LA Times Crossword Answers 29 Nov 14, Saturday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: Jeff Chen
THEME: None
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 14m 47s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. It’s a bluff SCARP
A scarp is a steep slope or a line of cliffs, especially one created by erosion. An alternative name is an escarpment.

14. Kit and kaboodle TOTAL
In the idiomatic expression “the whole kit and caboodle”, caboodle (sometimes spelled “kaboodle”) is an informal term for a bunch of people, or sometimes the “the whole lot”.

15. She plays Jackie on “Nurse Jackie” EDIE
“Nurse Jackie” is a comedy-drama series centered on an emergency room nurse at a hospital in New York City. The lead character is played by Edie Falco, who also played Tony Soprano’s wife on the “The Sopranos”.

16. “99 Luftballons” band NENA
Nena is a German singer (“Nena” became the name of her band as well) who had a big hit with one of my favorite songs of the eighties “99 Luftballons”. The English translation of the German title (“99 Red Balloons”) isn’t literal, with the color “red” added just so that the title had the right number of syllables for the tune. “Luftballon” is the name given to a child’s toy balloon in German.

17. Taqueria adjective ASADA
“Carne Asada” translates from Spanish as “roasted meat”.

20. Six-Day War setting SINAI
The Six-Day War took place from June 5th to June 10th, 1967, and was fought between Israel and its neighbors Egypt, Jordan and Syria. By the time the ceasefire was signed, Israel had seized huge swaths of land formerly controlled by Arab states, namely the Gaza Strip, the Sinai Peninsula, the West Bank of the Jordan River and the Golan Heights. The overall territory under the control of Israel grew by a factor of three in just six days.

21. Target, say MEGASTORE
Target Corporation was founded by George Draper Dayton in 1902 in Minneapolis, Minnesota as Dayton Dry Goods Company. Dayton developed into a department store, and the company opened up a discount store chain in 1962, calling it Target. Today Target is the second-largest discount retailer in the country, after Walmart.

22. Prince Valiant’s heir apparent ARN
“Prince Valiant” is a comic strip that first appeared in 1937 when it was created by Hal Foster. Edward, Duke of Windsor called the “Prince Valiant” comic strip the “greatest contribution to English literature in the past one hundred years”. I’m not so sure …

23. Beat on “Survivor” OUTLASTED
The reality show “Survivor” is based on a Swedish television series created in 1997 called “Expedition Robinson”.

24. Superstitious admonition DON’T JINX IT
A jinx is a charm or a spell, and the word “jinx” comes from an older word “jyng” from the 17th-century. A “jyng” was another word for the wryneck, a type of bird much used in witchcraft.

28. Crushed, as a spice PESTLED
I’ve always loved the sound of the words “mortar” and “pestle”, ever since I was first introduced to them in the chemistry lab. The Romans called a receptacle for pounding or grinding things a “mortarium”, giving us “mortar”. Mortarium was also the word for the product of pounding and grinding, which gives us our “mortar” that’s used with bricks to build a wall. And further, short stubby cannons used in the 16th century resembled a grinding bowl and so were called “mortars”, which evolved into our contemporary weapon of the same name. As far as the pestle is concerned, it is also derived from its Latin name “pistillum”, which comes from the word for “crush”.

48. First name in rap TUPAC
Rapper Tupac Amaru Shakur adopted the inventive stage name “2Pac”. He was a hard man, spending eleven months in prison for sexual assault. At only 25 years of age he was killed in a drive-by shooting in Las Vegas.

51. “Sleepy Hollow” director TIM BURTON
Movie director and producer Tim Burton makes my least favorite types of movie: dark, gothic, horror fantasies. The list of his titles includes “Edward Scissorhands”, “Sleepy Hollow”, “Sweeney Todd”, “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” and “Alice in Wonderland”. Also included in each of these movies is Johnny Depp in a starring role, as Depp and Burton are good friends and frequent collaborators. Another frequent star in Burton movies is English actress Helena Bonham Carter, who has been his domestic partner since 2001.

