0413-18 NY Times Crossword Answers 13 Apr 2018, Friday

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Constructed by: Joe Krozel
Edited by: Will Shortz

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Today’s Theme: None

Bill’s time: 9m 06s

Bill’s errors: 0

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Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

15. Images on a timeline of human evolution, maybe : CRANIA

The human skull is made up of two parts: the cranium (which encloses the brain) and the mandible (or “jawbone”).

18. Actors Aidan and Anthony : QUINNS

Aidan Quinn is an Irish-American actor. Quinn was born in Chicago but spent some years growing up in Ireland. Mainly known as a movie actor, Quinn is currently playing the role of Captain Tommy Gregson on the excellent TV series “Elementary” that is centered on a modern-day Sherlock Holmes.

Anthony Quinn was a Mexican-born American actor who is perhaps best known for playing the title role in the 1964 film “Zorba the Greek”. Off the screen, Quinn was an accomplished artist, with his works being exhibited both domestically and internationally.

20. High points? : UMLAUT

An “umlaut” (also “diaeresis”) is a diacritical mark consisting of two horizontal dots placed over a letter, usually a vowel. Here in the West, we are perhaps most familiar with umlauts in German, as in “Schön”.

23. Place for soldiers to eat : MESS TENT

“Mess” first came into English about 1300, when it described the list of food needed for a meal. The term comes from the Old French word “mes” meaning a portion of food or a course at a meal. This usage in English evolved into “mess” meaning a jumbled mass of anything, from the concept of “mixed food”. The original usage, in the sense of a food for a meal, surfaced again in the military in the 1500s when a “mess” was a communal eating place.

24. Paso ___, Calif. : ROBLES

Paso Robles is a lovely little city in San Luis Obispo County, California. Paso Robles is home to many, many wineries. The name Paso Robles translates from Spanish as “The Pass of the Oaks”.

25. Agile African animals : GAZELLES

When running at a sustained speed, gazelles can move along at 30 miles per hour. If needed, they can accelerate for bursts up to 60 miles per hour.

34. Northern : BOREAL

The adjective “boreal” means “northern”, as in “aurora borealis” (northern lights) for example. The term comes from “Boreas”, the Greek god of the north wind.

35. Many a YouTube video upload : MPEG FILE

The Moving Picture Experts Group (MPEG) was established in 1988 to set standards for audio and video compression. The standards they’ve come up with use the acronym “MPEG”.

46. OPEC nation since 2007 : ANGOLA

Angola is a country in south-central Africa on the west coast. It is the fourth largest diamond exporter in Africa, after Botswana, the Congo and South Africa. Such a valuable export hasn’t really helped the living standard of the country’s citizens as life expectancy and infant mortality rates are among the poorest on the continent.

Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC)

48. Ronda ___, mixed martial arts standout of the 2010s : ROUSEY

Ronda Rousey is a mixed martial artist, and the first US woman to win an Olympic medal in judo. Rousey is a popular person online, with hers being the third-most searched name on Google in 2015 (after Lamar Odom and Caitlyn Jenner).

49. Seedy establishment : DIVE BAR

We’ve been using the word “dive” in American English for a run-down bar since the latter half of the 19th century. The term comes from the fact that disreputable taverns were usually located in basements, so one had to literally and figuratively dive into them.

We use the word “seedy” to mean “shabby”. The usage probably arose from the appearance of a flowering plant that has gone to seed.

50. Rough Riders’ rides : STEEDS

The regiment known formally as the 1st US Volunteer Cavalry is more familiarly known as the Rough Riders. When Theodore Roosevelt was a Lieutenant-Colonel in the unit, it became known as “Roosevelt’s Rough Riders”.

51. Precepts : TENETS

A tenet is an article of faith, something that is held to be true. “Tenet” is Latin for “he holds”.

Down

2. Begin to remove, as a diaper : UNTAPE

“Diaper” is another word that I had to learn when I moved to America. What are called “diapers” over here, we call “nappies” back in Ireland. The term “diaper” is actually the original term that was used in England for the garment, where “diaper” referred to the cloth that was used. The term “diaper” was brought to the New World where it stuck. Back in Britain, “diaper” was displaced by the word “nappy”, a diminutive of “napkin”.

11. Nasal spray targets : SINUSES

In anatomical terms a sinus is a cavity in tissue. Sinuses are found all over the body, in the kidney and heart for example, but we most commonly think of the paranasal sinuses that surround the nose.

29. Acted evasively : WEASELED

To weasel out of something is to back away from a prior commitment. The association of weasels with the concept of not being trusted might have arisen from the behavior in which a weasel sucks out the contents of an egg while leaving the shell virtually intact.

34. Rigel and Spica : B STARS

Stars are usually classified based on the color of the light that they emit. These classifications are, from hottest to coolest, O, B, A, F, G, K and M. One way to remember the order of these letters is to use the mnemonic “Oh, be a fine girl, kiss me”. The colors of these stars range from blue (class O) to red (class M). Our sun is class G, a yellow star. I think we all know that …

Rigel is the sixth brightest star in the night sky, and the brightest star in the constellation of Orion. If you can imagine the stars in Orion laid out, Rigel is at his left foot. The name “Rigel” is an abbreviated version of the Arabic term for “Left Foot of the Central One”.

Spica is the brightest star in the constellation of Virgo, and the 15th brightest star in the night sky. Spica is actually a “binary star”, meaning that it is composed of two individual stars so close together that they cannot be resolved through a telescope. The two stars orbit each other every four days.

