LA Times Crossword Answers 19 May 15, Tuesday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: Marti DuGuay-Carpenter
THEME: Unusual Collections … each of today’s themed answers is a common phrase ending with a collective noun. However, the usual meaning of the phrase is ignored by the clue, which makes more literal use of that collective noun:

17A. Bunch of builders? ERECTOR SET
55A. Bunch of valets? PARKING LOT
10D. Bunch of contortionists? ELASTIC BAND
24D. Bunch of cryptologists? DECODER RING

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 5m 06s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Netherlands dairy export EDAM
Edam cheese takes its name from the Dutch town of Edam in North Holland. The cheese is famous for its coating of red paraffin wax, a layer of protection that helps Edam travel well and prevents spoiling. You might occasionally come across an Edam cheese that is coated in black wax. The black color indicates that the underlying cheese has been aged for a minimum of 17 weeks.

10. Car designer Ferrari ENZO
Enzo Ferrari was an Italian race car driver, and founder of the Ferrari car manufacturing company. Ferrari died in 1988, and in 2003 the company named the Enzo model after its founder.

14. O’Hara plantation TARA
Rhett Butler hung out with Scarlett O’Hara at the Tara plantation in Margaret Mitchell’s “Gone with the Wind”. Tara was founded not far from the Georgia city of Jonesboro by Scarlett’s father, Irish immigrant Gerald O’Hara. Gerald named his new abode after the Hill of Tara back in his home country, the ancient seat of the High King of Ireland.

15. Hunt of “As Good as It Gets” HELEN
Helen Hunt is a very talented actress who first came to national attention playing opposite Paul Reiser in TV’s hit sitcom “Mad About You”. Hunt then starred in some major films including “As Good as It Gets” (for which she won the Best Actress Oscar), “Twister, “Cast Away”, What Women Want” and more recently “The Sessions”. Offscreen, Hunt was married for a while to Hank Azaria, a favorite actor of mine.

“As Good as it Gets” is a very entertaining romantic comedy of sorts released in 1997 and starring Jack Nicholson, Helen Hunt and Greg Kinnear. Nicholson and Hunt won Best Actor and Best Actress Oscars for their performances. No other film has garnered both Best Actor and Best Actress Academy Awards since “As Good as it Gets”.

16. Café au __ LAIT
Café au lait (“coffee with milk” in French) is usually strong, drip coffee to which one adds steamed milk. At least that’s the way we tend to make in this country.

21. Peter, Paul and Mary, e.g. TRIO
Peter, Paul and Mary were a folk-singing trio who got together in 1961. The group’s members were Peter Yarrow, Paul Stookey and Mary Travers. Peter, Paul and Mary’s big hit was 1963’s “Puff, the Magic Dragon”.

22. White terrier, familiarly WESTIE
The West Highland White Terrier is a cute-looking little white dog from Scotland. The “Westie” looks very much like a related breed, the little black Scottish Terrier. The two breeds can be seen sitting side-by-side on the famous label of Black & White Scotch whisky.

25. “He __ Heavy, He’s My Brother” AIN’T
The Hollies are a great pop group from Manchester in the north of England. The band formed in 1962 and had big hits in the late sixties and early seventies. The list of songs from the Hollies includes classics like “He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother”, “Carrie Anne”, “Long Cool Woman in a Black Dress” and “The Air That I Breathe”.

26. Derby drinks JULEPS
The mint julep is a bourbon-based cocktail that is associated with the American South, and with the Kentucky Derby in particular. If you’d like to make yourself a mint julep, one recipe is:

– 3 oz of Bourbon
– 4-6 sprigs of mint
– granulated sugar to taste

The first Kentucky Derby was run in 1875, and is a race modelled on the Epsom Derby in England and the Grand Prix de Paris (now called the “Prix de l‘Arc de Triomphe”). As such, The Kentucky Derby was run over 1½ miles, although in 1896 this was shortened to 1¼ miles. The winning horse is presented with a very elaborate blanket made of red roses.

