LA Times Crossword Answers 8 Jan 14, Wednesday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: Daniel Nierenberg
THEME: Blood Ties … each of today’s themed answers starts with a word that is often TIED to the word BLOOD:

17A. *Marlin, for one SPORT FISH (giving “blood sport”)
25A. *Source of endless funds MONEY TREE (giving “blood money”)
30A. *Common Milky Way star RED DWARF (giving “blood red”)
44A. *Billiards maneuver BANK SHOT (giving “blood bank”)
50A. *Part of a uniform WORK SHIRT (giving “blood work”)
11D. *Chocolate overdose consequence SUGAR RUSH (giving “blood sugar”)
32D. *What a driver’s license may serve as DONOR CARD (giving “blood donor”)

62A. Family relations, and what the first words of the answers to starred clues can have BLOOD TIES

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 7m 17s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. __-loading: endurance strategy CARB
Only relatively small amounts of carbohydrate can be stored by the human body, but those stores are important. The actual storage molecule is a starch-like polysaccharide called glycogen, which is found mainly in the liver and muscles. Glycogen is a quick source of energy when required by the body. Most of the body’s energy is stored in the form of fat, a more compact substance that is mobilized less rapidly. Endurance athletes often eat meals high in carbohydrate (carbo-loading) a few hours before an event, so that their body’s glycogen is at optimum levels.

9. Shocking weapon TASER
Victor Appleton wrote a novel for young adults called “Tom Swift and His Electric Rifle”. The company that developed the TASER electroshock weapon named its product as a homage to the novel. The acronym TASER stands for “Thomas A. Swift’s Electric Rifle”.

14. Worker protection org. OSHA
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) was created in 1970 during the Nixon administration. OSHA regulates workplaces in the private sector and regulates just one government agency, namely the US Postal Service.

15. Singer from County Donegal ENYA
Enya’s real name is Eithne Patricia 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. She sure does turn up a lot in crosswords!

Donegal is a county in the north of Ireland, although it is part of the Republic of Ireland and is not one of the six counties of British-ruled Northern Ireland. The county takes its name from the town of Donegal, but the county town is Lifford.

16. Sky hue AZURE
The word “azure” came into English from Persian via Old French. The French word “l’azur” was taken from the Persian name for a place in northeastern Afghanistan called “Lazhward” which was the main source of the semi-precious stone lapis lazuli. The stone has a vivid blue color, and “azure” has been describing this color since the 14th century.

17. *Marlin, for one SPORT FISH (giving “blood sport”)
The fish called a marlin takes its name from the sailor’s took called a marlinspike. The long nose of the marlin might indeed be described as a “spike”. A marlinspike is used by sailors when working with rope, untying knots or perhaps splicing. The name of the tool comes from the practice of “marling”, which is the winding of twine around the ends of a larger piece of rope to prevent it from unravelling.

30. *Common Milky Way star RED DWARF (giving “blood red”)
A red dwarf is a relatively small star, and one that is relatively cool. In terms of size, a red dwarf has less than half the mass of our sun. Being a “cool” star, a red dwarf is classified as a K or M spectral type of star. Red dwarfs are the most common type of star in our Galaxy, with our nearest star (other then the sun) being a good example, Proxima Centauri.

34. Gallery baddies ROGUES
A rogues’ gallery is collection of photos of criminals and suspects that is used by police forces. The first “Rogues’ Gallery” was compiled in 1855 by Allan Pinkerton, founder of the Pinkerton National Detective Agency.

37. Yoko of Tokyo ONO
Yoko Ono was born into a prosperous Japanese family, and is actually a descendant of one of the emperors of Japan. Ono’s father moved around the world for work and Yoko lived the first few years of her life in San Francisco. The family returned to Japan before moving on to New York, Hanoi and back to Japan just before WWII. There Yoko lived through the great fire-bombing of Tokyo in 1945. Immediately after the war the family was far from prosperous. While Yoko’s father was being held in a prison camp in Vietnam, her mother had to resort to begging and bartering to feed her children. When her father was repatriated, life started to return to normal and Yoko was able to attend university. She was the first woman to be accepted into the philosophy program of Gakushuin University.

38. Rodeo rope REATA
“Reata” is the Spanish word for “lasso”. We tend to use the spelling “riata” in English, but sometimes can use the original Spanish word.

40. __-cone SNO
A sno-cone (also “snow cone”) is just a paper cone filled with crushed ice and topped with flavored water. Italian ice is similar, but different. Whereas the flavoring is added on top of the ice to make a sno-cone, Italian ice is made with water that is flavored before it is frozen.