“Sleepy Hollow” is a Tim Burton film released in 1999. It is a screen adaptation of the short story “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” by Washington Irving. Stars of the film are Johnny Depp and Christina Ricci.

52. One of Chekhov’s “Three Sisters” IRINA
Olga, Masha and Irina were the “Three Sisters” in the play by Anton Chekhov. The three title characters were inspired by the three Brontë sisters, the English authors.

Anton Chekhov was a Russian writer of short stories and a playwright, as well as a physician. He wrote four classic plays that are often performed all around the world, namely “The Seagull”, “Uncle Vanya”, “Three Sisters” and “The Cherry Orchard”. All the time Chekhov was writing, he continued to practice medicine. He is quoted as saying “Medicine is my lawful wife, and literature is my mistress.”

53. Abbr. for the nameless? ET AL
Et alii (et al.) is the equivalent of et cetera (etc.), with et cetera being used in place of a list of objects, and et alii used for a list of names. In fact “et al.” can stand for et alii (for a group of males, or males and females), aliae (for a group of women) and et alia (for a group of neuter nouns, or for a group of people where the intent is to retain gender-neutrality).

54. Rocky heights TORS
A tor is a high rocky hill. “Tor” comes from the Old English “torr”, the word for a tower or rock, which in turn comes from the Old Welsh “twrr” meaning a heap or a pile.

57. Weapon of yore SNEE
“Snick or snee” is the name given to cut and thrust while fighting with a knife. The phrase is rooted in a pair of Dutch words and it gave its name to a “snee”, a light sword-like knife.

58. “Grumpy Old Men” actor Davis OSSIE
Ossie Davis was a very successful African-American actor, but also a director, poet, playwright and social activist. One of Davis’s better known performances was in the 1993 movie “Grumpy Old Men”, in which he played the owner of the bait shop by the lake.

“Grumpy Old Men” is a wonderful romantic comedy film from 1993 starring the great actors Jack Lemmon, Walter Matthau and Ann-Margret along with an excellent supporting cast. “Grumpy Old Man” was the sixth on-screen collaboration between Lemmon and Matthau, but the first in over a decade.

Down
1. King’s Cross and others: Abbr. STAS
King’s Cross is a large railway station in London that first opened for business in 1852. The station is named for King’s Cross, the area of the city in which it is located. In turn, the King’s Cross area takes its name from a monument to King George IV that no longer exists. The station is well-known to many young people around the world as it is from King’s Cross that the Hogwarts Express departs (from the secret platform 9¾) in the “Harry Potter” series of books.

2. Mozart title starter COSI
Mozart’s comic opera “Così fan tutte” is also known in English as “The School for Lovers”. The literal translation of the opera’s title is “Thus do all (women)”, or “Women are like that”.

4. Gun site RADAR TRAP
Scientists have been using radio waves to detect the presence of objects since the late 1800s, but it was the demands of WWII that accelerated the practical application of the technology. The British called their system RDF standing for Range and Direction Finding. The system used by the US Navy was called Radio Detection And Ranging, which was shortened to the acronym RADAR.

6. Last of an annual trio BELMONT
The Belmont Stakes is a horse race held in June each year, at Belmont Park racetrack in Elmont, New York. The Belmont is the last of the US Triple Crown races, following the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness.

7. Ciao relatives ADIEUX
“Adieu” is the French for “goodbye” or “farewell”, from “à Dieu” meaning “to God”. The plural of “adieu” is “adieux”.

“Ciao” is Italian for “‘bye”. “Arrivederci” is more formal, and translates better as “goodbye”.

8. Certain brogue WINGTIP
A brogue is more commonly called a wingtip here in the US, I think. The shoe design originated in Ireland and Scotland, and “brog” the Irish word (and similar Scottish word) for shoe gives rise to the name. The brogue/wingtip design includes decorative perforations in the leather uppers. The toe cap of a brogue curves back in a shape that suggest the tip of a brid’s wing, hence the alternative name.

11. Inebriate BESOT
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.

12. Between, to Berlioz ENTRE
Hector Berlioz was a French composer active in the Romantic period. Berlioz’s most famous work is probably his “Symphonie fantastique”.

