LA Times Crossword Answers 15 Sep 15, Tuesday

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CROSSWORD SETTER: Jerome Gunderson
THEME: Hear T … each of today’s themed answers ends with a silent letter T, so we can’t HEAR T:

41A. Valentine symbol … or, when read as two words, what you can’t do when the answers to starred clues are spoken HEART (or “hear T”)

17A. *”The Color Purple,” for Oprah Winfrey MOVIE DEBUT
66A. *Special Forces soldier GREEN BERET
10D. *1990s Reform Party candidate H ROSS PEROT
30D. *Boneless seafood option FISH FILLET

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 6m 46s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today’s Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. High-ranking Indian RAJA
“Raja” (also “rajah”) is word derived from Sanskrit that is used particularly in India for a monarch or princely ruler. The female form is “rani” (also “ranee”) and is used for a raja’s wife.

5. Jack rabbits, e.g. HARES
A jackrabbit is a large hare that is native to North America. The animal was given its name because of its relatively long ears, with the term being a melding of “jackass” and “rabbit”.

10. Mr. Ed’s foot HOOF
The sitcom “Mister Ed” first aired in 1961 and ran for almost five years. It was a very successful show (and even made it to Ireland!). Mister Ed, the talking horse, was a palomino that had the real name of Bamboo Harvester. Mister Ed’s “voice” was that of actor Allan “Rocky” Lane, a star of a lot of B-movie westerns from the forties and fifties. In the show, Mister Ed would only talk to the lead (human) character Wilbur, played by Alan Young, leading to some hilarious situations. Mister Ed had a stunt double and stand-in for the show, another horse called Pumpkin. Pumpkin later made frequent appearances on the show “Green Acres”.

14. Like Bond foes EVIL
James Bond is the creation of the writer Ian Fleming. Fleming “stole” the James Bond name from an American ornithologist. The number 007 was “stolen” from the real-life, 16th century English spy called John Dee. Dee would sign his reports to Queen Elizabeth I with a stylized “007” to indicate that the reports were for “her eyes only”.

15. RLX automaker ACURA
Acura is a division of the Honda Motor Company, their luxury brand. As an aside, Infiniti is the equivalent luxury brand for the Nissan Motor Company, and Lexus is the more luxurious version of Toyota’s models.

16. Bring down with a big ball RAZE
To “raze” (in UK English “rase”) is to level to the ground. How odd is it that “raise”, a homophone of “raze”, means to build up??!!

17. *”The Color Purple,” for Oprah Winfrey MOVIE DEBUT
Oprah Winfrey’s multimedia production company is known as Harpo Studios. “Harpo” is “Oprah” spelled backwards, and is also the name of the husband of the character Winfrey played in the movie “The Color Purple”.

20. Soccer game tie, often ONE ALL
In soccer, a score of one goal apiece is usually referred to as “one all”.

27. Retailer known for little blue boxes TIFFANY’S
The Tiffany’s jewelry company is headquartered in New York City. The flagship Tiffany’s store is located at the corner of Fifth Avenue and 57th Street in Manhattan, and of course featured in the delightful Audrey Hepburn movie “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”. Tiffany’s has a longstanding association with the color blue. Tiffany’s mail-order catalog is called the “Blue Book”, and has been published since 1845. Items purchased from Tiffany’s are presented in a light blue box, usually with a white ribbon.

33. Singer Amos TORI
Tori Amos is an American pianist and singer. Amos started playing the piano at two years old, and was composing piano pieces by age five. She was playing in piano bars (chaperoned by her father) when she was 14. I’m going to have to find some of her music (I lead such a sheltered life …)!

34. Bottom corner of a square sail CLEW
Each corner and each edge of a sail has a specific name. For triangular sails, the top corner is the “head”, the lower corner at the mast is the “tack”, and the corner furthest from the mast is the “clew”. The bottom edge of the sail is the “foot”, the leading edge is the “luff”, and the trailing edge is the “leech”.

41. Valentine symbol … or, when read as two words, what you can’t do when the answers to starred clues are spoken HEART (or “hear T”)
Saint Valentine’s Day was chosen by Pope Gelasius I in 496 AD to honor various martyrs with the name Valentine. However, the saints’ day was dropped by the Roman Catholic church in 1969, by Pope Paul VI. Try telling that to Hallmark though …

43. Dallas quarterback Tony ROMO
Tony Romo is a quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys. Romo is also an avid amateur golfer and has even tried (unsuccessfully) to qualify for the US Open golf championship.

48. Monk’s title FRA
The title “Fra” (brother) is used by Italian monks.

56. Car in a ’60s song GTO
The 1964 song “G.T.O” was the debut recording for the surf rock group from the sixties known as Ronny & the Daytonas.