29. Talking heads PUNDITS
A pundit is a learned person who one might turn to for an opinion. “Pundit” is derived from the Hindi word “payndit” meaning “learned man”.

32. Adidas rival ASICS
ASICS is a Japanese company that produces athletic gear, including running shoes. The name comes from the Latin phrase “”anima sana in corpore sano” which translates to “a healthy soul in a healthy body”.

The brand name Adidas dates back to when Adolf “Adi” Dassler started making his own sports shoes in his mother’s laundry room in Bavaria after returning from WWI. With his brother, Adi founded Dassler shoes. The companies big break came in 1936 at the Berlin Olympics, when Adi persuaded American sprinter Jesse Owens to use his shoes, and with the success of Jesse Owens came success for the fledgling shoe company. After WWII the brothers split, acrimoniously. Adi’s brother, Ru-dolf Da-ssler, formed “Ruda” shoes (later to become Puma), and Adi Das-sler formed “Adidas”.

33. Magazine unit PAGE
The word “magazine” was originally used to denote a place for storing goods, particularly military arms and ammunition, back in the late 1500s. This usage was extended to include packs of ammunition attached to automatic weapons. The first use of “magazine” in the sense of a periodical or journal dates back to 1731, with the publication of “Gentleman’s Magazine”. “Magazine” had come to mean a printed list of military stores, and the idea was that the new periodical was to be a “storehouse” of information.

34. Bloke CHAP
“Chap” is an informal term for “lad, fellow”, especially in England. The term derives from “chapman”, an obsolete word meaning “purchaser” or “trader”.

“Bloke” is British slang for a fellow, lad. The etymology of “bloke” seems to have been lost in the mists of time.

36. Gambling town at the foot of the Sierra Nevadas RENO
The city of Reno’s economy took off when open gambling was legalized in Nevada in 1931. Within a short time, a syndicate had built the Bank Club in Reno, which was the largest casino in the whole world at the time.

The American Sierra Nevada range lies in California and Nevada. The Spanish Sierra Nevada range is in Andalusia, with the name meaning “snowy range” in Spanish.

37. Found new digs MOVED
“Digs” is short for “diggings” meaning “lodgings”. Where “diggings” came from, no one seems to know.

38. Sonny & Cher surname BONO
Sonny Bono was a recording artist who later moved into the world of politics. As a musical entertainer, Bono was most famous for his recordings as a duo with Cher, who later became his second wife. The couple divorced, but continued to work together. Bono went into politics, first as the mayor of Palm Springs, California and later as a representative for a California district in the US House of Representatives. Sadly, Bono was killed in a skiing accident in 1998. Coincidently, Michael Kennedy (son of Robert F. Kennedy) had died in a similar skiing accident just one week earlier. The epitaph on Bono’s gravestone reads “And the Beat Goes On”, a reference to the 1967 Sonny & Cher hit “The Beat Goes On”, which was written by Sonny.

Cher’s real name is Cherilyn Sarkisian, born in 1946. In her acting career, Cher was nominated for the Best Supporting Actress Oscar of 1984 for her performance in “Silkwood”. She went further in 1998 and won the Best Actress Oscar for playing Loretta Castorini in “Moonstruck”.

41. Historic Vegas hotel, with “the” SANDS
The famous Sands hotel and casino in Las Vegas once stood on the ground now occupied by The Venetian. The Sands was in business from 1952 until 1996, and was “the” place to stay in Vegas in its heydey. It’s said that the Rat Pack were “born” in the Sands, as Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis, Jr., Joey Bishop and Peter Lawford all stayed there during the filming of “ocean’s 11” in 1960, and indeed all performed together in the hotel’s Copa Room.

45. Like Santa’s cheeks ROSY
The Santa Claus persona with which we are familiar today largely comes from the description in the 1823 poem “A Visit from St. Nicholas”, and from the caricature created by the political cartoonist Thomas Nast.

46. Cottage cheese lump CURD
Cottage cheese got its name because it was a simple cheese that was made by simple folk living in cottages, using any milk left over from butter production.