13. Extremely shocked? TASED
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”.

19. World Cup chant USA!
The 1994 FIFA World Cup was held in the US, with nine cities across the country acting as host. The average attendance at the games was about 69,000, which set a record for a FIFA World Cup that persists to this day. Brazil won the tournament, beating Italy in a penalty shootout.

24. Key of Pachelbel’s Canon: Abbr. D MAJ
Johann Pachelbel was a composer from Germany active in the Baroque Era. Pachelbel’s music was very popular during his own lifetime, and today his best-known work is his “Canon in D”. which has become one of the most popular choices during modern wedding ceremonies.

25. River through northern France OISE
The River Oise rises in Belgium and joins up with the River Seine just outside Paris.

29. Like-minded SIMPATICO
Someone described as “simpatico” is likable, or like-minded. The term comes into English via Spanish or Italian from the Latin “sympathia” meaning “community of feeling”.

31. Vital components LINCHPINS
A linchpin is a clip or fastener that is used on the end of an axle to prevent a wheel from sliding off. The term is also used figuratively to describe anything that is a vital element in a system.

37. Used to buy SPENT ON
My money was used to buy, was spent on …

40. Request for more ENCORE
“Encore” is French for “again, one more time”, and is a shout that an audience member will make here in North America to request another song, say. But, the term is not used this way in France. Rather, the audience will shout “Bis!” instead, which is the Italian for “twice!”

41. Pittances MITES
A mite is a small amount, as in “the widow’s mite”, the story from the Bible.

42. Jazz singer O’Day ANITA
Anita O’Day was the stage name of the jazz singer Anita Colton. O’Day had problems with heroin and alcohol addiction leading to erratic behavior and earning her the nickname “The Jezebel of Jazz”.

43. “Cold Mountain” hero INMAN
The novel “Cold Mountain” was written in 1997 by Charles Frazier. It’s the tale of a deserter in the Civil War named W. P. Inman and his trek home to his beloved Ada Monroe, who is living the rural community of Cold Mountain in North Carolina. The plot has been compared with Homer’s “The Odyssey”, which tells of the long journey home of Odysseus to Ithaca after the Trojan War. In the 2003 film adaptation of the same name, Ada Monroe is played by Nicole Kidman, and Inman is played by Jude Law.

45. Coin first minted under Louis IX ECU
The ecu is an Old French coin. When introduced in 1640, the ecu was worth three livres (an older coin, called a “pound” in English). The word “ecu” comes from the Latin “scutum” meaning “shield”. The original ecu had a coat of arms on it, a shield.

Louis IX was the King of France from 1226 until 1270. Louis IX is the only king of France to have been made a saint. This Saint Louis was the man who gave his name to the city of St. Louis, Missouri.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. It’s a bluff SCARP
6. Let it all out, perhaps BAWL
10. “Yeah, what-evs” I BET
14. Kit and kaboodle TOTAL
15. She plays Jackie on “Nurse Jackie” EDIE
16. “99 Luftballons” band NENA
17. Taqueria adjective ASADA
18. Tongue specialists? LINGUISTS
20. Six-Day War setting SINAI
21. Target, say MEGASTORE
22. Prince Valiant’s heir apparent ARN
23. Beat on “Survivor” OUTLASTED
24. Superstitious admonition DON’T JINX IT
27. Laborer on the move MIGRANT
28. Crushed, as a spice PESTLED
34. Obliquely ASLANT
35. Without serious consideration AIRILY
36. “Yikes!” JEEPERS!
38. Considerable IMMENSE
39. Undeveloped areas OPEN SPACES
41. Title bout, say MAIN EVENT
46. Reminder of an old flame? ASH
47. Purity INNOCENCE
48. First name in rap TUPAC
51. “Sleepy Hollow” director TIM BURTON
52. One of Chekhov’s “Three Sisters” IRINA
53. Abbr. for the nameless? ET AL
54. Rocky heights TORS
55. Small change CENTS
56. Judicious SANE
57. Weapon of yore SNEE
58. “Grumpy Old Men” actor Davis OSSIE

