LA Times Crossword Answers 8 Jul 15, Wednesday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: Jack McInturff
THEME: Three on a Match … today’s THREE themed answers start with word often seen following MATCH:

57A. Smoker’s superstitious no-no … and hint to the starts of 20-, 31- and 41-Across THREE ON A MATCH

20A. Formal education BOOK KNOWLEDGE (giving “matchbook”)
31A. Hold firm STICK TO ONE’S GUNS (giving “matchstick”)
41A. Sweets for one’s sweet BOX OF CHOCOLATES (giving “matchbox”)

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 7m 12s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. One in a semi circle? CBER
A CBer is someone who operates a Citizens’ Band radio. In 1945, the FCC set aside certain radio frequencies for the personal use of citizens. The use of the Citizens’ Band increased throughout the seventies as advances in electronics brought down the size of transceivers and their cost. There aren’t many CB radios sold these days though, as they have largely been replaced by cell phones.

5. “Peer Gynt” playwright IBSEN
Henrik Ibsen was a Norwegian playwright, considered by many to be the greatest playwright since William Shakespeare. Ibsen was famous for shocking his audiences by exploring subjects that offended the sensibilities of the day (the late 1800s).

Henrik Ibsen’s play “Peer Gynt” is based on a Scandinavian fairy tale “Per Gynt”. The incidental music to the play, written by Edvard Grieg, is some of the most approachable classical music ever written, at least in my humble opinion …

10. Chopped-up fare HASH
“Hash”, meaning a dish of beef and vegetables mashed together, is a very American term and one that really surprised me when I first came across it. “Hash” just seems like such an unappetizing item, but I soon found out how delicious it was. The name “hash” in this context comes from the French “hacher” meaning “to chop”. Back in the early 1900s the dish called “hashed browned potatoes” was developed, which quickly morphed into “hash browns”. From there the likes of corned beef hash was introduced.

14. In the style of, on trattoria menus ALLA
The phrase “in the style of” can be translated in “alla” in Italian and “à la” in French.

A trattoria is an Italian restaurant. In Italian, a “trattore” is the keeper of an eating house.

15. Mount in Exodus SINAI
According to the Bible, Mount Sinai is the mountain on which Moses was given the Ten Commandments. The Biblical Mount Sinai is probably not the mountain in Egypt that today has the same name, although this is the subject of much debate. The Egyptian Mount Sinai has two developed routes that one can take to reach the summit. The longer gentler climb takes about 2 1/2 hours, but there is also the steeper climb up the 3,750 “steps of penitence”.

16. Mighty Dog alternative ALPO
Alpo is a brand of dog food first produced by Allen Products in 1936, with “Alpo” being an abbreviation for “Allen Products”. Lorne Greene used to push Alpo in television spots, as did Ed McMahon and Garfield the Cat, would you believe?

Might Dog is a brand of dogfood made by Purina.

17. Links star McIlroy RORY
Rory McIlroy is an incredibly successful golfer from Northern Ireland. McIlroy is a relatively young man and the current world number one on the circuit, so folks can’t help but compare him to Tiger Woods. He is first European to win three different majors. Along with Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods, McIlroy is one of the only three people win three majors before the age of 25.

18. Court star Borg BJORN
Björn Borg is a retired tennis player from Sweden, and a former World No. 1. Borg won 41% of the 27 Grand Slam singles tournaments that he entered, which is a record that stands to the day. He was known for reacting very calmly under pressure on the tennis court and hence earned the nicknames “Ice Man” and “Ice Borg”, which is my personal favorite.

23. “Heidi” author Johanna SPYRI
“Heidi” is a Swiss children’s book written by Johanna Spyri and published in two parts. The first is “Heidi’s years of learning and travel”, and the second “Heidi makes use of what she has learned”. The books tell the story of a young girl in the care of her grandfather in the Swiss Alps.

25. Mil. training academy OCS
Officer Candidate School (OCS)

27. Legendary 15-Across climber MOSES
(15A. Mount in Exodus SINAI)
Moses is an important prophet in Christianity and Islam, and the most important prophet in Judaism. It fell to Moses to lead the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt across the Red Sea. He was given the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai, and then wandered the desert with his people for forty years. Moses then died within sight of the Promised Land.