47. South Dakota’s capital PIERRE
Here’s an old chestnut of a trivia question for you … what’s the only state capital in the Union for which the name of the capital and the name of its state share no common letters? You guessed it: Pierre, South Dakota …

51. Boxing stat KOS
A “kayo” is a knockout (KO).

60. Soccer superstar PELE
Pelé is the nickname of Edson de Nascimento, a soccer player who has used the name Pelé for most of his life. Pelé is now retired, and for my money was the world’s greatest ever player of the game. He is the only person to have been part of three World Cup winning squads, and is a national treasure in his native Brazil.

Down
1. Hot times in Cannes ETES
One might spend the summer (été) under the sun (le soleil) in France.

Cannes is a city on the French Riviera, noted as host of the Cannes Film Festival. The idea of the annual film festival was adopted by the city just before WWII. However, the festival had to wait for the end of the war for its launch in 1946.

4. Scottish name prefix MAC
The prefix “Mac-” (often just “Mc”) is sometimes seen in Irish and Scottish family names. “Mac” means “son” in Gaelic”.

5. Rose protectors THORNS
Believe it or not, roses don’t have any thorns. Thorns are derived from shoots, spines are derived from leaves, and prickles are derived from the epidermis. The rose’s defensive barbs are in fact prickles.

6. Like many a Poe story EERIE
Edgar Allan Poe lived a life of many firsts. Poe is considered to be the inventor of the detective-fiction genre. He was also the first notable American author to make his living through his writing, something that didn’t really go too well for him as he was always financially strapped. In 1849 he was found on the streets of Baltimore, delirious from either drugs or alcohol. Poe died a few days later in hospital at 39 years of age.

12. Pasta that sounds like two letters ZITI
Cylindrical pasta is known in general as “penne”, and there are many variants. For example, ziti is a particularly large and long tube with square-cut ends. “Penne” is the plural of “penna”, the Italian for “feather, quill”.

13. Oklahoma tribe OTOE
The Otoe (also Oto) Native American tribe originated in the Great Lakes region as part of the Winnebago or Siouan tribes. The group that would become the Otoe broke away from the Winnebago and migrated southwestwards ending up in the Great Plains. In the plains the Otoe adopted a semi-nomadic lifestyle dependent on the horse, with the American bison becoming central to their diet.

18. Sporty sunroofs T-TOPS
A T-top is a car roof that has removable panels on either side of a rigid bar that runs down the center of the vehicle above the driver.

25. Wood shop tool AUGER
An auger is a drill, a boring tool. [Yawn]

28. Ship with staterooms LINER
The use of the word “line” with reference to transportation started in the 1780s, in the context of stagecoaches. Such transportation operated a string of stagecoaches between towns and cities along regular “lines”. The concept shifted to shipping “lines” operating ocean-going “liners” between ports.

29. Lays down blacktop PAVES
“Tarmac” and “macadam” are short for “tarmacadam”. In the 1800s, Scotsman John Loudon McAdam developed a style of road known as “macadam”. Macadam had a top-layer of crushed stone and gravel laid over larger stones. The macadam also had a convex cross-section so that water tended to drain to the sides. In 1901, a significant improvement was made by English engineer Edgar Purnell Hooley who introduced tar into the macadam, improving the resistance to water damage and practically eliminating dust. The “tar-penetration macadam” is the basis of what we now call Tarmac.

Back in Ireland, the “pavement” is what we call the “footpath” (because the footpath is “paved”!). It’s very confusing when you arrive in this country from Ireland, and a little dangerous when one has been taught to “walk on the pavement” …

31. Mortgage-issuing inst. S AND L
Savings and Loan (S&L)

Our word “mortgage” comes from the Old French “mort gaige” which translated as “dead pledge”. The idea was that a pledge to repay a loan dies when the debt is cleared.

33. Flanders Fields flower POPPY
The WWI battlefields in West Flanders, East Flanders (both in Belgium) and French Flanders are often referred to in English as “Flanders Fields”. The phrase was coined by Canadian physician Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae in his 1915 poem “In Flanders Fields”.

