1025-18 NY Times Crossword 25 Oct 18, Thursday

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Constructed by: Neville Fogarty
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme (according to Bill): Seeing Things

Themed answers are clued by the prefix “See-” at the start of the clue, and the answer of referenced, neighboring clue used as a suffix:

  • 17A. Footnote info : PAGE
  • 18A. See 17-Across : LOST LIQUID (SEE-PAGE)
  • 26A. See 29-Across : DO A SLOW BURN (SEE-THE)
  • 29A. Common article : THE
  • 45A. Oft-repeated words : SAW
  • 46A. See 45-Across : GO UP AND DOWN (SEE-SAW)
  • 59A. See 61-Across : IN SEARCH OF (SEE-KING)
  • 61A. Bed selection : KING

Bill’s time: 9m 39s

Bill’s errors: 0

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Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1. Actor Hemsworth : LIAM

Liam Hemsworth is an Australian actor who is best known these days for playing Gale Hawthorne in “The Hunger Games” series of films. Hemsworth met Miley Cyrus while working on the movie “The Last Song”, and the two actors were engaged for a while. Liam is a younger brother of actor Chris Hemsworth, who plays the superhero “Thor” on the big screen.

5. Where chapeaux go : TETES

In French, one wears a “chapeau” (hat) on one’s “tête” (head).

15. ___ Lodge : ECONO

Econo Lodge is a low-cost hotel chain in the Choice Hotels portfolio of brands. The chain started in 1969 as Econo-Travel, and demonstrated pretty quickly that budget-hotels were a good idea. The first hotel was built in Norfolk, Virginia and it started making money three weeks after welcoming its first guests.

20. Looks beneath the surface, in a way : SNORKELS

Our word “snorkel” comes from German navy slang “Schnorchel” meaning “nose, snout”. The German slang was applied to an air-shaft used for submarines, due to its resemblance to a nose, in that air passed through it and it made a “snoring” sound. “Schnorchel” comes from “Schnarchen”, the German for “snore”.

23. Night school subj. : ESL

English as a Second Language (ESL) is sometimes referred to as English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) and English as a Foreign Language (EFL).

24. 2010 health measure, in brief : ACA

The correct name for what has been dubbed “Obamacare” is the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act” (ACA).

25. John who founded a Fortune 500 company : DEERE

John Deere invented the first commercially successful steel plow in 1837. Prior to Deere’s invention, farmers used an iron or wooden plow that constantly had to be cleaned as rich soil stuck to its surfaces. The cast-steel plow was revolutionary as its smooth sides solved the problem of “stickiness”. The Deere company that John founded uses the slogan “Nothing Runs Like a Deere”, and has a leaping deer as its logo.

33. Shooting game : LASER TAG

The name “Laser Tag” is really a misnomer as lasers are rarely used in the game. The “guns” actually send out infrared light, and not laser light, which is picked up by infrared detectors worn by the players.

35. Stage name of rapper Sandra Denton : PEPA

Salt-N-Pepa are an all-female hip hop trio from New York, made up of “Salt” (Cheryl James), “Pepa” (Sandra Denton) and “DJ Spinderella” (Deidra Roper). Their 1991 song “Let’s Talk Sex” created quite a fuss as the lyrics explored the subject of sex, and safe sex in particular. A later version addressed the dangers of AIDS.

38. Seasoning for un oeuf : SEL

In French, one might season one’s food with “sel” (salt) and “poivre” (pepper).

In French, an “oeuf” (egg) is the main ingredient in “une omelette” (an omelet).

40. What may blossom from buds? : BROMANCE

“Bromance” is the name given these days to a close relationship between two straight males.

43. Worker in a chamber: Abbr. : SEN

The six-year terms enjoyed by US senators are staggered, so that every two years about one third of the 100 US Senate seats come up for reelection.

45. Oft-repeated words : SAW

A saw is an old adage, a saying.

54. German opposite of alt : NEU

In German, the opposite of “alt” (old) is “neu” (new).

55. Pat who played filmdom’s Mr. Miyagi : MORITA

Pat Morita was a Japanese-American actor who was born in Isleton, California. Morita’s most noted roles were playing “Arnold” on TV’s “Happy Days”, and Mr. Miyagi in “The Karate Kid” movies. Morita was just a child during WWII and spent most of it in the Gila River internment camp in Arizona with his family.

