1130-18 NY Times Crossword 30 Nov 18, Friday

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Constructed by: Robyn Weintraub
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: None

Bill’s time: 11m 15s

Bill’s errors: 0

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Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. “You Don’t Mess Around With Jim” singer, 1972 : CROCE

Jim Croce’s most successful songs were “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown” and “Time in a Bottle”. Like so many great singers it seems, Croce died in a plane crash. He was killed along with five others just after takeoff when the small commercial plane in which he was traveling hit a tree, possibly because the pilot had a heart attack. Croce died just a few days before the release of his album “I Got a Name”.

6. Resort in Salt Lake County : ALTA

Alta ski resort actually lies within the Salt Lake City Metropolitan Area. The first ski lift in the resort was opened way back in 1939. Today, Alta is one of only three ski resorts in the country that prohibits snowboarding (along with Deer Valley, Utah and Mad River Glen, Vermont. The ski resort of Snowbird, located next to Alta, has been in operation since 1971.

10. Hill worker : ANT

Anthills are actually underground nests. The ants in the colony excavate below ground, resulting in a pile of sand or soil above ground.

15. Coping mechanisms? : SAWS

A coping saw is one that is used to cut small curves in wood. It has a thin blade that is held in a U-shaped frame. In woodworking, a coped joint is one in which one element is shaped to fit neatly into the other member. On the other hand, a mitered joint is one in which the two elements are bevelled at 45 degrees to fit together.

17. Homer’s specialty : EPIC POETRY

Homer was a famous poet of Ancient Greece who is believed to be the author of the two classic epic poems “Iliad” and “Odyssey”. However, some scholars believe that Homer did not actually exist, but rather he is the personification of oral tradition that was passed down through the ages.

18. Website for tech whizzes : CNET

c|net is an excellent technology website. c|net started out in 1994 as a television network specializing in technology news. The host of “American Idol”, Ryan Seacrest, started off his career as host of a c|net show.

19. Eastern state : ZEN

Zen is a Buddhist school that developed its own tradition in China back in the 7th century AD. Zen is a Japanese spelling of the Chinese word “chan”, which in turn derives from the Sanskrit word “dhyana” meaning “meditation”.

22. Warm and toasty, e.g.: Abbr. : SYNS

The words “warm” and “toasty” are synonyms (syns.).

23. Follower : ACOLYTE

The word “acolyte” comes from the Greek “akolouthos” meaning “companion, attendant, helper”. In the Christian tradition, an acolyte is an individual who assists some way in a ceremony, by lighting candles for example. In more general terms, an acolyte is a devoted follower or attendant.

28. Little suckers : APHIDS

Aphids are called “greenfly” back in the British Isles where I come from. The most effective way to control aphids, in my experience, is to make sure there are plenty of ladybugs in the garden (called “ladybirds” in Ireland!).

35. County in a Pulitzer-winning play title : OSAGE

“August: Osage County” is a dark comedy play by Tracy Letts that won a 2008 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. I saw the 2013 movie adaptation that has a great cast including Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Ewan McGregor, and Benedict Cumberbatch. I really enjoyed it …

38. Mountaineer’s tool : PITON

A piton is a piece of mountaineering equipment, an anchor designed to protect a climber if he or she falls. It is a metal spike driven into a crack in the rock face with a hammer. Pitons have eye holes through which a rope is attached using carabiners. “Piton” is a French word for a “hook”.

47. ‘Vette alternative : GTO

The Pontiac GTO was produced by GM from 1964 to 1974, and again by a GM subsidiary in Australia from 2004 to 2006. The original GTO’s design is credited to Pontiac chief engineer at the time John DeLorean, who later was found the DeLorean Motor Company.

The Chevrolet Corvette was introduced to the world in 1953, and was named after the small maneuverable warship called a corvette. The “vette” has legs. It is the only American sports car that has been around for over 50 years.

50. Flier from Asia : MYNA

Some species of myna (also “mynah”) bird are known for their ability to imitate sounds.

53. Shakers, e.g. : SECT

“Shakers” is a the more common name for the religious sect more properly called the United Society of Believer in Christ’s Second Appearing. The sect’s doctrine was based on the teachings of Ann Lee.

54. Employer of some shepherds : CANINE UNIT

The lovely German shepherd breed of dog isn’t one of the older breeds, and only dates back to 1899. German shepherds are the second-most popular breed in the US, after the Labrador retriever.

56. Japanese bowlful : UDON

Udon noodles are made from wheat-flour and are very popular in Japanese cuisines such as tempura.