46. “Ah, Wilderness!” mother ESSIE
“Ah, Wilderness!” is a comedy play by Eugene O’Neill that was first stage in 1933, on Broadway. “Ah, Wilderness!” was adapted into the musical film “Summer Holiday” that was released in 1948.

47. Fifth scale note SOL
Do, re, me, fa, sol …

48. 1950s-’70s TV heroine LASSIE
We owe the character Lassie to one Eric Knight who wrote a short story that he expanded into a novel called “Lassie Come Home”, published in 1940. “Lassie Come Home” was turned into a movie three years later, the first of a very successful franchise. The original Lassie (a female) was played by a dog called Pal, a male dog. In fact, all of the dogs that played Lassie over the years were males, because they looked better on camera, retaining a thick coat even during the summer months.

57. Smoker’s superstitious no-no … and hint to the starts of 20-, 31- and 41-Across THREE ON A MATCH
“Three on a match” is a superstition that apparently dates back to the Crimean War. If three people light their cigarette from the same match, then supposedly one of the soldiers would be killed. A further superstition, called “third on a match” was that the third soldier who gets the light would be killed. The rationale was that if an enemy sniper saw the light of a match, he would take aim as the first person takes the light, determine whether he was seeing friend or foe with the second lighting, and then shoot at the third lighting.

59. All-birds comic strip SHOE
The comic strip “Shoe” was drawn by Jeff MacNelly from 1977 until he died in 2000. The characters in the strip are all birds, birds who work as journalists. “Shoe” is particularly popular in Norway apparently.

61. Matter of fact DATUM
Our word “data” (singular “datum”) comes from the Latin “datum” meaning “given”. The idea is that data are “things given”.

62. Big Apple neighborhood above Houston Street NOHO
NoHo is short for North of Houston (street), and is the equivalent area to SoHo, South of Houston, both in New York City.

63. New Rochelle college IONA
Iona College is a Roman Catholic school run by Christian Brothers in New Rochelle, New York. The school’s sports teams are called the Iona Gaels, and the team mascot goes by the name Killian.

65. __ mater ALMA
The literal translation for the Latin term “alma mater” is “nourishing mother”. “Alma mater” was used in Ancient Rome to refer to mother goddesses, and in Medieval Christianity the term was used to refer to the Virgin Mary. Nowadays, one’s alma mater is the school one attended, either high school or college, usually one’s last place of education.

67. Ruhr Valley city ESSEN
Essen is a large industrial city located on the River Ruhr in western Germany.

Down
2. Hit just over the infield BLOOP
A bloop single is more usually called a blooper. It’s fly ball that drops for a single between an infielder and an outfielder (in baseball, of course!).

3. Judy Jetson’s brother ELROY
“The Jetsons” is an animated show from Hanna-Barbera that had its first run in 1962-1963, and then was recreated in 1985-1987. When it was debuted in 1963 by ABC, “The Jetsons” was the network’s first ever color broadcast. “The Jetsons” are like a space-age version of “The Flintstones”. The four Jetson family members are George and Jane, the parents, and children Judy and Elroy. Residing with the family are Rosie the household robot, and Astro the pet dog.

4. Fast-food tycoon RAY KROC
The McDonald’s chain of restaurants was founded in 1940 by the McDonald brothers, Richard and Maurice. The brothers introduced the famous McDonald’s production line system for making their hamburgers in 1948. There were 8 McDonald’s restaurants by 1955, when Ray Kroc opened the ninth restaurant, as a franchise. This first franchise led to the founding of the McDonald’s corporation (by the McDonald’s brothers) that we know today. Kroc worked as a franchise operator for a few years and then bought out the McDonald’s brothers in 1961 as they were not interested in further expansion. It was Kroc who led the company to its worldwide success.

5. Dust jacket ID ISBN
The International Standard Book Number (ISBN) was invented by one Gordon Foster who is now a professor at Trinity College Dublin in Ireland. The code was originally developed for booksellers, so that they had a unique number (and now a barcode) for each publication.