41. Mount McKinley’s national park DENALI
Denali means “the high one” in the native Athabaskan language, and is now the name used for Mount McKinley. I was surprised to learn that there is a Denali State Park, as well as the Denali National Park. The two are located adjacent to each other (which makes sense!). The State Park is undeveloped for all practical purposes, with just a few campgrounds and trailheads.

49. Banking regulatory agcy. FDIC
During the Great Depression, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed into law the Banking Act of 1933. The legislation established the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), intended to be a temporary government corporation that provided insurance on deposits made by customers of qualified financial institutions. The first accounts to be covered, in 1934, had an insurance limit of $2,500. Since the financial crisis of 2008, that limit is $250,000.

59. “Gracias” reply DE NADA
“Nada” is the Spanish word for “nothing”. “De nada” translates literally from the Spanish as “of nothing”, and is used to mean “you’re welcome” or “don’t mention it”. The French have the same expression “de rien”, also translating to “of nothing” and used the same way.

60. Spanish American grassland LLANO
“Llano” is the Spanish word for “plain”.

64. Frequent Mastroianni co-star LOREN
Sophia Loren certainly has earned her exalted position in the world of movies. In 1962 Loren won an Oscar for Best Actress for her role in the Italian film “Two Women”, the first actress to win an Academy Award for a non-English speaking performance. She received a second nomination for Best Actress for her role in “Marriage Italian-Style”, another Italian-language movie, released in 1964.

Marcello Mastroianni was an actor from Italy who was noted for his collaborations with fellow-Italian actress Sophia Loren. One of Mastroianni’s more famous performances is in Federico Fellini’s 1960 classic “La Dolce Vita”. I’d guess that his most celebrated appearance with Sophia Loren was in “Marriage Italian Style” released in 1964.

66. Spacewalks, for short EVAS
Extravehicular activity (EVA) is the name given to any work done by an astronaut outside of his or her spacecraft. The term would encompass walking on the moon, as well as making a space walk i.e. floating around in space tethered to spacecraft.

67. Range with chinchillas ANDES
The Andes is the longest continuous chain of mountains in the world, running right down the length of the west coast of South America for about 4,300 miles. The highest peak in the range is Mt. Aconcagua, at an elevation of 22,841 feet. Interestingly, the peak of Mt. Chimborazo in Ecuador is the furthest point on the Earth’s surface from the center of the planet. That’s because of the equatorial “bulge” around the Earth’s “waist”.

A chinchilla is a rodent found in the Andes in South America. The chinchilla is a little larger than a squirrel, and has velvet-like fur. It takes its name from the local Chincha people who made clothing out of the fur. Chinchillas are quite rare in the wild now as they been hunted almost out of existence, but there are plenty of farm-raised chinchillas around supporting the fur industry, sad to say …

Down
2. Rockies skiing destination ASPEN
Aspen, Colorado used to be known as Ute City, with the name change taking place in 1880. Like many communities in the area, Aspen was a mining town, and in 1891 and 1892 it was at the center of the highest production of silver in the US. Nowadays of course, it’s all about skiing and movie stars.

3. Avignon’s river RHONE
The Rhone river rises in Switzerland and flows through the southeast of France.

Avignon is a city in the southeast of France. Avignon is sometimes called the “City of Popes” as it was home to seven popes during the Catholic schism from 1309 to 1423.

7. Big name in food distribution SYSCO
It’s hard to drive down any highway in the US without coming across a Sysco truck. It really is a huge company, the largest food service enterprise in the country. “Sysco” is an abbreviation for Systems and Services Company.

8. Aloha State big shot KAHUNA
Like many words in Hawaiian, the term “kahuna” has several English translations, everything from a priest to an expert in some profession. The expression “the Big Kahuna” comes from the movie “Gidget”, released in 1959. The Big Kahuna was the leader of one of the surfing gangs in the film, and was played by Cliff Robertson.

10. Nitrogenous dye AZO
Azo compounds have very vivid colors and so are used to make dyes, especially dyes with the colors red, orange and yellow. The term “azo” comes from the French word “azote” meaning “nitrogen”. French chemist Lavoisier coined the term “azote” from the Greek word “azotos” meaning “lifeless”. He used this name as in pure nitrogen/azote animals die and flames are snuffed out (due to a lack of oxygen).

13. Actress Zellweger RENEE
Renée Zellweger’s big break came in the 1996 movie “Jerry Maguire”. A few years later she followed that up with a string of successes in “Bridget Jones Diary” (2001), “Chicago” (2002) and “Cold Mountain” (2003). My wife and I love watching her play Bridget Jones, and as someone coming from the British Isles I have to say she does a remarkable job with the accent. She worked hard to perfect that accent, and of course she had a voice coach. She also went “undercover” and worked as a temp in an office for three weeks fine-tuning her skills.

