LA Times Crossword Answers 21 Sep 12, Friday

CROSSWORD SETTER: Neville L. Fogarty
THEME: Something’s Fishy … I SMELL A RAT in this puzzle. All of the theme answers are well-known terms with the word RAT inserted:

17A. One who illegally brings home the bacon? PORK PI(RAT)E from PORK PIE
25A. Mistakes in Dickens, say? VICTORIAN ER(RAT)A from VICTORIAN ERA
42A. When to send an erotic love note? R-(RAT)ED LETTER DAY from RED LETTER DAY
56A. “Something’s fishy,” and a hint to this puzzle’s theme I SMELL A RAT

COMPLETION TIME: 12m 31s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across
5. Tilting tool LANCE
Tilting is the most recognized form of jousting. Jousting can involve the use of a number of different weapons, but when lances are used the competition is called “tilting”.

14. Apple application no longer in use ALAR
The chemical name for Alar, a plant growth regulator and color enhancer, is daminozide. Alar was primarily used on apples but was withdrawn from the market when it was linked to cancer.

15. Eponymous William’s birthplace OCCAM
Ockham’s Razor (also Occam’s Razor) is a principle in philosophy and science that basically states that the simplest explanation is usually the correct one. This explanation is a corollary to the more exact statement of the principle, that one shouldn’t needlessly use assumptions in explaining something. The principle was developed by 14th-century logician and Franciscan Friar William of Ockham (or “Occam” in Latin). The principle is dubbed a “razor” as it is used as a philosophical tool used to cut out absurd and spurious reasoning in an argument.

16. Gospel writer LUKE
The Gospel According to Luke is the longest of the four Gospels in the Bible. Some well-known stories are unique to Luke, and do not appear in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark nor John. A couple of examples would be “The Prodigal Son” and “The Good Samaritan”. It is believed that the author of the Gospel of Luke was the same person who wrote “Acts of the Apostles”.

19. God in both Eddas ODIN
In Norse mythology, Odin was the chief of the gods. His wife Frigg was the queen of Asgard whose name gave us our English “Friday” (via Anglo-Saxon). Odin’s son was Thor, and his name gave us “Thursday”.

The Poetic Edda and Prose Edda are two ancient works that are the source for much of Norse mythology.

23. Uno e due TRE
In Spanish, one and two (uno e due) is three (tre).

25A. Mistakes in Dickens, say? VICTORIAN ER(RAT)A from VICTORIAN ERA
Charles Dickens was an English novelist who achieved great notoriety in his own time, and is still regarded as perhaps the greatest novelist of the Victorian period. Many of his novels explored the plight of the poor in Victorian society, perhaps driven by his own experiences as a child. Dickens had to leave school to work in a factory after his father was thrown into a debtor’s prison. As a result, Dickens had to educate himself, and did so with great success. He is said to have pioneered the serial publication of narrative fiction, with his first success coning with the 1835 serial publication of “Pickwick Papers”. And everyone’s favorite has to be his 1843 novella, “A Christmas Carol”.

33. Sound, perhaps INLET
Ships might travel through a sound, a wide channel connecting two bodies of water, or an ocean inlet.

35. Rapper __ Jon LIL
Lil Jon is a rapper, with the real name Jonathan Mortimer Smith. That’s all I know …

39. “__ American Cousin,” play Lincoln was viewing when assassinated OUR
“Our American Cousin” is play by Englishman Tom Taylor. The play is a farce, and was very popular. There is a line in Act III that always gets the biggest laugh:

“Don’t know the manners of good society, eh? Well, I guess I know enough to turn you inside out, old gal — you sockdologizing old man-trap.”

It was when the audience were laughing at this line in Ford’s Theater in Washington in 1865 that John Wilkes Booth shot President Abraham Lincoln. It is thought that Booth hoped t
he sound of the laughter would drown out the sound of the gunshot.

