LA Times Crossword Answers 7 Sep 13, Saturday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: Alan Olschwang
THEME: None
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 20m 51s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across
1. Asia’s __ Sea ARAL
The Aral Sea is a great example of how man can have a devastating effect on his environment. In the early sixties the Aral Sea covered 68,000 square miles of Central Asia. Soviet Union irrigation projects drained the lake to such an extent that today the total area is less than 7,000 square miles, with 90% of the lake now completely dry. Sad …

5. “One more thing,” for short BTW
By the way (BTW)

14. Michael of “Year One” CERA
Michael Cera is a Canadian actor, a very talented young man who is riding high right now. Cera played great characters on the TV show “Arrested Development”, and the 2007 comedy-drama film “Juno”.

“Year One” is a 2009 comedy movie starring Jack Black and Michael Cera as two stone age tribesman who find themselves in the Garden of Eden. After eating from the Tree of Knowledge, the pair are cast out of the tribe and embark on a journey on which they meet several figures from the Bible.

18. Dairy aisle selection GRADE A EGGS
Chicken eggs are graded according to the size of the air cell within the shell at the large end of the egg. The size of the air cell is measured by viewing the egg in front of a bright light in a process known as candling. The smallest air cell receives a grade of AA. A slightly larger air cell is grade A, and the largest is grade B.

20. Relaxation of a kind, briefly DEREG
Deregulation (dereg.)

23. Sonic Dash publisher SEGA
Sega is a Japanese video game company headquartered in Tokyo. Sega actually started out 1940 in the US as Standard Games and was located in Honolulu, Hawaii. The owners moved the operation to Tokyo in 1951 and renamed the company to Service Games. The name “Sega” is a combination of the first two letters of the words “Se-rvice” and “Ga-mes”.

28. Old-time sidewalk show RAREE
A raree show (from “rarity show”), was traditionally a display of photographs of in a closed box, with the viewer peeping through a hole. This form of entertainment became known as a peep show, and over the years the genre moved into the world of eroticism.

29. NFL miscue INT
In American football, a QB (quarterback) mistake could lead to an interception (int.).

30. Old Bikini Bare competitor NEET
The hair removal product “Neet” was launched in Canada in 1901, and was also sold as “Immac”. Today it is sold under the name “Veet”.

31. Univ. peer leaders RAS
RAs are resident assistants or resident advisers, the peer leaders found in residence halls, particularly on a college campus.

32. They’re beside the point: Abbr. CTS
When writing an amount of money, the cents (cts.) are written just after the decimal point.

33. Pop-up costs AD RATES
Although I do have to run ads on this site to cover costs, I promise I won’t resort to pop-ups!

38. Letters at sea USS
The acronym “USS” stands for “United States Ship”. The practice of naming US Navy vessels in a standard format didn’t start until 1907 when President Theodore Roosevelt issued an executive order that addressed the issue.

39. Southwestern ridge LOMA
“Loma” is the Spanish word for “hill”.

40. “Krazy” critter KAT
“Krazy Kat” is a successful comic strip that ran from 1913-1944 and was drawn by George Herriman.

44. In cut time, musically ALLA BREVE
The musical term “alla breve”, meaning “at the breve (i.e. the note)”, denotes a meter equivalent to 2/2. This implies quite a fast tempo, often found in military marches.

46. NFL practice team member TAXI SQUAD PLAYER
The scout team (or “taxi squad”) is a group of football players whose job is to play like future opponents for the main team. The scout team may not be the best athletes, but they learn particular plays designed to help the main team prepare for an upcoming game.

49. Goya’s “Duchess of __” ALBA
María Cayetana de Silva was the 13th duchess of Alba. She was a favorite subject of the Spanish painter Francisco Goya. The duchess is the subject in the famous portrait known as “The Naked Maja”.

Francisco Goya was a Spanish painter, often called the last of the Old Masters and the first of the moderns. Two of his most famous works are “The Nude Maja” and “The Clothed Maja”.