58. Off-road transp. ATV
All-terrain vehicle (ATV)

60. Horseshoe-shaped letters OMEGAS
Omega is the last letter of the Greek alphabet and is the one that looks like a horseshoe. The word “omega” literally means “great O” (O-mega). Compare this with the Greek letter Omicron meaning “little O” (O-micron).

65. Inland Asian sea ARAL
The Aral Sea is a great example of how man can have a devastating effect on his environment. In the early sixties the Aral Sea covered 68,000 square miles of Central Asia. Soviet Union irrigation projects drained the lake to such an extent that today the total area is less than 7,000 square miles, with 90% of the lake now completely dry. Sad …

66. *Special Forces soldier GREEN BERET
The US Army Special Forces are known as the Green Berets because they wear … green berets. The Green Beret is also worn by the Royal Marines of the British Army. When US Army Rangers and OSS operatives were trained by the Royal Marines in Scotland during WWII, graduates of the gruelling training program were awarded green berets by their British instructors. The US soldiers, although proud of their new headgear, were not allowed to wear it as part of their uniform and had to wait until 1961 when President Kennedy authorized the green beret for exclusive use by US Special Forces.

69. Words on a Wonderland cake EAT ME
In Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”, Alice follows the white rabbit down a rabbit hole and finds a bottle labelled “DRINK ME”. When she drinks the contents, it causes her to shrink. She also sees a cake adorned with the words “EAT ME”, and when she eats the cake she grows so big she finds it hard to stand up. After eating the cake, she utters the famous words, “Curiouser and curiouser”.

70. Turkish currency LIRA
The word “lira” is used in a number of countries for currency. “Lira” comes from the Latin for “pound” and is derived from a British pound sterling, the value of a Troy pound of silver. For example, the lira (plural “lire”) was the official currency of Italy before the country changed over to the euro in 2002.

72. Got off one’s duff STOOD
“Duff” is a slang term for the buttocks, rump. The exact etymology isn’t known, but the term dates back to the 1830s.

73. Mexico City problem SMOG
“Smog” is a portmanteau word formed by melding “smoke” and “fog”. The term was first used to describe the air around London in the early 1900s.

Mexico City is the capital of Mexico, and much like Washington, D.C., is a federal district and is not part of any of the 31 Mexican states. It is the oldest capital city in the whole of the Americas, and was originally built by the Aztecs in 1325 as Tenochtitlan. Mexico City was one of the most polluted cities in the world in the 1990s. A clean-up program has been very successful, so that the city now has levels of pollution similar to Los Angeles. Believe it or not, that’s a dramatic improvement …

Down
1. Riviera resort San __ REMO
The Italian city of San Remo sits on the Mediterranean, right on the border with France. In Italian the city is named Sanremo, just one word, although the spelling of “San Remo” dates back to ancient times.

“Riviera” is an Italian word meaning “coastline”. The term is often applied to a coastline that is sunny and popular with tourists. The term “the Riviera” is usually reserved for the French Riviera (the Mediterranean coastline in southeastern France), and the Italian Riviera (the Mediterranean coastline centered on Genoa).

2. CoverGirl competitor AVON
In 1886, a young man called David McConnell was selling books door-to-door. To enhance his sales numbers he was giving out free perfume to the ladies of the houses that he visited. Seeing as his perfume was more popular than his books, he founded the California Perfume Company in New York City and started manufacturing and selling across the country. The company name was changed to Avon in 1939, and the famous “Avon Calling” marketing campaign was launched in 1954.

CoverGirl is an American cosmetics company that was founded in 1961. CoverGirl has always tried to supply a wide range of products at reasonable prices.

3. Jazzy jargon JIVE
“Jive” is the name given to the jargon associated with early jazz and swing music.

4. Et __: and others ALIA
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).

9. Lascivious deities SATYRS
The satyrs of Greek mythology came with a very high sex drive. They are the “rude” male subjects drawn on the side of old Greek vases. The nubile maidens known as nymphs were often an object of attention for the satyrs.

“Lascivious” is such an appropriate-sounding word, I always think. It means lecherous or salacious.

10. *1990s Reform Party candidate H ROSS PEROT
Ross Perot graduated from the US Naval Academy in 1953, as president of his class. Perot served his 4-year commitment but then resigned his commission, apparently having become somewhat disillusioned with the navy. He was ranked number 101 on the Forbes 400 List of Richest Americans in 2012, and at that time was worth about $3.5 billion. Back in 1992, Perot ran as an independent candidate for US president. He founded the Reform Party in 1995, and ran as the Reform Party candidate for president in 1996.

11. Hall’s pop music partner OATES
Daryl Hall & John Oates are a pop music duo, most successful in the late seventies and early eighties. They had six number one hits, including the 1982 release “Maneater”.