41. 1985 novel “___ Game” : ENDER’S

Orson Scott Card is a science fiction author (mainly). Card’s most famous work is his novel “Ender’s Game” first published in 1985. “Ender’s Game” was adapted into a movie and released in 2013, with a cast that includes Harrison Ford.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. One talking a blue streak? : CUSSER
7. Get used to it : ADJUST
13. Segregated : UNMIXED
15. Images on a timeline of human evolution, maybe : CRANIA
16. Keeps in reserve : STORES UP
18. Actors Aidan and Anthony : QUINNS
19. “Help yourself, there’s plenty left!” : TAKE MORE!
20. High points? : UMLAUT
21. Layout with little concern for privacy : OPEN PLAN
22. Poker challenge : I RAISE
23. Place for soldiers to eat : MESS TENT
24. Paso ___, Calif. : ROBLES
25. Agile African animals : GAZELLES
27. “In what sense?” : HOW SO?
31. Wasn’t productive : IDLED
32. Wine-tasting offer : HAVE A SIP
34. Northern : BOREAL
35. Many a YouTube video upload : MPEG FILE
42. Not abundant : SPARSE
43. Spiny fish named after a bird : SEA RAVEN
44. Babysat : TENDED
45. Kind of development : ARRESTED
46. OPEC nation since 2007 : ANGOLA
47. Render undrinkable, as alcohol : DENATURE
48. Ronda ___, mixed martial arts standout of the 2010s : ROUSEY
49. Seedy establishment : DIVE BAR
50. Rough Riders’ rides : STEEDS
51. Precepts : TENETS

Down

1. Made-to-order : CUSTOM
2. Begin to remove, as a diaper : UNTAPE
3. Defeats decisively, in slang : SMOKES
4. Some urban noise pollution : SIRENS
5. Not obligated : EXEMPT
6. Do some cobbling work on : RESOLE
7. With 12-Down, blue cheese and black coffee, typically : ACQUIRED
8. Intro to a big announcement : DRUMROLL
9. Serious, as an offense : JAILABLE
10. Loose, in a way, as planks or siding : UNNAILED
11. Nasal spray targets : SINUSES
12. See 7-Down : TASTES
14. Dodge S.U.V.s : DURANGOS
17. Prefix with -gram : PENTA-
26. Like many coats with liners : ZIPPERED
27. Scold at length : HARANGUE
28. Emergency room case : OVERDOSE
29. Acted evasively : WEASELED
30. Good times for shopping sprees : SALE DAYS
32. “Heaven forbid!” : HOPE NOT!
33. [Boo-hoo!] : I’M SAD
34. Rigel and Spica : B STARS
36. Deserve something through hard work : EARN IT
37. Piece of armor worn over the shin : GREAVE
38. Secure : FASTEN
39. Drip source : IV TUBE
40. Give the eye : LEER AT
41. 1985 novel “___ Game” : ENDER’S

15 thoughts on “0413-18 NY Times Crossword Answers 13 Apr 2018, Friday”

  1. 13:33 As Dave said, pretty easy today. Top right was the hardest quadrant for me. I put AttUne in for 7A at first so that slowed me down a little bit.

  2. 25:14 for me to finish all 4 of these puzzles…..or at least it felt like 4 separate puzzles. Last to fall for me was the SE. Agree – overall easier than an average Friday puzzle.

    Best –

  3. 16:08, no errors. I also felt this was a relatively easy Friday puzzle. Worked from the bottom up. SW quad was first, then SE, NE and NW was last to fall. Only real difficulties were with CURSER before CUSSER, and HAVE A SIP before TAKE A SIP.

  4. 18 minutes, 49 seconds, and no errors. Easier than your usual Friday, but I had quite a time getting a first foothold. After dithering around for a good 5 minutes, it began to fall into place fairly easily.

  5. @Dale Stewart … I finally got around to reviewing my DVD of the movie “Wordplay” and I may have an answer to the question you asked a week or so ago:

    If you turn on the commentary by Will Shortz, Merl Reagle, and Patrick Creadon, at about 28:06-28:29 you will hear Will say something like the following: “Trip [Payne, one of the ACPT contestants] told me this technique he uses … Trip will look at 3 or 4 down clues together, get all the answers in his mind, and then fill them in consecutively, without looking back at the clues.” I can see how this might have been misinterpreted in the way that you described.

    Also, at 1:01:28, Tyler [Hinman, another contestant and the eventual winner], when asked what his strategy will be for the final round, says, (rather flippantly, perhaps) “I’m gonna look at every clue.”

    And, in one of the deleted scenes (“Friday night at Stamford”), one of the attendees makes a joke about being unable to fill in the squares on a crossword-themed tie he’s wearing because he doesn’t have the clues for it.

  6. I too thought it was a pretty easy puzzle for a Friday. And I found the lay out strange. Too much of a history buff I guess…reminded me of Germany under Hitler.

  7. Three quadrants easy, SE impenetrable (in my case). Either you know the PPP’s or you don’t. I didn’t.

    1. These are the SE crossing answers that did me in:

      MPEGFILE/SEARRAVEN/DENATURE/GREAVE/ENDERS

      I salute the successful solvers.

  8. Except for the SE quadrant I found it fairly easy for a Friday. It took longer for that section than the rest combined. But no errors so I am not complaining!

  9. Undone by the SE as well. Thought it was going to be a snap when I confidently entered “prenatal” instead of “arrested,” and you know how that went. “Dive bar” came a bit too fast.?

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