Here is a link to my answers to today's SYNDICATED New York Times crossword.
Completion Time: 21m 40s
Answers I missed: 3 ... PEN IN (PEN UP), FISK (FUSK), PONES (POPES)
TODAY'S GOOGLIES (all links go to Amazon.com) ...
10 SAFIN: Marat Safin is a tennis player from Russia, now retired.
15 PHONE HOME: The catchphrase from the 1982 Spielberg movie "E.T." is "ET, phone home!"
18 EGRET: At one time the egret species was in danger of extinction due to hunting driven by the demand for plumes for hats.
23 OPTICAL: Optical fiber is used for most of the communication trunk lines installed these days.
53 THE FORCE: Darth Vader was always trying to get Luke to come over to the Dark Side in the original "Star Wars" movies.
55 ODE TO: "Ode to My Family" was a 1994 hit for Irish band, the Cranberries, from the album "No Need to Argue".
2 SHOOFLY: Shoofly Pie is a molasses pie, a specialty of the Pennsylvania Dutch.
4 ANNE: Queen Anne was the last of the Stuarts to rule in the British Isles, and the first sovereign of the Kingdom of Great Britain (after England and Scotland united).
7 HOT: "Hot Rocks" is a great, great album released by the Rolling Stones featuring all their hits from 1964-1971.
8 AMADIS: "Amadis de Gaula" is a four-volume collection of knightly tales from Spain, of disputed origin.
11 ARGO: Jason and the Argonauts sailed on the Argo to rescue the Golden Fleece of Greek mythology.
21 PANATELA: A panatela is a slim cigar.
24 PARDONER: The Pardoner's Tale is one of "The Canterbury Tales" by Geoffrey Chaucer.
30 GRAIL: Percival is one of King Arthur's Knights of the Round Table, and was involved in the quest for the grail.
32 OIL: The Permian Basin is an oil and gas producing area covering much of Texas and New Mexico.
34 REL: Holy sisters study religion.
39 ARSENIC: A metalloid is also known as a semi-metal. The metalloids are a group of elements that have physical and chemical properties of both metals and non-metals.
40 WALCOTT: Derek Walcott is a poet, playwright and writer from Saint Lucia in the Caribbean.
41 HEC: "Hec Ramsey" was a TV western starring Richard Boone aired in the early seventies.
50 PONES: Pones are southern cakes or bread made from maize.
54 FISK: Carlton "Pudge" Fisk played for the Red Sox and White Sox (apparently!).
56 DEVI: Devi is the Sanskrit word for "goddess", and Devi is in essence present in all Hindu goddesses.