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

43. Swe. neighbor NOR
Norway has been ranked as the country in the world with the highest standard of living almost every year since 2001. Norway is rich in natural resources and has a relatively low population. The people benefit from a comprehensive social security system, subsidized higher education for all citizens and universal health care. And Norway is famous for her success at the Winter Olympic Games, having won more gold medals than any other nation in the world.

44. Crime on the Bounty MUTINY
Charles Nordhoff and James Norman Hall wrote “Mutiny on the ‘Bounty'”, based on a true story. They followed up their successful novel with two more works, creating what is now called the “Bounty Trilogy”. The three books are:

1. “Mutiny on the ‘Bounty'”, the tale of the mutiny against Captain Bligh.
2. “Men Against the Sea”, the story of Captain Bligh and the eighteen men set adrift in an open boat by the mutineers.
3. “Pitcairn’s Island”, a narrative about the lives of the mutineers on South Sea islands after the mutiny.

48. Crucifix inscription INRI
The letters written on the cross on which Jesus died were “INRI”. INRI is an acronym for the Latin “Iesus Nazarenus, Rex Iudaeorum”, which translates into English as “Jesus the Nazarene, King of the Jews”.

In many of the Christian traditions, a crucifix is a representation of Jesus on the cross. The term comes from the Latin “cruci fixus” meaning “fixed to a cross”.

49. Prince William’s alma mater ETON
Prince William is second in line to the British throne, after his father Prince Charles, with Prince Harry holding the third spot. Prince Harry moved down the list when William and Kate had their first child George. The law was changed in 2011 so that the oldest child of Prince William and Kate Middleton would be next in line, regardless of sex. Up until 2011, sons took precedence, even over older daughters.

51. Swiss surrealist Paul KLEE
The artist Paul Klee was born in Switzerland, but studied art in Munich in Germany. You can see many of Klee’s works in the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and if you get to Bern in Switzerland, even more of them can be seen at the Zentrum Paul Klee that was opened in 2005.

52. “Return of the Jedi” dancing girl OOLA
Oola was a slave-girl dancer who was eaten by a scary creature in the movie “Star Wars Episode VI: The Return of the the Jedi”. Oola was played by British actor Femi Taylor.

56. __ Baba ALI
In the folk tale “Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves”, the title character is a poor woodcutter who discovers the magic words “Open Sesame” that open the thieves’ den.

57. High-tech rte. finder GPS
Global Positioning System (GPS)

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Netherlands dairy export EDAM
5. Needle TEASE
10. Car designer Ferrari ENZO
14. O’Hara plantation TARA
15. Hunt of “As Good as It Gets” HELEN
16. Café au __ LAIT
17. Bunch of builders? ERECTOR SET
19. Ferrari, e.g. AUTO
20. Salty expanse SEA
21. Peter, Paul and Mary, e.g. TRIO
22. White terrier, familiarly WESTIE
24. Finished DONE
25. “He __ Heavy, He’s My Brother” AIN’T
26. Derby drinks JULEPS
29. Talking heads PUNDITS
32. Adidas rival ASICS
33. Magazine unit PAGE
34. Bloke CHAP
36. Gambling town at the foot of the Sierra Nevadas RENO
37. Found new digs MOVED
38. Sonny & Cher surname BONO
39. Took to court SUED
40. Phone button abbr. OPER
41. Historic Vegas hotel, with “the” SANDS
42. Before-marriage contracts, briefly PRENUPS
44. Mix at a party MINGLE
45. Like Santa’s cheeks ROSY
46. Cottage cheese lump CURD
47. South Dakota’s capital PIERRE
50. Boarding pass information GATE
51. Boxing stat KOS
54. Not pro ANTI
55. Bunch of valets? PARKING LOT
58. Tend to a pressing task IRON
59. Not from Earth ALIEN
60. Soccer superstar PELE
61. Bumper defect DING
62. Scatterbrained DITSY
63. Sewer’s row SEAM

