0608-18 NY Times Crossword Answers 8 Jun 2018, Friday

Constructed by: Caleb Madison
Edited by: Will Shortz

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Today’s Theme: None

Bill’s time: 12m 36s

Bill’s errors: 0

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Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Brand of headphones : BEATS BY DRE

Beats by Dre is a brand of audio products made by Beats Electronics, a company that was co-founded by rapper Dr. Dre. Apple bought Beats for $3 billion in 2014, the largest acquisition by far in the company’s history.

11. Sellers of buckets : KFCS

“Colonel” Sanders of Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) fame has been portrayed in ads on television by several celebrities. The list includes Norm Macdonald, Jim Gaffigan, George Hamilton, Billy Zane, Rob Lowe, Ray Liotta and even Reba McEntire.

18. ___ torch : TIKI

A tiki torch is a bamboo torch that’s very commonly used in Tiki culture. Tiki culture is a relatively modern invention dating from the 20th century, and is the experience created in Polynesian-style restaurants. The word “Tiki” is borrowed from Polynesia.

20. One hanging around in a deli? : SALAMI

“Salame” (note the letter E at the end) is an Italian sausage that is traditionally associated with the peasant classes. The meat in the sausage is preserved with salt, and it can be hung and stored for as long as ten years. The name “salame” comes from “sale”, the Italian word for salt, and “-ame”, a suffix indicating a collective noun. Our English word “salami” is actually the Italian plural for “salame”.

22. Queen Elizabeth spells her name with one : ZED

The letter named “zed” has been around since about 1400, and derives from the Greek letter zeta. The spelling and pronunciation “zee”, used in America today, first popped up in the 1670s. The spelling and pronunciation “zed” is still used in Britain and Ireland.

Princess Elizabeth became queen Elizabeth II in 1952 when her father, King George VI died. The Princess was on an official visit to Kenya when her husband broke the news to her, that she had become queen. When she was crowned in 1953 in Westminster Abbey, it was the first coronation to be televised. Queen Elizabeth’s reign is longest in the history of the UK.

23. Romanian currency units : LEI

The currency of Romania is the leu (plural “lei”), a word meaning “lion”. The leu is also the name of the currency of neighboring Moldova. Romania joined the European Union in 2007, and had planned to join the Eurozone in 2014. This implementation date was missed, and Romania continues to struggle to meet economic goals set by the EU.

24. Use Venmo, say : PAY

Venmo is a smartphone payment app that is now owned by PayPal. The first version of the product was introduced in 2009 by two entrepreneurs who had met as freshman students at the University of Pennsylvania. They sold the company in 2012 for over $26 million, and then PayPal acquired it the following year for a whopping $800 million. I wonder do PayPal ever buy blogs …

25. Mozart’s “Le ___ di Figaro” : NOZZE

Figaro is the title character in at least two operas: “The Barber of Seville” (“Il barbiere di Siviglia”) by Rossini, and “The Marriage of Figaro” (“Le nozze di Figaro”) by Mozart. The two storylines are based on plays by Pierre Beaumarchais, with one basically being a sequel to the other.

37. One of 32 for Beethoven : PIANO SONATA

In addition to 5 cello sonatas and 10 violin sonatas, Ludwig van Beethoven composed 32 piano sonatas. The most famous of his sonatas that have acquired names are probably the “Pathétique”, “Moonlight”, “Waldstein” and “Appassionata”.

40. Daytime star : SOL

Our solar system’s star is usually referred to in English as the Sun, but the Latin name “Sol” is also used at times.

45. To whom “Matchmaker, Matchmaker” is sung : YENTE

“Matchmaker, Matchmaker” is a song from the stage musical “Fiddler on the Roof”.

The enduring musical “Fiddler on the Roof” is based on a collection of stories by Sholem Aleichem about Tevye, a milkman living in Tsarist Russia. The musical version of the tales first opened on Broadway in 1964. “Fiddler on the Roof” had such a long run that it became the first musical to reach 3,000 performances.