Down
1. King’s Cross and others: Abbr. STAS
2. Mozart title starter COSI
3. Obliquely AT AN ANGLE
4. Gun site RADAR TRAP
5. Easy-to-miss miss PLAIN JANE
6. Last of an annual trio BELMONT
7. Ciao relatives ADIEUX
8. Certain brogue WINGTIP
9. Court groups LEGAL TEAMS
10. 19-Down, e.g.: Abbr. INITS
11. Inebriate BESOT
12. Between, to Berlioz ENTRE
13. Extremely shocked? TASED
19. World Cup chant USA!
24. Key of Pachelbel’s Canon: Abbr. D MAJ
25. River through northern France OISE
26. Ones who are retiring INTROVERTS
29. Like-minded SIMPATICO
30. Cherishes TREASURES
31. Vital components LINCHPINS
32. Conditional word ELSE
33. Turns red, perhaps DYES
37. Used to buy SPENT ON
38. Pungent, for example INTENSE
40. Request for more ENCORE
41. Pittances MITES
42. Jazz singer O’Day ANITA
43. “Cold Mountain” hero INMAN
44. Lofty NOBLE
45. Coin first minted under Louis IX ECU
49. Against ANTI
50. Court event CASE

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6 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 29 Nov 14, Saturday”

  1. Hello Saturday solvers –

    Ouch. DNF. Ok – I finished, but with alot of help.

    This puzzle actually made me angry for some reason. It was a combination of alot of information out of my comfort zone – Nurse Jackie, Survivor, Sleepy Hollow, rap,"brogue", ecu, tors, oise river, Prince Valiant, Grumpy Old Men to name a few.

    There were also some very OBLIQUE definitions used of some words – introvert/retiring (not by the true definition of an introvert in my mind)…considerable/immense (two different degree)Noble/lofty (they are correlated but not the same thing at all), sane/judicious(please – spare me), intense/pungent (perhaps obliquely)….and on

    Finally, any puzzle with the word "JEEPERS" in it is automatically flawed.

    These are my feelings towards this puzzle, and it's my audition for any remake of Grumpy Old Men….

    Best-

  2. Completed this puzzle when, for the longest time, I couldn't make any headway at all. It came together one letter at a time until the longer answers started to make sense.

    I was goofed up for quite a while on the upper left because I stuck in Syria for 29 Across instead of "Sinai" which didn't work for of the down clues except for the first one "stas" for stations. And then I automatically put in "ole" for 19 Down "World Cup Chant" and until I got USA I was floundering for that area as well.

    @Jeff – I thought of "introvert" for retiring only because "shy and retiring" came to my mind for some reason.

  3. TONY – Yes I know that's the popular usage and therefore I GUESS it's correct.

    But quoted directly from Briggs Myers: "Extroversion and introversion refer to where you get your energy and where is your attention? Do you like to spend time in the outer world of people and things, (extraversion) or do you like to spend time in your inner world of ideas and images (introversion).

    Everyone spends some time extroverting and some time introverting. DO NOT CONFUSE INTROVERSION WITH SHYNESS OR RECLUSIVENESS. THEY ARE NOT RELATED."

    It's that last sentence that is why I took exception to it in this puzzle. Introverts and extroverts really refer to where your attention is.

    Similarly schizophrenia actually has NOTHING to do with dual personalities…but I'll save that tirade for another day.

    Best –

  4. Hi Jeff – I tend to love words (which explains my enjoyment of crosswords which are an extension of said love) and when I am talking definitions and usage I always look at the dictionary definition, rather than Briggs Myers or the DSM-V or what have you. I guess I'm a "When you hear hoof beats think horses and not Zebra's" kind of guy (unless you are living in the Serengeti of course). ;-D>

  5. I agree w/ Jeff. I realize that the harder puzzles will have the more vague clues, but many of these were just plain off.

  6. I agree w/ Jeff. I realize the harder puzzles will have more vague clues, but many of these were just plain off.

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