41. Linney of “The Big C” LAURA
“The Big C” is a Showtime series about a suburban woman who is dealing with cancer. Stars of the show are the wonderful Laura Linney and Oliver Platt.

42A. When to send an erotic love note? R-(RAT)ED LETTER DAY from RED LETTER DAY
A red letter day is a special day for some reason. The term comes from the illuminated manuscripts of Medieval times. In such documents, initial letters were often written in red ink, so-called red letters.

46. Ottoman title AGA
“Aga”, or “agha”, is a title that was used by both civil and military officials in the Ottoman Empire.

Osman I was the man who established the Ottoman Dynasty, with “Ottoman” coming from the name “Osman”. The “Ottoman Empire” came about with the conquest of Constantinople, but that didn’t happen until almost 130 years after Osman I died.

55. Big-screen format IMAX
The IMAX Corporation, which is behind the IMAX film format, is a Canadian company. The impetus for developing the system came after Expo ’67 in Montreal. Back then large format screenings were accomplished using multiple projectors with multiple screens, with images basically stitched together. The team behind the IMAX technology set out to simplify things, and developed a single-camera, single-projector system.

58. Pantheon feature DOME
The Pantheon was built as a temple to all the gods of Ancient Rome. Even though the Pantheon was built almost two thousand years ago, the dome at its center is the world’s largest unreinforced concrete dome.

59. “Fear Street” series author STINE
The author R. L. Stine is sometimes referred to as the Stephen King of children’s literature as he writes horror stories for young people.

61. Tools for ancient Egyptian executions ASPS
The asp is a venomous snake found in the Nile region of Africa. It is so venomous that the asp was used in ancient Egypt and Greece as a means of execution. Cleopatra observed such executions noting that the venom brought on sleepiness without any painful spasms. When the great queen opted to commit suicide, the asp was therefore her chosen method.

62. 16th-century English architectural style TUDOR
Anyone wanting to see a lot of example of magnificent buildings in the Tudor style of architecture might visit the English university towns of Oxford and Cambridge.

63. Zombie’s sound MOAN
A zombie is a corpse that has been brought back to life by some mystical means. Our modern use of the term largely stems from the undead creatures featured in the 1968 horror movie called “Night of the Living Dead”. Now that film, I haven’t seen and probably never will …

Down
1. Andy of comics CAPP
The cartoonist Al Capp’s real name was Alfred Gerald Caplin. His most famous strip is “Li’l Abner”, but he also wrote “Abbie an’ Slats” and “Long Sam”.

2. Soothing agent ALOE
Aloe vera has a number of alternate names that are descriptive of its efficacy as a medicine. These include the First Aid plant, Wand of Heaven, Silent Healer and Miracle Plant.

4. ’70s TV teacher MR KOTTER
“Welcome Back, Kotter” is a sitcom from the the late seventies. The title character is a teacher at Buchanan High, one Gabe Kotter who himself had attended the school as a student. Kotter is played by Gabe Kaplan. One of the prominent students in his class is a young John Travolta, playing a role that launched his film career. In recent years you might have seen Gabe Kaplan as co-host of the popular show “High Stakes Poker” on GSN.

7. Sports gp. with divisions NCAA
The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) dates back to the Presidency of Theodore Roosevelt. When his son broke his nose playing football at Harvard, President Roosevelt turned his attention to the number of serious injuries and even deaths occurring in college sports. He instigated meetings between the major educational institutions leading to the formation of the Intercollegiate Athletic Association of the United States (IAAUS) in 1906, which was given the remit of regulating college sports. The IAAUS became the NCAA in 1910.

8. Garfield, for one CAT
“Garfield” is a comic strip drawn by Jim Davis since 1978. Garfield is an orange tabby cat. Davis named his hero Garfield after his own grandfather.

11. European wheels AUDI
The Audi name has an interesting history. The Horch company was founded by August Horch in 1909, but soon after Horch was forced out of his own business. He set up a new company and continued to use his own name as a brand. The old company sued him for using the Horch name so a meeting was held to choose something new. Horch’s young son was studying Latin in the room where the meeting was taking place. He pointed out that “Horch” was German for “hear”, and he suggested “Audi” as a replacement, the Latin for “listen”.