62. Garden crawler : SLUG

Snails and slugs are referred to collectively as gastropods. There are many, many species of gastropods, found both on land and in the sea. Gastropods with shells are generally described as snails, and those species without shells are referred to as slugs.

64. Neighbor of a Jayhawker : OKIE

“Okies” is a derogatory term used during the Dust Bowl of the 1930s for farming families who migrated from Oklahoma (hence the name), Arkansas, Kansas and Texas in search of agricultural jobs in California. The road used by many of these migrant families was Route 66, which is also called “Mother Road”.

Down

3. African country that’s a member of OPEC : 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)

4. Dutch artist Jan van der ___ : MEER

Johannes (also “Jan”) Vermeer was born in the city of Delft in 1632, and died there some 43 years later. The name “Vermeer” is contraction of “van der meer”, which translates as “from the sea/lake”. I just love Vermeer’s paintings, and his wonderful use of light. A great example of such a work is his “Girl with a Pearl Earring”. If you haven’t seen it, I thoroughly recommend the 2003 movie “Girl with a Pearl Earring” starring Scarlett Johansson as the girl in the painting, and Colin Firth as Vermeer. The movie is based on a novel of the same name by Tracy Chevalier, so it’s all just a great story as opposed to a documentary. The way the movie is shot really reflects the qualities of a Vermeer work of art.

5. Verizon, e.g. : TELECOM

The telecommunications company that we know today as Verizon was founded in 1983 as Bell Atlantic, and was one of the “Baby Bells” that were formed after the breakup of AT&T. Bell Atlantic merged with fellow Baby Bell NYNEX in 1997, and then merged with GTE in 2000 to form Verizon. The new company name is a portmanteau of “veritas” (“truth” in Latin) and “horizon”.

6. Anti-fracking legislation, e.g. : ECOLAW

“Fracking” is a familiar term for “hydraulic fracturing”. Fracking involves the injection of chemicals and sand in water at high pressure into a wellbore. This creates cracks in layers of rock deep in the earth allowing perhaps oil or natural gas to flow more freely to the surface.

8. Sinusitis treater, for short : ENT

Ear, nose and throat specialist (ENT)

The suffix “-itis” is used to denote inflammation, as in laryngitis (inflammation of the larynx), otitis (inflammation of the ear), tendinitis (inflammation of a tendon), tonsillitis (inflammation of the tonsils) and sinusitis (inflammation of the sinuses).

9. Bond producers : SOLDERS

Solder is a metal alloy that is used to join pieces of a work together using the principle that the melting point of the alloy is below the melting point of the workpieces.

10. Muslim ascetic : FAQIR

A fakir (also “faqir”) is an ascetic in the Muslim tradition. The term “fakir” is derived from “faqr”, an Arabic word for “poverty”.

11. Rigged game in “Casablanca” : ROULETTE

The term “roulette” means “little wheel” in French, and the game as we know it today did in fact originate in Paris, in 1796. A roulette wheel bears the numbers 1-36. A French entrepreneur called François Blanc introduced the number “0” on the wheel, to give the house an extra advantage. Legend has it that Blanc made a deal with the devil in order to unearth the secrets of roulette. The legend is supported by the fact that the numbers 1 through 36 add up to a total of “666”, which is the “Number of the Beast”. Spooky …

The movie “Casablanca” was released in January of 1943, timed to coincide with the Casablanca Conference, the high-level meeting between Roosevelt and Churchill. The film wasn’t a box-office hit, but gained critical acclaim, winning three Oscars including Best Picture. The signature song “As Time Goes By” was written many years earlier for a 1931 Broadway musical called “Everybody’s Welcome”, and was a hit in 1931 for Rudy Vallee. But today we all remember the Casablanca version, sung by Dooley Wilson (who played “Sam” in the film). Poor Dooley didn’t get to record it as a single, due to a musician’s strike in 1943. The 1931 Rudy Vallee version was re-released that year and became an even bigger hit second time round.

12. Deep blue dye : ANIL

“Anil” is another name for the indigo plant, as well as the name of the blue indigo dye that is obtained from it. The color of anil is relatively close to navy blue. The main coloring agent in indigo dye is a crystalline powder called indigotin.