25. Mademoiselle’s matriarch MERE
In French-speaking countries a young lady (mademoiselle) is the daughter of a mother (mère).

26. Dress to the nines, with “up” TOG
The verb “tog”, meaning to dress up, comes from the Latin “toga”. “Tog” can be use as an informal word for a coat or a cloak. Back in Ireland, togs are what we call swimming shorts.

28. Shunned ones PARIAHS
“Pariah” is an anglicized version of the Tamil word “Paraiyar”. The Paraiyar are a social group of about 9 million people found in some Indian states and in Sri Lanka. The term “pariah” came to be a general term for members of the lowest caste in society.

30. “Maggie May” singer Stewart ROD
The English singer Rod Stewart first achieved success with the Jeff Beck Group in the late sixties before launching a solo career while recording with a new lineup called Faces. Stewart is an ardent soccer fan, and actually supports the Scottish national team (Rod’s father was Scottish). Stewart plays the game himself, playing for a team called the LA Exiles along with a few other celebrities. He even kicks autographed soccer balls into the audience at his concerts.

31. Cincinnati-to-N.Y.C. direction ENE
Cincinnati, Ohio was the first major city to be founded after the American Revolution, and indeed was the first major inland city to be founded in the whole country. Cincinnati was a boomtown in the 1800s, but it’s growth slowed as the the railroads displaced the steamboats as the major form of transportation. The city was founded in 1788, and was named “Cincinnati” two years later. It was named for the Society of Cincinnati, an organization with the mission to preserve the ideals and fellowship of the officers of Revolutionary War. The society was in turn named for Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus. cincinnatus was farmer in ancient Rome who left his land to serve as Consul and then lawful dictator of Rome during a war emergency, before happily handing back power to the Senate after the war was won.

35. Eclectic musician Brian ENO
Brian Eno started out his musical career with Roxy Music. However, Eno’s most oft-played composition (by far!) is Microsoft’s “start-up jingle”, the 6-second sound you hear when the Windows operating system is booting up. Eno might have annoyed the Microsoft folks when he stated on a BBC radio show:

I wrote it on a Mac. I’ve never used a PC in my life; I don’t like them.

36. Lush SOT
Our word “sot” comes from the Old English “sott”, meaning a fool. The word “sot” started to be associated with alcohol and not just foolery in the late 1500s.

“Lush” is a slang term for a heavy drinker. Back in the 1700s, “lush” was slang for “liquor”.

39. First president to throw a ceremonial opening day pitch TAFT
Back in 1910, President William Howard Taft threw a ceremonial first pitch at Griffith Stadium in Washington, D.C. He did so on the occasion of the Washington Senators’ Opening Day.

42. Cry from Cathy of comics ACK!
“Cathy” is a comic strip drawn by Cathy Guisewite, a strip that ran from 1976 to 2010.

43. Skin wounds LESIONS
A lesion is a wound or any abnormal tissue found in an organism. The word “lesion” comes from the Latin word “laesio” meaning “injury”.

45. Passed, as rubber checks KITED
Check kiting is illegal. The idea behind kiting is to write a check, even though there are insufficient funds to cover the amount. The con artist then writes another check, also with insufficient funds, from another bank’s account to cover the original check. I am not sure it would work nowadays, but then I am as honest as the day is long! Oh, and I think the term “kiting” comes from the older phrase “go fly a kite”, the idea being that the bad check is floated on air (non-existent funds).

50. Half a Northwest city WALLA
The Walla Walla Valley is a wine-growing region in Washington that extends into the northeast of Oregon. The valley is named after the Walla Walla people who lived in the area. I have a few bottles of excellent wine from the region that I picked up there on a recent road trip with my wife.

51. Sock synthetic ORLON
Orlon is the brand name used by the DuPont Corporation for the acrylic fibers the company developed in 1941.

56. Pool stroke MASSE
In billiards, a massé shot is one in which the cue ball makes an extreme curve due to the player imparting heavy spin on the ball with his or her cue.

59. Mafia bigwigs DONS
Apparently “Cosa Nostra” is the real name for the Italian Mafia. “Cosa Nostra” translates as “our thing” or “this thing of ours”. The term first became public in the US when the FBI managed to turn some members of the American Mafia. The Italian authorities established that “Cosa Nostra” was also used in Sicily when they penetrated the Sicilian Mafia in the 1980s. The term “mafia” seems to be just a literary invention that has become popular with the public.