54. Overindulge, in a way TOPE
“To tope” is to drink alcohol excessively and habitually.

55. Used a Bic, maybe SHAVED
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.

56. Illegal freeway maneuver U-IE
A u-turn (u-ie) is a turn through 180 degrees.

57. Scratches (out) EKES
To “eke out” means to “make something go further or last longer”. For example, you could eke out your income by cutting back on expenses. I always have a problem with the commonly cited definition of “eke out” as “barely get by”. Close but no cigar, I say …

58. Patricia McCormick was the first American professional one in Mexico TORERA
“Toreador” is an old Spanish word for a bullfighter, but it’s a term not used any more in Spain nor in Latin America. In English we use the term “toreador”, but in Spanish a bullfighter is a “torero”. A female bullfighter in a “torera”.

Patricia McCormick was a professional bullfighter from St. Louis, Missouri. McCormick spent ten years fighting bulls, in Mexico and Venezuela. McCormick is noted as the first professional female bullfighter in Mexico.

59. S.E. Hinton novel set on a ranch TEX
S. E. Hinton was a writer known for young-adult novels set in her native Oklahoma. Hinton’s most famous book is “The Outsiders”, which was published in 1967, and which she wrote while still in high school.

Down
4. Light-show lights LASERS
The term “laser” comes from an acronym, “Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation” (LASER). It has been pointed out that a more precise name for laser technology is “Light Oscillation by Stimulated Emission of Radiation”, but the resulting acronym isn’t quite so appealing, namely LOSER …

7. Michael Caine memoir WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT?
The last line in the movie “Alfie” is spoken by the title character: “What’s it all about? You know what I mean.” “What’s it all about, Alfie?” is also the first line of the film’s theme song, and the title of a memoir written by Michael Caine who played Alfie.

There have been two versions of the movie “Alfie”. The original, and for my money the best, was made in 1966 with Michael Caine. The remake came out in 2004 and stars Jude Law in the title role. The theme song was performed by Cher in the 1966 movie, but it was Dionne Warwick’s cover version from 1967 that was the most successful in the charts.

9. Tampico “that” ESA
Tampico is a port city in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas.

10. Naps SIESTAS
We use the word “siesta” to describe a short nap in the early afternoon, taking the word from the Spanish. In turn, the Spanish word is derived from the Latin “hora sexta” meaning “the sixth hour”. The idea is that the nap is taken at “the sixth hour” after dawn.

12. Window occupant of song DOGGIE
“(How Much Is) That Doggie in the Window?” is a novelty song written in 1952. The original recording was by Patti Page in that same year.

19. Target of some mining DATA
The process of data mining is used to extract information from a database and present it in a form that facilitates further use.

25. City near Manchester LEEDS
I went to school for a while not far from Leeds in West Yorkshire in the north of England. Prior to the Industrial Revolution, Leeds was a major center for the production and trading of wool, and then with the onset of mechanization it became a natural hub for manufacture of textiles. These days Leeds is noted as a shopping destination and so has been dubbed “the Knightsbridge of the North”.

41. Glass raiser’s cry A TOAST!
Did you ever wonder why we use the term “toast” to drink someone’s health? The tradition probably dates back to the reign of Charles II, when the practice was to drink a glass of wine, to the health of a beautiful or favored woman. In those days, spiced toast was added to beverages to add flavor, so the use of the word “toast” was an indicator that the lady’s beauty would add piquancy to the wine. Very charming, I must say …

42. Pampas rider GAUCHO
A “gaucho” is someone who lives in the South American pampas, the fertile lowlands in the southeast of South America. The term “gaucho” is also used as the equivalent of our “cowboy”.

43. Old-Timers’ Day celeb EX-STAR
Old-Timers’ Day is a tradition seen mainly in Major League Baseball in which a team honors former players. The tradition was inaugurated in the late thirties by the New York Yankees. One of the famous Old-Timers’ Day was held on July 4, 1939, when ALS-stricken Lou Gehrig made a speech declaring himself the “luckiest man on the face of the earth”.