Down
1. Hot times in Cannes ETES
2. Take a chance DARE
3. Word with gray or play AREA
4. Scottish name prefix MAC
5. Rose protectors THORNS
6. Like many a Poe story EERIE
7. Too ALSO
8. “What’d I tell you?” SEE?
9. Woven together ENTWINED
10. Bunch of contortionists? ELASTIC BAND
11. Ship-related: Abbr. NAUT
12. Pasta that sounds like two letters ZITI
13. Oklahoma tribe OTOE
18. Sporty sunroofs T-TOPS
23. Finish END
24. Bunch of cryptologists? DECODER RING
25. Wood shop tool AUGER
26. Cookie holders JARS
27. Run out of USE UP
28. Ship with staterooms LINER
29. Lays down blacktop PAVES
30. Bit of beach footwear THONG
31. Mortgage-issuing inst. S AND L
33. Flanders Fields flower POPPY
35. One in a model’s repertoire POSE
37. Computer user’s accessory MOUSE PAD
41. Warning to pull over SIREN
43. Swe. neighbor NOR
44. Crime on the Bounty MUTINY
46. Bakery array CAKES
47. Picked up the tab PAID
48. Crucifix inscription INRI
49. Prince William’s alma mater ETON
50. Spunk GRIT
51. Swiss surrealist Paul KLEE
52. “Return of the Jedi” dancing girl OOLA
53. Wineglass feature STEM
56. __ Baba ALI
57. High-tech rte. finder GPS

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8 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 19 May 15, Tuesday”

  1. Wow, a slow day today – where is everybody ?

    The puzzle was easy but with some very cute answers. For a moment, I thought SANDL was the answer instead of THONG – an article on the beach ….

    I loved the theme concept. I must read up on the DECODER RING.

    Thanks, Bill, for the recipe for Mint Juleps. I didn't realize how easy that was; I must make a mint julep, and taste it in the very near future. Now, to get myself some Kentucky bourbon.

    Have a nice day, all.

  2. I had snoT before AINT, because I subconsciously corrected the grammar ("he's not heavy…"), and couldn't believe anyone would put that word in a puzzle. And they didn't.

    Cher cried buckets when Sonny died; but, I imagine they divorced since he was a little controlling (he was Sicilian.) Later, Cher had some trouble adjusting to her only daughter's sexuality. Sonny messed up copyright law permanently by extending copyright to 70 years. Loved their tv show.

    I never noticed the theme, but the mini-theme was finish/finished, not SANDL/THONG!

    English has a few words from the Indian languages, due to the Raj – shampoo, bungalow.

    Thanx for Flanders Field, a poem we had to learn in the 50s.

    Paul Klee's works are everywhere. (Klee is pronounced "clay") A nice exercise for h.s. kids is creating a work in the style of Klee.

  3. Some puzzle constructor has a thing for one brand of Italian sports cars if I'm not wrong…

    Found this very straight forward as most all Tuesday puzzles seem to be. Most of the time I find Monday's puzzle a bit more difficult than Tuesday (and a sentiment I've shared on Bill's Blog before – that's a lot of alliteration with b's at the end of that sentence!).

    Hope everyone has a great day. See you all right back here tomorrow I hope.

  4. Agree that Tuesday's have been easier than Mondays recently but no complaints really.

    I love mint juleps, but I make them without the mint or the sugar…

    Auger…a boring tool? How late were you up doing these, Bill? 🙂

  5. For Israeli soccer commentators it helps that "Pele" in Hebrew (same pronunciation) means "a wonder"

  6. Frowned at first when ERECTOR SET appeared. That's it? But it turned out to be more fun than I thought finding words for "bunch of". Easier than Monday, I almost thought I wasn't going to finish yesterday.
    Here's my
    COOKIE JAR
    that I bought at a garage sale years ago for 5 bucks.
    He's adorable!

  7. Cute theme, and the grid was a breeze.
    @Bill, thanks for mentioning the Hollies' "Carrie Anne!" My middle name is Ann and sometimes people sing that lovely song to me.
    And @Jeff–LOL and LOL! You're quite the card today!
    Back tomorrow for more fun–:-D

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