57. Title character of a “Dora the Explorer” spinoff : DIEGO

“Dora the Explorer” is a cartoon series shown on Nickelodeon. Part of Dora’s remit is to introduce the show’s young viewers to some Spanish words and phrases.

Down

1. Fancy restaurant name starter : CHEZ …

“Chez” is a French term meaning “at the house of”, which comes from the Latin word “casa” meaning “cottage” or “hut”.

3. “This Is Us” producer Ken : OLIN

Ken Olin was one of the stars on the hit television series “Thirtysomething”, playing Michael Steadman. After “Thirtysomething”, Olin moved behind the camera and is now a producer and director.

4. Org. behind the surveillance report FluView : CDC

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is based in Atlanta, Georgia. The CDC started out life during WWII as the Office of National Defense Malaria Control Activities. The CDC worries about much more than malaria these days …

6. Acts as a decoy for, possibly : ABETS

The word “abet” comes into English from the Old French “abeter” meaning “to bait” or “to harass with dogs” (it literally means “to make bite”). This sense of encouraging something bad to happen morphed into our modern usage of “abet” meaning to aid or encourage someone in a crime.

7. Mother of Artemis : LETO

Artemis was an ancient Greek goddess, and the equivalent of the Roman goddess Diana. Artemis was also a daughter of Zeus and Leto, and the twin sister of Apollo. Among other things, she was the goddess of the hunt, and so often is depicted carrying a bow and arrows.

8. University of Maryland athletes : TERRAPINS

The sports teams of the University of Maryland are called the Maryland Terrapins, or “the Terps” for short. The name dates back to 1932 when it was coined by the the university’s president at the time, Curley Byrd. He took the name from the diamondback terrapins that are native to the Chesapeake Bay.

12. Message that might be sent in a storm? : TWEET

In the wonderful world of Twitter (said he, sarcastically), a tweetstorm is a series of related tweets by a single user on a related subject.

14. Fawns, e.g. : YOUNG

A fawn is a young deer, usually one less than a year old.

21. Like many laundromat appliances : COIN-OPERATED

If you go looking for a laundromat in the UK or Ireland, folks will likely know what you’re talking about. However, the local name for such a facility is “launderette” or sometimes “laundrette”.

24. Jost’s “Weekend Update” co-anchor : CHE

Michael Che is a standup comedian from New York City. Che had worked as a writer for “Saturday Night Live” (SNL), and then started to appear in front of SNL cameras in September 2014. One of his roles was co-anchor for the “Weekend Update” segment of the show.

“Weekend Update” is the longest-running of any recurring sketch on “Saturday Night Live” (SNL). In fact, the segment made its debut on the very first show, back in 1975. The first “anchor” at the “Weekend Update” was Chevy Chase.

25. Bonkers : DAFT

The word “bonkers” meaning “crazy” originated in the fifties. The term might come from navy slang meaning “slightly drunk”, behaving as though one received a “bonk” on the head.

26. Fashion designer ___ Saab : ELIE

Elie Saab is a Lebanese fashion designer based in Beirut. Saab also goes by the name “ES”.

30. “Something” can be heard on it : ABBEY ROAD

The Abbey Road Studios in London was a large Georgian townhouse built in the 1830s. It became a recording studio in 1931, and you can even see some YouTube video showing Sir Edward Elgar back then making recordings with the London symphony Orchestra. The studios passed through various owners and by the time the Beatles started their famous recording it was known as EMI Studios. The Beatles recorded practically all of their albums there, between 1962 and 1970. Famously they named a 1969 album after the studio, “Abbey Road”. That’s the one with the cover showing the Fab Four crossing the “zebra crossing” outside the studio.

31. Bigwigs may have big ones : EGOS

A bigwig is someone important. The use of the term “bigwig” harks back to the days when men of authority and rank wore … big wigs.

37. Address that’s not often written down : URL

An Internet address (like NYTCrossword.com and LAXCrossword.com) is more correctly called a Uniform Resource Locators (URL).

40. Fiddler’s aid : ROSIN

Rosin is a solid form of resin derived from plant sources. Rosin is formed into cakes that players of stringed instruments use to rub along the hairs of their bows to help improve sound quality. The rosin increases the degree of friction between the strings and the bow. That same friction-increasing property comes into play when baseball pitchers use rosin to get a better grip on the ball, or when dancers apply rosin to the soles of their shoes.

