LA Times Crossword Answers 22 Apr 15, Wednesday

Share today’s solution with a friend:
FacebookTwitterGoogleEmail

Quicklink
Jump to a complete list of today’s clues and answers

CROSSWORD SETTER: Marti DuGuay-Carpenter
THEME: Get Cracking … each of today’s themed answers starts with something that GETS CRACKED:

56A. Begin working, and a hint to the starts of 17-, 25-, 35- and 49-Across GET CRACKING

17A. Chinese course in a bowl EGGDROP SOUP
25A. Reason to skip the Skippy NUT ALLERGY
35A. Classic cop show catchphrase BOOK ‘EM, DANNO!
49A. Browse on Madison Avenue, say WINDOW-SHOP

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 6m 53s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Source of fine wool ALPACA
Alpacas are like small llamas, but unlike llamas were never beasts of burden. Alpacas were bred specifically for the fleece. As such, there are no known wild alpacas these days, even in their native Peru.

15. “__ the Woods” INTO
The Stephen Sondheim musical “Into the Woods” was inspired by a book called “The Uses of Enchantment” by Bruno Bettelheim. The musical is a montage of several fairy tales from the Brothers Grimm collection, further developing the characters and situations in the original stories. For example, the song “Agony” is sung by two princes, one from the “Cinderella” story, and the other from “Rapunzel”. The two princes sing about the “agony” they feel in pursuing the women of their dreams. Interesting, huh?

16. La Mancha Mrs. SRA
La Mancha is a region in Spain, a plateau lying south of Madrid. The area became famous after publication of the novel “Don Quixote de La Mancha” by Miguel de Cervantes.

19. Elton John’s title SIR
Elton John’s real name is Reginald Dwight. Sir Elton was knighted in 1998, not for his music but for his charitable work. He founded his own Elton John AIDS Foundation back in 1992.

20. “Vive __!” LE ROI
“Vive le roi!” is French for “Long live the king!”

25. Reason to skip the Skippy NUT ALLERGY
Skippy is a brand of peanut butter that has been around since 1933 when it was introduced by Rosefield Packing Co., just down the road here in Alameda, California. The companies that have owned the “Skippy” brand name have for decades been in dispute with the estate of Percy Crosby, the creator of the “Skippy” comic strip, over use of the name.

29. Plastered LIT
“Plastered” and “lit” are slang terms meaning “drunk”.

34. 38th-parallel land KOREA
Korea was occupied by the Japanese military from 1910 until Japan surrendered at the end of WWII in 1945. While the UN was working towards a trusteeship administration for Korea, the Soviet Union managed the Korean Peninsula north of the 38th parallel and the US managed the south. The UN’s plans came to nothing as the Cold War dictated the establishment of the two separate states of North Korea and South Korea. North Korea invaded the South in 1950, leading to the Korean War. After three years of fighting, the border between the two states became the demarcation line between the two military forces on the day the Armistice Agreement was signed. That line runs diagonally across the 38th parallel, and is better known as the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ).

35. Classic cop show catchphrase BOOK ‘EM, DANNO!
I think that the link between “cracking” and “book” is in a phrase such as “he got through his exams without cracking a book”, i.e. without opening a book to study.

Danny Williams is a character on the TV show “Hawaii Five-O”, both in the original version that first aired in 1968 and in the remake that was first broadcast in 2010. The original, “Danno” is played by James McArthur. In the remake, Danno is played by Scott Caan, son of Hollywood actor James Caan. Book him, Danno!

39. Enjoys a bistro, with “out” DINES
“Bistro” was originally a Parisian slang term for a “little wine shop,restaurant”.

43. Hanukkah toy DREIDEL
A dreidel is a spinning top with four sides, often associated with the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah. Each of the four sides on a dreidel bears a letter from the Hebrew alphabet (nun, gimel, hei and shin). The four letters are the initials of the Hebrew phrase “Nes Gadol Hayah Sham” meaning “a great miracle happened there”. According to tradition, children would be taught Torah while hiding in caves away from the Greeks. When Greek soldiers approached, the children would hide their torah scrolls and play with their dreidels instead.