46. Abbr. on old Eurasian maps : SSR

Soviet Socialist Republic (SSR)

47. Play-___ : DOH

Back in the 1930s, a manufacturer in Cincinnati produced a doughy compound that was used to clean wallpaper. Twenty years later, school-kids started using the cleaning material as a modelling compound, so the manufacturer reworked the formula, and sold it to local schools. It was given the name Play-Doh.

48. Health abbr. : RDA

Recommended Daily Allowances (RDAs) were introduced during WWII, and were replaced by Recommended Daily Intakes (RDIs) in 1997.

52. Game in which it’s illegal to play left-handed : POLO

The sport of polo originated in Iran, possibly before the 5th century BC. Polo was used back them primarily as a training exercise for cavalry units.

53. Crushed cacao beans used to make chocolate : NIBS

Chocolate is made from the seeds of the Theobroma cacao tree. The seeds are very bitter and the traditional drink made with the seed was called “xocolatl” by the Aztecs, meaning “bitter water”. That’s how our “chocolate” got its name.

55. Leave one’s drawers in the drawer, say : GO COMMANDO

“To go commando”is a slang term meaning “to wear no underwear”.

57. Posthuman race of literature : ELOI

In the 1895 novel by H. G. Wells called “The Time Machine”, there are two races that the hero encounter in his travels into the future. The Eloi are the “beautiful people” who live on the planet’s surface. The Morlocks are a domineering race living underground who use the Eloi as food.

58. Secret society invoked in many conspiracy theories : ILLUMINATI

Although there were several groups known as the Illuminati, the reference is usually to the Bavarian Illuminati founded in 1776. It was a secret society, and as such was the subject of many rumors and conspiracy theories, which eventually led to the Illuminati being banned by local government and the Roman Catholic Church. Famously, Dan Brown featured the Illuminati in his best-selling 2003 novel “Angels & Demons”.

Down

1. Fifth place? : BOTTLE

A fifth is an American unit of volume used for liquor. It used to be equal to one fifth of a US gallon. Since the seventies, we’ve been using a “metric fifth” that is equal to 750 mL, the standard size for wine bottles around the world.

4. Hats in the Highlands : TAMS

A tam o’shanter is a man’s cap traditionally worn by Scotsmen. “Tams” were originally all blue (and called “blue bonnets”) but as more dyes became readily available they became more colorful. The name of the cap comes from the title character of the Robert Burns poem “Tam O’Shanter”.

6. Parts of an “S.N.L.” audition : BITS

“Saturday Night Live” (SNL)

7. Athleisure wear : YOGA PANTS

The wearing of clothing designed for athletic activity in casual, non-athletic environments is termed “athleisure”, which is a portmanteau of “athletic” and “leisure”.

10. Eponymous Dutch town : EDAM

Edam cheese takes its name from the Dutch town of Edam in North Holland. The cheese is famous for its coating of red paraffin wax, a layer of protection that helps Edam travel well and prevents spoiling. You might occasionally come across an Edam cheese that is coated in black wax. The black color indicates that the underlying cheese has been aged for a minimum of 17 weeks.

11. Baby skunk : KIT

Skunks have anal scent glands that can be used as defensive weapons. The glands produce sulfur-containing chemicals that have a really awful smell and that can irritate the eyes and skin.

13. Soda debut of 2005 : COKE ZERO

Even though Coca-Cola Zero is in the category of “diet soda”, the marketing folks at Coca-Cola don’t like its association with the word “diet”. The target market for the beverage is young, adult males, so it is described as “calorie-free” rather than “diet”, the assumption being that males associate “diet” with women. Not in this house …

14. Baseball Hall-of-Famer Duke : SNIDER

Duke Snider spent most of his MLB career with the Brooklyn and LA Dodgers. After retiring from baseball, Snider did quite a bit of acting. He often played himself or some baseball player, but also appeared in shows like “The Rifleman”.

26. “Don’t count your chickens before they hatch,” e.g. : OLD SAW

A saw is an old saying, one that is often repeated and is very familiar. The term “old saw” is actually a tautology, as by definition a “saw” is “old”.

