He returned to the US after being seriously wounded, but a few years later moved to Paris where he worked as a foreign correspondent. He covered the Spanish War as a journalist, from Spain, using this experience for “For Whom the Bell Tolls”. During the thirties and forties he had two permanent residences, one in Key West, Florida and one in Cuba. In the late fifties he moved to Ketchum, Idaho, where he committed suicide in 1961.

47 Floral subject for van Gogh : IRISES

Van Gogh painted his “Irises” while he was in an asylum in the south of France the year before he committed suicide. The original owner was a French art critic and supporter of van Gogh who paid 300 francs to purchase the painting. “Irises” was bought for $53.9 million in 1987, making it the most expensive painting sold up to that point. But, the buyer didn’t actually have the necessary funds, so it had to be resold in 1990. It was picked up by the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, where you can see it today.

49 Bach’s “Toccata and ___ in D Minor” : FUGUE

A toccata is a virtuoso piece of music, one usually written for a keyboard or plucked string instrument, and one that has fast-moving passages that emphasize the dexterity of the performer’s fingers. It is a piece of music with an “improvisatory feel”, a piece that seems very spontaneous in form. The name “toccata” comes from the Italian word “toccare” meaning “to touch”.

51 Surname of musical brothers Barry, Robin, Maurice and Andy : GIBB

The Brothers Gibb (hence, the name “Bee Gees”) were born in England but grew up and started their musical careers in Australia. They moved back to Manchester in the north of England as youths, and there hit the big time.

Barry Gibb was the oldest of the trio of brothers who made up the Bee Gees. He is listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the second-most successful songwriter in history, after Paul McCartney.

Robin Gibb was one of the twin brothers (with Maurice) in the sibling trio known as the Bee Gees. Off the stage, Robin had an eventful life. While traveling with his first wife he survived a devastating rail crash in 1967 that killed 49 fellow passengers. That marriage ended in divorce in the early eighties. Gibb ended up in jail for two weeks after that divorce, for speaking to the press about the marriage in breach of a court order.

Maurice Gibb was the keyboard-player of the trio of brothers who made up the Bee Gees. Maurice was a big fan of the Beatles and was friends with at least two of them. John Lennon introduced him to his favorite drink, which was whiskey and soda. Maurice ended up abusing alcohol for decades, and one of his drinking buddies was Ringo Starr.

Andy was the younger brother of the brothers Gibb that made up the British band the Bee Gees. Andy pursued a successful solo career, but got himself into trouble with drug use. He died in 1988, just after his 30th birthday.

55 Spiced brew : CHAI

Chai is a drink made from spiced black tea, honey and milk, with “chai” being the Hindi word for “tea”. We often called tea “a cup of char” growing up in Ireland, with “char” being our slang word for tea, derived from “chai”.

57 Queens ballplayer : MET

Flushing Meadows is a park in Queens in New York City. It is home to the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center (home for the US Open), Citi Field (home for the New York Mets), the Queens Zoo and several other significant venues. The park was created in the late thirties as the site of the 1939/1940 New York World’s Fair.

59 Jon M. ___, director of “Crazy Rich Asians” : CHU

Jon M. Chu is a movie and television director who is perhaps known for directing 2018’s highly-acclaimed film “Crazy Rich Asians”. Chu’s firstborn child is named “Willow”, after the 1998 film “Willow”. His second-born child is named “Jonathan Heights”, after the 2021 movie “In the Heights”.

“Crazy Rich Asians” is a 2018 rom-com based on a 2013 novel of the same name by Kevin Kwan. The film garnered a lot of attention and accolades, not only for the quality of the script and performances. It was the first major Hollywood movie to feature a principal cast of Asian descent since 1993’s “The Joy Luck Club”.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Wafting smells : AROMAS
7 Colorful play area at a family fun center : BALL PIT
14 Headwear for lesser royalty : CORONET
16 Dig up : UNEARTH
17 Appliance with buttons like “Bagel” and “Frozen” : TOASTER
18 Cat breed with blue eyes : SIAMESE
19 Okay boomer? : TNT
20 Butterfly relative : MOTH
22 Hero’s virtue : VALOR
23 Additive that imparts umami, in brief : MSG
24 Result of a lack of focus : BLUR
25 By : BESIDE
26 Lead-in to some unsolicited advice : IF I MAY …
28 Gets value from : USES
30 Some ward workers, for short : MDS
31 Military technology that’s a source of stress for whales : SONAR
32 Looking to mate, as a cat : IN HEAT
34 CD selection : TRACK
35 Reggae relative : SKA
36 Led Zeppelin’s “Whole ___ Love” : LOTTA
40 Ideological split : SCHISM
42 Wafting smells : ODORS
43 Star pitcher : ACE
46 “Fiddlesticks!” is a mild one : OATH
47 Irreversibly committed : IN DEEP
48 Pub regular : BARFLY
50 Man-eating monster : OGRE
52 “___ Misérables” : LES
53 Declare legally void : ANNUL
54 “Slaughterhouse-Five” setting, in brief : WWII
55 Foldable bed : COT
56 No-win situation? : TIE GAME
58 Wharton or Sloan, informally : B-SCHOOL
61 Made certain : ENSURED
62 “Cheer up!” : BE HAPPY!
63 Strongly dislikes : DETESTS
64 Credit ___ (bank headquartered in Zürich) : SUISSE

Down

1 Play a role : ACT
2 Supports from the stands : ROOTS FOR
3 Fizzy citrus drink : ORANGINA
4 More than some : MOST
5 Six-legged scurrier : ANT
6 In good taste : SEEMLY
7 Outback terrain : BUSH
8 DiFranco with a Broadway stint as Persephone in “Hadestown” : ANI
9 Lets be : LEAVES ALONE
10 Himalayan holy figures : LAMAS
11 Early round in a competition, informally : PRELIM
12 “Strangely enough …” : IT’S ODD …
13 “___ no place like home” : THERE’S
15 Drop ___ (moon someone) : TROU
21 Traveling fashion sale featuring the work of a specific designer : TRUNK SHOW
23 Fine rain : MIST
24 Neckwear for noisy dogs : BARK COLLARS
25 Hum bug? : BEE
27 Apple Store purchases : MACS
29 Fake : SHAM
32 “You sure?” : IS IT?
33 Younger Flanders boy on “The Simpsons” : TODD
37 Simple figure skating jumps : TOE LOOPS
38 Common spots for eagles’ nests … or a hint to 2-, 9-, 21- and 24-Down : TREETOPS or TREE TOPS
39 Egyptian vipers : ASPS
41 What’s needed to make bale? : HAY
43 Grew less intense : ABATED
44 Incisor’s neighbor : CANINE
45 Writer Hemingway : ERNEST
47 Floral subject for van Gogh : IRISES
49 Bach’s “Toccata and ___ in D Minor” : FUGUE
51 Surname of musical brothers Barry, Robin, Maurice and Andy : GIBB
54 Ties the knot : WEDS
55 Spiced brew : CHAI
57 Queens ballplayer : MET
59 Jon M. ___, director of “Crazy Rich Asians” : CHU
60 Caustic solution : LYE

4 thoughts on “0514-24 NY Times Crossword 14 May 24, Tuesday”

  1. 8:57, same as BruceB👍 Guess I gotta buy a new toaster, ours just has a slider to adjust how burned you want it…

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