13. “Bill & ___ Excellent Adventure” : TED’S

“Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure” is a 1989 comedy sci-fi film, starring Alex Winter as Bill and Keanu Reeves as Ted. It’s about two lazy students traveling through time in preparation for a history assignment, with a lot of “Dude!” and “Excellent!” scattered throughout the dialog. Reading the plot, this isn’t a movie that I’d normally go for, but somehow, I enjoyed it …

19. Adler in “A Scandal in Bohemia” : IRENE

The character Irene Adler only appears in one of the many Sherlock Holmes stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. In the story “A Scandal in Bohemia”, Holmes expresses remarkable admiration for Adler as a woman and as a foe. As a result, derivative works in the Holmes genre often feature Adler as something of a romantic interest for Sherlock.

28. Censor : BLEEP

The original censor was an officer in ancient Rome who had responsibility for taking the “census”, as well as supervising public morality.

31. Freudian subject : EGO

Sigmund Freud created a structural model of the human psyche, breaking it into three parts: the id, the ego, and the superego. The id is that part of the psyche containing the basic instinctual drives. The ego seeks to please the id by causing realistic behavior that benefits the individual. The super-ego almost has a parental role, contradicting the id by introducing critical thinking and morals to behavioral choices.

34. Cape Town coin : RAND

The rand is the currency of South Africa. Much of South Africa’s famed gold comes from mines around Johannesburg in the Witwatersrand (Afrikaans for “the ridge of white waters”). The rand currency takes its name from this ridge.

Cape Town is the legislative capital of South Africa (RSA), and one of three capital cities in the country. Pretoria is the executive capital, and Bloemfontein is the judicial capital.

35. “Masterpiece” network : PBS

PBS’s wonderful “Masterpiece Theatre” changed its name to “Masterpiece” in 2008. At the same time, three different versions of the show were introduced:

  • “Masterpiece Classic” introduced by Gillian Anderson, and then Laura Linney
  • “Masterpiece Mystery!” introduced by Alan Cumming
  • “Masterpiece Contemporary” introduced by Matthew Goode, and then David Tennant

37. Boots : POWERS UP

The verb “to boot” as used in the world of computers comes from the phrase “pull oneself up by one’s bootstraps”. The idea is that the software that has to be loaded before a computer can do anything useful is called a “bootstrap load”.

38. Rabbit’s tail : SCUT

A scut is short erect tail, like that on a rabbit or a deer.

41. Result of stress, maybe : AGITA

“Agita” is another name for “acid indigestion”, and more generally can mean “agitation, anxiety”.

43. Gobbled (up) : SNARFED

To snarf down is to gobble up, to eat voraciously. “Snarf” is a slang term that is probably related to “scarf”, which has the same meaning.

44. Lucky thing to get in Ping-Pong : EDGE

That would be the edge of the table, I think.

Ping-Pong is called table tennis in the UK, where the sport originated in the 1880s. Table tennis started as an after-dinner activity among the elite, and was called “wiff-waff”. To play the game, books were stacked in the center of a table as a “net”, two more books served as “”rackets” and the ball used was actually a golf ball. The game evolved over time with the rackets being upgraded to the lids of cigar boxes and the ball becoming a champagne cork (how snooty is that?). Eventually the game was produced commercially, and the sound of the ball hitting the racket was deemed to be a “ping” and a “pong”, giving the sport its alternative name. The name “Ping-Pong” was trademarked in Britain in 1901, and eventually sold to Parker Brothers in the US.

49. Dog, slangily : WEENIE

“Wienie” and “weenie” are informal variants of “wiener”.

What we call a wiener in this country is known as a Vienna sausage in Germany. It was first produced by a butcher from Frankfurt who was living in Vienna, hence the name “Wiener”, which is German for “of Vienna”. Paradoxically, the same sausage is called a Frankfurter in Vienna, as it was created by someone from Frankfurt. It’s all very confusing …

A hot dog is a sausage served in a split roll. The term “hot dog” dates back to the 19th-century and is thought to reflect a commonly-held opinion that the sausages contained dog meat.

52. San ___, Calif. : DIEGO

The name of the California city of San Diego dates back to 1602, when Spanish explorer Sebastián Vizcaíno named the area after the Catholic Saint Didacus. Saint Didacus was more commonly referred to as San Diego de Alcalá.