18. 1996 Reform Party candidate PEROT
Ross Perot graduated from the US Naval Academy in 1953, as president of his class. He served his 4-year commitment but then apparently resigned his commission, being somewhat disillusioned with the navy.

The Reform Party of the USA was founded in 1995 by Ross Perot with the intent of creating an alternative to the Republican and Democratic Parties. The Reform Party’s biggest success was the election of Jesse Ventura as Governor of Minnesota.

27. Nurse Barton CLARA
Clara Barton was deeply disturbed by her experiences caring for the wounded during the Civil War. She dedicated herself after the war towards American recognition of the International Committee of the Red Cross. The American Red Cross was inevitably formed, in 1881, and Barton was installed as its first president.

31. Papal topper TIARA
“Triregnum” is the Latin name for the papal tiara that has been worn by Roman Catholic popes since the 8th century. The crown has three tiers, so it is also known as the triple tiara. “Triregnum” is Latin for “three crowns”.

43. Prehistoric predators T REXES
The Tyrannosaurus rex (usually written T. rex) was a spectacular looking dinosaur. Tyrannosaurus comes from the Greek words “tyrannos” (tyrant) and “sauros” (lizard), and the “rex” is of course Latin for “king”. They were big boys, measuring 42 feet long and 13 feet tall at the hips, and weighing 7.5 tons.

44. Like Everest, vis-à-vis K2 TALLER
K2 is the second highest mountain on the planet (at 28, 251 ft), with Mount Everest being higher by over 700 feet. K2 is known the “Savage Mountain” as it is relatively difficult to climb, having claimed 1 in 4 mountaineers who have attempted to reach the summit. It has never been climbed in winter. The name K2 dates back to what was called the Great Trigonometric Survey, a British survey of the geography of India carried out during the 19th century. Included in this survey were the heights of many of the Himalayan peaks, including Everest. The original surveyor, a Thomas Montgomerie, included two peaks he first called K1 and K2. He discovered later that the locals called K1 Masherbrum (the 22nd highest mountain in the world), but the remote K2 had no local name that he could find, so it was christened Mount Godwin-Austen. This name was rejected by the Royal Geographic Society although it does still appear on maps. So, the most common name used is K2, that original note in a surveyor’s notebook.

47. Musical with the song “Another Pyramid” AIDA
The rock musical “Aida” is based on Giuseppe Verdi’s original opera. It premiered in 1998 and is still performed today. Music is by Elton John and lyrics are by Tim Rice.

48. Hebrew prophet AMOS
Amos is one of the twelve minor prophets in the Hebrew Bible. Before becoming a prophet, Amos was sheep herder and a fig farmer.

51. TV host with a large car collection LENO
Jay Leno was born James Leno, in New Rochelle, New York. Jay’s father was the son of Italian immigrants, and his mother was from Scotland. Leno grew up in Andover, Massachusetts and actually dropped out of school on the advice of a high school guidance counsellor. However, years later he went to Emerson college and earned a Bachelor’s degree in speech therapy. Leno also started a comedy club at Emerson college in 1973. Today Jay Leno is a car nut, and owns about 200 vehicles of various types. You can check them out on his website, www.jaylenosgarage.com.

52. Circular treat OREO
The Oreo was the best-selling cookie in the 20th century, and almost 500 billion of them have been sold since they were introduced in 1912 by Nabisco. In those early days the creme filling was made with pork fat, but today vegetable oils are used instead. If you take a bite out of an Oreo sold outside of America you might notice a difference from the homegrown cookie, as coconut oil is added in the overseas version to give a different taste.

53. Bupkis NADA
“Bupkis” is a word that means “absolutely nothing, nothing of value”, and is of Yiddish origin.

“Nada” is the Spanish word for “nothing”.