6. Delicate piece of jewelry BIJOU
The noun “bijou” is used for a small expensive trinket. “Bijou” is French for “jewel”.

7. Bamboozles SNOWS
It’s thought that the lovely word “bamboozle” came into English from the Scottish “bombaze” meaning “perplex”. We’ve been using “bamboozle” since the very early 1700s.

8. Country star Steve EARLE
Steve Earle is an American songwriter and performer, with a reputation as a man who has lived a hard life. Earle’s brushes with the law and drug addiction problems have earned him the nickname “the hardcore troubadour”.

9. Former Candlestick Park NFLer NINER
The San Francisco 49ers of the NFL have been playing their home games in the Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara since 2014. The team moved from the famous Candlestick Park, which they had been using since 1971. Levi’s Stadium will get a big boost in January 2016, as it is scheduled to host that year’s Super Bowl.

10. Intimidated, as a look HANGDOG
Hangdog is an adjective that can mean shamefaced and guilty, or downcast and intimidated. The word derives from the concept of a lowlife (a dog) only fit for hanging.

11. Protected from gusts ALEE
“Alee” is the direction away from the wind. If a sailor points into the wind, he or she is pointing “aweather”.

26. Like a dotted note, in mus. STAC
Staccato is a musical direction signifying that notes should be played in a disconnected form. The opposite of staccato would be legato, long and continuous notes played very smoothly.

30. Fed. IDs SSNS
The main purpose of a Social Security Number (SSN) is to track individuals for the purposes of taxation, although given its ubiquitous use, it is looking more and more like an “identity number” to me. The social security number system was introduced in 1936. Prior to 1986, an SSN was required only for persons with substantial income so many children under 14 had no number assigned. For some years the IRS had a concern that a lot of people were claiming children on their tax returns who did not actually exist. So, from 1986 onward, it is a requirement to get an SSN for any dependents over the age of 5. Sure enough, in 1987 seven million dependents “disappeared”.

31. Drink brand with a lizard logo SOBE
The brand name SoBe can be found on teas, juices and bottled waters. SoBe is an abbreviation for South Beach, the neighborhood in Miami Beach, Florida.

32. Bills with Jefferson on them TWOS
The US two-dollar bill features a portrait of Thomas Jefferson. The bill was introduced in 1862, and withdrawn in 1966. It was reintroduced in 1976, and is still legal tender. That said, there are relatively few two-dollar bills in circulation. Some people even hold that possession of a two-dollar bill is bad luck.

33. “What You Need” band INXS
INXS (pronounced “in excess”) was a rock band from Australia. The band formed in 1977 in Sydney as the Farriss Brothers, as three of the original lineups were indeed brothers.

34. __Kosh B’gosh OSH
OshKosh B’gosh is a company that produces and sells children’s clothes. The trademark OshKosh bib-overalls remind us of the company’s roots, as it was originally a manufacturer of adult work clothes based in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

36. Japanese chip maker NEC
NEC is the name that the Nippon Electric Company chose for itself outside of Japan after a rebranding exercise in 1983.

37. Grandson of Eve ENOS
Enos, as the son of Seth, was the grandson of Adam and Eve.

44. Rich topsoil LOAM
Loam is soil made up of sand, silt and clay in the ratio of about 40-40-20. Relative to other soil types, loam is is usually rich in nutrients and moisture, drains well and is easy to till. Loam can also be used in constructing houses as it is quite strong when mixed with straw and dried.

49. Marsh plant SEDGE
Sedges are a family of plants that resemble grasses and rushes. Sedges are more properly called Cyperaceae.

50. “Captain Phillips” military group SEALS
SEAL is an acronym used by the US Navy’s SEa, Air and Land teams. The SEALs were born out of the Navy’s special warfare groups from WWII, like the Underwater Demolition Teams and the Motor Torpedo Boat Squadrons. The Navy SEAL unit was established soon after President Kennedy’s famous speech in which he announced the plan to put a man on the moon, as in the same speech the president allocated $100m of funding to strengthen special operations forces. The Navy used some of this money to set up guerrilla and counter-guerrilla units, which soon became the SEALs.