57. “Saint Joan” playwright : SHAW

George Bernard Shaw (GBS) was a very successful Irish playwright. Shaw is the only person to have been awarded both a Nobel Prize for Literature, and an Oscar. He won his Oscar for adapting his own play “Pygmalion” for the 1938 film of the same name starring Leslie Howard and Wendy Hiller. Most people are more likely to have seen the musical adaptation of “Pygmalion” that goes by the title “My Fair Lady”.

“Saint Joan” is a play penned by Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw. “Saint Joan” had its debut on Broadway, in 1923.

58. One-named singer with the 2006 hit “Smack That” : AKON

Akon is a Senegalese American R&B and hip hop singer, who was born in St. Louis but lived much of his early life in Senegal. Akon is a stage name, and his real name is Aliaune Damala Bouga Time Bongo Puru Nacka Lu Lu Lu Badara Akon Thiam. Got that?

60. ___-Magnon man : CRO

Remains of early man, dating back to 35,000 years ago, were found in Abri de Cro-Magnon in southwest France, giving the name to those early humans. Cro-Magnon remains are the oldest human relics that have been discovered in Europe.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1. Actor Hemsworth : LIAM
5. Where chapeaux go : TETES
10. Greek house, for short : FRAT
14. Rough spots? : ACNE
15. ___ Lodge : ECONO
16. Top-notch : A-ONE
17. Footnote info : PAGE
18. See 17-Across : LOST LIQUID (SEE-PAGE)
20. Looks beneath the surface, in a way : SNORKELS
22. Not real emergencies : DRILLS
23. Night school subj. : ESL
24. 2010 health measure, in brief : ACA
25. John who founded a Fortune 500 company : DEERE
26. See 29-Across : DO A SLOW BURN (SEE-THE)
29. Common article : THE
32. Something that’s tailor-made : HEM
33. Shooting game : LASER TAG
35. Stage name of rapper Sandra Denton : PEPA
38. Seasoning for un oeuf : SEL
39. Prefix with nautical : AERO-
40. What may blossom from buds? : BROMANCE
43. Worker in a chamber: Abbr. : SEN
45. Oft-repeated words : SAW
46. See 45-Across : GO UP AND DOWN (SEE-SAW)
51. That’s an order : EDICT
53. Trail : LAG
54. German opposite of alt : NEU
55. Pat who played filmdom’s Mr. Miyagi : MORITA
57. Vented, say : SCREAMED
59. See 61-Across : IN SEARCH OF (SEE-KING)
61. Bed selection : KING
62. Garden crawler : SLUG
63. Not yellow : BRAVE
64. Neighbor of a Jayhawker : OKIE
65. Tears for Fears, e.g. : TYPO
66. Disseminated : SOWED
67. Have (to) : NEED

Down

1. Ran out : LAPSED
2. Firm affirmation : I CAN SO
3. African country that’s a member of OPEC : ANGOLA
4. Dutch artist Jan van der ___ : MEER
5. Verizon, e.g. : TELECOM
6. Anti-fracking legislation, e.g. : ECOLAW
7. Part of a tennis serve : TOSS
8. Sinusitis treater, for short : ENT
9. Bond producers : SOLDERS
10. Muslim ascetic : FAQIR
11. Rigged game in “Casablanca” : ROULETTE
12. Deep blue dye : ANIL
13. “Bill & ___ Excellent Adventure” : TED’S
19. Adler in “A Scandal in Bohemia” : IRENE
21. Popular smoothie ingredient : KALE
25. Twofold : DUAL
27. Fraud : SHAM
28. Censor : BLEEP
30. Sarcastic laugh syllable : HAR
31. Freudian subject : EGO
34. Cape Town coin : RAND
35. “Masterpiece” network : PBS
36. Slice of history : ERA
37. Boots : POWERS UP
38. Rabbit’s tail : SCUT
41. Result of stress, maybe : AGITA
42. One dieting strategy : NO CARBS
43. Gobbled (up) : SNARFED
44. Lucky thing to get in Ping-Pong : EDGE
47. Nook : ALCOVE
48. Like a live radio announcer : ON MIKE
49. Dog, slangily : WEENIE
50. Physically prompted : NUDGED
52. San ___, Calif. : DIEGO
55. Waterfall feature : MIST
56. Exclusively : ONLY
57. “Saint Joan” playwright : SHAW
58. One-named singer with the 2006 hit “Smack That” : AKON
60. ___-Magnon man : CRO