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0508-17 New York Times Crossword Answers 8 May 17, Monday





QuickLinks:
Solution to today's crossword in the New York Times
Solution to today's SYNDICATED New York Times crossword in all other publications
Solution to today's New York Times crossword found online at the Seattle Times website
Jump to a complete list of today's clues and answers

CROSSWORD CONSTRUCTOR: Zhouqin Burnikel
THEME: LGBTQ
Today’s themed answers start with words that sound like the initialism LGBTQ:
18A. "Super 8" actress, 2011 : ELLE FANNING (starts with “L” sound)
24A. "Thanks, Captain Obvious!" : GEE, YA THINK?! (starts with “G” sound)
40A. Flower that attracts pollinating insects : BEE BALM (starts with “B” sound)
52A. Whistlers in the kitchen : TEAKETTLES (starts with “T” sound)
61A. Order to get a soundtrack ready : CUE THE MUSIC (starts with “Q” sound)
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 5m 38s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. 4.0 is a great one : GPA
Grade point average (GPA)

4. Nearsighted cartoon Mr. : MAGOO
Mr. Quincy Magoo is a wonderful cartoon character voiced by Jim Backus. Backus is probably equally well-known for playing Mr. Magoo as well as Thurston Howell, III on “Gilligan’s Island”. Mr. Magoo first appeared on the screen in a short called “The Ragtime Bear” in 1949. His persona was at least in part based on the antics of W. C. Fields. Backus originally used a fake rubber nose that pinched his nostrils in order to create the distinctive voice, although in time he learned to do the voice without the prop. My absolute favorite appearance by Mr. Magoo is in “Mr Magoo’s Christmas Carol”, a true classic from the sixties. There was a movie adaptation of “Mr Magoo” released in 1997, with Leslie Nielsen playing the title role.

9. Garbage-carrying boats : SCOWS
A scow is a flat-bottomed boat with squared-off ends that's often used for transportation, usually pushed or pulled by a barge. Often a scow can be seen carrying junk or garbage.

15. Denim or linen : CLOTH
Denim fabric originated in Nimes in France. The French phrase “de Nimes” (meaning “from Nimes”) gives us the word “denim”. Also, the French phrase “bleu de Genes” (meaning “blue of Genoa”) gives us our word “jeans”.

Flax is mainly grown for its seeds (to make oil) and for its fibers. Flax fibers have been used to make linen for centuries, certainly back as far as the days of the Ancient Egyptians. Flax fibers are soft and shiny, resembling blonde hair, hence the term “flaxen hair”.

16. Ancient land near Lydia : IONIA
Lydia and Ionia were ancient territories in a part of the world now covered by modern-day Turkey. Both territories eventually fell under Greek and then Roman rule.

18. "Super 8" actress, 2011 : ELLE FANNING (starts with “L” sound)
The actress Elle Fanning’s most notable performance to date (probably) was playing Aurora in the 2014 movie “Maleficent”. Elle’s older sister is actress Dakota Fanning.

27. Ltr. addition : ENC
Enclosure (encl.)

28. One-named New Age singer : ENYA
Enya's real name is Eithne Ní Bhraonáin, which can translate from Irish into Enya Brennan. Her Donegal family (in the northwest of Ireland) formed a band called Clannad, which included Enya. In 1980 Enya launched her very successful solo career, eventually becoming Ireland’s best-selling solo musician. And, she sure does turn up a lot in crosswords!

New-Age music is created to provide a relaxing and stress-free atmosphere. The New Age movement is often said to have begun with the release of an album called “Spectrum Suite” by Steven Halpern in 1975.

34. Spring school dance : PROM
A prom is a formal dance held upon graduation from high school (we call them just "formals" over in Ireland). The term "prom" is short for promenade, the name given to a type of dance or ball.

37. How sardines are often packed : IN OIL
Sardines are oily fish related to herrings. Sardines are also known as pilchards, although in the UK “sardine” is a noun reserved for a young pilchard. Very confusing …

42. Actress Thurman : UMA
Uma Thurman started her working career as a fashion model, at the age of 15. She appeared in her first movies at 17, with her most acclaimed early role being Cécile de Volanges in 1988’s “Dangerous Liaisons”. Thurman’s career really took off when she played the gangster’s “moll” in Quentin Tarantino’s “Pulp Fiction” in 1994. My favorite of all Thurman’s movies is “The Truth About Cats & Dog’s”, a less acclaimed romcom released in 1996. She took a few years off from 1998 until 2002, doing very little work in favor of motherhood. It was Tarantino who relaunched her career, giving her the lead in the “Kill Bill” films.