41. Units equivalent to volts per ampere : OHMS

The unit of electrical resistance is the ohm (with the symbol omega) named after German physicist Georg Simon Ohm. Ohm was the guy who established experimentally that the amount of current flowing through a circuit is directly proportional to the voltage applied, (V=IR) a relationship that every school kid knows as Ohm’s Law.

42. California’s Point ___ Peninsula : REYES

Point Reyes is a picturesque cape on the Northern California coast about 30 miles west-northwest of San Francisco. The cape was named “Punto de los Reyes” (Kings’ Point) by Spanish explorer Sebastián Vizcaíno, when his ship anchored nearby on the Day of the Three Kings (January 6th) in 1603.

51. Big 12 sch. : TCU

Texas Christian University (TCU) is a private school in Fort Worth, Texas. TCU used to be called AddRan Male & Female, named after an AddRan Clark, the son of Addison Clark who died at the age of 3-years-old from diphtheria. Poor young AddRan was named after his father and his brother, Addison and Randolph.

52. Determination from a Breathalyzer test, for short : DUI

In some states, there is no longer a legal difference between a DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) and a DUI (Driving Under the Influence). Other states retain that difference, so that by definition a DUI is a lesser offence than a DWI.

What we know today as the breathalyzer was introduced in 1931 as a device called the “drunkometer”.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. “You Don’t Mess Around With Jim” singer, 1972 : CROCE
6. Resort in Salt Lake County : ALTA
10. Hill worker : ANT
13. Modern phrase said before doing something foolish : HOLD MY BEER
15. Coping mechanisms? : SAWS
17. Homer’s specialty : EPIC POETRY
18. Website for tech whizzes : CNET
19. Eastern state : ZEN
20. One might tell you to do the math : TUTOR
21. Kind of dog found in New York City : CONEY
22. Warm and toasty, e.g.: Abbr. : SYNS
23. Follower : ACOLYTE
25. Render harmless, in a way : DEFANG
28. Little suckers : APHIDS
29. In play : ALIVE
30. Put off : ALIENATED
33. Lets go : FIRES
34. “___ anniversaire!” : BON
35. County in a Pulitzer-winning play title : OSAGE
36. Holders of solutions : TEST TUBES
38. Mountaineer’s tool : PITON
39. Often-misspelled contraction : THERE’S
40. Court suspension : RECESS
41. Neat : ORDERLY
43. Ran fast : TORE
44. Runs : HEADS
45. ___ Smetanina, first woman to win 10 Winter Olympic medals : RAISA
47. ‘Vette alternative : GTO
50. Flier from Asia : MYNA
51. “Take a chill pill!” : TONE IT DOWN!
53. Shakers, e.g. : SECT
54. Employer of some shepherds : CANINE UNIT
55. Call, in poker : SEE
56. Japanese bowlful : UDON
57. Title character of a “Dora the Explorer” spinoff : DIEGO

Down

1. Fancy restaurant name starter : CHEZ …
2. Skip it! : ROPE
3. “This Is Us” producer Ken : OLIN
4. Org. behind the surveillance report FluView : CDC
5. They may have rooms to spare : EMPTY-NESTERS
6. Acts as a decoy for, possibly : ABETS
7. Mother of Artemis : LETO
8. University of Maryland athletes : TERRAPINS
9. Secret ending? : -ARY
10. Not just chilly : AS COLD AS ICE
11. Overprotective government, so to speak : NANNY STATE
12. Message that might be sent in a storm? : TWEET
14. Fawns, e.g. : YOUNG
16. Possible reason to forgo mascara : STYE
21. Like many laundromat appliances : COIN-OPERATED
22. Advance notice for an event : SAVE THE DATE
24. Jost’s “Weekend Update” co-anchor : CHE
25. Bonkers : DAFT
26. Fashion designer ___ Saab : ELIE
27. Activity for newlyweds at a wedding reception : FIRST DANCE
28. Some succulents : ALOES
30. “Something” can be heard on it : ABBEY ROAD
31. Bigwigs may have big ones : EGOS
32. Cubs’ places : DENS
37. Address that’s not often written down : URL
40. Fiddler’s aid : ROSIN
41. Units equivalent to volts per ampere : OHMS
42. California’s Point ___ Peninsula : REYES
43. Synergistic promo : TIE-IN
46. “Felice ___ nuovo!” : ANNO
47. Plastered : GONE
48. Bit of kindling : TWIG
49. Not falling for : ONTO
51. Big 12 sch. : TCU
52. Determination from a Breathalyzer test, for short : DUI