54. David Cameron’s alma mater ETON
The world-famous Eton College is just a brisk walk from Windsor Castle, which itself is just outside London. Eton is noted for producing many British leaders including David Cameron who took power in the last UK general election. The list of Old Etonians also includes Princes William and Harry, the Duke of Wellington, George Orwell, and the creator of James Bond, Ian Fleming (as well as 007 himself as described in the Fleming novels).

57. Early Beatle bassist Sutcliffe STU
Stu Sutcliffe was one of the original four members of The Silver Beatles (as The Beatles were known in their early days), along with Lennon, McCartney and Harrison. Sutcliffe apparently came up with name “Beatles” along with John Lennon, as a homage to their hero Buddy Holly who was backed by the “Crickets”. By all reports, Sutcliffe wasn’t a very talented musician, and was more interested in painting. He went with the group to Hamburg, more than once, but he eventually left the Beatles and went back to art school, actually studying for a while at the Hamburg College of Art. In 1962, in Hamburg, he collapsed with blinding headaches. He died in the ambulance on the way to hospital, his death attributed to cerebral paralysis.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Collected CALM
5. Tilting tool LANCE
10. Swift FAST
14. Apple application no longer in use ALAR
15. Eponymous William’s birthplace OCCAM
16. Gospel writer LUKE
17. One who illegally brings home the bacon? PORK PIRATE
19. God in both Eddas ODIN
20. The orange kind is black PEKOE TEA
21. Tape deck button REWIND
23. Uno e due TRE
24. Fairy tale baddie OGRE
25. Mistakes in Dickens, say? VICTORIAN ERRATA
33. Sound, perhaps INLET
34. Insect-eating singers WRENS
35. Rapper __ Jon LIL
36. Lasting impression SCAR
37. Just a bit wet MOIST
38. Stove filler COAL
39. “__ American Cousin,” play Lincoln was viewing when assassinated OUR
40. Go green, in a way REUSE
41. Linney of “The Big C” LAURA
42. When to send an erotic love note? R-RATED LETTER DAY
45. English class assignment word READ
46. Ottoman title AGA
47. Remote insert AA CELL
50. By oneself ALL ALONE
55. Big-screen format IMAX
56. “Something’s fishy,” and a hint to this puzzle’s theme I SMELL A RAT
58. Pantheon feature DOME
59. “Fear Street” series author STINE
60. Modernize REDO
61. Tools for ancient Egyptian executions ASPS
62. 16th-century English architectural style TUDOR
63. Zombie’s sound MOAN

Down
1. Andy of comics CAPP
2. Soothing agent ALOE
3. Bird symbolizing daybreak LARK
4. ’70s TV teacher MR KOTTER
5. Idle LOITER
6. Farm unit ACRE
7. Sports gp. with divisions NCAA
8. Garfield, for one CAT
9. Budding EMERGENT
10. Blossom FLOWER
11. European wheels AUDI
12. Crispy roast chicken part SKIN
13. Take care of TEND
18. 1996 Reform Party candidate PEROT
22. Messes up ERRS
24. Short tennis match ONE SET
25. Biker helmet feature VISOR
26. Provoke INCUR
27. Nurse Barton CLARA
28. Willing words I WOULD
29. Stand ARISE
30. Not just mentally ALOUD
31. Papal topper TIARA
32. Soothe ALLAY
37. Lauded Olympian MEDALIST
38. One might keep you awake at night CAR ALARM
40. Fishing gear REEL
41. By the book LEGAL
43. Prehistoric predators T REXES
44. Like Everest, vis-à-vis K2 TALLER
47. Musical with the song “Another Pyramid” AIDA
48. Hebrew prophet AMOS
49. Pitch a tent, maybe CAMP
50. Enclosed in AMID
51. TV host with a large car collection LENO
52. Circular treat OREO
53. Bupkis NADA
54. David Cameron’s alma mater ETON
57. Early Beatle bassist Sutcliffe STU

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