I’ve seen so many films recently that are “based on real events”, and one always has to ask, how much liberty have the screenwriter and director taken with the truth. I saw “Captain Phillips” when it first came out, and then read a “New York Times” article that basically called the whole thing fiction, a rewriting of history. But, it is still a very engaging film …

51. Greek vowels IOTAS
Iota is the ninth letter in the Greek alphabet. We use the word “iota” to portray something very small as it is the smallest of all Greek letters.

54. Ring-shaped reef ATOLL
An atoll is a coral island that is shaped in a ring and enclosing a lagoon. There is still some debate as to how an atoll forms, but a theory proposed by Charles Darwin while on his famous voyage aboard HMS Beagle still holds sway. Basically an atoll was once a volcanic island that had subsided and fallen into the sea. The coastline of the island is home to coral growth which persists even as the island continues to subside internal to the circling coral reef.

55. Noodlehead SCHMO
“Schmo” (also “shmo”) is American slang for a dull or boring person, from the Yiddish word “shmok”.

56. Young pig SHOAT
“Shoat” is a name given to a young hog, after it has been weaned.

58. Response to a sermon AMEN
Our word “sermon” comes from the Latin “sermonem” meaning “discourse, talk”. The literal translation of “sermonem” is “a stringing together of words”, from the Latin “serere” meaning “to join”, as in the related word “series”.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. One in a semi circle? CBER
5. “Peer Gynt” playwright IBSEN
10. Chopped-up fare HASH
14. In the style of, on trattoria menus ALLA
15. Mount in Exodus SINAI
16. Mighty Dog alternative ALPO
17. Links star McIlroy RORY
18. Court star Borg BJORN
19. Spiffy NEAT
20. Formal education BOOK KNOWLEDGE (giving “matchbook”)
23. “Heidi” author Johanna SPYRI
24. Entry before a password USER ID
25. Mil. training academy OCS
27. Legendary 15-Across climber MOSES
31. Hold firm STICK TO ONE’S GUNS (giving “matchstick”)
38. Rent alternative OWN
39. Pasty ASHEN
40. Quaint quarters INN
41. Sweets for one’s sweet BOX OF CHOCOLATES (giving “matchbox”)
46. “Ah, Wilderness!” mother ESSIE
47. Fifth scale note SOL
48. 1950s-’70s TV heroine LASSIE
53. Collect AMASS
57. Smoker’s superstitious no-no … and hint to the starts of 20-, 31- and 41-Across THREE ON A MATCH
59. All-birds comic strip SHOE
61. Matter of fact DATUM
62. Big Apple neighborhood above Houston Street NOHO
63. New Rochelle college IONA
64. Reason to wear shades GLARE
65. __ mater ALMA
66. Bird’s place NEST
67. Ruhr Valley city ESSEN
68. Congeal CLOT

Down
1. Pasta nutrients CARBS
2. Hit just over the infield BLOOP
3. Judy Jetson’s brother ELROY
4. Fast-food tycoon RAY KROC
5. Dust jacket ID ISBN
6. Delicate piece of jewelry BIJOU
7. Bamboozles SNOWS
8. Country star Steve EARLE
9. Former Candlestick Park NFLer NINER
10. Intimidated, as a look HANGDOG
11. Protected from gusts ALEE
12. Place to relax SPA
13. On a streak HOT
21. Fourth-down call KICK
22. Lowers with a switch DIMS
26. Like a dotted note, in mus. STAC
28. Court filing SUIT
29. Kin of -ess -ENNE
30. Fed. IDs SSNS
31. Drink brand with a lizard logo SOBE
32. Bills with Jefferson on them TWOS
33. “What You Need” band INXS
34. __Kosh B’gosh OSH
35. “My, my!” OHO!
36. Japanese chip maker NEC
37. Grandson of Eve ENOS
42. Homeowner’s winter option OIL HEAT
43. Reaction from a chicken FEAR
44. Rich topsoil LOAM
45. Annual reference volume ALMANAC
49. Marsh plant SEDGE
50. “Captain Phillips” military group SEALS
51. Greek vowels IOTAS
52. Harden ENURE
54. Ring-shaped reef ATOLL
55. Noodlehead SCHMO
56. Young pig SHOAT
57. A whole lot TONS
58. Response to a sermon AMEN
59. Offense SIN
60. Ground breaker HOE

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16 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 8 Jul 15, Wednesday”

  1. Decently enjoyable grid. 1 error involving a strange (badly clued, as it more relates to soldiers who smoke than smokers in general) superstition of 100 years ago, which allowed the rest of the grid to fall into line (namely due South) easily when fixed.