12. Holey layer OZONE
Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) are the propellants that were once used in aerosols. CFCs make their way up into the ozone layer and trigger a chain reaction that converts ozone (O3) into regular oxygen (O2). That conversion creates “holes” in the ozone layer. Regular O2 is good stuff, but we need O3 to absorb harmful UV radiation raining down on us. CFC is not good stuff …

18. Site of Napoleon’s exile ELBA
Napoleon was sent into exile twice. A coalition of European powers sent him to the island of Elba in Tuscany in 1814, only for him to escape after a year and return to power. After Wellington defeated him at Waterloo, Napoleon was dispatched to the British-owned island of St. Helena in the South Atlantic, where he spent the last six years of his life.

24. Pilgrim Standish MYLES
Myles Standish was one of the passengers on the Mayflower, and had been hired by the Pilgrims as military advisor for their planned colony in the New World. Standish served as commander of the Plymouth Colony from its founding until his passing in 1656, at the age of 72.

27. Sporty car roof T-TOP
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.

28. State whose straw poll was discontinued in 2015 IOWA
The city of Ames, Iowa is famous for holding the now-defunct Ames Straw Poll (also “Iowa Straw Poll) in advance of presidential elections. The poll in question was used to gauge the level of support for two or more Republican candidates, although non-Republicans were allowed to cast a vote. To vote one had to be an Iowa resident and had buy a ticket to the fundraising dinner at which the vote is taken. The event got a lot of coverage, so it boosted the local economy as journalists hit the town. It was a very successful fundraiser for the Republican Party in Iowa as well, but the usefulness of the straw poll in predicting the eventual winner of the nomination was less clear. There were six straw polls from its inception in 1979, and just 2 out of the 6 times the poll winner went on to capture the party’s nomination. The Republican Party decided to pull the plug on the event in 2015.

29. Banjo ridge FRET
A fret is a metal strip embedded in the neck of a stringed instrument, like a guitar perhaps. The fingers press on the frets, shortening a string and hence changing the note played. The note increases by one semitone as a finger shortens a string by one fret.

The instrument that we know today as the banjo is a derivative of instruments that were used in Africa.

37. Norse mischief-maker LOKI
Loki is a god appearing in Norse mythology. He is a “shape-shifter”, a being who can appear in different forms. In one story about Loki, he was punished by other gods for having caused the death of Baldr, the god of light and beauty. Loki is bound to a sharp rock using the entrails of one of his sons. A serpent drips venom which is collected in a bowl, and then his wife must empty the venom onto Loki when the bowl is full. The venom causes Loki great pain, and his writhing results in what we poor mortals experience as earthquakes.

38. Love, to Ovid AMOR
The Roman poet Publius Ovidius Naso is today known simply as Ovid. Ovid is usually listed alongside the two other great Roman poets: Horace and Virgil. Ovid was very popular in his day, but somehow he fell foul of Emperor Augustus. For a reason unknown today, Augustus banished Ovid to Tomis, an island in the Black Sea. He lived there for about ten years, until he died.

39. Oxen harness YOKE
A yoke is a wooden beam used between a pair of oxen so that they are forced to work together.

45. “No seats” letters SRO
Standing Room Only (SRO)

51. Gestation location WOMB
The normal gestation period for humans is 280 days, a little over 9 months. The gestation period can be a little shorter, or longer. Back in 1945, a pregnancy was confirmed at 375 days, just over a year.

52. Shrimp relative PRAWN
The terms “prawn” and “shrimp” are often used interchangeable on menus. Over the UK, the term “prawn” is most common, while “shrimp” is seen more often here in North America. Sometimes there is a differentiation from a food standpoint, with “prawn” being used for larger species and “shrimp” for smaller species. As a result, “jumbo prawns” seems to be an acceptable descriptor for a dish, whereas “jumbo shrimp” seems to be an oxymoron.

55. Fender guitar model, briefly STRAT
The Stratocaster is an electric guitar made by Fender since 1954. The company that made Fender electric guitars was founded in Fullerton, California in 1946 by Leo Fender.

59. White House no VETO
“Veto” comes directly from Latin and means “I forbid”. The word was used by tribunes of Ancient Rome to indicate that they opposed measures passed by the Senate.

