This is my solution to the crossword published in the New York Times today ...
COMPLETION TIME: N/A (Watching the old movie "So Big" on television)
THEME: SIT! ... all the theme answers start with something on which one can sit i.e. BENCH(WARMER), CHAIR(PERSON), COUCH(POTATO), STOOL (PIGEON)
ANSWERS I MISSED: 2 ... TOILE (ROILE), MOPPETS (MOPPERS)
1. 2006 boorish film character from Kazakhstan : BORAT
The full name of the 2006 "mockumentary" is "Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazhakstan". Borat is played by a British comedian, Sacha Baron Cohen. Not my cup of tea ...
11. David Letterman's network : CBS
David Letterman does more than present his show. He is also a successful television producer via his own production company, Worldwide Pants. Worldwide Pants produces The Letterman Show, as wells, "The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" and "Everybody Loves Raymond".
17. Second- or third-string player : BENCHWARMER
19. Actress Hagen : UTA
Uta Hagen was a German-born American actress. She married Jose Ferrer in 1938, but were divorced ten years later after it was revealed that she was having a long-running affair with Paul Robeson. Her association with Robeson, a prominent civil rights activist, earned her a spot on the Hollywood Blacklist during the McCarthy Era. This forced her away from film, and towards a successful stage career in New York City.
20. Cyclotron particles : IONS
A cyclotron accelerates charged particles (ions) using a magnetic field, usually directing the particles round and round a huge, underground, circular structure.
31. "God ___ America" : BLESS
Irving Berlin wrote "God Bless America" while serving with the US Army in 1918. He didn't find a spot for it until just before the WWII. He felt it was the right time to introduce a patriotic song, and famously gave it to singer Kate Smith, for a broadcast on Armistice Day in 1938. The song was such a hit that there were even moves made to adopt it as a new national anthem.
32. Photo ___ (when pictures may be taken) : OPS
Short for "photo opportunities".
35. Son of Seth : ENOS
Enos, as the son of Seth, was the grandson of Adam.
38. Broadband connection inits. : DSL
DSL originally stood for Digital Subscriber Loop, but is now accepted to mean (Asymmetric) Digital Subscriber Line. DSL is the technology that allows Internet service be delivered down the same telephone line as voice service, by separating the two into different frequency signals.
39. Lewis's partner in an expedition : CLARK
Meriwether Lewis and William Clark were soldiers in the US Army. Lewis was a personal aide to President Thomas Jefferson, even residing in the Presidential Mansion. This exposure contributed to his selection as leader of "the expedition". William Clark was actually Lewis's boss for a while before Clark retired. Lewis asked Clark to come out of retirement to accompany him on his three-year exploration.
40. Stiller and ___ (comedy duo) : MEARA
Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara are a husband and wife comedy duo, and parents of Ben Stiller (and Amy Stiller). Stiller and Meara met while appearing with the Compass Players (later to become Second City), and have been married since 1954.
41. One-horse town : PODUNK
Podunk is an Algonquian word, meaning a boggy place (literally "where you sink in mire"). European settlers used the name Podunk for the indigenous people that lived in what is now southern New England. These "Podunks" had no name for themselves as a tribe, and they were christened "podunks" as they lived on relatively marshy lands. Podunk has come to mean "the middle of nowhere".
43. Explorer Hernando : CORTEZ
Hernando Cortez led the expedition from Spain to Mexico that eventually led to the fall of the Aztec Empire.
44. One showing diners to their tables : MAITRE D'
The full name of a maitre d' is maitre d'hotel, which means "master of the hotel".
48. Suspect, to a cop : PERP
Short for perpetrator.
49. "Norma ___" : RAE
"Norma Rae" is a 1979 movie starring Sally field, a tale of union activities in a textile factory in Alabama. The film is based on the true story Crystal Lee Sutton told in a 1975 book called "Crystal Lee, a Woman of Inheritance".
50. Presider at a meeting : CHAIR PERSON
56. Stock debut, for short : IPO
Initial Public Offering ...
58. Decorative fabric : TOILE
Toile fabric can be used as upholstery, or as a wallpaper, or even us a fabric for clothing.
1. Dylan or Dole : BOB
Bob Dylan's real name is Robert Allen Zimmerman. Bob Dole's real name is Bob Dole ...
3. Director Howard : RON
Ron Howard sure has come a long way since playing Opie on "The Andy Griffith Show". He has directed some fabulous movies, including favorites of mine like "Apollo 13", "A Beautiful Mind" and "The Da Vinci Code". And now Opie is even a grandfather ...
6. George who was the first president of the A.F.L.-C.I.O. : MEANY
George Meany was president of the American Federation of Labor from 1952-55, which merged with the Congress of Industrial Organizations in 1955. He stayed on as president of the A.F.L.-C.I.O. until 1979. President Johnson presented Meany with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
7. Items fitting in rowlocks : OARS
Rowlocks, the upside down stirrup into which you place your oars. And where I come from, "rowlocks" is pronounced "rollocks".
8. Place to enter a PIN : ATM
One enters a Personal Identification Number in an Automated Teller Machine.
11. Boob tube lover : COUCH POTATO
22. Fort Worth sch. : TCU
Texas Christian University 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.
24. Time periods lasting about 29 1/2 days : MOONS
Moons are lunar months.
25. Police informant : STOOL PIGEON
The term "stool pigeon" comes from the practice of tying a pigeon to a stool to attract other pigeons.
34. Some air pollution : SMAZE
Smaze is a smoky haze, a meld of sm(ole) and (h)aze.
36. Kind of stock : BLUE CHIP
A blue chip stock is one that is highly valued by the market. It comes from the tradition of designating blue poker chips as those having the higher value.
40. Tots : MOPPETS
New word to me ...
42. Tie-breaking play periods: Abbr. : OTS
48. Leaning Tower site : PISA
The Leaning Tower of Pisa is actually the campanile, or bell tower, of the city's cathedral. It has been leaning since the tower was completed in 1173. Just shows you how important good foundations are.
51. Yahoo! competitor : AOL
Jerry Yang and David Filo called their company Yahoo! for two reasons. Firstly, a Yahoo is a rude, unsophisticated brute from Jonathan Swift's "Gulliver's Travels". Secondly, Yahoo stands for "Yet another Hierarchical Officious Oracle".
52. ___ v. Wade : ROE
Roe v. Wade was decided in a US District Court in Texas in 1970, and reached the Supreme Court on appeal. The Supreme Court ordered that the case be retried, and made its landmark decision in 1973.
53. Use the start of 17- or 50-Across or 11- or 25-Down? : SIT
54. Suffix with schnozz : OLA
Schnoz is a slang term for a nose, particularly a large one. I'm not sure why made it even bigger as schnozzola ...