44. Second word of a January song AULD
The song “Auld Lang Syne” is a staple at New Year’s Eve, the words of which were written by Scottish poet Robbie Burns. The literal translation of “Auld Lang Syne” is “old long since”, but is better translated as “old times”. The sentiment of the song is “for old time’s sake”.

52. “The Last Time I Came __ the Moor”: Burns O’ER
“The Last Time I Came O’er the Moor” is a 1793 poem by Robert Burns.

Robert Burns is a cultural icon in Scotland and for Scots around the world. As a poet, Burns was a pioneer in the Romantic movement in the second half of the 18th century. One of his most famous works is the poem “Auld Lang Syne”, which has been set to the tune of a traditional Scottish folk song and is used to celebrate the New Year in the English-speaking world.

53. Livy’s law LEX
“Lex” is Latin for “law”.

Titus Livius (aka Livy) was a Roman historian who lived from 59 BC to AD 17. Livy wrote the definitive history of Rome at that time.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Asia’s __ Sea ARAL
5. “One more thing,” for short BTW
8. Reaffirming words YES I DO
14. Michael of “Year One” CERA
15. “Feels won-n-nderful!” AHH!
16. Knows about IS IN ON
17. Charity ALMS
18. Dairy aisle selection GRADE A EGGS
20. Relaxation of a kind, briefly DEREG
22. Abbr. seen in repeat citations ET AL
23. Sonic Dash publisher SEGA
24. End of a wedding planner’s promise EVERY LAST DETAIL
27. Publishing houses and such MASS MEDIA
28. Old-time sidewalk show RAREE
29. NFL miscue INT
30. Old Bikini Bare competitor NEET
31. Univ. peer leaders RAS
32. They’re beside the point: Abbr. CTS
33. Pop-up costs AD RATES
35. Raised-eyebrow words OHS
38. Letters at sea USS
39. Southwestern ridge LOMA
40. “Krazy” critter KAT
41. One taking a cut AGENT
44. In cut time, musically ALLA BREVE
46. NFL practice team member TAXI SQUAD PLAYER
48. Give the heave-ho OUST
49. Goya’s “Duchess of __” ALBA
50. Finish with END ON
51. Toy based on a sports legend, e.g. ACTION DOLL
54. Overindulge, in a way TOPE
55. Used a Bic, maybe SHAVED
56. Illegal freeway maneuver U-IE
57. Scratches (out) EKES
58. Patricia McCormick was the first American professional one in Mexico TORERA
59. S.E. Hinton novel set on a ranch TEX
60. Trade-in factor DENT

Down
1. Purely theoretical ACADEMIC
2. Like things that matter RELEVANT
3. Some are ergonomic ARMRESTS
4. Light-show lights LASERS
5. Market option BAG
6. Sewing kit device THREADER
7. Michael Caine memoir WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT?
8. Give YIELD
9. Tampico “that” ESA
10. Naps SIESTAS
11. Engaged IN GEAR
12. Window occupant of song DOGGIE
13. Not as steep as it used to be ON SALE
19. Target of some mining DATA
21. Athletes on horses GYMNASTS
25. City near Manchester LEEDS
26. Like whiteboards ERASABLE
31. Draw new borders for REMAP
34. Wasn’t straight TOLD A LIE
35. “No problemo!” OKEY DOKE!
36. Need to fill, as a job HAVE OPEN
37. Least lenient STERNEST
38. Promoting accord UNITIVE
41. Glass raiser’s cry A TOAST!
42. Pampas rider GAUCHO
43. Old-Timers’ Day celeb EX-STAR
44. Second word of a January song AULD
45. Threw a fit RANTED
47. Post-presentation period Q AND A
52. “The Last Time I Came __ the Moor”: Burns O’ER
53. Livy’s law LEX

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2 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 7 Sep 13, Saturday”

  1. This is what I like in a Saturday puzzle. Only one obscure proper name and just a lot of deep thinking.
    Got er done in about 45 min. But I
    did get up to get that extra cup of coffee. Loved all the misdirections.
    Bic = Shaved? Doh!! They make razors also! I forgot.

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