  2. @Jeff from yesterday's puzzle: Nos is a pronoun that accompanies the conjugated form of certain 1st person plural verbs (in other words, the form that goes with "we"). So for the verb "to leave," which is irse in its unconjugated form, "we leave" is "nos vamos." But, you can also say "nos vamos" a different way. You can add the pronoun "nos" to the end of the verb "vamos" in this example, and then drop the s, and say "Vamonos." "Vamonos" = "Nos Vamos." Vamos translates to "we go," so depending on the context, you can interchangeable say either vamos or vamonos. But, the two verbal expressions derive from different verbs, so they are not strictly interchangeable. Vamos comes from the verb ir (without the se at the end).

  3. I have a hard time with the flash program with the LA Times, the latency and crashes are numerous. Not so with the Washington Post crossword, which appears to be the same flash program. Does anyone know of a fix, I've tried google help and I've done everything they recommend but no change.

    Or is there another site running the same puzzle?

  4. I had a slow slog to finishing this puzzle. I had one error for the for the ending letter in 31 Down "Drink brand with a lizard logo" where I inserted an "o" where an "e" was needed. Because I had no idea who "Ah, Wilderness" Mother was "Ossie" looked fine to me until I got to Bill's blog and saw her name was "Essie" – Oh well!

    Hope you all get over the hump without too much drama today. See you back here to tomorrow.

  5. Wow this puzzle really took ATOLL on me… Maybe I'm still recovering from the trauma of customs and immigration over the weekend, but I just couldn't get any momentum going. This took me what a normal Friday takes me. Perhaps I should take Vidwan's advice and go to Dubai and go through their customs…..

    HANGDOG, NOODLEHEAD, SCHMO….who says that?? (ok – maybe SCHMO)….

    Then I had my own noodlehead issues – I wrote ISBEN rather than IBSEN after putting ISBN. That led to a mess until I straightened it out. I had CLOG instead of CLOT, DELTA instead of SEALS (I never saw the movie). LASSIE?? I was only thinking human.

    Incidentally, ISBN number is another redundancy like ATM machine and PIN number….

    Good puzzle I guess, but I sure had my struggles.

    @Henry – Thanks and yes I understand all of those aspects of the construction and derivation. Everything you say there is correct. I was speaking strictly in terms of usage and specifically usage in the imperative form only for both. I've been to every Spanish speaking country in this hemisphere (except Cuba), and you really do get different answers as to usage of both vamos and vamonos . You could probably write a book on that subject alone….but you'll need and ISBN number….

    Best –

  6. Started with OSH. I look for the fill-in-the-blank clues first. ETTE instead of ENNE, but INN fixed that. Finished unassisted, but LASSIE took forever.
    @Bruce Johnson Google: "la crossword mensa" to get to the puzzle. It's pretty reliable.

  7. @ Bruce Johnson – LA Times puzzle requires the latest version of Flash (18). If you use Firefox instead of Explorer that version does not get updated automatically. Try updating from Adobe if this is the case.

    Bjorn Borg – When he won his first major he was just 18. Bud Collins, the legendary tennis announcer who was always on PBS broadcast matches, called him "Teen Angel". That's my favorite Borg nickname.

    NOHO was a new one on me. Always heard of SOHO though.

  8. Bruce Johnson – Try L A Crossword yahoo games.

    I had a tough time, a lil help, and I still enjoyed it very much. I was unfamiliar with some words like NoHo, SoBe and Shoat – and Essie and INXS.