49. Browse on Madison Avenue, say WINDOW-SHOP
Madison Avenue became the center of advertising in the US in the twenties, and serves as the backdrop to the great TV drama “Mad Men”. There aren’t many advertising agencies left on Madison Avenue these days though, as most have moved to other parts of New York City. The street takes its name from Madison Square, which is bounded on one side by Madison Avenue. The square in turn takes its name from James Madison, the fourth President of the United States.

52. Tequila sunrise direction ESTE
Tequila is a city in Mexico that is located about 40 miles northwest of Guadalajara in the state of Jalisco. The city is the birthplace of the drink called “tequila”. Local people made a variety of a drink called mescal by fermenting the heart of the blue agave plant that is native to the area surrounding Tequila. It was the Spanish who introduced the distillation process to the mescal, giving us what we now know as “tequila”.

53. Siouan speakers IOWAS
The Iowa Native American people are a Siouan nation. The Iowa speak the Chiwere language, along with the Missouria and Otoe tribes.

55. Director Ang LEE
Taiwanese director Ang Lee sure has directed a mixed bag of films, mixed in terms of genre but not in terms of quality. He was at the helm for such classics as “Sense & Sensibility” (my personal favorite), “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon”, “Hulk”, “Brokeback Mountain” and “Life of Pi”.

63. Without restraint AMOK
The phrase “to run amok” (sometimes “to run amuck”) has been around since the 1670s and is derived from the Malay word for “attacking furiously”, “amuk”. The word “amok” was also used as a noun to describe Malay natives who were “frenzied”. Given Malaya’s troubled history, the natives probably had good reason for that frenzy …

64. Serengeti heavyweights RHINOS
There are five types of rhinoceros that survive today, and the smaller Javan Rhino is the most rare. The rhinoceros is probably the rarest large mammal on the planet, thanks to poaching. Hunters mainly prize the horn of the rhino as it is used in powdered form in traditional Chinese medicine.

The Serengeti is a region in Africa, located in northern Tanzania and southwest Kenya. The name “Serengeti” comes from the Maasai language and means “Endless Plains”.

65. Help-wanted sign? SOS
The combination of three dots – three dashes – three dots, is a Morse signal first introduced by the German government as a standard distress call in 1905. The sequence is remembered as the letters SOS (three dots – pause – three dashes – pause – three dots), although in the emergency signal there is no pause between the dots and dashes, so SOS is in effect only a mnemonic. Similarly, the phrases “Save Our Souls” and “Save Our Ship” are also mnemonics, introduced after the “SOS” signal was adopted.

67. “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.

Down
3. Faddish ’90s disc POG
The game of pogs was originally played with bottle caps from POG fruit juice. The juice was named for its constituents, passion fruit, orange and guava.

5. Part of TLC CARE
Tender loving care (TLC)

8. “Small Craft on a Milk Sea” musician ENO
Musician Brian Eno started his career as synthesiser player with Roxy Music and then launched a very successful solo career in the seventies. Eno is considered as a pioneer of the ambient music genre.

9. “The Simpsons” disco guy STU
On television’s “The Simpsons”, the character of Disco Stu is voiced by Hank Azaria, although Stu was voiced for a while by the late Phil Hartman. Disco Stu is described as “a black, wrinkly John Travolta”.

10. Tank or tee TOP
“Tank top” is another one of those terms that always catches me out, as it has a different meaning on each side of the Atlantic. In the US a tank top is a sleeveless shirt, something we would call a “vest” back in Ireland (and the US “vest” is what we call a “waist coat”). A tank top in Ireland is a sleeveless sweater, which further adds to the confusion. The name “tank top” is derived from “tank suit”, an old name for a woman’s one-piece bathing suit. The use of “tank” for the bathing suit came from “swimming tank”, an obsolete term used in the 1920s for a swimming pool.

12. Emergency priority system TRIAGE
“Triage” is the process of prioritizing patients for treatment, especially on a battlefield. The term “triage” is French and means “a sorting”.

13. Saint Agnes, e.g. MARTYR
Agnes of Rome was a member of the Roman nobility who was executed in the year 304 CE as a follower of Christianity, when she was just twelve of thirteen years old. She is now venerated as the patron saint of young girls. John Keats wrote a poem called “The Eve of Saint Agnes” which refers to the superstition that young women should practice certain rituals on Saint Agnes’s Eve in order to identify their future husbands.