43. Money in the middle of a poker table : KITTY
The pot in a card game has been referred to as the kitty since the 1880s. It’s not certain how the name “kitty” evolved but possibly it came from “kit”, the necessary equipment for the game.

45. Farm tower : SILO
“Silo” is a Spanish word that we absorbed into English, originally coming from the Greek word "siros" that described a pit in which one kept corn.

49. Caltech, e.g.: Abbr. : INST
Caltech is more properly known as the California Institute of Technology, and is a private research-oriented school in Pasadena. One of Caltech’s responsibilities is the management and operation of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. If you watch “The Big Bang Theory” on television like me, you might know that the four lead characters all work at Caltech.

59. Dr. Mom's attention, for short : TLC
Tender loving care (TLC)

60. Each one in a square is 90° : ANGLE
In geometry, there are several classes of angles:
  • Acute (< 90 degrees) 
  • Right (= 90 degrees) 
  • Obtuse (> 90 degrees and < 180 degrees) 
  • Straight (180 degrees) 
  • Reflex (> 180 degrees)

65. Popular pen : BIC
Société Bic is a French company, based in Clichy in France. The first product the company produced, more than fifty years ago, was the Bic Cristal ballpoint pen that is still produced today. Bic also makes other disposable products such as lighters and razors.

70. State where the Cotton Bowl is held : TEXAS
The Cotton Bowl college football game was played from its inception in 1937 until 2009 in Dallas, originally at the Texas State Fair Grounds. The game was moved to Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas in 2010.

71. There are four in a gallon: Abbr. : QTS
The unit of volume “quart” is so called because it is one quarter of a gallon.

Down
2. Air Force One, for one : PLANE
We usually use the term “Air Force One” for the purpose-built military aircraft that transports the president, although any plane can use the call sign, provided the president is aboard. There was an incident in 1953 which a flight carrying President Eisenhower (flight no. Air Force 8610) flew close to commercial airliner (flight no. Eastern 8610). In order to avoid confusion of flight numbers in the future, the special call sign “Air Force One” was created.

4. Ian who wrote "Atonement" : MCEWAN
Ian McEwan is an English novelist with a track record of writing well-received novels. His most famous work at the moment I would say is "Atonement" which has benefited from the success of the fabulous movie adaptation released in 2007.

6. Fútbol score : GOL
In Spanish, a “fútbol” (football) announcer might shout “gol!” (goal!).

7. Onetime "S.N.L." regular Cheri : OTERI
Cheri Oteri was the SNL (“Saturday Night Live”) cast member who regularly appeared with Will Ferrell in the skit featuring a pair of Spartan cheerleaders.

9. Envy or lust : SIN
The cardinal sins of Christian ethics are also known as the seven deadly sins. The seven deadly sins are:
  • Wrath
  • Greed
  • Sloth
  • Pride
  • Lust
  • Envy
  • Gluttony

11. Dish in a bowl often served au gratin : ONION SOUP
To cook “au gratin” is to prepare something in a shallow dish with a crust of bread or cheese on top. In America we tend to think mainly of potatoes prepared this way, but the technique can be used for many different dishes. Notably, what we call French onion soup is called a “gratinée” in France, an onion soup with some bread and cheese baked on top.

19. Egyptian cross : ANKH
The ankh was the ancient Egyptian hieroglyphic character for “eternal life”. The ankh wasn’t just used in inscriptions but was often fashioned into amulets and as surrounds for mirrors (perhaps symbolizing a view into another world). The ankh is also known as “the key of the Nile” and “crux ansata” (Latin for “cross with a handle”).

32. Singer with the 1972 hit "Heart of Gold" : NEIL YOUNG
Neil Young is a singer and songwriter from Toronto, Ontario. Young is known for his solo work, as well as his earlier recordings with Buffalo Springfield and as the fourth member of Crosby, Stills & Nash. Young is also a successful movie director, although he uses the pseudonym “Bernard Shakey” for his movie work. Included in his filmography are “Human Highway” and “Greendale”.

33. One-on-one talk : TETE-A-TETE
A “tête-à-tête” is a one-on-one meeting, literally “head-to-head” in French.

35. Sash for a kimono : OBI
The lovely Japanese kimono is a garment worn by men, women and children. The word “kimono” translates simply as “thing to wear”, with “ki” meaning “wear” and “mono” meaning “thing”.