    Re: Shoat – — All I know about pigs is ….. a Tax Lawyer once quoted in a seminar about tax avoidance in so-called tax shelters …' Pigs get fat, Hogs get slaughtered,'

    I have several paper rolls of $2 bills, uncut, with 16 'bills' on each roll, that I purchased a long time ago, from the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.

    I have been reading about how the banks in Greece are running out of money (Euros -)…. and my question is – can't they print their own bills ? Surely, they must have a printing press somewhere. I guess it isn't as simple as all that – or they would have thought of it a long time ago. Although one blog asserted that the greeks have the 'plates' ( and the equipment – ) to print the 20 Euro notes …. even that could become very useful…. Here a 20, There a 20, everywhere a 20, 20 ….

    Have a nice day, all.

  9. In reference to @Bruce Johnson: What the others say is good. Also you might look into running a filter/blocker. While I don't begrudge honest people looking for ad revenue, there's a number of sites that ruin it for all by loading it down with connected sites (all it takes is one to be slow/for the site not to load), and making it a requirement to have a good browsing experience. LA Times games is the biggest offender I'm aware of (something like 37 sites or so if I even counted right with the filtering turned off, the filter report FILLED the screen and then some).

    @Piano Man: It does if you set it to do it. Mine's been doing a pretty good job here.

    @all: The stories behind the $2 bill's existence and use are perhaps the most interesting part of currency, namely the ones where military groups were paid these in order to make a point of economic impact to certain towns. But the old Taco Bell stories (and like re. dollar coins) of how people think they are counterfeit are fun as well.

  10. DNF – BLOOP crosses RORY got me – Sports, of course.

    Never heard of the smoker's superstition, but got that from crosses.

    @Jeff – I say HANGDOG and SCHMO – and Shmoo. Must be oldster stuff.

    @Vidwan – printing $ has a lot to do with what goods are behind it. There's an expression about two few goods chasing too many dollars. That's how inflation is created. But, I'd love to see what happens, as an experiment, say. However, unless Greece figures out what it takes to actually collect taxes and avoid baksheesh, they'll end up in the same spot, again.
    I can't help but think how so many of our ideas of philosophy, math, architecture, and, yes, gov't, are based on the Greeks. What happened?
    And I cannot understand why the Northern countries trusted any of the Southern ones to tow the line. The expression, "Dolce far niente" comes to mind as a description of the Southern countries who really know how to relax and use the heat as an excuse to do nothing.

  11. Glenn, try NoScript. I use it and have no problems with the LAT website. It allows you to selectively block or allow all scripts on a web page.

    Vamanos, vamos, etc. are all conjugations of the spanish verb "ir" – to go. Adding the reflexive me, se, nos, vos, etc. does not change that.

  12. And "Amen" in Hebrew comes from a root denoting "truth" and therefore has the connotation of"it is so". A reliable person in Israel today is known to be "amin" – a very complimentary adjective.

  13. @Willie D The response was more for Bruce Johnson. Though, I will second NoScript as a good one to look at. I use Adblock Plus and Ghostery as well, and if one doesn't solve the problem, one of the other two do.

  14. Thank you Sfingi for Dolce far niente – delicious idleness or sheer indulgent relaxation.

    Another phrase I came across in the NYT was …. 'usque tandem abutere ( Catiline ) patientia nostra' …. which means, – how long will you abuse our patience ( continuously ) Catiline ?

    This was a part of the speech by Cicero, the orator against a fellow 'elector' Catiline in the Roman Senate in 63 BCE. Catiline was trying to make a coup d'etat against the Rpman Senate….

    Have a Nice evening, all.

  15. @Carrie Re. Tuesday I think I'm noticing this more as the week is going on, and finding that the Wednesday and Thursday puzzles were much easier for me than the Monday/Tuesday ones. I have to wonder if badly re-purposed grids are the reason why this is the case this week.

    Now if only I can get down my error, lookup, and DNF count…

  16. @ Willie – I say Henry's right. "Ir" and "irse" are two different verbs. Or at least they can be so considered.
    Really, we are ALL right, but I love discussions of Spanish… my favorite language.
    I think this week's grids are harder than usual! What might this portend?!
    At this rate I'll NEVER finish a Friday!!
    See you all mañana!!

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