22. Keebler spokesman ELF
The famous Keebler Elves have been appearing in ads for Keebler since 1968. The original head of the elves was J. J. Keebler, but he was toppled from power by Ernest J. Keebler in 1970.

27. Croft of video games LARA
Lara Croft was introduced to the world as the main character in a pretty cool video game (I thought) called “Tomb Raider”, back in 1996. Lara Croft moved to the big screen in 2001 and 2003, in two pretty awful movie adaptations of the game’s storyline. Angelina Jolie played Croft, and she did a very energetic job.

28. Holder of a collateral loan LIENEE
A lien is the right that one has to retain or secure someone’s property until a debt is paid. When an individual takes out a car loan, for example, the lending bank is usually a lien holder. The bank releases the lien on the car when the loan is paid in full.

33. Table salt additive IODIDE
Back in 1924, a professor of pediatrics in Michigan led a campaign in the US to have producers of salt add a small amount of sodium iodide to table salt, so that the population would have a readily available source of the iodine micronutrient. His goal was to reduce the incidence of goiter in the population.

34. Irish rd. sign abbreviations KMS
You have to be a little careful when driving on the island of Ireland, as their can be some confusion about signage showing distances. In the Republic of Ireland (“the South”), signposts have showed distances in kilometers since the 1990s. Signs in the Northern Ireland still show distances in miles.

36. “… Yorick! I __ him, Horatio” KNEW
In Shakespeare’s “Hamlet”, there is a scene when Prince Hamlet holds in his hand the skull of the deceased court jester Yorick. Hamlet starts into a famous monologue at this point:

Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio; a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy; he hath borne me on his back a thousand times; and now, how abhorred in my imagination it is …

The opening line is often misquoted as “Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him well.”

41. “Atonement” novelist McEwan IAN
Ian McEwan is an English author with a track record of writing well-received novels. McEwan’s most famous work I would say is “Atonement” which has benefited from the success of the fabulous movie adaptation released in 2007.

42. Ally of Fidel CHE
Ernesto “Che” Guevara was born in Argentina, and in 1948 he started to study medicine at the University of Buenos Aires. While at school he satisfied his need to “see the world” by taking two long journeys around South America, the story of which are told in Guevara’s memoir later published as “The Motorcycle Diaries”. While travelling, Guevara was moved by the plight of the people he saw and their working conditions and what he viewed as capitalistic exploitation. In Mexico City he met brothers Raul and Fidel Castro and was persuaded to join their cause, the overthrow of the US-backed government in Cuba. He rose to second-in-command among the Cuban insurgents, and when Castro came to power Guevara was influential in repelling the Bay of Pigs Invasion and bringing Soviet nuclear missiles to the island. Guevara left Cuba in 1965 to continue his work as a revolutionary. He was captured by Bolivian forces in 1967, and was executed. Fidel Castro led the public mourning of Guevara’s death, and soon the revolutionary was an icon for many left-wing movements around the world.

57. Punk rock subgenre EMO
The musical genre of “emo” originated in Washington D.C. in the 80s, and takes its name from “emotional hardcore”. “Emo” is also the name given to the associated subculture. Not my cup of tea …

59. “Barefoot Contessa” host Garten INA
Ina Garten is an author as well as the host of the cooking show on the Food Network called “Barefoot Contessa”. Garten has no formal training as a chef, and indeed used to work as a nuclear policy analyst at the White House!

61. Govt. procurement agency GSA
The US Government’s General Services Administration (GSA), as the name suggests, provides general services to other federal agencies. So for example, the GSA manages office space for the other agencies, and transportation.