61. Maiden name intro NEE
“Née” is the French word for “born” when referring to a female. The male equivalent is “né”.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. __-loading: endurance strategy CARB
5. Chance RISK
9. Shocking weapon TASER
14. Worker protection org. OSHA
15. Singer from County Donegal ENYA
16. Sky hue AZURE
17. *Marlin, for one SPORT FISH (giving “blood sport”)
19. Prepare to make an electronic payment, say LOG ON
20. Halves of fifths TENTHS
21. Breaking wave feature CURL
23. Drink for a hot day ADE
24. Nasty expression SNEER
25. *Source of endless funds MONEY TREE (giving “blood money”)
27. “You’re dreaming” NOPE
29. Hate ABHOR
30. *Common Milky Way star RED DWARF (giving “blood red”)
34. Gallery baddies ROGUES
37. Yoko of Tokyo ONO
38. Rodeo rope REATA
40. __-cone SNO
41. Mount McKinley’s national park DENALI
44. *Billiards maneuver BANK SHOT (giving “blood bank”)
47. Where the floor is always wet OCEAN
49. Banking regulatory agcy. FDIC
50. *Part of a uniform WORK SHIRT (giving “blood work”)
53. Latish wake-up time TEN AM
57. Curve ARC
58. “Woe __!” IS ME
59. “Gracias” reply DE NADA
60. Spanish American grassland LLANO
62. Family relations, and what the first words of the answers to starred clues can have BLOOD TIES
64. Frequent Mastroianni co-star LOREN
65. Edger’s target LAWN
66. Spacewalks, for short EVAS
67. Range with chinchillas ANDES
68. Former partners EXES
69. Take out DELE

Down
1. Profit factors COSTS
2. Rockies skiing destination ASPEN
3. Avignon’s river RHONE
4. Work at a saloon BARTEND
5. They may cry foul REFS
6. Pasta ending -INI
7. Big name in food distribution SYSCO
8. Aloha State big shot KAHUNA
9. “There’s the fox!” TALLYHO!
10. Nitrogenous dye AZO
11. *Chocolate overdose consequence SUGAR RUSH (giving “blood sugar”)
12. Undermine ERODE
13. Actress Zellweger RENEE
18. Lose on purpose THROW
22. Give a new commercial name to REBRAND
25. Mademoiselle’s matriarch MERE
26. Dress to the nines, with “up” TOG
28. Shunned ones PARIAHS
30. “Maggie May” singer Stewart ROD
31. Cincinnati-to-N.Y.C. direction ENE
32. *What a driver’s license may serve as DONOR CARD (giving “blood donor”)
33. “Swell!” FAB!
35. Eclectic musician Brian ENO
36. Lush SOT
39. First president to throw a ceremonial opening day pitch TAFT
42. Cry from Cathy of comics ACK!
43. Skin wounds LESIONS
45. Passed, as rubber checks KITED
46. Like aromatherapy products SCENTED
48. Quick and light NIMBLE
50. Half a Northwest city WALLA
51. Sock synthetic ORLON
52. Take a load off RELAX
54. Credulous NAIVE
55. Words after cut or close A DEAL
56. Pool stroke MASSE
59. Mafia bigwigs DONS
61. Maiden name intro NEE
63. Have to thank (for) OWE

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3 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 8 Jan 14, Wednesday”

  1. Hello Bill, and friends.

    I am somewhat under the weather. ….. Should have taken my free flu shot when I had a chance, last year !

    The puzzle was quite easy, except for a few dicey word learnt a lot …. But I am feeling very sleepy. Good night, and good day.

  2. OH NO! Mr. Bill!!!
    I spelled REATA wrong!Had RIATA.
    When did crosswordese change the game?
    Vidwan, I sure hope you feel better soon, it's certainly no fun being sick. Take care of yourself.
    Thought the puzzle clever and with so many ties to blood.
    But it took a long time for me to get the TIES part.
    Had SUGAR high first, but SNO- cone set me straight.
    Played 'cello in HS and College, named my 'cello "Mastroianni"
    Would say, "This is my 'cello Mastroianni"
    Nobody ever "got it" (sigh)

  3. @Vidwan
    Sorry to hear that you're feeling under the weather. Let's hope you can get lots of sleep, a marvelous cure. Feel better.

    @Pookie
    I was scratching my head about the REATA spelling too. Fortunately I had enough French to stick with MERE. I had to go verify the acceptability of REATA after I was done. As for My Cello Mastroianni … best crossword chuckle I've had in a long time 🙂

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