36. Pop singer Zayn formerly of One Direction : MALIK
One Direction is a UK-based boy band. Each member of the band competed in the reality show “The X Factor”, and didn’t do very well. The five were then combined in a boy band at a later stage of the competition. They only finished in third place, but I don’t think they care. They’re doing very, very well for “losers” …

40. Fly-___ (Blue Angels maneuvers) : BYS
“Blue Angels” is the popular name for the US Navy’s Flight Demonstration Squadron. The group was formed in 1946 and is the oldest of the US military’s flying aerobatic teams. The squadron took its nickname back in ‘46 from the Blue Angel nightclub that was around at that time in New York City.

53. Locale of a film "nightmare": Abbr. : ELM ST
“A Nightmare on Elm Street” is a Wes Craven slasher-horror film that was released in 1984. As I don’t do “slasher” or “horror”, I only learned relatively recently that Johnny Depp was in the movie, making his feature film debut.

55. Modern movement initialism ... or a hint to the starts of 18-, 24-, 40-, 52- and 61-Across : LGBTQ
Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer/questioning (LGBTQ)

56. "The Waste Land" poet : ELIOT
Eliot wrote his poem called “The Waste Land” in 1922. “The Waste Land” opens with the famous line, “April is the cruellest month …”.

58. March Madness org. : NCAA
March Madness is the name given to the NCAA Men’s Division 1 Basketball Championship (among others), held in spring each year.

62. President before D.D.E. : HST
The letter “S” in the middle of the name Harry S. Truman (HST) doesn’t stand for anything. The future-president was named “Harry” in honor of his mother’s brother Harrison “Harry” Young. The initial “S” was chosen in honor of young Harry’s two grandfathers: Anderson S-hipp Truman and S-olomon Young.

63. Jazz instrument : SAX
The saxophone was invented by Belgian Adolphe Sax. Sax developed lip cancer at one point in his life, and one has to wonder if his affliction was related to his saxophone playing (I am sure not!). I had the privilege of visiting Sax’s grave in the Cemetery of Montmartre in Paris a few years ago.

64. Savings for the golden years, for short : IRA
Individual retirement account (IRA)

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. 4.0 is a great one : GPA
4. Nearsighted cartoon Mr. : MAGOO
9. Garbage-carrying boats : SCOWS
14. Superannuated : OLD
15. Denim or linen : CLOTH
16. Ancient land near Lydia : IONIA
17. Not good : BAD
18. "Super 8" actress, 2011 : ELLE FANNING (starts with “L” sound)
20. Relative who might visit for the holidays : IN-LAW
22. Hightail it : RUN
23. Secret language : CODE
24. "Thanks, Captain Obvious!" : GEE, YA THINK?! (starts with “G” sound)
27. Ltr. addition : ENC
28. One-named New Age singer : ENYA
29. Rough, as criticism : HARSH
31. Industrious little marchers : ANTS
34. Spring school dance : PROM
37. How sardines are often packed : IN OIL
39. "Get the picture?" : SEE?
40. Flower that attracts pollinating insects : BEE BALM (starts with “B” sound)
42. Actress Thurman : UMA
43. Money in the middle of a poker table : KITTY
45. Farm tower : SILO
46. High point : APEX
47. Auto deal for nonbuyers : LEASE
49. Caltech, e.g.: Abbr. : INST
51. Talk, talk and then talk some more : YAK
52. Whistlers in the kitchen : TEAKETTLES (starts with “T” sound)
58. Brief letter : NOTE
59. Dr. Mom's attention, for short : TLC
60. Each one in a square is 90° : ANGLE
61. Order to get a soundtrack ready : CUE THE MUSIC (starts with “Q” sound)
65. Popular pen : BIC
66. Money in the middle of a poker table : ANTES
67. ___ raving mad : STARK
68. Toddler : TOT
69. Deal negotiator for athletes : AGENT
70. State where the Cotton Bowl is held : TEXAS
71. There are four in a gallon: Abbr. : QTS