Share today’s solution with a friend:
FacebookTwitterGoogleEmail

Return to top of page

For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Source of fine wool ALPACA
7. Flotation device VEST
11. 24-hr. banking service ATM
14. Thingamabob DOODAD
15. “__ the Woods” INTO
16. La Mancha Mrs. SRA
17. Chinese course in a bowl EGGDROP SOUP
19. Elton John’s title SIR
20. “Vive __!” LE ROI
21. Milk source TEAT
22. Assuage EASE
25. Reason to skip the Skippy NUT ALLERGY
29. Plastered LIT
30. Believer’s suffix -IST
31. One working in a studio PAINTER
32. Like a ballerina FLUID
34. 38th-parallel land KOREA
35. Classic cop show catchphrase BOOK ‘EM, DANNO!
39. Enjoys a bistro, with “out” DINES
40. Set of moral precepts ETHIC
43. Hanukkah toy DREIDEL
46. Expected DUE
48. “Don’t think so” NAH
49. Browse on Madison Avenue, say WINDOW-SHOP
51. Excellent A-ONE
52. Tequila sunrise direction ESTE
53. Siouan speakers IOWAS
55. Director Ang LEE
56. Begin working, and a hint to the starts of 17-, 25-, 35- and 49-Across GET CRACKING
62. P.O. delivery LTR
63. Without restraint AMOK
64. Serengeti heavyweights RHINOS
65. Help-wanted sign? SOS
66. Word on some family business signs SONS
67. “Gracias” reply DE NADA

Down
1. Fruity drink ADE
2. Fuel for the fire LOG
3. Faddish ’90s disc POG
4. Confuse ADDLE
5. Part of TLC CARE
6. Festoons ADORNS
7. Call on VISIT
8. “Small Craft on a Milk Sea” musician ENO
9. “The Simpsons” disco guy STU
10. Tank or tee TOP
11. Claim with conviction ASSERT
12. Emergency priority system TRIAGE
13. Saint Agnes, e.g. MARTYR
18. Sulk POUT
21. One living in a studio TENANT
22. Keebler spokesman ELF
23. Feel poorly AIL
24. Bump, as a toe STUB
26. Like two peas in __ A POD
27. Croft of video games LARA
28. Holder of a collateral loan LIENEE
30. Enthusiastic yes I DO, I DO!
33. Table salt additive IODIDE
34. Irish rd. sign abbreviations KMS
36. “… Yorick! I __ him, Horatio” KNEW
37. Slippery ones EELS
38. “That’s terrible!” OH NO!
41. “Atonement” novelist McEwan IAN
42. Ally of Fidel CHE
43. Lives DWELLS
44. Meet, as a challenge RISE TO
45. Signs up for ENTERS
46. Bouncer’s post DOOR
47. __ mobility UPWARD
50. Sticks figures HICKS
51. Invite for a nightcap, say ASK IN
54. Throb ACHE
56. Fun time GAS
57. Punk rock subgenre EMO
58. Exaggerated homework amount TON
59. “Barefoot Contessa” host Garten INA
60. Agree quietly NOD
61. Govt. procurement agency GSA

Return to top of page

6 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 22 Apr 15, Wednesday”

  1. Too much Spanish! I asked Hubster what he thought, and he suggested How about something like "it's nothing" in Spanish, and he was right.

    We need our chemist to comment on IODIDE vs. iodine.

  2. Hi Sfingi – I found this citation about iodide on Wikipedia:

    "An iodide ion is the ion I−. Compounds with iodine in formal oxidation state −1 are called iodides. This page is for the iodide ion and its salts, not organoiodine compounds. In everyday life, iodide is most commonly encountered as a component of iodized salt, which many governments mandate. Worldwide, iodine deficiency affects two billion people and is the leading preventable cause of intellectual disability."

  3. I got my bachelor's degree in chemistry, and the word iodine is used to describe both the element (which can be found on a periodic table) and I2, which is a gas. There is definitely no iodine gas in table salt. Iodide is the form of iodine found in table salt.

    I couldn't solve the SE corner until I solved the clue for 'get cracking.'

    Sfingi- I love when they include Spanish, but I feel the opposite when puzzles include French.

  4. With the exception of IODIDE (like everyone else), no real problems here. DE NADA is the general form in Spanish of replying to "thank you," You might also say "no hay de que." I was in my 20s in the 90s, and I never heard of Pog before. I don't really feel like looking it up.

    And FWIW, Alex O'Loughlin (new Stave) has never said, "Book 'em, Dan-o" to Scott Caan. That was exclusively between Jack Lord and James MacArthur. Book 'em, Dan-o! 😀

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.