30. Corolla part : PETAL

The corolla of a flower is its collection of petals viewed as a unit. “Corolla” is Latin for “small garland”.

32. Someone who’s really too good to be competing : RINGER

A ringer was originally a fast horse that was substituted surreptitiously into a race for a slower one. The term was derived from the verb “to ring in”, meaning “to substitute”. We use the phrase “dead ringer” to describe an exact duplicate.

33. Hu-u-uge : GINORMOUS

“Ginormous” is a melding of the words “gigantic” and “enormous”, and surprisingly to me, one that dates back to about 1948. I thought that the term was far more contemporary …

35. Seller of calorific pastries : CINNABON

Cinnabon is a chain of stores that sells baked goods. The first Cinnabon store opened in 1985 in a suburb of Seattle Washington.

38. Anvil, hammer or stirrup : OSSICLE

The middle ear is the portion of the ear immediately behind the eardrum. The middle ear contains three small bones called the ossicles, the three smallest bones in the human body. The ossicles’ job is to transmit sound from the outer ear to the inner ear. The shape of the bones gives rise to their names: the hammer (malleus), anvil (incus) and stirrup (stapes).

44. Sure winner : SHOO-IN

A shoo-in is a surefire winner, especially in politics. Back in the 1920s, a shoo-in was a horse that was prearranged to win a race, a race that was fixed.

46. Fancy wrap : STOLE

A stole is a lady’s clothing accessory, a narrow shawl. It can be made of quite light decorative material, or it can be heavier especially if made of fur.

50. Protection: Var. : EGIS

Someone is said to be under the aegis (also “egis”) of someone else (for example) if that other person provides protection, or perhaps sponsorship. The word “aegis” comes from the Greek word for a goat (“aigis”), the idea being that the goatskin shield or breastplate worn by Zeus or Athena, gave some measure of protection.

51. Stone that’s cast : EMMA

The actress Emma Stone is from Scottsdale, Arizona. Stone really came to prominence with her performance in the 2010 high school movie called “Easy A”. She won the Best Actress Oscar for her performance in the 2016 movie “La La Land”. Now one of the most sought-after actresses in Hollywood, Stone values her privacy and works hard to maintain a low profile. Good for her, I say …

54. Word usually written in brackets : SIC

[Sic] indicates that a quotation is written as originally found, perhaps including a typo. “Sic” is Latin for “thus, like this”. The term is more completely written as “sic erat scriptum”, which translates as “thus was it written”.

56. ___ drop : MIC

A mic drop takes place when a performer has done particularly well and decides to celebrate by throwing or dropping the microphone to the floor. That doesn’t seem to happen at the performances I tend to frequent …

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. Brand of headphones : BEATS BY DRE
11. Sellers of buckets : KFCS
15. Brought about : OCCASIONED
16. Smooth : IRON
17. Annual fashion event since 1948 : THE MET GALA
18. ___ torch : TIKI
19. Put in the trash : TOSS
20. One hanging around in a deli? : SALAMI
22. Queen Elizabeth spells her name with one : ZED
23. Romanian currency units : LEI
24. Use Venmo, say : PAY
25. Mozart’s “Le ___ di Figaro” : NOZZE
27. Imprecise stats: Abbr. : ESTS
29. File folder part : TAB
30. One taking a survey : POLLER
31. Taking on a new identity, in a way : TRANSGENDER
34. Once-standard subject no longer taught in most schools : SCRIPT
36. “That must be the case” : IT IS SO
37. One of 32 for Beethoven : PIANO SONATA
39. Harmless : BENIGN
40. Daytime star : SOL
41. Temper tantrum outbursts : WAHS
45. To whom “Matchmaker, Matchmaker” is sung : YENTE
46. Abbr. on old Eurasian maps : SSR
47. Play-___ : DOH
48. Health abbr. : RDA
49. Measure the length of again : RETIME
52. Game in which it’s illegal to play left-handed : POLO
53. Crushed cacao beans used to make chocolate : NIBS
55. Leave one’s drawers in the drawer, say : GO COMMANDO
57. Posthuman race of literature : ELOI
58. Secret society invoked in many conspiracy theories : ILLUMINATI
59. Match up : SYNC
60. Participates in combat : SEES ACTION