67. Punk rock offshoot 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 …

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. High-ranking Indian RAJA
5. Jack rabbits, e.g. HARES
10. Mr. Ed’s foot HOOF
14. Like Bond foes EVIL
15. RLX automaker ACURA
16. Bring down with a big ball RAZE
17. *”The Color Purple,” for Oprah Winfrey MOVIE DEBUT
19. Great Plains tribe OTOE
20. Soccer game tie, often ONE ALL
21. Infiltrator SPY
22. Email command SEND
23. Hitch, as a ride BUM
25. Long locks TRESSES
27. Retailer known for little blue boxes TIFFANY’S
32. Maple output SAP
33. Singer Amos TORI
34. Bottom corner of a square sail CLEW
36. Pass along RELAY
40. Is obliged to pay OWES
41. Valentine symbol … or, when read as two words, what you can’t do when the answers to starred clues are spoken HEART (or “hear T”)
43. Dallas quarterback Tony ROMO
44. Hiking trails PATHS
46. Word before cook or burn SLOW
47. “Yeah, yeah, I get it” OK, OK
48. Monk’s title FRA
50. Winter traction aid SNOW TIRE
52. Game divisions PERIODS
56. Car in a ’60s song GTO
57. Stagger REEL
58. Off-road transp. ATV
60. Horseshoe-shaped letters OMEGAS
65. Inland Asian sea ARAL
66. *Special Forces soldier GREEN BERET
68. Dry with a towel WIPE
69. Words on a Wonderland cake EAT ME
70. Turkish currency LIRA
71. Egg container NEST
72. Got off one’s duff STOOD
73. Mexico City problem SMOG

Down
1. Riviera resort San __ REMO
2. CoverGirl competitor AVON
3. Jazzy jargon JIVE
4. Et __: and others ALIA
5. Went for a burger, say HAD LUNCH
6. Unhittable serve ACE
7. Pre-grilling spice mixtures RUBS
8. Blow one’s stack ERUPT
9. Lascivious deities SATYRS
10. *1990s Reform Party candidate H ROSS PEROT
11. Hall’s pop music partner OATES
12. Holey layer OZONE
13. Nourishes FEEDS
18. Site of Napoleon’s exile ELBA
24. Pilgrim Standish MYLES
26. Corn serving EAR
27. Sporty car roof T-TOP
28. State whose straw poll was discontinued in 2015 IOWA
29. Banjo ridge FRET
30. *Boneless seafood option FISH FILLET
31. Tapes up tightly SEALS
35. Like a test answer with an “x” next to it WRONG
37. Norse mischief-maker LOKI
38. Love, to Ovid AMOR
39. Oxen harness YOKE
42. Black-and-white, e.g. TWO-TONED
45. “No seats” letters SRO
49. Traditional sayings ADAGES
51. Gestation location WOMB
52. Shrimp relative PRAWN
53. Spooky EERIE
54. Brings in REAPS
55. Fender guitar model, briefly STRAT
59. White House no VETO
61. Slim swimmers EELS
62. Bleak GRIM
63. Prefix with dynamic AERO-
64. Guys-only STAG
67. Punk rock offshoot EMO

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10 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword Answers 15 Sep 15, Tuesday”

  1. Pretty quick Tuesday. The "H" added to Perot was a little sneaky.
    The best JIVE I ever heard was in the movie Airplane.

    @Carrie
    This is for you: After the last square was filled in, I sat there afinished looking over the puzzle….

    Best –

  2. Most of my time (about 3X Bill's total) got took on the bottom left. Overall, though, another relatively smooth grid, zero errors.

  3. A typical Monday/Tuesday duo. My two strike overs were for 20 Across "Soccer game tie often" that I first stuck in one one before I saw the grid wanted one all and 24 Down for which I put in Miles first instead of what I then corrected to Myles.

    Hope you all have a good Tuesday. It's raining hard out here, which was a critical need for all of California and tomorrow they say that the huge "Valley fire" will get rain, which is even more important for the beleaguered fire fighters up north.

  4. Got almost nothing of NW corner.
    I thought a monk was referred to as Brother. What am I missing?

    Have friends and relatives affected by the Valley Fire. Son in law helping organize relief supplies. I am sooooo glad rain is forcast.

    Bella

  5. Never mind-finally saw Bill's Italian monk explanation.
    Nit-picky–if the answer is Italian, maybe the clue should suggest that?
    Bella

  6. Yaay!!! RAIN!!
    INNINGS before PERIODS, MILES before MYLES.
    ONE-ONE before ONE ALL.
    HAD LUNCH and MOVIE DEBUT were surprises.
    Fun puzzle and finally got everything corrected.

  7. @Jeff-ha ha! And then you were aflush with pride…
    Well, I couldn't finish this easy puzzle, because I did it online with my tablet! What's the deal?! I couldn't see the whole grid, and when I fixed that I couldn't see the entire list of clues. An exercise in frustration… had to throw in the towel.
    That's what I get for tossing out the recycling too soon! At one a.m. I actually considered going downstairs in the rain to dig thru the bin and salvage today's newspaper.
    At least it's raining, thank heavens, so we've got that going for us.

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