Down
1. Not hold back : GO BIG
2. Air Force One, for one : PLANE
3. Bewilder : ADDLE
4. Ian who wrote "Atonement" : MCEWAN
5. Every last bit : ALL
6. Fútbol score : GOL
7. Onetime "S.N.L." regular Cheri : OTERI
8. "That sounds good ... NOT!" : OH FUN!
9. Envy or lust : SIN
10. Worry : CONCERN
11. Dish in a bowl often served au gratin : ONION SOUP
12. Tinkler on a porch : WIND CHIME
13. Wise man : SAGE
19. Egyptian cross : ANKH
21. Thumbs-up votes : AYES
25. Variety : TYPE
26. Relatives of rabbits : HARES
30. "We ___ to please!" : AIM
31. Word before "and ye shall receive" : ASK
32. Singer with the 1972 hit "Heart of Gold" : NEIL YOUNG
33. One-on-one talk : TETE-A-TETE
35. Sash for a kimono : OBI
36. Pop singer Zayn formerly of One Direction : MALIK
38. Opposite of strict : LAX
40. Fly-___ (Blue Angels maneuvers) : BYS
41. Lacking company : LONE
44. Rest for a bit : TAKE TEN
46. Abbr. before a name on a memo : ATTN
48. Suffix with cigar : -ETTE
50. Groups of poker chips, typically : STACKS
53. Locale of a film "nightmare": Abbr. : ELM ST
54. Less than 90° : ACUTE
55. Modern movement initialism ... or a hint to the starts of 18-, 24-, 40-, 52- and 61-Across : LGBTQ
56. "The Waste Land" poet : ELIOT
57. Religious offshoots : SECTS
58. March Madness org. : NCAA
62. President before D.D.E. : HST
63. Jazz instrument : SAX
64. Savings for the golden years, for short : IRA


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13 comments :

Glenn said...

@Bill
You might double-check your time on this one.

Dave Kennison said...

9:05, no errors. A bit harder than a typical Monday puzzle, I would say ...

Bill Butler said...

@Glenn
Thanks for noticing that. I forgot to update my time from yesterday's Sunday puzzle. All fixed now.

Jeff said...

Agree that this was difficult by Monday standards. I wrestled with this for 14 minutes. If I had done this on paper vs online, my grid would have been black with write overs. Finished error free, however.

A lot of crosswordese I just couldn't remember on cue such as SCOWS - something I've seen a hundred times in crosswords, but I still couldn't think of it.

Enjoyed the surprising challenge.

Best -

Sfingi said...

@Jeff - Wish I could finish any puzzle in 14 minutes!

Had a Natick at ELLE FANNING crosses OH FUN. Youngster's stuff. Can't keep up with everything.

Carrie said...

14:06, one error: same issue as Sfingi! Missed the F in ELLE FANNING/OH FUN.
Cute theme.

Douglas McFarlane said...

Loved A Christamas Carol as well. Still don't know what razzleberry dressing is. Thanks again.

Dave Kennison said...

The following site discusses "razzleberry pie" and "razzleberry dressing":

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Razzleberry

I think I have seen the "Mr. Magoo" special in question, but I remember little about it ...

BruceB said...

12:18, no errors. Agree with previous posters, this seemed a bit tougher than usual for a Monday. My difficulties began with entering 1D GO FOR, rather than GO BIG. Not familiar with ELLE FANNING, tried to fit 'Ellen' or 'Manning' into the slot.

Grew up watching Mr. Magoo, I remember my parents laughing as hard at the cartoon as I did.

Whenever I see the word SCOW I am reminded of the classic scene in the original Star Trek series. Scotty is explaining to Captain Kirk why he got into a bar room brawl with a Klingon. After listing several insults the Klingon made about the Captain, Scotty didn't lose it until the Klingon called the Enterprise a garbage scow. Then it was a matter of pride. :D

Tom M. said...

Clever and fun with some crunch. Nice Monday puzzle.

Dale Stewart said...

No errors. I got the theme early on and that subsequently helped with the remainder of the puzzle. I guess I am in the minority but I never could stand to watch Mr. Magoo. I thought that the whole concept of it was stupid. I was nearsighted myself so there was nothing funny about it to me. Why didn't he just go to an optometrist and get some glasses?

Anonymous said...

9:20, no errors. Lots of revised fills for me, I just had trouble with this whole puzzle.

Glenn said...

10 minutes, no errors. Pretty much par for how I do with these.

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About This Blog

This is the simplest of blogs.

I do the New York Times puzzle online every evening, the night before it is published in the paper. Then, I "Google & Wiki" the references that puzzle me, or that I find of interest. I post my findings, along with the solution, as soon as I am done, usually well before the newsprint version becomes available.

About Me

The name's William Ernest Butler, but please call me Bill. I grew up in Ireland, but now live out here in the San Francisco Bay Area. I am retired, from technology businesses that took our family all over the world.

I try to answer all emails, so please feel free to email me at bill@paxient.com.

Crosswords and My Dad

I worked on my first crossword puzzle when I was about 6-years-old, sitting on my Dad's knee. He let me "help" him with his puzzle almost every day as I was growing up. Over the years, Dad passed on to me his addiction to crosswords. Now in my early 50s, I work on my Irish Times and New York Times puzzles every day. I'm no longer sitting on my Dad's knee, but I feel that he is there with me, looking over my shoulder.

This blog is dedicated to my Dad, who passed away at the beginning of this month.

Bill
January 29, 2009

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