Down

1. Fifth place? : BOTTLE
2. Offers a similar opinion to : ECHOES
3. Nails a test : ACES IT
4. Hats in the Highlands : TAMS
5. Navigation abbr. : SSE
6. Parts of an “S.N.L.” audition : BITS
7. Athleisure wear : YOGA PANTS
8. Police department resources : DNA LABS
9. Something no one person can run : RELAY
10. Eponymous Dutch town : EDAM
11. Baby skunk : KIT
12. Makes curly : FRIZZLES
13. Soda debut of 2005 : COKE ZERO
14. Baseball Hall-of-Famer Duke : SNIDER
21. Privy to a practical joke, say : IN ON IT
26. “Don’t count your chickens before they hatch,” e.g. : OLD SAW
28. Tough situation : STRAIT
29. Something to do to a shoulder or the brakes : TAP ON
30. Corolla part : PETAL
32. Someone who’s really too good to be competing : RINGER
33. Hu-u-uge : GINORMOUS
34. With alacrity : SPEEDILY
35. Seller of calorific pastries : CINNABON
38. Anvil, hammer or stirrup : OSSICLE
39. James F. ___, Truman secretary of state : BYRNES
42. God, in Hebrew : ADONAI
43. Maintain, as standards : HOLD TO
44. Sure winner : SHOO-IN
46. Fancy wrap : STOLE
50. Protection: Var. : EGIS
51. Stone that’s cast : EMMA
52. Gasp : PANT
54. Word usually written in brackets : SIC
56. ___ drop : MIC

14 thoughts on “0608-18 NY Times Crossword Answers 8 Jun 2018, Friday”

  1. 12:59, no errors. Surprisingly easy, with crossing entries coming to the rescue in two or three spots.

  2. 17:38 Agree with Dave. Oddly, my biggest stumbling block was the K at 11A/D. Based on the clue I didn’t think 11A was looking for an abbreviation and I don’t know what a baby skunk is called. I gues KFC isn’t really conisdered an abbreviation anymore since no one seems to call that place by it’s original name.

    Jeff, sorry about the result last night. At least you got to enjoy an amazing season.

    1. >I gues KFC isn’t really conisdered an abbreviation anymore

      The chain changed its official name to that about 10 or 15 years ago. So it becomes fair game for crosswords and the like because technically it isn’t an abbreviation. Same goes for IHOP (soon to be IHOB) – no one calls it “The International House of Pancakes” anymore. Or most of the cable and tv channels that are acronyms – no one calls them by their full names.

  3. 26 mins, 32 sec, DNF: 10 answers forming the SW corner were simply impossible as clued. Really tough, although I did work out BEATSBYDRE, despite not being “into” rap or hip-hop culture references.

  4. … And there’s my pet peeve again — “mic” for microphone. Surely “mic” has to rhyme with sic, tic, Bic; and the short word for microphone has to be spelled “mike” — ? Anyone else agree?

    Sandra

    1. @Sandra—-It irks me, too. However, it is simply that “mic” has in the past 25 years or so replaced “mike”. It is just part of the tendency for language to always be in a state of change. I think “mike” is better for many different reasons but it does no good to try to stand in the way of societal changes. For me I am reluctantly afraid that it has to be “go with the flow”.

    2. No; if you’ve ever been involved with music, you know that “mic” is simply short for MICrophone; it’s got nothing to do with a man’s name. I have the same “allergic reaction” you have to “mic” when I see “Mike” used erroneously in its place.

      Where Mike IS used in a way other than shorthand for Michael is in military parlance, where “Mike” is radio code for the letter M. As in twenty millimeter ammunition being referred to as “20-Mike-Mike”.

  5. 30 minutes, 2 errors-@“bYrnes/Yenta”…for some reason I left an A in that square…need to proof these a bit better before taking a look at the blog…

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